Can I just say, though, that curves are hard?
It's made from a single charm pack, plus a little extra for the waistband and hem. I got the pattern here. The original pattern doesn't call for the extra piece at the hem, but I think it finished off the skirt nicely. I had a jelly roll of the same fabric line that I used to make that and the waistband. They worked perfectly! I think her friend will look adorable in it, and I hope she likes it!
The only change I made was to use lighter interfacing in the handle and along side the zipper. Otherwise it's just like the one I made for Lisa. This should make a great diaper bag/purse for when she goes shopping with my niece!
Here it is, all finished!
A close up of the back showing the binding:
Here's the before, sitting in the previous owner's yard:
And after, set up in our yard (we added a sandbox that my husband built):
Side note: the people we got it from had a deer's head laying in the backyard, waiting to go to the taxidermist for its antlers. Can you say 'EEEWWW'?!
I also recently scored a small bedroom set from a neighbor during our neighborhood's annual clean up days. For $40, I got a queen sized headboard that is the bookshelf kind, a night stand and a tall dresser with attached mirror. Sweet deal! Right now it is dark walnut veneer, but that will change. I'm going to paint them off white and get new knobs. The dresser and nightstand will go in one of my daughter's rooms, and the headboard will go on the bed in the guest room, which doesn't have one currently. I'll show you the before and after shots as soon as I have some.
There's a web site called Hayneedle (formerly NetShops) that sells all kinds of things for the home. Well, guess what? Their headquarters are in my town, as is their main warehouse. And 2 or 3 times a year, they have a warehouse sale where they get rid of all the returns, scratch & dents, and overstock. It's invitation only -- you have to know someone who works there. Here's a list of some of my scores over the past few years:
1. A captain's bed. Ours has storage in the bottom drawers, and the upper drawers are actually a trundle bed. Retail: $699. My price: $72. It was damaged, but my Renaissance man of a husband fixed that up, lickety split!
2. Barstools. We picked up TWO of the one pictured, barstool height, for $10 each! Swear! Retail: $350 each. AND there was nothing wrong with either stool. The year before we picked up two stools (one bar, one counter, but they matched) for $20 each. The hubby just cut the barstool down to counter height, and fixed a minor issue on one of them.
3. Dartboard. Not sure of the exact model we picked up, but it was similar to this one. Retail: $150-ish. My price: $15.
4. Poker Chip set. Retail: $50. My price: $10. Made a great gift for my brother-in-law. I'm told that he keeps it in the trunk of his car so that he's never without it when he needs it.
5. Patio umbrella. Retail: $150+, and it doesn't include the iron base. My price: $15, including the base. Mine is wood and doesn't tilt, but that's the only difference.
I think that's it for Hayneedle deals. Can I just say how much I love living in the same town as their headquarters?
I also prowl craigslist occasionally when I'm looking for something specific. My best find was a brand new, in the box, never used Cricut Expression for $180. Less than HALF of retail! Yay!
Here's a tip: if you're prowling craigslist, you can set up a feed with your specific search term right to your blog reader. I use Google Reader to peruse all the different blogs I like to read. If you read a lot of blogs and haven't figured one of these reader things out yet, do so now. Anyway, once you've input your search term and hit 'Search' on craigslist, scroll down to the very bottom of the first page of results. You'll see an orange RSS button. Click that to "subscribe" to the feed for your exact search term. That way you don't have to keep going to craigslist to do a search, it will just forward items to you as they're listed!
Why do I bring this up? Because this year, I showed great restraint and did not buy my daughter any summer dresses at all. I just couldn't justify it when I've got bins full of cute fabric, and I can get patterns on sale for around $1. I've made only 2 dresses so far, but this one is to die for:
The halter dress is from a Simplicity pattern, and it was so easy! And this picture doesn't do it justice. It looks less sack-like in person. Here's a shot of the back:
The dress is only 4 pieces of fabric, plus some elastic. There's a facing in the bodice, which next time I'll make a little longer. Love it! I can't wait for the weather to turn warmer so she can wear it all the time!
For Lisa, we have the lush pink paisley with coordinating stripe:Isn't it gorgeous? I love, love, love paisleys, and this one is particularly awesome, in my humble opinion. Here's a view of the inside:
The best part? On super duper clearance at Hancock a couple of weeks ago. Normally around $20 a yard, I got it for less than $5 per yard!
I made a few changes from the original pattern. Like before, I used the lining fabric for the piping and handles. This time I cut the handles on the bias, too, so that they have that barber pole effect. I didn't put piping around the bottom of the bag this time. It made it so hard to sew on the previous bag. I made sure to leave piping "tails" on the sides so that I could use them to plug the holes left in the corners. That worked even better than I had hoped! This time I also used heavier interfacing than the pattern calls for. I like how it makes the bag stand up on its own a little bit more. Unfortunately, it made the handles a bit more stiff than I'd like, though Lisa may find it works for her. I also didn't think it needs to be that heavy in the zipper area, either. Next time I'll use a mix of the heavy and light interfacing to get the best result. Final bonus addition: pockets on the outside, in between the handles. Perfect for the grocery list, boarding pass or parking ticket!
Oh, and note to self: remember to unzip the zipper before you sew on the bottom of the bag. Trying to unzip one from the wrong side is a pain in the ass!
Coming soon: Sarah's adorable polka dot bag!
and these bunny cupcakes:
(which I forgot to take a picture of the completed cupcakes before they were all eaten). Ooops :)The finished bunny also had miniature marshmallows as cheeks and frosted whiskers but you get the idea! These were very easy to make and turned out super cute! The eyes and nose are made from jelly beans cut in half. The ears were made from large pink marshmallows that were cut in half twice:
I have been doing a little crafting since my last post, which I'll show off shortly. I'm sporadic about posting mostly because I don't download the pictures from my camera often enough! But I've got a cute watermelon table runner to show off, and I'm working on refashioning a t-shirt of mine into a dress for Paige. Not sure if that will turn out or not. And after that? Believe it or not, I've got plans to make a couple more of the Sophia Carry All bags! My very good friend wants one just like the one I've already made, and I picked up some cute fabric the other day to make another as a gift.
Sorry for a picture-less post!
I've got the button! I saw a rainbow colored cha-cha bracelet in a j. crew catalog and I was inspired to make a piece of rainbow jewelry. I used a chain, jump rings and toggle clasp, all from Michaels. The buttons are mine. I have a little hand-crank drill that I used to make holes in the larger buttons. Open up the jump rings, add a button and hook it onto the chain. For the clasp, all you need to do is open up your end links and attach the clasp to the end.
The pattern doesn't call for the lining fabric to be used for the handle or the piping on the outside, but I think it looks better this way. Striped fabric on the bias (for the piping) is adorable! I kind of wish I'd done the handles on the bias, too. I think this fabric pattern fits the style of the bag really well.
The bag is a great size... big, but not TOO big. There were definitely things I would do differently next time. Check out my review on patternreview.com for the minutia.
So, do you want one? They still have a ton of this fabric available on clearance!
The bodice is a bit too big, but I made it in size 3 since she's already 2 1/2 years old. Hopefully she'll grow into it before the cold weather returns in the fall!
Where did I get the fabric, you ask? My fairy godmother, of course!
You can't tell from this picture, but there is a little more fabric behind the stacks you see here. The plastic grocery bag on top of the stack is full of precut bundles. There are TWO jelly rolls, at least one charm pack and a bundle of fat quarters in there! The paper grocery bag over there to the side? That contains fabric that she had already cut for a project, and in some cases had begun to piece together. I did cull quite a bit of that kind of thing out, but these were gems that I wanted to find a way to use.
Here's what it looks like laid out on my kitchen table, all coordinated by color:
I'm still pinching myself! I did thin out a little bit of the stash she gave me. It ended up filling two garbage bags. That stuff was mostly very small scraps. As you can see from the pictures, there was a LOT of decent yardage in this, in some cases more than enough to make a quilt back for a lap to queen sized quilt. Don't worry, I'm not going to throw away what I didn't keep. Some of it will go to a friend whose son loves tractors (John Deere fabric just isn't my thing), and the rest will go to Project Linus.
My cup runneth over!
Here's what I'm up to next:
This is the Sophia Carry All bag from Amy Butler. However, those are NOT Amy Butler fabrics this time! Hancock fabric was having a great sale on decorator remnants, with 50% off the already discounted price. I got these two coordinating prints for $6 a yard, and since they're decorator fabrics, they're 54" instead of 44", which means you buy less. Score!
It's coming together very fast, much faster than the Field Bag I made earlier. Using a decorator fabric means there's less interfacing to work with. I'm at a little bit of an impasse right now. I followed the instructions, but there's part of the bag that didn't come together as well as I would have liked, so I'm going to hand sew a little bit to correct the issue before going on to the next step. I should have a finished bag to share with you soon!
I've gone and made another handbag. Check it out:
This one is also from a free pattern, available here. Be careful, because part of the pattern instructions is dependent on viewing it in color. I ended up ripping out a bunch of unnecessary stitches because I printed the instructions in black and white. The stitches on the diagram are actually both black and RED, and I was only supposed to sew the red stitches indicated. Because all of the stitches on my print out were black, I sewed all of them. Oops!
It's a very cute bag, though not very secure. You close it like this:
Fun for a casual evening out, but probably not very good for an every day bag. If you want it, it's for sale in my Etsy shop!
It's the smaller version of the portfolio I made earlier. Both patterns are available in the same download. I made this one to give to a friend whose last name begins with D. Not sure what she'll use it for, maybe grocery coupons or something like that. It has two small pockets on the inside. Guess who designed the fabric?
I didn't use the Cricut to make the applique this time. I've come to the conclusion that it's too much of a pain to put the actual fabric through the machine. Instead, I cut out whatever shape I want out of nice, thick card stock and use it as a template. Old school (sort of), but much easier in the end. Plus, it means I can use whatever shapes I want since it will work with both cartridges AND Sure Cuts a Lot, the software that I bought to use with the Cricut. I found that I couldn't cut fabric using Sure Cuts a Lot, since the software specifies the speed setting on the Cricut for cutting, and it wasn't slow enough. I'll write more about Sure Cuts a Lot someday.
I purchased badge clips and removed the plastic piece from the metal piece.
Then I used my trusty hot glue gun to attach the metal clip to one end of a 6" piece of ribbon and used tacky glue to attach the plastic piece to the other end.
After that was dry I attached a cute, LARGE button to the end with the clip and ta-da!
These were very easy to make and turned out so cute!