Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Transforming a Sweater into a Dress

As I mentioned in my last post  I realized I had pulled some lottery numbers during this past Fall and have been able to cross a few projects off my list.

The second lottery pick was #56: Re-purpose a Sweater Into a Little Girl Dress.

I LOVE second-hand stores. St. Vincent de Paul, Goodwill, Value Village. I love them. I have scored some amazing finds at second hand stores (I'm looking at you Burberry jacket for $12). Frankly, trying to cram three kids into a dressing room is...well...impossible. Just impossible. I am picky, then, to make sure I get clothes that fit and fit right because I don't want to have to try and take them back or just re-donate them-that's a waste of time and money. When I first saw this sweater I thought it would fit me great but it turned out not to be as tailored as I would like it.

Thankfully, I had pinned this post on how to re-purpose a sweater into a dress for a little girl. I thought this would be perfect this Fall for Little Missy since she loves long sleeves and long dresses.

Making this little dress only took me an afternoon (the youngest took a GREAT nap!)  but I did have some problems along the way. I had a tough time when it came to making the neckline a little smaller-I think I took it out about four times and, even now, I'm not completely thrilled how it came out. I don't know if I cut it wrong or what, but it was somehow harder than it looked.

 I did use one of Little Missy's dresses as a comparison to determine the curve of the both the neckline and to take it in and that really helped.

I'm a little bummed I didn't take more pictures-especially of what it looked like after I cut the sleeves off; if you look at the original post she took some pictures of what it looked like. This was also challenging for me since I tend to like to follow pretty explicit directions; however, I found it kind of fun to wing it where I was going to cut and sew things back together. I felt like a fashion designer!

Overall, I liked how it finished. She ended up wearing it for the first time to her Thanksgiving feast at school. I added a little belt to give it a little oomph. I tried desperately to get her to pose for a picture after we had trimmed the tree a few days ago but she was having none of it.

Hanging her ornaments on the string of lights!

She does not like the flash!

So! Two more items off my list. I am almost done with my niece's quilt; I am determined not to go into 2014 with it still on my sewing table.

What do you want to finish before the New Year? 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Log Cabin Ornaments

After I wrote my last post, I realized a few things:
1. I don't think any of the crafts I had written about were on my Master List. Oops!
2. I forgot about a couple of things I had made and BOTH of them I drew from the lottery. Happy Day!

The first one pulled was #44: Complete Christmas Ornaments to Hanging Quality.

So, once upon a time I was going to sell some of these ornaments I had made. No one wanted to buy them and I gave away the ones I had completed as little Christmas gifts to various people. I still had quite a few leftover that were unfinished. All they really needed was some backing, a ribbon and then I quilted them with a simple stitch-in-the-ditch and I finished them off in an afternoon. A few I have hanging on my tree and the rest I will give away at Christmas this year. At least they are done and out of my sewing hamper! Here's a pictorial history from finding them unfinished to hanging them on my tree.

The log cabin had already been sewed as well as the batting on the back
I had even cut the backing out for each of the squares. They measured 4"x4"

I added the ribbon

Then sewed right sides together. You can see here I left an opening for the ribbon (which I forgot on this ornament) and to pull it right side out. 

At this point I was ruing the fact I hadn't left a bigger opening as I pushed the fabric through the tiny hole.

The corner hadn't popped out very well....
...so I used my handy dandy chopstick to pop it out!

All better!

Then I pinned (maybe over-pinned) the rest of it shut and used a slip stitch to close it off by hand. 

Oops! Got a little carried away with the chopstick-you have to be careful. I fixed that with a slip stitch as well.

Finished on my tree!

I'll post the next item from the lottery I completed this Fall in a few days. It's pretty cute!

What kind of ornaments do you have on your tree?

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Fall Recap

Oh friends!

I knew having a baby would put a damper on my ability to sew and craft for a few months. I even told myself that it would be at least three months before I was able to get back to the blog. But here we are a little over four months after My Sweet Baboo was born and I'm just starting to think I can dip my toe back into the blogging waters. Even with the new baby I have my two-year-old (His Nibs) hitting his Terrible Twos in stride. Man, has he got a case of the terrible twos. And my four-year-old (Missy), is navigating going to pre-school and learning all kinds of new things-both good and bad. It's great to watch all of them grow-and sometimes I wish I could stop time-but handling all three has kind of put a hamper on my time to craft and sew and create. Honestly, some days it really bums me out.

But here I am! I have been busy with Halloween crafts and costumes, finishing my nieces quilt and working on some gorgeous GORGEOUS Christmas pillows. My mom keeps on asking me where I find the time and I just keep on telling her my house is not immaculate. There is a load of laundry that needs to be folded and two more loads waiting their turn as well, and I am trying to figure out how to get a mustard and blueberry stain out of my husband's work clothes (any ideas?). That is all going to have to wait because I really wanted to get a post done! And maybe continue to work some more!

So here's what I have been doing!!!!

Halloween Costumes! I love them. I love making them. I love the homemade look. I love looking through all the stuff we have and trying to incorporate it into a costume without having to buy too much stuff. It's a great thrill for me. Missy was a peacock this year. I think this will probably be the last year I get to decide what she is and when I saw this post on Pinterest last Spring, I knew it was for me....I mean, my little girl!

I used it mainly for inspiration and if I had to do it over again I would have made more peacock feathers (I made about 9-12) and attatched them to ribbon hanging from the elastic band; I think they would have stood out a little more. I would have also used some lime green tulle. That would have been pretty awesome too.

Making the tulle skirt is so easy! 

As for my son, he needed to be a Ghostbuster! Many moons ago my older brother made a Ghostbuster costume for my younger brother and for some reason, I thought His Nibs should go as one this year. So I needed to make a proton pack. I spent quite a bit of time looking at them on Google. Luckily, my husband has more computer parts laying around than he knows what to do with and I put them to good use. 

The above picture is a little wonky but a combination of a hot glue gun and lots of duct tape made this bad boy come alive! I used this heavy duty cardboard my contractor had laid on my floors and it was able to withstand the multiple paint jobs and weight of the computer components. Jacob from Home Run Solutions cut me off a huge piece of it to use and without it the whole idea might never have taken shape! Thanks, Jacob! 

And, just because, here is My Sweet Baboo! Or monkey!

I did not make this costume but bought it when Missy was about three months old and all three kids have worn it for their first Halloween. I love it!

What else? What else have I been working on? Oh! My niece's quilt. That's coming along nicely. I just have to bind it and I am done. I think I will devote another post just that one since I have lots to talk about.  Plus my husband took some hilarious pictures of me quilting the borders. 

I made some Halloween luminaries out of mason jars. That idea was found here. I don't have a great picture of them but I made about a dozen-4 jack-o-lantern type, 4 ghosts, and 4 monster- and they were pretty cute. I lined them up along the path to my front door and I really liked them. I got some great responses back from neighbors-one who jokingly threatened to steal them- and parents, so that was fun. Next year I will take a picture! 

What else? What else? 

Oh right. The pillows. I'll just share this picture with you but these will definitely get their own post. 

My friend Taylor and I are making these for our moms and ourselves Christmas. They are so easy. So beautiful. So lovely. Here's one of them: 

Honestly, I changed the pin in the middle and it really makes it pop. I have made three so far-two in the blue and silver and one in red burlap with a cream flower-and they are just so great. I am hoping to get them all done this weekend and I will write a post just to them, I promise!

So that's what's been happening here. I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving. To paraphrase Bishop O'Brien, "When you are giving thanks for the turkey on the table, don't forget to give thanks for the turkeys AROUND the table." HA!

Monday, November 11, 2013

I need your help!

I have been busy, people, very busy! Not just with everyday cooking and cleaning stuff but with crafting! Sewing! Painting! Have I blogged about any of the things I have completed? Not even once. Have I thought about blogging about all the things I have created? All the time.  Hopefully the blogging part of this will happen vey soon. 

I have a dilemma for all of you and I need your help. The next pick from the lottery is to finish a quilt for my sister. The quilt top is done, all if have to do is get some backing material, quilt and bind the quilt. My dilemma is this: I have enough fabric leftover from the quilt top to sew together the back of the quilt. Do I use all of this beautiful material for the back of a quilt or do I buy more material for the back of the quilt and then make a brand new quilt with all of this amazing fabric.

Here is a sampling of what the fabrics look like that I will be working with on either the back of my sister's quilt or a brand new quilt. 

Tell me what you think I should do in the comments below!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Moms are Awesome (Part II)

Just a quick post today of some more stuff my mom made.

Some of these were made by her many years ago but she either got tired of them, couldn't find a place for them anymore or....who knows? I was very happy to give them a new home here.

The first two used to hang in her house. There is no date on them so I'm not sure when she completed them-I'll have to ask her. They are a nice addition to my family room.

Half of my family room doubles as a play room for the kids. Who am I kidding? My whole house is a playroom and the family room is just where the majority of the toys reside.

We originally saw this at Bayside Quilting  last year. I think she was feeling a little bad that she hadn't made much for my son (this was before the quilt she is currently working on), and I had originally intended to put it in his room.  But with the arrival of My Sweet Baboo in July, it made more sense to put it in the playroom.

She completed it last year but I hadn't gotten around to hanging it up so she did while she was here this summer. My mom loves to hang stuff-every time she is here I always have her hang a whole bunch of pictures and whatnot. Plus, she's really good at it!

I found the pennant at Cost Plus World Market! 

A fun map of the world!

I like all of the flags of the world as well. 

The kids like it and we have a lot of fun talking about all the different places in the world.

I was really happy to have my mom here for such a long time. She gave up five weeks of her life and in that time we organized my house, did a lot of cleaning and cooking, enjoyed each other's company and she got to have a lot of time with her grandchildren. I miss her but hopefully we will see each other soon!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Moms are Awesome (Part I)

My mom is pretty stinkin' awesome, folks! She came into town a week earlier than planned and stayed for five weeks. My house has never been so clean! My children so well-behaved! My garden so weed free!

The first thing we did upon her arrival was look at the stuff she had made for the new baby. I had originally seen these car seat wraps on Pinterest (naturally!) and sent her the link, asking if she could make one of these for me. She happily obliged-because she got to try out her new surger-and here are her results.

As you can see, the clasps for the car seat come through the blanket so you can wrap up baby but still keep them safe. It's still too warm here (and the baby is still a little small-I want her to have a stronger neck before I use this) but by the time winter rolls around, this will be great. Mom said this was pretty easy to make and plans on making another one for my cousin who is having a baby in a few months. The only change she made was she didn't use any batting-just two pieces of flannel. 

Here's my oldest daughter testing the whole thing out for me. She spent many a happy hour wrapping up her dolly and putting her in the car seat. 

I am very excited to use this in a few months!

She had this pretty much completed before she got here; all she had to do was see where the restraints were and then make the slits to accommodate them.

The other project she brought with her was a quilt that she was making for my son. There's some pretty cool things about this quilt but the best part: she started it 18 years ago! Procrastination runs in the family!!

This is what it looked like when she got here:
Twin size!

While here she added borders: 

I wish I had taken pictures of when she was cutting the striped border-she had this really cool way of sewing the fabric together and then cutting it so the pattern was now diagonal. You will just have to trust me on how awesome it was!

Look at how smart she was to make the patterns match! I never would have thought of that. 

Then she added the backing and batting and pinned all three layers together.

In the blank dark spaces she started to hand quilt stars:

She took it home with her and will finish it there. When I get it back, I will post the final product.

Anyway, it was great to have my mom here. She helped out SO much. She came away with 8 more projects to do (after making me promise not to let her buy anything more....that didn't work out really well) and I added five more projects to my list. 

At least this gives us stuff to do to keep us out of trouble! 

Thursday, August 22, 2013

New Baby!

Hi Everybody!

So, I'm sure you have surmised that since it has been silent here on Sewing By Lottery that I must have had my baby.

You would be right!

My Sweet Baboo was born right on her due date with not a lot of fuss or muss.

Just born!

About two weeks

About three weeks

She's now a little over a month old and with three kids running around, it's a little busy around here. I am trying my hardest to fit in some sewing (for my own sanity!) but I know that this time as a family is really precious and to not ask too much out of myself beyond keeping everyone fed, clothed and loved. :) 

I took a whole bunch of pictures of stuff my mom worked on while she was here-that woman likes to stay BUSY-so expect to see some of her great work in the next week or so. 

Take care and thanks for hanging in there with me!


Monday, July 1, 2013

Famous Last Words....

Ugh. In my last post I said, "...it should go pretty fast. Nothing super complicated."

There is nothing but straight seams and easy cuts in this quilt. No half-square triangles, no angled cuts. If you are a beginning quilter, this would be perfect for you. Yet somehow I have had the most difficult time with this quilt and I can't blame it on anyone except me. So annoying!

 To begin, apparently I don't know what a 1/4" foot looks like.

The foot on the right is my 1/4" foot. The foot on the left is not. 

I'm not sure why, but after sewing together 5 sets of a jelly roll strip and a background strip (about 42" long) something told me my seam was too small. I got out my handy-dandy ruler and checked....YUP. Not a 1/4" seam like I thought.

That may look like a 1/4" seam....

...but it's not. It's a little short. Short is not good. 

I take out all five of the pairs I have sewed together and put on the RIGHT foot this time. I'm zooming along, sewing my pieces together and then I realize....the thread in my bobbin is out. I "sewed" the same five sets I had just taken out back together without realizing there was no bottom stitching. I'm not even sure how that's possible, but I totally did it.

Ok, re-wind my bobbin with more thread. Get ready to sew-for the third time-these lovely pieces of fabric together. 

Where's the cover to my bobbin?

Seriously--where is it? 

Earlier, a certain two-year-old son had been playing near me while I was trying to get things back together and I had seen a little hand reach up onto my sewing table--which is a big no-no in my house. 

You DO NOT touch Mama's sewing machine. 

I had also seen said two-year-old playing with something near the heating vent on the floor. 

Oh no. 

Please, please, please, please, please...don't be in the vent. 

Thankfully, it wasn't. However, it did take me about 24 hours to find it. 

When asked where it was my sweet little Bubba would say in his tiny little voice, "I don't know Mama. I find it." 

Ok. The correct foot is on the machine. The bobbin is threaded. Let's sew!

Again, I'm sewing those five sets together and don't think that maybe I should check them when I am done with each to make sure everything is going swimmingly. What else could go wrong? 

Looks like my tension is not where it should be. 

It's almost kind of pretty-like maybe I was trying to do some rouching. 

What's really sad is it didn't stop at just one. 

Happily, I finally got my act together and was able to put together the strips. I wish I could say that this was over the course of just an afternoon but I think it was more like three days-three frustrating days.

Happy little strips waiting to be cut. 

Onward and upward right? 

It can't get much worse. I mean, how many silly mistakes can I make in just one quilt? 

Uh oh......

Monday, June 24, 2013

Back to the Lottery!

Now that I have completed the projects I wanted to for the baby-or at least to the point of sending them off to be quilted-I am back to the lottery projects! You can see them all here, here and here.


For those who are wondering, there is a tab on the website labeled, "The List." Very creative, I know. But it's the list I use to keep track of what's in the lottery. When I am ready to pick a new project, I use a random number generator found on the internet and that picks my next project from the lottery.

Anyway, the next project is.....

Another quilt!

I can't believe it; it's not that I don't like making them but it feels like I have made quite a few since the beginning of the year.

 I just went and looked through my posts since January and I really haven't made that many. I guess I was kind of hoping for something that didn't require me to stand at my cutting table for long stretches of time. I suppose that's the dark side of my lottery system-I don't always get what I want. 

Luckily, it is another jelly roll quilt-I love them so much-but it is my last one....until I buy another one!

It is for one of my sweet nieces and it should go pretty fast. Nothing super complicated-all straight seams and easy cuts. 

Here's the material I will be working with this time:

Happy fabrics for the happiest two-year-old I know!

I'll keep you posted and let's hope for smooth sailing!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Penant Wall Hanging

I'm not sure what exactly has gotten into me with this pregnancy--I have just been feeling really creative and have had lots of energy during the end of the second trimester and beginning of the third. Maybe she will be super creative, I don't know.

I first saw this quilt in Poulsbo, WA at Heirloom Quilts and loved it. I originally was going to do it for my son and make all the pennants in a nautical theme since that was his nursery theme. But......that never happened. Plus I found an awesome wall hanging for his room at a quilt store that went out of business, so that really worked out for me!

Instead, I made it for this baby. The theme for my oldest daughter's nursery was Peter Rabbit and my mom made some beautiful-absolutely gorgeous-curtains for her room. She also made a bumper and skirt for the crib which the new baby will use as well. Once I get those up, I will definitely post them because everybody should see just how talented my mom is and how gorgeous they are. For the new baby, I'm kind of going with a rainbow/Noah's ark/weather theme. I don't know. It all seems to go together and it makes me happy and that's all that matters, right?

The pattern for this quilt can be found in the book "Everyday Handmade." You can find it here on Amazon. The two women who wrote it have some really cute ideas.

That's a Jackalope stuffed animal, in case you were wondering

The pennants and clouds all cut out

I just love these fabrics!

Attaching the fusible interfacing I really like my shadow!

All the clouds and pennants cut out

Laying it out to make sure it hangs right

I can't get over just how cute the fabric is!

This is another quilt that has been sent to my husband's cousin to quilt for me as well. I thought about doing it myself but she will do such a great job and save me a lot of aggravation! I should get this and the baby quilt back from her by  the beginning of next month and I'll post updates.

That's it for the things I wanted to make for the baby. I'll go back to the lottery and see if I can squeeze in at least one more project before she makes her grand arrival!