Mine Is An Evil Laugh

Have you ever created something and laughed maniacally when you’re done?  I’ve been doing that a lot lately.  I have lots to share, but my camera is kaput and I’m beat by the time my hubby gets home with his phone.  I may have to play dress-up this weekend.  Maybe a Firefly/Serenity marathon while I’m playing life-size Barbie Doll.  I’ve been transforming old pajama pants into infinity scarfs and turning all my 99 cent Goodwill jeans into skinny jeans.  Both are so easy, hence the evil laugh.


Shabby Geek

We have lived in our house for 13 years.  We have never had bedroom curtains.  Until this last year, we didn’t even really have anything hanging on our bedroom walls.

Then, something epic happened.

My Mom gave me a comforter that she got from a friend and we went through totes in the garage for a garage sale.  In one of those totes, we found old Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back sheets that my Mom found at a thrift store.  The comforter matches the sheets perfectly!  

Here's the bedspread and the fitted sheet that I didn't use because it was really worn.  I'm thinking about using the edges, where it's in better shape, to make a dust ruffle.

Here’s the bedspread and the fitted sheet that I didn’t use because it was really worn. I’m thinking about using the edges, where it’s in better shape, to make a dust ruffle.

The result:


The middle portion is also part of a thrifted sheet.


I am so freakin’ proud of myself right now.

The sheets are really old and thin and even had holes in some places, but to me, that just makes them cooler.

I love to think that some little boy or little girl used these sheets and loved them so much that their Mom had to make up some story about why they suddenly had different sheets.

I also love that someone donated these, even with the holes.  One woman’s trash is another woman’s totally-freakin’-awesome-Star-Wars-curtains.

I cut the flat sheet into six sections, took out the top hem so I could hem all the sides, then hemmed all the tops and bottoms.  Had to do a little math to get them all the same length, since three of the panels already had a top and three already had a bottom.

The sides also seemed to have a selvage edge that made some of the hemming on the side wonky, but you can’t tell when they’re hanging.

I’ll take shabby geek over shabby chic any day!


I’m laundering, dusting, straightening, vacuuming, everything, the whole house today, when inspiration strikes. The majority of the knotted rag rug tutorials I’ve seen require some kind of grid to knot the scraps to.  I’ve seen the braided rag rugs that … Continue reading

Stuffed Animal Chair

My younger daughter’s bed has been used as extra blanket and stuffed animal storage for a long time.  She normally sleeps with us or with one of her siblings or on the couch.  I knew I had to do something about the stuffed animals if I ever wanted her to sleep in her own bed.  The kids’ rooms are in the basement and the spiders love to hide in the mountain of blankets and stuffed animals.  I don’t blame her for not wanting to sleep in her own bed.  

This might be my most favorite thing I’ve ever sewn.  I found this great tutorial from Googie Momma and used the pattern from Thread Riding Hood.  So much awesomeness!  My printer is out of ink, so I just got the sizing correct on my computer screen with the zoom, held pieces of white computer paper over the screen and traced.

P1100404 P1100407 P1100408

I used a soft flannel that I got from my Mom’s stash and a Care Bear print fleece that I found at Wal-Mart in their remnant bin.  I used soft velcro instead of a zipper because that’s what I had.  I almost used a smaller zipper that I had salvaged from a dress, but realized that I might not be able to fit the larger stuffed animals through the smaller hole.  This is the large version.  We still have three large totes full of stuffed animals.  As we stuffed, I was also thinking that you could stuff one with extra blankets.  Looks like I’ll be making another one or two.  I do have three kids, so I can’t have anyone feeling left out.

Bathroom Basket

I’ve seen this idea a couple times on Pinterest.  I reorganized my sewing area and had a basket left that matched my bathroom perfectly.  I had a hard time figuring out how to hang the basket.  Finally, I found several ribbons that I’d been saving for who knows what that I used to hang the basket.  There is a nail at the top and another nail right under the top edge of the basket to hold it against the wall.  I also used a couple tacks to add extra support.  Then I just hung one wash rag on the handle of the basket and rolled up several other wash rags to store in the basket.  I love it!


My Sewing Area

My homemade pattern weights and pin cushions.  The tomato pincushion is in a candle holder.

My homemade pattern weights and pin cushions. My pattern weights came from a hot sauce bottle, a mini ketchup bottle and wedding favors.  The tomato pincushion is in a candle holder.   The other pincushion has elastic for wearing around my wrist and the bottom is a Gatorade lid.  The bar of soap in the background is for my pins.  You can also see my jars of lost things.  Beads, pearls and anything else I find that I might use someday.   I also save any ribbon scraps and tags that I remove from clothes.  They are going to make something really cool one day!

Measuring tape in a lid to hold it in a roll.

Measuring tape in a lid to hold it in a roll.

Cute plastic sewing machine with spool holders.  This was my Grandma Aldrich's.  Love her.

Cute antique plastic sewing machine with spool holders. This was my Grandma Aldrich’s. Love her.

Cutting table with my inspiration board.

Cutting table with my inspiration board.  I’m supposed to be sewing up the Jamaican banana.  Can you see the Didle book?  It has graph paper in it and was a gift from Corina, a foreign exchange student from Germany who stayed with my family in high school.  I use it to sketch out my designs.

Thrifted sewing organizer, mug mat, tin with all my scissors and pencils and markers.

Thrifted sewing organizer, mug mat, tin with all my scissors and pencils and markers.

My reorganized sewing desk.

My reorganized sewing desk.  There is a jar for everything!  The vase on the bottom is full of thread and teeny tiny fabric scraps.

Dress & Tank Top Upcycle to Colorblock Dress

I made this from two stretchy tank tops and a beach dress, all from Victoria’s Secret, all bra tops.  The beach dress fit but was too small up top.  I cut the skirt off the beach dress.  It originally had some gathers in the front, so I had to put those in again for the side seams to match with the tank tops’ side seams.

I had already cut the bottom 1/3 off of the tank tops to use as modesty panels under tank tops and dresses.  I originally left the turquoise blue tank top as is and just sewed a band of the darker blue to the bottom of the turquoise, then, sewed the skirt onto the dark blue.  I didn’t like the top or the bottom.  I don’t have a picture of that dress, which is a good indication of how much I didn’t like it.

I’ve been visualizing how I wanted the dress to look over the last month.  I wanted the bottom and the top to be asymmetrical, with a tie to provide support and contrast.  I cut the bottom of the skirt at an angle all the way across.  The tank top, I cut at an angle until I got to the middle front and back.  Then, I cut closer to the original tank top edging, so I would still have the original point on the front and back where the strap connects.

I cut close to the original skirt hem all the way around and then cut off one of the original side seams so I would have one long piece of the black.  I sewed the long piece along the top from the point of the front strap to the point of the back strap, like you would bias tape, with the right sides together.  Then, I sandwiched it up, not over and did two parallel (or as parallel as I could get) lines of stitches to hold the black fabric up.  I was worried that I might have some waffling on the top, but I concentrated on letting my machine pull the fabric through and not stretching it and that kept the top from getting stretched out.  I also pinned the bejesus out of it!

At the end of the back point, I cut the remainder of the black fabric off to use for the arm hole that was left.  I folded the remaining black fabric in half, and put the midway point on the side seam and sewed from one point to the other, using the same parallel lines of stitching.

I really like the way it turned out.  I love the colors together and I already had jewelry to match.  There is no better feeling than taking three things that you weren’t wearing and making something new, that you love.  


My kitty Alice decided to join the fun.


With the other arm up. I was trying to see which picture showed the slant at the bottom better.

Maniacally Laughing

Why?  Because I found this tutorial for shirring with your Brother machine and it worked.  Woot!  Woot!!!  I feel like I won the lottery!  That is the level of my excitement right now.

I was so excited when I looked at the back of my line of stitching and it wasn’t all wonky, I scared the crap out of my kids with my maniacal laughing.  I could seriously do a cartwheel I’m so happy.  I’ll refrain for now.  Look for shirred everything from now on.