Summer Bee Dress

Cecelia’s Summer Bee Dress

This lovely summer spaghetti strap dress was suppose to be made in time for my sister in laws baby shower in June.  However, I was unable to finish it due to my water breaking early and being hospitalized.  I finally finished it and love how it turned out!  I free handed the design and sizing.  I meant for it to end up as a 2t size, but as you can see it’s a bit big!  This works out great since its winter and not summertime!  She can wear it this upcoming summer.  I can’t wait for the warm spring and summer to come!  Bulbs and flowers emerging and gardening time, but let’s get back on track.

As always there is a youtube tutorial and this written one.  I do not have a pattern as a freehanded it and designed the pattern myself as I went.  I used one of my Cece’s dresses to size it and make part of the pattern to guess the sizing.

Unfortunately, a lot of the video tutorial was accidentally videotaped over with my baby boys arrival home (sorry more important anyways!).  So I videotaped again trying to explain the best I could.  If you have questions please let me know!  More great videos to come soon!

What you need:

  • Chose of fabric colors and types (I chose three colors
  • 1/4 inch elastic (for gathering of the top of back of the dress)
  • Bias tape (or you can make your own like I did)
  1.  First you want to cut out your fabric pieces.  I looked at another dress I have for my little one and based the main front and back piece by measuring and estimating the sizing.  Then I cut the bottom piece I needed which ended up being about 40inches long and 4 inches wide (for the ruffle on the bottom). I ended up added another color (black) on the two sides of the dress.  Then I also cut out fabric to make bias tape (here is a good tutorial on making bias tape if you’ve never made it before..BIAS TAPE TUTORIAL. )
  2. Take your strap (black piece) and sew it to the top piece and bottom piece.  Pattern piece to pattern piece (facing each other) sew the bottom to the strap
    then the top.
  3. I made my own bias tape by cutting and ironing the fabric.  Then you proceed to use it to line the top of the dress (sew it on!). Then sew up the armholes and long to tie…estimate how long you want the straps to be to tie behind the neck (longer the better!)
  4.  
  5. Take the back side and sew two black (or whatever color you choose) by sewing
    facing pattern sides together
  6. I decided to add a small piece of fabric above the black strap to make it higher .  If you want, sew and connect.  Then place from and back piece facing each other and sew to connect from and back.
  7. Add elastic to back piece if you want it ruched and tighter.
  8. The last part is the bottom ruffled part.
  9. Hem the bottom first about 1/8inch
  10. To gather your fabric put your machine on the longest thread setting make two
    straight lines (Do not reverse!). Roughly 1/4 and 1/8 inch away from the top.
    Leave long threads on the ends.
  11. Next you knot the bottom of the back side of the threads so you can gather, just the two in the back (not the front).
  12. Pull the bottom threads from the other end and slide the cloth along the threads toward your knot making small folds. When your cloth has been
    gathered the way you want it, knot the ends securely with each other.
  13. Sew pattern side to pattern side all the way around.  Then you can zig zag around (or you can zig zag before attaching (this prevents fraying).
  14. Then you are finished! Great Job!  Have fun! Post your pics!
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Homemade Paint!

Looking for an easy homemade nontoxic paint for your little one to be creative?  Well, look no further!  We experimented with several types of homemade paint and below are our favorite recipes!


Kids of all ages love painting!  You can have your little one finger paint, use brushes, sponges, or even potatoes!

So we started off making completely edible finger paint with only a couple ingredients!

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Here is what you will need: (this makes enough for about 4-5 different colors depending on how much you want for each)…

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  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • extra water to thin out
  • food coloring, watercolors, or natural colors such as beet, carrot, tumeric

Instructions:

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  1. Place pot over medium heat and pour flour and water into pot and continuously stir the ingredients until it becomes a thick paste.
  2. Take the pot away from the heat when it no longer sticks to the sides
  3. Add cold water to the blob until it reaches the consistency you like and place the amount you desire into separate bowls to color.
  4. Add food coloring, watercolors, natural colorants such as beet or carrot juice, turmeric spice
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  6. These can be enjoyed right away or stored in the fridge!!

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This paint works well for fingerpainting or sponge painting.  You can also use brushes but as you see in the photo, the colors come out thinner and lighter than traditional paint.  The color dries on without fading. We used the paint several days in a row.

 

And who doesn’t love watercolors?  The problem with watercolors is that the colors can mix and you only get very small amounts of each color.  However, this can all change with homemade watercolor paints!

photo by factorydirectcraft
photo by factorydirectcraft
tbsp. baking soda
2 tsp. white vinegar
1/2 tsp. light corn syrup
2 tsp. corn starch
food colors*
containers for storing paints*
something to stir with (toothpicks)

photo from happyhooligans
photo from happyhooligans

You can use a muffin pain, disposable cups, egg cartons, or any other container that you aren’t going to use for a couple days.

Instructions:

1)Mix baking soda & vinegar in a cup with a spout.  I used my Pyrex measuring glass.  Let the kids watch as it fizzes

2) Add in light corn syrup and stir.

3) Stir in the corn starch until well combined.  (If it gets too thick, add a little more vinegar.)

4)Pour into your paint containers- not too full, you need room for the food colors.

5)Add the food colors and stir until you reached your desired color!

6) Now if you want them to harden into hockey pucks you have to let them sit almost two days!  If you plan on using it right away that’s fine too!

 

Sponges and potatoes!! 


You can cut out designs in potatoes or out of sponges and dip into paint and press just like a stamp! I remember doing this as a child! 


You can also use cookie cutters and paint the potato. This picture was taken from Fun stuff
Dollar store sponges are great to cut out designs for painting! 

Enjoy! 

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DIY Child Bean Bag!

I don’t know about your little one, but mine sure does love to read!  Well at this age, it is more like browse through the pages and pictures!  She sits by the book shelf and pulls out book by book looking at each page.

At first I thought maybe I should purchase her a bean bag chair, and then I thought, well lets just make one! This can also be a great gift for anyone!  I actually sometimes sit in it too (shhhh!)

So of course I have the video tutorial on youtube below and then the written and picture tutorial below that.  Let me know if you have any questions!

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What you need:

  1. Fabric (you can use two or one color) 2 yards total of each color (or 4 yards of one color)
  2. A 24 inch zipper (or you can use velcro or buttons)
  3. 4 yards of muslin or cheap fabric
  4. Bean bag filling (100L) (I couldn’t find a large bag at my local craft store so I bought mine on amazon with free shipping)
  5.      Snapshot 1 (3-14-2016 7-40 AM)
  6. Make panels of 40×16 inches. You should do 6 outside (3 of one color and 3 of the other color) and 6 inner panels.
  7. Take one of your panels and fold once long way and once width. Have your fold on top and side when measuring to cut. Measure bottom to 6 inches (the long side) and start a curve and cut right up to the right corner. See picture below.
  8. Snapshot 2 (3-14-2016 6-41 PM)
  9. IMG_3931
  10. Line up two inside pieces and sew up and down one side.  I did this twice for more strength.  For the outside you will have the patterns facing inside towards each other and sew.
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  12. Once sewn open the panel up. Then place another panel on the original piece and sew the opposite side (you will end up with three pieces sewn together)
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  14. Then sew the other 3 inside pieces together and you will have two sets of three.
  15. Take the two sewn together pieces and face pattern side in (doesn’t matter with the inside bean bag layer) and sew all the way around the outside leaving a couple inches hole.
  16. Turn right side out.  Then you will put the bean bag filling it!  Ah what a challenge!
    Note: I did not completely fill and sew this until I was sure the outside would fit over properly.  I waited to finish this until the end of the project.
  17. Take one of your outside panels and face the zipper down on the pattern.  Line it up on your machine and sew the zipper on.Take one of your outside panels and face the zipper down on the pattern.  Line up the right outside part of the zipper to the outside of the panel (as shown) and sew the zipper on.
  18. snap
  19. See the video for more of a demonstration on how to attach a zipper
  20. Sew pattern and right side of the next panel to zipper right sides facing each other (inside) and sew together.
  21. Line up the part below and above the zipper with patterns facing each other and sew
  22. zipper
  23. Then sew your 3rd panel on…complete another 3 panels together as done with the inside pieces.
  24.  **Open your zipper all the way.  Take each 3 piece panel set and place them facing each other (inside) and sew all the way around the edges.  Do not leave a hole this time, you will pull it out through the zipper opening!
  25. Next you will place your inside bean bag that is partially full inside.  If its full then you are done!  However, if you partially filled…continue to fill all the way and sew the inside bag shut.
  26. IMG_3966
  27. Congrats you are done! Enjoy!  Post your pics below!

 

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Easy Sock Snowmen!

What’s an easy gift that can be personalized and made in 15mins?  A sock snowman of course!

IMG_3866A what?  A Sock Snowman? What is that????

Well, let me tell you.  A sock snowman is a snowman made with rubber bands, rice, men’s socks, a hot glue gun, and personalized items.  It is easy, fast, and I love that you can personalize it any way you want for any time of the year!  I made 10 of them for Christmas gifts.  You can see the harry potter and eagles one above.  I also made a hunter, patriots, and princess snowman.  Then I made the usual Christmas snowman for decorations as well.  I even got most of my supplies at the dollar store!

Snapshot 1 (1-23-2016 2-55 PM)

As usual, there is a youtube video tutorial and the written instructions below.  These make great gifts for any occasion and are quick and easy! Enjoy!

 

What you need:

-Hot glue gun
-Crew socks or longer
-Any type of rice
-Rubber bands
-Decorations such as eyes, stick ons, felt, buttons, bows, pins

  1. Take your crew sock and cut below the ribbed area (the bigger the snowman the lower you want to cut (the bottom part will be the hat of the snowman).
  2. Turn the top ribbed part inside out and place a rubber band tightly on one end
  3. Snapshot 1 (1-23-2016 6-23 PM)
  4. Turn it right side out and pack with rice. Make sure you continuously pack it down with your hands to give the snowman a fuller shape.  Leave a small area on the top and then close it with another rubber band.
  5. Put a rubber band on the top then 1/3 of the way down place another rubber band as tight as you can and adjust the rice to form the body and head of the snowman.
  6. Snapshot 1 (1-23-2016 6-33 PM)
  7. Now time for the fun part- decorating!
  8. The scarf can be made out of felt, scrap fabric, or even a crocheted or knitted scarf!  I did this with camo yarn for a hunter snowman.
  9. I used the hot glue gun to make sure everything stayed in place including the scarf and hat!
  10. IMG_3865
  11. Take the bottom part of the sock and fold top of it and place on top of the snowman’s head for the hat!  Feel free to decorate the hat as well.
  12. Snapshot 2 (1-23-2016 6-49 PM)
  13. I made my sister a harry potter snowman.  I also made a hunter camo snowman, princess snowman, patriots snowman, soccer player, and Christmas themed
    snowmen.
  14. Congrats you are done!  Good job!  Post your pics!
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Truck Pillow Tutorial

I have a nephew who absolutely loves trucks, cars, and any other type of vehicle.  As Christmas approached I was unsure of what to get my nephew.  I searched the internet for ideas of sewing projects with trucks, but it was only to my dismay. None of the projects peaked my interest.  I found a car tutorial but that was it.  So I decided to make my own pattern and tutorial on a truck pillow.  I also decided that putting his name on with iron on letters would be fantastic!IMG_3727

As usual, there is a video tutorial on my youtube site, and written instructions with pictures below.

What you will need:
*Your choice of fabric colors
*poly-fil or any type of stuffing
*Choice of thread colors
*Optional: Iron on letters

Pattern: Use one whole piece of printer paper 8x10inches as the trailer part.  Make a circle for the wheels.  And make a from cab as you like.  The pattern I made is so easy I’m not even going to try and retrace it and scan it and turn it into a pdf because it takes much longer…if you are really having issues please let me know and I will take the time do that for you.

  1. Cut out your fabric pieces
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  3. Iron on letters or if you want to sew on letters that works as well!
  4. Sew on your hubcaps, windows and any other details you want to add
  5. Sew each side together.  The front cab to the trailer and the wheelsSnapshot 1 (1-4-2016 9-28 PM)
  6. Time to sew the middle strip part! I made mine 2 inches thick but you can make it as big as you like!
  7. You can switch colors to match or just use one color.
  8. If you do not want to do the middle section then you can just take the two truck sides facing each other (inside) and sew around leaving a 3 inch opening.  Turn right side out, stuff, and hand-sew shut.
  9. To do the middle strip, line it up with the truck where you want to start and back-stitch and go forward all the way around switch colors as needed.  Curve the middle strip around the corners.
  10. Snapshot 2 (1-4-2016 9-32 PM)
  11. Now take the other side of the truck and have the sides facing inwards towards
    each other, and sew the second side to the strips on the first side.
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  13. Turn right side out and make sure there are no holes in the outside, if there are turn inside out and fix them.
  14. Fill with your choice of stuffing and hand-sew shut.
  15. Congrats you are done!
  16. If you have any questions or concerns please leave them below.  If you have trouble with the middle strip please watch the youtube tutorial.
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Easy Birthday Crowns!

Want to sew quick and easy crowns for a party or get together?  Then you’ve come to the right place!  I made a last minute decision days before my daughters’ first birthday party that we needed crowns!  The theme was rubber ducky, so I decided to make birthday crowns instead of hats!  Young kids and babies don’t enjoy hard hats on their head and also shouldn’t have a rubber band or elastic around their neck.

IMG_0058 (2)As you can see they are very cute for photo shoots as well!  She didn’t particularly like keeping it on, but I got a couple good shots!

As usual, there is a YouTube video and also a written explanation below.  I didn’t have a lot of time to embellish the other crowns but you can always spice things up with some ribbons, bows, glitter, rhinestones, or buttons!

To get started you need:
1) Choice of fabric and design
2) Scisscors
3)Thread
4) Closure for crown (velcro, button, ribbon) or you can sew all the way around if you know the exact size

 

  1. Cut your fabric for the main part of the crown 4 1/2 x 18 inches
  2. Snapshot 1 (10-7-2015 8-50 AM)
  3. Make your own crown pattern by drawing the top on a piece of paper and cutting it out!
  4. Cut your design onto your fabric to make the shape of your crown! If you want a felt backing with another color cut that out as well.
  5. Next, pick out your ribbon if you are using one, if you want any other embellishments get them ready!  I made a felt duck that I sewed onto
    the crown.
  6. Snapshot 2 (10-7-2015 9-02 AM)
  7. Line up your crown pieces and sew all the way around!  Then you are done! If you want to add button loops and buttons you can sew them on as well.
  8. IMG_2478Congrats and enjoy the party!  Check back often for new crafts or subscribe below!

 

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Fun and Stimulating Toy Name Blocks!

I’ve been looking for a toy that offers a variety of sensory activities through textures, sounds, and touch.

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After making these squares, which by the way are FABULOUS for pictures, my little one couldn’t stop playing with all the ribbons, buttons, and laughing at the fabric and textures while sitting in her car seat.  What a great toy not only for entertainment, but for learning and increasing intelligence!  Not to mention it makes an amazing gift!

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Here is the Youtube tutorial:

 

If you would also like to follow the written then here goes:

What you will need: FABRIC, buttons, ribbons, polyfil, optional bells or rattle

  1. fabric: There are six sides to each square.  You can chose your colors and textures. You will need six squares for each letter you are making.  In this case, I used four letters for four blocks and six different pattern pieces with all different textures and patterns.  This is the fun part!  You can of course color coordinate for a boy or girl; however, I chose to do fun patterns that I knew my little one would love to look at, catch her attention, and also advance her imagination.
  2. IMG_1933
  3. So there are six sides to the blocks so I picked those fabrics and chose my size for the blocks to be 6×6 and cut out four of each fabric I wanted to use.   This is also great if you have extra scrap pieces you want to use up.
  4. Next, you want to cut out your letters.  I did this free hand.  I used extra felt I had sitting around!  Once completed, sew them on the fabric you would like for each block.
  5. IMG_1936IMG_1937
  6. Now you want to setup your pieces to
    make your block. Put the letter in the
    center and surround it as shown with your
    other fabrics. You may want to have the same pattern
    for each block or different spots for each
    fabric square
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  8. Start sewing pattern pieces facing
    each other.  Take top piece and put pattern facing inside on the letter and sew the top edge, then continue until they are all sew together as shown below. Do this for all your blocks.
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  10. If you want to add ribbons, buttons, or
    any other accessories this is the time to get
    those together! So now you want to decide where to sew them.  You can choose different spots on each block or the same!
  11. Sew the ribbons on facing towards the inside of the block.  If you do the opposite they will be on the inside instead of the out!
  12. IMG_1943 IMG_1944
  13. Start by sewing right sides together of two
    blocks. Take the top square and fold down and to the left. You will line up the left side of the top block to the top side of the left block.  Then sew.  Continue this around using the letter piece as the bottom part of the block.  The pattern of the fabric should end up in the inside of the block.
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  15. Continue around until you have all sides except one sewn together.
  16. For the last square, Sew each side around but for one side leave a 2-3 inch opening so you can pull the right side out.  Don’t forget to back stitch well!
  17. IMG_1956
  18. Okay!  Almost there!  So now you want to turn your block right side out.  So reach in there and pull the fabric through.  Then use a pencil, pen, crochet needle or what not to poke out the corners and make them shapely.
  19. Next, grab your stuffing, in this case polyfil, and start filling.
  20. You can put a bell or rattle in the inside of the block!
    To do this I put it in a small ziplock bag that is sealed with some air so that it has room to rattle around instead of being stuck in the polyfil. I actually have been saving the twist off tops of the food pouches and used them in a bag to make some noise!  So if you are going to do this try and put this in the center of the block then stuff around it.
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  22. Lastly, close up that hole!  You can do a whip stitch or invisible stitch or even use your machine.
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  24. Ta-Da you are done!  Great job….take some pictures and share!

 

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Creating A Photo Pillow

Looking for that perfect gift for someone?  Maybe for a holiday or special occasion?  Possibly a housewarming gift? Or maybe just an I’m thinking of you gift, the photo pillow is a perfect easy sewing project!  The pillow below always gives my little one a smile when she picks it up on the couch!  I know my husband enjoys it too because sometimes I find drool on it :op

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Follow the You-tube tutorial here:

You can also follow along here:

pillowFor this tutorial you will need:

  • Freezer paper the size of a piece of printer paper (8.5×11″)
  • Computer and printer (choose your photos or photos)
  • Fabric (sizes vary on size of the pillow you would like)
  • Sewing machine and accessories
  • Poly-fill
  • Iron

1. Start by cutting a piece of freezer paper to the size of a piece of a paper (8.5×11′).  Also cut the piece of fabric you are going to print the photo on to that size.  Remember you most likely want to print on a light thin colored fabric so the picture stands out.freezerpaper2. Next, take your fabric you want the photo printed on and put it on your ironing surface with the side you want the photo printed on down.  Then put your freezer paper shiny side down against the fabric.  Have your iron on medium high and iron on top of the freezer paper.  You can also turn it over and iron the fabric with the freezer paper on the bottom.  Do not leave it on one spot too long or the fabric will develop a burn mark.  Make sure the corners are well ironed and the sheet should stick to the fabric.

3. Take the fabric and freezer paper that are now one to your printer.  Place it in the paper tray and print your photo.  Make sure there aren’t any loose strings hanging on the side of your fabric, this could catch in your printer.  Also make sure you put your paper in the way your printer will print on the fabric and not the freezer paper.  If you are unsure, take a piece of regular printer paper and mark one side. Put it in the tray and check and see which side it prints on.

4. Once you have your photo printed, you can easily peel off the freezer paper.  You can save the freezer paper to use one or two more times; quite economical if I should say so myself!  Then, if you are planning on putting the photo fabric on a larger piece of fabric to have a bigger pillow, you want to fold a hem around the edges of your fabric and pin and sew it onto the larger piece of fabric.  Below is an example.

  pillow

However, if you would like to make a small decorative pillow (the size of a piece of paper), you would skip this step.

5. Next take your photo fabric or front of the pillow and place it facing side up.  Take the back fabric for your pillow and place it on top facing in.  So now the fabric pieces you want to be on the outside of the pillow are now facing the inside.  Pin them together.  Then you want to stitch all the way around the outside except for a three inch opening.  So make sure you back-stitch when you start and end.  I suggest you do not do this on the corner because it will be harder to hand sew at the end.  This opening will be used to turn the pillow right side out and then stuff with poly-fill.

6. After sewing, turn it right side out.  Stuff it with poly-fill to your desired fullness.

7. Now you will have to decide what stitch you want to use to close it.  You can close it on the machine however it will be noticeable.  You can do the regular loop stitch which is easiest.  Another option which is used in my video is the blind stitch.  The blind stitch is used for hems and closures that you want “blind.

8. And Viola!  You are finished, congrats and enjoy!

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