Happy Halloween from our Weeping Angels

Happy Halloween!

Rob had the great idea a couple of months ago that the ladies should be Weeping Angels for Halloween. He’s even been teaching them to play Peekaboo by saying “Rawr!” instead of “peekaboo!”, which they are tremendously fond of.

So I’ve been spending the last two weeks trying to figure out how to make a decent Weeping Angel costume for toddlers. It had to be comfortable and warm so that they could wear it without complaining. And I had a feeling they wouldn’t go for elaborate face paint and wigs, so it had to be limited to just a costume. This is what I came up with:

Weeping Angel Toddler Costume

The costume is basically a grey shirt and leggings (so they wouldn’t get cold) and then an over-dress, and a pair of wings that I painted to look like stone.

Weeping Angel Toddler Costume

There’s Vanessa doing her best Weeping Angel impression.

Weeping Angel Toddler Costume

I didn’t count on how much Diana would love playing with her wings. She was pulling on those all evening, and they needed so emergency repair at one point. πŸ™‚ Fortunately, her grandpa had a stapler handy.

Weeping Angel Toddler Costume

And here’s Diana showing that even Weeping Angels like to get cuddles from daddy.

Weeping Angel costume wings

Here’s an Instagram shot of the progress on the wings. Basically for both the dress and the wings I started with a white costume and turned them to stone by dying them grey, then spattering them with black, white, and grey paint.

For the wings, since I couldn’t just throw them in the washing machine with some Rit, I used fabric paint that comes in a spray can.

We hope you had a Happy Halloween!

Family of Patchwork Bears

I want to share one of my favorite sewing projects that I worked on last month – this family of patchwork bears:

family of patchwork quilted bears

I had the great idea to make some little patchwork bears for the ladies as Christmas presents to use up a few of the scraps in my quilting stash. I patchwork pieced the bodies, arms, legs, and ears of the bears, and then embroidered eyes and a nose:

Yellow patchwork quilted bear

After I had made the bears for the ladies, I thought it would be a fun project to make one for Rob as well… so I had to make a Green Lantern bear!

Green Lantern patchwork bear

And, well, once everyone else in the family had a teddy bear, I didn’t want to be the odd woman out! So I made a Wonder Woman bear for myself.

Wonder Woman patchwork bear

I actually had a ton of fun designing the pattern and then making up the bears for all of us. I think I might start making a few more of these teddy bears for new babies I know. I designed them without any buttons or other things that parents will have to worry about, and it’s nice and nom-able, too. πŸ™‚

2013 – New Year, New Ideas, New Quilts, New Dresses.

Hello 2013! I know we just met, but I have a feeling we’re going to be besties. Let’s see if we can make some beautiful music together, okay?

I had a great time this year, and make some fun sewing and quilting projects:

Dresses

Retro dress from Butterick 5209.
Butterick 5209

Retro dress/jumper Simplicity 3673
Simplicity 3673

Finished Quilts

Log Cabin wedding Quilt
My Wedding Quilt

Disappearing Nine Patch Elephant Baby Quilt.
Kennadi’s Baby Quilt

Charm square baby quilt
Leila’s Baby Quilt

Cupcake playing with the Jungle Safari Peekaboo quilt
Peek-A-Boo Quilt

FInished Quilt Tops

Blue and white Japanese Quilt
Blue & White Japanese Top

Oregon trail quilt
Oregon Trail Top

2012 was definitely the year of the baby quilt! πŸ™‚ I never know what quilting projects will come my way, but I’m going to finish the Blue and White Japanese Quilt, and I’ve got a stash of finished tops that I’m going to send out to the quilter so that they can finally be in the finished pile. I’ve got another Japanese quilt kit that has been aging for a year now, and I’d like to get that pieced, quilted, and hung in the living room. And I also have a silk throw quilt that’s been in the making FOREVER, so that will get done this year too.

This year I want to finish at least three more retro patterns – two dresses and one blouse. And I think I’d like to try my hand at a pair of wide-legged, high-waisted retro trousers. I’ve got a year, so we’ll see if I get brave enough for that. πŸ™‚

I have a love/hate relationship with resolutions. Some years I love them, and they are great…other years, I stick my tongue out at them when the year is through. I’m reading my resolutions for last year, and it reads like someone’s list of random things to do, rather than good resolutions. So I stick my tongue out at you, 2012 resolutions.

I don’t know what 2013 will hold, so goals I make now could be inconsequential in three months time, and opportunities I never dreamed of could blossom down the road. Who am I to take energy away from possibilities, just to hold fast to old ideas? Instead of New Year’s goals, this year I resolve to approach life with the three values I want to instill in the ladies as possibly the most important values you can have. As long as I keep these in mind I think my year, ideas, dreams, and goals will turn out just fine:

Creativity
Tenacity
Courage

I hope you work hard to make your dreams come true in 2013!

New Tutorial – Sewn Yarn Textured Scarf

So here’s the newest craft experimentation I’ve been working on:

Great textured scarf of yarn with sewn sections

I wanted a new scarf with a bunch of texture, and I figured there must be a way to sew yarn together instead of knitting, crocheting, or knotting it. Guess what – I was right!

A friend turned me on to this website that is designed for sewing, knitting, and jewelry tutorials called Kollabora, so I decided to give it a try. It’s easy and breaks down projects step by step. Head over there and check out my new scarf tutorial!

 

My second retro dress – Simplicity 3673

I had such a good time making the last retro dress, I picked up a bunch more of the vintage patterns by Simplicity and Butterick. Next up – Simplicity 3673.

I took advantage of Rob’s Guy’s Night Out and cut out the fabric:

Cutting out Retro dress/jumper Simplicity 3673

I figured it would take me a few weeks of working in dribs and drabs, but this dress came together very quickly. I’d guess that it only took about 6 hours from cutting to hemming.

I learned a lot from the last retro dress, and this one went together much better. One of the problems with the last one was it was just bigger than I wanted it to be, so this time I went off the measurements of the pattern, instead of how my measurements corresponded to a size. I wanted a lot less ease than the pattern built in.

Retro dress/jumper Simplicity 3673

It turned out pretty well! It is definitely more of a jumper than a dress, so I was able to throw this sheer shirt on underneath. I have had this shirt for almost three years, and I’m pretty sure this is the first time I’ve worn it. Glad that I finally have something it goes with!

This was also my first adventure with an invisible zipper. It was quite a bit different than the standard zipper, but not as difficult as I expected. If you’ve been hesitant to try putting in an invisible zipper, give it a try! I bet it will give you some good results. πŸ™‚

What sewing projects are you working on?

Exploring Salt Lake City’s Urban Flea Market

This Sunday we adventured to downtown Salt Lake City to check out the Urban Flea Market!

Salt Lake City's Urban Flea Market

In all honesty, I was a bit hesitant to head downtown to it because I was worried that it would be the super-lame sort of flea market of knockoff purses and old salad shooters. Happily, I didn’t need to worry – the flea market had tons of cool stuff!

60's Retro Typewriters

Beautiful retro typewriters and cameras

Compartments of old metal type

Look at all these beautiful metal type pieces!

Box of Old Fishing Reels

Fascinating Ant Farm

I didn’t check to see if the ants were still alive. πŸ˜‰

Tower of old cowboy boots

Bottle Rack for Old Coca-Cola bottles

80's Robot Toy

We had a lovely time wandering around. Spent a great deal of time in a booth that had some cool jewelry and old china, but I noticed that all the table coverings were quilts (!!!). Most of them were older patterns and hand quilted, so I had a great, but brief, chat with one of the owners, who was the one who quilted them! Fabulous!

Retro Toddler Romper Pattern

In the end it was a surprisingly successful trip. Rob picked up a couple of Norfolk & Western train pieces. I stopped by a booth that had a box full of retro sewing patterns, and I picked up this cute one in a toddler size. I think the little ladies will love it!

If you have the time, visit Salt Lake’s Urban Flea Market – It’s only once a month, and it’ll close down for the winter, so your last chance to check out all this cool stuff will be October 14!

Sewing – My first retro dress!

As you can see from flipping through the blog, I’m a bit of a quilter. I do the occasional other crafty stuff, but the overwhelming majority of my crafting is quilting. But this wasn’t always so. Back in junior high and high school I took sewing classes, and sewed quite a few outfits. And then in my 20’s I always made my own bellydancing costumes. But somewhere in the past few years, I’ve slowly moved away from sewing. It’s time for a change! So I decided to sew a dress:

My first attempt at sewing a retro style dress.

I forgot how long it takes to sew a dress! Sheesh! Probably about 12 hours from pulling the pattern out of the envelope to ironing the final seam. But I’m pretty happy with the results:

Retro dress from Butterick 5209.

It was Butterick 5209:

After doing a bit of online research, I’ve learned that the ease between retro patterns and current sizing is a few inches different. So a pattern that is form-fitting (like this one) is now sized to be looser. Lame. So next pattern I definitely need to measure the ease so that I can tailor the end product a bit better. I picked up a few of the 40’s patterns from the Simplicity line… and I’ll be after a few more Butterick Retro patterns soon. Looking forward to making some more retro-styled clothes!

Bye-Bye October!

October always seems to fly by, doesn’t it?
I mean, this October has been super busy for me; still adjusting to a new job, got married at the beginning of the month, settling in to married life. I just haven’t had much time for quilting.
Besides, October means Halloween costumes! For the past two years, Rob has mentioned that I should be Wonder Woman, and that means he could be Green Lantern (His favorite comic book character. Hands down. Totally.) And this year I finally gave in. Which meant spending tons of time making our Halloween costumes!

They turned out pretty well, even if I do say so myself.

But anyway, I actually had time last night for some quilting! Hooray! I’m hoping that November can be a nicely productive month on the quilting front. Hopefully I’ll have progress pictures in the next few days. Hope you’re doing well and finding time to quilt!

Animals Around the World!

I was in the fabric store the other day, standing in line at the checkout, and I noticed this cute little fabric book, Animals Around the World.

Well, my niece had her first birthday just the other day, and I figured this would be a great birthday gift. Fun stuff for little eyes to look at, mom and dad can teach her animals, and she can grab it and bonk herself on the head with it, and not get hurt. πŸ™‚

It took about three hours from start to finish. It was pretty easy, except that the panels for the pages weren’t exactly the same size and shape. Some of them were on a bit of an angle, so there was a large amount of pinning and pressing involved to make it fit.

But I’m happy with how it turned out. πŸ™‚ And it was a refreshing non-quilt project to renew my brain a bit.