Friday, May 11, 2012

Daisy Welcome Wreath

As soon as I saw this wreath on Pinterest, I knew I needed to make my own version.  I would be barefoot all the time if I could (darn winter!) and daisies were my mom's favorite flowers.

I wanted to make mine a bit bigger, so bought a 12" wreath form and also used fake flowers instead of daisy trim.  I'm also still mildly obsessed with buntings, so I wanted to put the wording on one instead of the flag.  It took about a skein and a half of Fun Fur, and much more time that was necessary to wrap the wreath, since I'm way too picky about ridiculous things that make no difference to the end result.

Then I had the seemingly brilliant idea of sticking the flower heads onto sewing pins, so I could reposition them easily.

Several flowers ended up falling off the pins as I worked with it, so I went back and hot glued the flowers to the pins, which worked well.  I didn't want to totally commit by gluing the flowers right to the wreath, so this was a good solution.

Then I printed off this bunting.  My original plan was to stamp the letters on with one of the alphabet sets from my stamping and scrapping days, but all my sets were either too small or too big, so I had to suck it up and write them on with a Sharpie.  This was a bit nerve-wracking, as I have the world's worst handwriting.  I taped the flags onto some embroidery floss and tied it to pins to attach to the wreath.  At that point, I realized that the bunting was much too big to fit all of "Bare Feet Welcome" on it without looking crazy busy.  I was bummed, since that was one of my favorite things about the original!  I was not about to start over and have to redraw all those letters, not to mention cut out the flags again, so I decided to simplify it to just say "Welcome." 

Despite that minor disappointment, it's pretty fun for a spring/summer wreath.  I think my mom would have liked it.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Doodle Swim Bag

One of my nieces had a birthday earlier this week, and my sister suggested that she could use a bag like O's for swim club.  I was happy to oblige.  I've probably mentioned this before, but one of my favorite things about blogging is that it's so helpful for gift ideas for friends and family.  That and my project notes are in one permanent place instead of scribbled on scraps of paper that I subsequently throw away or lose.

My niece is still into peace signs, so I was excited when I found this fabric that looks like it's been doodled.  Isn't it perfect for a tween? I thought the black background would be good for the dirt and muck potential of a locker room floor too.

I made it almost the same way as I made O's, but I did make the changes to the drawstring casing that I mentioned wishing I'd done.  This time I cut the two outer pieces to 14x20" (2" longer") and the one PUL lining piece to the same 14x35".  I left openings in the side seams of the outer between 1 5/8" from the top and 3/4" further down.  When I sewed the lining and outer together, then turned and stitched in the ditch, it created a casing just of the outer cotton turned to the inside.

As I'd hoped, this cinched up much more tightly than O's did with the PUL in the casing.

PUL-lined zipper pocket

The drawstring straps are probably too long, but that's easy enough for my sister to customize for my niece.  She can just retie the strings a bit shorter and trim the ends.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Star Wars Cargo Shorts & Pool Noodle Lightsabers

In addition to his Captain Rex tee, O asked me to make him cargo shorts with crossed lightsabers on the pockets to wear to his birthday party.  So I did.

I used the Hot Scott Cargo Shorts pattern.  Honestly, I wasn't crazy about it.  She notes that the sizes run big, which I found unusual for an independent pattern company.  I measured O and found that he was just slightly bigger than the 5T (he wears a 7 or 7X in RTW), but there was a huge jump in sizing for the 6, so I made the 5T with a 3/8" seam allowance instead of 5/8".  This proved to be unnecessary.  The shorts are big.  Very, very big.  Hopefully he'll still be a fan of Star Wars for several more years.  I also thought the directions could have been more clearly written and that using plaid fabric for the black & white instructional photos was a poor choice.

That being said, O liked the shorts.  I used leftover fabric from his swim bag for the hip pockets.  It amuses me to have Vader peeking out of the one.

I intended to sew down the lightsabers on the cargo pockets, but when I realized how tiny I'd made them  and just how late at night it had gotten to be by that point, I decided to take my chances with Steam-A-Seam 2's claim of a permanent bond.

In action
I also made some of the ubiquitous pool noodle lightsabers for the guests.  I was pleasantly surprised by how quick and easy it was to make them.  Usually the projects that I think will be fast take the longest!  A serrated knife cut the pool noodles in half easily, then I used shiny silver duct tape cut in half lengthwise to cover the bottoms (in Xs, kwim?) and clipped the ends of the tape so it'd curve nicely.  Then covered about 7" up the length with the silver for the handles, added two stripes with black electrical tape and drew on a power button with a red Sharpie.  While I was doing that, O was cutting out an assortment of masks from here and here that we'd printed onto cardstock.

The lightsabers were a huge hit, and most importantly, were painless when you got whacked with one!  They also made a cool -- loud! -- noise if two of them were banged together.


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