The Kiddos BackPack

Ok, now this one is LONG overdue! This is probably one of my favorite projects from last year that I somehow never shared!

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There’s no tutorial. There’s no pattern. This was a labor of love! I totally made it up as I went along! In hindsight, I wish I had made a pattern as I went. But I didn’t! I knew I could make it. The kiddo was super excited to design his own backpack. So we went for it!

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The flap is the outside of the alien’s ship. And then when you open it, you see the alien driving his ship around in outer space!

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I’m so glad the kiddo likes it! I didn’t have to buy too much to make it. So in that sense, it was cheaper than buying one. But in the amount of time it took to think about it, design it in my head and then put it all together. Um…. I’m glad there are no dollar signs to add up there, because that would put it way over the cost of just buying one! But it was so worth it! And now I know how to make it again!

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I made a zipper top. I added in the flaps when sewing together the outside and lining. Topstitched and then added the zipper.

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The straps are padded and adjustable. And you have to have a hanging hook, of course!

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I also added little triangular pieces at the bottom of the sides for the adjustable strap. I got this detail idea off his last backpack that he said was oto baby for Kindergarten! But adding them to the side seam totally helps the bag lay right on his back!

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Each side has an elastic pocket. These get used for sneaking legos into school…. But they fit a water bottle, if needed!

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Yes, I added a name tag…. You know, just in case it was to get confused with someone else’s backpack… Ha!

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And I added a quilted, velcro pocket on the inside. And I’m not sure this pocket has ever been used… Oh, well! It’s there if we need it!

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As much work as it was, we had such fun putting it together! Dad was in on the alien design as well. It all started on a dog walk and the kiddo came up with a crazy idea. I had to tone ti down a little bit to fit on the back pack! I love how it changes from outer space to inside the spaceship!

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He loves it! His best friend’s mom told me a funny story! Her son wants a new backpack so they were looking. Then her son said, ‘Max’s mom MADE his!’ I don’t think his mom was happy with me! I think she still likes me though!

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Have you ever made a backpack? Maybe if I make another, I’ll make a pattern! I’m hoping this one lasts for next year too, though!

Everything I Made in 2014

This is the last post about 2014! I love seeing it all in one place!

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OK! So technically it’s everything I blogged about in 2014. There are a few things I made that I haven’t shown you yet, like the kiddos backpack and everything for a fantastic Star Wars party! And there are a few things in here that were technically made in 2013, like some of the Project Run and Play clothes. But who is really taking notes here? I figure it all evens out in the end, huh!?!

So last year it came to 82 projects (and a lot of them I made multiples of!). I was behind this year… Only 72 projects… I’m on a roll this year, so I think I’ll beat both years this year if I keep on like I have been so far!

All the tutorial pages, Sewing Tutorials, Crafty Tutorials and the Sew Ready to Play Tutorials are up to date now! If you see something with a bad link or a tutorial that doesn’t’ have a button, please let me know!

Any ideas for me for this year? Let me know! (not that I don’t have a list already, but I’d love to hear your suggestions!)

Happy New Year (again) and best wishes for another productive year! (I’m off to put the kiddo to bed so I can getting sewing! Oh, Friday, I love you!)

2014 Favorites!

I started a little tradition a couple of years ago looking back at my favorite posts from each month! You can see 2013 and 2012…. I love just seeing how the kiddo has changed too!

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In January I had a great time sewing for Project Run and Play despite the fact I was voted off the island first! I made this outfit for the kiddo and we had such a fun time doing the photoshoot, that it makes it to my all time favorite post of the year!

In February I made this huge tote for carrying my quilts around while I’m sewing on the binding and I just love it!

In March I did a tutorial on making sandwich/snack bags. We use them all the time and it sounds like yall have enjoyed making them too!

In April I did a tutorial on the little bow tie that I made the kiddo! I really loved his whole Easter outfit that this came from!

In May I blogged about this fun little dog cape that ‘Santa’ had brought to the pup.

In June I published my first quilt pattern, The ‘Gator Quilt! It was a long process with a bunch of wonderful pattern reviewers, but worth it!

In July I showed you our preschool auction that I helped with the decorations. I just love decorating for a party!

In August I made a really cool dry erase notebook (with a tutorial)! I’m still totally in love with this one! If you haven’t made one, you should! Nice, simple, inexpensive!

In September, as part of the yearly Sew Ready to Play series (which I now have links for all in one place), I made a boom box pillow to plug your iphone into! I think this might be my favorite project all year!

In October I released my second quilting pattern, The Bat Block. And made these bat pillows with it. I didn’t really want to pack them away after Halloween, but they didn’t quite go with the Christmas decorations!

In November, I shared how I re-upholstered our dining room chairs (yep, with tutorial). They are SOOOO much nicer now then they were. I’m still not sold they will be with us forever, but I gave them some more time with us.

And lastly, in December, I made a Ice Castle Kit, AKA a fort kit made of icey looking fabric. There’s also a printable if you want to make your own! I think it’s pretty cool!

 

Stay tuned, I have a couple more ‘look backs’ coming up! Do you have a favorite project I made this year? Is there something you’d like to see this year?

Ice Castle Kit In a Bag!

Calling all Frozen fans!! Or should I say, calling everyone giving a Frozen fan a gift this year!!

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My son was invited to a Frozen birthday party last week and I was debating what to give. I wanted it Frozen themed, but I didn’t want it to be too ‘Frozeny’…. If you know what I mean!

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Then I figured it out! Years ago I saw the DIY Fort Kit by Saltwater Kids. For real. I’ve wanted to make a DIY Fort Kit for YEARS! But I changed it up a bit and made it Frozen themed….

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Most of the supplies came from the dollar store. We stocked it with clothespins, clips, suction cups, rope, double stick tape and fabric. And of course, you can’t have an ice castle without snowflakes! Now, here comes the expensive part… The fabric. The fort kit uses sheets. For this one, I wanted more of a see thru icy feel so I bought sheer fabrics. 7 yards of fabric that is! I used 4 yards of the iridescent fabric and 3 yards of the sheer. Then we did throw in a white sheet.

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I also used ribbon for the ‘hooks’. I cut 6″ pieces of the ribbon, folded it over and sewed it on to the fabric pieces. I put a hook on each corner, one in the very center and one on each center of the long side… Does that make sense? But then on the white, I added a couple more hooks where I thought I’d need them. There’s no real rule here!

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And I made the bag too… I kept putting off the bag because I couldn’t find the right fabric for it. One night I was going to stop by the fabric store and my son didn’t want to. I wish I could remember what he said, but whatever it was, it totally inspired me to make my own!

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I just happened to have bought these foam snowflakes about 3 years ago and never used them. Perfect! And then I just happened to have a block of wood the right size. I just used some double stick tape and stuck the foam flake on there, painted it and stamped it! Easy!

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Of course I had to try it out before I wrapped it! AWESOME! It made putting a fort together so simple. You have all your pieces right there. The hooks make it simple to rig it up to your furniture and doors and windows! My son really wants one, but he did request one, ‘that’s not a Frozen theme.’

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What do you think? Are you off to the dollar store for supplies right now!!?? You can print the label here!

Would you add anything else? Let me know!

Our Little Library

I realized I hinted about our Little Library contest we did as a family, but I never showed you the finished, WINNING project! If you follow me on IG, you’ve already seen a lot of this!

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We have a little library in our neighborhood and Max has wanted his own for a while now. Then I saw the Libraries on The Loose Design Competition! And it wasn’t just open to architects! Kids could enter too. We had a design plan. Then Max and Dad found a great sized box, so the plan changed. Then we found more materials so the design was a bit more organic than we had originally planned!

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During the building process, Max was interviewed and on the news. He did a great job explaining his design and showing off the box that we had started. I think he stole the show in the interview! You can see it here!

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For the most part, Max was pretty involved in the building of his library. Once he would have rather played with his pal next door than come home and stain the box. But once he got home he jumped right in! Dad did say that next time we sign Max up for a competition, it needs to be a competition that he can do on his own! Oh, Dad… We all did have fun putting it together!

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Then Max filled it up! And all the books disappeared! we filled it up again and most of them disappeared. Again. We hope the books went to a home of kids that needed them. It just took some time and our neighbors are refilling, too!

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We decided to go to the Seattle Design Festival Street Party to check out the others and see what there was to see and look what we found! Max’s library won his division! Yeah!

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Max was kinda excited about his win… But way more excited about all the fun stuff at the Street Party! Like the Tape it box! Max and Dad wrapped tape all around and back again!

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The light box was pretty cool! It lit up with motion sensors.

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The big plastic tunnel was a hit! Max made friends with this guy and they had beach ball fight! It was pretty cool! Then later we saw the crazy guys behind this wandering around in green blow up suites.

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But even with all these cool things, Max’s all time favorite was this Parkour Visions installation. It’s a gym in town where they seem to mix climbing on these boxes with gymnastics and gym! Max was in love! If he could have stayed on this all day he would have!

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Yea to our Winner!

 

Lion Mask Tutorial with My Own Fringemaker

There are all sorts of projects to do with the My Own Fringemaker, but in the spirit of Halloween I’m thinking of costumes! Like maybe a Lion costume…..

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I was going to make a lion stuffie. Maybe I still will, because our neighbors are having a baby any day now! Anyway, I’ll keep you posted on that! I’ve been wanting to do something lion since I found out about the My Own Fringemaker! Register to win a Fringemaker here!

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And if you’ve been around here for long, you know I like masks! Especially masks! We’ve done the Mr. Fox and the Arctic Fox and now it’s the Lion. Ready to make your own?

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You’ll need a fringemaker (register to win here, or buy it here), yarn, felt, 14,5″ elastic, the pattern, pipe cleaners, and cutting materials. For the felt I used four colors, cream, orange, yellow and a brownish yellow.

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Cut out all your pieces.

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Sew the elastic to the back piece of the mask.

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Make the mane! Start by tying off the yarn on the Fringmaker in a knot. Wind the yarn around and around and around! With this one I used 2 kinds of yarn, you don’t have to. Then sew down the middle. I just sewed down once since I knew the yarn would be sewn in the mask. And lastly, Remove the mane from the Fringemaker!

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Position the main on the back mask and pin it in place.

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Place the front of the mask in place and the chin/cheeks piece and the middle piece on top and sew around the edges. This part isn’t super easy, so go slow so that everything stays aligned.

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Embellish! Add the inside of the ear and the nose. These pieces could be glued on, but I sewed mine on. And sew down the chin and the middle pieces. Then add the wiskers. Cut a little slit in the cheeks, insert the whiskers and then sew down on top of the whiskers.

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Cut out the eyes and sew around the edges.

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And your done! Find a sweet kid for the mask!

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You’ve got a lion! What mask would you make with the My Own Fringemaker?

Don’t forget to register to win here!

I have been compensated with either payment or product for this post. All opinions are my own, honest opinions!

 

Name That Tune! A Boombox Pillow Tutorial

Today it’s me here at Sew Ready to Play! I don’t think I need to introduce myself, do I? So we’ll skip that part and move right in to my project! We’re all pretty excited about how this one turned out!

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I’ve been wanting to make this for a while. Maybe 2 years now… So when I was thinking about my Sew Ready to Play project, it hit me! Name that Tune is a game! We try to play it, but the kiddo always sings the same song and I’m horrible with song names! So it’s not our favorite, I’ll admit, but it’s a cool project!!

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It’s kinda a Land of Nod knock off. A few years back I saw that they had this boombox pillow (it’s not on their website anymore) and it was pretty cool. But it was just a pillow… Why wouldn’t a boombox pillow play music??? Our night time routine is typically a couple of books and then a book cd. And I have a bunch of books on my iphone… So… Combine the pillow, cd’s and iphone and you have a perfect boombox pillow! Yep!

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Dad loves to fall asleep listening to the radio and I like to fall asleep to white noise after reading. Needless to say, we had a little problem. So I bought Dad a speaker pillow. It’s perfect! He can listen and I don’t have to hear it! So the kiddo is super excited to have his own pillow so he can fall asleep listening to music too! Just like Dad!

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So I got to making my own! And it’s a hit! When he was modeling it, I told him, ‘Back when I was a kid, people used to walk around with them on thier shoulders.’ So we took some pictures and then a few minutes later he said, ‘Hey, let me carry it like they did in the old days!’ hmmmmmmmmmmm…….. The old days…. Really?

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The pillow has real hidden speakers behind the stenciled speakers.

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And a pocket on the back to hold the iphone (or mp3 player of your choice!). And a handle to make it easier to take to your next dance party!!

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make animated gifs like this at MakeAGif

OK! Does it look like so much fun that you want to make one? I’ll show you how!

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Your materials- 15x10x3 piece of foam (or how ever big you want to make it), you can use my template (but I warn you the file is very low resolution, but it works!), a zipper (I started with a 25 inch one), grey fabric, a little bit of black fabric, cutting supplies, speakers and freezer paper.

And not shown in the picture, but I also used a scrap of interfacing, a scrap of batting, fabric paint, 3 inches of velcro and about 10 inches of webbing. Also, I just happened to have a super big pipe cleaners for my ‘antenna’. But if you don’t happen to have those, I’d use a regular pipe cleaner wrapped in batting.

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First, cut out your pieces of fabric. For my 15x10x3 pillow, I cut:  2 pieces at 16×11, a 4 inch strip about 40 inches long, 2 strips about 2 inches wide and 25 inches long. The pocket was a scrap about 10 by 10ish. The pocket really just needs to be big enough to hold the mp3.

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Cut out the pattern in the freezer paper, iron it on and then paint it. For more freezer paper stencils details see this tutorial!

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Next we’ll prepare the back. Iron on your scrap of interfacing. I made mine centered and down just a little bit. Then draw on a rectangle, mine was about 3 inches long and 1/2 inch tall. Cut the inside lines, but not the outside rectangle. Then iron over and top stitch around the rectangle.

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Time for the pocket! Fold over the fabric (RST), add the batting on top and stitch along the short sides. Trim the bottom with pinking shears and snip the top corners. Turn right sides out, iron flat and fold over the bottom. Sew on the velcro to the pocket and the pillow back. Then sew on the pocket to the back of the pillow, covering the hole you just made.

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And the sides! Sew the two skinny pieces of the fabric to the zipper, using a zipper foot, and iron flat.

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Sew the zipper piece and the side piece together. Then, to get the best fit, I wrapped the piece around the pillow and marked exactly where the other ends get sewn together. I overlapped the zippered by one inch on each side. This helps with getting the cushion into the pillow case!

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Sew together the black fabric to make the antenna. And stuff it!

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Prepare the pillow! Carve out a spot for for the speakers. It doesn’t have to be pretty! Then cut a slit to slide the speakers through.

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Sew together the top, bottom and sides, RST. Turn right side out. This is where I decided to sew on the strap to the top for the handle! Then insert the pillow! You’re done!

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Just pull the cords through…

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plug in the player!

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Adjust the volume and you’re ready to go…

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Just like in the old days, namin’ that tune!

 

‘Gator Quilt Blog Hop- Tester Pics!

I am just loving seeing all the creativity in the ‘Gator Quilt! It’s remarkable to me how you can give someone the pattern and then from one pattern, such different pieces are created! I love it!

I had a wonderful bunch of testers. Some of which finished projects, others who just finished a block or two and then there are the ones who made a finished project but don’t have a blog to share it on. Today I’m sharing the work of some of these testers!

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The first one is my ‘etsy tester’ as I call her! Sharon contacted me on etsy when I first posted a picture of the quilt and asked if it was ready to be purchased. This was a while back, so I had to say no. But then I thought, I do need testers (see this was before testers even!). So she took it on, twice! I love her two quilts! Especially the clock in the belly from Peter Pan!!! I also love what she did with the ‘Gator’s eyes! The roses are from a pattern created by Beth at Piece By Number and the alphabet is from Linda at Paper Panache.

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Next up is Karen is new to the quilting world. This is her second paper piecing project. Her goal right now is to gain proficiency with as many quilting skills as possible. In “real life” she is an engineer living in Northern California. I love that it’s pink! It’s the first pink ‘gator I’ve seen!!

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Next is Marjorie in Mexico! Now this one is cool too by using the different colors! I love how the blue and green pop! Marjorie is making this one into a wall hanging for a friend who’s nick name is ‘Gator! How fun!

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And Kerrie is the last one to share today! Kerrie is an avid sewer who just started paper piecing around October of last year and was super excited to try this one! She was able to test the small and medium ‘gator for me. I love the texture in the patterns that she used. They just look great!

The quilt pattern is color coded. But only with codes like background color, body color, etc… So this way, you can come up with your very own personalized ‘Gator! And by the looks of the tester projects, everyone was able to do just that!

Keep checking in for more ‘Gator fun!

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June 10th- I’m Feelin’ Crafty

June 11th- A Quilter’s Table

June 13th- Marci Girl Designs

June 14th- I’m Feelin’ Crafty- showing off other Testers work!

June 15th- Made By Amanda Rose

June 16th- Wombat Quilts

June 17th- Wips and Tuts

June 18th- Shaffer Sisters

June 19th- Crafty Shenanigans

June 20th- I’m Feelin’ Crafty

Quilts for Oso Update

Last month, I know you heard of the horrible mudslides here in Washington.

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And then I posted about the wonderful woman behind the blog, Layers of Hope, who is running a quilt drive for the victims of the mudslides!  Well, I had a great response. Some quilters contacted me and we ended up finding ways for them to donate without the quilts actually going through me to get to Layers of Hope.

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But then this big box showed up with some fantastic goodies for the quilt drive. A lady in California quilts and also spends time in Texas with another group of quilters, the Rayburn Crafters.

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The box was super full with quilts and knitted blankets! I was like a kiddo on Christmas morning going through the box and seeing all the fun pieces. And as I was looking at each one, these cute little things kept falling out….

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Hats! Adorable little hats were packed in throughout the blankets!

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Most of the quilts are baby and toddler sized. They are small in size, but not in detail or love! Each one of these quilts are hand quilted, which I know is a labor of love.

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I picked some of my favorite details to show ya! I love the retro little girl fabric and the funny lady bugs! The embroidery and hand stitching is just always fascinating to me as well!

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Then there was also this quilt in the box. It’s nice and big and I’m totally in love with it! It’s made to look older than it really is. Doesn’t it look like something you’d and in an antique shop? Love it!

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and I’ve started my donations as well, but more to come on that!

I’ve been in touch with Layers of Hope and am dropping of the box this weekend!

 

 

Happy New Year!

I hope yall all had a wonderful New Years Eve! We have a tradition of always going to Tacoma’s zoo and seeing the zoolights, so that’s what we did! Do you have a favorite NYE tradition???

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I thought I’d welcome in 2014 with a look back at my favorite projects from 2013! I’ve been reading a lot of other blogs and it seems like I’m not the only one that gets into a mood thinking that I didn’t create too much… But once you sit and look at your whole blog from the past year, I’m reminded that I made A LOT! Yeah!

And my favorites are….

The crazy colorful outfit the kiddo and I made in January for the Project Run and Play Sew Along.

The I Love You Jacket I made for the kiddo in February.

The Super Hero Cape t-shirt tutorial (you’ll see a superhero theme throughout this year!) I made for the kiddo and Go To Sew in March!

One of my all time favorite projects was the Fox Skirt in April (for my friend April’s daughter!).

The wonky star quilt I made, with the help of my Nurture Circle, in May.

The low volume, ‘Lone Star’ pillowcase I made for a swap partner in June.

The little overalls I designed for a friend’s son adoption in July.

I really loved how this needle book turned out that I made for another swap in August.

The Flash costume in September! I didn’t blog about it until October, but technically I made it in September….

And the Hulk Costume in October!

The kiddo and I really loved our melted bead necklaces we made in November.

And last but not least, I loved our Jack and Jill pj’s I made in December!

What was your favorite project that you made last year??? Or do you have a favorite that I made? I’d love to hear about it!!

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