Saturday, June 20, 2009

Pretty in Bed Linens

What kind of mother would dress her child in bed linens??? ME! And my sister, of course! Ever since I started sewing last year, I've wanted to make a pillowcase dress for the girls...they just look so easy and so cute, and I love the idea that they are flow-y enough and big enough that they can last a year or two before being outgrown.

So while visiting my sister (who didn't know how to sew), we went on a hunt for discount-priced pillowcases. We found some cute prints, but also wanted some plain white ones to embellish with pretty fabrics and trims. She asked me to teach her to sew, and we decided to make matching dresses for our girls (my twins and her almost-3 year old daughter).

There are many versions of pillowcase versions...lots of tutorials on the web (just google "pillowcase dress tutorial"), and a recent tutorial in my fave "Simply Handmade" magazine. For these ones, we started with plain white pillowcases. We decided to simply hem the armholes rather than using any binding tape, and used ribbons through the casing at the neckline and tied it for the straps. The flowers use a metal button with a shank on the back, and we attached them with a safety pin to the dress, so it can be removed for washing, and different colored flowers could also be used. (For that matter, the ribbon at the top could be changed out too.)

The three princesses will wear their new dresses to church tomorrow for Father's Day and will look lovely. Their daddies were all quite impressed with their mommies' skills and creativity...especially my brother-in-law, since when he left the house this morning, his wife didn't know how to sew!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Stuff I've made

I've been in a bit of a crafty madness lately and can't stop...but I just realized there were a couple projects I never showed you.

The first is a little tutu and magic wand that I made for the 3-year old daughter of one of my best friends. They were a birthday gift, and were really fun to make. The tutu was quite easy - tie the strips of tulle and ribbon around the waistband of's really that simple.

The magic wand was an idea I got from my Simply Handmade magazine, and I loved how it turned out. I actually inked the stick with Stampin' Up! classic ink first, then coated it with glue and glitter, and then covered it with Mod Podge to keep the glitter from falling off.

I also made a doll-sized coordinating tutu for my friend's little girl, as she has MANY little babies who will need to be adorned with this tutu!!

The second project was just a little teacher appreciation gift I made for Mackenzie's Early Intervention teacher, Ms. Susan, back during Teacher Appreciation Week. It's another project idea I got from Simply Handmade Magazine (I'm telling you - you just HAVE to get that magazine - it rocks!!). You start with an empty (obviously), cleaned out (I would hope!), plastic snack-sized fruit cup. You trace the top of it onto the wrong side of patterned cardstock, then cut it out with pinking shears to give it a pinked edge...this becomes your lid. Then you just decorate the container with flowers and ribbon, decorate the lid however you like, fill the container with something yummy (I chose chocolate covered espresso beans), and then use glue dots to attach the lid to the container. Very easy and very cute! And Susan LOVED it!

Thursday, June 04, 2009

My camera will be cozy

I hate fishing around in my purse - my big, must take everything I might ever need in case of an emergency with me purse - to find my camera, every time there is a photo-worthy moment...only to have that moment disappear long before said camera is located.

So, before we set out on our summer vacation, I decided I must solve this problem. I turned to my loyal friend, Dr. Google, searched for "camera cozy tutorial," and found a couple to choose from. This is the one I opted for, though I did alter it by adding the neck strap (so PROUD of myself for figuring that out, getting it to end up on the right side, too!!!).

The fabrics I used are both from Melissa Averinos' Sugar Snap line - LOVE them!!! So bright and yummy! The crocheted trim was just something I had in my stash, and it matched perfectly.

After I made this one, Anthony, of course, insisted that he needed one for HIS camera (my old digi camera that doesn't close anymore). So I acquiesced and altered the pattern to make it a bit larger to accomodate the non-closing lens, and made his out of Thomas the Tank Engine fabric. He loved it, and I'm sure will wear it everywhere we go.

OH - and I totally missed it - but my last post? Was my 300th post!!!!! Can you believe it?! I should have done something really cool and fun...alas...I'm busy healing a broken rib and sewing and all that fun stuff!! Maybe for my 400th...or 500th...

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Gone, sewing...

Can you guess what THAT is? I know, it's a terrible photo. The fabric is really light and I had an awful time trying to get it to show up in it's true's a really nice pink and brown and white stripe on a very pale pink background. Anyway, my friend Deanna came over Sunday and we spent the entire afternoon sewing and crafting!!! It was SEW much fun! Perhaps the next photo will give you a clue as to what this is...

Yep, it's a Lavender Eye Pillow!! feels SO nice laying over my forehead/eyes when I've got a migraine or I'm just completely stressed out from the kiddos. It's filled with a mixture of flax seeds and lavender buds, mixed with some lavender essential oil. I wish you could smell through your computer how heavenly it is!!! Anyway, I made a few of these as gifts.

This is a fabric-covered chipboard notebook I made as a gift. Cute idea I got from here.

Another eye pillow...I love this fabric!!!

I made a set of 3 re-usable shopping bags using this pattern. These are great for several reasons. First and foremost - they help you stop using those awful plastic bags from the store. But as for the actual bags themselves...since the handles are cut into the bag, they are stronger than handles that are attached separately; plus, they are reinforced (so they are 4 layers thick). Also, the bags are totally reversible, which is great! They are generously sized, too. I made this set out of an old set of curtains - so EXTRA green points for me!!!

Of course, I can't sit around sewing ALL the much as I'd like to...I still have these little munchkins keeping me busy. :)

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

New Year's Resolution, Part 2

I'm not usually big on New Year's Resolutions, mainly because I never stick to them. But this year I made two. The first was to learn how to knit, and I actually started on it Christmas day...and by New Years Day, was well on my way to crossing it off my list. By now, I've finished several knitted objects, and can confidently say that goal was met.

My second resolution was to make a quilt. I just started sewing late last year, when my sweet husband bought me a sewing machine and I taught myself how to sew. I really never had an interest in quilting, until I started seeing quilts made with such gorgeous, modern fabrics, and now I'm in love! Seeing as it's now June, I figured it was probably time to get going on my quilt, or this resolution wasn't going to happen.

So last night, I decided to just dive pattern, no plan, really, other than knowing that this one piece of fabric is my inspiration and will be the "centers" for each of my "scrappy" quilt blocks. I'm not using any specific design or pattern for the blocks, but each block will be 9" square. I haven't even decided how big the quilt will be...but I'm thinking it will be for the couch, so like a throw-size...big enough to wrap up in on a chilly night.

So this was my first quilt block EVER. I truly LOVE LOVE LOVE how it turned out. I can't stop looking at it, honestly. It makes me happy.

And the first one was so fun, I couldn't stop, and so I made a second! I don't think I love the second one *quite* as much as the first, but I still love it. I would have liked to have had a few more blues and reds to add to it, I think...trying to go with the colors of the center piece...but I had to work with what I've got. Anyway, I still think it's beautiful.

I can't wait to do more now!!! And it's kind of fun not knowing how it's all going to turn out in the end!

Ouch, that hurt!

Last you read, we were having a grand time relaxing in San Diego. What I didn't include in that post, was that I had been coughing a LOT, for several weeks, and that sometime shortly after arriving in San Diego that Friday, I began having a sharp pain in my right lower rib cage area. The pain became worse and worse, and when I woke up Saturday morning, it dawned on me that I probably had a broken rib. (And really, the only reason I knew you could break a rib by coughing too hard was because both my mom and my sister have done so - must be in the genes, or something!!) By Saturday night, I was literally in tears as I lay in bed trying to go to sleep.

I would have gone to Urgent Care, but for a couple things. For one, there was no way I was dragging all of the kiddos to Kaiser...every time they go, they pick up some terrible virus and end up sick for weeks. For another, there's really not much they can do for a broken rib, besides give you pain meds, and I already have pain meds for my neuropathy, so I was covered there. Besides, Darrell probably would have decided if I was bad enough to need to go to the doctor, then we would need to end our trip...and I really didn't want to ruin the trip for everyone else!

But wow, this has been some really intense pain!!! We got back Tuesday night, and I went to my regular doctor first thing Wednesday morning. She confirmed not only a broken rib, but also pneumonia!! Yippee. Aren't I just a mess?! So some cough syrup, more pain meds, and antibiotics, along with a rib binder, and I was good to go. It can take up to 6 weeks to heal.

I'm gonna knock on some wood here, but I will say that yesterday and today have been better. I only had to take pain medicine once all day yesterday, and have only had to take it once I'm hoping the most intense pain is behind me. Here's to hoping this is one experience I never have to repeat!!


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