Chevron Apron

Hi!

So… I sewed an apron up for my sister a couple of days ago, and I love the way it turned out!  I’ve made aprons for myself and my mother but my little sis was out of the country and now she’s back and wanted an apron, so I made her this reversible apron with contrasting pockets:

Isn’t she gorgeous?

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I’ll have to write up a tutorial for making aprons soon because it really is a great quick project that only takes a couple of hours and you can customize it however you like.

Do you think I could sell these? I’ve been toying with the idea of starting an online store but haven’t had the guts to do it yet. I think I’d sell aprons and tote bags and stuff like that. What do you think?

Have a great Tuesday!

Fabric “Tea” Bags

My daughter loves her pretend tea set.

She got it for her 3rd birthday back in November and she and it have been inseparable since.

Playing tea set always involves lots of water being poured from one cup to another, with some inevitably ending up on the floor. Do we discourage this? No. We just put a towel underneath and let her have a blast.  Little girls need their tea time!

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I saw an adorable little project on Pinterest  the other day, and even though I though that Eliana wouldn’t actually use them for tea (since there’s a lot of water involved and I’d rather not have these little gems get soaking wet) I thought I’d still make them because they are so darn cute! I actually didn’t even go to the website, I just looked at the picture and figured I could do it and went to my sewing machine.

Fabric Tea Bags!!

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Not filled with tea, of course; just with batting.

But they’re super easy to make, so I thought I’d share.

First, decide how many tea bags you want to make.
I made four since Eliana has four tea cups.

(Although in the pictures there are only 3 because I ran out of thread on my bobbin and didn’t feel like winding another one because it was already really late at night and I figured I should go to bed instead of sewing into the wee hours.)

Cut out a few little rectangles, and fold them right sides together and sew up the sides, leaving the top open.

This is the last tea bag, where I ran out of bobbin thread. Sew on both sides, not just part of one. 😉

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Turn inside out, fill with a smidgen of batting, then fold the raw edges down, insert a ribbon into the top, sew across the top.

Then, if you want a tea “tag” take a few tiny squares of fabric, sew them together with the ribbon sandwiched in the middle.

And you have yourself an adorable pretend tea bag!

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I think these could make super cute Christmas ornaments too, if you made the tea bag string a loop so you could hang it over the Christmas tree.

Now, go make a few and enjoy a tea party with your little one!

If you haven’t entered my giveaway for some Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil, go do it! Giveaway ends January 27th at midnight!

Baby Shower Gifts

I went to a baby shower this past weekend, and I thought I’d show you what I made for the momma.

Lately I’ve been trying to make more gifts than buy them, for several reasons. First, it saves money for us, which we need for other things like…food and bills and gas. 🙂

Secondly, I’ve been feeling a lot that our culture is such a disposable society- if you need (or want) something, just go out and buy it! It’s convenient, but a lot of times what we buy is lacking personality or that “special something”. Of course, there are things that are just much easier and more cost effective time-wise to buy than to make, too. I think there’s a balance there.

I wanted to make a gift that was functional and durable but super cute, too.

Every mom can use a few more burp cloths for those times when baby loses his lunch and a little bag to hold some diapers.  I needed something to hold the gift in, and am too cheap to pay 2.29 for some tissue paper so I made a gift bag as well. It turned out to be more of a small purse, and I wish I had more of the fabric so I could make myself one!

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For the burp cloths, I layered muslin, a towel and flannel together and added a ribbon and ruffle at the bottom just for fun. They are nice and thick and absorbent.

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The diaper holder is just muslin lined with cotton, and  fastens with velcro for an easy open and close.

The bag is the same cotton as the liner of the diaper holder and is lined with denim for durability.

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I just love that bicycle fabric! My good friend Laura was kind enough to give me a bunch of fabric from her stash, since I had to get rid of all mine when we moved across the country. This fabric is one of my favorites! Its so cheery. 🙂

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I just love making bags!  They’re so fun and quick and the possibilities are endless as far as design goes.

Maybe someday I’ll open an online shop and sell them.

DIY Advent Calendar

It’s almost December and I’ve been thinking about Christmas a lot; wanting to make our Christmas more meaningful this year and be really purposeful about focusing on Jesus’ birth instead of what presents we’re going to get or the goodies we’ll eat or events we’ll go to.

I thought a good way to make sure we spend at least a few minutes every day thinking about Jesus and talking about him and how he came to earth to save us from our sins is to make an Advent Calendar. We’ve never done an advent calendar before, but we are going to this year!

Advent simply means, “coming” and to celebrate Advent is to celebrate the coming of Jesus into the world; opening a door or envelope or present each day for the 24 days preceding Christmas.

There are a lot of advent calendars and there are so many options of what you can do, it’s almost overwhelming!

I decided to go with a simple felt calendar, that we can use year after year without having to go to a lot of work making it.
I also used printables from some other fabulous blogs for the numbers, the Bible verses to go into the pockets and an activity to do each day. (more on that in a second.)

Wanna make your own Simple Advent Calendar?

Of course, feel free to adapt your felt to whatever color scheme that matches your home/decorating for Christmas.

I figured red and gray and white is pretty Christmasy.
Let’s do it!

You need:

1- 14″ wide x 18″ tall rectangle of white felt

5 -11″wide x 3″ tall strips of coordinating felt (for pockets)

1- 1″ wide x 18″ long strip of white felt for the hanger

Sewing Machine

Coordinating thread

Scissors

25 clothespins

Printables  for the day numbers, bible verses and/or fun activities

Or you can just make your own little cards if you’re so inclined. I’m not, so I just googled around til I found what I wanted.

I got my day numbers from  Shanty-2-Chic, the Bible verses from Happy Home Fairy, and the fun activities from  Plum Adorable.  Pinterest has a TON of free printables too, if you can’t find just what you’re looking for.

Now that you have all your supplies, let’s make the calendar.

Take your white felt and line up your colored strips so that all 5 fit evenly spaced on the rectangle. I took some white felt  and sewed 2 smaller pieces together to make a nice rectangle. I only had scraps of felt and thankfully I had enough to piece together a big enough shape to hold the strips of maroon and gray felt for the pockets.

The felt kind of sticks to itself, so you may not even need to pin anything if you handle it carefully!

Sew down the ends of all the strips- just one big long stitch through all five, ending just past the bottom of the last strip. Do this on both sides.

Then, sew along the bottoms of all of the strips.

DON’T sew the tops!!! You’ll close up your pockets. ONLY sew the bottoms.

Once you have your bottoms sewed, go ahead and make 5 evenly spaced pockets on each row. Mark with pins.

Sew slowly and carefully, making sure it’s in a straight line, all the way down across all the strips, just like you did on the edges. As you can see, mine is not perfectly straight. That’s okay. I did cut the felt around the edges to be a little more even after I took this picture. Thankfully felt doesn’t unravel, so you don’t have to worry about hemming anything!

Finally, take your skinny white strip of felt and sew the ends down on the top corners of the calendar to create a way to hang it up.

Good. The main part of the calendar is done!!

If you want, you could applique numbers onto the strips before you sew them on the calendar….but I thought of that after I’d already sewed the strips on. So I just used clothespins with numbers glued on them for the days leading up to Christmas.

Cut out your numbers, and glue them to the clothespins, cut out your Bible verses and your activities and place one verse and one activity in each pocket, clip the clothespins on the pockets and then hang up your Advent Calendar!

I’m so excited to start using it in a few days!

 

 

Shared at Frugal Days, Sustainable Ways

KCWC- Day 5

So last week was Kid’s Clothing Week Challenge- and I sewed three out of the seven days.

It was a busy week and I just didn’t get to put in as much time as I wanted to, but I did make this cute little skirt for Eliana out of the same fabric as I made Ethan’s lounge pants.
I’m calling it, “The Schoolgirl Skirt”.

It has a nice drop waist with pleats and plenty of room to grow lengthwise, with an elastic waist so its nice and comfy.
I’m thinking of making her a few others in knit fabric for next summer. Making skirts is so much fun because they don’t take long to sew and they usually are fairly easy projects. Unless your fabric gets stuck in the feed dogs or the tension gets messed up or something. 
Thankfully that didn’t happen with this skirt, but it sure has happened on other ones!
She just HAD to wear her “pony hat” for the photo shoot!

Precious little toes
Hope you’re having a good week so far, I’m going to be writing up a few posts on foraging wild for rose hips and what to do with them after you pick them in the next few weeks, so stay tuned if that sounds remotely interesting to you. 😉

KCWC Day 2 and 3: Lounge Pants

Hi, Tuesday was day two of Kid’s Clothing Week Challenge and  I made some lounge pants for Ethan out of an old cotton drop cloth that was leftover from making curtains from the living room.

I used Made by Dana’s flat front kid pants tutorial as a jumping off point for the flat front; although I already have made several pairs of pants using this method for kid pants. I kinda mixed and matched with the instructions, although I think I used Dana’s more because she was using cotton fabric and the other site uses knits.

I like the way the pants turned out but might add pockets in the future to make them look less “loungy” and more like regular pants.

Either way, Ethan loves them!!
They are comfy and since the weave is more loose like linen; dirt washes out easily.
I found this out first hand since one of the first things E did was go out and play in the dirt pit in them.
His cousin was visiting from Arizona and those boys had a blast!

I didn’t do any sewing for the kids Wednesday; I finished up the curtains that I’ve been sewing for the living room and then didn’t have time to whip up anything else.
At least I sewed something, right??

KCWC Week Day 1: Cheating, Kind Of

It’s day one of Kid’s Clothing Week Challenge, where you sew an hour every day
(or cut patterns or fabric to get your stuff ready to sew) for a week and make some cool stuff for your kiddos. If you want to join in or see what others are making, to check out the Elsie Marley blog- That’s where the real cool stuff is at!!
There’s some amazing sewing goin’ on this week, a bunch of WAY more talented people than I are sewing all kinds of beautiful clothing for their kids. Someday, I hope to be that good. 🙂

I’m kind of cheating today, because I didn’t actually make something for my kiddos but something for my kiddo’s toy.

Eliana had a dolly that she got from the thrift store a few weeks ago that is naked. Thankfully whoever made it had the foresight to sew undies onto her, but the poor doll had no clothes so I decided to sew her a dress.

This was a very simple dress; I could’ve put more embellishments on it, but I just didn’t want to take the time.
Doll dresses are hard to make because they are so stinkin’ small!
I take my hat off to people who have the patience to make doll clothes on a regular basis- I don’t think I’ll be making a lot of them because they are just kind of tedious, in my opinion.

Here is the pattern I used, from Quaint and Quirky. She made an adorable rag doll and this is the clothing pattern for it. The doll Eliana got from the thrift store was around the same size, so I just adjusted the sizing and made her dress slightly smaller.

I had some knit fabric that I used so I didn’t have to hem anything. If you are venturing into doll clothes making, knits are great because they save a lot of time- those tiny stitches you have to make on the hem are killer!
I did hand-sew a hem around the neck hole to make it look nicer, then put some cute little buttons for a bit of detail.

The sleeves are inside out…(on purpose, of course)……Ahem….
I seem to have trouble with sewing on sleeves.
Everytime I try to put sleeves on I do it wrong at least once, and this time I sewed them on upside down and inside out the first time, then inside out the second time.
As you can see, I didn’t feel like picking the seams and trying for a third time, so the dolly got inside out sleeves. We can say its for contrast. Yeah. That’s it. 😉

That’s it!

I’ll be back tomorrow with some pants for my son, Ethan (hopefully!).
He needs a few more pairs, or I just need to do laundry more often. 😉

T-shirt Refashion: How To Make Your Kiddo’s Clothes Fit Longer

Hi!

As you already know, children tend to grow like weeds; sprouting up literally overnight sometimes.

My Ellie May has been going through a growth spurt lately, and all of a sudden a few of her t-shirts were looking a little short.

She is going to be 3 in November, but already she is starting to grow out of her 3T shirts!!!
Seriously. She needs to slow down.
Ah, I guess she can’t help it with a tall daddy (6’4″) and tall momma (5’9″).

Her sweet belly was starting to almost pop out from under the hem to say hello and while it may be cute, that wasn’t really a look I’d like her to have.
 Modesty was at stake!

SO.

I decided to go to the store and buy her all new shirts.

Nope.

Just kidding!

Why buy more when I can just modify the ones she already has??

We have a ton of 4T shirts in the attic, waiting for her to grow into them (ahem..) but unfortunately, they’re all long sleeved, for fall and winter.
I decided to just lengthen a couple of her existing t-shirts so that by the time she grows out of them, maybe it will be cold enough to wear the larger long sleeved ones. (hopefully.) 🙂
This is what I started with:

It was really pretty simple.
I took some knit fabric I had left over from my Pleated T-Shirt Pillow that I made last spring and cut a strip about 4″wide and 25″ long.

 I had measured the width of her shirt and it was 12″, so I doubled that length plus added an inch for seam allowance.

Side Note: When you’re sewing with knits, make sure to use a ballpoint knit needle on your sewing machine. It looks SO much nicer and you won’t have weird holes or puckers in your fabric.
I didn’t know to do this when I first started sewing, and boy can you tell a difference!! Those first few knit projects I did looked a lot rougher.

Make sure to get the ones that say “Jersey” or Ball Point” or “For Knits” on them, like this.

 Since the bottom half of my fabric strip was already hemmed and knit doesn’t unravel, 
I just pinned the strip of white fabric to the inside of the bottom hem of her pink shirt.

Then I sewed it on and aha! A longer shirt.

It looks pretty cute too, if I do say so myself.
Of course, it looks even cuter when she’s wearing it.

The other shirt I started with a 4″wide x 36″ long piece of fabric and gathered it a bit for a ruffle

(here is a great tutorial for gathering/ruffling if you don’t know how) 

and sewed it on the bottom hem of her shirt, leaving the bottom hem unfinished for a more deconstructed look.

I accidentally missed a little part of the back of the shirt at one point,

oops!

 so I had to go back and fix it.

much better. 🙂

Eliana loves her “new” shirts and I love that I don’t have to buy her any new shirts!!! 🙂

Incidentally, the day I sewed these I was going down the list of blogs I read regularly and the fabulous Ashley at Make it Love it had the same situation on her hands with her daughter, except she chose to make some long-sleeved shirts into cute flutter sleeved ones. So there’s another option if you want to use some long sleeved shirts from the next size up when your little girl gets taller overnight. I may make some flutter sleeved shirts for Eliana if she keeps growing so quickly! 🙂

Knitting Needle Holder

Here’s a fun fact about me:
I recently started teaching myself to knit!
Honestly, it’s easier than I thought it was going to be.
For some reason I always thought it would be hard because all the ladies I know who knit are super smart and seem to be more of the “Type A” personality, so I thought I’d have trouble with it since I am most definitely not a logical thinker.

Guess what?
It’s not too hard to learn to knit. You just have to keep track of the stitches, and the tension of the yarn in your hand.
I just went to Wal-Mart and bought a “teach yourself how to knit” kit,
some fat needles 
(the kit comes with needles but I wanted big fat ones to start since it’s easier to knit with those ones)
 and of course, some yarn.


Then, I practiced and practiced and got frustrated and tried again and practiced some more.
I am by NO means “good” at knitting yet, but I’m much better than I was a few weeks ago!


Anyway, since I have all of these knitting accessories, I need somewhere to keep them.


Where did I look for inspiration?

Pinterest, of  course!


I found this:

Source

Perfect.

I tried my hand at making my own, although I didn’t follow the directions on the original site completely.
I just winged it, and it (amazingly) worked out.

I found some cute fabric I’ve had lying around for literally 5 years and measured a big enough square to fit inside my 12″ embroidery hoop;

then sewed a pocket onto it, then simply sewed lines down the pocket (marking where to sew with pins)

and then ta-da!

My version of the knitting needle holder.

I want to make like a thousand of these and hang them everywhere.
Okay, maybe not a thousand, but they are really cute, and I’ll probably make a few more for holding stuff in my craft room.
I love that I can hang this up on the wall and  1.) free up shelving space  but more importantly, 2.) keep my knitting needles out of the kid’s reach. Because I know two little munchkins who would love to have a sword fight with a few of them. 😉