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1  QUILTING / Quilting: Completed Projects / my first blanket! on: January 26, 2010 06:10:24 PM
this is a late posting of a christmas present, but i just wanted to show people the first blanket i've ever made!  even though i know it doesn't compare to the intricate, cool, and sophisticated work that everyone else posts here (it's true--you're all amazing! Cheesy), i'm kinda proud, because this is not my genre and was a big project to tackle... anyway, here are the pictures:

the whole blanket, on the bed.  it's a full-sized bed, so i made the blanket roughly 80" x 90" so that there's plenty of coverage Smiley  my boyfriend requested this design--i'm not really sure why, he just liked it and thought it looked cool.  who knew he liked the flag of england? Wink

the red and white fabric is super soft rayon (i wanted to make sure it would be comfortable and soft for him while he's sleeping, and rayon stays pretty cool, so it was the perfect choice for a blanket for him). along the sides of the front, i put charcoal gray colored polar fleece (something warm for the winter).

i stitched along both sides of the seams across the front (top) of the blanket to pull both the front and back together.  i used black thread so that it would stand out against the red and white fabric (it's his style).

on the backside of the blanket, i used this amazingly soft fleece fabric with brown and black bears printed all over it.  it's perfect for him, because i call him my "bear" and it's sort of a sentimental thing between us Smiley

you can see the stitching (black thread) that pulls the front and back of the blanket together in this photo.

here's the corner of the blanket.

i put a square of the bear fabric in each of the four corners of the backside of the blanket, next to 4 long strips of the charcoal gray fabric border. the bulk of the back of the blanket is the bear print fleece Smiley thanks so much for looking!  any comments and/or constructive criticism is appreciated, since i'll probably be looking into making more blankets someday!
2  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / a halloween delivery! :) (pic hearty) on: January 23, 2010 05:25:01 PM
hey, it's a bit late, but better late than never, right?!  this is the halloween costume commissioned for my boyfriend's nephew, deacon (the same deacon from the name book post: https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=334400.0)!

deacon's mom came up with the costume idea--she kept it a surprise from everyone. the story behind her reasoning is that her father (my boyfriend's dad as well) is a mailman for the USPS--she thought he'd get a kick out of his mini-mailman grandson showing up at their house for trick-or-treating Cheesy

some action shots, pre-trick-or-treating Smiley

i had to do some pretty lengthy scouting for the right fabric to use for his costume... i didn't realize it, but USPS colors are tricky shades of blue! i used official uniform websites for color references, and my boyfriend's mom sneakily cut out a real USPS worker patch from her husband's work shirt! all in the name of costume authenticity! Wink

anyway, the shirt is composed of a pale blue cotton sateen fabric that was a remnant (super cheap, yes!). clear buttons were used and the collar of the shirt was actually the collar of a navy blue old work shirt from my boyfriend. it was cut and sized so that there would be a more finished (and comfortable) edge around his neck.  i had to be careful to make the shirt a little baggy since halloween in NY can be chilly, and his mom wanted to put some warm layers on underneath his shirt.

a macro shot of a button-hole on the shirt.  it had to be hand-sewn because the stupid button-hole maker/sewer foot on my machine was not working... grr.... i think it turned out ok, though!

the mailman pants Wink these were originally made from a pair of gray scrubs that i found at goodwill (cheap again!).  i cut some more navy shirt fabric (same as the collar) and put stripes down the sides of the pants so that they'd look more authentic. the button was a false one and was a spare i had lying around Smiley i used elastic around the wait so it'd be easy to put on and take off.

and the mail bag! this was made completely from the navy work shirt and is fully functional. red & white stripes were added for authenticity and were both scraps from some old shirts i had. luckily, the bag fit him well!

here they are together--the two happy mailmen!  Wink

he's about 18 months old in these pictures--which means i had to challenge myself to work with much smaller measurements than usual. it was my first time making a child's outfit, and i have to say, it was pretty fun! i didn't use a pattern; just traditional measurements and placing toddler-sized clothing over the fabric before cut-out to ensure a better fit. it was definitely a little nerve-wracking, since he was all the way across the country when i made this! i was crossing my fingers for a proper fit the whole time during shipment... luckily it worked out Smiley

sorry for some of the crappy camera-phone pictures... any comments are appreciated! Smiley
3  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / summer halter dress! on: January 23, 2010 04:15:02 PM
feeling a bit chilly today, i decided to post a halter dress i created this past summer... it reminded me of warmer times Smiley  anyway, i picked up a pattern on sale at joann fabrics (you can't beat 99 cent butterick pattern sales!) and decided i'd try this baby out on some gorgeous blue & white cotton fabric... the bodice is fully lined with a super soft white eyelet (it's all i had but went pretty well). take a look!

the front of the dress--it feels pretty comfortable and i've gotten plenty of compliments on the ruching and the swish of the dress Smiley

the back--straps tie behind the neck and the zipper isn't as wacky as it looks...

here's a close-up of the fabric itself--there is some weight to it, and the grain looks almost like a nice denim. it's so soft, though, and swishes around nicely when i walk! one of the best parts about this dress is that it's wonderful to wear outside on a nice day, and can be converted into appropriate office-wear by throwing on a cardigan or shrug so that my shoulders aren't bare. the ladies at the office were so jealous!  Roll Eyes  hope you all like it!

*pattern was butterick B5029
4  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / slipcovers for the couch and pillows! on: January 15, 2010 08:34:30 PM
oh baby, this project was a BIG part of my to-do list for a loooong time! finally, i got sick of looking at the plaid country fabric on the couch and got the gumption to make the slipcovers when i received a $25 gift card for joann fabrics. it just goes to show that generosity inspires creativity Wink first, a completed shot!

anyway, here are a couple of pictures (front & side views) of the couch before the slipcover was created... no offense to those who appreciate and prefer this kind of thing, of course; the couch was actually a hand-me-down from my boyfriend's parents (given to us when we moved into our apartment and they decided to get new living room furniture).

^hey, who's that handsome guy?  Roll Eyes Kiss

so i went and bought the fabric, pretty much guesstimating at how much i would need after taking some decent measurements. i ended up purchasing about 8 yards altogether for the couch (4 yards of stretchy tan and 4 yards of soft brushed terra cotta-colored cotton with a very faint animal print pattern), and 1.5 for the pillows (remnant). the pillow cover fabric was actually a remnant of designer fabric on super-sale at hancock fabrics--i was told by the cashier that the original price was over $50/yard, and i got the whole remnant for less than $7!  scoooooore! Cheesy

here's an in-progress shot, with the middle section draped over the couch and seams sewn together. there wasn't really a plan for the slipcover before i bought the fabric--i just knew i wanted something bold, comfortable, and washable. here, you can really see the sheen of the backside of the terra cotta fabric!

some pictures of the contrast between seams:

although the terra cotta fabric might look like two different fabrics, i actually just used the back for the more narrow section to add some interest and sheen to the slipcover. i think it made it look a little more special and maybe even kind of expensive...? haha who knows! the seams are top-stitched to flatten the seams and also to create a more professional look.

this picture is off in color but shows the softness of the terra cotta fabric.

here's a picture of the pillow cover fabric--i love it!

and both pillows together. the back of the small rectangular one is navy and matches the designer fabric of the other pillow cover. i simply laid triangular pieces of the couch fabric over the front of the pillow and sewed away. that pillow has lived many different lives with various fabric fronts Smiley

some long views of the couch:

the front gathers around the arms--
i used simple hook & eyes on the backs of the small rectangle pieces of fabric, as well as on the couch's fabric to gather extra fabric and keep the slipcover snug. not only does it keep things together, i think it looks a bit luxurious (if i do say so myself! Wink )

and the gathers at the side/back; same concept:

last photo--me after a bunch of hard work and calculation!  whew!

comments & constructive criticism are appreciated, and thanks for looking! Cheesy
5  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / family portraits barn star on: January 15, 2010 06:28:51 PM
hello all! i know it's been awhile since the christmas projects were posted, but i figured if i'm on a roll, i might as well post Smiley so this family portrait barn star was inspired by a former post (by tvalentine. my boyfriend's mother LOVES pictures (especially of family) and she also LOVES barn stars--with those powers combined, i came up with this great holiday gift!

here's the completed barn star--all pictures were converted from color to black & white in photoshop, and then cut to fit the shape of the star. mod podge was definitely my friend for gluing the pictures onto the steel; it was my first experience using the product, but it was wonderful!

here are some of the photos cut up and laid out according to plan. i ended up taking a piece of 8x11.5" computer paper and tracing the shape of the star point so that i could effectively plan how my pieces would fit together. it worked like a charm!

and now for an in-progress shot:

it really didn't take long at all to glue the photos onto the star; most of the work was in the planning and piecing of things.

and now for the shots of the different points on the star:

top of the star

left point

right point

bottom left: you can see me sitting with my handsome boyfriend if you look closely (to the left of the cactus/sunglasses pic and just above the baby)

bottom right

i ended up mailing the star to her, wrapped in bubble wrap, because it would have been too awkward to fly with haha. it got there in plenty of time for christmas morning, and seeing the reaction on her face was wonderful! in fact, she loved it so much, she texted me yesterday to say that she took it into work to show her coworkers! Cheesy

thanks so much for looking!  any comments are appreciated!
6  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / felt name book/banner! (pic heavy) on: January 15, 2010 05:32:10 PM
when trying to figure out a gift for my boyfriend's nephew this christmas, i was inspired by the numerous name books posted here on craftster (mommymac and kahlan come to mind!).  so, i decided to embark on a journey of making a name book for deacon...

i chose to use a variety of materials, fabrics, and mediums when creating deacon's name book--this way it'd be stimulating for him and will allow him to experience different textures and explore with his senses Smiley  feathers, ribbons, buttons, beads, sequins, googly eyes, felt, embroidery thread, ric-rac, and cotton fabric was used.

here's the cover: all hand-stitched and completely personalized with colorful thread.

D is for dragon. i used ric-rac for the scales on his back, pink shell beads for the dragon's horns, and googly eyes, along with many different colors of felt.

E is for eagle. i made the eagle with a base of felt and added soft, brown feather with liquid stitch glue. the stars are gold-colored beads sewn on, and one googly eye was added Smiley

A is for alligator. the alligator is felt with colored green ric-rac for his scaley back, as well as a googly eye. his teeth are hand-stitched white embroidery thread. i wanted to add some atmosphere, so i strung various green-colored beads and created some marshy cat-tails Smiley

C is for coyote. this one is my boyfriend's favorite Smiley everything on this page is felt, with the exception of the writing and the bandana around the coyote's neck (a real and unused hanky). i spent some extra time embroidering the cactus for added effect and tactile stimulation, and embroidered in the hooowwwlllll coming from the coyote's mouth!

O is for octopus. orange and pink fish buttons are sewn on, and sequins were added to the octopus to amplify his tentacles and provide both visual and tactile stimulation. embroidered bubbles and googly eyes make the octopus more "life-like" Smiley

N is for newt. the newt has an orange felt base with added patterned cotton fabric on top of her back. she's hiding beneath a brown felt rock that can be pulled back to view her entire body. i just love how her little head and eyes peek out when she's covered up!

the back cover displays a personal and hand-stitched message, as it was a christmas gift from me to him. i also included the date, so that he might be able to look back on this someday and remember the times Smiley

i think the best part about this name book is that it's not just a book--thank's to my boyfriend's ingenuity, the book can also be displayed as a banner! simple thread loops and ties are present at the binding of the book so that it can be hung as a banner or tied up and displayed as a book, allowing pages to be flipped through one at a time.

i love this book and although it took a good amount of time.  let me know if you have any comments or constructive criticism--both are greatly appreciated! Cheesy  thanks for looking!
7  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / one zebra print and one aeropostale shirt recon WITH TUTE PG 1 on: June 14, 2008 09:06:13 PM
hey there!  now that this is my second post, i don't feel so worried about putting up things i make.  both of these are recons from other tops--sorry i don't have before pictures!

first up: the formerly long sleeved aeropostale button-up, modeled after a recon i spotted on craftster earlier (sorry i don't have the link... if someone knows of it, please comment with the link / name of the craftster--i want to give her credit!)

you can see that the cups are more solid than the rest of shirt; because the material is so thin and gauzy, i thought it'd be perfect for a summer tank top, but i knew i couldn't just wear it without some sort of support / layer of protection.  so!  i cut up an old flesh-toned soft-cup bra, took out the molded cups, and inserted them into the sleeves.  everything is all sewn together, so there's no worry about them falling out or anything haha  Wink

here's the front.  it's really not so lopsided / bunchy--i think i was just slouching a little.  the material itself is naturally wrinkled, so it's easy to wear and very comfortable.

haha this shot took me forever to get, but here's the back.

next: a zebra print top i whipped up the night before / day of a party!

lying flat, the true color of the brown isn't shown.  both front and back are identical.  the zebra material was part of a calvin klein 3/4 sleeve shirt that i got from salvation army years ago.  the brown stretchy material is from a (gasp!) kathy ireland maxi skirt my mom bought EONS ago.

the brown material at the top of the shirt is pleated a little, with a small strip of material stung through the hole and tied on the side  Smiley

i was so proud because everyone thought i bought the top somewhere and practically fell over when i told them i made it!  someone even told me i should be in the fashion industry!  now that's just a little too much feed for the ego  Wink 

have a great night / day!  oh, and comments / criticisms are appreciated lots.
8  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / classy blue pleated clutch! on: March 15, 2008 06:04:15 PM
hello everyone!  i'm really excited to show you all something i worked on this summer, based on a tutorial laurasaurus made.  i definitely don't think that mine is as classy or neat looking as hers, but i tried (first time i've ever done pleats)!  anyway, enjoy!

this is a long view:

and the back:

the inside is some snazzy material i got for christmas.  i love putting interesting fabric on the inside that's like a secret only the wearer knows  Wink

detail of the clasp (clearance item too!) i don't know why the camera decided the material looked like this--in reality, it's got a very soft, velvety feel:

and, an action shot that's kinda blurry; sorry:

there aren't any pockets on the inside, but i'm thinking i might add them later on.  just a simple magnetic clasp is used, and the pretty beaded item was glued on the outside metal of the clasp.  the project was really fun and it was made easy based on the awesome tutorial  Smiley  the pleats were kind of a pain, and i had to hand-stitch the top stitching for a lot of it, but i love how this turned out.  thanks for looking at my first post ever!  comments are most definitely welcome!
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