Sunday, November 30, 2008


Mostly I've been busy working on some Christmas-y crafts lately, but before Thanksgiving I used some of my Alexander Henry birds to make the girls and I matching aprons.

I was kind of experimenting on mine, and I don't love the tie method I used, but all in all, they're pretty cute. So we baked pies for Thanksgiving in our matching aprons. :) I think it's funny that I've gotten all into aprons lately, but they're handy, and it is nice to be able to look at some of my fun fabrics while I'm cooking!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

My present, part 2

I finally got to play with my coverstitch machine last night, and it's the COOLEST thing EVER! I'm so excited. I made a quick shirt, and it looks so professional. (Well, except for the part where I hemmed one of the sleeves backwards, so it's inside out. Good thing it was just a test shirt for pajamas!) I love my new machine!

Although it's got to be said, my three machine command center (so to speak) is hilarious:

I think some rearranging might be in order. Hee-hee.

Christmas traditions

I was thinking yesterday about one of my personal Christmas traditions, known in my household as the "crazy Christmas craft". (Slogan: It's not Christmas unless you're frantically crafting on December 23!) Every year I pick a craft, and I give it to pretty much everyone. Sometimes it's a little insane, but for some reason I enjoy it. Well, most of the time! :)

Anyway, I was sitting in the car yesterday while M took an unexpected car nap, so I compiled a list of all the Christmas crafts I could remember. I've been doing this for a long time now!

The oldest one I can remember is pottery in 1997 or 1998. Lots of mugs and vases and candleholders and things like that.
I don't think I did anything in 1999.
2000 - scented gel candles
2001 - checkerboards - I painted the squares on a stone tile, and the pieces were stones we collected in Greece on our big European trip. That was an awfully heavy box to mail home!
2002 - ??
2003 - I made books with a take off I wrote of Green Eggs and Ham (about A's tendency not to nap), illustrated with photos of A.
2004 - polymer clay animal ornaments - I still like these, but they were a lot of work!
2005 - ??
2006 - fleece hats with appliques
2007 - purses
2008 is still a surprise ;)

One year the craft was quilling - I assume that was either 2002 or 2005. That was hands down my worst Christmas craft ever, which actually wasn't even a proper Christmas craft, since I think I only ended up giving two of them. I still think quilling is really pretty, but it's also worth every penny it costs to not have to make them myself. (And as a die hard DIYer, that's not something you hear me say very often!)

Sewing has rather taken over the Christmas craft of late, which isn't much of a surprise, I suppose, given my sewing obsession. I wonder what this year's craft will be.... ;)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

I got the best present!

As I've mentioned before, I love my serger. All these t-shirts really made me lust after a coverstitch machine, though. And so my beloved husband gave me one as an early Christmas present! It wasn't actually a surprise, since I was the one to order it, but I'm very excited. (In return, he's ordered himself some car parts as his Christmas gift. This isn't how we normally do presents, but we're both happy with it this year. Although clearly I got the better end of the bargain. Of course, I'm sure he thinks the same thing, lol!)

Anyway, it came yesterday. I haven't had a chance to do anything but look at the manual yet. Apparently it's very complicated to thread - they devoted half the manual to the process. I'm a little scared.... Although the serger doesn't frighten me at all anymore, so I can't imagine it's *that* hard to figure out. I'm looking forward to playing with it tonight. AND I'm looking forward to how much easier it's going to make my Christmas crafting. Hooray!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Busy, busy

I haven't been blogging much lately, but I've done a lot of crafting. I was super busy during the 2 weeks after Halloween.
In that time I:
made my jewelry trade jacket (and learned it didn't fit)
stenciled an elephant on a shirt for M (to match her elephant pants)
stenciled a tree on a shirt for myself
turned my ill-fitting hedgehog shirt into a shirt for A
made myself another hedgehog shirt
made my Flirty Skirty apron (then decided I didn't like the fit, unfortunately. But my friend Diane is happy with it)
And last but definitely not least, I made myself a new traveling bag:

View under the flap:
My previous bigger purse was an early effort, and the strap wasn't attached quite as well as it ought to have been, so it's beginning to fall apart. Plus I wanted plenty of space for lots of books/puzzles/etc to entertain myself on the flight. (Which was good, considering how long it ended up taking!) I had this beautiful Marimekko stretch twill waiting for a good project plus some plain black twill on hand, and I put them together to make this bag. It's perfect for flying - big enough to pack lots of entertainment, food and water, with a big slip pocket on the back, and a divided pocket in the front for a cell phone and other stuff. Plus a zipper pocket inside just in case. I'm quite pleased with it. Plus it's so pretty! :)

I'm glad I got a walking foot for my sewing machine, though, as I think the stretchy twill would be have been a real pain otherwise. And while I'm at it, a quick shout out for The Fabric Fairy, since that's where I found an affordable version of my beloved Marimekko print! Plus they have great customer service.

I haven't actually done much of anything since I got back from my trip, but it's about time to get back into crafty mode. Christmas isn't all that far away, and I have lots to do!

I'll close with a picture of M in her elephant outfit, because it makes me happy:

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A moment of silence

I flew to Colorado this weekend, and the flight out here was a mess. First we were delayed, then loaded onto a plane, then taken off that plane, then eventually on another plane.

In the process, I lost my beautiful brown coat. :( I realized it was still on the first plane, but when the attendant went to look for it, it was gone. So I guess *someone* has my brown coat, but it isn't me.

So, a moment of silence for my beloved coat.

(Now I'm going to have to make two more, because the black version I made for my jewelry trade didn't actually fit. I'm going to be such an expert at this coat! But what a very sad way to get the expertise.....)

Saturday, November 1, 2008


I love Halloween. You get to dress up, be crafty and get candy; what could be better? So here are some Halloween pictures.

This year the girls decided to be ghosts. That was easy-peasy - some muslin from Joann's, quick armhole sewing, and some eyes and a mouth. I did add a headband on the inside of A's to keep the eyes in place, although I'm not sure how effective it was. M wore hers in the costume parade at school, but since she absolutely refused to let me try it on her, the eye holes really weren't in the right place. She had to be led by the hand to make it through the parade, lol. She looked cute, though! (If you look closely at this picture, you can see how much the eye holes moved...)

A was much more willing to wear her costume (although much crankier during the evening).

The *real* craftiness came in my costume. The kids thought I should dress up, so somehow I ended up as an alien with purple hair. This was the outcome:
I sewed the shirt, then freezer paper stenciled the writing. Then I attached a layered skirt with wire in the hems to hold the tiers out. It worked pretty well to get the effect I was going for, although I think thicker wire might have held its shape better. I really enjoyed the purple hair, though - I might have to do that for real sometime!

We had a lot of fun. We were joined by my mom, sister, brother in law, nephew, and in-laws for the trick or treating, then afterwards we went to the neighborhood party in our cul de sac. My in-laws are visiting for the weekend, so I got to actually talk to adults at the party. Bonus! My MIL dressed up for the trick or treating, too, so here's a shot of all the costumed ones (except my nephew):
Happy day after Halloween!