DIY Jewelry Organizer Update!

Hi everyone! I wanted to take a moment to let you know that I finally made the inserts for my jewelry closet.

Of course, I had to draw my plans up first. I couldn’t just start sewing away without any plan in mind. I ALWAYS advise you to do this if you think you have an idea in mind, because sometimes your idea won’t fit exactly, or work like you need it to. So I took my piece of paper and started drawing what I thought I wanted. This image below is my third attempt because the first two weren’t going to work.

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So as you see above, I measured out each insert and each pocket so I would know what size to sew everything to. The little rectangles are place holders for Command hooks.

I used clear vinyl for the pockets and black binding (1/4″) to edge everything so I wouldn’t have to worry about raw edges on anything. I measured out each pocket and made a tiny mark with a Frixion Pen (the marks from this pen iron right off) and stitched a straight line to divide the vinyl up. I then made a button hole stitch on the top of each panel to hang from a hook, as you can see at the top of the panels below. Once the panels were made, I hung them up and then proceeded to hang the hooks. I measured out where they needed to be placed and staggered them mainly for visual interest.

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What do you think? I think I need to ask for more bracelets and rings from Dale for our anniversary/birthday/Christmas!

 

To see how we built this box, go to https://homesteadingfortwo.wordpress.com/2016/03/03/hidden-jewelry-box-mirror/

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DIY Ironing Table

I’m an avid crafter, DIYer, and quilter. I love making and creating things with my own two hands. I also love having the space for it! But Dale and I share our hobby room which means I only have so much space to create. I love having him in the room with me, but sometimes I need more space than the two tables I have (not to mention that one of these tables has my sewing machine on it). Throw in an ironing board and I’m just about out of room. So I decided that I wanted to do something about this. All along, I’ve always wanted one table for ironing, one table for cutting fabric/miscellaneous crafts, and one table for my sewing machine. But there’s no way we could ever fit all that into one room.

You may be thinking that, yes, of course, there is a way to make it all fit, but when working with a ton of yardage of fabric, you need tons a table space so it’s not falling off while you’re ironing it or trying to cut it to the perfect dimensions. My half of the room isn’t big enough for that.

So my way of solving this issue was to just cover my current ironing/cutting table to make it an ironing board that I can place my mat on to cut. It’s a two-in-one! AND it’s a rather simple task!

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All you need is:
– A table that you don’t mind converting- A cotton based batting that isn’t too thick and will cover the top of your table
– A duck or canvas fabric (think upholstery) that will cover the top of your table
– A heavy duty staple gun and its staples
– An iron
– A hammer (optional for setting the staples flush against the table)

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To begin, lay out your batting to where the edge of the batting overhangs one edge of the table. You want to fold this overhang under the lip of your table so that there’s only one fingers width under the lip. Begin by stapling this edge in place. Next, you will want to iron out the wrinkles if there are any. Use light pressure with the iron as batting can pull and rip. Now go to the side just right of the stapled side. You will want to cut your batting so the overhang matches the first edge. Staple that into place. Continue to all four sides, working around. Don’t worry about the corners just yet.

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The corners are tricky, but remember that this is just the batting. It doesn’t have to be pretty because your fabric will cover it. First, push one side of the excess batting under the corner:

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Then pull the excess batting on top of what you just folded under:

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Staple in place and repeat on all corners

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See how my staples are sticking out? I just hammered those in.

Next, you’ll want to lay out your fabric and iron out all the wrinkles. You’re going to do the same thing you did with the batting, lining up one edge and stapling it. But I folded my first edge under, and ironed it, so the edges wouldn’t fray.

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Then I placed the folded edge under the lip of my table and made sure it lined up with the apron of my table (the part that the table top is sitting on). Begin stapling. Do not do the corners, but continue around like we did before with the batting. Remember to cut your fabric with a little bit of excess around the next three edges so you have enough to fold under. Also remember to smooth out the wrinkles on top of the table, so your fabric isn’t twisted or bubbled anywhere.

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Now to do the corners. This time it matters what they look like. They should begin to look something like this:

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Use your creativity and fold them up so they lay nice and neat. Cut them down if you need to, but remember to allow enough to fold under so you don’t have any raw edge showing. I’m pretty sure I did every corner differently, but this is the best looking one:

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Hammer in all your staples so they are flush. Now stand back and look at your new ironing table! YAY!

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Lounge Shorts

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Oh my gosh! I have to post about these shorts. I found this amazing tutorial at the Purl Bee blog and have absolutely fallen in love! I made five pairs in just two days… That’s how much I love them and this tutorial. The tutorial is pretty clear and thorough, with great pictures. But since it isn’t my tutorial or work, I can’t take credit for it and I can’t rewrite the tutorial on here. But if you by chance have any questions or concerns or need help understanding the tutorial, feel free to leave a comment and I will respond.

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These are probably my favorite pair. In fact, I’m wearing them now. Isn’t this fabric adorable? I got it at Hancock Fabrics.

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My only advice with the Purl Bee’s tutorial is that I would measure you actual hips (or the widest part of you) and then use the size range above where your size fits. For instance, my hips were 39″ and I used the 41″-43″ template. Also, if you haven’t ever made binding, it can be a little tedious. You can also buy extra wide, double folded bias tape at any craft store and this stuff works great.

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I made this pair (above) for my friend, who loves sunflowers and yellow and grey color schemes. Now, one thing you may see that’s different with my shorts is that mine have pockets. I CAN post about that, because who doesn’t need (or love) pockets?

So, before you attach the binding (or bias tape), cut your pockets. I would recommend folding a piece of fabric in half (such as linen or just a plain cotton), then cutting it to the shape you need, as below. This way you will have two mirrored pieces. You choose the size. Mine are 6.5″ x 8″. I wouldn’t recommend making them any longer, but maybe a little wider if you wish.

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Next, you will need to place them.

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Put one on the back side and one of the front side, both on the inside of the shorts. Be sure to pin them well.

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Then put the binding on and sew like the tutorial says.

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Now you should have one side complete. Do the other side.

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Once the binding is on, you will want to fold over the pocket that is attached to the back side and resew the stitch so the pocket is facing toward the front side of the shorts.

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Resew over the same stitch, as this stitch will be seen (from the pocket entrance). Now continue with the tutorial where you sew the front piece and the back piece together. Pin your pieces and measure out your side from the top. Mark 1 1/4″, 6″ and 9″. Instead of sewing all the way down, sew 1 1/4″ from the top, skip down to inch 6 and sew from that point to the 9″ mark. Be sure to back stitch every time you set your needle and take your needle up. You don’t want your stitches ripping out while you’re reaching into your pocket.

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Now to finish the pocket. Turn your shorts inside out and sew a line across the top, attaching the pocket to the front side of the shorts. The purpose of this is so the pocket will stay in the front instead of moving around your body when the shorts are on.

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I also added a stitch at the bottom of the pocket, about a 1/4″ up from the bottom for added stability.

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Next, I pulled the pocket up from the shorts and just sewed on them. Sew a 1/4″ from the edge and then zig zag stitch so they won’t unravel after your first wash.

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And there you have it! A pocket! Now repeat on the other side so you have two pockets. I’m not going to lie, these pockets make these shorts amazing! I’m also not going to lie that the Purl Bee calls these gym shorts, but I lounge in them… All. The. Time.

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Like I said, if you have any questions or are confused by the tutorial, feel free to comment and I will help as best as I can! Enjoy, and never stop creating!

Quilting

My favorite hobby is quilting. I love working with beautiful fabric, creating gorgeous quilts with accurate points and wonderful quilting. To date, I’ve made over 20 quilts in my young life. I’ve even begun a quilting journal.

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But today, I’m going to post about a quilt I made for my grandmother. She was the woman who taught 13-year-old me how to cut fabric and piece a quilt together. She had a ton of patience to work with perfectionist me (and still does). Over the years, I had made quilts for my mom and one for my dad and I realized that I hadn’t made one for her. I guess it never crossed my mind because she had a bajillion quilts scattered through her house, whereas my parents had only a few. I promise I’m not ungrateful. I love my grandmother very much. I am her first grandchild after all.

When choosing a quilt pattern for her, I wanted something I could quilt myself. Typically, I turn to my aunt for quilting, since she has a long arm quilter. I chose the beautiful Front Porch quilt kit designed by Jan Patek for Moda. I thought this quilt would be perfect for her! Here’s the finished quilt:

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The pattern is free, so download it for yourself! You need:

  • Blocks: 8 charm packs (40 5″ squares) OR 15 light and 8 dark assorted fat quarters (18″x22″)
  • Binding: 5/8 yard
  • Backing: 5 1/2 yards
  • Cutting mat
  • Rotary cutter
  • Acrylic ruler
  • Iron and ironing board
  • Matching thread
  • Sewing machine, obvious

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First you want to lay out your blocks, as well as (by following the instructions) lay out the matching cut blocks that you have made. See the small squares on the darker squares? That’s how I matched them up.

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Above is after the first row was all matched (step 2 in the instructions). Some helpful tips. In step 2, it calls to “select the 2- 2 1/2″ dark squares that match the 5″ dark square. Layer the marked squares and a 5″ background square right sides together as shown. Sew on the diagonal line. Press to the corners to form a triangle.” Most quilters would say to cut away the excess. DO NOT. Even if you are a perfectionist, your square might not come out perfectly square, but when you leave the excess on the square, when you sew them all together, the squares will be perfect!

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As you can see above, step 2 has been completed. Time to start sewing the blocks together to create rows. Make sure to line the squares up perfectly so your rows come out straight. Then sew the rows together.

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Here’s your finished quilt top! Time for quilting! First you have to layer what I call the quilt sandwich, which includes, from top to bottom, the quilt top, a layer quilt spray adhesive, the batting (I prefer all natural cotton), another layer of quilt spray adhesive, then the backing, which you have to piece together, unless your quilt is smaller than 42″. Be sure to iron everything out, and keep little paws off your quilt (notice the one on the right side of the picture). I use huge safety pins to keep it all held together while I quilt it.

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Next, I roll the quilt up into a cylinder so it’s easier to quilt. Be careful on this part, as you want to make sure the fabric is all flat and there are no wrinkles.

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Above, you can see I decided to quilt the outline of the stars, but on the inside of them. See below for more.

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Now, they aren’t perfect, but they did the job! Once that’s done, all that’s left is cutting off the excess and putting the binding on.  I was planning on giving this quilt to my grandmother for Christmas, but I just couldn’t wait. I gave it to her the next time we saw each other (which was October). And she absolutely loved it! She cried tears of joy.

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