Sewing bug bites again!

Saturday I had to be on the pool deck so I didn’t have a command center post, but Sunday, I packed up a bag of supplies and headed down to Schoharie County for a crafting day/demo/instruction day.

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Littlest crafter!

A bit ago, a friend of mine mentioned that she wanted to make a quilt and that her mother in law had given her a sewing machine to help this along. A sewing machine that she knew very little about other than that she had one now. Being that I adore spending time with her, I’m a helper, and I love spreading the crafting love (and love of crafting) I told her that I was happy to help her figure it out.

From what I understand about quilts (I haven’t made one yet although I’m considering a tshirt one…), they can be simple or complicated and it all depends on what you’re trying to make. They are not all that forgiving though if you want one with straight sides so I suggested that we choose a project that we could do together that was easy. I offered headbands, jammie pants, or bow ties (the last not being easy, but fun to make!) We could have made crayon rolls, tote bags or many other projects.

We decided to make jammie pants for her boys (one little, one big) because they’re not complicated to make and if it’s not done “just so”, they’re incredibly forgiving. I had some fun fabric on hand that I thought her boys would like so we picked a day and I headed down to her house to get our sew on!

(By the way, I highly recommend pj pants for first time projects. :))

A few things to keep in mind if you have a new machine and are just learning to sew (which I am totally willing to come help with):

  • Have the instruction manual handy. I can thread many different bobbins and machines by looking at them, but each is slightly different and some of those little differences aren’t actually so little in the long run. Also there are a LOT of handy tips in there. Your machine may also have a helpful hint or trouble shooting page. Feel free to keep that with your machine, on the wall by your machine or depending on it’s size, taped right to the sucker.
  • Read the instructions on the pattern and get all the supplies you’ll need. I failed to bring a safety pin so we had to get creative with my coffee straw to get the elastic in the pants.
  • Have a small piece of extra fabric that you’re working with for test sewing is really helpful if you’re having trouble getting the tension right. You might need to play with stitch length and tension to get it right.
  • Have a sense of humor and a seam ripper handy. Sometimes you sew the wrong seam or you realize that it’s all messed up underneath and needs to be redone. These things happen but they can be really frustrating. It’ll be okay. So long as you don’t destroy the fabric by just ripping things apart, you can generally undo anything you do.

Although there were some hiccups with the machine itself (that ended up with us taking a field trip to the store to get a different machine because I’m not entirely sure the first one she had actually worked.) we had a lovely afternoon of cutting, pinning, reading, chatting, and sewing and if I’m not mistaken, she might have caught the sewing bug!

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Working on…

I’m working on a post of helpful hints when sewing that probably exists in no less than 153,295,369 places already on the internet, but I’ll have my thoughts which so very few people have.

In the mean time, I thought I’d share some of the latest work I’ve been doing:

currently unnamed

nanny bag

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The Nanny Bag was a project with Sue and the Unnamed will have a name come the end of September. (Not me, but a dear friend.) This last one is just something I was playing with and think is adorable. I’m also making a dress and a couple of skirts that I’ll post photos of soon! They’re in various stages of being finished.

What are you working on these days?

Open Eyes lead to crafty finds!

20130501_220437Super close up!

Isn’t it lovely?  Beautifully regal purple with silver stripes and an ivory with gold stripes. It was super inexpensive too. (Without ripping it all apart yet, I have about 2 and a half yards of usable knit fabric I think.)

I saw it peaking out of the rack at a store I popped into last weekend.What store? I’ll give you a hint, I needed crayons. Now, I didn’t expect to find inspiration for a summer skirt that day, but part of being creative and crafty is embracing the inspiration when it hits you.

Hit me, it did; embrace it, I shall!

But, just what was that store? It was K-Mart.

No joke.

It was a clearance rack of winter clothes and for $1.99 each (I found 2 3XLs and 1 XL) these turtlenecks will provide enough fabric for a skirt for me, leg warmers for one of my little friends (maybe two or a tunic dress) and possibly a lovie rattle or stuffed owl perhaps.

Not bad huh?

How is that going to work? Come back (or follow along on facebook) to find out. I don’ t know about you, but I’m pretty excited for my very own New Dress a Day like project. (And do I have MANY more if this goes well!)

What would you make with fabric like this?