Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Kid's Candy Project

Tonight the kids and I sat down and made Boo-pops (Lollipops that look like ghosts). We had a blast! They especially loved using marker to color the faces ;)  I love time doing crafty things with the kids!

Thanksgiving Blocks

I made more blocks, this time as Thanksgiving decorations. Come Monday, they'll be sitting on my dining room table as a decoration ;)


Ben 10 Birthday shirt for the Boy!

I think my little man may grow up to be on Project Runway. He loves to design, and sew when he can (with my help and supervision of course!) He's four and already designing shirts and dolls and such. I love it!

Tonight we designed his birthday shirt. Awhile back, I made this Elmo shirt for his sister for her birthday, because she LOVES Elmo. So tonight, he designed what he wanted his Ben 10 shirt to look like, and Mommy cut and sewed. Here's the final project.

I'm so excited that he likes doing project like this. Gives us more fun time together. I think we both appreciate that!

Heart Shirt

I wanted to use up some of the shirts I bought and make some cute holiday gifts for my little girl, so I made a raw-edged heart shirt using colors I love - black and white on a white t-shirt, with a pop of pink. (I love heart shirts. I made this one for her awhile back and she wears it all the time!)

I haven't washed it yet, but the edges will fray a bit. I love how that looks, so vintagy! Another holiday gift so no pictures of the princess in it yet! Cost was about $1.50, for t-shirt and scrap fabric I had on hand.

Girl's Ruffles and Flower shirt ;)

If you have never seen Welcome to the Good Life's blog, you should - she is amazing! Her projects are just gorgeous! I recently saw this shirt she made, and I made an adult version for myself. And a kiddie version.

So simple to make. I used one of the Disney brand shirts I bought at the Dollar Tree, and some jersey knit I bought from the scrap clearance bin at Hobby Lobby. Perfect price - $2.00 total for the shirt.

And I don't have any pics of her in it, because it's going to be a Christmas gift ;)

My Ruffles and Flowers shirt

If you have never seen Welcome to the Good Life's blog, you should - she is amazing! Her projects are just gorgeous!

I recently saw this shirt she made, and I wanted to try something similar. However, because I'm a big chesty, I wanted it to be more slanted across the shirt as opposed to a circular flower, so I revised the pattern a bit.

It didn't turn out exactly how I wanted it, but I do like how it turned out. I just used two old t-shirts I was going to toss anyway because they were worn and stretched out. I took in the sides on the dark grey one, and then used the light grey to make the ruffles. And if you want to see the toddler version I made, check it out here.

Thanks for peeking! Have a good week!

Zebra Pillowcase Dress

I found this zebra material in the scrap bin at Hobby Lobby. Had to get it! It was just enough to make a pillowcase dress (there was literally no extra material). Thank goodness she's still small ;)

I used an old tank top (I used part of the tank on this dress as well), and made the bias for the arm holes and neckline. I cut the old flower off my tank and used it on this dress as a decoration (I used the other one on this hairbow). And of course, a touch of pink on the bottom to give it a pop of color.

I love sewing. And kid clothing. ;)  It turned out a bit baggy, but that's okay cuz then she can wear it for a few years.

Supergirl Dress for a Super Girl!

I was hard at work putting this dress together (matching cape in another post) as a gift for my daughter for her birthday. Her dad and brother are superhero fans, so when I saw this material clearanced, I had to pick some up. This is more of a jumper she can wear without a shirt underneath in the spring, and with a shirt in the fall/winter. It is a bit long (oops!) so she'll probably have to wait til spring to wear it, but oh well. For the top part, I used one of my old tank tops. I also created a matching hairbow. Because hairbows rock ;)

Happy Wednesday everyone!


Supergirl Cape!

I'm in heavy preparation mode for the holidays and my kid's birthdays, meaning lots of sewing. Last night, I put together three items: a Supergirl cape, a Supergirl dress, and a zebra stripe pillowcase dress. I can't wait for her to see her cape - she loves playing dress up, and always wants to play "Guys" with my son (meaning she wants to play with his superguys). So now she can wear her cape, and he can wear his (making that one tonight) and they can save the world ;) 

One side is Supergirl material that I got for the clearanced price of $2.95 per yard. The back is one of her old baby blankets, a fleece polka-dot material. I painted with fabric paint her initials on it.

Have a great week everyone!

Boo Blocks!

My son has informed me that I do not have enough Halloween decorations. So, in honor of Halloween, and in trying to make little man smile, I made some Boo blocks last night. They were inspired by this other set of name blocks I made as a gift. And cost me about $0.25 to make ;)

Happy Halloween everyone!

Monday, October 18, 2010

The Best Friend Quilt

I have a very awesome best friend, named Patty (you can read about her awesomeness here, if you want). I've been working on a little gift for her, because she's been a bit homesick. I can hear it in her voice, even if she'd never admit it.

I cut squares from all my favorite, fun, funky fabrics I've collected this past year, and then sewn them into a little quilt. Lots of colors, lots of patterns. Why didn't I just use a couple coordinating patterns? Well, because this quilt is meant to be like friendship - there are so many different ways we love our friends and that our friends are there for us. We can have similarities to our friends and yet still be so different. And as the years go by, we may change shape or form but we still fit beautifully together with our true friends.

My next step is to complete the back piece. It's going to be a soft, warm fleece, and I'm going to sew a pocket on it. Then, I'm going to sew little squares, and make "letters" to her. She can only open one a day or a week or whatever she deems as the time period, and they are going to be memories or words of wisdom, etc.

She's going through a particularly hard time right now (that I cannot discuss as of yet) and so hopefully, this will give her something to smile about.

Happy Monday!


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Being grateful for what we have...

Today at work, our department volunteered to serve lunch at a local homeless shelter. This was my first time serving food like this, and it was definitely an eye-opener. We all think we know what it would be like to be there serving food, but I can honestly say that when you actually do, it is a different experience. (This is my coworker Eric and I.)

To see the people going through line was shocking to me - it wasn't just the homeless I'd anticipated. Yes, there were the homeless that you'd expect - a little bit dirty, hungry, some talking to themselves. And then there were men and women dressed in clothes like I would wear to work and in uniforms for their jobs, who obviously are working to make a living but cannot make ends meet and need the help of the shelter. There were senior citizens, which broke my heart. They are veterans, someone's parents...and they don't have enough money for a daily meal. There were teens (runaways or orphans or on their own, who knows) but each one obviously lost in some way.

The hardest part was seeing the little kids. Kids of all ages, from babies to teens. Hair done neatly by mom or dad or grandma, picking at their food because they didn't really want it because they didn't like the taste but knew they wouldn't be getting anything else. So sad! I almost cried a few times, because I cannot imagine my children having to live like that.

Each person went through the line, some asked for seconds, but nobody wasted. If they weren't going to eat the beans, they said don't put them on the plate. I guess I thought they'd just want anything and alot of it because they might not know when they'd get to eat again, but they didn't want to waste. They know how precious food is. Most of them smiled, many of them said "Thank you for feeding us" or "Thanks for being nice to me." Wow - to thank someone for being nice to them? What an eye opener.

Many of them did chores like the dishes or wiping down tables afterwards. I noticed a lot of dirty fingernails. I take for granted the simplest things like having clean hands - even though I know not all people have that, it's still somewhat shocking to see. Some people wouldn't look us in the eye - you could see having to go through this line and get food was a very difficult for them. They just wanted to get it over with and eat, and then go back out into the world. Some told jokes, some made small talk, and some just went through silently.

It was strange to see people my age in line, the mom's with children, and people my parent's age. All people who had similarities to me. They are all somebody's baby, someone's family, and by being told "Thank you for being nice to me," I assume the world might not treat them as such.

I guess I'm more blessed every day than I truly realize, because I have such a great group of friends and family that I could depend on if times got hard. It definitely makes you grateful for all of the things we have - and I'm not talking about the cell phones and the video games and all the "stuff" we buy. I mean the simplest things, like knowing tomorrow we'll be able to put food on the table for our kids and not have to worry about how we're going to pay the gas bill. The ladies running the show at the shelter were great - talking to these men and women and children, calling them by name. They knew who was having a really tough time on the streets, and who might need a meal for a disabled family member at home. They care about these people, and you can really see it.

It makes me wonder what I could forgo to help out a little more at places like the shelter, where people just want the most basic things in life that we take for granted -- food, shelter, and most important, a little caring and respect. Because I'd like to think that if any of my loved ones were in their situation, someone would be willing to do the same for them.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Bitten by the Sewing Bug, Making Halloween Monsters

It happened - my son was bit by the sewing bug! He absolutely loves to help me sew. It started with him just wanting to work the pedal, then to sitting on my lap and helping me move the fabric through...and now to designing his own stuff.

I know he's only five (almost), but I'm pretty sure he's going to be the next Seth Aaron and win Project Runway someday ;)

I was inspired by No Big Dill's blog post about the doll she and her daughter made together. Then I thought about the cute little monster dolls she made a few posts later. I combined the two and presented my little man with the idea.

Tonight, he got to sew his first project (of course, with my supervision). He designed it himself - a little stuffed monster. He picked out the look he wanted (I helped a little so we could keep a simple design). He picked out the colors from my scrap felt and scrap fabric bins. He helped cut out the pieces, he helped lay them out how he wanted, and finally, he sat on my lap and helped me sew it all in place.

I am proud to present the very first creation by Little Man, "the stuffed monster repeller." (He named it himself, too).

Sesame Street Chic

This week, I saw a post where a blogger made Sesame street shirts. I sketched out a design from her shirts, and then tucked the notebook in my purse...and forgot to write down her site to give her credit and props!

So to the lady whose design I saw and who I can't give credit rock, I loved what you did, I made something similar, but it is so not as good as yours!! If you find this and let me know, I will immediately give you credit, and point people to your amazing etsy site to purchase your shirts, because they are amazing.

My daughter's upcoming bday party theme is Elmo. She loves Elmo. In fact, aside from da-da, Elmo is the only word she can clearly say. Seriously.

I made her an elmo shirt for her birthday party, but I thought these would be perfect ideas for gifts. Here's how they turned out! And here's a little secret: the shirts I used are Disney brand, and all cost $1 each at the Dollar tree. I used one sheet of felt, which was 25 cents. And scrap fabric and buttons I already had on hand. Woo hoo for thriftiness! (I savor these days because I know someday I'll be required to buy Hollister and American Eagle and she won't touch a thing I make!)

Elmo shirt:

Cookie Monster:

Oscar the Grouch Dress:

Linking to:
Creation Corner
It's A Hodgepodge Life
Crystals Craft Spot
Simply Designing
A Little Knick Knack
The Shabby Life
It's Fun to Craft
A Few of my Favorite Things
Fingerprints on the Fridge
Finding Fabulous

Wooden Block Christmas Gifts - and Printable Templates

I love the wooden blocks I've seen out in blog-land, and I wanted to do some of my very own! I thought it would be a perfect Christmas idea - something everyone could have that is personalized and from the heart.

Now here's my little secret - to make 12 sets of these cost me...$10.67. That's right - $10.67. That's literally $0.89 per set. That to buy, I would have to pay at least $20 or more for. I know it sounds cheap, but they don't look cheap, promise.

Here are my supplies:
  • Wood - two 2x4x8's from the clearance bin at Home Depot. $0.56 each
    They cut them for me too (and didn't charge me). One I cut into 4x4 squares, the other into 5x4
  • Paint - two half gallons from the clearance section in the paint area. Always look here first for paint! People return colors they don't quite like, but they can be perfect for a project that you don't have exact colors in mind for. Mine were black and tan, and $1 per can. Nice!
  • Paintbrush - full price, $1.97
  • Sandpaper - full price, $5.97
  • Mod Podge - had at home, but is about $6 per bottle
  • Scrapbook paper - had at home
  • Print outs of some words and pictures and letters that I just printed on my computer
Seriously - awesome.

I was so excited to see how this would turn out, and I picked someone who I would gift this prototype to. Basically as I walked in the door, I began sanding the edges of the blocks and then painting them - ha! While they dried, I worked on my cardigan revamp and dolly, and cut out my letters and squares. I cut out letters and traced them onto the blocks, then used a paint pen to fill them in. Here's a litttle tip - if you use a paint pen, make sure it dries before you add mod podge - I've made that mistake in the past and it stinks!

Once the blocks were dry, I put a coat of mod podge on them and put the squares on them. I added another coat of mod podge and let dry.

After it was dry, I sanded the edges again, to give them a vintage look. I love how they turned out! They are exactly how I wanted them to look. Yay! At the bottom of this post are templates you can print to use on your blocks if you want.

TEMPLATES (Just open in a new window, right click on it, and save the photo. You can then use whatever program you want to print it)

Linking to:
Creation Corner
It's A Hodgepodge Life
Crystals Craft Spot
Simply Designing
A Little Knick Knack
The Shabby Life
It's Fun to Craft
A Few of my Favorite Things
Fingerprints on the Fridge
Finding Fabulous

Dollies, Dollies, Everywhere!

Okay, not everywhere. I am experimenting with making dolls. I made one for a friend's daughter, and last night I thought I'd try a new one. Of course, I freehanded a pattern for a scrappy looking doll, and it didn't turn out quite how I had planned - BUT, I did learn alot and learned what I need to do and change next time (which will probably be tonight). And, I liked how her hair turned out. I sewed with brown thread on the back and the bangs, to make it have a textured look, and then the pigtails are actually jersey knit material cut into strips and sewn in.

And best of all? My daughter LOVED it. I love kids. They don't see the imperfections in things - they only see that it was something special just for them. ;)

Have a great day!

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