quilted pillow

I whipped up a pillow today for my mother-in-law. When she moved to Indy, she gave me a lot of her sewing room items, which included things her mother had worked on. Now that Gayle is moving into her own place back here to be around all us kids, I thought it would be nice to gift one of them back to her.

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I am not sure what Delores had originally intended with it, but I made it a pillow cover (I used the envelope-style pillow tutorial at The Happy Housie).

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Boy picked out the back fabric – he said it must have birds! I did mess up there – I wanted the opening in the back to be the other way, but at least I got the birds orientated correctly!

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It was a little tricky – the quilted top measured 21″ but I could only find pillow forms in either 18″ or 24″. I went with the larger version, with Boy’s suggestion in mind: if it was too big, I could take some stuffing out. It is a tight fit, but it seems to have managed ok!

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(Cat for size.)

zelda crest mug rug

Boy and I both adore the Zelda games, so this is really for both of us, though I tell him it is his:)

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I got the pattern from Our Nerd Home, and embroidered it over break. This one is really thick compared to my first attempt! I used three layers of fabric all told, with some thin batting and stabalizer between the first two (the third simply covered my crazy embroidery backside). It has a really great heavy feel to it, I love it.

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It was, however, the first time I tried using bias tape, and I could certainly use some more practice!

weighted pincushion organizer

Sew Mama Sew posted about Elizabeth’s Fabric Focus with a free PDF pattern of a weighted pincushion organizer. Now that I am sewing a little more regularly (being mostly jobless this semester, and all), I am constantly frustrated with all the extra threads and fabric snips that seem to go all over the place. So, when I saw this, I just had to try it! One of the toughest parts for me was finding coordinating fabric in my stash since I am trying to stay frugal.

I had a lot of fun learning how to make this. It was my first time using rice for weight, and I have many more ideas for that!

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The pattern did not call for embellishments, but I just had to give it a try. My scallops are a little wonky, but it was only the second time I had tried fancy stitches so give me some credit! (Side note: my machine broke mid-project and Boy and I took it all apart and found the cause, oiled her well, and cleaned her up like new – a screw had loosened over time, allowing a spring to slip, which caused the feeder dog to fail. Thank goodness for Bernina’s build quality – she is going on 30 years old!!)

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I also added some old lacey stuff I had laying around to bring out the pockets a little more, with teeny buttons.

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A cool feature of this project is that the scrap bin detaches so I can put it wherever it is needed. I really fell in love with this pattern, and I am ever grateful for the people at SMS and people like Elizabeth to offer free tutorials. Thanks so much!

burlap trim

I was at Michaels the other day and found a roll of Crafty Cuts daisy burlap on clearance so I got it after being able to answer the question of what would I do with it? Well, we have a stainless steel container we keep coffee/tea in and it just does not go with the kitchen which is more traditional than modern.

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Fix: wrap it!

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All I did was cut it to size, add folded hems on both sides, and hand-stitched it together.

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Then, I decided to repeat this process with my ceramic bottle sitting in the corner of the kitchen.

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Now, that corner is a little dressier now too.

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ikea hack: bekvam stool

*1/27/15 Edit: IkeaHackers added this to their page – check out their site for a ton of great ideas! :)

Ikea does make some really great products, and one of the things I use often is my little BEKVÄM stool. It is lightweight and easy to carry around my kitchen and other parts of the house when I need a step up. Plus, it works as additional seating sometimes – often for my cat, Maya;) I decided it needed a cushion but I wanted the cushion to be removable for when I needed a step up, you know? I don’t want to stand on a pretty seat and make it dirty over the years!

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I bought a piece of ¾ inch wood, cut it the same size as the top of the stool, with about ⅜” extra on the left and right sides (to have a little edge to grab onto when removing), then lightly sanded the edges and corners just so my fabric would not snag on a splinter.

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I used this board as a template to cut the cushion to size. The cusion is very thick and firm, and a little tricky to cut. I tried scissors, a knife, and my rotary cutter. What worked best for me was using the rotary cutter in vertical chopping motions.

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Then, I had a piece of snazzy canvas I bought a while back, and cut it so that I had about three inches to staple to the board. That way, I could make a hem with the fabric for extra strength. I did not have rhyme or reason to how I stapled it – I just had fun!

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As you can see above, I also set the cushion top on the stool and then traced where my wood-plug would go, through the handle opening of the stool itself. To make the plug, I had an extra bit of a 2×4 cut to the rough shape of the handle, then I sanded it down until it fit snug. I used a bit of wood glue and two screws (pre-drilled) to hold it in place.

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The plug allows the cushion to sit firmly on the stool, so you do not have to worry about knocking it off when you sit down. And, it let’s you pop the cushion off when you need to step on the stool, because it isn’t anchored to the stool itself – just slips into the handle hole.

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Now, all that is left is deciding on what color of stain I want to use on the stool itself!

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