Sunday, January 29, 2012

Cuddly Baby Toy made by me!

I finished the toy I was planning to make for my cousin's month-old son. I just need to run it through the washing machine and make sure it'll come out of the washer okay.  He is just a month old (well, seven weeks, if you want to get specific) so he can't really play with it just yet so there is no huge rush to get it to him.  I can be patient.  For a little while longer.

I found the tutorial here. I did a Google Image search for 'baby toy tutorial' or something like that and saw this and just loved it.  When I read how to make it I knew that I was totally capable.  It is very simple, but looks great.  Right up my alley!!  I did underestimate how long it would take me though.  I think it took about five times longer than I expected.  My thirteen year old wants me to make her one because it is so nifty!

I got my 12 little stuffed pieces made.  This is the back of the pieces.

Here is the front.  I wanted different textures for him to experience.  The backs of the pieces are a very soft grey fleece.  I've got a red velvety section, a soft fuzzy white section,  a plain cotton green section and a courdoroy-ish blue section.  I have a lot of pink and purple 'girly' fabrics in my cupboard so coming up with these more manly pieces was a challenge in itself!

Sewing the sections together was a breeze.

Sewing the whole thing together was pretty easy too.  The whole thing was a little time consuming, but not difficult at all.  I may make my teenager one after all.....

Click on the link and make one for yourself or a baby in your life! Pin It

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Chain Chomp plush

I love video games.  Back in October, I followed a tutorial here and made a very cute Boo plush.
See?  I told you!  Cute, right?

I have wanted a Chain Chomp ever since.

I have never made a pattern of my own before and had no idea where to start, so I just used what I already had.  The Boo pattern.  I was pretty sure that if I used her pieces, but cut four of the plain ones instead of two (because Chain Chomps don't have tails) I would end up with a ball shape. 
So that is what I tried.  I cut four out of black (yes, it really is black) felt.

Sewed two together along one side, then the other two together along one side, then sewed the two half-circles I just made together.  Leaving a gap for turning of course.  I know felt does not fray and doesn't need to be cut with pinking shears, but they are new and I wanted to use them!

Here is my method for remembering to leave a gap for turning.  I hope I am not the only person who has happily sewed a piece completely closed before...
My trick is to put a whole bunch of pins in the area tha I am leaving opened.  It is a good visual reminder because you just can't miss all those pins and continue to sew your piece shut.

Then I turned it, stuffed it and sewed it shut.  After that I ran the lint brush over it to clean all the stuffing scraps off of it.

I didn't take pictures of me  fooling with scraps of paper trying to get the features right.  But that is exactly what I did.  Once I liked the paper pieces, I cut them out of felt and sewed them on.  I just cut six small strips of felt and hand sewed them together in loops for the chain.

I really like the way that it turned out.  My thirteen year old deemed him "AWESOME" and that makes me happy too!

Thank you so much Serena for posting your Boo!  I never would have been able to make this without you! Pin It

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Make Your Own Ice Block Centerpiece

And it won't melt!

I'm not big on table top centerpieces.  Mostly because our table is pretty small once the four of us are sitting at it for dinner.  Centrepieces have a way of getting placed on a different table during dinner and left there.  Forgotten.  But I love this ice one and use it every now and then.

My next-door-neighbour taught me how to make this about five years ago.  I think she learned from a local TV show.  Sorry I can't give better credit than that.

For this you will need:
A large, clear vase.  (I like the rectangular look, but my neighbour's was cylindrical and looked awesome)
A clear candle holder (again, up to you.  I believe my neighbour had hers in another vase, level with her large one and had the candle at the bottom)
If your candle holder is short like mine, you'll need another object to raise it up.  I use a mason jar.
Clear basket wrap.  You know, that clear plastic film you can get at the dollar store.  I wipe this off, and fold it up and re-use it.  You don't have to toss it out when you dismantle your centrepiece if you plan to make it again.
Not shown: a candle, a poking device (I used a metal skewer with a handle), a jug of water

Start by placing your jar in your big vessel and start jamming the basket wrap around the jar.

Once it is about level with the jar, add some water.  Start by filling up the jar.  I just let the jar overflow until the water is about three-quarters of the way up the side of the jar.

This photo is supposed to show you that the jar is full of water...

Then you place your candle holder on the jar and continue jamming the basket wrap all around it.  Messy is good, in this case. Then fill it most of the way up with water, being careful not to fill the candle holder.

You can see the jar here. 

That is where the handy, dandy poking device comes in.  Trust me and don't use the sharp end of the skewer (if you are using a skewer).  All you will do is poke holes in your plastic.  I'm sure you can guess how I know that.....
Just gently push and poke the wrap around until you are happy with the way it looks.  You can still see my jar a little, but I am okay with that.  You have to be  looking pretty close to notice.

Then top it up with a little more water, getting pretty close to the top.
Hmmm....  My candle holder started to float.  I don't remember that happening before.

I had to add some clear "squashed" marbles (because that is what I had on hand) to weigh it down.

Then light your candle and enjoy the compliments. Pin It