I thought that this weekend, I would take a break from sewing “obligations” and gifts and just do some “selfish” projects. Some of my favorite embroidery sites have had some great sales so I’ve amassed quite a few designs so I figure that I need to get to stitching some of them up!
So for today, I’m knocking out a few of these drink recipe designs from String Theory – I got all 5, plus the matching coasters, and the small notebook so I have my work cut out for me as the towels do take quite a bit of time to stitch out (and to snip all those jump stitches). I’m pretty giddy with the way they are turning out so far and I love that these tea towels match the color scheme pretty well (sorry Long Island Iced Tea and Pina Colada, you’ll have to do with blues and purples). Hopefully by Monday I’ll have most of the set completed and ready to show off – otherwise you’ll have to suffer through seeing all of these designs throughout next week!
Our oldest, Taylor, came to visit us this past week. We tried to cram as much as possible into our time together – we celebrated her birthday early, we hiked one of the foothills of the Appalachian Mountains, we visited an Indian cavern, played some mini golf… we even tried our hand at wood fired pizzas. My heart is full, but my sewing is lacking.
With that said, I did manage to finish some projects for a winter issue of Creative Machine Embroidery magazine (early even!) and bought a lot of material (so I’m set to start working on some selfish sewing and embroidery). Most of the knits that I’ve picked up are in the wash, but here’s some of the wovens that I’ve received:
As soon as I saw Tula Pink’s latest line, Curiouser & Curiouser, I knew I had to have some… not only do I love Tula, but Alice in Wonderland as well. In total I got 7 of the prints and plan on using some of them for some cute little bags. I also snagged some 2-in-1 novelty prints from Little Lovies. These are essentially one yard cuts that are split in half with two different designs. I also snagged some pretty zipper tape and a few pulls… one of which was a Mad Hatter hat! The rest of the pulls are from Zor-Elle and will eventually be used for bags as well. I have so many ideas I can’t wait to bring to life!
For this version, I made a v-neck in short sleeves and a floral double brushed poly from So Sew English (I can’t remember the name of this print, it could be Chloe?). Overall this pattern was very easy to put together (even with the twist) and I love the end result – I find it to be very figure flattering. In fact, I like it so much, I’ve been thinking of making this style in a sleeveless version… because it’s hot here already!
Summer is just around the corner, but the temperatures are already heating up – which means it’s the perfect time for BBQs, picnics, and backyard get togethers. Don’t ruin the party with a hot beverage, instead make fun can coolers to keep your drink crisp and cool. My latest tutorial up at WeAllSew will show you how!
Not only are these ridiculously easy to make, but they’re also great to customize with your favorite machine embroidery designs (or lettering to make name) or heat transfer images. No time for either? No worries, patterned neoprene is just as fun!
Our oldest daughter, Taylor has a birthday next week. I always try to make a few “mom made” gifts. In addition to the coffee set that I made earlier this week, I also stitched up this fun evidence bag.
Taylor is a HUGE crime junkie podcast\tv show fan. I had picked up the murder show t-shirt screen a few months ago and knew that this bag had to happen too (like I said, I like themed gift sets!). This bag was a bit different than others I have tried as it had two hoopings. The front (clear) pocket is made first, then later added to the rest of the bag.
Some things about this bag if you’re wanting to try it for yourself (or just curious as to how it went). First off, I recommend skipping the tack down stitches for the clear vinyl and just tape it very well to the stabilizer. Why? For starters all the stabilizer is eventually removed (except for the stitching themselves) and this just makes the process easier. Secondly, You’ll be adding the pocket to the bag with an insert (I used a “bloody finger” shown on the bottom right picture) – if there is any bulk (or you just don’t line up carefully), the pocket will easily slip out of place, possibly exposing the tack down stitches your made in the first hooping. I had this happen in an area on the lower left side – while I was able to remove the threads, you can still see the permanent holes from where they were.
The bag itself was very easy to stitch and assemble. I did skip the olyfun that was mentioned in the instructions. I never could figure out why it was used other than as a possible (partial) “lining” that hides some of the stitching and the interior zipper look. Unfortunately I did have issues with “birthing the bag” – my poor clear vinyl ripped some along the top edge of the red design. Instead of scrapping it all, I whipped out the E6000 and glued that section of the vinyl down to the backing fabric. Not an ideal fix, but it works. I’m hoping that the rest of the designs hold up onto the clear vinyl over time.
Would I make this again? Maybe. I think if I did this again I would take a different approach and stitch the designs out on the machine, but make the bag myself on the sewing machine. This would allow me to make a slightly larger bag (which I think would help keep the pocket from ripping when turning it right side out) and also have a bit more control on placement, etc. Overall this is a brilliant project and I learned a lot doing it.
This may not be the first Retro 80’s Cassette zip bag that I’ve made, but it may be the most fabulous.
I started off making this version the exact same way I have in the past: a black vinyl base with a white vinyl “label”, but this time I had some fabulous hardware to make it even better.
For starters, I used a fabulous silver on black zipper (I think I picked this up at Zor-elle, but I could be wrong) and cassette tape pull. Then finished it with an MTV dangle and wristlet strap stitched with unicorn mane thread (to give it that fun, rainbow stitching look). I’m seriously in love with how this turned out. Too bad it’s a gift… I guess I’ll eventually have to make another one for myself.
For those that are curious about in the hoop zip bags – yes, they are a bit easier. So long as you are careful cutting and taping things in place, everything lines up well and stitches evenly every time. Do they save time? Probably not that much. I’m sure that I could sew this just as quickly on my machine, but it’s definitely easy and something different to try for a change!