January 31, 2012

Love: 12 Months of Ornaments February Theme

February starts tomorrow and this month's theme for the ornament challenge is "Love". So get your creative juices flowing and let's see some amazing interpretations!

My rustic heart was another scrap drawer idea. I pulled out some colored felt, my pinking shears, polyester fill, matching thread and decided to let the sewing machine sit this one out.

To make your own version

1. Draw 5 hearts that decrease in size for your pattern.  My largest heart was about 5 inches tall. There needs to be a minimum 3/4" between the sizes. I freehanded my hearts because I wanted them more folk-arty than perfect. Once you have your pattern, cut out two hearts for each sized heart pattern with your pinking sheers. When you are done you will have10 hearts, 2 of each color.

2. Stack the hearts and pin in place.
3. Use alternating thread to attach the hearts to one another to form two sides.

4. Begin sewing the largest hearts together back to back, leaving an opening in order to stuff the heart. Secure the ribbon hanger with your stitches at the top of the heart.
5. Cut a length of ribbon to use as the hanger, and pin in place between the hearts.
6. Stuff the heart with polyfill, and then complete the stitching to close the heart.

January 26, 2012

Upcycle Craft: Baby Pants from Old Sweaters


So accidents happen and sometimes wool sweaters go through the washer...and the dryer. I have 3 sweaters that have met this fate and they've been stuffed in a storage drawer awaiting the day that they could be upcycled into something useful.

Originally I was thinking of making some stuffed animals for a lucky baby (I even bought the child-safe toy eyes), but I was never motivated enough to get one going.  Last weekend I was flipping through one of my new favorite blogs, Prudent Baby, and found these great instructions for DIY Recycled Baby Pants.  Now, I have to admit, I have a new sewing machine and you can probably tell from the Little Blue Bird that I'm still getting used to it (my stitching a little shaky still), but the pants were a complete success. I even had the correct elastic on hand to make them in under 30 minutes! Give them a try and let me know how it went. I'm going to tackle another pair this weekend.

January 11, 2012

Another Winter Bird: 12 Months of Ornaments Project 1

January Winter Bird: Dove

I love Jen's bluebird, and since she gave me a sneak peek before I started crafting mine, I went in a different direction so that we'd have some variety to share with you.  My dove with red accents is based on the felt bird ornament kit offered by The Purl Bee here.  The design seemed simple enough, so I printed pictures of the kit and attempted to figure out the construction along the way.

January Winter Bird: Dove

I cut out the biggest bird body from my printout and used it to trace two shapes each on red felt and white batting scraps.  I did the same with the wing, tracing the shape onto felt and batting (two of each).

I used red perle cotton embroidery thread to stitch the red bird bodies to the white bodies, and then I stitched the layered wings onto the bodies with simple X stitches.  I used a scrap of red yarn to make a loop and used my hot glue gun to secure it to the inside (red) of one half of the bird body.  More hot glue attached the two bird bodies to each other -- just a glob of glue in the center of the bodies did the trick.  Gluing the halves together in the center only gives the ornament a bit of dimension.

Winter Bird: 12 Months of Ornaments Project 1

Blue Bird: January Winter Bird Topic
Little Blue Bird

On January 2, Elizabeth and I launched a year long ornament project. I have a little one on the way and need indestructible ornaments for my tree and let's face it... November and December are crazy enough without trying to whip together 12 ornaments. To learn more visit the 2012 Ornament Challenge page and get sewing and sharing!

January's project theme is Winter Bird and I've created my first addition to the tree, Little Blue Bird. I hadn't mentioned that I'm also trying to use up some scraps around the sewing room, so everything you see here came out of a drawer or storage bin. I've scanned the Little Blue Bird pattern in case you'd like to make a flock for your tree. These little birds would also look good as decorations or even a mobile in a child's room.

If you make a winter bird ornament, please take a photo and add it to our Flickr Album to share! We'll be selecting a few to feature as inspiration in an upcoming post.

We'll be posting February's theme soon on the 2012 Ornament Challenge page so don't forget to come back and visit.

January 7, 2012

Big Finish: Random Reflections Quilt

Quilt finish

You may remember that I posted about this quilt when it was in progress back in July. Along the way, I decided that I'd give the finished quilt to my sister as a gift, since she'd given me the print fabric.  A November birthday gift quickly turned into a Christmas gift.

Quilt finish

I finished the binding and gave it a run through the washer and dryer to give it a nice crumpled look. Then I covertly embroidered a label for the back while lounging in my parents' living room with the quilt recipients sitting just across the way.

Quilt finish label

The quilt was wrapped and under the tree by Christmas eve.

Quilt finish;   Quilt finish

On Christmas morning, armed with coffee/tea/hot chocolate and warmed by the fire, we got down to business and started opening gifts. Looks like the quilt was a hit, and I'm glad I decided to give it away to a good home.
Quilt finish

Quilt finish front

(I think she likes it.)
Quilt finish

January 3, 2012

Snowflake Latte

I couldn't resist sharing a snapshot of my snowflake latte, made by my dad on my last morning in Tennessee after Christmas.  Whenever I visit, he hands over my morning brew adorned with smiley faces, Christmas trees, snowmen, and even cats.  The snowflake is a delightful new addition, don't you think?

January 1, 2012

DIY Applique Onesies

Applique onesies, set

My good friend Anne is expecting her third little boy this month, and I was looking for something special to make her/him because, well, he's sure to have plenty of hand-me-downs, and a new baby deserves something new.  I bought a package of 4 onesies and used a couple of different tutorials to make this set for Baby Benjamin.

Applique onesies, B's

One thing I love about the applique monogram tutorial from Skip to My Lou is that it provides PDF files for the whole alphabet, so you can download, resize, and print the letters you need.  I opted for an uppercase and a lowercase B for variety. "B" is for Benjamin.

Applique onesies, neckties

For the other two onesies, I pulled some favorite fabrics and made neckties. I used the template and instructions provided at Crap I've Made (and yes, that is the best blog title ever created).


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