Sunday, May 31, 2009

jean apron tutorial!

Fred took the older kids to a baseball game, with my aunt & uncle, cousins, dad, and grandpa while I stayed here with the little ones. While Little Lad napped, I sewed and Dash worked beside me on a painting.

I decided not to wing it so much today. I found this tutorial when I was looking for a simple, free apron pattern online.

Would you believe that I snapped pictures along the way to make my own tutorial? I know! I'm not usually so "with it." Heh heh

So, to make a Jean Apron, first get a pair of jeans to use. This will work best if it's a pair that will fit you around the waist. This pair was too big for me, so I knew I'd have to take it in a bit. More work, but it was worth it for the cute angel tag on the back.

Now cut it apart, so you are left with just the behind and the entire waistband (keep the button hole and button on the end!) You can use your judgment on whether of not to keep belt loops. I like mine.

If you want it rounded out, you can use a plate as a guide.

I did this with the first one apron, but not with the second.

See, all rounded.

Next, sew lace or bias tape around the bottom and sides. I didn't want to break a needle trying to sew this thick jean material, so I put my bias tape down by hand.

Ta-Da! New apron. Easy peasy. I had to take in the sides a bit but, if you picked jeans that fit you, then you just button it in back and you are good to go! In the tutorial I linked to, she sewed ties on.
See the pink tag? Cute, cute.
I like it like this, but I'm sure I'll add embellishments when I find the right buttons.

Next, I used a black pair of jeans, and I kept the bottom part straight, then made a small slit and sewed the parts overlapping, so it looks like a skirt in front. (dang, I did forget to take a picture of that step.)

And I added a bird. Just because. I cut a pocket-like shape, and sewed around it quickly, on the machine. Add one button for an eye and embroider on some legs, tail feathers, and a beak. Viola.

(yes, I change clothes often, when modeling aprons. I want them show up, so I have to wear contrasting colors, right??)

Remember my house philosophy?
It doesn't have to be perfect to be beautiful!
Same goes for my sewing. :-)
With one of the legs of the black jeans, I made one more apron. No tutorial for this, because I decided to wing it again. Quickie version: cut leg material open. Cut up the front, so you like the way it looks when you hold it up. (heeheee) Sew loop for neck. Sew on ribbon or looped material for waist band. Sew on animal, if you please. I went with an owl this time. He does have a beak sewn on, you just can't see it well.

Three aprons in a day will send me to bed happy. :-)
Plus, I got to play in the sprinkler today with the kids.
Sunshine, oh glorious sunshine!!

The "wing it" designs: Pay It Forward, friend

Do you remember my "Pay-It-Forward" post? Well, I haven't forgotten, and it's about time I get started. School is out, and crafting, sewing, painting, whatnot begins with a bang.
After we took the kids to the zoo (more about that later,) we watched a movie together, and then I got kiddos in beddy-bye and started "sewing time!"

I have a dear friend who loves Mary Engelbreit . I'm partial myself. All of those cute sayings and bright colors are endearing. Sooo, I got some cutsy fabric, and went to work. With no pattern, and only a vague notion of how to go about it. I did have a good picture in my mind, though. ;-)

I must say, I love the way my "pen pal" turned out.
See, insert pens, or other art supplies. Roll up.
Snug as a bug in a rug. Tie with the pretty elastic-y ribbon.

I added the tulip button on top of the ribbon as an afterthought. Details are always fun!
Then, just because I have soooo much free time...
(do you see what time I'm posting. Geesh)
I decided to make a matching apron!
Again, with no pattern, other than an apron that I just bought recently, to use as a guide.
This took me way more time than it should have. I'm rusty.
And I wanted scallops. And big pockets. And ribbon.
So I used them. Winging it is fun. :)
That says "Princess of Quite a Lot," in case you can't read it.
It's hard to take pictures of it while I'm wearing it!

Sooo, SD, I will give you your pay-it-forward gift when I see you in a few days.

Hope you like-y.

(yes, I'm using lots of "y"s after midnight.)

Friday, May 29, 2009

She's doing a Vintage Wedding Refashioned Frock GIVEAWAY!!!!

Can I just say WOW. We're done with school (well, as "done" as you get when you homeschool,) so I'm all geared up for a fun and crafty summer. As if I didn't already feel passionately about reading, decoupaging, sewing has been added IN A BIG WAY to the list of desired activities. Lucky for me, I have kids to teach HOW, therefore I am always justified in spending my time this way. :-)
Still, I'm rather new myself,
and this kind of thing is totally out of my league.
(But it would fit me, and I sooo wish I would win it.
You know, I don't think I've ever won anything, come to think of it.
Can anyone prove me wrong? Mom, have I won anything, ever?
Julie? Amy? Fred? Can anyone remember? Hmmmm....)

Playing Lampapalooza!

"It's time for us to share our lighting adventures with each other!" -Nester
I found a cheap-y white 50's lamp at a yard sale a few weeks ago.
Nothing in my house stays white for long.
Here's an "artistic shot" that Nature Man took while I was doin' my thing!
Like the polka dots? They make me happy.
(And, yes, I did the little table while I was at it.)
For the dots, I used my trusty 2 5/16" hole punch with scrapbook paper.
I let the kids do the designing, and I helped them do the decoupaging.
Gotta add some fun details, too, even if we're the only ones who notice.
Dash chose blue dots for the inside of the shade.

The waterfall we never tire of

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

50s Garden Party

I love being around my friends. I love to dress up. I love to be outside. And I love good food. Monday night was FAB-U-LOUS!! This is SO-OO my era!

Don't we look the part?? I went Marilyn Monroe retro-style,
and Adelia went lovely Elizabeth Taylor classical-style. Julie did a mini-photo shoot before we left, but I can't divulge all of those portraits at this time! ;-)Here we have Laura R, Sherri, and Beth eagerly awaiting their mouth-watering meal. And, below, Laura and Trish are forced to pose every few moments.
The price of sitting at my table. ;-)

You can tell we were having fun, goofing around outside after the meal.

And here we have the beauties, Adelia and Trish.

This was our absolutely AMAZING hostess, Sam, with two of her equally amazing sons. And, below, there's Sam's mom standing with her. Do you see where she gets her loveliness?

It took us a moment to get organized for group pictures.

Here we are!! All homeschool mamas, all dressed up for a party.

Miss Jerri and Sam (yeah, I have lots of friends with guys' names! ;-)
heh heh Just kidding, guys!)

Saying good-bye at the end of a wonderful evening.

Monday, May 25, 2009

back in time on the water

After seeing my photos of the rafting trip, my Papaw sent me some old photos of my parents at Beaver Lake, in the late 70's. Hey, the styles are coming back around!

My Dad also reminded me of some funny comments while we were on the river:

At one point, referring to the previous float trip that Fred, Nature Man and Dad took,
Fred said, "I think that's the same gravel bank we stopped at before." The Artist, who was on her first float trip, logically asked, "Are we going in circles?" Good opportunity to explain the nature of rivers!

When we exploring along the bank, Nature Man said, "Poppy, here are some deer tracks." (He's extremely observant of nature, as you know.) Dash helpfully added, "That means that there was a deer here once but now it's dead." NatureMan responded, "That's not what it means at all!"

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Rafting at the Redneck Yacht Club

See, I'm not joking!!!

Only our Nature Man had been rafting before, with Cub Scouts,
so we decided to take the three older kids on a day-trip rafting excursion!

The water was higher and faster than we had anticipated.
Good thing we're getting stronger each day, doing our P90X!

The kids all took turns with paddles. And, thankfully, I was only hit in the head one time!
My Dad and Nature Man, right before Dad was hit by a branch
and toppled off of the raft backwards.
He went completely underwater (way over his head,) and lost those glasses.
They were real glasses, by the way, not just sunglasses.
Bye, bye glasses.
(This was very interesting to Dash,
who continued to ask his Poppy where the glasses were
and how he would possibly get them back again.)
Yes, I'm in pictures. Amazing. My hubby has been doing some good camera-handling. Be proud. :-)

We stopped here and there, on banks, to snack and search for shells and fossils, and throw rocks. The kids found some amazingly huge feathers, too. We also spotted two turtles, and several herons and egrets. Nature Man and The Artist practiced their bird calls.
The cliffs are covered with wild berry vines and new little trees. I have a thing for cliffs.
The Artist sat on her perch on the side. She let her feet dangle off the edge and dip into the cool green water. All of my kids love water the way I do.

At the end of our trip, we caught the Redneck bus back to camp. I don't know if you can see the driver well, but let me assure you that he was quite the character. He truly was the epitome of a REDNECK. Don't get me wrong, he was as nice as all get out, but the guy had on a short T-shirt, short cut-off jeans and hiking boots, an old worn baseball cap over unwashed pony-tailed hair, a cigarette hanging out of his mouth as he spoke rather "rough" English. I guess he really was in perfect context, on those rocky back streets. In a strange sort of way, it made me want to move way out to nowhere. Enter banjo music. Never mind.
This was also my boys' first ever bus ride!!! Can you believe it? The bus journey ended up being a bit more terrifying for me than the rafting expedition!!