Posts Tagged ‘Handmade Gifts’

Thursday, July 11th, 2013

Birthday Quilt

quiltI never did post about it but I did make it. At least I think I didn’t. Somehow I don’t think I posted about B’s birthday at all. Poor third baby. I made a variation of this quilt. My version is substantially less fancy but more in keeping with this one and this one. I omitted the binding and the contrast strips.

I had fun making this one. The squares were easy to put together (good, clear instructions!) but the sewing was more challenging in some ways. I wasn’t worried about getting it perfect and I’m happy with how it turned out albeit plenty wonky. It is way more challenging to match the points of multiple triangles than it is to match the points of a few squares. There are so many seams! It was a learning experience, the seams are more stressed. The quilt already has some scars but, not to worry, it just meas that I got to put some of my perle cotton to good use.

The fabric is all over the place. There’s some Alexander Henry, Ellen Luckett Baker, a vintage sheet and a Japanese print. Then I threw in some stuff I bought in New York while I was pregnant because it seemed fitting and something that I bought last summer in the Finger Lakes because it also seemed fitting. In short, an exercise in fabric free association.


Three first birthdays and three blankies. It’s hard to warp my head around. Babies and birthdays and it’s all flying by so fast.

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Saturday, December 8th, 2012

A Christmas Craft For Tiny Hands

Pomanders are an old fashioned traditional holiday decoration that make great gifts and are easy enough for little hands to make (very nearly) on their own. We used clementines because Chase REALLY wanted to try this project after finding it in one of our craft books and that’s what we had in the kitchen. But it turns out that a clementine is just the right size for her level of ability and concentration.

You don’t even need many supplies. Fruit, whole cloves and a skewer to help poke pilot holes for the cloves. Oh, and some string or ribbon for hanging. I helped her tie the twine. She could probably do that part on her own but we tied it after the fruit was studded with cloves so it was a little tricky and I helped.

They smell just like Christmas.

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Monday, December 26th, 2011

Handmade Holiday

I blew the dust off and fired up the old machine for the first time in months.  Months.  And I managed to eek out some gifts.  Three sets of pj’s, a bathrobe and an infinity scarf using this tutorial.   Read the rest of this entry »

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Sunday, December 18th, 2011


When did we get down to the week before Christmas?  Seriously, when??  I’m so behind.  I am not at all prepared.  But we did a little shopping today and a little baking too.

Chase continues to prove herself to be a great helper in the kitchen.  Great.  It’s amazing.  She rolled all of the pfeffernusse  in sugar and thumbprinted all of the strassburgs.  Which is what we call them but apparently they’re really called strassburgers and you can use the recipe to make spritz cookies.  Who knew.

I even started sewing last night so I’ll get a few things done yet.  Maybe not the whole list.  Actually, the problem is mostly that I never made a list in the first place.  All the same, I made Chase a much needed pair of pj pants last night and made her a cute little dress from this book.

My big plans for the week include figuring out where we stand with Christmas presents, an ultrasound, some more cookies, and making fried doughnuts for dinner.  What are your last minute plans?


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Saturday, August 20th, 2011


We made it.  We thought we might not.  We thought we might just stop along the road in nowhere, PA, pitch a tent and call it even.  By the time we left the girls were falling down (over) tired and whining like nobody’s business.  After listening to Magic Treehouse books 9-15 for the 5th time I wished we could “go there” but it didn’t work for me.  I spent Friday night recovering and Saturday night catching up on Project Runway.  I’m feeling mostly better but am very much looking forward to my sleeping in day tomorrow.  Mmm, Sunday.  Somebody bring me coffee in bed.

My pictures of the week are all crap.  Honestly, what kind of picture is that?!  I really captured a moment there.  I still can’t remember to take pictures with the people we visit.  Mostly, though, I just didn’t pick up my camera.  We were pretty unplugged.  There were a couple of times that I was able to check my email but I really couldn’t respond to or address anything and that felt pretty good and spilled over into the picture taking I think.  I mostly just sat around a lot.  I sure do like sitting.

The first day of school is quick approaching.  I really have to start thinking about back to school dresses.  That’s right TWO!  Two big girls go to school this fall.  We’ll have to see about that.  Things have been more than a little slow in that department.  I did do a teensy bit of sewing this afternoon for a special birthday and it always kind of feels weird sharing that stuff but it’s not like I can just show you some other cool thing I made sooo…   Chase picked out the fabric for the pouch and the headband.  The fairies were part of the G Street picks.

It probably shouldn’t surprise me considering how rarely I go delving into it recently but I was happy to find a black zipper in my stash!  I went about it the way I work best.  By just randomly cutting and slashing and throwing it together while chasing my kids and yelling into the phone.  Well, look at that, I DO know how to put in a zipper.

Chase helped me sew too.  Ok, go, faster, too fast! Stop!  STOP!  We still have all our fingers and it was fun.  It’s not really sewing if there’s no chance of a puncture wound, right?  We stuffed a little headband that we made in there and I’m wishing I had some knit in something a little less sunny that I could throw together for myself.  Maybe if I look hard enough my stash will come through again.

So, dresses… I have to think about it.  I must have said that ten times already.  Think.  I’m moving it to the top of my to-do list.  Which reminds me that I just finished I Don’t Know How She Does It.  Perfect for the beach.  Not too heavy, kept me laughing and made my cry a little but only a little and then I was laughing again.  Think Bridget Jones has kids.  I read in he acknowledgments that she sold movie rights and thought, hmm, it’s been a while since the book came out guess that never came to fruition but just stumbled upon this.  I wonder who Kelsey Grammar plays.  Oh, but I almost forgot the best part! I found a copy of Private Life so I can finally read the book I’ve been talking about since December!  Just sitting there right on top of the pile not even on the shelf yet!

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Thursday, December 23rd, 2010

The Mermaidens!

And I’m officially done!  I did everything I could to sabotage this project.  Everything.  I started by not reading the instructions.  After reading the instructions I decided not to follow them.  Then I committed a series of sewing sins.  But there they are and, at the end of the day, I decided not to hate them.  They kind of don’t look anything like the picture in the book but the girls will never know that.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Tuesday, December 21st, 2010

Baby Blocks

I’m happy to report that they’re done!  I’m planning to let her open them on Christmas Eve.  Last year I let Chase open her pyjamas at night but I don’t think I’m going to get to pyjamas this year so I’ll probably let her open her hat.  Or her mermaiden if I get to it.   Read the rest of this entry »

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Saturday, August 21st, 2010

Two Parties

Two cakes, two outfit changes, two, maybe three goodie bags.  The weekend of many parties.  So many parties that I could hardly keep it all straight and almost showed up two hours early for one.  Whoops.

I have plenty of things on my to do list but I’m recovering tonight from all the time I spent in the last few days cutting felt into tiny pieces.  Today’s birthdays were for two of Chase’s very special friends so we made some very special gifts.  Chase even helped me do some sewing on the machine.

The thing about making surprises is the waiting.  As soon as I pull stuff off the machine I want to run right out and give it to the intended recipient.  Sometimes before I even cut off the threads and finish up properly.  These two projects didn’t involve too much sewing but I did kill an entire bottle of fabric glue.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Sunday, August 23rd, 2009

Pink Pixie Hood

library-2303I love to knit hats.  Probably because they’re quick and easy.  I borrowed Baby Beanies by Amanda Keeys from the library but wanted to try so many of the hats that I decided to buy it.  I have come to accept that I need to just buy some books outright because by the time I return them to the library I inevitably owe as much as it would cost to buy in fines.  There are tons of books out there with so many cute ideas but this one leans toward simple which is just right for me.   Read the rest of this entry »

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Monday, August 10th, 2009

Project :: Fat Quarter Diaper Changing Pad

library-2232I was going to title this post cloth diaper changing pad but I couldn’t figure out how to place or not place hyphens so that it didn’t sound like a pad for changing cloth diapers instead of a changing pad made out of cloth.  Grammar is so tricky.  Then, my camera wanted to be tricky.  I had exactly enough battery power left in my flash to take exactly two pictures.  My flash batteries always disappear very suspiciously.  When questioned, Ben said, No, he didn’t know where he could find me a set of batteries.  However, upon further probing, it appears that he Read the rest of this entry »

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