Posts Tagged ‘stitch’

The Learning Process

January 12, 2010

2nd try on the 1st try

My brother Aaron gave me a gift certificate to the craft store for Christmas and I spent it on fabric and patterns. I really want to take the time to learn all about following a pattern and making clothes.

This skirt is one of my first goes and while I do like it…there are a few lessons from it!

My zippers need some help.

My hem is too obvious. There has to be a better way!

The leather bit was not a part of the pattern and it was a bit ambitious for me to make things up before I had the hang of things. This is actually the second try on that. The first leather band was a bit tight so I managed to make a second with the scraps. Leather…as I should have guessed…is also not all that easy to sew with. This one fits better, and I am happy with the buttons but tearing the band off and replacing it with a slightly larger one somewhat messed up my pleats in the front. They’re not unbearable but they’re not as sharp and neat as I would like.

All and all, I have to say for a first try it’s not bad. Its wearable and I do like the look of it. There is another skirt I’ll post soon and hopefully I can really get into making clothes! I think my next project will be an off white or cream button down to go with this 🙂

Don’t forget! Win a Prize Here!

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Recipe Book

January 6, 2010

My mom and I both love love love to cook and spend an awful lot of time watching food network when we’re together. Since I’ve been away in Australia cooking makes me feel close to her and I’ve been very much into digging out new recipes and concocting some of my own to pass along to her.

Mom’s handmade Christmas gift this year was a recipe book! This fabric I absolutely loved and had intended to use as curtains in my kitchen but that idea was VETOED. Instead I used it to make this gift for mom.
Recipe Book

I used batting and binding board for the covers and stitched button holes to accommodate the green binder clips I found in the craft booking section of the craft store. The pages are recipe book fill pages from craft stores and will take regular recipe cards.

I made my own recipe cards with photographs I took of the fabric and manipulated in Adobe Illustrator. The pocket in the front of the book will hold the blanks for her.

Recipe Book

I stitched a felt tea pot to the front of the book and monogrammed it. I also hand stitched all the way around the edge of the book which not only looked nicer but also made it easier to work around the thick binding board I used.

Recipe Book

Before Christmas day I wrote down all of my favorite new food adventures from the past year and filled about the first 10 cards for her. It’ll be a work in progress!

Keepsake Contest!

January 5, 2010

I am taking a break from my post-christmas-present-posts to solicit your help on a project that has stumped me.

It has been nearly a year since my Grandpa died. He was a really wonderful person and greatly missed by all of us. My aunt salvaged some of his clothing to make a beautiful quilt for my grandmother. It’s a beautiful piece that has a lot of meaning and comfort for her.

When my aunt came to visit at Thanksgiving she brought some of my grandpa’s old shirts and thought I could make something out of them. I’ve been thinking on it long and hard and can’t decide what keepsake to sew out of these shirts!

Help me Help youThey are both cotton, button down, short sleeve shirts size XL.

So here’s the deal! Post your keepsake sewing ideas involving one or both of my grandpa’s shirts in the comments of this post. I’ll give it about two weeks before making a selection!

The winning idea-supplier will get to select any item from the Megnificent Made Etsy store as their prize!

That includes camera wristlets…

Camera wristlet by Megnificent Made

Pink Floral Camera Wristlet by Megnificent Made

Custom Coloring Books…

Vespa In Paris Custom Coloring Book by Megnificent Made

Vespa In Paris Custom Coloring Book by Megnificent Made

Or writing and drawing fabric notebooks!

Sketches in Blue Fabric Book by Megnificent Made

Sketches in Blue Fabric Book by Megnificent Made

So start exercising your creative brains and send some keepsake ideas this way! Any questions feel free to ask. I’ll give about two weeks (more if necessary) to see some posting!

Note: Subscribe to my RSS feed on the right to help you follow my blog and find out the winner!

Sail Boat Pillow

January 3, 2010

This gift was for my dad who is an avid sailor. He just purchased a new boat that is in storage until spring and the real gift will be curtains for his new boat but until I can get at it to take measurements I wanted to give him something to open on Christmas day.
Sail Boat Pillow

Before I wrapped it I loosely stitched a ribbon at the top of the sails that said I O U SAILBOAT CURTAINS that can easily pull right off.

Sail Boat Pillow

I used a bunch of fat quarter scraps to pull it all together and didn’t really bother with a pattern (I probably should have drawn something up). Sometimes I wing things I shouldnt! But all in all its a nice little pillow he can put on his boat this summer! The real challenge will be the boat curtains 🙂

Buttercup Purses

January 2, 2010

Here is another post-Christmas-post! For my brother’s girlfriends I made purses. These lovely little bags were created with a free pattern from Made by Rae. This bag, called the butter cup bag, has a little pocket inside and a magnetic closure. It was pretty easy to make and I really love the result!

Buttercup PurseThis lovely pink and grey purse was for Ashley. My brother told me she loves pink and I found out later the grey matches an outfit she has 🙂

Buttercup Purse

Buttercup PurseJen has mentioned a few times how much she loves black and white accented with red! The inside has a very subtle red stripe and I really loved the hounds tooth for a winter purse.

Buttercup Purse

The butter cup pattern was really easy and It taught me how to install those great little magnetic snaps as well as creating nice neat pleats. I recommend you download and give it a try! It only takes a quarter lining and a quarter fabric.

Felt Strawberry Short Cake

December 15, 2009

Felt Christmas

As promised! A photo of the completed strawberry short-cake! A few weeks ago I posted a HOW-TO for this adorable felt play food which you can find here. You can find a tutorial on the strawberries here. I try to make lots of How-To posts so check out that whole section of the blog if you’re feeling crafty.

Felt Christmas

It took me a while to get this posted because I’ve been working so hard on all my christmas goodies. This tea party for my nieces (more of which can be seen here) has been my big project since October and I’ve poured a lot of time and love into. I absolutely cannot wait until Christmas to see the reveal.

I spent yesterday evening constructing a table for their party which is a really simple and fun project I will post more about soon. It is made of cardboard but is very very structurally sound. I’ve made cardboard furniture before and absolutely love the concept of recycled furniture that can be so creative and unique visually. I’ll be sure to post more about that soon.

Felt Christmas

I took all of these photos before the table was completed but I really love how all of the elements of their tea party together are such beautiful bright colors. It’s just so pretty to look at. I can’t help but leave it all assembled until Christmas.

Since these photos I have painted a purple lace doily on the table with their initials as well as painted the legs of the table pale yellow with faint wood grain. The scallops of the table has purple trim now too. I didn’t make them chairs for their table because, as you can see in earlier posts about the project, I had made them special embroidered and fringed pillows to sit on.

Felt Christmas

Felt Christmas The latest addition to the table are these adorable felt fruits from a pattern by UmeCraft on Etsy. The apple velcros together and slices apart. The Orange comes apart into 6 slices, and the banana peels!

Felt ChristmasTheir dessert selection is not limited to Strawberry Shortcake! These girls can also pick from four different cupcakes! This one here is their lemon merengue with orange peel and a lemon wedge. I made special cupcake wrappers with their names on them in three bright fun colors too. In my final tea party post I will show more in detail on the cupcakes.

If you’d like to see more photos of what I’ve been up to with this project, please visit the tea party post to see more about the table ware, and my flickr site to see food more in detail.

I can promise you two more posts on this subject…if you don’t mind! One on cardboard furniture with this table as the feature, and one on the final project after christmas. It’ll be a part of my slew of holiday gift ideas for 2010!

Flickr Finds

December 14, 2009

I was trolling around flickr today looking for pretty things to share with you since my own pretty things are in hiding for christmas. There are some great flickr craft groups and it didn’t take long to find a few things I liked!

Los Trillizos Westie

Los Trillizos Westie by agustina

My mom is a westie owner and so I was particularly partial to these adorable little westie pins by augustina. Check out more of her hand made goodies on her flickr page by clicking the photo.

Mini Moo Box Camera

Mini Moo Box Camera by Hine

I love this little felt camera by Hine. She’s constructed it out of a Mini Moo cards box! I may have to order some mini moos just to make this. By clicking her photo you can see all of the other great felt constructions she’s been working on. She has some really creative phone cases and camera cases!

Tomboy Bifold Wallet

Tomboy Bifold Wallet by BCharmer

I love love LOVE this wallet by BCharmer. I have to agree with her that boy wallets hold your goodies much better than ours and I love that shes patterned something so cute and girly for us. Her selection of fabrics is fantastic! Check out more of her hand made goodies by clicking on her photo.

How To (Make Paper Bags)

December 11, 2009

Here is another one of my promised posts that I am checking off of my list of things to do.

Last week I had my first craft show and tried to make lots to save money. One of the things I cut cost on were paper bags. The cheapest I found were 13 bags for $6 but I found that the office supply store sold a roll of shipping paper for $5 and with this sewing technique and the size bag I wanted, I was able to get 60+ out of it! Quite a deal if you have the time!

Firstly…I apologize for the terrible photos. There isn’t much good lighting once the sun goes down in this house and I was working frantically to get things done for the craft show.

How To (Make Fancy Paper Bags)Fold the paper back on its self at about the size you want your finished bag width. Add an inch or so for seam allowance and cut it off.

I then folded that piece in half and cut it to get the right height for my bag, but then that depends on what size bag you’re going for.

How To (Make Fancy Paper Bags)

Here are the two bags I can get out of one strip of paper. You are then going to sew down along the cut edge of the bag. I use a long and wide zig zag stitch to make it decorative. I also used bright threads, and mixed up my bobbin and thread colors.

Once that stitch is sewn, use a bone folder to center the seam over the back of the bag, press the edges of the bag and flatten the seam up the back.

How To (Make Fancy Paper Bags)The seam should run up the back like this. I then used my paper-cutter to add a scalloped edge to the top and bottom of the bag. You don’t need to but it looked nice!

How To (Make Fancy Paper Bags)Fold up the bottom edge of the bag and press it flat with the bone folder. Zig zag stitch it down. I again used bright colors and a different bobbin color to show up on the front of the bag.

All done! It’s the same concept as an envelope really and works best for flatter items. I was selling my custom coloring books so a little bright tissue paper, a book, and this cute bag customized with my hand carved stamp worked out great.

Good luck!

Lego Sleeping Bag

December 9, 2009

I’m hand making all of my Christmas gifts this year and my nephew asked for nothing but logos… that posed a problem! When I told him I was making gifts for everyone he replied “You can sew something that reminds you of my personality!”

That didn’t help much.

I have to be honest, I gift idea stole from my mom. She had bought my nieces sleeping bags to use on my dad’s new boat this summer and was searching for one to give to Brendan as well. She couldn’t find one she liked so i stole her gift idea and decided to make him a lego one!

It came out well and I am really proud of it, but the big sewing lesson I learned from this project was to NEVER SEW A SLEEPING BAG.

Here is the finished product.

Lego Sleeping BagI made the pillow first which was, in retrospect, great practice in fabric lego design. It’s big, overstuffed, fleecy and fluffy  but if I were to make it again (which I may) I’d make those lego pegs a bit smaller! It’s not uncomfortable to lay on but I think it’d both look better and sleep better with shorter pegs…a lesson I used on the sleeping bag. The pegs on the bag raise only about an inch from the bag.

The pillow is red fleece as is the lining of the sleeping bag. The outside of the bag is made with blue rip-stop and it is stuffed with 5 layers total of 1 inch thick batting. Two layers on top, three on bottom. There is a blue zipper that runs half way down one side of the bag. I couldnt find a zipper for the traditional full length and around the bottom edge but he’s just a kid and even I can get in and out without opening the zipper anyway.

The pegs were made by sewing cylinders and then hand sewing the cylinders to the top layer of rip-stop before assembling the bag. The pegs on the bag are stuffed with two layers of the batting used in the bag.

The toughest part had to be sewing the lines along the body of the bag to keep the batting from bunching or shifting. Our machine is clearly not equiped to deal with that many layers or anything of that size! I sat on the floor with the sewing machine wrestling this bag all day through the arm of the machine and broke 5 machine needles. I tried sewing it by hand but it looked terrible from the inside. There was a minor bit of bunching on the back of the bag but I was able to flatten it out by snipping the lump out of the batting and you wouldnt really notice.

If you’d like to undertake this project, I have no pattern and I’ve already recommended you don’t do it…but it’s easy to figure without a pattern if you think you can handle the back ache.

Just figure in a comfortable length and width for your child. Double the width to accomodate the top and bottom of the bag. As I mentioned. The pegs were made by sewing cylinders. I cut my circles by tracing a plate. Sew the cylinders to the top layer of rip stop and then sew the lining fleece to the rip stop with the outsides in. Leave enough space to fit in the cut layers of batting. I figured this space by installing the zipper on either end, and then leaving the space below the zippers open. Turn the bag right side out and stuff in the batting. It was easier to install the front layers of the batting from one end, and the bottom layers from the other end rather than pushing them all in from one side.

This is the tough part! You need to sew lines across the width of the bag to keep your batting from shifting or bunching. You can sew by hand if you’re neater than me, or if you have access to a more industrial machine then you should be fine. For me, I rolled the bag tightly from one end to fit under the arm of the machine. I put the machine on the floor and sat behind it to pull the fabric through the machine. It wasn’t easy and I broke my back but good luck. If you have any ideas on how to make that easier let me know and I’ll share it!

The last bit is to fold the bag with the rip stop together. Sew from the end of the zipper and around the bottom of the bag to seal it shut. Turn it in side out and if you’re lucky…a big lego bag!

If he doesn’t want it I know plenty of adults who would, but I do hope he likes it.

Tie Dress

December 8, 2009

I’ve been making a lot of “I’ll post soon” statements around here and I intend on catching up on those.

Recently I attended the wedding of my best friend Teale and my new best frenemie, Greg at a local art gallery. This was one of the many things that had kept me so busy lately.

I had promised Teale to wear something fabulous to her wedding and about seven months ago I decided to make my own dress for the wedding. I made this decision having never sewn anything successful in my life but it is with this dress that I bought myself a sewing machine and taught myself to sew.

Everything I have made since this project has gone quite well, but this one was a tough one for a starter! I’d like to do it again knowing everything I know now. I do like the dress, but if you were to look inside you’d say “What on earth is going on here??”

Anyway. Here it is…

I have to apologize. It is a small photo and a post-wedding photo. Alas, it is the only one I have because I took the wedding photos so I’m not in any. This was taken by my aunt to was at my house when I arrived home.

The dress is made entirely of vintage neck ties I collected from the vintage stores all over Sydney. I originally wanted black and white only but It only took me two shops to discover that would be nearly impossible on a reasonable budget so I caved on gray. I accented it with the only semi-full price (from paddy’s market) neck tie in fuscha that matched my hair and pinned at the knot to the top of my strapless dress making it a halter dress. The pink tie can also tie around the waist if I like.

The real work was in combining all of the ties. Each tie had to be torn up the back seam, stuffing removed, and sewn the neighboring tie. Once they were all together I sewed each tie up it’s back seam again. When all of ties were together side to side I treated it like a piece of fabric and used a strapless dress pattern on it making sure I cut the fabric to keep the ties in line. Beneath the dress is heaps of black toole.

I used my new found sewing skills 7 months later when I arrived here in Rochester 3 days before the wedding to correct all of my inexperience and it ended up fitting quite nicely. The shoes were a lucky find last minute at target! Black white and gray satin striped shoes.

I wish I had a better photo. If I find someone else has one I’ll post that too.