Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Pink Ombre Puff Quilt

This is the big project I've been thinking about for almost 9 months and been sewing for at least 2 months.  I made a practice one right after Christmas with fabric my MIL gave me.  And then miracle of miracles, I found flannel at Joann's that was the shades I had been looking for.  And then I found Coral Sheets at Wal-mart on clearance.  At least it seemed like a miracle because I could not find fabric in coral for the 6 months I looked prior to then.  And I was working on putting together a color scheme of solids online, but then my computer crashed and I lost all of that work.  Anyways, it took a long time, I'm happy it is finished, but I have 2 more cut out for the boys.  So I probably won't be doing much else crafting around her until those are finished.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Star Wars Softies

Pigg #1 got invited to a birthday party and I needed a present for him to take.  The little boy LOVES Star Wars, especially Storm Troopers.  So this is what Pigg #1 and I decided to do for him.


First I made Chewbacca, because I thought he'd take less time and then I'd at least have SOMETHING for the party.

And then I made a Storm Trooper.  This is the second version and I think it is pretty darn cute!

 I made up the shapes and patterns myself and I'm so happy with how they turned out!


Lighting was not what I had hoped for this morning because of winter weather, but the party is tonight, so we took picture anyways. 

 Pigg#3 likes Chewie.

And Pigg#1 likes them both.

But thinks the storm trooper is cool and that his friend is going to love it!

Personally, I like Chewie best.  He's kind of like a tough teddy bear.  

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Pigg#2's Christmas 2012 Dress

I made a dress for Pigg #2 in time for Christmas and even got a picture of her wearing it.  I really like how it turned out and she's been wearing it every week since.

All the strips on the circle skirt are bias strips and they hold up pretty well in the wash.  Not fraying at least.  The strips that are completely cotton bunch up a lot and have to be ironed (boo) while the other ones continue to lay flat after a wash.

I'm glad it worked out since I was piecing together different tutorials and patterns to make the dress I wanted.  I ended up making a 'v' in the back so the zipper could be lower in the back because the only zipper I had on hand was one I ripped out of some of Mr. Jigg's old pants.  The zipper was fine, but not very long at all.  Usually her hair covers up anything odd. 

The only other thing is that the neck line ended up a bit too wide.  Sometimes I feel like her little shoulder is going to slip out.  But overall I really like it and I'm thrilled she is actually wearing something I made for her!  Maybe next year I'll get vests done for the other Piggs.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Cassette Desk Calendars

I made several of these for Christmas presents this year.  I loved how they turned out even though they are slightly different than I intended.

I got a free template for these desk calendars at Persnickety Prints.  They are sized so that the prints fit nicely into a CD case turned inside out (sort of.  They have instructions.)  I fully intended to do that.  But I had free prints at York photos and I thought they were printing them the same size as at Persnickety Prints because they had an option for a 4x5.33 or something like that.  I wasn't thinking straight.  But lucky for me, even though the prints did NOT fit in a CD case, they did fit in a Cassette Case!  As chance would have it, I didn't have any cassette cases around and I had to go buy some at Goodwill.  But I am happy the gift worked out even though I messed it up.

Grandparents love them and so does Mr. Jiggs.  He's been wanting pictures of the family to put in his cubicle.  Now he has some!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Nativity Dolls

Another post I planned to share with you at the beginning of December.  It's out of season now, but this project has been two years in the making so I'm sharing it anyways.

Last year my best friend came up with the idea to make a nativity set out of baby dolls.  I was already searching for a nativity set to make that my kids could play with and I loved her idea.  So I took her idea and ran with it.  We had many 'sewing playdates' where our kids played and we worked on sewing nativity dolls.  Goodness I miss living next to her!  But I didn't get all the dolls finished in time for Christmas.  I made all the dolls for a nativity set except baby Jesus and the animals.  And my niece was very disappointed when she visited.  Who can blame her?  A nativity set isn't much of a set with out baby Jesus.  So this year I was determined to finish the set it in time for the kids to play with throughout December.  And I met my goal.  

I had a pattern for the dolls. I shrunk each piece to 75% of the original and I made them out of muslin for the most part.  There is at least one made out of knit.  I also had a pattern for a horse and sheep.  I altered the horse's ears to make it look like a donkey, and then lengthened the horse's legs, drafted a camel ear, and played around with a hump to make the camel.  Originally, the camel had two humps, but Mr. Jiggs said the second hump looked like a funny bum.  So I cut off the two humps and sewed on  one large hump.  The sheep was scaled down to 50% and it was kind of tight to get it put together.  

None of the dolls or animals have faces.  1. I wanted it to kind of have the same look as the Willow Tree Sculptures.  2.  I stink at embroidering and knew I'd mess up the dolls if I tried embroidering faces.  Why not draw them?  I'm not so hot a drawing either and knew they'd end up looking more juvenile than I wanted.  I wanted a cute set that looked sort of sophisticated but was okay for kids to love and play with.

All of the dolls have a little bean bag of plastic pellets in their bums to help them sit a bit better and the donkey and camel have some pellets in their hooves too.  Maybe it helps?

The clothes are basically from the clothes included in the pattern.  I altered them to have wider sleeves in some cases, show the feet, and be shorter in some cases.  The head pieces are generally squares or rectangles sewn onto their heads to look like head pieces.  Almost all of the clothes are made from repurposed clothing and I tried to use as many original hems as possible.  The animals are made out of fleece and fuzzy felt left over from halloween costumes a couple years ago.

So here are a billion pictures because I love how they turned out.

3 Wise Men

The whole set


Wise Man


Wise Man


Wise Man





Baby Jesus

I used this tutorial to make baby Jesus because I thought it would be perfect so his swaddling clothes weren't scattered all over the house all the time.

Jingle Bell Shakers

I meant to post this over a month ago, but guess what?  I had too many photos.  And then Christmas stuff started happening and I didn't do anything about it.  I might have it fixed.  We'll see.  Eventually I need to just print off my family blog and then delete posts.

Anyways.  Back to the project.  I made some jingle bell shakers for children to hold and shake and have fun with. It's been a month or so since I made them so now I can't remember the dimensions of the rectangles I cut out.  But You'll get the general idea.

Long rectangle, hem both short ends.

Fold in half, right sides together, and sew down the length of the rectangle.  I think I used a safety pin and pinned it to one side of the tube and pushed it through the tube to turn it...then find yourself a cheap shower curtain ring.  You can buy a pack of 12 at Wal-mart for about 2 buck.  Probably a bit less.

Thread the tube onto the shower curtain ring and keep threading until you get to the end.

When you reach the end, hook the shower curtain ring so it is secure.  Then hand stitch the two ends together so you can't see the ring.

Then hand sew some jingle bells onto the fabric.  My jingle bells are pretty small.  They aren't very loud which may be good if you're just in your house.  I'd use bigger ones if I was doing it again because I made them for the little dance class I teach.  We used them for our Christmas dance but we couldn't hear the bells over the music because they were so small.  But I already had this size from a preschool project I did so that's the size I did.

Make sure you use thick thread or really sew the bells on.  My little 3 year old dancers kept sticking the bells in their mouths and chewing through the thread!  Kids never stop surprising me.  Just when I think I have it all figured out, they show me I don't.  So secure those bells well so no one chokes on them.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Oliver + S Messenger Bags

Last Christmas my sister and her family came to visit.  I had a copy of Little Things to Sew and was tracing out patterns onto freezer paper.  My niece is really into bags.  And she fell in love with the messenger bag in the book and decided to trace out the pattern as well so she could make the bag.

I don't think she really knew what she would use it for ( which probably bugged my practical sister) but she still liked it.  Thing is, my sister had 5 kids and about to have her 6th.  I knew helping my niece make this bag was not going to be at the top of her to-do list for a long while.

Oh, and they were in the middle of moving several states away for a new job.  No time for unnecessary bags.

(Pigg#1 was kind enough to wear the bag for my pictures..but I don't think he'd want his face with the girly bag.  Kindergarten has taught him a few things...and don't you love the sunburst things in my pictures?  Not photoshopped.  Totally got that through my own skills/luck.)

So I decided to make the bag for her for Christmas this year.  I hope she likes it...that it meets the vision she had because I honestly couldn't remember what colors she said she'd use except for the pink.  And I don't want to ruin the surprise by asking too many questions and tipping her off.  No...I have this delicious vision of her opening the present and just loving it and knowing I made it for her out of love.  Perhaps a bit sentimental.  But I get to keep that vision because she lives in another state and won't actually open it in front of me.

But I also decided to make the smaller version for her little sister...who may not care too much about bags but I hope will like the flower print.

I personally think the little one is adorable and would make a perfect purse.  And it fits an iPad.  With one of those case thingys on it.  Convenient, right?

So things I did different...well the front pockets I made out of the lining fabric because I wanted the pop of color.  I didn't want to give them plain 'ol functional BROWN bags.  I wanted it to have a bit of fun. Honestly, I struggled a lot deciding what fabrics to use and how to make this come together.  So much so that I was asking opinions of the sweet lady in the cutting line who runs her own etsy show selling bags.  Now would be the time to link to it...but I forgot to ask what it was.  I was that preoccupied.

But I think making the front pocket out of the lining print was a great idea because I love how it looks.  Much more fun.

I used 'D' rings instead of sliders because JoAnn's didn't have any on the store I was at.  I was a bit bummed about that.  And, it turns out I didn't trace out the pocket flaps for those front pockets.  Or at least I couldn't find them.  So I just didn't put on the flaps.  I think it will be fine anyways.

And I made my own bias tape after printing out and putting together this cardstock bias tape maker.  Putting it together was a bit lengthy especially because they have two sizes and I did the wrong size first, but my goodness I turned out a bunch of bias tape in no time.

(Aren't the leaves on our tree gorgeous?)

I love the fabric I used for the pink bias.  Got 1.5 extra yards I loved it so much.  :)  However, it was the only fabric I bought that day that wasn't on clearance.  So it all even out...right?

Mr. Jiggs' one comment was that it should have something to close the main flap.  A buckle or snap or something.  Maybe I'll figure out a fix if I make another one sometime.