3 stash additions for spring.


A few fabrics that were added to the stash recently.  Including a couple prints from Jessica Jones!  The green leaves are my favorite, so springy don't you think?

5 weekend progress.

A little progress was made on the houndstooth quilt this weekend.  There is still a lot more work to do.  I've been falling back on this project lately when I'm feeling uninspired but still want to get some sewing done.  It's sort of repetitive sewing all the blocks together!  
It's nice to have a project to work on when I'm not in much of a creative mood but still want to feel productive, and I've found that it helps me to feel more inspired in the process.
Bonus: I think I've discovered a way to make a cute fabric garland while making these blocks!

6 so i (hope) i'm crafty?


I apologize for neglecting my blog all last week, but I had a big project I was working on with a looming deadline. I can't tell you what the project was yet other than the fact that it was my audition project for So You Think You're Crafty! The audition round starts today and I hope you'll head over there and vote for your favorite project! I really hope I make it through this round, it would be so fun to participate in this crafty competition. The creators of the top 10 projects with the most votes will move on to the actual competition which starts in a few weeks. Please head over to SYTYC and vote now!

5 can pincushions have babies?


Because mine did.

Why is everything so much cuter in miniature?

20 colorful cushion.


Little squares can quite quickly be sewn into a colorful quilted pincushion.
With a simple pattern like this, it's one of those (almost) instant gratification projects that keep me sane while I've got bigger things in the works.  Plus it's a much prettier place for my pins than the cheap plastic boxes they came in.
I see more of these little cushions in my future.
Thank you to Jen for sending me the beautiful fabric scraps!

4 wearing green.


I didn't have a green shirt that I liked enough to wear downtown this weekend for the insanity that is St. Patrick's Day in Chicago, so I made a few flowers and sewed them to a white shirt.  They added just the right amount of green for me.  Festive, but subtle.

I hope you all had a nice St. Patrick's Day!  I didn't even have a green beer today.  What a shame!

3 little squares.


Little squares for a little project.  The colors are so bright!  
Can I tell you how nice it is to be able to have an extra hour of sunlight?  Taking pictures for the blog after work is so much easier than during my lunch hour.  Thank goodness for daylight savings time.

5 lovely things: orla kiely notebooks.


I recently purchased four Orla Kiely notebooks from Gilt Groupe, and I've been in love ever since they arrived.  
These notebooks just make me so happy with their beautiful linen texture and coordinating color scheme.  The lovely print on the front doesn't hurt either!  I have to admit that I didn't really need these notebooks but if something as simple as a notebook can make me as happy as these do, why not buy them?  Even if they stay blank forever (which they won't, hopefully!) they are still pretty to look at and they make me smile.

What's making you smile today?

13 tag, you're it.


As I begin to sew more and more often, I always want to add a little bijou lovely tag to everything I make. So far, I've been hand embroidering my tags specifically to match each project.  One tag takes about 10 minutes or so to make (I've gotten much faster at it over the past year-- it used to take much longer).  I always find myself procrastinating on assembling things because I don't feel like making the tag.
I've been thinking of getting some tags professionally made.  It would be so nice to just pull a tag out of a box and sew it in without the hassle of making it by hand.  But I'm also thinking the handmade tags show that a little extra effort went into each project.  But do they look too handmade?  Would a real tag look better?  Are they super expensive?  And where the heck do I order tags from anyway?

Any thoughts?  Do you prefer professional or handmade tags?  If you've ordered tags before, where did you get them from?

8 a mostly vintage apron tutorial.


In need of an easy sewing project?  I've had several of my friends by sewing machines in the past few weeks, and I think this is the perfect project to get them started.

Want to make a mostly vintage apron?  You don't even need vintage fabrics.  New ones will work just as well, although then you can't call it "mostly vintage".

You will need:
1 yard medium weight cotton
1 yard lightweight cotton for lining
An applique design from a vintage placemat, table runner, pillowcase, etc. (or any other applique design you like).* optional--you do not need to add an applique if you don't want to and/or don't feel ready to sew one on yet. 
Coordinating thread

1.  Cut out your fabrics.  Follow the cutting diagram for your front fabric.  
The 24" x 27" piece is for the front of your apron.  The 4" x 27" piece will be your waistband, and the two 4" x the width of your fabric pieces will be your ties.  The 7" x 7" piece is for the pocket.

Now cut your lining fabrics.  Cut a 24" long by 27" wide piece for your apron lining and a 7" x 7" piece for your pocket lining.

2.  Carefully cut out your applique designs.  I used two different applique pieces for my apron.

3.  Place your applique design(s) on your apron where you want them.  Since we will be taking in each side by 1", the top by 1/2" and the bottom by 3", make sure your designs are within those smaller dimensions.  Pin your applique well so that it won't move or bunch when you try to sew it onto your fabric.

If you want to place an applique on your pocket, make sure to allow 1/2" from each edge to allow for the seam allowance.
4.  Sew on your applique.  Make sure to sew around all of the edges so it is secure.

Sewn and secure.

5.  To finish your pocket, place 7" x 7" front and lining fabrics with right sides together and pin.

6.  Using a 1/4 seam allowance, sew around all sides, leaving a small opening on the bottom for turning.

7.  Clip corners to decrease bulk.

8.  Turn right side out and press.

9.  Topstitch using a 1/4" seam allowance along the top of your pocket.

10.  Pin your pocket to your front apron fabric.  I placed mine 4" from the top and 4" from the right side of the edge.

11.  Sew your pocket onto your apron along the sides and bottom edges using a 1/4" seam allowance.

Your apron is coming together!

12.  Place your front apron fabric right side down on a flat surface.  Place your lining fabric on top of it facing right side up.  Make sure your edges are all aligned and smooth out any creases.

13.  Fold and pin the right and left edges of your fabrics over 1/2" towards the lining fabric along the entire edge.  Press the seams.  Remove pins.

14.  Fold the right and left edges over an additional 1/2" to hide the raw edges and pin.  Press the seams.

15.  Sew along the right and left seams using a 1/4" seam allowance.

16.  Fold the bottom edge over 1 1/2" and pin.  Press your seam and remove pins.

17.  Fold over bottom edge an additional 1 1/2" to hide raw edge.  Pin and press seam.

18.  Sew using a 1 1/4" seam allowance.

19.  Pin one of your tie strips (the long ones) to your 4" x 27" waistband fabric  right sides together along the short edge.  Sew using a 1" seam allowance and press seams open.  Attach your other tie strip to the other end of your waistband in the same way.  

When complete, your waistband should be centered within your tie strips which are sewn on each short edge and the right sides of all three strips should all face up at the same time. 

20.  Line up your waistband seams with the edges of the top of your apron.  Pin waistband and apron right sides together along the top edge.

21.  Sew along the top edge of your waistband (stopping and backstitching at each waistband seam) using a 1/2" seam allowance.

22.  Press seam to the waistband side.

23.  Fold and pin tie edges to the back side 1/2" along the entire length of the ties.  Repeat along the top edge of the ties and waistband.  Press seams down.

23.  Fold waistband and ties in half along the entire length to hide raw edges.  Pin together and press.

24.  At the end of each tie, fold the edges in to hide the seams at a diagonal, pin and press.

25.  Sew along open edges using a 1/4" seam allowance.

Your apron is finished!  Now go bake something to break it in!

I hope you enjoyed the mostly vintage apron tutorial!  As always, if you have any questions, email me or leave them in the comments.  Happy sewing!
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