Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Various crafting...none baby related

To prove that I am in fact crafting for people other than the baby (ahem, myself), I thought I'd post a few of my recent projects that are NOT baby related. I've got some more done, but won't post those until after Christmas, since the intended recipients are blog readers. Just a note -some of these pictures were taken with my phone, so forgive the lighting/poor quality, etc.

Remember me mentioning that I initially tried to make a tote bag for a diaper bag? Here were the results of that endeavor- both ended up being teacher gifts. I had the black canvas on hand from when I patched Dave's snowmobile cover last year and the IKEA fabrics were both thrifted. When I found them at Goodwill, I was not sure what I'd do with less than 1/4 a yard of each of them, but liked them enough to shell out $1.50 for them both.

While they are not necessarily good diaper bags (no pockets at all) I like how they turned out overall. One I went for LL bean type straps, the other was larger and had simple straps just long enough to throw the bag over your shoulder. I packaged these up with homemade caramels (thanks to Jen's recipe) and the kids said the teachers were happy campers.

Next up is a t-shirt quilt. My cousin Sara is planning to surprise a friend and show up in Hawaii for Christmas to see him. She asked if we could put together a quilt made from Twins t-shirts as his gift. To get the shirts we needed, she raided some thrift stores and her family members' closets and then found an odd man selling 87 and 91 championship sweatshirts on craigslist. She also found a fun remnant of baseball themed fabric. We managed to throw it together in less than 4 hours - backing it with red fleece and using embroidery floss to tie quilt it. Perfect man quilt, per my hubby. Took longer to drive to get her and bring her back home in a snow storm then it did to make the quilt! All worth it - the chatting was great and she brought me all my favorite treats from the Old Spaghetti Factory (where I worked in college and she does now).

See her peeking out over the top? Thanks Sara - have fun in the sun!!

Last up was a gift for my friend Kim for her birthday last week. She had liked the jewelry frame hanger I made for our friend Jen a while back, so I crafted up one for her. I had a frame on hand that I painted white, added re purposed screen to the opening for hanging earrings, screwed in 3 cup hooks to the bottom to hang necklaces or bracelets from and embellished it a bit to match her bedroom. Somewhat sadly, it was gifted while the paint was still a little tacky (nothing says thoughtful gifter then to give something 1/2 done), but Kim is a smart cookie and hung it up to dry in her garage for awhile :) Thanks for your patience Kim! Hope it matches your room!

I've got a few more Christmas related projects in the hopper - nothing says holidays to me than sewing up gifts the day before they are given :) HA!

Diaper Bag, at last

One of the projects I've been both dreading and anticipating was sewing a diaper bag. The thought of interfacing was making me cringe, but I knew I wanted to make a bag and not spend lots of cash on one I would not love. I INTENDED to make one with somewhat neutral fabric so Dave would be happy carrying it, but at 10 pm when you realize you don't have enough of the planned fabric, you sometimes throw your best laid plans out the window and make do. I originally started out with a tote bag style in mind, but those ended up as teacher gifts, as the interior and pocketing process did not work out as I wanted. I'll show pics of those in a later day, assuming the quick pics I took with my phone are decent. I then googled and researched for a while until I found the perfect pattern. Let me caveat this by stating I was more than willing to purchase a pattern for a diaper bag, just could not find one I liked. The various reviews I read on the patterns for sale all seemed to point to something wrong - floppy, lack of pockets, too big, to small... you get the idea. Then I saw this tutorial (FREE) for the "Hip Mama Diaper Bag", and fell in love. Pockets galore, and a messenger bag style - what is not to lurve? The tutorial was dreamy easy to follow (ahem, assuming you read it, I did have 1 mishap an 1 near miss, but neither ruined the bag). The only modifications I made were to use fusible fleece to face the handle (I like a padded handle on my bags) and since I did not have any vinyl for the interior, I used corduroy. It is maybe a little floppier than I'd like, but as I've started to stock it up I think it will work fantastic.

Fabric is Anna Maria Horner on the exterior, thrifted corduroy on the interior. There are magnetic snaps holding down the flap in front, 2 front pockets and side pockets that have velcro to keep them closed. The back has a large zipped pocket and inside has 5 bottle/diaper pockets that have elastic to keep them together.

Front and side pockets shown here......

Back zipper...

Interior shot. Look at all the pockets~! I plan to make a changing pad to fit in here today. Plenty of room :)

Did I mention I love it?

Can't wait for this little one to make her grand entrance so we can use it! Less than 2 weeks til her due date!! Hurry up little Miss No Name, we can't wait to meet you!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Baby bedding and other projects.

I'm getting my baby checklist taken care of - project by project. With only 4 weeks to go, I now have a raging case of carpal tunnel syndrome - had to get new braces for both wrists -so the crafting is taking a little longer than it should. All worth it though :)

I added some length to thrifted curtains for what will be the GIRLS room. The add on fabric was a IKEA curtain that I've chopped into for various projects.

I told myself a baby quilt was not necessary, as you don't actually cover them up, but could not help making a quick one to match their lime, aqua and hot pink room. I used scrap fabrics I had on hand, as well as a pillow case and the rest of the re purposed bed ruffle (I found a twin size one at the thrift store I shrunk down to crib size). Love this quilt. The hand binding was a complete pain, but it kept the insomniac busy last night.

The back is an IKEA sheet that came with a duvet set we never used. Then I used the left over scraps to make a patchworky binding too.

Here it is next to the bedskirt and thrifted crib sheet.

I read about 50 tutorials on making a car seat cover. None really dealt with the wonky handle on our new seat (old one was "expired"??). So, after having velcro straps sewn on that did not work, I ripped them out and added ribbon to tie on for now. Don't love, but it should serve its purpose. Love the Tina Givens fabric though....the back side is some thrifted knit.

And the reverse side...

Last I used this tutorial to make a sheet for our co-sleeper. I used a thrifted flannel sheet and had it done in under 15 minutes. I have enough sheet for maybe 2 more as well. Great tutorial!

I've got a diaper bag and a sling left on the horizon. Tried to make a sling on Monday but something went awry and it doesn't even work for Rowan to carry a doll in. Hmmmmmm....also plan to throw in some Christmas gifts, but we'll have to see how the hands hold out!

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Tiny Headwear

Yep - you guessed it. I've moved on to baby hats now. Since my previous 2 beasties have had huge heads, I am making headgear larger than normal "newborn" size. (I tell myself their large head sizes are meant to hold all their brains, btw). I found a great crocheted tutorial here to make a basic hat, and despite frequent stops due to pregnancy induced carpal tunnel in my right hand, these hats really fly together.

Here is the first one I did with bright pink yarn. I added a thrifted doily and a vintage button to dress it up a bit.

I made another in brown yarn and then added ears using this tutorial. My ears are a bit lopsided, but I think they will do :) Love it!

Last up was a quick headband. I made some spiral flowers out of some gray wool felt during our long Turkey Day drive. I stitched them on to a piece of striped knit (from a Target dollar land scarf) and for now have tied the bottom together. I plan to sew this when I can actually measure how big Miss 3's head is, but for now will leave it tied.

As a side note, I posed what is turning into the great name debate out on a fun blog - Swistle Baby Names. The blog author and her many commentors help with baby naming. Since Dave will no longer even talk about names with me (he keeps escaping to his basement man cave when I bring it up), it is nice to get some real opinions from those who love baby names. Here is my post....I'd love to hear your ideas as well! We've only got 4 1/2 weeks left!!