Monday, June 21, 2010


I have a love of mushrooms! They are delicious to me! So when I was at Joann's one day and I saw some mushroom fabric, I had to buy it! It's a bit trippy, but I loved it! The oranges and greens - Gorgeous! I made myself a bag, then when someone else saw it - they wanted a mushroom purse too! She wanted a big tote bag and a smaller purse.
The tote bag is quite big, but still very tote-able. The front has a zipper pocket and there are pockets inside too!
The purse has a zipper top, a long shoulder strap, a front pocket, and a zipper on the back.

She ended up loving them and I love them too! Oh mushrooms! So cute!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

My Room

Well... I've been pretty busy since I last posted... I got a summer job and moved! I'm working with the youth program at my church - which I am VERY excited about! I love the youth!
And I moved! And I'm liking that as well. I've had fun deciding on colors and all that kind of stuff. I'm in a very bright mood, but I didn't really want to paint, so I went with getting color in other ways.
Here's a picture of the corner my bed is in:
Yeah, can you tell I'm into bright colors right now? I painted the chest of drawers on the left and there's a book case to the right that I painted the same color. My sheets and comforter are from Target. And I crocheted the granny square afghan at the end of the bed. I was working on it before I even knew I was moving!
I based the whole room around some fabric from ikea. It has pretty birdcages and birds on it and I just really liked it, so I stapled it onto some canvas and got an cool piece of art! (the rectagular one to the left)
Then I found some other fabric on my stash that went well with it (the pink is some Prints Charming, the green houndstooth I used to make a purse and I love, and the other blue/green one is some fabric from Hobby Lobby that was on clearance).
Then I tried out doing hand embroidery and embroidered that orange bird onto the brown fabric.
I'm still working on finding a chair to go in there (a nice reading chair) and getting my desk put in. But it's looking good and I'm really loving it all!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Another Dress

This is actually dress #3, but I still haven't got a good picture of dress #2 yet!
For this one - I had a t-shirt that I ended up with a stain on. (I get stains on basically every shirt I have and have multiple tide to go sticks to try and save stained shirts, but some just can't be saved.) Instead of just getting rid of the shirt, I wanted to see what I could do with it. To cover the stain, I decided to make some ruffles! I'm not exactly a ruffle girl, but I thought I'd make an exception and I'm glad I did!
For the ruffles - I gut strips from the bottom half of the shirt and sewed long stitches in it. Then I gathered the strips and sewed them onto the front. I'd done 3, but then I realized the shirt stretched out when I put it on - so my mom suggested adding 2 more strips in between the ones I already made and that did the trick! The ruffles are so soft!
Then I found material I already had that went with the shirt and voila! A cute new dress!
The green strip is just as long as the shirt (thankfully it fits on pretty easily!) and the dress bottom is basically using the same pattern as the other dresses I've made.
I really like it! The decision of what to wear for Easter was between it and the first one I made. I ended up going with the first one I made, but it was close!
And I helped a girl I know make herself a dress for Easter too! That was super fun! And it turned out really cute!
Now in the works: a purse made out of some super cute mushroom fabric!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

My first handmade dress!

I made a dress!!! And I love it!
I’ve never been too big on dresses… I don’t really have a reason why. I went through a skirt phase last summer and have a dress or two I really like, but overall not a huge dress fan. But I think I’m becoming a dress convert!

I made it using this book – Built by Wendy Dresses by Wendy Mullins. I’d read reviews online about this book (all good) and had seen/wanted this lady’s other book about sewing with knits. I had a left over giftcard from Christmas, so I got the dress book the day it came out. It’s a really good book! If you’ve never sewn before then it’s probably not the best book, but she’s got another book that looks super good that has more basic stuff in it.
She goes through and tells about 3 types of dresses (sheath, shift, and dirndl) and tells which ones work best on different body types. Then each dress has a section in which the dress is done like 8 different ways! And there’s more ideas too so the possibilities are endless!

It comes with the basic patterns for the three types of dresses and in various sizes. (oh – the patterns don’t have seam allowances, which I didn’t really have a problem with probably because I don’t usually use patterns… you just have to remember to do them.) It suggests you make a dress out of muslin first and then you can see what you need to change in the pattern and I fully back that idea! I made my muslin dress and it fit a little tight, but not enough that it needed to be adjusted. I did end up adjusting the armholes and width of the shoulders. I definitely would suggest making a muslin dress first. For sure. I tend to just do things and not really practice… but making the practice dress was definitely necessary.

Things I really liked:
- The section on how to make alterations! It tells what to do if it’s too tight or too loose or too long in each area… And it gives lots of different ways to change the dress by changing the necklines, length of the dress, sleeves, etc.
- The part about deciding which dress would be best for each body type. It’s interesting to read about.
- All the ideas on how to adjust the pattern to make them unique and awesome. I haven’t done any yet, but I’m excited about all the ideas!
- How to do pockets! I haven’t had a dress with pockets and I didn’t realize how much I was missing! Dresses with pockets are pretty much the best thing ever.

Other things:
- It has some directions on how to gather, and I tried it her way which is also the way I’ve read many other places (do two long rows of basting stitches then gather). It’s never worked for me. But what does work for me is to do a wide zig-zag stitch over yarn and then gather on the yarn… I saw it online somewhere and it totally works for me.
- I also do the zipper different than how the book says to do it. I think to each their own – there’s not just one certain way to do something. Whatever works best and easiest for you is what is the right way.
- I used the largest size pattern thinking it would be too small based on my measurements and the measurements in the book, but it fit perfectly. It says (and makes perfect sense) to pick which size pattern based on bust size and then you can adjust the rest.
- I don’t have a serger, so I just made sure and did tight zig-zag stitching along all the seams to make sure they’ll stay tight and won’t fray too much.

I was really surprised by making a dress. It’s way easier than I thought it would be! The hardest part for me is always cutting out the fabric. It seems to take forever, even though it doesn’t actually. And I’ve made another dress and it has sleeves and they were easier than I thought they’d be too.

I would suggest the book to anyone who has sewn some before. It’s really informative and interesting and easy to follow. And I’m definitely putting her other books of my list of books I would love to get!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Presents and a Chicago Picture!

I just thought I'd share a couple of gifts that I gave three awesome boys!
For the oldest - a fake beard! Really now, everyone needs a fake beard or at least a mustache. This one is reversible! Blonde on one side, old man gray on the other.
For the middle - a tie! He's a ladies man and he looks quite dashing in a tie! The bright colors really suit him as well!
And for the youngest - a crayon wallet! It was like the one I made in the last post, except for this one there's a cover over the crayons so they don't come out as easily.
Other things I've made lately include a purse I took to Chicago (super fun city by the way!) and a dress (also super fun and awesome!). I'll try to post about the dress soon! I went based off a book, so it'll probably end up a bit of a book review.
(The blue thing to my side is the purse I made. You can't see it too well, but trust me - it's awesome!)