Sunday, August 17, 2008

No pictures today...

So I've been plugging away at the kindergarten readiness thing. The prototype lunch bag is done, except for the velcro closure. I'm not totally happy with it, as I couldn't find my Insul-Brite (used Warm&Natural batting instead), and it turned out way bigger than necessary. But at least it is ready for use. And I'm sure that I will make more eventually and tweak the pattern. I also bought two ice packs and two drink bottles to use in said lunch bag, so I think we're good.

And I found a nap mat at WM and made a cover for it, to match the pillow and blanket. So naptime is set. I have enough train print left over to make a tote to carry the pillow/blanket/cover to school and back, but I'm not going to worry about that this week. It's not on the urgent list.

I also made a trip to JAF on the way home from church to take advantage of the Founder's Weekend sale! I needed interfacing for DH's shirts that I've been promising him forever....and I bought the Insul-Brite I needed for the next round of lunch bags. And I found a dinosaur knit print that Ruth (of SewChic)used recently for jammies for her son, so of course I had to buy some - it was on sale for $2/yard!

Now I'm ready to cut a new pair of PJs for Thing 1, so that I can take advantage of orange serger thread. And I'm ready to start actually stitching the muslin for DH's shirts!

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Getting ready for kindergarten....

Thing 1 is starting kindergarten next week - yikes! So there are a few items we still need to get together. I finished one last night, when the Art Smock was completed:

I used the SewBaby Art Smart Smock pattern and made the 5-6x size. (There are only two sizes, and that is the bigger one.) For this project, I used white PUL, red bias tape, red ribbing, and cotton scraps - all from stash! It takes just one yard of the main fabric, and it really works up quickly. I wanted to use the PUL so that the smock would be waterproof and protect his clothes better - wasn't so crazy about the white, though, which is where the Thomas the Tank Engine appliques came in. But at least I didn't buy more fabric to use in this project!

Thing 2 is pretty happy with his art smock, and I can see more of these in my future. Depending on how stained they get, I could envision making a new one every year for Things 1 and 2. I think this would be easy to size up, and it certainly went together quickly and easily.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

New shoes....

Thing 2 needed new shoes, as he's worn holes in the heels of his current shoes....go figure - I hadn't added heel guards to those. I had cut this pair out several weeks back...maybe when I made the last ones, come to think of I sewed them up this weekend. I also thought it was time to do an applique, and he (like his brother!) is really into trains and especially Thomas the Tank Engine. We'll see what he thinks in the morning!

These are from the Make Them Yourself pattern, and I think I used a size 7 again. This may come back to haunt me, since I added both toe and heel guards this time. I may decide that I should have gone up a size to account for the extra addition. I hope not, but I guess it won't be the end of the world.

I also need to get some more leather, I think. But first I'll make a pair from the black leather jacket DSIL thrifted for me. :) This pair is made with recycled jeans, once again; Toughtek soles; recycled white jeans for the lining; and scraps of leather for the guards.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

A head start on winter....

Apparently I'm an optimist and am convinced that the hot summer will come to an end. :) Because I decided that now was the perfect time to make a new blanket for Thing 1. And not just any blanket - no, I had to make a warm blanket.

I bought the "car road" fleece for this blanket almost two years ago, during one of JAF's red tag clearance sales (everything on clearance goes to 50% off the clearance price). So I paid $2.50 per yard for it, and I bought two yards. (Thing 1 was 3 then, so I figured two yards would be astronomically long on him. Fast forward to 5, and it's not nearly as gigantic now, but still...) I then let the fleece sit for quite awhile before buying the hunter green fleece for the reverse side a few months ago. The blue fleece for the binding may have been purchased at JAF's Black Friday sale last year.

And here we are! I started putting this together Sunday, and I finished it Tuesday night. I used a basting spray to put the two layers of fleece together, then cut off the selvedges and evened up it all up, before binding the edges with blue fleece.

***Edited to add: I found this post lost in draft mode, when I was trying to finish up other posts! Poor post, lost for 3 years! This blanket is STILL in heavy rotation in our house.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Hooded towel explanation....

I'm calling this an explanation because "tutorial" is entirely too formal a word for what I'm doing. :) I made two new hooded towels, because Thing 2 has really outgrown the baby-sized hooded towels, but Thing 1 still likes to use the two which I made a few years ago, so it's always good to have more.

So I started with two bath towels and a matching hand towel. (And for the record, apparently I wasn't paying enough attention and bought bath sheets when they were on sale - because these new hooded towels are huge!)

1. I laid both bath towels (one at a time) on my rotary cutting mat, wrong side up, and cut the left edge off one and the right edge off the other (long edges, mind you). I also cut the top (short) edge off both of them. I then put the two towels right sides together and sewed the long cut edges together. Then I serged the seam allowances and stitched them down to one side.

2. I cut the hand towel so that it was about 12 inches wide, leaving the bound (long) edge on one side intact. Then I cut the top and bottom (short) edges off. Next, I folded the towel right sides together and sewed along the long cut edge, eyeballing a gentle curve up to the fold. (The picture below shows the finished hood right side out and attached to the towel. You can see that it's about 11 inches long after seam allowances.) Like with the main towel, I serged the seam allowances and stitched them down to one side - I did pay attention and stitch them to the opposite side as the towel.
3. Next I joined the two pieces together: I pinned the center seam of the hood to the center seam of the towel, wrong sides together. Then I pinned the hood in both directions. I stitched the hood down, then serged the entire edge of the towel, including the seam allowances at the join. I turned the serged edge down and stitched it in place.

4. Happy customer! You can see how much my tall Thing 1 (5 years old) swims in this new towel. Oh,'ll just last longer, right?
These don't take long to make up, and they are great baby shower gifts, too. I just bought a bunch of towels on clearance to make more (though I did buy smaller towels this time!).