Cluttered Cables No More: Make A Cable Cosy

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I like things organized. If an item doesn’t have a proper place, it gets lost, broken, or just ends up in a cluttered pile. This leads to collecting patterns that will help keep things in their proper place. On Pinterest, I found a picture for a cable cosy and decided to make a few for upcoming travel commitments. I ended up using  the tutorial as an inspiration point and creating a pattern of my own. Along with varying the pattern, I changed up the closure as I disliked the buckle. However, that doesn’t mean someone else would love it: Make It Cable Cozy.

In the end, I made quite a few of these including adapting them to hold action figures and a larger one for Barbie dolls as my youngest nieces and nephew are going on a long road trip this summer.

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Every since I read the March issue of Crafts Beautiful magazine, I have been obsessed with a little retro bus pincushion. It’s cute and practical – in other colors and designs, of course. The artist designed it to be mainly orange, which isn’t my thing. One of the things I really loved about it was the inclusion of Frumble UK’s Typography fabric, which try as I might is just not available. I have searched for an alternative and haven’t quite decided if I like any of them enough. I might just make my own through Spoonflower or with a fabric printed sheet – might be too uggg though. In my search for fabric, I have found some excellent examples of typography fabric though:

With visiting my nieces, I didn’t make anything this last week. I started a couple of things, but nothing to show for it yet. However, both of my nieces wanted to attend the Bristol Renaissance faire and dress up! I would have never expected it from the 16-year-old. She further shocked us by asking if she could dress as a gypsy in skirt and all! This is a girl who wants to wear her Vans, blue jeans, and an appropriately modest shirt every day, all day – nothing frilly or girly ever.

Busy Crafting Week

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I had many hands in the craft fire this week. It was finally nice outside and with the snow melting, it was time to go back to work. So I did.

Rustic Tote

First, I painted a “rustic tote” for my spouse. He’s into storing his craft beer next to the fridge. Rather than continue to knock it over, I felt it was time it had a home of its very own. I’m klutzy and scrubbing perfectly good beer off of the floor is no fun. He’s a huge Cubs fan – born and raised in Chicago – so theming was easy. What wasn’t easy? Stenciling. It looks like I drunk-stenciled. But he loved it anyway.

I seam ripped my old prom dress. I am thinking of turning it into a clutch. Pictures of the final result when I finish.

gogobagI, also, made this purse. I used the Go-Go Bag pattern from Sara Lawson’s Big City Bags. I spaced out the work over four days, and I am very happy with the results. Although, I did not like her Zip Pocket Method 1 instructions. I ended up making a larger zip pocket and lined it with extra thermolam and headliner, so it could hold my tablet when traveling through the airport. (I checked, I have to travel 8 times this year. I think this bag will be my go-to. At least until I am bored looking at it.)

skirtAs if that wasn’t enough, I found shirring that I fell in love with at Joann’s. I made it into a skirt because the shirring is not wide enough to cover my chest. Such is life.

Finally, I decided to catalog my patterns using Pinterest. This way I will not buy any more duplicates.

I am visiting my nieces this week, and so I don’t think I will have the time to complete any projects. Though that isn’t going to stop me from trying to do something. At the very least, I might talk the younger one into picking out the fabric for a Renaissance or Medieval gown. She’ll need one this summer when we take her with us to the faire.

 

Lazy

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I have been so lazy lately.  My husband had surgery and getting him through all of that was draining. By the time he was better, all I wanted to do was nap. So I napped for the better part of two weeks. Then, I got started doing little things, but avoided the computer.

Then, my daughter announced she wants to have an Anime Murder Mystery Party. Everything for this party has to be created from scratch! I’ve been trying different foods and recipes (no pictures) and party favors (again, no pictures). Things are coming together. Slowly.

sootspritesI made a trio of soot sprites out of felt, which is very easy. If you want to make them all you need to do is make a pattern (basically six ovals all of the same size) or search for a pattern online. You may need to adjust the pattern to the size you want. Cut out your felt, sew it together three sections at a time. Make sure to leave an opening in your ball to add stuffing, and then sew up or glue the back. The eyes are just felt circles glue together and then to the “face.” I will set them next to a bowl of Konpeita with a sign that reads: “Please do not feed the soot sprites.”

I plan to make more plushies as party favors for Alexis and her friends.

 

I decided to make the invitations with a Death Note theme.

I decided to make the invitations with a Death Note theme.

While most of the communicating the kids do for parties and such are throw social media and cell phones, paper invitations are still appreciated by parents. So I made them myself. I made fold over cards on card stock. The outside has all of the information the parents will need: date, time, address. The interior (shown) here features information the teenagers will need.

To make the I inverted the color from a scan of the Death Note DVD set. Then, I used a website to generate the Death Note style font. I did not install the font on my computer. I am not sure how safe that is, but I did type in my words, save the graphic it generated, and then combined the various script graphics into the invitation. Each set of words was limited to 40 characters. The result was a lot of layering in Photoshop.

I wish more anime themed things were available easily in our area, but there it is.

Slow Week In Store

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Most of my sewing space in one picture. I have little room in front of the green, plastic bin that I use to iron fabric.

Most of my sewing space in one picture. I have little room in front of the green, plastic bin that I use to iron fabric.

I have a slow week in store. Due to my irrational fear and hatred of ants, I have the exterior of my house regularly sprayed against them. The interior is sprayed as well, but only parts at one time. This week the pest company needs to spray parts of the house that include my sewing studio space. The space is tiny – 5.5 feet by 8 feet. With every item put up properly the four available walls are stacked up like Tetris. Each item balanced precisely.

When I am working on sewing project, there are pieces of it everywhere. My “sewing studio” fills up quickly. Everything on the sewing table goes to the floor. The ironing board wedges in the “long” open space. Things get moved into the kitchen if I need more room. A mess is birthed in about 3.3 seconds.

Before and after major projects I clean the area all up again. It’s like starting with a blank slate; calming the mind and centering the energy. At least that is how I feel. In between big projects, when I am tackling smaller pieces, all bets are off.

With the bug guy coming, I can’t have that. So everything has been put away until after he has visited. Sad, I know, but no mess to clean up day of and no chance of him finding a pin in his boot.

Generally I use the bug guy visit as an excuse to do intense, deep cleaning of the house. So that unfortunately will probably be what happens.

Little Mermaid Gaming Bag

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firstgamingbagFor a while I have wanted to create a bag for gaming that is both functional and pretty. Sure, I could stuff all of my gaming stuff into a backpack and call it a day, but I want something with more personality. I also love handbags. I am always on the look out for the perfect bag. That purse and I share a relationship for about six months, and then I am ready to move on. I actually started to seriously sew because of purses.

This bag was not intended as a stepping stone to perfecting a gaming bag. It was instead for my daughter. I drafted up this bag to give her something to carry her wallet, keys, and other sundries when she needed a handbag. It’s larger than anything she would actually carry, so I absconded with it. It is big enough to accommodate just about everything a player will need for a night of tabletop gaming. As it is finished, it needs more compartments to keep everything organized. However, it is sturdy enough to carry two books the size of the Dungeons and Dragons Player’s Handbook.

The main problem with this bag, right now, is the cost to create it. I used $15 in fabric and $10 in fusible fleece. The Little Mermaid trim costs about $8 per yard, and I used half of one on the bag. This design needs revision, and a firm application of coupon only buying.

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Make It Yours: Reversible Curtain Sewing

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By now, you’ve measured your space and bought or found the fabric you’ll need.

When I said this project was simple; I meant really simple. First, you’ll need to cut out your rectangles to the measurements you made earlier. Measure twice before cutting. Sometimes I measure twice incorrectly. That is really annoying. So just be careful with your measurements.

The example curtain I am using is from Captain America fabric that my daughter wanted. The store only had enough for a single curtain, and it was 42 inches wide. So I adjusted my secondary fabric to 42 inches wide as well. I needed to change fabric the pictures of the original fabric were completely blurry and unusable, so I changed to another pattern. A little cutting with the rotary tool, which I highly recommend when cutting rectangles, and I had my cut pieces.

pinned before sewingNext, pin your two fabric together right sides together. The order for sewing on this project is probably a bit different than you are used to or will be told to do so in the future. I make sure the top and bottom line up perfectly, or as close to perfectly as possible. I sew the top first using a one-half inch seam allowance. Then, I press the seams open. You definitely want these seams pressed open.

Then, I sew the bottom seam allowance of one-half inch. This can be tricky if there was any error in cutting, sewing, or drape that escaped noticed – this happens, don’t worry about it. Press these seams as well, but they don’t have to be open. Next you will need to measure three-to-four inches down from the top on both sides. You will leave this portion open for the curtain rod. It also is big enough to accommodate a hand for turning and enough room to stitch the seam allowance down with the sewing machine later.

pressed outSew both sides leaving the gaps and backstitch a couple stitches at the opening. Press the seams open. You want to press the seams open all the way to the top.

sewing the curtain rod opening downFor the next step, you have a few options. First using your sewing machine, you can sew the seam allowance down being careful not the close the gap or stitch what will be the circle for the curtain rod closed; this is what I do. You can also hand stitch your seams down. This will take longer, but has the advantage of being easier. You can use fabric glue to hold the seams in place; the disadvantage is that you can’t hang your curtain up immediately. Last, you could leave it alone and risk fraying later. It is up to you.

Hang your curtain up, and you are done.

Advanced techniques for this curtain would be to sew a straight line from the bottom of the left side gap to the right side gap. This creates a channel. You can also top stitch around the curtain to give it a more finished look.

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