Archives for category: Creative endeavors

Wait. Already I lie. Let me rephrase that to my first sewing project with my new (to me) sewing machine. We all know about the actual first project… (and if you don’t, you can read about the disaster here)

Yesterday, Jack and I travelled about 30 minutes up County Road 23 to Vankleek Hill, where Rachel of The Fabric Box had offered to teach me how to use my machine and to guide me through some little projects. Let me tell you, she is patient! Darling Jack had slept through the night for the first time (yippee!) the night before. I’m wondering if that accounts for the Senor Crabby Pantiness of yesterday. Of course the day I decide to sew he decides he wants to be in my arms or else scream. So between me having to nurse him into submission and the actual store clients who wanted Rachel’s time, it took us about 4 hours to do something that could probably have taken even me under an hour to make! Rachel kept reassuring me that it was ok, babies cry. But I can’t help it. I wanted him to be a perfect angel for us! In any case, at the end of the afternoon she told me she has a whole collection of dinosaur stuffed animals she wants to give him so I guess she really didn’t mind the fussiness.

I decided to go simple for my first project – a cover for his very boring white plasticky changing pad. I figured it would have a pillowcase effect. Easy peasy. But no. Rachel wouldn’t let me get away with just that – “You’re going to make a pattern!”

But first I had to choose the fabric.

Have you ever gone into a fabric store to choose fabric? That took a little while. But I finally decided on this, isn’t it cute?

kissybirds

Rachel suggested I use muslin for the bottom since it’s less expensive and you don’t see the bottom anyways. In my case you kind of see parts of the bottom at the sides but it doesn’t look horrible with the fabric I chose. She also said that I’d be putting in a zipper, which almost made me faint but it worked out fine and much nicer than velcro or just folding a side under as was my original ‘plan’ (I use the term plan very loosely).

I’m going to be honest. I basically sewed (not so) straight lines. Rachel cut and pinned and showed me what to do. Wait, I did do some pinning after she had done one side. But hey – it was the first real thing I have ever sewn! I’m not counting the wonderful (not) basting of pant hems I have done nor the impromptu skirt I made from scraps of plaid material in my mother’s basement when I was 15 – so punk rock. I actually wore that skirt to school once. Boy were my folks proud 🙂 And I am certainly not counting those denim shoes….

So here it is from many angles!

Finished project on Jack's bureau, where we deal with diapers

Finished project on Jack's bureau, where we deal with diapers

What is that dangling? Yes - a zipper!

What is that dangling? Yes - a zipper!

bottom

bottom

Corner with zipper

Corner with zipper

One more view for the heck of it

One more view for the heck of it

If you read my last post, On Planning, you’d know that one of my plans from the other day was to make these adorable shoes for Jack.

DIY recycled baby shoes from prudentbaby.com

DIY recycled baby shoes from prudentbaby.com

Well. I need to (or perhaps I don’t, the images being self-evident) let you know that I am not really a sewer, though sometimes the house may smell like one, now that Jack is in the picture. But I really did think that the directions seemed simple enough for me to attempt this project. After having made the heels, I realized that a sewing machine would probably make life much easier so I enlisted the help of my mother who both has a sewing machine and knows how to use it.

Here are the results – please don’t laugh too too hard, you may hurt yourself or make a mess in your pants (the latter having already happened to someone when she saw Jack wearing the shoes).

baby shoes, kinda

baby shoes, kinda

Homemade shoes, side view

Homemade shoes, side view

Homemade shoes, sole

Homemade shoes, sole

Homemade shoes, heel

Homemade shoes, heel

Aside from the obvious error (one being sewn inside out…I think wine may have been involved) I’m not sure how this happened! Actually, I lie. I’m pretty sure I know where I went wrong. It was with instruction #5.

5.  Now take two top pieces and place them right side up.  Turn your heel pieces right side up and pin the side of them to the top left corner of the flat edge like so:

Instruction 5 for DIY baby shoes from prudentbaby.com

Instruction 5 for DIY baby shoes from prudentbaby.com

I pinned those suckers in a few different ways but couldn’t quite figure it out – the centre of the side? the top? but then wouldn’t she indicate corner instead of side? The whole side?  so I went with what I thought looked right.

Evidently, it wasn’t.

So I will try them again but I wouldn’t mind if someone could give me some more precise (like you are talking to a  5 year old) instructions for number 5!