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1  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Mother's Day / Mother's day gift idea -- drawstring bags for travel! on: April 28, 2005 02:28:04 PM
So I have an idea for a mother's day gift..and then a question about it :-)

First the idea: I want to sew a set of drawstring bags that my mom can use when she travels. Like one for lingerie, one for socks, one for other small items that get lost in a suitcase. I'm thinking of making a set of three, each with a different, but coordinating fabric -- probably cotton; it's easiest to work with. Oh, and maybe one for dirty clothes. Each would be a different fabric so it's easy to find the one you want in a suitcase. So there's the idea. If I could embroider, I'd add a monogram or a little graphic of what the bag is for...but I can't, so I'll have to settle for fabulous fabric. :-)

Now here's the question: I know how to make a simple bag, but I always get messed up on the top -- how can I do a drawstring opening neatly??  All I can think of is to fold down the top of the bag about an inch or so, and sew that all the way around, which leaves a "tube" of fabric to pull the drawstring through. But what about the opening to the tube? In the past I've just poked a little hole in the fabric for the drawstring to come in/out...but that is messy. Does that make sense? Does anyone have any suggestions?

I'll try to post pictures of what I come up with eventually.
2  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / simple fabric envelope ala Martha Stewart on: April 27, 2005 12:58:53 PM
Even though it might not be a popular opinion in the world these days, I LOVE Matha Stewart. She's my favorite felon :-) I found a tutorial on her website for fabric envelopes for CDs, like a little pouch to put a CD in if you are giving it as a gift. Martha's tutorial is here: http://www.marthastewart.com/page.jhtml?type=content&id=channel1221&catid=cat268&navLevel=3

So I decided to try making one and here is what I came up with:

Rather than use 6" wide ribbon like Martha suggested (because really, who has 6" wide ribbon just laying around?), I just used some leftover fabrics and cut both pieces to 6.5" x 17.5" and sewed them together. I also sewed the ribbon to the pouch rather than just wrapping it and tying it.

Anyway, just thought I'd share!
3  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / summery apron-top dress...my first try on: April 27, 2005 12:48:00 PM
My husband was out of town this weekend so I spent my time sewing...This is my first attempt at making a dress. I'm new to sewing, and I'm not sure if I like how it turned out...but here it is. I didn't follow a pattern, but rather I used a hippie-apron style top that I already have as a pattern for the top, and just winged it for the bottom. Not sure if I like it enough to actually wear it out of the house....but we'll see. Here in frigid upstate NY, it's definitely not warm enough yet!

Sorry for the blurry pictures; who knew holding a camera still could be so hard?

I got the fabric from JoAnn fabrics last year -- it came with the "sari border" at the bottom, so I didn't even have to finish the bottom edge.

Does anyone have any tips for me on how to make it better? I feel that the front is too boring. I was planning to embroider something on it, but then I tried embroidering on some scrap fabric and realized I need a LOT more practice before I can actually make something that looks good. So I don't want to ruin the dress with my shoddy embroidery skills. I was thinking of deocrating it with ribbon??? Any ideas?

Also, I just kind of winged it on the back ties and bottom...is there a better way to do this? anyone have a tutorial out there of how to (properly) make an apron-style dress?

Oh, and almost forgot -- I didn't put any darts or anything in the front because I'm scared of messing it up...Does anyone have any tips for me on how to sew in darts? I don't need much because I'm pretty flat (*sigh*), but I'm thinking that a little bit of boob-dart might be nice. what do you think?
4  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Some bags I've made -- long post and picture heavy on: April 22, 2005 08:59:46 AM
Hi everyone!
I finally took some pictures of projects I've been working on, so I thought I'd share them. I'm new to sewing -- had a sewing machine for years, but it wasn't until I found craftster that I was inspired to use it!

Below are photos of some bags and purses that I've made...each one has at least one big "oops!" that I discovered after I made it, but I guess that's how I'll learn.

my first creation! I made it out of an old women's blazer that I bought at a thrift store. It is made from the front pockets...they are off center, oops!


no strap (because I cut it off for another bag.) Just a little pouch, kinda floppy -- this was before I discovered interfacing   Smiley

This one has interfacing, but is kind of messy. I made it out of a wool dress and the lining from a blazer.

This one is from a pretty pink fabric that I just couldn't resist at JoAnn fabrics. My first attempt at a jordy with a flap...I cut the flap too small...oops! The inside is lined with grey wool (even though it looks black in the photo) from an old skirt.

For this one I cut up a huge wool coat that I found (yet again) at a thrift store. I used the lining of the coat to line the bag. Black grosgrain ribbon for the straps. My first attempt at a tote bag; I put the straps on wrong (they were crossing the opening of the bag...can't really explain it, but it was a big OOPS!) so I had to cut them and sew them together again...ah, live and learn. 

This is probably my favorite so far..just a simple tote bag. In my rush to finish it, so I could show it off, I sewed on one of the straps backwards. Oops!!!

Padded little bag for fragile things...I just used polyfill to stuff it.

Anyway, sorry for the super long post! Just wanted to share my creations!
5  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Apron from men's shirt on: April 22, 2005 08:27:50 AM
Hi everyone!
This is my first post, though I've been lurking for a while. I finally took some pictures of projects I've been working on, so I thought I'd share them. I'm new to sewing -- had a sewing machine for years, but it wasn't until I found craftster that I was inspired to use it!

This is an apron that I made for my husband. I made it out of a men's button-down shirt that I got at a thrift store. I modeled it after an apron that I borrowed from our local food co-op; it's a lot like the ones they wear at HomeDepot, but a bit longer. Three pockets at the bottom and a little loop to tie a dishtowel to. Let me know what you think!

6  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Hippie apron top pattern or tutorial? on: April 20, 2005 07:33:25 AM
I have a couple of hippie apron tops (the backless kind that tie in the back, made out of simple cotton calico) that I bought at a concert last summer. I LOVE them and I would like to make some more, but as a novice at sewing (I started to write novice sewer, but that sounded like something gross :-) ), I can't seem to figure out how. Does anyone have any tips for me? A tutorial perhaps? Or links to other forums/boards that might help (though craftster is my favorite forum on the whole wide internet, for sure! you are all so talented!!!)

Anyway, can someone, anyone, help me get started?


7  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Discussion and Questions / How to paint/decorate glass jar lids? on: April 05, 2005 08:38:52 AM
This is my first craftster post, but I've been lurking for a few weeks now. Best crafting site ever; you all are so inspiring!
So here's my question: How can I decorate the metal lids of glass jars I have around the house (from spaghetti sauce, jams, pickles, etc.) so that they look nice and I can reuse them for other kitchen goods (flour, lentils, rice, etc.) I want to do something to make the lids look good but still allow them to be washed, used over and over again. I thought about fabric, but that won't allow me to wash the lids...Are there any paints that will not dull the finish of the lids and allow me to wash them?
Any suggestions would be great! Once I figure out how to tackle the lids, I plan to get some glass etching cream and stencil the name of the product onto the glass jar itself (flour, sugar, rice, etc.)


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