Archive for the 'Crafting' Category

Hula Hoop Reading Tent

What a fun project!

reading tent.jpg

This is for my goddaughter, but she’s away on vacation so I had my schnauzer, Peanut sit in as a model.  Make no mistake, this little guy deserves a little tent for sleeping in for being such a fantastic pet. ❤

The tutorial can be found here.  Of all the hula hoop tent tutorials out there, I thought this one was the cutest and had pretty great instructions.  I couldn’t resist making a few modifications to make the process easier.  I wish that I had made it just a tad tighter around the top so it didn’t look so floppy – I was so scared that it wasn’t going to be wide enough that I overcompensated.  The tent and border are from my goddaughter’s bedding from when she was in a crib.  She’s 4 now and her mom had saved the bedding for a sewing project.  The drapey part is a fitted sheet that I had left over from a previous project so all in all it came together rather cheaply! Always nice when I’m doing a project that requires yards and yards of fabric.

One thing I did learn is that there is double-sided Velcro out there.  Did you all know this? It’s called “One Wrap”.  I used it to keep the hula hoop in place.

This was my spring break project and now that spring break is over, it’s back to my real job: homeschooling the kids.  Happy Spring Y’all!

 

 

 

Aragorn / Strider Costume

My son went to a costume ball this month as Aragorn from Lord of the Rings.  In the movie, Aragorn wears layers upon layers of clothes so we started months before to get all the pieces together.  While there are a few very cool diy Aragorn costume pictures out there (love this one), I couldn’t find anyone who could tell me where to get the parts put together a great costume myself.  So I’m listing what we did below.  We focused on getting all black for the body with a green cape.

T Aragorn.jpg

  • Black long sleeved T-shirt: Soft-Washed Men’s Henley from Old Navy
    I cut out  the buttons to give the V neckline of a medieval tunic, stitching up some raw edges.
  • Black long pants: Slim Built-In Warm Black Jeans (Washed) from Old Navy
    The pants only show from mid thigh to just below the knee.  The focus here was on warmth because it was a winter ball and cold.
  • Tunic: Black Warrior Tunic from Party City
    For $30 this is cheaply made, but it was the right look.  I removed the collar and epaulets and stitched up the raw edges.
  • Boot covers:  Black Pirate Boot Covers from Party City
    $14.99 was a deal compared to $100+ we could have spent on real boots that my son would never wear again.  We didn’t need the pirate flaps so he tucked them into the top and they never popped out.
  • Black Shoes:  My son had these already as his dress-up shoes.
  • Green Elvin Hooded Cloak:  This was my big crafty contribution to the costume.  3 yards of Softened 5.3 oz Linen (Olive Green) from Fabrics-Store.com. 2 yards for the cape (just a big rectangle) and a little under 1 yard for the hood. He was able to slip the cloak on and off over his head.
  • Elven Brooch:  We got this Green Leaf Elvin Pin from Amazon.  Originally I had ordered a cheaper one on Etsy, but when it didn’t arrive after 6 weeks, I turned to Amazon and after 2 days we were set. We pinned the cloak closed with an oversized safety pin and pinned the brooch on top.
  • Arwen’s Evenstar Necklace:  No Aragorn costume is complete without Arwen’s Evenstar Necklace.  It really made the outfit.  Amazon had the best deal again.
  • Leather Bracers:  These really added to the layered effect.  We got these bracers from Amazon.
  • Leather Belt:  We had to have a medieval belt.  Ours was again from Amazon.
  • Hair: All natural!  My son’s been growing his hair out for a few months.  It just happened to go really well with his costume choice!

When it was all said and done this was NOT a cheap costume. It ended up costing more than the ticket to the ball. BUT I have 2 more younger boys and I’m hopeful that they might wear it (or parts of it) when it’s their turn to go to the ball.

Do you have a great Aragorn costume you’ve put together?  I’d love to see it!  Please link it down in the comments.

Quilted Camera Straps in Blue

A sewing project that complements my photography hobby comes full circle when I set up a photoshoot for my sewing hobby project.

camera strap cover blue 1

I made a few more camera strap covers for the shop.  The last ones were all pink but I’m loving blue right now!  After making the straps I started working on a quilt with the same fabrics.

camera strap cover blue 3

I actually prefer sewing things that flow from one project to another instead of working from a set list.  I have a list, but sewing and checking things off of a list isn’t as fun as just letting my hands do what they wanna do.

Warm and Fuzzy Flower Rice Bag Warmer Sewing Pattern

Introducing the Warm and Fuzzy Flower Rice Bag Warmer PDF sewing pattern, available in my shop here.

Full, color photos and pattern pieces are included for this quick project.  I use rice or flax in a microwaveable pouch to stay warm most of the winter.  Placing it in a cute, cozy cover keeps it warmer longer.

Just in time for Christmas gifts!

Quick Christmas Stockings

When I unpacked our Christmas decorations this year I found I not longer liked our old stockings.  They seemed bulky and oddly shaped. Isn’t it weird how that works?  Styles change.  It felt fickle, but I wanted something narrower, less beefy and more cute.

So this year we have socks.  Actual socks.  That came in pairs.  They were cheap.  They were striped (yay!).  I rolled down the extra length into the sock, sewed around the top to the right length, and added a hangar.  And here we are.

stockings

And if I change my mind next year, I still have our old ones. Hooray for a quick Christmas project!

Rice vs Flax. Which is warmer?

rice vs flax

Last winter when I was all done making my rice bag warmers a friend told me that using flax seed was actually warmer.  This was news to me and intriguing since I feel like I’m having to rewarm my rice bag warmers way too often.  So I went on Amazon and bought a few pounds of organic flax seeds.

This winter I made a flax seed warmer and honestly couldn’t tell if it lasted longer.  So I decided to get all sciencey and run an experiment.  I made 2 round bag warmers out of the same fabric and filled one with 2 cups of organic sushi rice and one with 2 cups of flax.  Then I microwaved one for 1 minute and measured the temp with my kitchen meat thermometer every few minutes.  I repeated the same process with the other one.

They both came out of the microwave just under 150 degrees (Rice: 147, Flax 149).  At the 5 minute mark Rice had lost 15 degrees and Flax had lost 25 degrees.  Things weren’t looking that great for Flax.

The final verdict?  At the 25 minute mark, the rice bag was 5 degrees warmer than the flax bag (Rice: 110, Flax: 105).  This is about the temperature that I would be rewarming the bag so this is where I stopped measuring.

rice wins.jpg

Flax does have some advantages:  It’s lighter and feels nicer since the grains are smaller.
The biggest disadvantage to flax is it’s smell.  I’ve gotten used to it but my kids continue to complain about the smell when I pull it out of the microwave.  A new rice bag smells after the first few uses, but gets less and less smelly with use.  Flax doesn’t seem to change.

Summary:

  • Rice holds it’s warmth slightly better than flax.
  • Flax smells worse and the smell lasts longer than rice.
  • I’m not sure what I’ll be doing with all my extra flax seeds.

From Fabric to Floppy Bag

I thought it would be fun to do a little before and after shot of my last bag.  I might even call it a fabric makeover – from frumpy to fabulous.  😂

floppy bag before

There is just one thing missing from the supply shot.  Any guesses?

floppy bag after

I was so happy to discover that my camera allows me to connect to my phone so in the “after” shot I’m actually holding my phone to take the picture.  As a mom of 3 boys who absolutely do NOT want to model a bag, I am honestly quite thrilled!

I’ve been experimenting with natural leather for the straps and am really liking it. Due to my chemical sensitivities it is really the only one I can tolerate working with.

So there you have it:  Floppy Library Tote with Natural Leather Straps.


Craft Apple

An apple a day keeps the doctor away, right? Well, crafting is my apple. It’s what I do to maintain my sanity while taking care of my family. I homeschool my three boys, ages 14, 15, and 16), am a quilter, a bagaholic, and pattern designer.  Oh – and I also like taking pictures.

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