Saturday, December 31, 2011

Melissa's blog

In 2012, I want to get back to my poor neglected blog. That also means that I get to start reading more friends blogs.

I just found out an online friend of mine has a really great blog AND she's got an awesome year end give away. Go check her bloggy goodness out here. :)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

How To Make A Taggie

So, you've seen those super cute baby things called "taggies" and you want to make your own? They're SUPER easy to do and you can whip one up in about an hour.

1. 2 pieces of fabric cut to your desired size. I like to do squares. Depending on the size of fabrics I have, I like to do mine 15-18" square. Wash and dry your fabrics first. I like to use flannel paired with fleece. 2 layers of fleece is pretty thick for some machines to stitch thru. Use whatever fabrics you want to. Be creative!
2. Ribbons. I tend to like them to be matchy all the way around but I've seen them made with all different ribbons. Try to use different textures and patterns. Ric-rak is fun too.
3. Thread
4. Sewing machine
5. Scissors or rotary cutter & cutting mat
6. Ruler
7. Pins

Ok- ready to get started?
1. Cut your fabric to your desired size. Here, my squares are 18"

2. Cut your ribbons to 6". Fold in half and press with a warm iron. If the iron's too hot the ribbon may melt.

3. Take one piece if fabric and place it face up. Pin the ribbons, folded end toward the center of the fabric, around the outside. I do mine starting 2" from the corners and then about 2" apart. I also do them 2" in from the edge. Be sure to pin them all down. Put sturdy ribbons at the corners for hanging on things.

4. Place your other fabric face DOWN over the piece you just pinned all the ribbons to. Match the edges as best you can and pin the heck out of it. I start by pinning the center and a few inches out from the center then I pin between all the ribbons and at the corners.

5. Stitch all the way around using a 1/2" seam allowance. Be sure to leave space for turning. I usually take one of the ribbons out and leave about 5" open.

6. Clip the corners to get a nice corner when you turn it.

7. Turn it right side out after reaching in and removing all the pins. Trust me, remove the pins before trying to turn it. Poke the corners out. I like to use a chopstick for this.

8. Iron it smooth and be sure to iron the fabric inwards at the opening you left for turning.

9. Pin the ribbon you left out into the opening. Pin around the taggie to keep the front and back neat for top stitching.

10. Stitch around the taggie. I like to do 2 lines. I just use the sewing machine foot for the measure here. One line is the outer edge of the foot and the other is the inner line. I think they're 3/8" and 1/8" (maybe ?)

11. You're done! :) Sit back and smile at the money you saved and the cuteness you created! If you make a taggie using this tutorial, drop me a note and let me know how it turned out.

Monday, September 19, 2011

quilting books

I inherited a whole bunch of quilt magazines and books. Anyone interested in them? I have no clue what's in the books since I don't really quilt much. There's some ribbon applique stuff, some patchwork, piecing patterns, crazy quilt.

Sorry the pictures are all upside down and wonky. But you get the idea. Just turn your screen upside down. :)

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Miss Independent Necklace and Earrings

Fusion Beads put up a tutorial for this GORGEOUS necklace a while ago. I instantly fell in love and knew I had to make it. So, here it is- Miss Independent. Of course, I can't make a necklace without matching earrings so I also made earrings. I think they need more crystals at the top to "fill out" a bit more and match the necklace- guess I'll have to order more beads. :) The picture does NOT do it justice- it's SO crazy sparkly and shiny. Hopefully when I wear it for school pictures it'll photograph better and I can put up a picture of ME wearing it.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Mini Crib Sheet Tutorial

I got a great hand me down mini crib from my cousin. We're painting it lime green for Ally's room. To go with the mini crib, I needed sheets. All the sheets I found online were around $20-$30 for ONE! I'm not about to pay that for ONE sheet! So I searched around the internet and found a few tutorials. I didn't really like any of them, so my sister and I figured out how to make one ourselves. AND I was able to make 4 for under $25! I could have done it cheaper but I really liked these fabrics and had to have them. :) This tutorial has elastic ALL THE WAY around the underside, not just on the corners. I found out that this sheet will also fit my pack and play! Double happiness!

To make a mini crib sheet (38"x24"x6" deep) you'll need (if yours is a different size, scroll down for how to get the measurements you need):
1.5 yd fabric
matching thread
54" of 1/4" elastic

1. Wash and dry your fabrics. I used flannel for this one but plan to make a new that are just cotton.

2. Cut your fabric to be 38"x52"

3. Fold over into 4's so that the open corners are all together.
4. Pin a 7" square of paper to the corner to give you a cutting line.
5. Remove the 7" square of fabric.
6. Match up the edges of the corner you just removed and pin. Do this on all 4 corners.
7. Stitch closed with a 1/4" seam (or there abouts, I used my sewing foot to get a straight line. Again, do this on all 4 corners.

8. At this point, if you want to, you can zig zag or serge all the way around to give a nice finished edge. I don't have a serger and really didn't want to take the time to zig zag. We'll see how well these sheets wash and if they fray.
9. Fold over 3/4" and iron all the way around. I pinned it too because I'm ultra anal about having things straight.
10. Iron all the way around so you have a nice straight edge to stitch against.

11. Stitch a casing using 1/2" seam allowance. I used my quilting thingie (I know it's got a proper name but I don't know it) to get a consistent 1/2". Don't forget to leave a space to thread the elastic. I like to do this at the beginning so I don't forget down the line.
12. Thread your 1/4" elastic thru it being sure to pin it at the far end so it doesn't slip into the casing. Yes, I know this from experience. LOL.
13. Tie a knot or stitch the ends of the elastic together and slide it back into the casing a bit.

14. Sew the opening shut and stand back to admire your brand new sheet. :)

Note: this is for MY specific mattress. If your mattress is a different size you're going to have to adjust the measurements. See below.

Here's how I did it.
1.I took the length of my fabric and subtracted the length of my mattress, then subtracted the depth of my mattress x 2, then subtracted the seam allowance x 2.

2. I then took the width of my fabric and subtracted the width of the mattress, then subtracted the depth of my mattress x 2, then subtracted the same seam allowance x 2 from step 1.

3. You want to make sure that you have the same size on each piece to cut out so you may have to do a little "wiggle room" math and trim it down a bit to get it figured out

4. To figure out the square you need to remove, add the depth of the fabric and 1 of the seam allowances. If you use the seam allowance x 2 you will have too small of a sheet. Again, experience here.

So, for mine-
mattress length is 38", 38+6+6+1+1=52" which is the length of fabric I started with
mattress width is 24", 24+6+6+1+1= 38" which is the width of fabric I started with
mattress depth is 6", 6+1=7" which is the side length of the square I removed.

Any questions or corrections please email me! Thanks for checking out my tutorial. :)

Sunday, July 17, 2011

My Dad's iPad 2 case

My dad just got an iPad 2. He LOVES it but needed a cover for it. Thus the birth of this "one hour" cover. Let me just tell you, it did NOT take an hour! I made it over 2 days (ran out of thread, ran out of velcro.) It would have taken me a full day of sewing to make it but I sew REALLY slowly. I also didn't have enough fabric to make the flap from the piece I quilted so I had to improvise and added on to it. I really like the way it turned out actually! Happy mistake there. :)

Both the inside and outside are quilted with warm and natural quilt batting. The outside is a solid blue cotton fabric and the inside is a soft blue mottled flannel. I LOVE it! There's a hidden jeans pocket (yes, from a real pair of jeans) that closes with velcro to hold all the cords and whatever. The flap folds over and secures with velcro to hold it shut and keep the iPad inside. I put a grab handle on it made from left over quilt binding from my quilt I made for Ally. I think it's manly enough to not be a "bag" but still VERY usable. The handle can also be slung over a door knob. Not having an iPad to actually make it around, I hope it fits when I give it to him!

Outside of the iPad2 case

Opened up to show off the lining and hidden pocket

Close up of the pocket I added

I really like this little tote and think I might just make one for myself eventho I don't have an iPad. it's neat. I've never done anything with the jeans pockets I took off the TONS of pairs of jeans I used for Ally's rag quilt. I have plans for SOME of the pockets but I have almost 30 pockets to use!

I loosely used the tutorial from One Shabby Chick to make this tote. I had to call dad to find out the exact dimensions of his iPad and ended up trimming down the fabric a bit to make sure it all fit properly. I made the outside 1/4" larger all around because of the bulk of the layers of batting and fabric. I also stitched the flap to the lining and then shoved it inside the outside and stitched those together. I used stitch witchery to hold the tops down so I could stitch them together. I don't like the whole "leave a hole to turn the whole thing right side out" and prefer to make complete bags and then fold over and sew the tops together.

Thanks for checking out my iPad tote. If you'd like one email me! :)