Sunday, April 29, 2012

the dress found a baby!

Remember this dress I made for my friend Julia's baby?

Well, it fits!

And then I had a little fun with Photoshop. 

Friday, April 27, 2012

Winner: i-pod suffle

Today has been nutty. I'm very involved in Doodlebop's school fair which is tomorrow. I've forgotten how crazed I get this time of year! When I close my eyes...I see spreadsheets...lots and lots of spreadsheets!!

Congratulations to the winner of the i-pod shuffle, “anonymous” who said, “I just became a follower via email.”

I will send you an email today and you have a week to respond with your mailing address!

Thanks for playing, everyone!!! Happy Friday!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

eco cloth tutorial

A few weeks ago I had big plans about posting an entire week of posts devoted to Earth Day - filled with eco-friendly projects for the whole family. 

But, yeah, that just didn't happen! 

Instead, I only found the time for one project, but I think you'll like it!

So, in the spirit of conservation I present you with a paper free towel tutorial:

There are many versions of paper free towels on the market:

Like this one from William Sonoma:
And this one on Etsy:


But I think you'll find this project affordable and fun! 

Materials Needed: 
2 yards of printed fabric 
2 yards of terrycloth (I asked at the fabric store which would be the most absorbent)
1 1/2 feet of Velcro (I like the adhesive kind you can stick to your fabric before you sew)
Matching thread for patterned side and      terrycloth
Matching thread for Velcro

Since we're trying to emulate paper towels here so they'll sit on a proper paper towel dispenser, measure your fabric (15 1/2 inches x 12 1/2 inches) - you'll be using a 1/2 inch seam allowance when you sew.

Cut 6 squares of fabric in your printed pattern
and cut 6 in your terrycloth.

With right sides facing, pin the terrycloth to your printed pattern.


Terrycloth is not the easiest fabric to work with. It shifts and moves as you sew. I prefer to have the printed side facing me as I sew since I know that it's more immobile and acts as a better shape guide while sewing. 

Sew together all the way around the square leaving a 3 inch opening for turning. 


While you're still wrong side out take stock of your fat, chunky corners....


and cut em! You can cut the corners at an angle and if you have a lot of extra fabric along the sides, you can cut that as well. This will cut down on the bulk of the cloth towel. 

Ah, so much prettier! 


Now, turn that puppy right side out. Be sure and push the corners out (you can use a fancy corner pushing tool or a pencil eraser will do.)

Find that three-inch gap you left open. Press both seams inwards and sew. 
Repeat this process 6 times. 

Now you have 6 pretty cloths! 


But you need them to be able to be connected to one another like real paper towels. Grab your Velcro. Cut them into 1 1/2 x 1/2 inch rectangles.


On the printed side, place the soft Velcro in the same two spots on each cloth. Since I use the adhesive Velcro, I like to place both entities of Velcro on my material, then take terrycloth of another cloth towel, lower it onto the patterned side of a cloth towel and press til it sticks.

Then I can unVelcro the whole thing and everything is perfectly lined up. 


The one thing you have to remember is be consistent in what side of the Velcro you are using where. If you're using the soft side on the patterned cloth...stay soft side for all patterned cloth and then the rough side for all terrycloth material. 

Sew all Velcro squares into place. 
I like to go around the circumference of the Velcro square, and then sew an X through the middle. 

You can't really see my perimeter sewing and X shape in the photo above, so here's the view from the terrycloth side. 

When I sewed this, I used black thread for the top and white thread for the bottom. 

Line up all towels and stick to one another. Carefully roll onto the nearest paper towel holder and say adios to paper waste!

Monday, April 23, 2012

amigurumi fun

Have you ever made amigurumi? The concept comes from Japan and refers to the art of knitting or crocheting a small toy. 

They're so cute! And a nice, manageable project for those of us that are project commitment-phobes (yeah, I'm addressing myself here.) is a site full of FREE amigurumi pattern downloads as well as a lot of inspiration!

(and hey, in 2006, they were the most popular item on Etsy! So get knitting!)

Saturday, April 21, 2012

new at the Etsy store

I wanted to share with you a few new things recently added to my Etsy store:


Dinosaurs galore! These are vinyl wall decals for all the dino-lovers out there. Place them anywhere you want and then remove them with no fuss or leftover marks. I've added orange, deep pink, sage green and baby blue to the red, black and yellow collection. I'm also happy to take custom orders should you need them, say for a birthday party goodie bag!

And between now and the end of April, all items in my shop are 10% off! Just type the coupon code: dinofun at checkout. 

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Giveaway: i-Pod shuffle CLOSED

I love rocking out while I’m sewing. In fact, music has fueled my life for a long time. I started piano lessons at 2 (and continued through college) and then I moved to Los Angeles to become a singer / songwriter. After releasing two albums, I was accepted into graduate school to study literature, so I said a fond farewell to my music career.

But the music plays on! Especially while I'm sewing.

We recently acquired my parents’ old record player as well as a bunch of classic records. It’s been so much fun selecting what to play depending on my project.

If it’s a project full of repetition (i.e. a pile of burp cloths) I opt for something speedy. If it’s something with delicate details, I’ll go for something more brooding.

In the spirit of song, today I’m sharing a special giveaway with you:
One winner will receive a silver i-Pod shuffle to fill with whatever music gets you going!

All you have to do is:
1.     Leave a comment after this post  AND
2.     Follow my blog

One winner will be chosen via

U.S. mailing addresses only please.

Once the winner is contacted they will have one week to send me their mailing information before a new winner is selected. 

This giveaway will close on Wednesday, April 25th at 11:59 PM ET

Rock on!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Citrus Bars

So these were, in theory, supposed to be lemon bars for my sister's book reading this weekend, however, when I went to juice the lemons I realized we had only one, very sad, small lemon. I gathered up all the  other "juiceable" fruit I could find (hence the lime and orange) and decided to call these, Citrus lemon bars, but a bit less tart. 

Citrus Bars

2 sticks of butter (melted)
2 cups of flour
1 cup powdered sugar

4 eggs
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 cups granulated sugar
¼ cup flour

juice from 1 lime
juice from 2 small lemons
juice from one orange

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a bowl mix the butter, flour and powdered sugar. Spread and press into the bottom of a 9 x 13 inch pan.

Bake it for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, beat the eggs in a bowl and add the baking powder, sugar and flour. Stir in the citrus juices. Pour on top of the crust and return to oven for another 30 minutes.

Looks cake-like in texture, right? That will change as it cools. 

Wait until the bars are completely cool before cutting them into squares. Then dust with powdered sugar.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

dinosaur burp cloths

Spring has sprung and everyone is having babies!(not me....don't go starting any rumors.) Burp cloths are a useful and simple gift to give a new mom!

I made these dinosaur themed burp cloths to sell at Doodlebop's upcoming school fair. They came out so soft! I used a new kind of minky this time because they were out of the swirly minky I use to sell my burp cloths in my Etsy store.

Since I do sell these online, I'm gonna hold on to my pattern, but here's round up of other people's burp cloth tutorials for you to enjoy!

Friday, April 13, 2012

a trip to the getty

The Getty Museum has become quite a landmark in Los Angeles. It is a stunning work of architecture that boasts an extraordinary permanent collection as well as visiting art. 

Since Doodlebop is off school for another week (that's right, I'm on week three of the kids' vacation), we met up with some preschool friends to explore the Getty. 

I think the highlight for them may have been the 3 minute tram ride to get there - up the side of the mountain.

We perused the children's center - a small, hands-on wing with lots to explore. 

An interesting tube room......with lots of room to manipulate (and cool lighting for photographs!)


A replica of an antique bed with books to read:

A white board / bug room where the kids could write on the walls:

And a mask-making station:


The grounds are amazing...I think the stone was all flown in from Italy. 

The gardens were closed for renovation, but the views were open for enjoyment! That's the Pacific in the distance and west Los Angeles. 

Good, clean, free fun.