Thursday, May 19, 2011

Lunch Tote

Even though I was busy with other projects, I couldn't resist participating in my friend's Easter swap. I join in on projects hoping that it will somehow force me to do the things I've been wanting to do. And it worked! I had been wanting to make a lunch tote for myself (I'm a big proponent of bringing your lunch to work) and thought a lunch tote would be the perfect "basket" for a swap. I bought cloth napkins (something I had also been wanting for awhile) at Bed Bath & Beyond (12 napkins, in 6 colors for $10) and used a white jelly roll pen to spruce them up a little (the ink won't wash out). I also added a glass jar from Fishs Eddy, a sandwich container and some candy.

The most important feature I wanted the lunch tote to have was a large flat bottom - so my containers wouldn't tip over. I ended up finding two patterns out the internet and combined them. The top portion is from here, and the bottom portion is from here. There is a layer of cotton batting, and because of the way it's sewn together, it's also reversible.

I used the fabric from the "inside" to create the flower on the outside of the tote. I cut out one of the flowers in the print, and fused some fabric on the back (to add weight and stability). I ran some thread through the middle to add more dimension and also cut a flower shape out of plain fabric to add more depth and layers. I attached it to a pin back, so she can easily remove it. I used a white jelly roll pen to write her name on it. I'm sure labeling your lunch isn't as important as it was in grade school, but it seemed like a fun element to add.

I now have my own lunch tote (an owl print that is somewhat grade school-esque) and I just sent off one for my mom as a belated Mother's Day gift!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Cat Nip

It seems everyone in my life has gotten a cat(s) recently, or already had them. I cannot wait for the day that I will have one or two of my own, but until than I will treat other cats as my own. I had been wanting to make cat nip toys, so my mom purchased some from her food co-op. The only downside is it comes in large quantities, and now I have a big ass bag full of cat nip (see photo below).

Now I am on a mission to come up with some clever cat nip toys I can give to my friends and family. The first toys I made were inspired by my good friend's cat Nimbus (because he looks like a fluffy gray cloud) and so I made nimbus cloud cat nip toys. He destroyed them within 24 hours, but he enjoyed them, and that's all the matters.

I had a co-worker give me some leftover fabric that was perfect for the nimbus clouds, so I gave a set to her cats as well. Spreading the cat nip love!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

American Girl doll outfit

For my niece's 5th birthday, she got to pick out an American Girl Doll. My sister and her family came down to go to the new store, and the three of us (the boys stayed at the hotel) went shopping! My obsession with these dolls has not stopped since becoming an adult, and I tried my hardest to pursue my niece to pick out Kit (check out that doll's clothes and kitchen set - they're awesome!), but in the end she picked out a My American Girl doll (that happened to look just like the Molly doll) and named her Molly.

I still remember when Santa brought me my very own AG Molly doll! She lives at my parent's home (seems too creepy to be 27 and have her in my apartment) and I used her in a photo shoot to capture the doll outfit I made for my niece's birthday. She's still in pretty good condition - though her hair could use a deep hair conditioning treatment.

I used this pattern from Mod Kid, and used fabrics from JoAnn's. Normally I don't purchase fabric from there, because the quality is cheaper and the fabric isn't as cute - but I happened to find this adorable print that was perfect for the doll outfit. Sewing tiny outfits does have it's downsides, but they are so much fun to work on and are so cute when finished!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Baby Shower Invites

The same baby shower that I made the quilt for, I also did invites. After completing them, I realized I could have created a much simpler version, but such is the downside of being creative. We aren't always practical. I made garland for it too (pictured below) which unfortunately we didn't end up using, but fortunately for me I kept it and hung it up in my bedroom - an easy way to brighten up an apartment bedroom.

It was a book themed baby shower, so I used a book-fold format for the invite (so obvious, I know) hoping it would have the feel of an actual book. I also included a removal book plate (printed on sheets of sticky label paper). I got the idea for the book plate addition from here. Everyone bought a book for the new baby girl, and this seemed like a good way for everyone to personalize them.

If you are thinking about hosting a book themed baby shower, you must check out this one created by the people at Martha Stewart. Amazing! And it even comes with free downloads!