The idea of drafting a pattern used to terrify me. I always thought of pattern making as something that only professionals could do. Then, a little over a year and a half ago, I was looking to turn a men's dress shirt into a baby dress and stumbled upon The Metro Dress by Shwin & Shwin. Their website is chock full of wonderful patterns as well as instructions on various sewing techniques and even how to draft your own sewing patterns. I thought back to The Metro Dress last month when I saved one of my husband's dress shirts from the good will pile. Below is the upcycled version of said shirt.
As I have mentioned before, my crafting desires come in ebbs and flows. Generally I will knit/crochet like crazy for a couple months then I will sew like crazy for a couple months, then go back to knit/crochet. When I am in full knit/crochet mode, I like to take my projects with me, however, I haven't had a great bag to do this. Usually I end up using a large purse to carry everything and my hooks/needles get lost among diapers, snacks and other basic purse worthy items. I thought of this large tote to solve this problem months ago, but didn't get around to making it until now. Below is the tutorial.
Nothing is more essential for a child's room than storage and it is always helpful to find an adorable solution. I was on Pinterest a few weeks ago and stumbled upon the perfect tutorial by Make It and Love It. I used a basic gray duck cloth because that is what I had around, but how cute would this be in a bright pattern?! Anyway, today is a shout out to the tutorial for this lovely little bin.
Today's post is a shout out to a wonderful pattern and tutorial by Sewing in No Mans Land. I found this lovely little dress on Pinterest a few months ago and knew it had to happen. Below is my version in which I used fabric remnants.
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There are so many crafting mediums I enjoy, but I tend to always go back to a few trusty standbys; namely, knitting, crochet and sewing. Generally, I tend to rotate through the different techniques about every month and a half. However, when I found out last February that I was going to do the Beehive Bazaar, I went into production mode with knit and crochet, so my sewing machine did not leave its' case for quite a while. Apparently, my crafting addiction needed to make up for lost time because in the last two weeks, I sewed this skirt, a dress, a canvas container, a frilly apron and a large tote. Not to mention the 3 projects I have in mind that I still want to sew up. Don't, worry, I will blog about them all and share links to tutorials.
This large doily was part of a stack of doilies and lace trims my grandmother gave me about a year ago. To make the pattern for this skirt I primarily followed a tutorial over at Made, which was so great, I didn't feel that it was worth re-doing. The only deviation from the tutorial is to add the doily on top.
Large piece of paper (or a few letter sized taped together)
About 1 yard of fabric (depending on how large the skirt will be)
To make the pattern, go to this tutorial over at Made. Keep in mind how long the doily is and whether you want the skirt to extend past the bottom, just reach it or not hit the hem at all (like I did). Once you have the pattern drawn up, cut it from your fabric as described in the tutorial, then create a rolled hem along the bottom edge of your fabric.
Fold your doily in half and iron the fold, then fold it in half again and iron the fold. Now, line up your pattern to the folded edge of the doily and cut the hole for the waist. Unfold the doily and lay it right side up on the table, then place your fabric skirt on top of the doily, right side up as well. Pin around the waist, then sew at your determined seam allowance. Then bring the doily through the waist hole and on top of the fabric skirt and iron along the seam. Lastly, go back to the tutorial to add in the waist band.
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Last week, I posted a lovely little A-Frame Play Tent that was decorated with a fabric fan garland. I found the tutorial for this adorable string of fans at Blooms and Bugs. I really loved the outcome, however there are a few things that I would probably do different if I were to make it again. I think it looks better when hung vertically (pictured below) as opposed to horizontally (shown in the tutorial). If you want a horizontal garland, here are a few suggestions:
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I grew up building forts using blankets, stools, chairs or whatever looked useful, so when I saw how simple and inexpensive it is to build an A-frame play tent I knew it had to happen. I ended up making one for my daughter and my niece. Seriously, it cost less than $10 total and took all of an afternoon to make. The best tutorial I found for this creation came from Twirl for a Rainy Day Tent. I contemplated redoing the tutorial with the few tweaks I made, but I have had a few too many projects on my plate in preparation for Christmas. So, instead, I am providing you with a link to the tutorial I used and a list of my little tips.
* Watch out for bowing and large blemishes when picking up your furring strips
* If you aren't down with buying thrift store sheets and/or you don't want to do any sewing, look for curtain panels instead of a flat sheet
* When drilling your holes, do two of the furring strips at once so that the holes line up and mark them, then paint the ends of the pairs different colors
* I sanded my furring strips because they are pretty rough just from the store
By the way, I will be posting about the fabric fan garland next week.
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Here is the other half of the Asymmetrical Ruffle Christmas Stocking for a little girl that had this mini quiet book attached to the front. As I had mentioned before, this stocking was donated to Helping Kids with Cancer. This little book is a spin off from the Dress Up Page that I made as part of the Quiet Book I did about a year ago. That page was easily my favorite page to make. The little dresses are so fun to "design" it is hard to stop! I hope you enjoy the tutorial!
2 rectangles at 5" x 6" of fabric (Inside panels)
1 rectangle at 9" x 6" of fabric (Outside)2 rectangles at 4.5" x 6" of a reinforcement material, such as a sturdy outdoor fabric or canvas
Pattern (UNCHECK the fit to page box)
Felt for the girl and back of the dresses (you can get felt sheets for $0.37 at JoAnn's)Steam a Seam
Embroidery floss and needle (face and crown)
1/4" double fold bias tape or fabric to make your ownScraps of fabric for the dresses and castle
Ribbon and/or lace for embellishment
1. Pre-wash all fabrics before cutting.
2. Place the 2 inside panels face down on the table. Place and pin a rectangle of reinforcement material on top of each panel, lining up the top and sides. Baste stitch around the edges.
3. Cut two 5" strips of the soft side of the Velcro. Place an pin one strip about 1" from the top of one of your inside panels. Place and pin the second strip about 3/4" below the first. Straight stitch along the top and bottom of each strip.
4. Pin the two inside panels right sides together and sew along the inside at a 1/2" seam. Iron open the seam , then top stitch on each panel.
5. Cut the girl from the felt as well as from the steam a seam, then center and iron in place. With a straight stitch and starting at the bottom of the legs in the middle, sew straight about 3" or so to create the legs. Satin stitch around the body, except for the head. Cut the under dress and hair from both the fabric and the steam a seam. Iron in place, then satin stitch around the edges with a matching thread. Cut a piece of the soft side of the Velcro to fit on the chest of the girl, then pin and sew in place.
6. Trace the face and crown onto tissue paper and use that as a guide to embroider the face and crown.
1. Cut your castle, roofs and flag from the fabric and steam a seam, then iron in place on the front of the book. Satin stitch around the edges, extending the back side of the flag down to the roof to create a flag pole.
2. If you are attaching this book to the Ruffle Stocking from Tuesday, cut a 1" square piece of the reinforcement fabric and place it on the wrong side of the exterior fabric where you would like the eye to go (I just held mine in place instead of pinning) then sew the eye portion of the large eye and hook in place.
3. Cut a rectangle of fabric at 3" x 2". Fold in half so that the 2" sides meet. Sew along one side with a 1/4" seam allowance, then sew again from the same side with a 1 1/2" seam allowance. Clip the remaining fabric and turn right side out. Connect your Velcro and cut a piece to fit the tab just made. Attach the prickly side to the tab and the soft side to the back side of the book in the middle about 1/4" from the edge. Then, place and pin the tab with the Velcro facing up on the front of the book and baste in place.
4. Place the outside of the book face down on the table, place the inside face up on top, pin and baste around the edges. For the binding, please refer to the detailed instructions of how I bound the pages in my quiet book.
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Last week, I posted about Blazing Needles and the incredible donation they made to fill stockings that I had created. These stockings are being donated to Helping Kids With Cancer in an effort to bring some Christmas cheer to children fighting cancer and their families. I also made and filled another stocking to be donated (I just can't help myself!). Best part is that I am providing you with quick tutorial of how I made this lovely item. There are two parts to it, the stocking itself, which I will show today, and a mini quiet book closet with Velcro dress up clothes, which I will show on Thursday.
12" of a sturdy fabric or 24" of a lighter fabric (44"wide)
9" of fabric (for the flap and the loop to hang it) (44" wide)
5 rectangles of fabric measuring 14" x 6" (for the ruffles)
1. Pre-wash all fabric. Print the pattern, making sure that the box labeled "fit to page" is NOT checked. Piece together and tape the main stocking before cutting out.
2. Fold your main fabric in half and cut 2 stocking patterns, repeat if you are using a lighter weight fabric. Fold your flap fabric in half and cut 4 flaps (the last page of the pattern).
3. Pin 2 of your flaps right sides together. Sew along the rounded edge using a 1/2" seam allowance. Unfold and iron the seam to one side. Sew along the seam, attaching it to the side you just ironed it to. (This causes the fabric to fold to one side making a cleaner finish). Repeat this step, but iron the seam to the other side and sew it to the other side. Make a few clips along the seam so that it lays flat when you fold it right side out. (You should have a visible seam on only one side of each flap which will be the wrong side).
4. Lay down one of your stockings with the wrong side up. Place one of the flaps with the right side down on top. Line up the top edges and pin. Sew together using a straight stitch, then zig zag along the edge. Repeat the same process with the remaining stocking and flap.
5. Open up the flap and iron the seam toward the stocking. Top stitch along the top of the stocking, being careful to catch the seam as you sew.
6. Cut a 2 1/2" x 4" rectangle of fabric for your loop. Fold the rectangle so that the 4" sides meet and sew along this same edge using a 1/4" seam allowance. Turn the loop right side out and iron. Fold in the loop in half so the short ends meet. with the flap unfolded, place and pin the loop on the wrong side of the back stocking about 1 1/2" from the top and 1" from the side. Sew with a straight stitch and a zig zag stitch. (Please refer to the Origami Stocking for further pictorial representation)
1. To do the ruffles, fold each of your 5 rectangles in half, wrong sides together, and iron. Next, do a "dry fitting" as in place the rectangles about where you would like them to go on the stocking. This is especially necessary if you are using directional fabric or putting tulle on one side. Mark the side of the ruffle that will be angling up toward the flap with a pin.
2. Using a basting stitch, sew about 1/4" from the top of each rectangle, rounding off the corner that will be angling up toward the flap at about 1" - 2" from the end. The rounding off doesn't have to be exact as you will be bunching it anyway, but if you are really nervous about it, use a cup or a bowl to draw a round line on the ruffle before you begin sewing.
3. Pull one of the strings on each ruffle to bunch it and tie off the ends when it is bunched enough, then cut off the excess fabric from the rounded corner.
4. Do another "dry fitting" by placing all of your ruffles on the front stocking, then pin the bottom most ruffle in place and sew using a zig zag stitch to prevent unraveling. Repeat until all of the ruffles are attached; placing the topmost ruffle right under the flap.
5. If you are planning on adding the mini quiet book, then place the hook end of a large eye and hook under the bottom most ruffle and mark with a fabric pen, then hand sew to the front.
6. Pin the front and back stockings right sides together, tucking the ruffles a bit as you go. Starting about 1/2" from the top of the stocking and with the flap unfolded, sew the stocking together using a 1/2" seam allowance. End about 1/2" from the top on the opposite side. Cut off any excess fabric from the ruffles and make small clips about 1/2" apart in the seam allowance at the rounded portions of the stocking, taking care not to cut through the seam.
7. Turn the stocking right side out and sew along the flap sides with a 1/2" seam allowance. Fold the flap down and you have a lovely ruffled stocking!
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Lets get real, the holiday season is upon us and Christmas isn't really that far away. If you have high hopes for a handmade Christmas, now is the time to get started on those one of a kind gifts. The great news is that there are a LOT of gift ideas out there that really don't take much time. Today, I am going to highlight some from this very website to get you jump-started.
This first group is for all of the knitters out there.
1. T-Shirt Yarn Star Bracelet - The great thing about this gift is that you don't even have to make a trip to the craft store, just make your own tarn from your closet!
2. Fancy Spats - Liana - Use some left over yarn from your stash for this adorable fashion statement.
3. Baby Bear Hat - Made with chunky yarn and few embellishments, this darling hat is incredibly quick and easy to make.
4. Tractor Hat - This is a great hat for the boys in your life. Plus, it is a great base for an earflap hat, just swap out the chart.
Now to some lovely crochet projects.
1. Fancy Spats - Cathedral - These little shoe collars are the perfect gift for that person with a unique style.
2. T-Shirt Yarn Cluster Bracelet - If you are low on cash, then this is the item to give to your friends. Not only is it adorable, but you can make it from t-shirts in your closet.
3. Ruffle Wreath - Perhaps you would like to add to your decor stash or maybe you just aren't sure what to buy for someone on your list. This gorgeous wreath is easy to make and fairly inexpensive too. (You can make the flowers from old sweaters!)
4. Broomstick Lace Headband - Really, does it get any easier?! Make these as stocking stuffers and use up some of your left over yarn or even make some tarn to create this headband with.
Ok Sewers, here are some ideas for you.
1. Poinsettia Stocking - So, the stocking itself is pretty cool, but you could use the same technique for a pillow, which would also be adorable.
2. DIY Library Bag - This bag is so easy and doesn't take much material. It would make a great gift for friends and family. You could make it on a smaller scale and fill it with homemade soaps and scrubs.
3. Custom Stuffie - Here is an outline for how to make your own custom little stuffed animal for the little cutie in your life.
4. Men's Dress Shirt to Baby Dress - This would be awesome out of a great red or green plaid shirt!
Here are some random crafts that don't necessarily fall under a specific category.
1. Pallet Growth Chart - This would be a great gift for someone with growing children or grand children
2. DIY Bath Crayons - Can we say stocking stuffers?
3. Olliblocks - So fun, so quick, so easy.
4. Nativity Puppets - Switch up the telling of Jesus' birth with some simple felt puppets
If you are not so much into making things, but want the look of handmade, check out my Etsy Shop.
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Hey there! I'm Kristin, aka Kit. Here is just a peek into my crafting mind. I hope you find something to spur your creativity!
Kit's Crafts Shop