Christmas Stockings

I made some beautiful quilted stockings for a friend, and a couple for a gift exchange.  They turned out well, and are very easy to make! In my last post I said that I would get you directions for how to make your own quilted stockings, so here we go:Christmas stockingsMaterials:

  • Numerous fabrics to strip quilt the stocking front (a fat quarter of each is sufficient)
  • 1/3 yard of material for stocking back
  • 1/3 yard of material for lining
  • 1/3 yard of batting
  • Stocking to trace for a pattern or download one from the web

First, cut out strips of fabric for the strip-quilted front of the stocking.  Mine were two inch strips.  For my stocking pattern to fit, I needed 13 strips.

Lay out the strips and then sew together using a 1/4″ seam.

strip quiltingPress the seam allowance one direction, just to make it easier to sew.back of strip quilting

After you have enough strips for your stocking pattern to fit, cut out your stocking front.  Remember to leave a 1/4″ seam allowance if your pattern doesn’t include it.Stocking frontCut out the remaining pieces for the stocking so that it can be assembled:  1 stocking back, 2 batting and 2 lining.

All pieces

Arrange your “outside” stocking pieces so that they can be sewn together:  1 layer of batting, topped with the stocking back, topped with the stocking front (right sides together) and topped with the final layer of batting.Stocking layersSew together using a 1/4″ seam.  Trim/clip curves.  SewnTurn right side out and iron.right side outNext, assemble the lining.  Place the lining pieces right sides together and sew using a 1/4″ seam allowance.  On one side of the stocking, leave a 3-5″ gap.liningLeave the lining as is, and do not turn right side out at this point.  Stuff the outside of the stocking into the lining.  Right sides should be together.  IMG_0975Line up the top edges so that they can be sewn together.  If you want to add a ribbon or bias tape to hang the stocking, do so now.  The looped part will be placed between the lining and the quilted layer, with the loop pointed down and the ends of the loop into the seam.  Match seams and pin into place.Line up edgesSew around the edge, using a 1/4″ seam allowance.  Reinforce seam where ribbon or bias tape hanger is located in the seam.Sewing edgesTurn right side out using the gap that you left in the stocking lining.  Lining and stockingHand sew the opening closed.  Iron the lining flat, and then insert into the “outside” of the stocking.  Iron again, and you are done!Christmas stockingsSuch a simple, but beautiful way to decorate for Christmas.  And functional, too!

A couple of notes:  The outside could be more elaborate with quilted blocks or even an appliquéd design.  The assembly would still be the same after the front of the stocking was completed.

I also added my label to the inside of the stocking, rather than drawing attention to it on the outside.  I sewed it into place prior to assembling the lining.  One could also add a secret pocket to the lining for money or other Christmas treasures.  The sky’s the limit!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

~IngridSanta Pic

It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas…

I can’t believe there are only five days until Christmas!  I always seem to have a few projects to get done around the holidays, and this year was no exception.  It’s really too bad that I usually give these items as gifts or donations items…one of these days I should really focus on sewing for myself!

I made this beautiful Christmas table runner for my Soroptimist International of Helena holiday gathering and auction.

Christmas table runnerThe pattern is from the Recipe Bunny blog.  She had a great tutorial on layout with yardage and instructions.  It was very easy to follow, and fairly quick to make.

I’ve also made quite a few of these stockings.  I need to make my youngest son his own stocking, so this was a nice project to get things going.  I took enough pictures that I will probably make a tutorial for my next post…hopefully before Christmas!

Christmas stockingsNext up (before Christmas) are pajamas for the boys for Christmas eve, then a Christmas stocking for G so that he doesn’t have to have one of the dog’s old Christmas stockings…I think if he knew, he might be offended…but then again, he’s not even 2.

Merry Christmas!

~Ingrid

 

 

 

New Headboard!

Have you seen those cool headboards on Pinterest?  Earlier this summer, my Pinterest feed had several examples of awesome, padded headboards with tutorials.

Screen Shot 2014-11-14 at 6.17.56 AMpadded headboard exampleAfter seeing a few, I knew I needed one.  I found some awesome floral fabric on Fabric.com, purchased it, and then let it sit on my fabric shelf for a few months.

After awhile, I decided our bedroom needed a makeover.  It was looking a little drab, to say the least.  Old bedroomWe’re pretty simplistic when it comes to furniture and decorating, but this was getting a little old.  So off I went to Lowe’s to pick out some new paint colors.  I didn’t even realize our walls were gray until I started painting the new paint on!

cream against grayI even painted the ceiling and took down the old ceiling fan.IMG_0657And added an accent wall to make the headboard pop!

IMG_0667At this point, the headboard was already made, but I’ll get to that soon.IMG_0670New ceiling fan!  Good bye 1980’s ceiling fan!IMG_0668Our awesome new paint colors!

Okay, now onto what you’ve been waiting for: the headboard!  I could do this as a tutorial, but I’ll walk you through the steps with pictures and minimal captioning.

IMG_0942The finished product.  So happy with it, even if my mom says it looks a little hippy.IMG_0685First things first, deciding on the dimensions of the headboard, and shaping the corners.  I used 1/2″ plywood for this project.IMG_0686Cut your first corner, and then just flip it over and draw a line for the opposite.  I used a jig saw to make the cuts.IMG_0688Finished cutting the top of the headboard.IMG_0687Next I marked where I was going to put the tufting, and drilled some large pilot holes to make threading the buttons easy.IMG_0689Time to pad the headboard!  I used a cheap foam mattress topper, and covered it with batting, and then stapled it in place.IMG_0690Cut off the excess…it doesn’t have to be pretty at this point.  I repeated the process with the fabric, but on a clean work surface.  IMG_0936Don’t mind the legs on the headboard just yet…we’ll get to that.  I apparently forgot to take a picture of the covered headboard back, but you can see how much I overlapped the fabric here.

Next I added the covered buttons for tufting.  (I also forgot to take pictures of this!)  I used upholstery thread, waxed it so that it would stay better, and threaded my covered buttons through the pre-drilled pilot holes.  John helped me staple them in place on the back.IMG_0934Then we added the 2×4 legs to the headboard.  You could also just hang your headboard on the wall if you didn’t want to add legs and attach it to your bed frame.IMG_0937I covered the legs with a little foam…you know, so it wouldn’t knock against the wall, if you know what I mean 😉IMG_0938Finally, I covered the raw edges with an old sheet, just to make it look pretty.  Not that anybody will see it…IMG_0940John attached it to the bed frame with a couple of screws with washers.  It’s pretty darn secure.IMG_0942Yay!  It’s finished!IMG_0941You can find more detailed tutorials on how to make your own padded headboard by searching the web or on Pinterest.  As far as expenses go, I think I spent $50 on fabric, $25 on wood and screws, another $25 on batting and foam, and $15 on buttons and upholstery thread.  Not too shabby for a new headboard!

Happy crafting!  Cheers!

~Ingrid

Trick or Treat!

Fall is here in Montana!  The mornings are cool, but the days are still pleasant (thankfully).  Somehow all of September and October have flown by, and here we are on Halloween.  My kids are sleeping peacefully as I write, tuckered out from some mid-day trick-or-treating on the walking mall.   Our downtown businesses are so hospitable, opening their doors during the afternoon for the youngsters.  The kids had a blast playing outside, collecting treats, and walking a few blocks.  It was great.

This Halloween, I thought I was going to have it easy.  Our oldest (still obsessed with firemen) wanted to be a fireman.  We already have that costume.  I thought it would be cute to have his brother be the firehouse dalmatian.  My assistant even loaned out her dalmatian costume to us.  It was too big for our youngest, so F tried it on and decided he’d rather be a dalmatian, too.  I thought that would be fine, I’ll just make a dalmatian for his brother.  Easy.

I went to JoAnn’s and bought a pattern I could modify into a dalmatian.

Simplicity 1351The fox was an appropriate choice.  I only had to modify the ears to make a cute little dalmatian.  I bought the polar fleece and notions to get it done.

After awhile, Finn was asking if I was going to make him a dalmatian costume, too.  My sweet boy loves it when I make things for him.  Of course I’ll make him one, too.  How can I refuse when I know in a few years he probably won’t want anything I make for him?  So back I went to JoAnn’s to get more polar fleece and another zipper.

I had good intentions of starting these costumes in early October, but after a couple of work trips and CE classes, I was down to the last weekend before Halloween.  I was able to start and finish BOTH costumes the Sunday before Halloween.  My hubby was so awesome to keep the kids occupied while I worked away like an elf at Christmas.  It only took 8 hours (THANK YOU SIMPLICITY PATTERNS) on and off that day.  AND, it felt so good to just get them done.  No staying up until 11 or midnight the night before just to finish costumes.  They were so easy, and turned out to be pretty darn cute.  The kicker?  Guess who had to be the fireman…

dalmatians

They’re not perfect, but they’re warm and Finn couldn’t wait to wear his this morning.  So awesome!

Trolley dalmatiansFireman and dalmatians

It’s not Halloween without a pic of at least one kiddo crying!

Happy Halloween!

~Ingrid

Baptism Bear

Super-sweet bear that I made for our godson’s baptism.  I hadn’t made a stuffed animal since I was a kid, so it was kind of a new project for me.  I scoured Pinterest for stuffed animal patterns, but came up empty-handed.  I went to the quilting store, and didn’t see anything I liked there.  Finally settled on this pattern (5461) from Simplicity to make the bear:

Screen Shot 2014-10-19 at 3.21.08 PM

Of course I had specific fabric that I had in mind to use.  Remember the baby quilt I made a while back?  Well, turns out I had enough of the gray minky material from the back of the quilt for the bear,

image

and enough of my leftover bridesmaid dress for the ears and soles of the feet!

It turned out to be a much simpler project than I imagined.  In fact, it was down-right quick and easy to sew this bear together.  And I LOVE (LOVE!) the way it turned out.  So sweet.  IMG_0583

I think the hardest parts were hand-embroidering the nose and the extra embroidery I did on the soles of the feet.  But I love it.  And I should probably make my own boys a teddy bear, but they already have their stuffies!

IMG_0584

Cheers to Sammy!

~Ingrid

Back to School

Our oldest son started preschool this fall! We are so excited for him. We fell in love with the Montessori program when we toured the school last spring, and couldn’t wait for him to get going.

As it was his first day of school (ever!), I felt like he needed a little something special from his mama. Enter Made-by-Rae’s Toddler backpack.  I had visions of grandeur about sewing this for him weeks before school started, but (as always) the time got away from me, and there I sat with my fabric and new pattern on the night before school.  I was only going to get as far as I could get, but by 10pm, I was so close to being done.  By 11, I was done…until I realized I had put the straps on backwards.  By 11:45, I was finally done, and ready to send my Big Little boy off to his first day of school.

sock monkey backpack It really is the perfect size for a toddler.  Not too big, not too small.  Just right (apparently he’s a boy goldilocks?)….

IMG_0081No, we didn’t send him to school in his pajamas.  At least we haven’t yet.  That day might come.

IMG_0064Sock monkey fabric from JoAnn fabrics, Red dot fabric (Robert Kaufman, I believe) from the Sewing Palace.  I did have to line the front and back with a heavier fabric to make it a little sturdier.  I didn’t fuse it into place, just basted the lighter fabric to the heavier fabric before sewing the pattern pieces together.

IMG_0062He is still loving his backpack three weeks in.  Success!  And well worth the lack of sleep to see a smile on my boy’s face!

IMG_0077~Ingrid

Craft Table Tutorial

Well, after months of Pinteresting all of the web’s fabulous craft tables, I finally made my own!  I had an idea of what I wanted, it was just a matter of getting it done (and having someplace to put it).

On my wish-list:

  • Storage
  • Counter height surface
  • Laminate counter top to pin and cut fabric
  • Big enough to fit my large cutting mat for quilting

On John’s list:

  • Roll away or fold-away in case we have company and need to actually use our guest room

I managed to get everything on BOTH of our wish lists, without compromising on size.  I am loving it!  And loving my ingenuity!!!  There were no directions out there, so here is my “craft table tutorial”.

finished table

Materials:

  • Laminate counter top to the dimensions that you desire.
  • 2 cube storage shelves.  Mine are 2 wide by 3 high.
  • 2 pieces of scrap wood that are relatively flat and about the same width as your storage cube pieces.
  • Wood screws
  • Brackets or clasps

I ordered the countertop from Ikea.  I was going to have one custom made, but thought I would give the pre made one a shot…the price was right.  I believe I got the cube storage shelves from Target, but any big box store will have them.

Assembly:

As mentioned before, I wanted the table to fold or roll.  I thought about how I would make that happen, and decided it would be easiest to have the countertop come off, when needed.  Here’s how to achieve that with clasps or brackets similar to what you’d find underneath a dining room table.

Lay out your counter top, wrong-side up.

Countertop

Mark where you would like to have the “legs” of your craft table by placing the top piece of the storage cube on the countertop.

As you can see, I am measuring the placement of the unassembled storage cube.  Draw a line along the innermost edge of the storage cube.countertop with board

Place the piece of scrap wood along the line that you just drew.  Screw into place.placing bracing

I didn’t have a piece of scrap wood, it was decorative trim.  It was basically the same dimension on the fat side of the trim as my shelving unit, so I used it.

Repeat the process for the other end of the craft table so that you have two pieces that will brace your shelving units:

Bracings

Assemble the clasp units onto both the bracing and the shelving unit.  Follow the instructions that came with your clasp if need be.  I used 4 clasps for stability.

clasp

4 clasps

Your removable countertop is now finished.  Assemble the shelving units using the instructions they came with.

Shelving unitYou can see the half of the clasp that has already been attached to the shelving unit (above).

Move your craft table to the desired location prior to assembling it.

Attach the countertop, and begin crafting!  finished table

craft table

I am happy to say that my husband had no part in the “wood working” on this project.  I can’t remember where he was, but the kids were in bed early, so I pulled out the saw and the drill and got to work!  We women can do this stuff, too!

Cheers!

Ingrid