Archive for the ‘DIY’ Category

2015 Finish Along Q2 Goals

14 Apr

I’m trying to be a little bit less ambitious but I’m hoping that the accountability will help keep me going! So here are my goals for the Q2 of 2015 Finish Along


finish Mom’s Winged quilt – nearly finished quilting, then I will need to do a bit of ripping before I add the binding

Rainbow Road Tablerunner – I have the pieces cut out and have been using them as leaders/enders – I’d like to gift this to my MIL. This is one of the projects from the Curves Class.

Red HST placemats – there is one up on my design wall taunting me. I have the layouts all figured out, I just need to sew them together. I’m hoping this will be a good project to practice FMQ

Giant Plus Quilt – um, considering how long it took me to just quilt mom’s quilt this is probably crazy ambitious but even if it doesn’t count as an entry for the FAL I would like to at least finish piecing this one.

Retro Flowers Quilt – I bought a curve master presser foot through Massdrop and haven’t had a chance to play with it but I need two baby quilts, and I bought the pattern back when I was doing the Curves Class. I have a FQ bundle of Mormor that I think would work well for this project – I will probably only do 4 flowers (2×2 layout) but I may do 9 (3×3 layout) if I think it needs to be larger. So this one is still in the planning stage.

Spiderweb Strings – I want to use more of the strings that I made my potholder with to make a quilt using this pattern, though I may mod it a bit. Basically my idea is to make blocks until I get bored or until I run out of strings. So maybe somewhere between a baby and a lap quilt?  (also, I should actually finish the potholder but that seems too small to list as a FAL goal. But that comes first)


Mother’s day socks – first sock down, second sock started.

Harry Potter scarf for T – I have the yarn and pattern, have not cast on yet.

Featherweight Cardigan – this was started while I was pregnant with Davy. I think I finished the body and some of the ribbing but I need to do the arms.

Other Craftiness:

Cross-stitch for Jen – I’m making a snarky pattern for my sis as a graduation gift – I’m almost done with the most complicated part. I’m using this cross-stitch pattern: Not my Circus, Not my Monkeys. This is my first cross-stitch project.

Felt food: I made a bunch of felt food for Davy that I need to write up properly. My SIL commented that my youngest niece, A, would love some and so I am making a set for her as well – I’m doing sandwich fixings, pasta, and maybe a few other small things (but probably not sushi since they are vegetarians).

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Posted in DIY, knitting, Quilting, sewing, WIP


Craft Room Redo – details

12 Mar

Another post written months and months ago – posting this now but I will try to do an update with how it’s working and the changes I’ve made.



I guess first off, I should say I’m lucky to have a dedicated space. When I bought my house I was single and I decided that I didn’t want a TV on the main living level. I have a walkout (mostly) finished basement, so I turned half of that into a TV/media space and the other half into a craft studio. I had an L-shaped desk with a whole bunch of crap on it and a bunch of large bins that held yarn. I’ve been wanting to redo it for a few years but had been holding off because I didn’t want to spend the money and, especially once Davy was born, I rarely had time to do anything crafty! Now that he’s older (and sleeping in his crib), I have more time to create things but was still putting it off.


Well, a few weeks ago, a generous friend came by to give me a big piece of IKEA furniture – I think it’s something they don’t make anymore, it looks like the old Hemnes except with 10 cubbies that are all the same size. It’s big, really big, and it didn’t really fit in the space we had. But I figured it would fit with a new sewing machine table and cutting table. So Gregg and I talked it over and I made a spreadsheet (yes really) costing out how much to make both a custom sewing table and cutting table and we were off and running. I don’t know the final cost since there were a couple of random trips to Home Depot in there to return one thing and buy another but it was probably between $300-$400. We had nearly all the tools necessary (borrowed a staple gun and a truck) so the cost was all materials. I was able to justify the cost by cashing in a whole bunch of credit card points so it was semi-free.

So, inspiration. I don’t know when or why I was even looking, but at least a year ago I ran across the DIY IKEA Sewing Table Tutorial on From Marta With Love, and I was totally inspired – I loved the idea of a custom table for cheap! But at the time, I still had my not-great starter machine and there just wasn’t a budget for any kind of redo. But I’d definitely been wanting to do this for awhile, and now was the time! Sadly I didn’t take any in-progress photos of this project.

My mods – for the sewing table, we didn’t bother with the pocket holes, just screwed the 2x2s in through the front and back rails. We also didn’t countersink the screws – we attached the 2x2s slightly lower than the top of the table so there is space for the bolts. My machine has a knee lift so we also drilled a hole for that. At some point I would like to paint it, but we knew we were having family visit soon and I wanted it to be presentable/functional when they arrived, not midway through the painting process.

What I would do differently – I traced the machine footprint directly onto the table before making the cut with the jigsaw and honestly, I didn’t do a great job. If I had to do it again, I would make a template on cardboard rather than directly tracing the machine. I’d also set up a piece of wood to act as a rail – my jigsaw kept fighting me, trying to go in a different direction. Gregg had to step in and finish the cutting, and the hole is bigger than it needed to be. Luckily it was salvageable, but there were tears.

(yeah, this is the same image in my other post)


Around the same time that I found the sewing table, I was poking around IKEA Hackers and ran across <a href=””>this project</a> and I was in total lust. I didn’t have any large surface to cut fabric on, so I either hauled my cutting mat, rotary cutter, rulers, and fabric upstairs to use the kitchen table (naturally, this was only possible while Davy was asleep) or, most of the time, I kneeled on the floor of the basement and cut my fabric like that. So I was really excited to have a new cutting surface. At some point, I decided I should add some fabric and batting so it would do double duty as a pressing table.

So my inspiration was much looser for this project. We used 2 KALLAX units (the replacement for EXPEDIT, but practically the same) and arranged them in an L shape, sandwiched between 2 pieces of melamine cut to 3ft by 4ft (we started with a 8ft x 4ft piece of melamine). We added 6 BESTA legs to give it some additional height – it’s 36″ tall, approximately counter height. We also found some iron-on melamine edging to finish the bottom edge with.


After attaching everything together, I sewed up a giant piece of frankenbatting to cover the unit and staple-gunned that in place. Then I added some ironing board fabric, and then some IKEA fabric on top of that.



The L-shaped arrangement means I have some storage space good for batting and fiberfill and other large items. I also added some KALLAX drawer inserts so that I could keep my sewing machine supplies handy and some DRONA boxes to store fabric and quilty WIPs in.


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Posted in DIY, sewing


Craft Room Redo

12 Mar

So I wrote this maybe 9 months ago and for some reason never posted it, but since I was commenting on another blog about redoing sewing areas I figured I’d better post it – better late than never!


Lots of exciting changes to my crafting area have occurred.

My husband surprised me with a new sewing machine for my birthday:

We made a design wall:

We got rid of the corner desk that was my old sewing area





More details on how we redid it next time!


Posted in DIY, sewing


Finally Quilting

21 Jan

Wednesday again already?

I’m thrown off because Monday was a holiday for me. It was also one of the rare days that my work is closed but daycare is open! My initial plan was to spend the day in sewing land, but then reality set in. Gregg and I had a house project that really needed to be finished and with Davy out of the house it was the perfect time to do it. Our townhouse has 6 concrete steps leading up to the front door, and last year our metal railing rusted through at the bottom so Gregg took it down. It took a ridiculously long time to source a replacement that wasn’t a super expensive custom railing, and once we got it it’s taken us forever to get it up due to some quirks of installation and needing some heavy duty tools. But Monday, after hours of work and multiple hardware store runs, we got the final part of the railing in. It still needs caps on the uprights (they were included but there are no instructions so we still have to figure out how to install them) but it’s at least usable – timely, because we’ve gotten several inches of snow today.


Luckily, we did finish before daycare pickup so I took the opportunity to start the quilting on my Winged Quilt. I played around with designs on a practice block as well as taking a photo and doodling in one of my apps before I made the decision to do angled lines following the piecing. Until I get better at FMQ, walking foot quilting all I’m comfortable with. Luckily I think it looks pretty good! I’ve gotten maybe 1/3 of it quilted.


Last night should have been dedicated to quilting Winged but instead I started my first project for the Curves Class, from Rachel at Stitched in Color. It’s a scallop bunting, and I decided to use up some of the Christmas fabric leftover from my tree skirt. I’ve only made one of the scallops (because I frittered away my time making bias tape) but it came out really nice so hopefully I can get some more sewn tonight.

Linking up with Lee for WIP Wednesday!