Sunday, March 10, 2013

iphone sleeve with applique

I bought my first iPhone a few months ago.  While it has a rubber cover, I still don't like the fact that I can't safely toss it into my bag or purse without it getting scratched, cracked or dinged.

So I decided to try making an easy sleeve/cozy/cover for my phone and thought I'd make one for my sister's phone as well.

She is a Fleetwood Mac fan.  In fact, I think she should have been a teenager in the '70s because she is the queen of classic rock.  We are going to see Fleetwood Mac next month, so I had an idea for her iPhone sleeve that I thought she might like.

First, I drew a little cassette tape (sadly, none of my third graders know what this is).

I cut the paper into individual pieces and traced them onto a sheet of Wonder-Under I love that stuff!  

Then I pressed each individual piece onto fabric to create some iron-on applique.

I used two strands of embroidery thread to hand stitch around the borders (which is incredibly relaxing, but time-consuming!) and also added some extra details and embellishments to make it look more realistic.

Finally, I sewed a simple sleeve for her phone.  Safe and sound.

For my phone sleeve, I drew this little gnome, but have yet to get started.  Daylight savings threw me for a loop today, so hopefully I'll get started on it sometime this week...

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

snow day

It feels good to have a day off.
It feels even better to be productive on that day off.

I woke up this morning and made some bibs with matching washcloths.  I can't wait to give these as gifts to the mother-to-be.   

For the bibs I used this pattern from Sew She Sews.  For the washcloths, I hastily measured 8" x 8" squares.  Next time I'll try cutting them a bit straighter.

I found a white beach towel that I had never used.  While soft as velvet, it had a silly logo.  So it was just another item headed for the Goodwill pile.  However, it works out perfectly as a backing to all the bibs and washcloths, and I'm glad I could repurpose it.

In hindsight, white thread would have been more aesthetically pleasing (duh!).

I have a little left over, so maybe I will add burp cloths to finish the sets.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

quilted bib with recycled backing: a tutorial

Since making a recent quilt top for a friend's baby girl, I thought it would be nice to include a matching bib as part of the gift.  I wasn't sure if it was worth the time to quilt such a small item, but in hindsight, I'm so glad I did.  I was also happy to recycle an old pink towel, which makes a bright and absorbent bib backing.

Start by gathering the "ingredients" necessary for your bib.

You will need:
  • a reusable towel  -11.5" x 14" rectangle
  • batting -11.5" x 14" inch rectangle
  • 30- 2.5" x 2.5" fabric squares (if you're looking for a quicker finish, use mini charm packs)
  • disappearing tracing pen/marker
  • pins, thread, scissors
  • velcro or snap enclosure
  • point turner or other object to poke out corners/edges of bib
Lay out your fabric squares to your desired design.  I tried to follow the pattern of my larger quilt as much as possible.

Then, sew your squares into six rows using a 1/4 inch seam allowance.

After sewing the rows, use an iron to press open your seams for a crisp and clean appearance.

Sew your six rows into three thicker rows, then press all seams open again.  Finally, sew your three rows into one small quilt top, pressing your seams open one final time.  I pinned my rows together as I went along to keep everything straight and secure.

Like a regular quilt, I pinned my "top" to the piece of batting to keep it in place while sewing.

Then use your walking foot to quilt the top to the piece of batting in whatever pattern you wish.  In this case, I preferred basic straight lines in a vertical/horizontal grid.  Pull the pins out as you finish.

Trace a pattern for your bib.  I found and printed half a dozen free bib patterns online before selecting this one by Sew She Sews.  I traced one half using an erasable marker, then flipped the pattern and traced the other side.

Once traced, carefully cut out the bib along the line.

Place the bib right side down onto your towel.  Pin the three layers together to keep them secure.

Use your machine to stitch around the outer edge of your bib, leaving a 3-inch opening to turn it inside out later.

Cut out the bib again, being careful not to cut your stitching.  Leave a longer tab at your opening for easier finish later.

Turn your bib inside out, using a point turner or other tool to ensure that all corners/edges are pushed out.  I used my marker, and it seemed to do the trick.  Then, securing the longer tab on the inside, carefully pin your opening closed.  I pressed mine to flatten the edges, which made sewing it much easier after.

Sew around the very edges of your entire bib, making sure to reinforce the opening.

Finally sew in velcro or attach snaps or ribbons as closures.