Saturday, December 24, 2011

A Pinterest Christmas!

Have I told you how much I love Pinterest?  Haha.  I do.  I love it.  Here are some projects I've been working on for Christmas this weekend:

An ornament with sand and shells that I brought back from our vacation to Kauai a couple weeks ago.  I bought a clear ornament at Michael's, filled it with sand and the shells, then tied on ribbon and a little tag to remind us of where it is from!
Inspired by this pin
A clip to hang recipes I am using in the kitchen.  This way they won't get dirty on the counter!  I bought the pant hangers in a 4-pack at Target, then traced, cut, and glued on scrapbook paper.  I used little black letter stickers to spell out the sayings and brushed on about 4 coats of matte Mod Podge.
Inspired by this pin
 Other side - What's Cooking?

A set of monogrammed gift tags for the whole family.  D = Daddy, M = Mommy, A = Audrey, N = Nathan.  The pin is from  I printed out a template from the website, then pinned the templates to felt.  I cut them out, then glued on strips of rick rack with Aleen's Tacky Glue.  I also cut out the initials from felt.  I just eyeballed these, I was too lazy to make a template.  I figured they are so small, it wouldn't matter if they were all slightly different.  I sewed the rick rack on with a straight stitch and coordinating thread, then glued the initial on top.  I sewed the initials on with a zigzag stitch and coordinating thread. 
Inspired by this pin
 Here is the whole lot - 4 for each member of the family.  I can't wait to tie them to all our packages!

The tags are a perfect companion to this idea I found on Pinterest - only 4 gifts a year.  My kids share a room (so space is at a premium), and they already have so much stuff.  I started my shopping this year with the 4 Gift Rule in mind.  It was hard to stick to!  My husband had an especially hard time.  He loves to buy toys for the kids.  He may have to just shop for Santa's gifts from now on!
Screenshot of this pin
What Christmas projects have you been finishing up this weekend?  Do you love Pinterest, too??

Friday, December 23, 2011

Super Hero Cape Tutorial

This tutorial is WAYYYYY long over due.  Since Nathan's birthday last year when I made 7 capes, I've made 11 more!!  Here is a quick tutorial on how to do it.  Anyone who can sew a straight line can do it!

1.  My mom helped me design these.  We started with two colors of fabric, one for the outside and one for the lining.  First, cut both pieces of fabric into 21" by 20" squares.
The fabric is folded in half here, so that the angles would be symmetrical.
2.  Cut the bottom into a point with the shortest section being 17" and the bottom section being about 3" wide. 
Does that help?  Yuck, I can see my old Blackberry in this pic!
3.  Print out a Superman emblem onto a full size of paper and cut it out.
Found via Google Images
4.  Pin the paper emblem to your desired color of felt and cut out the felt.  If you are going to use an embroidery machine to stitch names onto the emblem, iron stabilizer on the back.   If you don't have an embroidery attachment, you can leave the emblem blank and buy stick-on stars or other shapes to have kids decorate their own capes, or use stick-on felt letters to spell out the kids' names. The possibilities are really endless here.

5.  Pin the completed emblem onto the top piece of fabric and, using a zig-zag stitch, sew the emblem to the fabric.

6.  Next, pin both pieces of fabric together, wrong sides together.  Make sure to pin where you will leave a hole to accommodate the tie string.  I just eyeballed it to go a couple inches above the top of the emblem.  I wanted the emblem to be in the middle of the child's back and wanted a little bit of a collar to ruffle at the top.

7.  Start to sew in straight stitches, leaving a 1/4 inch seam.  When you get to these pins as you are sewing, backstitch to make sure it wouldn't unravel in the wash or anything, jump to the next pin and backstitch again.  Make sure to leave a hole in the cape in order to turn it right side out.
8.  Turn it right side out and iron the seams flat.

9.  Next, top stitch all the way around, skipping over the holes for the tie string again.  You will then stitch across the top of the cape, from one side of the little hole to the other, making a track for the tie string to stay in.  (Note: It looks like I had sewed along the entire edge, but I just hadn't snipped the string that jumps across the start and finish of the hole yet.  You will need that hole to be open in order to thread the string through.)

10.  The last step is to thread your string through the track.  I have used ribbon and I have also used binding tape (folded in half and stitched closed).  Then secure, you can use a cord stop on each side, or you can ruffle up the collar to your desired effect and stitch the ends of the track closed.  Stitching it closed makes it not adjustable, but I don't really think that matters too much.  Nathan's cape is stitched closed and he doesn't mind that he can't adjust it.

Happy cape making!!

Decorating capes at Nathan's birthday last year
Wearing the completed capes
Running in the neighborhood to save the day!
Finished cape from my Craft It Forward project

Do you have any little ones who would like a super hero cape?  Who is YOUR favorite super hero?  Maybe you can just make one for yourself!  Or by like my friend and make one for your dog! :)

Monday, December 19, 2011

Craft It Forward 2011

On January 4, 2011, I promised to make something for the first 5 people who commented on my Facebook status.

So finally, the end of December, I am ready to mail them out!  Thank goodness for Facebook's new Timeline.  The first time I went to check who exactly had commented on this status, it took me over 30 minutes to scroll all the way back.  Now, I just click on 2011, then click on January.  Easy, peasy!

Now on to the gifts...

For Tia, a jersey knit scarf, sewn with elastic thread in the bobbin so that it would ruffle a bit.  I got the idea from this tutorial.  Since I used jersey knit and it doesn't fray, I didn't hem the edges.  It's really light weight and will be great in the late spring or summer!

For Laura, a shirt for her son, inspired by the Oregon sticker on my car.  I printed out a map of Oregon, then cut out the shape from white felt and sewed it on a little boys black shirt with a straight stitch.  I cut out the green felt heart and sewed that on top with green thread and a straight stitch.  Really easy and super cute!

For Shannon, a fun coffee cozy.  I've made them before, here.  If she doesn't buy coffee drinks often at Starbucks or other places, she can also use this sleeve on Kleen Kanteens (those things can get really cold if you put ice in them) or on to-go coffee mugs.  I used the left over fabric from making Kara's oven mitt and hot pad bridal shower gift and top stitched it with a cute flower stitch on my sewing machine.

For Wendy, a onesie for her baby girl.  I got the idea from this pin on Pinterest.  I had actually originally pinned the inspiration from one of Wendy's boards, so I hope she hasn't made one for her daughter yet!  The flower is from this tutorial because I wanted it to be permanently attached to the onesie.  If Wendy wants to turn it into a pendant, she just has to snip the threads and glue or sew it to a pin from the craft store.

For Kelly, a super hero cape for her daughter, Greta.  I also made capes for Nathan's birthday last year and Greta's brother was one of the attendees who received one.  I'll have to do a tutorial on those soon!  Kelly is also a teacher and last year her class wrote an imaginative story about Super Greta, a brave and courageous toddler.  In the story, Super Greta's cape was blue and red.  I made her real cape blue and purple, because purple is her favorite color!  I even practiced using my embroidery attachment to embroider "Super Greta" on the Superman emblem.  It turned out much better than the last time I embroidered something for Greta! Here is the finished cape in the car, on the way to the post office!

So, moral of the story, if I participate in Craft It Forward 2012, I will start these projects WAYYYYY earlier! :)  I'm such a procrastinator, it's not funny.

What have you been working on lately?