Friday, December 12, 2014

Dresser Makeover

 I was recently asked if I wanted an old dresser. It was painted a plain beige but I loved the shape of it! I took it home and got to work. The fabulous thing about the dresser is that that paint was in good shape, and there weren't a ton of layers which meant I could prime and paint! My kind of project. I had a can of 'oops' paint I had picked up for a buck or two. It is satin enamel, so it should wear well in the boys' room.

 The knobs on the dresser were very tiny and pretty plain. I found these (!!!) at Hobby Lobby. Seriously, how often does one get to use cow head knobs on something? But they called to me, and I had to answer. It was my moral obligation.
 The other knobs are antiqued wooden knobs that look like they have been sitting in a corner of someone's barn forever. Just the way I like them. I love this dresser and secretly wish I kept it for myself, except that my son LOVES it and promptly arranged all his special treasures on top of it. Now to find the next dresser makeover candidate!

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Random Updates

Phew! It has been a busy few weeks (or months...haha) and I have been sewing like a mad woman. I had big dreams of having 75 items in the shop by Christmas and guess what?! I am not going to make it, and that is a-OK. It just means I am selling stuff quicker than I can get ahead. I did a craft show with a friend on Sunday and sold a handful of things. This week I am working on two custom orders. It is a fun excuse to sit at my sewing machine.

In other news, I have been totally slacking in the blog department and need to announce (yeah, one day before it ends!) that I have having a giveaway on our shop's facebook page! Head on over and leave a comment to be entered to win a batik bunting!

And lastly, here are pictures of a few of my latest projects.


What Christmas projects are you working on?

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Handknit Doll

I am sure I have talked about it here before, but every year we participate with Operation Christmas Child. They collect shoe boxes filled with school supplies, toys, toiletries, and treats and deliver them to children living in poverty around the world. I always try to put something soft and snuggly in each box and this year I was so excited to pack this:

This little gem was made by my friend Belinda to pack in a shoebox. Isn't it the cutest?! I absolutely love her hair, and her cuddly-ness. I am sure that the girl who recieves her is going to LOVE her! Belinda also made crocheted washclothes for the boxes and they were adorable too! All different patterns which is still beyond my comprehension. :)

 Katie packed her up along with pencils, a beautiful crocheted washcloth, stickers, a top, and a cute outfit. I was able to put a tracking label on the box so hopefully soon we will be able to find out where she went!

Saturday, November 15, 2014

And Again....Another Apron

 Here's another one! I have so (sew) much fun picking out fabrics and trims and embellishments. I think that might be one of my favorite parts of the whole sewing process. Aprons are fun because you can get away with using a lot of fun/bright/funky stuff.
 Isn't this fabric the cutest? Snowmen, gingerbread and candy canes! It's so fun and cheerful.
 This one got a little wool felt gingerbread man on the pocket.
...And a little flair at the top! I have been using D-rings because they seem so much more manageable than tying and untying knots on wiggly kids.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Kids' Christmas Apron!

 I've had a spurt of random sewing projects lately, including Halloween costumes, birthday gifts and Etsy stuff. Perhaps one day I shall blog about it all, but no promises! :) I have about half a dozen kids aprons in progress right now. This one was my prototype and I love it! Basically, I want one for myself in grown-up size, but I have yet to find the justification to add yet another apron to my collection.
 I am working on a basic apron pattern with various 'customizations' so that each one can have its own personality. For this apron, I used this funky Christmas print as an accent with red bows and rick rack.
 I love that each apron can be unique and adapt to the style of the fabric, etc. Wait til you see the others I am working on! I have some fun ideas that will hopefully come to fruition. In the meantime, this cutie is up in the shop and ready to find itself a good home!
Rick rack and all....

Monday, November 10, 2014

Quick and Easy Chair Makeover

Years ago, I found this wonderful chair at a yard sale. Apparently the seller didn't find it to be nearly as wonderful as I did, and she sold it to me for two bucks. I have loved it ever since. It is sturdy, but old and chippy and a delightfully weird shade of green.

I figure the chair is fairly old, as the seat is covered in real leather, and the seat base is wood and not some funky particle board. And while I loved the chair, I think we can all admit the seat could use a little fancy-ing up. Fast forward to last month. I was on my way to my favorite annual yard sale when I saw a sign. It might as well have had a light shining down from heaven on it, because it read "FABRIC SALE". Here is where I flipped a U-turn and made a detour straight to the fabric sale. My kids were less excited than I. Much less excited in fact. The lady was selling big lengths of home decor fabric for ridiculously cheap prices. One piece I bought was a silk blend, which she told me was over $100 a yard, and I bought 1 1/2 yards for $2. Woot! I also picked up a funky hexagon-type fabric which I later realized was a perfect match to the funky green chair. Que the angels singing.

Recovering the chair was very simple. I removed the cushion, cut fabric a few inches larger, and stapled it under. If you don't have a staple gun, you should get one. You will feel like the world is your oyster when you use it. At the very least, you can give your chairs new life in no time flat!
 And now she lives on! A little more funky, a little more fabulous!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Clothespin Bags

 A friend recently asked if I could come up with a large sized clothespin bag. She needed one to fit on a regular sized hanger since she does a lot of laundry. Something about having four kids does that. :)
 I have this strange? helpful? efficient? weird? philosophy that says 'If you're going to make one, might as well make 6!' or something like that. Which would explain how I suckered myself into buying three bushels of apples yesterday. I decided since I was making one clothespin bag, I should make two so she can pick which she likes best.

I ended up making 3, but that's beside the point. This one...I'm in love. When I sewed the bag up, it needed a little extra something, and that is what it got! Pompoms and rick rack on the same project. I'm out of control.

Fortunately she saw the vision and liked it too! Now I am inspired to use up the rest of this trim. Technically, I am always inspired by something(s) and it gets kind of annoying sometimes because there are only so many hours in the day in which to do all these things. And speaking of inspiration... I just inherited a stack of vintage-y shirts from my friend Belinda who is my yarn enabler and now fabric enabler. I have lots of ideas for them flying around in my head. I'll keep you posted!

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Gingerbread House Ornaments: Embroidery + Felt

Here are a few ornaments I made recently. I love embroidering on felt and it was great fun to work on all the little details of each house. The pattern is by Gingermelon , and I tweaked it a bit to size them up. The original pattern is adorable, but TINY. Like possibly too tedious even for me. Cute, but tedious.

 I used wool blend felt which is easy to cut and comes in all sorts of colors. That makes ordering felt a dilemma of 'should I choose the concord grape or wisteria or lilac or ????' All of the above should be considered a suitable answer.

 I had fun adding candy details to this one, and a little glass beaded door knob. On each of the ornaments, I added glitter to the snowy roof. I love how it looks, but unfortunately it doesn't show up in the pictures very well.

 And what could be more festive than a wreath and candy canes? This one has tiny red seed beads decorating the wreath. I had fun making these and am happy to report that I have already sold 2 out of 3, so I suppose there will be more in my future!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Vintage Yellow Floral Dress

I love to go thrifting and I am always on patrol for nice vintage fabric. When I saw this sheet set I squealed (quietly) and threw it in my cart. The sheets are in perfect condition, as if they sat in some sweet grandmother's linen closet for the last 40-50 years. Vintage sheets are great sources of fabric. If the sheet isn't the most beautiful design, you can use it to line dresses, or as fabric for making a muslin. If the print is fantastic, like this, the world is your oyster! I will be able to get 3-4 more dresses out of this fabric.

I embellished it with little yellow flowers and vintage buttons because we all know by now how obsessed I am with vintage notions. Seriously. Wait til you see the next project I'll laugh, and hopefully love it as much as I do.

I love using a contrasting lining in this style of dress as it adds a fun pop of color to the ties and some personality to the dress overall.

I also think this would make adorable bias tape or a great bag lining! Oh, now I'm full of ideas. Now who wants to come over and clean my house so I can sew? ;)

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Sparkly Jack-O-Lantern Tutorial

In need of a last minute Halloween craft? Here is a fun one from the archives. I have my work cut out for me today finishing the kids' Halloween costumes. Stay tuned!

We received several jack-o-lantern pumpkins from our CSA share. I knew that if we carved them, they would be gone long before Halloween. I decided to do something different (and less messy) with them. To make these sparkly pumpkins, you will need a small piece of contact paper, white glue, a paint brush, glitter, and of course, pumpkins.

Begin by drawing your jack-o-lantern's features on the back of your contact paper.

Using sharp scissors, carefully cut out your stencil.

Peel the paper backing off and apply stencil to the pumpkin. Rub the edges down with your finger to make sure that there are no gaps. (You may have to 'pleat' the stencil a bit to get it to lay flat)

Using a paintbrush, spread glue over the design.

Sprinkle a generous helping of glitter over the glue. (Make sure to do this over a sheet of scratch paper to catch the extra glitter) Tap the pumpkin a few times to remove excess glitter.

Gently peel away the stencil and remove any stray glitter with a dry brush. Repeat for other features. (I used the same stencil for both eyes)

*You could spray the finished pumpkins with a sealer if you plan on keeping them outside.

Now you have yourself some sparkly, happy pumpkins!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Ruffled Dress + Facebook

 Sometimes an idea for a dress just pops into my head and I have to make it. This time it was inspired by the fabrics I stuck together. I decided it called for ruffles! And so ruffle it, I did. P.S. I hate sewing ruffles. All that gathering makes me wonder if the cuteness is worth it.
 But alas, I pushed on and the cuteness was indeed worth it. I added a few little flowers with vintage buttons. Am I the only one obsessed with vintage buttons? Please tell me I'm not alone!
I love the way the ruffles allow me to use different fabrics together. Picking fabrics is one of my very favorite things to do. I am thinking of sizing this pattern up and altering the bodice a little. In my spare time, you know. Ha, ha.

In other news, I finally put my big girl pants on and launched a Facebook page for the shop! Check it out here.

Monday, October 27, 2014

It's The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

I was excited to see that Sew Mama Sew is starting up their Handmade Holidays on November 1st! Each year they spend the month of November posting great tutorials for all manner of homemade gifts. Each day the tutorials speak to a different theme, such as 'Gifts for Kids' or 'Gifts for Techies'. I have found a lot of great tutorials from this series. Follow along and see what inspires you! Don't have me if your projects-to-do list gets even longer! :)

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Fingerless Gloves!

Sheesh! We won't be winning any awards for consistent blogging anytime soon. I have been sewing quite a bit and knitting too. My friend Belinda has been enabling encouraging me to get back into yarn projects. She taught me how to crochet (hello, granny squares!!) and sent me the link for this pattern with the encouragement that I could actually make them. And that I did! The pattern is posted on Ravelry, with a link to the directions. I am happy to say this is the first knitting pattern I have ever done.

No comments from the peanut gallery as to the technical difficulty (or lack thereof) of this pattern. Not only that, but I completed them in one week which is light speed for me when it comes to knitting.
I even had to knit like a big girl and use math to figure out how many stitches to cast on since my yarn was a different weight. These babies are knitted flat and seamed up the side, leaving an opening for the thumb.
Photographing them turned out to be the trickiest part, because...well, it's really hard to take a picture of your hands without using your hands. I decided to enlist my boy, who as I like to tell him has the sophistication of a 9 year old. Read: he laughs at fart jokes. We were trying to accomplish all this with the web cam since my camera batteries died and as you can was entertaining to say the least! Most of the pictures look like this last one, with one or both of us cracking up. All in all, I am thrilled with these gloves and have decided to wear them till they fall off. It is like having long sweater sleeves with thumb holes. They keep my hands cozy and I can still use my digits. Yay!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Gingermelon Angel Ornament

 This project was part Etsy research, part sewing one of those projects I've wanted to do forever. I spotted this pattern from a shop called Gingermelon last year and loved it! I collected angel ornaments as a kid so I have a soft spot for them. I made one up to see how it worked out, and possibly put them in the shop. This one gave me an idea of what tweaks I want to make before they are 'shop worthy'. In the meantime, I haven't decided whether I will keep this one or give it to my daughter. Or make a bunch more so we can all have one! :)
Did you spot the rick rack yet? Oh, yeah. I haven't used it in a while and it was about time! I also added a little holly leaf to the song book just for fun!