Tuesday, August 7, 2012

A few more recent projects

Still playing catch-up and trying to get all of my recent projects posted on here as well as available in my ETSY shop! Remember these funny little trouble makers from Dr. Seuss's book the cat in the hat? Well they are quite popular these days with kids. Soo... while thinking about more fun hooded towel Idea's, I thought how PERFECT to make some "things"! so cute for twins, but who says there can just be 2? My "thing" towels are available in any quantity you need. Available HERE in my etsy store.  This set was for twins and their little brother, and I just picked up towels today for another order of them. 

These super soft towels have a bright blue hood just like the hair of the real trouble makers! I made my own template and cut out each letter and applique it onto a white fabric circle. Then each circle is appliqued onto the back of the towels with a black fabric circle outline. 

On the front side are the names in red and white polka dot fabric. All cut out by hand and appliqued on by machine. 

Eeeee! I just love these! And how many other gifts are going to last and be used and loved for years? No guessing sizes, or out growing these to worry about... I use a full size bath towel and add a hood out of another piece of towel so they are perfect for a 1st birthday up through elementary school! 

 Not sure about you, but I'm a big fan of practical gifts... and I think hooded towels rank pretty high on that scale! Perfect for a beach/pool towel, swimming lessons, and everyday baths. 

Chad's cousin, (and my last room mate before I got married) just got married! Sooo I was thinking about all of the wonderful gifts we received when trying to figure out what I could make for them. We got 2 sets of flour sack dish cloths with things hand painted and drawn on them, and we still use them every day! Nothing like a good ol flour sack dish cloth to dry dishes!  (Remember, I like practical gifts) So... I made them a set with their last name initial appliqued  on the bottom middle. Then a strip of contrasting frayed fabric is appliqued all the way across one side. And I had to make a coordinating pot holder of coarse :)

Up close. The edges of the fabric will fray a bit more as they are washed for that fun handmade feel. 

For a graduation gift, I played around with a notebook and some fabrics! I came up with a fun little notebook with an appliqued initial on it and a couple of flowers. Lesson learned... some notebooks might have a glued binding... which melts when you iron your fabric to it. This causes all the pages to fall out... yeah, it was a bit of a mess but I got it back together :) Proof that there are always fun surprises no matter what you are making. 

Both gifts all bundled up. 

Oh and remember that garden I mentioned last time? Well this was what it looked like in the spring...

And this is what it looks like now! Ahhhh I love my garden :) The corn in the back is 10 feet high, tomatoes are all over the place, lettuce and beets are all done, zucchini and squash looks like piles of oversized baseball bats because I'm ignoring them, cantelope and watermelons are getting big, and the winter squash is coming along! I planted the "big sprawling" things outside the fence on the back side for my sanity like the squash, watermelons, cucumbers etc. My garden just wasn't big enough :) Well... I made a mistake and thought that since mini pumkins were, well, mini... that the vines that produced them would be too, so they got planted inside the fence. whoops... I was wrong. Those things are all OVER the place. 

Chad helped me pull all the beets recently, whew there was a lot but they are all pickled! and I even made strawberry jam for the winter too. Riley had to jump up on the bench and pose for the picture :)

Happy Tuesday Everyone!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Lots of sewing projects!

Tomorrow is August?! The summer seams to be flying by and I can't seam to keep up. I've been busy in my HUGE garden. The beets need to be pickled and canned, the tomatoes, onions and cilantro will need to be made into (literally gallons) of salsa soon, and the Basil needs to be made into pesto and frozen into cubes yesterday, but I guess tonight will have to do :) I don't even want to talk about my zucchini and yellow squash. Seams like we are always on bad terms with each other by the end of July and I don't care if I ever see it again! (Well... until next summer anyway) I need to make up a bunch of zucchini relish and can that, but then I think I'm done with the stuff! At one point we were picking 13-15 A DAY! what is a person suppose to do with that much?! and Im PRETTY sure if you watch closely you can actually see the stuff growing haha. Whew, I'm tired just thinking about it and that's just my garden. I can't wait for the sweet juicy watermelon, cantelope and corn to enjoy tho! My wonderful hubby helped me put a fabulous fence around it last year, and this year I put in a watering system. Sometimes when I wade through the fruit and veggies, I shake my head and laugh. I can't believe that 2 years ago I had nooo idea how to plant a garden nor what to do with one, and now there are more square feet in my garden than in my house and Im trying to figure out how I can make it even bigger next year!

Recently we attended a very special birthday party for a little boy who turned 2. I have been his nanny full time since he was 3 months old, so we are pretty good buddies :)  If you remember from a post last winter, I tried my hand at making fondant cup cake toppers for my sister in laws baby shower, and then for my niece's birthday. Well... I got the crazy idea that I should try a cake for Braeden's 2nd birthday. I just want to throw a thought out there for anyone who is crazy like me: Just because there are video's on you tube on how to do something doesnt mean that its easy to do, they have prob been doing it forever and it will take you 10 times longer than you think! Im just sayin. But since we're pretty good buddies, it was worth it! The theme of his birthday party was the beloved Thomas the Train! Sooo... here is the rich, moist vanilla bean cake with whipped vanilla bean buttercream filling cake I made from scratch (Again... what was I thinking? as if decorating it wasn't enough!) all decked out with a marshmallow fondant Thomas the Train scene I made - all completely edible. (Accept the candle) Not perfect... but I was happy with it considering it was my first shot at a cake!

My goal was that when braeden saw the cake, he would recognize Thomas the Train and Harold the Helicopter. (he loooves helicopters) Mission accomplished, he did :)

I don't even know where to begin on my recent sewing projects and custom orders! It would help if I posted more often, I'll work on that. Here is a DARLING Pink and zebra custom order set I made for a baby shower last week. It included 3 plush wash cloths, 2 plush burp cloths, and a coordinating personalized onesie. 

I love making these sets almost as much as the emails that follow like the one I got this morning saying this package had arrived and looked amazing! :)  Always makes me smile! 

Here is another similar custom set I made. She had requested a  set of 2 plush burp cloths, 4 plush wash cloths, a coordinating personalized onesie, and one of my super soft and cozy flannel/minky blankets with an added satin ruffle and the baby's name appliqued in the corner. 

Up close of the name on the blanket- I hand cut out and sew on all of my letters.

All bundled up

I always wrap my items in twine with my hand made label attached, but now I even wrap orders up in tissue paper and a frayed strip of fabric before wrapping them in brown paper to ship. I just love the hand made feel it gives them! 

A while back for fathers day I made these pot holders for both my dad and my father in law. They are camping/fishing fabrics so that when the guys use the grill, they don't have to use a flowery girly pot holder. You know how guys can be... :) 

This weekend I decided to work on something I've been thinking about for a while. Hopefully once I get all the kinks figured out, I will make a bunch for my Etsy store. (But like always, custom orders can be made even if they aren't available in my store yet! just send me an email) 

What is it exactly? Well first here was my delima. Since I am a nanny, my purse is more of a big diaper bag. But sometimes in the evenings, or on weekends i just need my wallet, phone, keys and maybe some chapstick and gum. Sooo... I end up with an arm full of random little things because I don't want to take my whole big diaper bag like purse! This... is a wallet... but also a clutch with 2 decent sized pockets. This also means that all of those little things... are really quick to grab, and stay organized in a big diaper bag or purse too! I also needed a business card holder... so I made one of those as well :) These are both from patterns I created... which are a work in progress and have already had changes made to them. 

And my other project this last weekend? Stuff for the pool. I needed a waterproof bag for wet swim suits, and something that attached to the bag for our pool passes. I needed it to be quick and easy to grab (slip knots around the handle/strap of the swim bag). So here is what I came up with! 

I recently needed to make a gift for someone. It is another clutch in gray and white flowers with some ruffles on the front out of pink's and pockets for organization inside. 

I have lots more recent projects to share... I just need to get the pictures off of the other camera. So check back soon! Hope everyone is enjoying their summer. :) 

Monday, May 21, 2012

And the winner is.....

Thanks to everyone who took a few minutes to look at my Etsy site. I have been busy on some fun new idea's lately too that I hope to get posted soon!

It was a gorgeous Minnesota Spring weekend with {Mostly} sunshine! Sooo, we spent most of Saturday busy in the garden and I got lots of seeds planted as well as my little transplants I started thanks to our super short growing season up here! Then as I was cleaning up, it started to rain which was followed by hail about 3/4 of an inch in diameter. haha... well I guess I still have a bit of Murphy's Law stuck in me after all :) But it didn't last too long and most everything looks like it should pop out of it. Needless to say, I was more than pooped and completely forgot until late last night that I hadn't done the drawing! whooops! sorry guys! soooooo here ya go, a fun little Monday morning surprise while I sip my Monday Coffee.

The winnnnnner is:

She picked these ones for her adorable little guy!

Congrats Amy! Send me an email with your address so I know where to send them: Pistachios2.anna@gmail.com 

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

My Etsy Boutique and a Giveaway!

My Etsy shop is up! (It's been up for a while, I just keep forgetting to post on here!) The link is also available on the "my etsy" page at the top of my blog.

I've been crazy busy having too much fun making Burp cloths, Thick fluffy wash cloths (Kids and adults), flannel/minky baby blankets, pot holders, and even some personalized shirts for kids with their initial in a fun fabric on them! So... here are a few pictures!

Everything comes ready to give as gifts with a twine bow and one of my boutique tag labels.



Contoured burp cloths... Fit your shoulder and neck. Super soft flannel print on the front and thick ultra cuddle fabric on the back makes it thicker than most burp cloths and most importantly it holds a lot of "liquid" :) They come in sets of 2.

Baby blankets that are fun flannel prints on one side and soft dot textured minky fabric on the back. The perfect size for over the car seat, tummy time, and even fit easily in a diaper bag all rolled up. Incredibly soft but not too thick so they are perfect for a cushy summer blanket.

Wash made of the same materials as the burp cloths. They are thick and super soft making them perfect for babies delicate skin. But they are a huge hit with toddlers and kids too, and even amazing as adult face wash cloths! These come all wrapped up in sets of 3. 

The other thing I've been doing lately is putting first initials on kids shirts for family pictures. I just got an order for 2 more today! They are so much fun. Here is a set I made last week to match the babies onesie I had made previously... They wanted a skirt and headband to match for the little girl. (sorry the pic of onesies is sideways... )

Sooooo... I am having a free GIVEAWAY for a set of wash cloths! (they make GREAT gifts if you don't need them yourself) Look on my Etsy site to see all of the fun fabrics they come in and leave a comment on this blog post for a chance to win a set of your choice! (you don't have to pick which set until you win) If you leave an anonymous comment, make sure you leave your name so I know who you are if you win! Drawing will be Saturday at 8PM (Minnesota time) so leave your comment before then! Here is the link to my etsy shop again! and it can always be found on the link at the top of my blog under the "my etsy" tab.  Also, I love doing custom orders... have an idea, just ask :) My stash of Flannel and cotton fabrics has grown big time recently thanks to my addiction to fun fabrics!

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Recent Projects

I've been doing a LOT of sewing lately :) I'm sooo close to opening my Etsy shop, just working on finishing up all the things I want to have done when I open it.  There are lots more pictures to take and writing descriptions for everything as well. And so many more idea's already flying through my head that I want to make to sell too, I guess I'll be keeping myself quite busy. The house is a mess, we ate out for brunch Saturday and then ordered pizza and salad for dinner, sooo... yeah, you could say I've been living in the sewing room and slightly neglecting everything else. (we hardly ever eat out or order pizza...haha...yeah) All of my items that are custom, or will be on Etsy get packaged with a coordinating satin ribbon, tied up with twine, and have a special homemade tag so they arrive looking spiffy.

So... whats been getting stitched? Well, lots of fun things! I just finished packaging up a really fun custom order and it is ready to get dropped off on Monday.

The order included two onesies. One with a custom iron on graphic and the other with a custom applique of his name. She cose some of my favorite aqua and red fabrics. How cute are these!! 

And also a magnetic alphabet set in aqua and brown. (So much more fun than the little plastic ones.) I made a little matching window pouch to hold them all. Ahhh I just love these!

The lady that ordered these had seen the letters I made a few months ago for the little boy I nanny. His are in fun aqua and green fabrics. They have batting in them to help make them stiff and magnets sandwiched in the middle to stick to the fridge. Lesson learned the hard way: magnets only stick on one side, so don't sew them in upside down :) 

Speaking of fun with letters, I made a baby blanket for our nephew Gunnar recently too. Its cotton striped on the front, a fun flannel on the back, thick cozy batting, and satin binding around the edges. 

Friday night I decided to finally make myself a new bible bag. It has a  fun coordinating lining inside, batting to make it thick, and its hard to see but I also quilted it. (The stitching in a lime green color around the shapes on the fabric.  It gives it texture instead of  just a flat piece of fabric.) 

Here it is outside where there is better lighting. 

In February I took a class to learn how to do the free motion quilting like I did on my bible bag. It basically like drawing on fabric with a sewing machine. (Sign me UP!) But I realized I couldn't go to a 3 day class without something to carry all the supplies I would need. And being a sewing class, I couldn't just throw everything in a plastic bag! no... This was an excuse to make a fun carry tote with lots of clear window pockets out of this really yummy quilt shop fabric I had recently found :) 

And I needed something to hold my thread and bobbins right? Well  what a good excuse to make a fun window zipper pouch! I mean, I wouldn't want to just use a zip lock bag... haha... I know, I've got issues I guess. 

Then the thought crossed my mind that I might need something for all my thread ends and such. Who knows how far away the garbage can would be... well, I guess I better make something for that too. Or maybe I was just having too much fun with this awesome fabric... yeah that's probably more like it. 

Last fall I made some darling little mary-jane shoes for a friend's little baby girl. One pair is white courderoy with gray and white polka doted satin inside and the other was black and pink coordinating flannel. Eeeeeee.... I love baby shoes!! 

I made a lap quilt with soft flannel on the back for a very sweet lady in our Sunday morning meeting. When life is hard and you are put through health situations that you would never chose for yourself, it's easy to use them as an excuse to complain a lot and be in a bad mood. This lady is has every excuse, and yet I've only ever seen her smile and say positive things when I ask her how she is doing. She can't walk on her own without falling, she can't hardly see, and she's very feeble yet 2 years ago when Chad and I told her we were going to get married, she immediately said she wanted to help with whatever she could. I went home and cried. Someday I hope to be as strong and as full of love as this lady. So I decided to make her a lap quilt. I needed to do something to pass a little bit of love onto her. Something to make her smile.  

All bundled up.

Recently I saw something about a "relax" bottle for kids as an alternative to a time out. I made one for someone per request after mentioning it and wondering if it would work. The idea is that they sit and shake the bottle and watch the glitter inside settle. They can't get up until it does and instead of making them more mad because they got put in a time out, it gives them something to concentrate on and change their focus to, while relaxing their brain. I'm anxious to hear how well it works! Here is the one I made, cap is gorilla glued on so it won't come off, Thomas the train stickers, teal glitter inside, a fun fabric top, all ready to go! 

So as you can see, I have been busy lately and thoroughly enjoying it :) These are the projects I've been doing in between the stuff I'm making for Etsy! As soon as I take pictures outside, I'll post one of two matching quilts I'm making for the guest room. (I'm saving the rest of the second quilt until next winter... I needed a break after probably close to 50 hours spent so far) I also made a fun birthday present for my niece in San Diego but I can't post pictures of that until I know she got the package... don't want to spoil the surprise.