Monthly Archives: December 2012

Reflections

With today being the last day of 2012, I’m like many of you – reflectingreviewing the year we’re leaving behind. When it comes to sewing, I usually keep a notebook by my machine to record all the projects that I’ve worked on… it’s always amazing to see how productive I was (last year I had a whopping 154 projects!). I did the same this year. However sometime around July I just gave it up… I blame the notebook. Previous years I recorded my projects in a pretty, “leather” bound memo pad, but this year I opted for the cheap, composition book and decided to categorize all my projects by pattern designerwebsitemy own design as well as attempt to record embroidery only projects. This, was my downfall – too complicated of a system. 2013 will be different…. I have a new notebook lined up and plan on no system at all!

With that said, I’m excited about the upcoming year and what it brings: new tutorials, a few projects for WeAllSew and SewNews, as well as an item in the upcoming One Yard Wonders (3) book – not to mention the assortment of clothing, accessories, and whimseys that appear here. Happy New Year to everyone and I’m looking forward to another year of sharing sewing fun!

Hello, My Name Is…

Rounding out the last of the last minute gifts…. a present for my future niece or nephew! My sister-in-law recently announced that they are expecting in July and I couldn’t resist whipping up a little something himher. Since it’s still too early to know the gender, I went with a neutral white onesie and transferred a “Hello” name badge onto the the front. I like to add a sharpie or fabric marker to the bag so they can write in the name – it makes for an adorable photo (or fun gender announcement).

Linky Thursday

It may be too cold outside to go camping, but it’s always the right temperature when you have a plush felt version!

If you’re looking for a simple, but sharp way to keep warm this New Year’s Eve, stitch up a gorgeous faux fur caplet!

Next time you have to bring a dish to a pot luck, bring it in style.

Keep the kids warm and snuggly with a new pair of pjs (or if they’re like my kids, they hardly change out of them over break).

A pretty way to give a journal to a little girl (although I could definitely modifying for adults, teens, and even boys).

I’m actually not sure how I feel about this shirred legwarmer tutorial, but it’s an interesting way to practice a shirring technique.

Love the look of buttons, but hate to make buttonholes? This Fold-Over Button Pillow give a mock button-up look, without having to make that extra step (plus its a cute project too). It would look great paired up with this Faux Pleated Pillow.

It may be too late to use these adorable Liberty of London Elf Stockings this year, but it’s never too early to start thinking ahead to next – only 363 days until Christmas!

This Kate Spade knock-off may be labeled as a diaper bag, but I’m thinking it’ll make one hot tote for spring!

Whether you’re planning on traveling or just got new brushes as a stocking stuffer, this make-up brush roll is a great way to keep them neat and tidy.

I remember flip chairs when I was in college – now you can learn how to make your own (I’m thinking Easton would love one of these).

This batwing top is perfect for a casual holiday gathering.

Last Minute Gifts

I hope that everyone had an enjoyable and very Merry Christmas! This year, I was doing some ‘down to the wire’ sewing for holiday gifts – fortunately most of them were small projects so I wasn’t up too late finishing them. One of my favorite last-minute items is a golf towel that I created for Taylor (it is meant to go with a “My Sack – Girls Need Balls to Golf” gag-ish type gift). I used the embroidery unit on my machine and Urban Thread’s Skully Golf design to create this project. While the pile on this towel is relatively low, it is a very thick towel – so I opted to use a cut away stabilizer for the back, but decided to omit a ‘topper’. I’m not sure if this was quite the right thing to do as the design still sunk into the fibers of the towel quite a bit and there is a bit more pink showing through than what I think should, but considering it will get dirty quickly (if she uses it), I’m not sure that she’ll mind.

On another ‘crafty’ note, we tried something new with a few of our gifts this year…. ‘chalkboard wrapping paper’! We used black wrapping paper and a white paint pen to give them a blackboard appearance – the kids had fun decorating and drawing on them, plus it eliminates the need for gift tags! I’m definitely keeping this in mind with future packages!

Pizza Roll Pillow

What’s the best part about sewing? Being able to make just about anything you can dream up! My daughter had an idea for a Christmas gift for her boyfriend, a pizza roll pillow (apparently, he eats a lot of pizza rolls), but never found anything remotely similar to what she was looking for…. so she asked me to make one. The photo on the left is what I came up with. The lettering and banners have all been created and fused with Wonder Under and the pizza roll images were made by enlarging the actual photos from the box, printing them on a t-shirt transfer (made for darks so that the fabric doesn’t bleed through the photo), and ironing them directly onto the pillow. I think it turned out well, but if I ever make one again, I think I’ll add more ‘details’ like nutritional information from the back and the description of the pizza roll flavor (that appears under the combination banner), just to make it look even more ‘realistic’.

This was definitely one of the most fun (and wacky) projects that I worked on for Christmas. What have you enjoyed sewing up this holiday? Anything off the wall?

Wild Woman

Just in time for the weekend, my ‘wildwoman’ tunic is finished! I was a bit concerned how wide the neckline would turn out, but went ahead and sewed it ‘as is’ and was presently surprised that it didn’t slide off my shoulders as many people had stated on Pattern Review (I may have had a better fit than most because my shoulders are rather broad). I love the ruching along the left side seam (and the shoulder seam), but I believe that the print of the fabric hides most of this detail. The fit is good, although a bit on the snug side, so if you’re looking for something with a bit more ease, I’d recommend going up one side on the lower portion of the shirt. Overall, I’m thrilled with my new tunic – it’s time to pair it up with some leggings and a great pair of boots!

Linky Thursday

Make your Christmas a bit more delectable, adorn your tree with one of these Sweet Cupcake ornaments.

Simple to make, gorgeous to wear: The Draped Square blouse. This Draped Jersey Circle top is also fabulous.

Still looking for a great, functional stocking stuffer? Check out this adorable Pencil Pouch… it’s ‘pencil’ shaped!

Turn an over-sized men’s T into a cute dolmen top.

Drop that winter sewing and get started on spring. This Washi Maxi Dress is a must sew!

No one would complain if they had to use one of these hotcold packs.

Who wouldn’t want one of these My Little Pony plush? (I even want one!)

Everyone loves new pajamas for Christmas.

Love the look of purse frames (or just always wanted to try one)? U-Handbag has a new tutorial up for the Sew in Purse.

An ironing board cover almost too pretty to use!

If a new purse is on your list, be sure to check out the Olivia Bag (it looks quick and easy to sew, too).

Need a quick skirt? Transform a pillowcase into a pretty retro version!

Distractions

I know I’ve said it before, but I have sewing ADHD. It seems as if this month is particularly bad because I had lots of plans for holiday sewing, but haven’t accomplished much on my ‘to do list’. I had hoped to finish my Believe pillow set, but only got as far as fusingcutting out the lettering…. instead I cut out the fabric for my Wild Child Asymmetrical Top and wrapped a few presents. I also learned a valuable lesson: Presents under the tree don’t last (here’s my kiddos opening two of them this morning)

Now it is time to focus: Taylor has a project she wants me to make and I still have an Art Caddy that I want to make for my niece. Any tips for staying focused?

Stockings Were Hung

One of my fondest Christmas memories as a child was waking up finding Santa had replaced my ‘regular’ stocking with a GIANT one (filled with goodies of course). I thought that this year, my kids might think it was just as awesome and had plans to make my own extra-large stocking. Unfortunately, once I started selecting fabrics, notions, etc. I had ‘out priced’ myself – even using sales and coupons. I was going to go ahead and suck up the cost, but then I stumbled across these at the Dollar Tree. Not only are the size I was after, they were the right price too ($1 each)! Since I didn’t wind up making them, I still wanted to give the stockings a special touch so I embroidered their names on them… my only regret is that I wish I had used the larger hoop size and expanded their names to cover the cuff a bit more (I’m sure they won’t notice at all, though). Now I’ve stashed them out of sight and am ready to pull them out on Christmas morning! What surprises do you have in store on Christmas morning?

Weekend Recap

I have a confession to make. I don’t like gingerbread (actually anything with ginger in it). With as many gingerbread houses as what we make, you’d think that I’d get use to it… Needless to say, this was another weekend filled with holiday activities, including making a gingerbread village:

I also managed to finish up my Christmas shopping this week (yay! Because Easton and I tried to go to the mall on Saturday and there were no parking spots left!) and start on a set of Believe pillows. Hopefully I’ll have a finished product for you tomorrow since these guys need to head to (Easton’s) teachers on Wednesday! What did you stitch up this weekend?