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Archive for November, 2010

So, I’ve seen a lot of switchplate covers that people are making out there – and VERY cute.  But, I wanted to make my own so that I could coordinate things identically with a comforter or duvet cover for Beka’s room.  So, I ventured out and decided to make my own.  I found an adorable fabric that I plan to use as an accent fabric, and that’s what I decided to use for her covers.

I started out with white metal switchplate covers.  I decided to go with the metal due to a nice texture on the face of the plates as compared to the plastic covers and I figured they would be a little more substantial.

I cut out pieces of fabric to slightly larger than the actual switchplate.

Next, I centered the switchplate on the pattern the way I wanted it and then traced the switchplate outline.

After tracing, I cut a small slit in the fabric where the center of the switchplate is and then made diagonal cuts to the line on each corner.  For the tags that are on the top & bottom, I trimmed the point off about half-way so that when it’s applied to the switchplate the fabric doesn’t cover the screw holes.

Then I clipped the outside corners to the line.  After preparing my different pieces of fabric, it was time to start adhering the fabric to the switchplates.  I used fabric ModPog by Plaid.

I followed the directions for applying the fabric to the switchplate.

After gluing the fabric to the front of the switchplates, I then flipped them over and started wrapping the fabric onto the back.  Using the ModPog, I coated the back of the switchplate and began wrapping the fabric over making sure to make it taught and smooth.

To assure that the corners were relatively smooth, I clipped, about at 45-degrees, the cut corners.  I then continued wrapping the fabric all the way around, trimming and clipping excess fabric as needed.

I’m not a perfectionist, so they aren’t perfect.  After wrapping the fabric all the way around, I then put a little dollop of ModPog in each corner and used my fingers to tuck the excess fabric around the corner so that the fabric followed the contour of the curved corners and was smooth on the inside.

Once the glue was allowed to cure for a few hours, then coat with the ModPog and let cure for a couple days for a nice finished product.  Use an awl or other device to pierce the screw holes and then you’ll have a finished product ready for installation.

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Okay, so I’m really enjoying sewing.  Maybe it’s because my career is so left brain oriented that having a right brain outlet is really fun.  And, it’s rather practical.  I’m looking forward to making items for the kids.  The Halloween costumes were a dive into the deep end and it’s a good thing.

Anyway, I was inspired by JJ Heller’s Blog post to make a dress for Rebeka.  My mom had handed down a polo shirt a while back – she said if I didn’t want it to pass it on to someone else.  Well, I didn’t want it, so it’s been hanging in my closet for a few months.  Well, after the inspiration from JJ Heller, I decided I could use that shirt to try to make something for Beka.

Unfortunately, I didn’t take a picture of the shirt ahead of time.  I really need to get better about that.  Anyway, the shirt looked something like this.

Photo from Tommy Hilfiger; Wide Stripe Polo Shirt can be found here.

So I got busy and within an hour and half (with distractions) I ended up with an adorable dress for Beka.

(Please excuse the kitchen under construction in the background.)

(Excuse the not so great pictures, it was with my phone as I didn’t know where the other camera was)

Not too bad for my first foray into just throwing something together. I used the sleeves from the shirt to make the sleeves on the dress – as I saw it, it was less hemming that I would be required to do. I also need to get a better picture of the front (sans sippy cup) because I used the buttoned front and incorporated it into the neckline.

And, really, I have to say, it is fun.  I’ll make changes in future designs, but I can’t wait to hit the thrift store and look for some more shirts to use for different outfits now.

This morning I put Beka in the dress for school and realized she needed some bottoms (they have a good modesty policy at her preschool).   And I remembered that Chet’s aunt Rachel gave us this ADORABLE diaper cover when she was born.  So digging into the drawers I went searching, and VOILA!  I found it!

However at this point in time Beka was over having her picture taken.  So, that’s the best I could do.

So, I owe JJ Heller a big thanks for inspiring me to craft something for Beka and to Jessica from Happy Together for providing the basis to do put this together.

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Yes, it has come and gone, but I had a blast this year making the kids costumes.  It all started with G saying that he wanted to be an Indian.  Okay, even I could make an Indian costume.  We debated several options for Beka’s costume, most were not very “P.C.” and ultimately we decided that she should be a little Indian too.

I wish I had taken pictures of the process, but I’m not very good at that.  So here’s some pictures of the completed costumes on the kids

It was really fun to make the costumes, considering I haven’t fired up the sewing machine in more than a decade.  For G’s costume, the fabric I purchased had a fringe laser cut into it already.  But, I hadn’t planned on using that fringe, as the pattern for his costume called for making the fringe yourself, which I was good with.  Though, after cutting hundreds of strips, I think my hands would have celebrated another alternative.

He was so excited, I swear he’s been wearing the costume off and on for over a week already.

To tie the costume together, as I wasn’t about to make or purchase a full head dress or war bonnet, so I put together his headband and sent him out into the backyard to find some chicken feathers for the headband.  Somehow, I managed to line up the pattern on the headband.  Trust me, it was completely unintentional.

Amazingly, his costume only took me about a full day to make.  Which, like I said, for not sewing for a decade was good in my book.

B’s costume took me about 4.5 hours on night (the night before her school party).  It was a blast to make.

The pattern for her costume specified purchasing fringe, which I declined to do at the tune of $7.00/yard.  I figured I could make fringe for far less and intentionally purchased extra fabric.  Then, after I had finished G’s costume and had all this left over fringe, I realized, I already had pre-made fringe.  My hands sang a chorus of “Hallelujah!”   So, I incorporated the fringe from the fabric for G’s costume into her dress.  I made some modifications to the pattern, and I am pleased with the outcome.

Sunday, with the help of my Mom, I was able to get some pretty even ponytails in place and I had brought along a couple strips of the fabric and wrapped her ponytails with the strips.  All in all, I’m extremely pleased with the finished product.

It of course turned chilly on Halloween here, which necessitated wearing a layer under the costumes.  Looking back, the biggest change I would have made to their costumes would have been the shoes.  G wore his cowboy boots, which looked fine, but if the two had been in moccasins, that would have been totally over the top.

The only complaint from G was the fact that he didn’t get his spear made.  *Sigh*  I left that project up to him and his daddy.  But, life is busy.  It would have been neat to use on of the arrowheads G’s found on our property for his spear.  Oh well.

Trick or treating was wonderful, and it was so stinking cute when Beka figured it out.  After the second house, I look behind me and she’s sat down on the sidewalk and was digging in her bag.  She was delighted in the experience of going and saying “ticka ticka teet” and being rewarded with goodies deposited in her bag.

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