Monday, October 30, 2017

Book Review ~ Complete Book of Sewing Techniques

I was given a chance to review the Complete Book of Sewing Techniques by Wendy Gardiner. She is an Internationally-accredited sewing machine expert and she has been an editor of Vogue Patterns, Sewing World and Sew Hip and has produced books and DVDs on sewing. She also teaches and is a regular guest presenter on shopping channels Ideal World and Create & Craft TV.

Her book contains more than 30 essential sewing techniques ideal for beginning sewers as well as those who already know how to sew.

Are you interested in how to lay patterns onto fabric or how to alter patterns?

or, you might be interested in different ways to finish the edges...

Perhaps, you might want to know how to sew darts to create more nicely fitted clothing.

Wendy includes useful information of fabrics, threads, needles and other equipment. Her clear directions and the helpful pictures will help you in your sewing adventure!

Monday, October 23, 2017

Orange Peel Quilt Finished

I finished piecing this quilt a while ago, but I was debating whether to hand quilt this, machine quilt it myself, or ask someone else to machine quilt it for me... I finally decided to go with choice #3. I dropped the quilt top off at my friend's who does machine quilting. I happened to have enough bias tape I made a long time ago and the colors went perfect with the quilt. Don't you love when things work out like that? I quickly binded the quilt and took advantage of a beautiful Autumn day to take some pictures.

I spread the quilt to take a picture and my dog must have thought that was an invitation for him to sit and chill...

He kept coming back no matter how many times I would shoo him away. I decided to change the location to the near by bridge.

There were some beautiful yellow and orange leaves still on the trees that gave me a gorgeous background for my picture. I love how this turned out and it motivates me to finish more quilts I have started this year.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Bell Sleeve Dress for My Preteen


I don't know if this is just me, but I feel like there are so many cute baby and toddler clothes everywhere I go, but when it hits a certain age group; preteens is where I have a hard time finding pretty clothes. Especially nice, modest, stylish dresses that don't cost an arm and a leg!

I decided to make one for my daughter, but none of the patterns that I saw caught my eye either. It was time for me to roll up my sleeves and tweak a pattern I already had and create a dress for her.

I found some pretty fabric at Joann's a few weeks ago and fell in love with the color and texture. I thought I could create a feminine & pretty dress with this. The lady at the cutting table told me that the bolt came in earlier that week and it is selling fast... on Friday I finished off the bolt. Phew... I am glad I decided to stop by to check what they had.

I love love the bell sleeve and I am so glad she did too. She came in to my room when I was just finishing up with the sleeves. The first thing she said was "WOW!! This is so pretty, how did you do that?!" (while touching the sleeve)


I was going to bed because I was at a good stopping point, but looking at her excited and happy face made me change my mind. I used up my extra fuel for that day and finished up her dress, so she could wear it to church on Sunday. I quietly went in her room and hung the finished dress where she could see it the first thing in the morning. I was feeling giddy; just like when I am leaving a present in the kids' rooms the night before Christmas. :)









Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Ruffle Sleeve Top Mini Refashion


I found this top at a local TJMAXX a couple weeks ago. Was it love at first sight? Yes, but when I tried it on, I loved everything except the length of the sleeves. The sleeves were very long (I actually have long arms and they were still too long for me) and the end seam was touching my knuckles. It looked a little out of balance and like it was pulling me downward. I still bought the top and decided to alter it a little.

I took off the bell sleeves and looked at the straight sleeves. They are nice, I thought, but I also liked the look of the "bell", when it was placed in a higher location...

I know the ruffle or bell sleeves are trending right now, but for how long? I just didn't want to do a refashion for something I will only wear for a few months. So, here is what I decided to do.

I sewed the seam of the sleeves, so I can wear it as a straight sleeve styled shirt.

Then, I added the bell sleeves on top of the sleeves with slightly larger stitches.

This way, I can enjoy the bell sleeve top for a while and when I am ready for a change, I can simply unpick the stitches and change it back to a straight sleeve top. Sewing with larger stitches makes it easier to do this.

I have a few things in my closet that need a transformation like this. I might start sharing these mini refashion posts more often!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Skirting the Issue/ Free Skirt Patterns


Liz and Elizabeth of Simple Simon ladies started Skirting the Issue years ago and I have been participating by providing free patterns for people to use online. You can visit the link to find out more about it.
Basically, it is a month long event that they host every July where you are invited to sew along with them and other participants to make skirts (and quilts and pillowcases) to donate to the local Foster Care centers for the girls (and boys) to receive just in time for back to school.

I didn't have time to create a new pattern this year, but here are a couple links to my free skirt patterns for you to use.

My ultimate favorite Insta Pocket Skirt pattern. Coordinating the fabrics to create this skirt is very fun and you can make pockets with a breeze.


If you are looking for something more simple to make, this Half Circle Skirt might be perfect. I made a couple of those for my daughter in different colors and they were her most favorite skirts. I need to make some more since she has grown.


I hope these tutorials will be useful to you and many girls in foster care who will be receiving new skirts to wear for the upcoming school year!


Sunday, July 2, 2017

Tiny Tin Sewing Room Restock


Hello! I can't believe it is already July! More than 1/3 of my kids' summer vacation is over and as much time as I spend with them, I am also working.

I started selling my Tiny Tin Sewing Rooms sometime in September last year... not really expecting them to do as well as they did. Then, October and November rolled in and I could not keep them in my shop long enough and that lasted throughout December. I will make a dozen or so and put them in my shop and they sell out in a day or two (Thank you, thank you so much to those of you who ordered them! I appreciate your business!). That never happened to me with my other products I sold in the past and I was not ready for that. Consequently, I didn't have tin Rooms to sell for a week or two while I was making more and some costumers were waiting. Even though I don't have a business degree, I know that is not good way to run business.

But, I want you understand that, I am not a large corporation who has manufactures overseas. Those individual tiny tin rooms are handmade by me one by one. Also, I don't have large funds to waste on surplus materials.

This year I want to do it a little better by making more and preparing for the Christmas season early and hopefully I will have enough to restock right away.
Are you the type to start shopping early for Christmas? If you have family or friends who love to sew or quilt they might LOVE the tiny tin sewing room! I just added 22 new tin rooms to my etsy shop. Please hop over and check them out. :)

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Sewing Some New Skirts 2

As I mentioned in the last post, I made another skirt for my daughter. One of the exciting things is that I used the fabrics from my stash and didn't buy any new fabrics for either of the skirts. Yay!

She loves both of the skirts I sewed for her and we had a fun time taking these photos. I told her that I am going to sew a couple more skirts for her but she looked at me and said, "Mom, I am not being ungrateful or anything, but I don't need any more skirt. I have enough."

"But... but...I already have fabrics for it and I think it will be fun for you to have more during the summer since you are not going to wear uniforms"

With a very serious look, she said, "Mom, I really don't need anymore".

"OK, I guess I respect that... are you sure??", I said playfully.

She just looked at me but didn't roll her eyes.

Fine. I am not going to sew any more skirts for her this season, but what she doesn't know is that this mama is going to sew a Summer dress for her soon. Hehehe.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sewing Some New Skirts

One day, Rachel and I took inventory of her closet and found out that she out grew many clothes. Not so much of the tops, but pretty much all the skirts that I made for her a couple years back. I have been looking for some skirts to buy at the stores, but they were all too short for my (and her) liking. I promised her that I would sew some skirts for her and that's what I started doing. In the previous week, I cleaned out my fabric closet, so I had a pretty good idea of what I had and this variegated pink fabric seemed like a perfect fabric for her.

I used Simplicity pattern 8106 as a base and tweaked a little, added a cotton liner which gave the skirt slightly more body. It was very simple to make and the best part is that she loved everything about the skirt: I mean, the fabric, style and length! I am going to make a couple more skirts with the same pattern before I move on to making dresses and other items.

It is so cute for her to ask me to make a skirt. I don't know how long this will last but I am willing to sew more skirts every time she grows out of them. :)

Monday, May 8, 2017

Tiny Tin Teacher's Corner is Back in the Shop!


Hello! This is a quick shop update post for Tiny Tin Teacher's Corner. I just added 5 Teacher's rooms to my etsy shop. I was making more but, I realized I needed to order some parts online and they will not be here until next week or so... if you are interested, please hop over and see what is available right now. :)

In the meantime, I am working on some more Tiny Tin Sewing Rooms. I will be adding them to my shop this week.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Hexi Log Cabin Denim Purse

 
My family and I had some old jeans that I almost took to a thrift store to donate. Then the wheels in my head started spinning and I came up with this Hexi Log Cabin Denim Purse.

I had a couple denim tutorials in the past, such as the Denim corsage and Denim Necklace. This purse was a little more labor intensive, but the result is very rewarding to me. I just cut out a bunch of strips and some small hexagons. Then, made a Hexi log cabin with them and turned it into a purse.

I made a ribbon to accessorized the purse using Anna Maria Horner's Lou Lou Thi Clippings Passion I already had. I love how it turned out!

If you have some jeans you are thinking about tossing, this project might be a fun one to try. :)





Thursday, March 23, 2017

Epic Mom Day!



I hope everyone is having a better day than I have been having. It is kind of a lengthy post, but here is what happened.

I picked C up from school this morning to take him to his orthdontist appointment. After that, I dropped him off at school. I was doing grocery shopping and going to take care of various errands, then my phone rang...it was M

M: ... Mom, I think I broke my thumb...

Me: What!? How!?!

M: I was in gym class...

Long story short, I went back to the school and checked him out. We got in the car and I was calling to see if we could make an appointment right away with our doctor. Then, right after I hung up My phone rang. It was from R.

R: Mom... I am not feeling well, I have chills and am aching all over...

You are kidding me! It was kind of humorous at this point and made me laugh a little. I made a phone call to cancel my 1:30 prosthesist appointment and went straight to school to pick her up and we went home to situate her. I felt bad to leave a sick child with a fever, but I needed to take M to take care of his thumb.

Yup. After the X-ray we confirmed that his thumb was indeed fractured. This boy fractured his pinky a few months ago and we were at the doctor's office last week for his injured hip from his Martial arts! On the way home I had to fight the urge to stop by at a store and buy a BIG roll of Bubble wrap and duck tape and just wrap him up so he won't get injured! Argh...

We picked C up from school and came home and all is well for now.
It was definitely a crazy and chaotic day, but I am so grateful that I was able to be there for them. A mom's job never ends and I know I will miss days like this once they are grown and gone even that may sound crazy.

M's casted hand is a symbol of "job well done" or a "pat on the shoulder"for my effort today.
You see, he is giving me a thumbs up!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Shop Update


Hello! I added 12 new Tiny Tin Sewing Rooms on my etsy shop today!
I don't like making the same thing over and over again, but making these Tiny Tin Rooms is so much fun and I never get tired of it. I think because they are all different. I love looking at miniature items or tiny findings and wonder how I can incorporate them into the rooms and let my imagination go wild.

I hope you enjoy looking at them as much as I have fun making them. :)

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Tiny Tin Teacher's Corner is in My Shop


It's been a while! I finally got better from the flu and with being busy... well, being a wife and mother consumes most of my waking hours on top of my church volunteer duties. It is very tricky to find the time to sit down and enjoy my creative hours, but I was able to make some progress on some Tiny Tin Teacher's Corners!

My sweet and talented friend Christie of Lemon Squeezy Home created the graphic on the left side of the tin for me. Thank you so much!
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There was very positive feedback last time I posted on my blog and Instagram, but I didn't want to make too many. There are a limited quantity of 6 this time. I might make more but it depends on how they do in my shop. They are fun if you are a teacher, or better yet they will make a great gift for a special teacher in your life.

There are many elements that I like about these Tiny Tin Rooms, but I must say that my favorite part is the cute little apple. :) Let me know what you think!
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