Sophia’s Quilt

NOTE: I’ve gotten a lot of inquiries about where to find/purchase this pattern. The pattern is out of print (I had to purchase my copy from etsy). If you’re in search of this pattern:

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This is a long overdue post to talk about a project that wrapped up a loooooong time ago! Based on my blog posts alone, you may think the mustaches and elephants quilt was my very first rag quilt. But … it wasn’t. My very first rag quilt was completed months and months prior to that when I tackled the now out-of-print Simplicity 4993. I’d had this pattern on my radar for a long time so when I discovered it was recently retired, I jumped on etsy and grabbed a brand new copy.

On the Sew Lindsay Sew blog: Simplicity 4993 Teddy Bear Quilt Continue reading

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Mother’s Day: nailed it!

One of my earliest Mother’s Day memories is my dad taking me to the cosmetics section in the grocery store to choose a bottle of nail polish for my mom. I couldn’t help thinking about that as I constructed this year’s Mother’s Day gift – a small tote for my mom to carry her nail polish and related supplies around the house.

Some time ago, I was showing my mom all of the sewing projects I have pinned on my “Sewing (Someday)” Pinterest board and the Portable Manicure-Pedicure Kit tutorial on Positively Splendid caught her eye, which made it really easy to choose what to make for Mother’s Day.

This is what it looks like folded up – a strap with a Velcro tab keeps it securely closed.

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Sweet Success

My mom loves iced tea. Really, she is a self-proclaimed iced tea addict. I grew up hearing, “Can you pass me a pink/yellow/blue packet?” in restaurants as she requested her sweetener of choice. But of course, for those emergency-sweetener-situations, she always has some packets in her purse. When I made my mom an earbud zipper pouch (she’s as addicted to music as she is to iced tea) she mentioned that it might be a good size for her sugar packets.

I had a Barney Stinson moment: “Challenge Accepted!”

Barney Stinson: Challenge Accepted

Side Note: This Barney Stinson graphic is going to be a recurring image in my blog every time I try something new. Because it’s awesome.

Okay, so making a separate zippy pouch for sugar packets wasn’t really that big of a challenge, but I knew that I could do better than the circular earbuds pouch. Here’s the thing with sewing: you don’t have to “make do.” You don’t have to say, “I guess this MIGHT work for my sugar packets.” No. You get to say, “Let’s make something that WILL work.”

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Ode to Joe (and what I sewed)

When I moved to Florida in 2006, one of the first people I met was Joe. We both participated in the Disney College Program together and spent many, many hours living it up in the Disney parks!

Joe

Some photos from our College Program days back in 2006!

After the Disney College Program ended, I stayed in Florida – and Joe returned home to New York. But within a year or so, he was back in Florida and we’ve been able to continue our adventures ever since!

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For my buds…

A few weeks ago I was in the mood for a quick project, so I decided to try this Circle Zip Earbud Pouch Tutorial over at Dog Under My Desk. I’m so appreciative that the internet is chock full of these great, photo-heavy tutorials. My sewing journey would be completely hampered without all of these incredible resources at my fingertips.

I use earbuds at work from time to time, but they are always floating around between drawers or crammed at the bottom of my laptop bag. Now I have this little guy hanging on my cube wall, ready to provide my buds at a moments notice.

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Katie’s Knitting Bag

I’ve lived with my roommate Katie for almost five years. She’s neat for lots of reasons. But one major common thread that brings us together is that she loves crafty things as much as I do! Okay, she’s not nearly as ridiculous as I am, but she has an appreciation for it all the same.

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Just before Christmas, I taught Katie the basics of crochet. She was out of town for the holidays so I didn’t need to have her Christmas gift ready until she returned in January. The plan was to get Katie some of her own crochet supplies and a sew a neat little crochet hook holder while she was gone. Continue reading

A monster of a project

I think it’s a given that anyone who sews will eventually make a Halloween costume. It was only a matter of time after I bought my sewing machine in July that I started racking my brain for Halloween costume ideas.

Since I planned to attend Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party with a friend at Disney’s Magic Kingdom Park, we really wanted to come up with a fun Disney pair that was slightly outside-the-box. A prince-and-princess just seemed too cliche for our creative personalities. After coming up with a lot of ideas, we finally decided that Mike Wazowski and Boo from the Disney-Pixar film Monsters, Inc. was the winning duo.

I started with Simplicity 7415,  a vintage pumpkin / tennis ball / baseball / ice cream scoop / pincushion / Humpty Dumpty pattern from the early 90’s. (Side note: I’m happy to report that this is the first official pattern I’ve mastered thus far. Woohoo!)


I followed the instructions for the tennis ball costume, primarily using lime green broadcloth for the body, and lined the inside with felt to add a little shape. I used white, black and kelly green broadcloth to create the eye, which is glued on and lightly handstitched around the edges. We stuffed the costume with crumpled newspapers contained in trash bags, and elastic at the neckline and the bottom of the costume kept the innerds from falling out during our trek around the Magic Kingdom.

In a dream world, I would have sewn a shirt and pants for Mike Wazowski using the same lime green broadcloth as the body – but in the end, it was just more practical to wear a pair of mint green scrubs that he already owned. My entire Boo ensemble consisted of lucky finds at Walmart – no sewing involved.

Mike Wazowski and Boo costumes

Can you believe I was lucky enough to attend the Halloween party with Nick Lachey?

Although only die-hard Disney fans recognized me as Boo, the Mike Wazowski costume was a HUGE HIT. I couldn’t believe how many “Mike Wazowski!!!” shouts we heard from afar. Little Monsters Inc. fans in strollers gazed up at Mike Wazowski with wide eyes. My friend was quick to brag about my skills to strangers, telling them that I had sewed the costume, but I was secretly glad it was dark outside so that nobody could see my imperfect stitches up close!

What I learned from this project:

  • To fulfill a creative vision, it’s sometimes necessary to shop for out-of-print patterns on the internet.
  • I used bias tape for the first time. I still can’t say I completely understand the purpose of fabric “cut on the bias,” but for the purpose of this project, it was incredibly useful to have long strips of pre-cut, folded fabric.
  • This costume was the biggest and most cumbersome project I have made to date. It was also the most time consuming, and let’s face it, a lot of the steps were repetitive and not very exciting (sew lots of solid colored panels together… zzzzzzzz). Feeling burnt out from a specific, monotonous project is probably normal. But it sure helped my sewing soul to take some days off to work on other projects, like cutting fabric for new Friendship Bags, before returning to the Halloween costume.

All in all, I love how the Mike Wazowski costume turned out, although it is a little strange to have a monster hanging in my closet!

What are you dressing up as for Halloween this year?

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The Friendship Bag

In my first few weeks of sewing machine bliss, I was lucky enough to stumble across p.s. i quilt, an inspiring blog with lots of incredible tutorials. I was immediately drawn to the Friendship Bag tutorial. Not only was the bag adorable, but I read the instructions ahead of time and understood each and every step thanks to the wonderful photos included throughout the tutorial. Plus all of the fabric pieces were rectangles that I could easily measure and cut myself without having to print a pattern.

I eagerly chose a variety of “fat quarters” at the fabric store. I have since learned that “fat quarters” are a quarter of a yard of fabric… duh, makes sense. But that means they are not always the best deal at $1.99 apiece, as that would be about $8/yard on the bolt! A little pricey for a beginning sewer, prone to disaster, who is just experimenting with a new project. But alas, the fabrics I chose complimented each other perfectly, were very “Lindsay-ish” with their cutesy blend of browns and pastels, and therefore worth every penny.
I made the bag and was shocked at how tiny it was. But my euphoria about making a successful bag outweighed the fact that I hadn’t really paid attention to the measurements, which clearly indicated how small the bag would be. Since I had plenty of fabric left, I later recalculated the measurements and made a larger bag.
What I learned from this project:
  • There are lots of awesome, free tutorials available on the internet, thanks to savvy sewers on the web. Wahoo!
  • Pay attention to measurements in order to get an idea of how large or small the final product will be. Don’t assume!
  • “Fat Quarters” may look like a wee little economical choice in the store, but that is not necessarily the case. That doesn’t mean I’d ever pass up an adorable Fat Quarter, but I’ll never pass up an adorable fabric on the bolt out of convenience, either.

And now, I will leave you with the measurements for the larger bag. Follow steps in the p.s. i quilt tutorial, with a 1/4″ seam allowance.

  • 16 strips, 9.5″ x 2.5″
  • 1 bottom panel, 17.5″ x 9.5″
  • 1 lining, 16.75″ x 25″
  • 2 straps, 24″ x 4″

Happy sewing!

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