Wednesday, November 23, 2011

I have 2 days to finish a backpack for my daughter.  And one of those 2 days is a holiday.  Eeeek

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

my most time consuming project thus far

The I-Spy Quilt

I first started this quilt back in May.  6 months later and it's finally completed!!!  I blogged about it here once I had the front finish, but I still had a long way to go at that point. 

As I mentioned before, I followed Obsessively Stitching's tutorial to do the front of the quilt (a disappearing 9 patch).  I followed my Aunt's advice for taping the front down to the floor, layering, pinning, and trimming.  I decided on my own that I wanted to use an "s" stitch "in the ditch" (I have no idea if the stitch I used it actually called an "S" stitch, and I'm not quite sure if what I actually did is considered "in the ditch"....but just go with it).  Of course my machine didn't have the "s" stitch.  Nor did the amazing machine I'm borrowing from a friend.  I had to borrow another sewing machine just to get what I wanted!!  I followed the guidance of my Aunt to do the binding, and viola - a finished quilt!!!  I'm really very pleased with it, and my children enjoy playing with it. 

It's funny because the whole time I was making it I kept saying I will never make another quilt - that they are too tedious and time consuming.  But wouldn't you know, now that I'm done with the one, I want to do another.  Eeeek.

So, here she is in all her glory:

Here's a small glimpse of the back:

 A close up of a square, and the stitch I used:

"Hey Trent, show me the dog that looks like Maggie":

and in case anyone was wondering: it's approximately crib size. 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

more cloth diapers

I posted here about a cloth diaper I made a while back.  An update on that cloth diaper:  it's not holding up very well.  I partly blame the fabric but I also blame myself.  My professional cloth diapers are washed and dried the same way as my homemade cloth diaper, and they hold up fine, which goes to show you the quality of the PUL is different.  I blame myself because I could have stopped putting the homemade diaper in the hot dryer once I noticed the effects the heat was having on it.  The waterproof coating of the PUL is starting to "chip" and peel.  Fortunately it hasn't effected the absorbency of the diaper at all (yet?) and we still use it.

Some of you may have noticed that Joann Fabrics is carrying a new line of PUL fabric and coordinating accessories, called Babyville.  The designs and colors they chose for this line are adorable!!  A friend of mine asked me to make her a few for the baby she's expecting, so I decided to try out this new babyville line.  I'm hoping the quality of the babyville PUL is better than the other PUL they carry, but either way I definitely recommend air/line drying.  I also purchased the cloth diaper pattern book they sell, which is great!  The book tells you how to make almost any kind of diaper you can imagine, complete with color photos and step by step directions.  My friend flipped through the book and chose the style of diapers she wanted and I got right to work. 

The first diaper I made for her (monkey diaper) is a size medium pocket diaper with offset side snaps.  "Pocket diaper" means there's a pocket in the back where mom can stuff the diaper with an insert(s).  "Side snaps" means the snaps are along the side of the diaper rather than the front, like most diapers.  And "offset snaps" means that rather than the two rows of snaps being directly on the top of one another, the top row is offset so that the snaps are diagonal to one another.  This type of snap placement is especially nice when you have a baby that has a wider stomach than thighs, or visa versa. 

The second diaper I made for her is a one-size pocket diaper with offset snaps and gussets.  "One size" means it has an adjustable rise which adjusts to fit very small babies as well as older, larger babies.  I included a set of crossover snaps so that the waist could be adjusted to fit the tiniest baby.  "Gussets" are fabric that's been placed at the leg openings to help 'keep the mess in'. 

Each diaper is lined with a white micro suede.

I had enough supplies left over to make a third diaper, so I chose to make another one size pocket diaper with offset snaps and gussets.  This diaper is a solid orange color with an owl applique applied to the back.  The main different between this diaper and the owl diaper above is that this diaper is lined with 100% cotton flannel, and this one does not have crossover snaps (although they could easily be added).  I have this diaper listed on my etsy site for anyone who's interested.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Halloween 2011

We had a hard time coming up with Halloween costumes this year - for all 4 of us.  Kevin and I had specific costumes in mind, but then we both changed our minds.  When we finally decided that Trent would be the Phillie Phanatic, the Phillies were still in the playoffs.  Shortly after we made the decision they were no longer in the running.  Oh well.  Still fun.  Kevin came up with the idea to be a mime and I came up with the idea for Kevin to be the Phanatic too, so he went with my idea and I went with his. Confusing?  I came up with the idea for Claire to be a purple monkey a while ago, but I wasn't set on the idea until mid-October.  A monkey seemed very fitting for her because she climbs around like a monkey.

Our local fabric store doesn't carry green fur, so I ordered five and half yards of green faux fur from  It was just enough.

I made Claire's costume out of anti-pill fleece from Joann Fabrics.

All 3 costumes closed up the back using velcro.  All 3 hoods closed under the chin with velcro.

I used Simplicity 2853 pattern for Kevin's Phanatic costume, and I used McCalls M6105 for both Trent and Claire's costumes.

The Phanatic faces were made using basic craft supplies from Joann Fabric, including styrophome, boas, felt, foam, and a hot glue gun. 

The tongues were simply party blowers.  I got glued Trent's in place, but for Kevin's I poked a hole thru the entire hood so that he could actually blow into it and shoot the "tongue" out - similarly to the real Phanatic. I also made a pair of mittens for his hands.  As for his feet, we bought a pair of clown shoes and added the Phillies logos to them.

Overall, a great year for costumes