bad dog!

So, sometimes our good dog ...
...can be a bad dog... (doesn't he look hard-core here?)
Well, since we used to (pre-baby) allow Gimli to chew up stuffed toys that we bought specifically for him, he thought he would take the opportunity to chew up baby's stuffed doggie (actually, I think it really is a dog toy, but it was like 3 bucks at TJ Maxx and I thought it was cute--for baby--not for doggie). Anyhow, the other day, stuffed doggie turned up looking like this...
(I apologize for the photos...I seem to only have time to take photos and blog after baby is in bed and thus the lighting is not beautiful).
Here you can even see the blood from Gimli's mouth...eeweww
Puncture wound
So stuffed doggie gained a name ---can you guess??? it is real original....
Meet "Patches!"
He also got some embroidered eyes, which I thought I'd eventually get around to someday. "Stuffed white doggie" had no eyes!
Oh, how embarassing for Patches! Crotch out there for everyone to see!
Welcome to our home Patches! Sorry Gimli bit you all up, but LOOK now you have EYES!
Therefore, if YOU have a good dog who is sometimes a bad dog and chews up you children's toys.. don't trash 'em,just patch 'em up!
Did you happen to notice all the mileage I am getting out of hubby's shirts? If you missed it, click here and  here.


a few more fabric flower ideas and how-to

Here are some flowers I made for the some "spring" on our mantle. I did not cut them on the bias this time since I did not have enough fabric to do so. I thinik the edges make them rustic looking and since I don't think I'll need to wash these, it was fine (I actually might wash one to see what happens, but after Easter!) I remember my mom making fabric flowers for bridesmaids' dresses in the 80's (you know when flowers cascaded down one shoulder of the dress?)
Here's how I did it.
cut strips of fabric (mine were about 2-2.5 " wide and 14-16" long, but I did not measure). Like I said above you can do it on the bias (which I prefer) if you want them washable and un-ravel-abel or just along the grain.
Machine sew along one edge with the largest stitch you have.
Leave a little bit of a "tail" on the end of the thread, from which you will pull to gather the fabric.

Gently pull one of the threads to start gathering the fabric. Do not pull too hard. You don't want the thread to break. It will look like this once it is all gathered.
After it is all gathered stick a needle and thread straight through the bottom catching all layers.

Turn a quarter turn and sew through the other side. Repeat this a few times.

Clip some branches
Sew the flowers on the branches with invisible thread. Or glue gun them on, if you prefer.
Place in a vase and voila, you are done!  Pretty easy, huh?
Here are some "corsage" flowers I made.
This one is out of felt.  I just attached them with a safety pin on the back.

Here is the same kind as my pillow flowers.


sandwich wraps (with update)

I have been using foil to wrap my sandwiches for work so I could also use it as a place mat on my desk. It was very wasteful. I have seen these sandwich wraps around a lot, but the ones I saw to buy were the pocket kind and I wanted a "place mat" kind. I also thought, "I could make that!" but I did not know what to use for the liner since I did not want to use something toxic. Enter Towards Sustainability, an Aussie Mommy Blogger. She used a ZIPLOCK baggie!!! Genius! Please see her tutorial. Like she says on her blog, who knows what kind of chemicals are yet to be found in Ziplocks, however, they currently are food grade!
So I set out to make my very own sandwich wraps and I even made a snack pocket to match. They were so easy to make and I kept going! All 4 of my sustainable home-made-lunch-ware are from 2 one-gallon size freezer baggies—think of all the use we’ll get out of them!

Another pattern. Basically, I made these for almost nothing. I had the square patterned fabric and the Ziplocks on hand. I bought the below fabric last week in the remnant section for 50 cents!
Matching snack pack for dry snacks, like pretzels or Cheerios, or granola.....
Sewing around the edges after turning it right side out to make it lie flat.

After all 4 Velcro pieces were sewn on. And miracles of miracles- it works!

Now for the bloopers section: I made a few mistakes on the first one, so let me share them with you in case you want to try a wrap out for yourself. I fixed them on my later attempts. 1) I did not cut the plastic and fabric out square. It was 10”x11”. I don’t know why I thought that would work. 2) I drew the piece of bread on the plastic “square,” not diagonally –I should have followed directions! I decided not to even bother drawing on the other 2 I made. 3) I left a stray piece of thread between the plastic and the fabric.

The mistake I made on the snack pack was, I did not sew on the bottom piece of Velcro before sewing it into the pocket shape. Therefore, I could not machine sew it (as the pocket was not big enough for the machine to get inside. I had to sew it by hand instead. No biggie!
None of these things factor into the usability of the end product, thank goodness!
I have washed one of the wraps in the washer and laid it outside on a towel to dry and so far so good! I washed it on the delicate cycle. The other 3 are in the wash now. I stuck them in a lingerie bag and used the regular cycle...we'll see!
The REAL test is taking a sandwich to work! I am doing that tomorrow so I'll have to let you know!
P.S. I am changing fonts. The Courier was just not working for me! Trying out the Trebuchet.
UPDATE 03.25.10: The wraps I made were a bit to large so I will need to move the Velcro in a little more from the border. Perhaps about an inch so that it will tightly seal in the sandwich. Otherwise, I am very happy with my little sandwich wraps! I used the snack pack today to take an English muffin to work and it was a perfect fit! Very happy! And I have washed all of the wraps and the snack pack in lingerie bags on the gentle cycle and laid them outside on a towel or on top of the dryer on a towel to dry. The outside method was a tad faster, but there is the risk of the wind blowing them away since I did not hang them from a line!


more birds

I guess the my craft nest is making me bird brained! Here is a ridiculously easy project. Remember when I covered a Dollar Store bird with pages from the thesaurus? Well, while I was there I picked up 2 little ceramic birdies. Pretty okay as they are I guess... ..but better with paint right?
but not glossy like I envisioned, plus the brush stroke were showing.

So I spray painted one high high gloss white, which was sitting in the garage and the other satin magenta which was left over from my pink peg board.
Now they are 2 little love birds sitting on my mantle.


wordy bird

photo from A Lovely Place to Land
What do you get when you combine an old thesaurus, Mod Podge and a bird from the Dollar Store? I saw this project over at A Lovely Place to Land. The same week I saw this post I ran over to the Dollar Store just to pick up a couple of these birdies to try it out and I am very happy with the results.

I have not yet decided if I want to give him eyes yet. What do you think?
This little guy has been perched in my craft nest, but I think he may want to fly downstairs and check out the mantle for Easter and Spring!

Thank you Amanda for posting your creative idea!

Michael's $ bin

I scored at Michael's last weekend! First of all, I had been given 2 Michael's gift cards for my birthday last week and I went to Michael's with no plans about what I should get. I just wanted to get whatever struck my fancy. All of the below were from the dollar bins and either one or two dollars each! So exciting! I got several other things too, but the below things were very exciting to me!
Green polka dot packing tape! I didn't realize until I got it home that it matches my craft nest peg board!!!

I needed some toys for our son to play with on the air plane when we travel cross country. Requirements: small, lightweight, quiet and hopefully time-consuming! Michael's had plenty of toys for $1-2! I realize of course that I could have made the thread through trucks, but for one buck! It is not worth the time!

And a magna-doodle for $1!!! It's not the best quality, but again, for one buck...!? (I realize now that i forgot the "y" on voyage! oh well!) The green half circle is a turtle where kids can stick little self-adhesive foam "tiles" on the turtle's shell and stick the head, legs, and tail on the shell. I'm not sure if an 18 month old will get the big picture, but it will be fun and take some time. And look, it all fits in the shirt sleeve drawstring bag from last week! Another travel related accessory. I have been trying to figure out how to travel with a sippy cup of milk and keep it cold without having to lug around a insulated lunch box. This is an insulated water bottle holder with strap in white canvas. Not sure how to decorate it yet, any ideas???

Get yourself to Michael's!!!


drawstring bags from shirt sleeves

Remember those button-up shirt pillows from earlier this week (see below post)? Well I needed to do something with the sleeves and the rest of the shirts and I’ve been wanting to make some drawstring bags for traveling (keeping all those baby socks together, keeping shoes from touching my other packed items, having a lightweight bag from which to pull toys from when on the plane,etc). Well, I put those scraps to good use last night.

I kind of made up the pattern for each one a little differently and even put the drawstrings in differently in each one…learning as I went. I recall seeing Martha’s drawstring bags in her magazine last month (but could not find on them her website) and her directions are probably good (she is THE Martha, after all—maker of all “good things”) but I did not follow them. Who has time to follow directions when trial and error is so much more fun?

Here is what I ended up with.

Here they are re-arranged after baby walked over them.

We even used one today to pack our son’s lunch in when we went to the zoo! You can see that the sewing is a mite pitiful, but who cares? They are functional!

I will probably be making a bunch more of these. I have an awesome idea for one that I will save for later, so stay tuned! Not sure when it will come to fruition since I want it for a room that I have yet to decorate, but have some BIG ideas for!!! I am so excited, but I think it will have to wait a while since I will need some large chunks of time which, so far, I have yet to find! Oh how I wish that dang job was not in the way, but I could still make money!