Saturday, August 29, 2009

New Stuff Made and Started

First up is my little monster embroidery piece. I talked about my monster sketches for felt stuffies in an earlier post. Well, I decided to stitch one up...mostly because once they turn into stuffies, they no longer look like the sketches :P This way, I get to see remember what they were intended to look like.

And this is the mini stuffie of that guy...

Next up are some more fabric headbands. The pink kitties are strips of the fabric - I was going for a haphazard look. It did not quite work out as pictured in my head. I may add some fuzzy yarn kinda squiggled along the top, not sure yet. The undersides are velvet ribbon, which stay in my hair so much better than plain old fabric.

And this is my "Started". It is going to be a flower table runner. I found it over at Moda Bake Shop. I am hoping to have it done and at least one pic by the end of Monday so I can post it for an entry into a contest at Sweetwater.

Friday, August 28, 2009

The Painted Totes are Done!

Here they are, the totes from my last post. I finished them a few days ago but it took a while for me to get the photos taken...rainy days all week did not help...neither did the photo editing program crashing daily :P

I made each bag a little different & was hoping to gather some opinions on which style is most liked. None of them have a closure. I figured that with their sizes (nearly 2 feet wide) a snap wouldn't do much and a zipper won't allow for overstuffing. I could easily add a simple tie closure, may try that on the next one. The straps have twill tape inside to give them more oomph. They all have 2 large pockets inside - one printed and the other in the solid color & sectioned. The bottom is reinforced with an extra piece of stiff craft interfacing fused (and quilted, on some) to the lining. The next batch I make will be half this size. I don't want too many XL totes hanging around.

Now for the bags & their differences...oh, and the center panels are all hand painted to mimic the print.

This first one has a strip of the printed fabric all around the top edge.

This bag has the 2 different colors next to the print.

This is the simplest - no band at the top and only one solid, no pleats.

Here are all 4 hanging above my idea where to store yet :P
The yellow bag was in the last's difference is the pleating...which is quite bulky when sewing. I feared for my poor little machine. The yellow is also a tad see through, which is what brought on the idea for the band around the top on the chili pepper bag.

So, any preference among the differences?

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

September's Giant To-Do List

I have decided to attempt a giant to-to list for September. One creation - every day. What I make should be easy enough to start and finish in one day....usually with time to do my regular stuff. It could be anything & I will most likely not do a bunch of planning ahead, which will help keep the stress off. I don't want stress from this because I am doing it for the fun of it. For the challenge of it. And probably for the humor of it.

What brought this on? Well, I blame...I mean thank ☺...a fellow MICE member and next town over neighbor, Ashley, from Ashley Amanda Designs. I read about this challenge on her blog, Peacocks and Dragonflies. Want to join us? Are you up for a challenge? Just let me know & I will add you to my list at the end of this post.

I know there will be days that the only crafts I do will be those I do all the time anyway, like my bags...and that's okay. But I do want to use this challenge as an opportunity to try new crafts. I know I can't start & finish somethings I want to give a whirl in just one day (like knitting) but with my list, I am sure there are plenty of new or at least seldom done arts & crafts that I can do in a day.

So what will I do with all these goodies? Dunno. Some may go into my shops, some may be gifts and some may be just for me. I do know that I will take pictures everyday & post them here. I may have a running image list on the sidebar, not sure yet. Posting them will help keep me going....and you get to be my cheerleaders. Heck, I am sure some things may be a source of amusement for us all. And couldn't use a good giggle now and then?

Others up for the challenge:

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Finally, More Bags

I have been having so much fun with my monster stuffies and accessories that I have neglected my poor bags. A while back - like just before my vacation one month ago - I had cut out bunches of bags. I have gone back to some of my super sized totes (well, to me they seem super sized...almost 2 feet wide and 5-6 inches deep) but with some hand painting on the center panels. I finished one up the other night and another last night (no finished pics of that one yet). I decided not to pleat them all. Reason one - it's a total pain in the butt because of how thick it gets...I don't want to anger the machine. Reason two - I can never decide which I prefer.

These are the pieces for the other 3 bags-to-be....

That last one was finished up last night. The pink (which looks kinda orange in that pic) are the panels that went on either side of the print panels. And I am proud to say that I am thinking ahead & creating simple zip pouches to go with each bag (that goes for most, not just these totes). Okay, I'll fess up to the whole truth on these...while I am prepping all my bags for some kind of accessory (mostly zip pouches), these came about from a miscalculation. I created one too many panels for each bag. Two to four too many actually. Oops. Oh well - good things come from goofs. Like zip pouches and extra pockets inside. Woo Hoo?

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Accessories Version of the 3 Bears

I sold a clutch in this fabric the other week and she requested some accessories to go with it. I posted previously the checkbook cover/wallet thingy, zip pouch and keychain...these are the "credit card holders with a back slot/pocket". Scratch that - I just went back looking for the link & realized I never got to it. So i posted them at the bottom here ☺

This was the first pouch made. And there really was nothing wrong with it...until I put a card in the back pocket.

Too Big

See this snap on the back pocket? I had to put it there because it was not snug enough to hold a card in safely. So what's the problem? When I went to put in the snap...only one side worked. The "inside" snap kept getting flubbed. Eventually, there was a ring of small holes where the snap should be. I am keeping this one for me, because, well, doesn't matter to me...but I'd never try to pass it off to someone else. Besides - I am now out of the fabric...which I love. This way I get to enjoy the fabric a bit myself ☺

This is the back of the 3rd pouch...the one that was so hard to do because of the zipper bulk. Actually, the one before this was too gggrrr - it got scrapped. This one just ended up too small to fit credit cards in once I tried to fix some of the bulk problems. But it made a great coin pouch.

Too Small

This next pouch was my last one. I found that making such a small zip pouch is rather frustrating. I kept having a hard time with the tininess of I rearranged the zipper to go across the front. When it was at the top, the bulk was too much for such a small pouch.

Just Right

And here is the first accessory problems with any of these guys.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Monsters and Squid and Whale Oh My!

I think I'll let the title & the pics speak for themselves. Well, almost... The whale with the bird on top and the maroon one eyed monster were made for my swap partner. The whale was made from the book "softies" - it is sitting on the page from the book in the pic up there. Oh, and the orange guy is a keychain. I have 6 more (different styles) cut and ready to be assembled. My house is slowly being overrun by monsters - I love it!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Looking for Opinions and Tester

I have made some new checkbook cover/wallet thingies because of a custom order recently. I am pretty happy with how they turned out. There are still some kinks to work out, pretty minor and only with ways to make assembly easier. This is the first one I made. The topstitching had some flubs (I needed to use a larger needle), the label is not in the best place and I ironed it after the snaps were put in which left some "shine" on the material.

So this is where the "tester" portion of the title comes into play. I am looking for someone who is willing to use my checkbook cover/wallet thingy, flubs and all, in exchange for giving me some is the size ok, does it need more or less pockets/slots, is there something that should be added or deleted, etc.? If you are up for it, I will send it out to the 1st taker. Thanks :)

And now to the "opinion" portion of the post. Remember the windy craft show that ended in rain? Well, there was a casualty. I am not 100% sure what caused it, I think it was ink running off the tags onto the fabric. Luckily, the color matches the bag. I took a couple pics of the "stains", they are difficult to see on the picture of the whole bag....unless it's zoomed in.

Opinion you think these could/should be one-offs or oopses at a bargain price? I hate to just toss them. Personally, it would not matter much to be since it is rather subtle. Plus, after a few uses I'd probably wind up doing something like that to it anyway. But I want to know what you think. Thanks :)

Monday, August 10, 2009

To Market

I think I wrote a post a while back that included some WIPs of market tote bags. I have been using the first one for weeks and I love it. I have about 10 cut up & ready to sew. This is the first one, after mine, that I completed. I used my fiberfill bag to "stuff" the tote so it was not just a flat piece of material lying down on my sewing table.

I decided to go with bias tape around the edges instead of hemming. I hemmed mine and they look a tad mooshed. I know, not the best universal descriptive word out there. But saying worn makes it sound like it's falling apart, which it is not. And wrinkled sounds like it can just be ironed out. But me that fits best.

I suppose a tote you use for the market should be expected to get mooshed. I know I carry all mine folded up (or squished) into one tote. Using the bias tape should keep it looking "fresher". I also plan to make reuseable produce bags to go with them. You know the type - netting with a ribbon drawstring. I use one when I shop and I love it. They are so light that they do not add any weight and no plastic produce bags to just dump back onto our Earth. It's a win win.

Friday, August 7, 2009

Embroidery & Ribbon Fun to Come

I finally finished my Not Mandatory took forever. Well, it took forever for me to get back to. The stitching itself was not too bad. I think it will become part of a mini messenger type bag. Something wide enough for a sketchbook.

Remember that craft show I had the other weekend? Well, I always go prepared to craft in case of slow times. So I prepped these hoops. Why so many? Well, I just never know what I may be in the mood to work on :) I am aiming to have at least one done a week. That should be doable, right? I know you can't see all the designs clearly (if at all) but there is a fairy baby, roses, brain, zepplin & another image from Serenity (the fruity oaty bar girls).

And from my vacation up north, the cool ribbon I found. What am I going to do with it? Not 100% sure, but some of it will be part of a clutch in October for breast cancer awareness.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

More Monsters Invade

I have scanned all the monster sketches to prep for pattern drafting...I think there are about 12. But I couldn't resist playing more until then. So I made 2 more keychain guys based on the sketches. The proportions aren't quite right since I was just eyeballing it, but they're cute anyway...right? My youngest thinks they're fun - it's ok to base stuff on a 4 year old's opinion - right?

This next guy may look familiar to some of you. He is my 3rd flying piggie. I worked out some of the assembly kinks and used a darker pink so it's less see through. Plus, I skipped the white fur trim & used felt instead - much easier on the fingers...and my shirt.

I have 4 more cut and ready to go. The yellow & maroon ones are based on some I saw while browsing Etsy - I couldn't tell you who because it was just an image that stuck. Those guys will be staying home with us or head off to my niece & nephew.

I have finished this maroon one since these were taken, but have not taken a pic yet...which is okay, he didn't turn out so great. The circles & the body colors didn't look right once put together. But again, my 4 year old loves him :)

You can't tell from this pic, but this one is rather large. The head is almost as big as my arms when circled together. I hope I have enough fluff to fill him :P

This last one started as a bear. Yup, a bear. The head of this guy was a belly. I had it laid out on the table with some other color strips to use for eyes & stuff, but when I looked down at it, I saw this octopus type guy. My oldest dubbed him Troctopus (tri-octopus)...since only 3 legs/arms/appendages. I have already got him going. I hope to show him early next week.

Where are my bags you ask? They are there. And I need to get going on them. But sometimes, changing up what you create can help get the inspiration & motivation back for what you do regularly. A recent custom order for lots of fun matchy things helps too . I love it when the customer helps "design" the bags :)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Loving the Monsters

Okay, I am on a new kick...stuffies. I have made some before, mostly felt ones. But now that I am in a stuffie swap on Craftster, I am making more. More than I needed to. And I have sketches for even more...almost an army.

This guy here was so fun to make. And he was kind of freehand based off one of my sketches. He looks nothing like the sketch. But I love him. Plans to make another are already in my mind, but, well, um, I forgot to copy the pattern. But I am still going to try.

After the blue guy was done, I wanted to make my 3 Eyed guy. My mind was envisioning a larger monster, but something said "keychain" to me. SO I made a teeny one. Loved him so much, I plan to make many more. Which shop they will go in? Not sure yet. They are an accessory, so the bag shop would work..b.ut the Too shop is a mish mash where monsters may feel more at home.

And that are 3 WIPs ready to roll. And the sketch book has about 12 more. I plan to alternate X number of bags, then that number of monsters. I don't want to get too "stuck" on one.

Oh yeah...if you are wondering which one is for the stuffie swap - none of these. I won't post pics until my partner spoilers in case she peeks over here :)