Itsy Bitsy Teenie Weenie Purple Polka Dot Bag-ini

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I think the Itsy Bitsy part is apparent. The finished bag is about 5.5in X 6in.

When I first saw this tutorial for the Day Out Purse I barely gave it a look, but returned to it as a good option for an upcoming trip.

This project suffered from my attention being divided between another project and a disruption in the family routine. I Do Not multi-task well. Trying to steal a couple minutes at a time often meant the tablet with the instructions was elsewhere, I goofed on the placement of the magnetic clasp, and I cut the pocket piece incorrectly. Nothing fatal though. I was able to improvise solutions and looking at the instructions got me on track.

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Pattern Comments: The instructions have you make a 30in strap, I needed 50in to make it an over the shoulder bag. This bag is SMALL, but easily modified to be larger. The card pockets are awesome but the large pocket takes up too much real estate in this small purse.

The end result is a streamlined bag that is just right for my Day Out plans on vacation.

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No new fabric was cut in the making of this project. I used up two pieces of my fat quarter collection from my former quilting days. About a hundred to go.

This project should take you a couple hours.

Fabric Bins tutorial

This week I needed a quick and easy project, so I tried out a crafty idea that I saw in Nai Nai’s kitchen. I’d like to share with you how I quickly made a few fabric bins to help wrangle the loosey goosey stuff that lives in the drawers at my house. I’m sure there are plenty of templates and tutorials out there, but I just wanted to dive in and do it my way. Mine are 7x2x2.

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You’ll Need:

 Some basic sewing gear, heavy weight fusible stabilizer, two 12×7 inch pieces of coordinating fabric.

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Tip: Making multiples is efficient and easy. Stack multiple layers of fabric when cutting and chain stitch your corners.

Step 1: Cut a 12in X 7in rectangle in each fabric (2total) and one 12in X 7in interfacing.

Step 2: Apply the fusible to the wrong side of the outside fabric.

Step 3: Mark a 2.25in square at each corner. Stack your layers and cut out the corners.

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Step 4: Sew each corner, right sides together, using a 1/4in seam allowance. Sew from the raw edges down all the way past the cut edge. See below. Do this for all eight corners.

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Step 5: Nest the two pieces right sides together, pin if needed. Sew the top edge using 1/4in seam allowance and leaving a 2in opening along one of the longer edges. Turn right side out.

Step 6: Fold under raw edges of the 2in opening and pin as needed. Topstitch along the entire top edge closing the opening.

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All Done

Optional Step 7: For some added shaping, pinch together each upper corner and topstich for about 1/2in from the upper edge. See below.

Topstitch the top 1/2 inch
Topstitch the top 1/2 inch
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Topstitched corners for more structure

Under the Banner

My father has delved into the art of marquetry (wood veneers inlaid to make a composition) and I’ve been trying to encourage him by managing his blog Earlsmarquetry and being a sounding board for his ideas.

custom pet - CopyCustom pet portraits by Earl’s Marquetry

With a couple shows lined up for the fall, Atlanta’s Makers Faire and the art show at Roselawn, I wanted to make him something for his booth. I landed on making him a banner that could fit along the front of his table. I downloaded some letter templates and after measuring their width, I calculated the spacing I would need to make it all fit on a banner 10in tall and 70in long.

I have four layers here in this reverse applique banner; the dark brown front and backing, a layer of flannel to give it some body, and a layer of woody looking fabric layered under the brown front to be revealed by the reverse applique. I traced and sewed the letters, then cut out the top layer of brown to reveal the woody fabric for the letters.

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Even with my meticulous measuring, I still goofed the spacing up. Unfortunately I traced and stitched the first word before discovering my mistake so the second word is a little scrunched.

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A project like this should take you about 3.5 hours.

Kids Clothing Week 2014…my plan

Allrighty, its my first time participating in a sew along of sorts. July 21 through 27 is Kids Clothing Week where participants are challenged to sew 1 hour a day for 7 days.

kid's clothes week

Here’s my ambitious plan. Ambitious because I have a toddler that has decided to boycott naptime of late and because I several ideas but have not been as OCD about making sure I have the materials to complete these projects (running off to the fabric store is not as easy as it used to be).

Okay now for my plan, lets see how I actually do.

Project One: Boys Basic Blazer from Blank Slate Patterns

I’ve made pants and a tee from Blank Slate Patterns before and they are a dream to use. I actually have all the materials I need for the blazer except for the buttons. I have a pretty good stash of buttons, so I have high hopes for this project.

Project Two: Winter PJs. Bottoms using Clean Slate Pants by Blank Slate Patterns; Top tbd.

100_3343Here’s my version of the Clean Slate Pant.

I have some charcoal grey and robins egg blue fleece in my stash to use up for the pjs. I have just enough charcoal to make the pants without pockets if I use a bit of the blue as a side stripe and I’m hoping enough of the blue to do a simple top. I give this project about 50/50 chances.

Project Three: Activity Station/Seat Saver

Something like this from 8th Day creations.

Not that we have a super fancy or even super clean car but it grates on me when I hear my little guy’s shoes sliding against the back of our leather seats. I’m hoping something like this will be great for little guy and nerve saving for mommy. I have no ideas on what fabric in my stash to use or what kind of pockets I’ll need. This will definitely be a winging it project. I’m NOT a wing it type of person so maybe not so nerve saving for mommy. I’ll give this one 50/50 also. I don’t think it will be difficult to execute, once I figure out fabric and a basic plan.

Project Four: Monster in the Pocket sweatshirt.

I’m thinking a basic long sleeve sweatshirt with a large zip pocket across the tummy. The pocket lining would be black with a couple friendly monster eyes peaking out.

Abigail Bib by mahlicadesigns

I recently made a Caterpillar Onesie as a gift for a girlfriend’s new baby, shortly thereafter I received an invite for a welcome baby party. I sure didn’t want to show up empty handed , so I needed something quick and easy since my new little guy (three months old now) doesn’t give me much time for sewing and crafting any more. Hurray again for Pinterest. I love the bibs made over at Stubbornly Crafty and used her template to make my own simplified version.

Here’s how I made mine.

Supplies: Approximately one 12 x 15 piece each of terry cloth and quilter’s cotton, coordinating ribbon, and sew on velcro.

Cut out one bib in each of the fabrics using the template. Aline your ribbon across the quilters cotton and sew in place along the top and bottom edge of the ribbon. Using one of your machines fancy stitches might look nice here.

Place your bib pieces right sides together. Starting about three inches from one of the bottom corners, stitch toward the corner and around the bib. After rounding back around the other bottom corner, stop stitching to leave an opening about four inches so you may turn the bib right side out. Clip the seam allowance in the curved areas. Turn your bib and use a tool to push out the corners and curves.

Pin the bottom opening closed. Top stitch around the entire bib, being sure to catch the front and back of the bottom opening to secure it shut.

Sew on your velcro to each side of the neck flaps. Be sure one piece is sewn on the front, and one piece to the back so it will close properly.

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The Helene Bib Onesie by mahlicadesigns

I’m borrowing my bib idea from my Sweet Treats Top to make another baby gift for one of my friends. This will use the third of a five pack of Onesies I  purchased recently; I’m challenging myself to use them all in a creative way. Let’s see how I do.

Here’s how I made the Helene Bib Onesie.

Supplies: Onesie or other top, two 3/8 in buttons, 1 1/4 in x 2 in fabric for the placket, 4 in x 7 in fabric for the ruffle, and 3/4 in x 1 1/2 in fusible interfacing (optional).

Fold the 4 x 7 in ruffle piece of fabric in half length wise, right sides facing. Sew along the short ends using a 1/4 in seam allowance. Turn and press. Using a long basting stitch, stitch along the top raw edge of the ruffle piece. Use the basting stitches to gather the upper edge into a ruffle.

Pin the ruffle in place at the center front of your neckline.

Center and fuse the interfacing to the wrong side of the placket piece, then fold in all raw edges by 1/4 in and press towards the center of the wrong side. Pin the placket in place over the ruffle, being sure to cover the raw edges of the ruffle.

Top stitch around the edge of the placket through all layers.

Hand sew on your buttons.

Flag Garland tutorial by mahlicadesigns

Among my circle of friends, lots of babies are on the way. What a great way for me to combine my love for handmade and trying out some of the very cute ideas I’ve run across on Pinterest. (Follow me on Pinterest)

Here’s how I did it.

Supplies: Fabric quarters or larger scraps in assorted colors. Double fold binding about 40 in  long. Basic sewing supplies.

I wanted to make my finished flags 4 in across the base and 4 in at center height, so I drafted a paper board template with a 4.5 in base and a 4.5 in height and connected the sides. If you have a quilting ruler, it may be more efficient for you to use the marked angles on the ruler to make your triangles of your chosen size rather than make a paper board template.

I made my garland with 12 flags; purples on one side and pinks on the other.

Cut out a total of 24 triangles to make 12 finished flags. I cut out 12 purples and 12 pinks. Pair up your triangles right sides facing. Using a 1/4 in seam allowance, chain sew all your triangles along one side. Next, chain sew along the other side making sure your seam lines cross at the tip of your triangles. Grade and trim the seam allowances near the triangle points. Turn and press your flags. Top stitch around the outer edges.

About 10 in from the end of your binding, place and pin your first flag. Space your flags about 5 in from the beginning edge on one flag to the next.

Fold your binding in half lengthwise and begin sewing from one end. After sewing 2.5 in, stop with your needle down. Lift your presser foot and loop the top edge of your sewn binding around and fit it inside the still open binding. Continue sewing to make your loop and your garland.

Stop sewing 4 in from the end of your binding. Remove from your machine and trim your threads. Now, starting from the unsewn end of the binding, sew 2.5 in and repeat the process to make another loop. Continue sewing until you meet your original seam, back-stitch, remove, and trim your threads.

Caterpillar Onesie by mahlicadesigns

I came across diddledumpling‘s  really cute idea for a caterpillar detail on Pinterest and was inspired to make one as a gift. This will use the second of a five pack of Onesies I  purchased recently, I’m challenging myself to use them all in a creative way.

Here’s how I made mine.

Supplies: Onesie or other top, six 3/8 in buttons,  small bit of black embroidery floss.

Arrange your buttons along your top and sew in place. Use the embroidery thread to create the antenna. I made french knots and back-stitches.

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How to make a monogram top for baby by mahlicadesigns

I came across a really cute appliqued top by Dana at made and was inspired to make a monogram onesie for the new guy on his way to our family. Since the Onesies I purchased came in a 5 pack, I’m challenging myself to use them all in a creative way. Let’s see how I do.

Here’s how to make the monogram.

Notes: You can skip the fusible part and attach the letter directly to the top using your outlining stitches in the step starred below**

Supplies: Onesie or other top, craft felt approximately 2in by 2in,  embroidery floss, fusible interfacing**, letter templates, fabric marking tools, large eyed needle, scissors, iron.

Choose a letter template that fits the area on your top or trace it out free hand. Place your letter template (right side down) onto the wrong side of your craft felt, trace the outline, and cut out your shape. Repeat this step for the fusible interfacing, the non-fusible side should be face up when looking at your letter.

Now, start adding running stitches to the interior of your letter using the embroidery thread. Fill up the middle area first, we will use the last row of running stitches along the outer edge to baste on your interfacing. This is a great way to use up those short lengths of threads you’ve been keeping.

I placed all my knots to the back, but you could have them on the front for more texture if you like.

Attach the fusible interfacing to the back of your letter using one last row of stitches around the outer edge of your letter. **(Alternately you can use this last row along the outer edge to attach the letter directly to the top and skip the fusible.) All those knots should now be covered and the fusible side should be facing out.

Center your letter onto your top and pin in place. Set your iron to the setting recommended for the fusible interfacing. From the inside of the top, press to fuse the letter in place.

These instructions and your finished project are intended for personal use, please do not resell.

Crazy Quilt Ornament: the tutorial

100_2874Here’s a little How To for the crazy quilt ornaments that I make. These are a great quick project to use up left over scraps.  Make your own or take a look at my etsy store to purchase one of mine. These instructions and your finished project are intended for personal use, please do not resell.

Notes:

  • Finished square is 3in X 3in
  • Use a 2mm stitch length.
  • I use about an 1/8in to seam the crazy quilt pieces. This is pretty narrow, but since these are decorative I’ve not had any problems. Furthermore, since the scraps I use are pretty small, a larger seam allowance would eat up more fabric than I would want.
  • For best use of your scraps use the small pieces in the center area and larger pieces on the outer area.
  • You’ll notice I don’t use a batting. If you choose to add one, you will need to add width to your muslin and backing fabric to accommodate the thickness.

Supplies:

Muslin or base fabric, backing fabric, fabric scraps, small scrap of fusible web (optional).

Cut one 3.5in square of muslin and backing fabric. Cut one 1in x 2in of coordinating fabric for the loop.

Make the loop:

Fold the loop piece in half lengthwise and press. Fold in the long raw edges to the center crease, press. Fold in half again and press. Stitch a scant 1/8in to close the long edge. This will give you plenty of length to make the loop as big or small as you like.

Crazy Quilt:

Choose a 4-5 sided scrap piece for the center of your quilt and place right side up in the center of your muslin square. Choose your next scrap piece to fit along one edge of your center piece and place right side down. Aline your edges and sew through all three layers (your top scrap, your center piece, and the muslin) using a 1/8in seam allowance.

Open up the seam and heat press or finger press to lay flat. Trim away any of the second piece that extends beyond the edges of your center piece.

Choose your next scrap and aline along the second edge of the center piece. Continue adding scrap pieces around the center area at random angles until the entire 3.5in square muslin is covered.

Make the quilt sandwich:

Square up your quilt square to 3.5 in X 3.5in using a rotary cutter, mat, and ruler or the tools of your choice.

Choose one side to leave an opening for turning. Look for a side that does not have a seam ending in the middle section. Make note of this side or add a pin to remember it.

Center your loop on any of the remaining three sides. With quilt square right side up, line up the raw edges of the loop with the raw edge of the quilt square and position to make the loop as big or small as you like. Baste using 1/8in seam or pin in place with the pin heads outside of the square for easy removal when sewing.

Position your backing piece on top of of your quilt square with right sides facing and pin in place if desired. You now have a small pile with (from bottom to top) your quilt square right side up, loop positioned on one edge, and backing fabric. Right sides facing.

Sew your Quilt:

Using a 1/4in seam allowance.

Begin on the side you will leave open. Position your needle 1in from the corner, back-stitch 2-3 stitches and then sew towards the corner, pivot, and sew around the remaining edges. When you come back around to the beginning edge that you will leave open, stitch about 1in from the corner and take a few back-stitches.

Finishing:

Trim your corners. Turn right side out using your favorite tool to gently push out the corners. Fold the unsewn edges of the opening to the inside and press all edges. If the quilt appears puffy, use a scrap of fusible web in the middle to tack it down. Slip stitch the open edge closed.