Brothers

Before my newest addition was born I made the boys brother shirts.  I had searched Etsy for just the right shirt but couldn’t find any that said just what I wanted.  So I went ahead and made my own!  I used iron-on vinyl in the boys colors (yes, this type A mama has colors for each boy.  It keeps me organized and helps the boys tell whose things are what!)

Here is the front-
Here is the back
When Ethan was big enough to fit into his my friends at All Yours Photography took the boys pictures.  Jessica did a great job photoshopping all the boys into one collage (I know you didn’t think they all were smiling, happy, and looking at the camera all in the same frame!)
I cut some extra vinyl for Ethan so that he can still have a brother shirt when he got bigger.  It is about time to get him a shirt and put them all in them again.  Can’t wait to line them up and photograph the backs!

Carnival Birthday Party

Back in August my little guy turned 2.  We had a carnival themed birthday party complete with game booths, a prize table and LOADS of fun.  I recently realized that I never posted the pictures on my blog. So here you go, a glimpse at some of the things I made.

First the carnival booth banners – I used felt and (with the help from an amazing friend) cut the lettering out on my Cricut, traced them, and cut them out.
I love the way they turned out.  And did you notice the bunting along the booths.  So cute and so much fun!  I used an adorable Debbie Mum polka dot fabric that will now be pulled out for all birthdays in our house.
Here is the bunting right after I finished it.  They were simple but took quite a bit of time to make.  Using some cardboard I made a triangle template.   Using my rotary cutter I cut out TONS of triangles.  Then I matched them up and sewed up right sides together.  After turning them I topstitched – I used a zig zag stitch to dress it up a bit.  Then I used bias tape to connect all the triangles.
Next, the birthday boy’s shirt.  I LOVE iron-on vinyl!  Using some scraps I had left over from the boys brother shirts I tried out a double layered design.
Here is another item that will become part of birthday traditions around here.  Can you imagine getting your own special chair decoration on your special day!  Well here is ours.  Ideally I would have liked the lettering a bit larger but I was working with scrap vinyl so this is what I have.  Might just have to make another one and applique the lettering on!

Diaper Box Liner Tutorial

My friend Heather of Pinfluence.com asked me to help her with a project she wanted to feature on her blog.  For those of you that haven’t visited her site, you NEED to!  Heather has taken pinning to a whole new level.  Not only does she pin away {as many of us do!}, she started a website where she posts what she has done with her pins.  She uses the pins as inspiration for her own projects!  Isn’t that genius!?!?!

Heather needed some sewing done so she emailed me to see if I would help. My answer was an excited YES!  I, too, had see this pin on Pinterest and thought it was a fabulous way to recycle something ALL moms already have around the house. We all know how expensive bins are and as moms so many of us are NEEDING containers to wrangle all the toys that come with having children in your home.
Diaper Box Liner Tutorial

Anyway… back to the tutorial part. Here is what you need to get started:
- a diaper box
- fabric (for this size box a yard was perfect, you might need more depending on your box.
    {See below for an explanation of how to measure to determine size of fabric necessary}
- coordinating thread
- sewing tools (rotary cutter, pins, sewing machine, iron, etc)

How to Determine Fabric Size:

First measure your box. Here you can see that the diaper box was 10 inches tall.

Second, measure the sides of the box.  This diaper box was 9 inches on the shorter side and 10 1/2 inches on the longer side.

Now is where it gets a bit tricky. Decide how much overhang you want the liner to have.  Since Heather picked such cute fabric, I decided to show it off a bit more and made it come over the outside of the box about 3 inches.  Now we are going to put all these numbers together.

overhang + height + box length + height + overhang = length of fabric
For me that translated to:
3 inches + 10 inches + 11 1/2 inches (additional inch added in for seam allowance) + 10 inches + 3 inches =
37 1/2 inches
Repeat for the width of the box:
overhang + height + box width + height + overhang = width of fabric
For me that translated to:
3 inches + 10 inches + 10 inches (additional inch added in for seam allowance) + 10 inches + 3 inches =
36 inches

Now that all that math and measuring is over with figured out, we can get to the cutting.  {Be sure to do all your measuring BEFORE heading to the fabric store or you might not get enough fabric!}  

Here is the fabric for this box. Once the cutting was completed it measured 36″ x 37 1/2″.
One yard was perfect for the width.  I then folded the fabric so my cut ends were together and now my piece was 44″.  I cut that down to 37 1/2 inches for the length.
Since both sides were going to be 13 inches I folded the fabric lengthwise so all 4 corners were stacked together. This way only 1 cut would need to be made.  {Yep, I’m lazy efficient like that! As my page name suggests, I’m a busy mama and I usually have at least ONE of my four small children pulling on my leg, talking my ear off, or crying about something so needless to say, I need to work quickly.}
I moved the fabric down on my cutting mat 1 inch
so I could see the gridlines and then using my ruler I measured and cut down 13 inches.
After moving the fabric back up to the O at the top of my cutting mat,
 I then moved it one inch to the right (again to see the grid).  I again measured 13 inches and cut.
I now had a 13 x 13 inch square cut out of the corners of the fabric.
 Here is what it looked like completely open.
Starting with the bottom left corner, I matched up the sides and pinned them in place.
This would become the first corner of the liner.
I sewed the sides together.
This is how it looked once I was done. See how a corner was created.
Now just continue matching up the sides from where the corners were cut out and sew them up.
Here is the liner with 2 sides sewn up.
Once all 4 sides are sewn, you are almost finished.  I tried the liner in the diaper box now to check for fit and length of the overhang.  Only a couple more steps and the liner is done.
(notice the edges here aren’t hemmed up yet)
 Inside of the box with unfinished liner
Move over to your ironing board and iron wrong sides together all the way around at 1/2 inch {I totally eyeballed it, I am horribly impatient and don’t enjoy bending over the ironing board with the ruler making sure it is exact}.
 Then fold it and press over 1/2 inch again.
Now your unfinished edge is completely hidden.
Pin the fabric into place.
 Sew all the way around the liner at 1/2 seam allowance.
Put the liner back into the diaper box.
Close up of the finished edge.
There you have it!  Your liner is done and you can start filling your bin with whatever your heart desires.
Well you are almost finished!  First you need to click on over to Pinfluence.com for Heather’s post on how to finish the box itself {that is unless you like the picture of the diapered baby and the diagram of the diaper on the outside of the box}.
I hope the tutorial was easy for you to follow. Please let me know if you try it out and link back to your own project!  Can’t wait to see how you are using your upcycled diaper boxes to help get your space organized!!!  I’m off to make a few of these for myself.  With TWO kiddos in diapers, I have a couple different sized boxes to choose from ;)

Tutorial Tuesday: Purse Organizer

After wanting a purse organizer for quite some time now I finally decided to create my own. Since I hadn’t ever made one before I wasn’t sure about the size of it. I will be making some modifications to the depth of the pockets but since I was using scraps I just used what I had on hand.

Materials Needed:
 - 1/3 yd. main fabric
 - 1/4 yard lining
 - 1/3 yd. heavyweight fusible interfacing
 - coordinating thread
Dimensions for pattern pieces:
Main fabric
 - cut 2  9×5 (front and back panels)
 - cut 2  4×5 (side panels)
 - cut 1  9×4 (bottom)
 - cut 2  9×6 (for pockets)
 - cut 2  4×6 (side pockets)
Interfacing
 - cut 2  9×5 (front and back panels)
 - cut 2  4×5 (side panels)
 - cut 1  9×4 (bottom)
Lining
 - cut 2  9×5 (front and back panels)
 - cut 2  4×5 (side panels)
 - cut 1  9×4 (bottom)
 Here are all my pattern pieces cut out and ready to go.
 Iron interfacing onto all the main fabric pieces except for the pockets.
Fold pockets in half lengthwise and press.
Lay the pocket pieces on top of the main fabric pieces making sure to line up the bottom edges.
Now figure out the size of the pockets. I drew my lines every 3 inches on the front and then on the back I made the pockets 5 inches, 2 inches, 1 inch, 1 inch.
You can faintly see my lines here. These can be adjusted based on the size of the items you want to organize.
Baste the pockets onto the main pieces to help hold them in place as you sew. I basted them with a 1/4 inch seam.
{on a side note, I am so happy that my darling hubby sent me out for a mani on Friday!  My nails are much prettier for this tutorial because of it}
 Sew down the lines you drew to create the pockets. Be sure to backstitch at the top so that the wear and tear of using the organizer doesn’t fall apart.
Pin right sides together and sew the bottom piece to the front using a 1/2 inch seam. Repeat with the other side panel.
 Here is how the bottom piece looks once all sewn onto the front and back panels.
Now it gets a bit tricky!  Pin the side panels to the bottom (there will be about 1/2 inch on both side that goes PAST the seams you just stitched). Sew from line to line (leaving the 1/2 inch on either side unsewn!).
When done it should look like this.
 Pin and sew the sides together to create the outer part of the bag.
Clip the corners to make the bag sit better once turned.
This is what the outer part of the bag will look like once it is all sewn together.
Finish the lining of the bag the same as the outer part of the bag (except without the pockets).
Fold the top edges down 1/4 inch wrong sides together and press {tutorial fail – I completely forgot to take a picture of these steps} . Then place the lining inside the bag, so that wrong sides are together and pin into place making sure the seams line up.
Topstitch around the top to sew the pieces together and you are DONE!

Now the true test… how does it work?  Well, here is my actual purse. (see same fabric, told you I made it with scraps). This is the before, where I would have to dig for the items I needed while usually struggling to hold a wiggly 10 month old and chasing a rambunctious 2 year old.

I loaded all my items into the organizer, small items in the pockets and the larger ones in the center.

view from the top

And my purse after with the organizer in. So much neater!  Added bonus… changing purses is now a breeze since you just take the organizer and put it into your second bag.

See, how much easier does it get?

I can’t wait to make another one that is a bit larger (for those huge mommy bags that I will be carrying more once I no longer have TWO babies in diapers! LOL)

Please leave a comment if you use this tutorial and let me know how it turns out. This is my first tutorial so if anything is unclear or needs more explanation I would be happy to do so!

Happy Sewing!

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Craft Room Valance

Once again Pinterest has inspired me!  My craft room was in need of curtains and I had recently bought this third coordinating fabric that matched the previous fabric I had purchased. With my hubby’s help, I hung the fabric from the existing curtain rod so I could stare at if for a bit. The look of long curtains was amazing, however, my hanging scrapbook storage and magnetic rack (in the photo- on the right) made long curtains pretty much impossible.

So while scrolling through my Pinterest feed I came across this post about No Sew Curtains. Being that I know how to sew, I decided to make my own version of these using them as my inspiration. I measured my curtain rod and went to work figuring out what I needed to do. My print looked better (in my opinion) one direction than the other and so I had to piece the fabric together to make the length I needed. Instead of having a seam down the center, I used my full panel in the center and then two side panels. This way the seams would be covered by the accent strips.
After sewing those and them hemming the sides and bottom, I made a casing for the rod at the top. Once that was done, I got to work on the accent strips. For those I cut two 6″ strips of fabric, sewed them right sides together, and then turned them.  After top stitching along the sides and sewing the ends into a point, I added a button and buttonhole for attaching them.

Here is the finished product. I will probably be going back and shortening the accent strips to make the valance pull up a bit more like the inspiration picture.  I could not be more happy with how these turned out. Walking into my craft room now I am greeted with pops of design and color instead of just lots of blue!

Pillowcase Dresses

 Here are a few recent creations for some darling little girls!  I am always thrilled when we get to go to a birthday party for a little girl. That means sewing girlie creations that I rarely get to make!  Pillowcase dresses are so quick and easy so I love giving them as gifts. Each of these took me less than an hour to complete and less than a yard of fabric. I like to dress them up a bit with coordinating fabrics and such.

 SO what do YOU think???

Sewing Machine Cozy

 

In continuing my posts on my craft room decorating, next comes my sewing machine cozy. While happily pinning one day I came across this pin for a sewing machine cozy complete with pockets on the side. Yet another perfect project for making my craft room even more cozy.

So one night after coming home from Bible study, I went into my craft room and began sewing. First I whipped up a valance for the window (post coming soon) and then since it was only 11pm and I had had a venti coffee, the night was still young. So I decided just to cut the fabric for my machine cozy. Next think I knew, it was done. Yes, I didn’t get to bed until 1:45am that next morning, but I felt so nice to get these projects accomplished.