Sunday, December 17, 2017

3-D Printed Mailbox

It's the 10th anniversary of the ornament exchange so I 3-D printed a mailbox! I used a design I found on Thingiverse. It's not my first mailbox ornament, though it's a definite improvement, even though it's not technically an ornament since it doesn't hang. It was designed to be used as a bank, so it has a working flap so you can actually put things inside, which is awesome.

Door open

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Mini Fireplace Christmas Decoration

Since the book cart and then the bus, I have been determined to make Amanda an ornament that lights up. This is not technically an ornament since it doesn't hang, but I think this is as close as I am going to get. Unfortunately, you can't really tell the difference between the photos with the lights on and off.

Lights off
This ornament/decoration required more assembly than actual creation. I made the tiny stockings and the felt fire, but everything else is store-bought. The fireplace is from the doll house section of Hobby Lobby. I bought the string of lights first, determined to figure out something to do with them, but it's hard to create an ornament around a 9' string of lights and a battery pack that requires 3 AA batteries.

Lights on

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Pink and Purple Ornament

This ornament was made to match the triangle baby quilt. It's not quite an exact match to Claire's ornament, since my sister chose an L name for this baby and I had already used the rest of the L brads on previous ornaments. I bought these larger, flat, gold brads because that's all I could find. I don't love gold, but I think it looks fine with these fabrics. I was afraid the brads would be too large, but I think the bigger brads actually work better. I do miss the look of the embossed letters though.

Try making one yourself with this tutorial.

Saturday, December 9, 2017


I made this for Amanda for with the hexagon blocks her grandma gave me a couple years ago. Since the blocks were all hand-stitched, I hand-stitched most of it as well. (It looks fine on the front, but not so much on the back.) I attached the binding to the front by machine, and attached it to the back by hand. It's too big to be an ornament, but I'm sending it to her along with my submissions for our Christmas ornament exchange.

Finished size: 11.75 x 11.75"

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Triangle Baby Quilt

This quilt is for my new niece. Julie chose a more muted color palette than Claire's airplane quilt. I didn't love the colors at first, but I am really happy with the way it turned out. When Julie told me she wanted a triangle quilt, I bought a triangle template because I hate cutting triangles with my rectangular ruler. Fortunately I bought most of the fabric before we moved because we don't live anywhere near a fabric store now. 

I quilted it with a zigzag pattern similar to Claire's quilt. Julie wanted a grey binding, so I went with the same silver fabric as my last scrap quilt. Eventually I'll get back to the quilt for which I originally bought this fabric!

Finished size: 41" x 58"

Sunday, November 12, 2017

Stuffed Unicorn

A while ago, Claire found a scrap of fabric and announced to Julie that she needed me to make her a stuffed horse with a saddle. (The saddle was very important.) Once Claire found out I was moving closer, she was very excited that I could bring my sewing machine to her house. (Julie also started lining up sewing projects it wouldn't have made sense to mail me.) I started looking for a pattern and found one for Henry the Horse in Jill Hamor's book, Storybook Toys. Claire loves unicorns so we added a horn. It came out fairly well considering my lack of experience with 3D patterns.

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Jack O' Lantern Halloween Treat Bag

This is Claire's Halloween treat bag. The C is an iron-on patch. There were no sequined Cs like I used for the twins, and only one pumpkin. The pumpkin is actually a sticker. I bought it thinking it was an iron-on patch, but fortunately I realized it wasn't before I tried to iron it. This bag was also made in May, and fortunately the sticker is still attached, since I was worried about its continued ability to stick to fabric.

Finished size: 5.5"H x 5"D x 4"W plus handles

Saturday, October 28, 2017

Sequined Halloween Treat Bags

Halloween treat bags for the twins, made specifically to fit the miniature pinatas I found in the party section of Target. I bought the pinatas in May, because pinatas are a super fun candy delivery method! Fortunately I also made the bags in May as well, since another interstate move upset the craft schedule all summer. I found these sequined iron-on letter patches on clearance at Hobby Lobby. I love having initials on hand to personalize projects like this!

Finished size: 8"W x 6"H x 4"D plus handles

Sunday, July 9, 2017

Map Ornament

While visiting San Antonio with my parents, I bought a Texas Christmas ornament, and it occurred to me when I got home that I didn't have a North Dakota ornament. I was cleaning up my maps after our trip when I realized that a map ornament would be the perfect way to recycle a map I didn't need anymore. Fortunately, Bismarck is small enough that it fit nicely on this star! It is very similar to my rainbow ornament - just a wooden shape mod podged with paper and a grommet to finish the hole I drilled.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Penguin Stockings

My sister is having another baby in November! This meant doubling all the stockings I made earlier this year. I found these cute penguin brads and knew they would be perfect for stockings. The set also had blue and green penguins, so those may show up in later stocking designs.

The blue snowflake fabric was the only one I didn't have enough of to duplicate, so that will be for Claire this year, and the new baby will get a different design.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

Scrap Quilt #3

I started this quilt in 2015, right after finishing my last scrap quilt. Then we moved, and all the little squares got packed up. It is 25 blocks of 49 2.5" squares.

The Irish chain design is a little harder to see than I anticipated.

Close up of the design

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Green Boxy Bag

I made yet another bag! This one will go to the same little girl who is getting the orange purse. My mom got me this green fabric quite a while ago and I've never found enough matching fabrics to turn it into a quilt. The lining fabric matches the handle. The set of vehicle buttons I got for the car boxy bag included planes and trains as well, and I thought this little grey train button matched nicely for the zipper pull.

Finished size: 3.5"H x 4"W x 8.5"L

Saturday, April 29, 2017

Blue Heart Bag

Seriously, I can't get enough of this purse! (This is #6.) I love this orange version. It is lined with blue. I would make more with this orange fabric, but I'd need more blue lining fabric. It was surprisingly challenging to find a blue heart button, but I am very pleased with the glitteriness of the one I found. It is going to the little girl who received the blue birds quilt.


Saturday, April 22, 2017

Princess Bags

Claire loves princesses. My mom told me they were looking at princess fabric at Joann's and she told Claire that I could make her something with princess fabric. Then I get a text from my sister, "I hear you have princess fabric? Claire needs a bag for all her princesses." I clarified that I did not have princess fabric, but yes, I could make a bag. Julie sent this super cute princess print. We had settled on a wristlet design, but the size of princesses necessitated making the bag a little bigger in order to accommodate all the fabric princesses (hopefully it's big enough for all the princess figurines). When I called Julie to discuss dimensions, she asked Claire, "Do you want one row of princesses or two rows of princesses?" Of course she picked two. Since it was going to be so much bigger than a wristlet, I added d-rings and an optional shoulder strap.

The lining is a pale yellow with a strip of the same star print that's on the outside  
Starting dimensions: 12.5"W x 11"H
Finished size: 12"W x 8"H x 4"D

Saturday, April 8, 2017

Flower Purses

I had planned to send our twin nieces two of the batik bags I made for Easter, but then my mom asked for a third for the youngest of the sisters she babysits. Since I didn't have enough fabric left for another, I decided to make two more for the twins out of this floral print so the sisters would all have matching bags. This floral fabric is very Eastery, and I was pleased to find these perfect pink flower buttons.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Car Boxy Bag

After I made a bag like this for Claire last year, I commented to my sister that I should make one for Claire's friend Jack too. She said he would love it for his cars, and I knew the fabric from the car quilt would be perfect. However, I didn't have a wide enough piece left, and it took me awhile to brainstorm the idea of making a road to make it wide enough, despite that being the pattern of the quilt this fabric is from! I used an orange polka dot fabric for the lining and found a cute car button to use as the zipper pull. Orange would have been perfect for a bit more contrast, but the blue works too. I used my machine's letter stitch to stitch BEEP BEEP on the handle, since it also says BEEP on the fabric.

Finished size: 4"W x 3.5"H x 8.5"L

Saturday, March 25, 2017

Triangle Trees Quilt

Making a quilt out of this tree fabric has been one of my goals for the past two years, since I've had it for awhile. This quilt went through so many variations of the layout, and this one is definitely the most visually interesting. Most of my quilts don't have borders like this one. I was inspired to use this half-square triangle design by an image I saw at work. I made a quick sketch only to discover when I got home that I didn't have as much of the tree print as I thought, and I didn't want the size to be limited my that. I had exactly enough tree fabric to make 80 blocks. Then one of my cuts went off the rails, ruining one of the blocks. Fortunately I had this swirly orange to substitute in, and I made 4 substitutions for the sake of symmetry. Blue would have been a logical substitution as well, but when I got to the back, I was glad I hadn't done that.

I had two green fabrics I was debating between, then I used a completely different one, since this one was a much better match. I bought this green swirl fabric thinking I would need it for the back of the Bright Birds quilt, but I didn't end up needing it, so fortunately it found the perfect home in this quilt.

Close up of the front fabrics

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Pink Doll Quilt

I knew when I made the owl doll quilt that Claire did not have enough quilts for all of her dolls. However, this did not occur to her until she received the owl quilt. I decided to use the same fabric I used for the doll clothes I made for her for the this doll quilt. Then I gave her a choice between two sets of pink and green fabrics and she chose this swirly pink fabric over pink polka dots. I think it was a good choice! Unfortunately, I did not have enough of any of the three main fabrics for the back. Instead of plain solid pink, I opted for this chevron print, since it mimics the design on the front of the quilt.

Finished size: 17" x 21"

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Doll Skirts

When my sister sent me a photo of Claire's new doll bunk beds, I noticed Gerber Baby was wearing a white eyelet skirt that we had dressed our dolls in, and I knew the Velcro was coming off of it. When Julie asked her if she needed new skirts for her dolls, Claire said "I do need more." The skirt in question was too big for her new doll, Echo, and a bit snug on Gerber.

Echo has a white body, so Claire wanted a white skirt for her, and, because it's too big, the old skirt is long enough that it looks like a ball gown on Echo, so she wanted the new one to be long as well. I found this very convenient trim at Joann's that was the perfect length to turn into a skirt.

Claire wanted a blue skirt with hearts for Gerber. Conveniently, my machine has a heart stitch. Inconveniently, I couldn't get it to sew more than one heart before bunching up. All my plan Bs for adding hearts involved considerably more effort than having my machine stitch them on. I didn't see any blue fabrics with hearts, I ruled out applique, and iron on patches were too big. Fortunately, I found this set of tiny heart buttons that matched the fabric I had. Despite having different size waists, both skirts are about the same length, but this meant Claire thought the blue skirt was too short for Gerber, since Gerber is a bigger doll. I didn't realize she wanted Gerber's skirt to be really long as well!

Saturday, March 4, 2017

A Bevy of Batik Bags

I loved the purse I made for Claire so much that I made four more! It's a great pattern! After the owl doll quilt, this was the perfect way to use up the rest of this batik fabric! These are lined with solid pale pink fabric. Two will be going to the girls my mom babysits, and two to our twin nieces. Since they are going to sisters, I chose light and dark pink heart buttons so you can tell them apart.

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Sleepy Owl Doll Quilt

Claire got bunk beds for her dolls, so she needed a new doll quilt and a few pillows. I had a fat quarter of this owl fabric. There were other cute owls, but these were perfect since they look like they're sleeping. She wanted it to be pink of course, so it was an ideal project for this batik I've had forever and have been looking for ways to use. Julie reported that when Claire opened the quilt she said, "It has owls on it! This is amazing!"

The pillow forms are 5"x7". I stuffed them with leftover polyester quilt batting. I hate stuffing things, so they are a little lumpy, but it was a great way to use up batting! There are three because it's a triple-decker bunk bed. I love the little pillow cases!

Quilt finished size: 17" x 20.5"

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Bright Birds Quilt

I have had this bird fabric forever, and the green and pink dots possibly even longer. The green dots date back to at least the dinosaur quilt from 2010. At one point, I had this print in purple too, but not in the quantity I had pink and green, nor was it a bright enough purple to match this quilt. Purple is a tricky color to match, so I was relieved to finally find this purple fabric last year.

The back is perfectly pieced from the leftover fabric!

Finished size: 65" x 77"

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Library Due Date Card Bags

My iron-on image transfer sheets are my new favorite craft product! I have lots of old library due date cards and I realized that the image transfer sheets would be the perfect way to turn them into fabric products, particularly these little treat bags for my ND librarian friends. (I actually made 4.) I started by scanning the card. I thought a book titled "Fabric Pictures" was ideal for a fabric creation. Then I needed to add the date stamps. I decided to go with holiday dates. Canva had the perfect font for a date stamp, but when I downloaded the completed image, the scan was blurry. I thought I might actually have to stamp the cards, and I even bought a date stamp at Hobby Lobby, but then I got Adobe Illustrator at work! Perfect, except I'd never used Illustrator, so I had to figure out how to make it do what I wanted, and it has a million features. Fortunately, there are lots of tutorials! I was glad to have a project to motivate me, or all the features might have been overwhelming. I had fat quarters of this scripty fabric that is perfect for library-themed bags.

The lining fabric
Finished size: 4" x 2" x 6" plus handles

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Water Bottle Tote

Several years ago, I made a tote so my 32 oz water bottle would be easier to carry. This smaller 24 oz bottle is the one I take when we travel, and, after our Christmas trip, it was time to make this one a tote too since I was tired of carrying it through the airport by the tiny little handle. I was looking through my stash for plain canvas when I found this lovely patterned canvas left over from a little pouch I made for my mom. The blue coordinates quite nicely with the bottle, though the lining and handle are both green.

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Carhartt Stocking

Claire isn't the only one getting stockings! This one is for my brother-in-law. He works at Carhartt and sent me a couple Carhartt patches. I wasn't sure what to do with them, but while I was making stockings, it occurred to me that the patch would fit right on my mini stocking pattern, and wouldn't that be just a lovely holiday addition to his office! They are adhesive patches, so I didn't even have to sew them on!

Saturday, January 28, 2017

A Flurry of Stockings

These stockings will be for 2017-2020. Apparently I have a lot of snowflake fabric. The blue snowflakes have been used for ornaments, and the snowmen have been used in ornaments and a stocking. The green snowflakes showed up in my yo-yo tree, but this is the first time I used the red snowflakes, which is my favorite of the snowflake fabrics.

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