Saturday, June 29, 2013

Craftiness Runs in the Family

Look, my daddy is crafty too- he made this table!
My parents added a patio onto their house last fall and my mom has been looking for a big table  to put out there.  She hadn't found anything she really liked so my dad took matters into his own hands and made one.  He has been woodworking off and on for as long as I can remember- we even have a photo of me at 2 or 3 years old sitting on his work bench surrounded by pieces of a rocking horse that he (or rather, Santa) was building for me.   

I know it is a little hard to see with the shadows, but there is a border around the table, a vertical piece down the center, and then horizontal slats on either side.
So to sum up my crafty genes-
Dad= woodworking
Mom= sewing
Grandmother= sewing, knitting, crochet, watercolor painting
Aunt= knitting, crochet
Cousin= quilting (she is the one who put the quilting bug in my head!)
I think I was destined to be crafty!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Cat Carrier Surgery

My cats went on a little vacation to visit my grandparents last week, they really like it there, so much so that my youngest cat tried to escape his carrier when I was getting ready to bring him home!  I had scooped him up and put him in his carrier, but I wasn't ready to leave yet and went into the room next door.  I could hear his fidgeting in his carrier, but when I went back in I saw what he had done- ripped two good sized holes in it!  In true diy fashion, before going out and buying a new one I decided to try and fix this one.

I decided to use some netting I found at Joanns and WonderUnder to attach it.  I didn't want to attempt trying to get this under my sewing machine.  Getting it on the ironing board wasn't that much easier though- thank goodness I haven't put away all the moving boxes yet- this one was very handy for hold the carrier up so it could reach the ironing board.

And here is the outside of my patch.  See the nice rips that kitty made!  I made sure that the patch was well attached on the inside, otherwise kitty would just pull it off I'm sure. 

What is the most unusual thing you have ever sewn/fixed?

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Learning Curve

Remember that new hoop I bought for my embroidery machine?  Well I finally got around to testing it out the other day, and I learned a thing or two (or three) in the process.

#1. Just because a hoop has three connection points that does not mean it is equal to three of your machines regular hoops.

#2. When making an embroidery design, it is important to remember the size of the hoop (the real size, not the size you think it is - see #1). 

#3. When trying to center text, the width of the letters matters more than the number of letters.
Glad this was just a cheap tee from Walmart and that I was just playing.  I'm trying to figure out if I should put something (palm tree? nautical coordinates?) on the left to try and balance it, but I don't know if it will help or if it will still look off center.  Hello new bum around the house tee.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Baby Gift Part II

I showed you the baby bibs I made last week, but I wanted to add a little more to the gift so I made matching burp cloths.

Just a layer of fabric, an inside layer of terry cloth, and a back layer of chenille.  Why oh why did Joanns stop carrying chenille??  I had one piece left so I was able to make these, but now I'm out.  Any suggestions on what else I could back a burp cloth with?  Or should I suck it up and order some chenille online (in which case, any good online sources I should know about?)?

Delivering these gifts to the soon-to-be mommy and daddy tomorrow night!  I hope they like them!

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Baby Bibs and a new (to me) Quilt Shop

Oh Google maps, how I love you.  I was playing on there last night (you know, as one does when they are bored with all their iPhone games) and I searched my area for 'Brother Sewing'.  Low and behold a (new to me) quilt shop popped up about 20 miles away!  The Sewing Garrett.  Their website wasn't much, but it had photos of their Brother accessory wall and what did I spot- the two things I have been looking for!  A walking foot for my machine and a new embroidery hoop for my machine that has three places to connect it to the machine.  So instead of unhooping and rehooping my fabric, I can just hoop a big piece and then scootch the frame down as I need to.  I still have to stitch within my 4x4 size, but at least I can leave the fabric hooped if I have a bigger design that I want to do (I just have to split it into threes).  I may have stunk at explaining that.  I'll try again in another post when I actually use it.

I did use the walking foot this afternoon though.  One of my best friends from high school and his wife are expecting their first child this fall and my husband and I are going out to visit them next week- and Southern girls never show up empty handed.

Behold, the beginnings of their gift!  Homemade bibs for their soon-to-be little one.  The fabric on the right was just too perfect- Pat loves cars, planes, and skydiving (hoping he gives that one up now that he is going to be a daddy!)

I had made bibs before when I found out Angie was expecting baby Sam, but of course I found a tutorial on Pinterest that I wasn't smart enough to actually pin.  "I'll just search again the next time I need it"  #famouslastwords  Thankfully I mentioned how I made it on my other, family website.  Just two pieces of fabric with terrycloth sandwiched in between. 
For these I decided to put denim on the backs, mostly so the two bibs would kind of tie together.

On the left here is a finished bib (except for the Velcro closure which still needs to be sewn on) and on the right is the fabric before being sewn.  It always surprises me how much the bibs shrink after sewing, flipping, and top stitching.  Turning those ends right-side-out was not easy!  Thankfully I found a chopstick in my kitchen drawer to help.  I had never tried that trick before, but it was really helpful.  So much so that the chopstick now lives in my sewing room :)

Monday, June 3, 2013

Teacher Tote and Catch Up

Hello all!  I can't believe people are still peeking on this site (though not many, and it might just be Kim :) when I haven't posted in so long.  It wasn't an intended break- I even posted once from my honeymoon and was going to post more- but the iPad did not like Blogspot and it wouldn't scroll so it was making things too hard.  Then I got back and there was all the welcome back chores- presents to unwrap, laundry to do, cats to pick up,... but I did managed to get in some sewing.

With less than 24 hours to spare, I finished up the tote for the Kindergarten teacher I work with.  It turned our really cute, but also really big!  It is a modified version of the Sewing Circle Tote from Oh Fransson!


See, big bag!
 (and why are the photos from my real camera not as good as my iPhone pics??)

As I had planned, I had each of the kids put their thumbprints on the gray background fabric and then I turned them into the feet for a sheep with the child's name on it.

Inside the bag I used a fabric I made on Spoonflower.  I had each of the kids write their name with a black marker on a white piece of paper and then I took a photo, edited it, and then uploaded it to the site.  I worried when got my order confirmation it would not arrive in time and I emailed them right away to see if they could upgrade my shipping- instead they found my order and had it sent out the next day.  It arrived two days later.  Awesome customer service! 

The print did end up getting pretty chopped up, but I think I have each child's name somewhere in their- though some are hidden in the pockets.  The pockets were supposed to be the same print, but it is possible I ordered the fabric before I ordered the pattern...and therefore ordered 1/2 yard less than I needed.  Here's hoping that the kids don't get too upset about that tomorrow.  And here is hoping the teacher likes it :)