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1  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Easter / Sorbian (Melted Wax) Eggs - again on: April 14, 2014 12:10:02 PM
Hi I thought I'd post this years results, just to keep the tradition. Even though I did not manage to make a whole lot this time. A two-year old plus a four month old don't leave a lot of spare time.


Most importantly the egg for my god child and her older and younger (yet to be born, she is 5 days late currently) sisters are done. She gets one every year.


Lot's of greens this time. After having a white Easter last year I really enjoy the wonderful spring this time.

I posted a quick how-to last year

Hope you enjoy!
aml
2  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / zip-up sewing kit on: April 08, 2013 12:22:54 PM
Hi,

I have a friend who wants to start (machine) sewing and I thought I'd get her a starter set. But once I looked at the web I found lots of (ugly) and not very well equipped sewing kits. Most of them included stuff I've never used and left out other stuff I find highly useful. I finally decided to make her a special sewing kit with all the stuff I've found helpful.

ETA: as alteredmommy pointed out, this could be modified to any kind of kit - put in a few more loops for knitting needles or crotched hooks, add pockets for stitch markers etc., modify to fit your needs Smiley

Here it is:




room for sewing needles and threader
seam ripper (used it a lot)
chalk pens
tracing wheel
rotary cutter
folding templates (from the scientific seamstress)


1/2in bias tape maker (scientific seamstress - she has cool stuff Smiley )
IKEA fabric scissors (normal and zigzag)
pins
magnetic pin cushion
measuring tape


HOWTO

materials
1. decide on what you want to put into your sewing kit
2. sturdy fabric for the outside
3. lightweight fabric for inside + some contrasting if you feel like it
4. stabilisation - regular floor wipes or batting
5. some elastic
6. old binder for support without the binding mechanism
7. small zipper for pockets
8. endless zipper for outside closure: one side ~ 2 yards, one zipper


lay out everything you want to put inside the case and decide on a rough layout



a. inside flap
I wanted a divider with just a few pockets

cut floor wipe to a square roughly an inch shorter than each dimension of the binder
cut light weight fabric for fabric as big as flap + generous seam allowances
cut 2 pockets each twice as high as final height + seam allowance, fold in half



mark dividers with chalk pen and sew pocket and inner fabric to floor wipe
sandwich pockets in between both layers of inner fabric, with floor wipe on top
stitch around stabilisation - leaving side that will be connected to the middle open, turn around.

b. left outer side

cut stabilisation to same size as binder flap
cut inner fabric to size of binder flap + 1/2 binder back plus very generous sewing allowance - better to cut it away at later point


- pocket - for small stuff like needles an threader
I didn't want any raw edges to be seen, that's why I did everything in double layer.

sew one flap (the smaller part would have been easier Smiley ) to the zipper, right side of fabrid inside

turn around

repeat with other side

cut pocket to desired length

fold fabric around open sides, stitch closed

place pocket on fabric and stabilisation, pin and stitch

loops for pens

place post it below the pens you want to use - mark distances
take elastic and put on markings for slightly stretched distances across pens
I did have pens of different widths - thus the varying marks

align marking on elastic with marking on post-it and sew in place stitching multiple times for and backward (just flap under beginning and ending of elastic)


pockets for copy wheel and rotary cutter

measure across tools, holding measurement tape down where pockets will be sewn to inner fabric
measure from top of pocket to bottom across tools
cut fabric for pocket - twice as high + seam allowance, and width + seam allowance, fold in half
cut elastic about an inch shorter than width - zig zag to one layer at the middle, close side seams, leave bottom open
turn pocket over, stitch below elastic on top
mark dividing line on pocket

fold bottom of pocket, so that the final width measures as much as the distance below the tools.

pin to flap and stitch in place

c. right flap
scissors, pins and needle cushion

cut stabilisation to same size as binder flap
cut inner fabric to size of binder flap  + 1/2 binder back plus very generous sewing allowance - better to cut it away at later point


mark where the elastic to hold the scissors and pins will go
sew on elastic, folding edges under, stitching each seam multiple times

make a single pocket for the pin cushion as the pockets for rotary cutter and tracing wheel

d. putting it all together


mark sewing line on flaps: using edge of stabilisation as guide add 1/2 width of back of binder + 1/4 in (marge to stitch in between all those layers later)
sandwich flap in between sides, sew together


cut another part of stabilisation as big as back of binder


cut back seam allowances of inner fabric to about 1/2 in


cut outer fabric to same size as inner fabric

close on three sides, leaving bottom open, stitching at 1/4 in distance to stabilisation (marge needed to stitch on the zipper)

iron seam allowance inside on forth side

turn inside out,

top stitch folds in between outer sides and back
slide in binder pieces and close with ladder stitch or stitch closed very near the edge


e. put in zipper

startin at dividing seam (see pin) stitch zipper to fabric very close to the edge, leave about 3 inches of free curls

if possible use a edge(blind-hem)-foot for an even distance

at corners, leave needle in fabric and turn 90

put in zipper piece

cut out plastic curls for about 1/2 in on one side, slide in other side first, than put in the side without curls
zip up and check whether everything is aligned, otherwise unzip and try again

when you are happy, sew closed end of zipper together


cut a little rectangle of fabric - a little wider than the zipper plus seam allowance, twice as long, fold in half

sew sides closed an turn inside out, fold raw edges inside

put on zipper and top stitch all around


DONE

fill your sewing kit and be happy

credits: I did get the original idea seeing the IKEA sewing kit, and I adapted parts of Schnabelina's tutorial for a pen etui - she does have wonderful sewing tutorials and patterns on her blog (in German)





 

3  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Easter / Sorbian easter eggs - with quick how-to on: March 21, 2013 01:24:24 AM
I finally got around to make some of those Easter eggs again.

I did a few sets of eggs


group shot of all of this years eggs:



I tried something new this year - dying the eggs first and putting colored wax on them afterwars. So far I either covered the plain eggs with colored wax or did the wax-reserve-technique where you apply wax on the egg, dye the egg, put on wax again and dye until you end up with a colored egg.

Quick how-to - copied pictures from my previous post about those eggs. It's basically the same technique as the drop-pull eggs

Just to avoid confusion - I'll be describing two similar techniques at once

wax-batik: colored wax on plain/dyed egg, wax stays on

wax-reserve: plain wax "reserves" color, egg is dyed, wax "reserves" color, etc, wax is removed at the end


supplies:
  • plain bees wax / colored bees wax (encaustic wax)
  • glass point needles (plastic ones might melt) on pens -> for dots and stripes
    feathers cut to shape -> for triangles, diamonds
  • spoons and candles -> to heat the wax in
  • circle templates, rubber bands, soft pencil ->  to sketch the design to the egg
  • dyes - I use plain easter egg dyes, but quite concentrated and with a lot of vinegar
    fabric dyes are supposed to cover even better, but they are quite expensive
  • eggs Wink

1. hollow the eggs
easiest and cleanest way for me:
on the day before
put in one! hole (if you have with one of those egg drills)
holding the egg with the hole at the bottum pump in air with a syringe, let sit for a while and repeat pumping in air
rinse with water, let dry

2. thoroughly clean the eggs
use sponge and water with vinegar to clean the eggs and remove any stamps they might have, rinse carefully with water and dry

3. lightly sketch design with pencil
use rubber bands to divide eggs, produce straight lines, sketch circles with templates
get ideas for design by searching images of "Sorbische Ostereier"

4. start covering your egg with wax
dip needle point, feather tip into hot wax, quickly print on egg
repeat (many times Wink )

for wax-reserve technique:
5. work your way from light to dark colors

use syringe to fill egg with dye, so it does sink down
use syringe to get the dye out of the egg, after dying
disposable gloves are great to protect your fingers
dry up egg thoroughly before putting on another layer of wax

for wax-reserve technique:
6. remove wax
hold egg next to flame, heat wax, wipe of with kitchen roll
polish the warm/hot egg.

Please ask any questions if I did not explaining the steps well. I'll do a few more eggs in the next days and will try to take pictures of the steps in between.


4  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / bibs with sleeves - with tutorial on: December 07, 2012 11:00:22 AM
I do have a wonderful cookbook for babies - which has only one tiny flaw. They say bibs with sleeves are only necessary once the child starts to eat on his own. They do not now my child! Without bibs with sleeves I'd have to wash her clothes after every meal.
So I started to sew some bibs of my own.




I found a tutorial on a french-german blog, which seems to have been taken down in the meantime. I can't find it anymore. The author was quite enthusiastic about the speed it would take to sew one bib: 20 minutes max! I do need more time, but then I like to embellish my bibs and finish the top with bias tape, that might account for some of the added time.

I took some pictures along the way and digitalized the pattern.

material needed:
1-2 old/cheap towels,
some cotton fabric (old shirts) for the sleeves - the material should not be to thick so the child can still move easily,
shower curtain (optional),
some elastic
bias tape or celcro or snaps for closure

instructions

1. print pattern and cut your pieces

print pattern without scaling - the square should be 5cmx5cm/2 inx2in
The pattern is quite large - but I use it for my 9 month old, too.
If you are sewing for a very small child you might want to print at 95%.
Cut you pattern pieces:
   1x front (terry cloth), optional 1x front from shower curtain
   2x sleeves
2. serge all raw edges
embellish your front, serge/zig zag front and shower curtain layer together

3. sew sleeves to front piece


4. add elastic to sleeves

I find it easiest to zigzag the elastic to the sleeves at this point, before hemming and closing the sleeve.
The proper way would of course be to a) close the sleeve first, b) hem it, c) thread in elastic
5. close the sleeves

turn bib right side up, turn upper part of sleeves down and sew bottom of sleeve close.
hem the sleeves
6. finish upper part of bib with bias tape
or add velcro/naps to close bib.
If you really want to you could add bias tape to all raw edges, I'd advise to start with the lower part of the sleeves and bib, and then add the bias tape on top.


I'll ask the mods to add the pattern
Please ask if any of the instructions are unclear - happy sewing!
5  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / baby couture :) on: June 29, 2012 05:18:40 AM
I've been sewing lately, but did not post for a while

playsuit (Intemporels pour bb) and bucket hat (from oliver + s) for a newborn baby boy


Itty bitty newborn dress. I saw this dress on craftster and had to make a version for my little one, once I knew we were expecting a girl.

This dress really is tiny! It barely fit my 2-week early, 6 lbs 6 ounces and 18.5 in baby during the first week.

Wrap dress made of corduroy - very stiff. I'd use a different material next time. And bias tape is called *bias* tape and not straight tape for a reason... Angry


And finally a dress for my one-year-old goddaughter. I had so much fun making this. I am really looking forward to when my little one starts to walk and it is finally time to make her wear dresses.

I used a pattern from Sue&Blu, but made the dress out of an old men's shirt reusing the original hem and button panel - yeah to avoiding sewing button holes. I already plan on making a version in dusk pink - offwhit lace for my little one next year - or maybe dark red velvet and white satin for Christmas???
What do you think?

 
6  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / hooded baby carseat snuggle blanket on: March 29, 2012 03:38:00 AM
Is a blanket clothing? - this certainly makes one layer of clothes unnecessary

We got a blanket like this for our seven weeks old. She loves hers. Now that a colleague just got a baby boy and a friend is expecting a baby girl, I found a wonderful occupation for those morning napping times of my girl.
I copied the pattern, used a large fleece blanket and two shirts - et voila - 2 new snugly blankets

I have to start with the ears, it's the part I like most.


both blankets


slit pockets in the back to pull the seatbelt through


my little one modeling


--- EDIT - TUTORIAL

you'll need
-fleece for the blanket, flap, back of ears
-jersey for front of ears, brim of hood, bias tape

cut (no seam allowances included!)
- blanket on fold - 1x fleece
- flap on fold - 1x fleece
- ear - 2x fleece, 2x jersey
- brim - 35cm x 5cm jersey, looks nice if not cut on bias (see blue blanket)
- bias tape - 5cm wide (jersey does not necessarily need to be cut on bias, but it looks nice if you do use stripes)

basic measurements:


1. sew ears
put jersey and fleece right sides together, sew, trim seam allowances quite short (less than 1/4 in)
turn right side out, gather at bottom to achieve nice little teddy ears

2. put ears in ear seams
pin ears, close seam, serge edge
pay attention that you put both ears in the same direction (both to the outside)

3. close top of hood

4. put brim on hood
fold brim in half (optional serge edge)
center brim on hood
pin ends of brim to the outside (picture shows inside, but that does not look so nice after putting on bias tape)
serge in both directions, topstitch to keep in place


5. enclose top of flap with bias tape

6. baste flap to blanket (very close to the edge, so that you won't see the stitches after putting bias tape around it

7. enclose blanket from brim to brim with bias tape

8. put slit pocket into blanket
use leftover of bias tape/brim for the inside, serge outer edge
follow silk81's slit pocket tutorial
inside of slit for car seat


9. clip all loose threads and you're done Smiley
7  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Patchwork Soccer ball/ Truncated Icosahedron with rattle - including tutorial on: February 01, 2012 03:18:12 AM
I recently saw these in a quilt shop and knew I had to try my hands at them. A few friends of us were expecting babies - what an ideal situation to try something new.



As neither I nor the parents of the recipients are particular soccer fans, I changed the color scheme. Each pentagon is surrounded by five different colored hexagons, no two adjacent pieces having the same color.

Once you have all the shapes it requires some patience to hand-sew all the shapes together, but apart from that it's a nice thing to patch together in the evenings while watching TV.

I put together a tutorial including the paper piecing templates added below.
I'd love to get feedback on the tutorial and see any soccer balls you sew Smiley
8  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Maternity blouses from old mens shirts - with link to tutorials on: January 30, 2012 07:48:44 AM
Less than 15 days to go till due date - I finally got my husband to take pictures of the shirts I altered for myself.

I started 3 shirts, but finished only 2 - with this little time left to go, I'll wait for my next pregnancy to finish the last Smiley

1. Shirred maternity top




I used the following tutorial from DIY maternity - but kept the sleeves long, chopped the cuffs off and added some elastic instead because it's winter.

2. Button up baby doll shirt





Except for adding darts in the upper part, I followed this tutorial. A tutorial from DIY maternity as well.


9  QUILTING / Quilting: Completed Projects / Wee play - my first quilt on: September 05, 2011 02:17:42 AM
I just completed my first quilt - at 8:30 in the morning, to be given away at noon Smiley - enough time to take some pictures and wrap it nicely.



When my best friend got pregnant three years ago I decided I'd like to make her a quilt for her first child.
So I searched for nice fabrics, bought them, got all roll cutter and mat, and put everything aside as soon as a started my first job. Now she got pregnant with her second child - and I got to be the godmother. I finally started to plan the top, put everything together and even got the binding done in time for the baptism.




the back


and artsy shot - just because I liked it on top of the flowers


It's 1,10m x 1,10m (3'7'' square) made of 1 1/2 charm packs of modas wee play line, 6 panels, plus some contrasting fabric, backing, and binding
I planned the design with a normal graphics program at the computer, scanned all the fabrics, and played around with the colors. Finally, I decided on four different colored corners, and blending the colors between. (It's a very educational quilt Wink - four squares/triangles of each fabric, learn the letters, the numbers, and the colors... who am I kidding. The child will lay on it and burp on it, but it's fun anyways)
It's machine quilted - simple quilting in the ditch. Would have loved to do some freehand quilting around the figures in the panels, but ran out of time.
Learned a lot that I'll do differently for the next quilt (baste the hell out of the quilt, before machine quilting....), but overall I like the result.


Best thing - the family of the child loved it. Hopefully it will be an heirloom to stay.
C&C welcome Smiley
10  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / a new party dress on: August 13, 2009 12:24:08 AM
Hi,

it's been a long time since I've last posted.
I had some leftover from one of the formal dresses I sewed last year so I decided to finally try out the newlook 6749 that I always wanted to sew. I fell in love with the picture on the pattern envelope.

Here's the result:


and a picture of the back using the flash light to show off the shiny fabric


I love the final result - especially the neck line, but it's been a long way there.
The instructions call to finish the bodice first, sewing together lining and fabric in one continuous process. Last thing you do is sewing in the zipper. This is where I found out the hard way that I had to take in 2-3 inch. No fun ripping out the zipper twice...
I also had to adjust the darts in the back to minimize the tucking. It's not perfect, but way better.

Thanks for looking! Comments and criticism very welcome!
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