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Archive for the ‘TUTORIALS’ Category

Y’all know from my previous post that I’m constantly scouring magazines for of-the-moment pieces to copy…er, um…sew myself. Well, my latest project centered around three trends on the runway this spring and summer:

Floral + Pastels + Maxi skirt

Like this Alice + Olivia skirt from Neiman Marcus .. which sells for $698! Oh that's reasonable for my grocery shopping excursions!

Like this Alice + Olivia skirt from Neiman Marcus .. which sells for $698! Oh that’s reasonable for my grocery shopping excursions!

With this in mind yet wanting something waaaaay cheaper…aka. more casual … I came up with this……………………

My version: $27 … and took about 20 minutes to sew!

My version: $27 … and took about 20 minutes to sew!

And in case you’re wondering, here’s how YOU can make one too:

Grab some lightweight fabric and 2" elastic. The fabric should be the length from waist to hem + about 5". The elastic should be long enough to go around your waist comfortably.

Grab some lightweight fabric and 2″ elastic. The fabric should be the length from waist to hem + about 5″ x 2. (you’ll be cutting two identical rectangles – one for the front and one for the back.) The elastic should be long enough to go around your waist comfortably.

It's ideal to have someone else measure you..but let's face it - 8 year old boys aren't exactly the most reliable source. So, here's how I estimate the length.

It’s ideal to have someone else measure you..but let’s face it – 8 year old boys aren’t exactly the most reliable source. So, here’s how I estimate the length. PS: it’s a little known fact that messy rooms make for more accurate measuring.

Fold your fabric over, lining up the folds. Measure where you'll cut.

Fold your fabric over, lining up the folds. Measure where you’ll cut.

You'll have something like this. Two identical rectangles.

You’ll have something like this. Two identical rectangles. (The sparkly Tom’s are not necessarily going to occur…)

With right sides together, sew up both sides - my photo shows how a serger seam will look. Remember, if you use a sewing machine, your sides will look a little different

With right sides together, sew up both sides – my photo shows how a serger seam will look. Remember, if you use a sewing machine, your sides will look a little different.

Now you're going to make the elastic casing at the waistline. (It doesn't matter which end you use - they're both the same…whew!) You don't want the excess seam allowance creating bulk around your midsection, so I suggest making the casing just wide enough to cover the elastic and hold the seam…not too much longer.

Now you’re going to make the elastic casing at the waistline. (It doesn’t matter which end you use – they’re both the same…whew!) You don’t want the excess seam allowance creating bulk around your midsection, so I suggest making the casing just wide enough to cover the elastic and hold the seam…not too much longer.

I serged the raw edge of the casing; however, if you use a sewing machine, remember to have enough width to tuck under about 1/4" …like this.

I serged the raw edge of the casing; however, if you use a sewing machine, remember to have enough width to tuck under about 1/4″ …like this. 

Press the casing. Sew all the way around EXCEPT - leave a hole to thread your elastic through. Thread your elastic… and before you close up that hole - make sure the waistband fits! I was worried that I'd get the elastic too tight and then it would push out my muffin top, so I cut my elastic huge, then kept cutting away until I liked the fit.

Press the casing. Sew all the way around EXCEPT – leave a hole to thread your elastic through. Thread your elastic… and before you close up that hole – make sure the waistband fits! I was worried that I’d get the elastic too tight and then it would push out my muffin top, so I cut my elastic huge, then kept cutting away until I liked the fit. (yes, it’s inside out right now!)

My length was just right, so I simply used a rolled hem from my serger for the hem. If you're using a sewing machine, just hem as needed.

My length was just right, so I simply used a rolled hem from my serger for the hem. If you’re using a sewing machine, just hem as needed.

And you're done! Bam! Look at you!

And you’re done! Bam! Look at you!

I really really love this skirt! It’s super fun to wear, very comfortable, very forgiving of the figure, and even sexy if you ask me!  I’m wearing it to an Arcade Fire concert tonight…I’ll share photos of this little ditty in action tomorrow!

A NOTE ABOUT THE FABRIC YOU CHOOSE: in order for this skirt to "work" be sure to select fabric that is: flowey, lightweight, etc. and also that is pretty wide. The reason it works so quickly is because I chose 57" fabric which gave me 104" of skirt…give or take. Something narrower will change the dimensions. Make sense?

A NOTE ABOUT THE FABRIC YOU CHOOSE: in order for this skirt to “work” be sure to select fabric that is: flowey, lightweight, etc. and also that is pretty wide. The reason it works so quickly is because I chose 57″ fabric which gave me 104″ of skirt…give or take. Something narrower will change the dimensions. Make sense?

Alrighty, here’s the breakdown:

TIME: Literally 20 minutes, maybe shorter!

COST: I bought 3 yards of $13.00/yd fabric that was 30% off, so a total of $27! That’s a little bit better than $700…but maybe I’m a weirdo!

I hope you’ll make one of these…. I’m confident you’ll thank me!

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Hi friends!!!!

Yep…I’m still here, are you???

It’s been quite a while since I put my shop on vacation and all but forsook my little blog here. I’m bowing my head and slumping my shoulders in shame. Will you forgive me??? Okay, I get that. How about a quick little tutorial to warm our friendship up again… and better yet… it has POM POMS!!!!  Just typing the word “pom pom” gives me glorious goose bumps!

Here's what I'm talking about - glorious garland made from what else but dollar store pom poms!

Here’s what I’m talking about – glorious garland made from what else but dollar store pom poms!

Here’s the tutorial…free and fast…perfect for our friendship!

photo 1

Start with something good on TV – my choice was the ladies figure skating short program. Go Team USA!

In your lap, gather lots of loose pom poms, scissors, thread/embroidery floss, and a sharp needle. (a long one is best)

In your lap, gather lots of loose pom poms, scissors, thread/embroidery floss, and a sharp needle. (a long one is best)

 

Pull out a long line of your string - preferably as long as you'd like your garland to be; however, you can always tie two ends together to make it longer. Thread your needle and pass it through the center of the pom pom. Bam. You're almost done. I do NOT kid.

Pull out a long line of your string – preferably as long as you’d like your garland to be; however, you can always tie two ends together to make it longer. Thread your needle and pass it through the center of the pom pom. Bam. You’re almost done. I do NOT kid.

Just keep pushing them down the line and watch them form one long jolly line of garland. It's majestic and delightful. I felt like an Olympian myself!

Just keep pushing them down the line and watch them form one long jolly line of garland. It’s majestic and delightful. I felt like an Olympian myself!

When you've finished, wrap it around something you love…and experience a greater love you never thought possible.

When you’ve finished, wrap it around something you love…and experience a greater love you never thought possible.

I mean, seriously!!! I want a million of these all over my house!

I mean, seriously!!! I want a million of these all over my house!

Last look at what could very well change your life…and your view of television!

Last look at what could very well change your life…and your view of television!

As always, here’s the breakdown:

Time: My garland is about 3 or 4 yards long, and it took me 3 short programs. I mean, it took me about 15 minutes, including being distracted.

Cost: 3 bags of 80 pom poms – $1 each. I already had the thread and needles…so a whopping $3. Insert smiley face doing cartwheels.

Tomorrow, I hope to have a big surprise… which could include another curtain tutorial… Oh the suspense… see you soon!!!

 

 

 

 

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It’s been almost a year since we moved into our new home…but it feels like I’m just now getting started making it my “real” home.  For instance, the week we moved in I had my sewing room/game room painted a beautiful color turquoise.  The only problem is… it’s a horrible color turquoise!  No matter how many times I say, as I go up the stairs to the sewing room , “I love the color!  I love the color!  I do love the color!”… I do NOT love the color.  In fact, I don’t even just sort of kind of a little bit like it.  I loathe it to be exact.

I paid a painter to paint it.  Catch my drift…???  It’s just not worth it to me right now to PAY again to have it “fixed”… so I keep trying to come up with more ways to fill the room with fabrics and items that will absorb some of the Taco Cabana blue that’s splattered everywhere.

The latest attempt ….. PILLOWS!  And not just pillows… ZIPPERED PILLOWS!

You are going to LOVE how fast and easy these are!  The crazy thing is that this zipper technique makes making the pillows with a zipper FASTER than making them without… don’t you just love me for saying that!!!!

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This is the canvas I started with… I decided to make pillows for this couch…

What a difference 3 15-minute pillows make... right!?!?  Can I get an AMEN??

What a difference 3 15-minute pillows make… right!?!? Can I get an AMEN??

 

Here’s how I made these fun little ditties…

(I’m basically doing the same thing I do for my LINED ZIPPER POUCHES… only I’m not lining these.  If you’re using stuffing instead of a pillow form, then you’ll want to line your pillows….so just do exactly what I did for the pouches.  Only- call it a pillow instead of a pouch!)

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I started with my fabrics, some caning cord for embellishment, and zippers. (you’ll also need a pillow insert or stuffing … but seriously, you already knew that!) I used two different fabrics cut to the same size, and be sure to purchase zippers that are quite a bit longer than your pillow – trust me on this!

I first embellished the pillow the way I wanted.  I chose chair caning jute and just sewed it straight up the middle.  Then, here's where the pillow part starts, place one side of the pillow in front of you - ride side up.  Place your zipper - upside down - along the upper edge.

I first embellished the pillow the way I wanted. I chose chair caning jute and just sewed it straight up the middle. Then, here’s where the pillow part starts, place one side of the pillow in front of you – ride side up. Place your zipper – upside down – along the upper edge.

Your zipper pull should be facing down like this.

Your zipper pull should be facing down like this.

zippered pillows 11

Now sew the zipper to the pillow along the top edge like shown…. you’ll have to look closely because I chose to use white thread! sorry!!!

When you fold your zipper to the front, it should look like this.  Of course - you now need to iron it... sorry!

When you fold your zipper to the front, it should look like this. Of course – you now need to iron it… sorry!

Now put your other pillow piece on top, wrong side up, and line it up with the zipper.  Then sew to the zipper.

Now put your other pillow piece on top, wrong side up, and line it up with the zipper. Then sew to the zipper.

You'll end up with this!

You’ll end up with this!

After you press the zipper again, open up the zipper about half way... trust me - you don't want to forget this  step!

After you press the zipper again, open up the zipper about half way… trust me – you don’t want to forget this step!

Now fold the two sections over, right sides together and fold the open zipper parts like this.  Next, you'll sew down along the side, the bottom and back up the other side - forming a stitched square (the zipper making the 4th side).

Now fold the two sections over, right sides together and fold the open zipper parts like this. Next, you’ll sew down along the side, the bottom and back up the other side – forming a stitched square (the zipper making the 4th side).

Again, my thread is too light to see clearly, but if you bring your face to the screen and squint - you can see the stitching all the way around ... maybe... sort of...

Again, my thread is too light to see clearly, but if you bring your face to the screen and squint – you can see the stitching all the way around … maybe… sort of…

Oh girl - you're almost done!  clip your corners and trim off the excess zipper ends.  Turn right side out.

Oh girl – you’re almost done! clip your corners and trim off the excess zipper ends. Turn right side out.

You'll get THIS!!!  A zippered pillow!  I have made them with "hidden" zippers that take a long time, and I have made them like this in a jiffy.  Personally, I think saving an hour beats not seeing the zipper!  Maybe that's just me...

You’ll get THIS!!! A zippered pillow! I have made them with “hidden” zippers that take a long time, and I have made them like this in a jiffy. Personally, I think saving an hour beats not seeing the zipper! Maybe that’s just me…

 

Now for more photos…. the pillows’ selfies…..

zippered pillow 19a

zippered pillow 19b

zippered pillow 19d

zippered pillow 19cWhat a difference a pillow makes, huh!?!

The breakdown:

Cost: I used fabric I already had and pillow forms I already had, so my only cost was zippers.  At about $2.50 each, the cost is $7.50!!!  LOVE that!

Time: Trust me when I say that you can make these pillows in about 15 minutes per pillow… after you’ve cut them out… maybe even faster if you time yourself!

I hope you’ll try this out… the worst thing that will happen???  You’ll have one very large zipper pouch for traveling!

 

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Gosh y’all… how are you doing???  I’m sort of living in chaos right now, and I love it!

This post is going to be brief and to-the-point … I know, I know, you don’t believe me.  That’s fine.  I’ve earned your distrust.  However, tonight I’m serious.  I’ve been missing you and missing writing tutorials.  So, despite my chaotic chaos, I wanted to share with you the fastest, easiest headband I’ve come up with yet.  Know what else????

I. Saved. THIRTY DOLLARS!!!  $$$$$$$$

I was shopping lusting  browsing around Anthropologie the other day and I saw these gorgeous headbands.  But are you kidding me right now???  $32????  For something I’m going to put on my overprocessed, frizzy and most likely dirty head of hair?  I’m way too cheap smart for that!

So I ran out to Hancocks.  I found some embellishment ribbon on clearance for $2/yd.  Then, I made myself a cheaper…but I think just as fabulous version.  Judge for yourself…

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So, yes, it’s missing the rhinestones. If that’s important to you, you can pretty much buy a Bedazzler for the $29 you’re saving. I purchased the whole yard, but only used 23″.

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Besides a needle and thread, the only other thing you need is a pony tail elastic.

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It’s incredibly hard to photograph the back of your head by yourself… but what I’m trying to show you is that I used the length from the back of one ear, around the top of my head and over to the back of the other ear. Then give yourself a couple of more inches for the seams. I have a large head, so I used 23″.

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Now wrap the ribbon around the elastic forming a casing.

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As much as I hate saying this – the next step is to hand sew the casing closed. Maybe your machine can take the width of the ribbon. I’m jealous of you. If not…I can say with honesty that it only takes about 1 minute to sew each side. Repeat with the other side. (I love this photo b/c it shows how I’ve finally stopped biting my nails.  progress!)

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I used white thread so you can see it … I just used very simple but sturdy stitches. Nothing time consuming at all. The only real “trick” I used was making sure I had several layers of thread in my needle.

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Once you’ve completed the other side, you’ll end of with this little doozie. I love it. Fancy and Casual all in one.

And now for my feeble attempts at photographing the finished product on my head, all the while trying to make sure my craft room looks as clean and cool as possible.

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Okay  y’all – here’s the lowdown:

Time: literally THREE MINUTES!  (That includes hand sewing… crazy wonderful)

Cost: $2 … that’s a savings of $29.  Hurry out and get you some matching shoes with that money!!!

Try this….please!!!!

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I know you’ve heard the addage, “never trust a person who says ‘Trust Me!'”  And for the most part, that might be really good advice.  HOWEVER …. TRUST ME!!!  Today I want to show you how easy it can be to make LINED Curtains …I’ll even go so far as to add Pom Pom fringe and the project still remains EASY!  Trust me.  You can read it  in a creepy voice if you want, but I’m saying it as a true friend-to-friend-who-doesn’t-carelessly-use-the-word-EASY!

Here is what I'm talking about!  I used Summer Totem by Anna Maria Horner for my sewing room.

Here is what I’m talking about! I used Summer Totem by Anna Maria Horner for my sewing room.  Sorry, I didn’t know you were coming so I didn’t clean up for you! (actually, I am lying about this…I had a housekeeper yesterday, so SHE cleaned up for you!  But from now on… trust me!)

Let’s get started, shall we?  Here’s a little something to keep in mind if you’re new to my blog.  Most of my projects are designed to be FAST, EASY and INEXPENSIVE.  This means that I cut corners where necessary and possible, and I don’t get bogged down with crazy things like “standard hem lengths.”  Let’s face it… who in the world will ever look behind your curtain and wonder if you used a 7″ hem or a 2″ hem…right???  You can save a lot of money and time by using small/short hems wherever possible.  This is casual sewing, for sure…but the end result looks the same…TRUST ME!!!  Let’s get going…

First you'll need your main (outer) fabric.  There is no rule what kind of fabric you need - I love using quilting cotton because it's so soft and hangs beautifully.  The downside is that it's only 44" wide - but that's never worried me.  Measure how long your finished curtain will be.  Then add only about 2 - 4".

First you’ll need your main (outer) fabric. There is no rule what kind of fabric you need – I love using quilting cotton because it’s so soft and hangs beautifully. The downside is that it’s only 44″ wide – but that’s never worried me. Measure how long your finished curtain will be. Then add only about 2 – 4″.

Then, cut out your lining fabric...I cut mine a little bit shorter than my outer fabric.  Saves money!  Something to note: it's way easier and faster to choose a lining fabric that is the same width as your outer fabric.  This way there is no cutting down the length to make it narrower.  All you have to do is cut the length.  I used Symphony Broadcloth fabric.

Then, cut out your lining fabric…I cut mine a little bit shorter than my outer fabric. Saves money! Something to note: it’s way easier and faster to choose a lining fabric that is the same width as your outer fabric. This way there is no cutting down the length to make it narrower. All you have to do is cut the length. I used Symphony Broadcloth fabric.

Now place the two fabrics on top of each other with right sides facing ... like your making a pillow... align the top edge and the sides remembering that your lining fabric will be shorter than your outer fabric.

Now place the two fabrics on top of each other with right sides facing … like your making a pillow… align the top edge and the sides remembering that your lining fabric will be shorter than your outer fabric.

Now sew the top edge of the curtain together.  Stitch all the way.  As you can see here, the selvege of my outer fabric sticks out a little further than the lining.  If this happens to you, just position the lining so that it's centered on the outer fabric.  Make sense?

Now sew the top edge of the curtain together. Stitch all the way. As you can see here, the selvege of my outer fabric sticks out a little further than the lining. If this happens to you, just position the lining so that it’s centered on the outer fabric. Make sense?

Okay, now let's continue sewing this up like we're sewing a pillow by sewing down the two sides of the curtain.  Begin about 5 or 6" down from the top and stop at the end of the lining.  (You start further down so that you will have a casing for the curtain rod to go through.)

Okay, now let’s continue sewing this up like we’re sewing a pillow by sewing down the two sides of the curtain. Begin about 5 or 6″ down from the top and stop at the end of the lining. (You start further down so that you will have a casing for the curtain rod to go through.)

Now, hem the casing edges by pressing them inside and sewing a straight stitch.

Now, hem the casing edges by pressing them inside and sewing a straight stitch.

 

 

Here's what you'll get.

Here’s what you’ll get.

Now, go to the bottom of your curtain and fold in the last few inches of outer fabric that extend past the lining.  (You  may be wondering...I choose not to hem the lining because it takes time and is uneccesary.  If you prefer a nice hem, you'll want to do that BEFORE sewing the sides...better late advice than no advice, right!?)

Now, go to the bottom of your curtain and fold in the last few inches of outer fabric that extend past the lining. (You may be wondering…I choose not to hem the lining because it takes time and is uneccesary. If you prefer a nice hem, you’ll want to do that BEFORE sewing the sides…better late advice than no advice, right!?)

Almost done y'all!  Put the bottom of the curtain on your ironing board and press a small seam...about 2 inches.  Sew that hem up!

Almost done y’all! Put the bottom of the curtain on your ironing board and press a small seam…about 2 inches. Sew that hem up!

If you're not adding fringe, then you're almost done...woohoo!!!  All you need to do is sew a straight stitch across the top of the curtain about 5 or 6" down from the top ... I always make mine plenty wide so that any size curtain rod will fit through...and it also helps the curtain slide more easily.

If you’re not adding fringe, then you’re almost done…woohoo!!! All you need to do is sew a straight stitch across the top of the curtain about 5 or 6″ down from the top … I always make mine plenty wide so that any size curtain rod will fit through…and it also helps the curtain slide more easily.

You’re finished!!!! Unless……………… Like Me………………. You’re still wanting more!  Go for FRINGE!

I love this stuff.  Especially bright yellow!  It will up the cost of your project but it's so worth it...even for a cheapie like me!

I love this stuff. Especially bright yellow! It will up the cost of your project but it’s so worth it…even for a cheapie like me!

Before you sew, make sure you tuck the edge inside because this will really unravel on you otherwise.  Simply start at the top, and with a wide zig zag stitch, sew it all the way down.  Don't forget the double tuck at the bottom too!

Before you sew, make sure you tuck the edge inside because this will really unravel on you otherwise. Simply start at the top, and with a wide zig zag stitch, sew it all the way down. Don’t forget the double tuck at the bottom too!

You'll end up with a little something like this!  (I can NOT describe how hard it is for a horrible photographer - aka. ME! - to take good photos in the daylight!)

You’ll end up with a little something like this! (I can NOT describe how hard it is for a horrible photographer – aka. ME! – to take good photos in the daylight!)

Another shot!  Oh how these make me giddy!  Don't you seriously want to sit down and sew something!?

Another shot! Oh how these make me giddy! Don’t you seriously want to sit down and sew something!?

Last shot ... feeling pretty good you've got the picture of how my curtains look!

Last shot … feeling pretty good you’ve got the picture of how my curtains look!

So there you have it.  It’s a little difficult to capture photos of every step – please email me if you’d like further instructions.  I am a true believer in handmade curtains … I’ll do everything I can to make that possible for you!!!

If you make some – please send me photos …. TRUST ME – I love them!!!

xoxoxoxoxoxo

robie

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Every once in a while, that magic, life-changing event happens … you know the one I’m talking about.  The event where you have said to yourself, “I could make that”….and later on you ACTUALLY DO!  I haven’t experienced this sort of phenomenon much in my life, I admit, but how I cherish the memories (and the pieces) of when I have!!!

Let me tell you about this most recent happening …

We received a fabulous gift card to Crate & Barrel for Christmas.  I love this gift because it was the first time in a long time I didn’t feel like I was skipping school to roam around the store.  I was there LEGITIMATELY!  We had already purchased a rug online, so while I went to pick up my “ship free to store” purchase, I roamed around to figure out what to do with my remaining $60.

Isn’t it crazy how having NO money = I’M LICKING EVERYTHING IN THIS STORE BECAUSE I WANT IT SO BADLY.

Yet, having ACTUAL money = I CAN’T LET GO OF MY GIFTCARD. NOTHING IS GOOD ENOUGH FOR ME.

Well, among several things … my heart was divided between chalkboard placemats and these darling Napkin Rings:

These are regularly $4 each... on sale at this moment for $3.15 each.  Not expensive .. but say it with me, "I-can-make-that!"

These are regularly $4 each… on sale at this moment for $3.15 each. Not expensive .. but say it with me, “I-can-make-that!”

I mean really, aren’t these just so cute.  This photo from the store website doesn’t do them justice.  They’re large, burlap-looking, and so fresh and happy.  (I think these are actually hemp, but I like to pretend they’re burlap)

So, I took a picture, put it in my phone, bought some burlap.  Then I let 3 months pass by.  Then…. last night, the impossible happened.  I MADE THEM!

 

Here is mine.  I am completely smitten.  If it wasn't burlap, I'd lick it for sure!

Here is mine. I am completely smitten. If it wasn’t burlap, I’d lick it for sure!

Alrighty…for those of you who also like the looks of these, please read on for how to make them yourself!

Cut your strips.  Mine were approximately 3" and I cut across the full width of the burlap.  Remember - it's burlap!  Don't overthink it or try too hard.  Just cut that stuff up!

Cut your strips. Mine were approximately 3″ and I cut across the full width of the burlap. Remember – it’s burlap! Don’t overthink it or try too hard. Just cut that stuff up!

You'll also want to cut out felt circles whatever diameter you'd like your flowers to be.  Mine are probably about 3"-4" in diameter.  I used the lid to a container jar as my template.

You’ll also want to cut out felt circles whatever diameter you’d like your flowers to be. Mine are probably about 3″-4″ in diameter. I used the lid to a container jar as my template.

Now you're going to fold this in half and serge the two sides together.  If you don't have a serger, use your overcast stitch ... or, worst case, a zigzag stitch.  But come in closely ... you really should use a serger!  (good excuse to return that shirt you borrowed from your friend with a serger!)

Now you’re going to fold this in half and serge the two sides together. If you don’t have a serger, use your overcast stitch … or, worst case, a zigzag stitch. But come in closely … you really should use a serger! (good excuse to return that shirt you borrowed from your friend with a serger!)

Your strips will look something like this.

Your strips will look something like this.

Now you're going to start forming your rosette.  Have your glue gun ready, heated, and lots of extra glue sticks ready.  You'll use about 1 stick per rosette.  Start by tucking one end in just a bit and gluing.  Now fold that over again and glue.  Third, start tucking just a bit and glue.  Fourth, begin wrapping and glue as much as you can.

Now you’re going to start forming your rosette. Have your glue gun ready, heated, and lots of extra glue sticks ready. You’ll use about 1 stick per rosette. Start by tucking one end in just a bit and gluing. Now fold that over again and glue. Third, start tucking just a bit and glue. Fourth, begin wrapping and glue as much as you can.

Now, put a HUGE dollop of hot glue right in the center of your circle.  Place your rosette as it is right down in it an press.  Hold it for long enough for the glue to secure to the burlap.  From there, just place a line of glue, twist and stick the burlap.  repeat until you get to the end of your circle.

Now, put a HUGE dollop of hot glue right in the center of your circle. Place your rosette as it is right down in it an press. Hold it for long enough for the glue to secure to the burlap. From there, just place a line of glue, twist and stick the burlap. repeat until you get to the end of your circle.

Clip your burlap, leave about 2".

Clip your burlap, leave about 2″.

Fold the tail in and in again then glue to the back of the rosette.  All along the way, just glue glue glue.  Wherever it needs it, GLUE it!

Fold the tail in and in again then glue to the back of the rosette. All along the way, just glue glue glue. Wherever it needs it, GLUE it!

And here is what you end up with!  AAAHH.  dreamy.  Of course, you can do a million things with this... headbands, curtain tiebacks, wristbands, etc...but I'm making napkin rings, so keep reading for the rest.

And here is what you end up with! AAAHH. dreamy. Of course, you can do a million things with this… headbands, curtain tiebacks, wristbands, etc…but I’m making napkin rings, so keep reading for the rest.

Crate & Barrel used a small strip of hemp plus a dab of velcro for their version.  SHUH, as if!  That takes WAY too long.  So, I got some rick rack.  Cut it into 8 equal strips.  I think it looks nice and farmhousey, which is what I'm going for in my home.  You can use something fancier if you want.

Crate & Barrel used a small strip of hemp plus a dab of velcro for their version. SHUH, as if! That takes WAY too long. So, I got some rick rack. Cut it into 8 equal strips. I think it looks nice and farmhousey, which is what I’m going for in my home. You can use something fancier if you want.

Place a dab of glue right in the center of the back, then place the rick rack on it.  Top it off with a heavily glued small felt circle.  YOU'RE DONE!  Hug yourself.

Place a dab of glue right in the center of the back, then place the rick rack on it. Top it off with a heavily glued small felt circle. YOU’RE DONE! Hug yourself.

Here is your new place setting ... compliments of YOU!!!  Are you kidding me?!?  i love these!

Here is your new place setting … compliments of YOU!!! Are you kidding me?!? i love these!

I am speechless.  Okay, that's never true.  But if ever oh ever I were to be speechless, it would be now!

I am speechless. Okay, that’s never true. But if ever oh ever I were to be speechless, it would be now! (Did you notice that by making these myself, I was able to get BOTH the napkin rings AND the chalkboard placemats!?!  It’s good to be a sewer… in this case, a gluer!)

And see how the tiebacks don't even show.

And see how the tiebacks don’t even show.

I hope you’ll make these!  You won’t regret it!!!  And seriously… they’re on sale for cheap.  I won’t judge you for buying them as long as you make the napkins they will hold!  =)

Here’s the breakdown:

TIME: I got lost in a conversation with the young gal that lives with us … but I’m thinking about 10-15 minutes each.  I easily made 4 in an hour, so probably even less.

COST: $3/yd for the burlap.  I bought 1 yard.  About $2.50 for the rickrack and I got all 8 completed with one package. So total cost for all 8 napkin rings…. $5.50!  A great saving compared to the $32 I would’ve spent on these in January!

That’s all I’ve got for today y’all … I’m about to make dinner and let’s just say there’s a reason I don’t write a cooking blog!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Okay – for those of you who missed the last post – I’m working very hard to create fun and meaningful spaces for my kids’ rooms.  Starting with Owen because he’s my oldest… okay, who am I kidding.  I’m starting with Owen because I like his fabric more!

Here’s my starting point:

hey ... atleast the paint color turned out nicely.

hey … atleast the paint color turned out nicely.

Here’s what transpired first:

I started the room by making his bedding.  My hope is that if all else fails, he can easily make his bed and have a nice looking albeit thoroughly trashed room!

I started the room by making his bedding. My hope is that if all else fails, he can easily make his bed and have a nice looking albeit thoroughly trashed room!

Yesterday’s post was about how to make the pillow case – super easy and super fast.  Today… let’s tackle that coverlet!

I have decided that I LOATHE duvets – especially for kids.  I’m sure you’re kids are the epitome of tidy and orderliness; however, mine inherited a few “other” qualities from me.  Hence, a coverlet instead of a duvet.  It’s lightweight but still warm.  Not as warm as a down comforter but a heck-uv-a-lot warmer than just a sheet.  Amen!?!

Here’s how to make it – a free tutorial for ya.

Please feel free to measure your bed... I, however, choose something more exact.  I just place my fabric over the bed.  Turns out this fabric is exactly the right width.  Whew.  Let's assume for the sake of this tutorial that yours is too.  (If it's not wide enough, that requires an additional step or two - for another day)

Please feel free to measure your bed… I, however, choose something more exact. I just place my fabric over the bed. Turns out this fabric is exactly the right width. Whew. Let’s assume for the sake of this tutorial that yours is too. (If it’s not wide enough, that requires an additional step or two – for another day)

Then, use another scientifically proven method of measuring:  put your finger where you'd like to cut your length.  Then cut it.  Impressed?

Then, use another scientifically proven method of measuring: put your finger where you’d like to cut your length. Then cut it. Impressed?  (don’t forget to cut it about an inch or two longer to make room for the seam allowances)

Next, you'll need to cut your back side fabric the exact same size.

Next, you’ll need to cut your back side fabric the exact same size.

You will also need some form of interlining/batting.  You can use either an official form like shown here on the left, or you can use warm fabric.  I chose to use some flannel that I had on hand.  (This started out as Owen's duvet cover until I got tired of the print.  Snaps to me for repurposing, right!?)

You will also need some form of interlining/batting. You can use either an official form like shown here on the left, or you can use warm fabric. I chose to use some flannel that I had on hand. (This started out as Owen’s duvet cover until I got tired of the print. Snaps to me for repurposing, right!?)

Now cut that interlining/batting to the same size too.

Now cut that interlining/batting to the same size too.

Now you're ready to begin assembling your coverlet to be sewn.  Start with your interlining.  Place it on the floor - it doesn't matter which side is facing up.

Now you’re ready to begin assembling your coverlet to be sewn. Start with your interlining. Place it on the floor – it doesn’t matter which side is facing up.

Next, add your top fabric with the right side facing up.

Next, add your top fabric with the right side facing up.

Then add your back fabric.  My fabric is the same on both sides.  If yours has a print, be sure to layer it on top with the WRONG side facing up.

Then add your back fabric. My fabric is the same on both sides. If yours has a print, be sure to layer it on top with the WRONG side facing up.

NOTE:  as you can see here, my back fabric is narrower than my outer fabric.  So, I layered the back fabric on top of the outer fabric with only one side lining up.  It will make sense in a minute – just be sure that you do this (instead of centering the fabric).  If your fabrics are the same width, then no problems – just line them up.

Now sew along the side that has all three layers.  Again, you should have:  back fabric on top wrong side facing up.  Outer fabric in the middle with right side facing up.  Inner lining on the bottom facing any way.

Now sew along the side that has all three layers. Again, you should have: back fabric on top wrong side facing up. Outer fabric in the middle with right side facing up. Inner lining on the bottom facing any way.

Now, sew the other side together - if your fabrics are different widths, just gently pull the back fabric over to the other side.  Turn it right side out, and center everything like you see here.

Now, sew the other side together – if your fabrics are different widths, just gently pull the back fabric over to the other side. Turn it right side out, and center everything like you see here.

 

Now sew up both the short sides - leaving a large hole on one of the sides - just like you would a pillow. (hint: it's a good idea to pin extra well here.  The fabrics are heavy and can shift without a good amount of pins.  I hate pinning, so if I say you should pin, you should pin.  just sayin'.)

Now sew up both the short sides – leaving a large hole on one of the sides – just like you would a pillow. (hint: it’s a good idea to pin extra well here. The fabrics are heavy and can shift without a good amount of pins. I hate pinning, so if I say you should pin, you should pin. just sayin’.)

Reach your hand inside, and turn the whole thing right side out.  Yes, you should press the sides - then close up that hole.  If you're one of those meticulous types, you can hand sew an invisible seam.  I, however, just topstitch it.

Reach your hand inside, and turn the whole thing right side out. Yes, you should press the sides – then close up that hole. If you’re one of those meticulous types, you can hand sew an invisible seam. I, however, just topstitch it.

This is what the backside will look like.  Oh how I love it!

This is what the backside will look like. Oh how I love it!

Now put that little darling on your little darliing's bed.

Now put that little darling on your little darliing’s bed.

It really is easy - I wouldn't lie to you!

It really is easy – I wouldn’t lie to you!

And don't forget to add the pillow ... and a coordinating $3 Ikea blanket.

And don’t forget to add the pillow … and a coordinating $3 Ikea blanket.

The options to embellish this thing are endless … I’d love to see what YOU come up with… especially if you make one with ruffles.  wink wink.

Cost: I used about 3 yards of each fabric.  The chevron fabric was $7/yd.  The orange flannel was $3/yd.  The inner lining flannel was $3/yd.  which brings me to a grand total of $39.  Not exactly cheap, but definitely a great price for customized and designer bedding.  If you count the 1/2 yard for the pillow and the $3 blanket, the grand total for this ensemble is $46.50.

Time: I am estimating this took about an hour.  A novice sewer will probably need about 2 hours to just account for checking and double checking.

I hope you found this helpful … I’ve got a lot more planned for this guy’s room … but I just might get distracted by something else first.  Like a new dress!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Happy Monday y’all!!!

Some of you may have noticed that my Etsy shop is looking more like a poor pitiful shop than an actual clothing store.  OH WELL!!!  I’m having such a great time getting my house in order that I don’t even miss creating new dresses…yet.

This weekend, I began the process of transforming my son’s room into something noteworthy.  In our last home, we kept adding kids so the rooms never quite became anything worth anything.  A quote from the first realtor to visit our old home and tour the kids’ room:  “Oh my.  Hmmmm.  This will have to change.”

Well – I am now determined for that to change!!!  Owen’s room is slated to have matching bedding, a curtained reading nook, curtains for his closet, and actually worthwhile things on his walls. (not that last time he had mis-matched girlie things on his wall, right!?  cough cough)

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Above is what I finished this weekend…. AAAAAHHH… it was SO fun!!  My son is only 7 years old so I wasn’t expecting much of a reaction to something as useless to him as fabric on his bed.  WRONG!!!  I was downstairs when he first saw it… I heard something that sounded like Super Bowl screaming coming from his room.  Then I heard, “MOOOOOM!!!  This is the Best Day Ever!!”  Be.  Still.  My.  Heart!  SEW worth it, right!?!

This has brought me such joy, I thought I’d spend the next few blog posts sharing with you how I upped the wow factor in his room.  I’ll share tutorials on easy pillowcases, easy coverlets, and easy fabric curtain panels.  I’m hoping that some of you will find these helpful!

Let’s start with the pillowcase… mostly because it’s fewer photos and that’s all I had time to download today.  (Apparently, the kids’ school thinks they need to be wearing “official” uniforms and not chevron fabric, so laundry has to be done.  UGH!)

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If you google “how to make a pillow case”, you’re gonna find all kinds of crazy patterns that take about 14 or 15 steps. Seriously!?! It’s a pillow case. It’s gonna get drool and vomit on it. Why spend a whole day making one!!! Here’s I do it: Grab a pillow case that you already own. lay it on top of the fabric that you want to use. You can see here that my fabric is narrower than the pillowcase I’m using for my pattern, but it’s okay. It’s okay because it’s close enough. If it were much narrower, I probably wouldn’t use it, but since it’s close – bam. I’m using that baby! (also worth noting: I’m able to keep the selvege edges as they are. There is no need to hem them on this fabric. If you need to hem up the opening edges, you’ll need a little bit more fabric than I’m using.)

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Be sure you match the folded edges together and the open edges together.

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Then cut out your fabric just a bit larger on the sides than your pillowcase pattern. We’re going to do a French Seam, so you’ll want to cut your fabric about 1/4″ or so bigger than you usually would … but just eyeball it. Pillowcases are very forgiving!

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A french seam is a seam that enclosed – meaning you can’t see the edges on the inside. It will make sense in a minute. I like to use this seam on pillowcases because they get a lot of laundering. The French Seams keep the inside of the cases nice and tidy. To do it – sew up the sides of the pillow case WRONG SIDE TOGETHER, I know, weird, and use a very narrow seam allowance.

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Now, turn your pillow case inside out and press those sides.

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Now you will do another seam down the sides. Be sure that your seam allowance it enough to fully encase the seam on the inside. If you do too small of a seam allowance, you’ll have fabric sticking out when you turn it back right side out. Now you have a French Seam Pillow Case.

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Since I’m not hemming the selvedge edges (aka: leaving the opening unhemmed), I needed to be sure to reverse stitch my seams extra well and clip those tails very well.

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This is kind of a whompy photo – but I wanted to show the inside so you can see the french seam. (at this point, I’m wondering why sometimes I capitalize French Seam and sometimes I don’t. Are you wondering that too?) Anyway, you can see the enclosed french seam on the right.

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When you turn it right side out and press the side seams – Here’s what you get!!! I love it. It was super fast … that makes me so happy!

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Coming next – how to make that easy coverlet! And I do mean easy!

There you have it y’all… how to make a very fast and easy pillow case!

Breakdown:

Time: I think this took me 15 minutes…and that was with taking pictures.  You CAN DO THIS!!!

Cost: pretty darn cheap.  I used leftover fabric from the coverlet … but lets’ see… I think I used about 1/2 yard of fabric, so for me – $3.50.  YAAAAAAY!

I hope you’ll make a million of these.  Be sure to invite someone over to spend the night just so you can offer them a brand spanking new pillowcase!

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I don’t say this often … but OMW!!!  (That means Oh My Word!)

I almost can’t believe I’m here.  Posting.  On my blog.  Do you remember me at all???

It’s been about 3 months since my last confession post, so I feel like a little round of catch-up might be in order.  Well….the sale of our home FINALLY went through on July 3rd.  We were supposed to close on June 28th, so we frantically and crazily got ourselves moved out of our home on June 27th..only to find ourselves sitting in a tiny two-bedroom apartment while our home lay empty.  Do I sound frustrated!?!?  Heavens no, I’m so over that feeling!

Anyway, we have moved into our temporary housing while we wait for our next home’s completion.  We’re hoping for September, but we’re not holding our breath.  In the meantime, I still have a sewing wall – only now it’s in the dining room!  Also, my husband still has a study – only now it’s in the dining room!

Just to prove I’m not exaggerating!

Life in a temporary place is definitely …er…um…what’s the word…interesting?

In our apartment, life in temporary housing is BLAND!  We don’t want to be charged any move-out fees, so we’re not hanging anything on the walls, hanging any curtains, or even putting up much furniture.  For those of us who whip up curtains for everything from windows to sinks, this is quite a challenge … AND, leads me to my next and long overdue tutorial.

This is my current laundry room. Plain. White. Depressing. (oh, and it’s IN the kitchen. Not near the kitchen but IN. THE. KITCHEN)

Soooooo…. if you can’t beat ‘em, JOIN ‘EM!

In only 8 minutes and for about $10, I added just enough flair to make laundry fun again … simply by whipping up a quick set of bunting / banners and adding a photo.

Here’s how I made the bunting in 8 minutes:

I started with a package of pre-cut (AWESOME!) quilting triangles. They were on clearance for about $6.

Then I pulled out some left over wide, double-fold binding. The double-fold is important if you’re wanting to do this project fast … but seriously, is there any other way!! ???

Next, I placed each of the different prints in a pile right next to my sewing machine so I could grab them quickly. Just put them out in random order. Please do NOT overthink this part … remember: you’re not making a quilt, you’re making something that NO ONE will ever cuddle up next to, only appreciate from a distance. Have fun!

To make the bunting – simply place 2 triangles together wrong sides facing, slide into the center of the bias tape, and sew. I started sewing at the start of the biast tape, and just kept sewing all the way through adding the triangle sets along the way. Also, I used a zig zag stitch to make sure my stitches counted!

You’ll end up with something like this!

Now, just go crazy hanging these from every hanging place you can think of! I used sewing pins to hang them so that I didn’t leave any nail holes.

I added a photo of the kids and a fabric covered candle. That’s it. Now, I will never complain about laundry or temporary place again. EVER. maybe.

I may not have been converted into a laundry-lover, but I do enjoy the laundry room now.  That’s got to be worth something, right!?!

Now for the lowdown:

COST:  about $10.  The triangles were $6, the binding will cost about $3.  I had the binding from a previous project, so FREE for me!  You know I love that!

TIME: 8 stinking minutes!!!  I am SO not fibbing on this.  I timed it.  SO and SEW easy.  You’ll hug yourself for this, I promise!

I’m quite certain this will be a great project for any space … temporary or permanent.  AND, I’m quite certain you’ll see this bunting in my next home … which currently looks like this:

It’s good to back.  Tell me what YOU”VE been up to!!!

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I realized LAST SUNDAY that TODAY was the last day of school for ALL of my kids.  WHAT IN THE WORLD!?!?  How did this happen???

Somehow in the next few days, I had to come up with 6 Thank You gifts for my kids’ teachers.  And not only that – this week is the last week of our pay period … translation: I need these gifts to be FREE.  But how in the world do I adequately say thank you for 9 months of loving and teaching my children …. for free???

Put on my thinking cap and think. think. think.

I opened up my scrap fabric drawer for some inspiration….

And I came up with this … a reversible scrap fabric apron. And I must admit, I LOVE them!

I kind of feel bad for showing off my mennequin’s posterior, but if mine looked like that I’d show mine off too. Anyway, I love how the reversible part peeks through in the back! This particular version is made from a fabric remnant my husband brought me back from Africa. The houndstooth fabric is just remnants from prior projects.

I made three of these in an hour – how awesome is that!?  Here’s how you can too:

You’ll need to remnant pieces that you can cut to approximately 30″ x 12″. (That is just what I decided to do. You can make yours as wide and as long as you want. This size will make you what I call a “carpenter’s” length apron – just above mid thigh.) I cut mine out with right sides together so that I can go straight to the machine without turning the fabric. Just pick it up and sew. Also, I chose to round the bottom edges. Purely a matter of opinion.

For this particular apron, I wanted to add rick rack (and who cares that I didn’t have quite enough – I just started down a little lower…it’s MY apron!). So, I just sewed the rick rack to the rightside edge of one apron panel. Then I placed that panel on top of the other panel with right sides facing. I sewed along the rick rack stitch line to attach the two panels together. This way you can be sure that the rick rack appears as it should.

Turn your apron section right side out and press. Lovely! Sigh, take in the sights, so pretty!!!

Now to attach the tie/band … cut a long strip of fabric about 6″ in width and as long as you like. This one wrapped all the way around and tied in front. Others can just tie in back, whatever you want and have enough fabric for. Then press the center, and then press in about 1/2″ on each side.

Making sure to match up the centers of the apron panel and the apron tie – begin pinning the panel to the inside seam allowance like shown.

Then fold over the tie/band and pin in place as well. I stitch the apron panel and band together first, then stitch the rest of the tie … if you start at the tip of the tie and sew all the way down to the other tip, your band will have a tendency to shift, so sewing the panel and band first helps to avoid that. But it’s your apron – do what you want!

Okay hot mamma, you’re almost done!!! Try the apron on for size and mark where you’d like to trim your tie (assuming that you want to trim it!)

Now all you have to do is tuck in your edges on both sides and sew ‘em up. YOU’RE DONE!!!

Don’t just stand there… admire yourself and the mirror … this is one awesomely easy apron!

And so is this one! Wait…what? They’re the same thing??? How amazing are you!?!

Here’s another combo I whipped up.

EXTRA EXTRA: if you end up cutting a fair amount off the tie, just turn it into a headband. Bam. You’re killin’ it!

So, I feel as if you don’t really need the “breakdown” because I’ve been pretty clear…but here it is anyway:

TIME:  I finished 3 in one hour, so 20 minutes.  ***That means that you’ll have to cut them out at the same time though.

COST: FREE if you use scraps like I did!  Not more than about $3-$5 if you purchase fabric.

Okay, now don’t just stand there…go make some and give them away!!!

 

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