Sew Fantastic Show Off {Boxer Sleep Shorts}

IMG_3744You know it’s almost July when I’m prepping for my 5 week Sew Fantastic sewing session for teens at the library. The program is already filled {I limit it to 8} and it’s looking like I mostly have new and young {6th graders} sewers. My plan is to start off Week 1 with a nice easy square pillow and then spend the last 4 weeks working on these awesome boxer shorts for lounging in this summer. I have a feeling I’m going to want to kick myself, but we’ve never attempted to make clothes before, and this project was relatively simple {except for the elastic waist band. I see some tears in my future, but it’s no worse than a zipper}.  Continue reading

Sew Fantastic Show Off {The Library Tote}

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I have been obsessed with The Purl Bee’s Twenty Minute Tote for the last several years.  I have used this tutorial to make Christmas presents for my coworkers and teach children through adults at my library how to sew.  It is my go to project for novice sewers and is ALWAYS a crowd favorite.  I have probably made this bag close to 10 times and I have never once posted about it.  Well, today that changes!  Continue reading

Sew Fantastic Show Off {Leather Bottom Tote}

1I’m three weeks away from my most favorite library program: Sew Fantastic.  For our Fall session, we met once a month and worked on smaller projects.  I decided that I wanted to do it a little different for our Winter session and I scheduled us three Thursdays in a row so that we could work on one bigger project.  What’s the project, you ask?  See Kate Sew’s Leather Bottom Tote.   Continue reading

{Sew} Easy Pouch with Zipper Tabs

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I first attempted the zipper pouch three years ago. Although the pouch came out fine (especially for a novice), the experience was horrible and I swore off zippers for a loooooooooooong time. This past summer, however, I taught sewing to a group of 7 teenage girls and I decided it was time to bring back the zipper in my life. Have you ever seen a group of teenage girls look at you with anger, frustration, and tears? It’s pretty horrible! But each of the young ladies in my class finished their zippered pouch and the pride on their faces when they saw their finished pouch made the whole experience worth it. Continue reading

He Gives Warm Hugs {DIY Olaf Costume}

OlafMy two year old was very anti costume this Halloween.  In fact, he started telling me in September, “I don’t want to wear a costume. I just want candy.” Sorry kid. It doesn’t work that way. In early October, this Olaf costume pattern from Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop came into my inbox and I just had to make it! I showed it to my husband, who laughed and said, “you know Dax will never wear that, right?” Luckily, I have a friend who was looking for an Olaf costume for her three month old son, so I got to make it for him. Continue reading

DIY Burp Cloths for my Super Spitty Baby

I can’t remember the last time I used my sewing machine.  I think it was when I made Dax’s car seat cover back in February.  Wow!  That was three and a half months ago.  {sad face}  Tonight, my little dude decided that he wanted to go to bed at 8:30, so I took this opportunity to wipe the dust off my sewing machine and make Dax something not sew (ha!) easy.  I pinned this tutorial from Petite Lemon Blog FOREVER ago and I’m excited that I was finally able to make her awesome burp cloths.  Continue reading

Car Seat Cover

The compulsion to nest, clean, and create has hit me full force over the last 3 weeks.  For someone who considers herself to be “domestically challenged”, this is all a super crazy feeling.  I woke up yesterday and knew that I would have to spend my day crafting.  I went out to Jo-Ann Fabrics and bought supplies for three projects.  The first project was the Visual Weight Loss Jars that I completed in like 10 minutes yesterday.  The second project turned out to be a total epic fail and left me screaming at my sewing machine.  My third project was to make a car seat cover for my little guy’s car seat before he gets here in 9 days.  I found an amazing tutorial at Make It Do that was easy to follow and yielded some super cute results.  Continue reading

Point and Shoot Camera Clutch

My second Christmas sewing project was for my awesome parents.  After finding out that Dave and I are having a baby, they told us that they plan to help with babysitting Dewey.  YAY!  I decided that since they will be spending so much time with the baby, they would need a fabulous point and shoot to capture all of Dewey’s awesomeness.  Dave and I got them a Nikon Coolpix S6100 Digital Camera from B&H. (We <3 B&H!!)

I realized after buying my parents the camera, they would also need a case, but I couldn’t find one that I really loved.  Luckily, Pinterest was there for the rescue.  After doing some searching, I came across the perfect camera clutch tutorial found at Karlen Creates.  Although, I’m going to post my step by step instructions, you should definitely check out Karlene Creates for more detailed (and easier to follow) instructions.

First, I gathered up the ol’ supplies:

-Two Rectangles of fabric measuring approximately 14 1/2″ x 4.5″

(I like to make a template in Microsoft Word because I suck with my ruler.)

-Batting

-1″ of 1/4″ elastic

-1 button

-Sewing machine and basic sewing supplies.

Start by cutting out your fabric:

and your batting:

Take the two pieces of fabric and lay them right sides facing.  Then lay the batting on the wrong side of one of those two pieces.

Next, peel back your one layer of fabric and pin your 1″ of 1/4″ elastic into a loop on one of the 4 1/2″ sides of the other piece of fabric with the loop FACING IN!!!!!  (I messed this up and had to start all over from the beginning.  Sad face.) Karlen Creates says that she, “found it held best if you use the side that has the batting on top of it.”

(This is the wrong way!!!!  Don’t do this!!!  Face the loop IN not OUT!)

Now we pin…

….and sew (leaving about two inches from your starting point so that you can pull everything through):

(Make sure you go over the elastic with the sewing machine a few times so that it’s really held into place.)

Trim up your corners and the batting, then pull everything through your hole so it’s right side out.  Use a chopstick, pencil, etc. to poke to corners out. Make sure you go back around with your sewing machine, as close to the edge as possible, to close up your 2″ hole.

Here’s a little picture of what happens when you attach the elastic loop the wrong way:

UGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!

Now you want to fold from the bottom up (the top is where the elastic loop is), leaving about 2.5″ left on the top (I also pinned as I went).  Fold the top over the bottom and using the elastic loop, mark where you want your button to be sewed on.

The very last step is to start at the bottom of the right side of the bag and sew all the way up to where the bottom and top pieces no longer meet.  Repeat on the left side.

Finally, you’re done and your bag is ready for a camera!  YAYAYAYAY!!!

This might have been one of the more tricky sewing projects I have tried.  It was my first attempt at sewing through batting and it made for some interesting cursing and hissy fits.  BUT, I did it and I am super happy with the results.  (Dave liked it so much that he asked me to make a larger case to hold his Tablet.  We’ll see….)

I feel like my instructions are adequate, at best, so please please please check out Karlen Creates’ Camera Clutch Tutorial if you decide to make this case.  You’ll be happier (and less frustrated) this way!

I rate this Pin an Epic Success!

Happy New Year’s Eve!

~Christen

Pocket Hand Warmers

I wanted to make my brother (aka the guy who wants *nothing* every year) a little something for Christmas.  I thought about maybe a hat or a scarf, but then I came across a Pin for Pocket Hand Warmers.  My brother works outside, so I thought these little beauties might be a nice treat for his super cold hands.  Of course, after I made my brother’s set, I realized his girlfriend is a teacher and probably has recess duty so she would need a pair, too.  Then when I showed my mom a picture, she said my dad could also use a pair.  I was so proud of my work, I showed a coworker… and ended up making three pairs for her six year old son to give to his teacher, aide, and the morning car door opener. 🙂  I then showed another coworker, who is a long term substitute teacher, and she wanted a set, too.  Ha!  It became a cycle.  At one point I ran out of rice, but I still have TONS of fabric.  I guess I know what I’m making next year, too.

A great BIG thank you to Blissfully Content for her super easy to follow Pocket Hand Warmers Tutorial!

Supplies:

-Fabric (I used flannel for my brother’s hand warmers, but 100% cotton for some of the other sets I made.  Both work great.)

-Rice (I used just regular long grain white rice.)

-Nutmeg

-Paper Funnel

-Sewing Machine & basic sewing supplies

Optional:

-I also made a 4 1/2″ x 5 1/2″ rectangle in Microsoft Word and printed it up on cardstock… just so I wouldn’t have to keep measuring my squares.

-Ribbon

First, cut out four rectangles (two rectangles for each hand warmer) from your fabric.

Start by taking your first two rectangles and pinning your right sides together…

… and sew.

(Make sure to leave a little opening on one of the sides.)

Turn your fabric right side out and use an instrument (chopstick, pen, etc.) to poke out your corners.

***After making my third set of these hand warmers, I started leaving my hole more in the middle of one of the shorter sides (instead of the corner).  I then ironed out the fabric and then folded my open seams under and ironed them to make a nice even seam.  This made it much easier for me to close up the hole.  Instead of blind stitching the hole, I just did one more top stitch (after I filled the bag with rice) real close to the side with the open hole.  Easy peasey!)***

Now you want to make a little paper funnel and fill the fabric with rice (kind of like a bean bag).  I also added in some nutmeg to make the warmers smell nice.

And now we’re almost done! You can either blind stitch that top hole (like I did for this set) or you can follow my above asterisked (***) instructions and top stitch the hole closed.

Fin!

You will now repeat the above instruction to make bag number two.  After that, I tied mine up with some ribbon to make them look fancy and wrapped them up for Christmas.  I let everyone who received a set of hand warmers know to microwave their bags for approximately 30-45 seconds and that each bag should hold between 20-30 minutes of heat.  (My dad used his set Christmas Eve night while helping Dave scrape the ice off of his windshield before we went home.  Brrrr!  My dad said his hands stayed toasty though.)

Thank you again to Blissfully Content for the super easy instructions.  Not only was this Pin an Epic Success, but it will more than likely be my go to holiday gift for many Christmases to come.

Happy Holidays!

~Christen~