Friday, August 28, 2009

Quick and Easy Bulletin Board

I posted a simple but fun bulletin board idea over at the MemoryWorks blog today - check it out:

Message Board, Jr.

Oh, and if you go down a few entries to last Friday's, you'll find a more grown-up and very cool version of a message board by my friend Lacey!

Little Guy Tool-Belt

Here's a fun one for the little fix-it guy (or girl) in your life!

All you need is ONE fat quarter and a package of that hem facing tape stuff (or really fat bias tape...or a ribbon...or whatever else would make an apron tie!): All you do is fold your fat quarter in half, right sides together. Sew three sides, turn rightside out, press and top stitch.

Now fold up the bottom edge a little more than 3/4 of the way up to form a pocket. Top stitch around edges of pocket and top to bottom in a couple places to divide the pocket.

Take your bias tape, hem facing or whatever you're using...fold it in half (if necessary) and pin to the top of the apron. Top stitch all the way around it to form waistband and ties.

Use smaller pieces of your leftover belt/apron tie fabric to make little loops to hang tools on.

Load 'em up!

Repurposed Weird Baby Jeans + Moda Charm Pack = Quick, Cute, TOTALLY Do-able!

Everybody ready for a tutorial?? This is one of my favorite projects of the summer! It turned out really cute, was incredibly cheap (we're talking like $2-3 for the entire outfit, folks!), is fast to make...and is VERY "operator error"-friendly!

Here we go: Cute, huh?!

This is what you need to decorate your baby in such chic cuteness:

*A onesie or T-shirt (you probably have one at home you can that would be FREE, my friends!)

*An awkward pair of thrift-store pants. This particular pair has unusually short legs compared to the size of the waist...and denim sweatpant capris are never flattering, right?! (Awkward thrift-store pants: FREE to me, but if you went out and bought $1-2, right?)

*10 squares from a Moda charm-pack (5" squares if you're cutting your own). I used "Objects of Desire".

*Sewing machine, serger is helpful, thread, rotary cutter, scissors, embroidery floss/needle

First, lop off the pant legs. You can make them shorts:

Or cut a little higher and make a skirt, like I did:

Lay out your outfit so you know what you're doing and what fabric you want next to what:

Cut your charm squares in half - put one stack aside, you only need half of the halves. I can't really tell you how many total squares you'll need, because your cut-up pants might be a different size than mine...I think I used 10 or so - you need enough to go around the base of your skirt about 1 1/2 times (you'll be gathering):

Sew all the charm square halves in a long strip like so:

Cut down the center, lengthwise, of the strip with a rotary cutter:

Sew the ends of the strips together to make a circle:

Two things to do here -- 1.) serge all around along the bottom edge of your circle (or zigzag or whatever you want to do to finish it) and 2.) machine baste around the top edge:

Pull the machine-basting-thread to gather into a ruffle:

Adjust the basting so that the ruffle fits the bottom of your skirt and is fairly evenly gathered. Pin to the INSIDE of the skirt, sticking out as shown:

Sew 1/4" or so along the bottom edge of the skirt to attach the ruffle. Leave the edge of the denim part "raw" as shown:

Remember those awkward pant legs you lopped off? Cut a few strips from them and attach a few around the waistband for some funky belt loops (leave edges raw):

Here's what we have now:

Now, go throw it in the washing machine, get it good and wet -and then throw it in the dryer. All those raw edges will get nice and frayed! Then find a long, cute ribbon to thread through the belt loops for a belt.

If you want to make a matching shirt (and I stole this idea from my friend JILL, who stole it from our friend TRISH)...stick a charm square under the top layer of the shirt and using embroidery floss and a needle, stitch a shape over the top of it. Then use some sharp scissors and cut out the T-shirt area inside the shape to let the charm square show through.

Do NOT do this, which I did:

I tried to cut the hole before doing the stitching. This was not a great idea, it was not fun, and it turned out weird. Still cute, but weird. I should really have clarified the directions before I tried it :)

When you're all done, you'll have yourself one sweet little outfit...AND you can be all impressed with yourself for "recycling"!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

OH where, oh where, have all the crafts gone?!'s been a long time! I have been making lots and lots of things...and not posting them! Sigh. I still need to show you how to make car organizers for the kids, binder bags for church (or any other quiet activity), fabric buckets, a super-super-super-cute baby skirt out of an old pair of jeans, a quick "tool belt" apron for that busy little guy in your life, an even quicker bowtie for that same busy little guy, lots of organizing and reuse/recycling tips...I've been up to things. Lots and lots of things. :)

Hang in there with me...I'll get some stuff up here soon!