DIY shelves

I’m almost complete with my 1 room, 30 days bathroom challenge and I can’t believe the transformation. Today I completed the shelves and couldn’t wait to post about it. I found several posts on Pinterest about DIY shelving, and thought- what the hell!

I bought a board from Lowes (10″ deep x8′ long) for less than $8. I also bought stain, brackets to hang it on, and my favorite antique bronze spraypaint because the brackets were silver. (Also on my cart was my shower rod).  

Over the weekend my husband cut the board to length for me. I decided to make my three shelves 22″, which gave me a slightly longer board left over that I hung in my laundry room for more storage there.   

Yesterday I got to work staining and spray painting. I don’t think I’ve ever stained anything before, but it was pretty easy and I only needed one coat. 

  
  
I let everything dry overnight and got to work hanging them today. I first used the long level to mark a line on one side of the toilet and used that as a guide for one side of brackets. I used drywall anchors rated for 75 pounds, so I feel confident that these shelves are secure.   

Hanging the left side was the tricky part. I needed to make sure the brackets were level horizontally and vertically. An extra pair or hands would have been helpful, but I was able to make it work using the level.    

 

Next up was the fun part. I made sure the shelves lined up and were centered on the brackets, then secured them with a screw from underneath. I am in love with how this turned out. All together, I spent around $45 (3 sets of brackets at $7 each, $8 for the board, $7 for stain, and $6 for spray paint, plus screws). 

  
Lucky me, baskets and home decor was 50% off at Hobby Lobby this week. I have toilet paper in the red bucket and wash clothes in the basket on the middle shelf. The picture frame and anchor artwork are also from Hobby Lobby, and the sailboat is from Target. Next up for my bathroom makeover is towels, but I’m going to take the next couple days and catch up on some sewing. 

   

 

Tuesday Tutorial, sizing down a t-shirt

Hello friends and happy 2016! It’s been a (long) while since I’ve posted. Quick recap, we moved the week of Thanksgiving, and life has been crazy ever since. I’ve used the past few months to catch up on a few projects that have been pushed to the side, and I can’t wait to tell our story of the move, and show pictures of my new sewing space. Until then…

Zac is now obsessed with Star Wars. When he started to see previews for the new movie in December he asked to watch it. My husband jumped at the opportunity, so we ordered the original trilogy off Amazon, and watched episode 4, 5, and 6 over a long weekend. He was hooked and has probably watched them 100 times since then.

Last week, I was walking through Khols and they had adult t-shirts on sale. I thought, how cool would it be to get matching shirts for Zac and Patrick. To my surprise, my husband thought that was an awesome idea. Only problem, the smallest size they had was an adult small, and my son is a 4t.

Sizing down the shirt seemed easy enough, but this is the first time I’ve attempted to do it. First, I cut the shirt down the side seams, but left the neck intact. I cut the sleeves around the seams as well, and you can see that beside the shirt. IMG_6172.JPG

Next, I used an existing t-shirt pattern to ensure I sized down appropriately.

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This would actually make an adorable tank top. I’ll have to remember that for summer… After I cut the body of the shirt, I did the sleeves. I used the sleeves I had cut off from the t-shirt, and kept the existing hem. Because my pattern had you hemming the sleeves, I just folded the bottom up about an inch to account for the difference.

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Once those were cut, I assembled my shirt just like you would if you started from scratch. I attached the sleeves with my serger, and then stitched the sides together. Finally, I hemmed the bottom. I love how this turned out, and using the existing neck binding saved me time. My son woke up this morning and even though it’s currently snowing outside, insisted on wearing his new Star Wars shirt to school. I can’t wait to get a picture of him and his daddy in their matching shirts when my husband gets home tonight.

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I hope this inspires someone else to tackle this quick sewing project. ūüôā

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Tuesday Tutorial- bridesmaid dress quilt

A few years ago, I came across a pin on pinterest for a baby quilt used from a bridesmaid dress. Since then, I’ve made several of these blankets for customers and they’ve become one of my favorite projects to sew. The idea of making a quilt scares a lot of people, and I’m hoping this step by step tutorial eases your fears. If you can sew a straight line, then you can take on this project. I suggest investing in a cutting mat, a rotary cutter, straight edge, and a quilting ruler.

For the quilts I make, I usually pick out 4 fabrics that coordinate with the dress. My blankets measure anywhere from 36″ to 42″ square when completed, and if this is the size you desire, 1/4 of a yard is all you’ll need of each.¬†IMG_8833

When you get your fabrics, iron and then cut to your desired size. For this quilt, I used a 6″ quilting ruler (which is actually 6.5″ square). To make my life easier, I cut my fabric in a 6.5″ strip, then used the quilting ruler to cut 5 equal sized squares.¬†
  

Repeat this with the remaining three fabrics.

When it comes to cutting the dress, don’t be afraid. Cut along the seams to give yourself large panels to work with. Do just like you did before and cut a 6.5″ strip and then use the quilting ruler to cut squares.

  

Once all of your squares are cut, lay them out in a design or pattern you think looks best. I always like the dress to be the middle square, and then I spread them out- always making sure each of the 5 patterns are represented in each row and column.

Now it’s time to sew! If you look behind my sewing machine in the picture, you can see how I have each of the rows laid out so they’re in order and ready.

Ta da!!! Once you have your five rows sewn together, iron the seams flat.

Now it’s time to sew your rows together to make into a blanket. I think this is the part that worries most first time quilters because with this type of blanket you want to make sure everything lines up. When I lay out two of the rows, I make sure that the seams line up exactly, then pin them in place.¬†
  

Once you’re pinned, it’s time to sew. Repeat this process with each remaining row. Then, just like before- iron your seams flat.
  

It’s up to you how fancy you want to get. I really like a border (or two) around the outside of my quilts. For this quilt, I used a double border and because the bridesmaid dress was long, I was able to use that too. For shorter dresses it’s not always possible to get strips of fabric long enough. For the first border on this dress, I used a grey fabric and cut it in 1.5″ strips. I sewed the strips along the sides, then across the top and bottom. Iron flat when you’re done.
  

Next up, I cut dress. I used 3″ strips for the outside.

Once your front is done, it’s time to attach the back. I used minky dot fleece for this quilt. This fabric sheds. A lot. It’s also sometimes almost slippery to work with. Use lots of pins and sew slowly. To attach the front to the back, lay your fleece down on floor, good side up.

Next, lay your quilt down so the “good” sides face one another. Cut off the salvage fleece at the top. Now, it’s time to pin. Make sure you leave yourself an opening, so that you can flip the quilt right side out.
  

When you’re done sewing, flip your quilt right side out. Iron your edge flat, and pin your hole closed. To give a finished look, I like to top stitch all the way around the quilt. Because you can see the thread, try your best to match the top thread to your top fabric, and your bobbin thread to your fleece.
  

Congratulations, you’re done!!!¬†IMG_8938IMG_8945

Tutorial Tuesday, how to make a hooded towel

Happy Tuesday friends! Life here has been busy, hence the lack of blogging. Today I was finishing up some towels and thought it would make a great tutorial, so here we are.

Right around the time my son turned 1, all the cute hooded towels I got when he was a newborn magically shrunk (I refused to believe my baby grew), and I was in the hunt for new ones. I found some at Khols, but just like so many things in my life, I realized I could totally make them myself. Today is your lucky day because I’m going to teach you too.

Materials:

  • Full sized bath towel ($5 at Walmart)
  • Hand towel ($3 at Walmart)
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine
  • Serger (not necessary but helpful)
  • Embroidery machine (optional)

I embroider my towels. This is not necessary and I’ve seen tons of Pinterest tutorials with ribbons or other decorative accents on the hoods. There are also tutorials on Pinterest where you get two hoods out of a single hand towel. Warning- if you do not have a serger, your towels will fray, especially doing it that way. I personally find my way easier and if you don’t have a serger, your seams are hidden with my method.

So, here we go. I take my hand towel and fold it over, leaving one or two fingers of clearance at the bottom. I then eyeball and sew around the sides and top with my sewing machine.

Next, I trim around the edge and leave about 1/2 from the seam. After that, I serge around the edge. This step is optional!

You’re almost done!! Flip the hood back right-side-out, line it up to the middle of your towel, and sew a straight stitch to secure it.

   

Enjoy!!

Tuesday Tutorial, how to make a crib skirt

Happy 2015 friends!! One of my new year’s resolutions was to be a better blogger. Seeing as today is the 20th of January, you can see how well I’m doing with my resolutions‚Ķ One thing I want to start in the new year is Tutorial Tuesday, where I give you step by step directions on how to complete a project. I won’t promise that this will happen every Tuesday, but I’ll do my best to post a couple tutorials a month. The first tutorial is how to make a crib skirt.

The first thing you need to do is measure your crib mattress. They vary in size slightly, but it should measure somewhere around 28″ wide and 52″ long. The next thing you need to do is determine how long you want to make your skirt. If you’re a first time mom, you probably aren’t thinking that you’ll adjust your crib height as your baby grows and starts sitting up, and then standing. I didn’t, and when I made a crib skirt for my son’s nursery a few years ago, I made it touch the floor and then a few months later it was too long. I recently made a crib skirt for my childhood best friend’s new baby and I made her’s 14″ long. (This tutorial can easily be adjusted to make a bedskirt for any size).

For this crib skirt, I used home decor fabric which measured 56″ wide. The home decor fabric was heavy enough weight that I didn’t need to line it, AND wide enough that I was able to buy less yardage. I purchased 2 yards, but could have gotten away with only 1.5. I also bought a piece of cheap white fabric to use as the base that lays under the mattress. Nobody will see it, so feel free to use a scrap of something leftover from a previous project.

Now that you have your measurements, cut your pieces to size, leaving an inch clearance on the two sides and bottom, and a half inch seam allowance on the top. I folded over the sides and ironed, and then folded again to hide the raw edge of the fabric and sewed.

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Next, I repeated the same step with the bottom hem of the fabric. I snipped the corners at an angle and sewed. Repeat this with all 4 side panel pieces.

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Now, your’e ready to attach the pieces to your base, which should be cut the exact size of your crib mattress. I used a serger to attach my fabric pieces because I wanted a finished look. If you do not have a serger, a zig zag stitch will work just fine. I promise you, nobody will ever see this, and chances are, you won’t be washing the crib skirt, so you have very little chance of it fraying. Once you’ve sewn all for sides, iron them flat, and ta-da!!

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You can get as fancy as you want to with your crib skirt. Here is the finished product on the crib. I also made a chevron quilt for this nursery, and I’ll post about that on another Tuesday tutorial. For my son’s crib skirt, I added a stripe across the bottom. To make this adjustment, just account for how wide you want the stripe and subtract that from the length of your other fabric.

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I hope that this tutorial was helpful. I’d love your feedback or to see completed pictures of crib skirts you make. Please check out some of my other¬†tutorials.