Sunday, December 15, 2013

The Stache Tote winner is....

Thank you ALL for dropping by and entering this Sew, Mama, Sew! Giveaway!  I had so much fun reading your comments.  Seriously, I smiled as I read each and every one of your dreams, plans, and intentions for this Stache Tote, and all of your kind words and compliments.  You guys made my week!  Now, to the business at hand. . . .

The winner of the Stache Tote is. . . . . .

CONGRATULATIONS, Rose!  Your prize will be in the mail tomorrow!

Just a few more mustaches. . . .

7 weeks old now!

The pants finally fit!  They're now the perfect size, roominess, length.  It took Henry quite a while to get to wear them.  I'll share his story later, but I'm just so happy he's finally growing and thriving... and wearing adorable pants, I had to share!

Thanks again, everyone, for dropping by and for your comments.  I hope you'll join us over on facebook, or stick around here for my sporadic-for-now postings, tutorials and ramblings.  (I'm often on pinterest, and occasionally on twitter. . . I'd love to see you there, too!)

I'll be around here, soon.  See you then!

Monday, December 9, 2013

Stache Tote Giveaway! Hooray!

WHEW!  What a month!  Time has both flown by and dragged on:  magic made possible by sleep deprivation only a newborn can create.  In the blur of the past six weeks, I somehow remembered and prepared for this fun and fantastic day:  Giveaway Day, hosted by Sew, Mama, Sew!  Yippeee!  I had so much fun with it last year, that I couldn't wait to participate again.  Soooo....

This year I'm giving away this handmade 'Stache Tote!

 This roomy tote features Alexander Henry's quirky Where's My Stache print in natural. . .

roomy: 15" wide and 16" tall

I also used reclaimed denim on the exterior, and a cool reclaimed cotton fabric for the interior. . .

with magnetic snap closure...

...and cotton webbing handles

There are a couple of big pockets inside the tote, too. . .

This tote is the perfect size for everyday use, shopping jaunts, library trips, or even for hauling baby stuff around.  It's sewn to last and last, with double stitching on the seams, and a nice, soft fleece lining between the fabric layers.

So... Are you ready to win??

All you have to do to enter this giveaway is leave a comment, telling me where in this big, lovely world you'd like to take this tote.  Home?  A grocery store?  All over town?  A classroom, a dreamy vacation, a secret cabin in the woods?  It's all good to my sleep-deprived (and easily entertained mind.)

This giveaway is open to any and all persons on this planet.  The giveaway will be open until Friday, December 13th at 5 pm PST.  At that time, the winner will be chosen at random (via online random number generator.)  I'll email the winner and also announce the winner on this blog by Sunday, December 15th.  :)

I look forward to reading your comments, and a big West Texas welcome to new readers, and warm HELLO to my old friends!

Be sure to drop by Sew, Mama, Sew! and enter alllll the other a-MAZ-ing giveaways.  You can find the handmade item giveaway HERE, and the supplies giveaway HERE.

Good luck, and stay warm!

gratuitous baby Henry pic... 6 weeks old!

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Hello, Henry!

I'd like to introduce you to our newest little blessing, Henry Wilson. . . .

Delivered via scheduled c-section, Saturday, October 26th

 Weight: 9 lbs, 8 oz
Length: 21.75"

loves 4 a.m. chats

 So glad I tried this little hat on him when I did, 
because I don't think it will fit him in another week or so!

my new super-hero on his first Halloween

I'll be back here soon-ish!  I wanted to share with you the car seat cover I made for Henry. . . um, the day before his delivery.  Hey, so I'm motivated -- strongly motivated -- by looming deadlines!  If you'd like to take a peek at it now, you can see it over on my facebook page.  :)

Excuse me while I go inhale some of that new baby smell. . . . talk to you soon!

Monday, October 21, 2013

My QAYG diaper bag - completed!


I LOVE this bag!  The QAYG (Quilt As You Go) method is so fun for me (read: instant gratification) and I especially love how I was able to make this bag using only materials from my stash / scrap bin!  (You can see in-progress pics here and here.)

More pics, more details. . . .

I wanted a roomier-than-usual-for-me bag this time around, so the finished size is 16" wide, 13" tall, and 5" deep. 

The diaper bag is constructed of cotton, poly/cotton blends, and rayon fabrics, with a mix of old, new, designer and vintage pieces.

The exterior fabrics are fused to a thick, fluffy fusible fleece for body and durability.  It's incredibly sturdy, due to the nature of the QAYG construction method, so it should hold up wonderfully to all the use and abuse it will soon be getting.

For the zipper closure, I used the same method I describe here, when I made this Amy Butler Sweet Harmony Tote.

The lining is made from a pretty cotton quilter fabric that I've had in my stash for years.  I've misplaced ALL of my interfacing (how does that even happen??! ) so I simply flat-lined the lining and all of the pockets with a high-quality cotton -- and thrifted! -- sheet.  (Never flat-lined?  Check out this fab tutorial on the technique!  I love using muslin or cotton sheets for this step!  Saves a lot of money, and is quick and easy.)

 pockets within pockets. . .  lots of room for stashing baby gear

I also wanted the diaper bag to have a structured, non-removable bottom, and it had to be washable.  Buuut, since I couldn't find my interfacing, or peltex, or anything of that nature, I improvised. . . .

lightly score the plastic over and over again to cut through the plastic -- and avoid injury!

I had a spare plastic tote lid lying around, so I thought that it would make the perfect firm, washable bottom for the bag!  I took the original measurement of the bag bottom pattern piece (6" x 17") and subtracted the 1/2" seam allowance from each side (now 5" x 16".)  Then I shaved off another 1/4" from one long side and one short side, to allow for the bulkiness of the fleece interfacing.  Finally, I also cut the corners off, just a tiny bit, like you would trim the corners in sewing, so the plastic corners wouldn't poke out or tear the bag fabric.

I wanted to pad that plastic piece a bit, so I wrapped some fusible fleece around it.  Yes, I tried to fuse the fleece to the plastic, and no, it didn't work.  I then stitched the fleece closely to the plastic, trimmed the bulk, and slipped it between the bag exterior and lining.  Perfect fit!

I hope you'll give the QAYG method a try!  You can use this technique for small projects (think pot holders and trivets) or for larger projects, like quilts.  If you have any questions, please leave them in the comments below and I'd be happy to try to help!

Now, I've got to get busy sewing more baby stuff!  I only have a few more days 'til we meet this precious guy.  Can't wait!  See you soon!

Saturday, October 19, 2013

WIP: my QAYG diaper bag, part 2

Making progress!  Here are three of the completed exterior sides of my QAYG diaper bag.  I gave one large side a couple of deep, scooped pockets.  I made the cute pocket piping using my friend's awesome, fabulous, and magical video tutorial on how to make your own bias tape.  (Thanks a bajillion, Erin!)

you can click on any of these photos to enlarge, if you want to see the details better.  :)

Inside one of the scooped pockets, I hid another pocket for my cell phone. . . .

And here is the other side of the bag, sans pockets.  At the very bottom of the photo, peeking out from underneath the two side panels, you can barely see the bottom panel.  I just went with a solid cotton.

I already have the sides sewn together, but am taking a little break to stretch my legs a bit before I tackle the bottom, the adjustable handle, and then finally the lining.  I hope to finish the bag tonight, so I'll have another post for you with the finished diaper bag by Monday!  See you soon!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Baby Pants Gone Crazy

I think I went a little bit overboard with the baby pants.  Once I started choosing fabrics, I couldn't stop!  I still want to make some little red plaid flannel ones, a houndstooth pair, a few pairs of soft denim pants....  SEE!  Out of control!  

I used The Purl Bee's free Baby Pants pattern and tutorial to make these darlings.  I made these in the 0-3 size, but plan to download and make the larger sizes as time allows.  I will say that this pattern is a bit tricky, in that it recommends (and requires) A LOT of pinning.  I almost never pin if I can help it, and I probably used 30 pins every time I pinned the baby booty gusset.  I didn't care too much for that part, but the end result is so darn cute, I think it's worth the extra work!

 left:  reclaimed green linen (from a ladies' skirt) 
right:  reclaimed grey striped cotton and grey oxford gusset (both from men's shirts)

I was able to use all fabrics from my stash.  The only thing I had to purchase was more 1/4" elastic for the waistbands.  I actually left a little almost-unnoticeable gap in the waistband seam, so I can adjust the elastic later if need be.

Michael Miller rubber ducky cotton (discontinued) 
with mustard Walmart quilter cotton fabric gusset

reclaimed cotton gingham gusset (from a men's shirt)

reclaimed pinstripe cotton (from ladies' pants) and 
reclaimed polished cotton paisley gusset (from a men's shirt)

Now this next pair caused me much elation, and then much grief.  I was SO happy to find the perfect vintage fabric pairing!  Only to realize.... that I cut the gusset piece UPSIDE-DOWN.  WHAAAHHHHH!  I almost cried for real!  I didn't have enough fabric to re-cut it, so upside-down it is!

vintage grey suiting with vintage cotton tree print (both from FreeCycle)

And this fabric.  THIS FABRIC!  I didn't even know I owned this fabric, until I did an epic clean-out of my sewing room a couple of months ago.  It came as a freebie (!!!) from a seller in Japan. . . years ago!  I wish I could remember who sent it, as I would thank her profusely for this crazy-cute print. . . .

japanese cotton print with Walmart quilter cotton gusset

I now feel confident that my soon-to-arrive baby will have plenty of pants for the first couple of months.  ;-)

Up next on the machine. . . .

I've decided on the style, shape and size of my diaper bag.   I'm going to use the QAYG method, like I used here. . . .

(By the way, Sew, Mama, Sew! has a wonderful tutorial for this patchwork / QAYG (Quilt As You Go) method.)  As for the fabrics, I'm leaning toward these at the moment. . . .

This is hard.  
Wish me luck!  I'll post some in-progress photos soon.  See you then!

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

37 weeks and a wee bit of sewing

We're getting close, folks.  Nesting, that magical last-minute push of elusive energy, has finally kicked in and I'm squeezing myself behind the sewing machine for one last hurrah!

I fell in love with these adorable newborn-sized harem pants, over on The Alison Show blog, and decided that our soon-to-arrive bambino needs a pair.  I cut up one of my teen's discarded cotton tanks, and transformed it into this. . . .

I used the tank's bottom ribbing for the cuffs and waistband on the pants.  SO EASY.  I had enough fabric left over to make a tiny hat, too.  (I used this super-easy free hat tutorial from the Zaaberry blog!)  The onesie applique was just a simple eco-felt applique, inspired by the one and only. . . .

you had me at meat tornado.

I have a long list of projects to make and sew before the baby arrives *cough*nextweekend*cough*, half of which will not be made.  OK.  Who am I kidding???  80% of which will not be made.

But that's OK.  I have to prioritize, and my top priority is making myself a very sturdy diaper bag.  With Donovan, I had wanted to make a diaper bag, but then somehow lost the fabric.  I providentially received a lovely, expensive diaper bag as a gift.  I loved the style and size -- it was perfect!  Except for the fact that it started falling apart after just 2 months.  The lining began to separate from the bag, the pockets tore, then the lining opened up. . . .   I've decided that since the bags I sew never seem to die, I'll just make myself a simple one, tailored to my own specific needs.  Largish, several pockets, zipper closure.  No Weekender, mind you.  Simple, functional.  I'll be starting on the bag tonight, right after I finish the hems on these baby pants. . . .

This sweet pattern is from The Purl Bee, also free, and also adorable!  I'll post pics of the finished pants tomorrow, as well as some in-progress shots of the diaper bag later this week.  See you soon!  :)