Category Archives: Awwwwww CUTE!

This is me.

That’s exactly what I thought when I saw today’s xkcd. I could very well be the “professor” teaching this class — or maybe the respectful student whose words appear at the bottom of panel five.

“If a wild bun is sighted, a nice gesture of respect is to send a ‘BUN ALERT’ message to friends and family, with photographs documenting the bun’s location and rank. If no photographs are possible, emoji may be substituted.”

(For those of you unfamiliar with this comic, the above quote is the bonus bit revealed when you *hover your cursor over the strip. That particular feature isn’t available in the embedded strip, but I cared enough about you to copy it out for your continued amusement. You’re welcome.)

I’ve been a big fan of this strip for years, though I admit I don’t always understand the ones about math and computer programming. The comic’s creator, Randall Munroe, also has a second series called what if? which offers “serious scientific answers to absurd hypothetical questions” such as “Could a bird deliver a standard 20″ New York-style cheese pizza in a box? And if so, what kind of bird would it take?” or “How much force power can Yoda output?” Explanations are accompanied by graphs, mathematical formulae, and amusing illustrations. If you check it out, don’t forget to hover your cursor over the illustrations. Each one has another bonus message/caption. The archive is at http://what-if.xkcd.com/archive/. I’d put a link here, but WordPress won’t let me do more than one link per post, for some reason. Weird.

*For those of you viewing the strip on your phone, you can still access the bonus message by holding your finger down on the image as if to right-click on it. BratzBasher figured that out for me. Aren’t kids smart?


More Upcycled Jackets — and a dress

As promised, here are three more projects that I completed for the fundraiser’s silent auction. I don’t know what people wound up paying for them because I wasn’t paying attention to the auction sheets at the end, but I doubt any of them went for less than it cost to make. In the end, I had three jackets and a baby dress. (See previous post for jacket #1, which turned out to be my favorite.) As usual, you can click on any image to enlarge it.

Floral Patch Jacket:

Floral Heart jacket

The graphic was originally off-white with a navy blue outline of the flowers, but I colored it in with fabric markers. The colors were pretty saturated at first, but I ran it through the wash to get this cool watercolor effect before the ink fully set. Yeah, I totally did that on purpose. Can’t you tell? Trust me — it looks way better now.

Frozen Jacket:

Frozen jacket

I found the t-shirt I used for the patch at one of our local Goodwill stores. There were about a dozen of the same shirt, and all of them had the same manufacturing defect: patchy lettering. The letters were originally a thick, sparkly turquoise. I embroidered over them with a satin stitch, and they look better than the original would have, I think. I also embroidered a large snowflake at the top of each sleeve. I’d purchased some snowflake iron-on patches from Hobby Lobby, but I decided that they didn’t really work after all. I think this jacket turned out great. There were a couple of moms in a bidding war over it — don’t know how heated. I heard the winner’s little girl wore it almost the entire next day. That made me happy.

Fairy Dress:

Fairy Wings dress

I found this dress at Hobby Lobby. On the front, I embroidered a pixie dust border graphic I found on the internet. On the back, I used the same colors to embroider wings. The outline of the wings and the stars from the pixie dust are in glow-in-the-dark thread. This dress was the most time consuming of all the projects, but it turned out pretty great. I used the top of a onesie to line the dress so the threads wouldn’t irritate the wearer’s skin. Sorry I didn’t get any pics of this one in the dark.

So those are my most recent, completed projects. Now I’m back to working on BratzBasher’s kimono. I’m using Simplicity 4080 for the pattern and some gorgeous brocade in a dragonfly pattern I found at JoAnn a couple of years ago. I’ll post pics when I’m done.


Upcycling, which is way better than chucking(…or “up”chucking)

I’m starting to think it might be a realistic goal to post once a month. We’ll see.

I wanted to show you a bit of what I’ve been up to lately. I have two major projects on my front burner: BratzBasher’s deluxe kimono and a new cover for my dad’s patio swing. Both of these have been temporarily put on the back burner so I can whip up a few things for the silent auction our church ward is having to raise money for youth camps this summer. It’ll be going on in the background during Trivia Night this Friday.

Merkin is in charge of the kitchens Friday night, and he has appointed BB as kitchen manager, or something. He is, of course, “executive chef”. He’s actually got everything organized like a real restaurant so that the kids on his staff can gain real job experience. He’s offering professional referrals to anyone who does a good job. But I’m not involved in the kitchen stuff, so I’m not going to elaborate on any more of that. Instead, I will show you one of the five projects I’m donating to the auction. It was inspired by BratzBasher’s Killer Rabbit jacket, and it’s already my favorite item. I hope other people like it as much as I do — like enough to pay good money for it and help send kids to camp.

I started with a basic denim jacket from Baby Gap (size 2T/3T), a graphic t-shirt, and a really cool iron-on applique from Hobby Lobby. Sorry, no pictures of the process, but you don’t need photos for this project because it’s super simple. Here’s my technique:

  1. Cut the front graphic from the t-shirt (I basically just removed the front of the shirt from the rest, so I still had plenty of margin to work with) and apply fusible interfacing to the back of the entire piece for stability.
  2. Trim the image to the size you want. It’s easiest to work with just a basic rectangle, so I used a rotary cutter and straight edge.
  3. Position patch on back of jacket and pin in place. I like to pin all over, not just around the edges, so that the piece really stays put during the next step, which is…
  4. Sew patch to jacket with a straight stitch all the way around the edge, leaving a margin of about 1/4″. When you get all the way around the four edges, keep going maybe an inch past the first stitch and then backstitch to lock everything in place. You can use matching or contrasting thread. I prefer to use contrasting because I like the “obviously customized by a cool person” look. Be mindful of the tag inside the jacket during this step. You don’t want to wind up sewing your care instructions face down onto the fabric. Depending on where your stitching and tag are, you may need to pin your tag up or down out of the way. In my case, I had to pin it down.
  5. Remove pins (except for the one keeping your tag in the desired position) and sew all the way around the edge of the patch again, using a zig-zag stitch. I set my stitch width to 4 and the length to 1. Again, I didn’t want it to look too professional. Center the zig-zag stitching between the previous straight stitch and the raw edge of the patch. Backstitch at the end, same as in the last step. Because the backstitching is more obvious on the zig-zag, you will probably want to start/finish in a lower corner. (In the photos below, you can kind of see where the stitching is darker/denser in the lower left corner.)
  6. Extras: I added the awesome “ROCK” applique I got from Hobby Lobby. I had originally thought it would go on the front, but the jacket had pockets on the chest with big snap closures. BB suggested I put it on the upper arm instead, and I think that’s much better. It’s an iron-on, but I never trust those — especially ones with odd shapes that could peel up around the edges, so I hand stitched it in place after ironing it on.

Here are photos of the finished product. I had a terrible time getting the flash working right, so the only one that’s true to color is the close-up of the ROCK applique. The lightning bolts on the patch are neon green, and the patch is hot pink with black, purple, pink, and blue print. Click on an image to see it full size.

girl's rocker jacket

left sleeve

Rock!

 

Girls Rock patch

Jacket: $3 (Goodwill); T-shirt: $2 (Goodwill); Applique: $1.99+ $0.16 tax (Hobby Lobby); Black Thread and Fusible Interfacing from my stash: FREE!

Total Cost: $7.15

Having the most rockin’ jacket on the playground: Priceless

It’s a shame I didn’t stick something like a dollar bill next to the jacket for size comparison. It’s even cuter when you realize how small it is. Maybe I’ll have to take another pic and update this post. So what do you think? I don’t think it took me an hour from start to finish. Stitching the applique on was the most time-consuming part, and that was because it was so intricate. I’ll post pics of the other projects when they’re completed. There’s even a little  dress with glow-in-the-dark embroidery. You’ll love it.


No snow, but we have snowmen!

Today, I bring you a photo of a project my library’s craft group did earlier this year. Of course, I was working on something else then, so I haven’t even started mine. Don’t even have the felt for it yet. I thought y’all might like to see it because it has a cute snowman and cardinal on it.

Snowman pillow

If this is your kind of thing, the pattern’s available at Better Homes and Gardens’ website.

One of our more prolific crafters brought hers to display at our first ever craft show. We’re hoping to spark interest in the various craft groups by exhibiting the numerous projects we’ve learned over the last few years. I was at the show for a couple of hours and saw quite a few people check it out.

Gotta go now. The kid is demanding my attention.


Ugh. I hate being sick.

sick Foo4

I’ve got a cough, sore throat, congestion…yeah, I’m sick.

Still working on Christmas, though.

Today’s image is a combination of two drawn by Ellen Jareckie of House-Mouse Designs.


It’s a cute thing.

My latest craft kick was inspired by how dang cute the things were, rather than need.  I found this pattern, though I don’t remember how.  I think I googled “felt crafts”.  Anyway.  I’ve already made two pair — not with wool felt, though, because that stuff is too expensive when you don’t even have an intended recipient in mind.  Here’s a photo:

100_0248

I should’ve put a quarter next to them, or something, but trust me when I say they’re almost as tiny as they are cute.  The pattern can be adjusted for any size.  These are newborn size (unless the baby is born with unusually large feet).  That pink band on the brown shoes is from an elastic hair tie that I found at the dollar store in a package of 5.  It’s just stretchy ribbon, and there was enough to do both shoes with just one.  The red shoes are button closure, but I think the elastic is more practical.  I did all the sewing by hand, but I suppose a more skilled seamstress could manage the assembly with a machine.

Coming up in the next post: a bracelet inspired by The Hobbit.


Crocheted Fox Scarf

A friend of mine has a cute, knit scarf that looks like a fox has wrapped itself around her neck.  She wondered if there was a crochet version of the pattern because she has friends who crochet rather than knit.  I decided I might be up to the challenge of figuring it out.  It took me three attempts and an internet search for how to crochet a triangle, but I finally finished it.

fox scarf thumbnail

What do you think?  I’m actually quite pleased with it.  I’m not so sure about the instructions I wrote up for it.  I’ve never tried to write a pattern before, and I haven’t read a pattern in a while.  If you’re interested in trying it out, I’ve put it on a separate page here.  Let me know if I can improve on the instructions, if I need to clarify anything, or whatever.  If you try it out for yourself.  I’d love to see a pic.