Friday, October 28, 2011

It's Halloween at my house!

It's Halloween at my house and I thought I'd share a quick project that was free.

I used the mouse templates from Martha Stewart to cut out a bunch of mice out of construction paper and some webs and another spider like the one I used for the Bleachy Halloween project.  
I just glued them to some left over packing paper cut to fit the garage door windows.  Then I used packing tape to tape the paper to the inside of the windows.  

Love it!

Now if I could just figure out how to animate the mice....

 Happy Halloween everyone!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Bumper Pad Tutorial part 2

OK let's do some construction on the bumpers.  I'm so excited! Get your inside piece, the piping fabric and your piping.  I'm using really small pipe that is paper constructed.  You can get cotton pipe at the fabric store in numerous sizes.  I've even used 1 inch pipe on bumpers before.  Huge but very cute.  Since these are for boys I didn't add a ruffle to the top edge but you could do that here at this stage.

Lay the pipe fabric right sides together along the top edge of the inside fabric.

Lay the pipe along the edge and fold up the pipe fabric to cover the piping.  You should have enough fabric to cover the fabric with extra for seam allowance.

 Stitch along top edge encasing the piping as you go.  You can construct the piping before attaching to the fabric but this method saves a step.

When you get to a seam of the  pipe fabric lay seam allowance open. This avoids bulk.
 Now switch your foot on your sewing machine to the zipper foot.  This allows for a tight seam along the piping.  Lay the outside fabric, wrong sides together, along the top edge and seam keeping foot as close to the piping as you can.  You can feel it with your fingers, but don't stitch over the piping.

 Now that the inside and outside are attached lay out the fabric and pin it to mark where the ties will go.

This is the step where you make the length right.
I lay the fabric at zero and mark at 28 inches.
Move the pin to zero and mark at 25.5 inches.
Move to zero and again mark at 25.5 inches.
Move it to zero and mark at 28 inches.
Move to zero and mark at 25.5 inches.
Last time, zero then at 25.5 inches.
Cut off the excess leaving about 1 inch for end seam allowance.

 Open the ends and cut one tie in half.  Pin about 1-2 inches from the top and another on the bottom.  These ties keep the ends tied together.  Stitch along the end edge backstitching on the ties to secure.

Turn the bumper right side out and where the pins marked the bottom edge is were you will attach the ties.  I start at the top and lay the middle of the tie on the fabric and stitch all the way down like this:

At the bottom fold the inside and outside fabric together like this:

Continue all the way around the bumper.

 Now it's time to cut the foam.  I cut 1 inch high density foam at 8 inches.
 Get out your batting and wrap each piece of foam loosely, covering both sides.
 I used to use spray adhesive to attach the batting, but it's not necessary.
 Stuff each section with the batting covered foam adjusting to keep it even and not bunched anywhere.

 Pin the bottom edge closed every few inches.  I usually don't pin that much in my projects but this time...  PIN PIN PIN!  You'll thank me later.

The last step is the hardest, but it's the last so when you're done, you're done.  Stitch along the bottom edge.  This is really awkward and I keep the unsewn part over my left shoulder as I sew (I've never gotten a pin in my ear so don't worry)  Go slow and keep the edges together and not bunched.  Now clip threads and you're done! Hoorray!

The places were you attached the ties are the natural corners for the crib with an extra section on the sides to keep the sides secure to the crib.  Tie the ends together, then attach them to the crib.

My cute nephew "L" in his monster shirt!

 My cute nephew "J" in his monster shirt!
Now you know how to make your own bumpers!  Good luck and send me a message if you get stuck.  I'd be happy to help!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Bumper Pads Part 1

In a previous time in my life I was a Professional Seamstress.  My specialty was bumper pads.  I've literally made over 100 sets in all shapes, colors, sizes, and designs.  If you can dream it, I've probably made it. I even made a complete set of bumpers, dust ruffle, and drapes for the guy who patented the flatscreen TV and his partner who wrote for the show Will and Grace.  (didn't know they were "partners" when I took the job but loved the results anyway.) 

 My cute baby sister had twins recently and desperately needed new bumper pads.  This will probably be my 4th set of twin bumpers.  I love making them!  They are a little work, but so worth it because they are totally customizable.  I am frequently asked to help make bumpers and thought I'd post my tutorial.  Personally this is the best way to make them and I'm happy to share.  So lets get started.

1 1/2 yards fabric for inside of bumper
1 1/2 yards fabric for outside of bumper
1 yard for ties
1/2 yard for piping
1 sheet 1 inch firm density foam
1 twin size high loft batting
Thread to match
3 3/4 yards piping (size of your choice)

Since my sister loved stripes that's what I did.  Kind of in strip quilting fashion, I cut several strips, sewed them together, ironed then cut them down to 11 inch pieces.  Then sewed each piece together to make one long strip.  Since the crib bed inside is 52 inches by 28 inches, you'll need 160 inches in length.  I would give yourself another 3-5 inches as a cushion. 

If you're not piecing the inside, or the outside, you need 4 cuts at 11 inches.  Sew each piece together to make one long strip.  Don't worry about excess.  You'll cut it off later.

 There was a time when ties were huge, like 2 inches wide and about 2 feet long so you could tie a big bow.  That has changed.  Now they are much smaller and simpler.  I cut these as 2 inch strips.

You will need a total of 14 ties.  Cut strips down to about 10-12 inches long.

Fold in half, press, open and fold sides to center, press again, then fold in half and press again.

It will look like this, kind of like bias tape.  (sorry about the ghost shadow in the foreground... )

Tuck ends in and stitch along folded line.  I sewed mine continuously to save time.  Press and clip apart.

Last step for today is to make the piping for the top edge of the bumper.  I cut strips wide enough to cover my piping plus about 1 inch for seam allowance.  Sew strips together in one continuous strip.  I do it in one seam to save time.

Note: I was using Chenille for part of the fabrics in the bumper that's why there are so many little white dots on the brown courdoroy.  Seriously Chenille gets everywhere.  I feel like I'm wearing more than actually is in the project.

Feathers are worse.  Don't get me started on that one.  Thank goodness they aren't popular anymore.

Now you're halfway done.
Tomorrow will be the fun part!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Homemade Ravioli

I love learning new things.  Especially when it comes to food.  In Seattle we found this great place called Cook's World that offers all kinds of cooking classes. My friends and I tried the pasta class and loved it! I will definitely be making more pasta.  The fam loved it and asked when we were going to make more. Awesome!

                          This was me!

 This is my good friend Megan.
And my good friend Shelley.

Luckily I already had this pasta maker I bought years ago at Shars. It's a great Gilbert, AZ store that sells everything for the kitchen and then some, and teaches free classes.  I missed them while in Seattle. I bought mine on sale for about $30. Amazon has the Norpro Pasta Maker here.

 Anyway I've wanted to try the recipes we made in our class and thought I'd share.

Wet Pasta Dough for Filled Pasta

In a mixing bowl place 1 1/4 cups all purpose flour or 10 oz and make a well in the center. (I doubled the recipe since I'm feeding 7.  It was just enough)

In another bowl whisk 2 whole eggs and  pour into the flour well.  Stir with a fork to combine. Drizzle 1 Tbsp cold water over flour mix and stir until it begins to form a mass. I added a bit more water to get the consistency I wanted. With your strong hand knead the dough a few times incorporating any loose flour.

Turn dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead 4-5 minutes until it is uniform in color and texture and springs back when you poke it.

 Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and let rest on the counter for at least an hour.
*don't forget this step. It makes it much easier to work with.

When the dough is done resting divide into halves, 4 if you doubled the recipe. Recover the pieces you're not using to prevent drying.  Run the dough through the pasta maker at setting 1 for about 5-6 times, folding dough onto itself between rolls.
 Move the setting to 2 and roll through 2-3 times.
Then setting 3 and roll 2 times.
Setting 4, roll 2 times.
Setting 5, roll 1 time.

Heavily flour counter and lay pasta down.  It will seriously stick to the counter without alot of flour.  I had to re-roll one of the pieces because it stuck so bad.

 Make your filling. Get creative.
I used 1 1/2 cups butternut squash cooked.
3 oz goat cheese
1 heaping Tbsp parmesan cheese.
Pinch of favorite seasoning blend.

Puree mixture and spoon onto pasta.
Wet one side of the pasta with your finger an fold over pressing to seal. Cut with decorative cutter if you have one, otherwise use a pizza cutter to separate each ravioli.  Drop into salted boiling water and remove when they float.

I tossed mine with melted butter and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese. Add a side salad and you're done!
So Yum!

Monday, October 17, 2011

My $4 King Tut Costume

It's that time of year again.
Halloween Costumes.
My son needed an Egyptian Pharoah costume for a class project so I got to kill 2 birds with one stone.
Plus I only spent $4.  Yep.  $4.
Looks pretty good if I do say so myself.

 For the collar it's just tin-foil and cardboard.  Cut the shapes out of cardboard and cover with tin-foil.  I taped the back with Scotch-Tape to hold.

The beads were some cheap ($2.50) gold tone plastic beads that we stitched onto the plates with heavy thread and a yarn quilting needle.  Then strung them together with ribbon.  I cut the slits with a paring knife.  Leave enough ribbon in the back to tie together.  The apron was constructed the same way just longer cardboard pieces.

The top was made from a piece of packing tape folded together then wrapped in tin-foil.  I used a yard of red satin that I had on hand, folded the top and used packing tape to hold in place.

The tunic was from an old bed sheet that I used one of his t-shirts as a pattern and serged together.  I added a strip of silver ribbon to the hem to finish the look.

The staffs were made from old broken tent poles wrapped in tin-foil.

The tassle was $1.50 in the clearance isle.    We wrapped his arm with the rope left over from the tassle tie-back.

Not too shabby for an Egyptian Pharoah!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

A Bleachy Halloween Project

I have been anxious to try bleach on t-shirts and thought Halloween might be the perfect time.  All I used was Q-tips, Bleach, & Freezer Paper.  Grab some shirts and lets get started!  

I found the spider image on Google Images, printed it the size I wanted, cut it out of Freezer paper and ironed it in place on my shirt.

 Put a plastic bag inside your shirt to prevent bleeding. Next outline the spider with the bleach Q-tip and create your web. It was orange-y at first but as it dried it became more white.
 Remove the freezer paper and let dry. Wash as normal.
 We did one with a cat face for my little girl.  Cut the freezer paper to create a resist, paint inside the lines with the Bleachy Q-tip & let dry.
My son wanted a fly in the web so I found another image and  followed the same process.  Then I added a red hour glass on the spider to make it a black widow with craft paint.

This one is mine.

Happy Haunting!

NOTE:  I love the look but you need to be careful.  My shirt was pretty thin knit and the bleach ate through the fabric in one spot.  Use a heavy-er knit and you should be fine.

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