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Posts Tagged ‘homemade gifts’

Where did the Weekend Go?

October 5, 2010 Leave a comment

I was busy the whole weekend but I don’t feel like I got much accomplished.  Do you feel like that too?  Time does pass quicker the older you get.  I don’t know where those two days went.

How do you manage your time?  I am big on lists but I still managed to go to Wal-Mart twice in the past 3 days and still did not get everything I wanted.

I am going to trim down my list of priorities of things I want to get accomplished each day.  I do need to add some to the list, so I HAVE to move some off.  They can come back later.  I really have to be working on Christmas gifts.  I also have two friends that are pregnant.  I love babies.  I will be making items for them.  I will post pictures of those gifts.

What do you do to make more time in your life?  I have to decide which are “fun”, “necessary”, “obligations” and what do I just feel like I can move on to a secondary list. How do you keep a good balance in your life?

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An Easy Erasable Board

September 30, 2010 Leave a comment
White Board Project from Make It and Love It

White Board Project from Make It and Love It Site

I found this Picture Frame Dry Erase Board and realized that you could use those markers on something other than a White Board. Since the only place I have ever used them was at work, I never thought of using them on anything else. This was great for me who loves lists. How easy does it get, besides using sticky notes?

I wanted to make one for my sister also. I went to the Dollar Tree and picked up a couple of wooden document frames to start the project. I should have looked better at the condition of the wood frames.  They were of terribly poor quality and not smooth.  Luckily I have a can of Stone Creations spray paint that gives the appearance of stone. I had to give it several coats to cover it but it worked like a charm.

Frame with Busy Background

Frame with Busy Background

Frame with Single Color Background

Frame with Single Color Background

Let me tell you of my lessons learned. My sister loves lambs so I first tried a background with sheep on it.  I found that to be too busy to read what I wrote.  I went to a piece of textured single color paper.  I think that works much better.   I am going to Hobby Lobby or Joann’s and see if I can find some seasonal scrapbook papers that we can change out with the holidays and seasons.  I will have to find something that has very muted images on it to avoid the issue I have all ready run into.  I think maybe a blue with clouds or a off-white paper with white snowflakes.  I am hoping I can find a small variety sheets that we can use.

Let me know what you think.  It is quick and easy project that you can make very quickly (unless you have to paint the frame).  Maybe a good gift for a teacher or a friend with scheduled practices and meetings.

Scented Packets for Hangers

September 27, 2010 Leave a comment

Scented Hanger PDF

I saw this project and thought how nice to freshen up some closets, especially for those holding out of season clothes. I modified it somewhat to accommodate the material I had on hand. After they were made I was just looking at them. Then I thought that it could also be a good hiding place for small articles. It can hold cash or small jewelry. I found the pattern on the internet. It is compliments of White Sewing Machines.

Scented Cover Two

The Blue Jean Purse Tutorial

September 19, 2010 Leave a comment
Purse made from recycled jeans

Purse made from recycled jeans

I finished this purse for my sister’s granddaughter.  I like the tutorial section on other sites that I decided to try and make a tutorial when I could for the projects I am making.

The shorts are from a garage sale for 25¢.  I have a large collection of old jeans that I use to make projects so I used part of a leg from another pair for the strap.  I had the lining material but that small part probably cost 50¢.  I had the thread and velcro.  The cost of my purse was under $1 but yours should not be much more.  Just look for those garage sale bargains.

Original Jean Shorts

Garage Sale Shorts

I opened the crotch seam by cutting them.  You will be removing this part so preserving this seam area is not important.

Releasing crotch seam

Releasing crotch seam

You need to open the front seam.  This seam is important for reconstruction.  Use your seam ripper and open it carefully.   I opened it almost to the intersection under the front opening.

Opening front seam

Opening front seam

I folded the side over flatly as in the picture.  I drew a  line down the middle of the front opening to crotch area.  You will do this on both sides of the front panels.  This line is your guide for the front seam of the purse.

Measuring for new seam placement

Measuring for new seam placement

I trimmed some of that excess material away and closed the seam.  The I laid it flat to see how much of the back that needs to be trimmed away.  (I chose to save the hem and have it on the purse.  This did cause more work but I think it was worth the effort.) The line I drew on the back side was for the final length of the purse so I had to consider that it was going to include that hem.  The lines showed what the excess was and had a very small seam allowance in it.

Measuring for new length of back of purse

Measuring for new length of back of purse

You will trim the excess and sew the hem back on.  The arrows show the seam after I sewed them back together again.  Then I sew the bottom together.  I sewed it on the outside with matching thread

Back is sewn back together

Back is sewn back together

I placed the shorts the lining material I chose.  I traced around the outline of the jeans with about a half inch extra around.  The lining will be smaller but this will insure that we have enough.  Then with wrong sides together, I sewed the sides and bottom.  Then I fitted it in the jeans until I liked the fit.

Measuring the lining

Measuring the lining

At this time I made a strap out of the leg of an old pair of jeans that had the same color consistence of the purse.  I forgot to take pictures.  I cut 24″ x 3″.  I turned under 1/4″ along one of the long sides and ironed it down.  Then I folded the other long side to middle.  This will have wrong side touching wrong side.  (There is NO way you are going to sew it and turn it. So let’s make it easier to do.) Then fold the other edge with the 1/4″ turn under toward the middle so it covers the raw edge.  Then sew it down to close it.  I did refold this a couple of times so the seam ended would be fairly close to the edge and made a second seam on the other side so it be balanced with the seams.    I hope this is clear..if not contact me and I will help you.

Then I pinned the strap to both sides.  I sewed it in with the machine and went over it twice to hold up to whatever an eight year will do with.  I placed the lining in the purse and pinned it.  I did have to take it out and take in one side another half inch so it would fit properly.  That’s what you do when don’t really measure it but just eyeball the fit the first time.  Then I hand hemmed it due to the decorative front.

Handle attached and lining pinned

Handle attached and lining pinned

I sewed about and inch long piece of velcro for the closure.

Blue Jean Purse

Finished product

I placed the shorts the lining material I chose.  I traced around the outline of the jeans with about a half inch extra around.  The lining will be much smaller as we fit it later but this will insure that we have enough.

Measuring the lining

Making appointments with myself

September 16, 2010 Leave a comment

I do find that I am easily distracted.  I have made a commitment to myself to keep this blog mildly current, as in not let it be two weeks between posts.  I am trying this week to make appointments with myself and keeping them like I do in my career with business colleges.  So far I have been 90% faithful to the appointment times.  Other things have needed attention and I am shuffling my time but still devoting some time to each appointment.  It has only been 4 days but I am declaring it to be something I can be proud of today.  The blue jean purse is coming along just fine.  I am hoping to finish it this weekend.  That means I will have to queue up the next project.

Does anyone else have this issue of just taking time to do the things that you really enjoy?  It is 12 or 13 weeks until my I am in the middle of different Christmas gatherings.  I am trying to pace myself on these projects so I will not be pushed.  I do not like to turn the pleasure of making a gift for someone into a chore because I did not manage my time well or I over promised.  I am really trying to not do that this time.

My first project on my Christmas List

September 13, 2010 Leave a comment

My sister’s granddaughter has seen the purses that I have made from the tops of blue jeans and wants one.  Well, that will be my first project.  I have a pair of blue jean shorts that I bought at a yard sale for 25¢.  They are low-rise Jordache…I can remember when I would have done anything to have these to wear.  But that was many memories ago.

I will be turning them into a purse for her.  Let me get started on them and I will post pictures and directions.

And the Christmas list of gifts to make has been started

September 5, 2010 Leave a comment

I am going to finish some clothing projects I have made a commitment to before I start my Christmas gifts.  I hope to get the clothes totally finished and sent by a week from tomorrow.  Then I can start on my list of things I want to do for my family and friends.  I come from the old school that when you make a gift for someone who you give so much love too.  The children will also get something that I buy from their list but they will get a special gift that I want them to have too.  I started the list of gifts and they include a purse made from jeans, a closet freshener (secret place too), candle holder and many more to be named later.  I will be posting progress reports and pictures.  I hope you enjoy and maybe get inspired like other bloggers have done for me.