Showing posts with label children. Show all posts
Showing posts with label children. Show all posts

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I Did It!!! My First Stupid Sock Creature

I finally decided to take the plunge and create something from John Murphy's book,  Stupid Sock Creatures:  Making Quirky, Lovable Figures from Cast-off Socks

Stupid Sock Creatures: Making Quirky, Lovable Figures from Cast-off Socks

I've been waiting because I didn't have any cast-off socks.  I like my socks, and no one was offering to donate theirs to the cause.  I felt a certain amount of guilt sacrificing a pair of perfectly good socks.  As it turned out, however, L'ove-Lorna was well worth it.  I am using the new style of naming I've seen in the papers lately which requires one to use an abundance of punctuation.

Is she not a thing of beauty?  Okay, she is cute, at least.  And, look at those eyes!

Filled with love.  And some stuffing.

Here she is in a more formal pose.  Those ears are great fun.

L'ove-Lorna can tie them in a knot but not a bow.

My first sock adventure!  I'm stoked!  I have some pink heart-shaped buttons.  She will probably have a sister by tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Fabric Scraps into Simple Doll Quilts

I made my first of these doll quilts out of Keepsake Quilting's  fabric sample boxes.  Keepsake used to sell sets of tiny squares of the sample fabrics.  I loved going through them.   Even the boxes were special.  My sets came in small dark green boxes with gold lettering and gold elastic ties. They looked nice just sitting on the shelf  in my sewing room.  There was no way I could just toss them out when they were outdated.  So, this was my first doll quilt.

 This night-light doll  from a store near Lake Placid seems to enjoy them, too. 

The down side of finally using the samples is that I now know I can do something with even a two and a half inch square of scrap fabric.  When the stash of pathetically small pieces gets too out of control.  I start another doll quilt.
 The quilts also give me a chance to use up some of the children's fabrics I've bought simply because I like the design.

Who could resist this Raggedy Ann flannel I used for the backing on these two?

I was a bit disappointed to learn that Keepsake no longer sells the sample boxes.  While I really make MORE than enough scraps on my own, my collection is not nearly as diverse and exciting as the Keepsake collection.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Putting Away the Special Quilts

Today I am repairing a quilt I made for my son, Kiefer, when he was about four years old.

He's now 19, and it is way past time to put the kiddy quilt in storage.  It is in surprisingly good shape--just needs a few seams repaired.  I made it from his baby/toddler clothes and left-over fabric from window curtains I made for his room at the time.  The curtain fabric is covered with cats--which he loved.  Some of the squares have pockets from pants and shirts.

Some have the applique designs from clothing.

The solid color squares have all kinds of button representing things that he loved.

There are  sport buttons, cat buttons, car buttons, even a Lego piece button. 

I'm hanging on to it just in case Kiefer decides to have some little ones of his own. Or, maybe I'll just keep it.  Looking over the quilt, I have wonderful memories of him wearing all those tiny shirts, overalls, and jackets.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Anja's Little Ladies' "Bathing Dresses"

Anja  thoughtfully does her blog in her own language and English.  She's been doing the "Make your Kids Clothes in Seven Days" challenge from Elsie Marley.  Today she posted "bathing dresses" for her girls.  She wrote that robes don't stay on well, so she's made slip-over dresses instead.  It looks like an easy and quick idea for the summer as well--with no buttons or ties!  Makes me wish I had a little girl to sew for.  Click on either of the links above to read about it and see the photos.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Fabric Matching Games ala Chez Beeper Bebe

Chez Beeper Bebe has a tutorial for making matching games from fabric that inspired my attempts.  I have the worst time sticking to directions.  I always end up venturing off the path to try some new idea.  These have numbers of changes from the very nice ones on the tutorial.  So here are my three versions.

This first one has farm animals to match up and a bag that closes with a button.

I used the same fabric for the bag lining and the backs of each piece.  For all three sets, I sewed around the square leaving an opening for turning and to stuff in a square of batting.  I hand sewed them shut and sewed in about a quarter of an inch around the outside to stabilize the batting.  This is a picture of the bag closed.  I used a loop of very thin, rounded elastic (I can't think of the right name for it now) sewn into the back top seam of the bag to pull over the button which is sewn  a few inches down the front center of the bag.

Since I had enough animal prints to do another, I tried out a new bag design.

For this one I tacked the ribbon to the back with a few stitches to keep it from getting lost.  I did the bag as two long strips sewn together leaving an opening for turning right side out. Then I stuffed half of the bag to the inside for the lining.  I made the strip just a tiny bit narrower at one end so that the lining end would fit in nicely.  Since I forgot to put the fabric picture on the front before sewing up the bag, this one just has the picture held in place on the bag with double-sided iron-on.  There is no finishing stitch around the edge of the picture.  The button bag has the edges sewn which I would prefer.  However, I don't think these kinds of things get used heavily enough to make much of a difference.  Here is the bag with the pieces:

The backing is the same as the other set.

I found another great fabric with musical instruments that I thought might work for this project.  I should probably have looked for a fabric that would work with the browns/tans instead of the black I chose for the bag and backing.  It's a bit drab for kids, but here it is:

I tried a drawstring for this bag.

I squared off the bottom of all three bags by sewing triangular corners and serging them. 

I really can't decide which bag I like more.  The drawstring and ribbon will probably travel better.  The button one, though, has the advantage of providing the wee ones with some eye-hand coordination practice.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Bedtime book hanger

My niece, Binnie, came up with the idea for this project, and I got to find the embroidery design, and sew it.  There is a plastic sheet usually used for hand embroidery sewn into the back for strength and to keep the shape. The ribbon handle can hang on a door knob, hook, or drawer pull.  For the next one, I will probably use cording instead of ribbon--books can be heavy!

The embroidered section in front is a pocket for small books that sits on top of a larger pocket for bigger ones.  Binnie's idea was for the kids to not only have a place to put the books they have chosen for bedtime reading, but also to give them a sense of  independence and control.

I did the embroidery for the book bag on my Brother Pacesetter. I do love that machine. I had it in for a tune-up recently, and the guy acted as though I had brought in an original Singer pedal machine.  It's not THAT old! It does both regular sewing and embroidery incredibly well.  I will not be replacing it despite the repair person's nasty insinuations.
The Three Pigs

It is rather fitting that I made this since I almost always give Binnie's kids books as gifts. If you are thinking of getting some little person a book, take a look at David Wiesner's Three Little Pigs He does the traditional tale in a whole new and fun way.  It's not your mama's three little pigs tale!  

You all can probably figure out the design if you want to try one.  Give a shout in the comment section if you need any info.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

My version of John Murphy's monster plushie

In the fall I watched John Murphy's video tutorial on making monster plushies at Threadbanger's site.  By the winter holidays, I had the time and courage to attempt my own.  These are the first two I did.

Since the fabric used for the arms and part of each one's ears was called cheetah fabric, I  named them Tiger and Elliot.  I guess everyone can figure out how Tiger got his name.  If you are from New York State or really into politics, you may understand where Elliot got his.  Since these were not for little kids I went with button eyes.  Elliot had bloodshot eyes (much as he namesake's) as you can see here.  Yes, he is a blue blood.

I decided to birth some more of these for newly arrived grandchildren of my book club members, and Tattletales were born.  I do consider that my monsters are born rather than made.  They take on personalities.  I swear they do.  These new sweet things tattle on the new owners like Addison's below:

Yes, that says, "Addison did it.  Babies have it way too easy.  These little monsters will toughen them up.  I gave this one embroidered button eyes for safety purposes.   I think they look just as nice as the real buttons.  There is the added advantage of using the little beast to help with learning colors.  The nest came from a pattern by Michael Miller that you can find here.  THEY call it a soft basket rather than a nest.  There are a number of  great tutorials on the right side of the website.  Just scroll down to the "soft basket" one that I think should be called a nest. 

This tattletale was for Reid:

He has felt eyes sewn on that give him a bit of a condescending attitude with those droopy eyelids.  I decided to make his feet the same as the hands.  I like that three-fingered and toed look best.  Actually his feet tuck quick nicely into the basket, but I wanted to show his adorable toes.  Eli's tattletale sneaked out before I got his picture.  I'll have to see if I can get the family to take a picture.  If he behaves as badly as Elliot, they have probably thrown him out on the street.

Elliot is still with me.  My nephew, Randy, takes him home occasionally, but he tells me that Elliot behaves so badly he has to keep bringing him back.  Randy has, however, been teaching Elliot how to play lacrosse.  Or perhaps Elliot stole the equipment from Randy.  I'm not quite sure.  That is Elliot's mother in the background, the couch.  They are indeed cut from the same cloth.  Stay tuned for the story of the reupholstered furniture coming to this blog soon.

I got John Murphy's, "Stupid Sock Creatures:  Making Quirky, Lovable Figures from Cast-off Socks.  I'll post my first creation soon. I've had a bit of trouble gathering socks.   It's amazing how attached people are to their socks.  People react badly when asked to part with their them, especially the striped ones.