Fabric, Paper & a Bundle of Fur

Friday, February 12, 2016

Hi Friends! I have slowed down in the craft room quite a bit over the past few months, but I haven't been completely dormant. Between sewing, making books, and training our new puppy, I've been busy. I've sewn my entire life, and my daughter is interested in learning now, so I'm teaching her with the help of a fantastic book called "School of Sewing," by Shea Henderson. It was written for adults who want to learn to sew, but my 11-year old hasn't had a problem with it at all, and the projects in it are super cute and fun to make! If you've wanted to learn to sew, but thought it was too difficult, I highly recommend the School of Sewing! Here are the projects we've worked on, so far:

pic name pic name pic name

I can't be around sewing without wanting to sew myself, so I pulled out an old book of handbag patterns and made this one:
It's called a Versatile Handle Handbag because you can easily adjust the length of the handles. This is the short length.

And, this is the long shoulder strap length. The pattern in the book ends up being more of a tote bag because the inside of the bag is just a big empty sack, so when the handle is adjusted for a shoulder strap, and there is any weight inside the bag (my bags always weigh a ton because of my iPad), the bag draws up like a drawstring bag would, and everything inside the bag just falls into a pile in the bottom of the bag, which I hated. To try to fix that, I created an unattached hard bottom with a lined zippered pouch divider sewn to it.

Still not exactly what I would like, but because of the design of the sides of the bag, I couldn't figure out a way to attach the pouch to the sides of the bag. As long as I have all my stuff in there, though, it works fine. As for the electric colors, I'm not sure how much I like them on this bag, but being my first handbag, it was fun to make and I learned a few new techniques in the process. Maybe it will work better as a summer bag.

I haven't made a card in awhile, but I have had a chance to work with paper. I needed to make a book to donate as a door prize for my daughter's bowling league, so I made one that I thought would be simple...and it would have been, if it hadn't been so long since I'd made a book. Getting the back cover on gave me fits, but I finally got it figured out. I definitely need to make a few more, real quick, before I forget how to do it again!

The book is 4.75" x 7", with 176 blank white pages, and a taupe elastic closure.
It is stitched in a rose-colored waxed linen thread, using Coptic Stitch and Gathered Long Stitch.

The inside of the journal is blank, but on the first page I stamped this great quote from a retired MFT Stamps set called "Own Your Story." 

Finally, I mentioned, back in November that we lost our Silky Terrier after 16 years. I was so sad, I said I'd never get another dog, but then, this guy showed up in my Facebook feed, looking for a forever home. I just couldn't resist...
Dexter is about 18 months old, and the vet thinks he's a PBGV/Terrier mix. (We'll know for sure once the DNA test results come in). He's just about the sweetest dog ever, but he is twice as big as Ozzy was, and he's still got some of that puppy hyperness at times. He is very short, but has figured out how to jump from a chair in our den onto the kitchen counters, he can open the doors in our house, he busted a lamp--twice, and just this week, he chewed up our tv remote control. But, he has the most expressive eyes, and can "talk" his way out of just about anything with them. He's also a snuggly lap dog, and loves getting scratched behind his big, floppy ears. All in all, the good outweighs the bad, and we are marathon-watching every Cesar Milan rerun we can to get this stubborn boy trained as quickly as possible. Wish me luck with that!!!

That's it, for now! Have a wonderful weekend, and a Happy Valentine's Day!

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Maria said...

How sweet for your daughter to enjoy the love of sewing as much as you do! Her projects are awesome! Your handbag is fabulous! I have sewn, but it's been so long. I don't think I could even dream of making such a lovely handbag...so pretty! Your book is wonderful! I'm sure the recipient will love it! And, I must say that your dog is so CUTE. He looks very innocent in the photo...hehehe! Good luck with the training. I'm sure he'll learn. Have a great weekend!:-)

Conniecrafter said...

How neat she is interested in something you like to do, my daughter has gotten into cross stitching and crochet so it is fun to have something in common we like to do. Great projects by her and yourself!!
Congrats on your new furbaby!

Jill Norwood said...

What a beautiful post Cheryl! I love that you are sewing with your daughter and all the fun projects! My son and I are doing a lot of cooking together this year - he is ALWAYS hungry! :) Welcome to your new adorable dog! I love how you described his antics and face! Hugs my friend!!!!!

Leslie Miller said...

What a fun post, Cheryl! First of all, I have to comment on your Dexter. He's so darling! Looks like my little Charlie from years ago. Still gives my heart a twinge to think of him. Bless you for giving him a good home. Now... the sewing projects you and your daughter have been working on are fabulous! My mom was an excellent seamstress but wouldn't have anything to do with teaching me to sew. I had to learn in Home Ec. But I learned quite well and have sewed all my life. Unfortunately I don't have room for all the crafting I'd like to do, so sewing took a back seat. The purse you made is awesome! And the book -- beautiful paper and stitching. Amazing door prize, really.