Tag Archives: sewing

More Christmas Crafts

It’s another crafty Christmas for me this year.  Here’s a felt pig ornament I put together for an advent calendar exchange that our library craft group will actually be doing next year:


I’m particularly pleased with the pipe cleaner tail.  I know, I know — what do pigs have to do with Christmas?  Well, I was challenged by the group’s leader to do a pig, so there.  I think it’s cute.

I teach the 11-to 12-year-old girls’ Sunday School class, and I have five wonderful girls in it.  I’ve made them all faith-hope-charity necklaces for Christmas.  Rather than do the traditional cross-anchor-heart design, I chose symbols based on Mormon’s words in Moroni 7 (in The Book of Mormon):

  • an angel for faith: “Wherefore, by the ministering of angels…men began to exercise faith in Christ….” (It’s interesting that I chose the green bead angels because I’ve read that emeralds can symbolize faith as well.)
  • a bird for hope: “…ye shall have hope through the atonement of Christ and the power of his resurrection….” (The bird represents spring, the season in which we celebrate the resurrection of Christ.)
  • a heart (of course) for charity: “…charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever….”

Here’s the finished necklace:


I’m including the relevant verses from Moroni 7 with each necklace.  There’s also a little tag by the clasp that says, “made with love”.  I think they turned out really well, but using head pins to turn the angel beads into charms was an exercise in patience.  I wasn’t thrilled with the outcome.  Then when I went to redo them later, I couldn’t find my package of head pins, so I used sewing pins.  That actually worked even better.  They were exactly the right size.  Go figure.

And finally, here’s a bookmark (about 4 inches long) that I made with a miniature, blue angel bead charm:


I’ve read that sapphires are a symbol of heaven and one’s devotion to God.  Interesting, huh?



Jeans aprons, as promised.

I have photos of two of the three aprons I made recently for a favorite things party.  We were to bring three of a favorite thing (purchased or homemade) with an approximate $10 value.  We wrote our names on three separate pieces of paper and placed them into a bowl.  Near the end of the party, we each took turns picking three names out of the bowl (checking to make sure we didn’t wind up with our own name or duplicates), and those women got the items we brought with us — after we explained why the items were our favorite.

I came home with a handheld (It had a strap so I could wear it on my hand.) canister of pepper spray, a homemade bar of lotion (similar to those you can purchase through Lush), and a bag that contained body scrub, cherry Twizzlers, and a bottle of Coke.  During the party, we munched on appetizers and traded ideas for favorite activities, date night ideas, local restaurants, etc.

My aprons were actually a representation of a favorite thing that I couldn’t package and gift away: the craft group I attend at the library.  The aprons were a project that I learned at that group.  I confess that the jeans for the two aprons pictured here came from Goodwill.  Normally I would balk at cutting up a perfectly good pair of jeans, but I couldn’t resist the bright colors.  The Christmas apron looks black, and I haven’t the means to fix that, so you’ll have to trust me when I say it’s actually a Christmas-y green color.


(The ribbon bows were sewn on by hand so that the usefulness of the pockets wouldn’t be compromised.)

Christmas apron

(I machine-stitched the patches, but they didn’t overlap across the pockets too much.  My favorite part is the row of miniature cookie cutters along the middle section.)

The third apron was made from a pair of ecru jeans.  I added a ruffle of polka dot fabric in shades of brown and a striped brown ribbon across the pockets and where the ruffle met the denim.  I had to replace the belt loops with the ribbon because the originals were poorly placed for my purposes.  (I did the same thing with the Christmas apron.)  If I ever get a picture of it, I’ll include it in another post — or maybe update this one.  It’s not as exciting as these two, but I think it turned out pretty cute.

But it’s such a novel idea!

Now that my crafting is done for the year, it’s time to clean up the front room to make way for Christmas decor.  Have I mentioned how much I dislike cleaning?  When I noticed that Her Ladyship (my dressmaker’s dummy) was stationed in front of the window where our tree usually goes, I suggested to BratzBasher that we simply decorate Her Ladyship as if she were the tree.  BB was not amused. I thought it was a great idea.  Think of the many sewing-theme ornaments I could add:

  • measuring tape garlands
  • spools of thread
  • scissors
  • buttons, snaps, and buckles
  • zipper rosettes
  • swatches of fabric
  • ribbon/elastic bows
  • everything could be attached with velcro
  • “Made by Mommy” tags
  • and many, many more!

So what non-tree item is in your house that could be decorated like a Christmas tree?  No, really.  I want to know.  Amuse me.

At last! The Dress:

Here are those pics of the wedding dress I worked on.  I know I promised them a couple of weeks ago, but I’ve been busy.  The second pic is a close-up of the shrug I made to go with it.

wedding dress front


She was a gorgeous bride.  I’d show you her face, but I don’t have permission to display her photo here.  Just the dress, so you’ll have to trust my word.

Now that I’m done with that, I’m…still sewing.  I hope to be done with the crafting by tonight.  I just have to finish some pj’s for my grandma and replace the zipper on BratzBasher’s winter coat.  She’s been using mine in the meantime, and I’m starting to miss it.

busy, busy

My dad and stepmom are coming for a visit next week, and I’m in a mild cleaning frenzy.  I actually tackled the worst room we have upstairs (aside from BB’s, that is): the computer/craft room.  It will be finished tomorrow, but the big victory came when I was finally able to close the craft closet doors for the first time in years.  Years, people.  This room hasn’t been properly cleaned since the last Harry Potter book came out.  I know because I made myself clean it before I would allow myself to read the book.  Also under the category of “good news”: I found my piggy pen!

piggy pen

Aside from the cleaning, I’m refurbishing a wedding dress for a friend.  She found it at Goodwill for an excellent price, and I volunteered to

  • re-secure beads
  • replace buttons
  • replace hook/eye closures
  • repair seams
  • add straps
  • raise the hem (she’s petite)
  • sew a matching shrug (minus the beads, of course — I’m not that crazy.)

I thought it would take me forever to do the beads, but it turned out that only a small fraction are loose — yay!  I should be done with that part in a couple of days.  I suppose I could do it in one, but that would require me to stop cleaning in the meantime.  Don’t worry.  I’ll post a pic when everything is done.

Did I mention I’ve caught a cold?  The darn high school football team is determined to stick to their no-loss strategy, and now they’re in the playoffs.  BB and the rest of the marching band had to play pep music and perform for the halftime show on Wednesday.  (Who schedules a high school football game on a school night?)  I bought BB some new long johns for the occasion, and they kept her toasty warm.  She recommends the Cuddl Duds at Walmart.  (No, that’s not a typo.  They really did leave off the “e”.)  I, on the other hand, caught a cold.  I’m hoping to beat it before the folks show up next week.  Wish me luck.  Oh, and did I mention that we get to do it all over again Monday night?  Yeah, another school night, another playoff game.  Sigh.  I’ll dress even warmer this time.


Jeans Apron

I love library programs — especially the crafty ones.  I recently attended an evening program during which we all made aprons out of old pairs of jeans.  Here’s mine:

jean apron

It’s really simple to make.

  1. Cut out the back of a pair of jeans or denim skirt.
  2. Cut a 4″-wide strip of fabric for the bottom.  Mine was approximately 22″ long, but yours may be longer or shorter depending on the width of your apron.  (I cut two strips and used one to back the first.)
  3. Sew fabric strip to bottom edge of apron.
  4. Sew bias tape all around the raw edges of the apron.
  5. Cut two more 4″-wide strips of fabric for the belt/ties.  I used the full width of the fabric, so my belt was approximately 44″ long.  The selvage on either end made it unnecessary to sew up the ends of the belt.  I just sewed the strips end to end and turned in the raw edges, but you can sew the raw edges right sides together and then turn it right side out.
  6. Add any decorations you want.

I got all my materials at JoAnn (though the fabric has been in my stash for a while now) — except for the jeans, of course.  They came from my stash of discarded clothing.  The daisies were originally fabric stickers, but I took the sticky parts off and added buttons.  The ric-rac came from the program director’s stash, but you can find it at any fabric store.

Merkin gets points for not laughing at the fact that I made an apron for myself when I don’t really cook.  Ever.

It was fun and only took maybe an hour to do — at most.  If you make one, I’d love to see a picture.


Sewing Machine Diagrams

I was trying to remember what the dial thing on the side of the sewing machine was, so I looked it up.  The term is “hand wheel”; however, I encountered two alternate terms for it when I encountered these two diagrams on Google search:


I love the tangled thread and the instructions for the foot pedal.


“Horn of Gondor” — Ha!  Ten points if you know why.