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Archive | March, 2012

zakka along and some babble

Just had to pop in today for a couple updates.  I’m sure you’ve heard of the Zakka Style Sew Along hosted by the lovely Lindsey of LR Stitched, right?  Well, I get to be part of it, and I’m super excited about the project I’ll be sharing (you’ll have to wait until August to see it though, hope you’re patient!)

Here’s the schedule of events:

There are 24 projects in the book and they’ll be sewing right through it from start to finish.
The sew along starts Monday April 2nd with the first project in the book and will continue through Monday September 10th with a new project  introduced each Monday.
Each blogger will be sewing a different project and will share their finished project and inspiration with you!  How cool is that?  And there’s so many awesome projects in this book, you’ll love it.  Anyway, here’s the list:

Lindsey is also hosting a giveaway on her blog today for the chance to win one of 5 copies of the Zakka Style book!

And as for the babble part of the post title, I found out the other day that I’m on Babble‘s list of the top 50 Mom Craft blogs of 2012, wow wow!  Now before I give my acceptance speech (haha) you should check out the list, lots of my great blogging friends are on there.  If I made my list though, I think it would have to include a bunch more!

Comments: 11

Ayashe Shirt and Skirt: Round 2

Good thing I usually have to make two of everything because I think I left out some stuff from the last post.  Sometimes I just start writing the post and I get sidetracked into talking about something else entirely.  Anyway, this is Emily’s Ayashe shirt and skirt.  I used Laurie Wisburn‘s Modern Whimsy for the shirt and pockets/facings on the skirt.

The skirt is a really soft yarn dyed cotton I had gotten from Yozo Craft, although I don’t think they carry that particular fabric anymore (although if you want super cute stationary, they’ve got a ton of cute stuff!) .  I just love the texture that fabric has!

I made Emily a size 2/3 in both the shirt and the skirt.  Even though she’ll be 4 later this summer, she’s so tiny that I should have cut the size smaller in the skirt and just lengthened it.  Maybe next time!

I finished it up at a little gathering we had this past weekend at Vanessa‘s house.  Got to hang out with Jeni, Megan, Faith, and Deedee, which was totally cool.

Another fun project crossed off the list, and not to sound like a broken record (or a crappy advertisement), but seriously, Figgy’s patterns are so well done and easy to follow.  She even includes little handmade tags for you to put in your finished garment!

Comments: 16

Ayashe Top & Skirt

Wahoo!  I finally completed the coordinating skirt to go with the tops I made for the girls.  The two skirts have been sitting on my floor all ready to cut out for almost a month now, and it was finally driving me crazy!  I thought I could crank out two skirts in one night, but I’ve been going to bed on time too many nights in a row now so it was hard to stay up and concentrate.

Anyway, Shelly (of Figgy’s Patterns) sent me the Ayashe pattern after I gushed on and on how much I loved all her new patterns and look of her new site.  I couldn’t help myself, the patterns just seemed so refreshing compared to a lot of what’s out there.

I loved the way everything came together, it was fun showing the girls the different shirt options and letting them choose what they wanted.  Heck, any effort that might give a glimmer of my crazies actually wearing the outfits I make them is worth the try.

Seems like it might get worn, but we’ll have to see.  Emily’s is almost done, but that’ll have to wait for another day.  I did make them sort of matching skirts, but to try and make them a little more personalized, I made the waistband facing and pocket facing out of a contrasting fabric, green for Natalie and I think I cut out a pink print for Emily to go with the shirt I made her.

And lastly as if you’re still reading, I did make the skirt a little longer (and I think I’d almost want to make it longer yet if I made another version – which I totally might because after I was done I decided that it was super fun to make).

Off to play this weekend with some sewing buddies, can’t wait!!  Have a great weekend.

[had to include a pic of goofy, too]

Comments: 23

Tutorial: handmade piping

Hi everyone, hope you had a great weekend.  Seems like lots of the US is having unseasonably warm weather this spring!  Of course it’s been keeping me busy outside enjoying the sun and the sounds of the neighborhood.  I thought it would be fun to share a little sewing technique I’ve picked up along the way.  Nothing groundbreaking or earth shattering, but useful nonetheless.

I love using piping in projects.  It’s won my heart in a similar way as bias tape.  I love that you can add a bit of color here and there and still keep things clean and classy.  I’ve often mentioned in my patterns and tutorials that you can use handmade piping, but haven’t ever gone into significant detail about it, so here we go.


  • fabric, a fat quarter works great!
  • cording (or in my case some thin rope bought at home depot – hey, it does the trick!)
  • steam-a-seam double stick fusible web tape (mine was 1/4″ wide)
  • spray starch

First you’ll want to cut your fabric on the bias (in other words a 45 degree angle to the selvage edges).

There are techniques to make continuous bias tape (from a fat quarter – love that!) that you can use, but for me I like to keep it simple.  And because of the fact that just about every time I try to make continuous bias tape I mess is up somehow and have to scrap it.  A self healing mat, rotary cutter, and ruler work perfect for this, but you could also just mark the lines with a pencil and cut with your scissors.  Just cut your strips on the bias at 1.25″ wide or 1.5″ wide depending on how thick your cording is.  I found for me that when I cut it 1.25″ wide that it worked perfectly sewing the finished piping into a 3/8″ seam.  I should note that you wouldn’t have to cut the strips on the bias, especially if your final project used the piping on only straight or very slightly curved seams, but cutting on the bias will give you the most flexibility.

Joining the strips.  Here’s where I like to spray a little starch and press the bias strips, keeps things in place and makes it easier to work with later on.  Place your strips right sides facing at a 90 degree angle like so:

Mark a diagonal line, sew along that line.  Trim the seam allowance.  Press seam open (or to the side) your preference.

Now for the fun part.  Instead of using your zipper foot, a basting stitch, and sewing the cording in place, we’re going to speed things up and in the process make it so you don’t have to worry about any basting stitches showing up later in your project.

Just place your cording centered on the wrong side of the bias strip you’ve joined, tear off a length of steam-a-seam and press it down in place.

Peel off the paper backing.  Fold over the bias strip and press in half with your iron, sandwiching the cording in the middle.

The fusible web hold everything into place.  That’s all!  Now go make some piping and add some fun to your next project!


Comments: 40

envelope clutch pattern testers

I love sharing what the pattern testers have made.  It’s always fun to see someone else’s interpretation of the pattern.  One thing I really do love about the Envelope Clutch pattern is all the possibilities.  Small size, large size, wrist strap, shoulder strap, zippered pocket, card slots, piping.  We even decided it was almost big enough to hold an ipad, so I included directions in the pattern for that too!  Oh the possibilities!

Here’s a little parade of Envelope Clutches for you to feast your eyes on.  Thank you to my friends who helped test these puppies out, without their help, I’d be lost.  And if you’ve never stopped by their blogs before, be sure to check them out, they’re amazing!

Kristin (Skirt As Top), check out her post on the clutch here

Shannon (Luvinthemommyhood), check out her post on the clutch here

Mary Ann (Marie Sews)

Gail (Probably Actually), check out her post on the clutch here
Deanna (Little D and Me), check out her post on the clutch here

Nikki (The Girl Who Quilts),  check out her post on the clutch here, she also already made one for her ipad!
Thank you!!
Comments: 15