Archive for the 'Crafts & DIY' Category

Recent Projects 11

I made this padded zipper pouch for my sister-in law! Definitely planning to add something similar to the shop in the near future.

I FINALLY completed my longest outstanding project to date: A t-shirt blanket for my friend Lauren. She let me hold her undergrad shirts captive for over 6 years. The blanket is double sided with a zipper on the bottom so she can tuck a comforter inside and make it extra cozy.

My old boss asked if I would make a travel car mat/carrier for her son! It was pretty fun to make, but I’m not planning to make any more of them. There are pockets under the parking spots, and the it folds into thirds as a small carrier.

I’ve been working on UV activated color-change earrings! These go from white to a deep fuchsia, depending on how much sunlight they’re getting. I have a few colors in the works, and just cast a glitter set last week. I’m still working on getting all the bubbles out, so it might be a little while before these show up in the shop.

I’ve got a couple more projects going that I’m excited to share when they’re done. Have you been working on anything new lately?

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Recent Projects

I turned an XLT button up shirt into a dress. I mentioned it in this comic.

I designed some fabric for my husband’s cousins featuring their cute little pup, and made laptop sleeves with it!

A trio of travel bags for my friend’s mum:

And a couple of bags for my friend! I found this sweet fabric at a cute little store in Littleton, NH and picked up a fat quarter bundle with every color :D

I got a custom order request at the farmer’s market last weekend for, essentially, a much larger version of my zipper pouch pattern with a handle. So, a wristlet! I made a prototype immediately, and I’m trying to decide if I want to re-introduce wristlets back into the shop.

I hilariously forgot to order more bag labels before I ran out, so I’m kind of at a shop stand still right now. Oops! I have about ten which I’m saving in case I get any special order requests before the new ones come in. The good news is that I’m completely wiping out my “Outstanding Projects” list! Completely. Everything is getting done. And I’m working on developing a few new items for the shop :)

I tried to clean my sewing machine and broke it.

My primary sewing machine is a Brother DZ3000. My parents got it for me for Christmas 5 years ago and it’s been amazing to work with even though I don’t usually use any of the fancy functions. But a couple of years ago, it started making a squeak noise. And today I decided I should open it up and check it out. While in the middle of a project. Because, why not?!

The inside looks like this:

It was a real piece of work to put back together when I was done, but I got all the screws back in, set it right side up, turned it on, pressed the foot and… Error message. Also, the needle seems to have shifted.

I BROKE it!

The good news is that I have another one. Well, I have a couple of other ones but I need one that works properly / I know how to use. Enter: the Brother LB6800:

My father-in-law sent this to me right after I moved in with my husband (Thanks again, Norman!) and it’s even fancier than the fancy one I was using for basic sewing! And now I get to learn how to use it. And NOT open it up. Ever. For any reason. No matter what.

Plus, there is a quilt shop a few towns over that offers sewing machine cleaning at the end of each month, so DZ3000 will be going on a field trip!

Recent Projects

I made some cool bags for my sister-in-law with this AMAZING Beauty and the Beast fabric she nabbed:

I took a special order for some mustache pencil cases:

I used some Harley Davidson bandannas to make mini pouches and makeup bags for a former coworker:

I went on the hunt for Bruins fabric, also for a former coworker:

I spent some time time designing Tofu fabric for my husband’s cousins! Tofu is their adorable pup :D

I still have a couple of long-outstanding projects I’m planning to wrap up this year, so keep en eye out for those!

DIY Ant-Be-Gone

My apartment is part of a very old house and, as with all old houses, it has it’s share of bugs and critters crawling around. Namely, sugar ants. Don’t get me wrong, I love sugar ants. They are the cutest ants around and they’re too small to see all their creepy ant features. But I don’t want them in my house.

Last summer when they heavily infiltrated my kitchen (I opened the window ONE TIME and they swarmed), I found a super easy recipe to get rid of them. Borax and jam.

You will need:

photo 1 (1)– Borax
– jam
– spoon and bowl for mixing
– something to put it in (I used a candle lid)

Let’s get started!

1) Spoon some Borax into your bowl.

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2) Spoon some jam into your bowl. I like Smuckers because it’s good for, like, a year and a half. This is the jar I got last year, and I’ll probably use it next year. That’s kind of gross but I’m not eating it- it’s just for ants. I don’t measure, but it’s about a 1 spoon Borax  to 3 spoons jam ration.

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3) Mix it really well!

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Then spoon it into the candle lid. Last year I used a frosting lid.

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(I tried to bend the side down and broke it. Oops.)

Whatever you use, make sure it’s shallow and the ants can get into it. Place where you see ants.

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The great thing about Borax is it doesn’t kill the ants immediately. They have a snack, bring some home, share it with the colony, and THEN they start to die. If you place it near their front door, they’ll actually collect their dead friends so you don’t have to clean them up! Fascinating creatures.

Good luck getting rid of your ants! If you have any other methods, please share them with me :)

Makeup bag tutorial

I do a lot of sewing but I don’t share too many sewing DIYs on the blog- what’s up with that?! So today I’m going to show you how to make your very one makeup bag!

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Supplies:
– sewing machine
– all-purpose foot
– zipper foot

IMG_3776All-purpose- left, zipper foot- right. Most machines comes with these feet.

– card stock
– ruler
– pencil
– pen
– scissors
– fabric, two colors or prints

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– interfacing, to make it sturdy!
– zipper
– iron
– pins

Let’s get started!

1) First we have to make our pattern. You can use the one I did or you can make your own- the directions will be the same. You’ll start with a rectangle, I used 8.5 inch by 5.5 inch, and then cut two squares out of the bottom, so it looks like the picture. I cut out 1 inch squares.

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2) Grab your fabric and interfacing. What I like to do is trace my pattern onto the interfacing with pencil,

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then cut out the fabric to match the pieces of interfacing I have.

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That way, when I go to iron it, I’m not trying to match two perfectly-cut makeup bag pieces together and worrying about them not lining up just right.
3) Iron your fabric and interfacing together.

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4) Cut out your pieces, along the pencil lines. But tracing the pattern just once onto the interfacing, and cutting it after you iron, you only have to cut the pattern once! And I specifically use pencil because you can’t see it once the project is done AND you don’t have to worry about it getting wet and running (like with pen and markers).

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5) It’s zipper time! Zippers can seem intimating, but they’re really just scared and acting out in aggression.

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Take one of your inside fabric pieces and lay it right-side up. Lay the zipper right-side up on top of it.

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And then lay your outside piece right-side down. Make sure the pieces line up with each other on all sides, and that the zipper is tucked nice and close to the tops

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6) Secure with pins.

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7) Using your zipper foot, sew along the edge with the zipper pinned in place.

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It should look like this when you are done.

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8) This part is optional. I like to flip the fabric right-sides out and sew along that zipper edge again. It helps hold the fabric in place and I like the clean look it gives the finished bag.

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Next) Repeat with the other two pieces of fabric. Make sure you place your pieces on the right sides! Inside fabric should be right-side down on the inside fabric side, and outside fabric should be right-side down on the outside fabric side.

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So when you are done stitching it together and open it up, it will look like this:

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10) Flip your project around so that the inside fabric pieces are touching and your outside fabric pieces are touching, with the zipper in the middle. I like to call this butterflying but I know that can mean different things and I don’t want anyone to, like, fillet their bag or anything.

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11) Very Important! Unzip the zipper halfway! If you skip this part, you won’t be able to turn your bag right-side out when the time comes!

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After that) Before we pin anything in place, make sure the zipper teeth face up into the inside of the bag.

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Still facing up.

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13) Secure with a pin.

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14) Again, make sure your zipper is facing teeth up into the bag before you pin anything down.

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Pin in place. Sometimes I add an extra pin here or there to hold it together while I sew, and sometimes I only pin where the zipper is.

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15) Switch your sewing foot to the all-purpose one and sew all the way around, making sure to leave an opening along the bottom inside-fabric edge.

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Just sewing.

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Be Careful!) Because I lined my zipper up with the edge of my fabric, there is a little metal nub hiding in there. And that nub is a land mine to your sewing machine needle. As you get close to it, check to make sure you aren’t going to run it over.

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words

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And Remember) Leave that opening! You’ll need it later.

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18) Trim off the extra threads and zipper.

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19) Remember those little squares we cut out of the pattern? It’s time for those to come into play. Where each corner should be, line up the edges of fabric…

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and pin them in place.

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Now) Sew right along that edge.

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It should look like this when you’re done.

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21) Repeat for all 4 corners. Or lack-of-corners. Anyway, this is what will give your bag a proper bottom and will allow it to stand up on its own.

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22) Remember that opening we left?

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Reach in and pull your bag out. Well, pull the fabric right-side out.

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23) Push out the bottom corns,

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24) and the zipper. It’ll look like this when you first flip it right-side out. But with a little pushing…

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it will look like this!

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25) Now we just have to close up that little hole in the bottom.

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So pull the inside fabric out a bit, and pin the hole closed.

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26) Sew it up.

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27) Push the inside fabric back into the bag.

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28) And you did it! You made a makeup bag!

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I love this pattern because it’s so easy to tweak. Need a wider bottom? Cut bigger squares. Need a longer bag? Elongate the width. I use a pattern close to this for my extra small – large makeup bags in the shop, shaving just a little off the pattern as they go down in size so they are actually nesting bags.

Let me know if you have any questions, need anything clarified, or if you make one yourself! Thanks for reading!

Recent Projects

Another diaper bag project. This one I left open and gave it a couple of snaps to hold is closed. It makes the construction a little easier, but I have some new ideas for adding zippers to large bags in the future ;)

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More chia heads!

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Stuffed whale for my friend’s boyfriend’s friend’s girlfriend’s baby :)

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Bag for my Mom! It has an extra long strap (a comfortable 64 inches) to accommodate her orangutan arms (her mother’s words, not mine). I always worry when I make her something that she won’t like the print. And she has one of those faces where she can’t really hide her disappointment. But I think she really likes this one! I made a matching makeup bag and clutch to go with it.

LONG strap

Extra long knitting needle pouch. This is the third request I’ve had for one of these, so maybe I should start carrying them in the shop..?

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And I still have an essential oil bag project and a fanny pack to work on!

What have you been making lately?


Hello, I’m Kerry! Maker. Sewist. Fan of all things bright.

October 2018
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It's Fluff! Curious, master napper, likes to try new veggies.

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