Saturday, April 27, 2013

Binding Tracey's Quilt

I've been working on Tracey's quilt since January 2. It started with her mentioning she'd like an Aunt Donna quilt. She had me. That was all it took. I should have completed quilt pictures in a day or so. Be on the lookout!

Monday, April 22, 2013

Scrap Sewing Gift Card Holder

I happened upon this tutorial earlier today. How cute is this?
Photo from The Sewing Loft

I know I give gift cards a lot for Christmas and other occasions. Thank you to The Sewing Loft blog for doing this tute. A great way to use up scraps of trim and felt or other fabric.

Click here - The Sewing Loft

She has a great blog and free patterns. Check it out!

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Project - Clothespin Bag

I figured it was time to get rid of the old clothespin bag. It's sort of falling apart.

So I did. I made one today and you can make one too. Click on the projects link or go directly to it by clicking here.
Much better. Have fun!

Friday, April 12, 2013

Article about how sewing can save money

Well all knew this already, right? Here's a first person view of how to save money with sewing.

First Person: My Sewing Skills Saved Us at Least $150 Over the Last Year By Tammy Lee Morris (text below)

Knowing how to sew used to be a must for all young women but today, it seems to be a dying art. I learned to sew from my mother and grandmother when I was a little girl. While it was a fun hobby during childhood, it has become an essential skill that helps save my family money. Here are specific ways that I have saved money in the past year thanks to my sewing skills

Kitchen Valances

The valances hanging in my kitchen now were homemade a few months ago. I created the unique paint scheme in my kitchen then decided I wanted to make curtains that would complement the colors. After choosing the perfect fabric, I measured and cut then sewed and I was quite pleased with the finished product. They look great in my kitchen and are exactly what I wanted for a fraction of the cost of store-bought valances.

I spent a total of about $10 on the fabric and each valance would have cost at least $10 each at a local store. I sewed four valances so the total cost savings was $30.

Rag Dolls

For Christmas this past year, I decided to make homemade cloth dolls for my newborn daughter and my 16-month-old niece. To buy comparable dolls, it would have cost between $10 and $20 for each doll. I used supplies and materials I already had on hand and the finished products were adorable. The total cost savings was between $20 and $40.

Diaper Covers

After my daughter was born, I chose to use cloth diapers in an effort to save money. Store-bought, commercially-made diapers covers cost $22 each (including a lining pad) at a local store. Instead, I purchased waterproof fabric and liner fabric as well as hook and loop closures, elastic and a diaper cover pattern at a local fabric and craft store. The total cost of the fabric, notions and pattern was about $30 but the amount of materials I bought will make at least six diaper covers. If I bought those at a local store, the investment would be $132 but my investment was $30 -- a savings of $102. That savings doesn't include the money I will continue to save on diapers.

Cloth Napkins

In order to save money, we use cloth napkins instead of disposable paper napkins. To buy cloth napkins at a local store, the cost is $2 for two napkins, or $1 apiece. I was able to use scrap materials that had been given to me to sew cloth napkins myself. For one dozen napkins, I saved $12 and that doesn't include the savings from not buying disposable napkins.

Saving Money

Being able to sew has allowed me to create a number of items that would otherwise cost me a lot of money. I have made curtains, blankets, throw quilts, dolls, stuffed animals, clothing and more. Because I can sew, I have been able to find cheap items at thrift stores, mend and alter them and repurpose them to suit my tastes or the tastes of those in my family.

While many people would see a one-dollar winter coat that has a tear or a ripped seam as not worth buying, to me that's a bargain. I can mend that easily and have an excellent-condition coat for a member of my family. An item of clothing that is too large, too short, or damaged is still a great bargain if the price is right as I can fix it up.

Simple sewing skills are valuable to know because not only is it a fun hobby, but it is a money-saving skill.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Works in Progress or UFOs

If you're like me, you have a bunch of works in progress and stacks of fabric waiting to be turned into a garment or a treasure or both. I thought it was time to make a list of what I'm working on and maybe see if I can manage to get these things done!

  1. Hexagon quilt: I've been working on this for a few years. It's hand sewn and will take a while longer. I finished one of the two twin quilt tops. The second one is about two-thirds finished. 
  2. Smurf dress: I cut this dress out last year. It's a girl's size 5. One of my Hippie Sewing friends gave me a zipper to put in it. I went to start stitching this together two days ago and found that I no longer have the pattern envelope with the instructions in it. I can probably put it together without instructions, but I'm a bit squeamish when it comes to zippers. This zipper will go into a lined bodice. Eeep! I ordered another pattern from Simplicity. They have a certain number of  out-of-print patterns and thankfully, this was one of them. What a wimp, huh?
  3. Steelers mug mats: I have two of four made. I tired of them almost immediately, but put them on Etsy, so when they sell, I'll definitely finish them. I have two packages of craft batting to make things like this, so I guess that it sitting around means it's another unfinished project in and of itself!
  4. Christmas stockings: I have several of these started. The ones that are waiting for me include one made of denim strips and Christmas trims, two cut out of a cutter quilt to which I added reinforcement zig-zag stitching, and several lining pieces. 
  5. Dish or hand towels: I have a couple of hearts cut from the above-mentioned cutter quilt to applique to a recycled bath towel or two. You can never have enough dish towels, right?
  6. Black and white dress: This is a drop waist dress made of black and white as well as black fabric. I ran out of the black and white, so did some strip piecing for the bodice. It has patch pockets short sleeves. I made the bodice and lost interest. It hangs in the sewing area and stares at me. 
  7. Skirt: I have the pattern, pins, and scissors on my cutting table as well as the fabric - a cheater patchwork quilt fabric (not quilted). I'm not sure what the holdup is here. Once cut, it will take a couple hours to make. My intention is to make the same pattern with several pieces of fabric I have hanging around. 
  8. Skorts: Oh skorts. How you taunt me. I bought a pattern for a simple skort. The pattern cries out for my attention, but I haven't gotten there yet. 
  9. Robin's quilt: Robin's mother asked me to make a quilt out of her mother's hankies and I said yes. I have a box of hankies, some clothing for accents (Robin's mother recently passed away and I asked her to pick up a few pieces that remind her of her mom), and a sky/cloud fabric for the background. It will be an 18", 5 x 4 blocks quilt-as-you go similar to the tee shirt quilts I've made in the past (you can see a few in my gallery; link on the right). I'm holding off on this quilt for a little while. I'm not ready to tackle it yet.
  10. Last, but not least, Tracey's quilt. I've posted pictures of this one in progress. I plan on sewing more of it today; in fact, I did sew a row of tumblers earlier. I also cut out more of the denim tumbler pieces. I most likely will finish the top today. At least, that's the plan!
I have a longer list of things I'd like to sew in my head, but it's overwhelming to think about it. Maybe simply spelling out this list will spurn me forward. I'll update as I finish these. 

How many projects are you working on?