Saturday, February 21, 2015

Sew Much Sewing!

Happy Saturday!!!  Big A is out of town at a football conference this weekend, so the kids and I are enjoying the fresh snow that fell last night!  After the 15 minute snow suit application for the littles and I, and then sledding and traipsing through the snow, we are pooped!!! ...but in a totally good way!!!

We're enjoying our lunch and I was thinking about heading up to sew...and then I realized that blogging about sewing from my comfy chair sounds WAY more fun! ;)

I really got into sewing this past year.  Hobby Lobby kept putting their Simplicity patterns on sale for $.99, so obviously I had to buy ALL THE PATTERNS!!!  Ha!  At least that's how I felt at the time!  Plus, I've been collecting gorgeous fabrics from my trip to Chicago, and Crimson Tate downtown, and of course, Hobby Lobby, so I put them all to good use!!! 

My niece, Story, had a Princess birthday party last June, and I used one of my new patterns to make Liv a princess dress!!!  It is fashioned after the Tinker Bell fairy dresses, and I must say, I can't actually still believe that I made this!!!  She looked absolutely beautiful fluttering around outside...plus it's all pink, which makes it even more awesome ;)
 This dress was from a Project Runway pattern for kids!  So, of course, I worked furiously in the dining room at my sewing machine during nap time for daaaaaaaayyys, pretending that I was in a clutch "make it work" moment and only had one day to complete my task!  ;)  My friend, Hilary, gave me this gorgeous fabric because...she has a boy :/  So, I did her proud and made Liv this fancy dress!

 This summer while at Hancock Fabrics, I found these amazing graphic prints of bikes and sewing machines, so I whipped this little beauty up during a nap time so she could meander the park in style.
 Oh. This dress.  Be still my heart!  I stumbled on this fabric and about fell over!!! ... I probably get WAY too excited about things, which is also what the lady cutting my fabric must have thought as I stood there gushing over it!!!
 I used this tutorial from Pinterest!!!  As she is getting bigger, she can still fit into it, although this summer it will probably be a shirt!
 After that, I decided to try something for myself!!!  The pattern said "easy" on the front, so I figured I'd give it a whirl!  Not knowing what to expect, I was pleasantly surprised!!! I really like being able to say that I made my clothes!  :D
 I had found this tutorial on Pinterest, and this adorable polka dot fabric around the same time, and I LOVE this little tunic!!! 
 She debuted it at Thanksgiving this year, and can you believe that she did not stand still even ONCE for me to get a great picture of her in it?!?! (I can! ;)
 I also dabbled in Kimonos this year!!!  They are the perfect light layer to add pizazz to any plain outfit!!!
 Once it got cold enough, I began making Kozy Kimonos out of fleece to keep us all nice and toasty...which they do!
 And, of course, if you follow me at all, you know that I've been making a gaggle of Babushka Softies this year!!!  This is just one group of the MANY I've made that are actually being sold in our friend's restaurant shop!
 I thought I'd throw this one in for fun :)  Our small group had an Ugly Christmas Sweater party this year, so I channeled my inner Ann, and recreated a combo of outfits she made for us when we were little!! My sweater both sparkled and shined, and Andy, well, his snowman was very happy! LOL!!!
 Here are my Valentines Babushkas that have a pocket on the front for you to leave notes to your little love in!!!
 Oh. Livie's 2nd Birthday Dress!!!  This dress was made from fabrics that I got in Chicago, from a pack of fat quarters I got for Christmas, some from my friend, Hilary, and adorable little Babushkas on the apron! 
 Since Liv had a Doll Party this year, I made each girl a small flannel Babushka softie to take home!!!
 Thank you, if you made it through this whole post! ha!  Let me know if you have any tutorials that I should try! 

Friday, February 20, 2015

The Sketchbook Project

Aaaahhhhh! I've had my sketchbook for The Sketchbook Project since August, and I have just been so stumped on what to put in it this year!!! To be honest, I've actually spent a lot of time sewing these last few months, so I haven't been working on my other "art!"

So, I finally decided the other day to do some collaborative pieces with the kids! We've done this before, and it is just so much fun!!!  I let the kids draw, and then I fill in with watercolor and pen.  They turn out beautifully, and I love that it is something that we created together!



I've recently seen how much Livie enjoys coloring, and it makes me excited that she may enjoy my loves as well!!! ...However, she's sort of missing WHERE her art should be created!!!  T-man never had a problem sticking to the "only draw on paper" rule, but Liv is really getting into the whole Body Art movement!
I could not stop laughing when I turned around from putting dishes away the other morning to find a purple mustachioed toddler staring back at me!  ...She's got quite the personality, this one!
So, my sketchbook is on it's way, but there is still much work to be done!

Monday, December 15, 2014

Pom Pom Garland DIY

Over the past few years, I have had a great time collecting and making my own unique Christmas Decorations!  My tree is decorated with the colors, beauty and whimsy of a child's dream tree...which works out well now that there are little hands helping me adorn our walls during the holiday season!

So, you can imagine my excitement when I saw this bright and colorful garland over at Peach's Blog!
The project was actually VERY simple, and completely do-able while cuddled up in a blanket and watching a good ole Christmas movie!

Here's what you'll need:
1. Pom Poms of your choice! This would look great with just the traditional Christmas colors, but you know I had to add some neon :)
2. Black and white paper straws- cut into 1/3s, or smaller if you want!
3. Button Thread- thicker and waxier than regular, all purpose thread.
My bags of pom poms came with 3 different sizes, so I actually separated the biggest ones into one bowl, and the medium ones into another! (I've saved the tiny ones for some garland for Doll Baby's tree!)
Cut the straws into thirds or fourths, depending on how long you want them to be between your pom poms.  I cut them into thirds, and it worked out great with the number of pom poms.
I began my strand by threading the needle, and tying a knot to keep it on the thread.  I started the garland with a large pom pom to keep the ends in place.  I didn't cut the thread or tie it off until the whole strand was done, so just keep scooting your poms and straws down as you go!
Alternate poms and straws until you have reached the length you want!
I made 2 strands with the supplies that I showed you, and it was long enough to perfectly drape my fireplace!

 I love this garland so much that I think I'm going to hang it in my studio as soon as Christmas is over!! Such a fun decoration!  Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Thankful Tree!


Our Thankful Tree is becoming one of my favorite activities to do with the kids!!!  This year I am finding as many "teachable moments" as possible to incorporate into this project!
To make your own tree, you will need:
1. brown packing paper (I got my roll from the Dollar Tree!)
2. brown paint, markers, or crayons
3. construction paper or leaf doilies (which i found at the Dollar Tree years ago, but can't find any more :/, so now we make our own leaves!)

First, tape your paper to the floor, and draw a tree on it!  Don't worry about how you think it looks.  ALL trees are different, and yours will be unique to your home! ...plus, it will eventually be covered in leaves :)
Next, confine any smaller children to a chair so that they won't run through the paint and drag it all over the house :D  Then, have your child(ren) paint/color their tree! 
I think this may have been the first year that T-Man was actually excited to do this whole project :D
It's ok if the paint or marker gets outside the lines of the tree because you'll be cutting it all out!
I knew that we would be making our own leaves this year, so while T was at school, I let Livie paint!  I had put her painting projects on hold for a bit because she was wanting to eat the paint more than putting it on the paper (*sigh).  Thankfully, this time, she loved dipping her brush in the water, and then the paint!
I drew leaves onto the paper, and then let T cut them out!  His teachers had recommended letting the kids cut at home, like cut anything and everything, so BAM! cutting we will do! :D  He loved it!  I think he's thrilled any time I let him use scissors!
He was really into doing each step of this on his own, by himself, and then presenting me with the completed project at the end with a flourish and celebration! ...I have no idea where he gets that from ;)
Next, we began talking about what it meant to be thankful.  This has continued to be a difficult subject to convey to tiny people, but T is doing much better with this concept.  We talked about things that we are glad that God has given us, things that we are happy we have, people who we love, and so one.  
So, I asked him what he was thankful for, to which he responded,
"going bowling!"
:D
It's working, right?! ;)
So, we continued.
He listed more, and then wanted to write them all on his leaves!!! (More school practicing!!!!)
I watched in awe as we spelled the words together, and he wrote the letters all by himself!  Yes, some were backwards, and some were not made perfectly, but he was practicing, and improving, and I love it!
Next, tape the tree to the wall! (Please pardon the horrible pictures!  We recently rearranged the toy room and moved our tree spot next to the window :/ Great to look at, not great to take pictures of!)
Remember that other child being restrained and throwing every Cheerio available on the floor?!  There she is!  She's as thrilled as T, because although she wasn't physically involved, she watched and celebrated, and totally thinks she made the whole thing! :D  Man, I love that girl!
And, there you have it!  A Thankful Tree in a morning! :D 1 project, many steps, covering many learning concepts! :D  We will continue to talk about thankfulness and hanging leaves on our tree daily until it is covered with colorful blessings!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Explosions!

As we are springing into summer, my mind is exploding with creativity, and my hands can barely keep up!!!  So, in between trips to the pool, library, and friend's houses, I've been wearing out my studio!  It hasn't seen so much of me in a long time!!!

For starters, T-Man and I played around with watercolors in a new way!  He had so much fun blowing through the straw and watching the colors spray everywhere!
I have been experimenting/obsession ;) with texture up in the studio!  I love to not only see the vibrant colors of the paint, but I love that these pieces make you want to TOUCH them!!!  Oh, how I love the rough edges, but the softness of the drips and dribbles!!!



My palette has practically become a creation of it's own!  Look at those gorgeous colors!!!
Then, all of a sudden, my brain switched to sewing!  I've recently bought an embarrassing amount of patterns, and I've been dying to use up some of my delicious fabrics...so...
Livie gets (another) new dress!!! :D  It's not quite done, but I'll save the buttons and bow for tomorrow :)
I am just soaking up this feeling of creativity, creation, and am feeling very blessed with the talents that the Lord has placed in my hands!!!

Sunday, June 8, 2014

A Fairy Princess

I guess I've been a bit busy since my last post! LOL!!! After mailing out all of my post cards from the Swap, I received 10 gorgeous post cards in return! Oh, how fun it was to actually receive FUN mail every day!!! It was so exciting to WANT to go get the mail! :)

Ok, onto my tiny princess!!!
My niece, Story, just celebrated her 2nd birthday with a Princess and Knights party!  I had been dying to pop open one of the new patterns that I just got at Hobby Lobby's $1 sale, and one of them was a Disney Fairy dress!

Oh, how I envisioned #dollbaby in a fluffy pink dress...made by me!...you know, something like this:

EEEEEEEEKKKK! I still can hardly believe that I actually made this thing! The bodice was made with pink satins and a lining, with some trim on the front.  The petals were made from organza...the hardest material EVER to sew!...I think...I really haven't tried ALL the fabrics, but you know, when you can't sew a straight line on a fabric, it can be dumped in the "hard to sew" pile :)  Anyways, finally, the lower skirt was made with 6 yards of tulle and a lining to keep it soft on her legs.

I love the length on it, which keeps her from tripping, and I added velcro in the back to make it easier for me to get her in and out of it.
Well, it was exactly as I imagined it!  She was a beautiful fairy princess!!!!
I love you, baby girl! :D