Thursday, July 31, 2014

Day 18 - Use What You've Got

Today I'm going to be making use of the medicine and vitamins we have in our house - together with some fresh fruit, plenty of water and enjoying the comfy sofa to rest on.
I'm a bit sick just now with flu-type symptoms. Yesterday was a day when I had to be out and about all day and it really wiped me out. Today I'm resting!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Day 17 - Use What You've Got, my stash dilemma

Everyone keeps random objects for future crafting don't they?
A few years ago, we transferred all our music from CDs onto the computer and mp3 players. Of course, I didn't throw out the CDs seeing far too much potential in them as a craft supply!
Over the years, I've added to my craft CD collection with DVDS and CDs as my girls have grown out of various song and movie choices.

Now look at what I have...
At a rough count, about 250 CDs!

I like that they're shiny and was thinking of some kind of outdoor shiny mosaic project. A couple of years ago on a family holiday to Bali - I saw large statues covered like glitter balls - and in my mind, I kind of imagined I could perhaps create something similar to stand proud and glittery in our backyard..

Tacky? maybe - but I'm a sucker for anything shiny and glittery!!

However - here's the dilemma.

My daughter's school is putting on a production of 'At the Bandstand' and the art teacher who is working on the production set, has asked for donations of old CDs - and lots of them!

I'm in the midst of a challenge which involves using up my stash. I want to clear our house out and really should just donate these CDs to the school.

But there's a part of me doesn't want to part with all that shiny potential!  

If I keep them, I need to USE them - either way this stash is going to get used up!

What would you do??

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Upcycled school dress to teddy uniform! - Day 16 Use What You've Got

I've been saving my daughter's old school dresses. Ones that have become too worn to mend or patch. We've had a good few years use out of them - for both girls. 
I thought it would be fun to use the fabric to make things for them with.
I've made a few hair scrunchies in the past with them, but this time I thought I might make a keepsake for them.

I kept a couple of teddies the girls discarded at their last clean-out, with this project in mind!

Yesterday I took one teddy and one dress..

..and pieced together a mini school dress for teddy!

What do you think?
I think she may also need a school hat! I know there's an old spare one somewhere I could use...

Have you ever made anything from your kids old uniforms?

I also made a selection of bags from our swim club's old uniform shirts a little while ago! 

You can see what I made from those here.

Happy Upcycling!

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Use What You've Got Day 14 - a little sorting

This weekend I've not been feeling very well. Blocked up and a chesty cough so I've been taking things as easy as I can.

I took the opportunity to slowly sort out some of my 'stash' while watching some Commonwealth Games action.  

These fabric 'pockets' used to belong to my daughters, but when they got their own rooms this year, they cleared out some of their things, and I got this! I thought it would be good for keeping my current sewing projects organised, but until now, it's just had things randomly stuffed in!

No more!  I'm making use of them to organise my 'miscellaneous stupplies' in - everything from old clothes waiting to be upcycled, to beads and chess pieces! Plus some 'trinkety' things!!  I really do have some odd things saved - but there are ideas for everything!

So hopefully now things are sorted and clearly labelled, I'll get around to doing something with them!

It feels good to have a tidy craft room again!
Now I just need to rest for the remained of the weekend - and maybe just plan the week ahead of some crafts, sewing and upcycles to ..

Use What I've Got!

Friday, July 25, 2014

Day 12 - Use What You've Got - the quirky koala's capes!

Do you remember my quirky koala? I made him back in May for my daughter's teacher who is coaching an important hockey team later this year and needed a new mascot.

The team now has a name, and I've been asked to make a cape for the koala. 
 Here's what I came up with.

Since it's a Queensland team, the cape had to be maroon (QLD sporting colour). And I found a perfectly coloured shiny old pillowcase that was just perfect to upcycle for the job!
I don't own an embroidery machine (wouldn't it be nice?), so I appliqued the team name on one, and printed the others onto fabric which I then appliqued to the cape.
So I really did manage to use what I've got for this project! (The koala itself is made from a pair of jeans and some scrap fabric I had in my stash!)

So here's the first one, with the team name.

Or an alternative smaller version
 (just in case they play on a hot day!)..

Then some words of advice from the coach.

The Quirky Koala seems happy enough with them.

Let's hope the coach likes them too!

Have you ever made a team mascot?

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Mini Circle Zip Pouches - Day 11 Use What You've Got

I pinned this tutorial by Dog Under My Desk to my
 "Things I want to make" board two years ago. 

Yesterday, I finally got around to trying it!

It's a great little tutorial - nice and clear with lots of photos.
It's also perfect for using up scraps!

I made one for each of my daughters, but I have to say I like the doggie one better. The fabric has perfect size doggies on to cut perfect pieces..

And although it's called an 'earbud' pouch;

It's also just the right size for a little coin purse!

Do you have lots of things 'pinned' that you haven't yet tried?
Why not pick something and try it out this week?

Hey - then you could always link it up to my 

Go on - do it!

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Cake in a cup - Day 10 Use What You've Got

Last night I decided to try out a recipe that I'd pinned months ago - for a cake in a cup!

There are lots of different recipes out there but I used 

Apart from being a little confused with the amount of some of the ingredients - like 5 Tablespoons of flour (in a cup?). Once I realised I should just measure everything in teaspoons it was all good!

Here's what it looked like before cooking..

And after just 1 minute in the microwave..

(sorry didn't get a better picture before the toppings were added!)

We added squirty cream, a little chocolate sauce and sprinkles!

My husband and I enjoyed the cake, but my kids were less than impressed. Perhaps it was a vegan cake recipe - with no milk or eggs in it? We don't usually have vegan cakes..

I think to be fair I'll have to try this again with a different recipe.

Does anyone have one to recommend?

Have you ever made a cake in a cup?

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

3 Size Triangle Pouches - a tutorial

I love these triangle shaped zipped pouches. Here's my own version of  them - a little patchwork - some denim from jeans (my favourite thing to sew with and I have lots in my stash to use up) and 3 different sizes to choose from.
Keychain size:

Medium 'pencil case' size:

And large:

To make the large pouch 
(roughly 30cm (12") tall)

Materials needed:
Jeans (or other fabric of your choice) - another fabric for the outer patchwork, and inner fabric, and a zip - approx 40cm (16") long.

Cut 4 squares of each outer fabric, 20cm (8") square each.
Cut 2 squares of inner fabric, 40cm (16") square each.
Cut outer fabric for the strap, 22 x 10cm (8.5 x 4")
Cut 2 scraps of outer and 2 inner fabric, approx 6 x 8cm (2.5 x 3")

First make the patchwork outer pieces.
Pin one of each square of outer fabric right sides together and stitch two down the left side and two down the right side:

Then place each of these stitched pieces, right sides together, matching up the seams but with opposite fabrics facing each other. Pin and stitch to make 2 larger squares:

The strap
Take the piece of fabric you cut for the strap. Fold both long sides in towards the middle, then fold in half again so the long raw edges are completely hidden. Top-stitch down both long sides:

The Zip
Pin the 4 pieces of scrap fabric to either end of the zip. Right sides together and facing in. The lines where you stitch will make the new outer edges of the zip, so make sure they are closer together than your outer patchwork square of fabric:

TIP: before I stitch these ends, I always like to gently pull them back to see what it will look like when finished (several times I've got the fabric the wrong way round when I haven't checked!!)

Once you've stitched the ends, you can trim off the excess zip and fabric:

So your zip ends look neat and in line with the actual zip itself.

Your pieces are now ready to assemble:

Lay your zip face down, centrally on one of your outer squares of patchwork fabric. Then place and inner square of fabric also face down on top of that. Pin across the top.

Stitch across the top close to the zip teeth using your machine zipper foot.
 Open the fabric out and it should look like this:

Now to the other side. Place this whole piece on top of the other inner square of fabric, then lay your final outer square face down on top of that.
You should have both outer squares right sides facing, and under that both inner squares, right sides facing, with the zip between the outer and inner fabric pieces:

NB: Be careful to place your outer patchwork pieces so that opposite fabrics are next to each other!

Pin and stitch close to the zipper teeth again.

Now open your fabric out like this - one outer and inner fabric piece on either side of the zip.

Top stitch around all 4 sides of the zip. This will prevent the fabric from folding and catching in the zip when you open and close it.

Attach the strap:
Fold the strap in half and pin then stitch to ONLY THE OUTER FABRIC, just to the right of the top of the zip.  Also trim the fabric from the outer edges of the zip in line with the main squares.


Now place the fabric squares outer pieces right sides together, and inner pieces right sides together.

Pin then stitch around the sides and top edges - leaving the bottom completely open.
Make sure and match up the seams on your patchwork.
Also leave a gap of a few inches along the top right side - you'll need this at the end to turn the pouch out!

Now fold the bottom open ends so the side seams line up with the middle where the zip is. creating two pouches:

Pin then stitch across the bottom of both the outer and inner pouch.

Now find the gap you left in the inner fabric piece - and turn the whole pouch right sides out:

Finishing off:
Now all you have to do is hand-stitch the opening in your inner fabric.
Pin first, then stitch:

And there you have one large triangle pouch!

 Other sizes

For the medium (pencil case) sized pouch:
Cut 4 squares of each outer fabric, 10cm (4") square each.
Cut 2 squares of inner fabric, 20cm (8") square each.
Cut outer fabric for the strap, 16 x 8cm (6.5 x 3")
Cut 2 scraps of outer and 2 inner fabric, approx 6 x 8cm (2.5 x 3")
Zip - 20cm (8") long

For the small (keychain size) pouch:
Cut 4 squares of each outer fabric, 5cm (2") square each.
Cut 2 squares of inner fabric, 10cm (4") square each.
Cut outer fabric for the strap, 12 x 6 cm (5 x 2.5")
Cut 2 scraps of outer and 2 inner fabric, approx 6 x 8cm (2.5 x 3")
Zip (10cm (4") long
Don't forget a keyring here - and slip it through the folded handle before stitching that to the pouch!

These pouches are cute and a fun shape and could be used for storing or carrying whatever you choose!

The large one could carry clothes or even beach gear - and when full could be used as a pillow! The small keychain version is great as a coin purse!

Or you could put them all inside one another like Russian Dolls, they'd make a great gift!

What would you keep in these cute triangle pouches?

If you liked this tutorial, there are plenty more: 
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