Thursday, July 21, 2016

Lies and the liars who tell them

So last month, I decided to venture on to a new journey and recreate crafts from a blog that I frequent often with the notion that they COULD ALL BE MADE IN 10 MINUTES OR LESS (I picture an infomercial voice here).  Well they lied.  Lied, lied, lied.

The first one wasn’t too far past the 10-minute mark, but this one?  Almost a full HOUR past that mark.  I’m trying to figure out when they use the timer?  Is it just the sewing time?  Just the cutting out the pattern time?  Just the pinning time, or just the “I’m going to say it only takes 10-minutes to really piss people off” time.

Here's the link to the blog, just in case you want to try out this 10-minute 1-hour+ project.

So here’s how it went… I saw the project for oilcloth placemats and since I bought this oilcloth years ago with every intention to make something cool with it (that sh#t is expensive!), I realized now was my chance.

Cute fabric, right?  Who knows when I bought it, but I obviously never used it.

First, I cut out the placemats in both the oilcloth and backing - yes you have to cut out a front part (oilcloth) and a backing (cotton).  Maybe they meant the time it takes to make ONE placemat?  But who in God’s name only uses one placemat??  I digress… 

Then I cut out the template for the napkin/utensil holder and pinned it on the oilcloth to cut out.  I finally attached the napkin/utensil holder to the oilcloth portion and stitched around it. 

Time check!
26 minutes of cutting and pinning, a wee bit more than the 10 they promised
Placemats with napkin/utensil holder stitched on

Then I sewed the oilcloth and the backing together which was super easy (I love me a straight line – which never winds up being very straight since I can’t seem to cut, draw, or sew straight).  Then instead of using a rotary cutter with the pinking edges, I used my pinking shears.  Holy wow did my hands hurt after doing all six!

Final time check - almost a full hour more than promised. 

Side note…I stupidly folded my oilcloth and read that I was not to iron it, but it would eventually lose all of its creases.  I tell you the world if full of liars.  Two weeks later and I still have creases. GRRRRRRR.

After it was done, I decided to put my Cameo to use and individualized each placemat… one for me, one for daddy, one for Peaches, and one each for the people who dine with us most frequently: Bridget, Grammy, and Donnie.  Are they cute?  I guess.  Were they worth the hour plus?  Good God no.  Which leads to find another list of projects where I don’t feel like I need to go the confessional afterwards because I’ve used so many expletives.

Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Bookmark This!

It seems that I work all the time now.  My job is full-time, Peaches goes to school about 20 minutes away and I still take care of the house and the cooking.  I've found myself a little down in the dumps but yesterday, I made a simple bag for Peaches' blocks and realized that I need to create something...anything to help my mental state.  

My journey out of the stay-at-home blues started with a mission to recreate Martha Stewart's crafts which eventually led me in all the right directions to start creating my own items for sale.  Now, I'm going back to that model and I'll be trying each of the following projects from this website:

And I'm also going to time them and see if they really are "sewable" in under the alloted time they state because you know I'm a stickler for those who brag about time and ease of projects (read: Martha Stewart).  

First Up - a "5-minute" bookmark that I plan to make for Peaches who is an avid reader and has graduated to books where she actually needs a bookmark.

  • Scraps of fabric
  • Small piece of elastic (hers was 1/2 inch wide but as she states really, most any width will do)
  • Sewing machine
First I asked Peaches which fabric she wanted and let her know that she could have two so that it would be reversible.  After some careful coaching thought, she chose these two:

Fun fact - the first pennant flag that I ever made for Milla was with this fabric

I then sent her upstairs for her daily "quiet time."  Seriously, this kid went from sleeping 14 1/2 hours per day (including a 2 hour daily nap) to only 12 - 12 1/2 hours now that she's in kindergarten and gets home too late, so for the sake of everyone's sanity, she needs this quiet time. Plus, it's only for an hour which should give me plenty of time to make the bookmark.

I started the timer on my phone and cut out the fabric a little smaller than she did (3" by 9"). I then used a straight-stitch on my machine with the two right sides facing each other.  Of course I screwed up, and had one on the wrong side, but I stopped the timer since it wasn't fair that I was the idiot.  

After ripping the stitches (my seam ripper gets some serious usage), and a few profanities, I got started on the project again.

I then turned it inside out, pressed it flat and pressed under the edges so that I could sew in the elastic (seriously, if you want the step-by-step, check out the original:

After sewing in the elastic, it looked like this:

And the timer that does not lie, said this:

Close, but no cigar my friend.  And I even HUSTLED.  

But me, being me, I had to personalize it for Peaches. Using my Silhouette Cameo, I cut out the words "Milla's" and "Book" on Heat Transfer Vinyl and made it a bookmark just for her.

Finished product - cute.  5 minutes?  Nope.  Would I do it again?  Probably not!

Front of bookmark (Milla's)
Back of bookmark