Sunday, November 24, 2013

Book Report Dress

 With church choir dress code being white top, black bottom, I have been looking for dress patterns that can easily be color blocked... the Book Report Dress came to the rescue!

 The white wool felt bow and the black fabric-covered headband that I made matched this outfit perfectly.

 The hidden on-seam front pockets are my favorite detail on this dress.
 Project details
Pattern: Oliver + S Book Report Dress (difficulty level: 2 out of 4 scissors)
Size: 5
Modifications: I added one inch in length to the bodice and one inch in length to the skirt
Fabric: fine wale corduroy (got the idea to use light weight corduroy from Cindy at Siestas and Sewing) I've worked with stretchy corduroy before when I sewed up a pair of Oliver + S Art Museum Trousers. I got frustrated with how the paper pattern pieces kept sliding on top of the corduroy with I was trying to cut them out. This time around I traced pattern pieces onto freezer paper and ironed them onto the back of the corduroy. Much better results!
Notions: 6 white and black cat buttons (made in France) because someone around here likes kitty cats >^..^<
Thanks for stopping by and have a great day!

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Weaving Rubber Band Bracelets

 The Rainbow Loom bracelet making craze has hit our home. At church the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd graders are making woven rubber band bracelets for a couple of weeks to donate them to a local charity.

This Let's go fly a kite's flickr photo caught my eye and it lead me to the Lil' Loom.

All that is needed to make a Lil' Loom is a wine cork and 2 push pins.
 Poke the 2 push pins next to each other into one side of the cork.
 I purchased these little Color Loops Weave Kits (which includes a little plastic crochet hook) for $1 each at a dollar store. A package of 300 rubber bands with some clips was $2 at a beauty store. And I picked up a stackable 7-day organizer for $5 at a drug store.
 We found that glass baby food jars make great storage containers for the different colors of rubber bands.

 We made an 'on the go' version for traveling on the school bus, in the car, because weaving rubber band bracelets can be done anywhere. The clear 'c' clips are stored in the clear compartment and the colored rubber bands are stored in the matching colored compartment, then we took larger rubber bands to wrap the Lil' Loom and mini plastic crochet hook around the stackable organizer.
After watching a video on YouTube, creating a fishtail rubber band bracelet is really quick and easy.
Happy rubber band bracelet making!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Homemade Christmas Crèche

 A project that 1st graders do at our church is work together as a family and create a simple Christmas Crèche (crèche is the French word for cradle). To keep with the simplicity of the story of the birth of Jesus, families are encouraged to use simple materials, for example, items that can be easily found around the house. Ours is all done and ready to go to church to be blessed with holy water by our priest.

We made Mary, Joseph, Jesus, an angel, 3 wise men, 2 shepherds, 1 gray donkey, and 1 white sheep.

Our inspiration came from:

  • wine corks (for bodies)
  • wood beads (for heads)
  • wool felt (for clothing, angel wings, donkey fur, star of Bethlehem)
  • wool roving (for angel hair, wise men beards, sheep wool)
  • nails (1.5 inches in length, used to attach the wood bead to the cork)
  • craft gems (for the gold, frankincense and myrrh)
  • pipe cleaners (for angel's halo, wise men's crowns, shepherd's staves, and to hold up the star of Bethlehem)
  • permanent markers (to add faces to wood beads)
  • toothpicks (for the legs on the donkey)
  • scraps of beige yarn (leftovers from a knitted sweater and bunny, for the hay in the manger)
  • cardboard tube (for manger)
  • cardboard box (packaging from a doll my daughter got, for the stable)
  • cardboard circle from a frozen pizza (for the base)
  • hot glue gun

 A very quick explanation on how to make one of the figures… cut out a piece of wool felt to wrap all of the way around a cork, attach it to a cork with a hot glue gun. To attach the wood bead to the cork, put a nail through a wood bead and push the nail into a cork. Baby Jesus was half of a cork and for the animals the wood bead and nail were put into the side of the cork. All of the figures stay in place thanks to the hot glue gun, so nothing will move or tip over.
 The only thing I bought were the wood beads which were a couple of dollars. Otherwise everything else came from around the house, from our stash of craft supplies, items that could be found in a recycling bin, etc.
 All of the 1st grade nativity scenes will decorate the tables as centerpieces in our church's community room during Advent. After that ours will come back home to stay.
Happy 790th anniversary of the Christmas crèche! It was 790 years ago when St Francis of Assisi staged the first nativity scene back in 1223.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Red Riding Hood Doll

  I had been wanting to make this doll for months, so it feels good to have finally made it.

The pattern and instructions came from the book We Make Dolls! Top Dollmakers Share Their Secrets & Patterns by Jenny Doh. It's called Red Riding Hood and was designed by Suse Bauer.

It was so nice that all of the supplies (fabric, felt, button, embroidery floss, stuffing) were basic, you know, what most crafty people already have on hand, so all of these came from my stash and no need for a trip to the craft/fabric store.

One thing I really liked about this craft book is that the pattern didn't need to be enlarged so I didn't have to make a trip to the copy machine.

This doll turns out kind of long, 18 inches!

Red Riding Hood is a little gift for a little person :)
Off to my next project...

Sunday, November 10, 2013

The 12 Days of Christmas series


 photo 12DaysButton450_zpsfbac24a0.png

Just a quick announcement today to share that there is a super fun new handmade children's clothing series coming up just around the corner. It's called the 12 Days of Christmas and is being hosted by Suz of Sewpony and Laura of Craftstorming.

Sewists from all around the world will be contributing, offering inspiration for sewing children's holiday garments, it will also be fun to learn other peoples Christmas traditions.

You are invited to join in on the fun, too. Sew some Christmas clothing for your child/ren and add a photo to the The 12 Days of Christmas flickr group. I hope you will join us.


things for boys
Image Map

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Holiday 13 Ideas House

 {This is not my house}

Are you thinking about and planning for Christmas? I know I already am. Maybe this photo tour of the Bachman's Holiday 13 Ideas House will offer you some inspiration. This time around the theme is "A Cozy, Contemporary Nordic Celebration"… simplicity, a clean white or ivory slate with layers of fresh green and traditional reds… Northern European influences, metallic accents, natural driftwood pieces...

Are you interested in 'visiting' some of the previous Ideas Houses? If so, these are just a click away: Fall 13, Spring 13, Holiday 12, Fall 12, Spring 12, Holiday 11, Summer 11, Spring 11, Holiday 10, Summer 10, and Spring 10.

 On the front porch, vintage metal cart used as a winter accessories storage, screen door transformed into a chalkboard
 Hot chocolate bar, mini sled used as a serving tray
 In the living room, fabric inside cabinets appears as stacked wood
 Salvaged wood as art, mittens layered with stockings on mantel
Wall hangers display Christmas cards
 Baby cradle holds presents, presents wrapped with paper placemats and decorative tape
 In the dining room, salvaged wood mounted on wall as candleholers

 In the kitchen, hanging red heart vases, lantern holds soap and lotion
 Large vintage tray used as a kitchen organizer
 Vintage bed spring hung as pot rack, dentist cabinet used as kitchen organizer
 In the main floor bathroom, drawer used as toilet paper holder
 In the gardener's room, live plants become wall art
 Paper placemats hung as wallpaper, roll of moss garland appears like a holiday wreath
 Hanging bottles vases embellished with craft paper, decorative tape, and rubber stamped images
 Chandelier made of small terra cotta post and garland
 In the tablescapes ideas room, traditional Christmas gathering, place setting 'wrapped' like presents
 Winter wedding with white "fur" throw blanket on wall and table
 In the upstairs bathroom, driftwood snowflakes accented by painted shadow, birch baskets for towel and soap holder, copper leaves accented with stems and berries as shower currain embellishments
 In the master bedroom, headboard made from cedar shelves
 Birch branch used as ornament hanger, jewelry holders made from birch rounds
 Christmas tree accented with copper wire
 My favorite room in this house is the girl's bedroom with a soft turquoise and white winter wonderland fairy theme (I could stare at it all day long!), stuffed reindeer, galvanized wash basin used as tree base holder, framed fairy hanging as ornament, gift wrapping embellished with decorative tape
 Vintage vanity shortened and used as play desk
 Window valences decorated with ornaments, paper and crystal snowflakes

 Stickers became art work with a painted faux frame and vintage door pulls, vintage garden table and chairs used as coloring space
 Large basket used as nightstand, bird cage turned into a miniature fairy garden, metal owls used as bookends
 Sparkly taxidermy
 Porch posts used to make a canopy bed, accented with lights
 I'll leave you with my favorite photo…
And what is your favorite thing from the Holiday 13 Ideas House?

PS I hope you get a chance to visit this Holiday 2013 Ideas House (there are so many more ideas to see than are in these photos) it is open November 7th - December 15th, 2013.