Tag Archives: sewing

Free Motion Embroidery

17 Jan

Free motion embroidery Kukui nut

Last year I made a gift for my daughter’s teacher, who was my son’s teacher, who happens to also be my husband’s aunty.  Anyway, she’s special and I wanted to do something special.  I’ve always wanted to try “drawing” with my sewing machine.  It was a small space and I thought it would be faster than doing an appliqué.  I really hate preparing my fabric for appliqué.  It’s a Kukui leaf and nuts, which has special meaning to her and her class.  
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Until tonight, I had no idea there was such a thing as “free-motion embroidery.”  I’ve been wanting to do more with it since this first project and now I’m really inspired!  If only I had the time to go with it.

 

 

Gifts for Tweens Are Hard

17 Jul

I have a ton of tween nieces.  All fabulous.  They are so hard to shop for.  The cutesy stuff no longer applies and the stuff they want often comes with that picture of an apple on it; and I wouldn’t dare try to buy clothes for them.  I decided a bath wrap was kind of spa-ish (I saw lots of ideas for spa baskets…but no one ever really uses that stuff) and functional.  I like functional.
Tween gifts Bath wrap tutorial

I found a bunch of tutorials, but this one made the most sense to me.  This one inspired the ruffle.  As always, I followed it loosely.  Many tutorials call for terry cloth, but I like the large and super plush towels that Costco & Sams club sell.  Plus, they are huge!  I cut off about a third of this towel.

My favorite part is the ruffle…although it killed two of my sewing machine needles.  I free-motioned her name to personalize it.  I think tweens are probably over appliqué.  I kind of want one now.

Easy Drawstring Bag Tutorial

11 Jul

I’m usually a room parent for my kids’ classes, but I opted out this past year since I spent a good portion of my pregnancy in the horizontal position.  I know the amount of time and work that goes into helping out the classrooms, so I wanted to thank them some how.  I found a great tutorial for drawstring bags online.  I think it’s one of the easiest around.  I filled them with a bag of cookies and a thank you note.

Drawstring Bag Tutorial Teacher Gift

They would work for teacher gifts too, but we ended up doing personalizing water bottles instead.  Thanks to my sisters for their Sillhouette & Vinyl.

Teacher Gift Ideas

You could make a bazillion of these for so many things!  Here’s the link to the tutorial:

Best drawstring bag tutorial!

Gifts I Made This Past Christmas: Toddler Backpack

6 Jan

Here, another pattern I bought a LONG time ago, but never made.  Finally, I had a need!  With so many people in our family, we pick names for Christmas.  I was so excited that I got a little girl!  My niece who is almost two.  So, I put that great pattern to use.  Thanks to Pinterest, I made the applique piece based off of an item that her Mommy pinned.  Here’s backpack number one.And for the back…Being the non-tv family that we’ve been for seven years now, Netflix has really compromised the rules in our home.  It’s been pretty bad.  My youngest has become obsessed with Dora the Explorer.  I hate to admit it, but if it wasn’t for Dora and Netflix, I wouldn’t have finished most of my projects this past Christmas.

With the exception of the gift from Santa, I decided to go hand-made on my gifts to the kids this year.  Partly for fun and partly to save money.  It was lots of fun.  I think it will be a tradition.

Since we now have a Dora obsession in our home, it was almost too perfect that Dora’s main accessory is, “Backpack! Backpack!”  So, My youngest got “Backpack!” for Christmas.  Thankfully, she loves it at least as much as I’d hoped.  She takes it everywhere and even woke up two mornings shouting, “Where’s Backpack?!”  Here’s Backpack! (You have to use “!” because my sister-in-law pointed out to me that Dora “yells at you.”  I can’t listen to Dora anymore without feeling like she’s yelling at me.)I have to say, it was maybe the most fun project that I did.  And since it was my second run on this pattern in a week, it went really quickly.  Thank goodness because I finished it at about 3am on 12/25!  (Later I’ll post what I was doing from 3am to 4am).   I found the best face for Backpack that I could off of an image search and just used my light table to create the applique pieces.Did I mention that I absolutely loved this pattern?  It was the first time I’ve ever used piping and now I want to put it on everything!!  I purchased this pattern from Made-by-Rae.  Click HERE for a link to her pattern.  She also created the free pattern to the purse I talked about in this post.

***Note about the pattern: It calls for canvas or a sturdy home decor fabric.  I ended up using cotton, so I actually lined everything because I wanted it to be sturdy.  I had a layer of fusible fleece and fusible webbing on the back of the fleece to attach the front and back piece.  I do NOT recommend doing it this way if you can help it.  It’s a LOT more work.  But, if you have to make a purple backpack, sometimes you have to go standard cotton!