I had to put this one under crafts because there’s actually no sewing involved!
My family does a Turkey Trot 5k run every year on Thanksgiving Day. We’ve been doing it at least the last 5 years, maybe 10. I’ve lost count at this point. Some years I run. This year I walked with my cousin since she was pregnant and the running aggravated things (as they will when you’re carrying another human).
To make things a little more “exciting” this year, we decided to make matching tutus! I looked at a bunch of different tutu tutorials online and then basically used this tutorial from DIY Projects mostly for the yardage and size of strips. We used elastic rather than ribbon though and of course a variety of colors, but it came out to approximately 6 yards of tulle per skirt.
- 1 yard of 1/2 inch elastic (or whatever is needed to go around your waist and tie it in a knot)
- 6 yards of tulle (feel free to mix up the colors!)
- Rotary cutter & mat
- Your hands 🙂
Use the rotary cutter to slice the tulle into 6 inch strips. I started using a rotary ruler for this to begin with but trying to layout the tulle, measure was too much bother so I just eyeballed it. Tutu making of this sort is not an exact science so it wasn’t really a big deal, made no difference to the finished product and went so much faster.
Cut each strip in half so that they’re about 25” long each. I had some minions to do this for me while I continued to cut strips. 🙂
Tie the elastic around your waist and then do pull over knots to tie it to the elastic. Repeat until tutu has desired fullness.
What’s a pull over knot? This is where you create a loop with the tulle (ideally at the middle of the strip) and pull the rest of the tulle through that loop so that it wraps around the elastic (or whatever you are tying it to). The tutorial linked above has some good photos of how to do it if mine don’t make sense.
Enjoy your tutu!
I get a lot of joy out of quilting and sewing, but most of the sewing that I do would be classified as “selfish sewing.” It’s sewing that I do for me because I want to. I don’t feel too bad about this because I work hard at my job and sewing is one of my two main outlets for relaxing and having fun.
However, in general, I do feel the need to give back to my community and I found that with quilting, I can actually do both. Last year I heard about do. Good Stitches. do. Good Stitches is a charity bee started by Rachel Hauser of Stitched in Color where quilts are made by groups to give to people in need. People can be either stitchers or quilters. Both types of contributors make blocks each month, but the quilters also assemble and ship off finished quilts as well. I figured it would be a manageable way to give back without a massive time commitment so I signed up to be a stitcher on the waitlist.
I was contacted back in June about joining one of the quilt circles. However, the circle was looking for a quilter, not a stitcher. I was a little nervous about the increased commitment as a quilter but I really wanted to be a part of this organization and give back so I agreed. The circle I was invited to was the Grace Circle whose charity recipient is My Very Own Blanket, an organization that gives quilts to foster children. One of my best friends recently started fostering children and I had learned from her about how hard it can be for those children. I’d read all the stories, of course, but it’s not the same as first hand accounts. For that reason, this circle seemed like a particularly good fit.
Through my involvement, I’ve met several wonderful women who are also a part of Grace Circle and I’ve gotten to try out a bunch of new blocks. The quilter for each month gets to pick the size, color, design for the block and sends it out. My first month as quilter was October so I’ll share my first quilt made for Grace Circle in a few weeks after I’ve finished it up.
In the mean time, here are some of the blocks that I’ve made as part of do. Good Stitches in addition to the one at the top of this post. One of the things that continues to amaze me is how cool the quilts look despite varied interpretations of the quilter’s request. The sum really is greater than the parts!
Right, so among the many things I’ve been up to recently . . . one of those was taking a chainmaille class. I wasn’t taking it to make armor or anything like that. No, it was to make pretty jewelry.
The first chainmaille pattern we learned was the 6 in 1. It’s pretty basic and I could use it to make chainmaille if I wanted to. But I probably won’t.
We just made a bracelet out of it.
The second one we learned was the Byzantine round. This was my favorite. I love the two colors and how round it actually feels. I may actually wear this one.
And for bonus we learned how to make scale maille flowers. Scale maille is basically plate armor stuff.
All of these was aluminum so very light and since it’s anodized aluminum, pretty colors as well. The supplies were purchased from The Ring Lord.
It was lots of fun! I hope I have time to make more stuff in the future. I may or may not have already bought some more rings 🙂
Despite not posting for the last . . . oh, 3 months, I have been actually been doing stuff. There’s been sewing and traveling and quilting and preserving and puzzling and dancing and probably more. Which is why there haven’t been posts. But trying to catch up on stuff now. Someday I’ll get this whole blogging thing under control. Maybe.
This one is a baby quilt for a friend who had a baby in August. It took me a little bit to get her the quilt (I originally intended it for her shower in June) but I had to get longarm time (and life time) to finish it.
I found this jelly roll of super cute flannel with little woodland creatures on it. I pieced sets of three strips together and then cut them into squares.
Then I laid out the squares in a grid, alternating direction.
For the quilting, I did some freestyle swirls following the pattern of the blocks. I love how the design really shows through on the flannel.
For the back I used minky because it’s so soft and cuddly for the babies.
They had yardage of the flannel as well so I picked up some of the striped one to use as the binding. Sewing flannel was a bit challenging — it liked to slide and the binding was no different — but it turned out okay in the end.
I ended up with some odds and end pieces that I put together to make a couple of burp cloths backed with minky.
It was nice to be able to include a little something extra that coordinated. From what I see on Facebook, the little guy is getting plenty of use out of his blanket 🙂
The fabric is printed by Spoonflowe
so it comes wrapped nicely.
I wanted something kinda “zen” that I could wear to yoga so I went for this gingko leaf design by lauriekentdesigns
. I was also trying to match a green top. I did not actually manage to match it, but I did like the print.
The leggings themselves went together in an afternoon. Maybe an hour? Tops. There’s only a few seams.
I ordered a medium based on the measurements on the website. I ended up having to take it in — everywhere. The crotch, the legs. But it’s always better (and possible) to take in than out. This fabric was Spoonflower’s performance lycra. I really like the fabric, but it’s got a lot of stretch. So next time I would probably order an extra small (for those of you thinking of ordering your own).
My only real beef with the pattern itself was that they recommend putting in knit interfacing in the waistband. Above is how I cut out the interfacing because I didn’t feel like printing and tracing the pattern. Maybe I used terrible interfacing. Don’t know. But it left it really wrinkled after it stretched the first time. It’s fine when it’s pulled up (sorta — but no one sees it usually):
But looks a bit odd when rolled down. Or maybe it’s just a texture feature 🙂
Please ignore that you can kinda see my panty outline in these photos. I usually wear it with a skirt or long shirt over top like in the first photo.
Either way, they work. I’ve since made the Sloan leggings again and not put interfacing in the waistband which works much better for me.
Here’s a side view.
Overall they’re good leggings. I’ve got a legging pattern comparison post coming up. But the features I like about the Sloan leggings are:
- wide waistband
- card pocket (I can actually fit my whole phone which is great when walking the dogs)
- extra shaping around the calf
I leave you with one last photo. I need to find something that matches them better . . .
Some more decoration for Halloween. I worked on a Halloween quilt this year (more details on that in another post). And using the leftover fabric, I decided to make a little festive table decoration.
The overall design was pretty simple. Just laid out the squares and sewed them together. After doing so, it wasn’t quite big enough to put the black around the edges using some black strips leftover from a kona black jelly roll. I mitered the corners! That was the first time and I like how it came out.
I used fusible batting to give it some bulk and then just sewed the backing around the edges and turned it inside out. I did a bit of stitch in the ditch quilting between the black border and the inside to just give it some stability. In hindsight, I realized I never sewed up the edge (was planning to sew around the edge) but it apparently didn’t need it. If I ever need to wash it, I’ll make sure to do it first though.
Here’s the back in case you’re curious. Pretty basic, but looks great on the table!
This year for Halloween we went full Star Wars. Minnie was Princess Leia and Max was Obi-Wan (at least that’s who I based his jedi robes off of. They were a little less than cooperative with the modeling this year than last year, but I think we still managed to get some decent photos.
I like this one because you can see her belt and hood.
His sash did not want to cooperate. Nor did he.
Unfortunately we don’t have any photos where you can see the hood on his robe. But it’s there.
And some behind the scenes of the styling:
My husband has one of those Apple Pencils to go with his iPad but he has a hard time keeping track of it, so he asked me to make him a holder for it that could attach to his iPad.
I actually made him two. One from leather and one from lycra. Personally I think the leather one came out a little better. I did a better job of tapering the leather at the point and giving the top piece slack to allow for the pencil. Plus the leather naturally has some grip on the pencil.
My leather skills aren’t perfect, but they are greatly improved from my recent bag making. I used some pieces I had in a large scrap bag from Michael’s.
For the inside of both, I used black lycra. I wanted some thing stretchy so I didn’t have to add additional elastic but also thin and smooth since it would be up against the screen. This seemed to fit the bill and did indeed work well. Bonus that it doesn’t need to be finished on the edges making it even smoother.
The second one was all lycra. I didn’t give the top layer as much give as the leather one because I worried about it being too loose and not holding the pen. Although I double interfaced the lycra on the bottom part, I should have given it a stable base like peltex. Next time . . . this is good enough for now.
Back when I was in 8th grade, you could still take home ec. It was the BEST class. We got to cook and sew and learn about color theory and did I mention, sew? Yeah, we got to sew for school.
At that point, I had already been sewing for fun for a while so it was like someone told me I could just have fun in school for a period. One of the projects was to pick a softie from a catalog of softies the you would make for a grade. You were allowed to buy extras if you wanted (of course, I got one — they were only $5 each for each kit!!). But this was the one I did for my school project. I got an A+++ (yes, three pluses) on it. 😀
Would you look at the detail and hand embroidery on that thing? All those little felt pieces were sewn by hand. Only the body was machine sewn. I’m quite proud of my little 8th grade self. And also pretty psyched that as a girl, I chose to make a computer. Although we had a computer at home, computer science wasn’t really on my radar as a possible field of study, but maybe the universe knew something I didn’t. 🙂
So, I’m a tad behind in posting. As usual, getting pictures from my camera to my blog always takes longer than expected. Here’s the block from Chapter 4 for April.
For this one, we did reverse appliqué. Above is after I based the green pieces to the back using quilt basting spray. I also starched the heck out of the top piece and the little pieces to make them easier to appliqué. I used some embroider thread to do the edging. I used the default width of 3.0 but next time I’ll definitely go larger. I had a hard time catching the fabric at times.
And here’s the block for May. She’s making them a bit easier for the summer months because people have more going on. And I totally appreciate that 🙂
In other news, Meadow Mist Designs has announced another mystery quilt for this year. I had such a fun time last year and learned so much that I’m definitely planning on doing it.