Happy New Year!

Wishing you a happy and healthy new year!

I'm not big on new year's resolutions.  I prefer to reflect on everything that has brought joy to my life in the past year.  It's been wonderful watching my children change and grow.  We started school and embraced the change as a family. 
I've enjoyed learning to use my camera more and not getting so hung up on photos for blogging.  
My husband traded his classical guitar in for a banjo and it's been really fun watching and listening to him learn as he adds another instrument to his collection.

Overall, it's been a great year.  Can't wait to see what new joys the new year brings!

Happy new year to you and thanks for stopping by.  


Matryoshka Messenger Bag

 Back in November I was commissioned to make a Mirabelle Messenger Bag for a local friend.  Luckily, she's very patient and understanding, because I just finished it yesterday.
 Since the print is directional, I cut the gusset band in 2 pieces so that the dolls wouldn't be upside down at the top on one side.
The fabric is so pretty and looks really great with the pink piping and lining.  I ended made the piping (using this tutorial) and bias tape myself so that everything would match perfectly. 

I hope she loves it!


New Apron for ME!

I've been in a bit of a sewing slump lately.  When I actually have the time to spend with my machine, I get overwhelmed with all the projects floating around in my head and end up doing nothing.  Ever feel like that?
Well, maybe it's because it's the first day of vacation or maybe it's because I got a few things checked off the list, but I finally just sat down and sewed something.

I've been wanting to make a new apron for a while and have gone back and forth on what pattern to use.... So today, I sat down and just made it up as I went.  I held the fabric up to my body, cut, gathered, did it all on the fly.  It was so much fun!  I ended up with an apron I love and a renewed creativity and energy.
So, here's to a relaxing and renewing holiday.


Burlap Heart Ornament Tutorial

I never leave Joann's without hitting the remnant bin and just recently scored this burlap remnant for $1.25!
I came up with this cute little ornament to give to friends and neighbors to go along with our annual gift of granola.  So, friends and neighbors, avert your eyes!

All you'll need to make some of these are:
  • some scraps of fabric, I used knit since cut knits generally don't fray or unravel
  • a little burlap, you could probably make 10 or more from half a yard
  • some kind of string, I used a cream colored yarn
  • fiberfill of some sort   
  • pinking shears 
Cut a heart (or 6) out of the knit fabric.
Lay the heart on 2 layers of burlap that are about an inch larger than the heart.  Then cut a piece of string that's about 12 inches longTuck the ends in between the 2 layers of burlap as shown, making sure it's tucked down under the knit heart

Sew the heart in place, through all 3 layers of fabric and making sure that the string gets secured as well.  Leave a small opening as shown by the arrows.
Fill the heart with a little fiberfill.  You can use a knitting needle or pencil to gently push the fill into the top of the heart. 
Pin the opening closed, making sure all the batting is tucked inside and none is hanging out.
Sew the opening closed.  I also sewed around the whole heart again, just because I like the look and I thought it might make it a bit more secure, but this is optional.
Now take your pinking shears and trim away the extra burlap.  When you get to the top center, make sure to move the string out of the way so you don't accidentally snip it.

If you need to, you can use regular scissors to trim away any extra in the center.

There you have it!

Make one, make six!

Who will you make yours for?



Ever since I heard the news of the tragedy in Connecticut on Friday, my heart has been aching.  I can't watch or read the news without crying.  I can only imagine what those families are feeling....
 As I send my 6 year old out the door to school tomorrow morning, a small reminder of my love. 
 Tutorial later this week.....tonight, only thoughts and prayers.

“Making the decision to have a child - it is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body. ”
― Elizabeth Stone


Traditions - New and Old

This year, we decided to jump on the gingerbread house bandwagon.  I grew up with a pretty minimal Christmas celebration given that my parents grew up in India and didn't celebrate Christmas themselves.  But, how could I resist this gingerbread house kit from Trader Joe's.  For $7.99, it's pretty great.  Next year I might have to make my own and start a new tradition.  
 Another tradition in our family is attending the local ballet company's performance of the Nutcracker.  I make a new dress for my daughter each year.  She really liked the style of last year's dress, so this year's is the same in different colors.
 The back....with 2 little helper monkeys.
I don't often do a rolled hem on my serger since it requires changing a plate and removing a needle.  But, since I teach about rolled hems and lettuce edging in my serger class, I thought it's about time I do it on my own machine.  It came out really pretty and is easier than doing a regular hem.

Another holiday tradition complete.

What's your favorite holiday tradition?