A Hooded Towel for Christmas!

It has finally come, that time to put away the other projects and focus on my Christmas sewing. Yea! I love Christmas!

When my oldest son was born, a beautiful lady from my church made a hooded towel for him. That towel was WONDERFUL! It was large enough to wrap him up in and absorbent enough to really get him dry. I just LOVED it!

As I was thinking about gifts for my grandsons this year, I knew that I wanted to make a large, soft, hooded towel for them too. I wish I had kept that old towel to use as a pattern, but it has been long, long gone. I searched the internet and Pinterest for patterns that were similar or that I liked, but I couldn’t find one that gave clear enough instructions. So… to make this long story short — I just designed my own!

The pattern is EASY!! And the tutorial makes sewing the towel a breeze :). If you have any babies or toddlers on your Christmas list, you might want to try your hand at sewing them a Hooded Towel. 🙂

Supply List:

  • One Bath Towel
  • One Hand Towel
  • Matching Thread

Instructions:

  • If you want to add embroidery or ribbon or appliqué etc., add it to your hand towel first. Make sure that the embellishments are between 6” – 9” from the bottom of the towel. You can add bows and buttons or more after the towel is sewn.

  • With the right side of the towel facing down, fold the bottom of the towel up about 5”. If you are adding embellishments, Check to make sure that the fold covers the whole thing. If not, make the fold larger.
  • On the front of the towel, sew a top stitch close to the fold.
  • On the back of the towel, sew the top of the folded flap down.

The front will now look like this.

  • With the right side facing up, fold the edge you just sewed back on itself 6.5”
  • Sew these sides closed

  • Find the center of the towel on the fold and place a pin there.
  • With a ruler, place the 3’ mark at the pin and mark 3” on either side with a pin.

  • Sew from the pin to the end of the flipped edge.Back stitch and secure this edge quite a bit. I have marked in chalk your sewing line from the pin to the end of the flipped edge. You do not need to mark your towel

  • Cut the corners of folded edge next to the angled stitching.
  • Cut the free edge of the towel 3” from the fold as in the above picture.

This next step is the only somewhat tricky part, but it really just feels a bit awkward. It’s not hard. You can do it!:)

  • Mark the center of the folded, top of the hood with a pin.
  • Fold the back of the towel lengthwise starting at the pin. Fold the hood evenly in half lengthwise pinning as needed.
  • Sew from the top pin down to the bottom about 1” over. I have marked in chalk your sewing line

You will have a hood with a dart on the back when you are done . Yea! You did it:)

  • Finish all of your cut edges with a serger or with a zig zag stitch.

  • Sew the side wings down that are barely below the hood

  • Find the center of the long or wide side of your towel.
  • Pin the hood to the towel
  • Sew the hood down making sure to really back stitch and the beginning and end for added strength. You may even want to sew this seam twice.

Oh my goodness! You are done! Isn’t it the cutest thing?

And since I blog about my creative journeys, there are rarely any real homemade surprises under our Christmas tree. I figure it gives added anticipation. Lol:)! Here are the three towels that I made. After the initial embroidery, which took forever, these towels whipped up in no time!

And of course I had to grab my SWEET grandson and take quick photo to show you how truly adorable this towel really is! Just look how snuggly he is:).

I will not be posting the rest of the week due to the Thanksgiving holiday. I hope those of you in the States have a wonderful holiday filled with family and delicious food. I am Thankful for all of you, my online friends.

Scrap Happy Needle Case

Hello and Happy Tuesday!   Today is a fun day because it is Kate’s Scrap Happy round up day:).  For my Scrappy project I would like to share with you my beautiful  Scrap Happy needle case. 

I  am part of a shoebox swap Christmas gift exchange. I have been getting ready all year.   My swap friend said she needed a needle case.   Sew…I made her one!  Isn’t it cute?

For my inspiration I used a pattern from Nana Company that can be found here. I didn’t really follow her instructions as much as I just kind of looked at them for inspiration. It measures 7″x4″.

I sewed my tiny 1 1/2″  scraps to make the front.  I  drew a free hand Needles on it and stitched it using an easy back stitch with double the thread.

The back is just a single piece of fabric with quilting and a button closure:). But the really fun part is the inside.

I made a little pocket to hold scissors and needle threaders:).  The pages are made from a soft, yummy wool.

Each page has a bit of lace for embellishment.  Isn’t it pretty?  

I found this lace as I was rummaging through my ribbon and lace scrap drawer for embellishments.  I knew it would be perfect!

I cut around the flowers and then sprayed them on the back with Scotch permanent fabric adhesive.  I did this on top of a paper towel to keep my table clean.  Then I glued them to the wool page.  Easy!!

I just loved making this SWEET little needle case!  I think I might have to make another for me:)

I hope you have a Happy Scrappy Day!

Scrap Happy Bag

Hello!  It is that Scrap-Happy time of the month again:)!  I always love linking up with Kate over at Tall Tales from Chiconia and seeing what fun creations everyone is making from their scraps:)

I helped my daughter in law make a beautiful quilt for her new baby boy.  She cut, sewed, and then cut and sewed again.  It turned out wonderfully!After it was all sewn together, there were quite a few beautiful fabric strips leftover.

I can’t throw lovely fabric away, so I decided to gather them up and make a matching bag for her.


I have had this bag pattern in my file for years.  Now seemed like the perfect time to use it:)


I sewed the scraps into strips and then quilted them to a backing.


Looking good so far!   I followed the pattern to construct the bag and then came to the grommet section.  I used Dritz curtain grommets that I bought at Walmart but you can get them on Amazon as well. 

  • There was a template to mark the fabric.  
  • I traced the circle
  • Pinned my fabric together to keep it from shifting as I cut
  • I took a DEEP breath and cut this large hole into my bag.  Eeeeek!!  That was scary!!
  • I snapped the grommet in place. 

Woo hoo!  They look GREAT!!  Some of the grommets were easier to snap together than others.  There is a lot of fabric in there!  But they all came together:)The bag turned out so cute!!  I really love the large grommets.  


I even used scraps to make an inside pocket to hold bottles or a phone.


Here is the matching set.  SWEET!!  They look so good together:). I probably need to make another one for me!

I hope you have a Scrap Happy Day!

Patio Chair Make-Over Scrap Happy Style!

It a Scrap Happy day around my house today:). Each month Kate @ Tall Tales from Chiconia hosts a use your scraps party called Scrap Happy.  It has been a great motivator for me to use what I have.   Waste not, want not is always a good idea:)

I have been working on my backyard lately.  Every now and then I do get out of the sewing room believe it or not!:).  Our patio table was in extreme need of replacement.

The cushions were destroyed by the sun, the webbing felt a bit weak, and the color was dated.  Yep, time to go!

I wanted an all metal table and chairs with large pillows. I started looking online, around stores and on Craigslist for new or almost new sets in the burnt orange-red and greens that are a bit more trendy.  But wow, they were pricey!  Some were as high as $4,000.00!

Nope, that’s not my way.   I will not spend full price on something I can make almost as nice myself.   I bought 8 wrought iron chairs on Craig’s List with two extra tables for $500.00.  

These chairs are never going to weaken in the Arizona sun and heat:)!  They gently rock and are comfortable to sit in even without the cushions.  Yea!  


I scrubbed and cleaned them up, and bought 10 cans of Rust-Oleum. $60.00  I spray painted everything, including my old table with this lovely hammered bronze.  I love it!

Now, on to the pillows.  Thick chair covers were anywhere from $35-50  each.  Ouch!  Nope.  Not gunna do it!  I found these large Solarium pillows at Costco.

They were two for $15.00.  Now we’re talking!  I stuck eight of them in my cart and smiled all the way home:).  $60.00 for eight!  The only thing they needed to make them into chair cushions was ties in two corners to keep them from blowing away in the wind.  I can do that!

Scrap Happy to the rescue!!   I have a bunch of old orange fabric that I have used to make pioneer skirts and quilts out of.  It is the fabric that never reduces no matter how often I use it.  Here it is in the quilt I made for my niece.  Remember?

I cut a bunch, well really ripped a bunch of 3″ strips.

I cut them in half.  Then I  folded them in half lengthwise and sewed them into a tube


Next I took out my handy Turn-it All.   

This is a wonderful little tool.  

You place the plastic tube into your fabric tube and sew the fabric tube end closed.

Next, you use the dowel to push the sewn end into the tube and pushed it through.  The fabric magically turns!  You can use the dowel to push out the edges.  How easy is that?!


I made 16 of these.  I then pushed in the open edges, and edge stitched all the way around.

 

Pretty!

Now I just had to sew them to my pillow cushions.

I folded the ties in half and sewed them to corners of the pillow.  They were easy and turned out PERFECT!


I promptly ran outside and tied them to my chairs.  They look great!

Woo hoo!!  So for a total of $620.00 I now have an all metal table with 8 rocking chairs and large squishy cushions.  I saved up to $3500.00!   That’s what I’m talking about!!:)

From this–

To this–

It was definitely worth the elbow grease:). I know we will be enjoying this new set for many many years to come.   

I think I may have to eat my pizza from the Fantastic Bake Along pizza party out here on the patio!  SWEET!!

72 Hour Kits – Emergency Preparedness 

Good Monday to you!  While no one ever wants to be in a disaster, it is always a good idea to be prepared for emergencies.  It is wise to have 3 months to a year supply of food on hand in case you lose your job.  It is smart to have money saved for times when the refrigerator breaks.


I have been working on our 72 hour kits for my hubby and I.  This is a natural disaster type of kit.  We can pick this backpack and these buckets up on a moment’s notice and live fairly comfortably for three days.

To be honest, I hope we will never use these.  But they are ready just in case.  Here is what we have inside:

Isn’t that fantastic?  I will give you the list at the end of this post if you want some ideas to get your kits started:)


I really like using the buckets that you can buy at your local hardware store to hold evertything. I have added a cushioned top on it so it can be used for a stool as well.  The cushion can also be a pillow if needed.  How cool is that?!

My husband cut out some wood in a circle that fit the top. I had some old foam that I made a cover for out of old upholstery fabric I had in my stash.   I stapled over the wood around the bottom.  My husband screwed it onto the lid.  PERFECT!!


Almost everything fit nicely in the buckets. A small backpack fit the rest.  

I am so glad that I have these kits done.  They are sitting on a shelf in my basement just waiting there in case we may need them someday.

Here is the list of supplies I put in our kits.  Please feel free to print out as many of these as you need for you and your family:)

And here is my bullet journal page where I brain stormed to get everything organized:)

I hope you are inspired to stock up on a kit for you and your family.  I would love to hear about it if you do:)

Have a super SWEET day!

My Bullet Journal and Scrap Happy Book Cover Tutorial 

It is that “Scrap-Happy” time of the month again:)  Yea!  I am always happy to be linking up with Kate and Gun, it keeps me motivated to use those scraps!:). — I have always been a note-taker, journal keeper.  I have a Sunday journal that I take to church and write about the talks and lessons.  I have a tangle journal where I draw and sketch.   And I have several other small journals either on my phone or lying around the house.

It wasn’t until I read Emma’s post about Bullet Journaling @ Emma’s Craft Projects that I realized that I have been a bullet journaler for years.  I just didn’t know there was a name for it.  Thank you Emma!!

I  searched online about bullet journaling and learned that most people use a fancy journal with thicker paper, but I had a bunch of term notebooks left over from a project I did with a church group a while back.    While the paper is thinner and bleeds a bit, I have always liked to use pencil for sketching and note taking, So I am just alternating and working around to avoid too much bleed factor.  Waste not, want not right?

 I took one out and started journaling.   Fun, fun, fun!  Now all I needed to do was to make it pretty.  I gathered up some scrap fabrics and notions and covered it.  It was super easy.  Here is the “recipe”:

Materials:

  • Two scrap coordinating fabrics
  • Permanent spray glue – i.e. Loctight
  • 2 pieces Heavy weight cardstock
  • 1 ribbon
  • Decorative washi tape (optional)
  • Fire stick
  • Paper towels or newspaper

Instructions:

  • Measure the front of your journal leaving about 1.5″ from the spine. 
  • From the main fabric, cut two pieces of fabric the width  minus 1″ and the length plus 2″–  mine measured 7″x9″.  I cut my fabric 6″x11″.
  • From the accent fabric cut two 2.5″ strips the length plus 2″.  Mine measured 2.5×11″
  • Sew the accent and main color pieces together with a 1/4″ seam, press open, and top stitch on both sides of the seam
  • Sew a stitch 1/4″ from the edge of the accent pieces, press on this line, top stitch on the pressed fabric.  Sewing done!
  • Lay out some newspaper or paper towels to cover your work space.
  • Place one of your sewn fabric pieces face down and spray heavily with glue.
  • Gently place it on your book and smooth it out with your hand making sure it is bonding completely.
  • Place the book back on the paper. Open it and cover the free side with a paper towel
  • Trim the corners, fold the corners down, spray corner gently with glue and fold the sides down. Repeat these steps for the other side.
  • Measure your page and cut the cardstock large enough to cover all of the folded fabric leaving about 1/4″ around.
  • Spray the cardstock and glue to the front.
  • For the back- cut a piece of ribbon 3″ longer than the length of your book.
  • Cut one edge of the ribbon on a diagonal and quickly sear and seal the edge with your flame stick.
  • Glue the straight side of the ribbon to the inside of the back of the book about 1.5″ from the spine and 1″ from the top with the tail going up away from the book.
  • Glue the back of the paper and place it over the ribbon to create a book mark.
  • Cover the inside edges of the spine with Washi tape for a pretty finish

Done!!  Isn’t that pretty?   I am just in love, love, LOVE with my new journal!  

 Here are a few of my pages–

I have so many fun ideas that I am excited to journal about and keep track of in this pretty bullet journal.  It is going to be  a SWEET year!

Totally Tip-ster! – On the Go Fabric Organizer

Happy Tuesday to you!  Like many of you, I like to work on hand work at night while relaxing and watching a show.  I bet you do too, right?

But sometimes those little pieces can be a bit tricky to transport and keep organized from my work station to my evening chair or to the car for traveling.  Well, I have a Totally Tipster Tuesday tip for you today:)

I am guessing that you have an old coupon organizer laying around your house.  I did.  But if you don’t, these handy organizers are just a dollar or two at your local Walmart or corner pharmacy.A coupon organizer is the perfect size for those small appliqué or paper pieces. Plus, it fits in your purse for easy take along sewing. SWEET!It even comes with handy dividers to keep sections separated so you won’t have to dig around to find the pieces for each flower or leaf etc.  For very small paper pieces, I  recommend putting them in a small envelope and then in the divider so the don’t migrate under the dividers:)When each piece is turned, sewed, or pieced they fit happily back in their divided space.  They can easily be carried back to my normal working area without falling to the floor or getting mixed together.How easy is that?  They look so pretty all separated and organized by color and style.  It is so Totally Tip-ster!!  

I hope this helps and inspires some of you.  If you have any fun ways to transport your projects, I would love to hear about them:)  

Have a super SWEET day!

Totally Tipster! – Thread & Bobbin Storage

I have quite a few thread spools.  Maybe not as many as some of you and maybe quite a bit more than others.  I am sure you all have your own working system on how you like to store yours. 

For years I have used two wooden thread racks  that I mounted on the wall behind my machine.  I love to look at the pretty colorful thread when I enter the room:)

Here is my Tipster Tip-

  1. Buy extra bobbins for your machine. – I bought 20, but will be buying more.
  2. Invest in a peg rack.- they are about $20. on amazon.  –SO Sew worth it!!
  3. Store your thread and matching bobbin thread together on the same peg.
  4. If your spool is too tall for the bobbin to fit as well, cut a straw to your desired length and place it over the peg to lengthen it.

Now that is Totally Tipster!!  What an easy fix!

I lengthened my smaller rack the same way, but my pegs are too wide for my bobbins.  Bummer…  oh well, there is a bobbin rack attached to the top of my board.  It works but not nearly as well as the skinnier pegs on the other rack..

I like how the straws give stability to some of my more awkward embroidery thread.

Storing my thread this way has been such a time saver for me.  It makes finding that matching bobbin a SWEET dream!  No more holding up bobbins to see if it is the thread.  Just grab and sew!

Thank you for dropping by my blog:)

Crocheted Power Cords

My phone cord is splitting at the seams.  It is on its last leg for sure. Ugh!!  I know I’m not alone here.  This is the inevitable fate of all plastic covered cords.  I bet you have one or two of these beauties around your house as well.I have been seeing fancy phone cords advertised on Facebook and have been tempted to buy a bunch to give as gifts.  Then I thought to myself, “Why should I spend $20.00 on a cord when I can crochet one instead?!”  Why not?

I had some sock yarn that has been waiting for me to learn to knit into socks for a long while now. (I don’t think socking is ever going to happen).  Wrapping my cord will have to be this yarn’s fate.

Here is how I did it:

  • Cover the split cord with electrical tape

  • Start wrapping yarn by laying about a  6″ tail on the cord and then wrap around it for about 1/2″
  • Place your 2.5mm crochet hook under the cord, hook the yarn and single crochet around the cord.
  • Repeat this all the length of the power cord.  It is fun to see the different colors peek their heads out with the fun variegated sock yarn🙂
  • When you come to the end of the cord, where the ridge is higher from the plug. Cut yarn with a 12″ tail and fasten off 
  • Finish this last 1/2″ or so by circling the tail around the cord and placing the end under the loop and pulling tight. -this is like the crossover of tying your shoe lace.
  • Repeat the crossover knots until the end of the plug.
  • On the last loop, go under three times, pull tight, and cut thread.

There you go!  Easy, easy:) It took me about an hour from start to finish this cord.  Doesn’t it look great?!  That is a whole lot stronger and cooler than that flimsy rubber coated original.

I enjoyed making this so much that I covered a not so tattered cord as well!  How could I resist when I have all of that beautiful yarn?

I hope I have inspired you to hook some SWEET power cords for yourself and maybe even a few for your loved ones.

Thank you for dropping by and reading my blog.  Please feel free to comment if you have any questions.

Still Halloween Decorating After All These Years!

Happy Memorable Halloween Monday to you!  Holiday decorations come and go around my house.  In fact as my baby is now almost 20, I don’t hardly decorate for the holidays at all. 

BUT there is one decoration that has lasted through the raising of all of my children.  It is a set of 4″x4″ wooden blocks that I made when my oldest was only three years old:). Ahh the memories:)!

I made these with a friend and have enjoyed using them ever since .  Each side has a holiday type theme that I just roll over to welcome in the new season.  They are large and sturdy so little children can stack  and play with them easily.

They were very easy to make:

  •  I bought a  4×4 board that I had the lumber hard cut into five 4″ square blocks.  
  • I sanded the edges to round them a bit
  • I added one or two coats of a watered down cream paint and aged the edges a bit with a darker paint.
  • I used the cheapo 3″ stencils that you can buy at any hardware store and painted my sayings on the blocks.
  • I wasn’t lucky enough to have the internet back in those days, but now there are tons of free stencil graphic images that you can download to add a few fun designs to the other blocks.
  • Finally I sprayed a light coat of sealer to the blocks.


One SWEET afternoon of painting fun with my friend and 25 years of decorating ease, and still counting!   Now that’s what I’m talkin’ about!  Maybe I will show the other 3 sides when my Christmas decorations are up…..

I hope you and yours have a Happy Halloween today.  I hope it is filled with costume parades and lots of candied sticky hands and painted faces!

Until tomorrow,

–Tracy:)