Monday, August 31, 2009

Fabric Covered Notebooks

The other night I was jumping from blog to blog and somehow ended up at this blog: Wise Craft tutorial of fabric covered moleskines.

I had been planning on making some quilted covers for composition notebooks having seen this Quarterly Challenge from American Patchwork and Quilting to make a journal cover. I had even suggested to my daughter that we make some journal covers for some of her friends for their birthdays.

So when I saw the fabric covered moleskines tutorial, I instantly decided to try it (even though I don't like to iron). I didn't know what a moleskine was (I do now after seeing the link from the tutorial), but it looked like a composition notebook so I used the same idea with my composition notebooks. I knew it would be a lot faster than making a cover so next thing I knew --

I had six made. I made them in sets of two because I found that 1/3 yard of fabric would make two. Also the double-sided fusible webbing I had was Steam-a-Seam lite. It just happened to be 12" wide. I cut that about 18" long which was enough to go around the composition notebook with an inch or two to spare so I didn't have to line everything up exactly.

Then I ran down to the store to pick up more composition notebooks while they are on the "Back to School" sale for fifty cents. I bought 19 of them. It filled up a box that was there. With a project this easy, I really can do it with my kids for friend birthday presents.

When I got home, I let my oldest pick out some fabric since one of her friends had a birthday last week and another in a couple weeks. This is what we ended up with:

The purple ones are for her friends, the crocodiles are for her and her brother. (There's one brother and lots of little sisters who would like the flowers and polka dots that I had already made. The tan and blue "Halfway Cafe" fabric by Cosmo Cricket is mine. It is my lastest favorite fabric.) Oh--the light blue notebook with flowers was light enough that the notebook showed through a little. My little girl just said that was where she could put her name. So I took a Sharpie and wrote her name on it, and she was happy.

Is this project as easy as it sounds? YES!!!

To make the composition notebook version of the fabric covered moleskines here's what you need (for two notebooks):

  1. 1/3 yard of fun fabric
  2. 2 composition notebooks
  3. 1 yard of double-sided fusible webbing that is 12" wide (maybe less if your webbing is a different width)
  4. Scissors and an iron

  1. Read the fabric covered moleskines tutorial.
  2. Cut fusible webbing into two rectangles each 12" x 18" wide (this is generous so if you are a little smaller it's okay).
  3. Fuse both rectangles of webbing onto the wrong side of your fabric. Cut fabric a little bigger than the webbing rectangles. Peel paper backing off the fusible webbing.
  4. Lay fabric down with webbing up. Place composition notebook on the fabric. Smooth fabric over the notebook. The nice thing about the Steam-a-Seam webbing is that it was tacky. Other webbings may be like this as well, I don't know. Because it was tacky, I pressed it onto the notebook, reposition, smooth, so the fabric looked just right.
  5. Because the fabric was tacky, I trimmed the fabric at this point. That is different than the tutorial.
  6. Press.
So much fun! I think it took about half an hour to make six. It was so slick. I loved seeing how each fabric transformed the notebook.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Scrap Quilts for Dolls

What to do with fabric strips 5" long of mostly, but perhaps not exactly, the same width? Make a scrap quilt!

I had a four year old home for a week while her three older siblings were at Grandpa and Grandma's house. She liked these scraps so we made them into a doll quilt for her. Had just enough to make a little pocket. Four year olds can't stand to have one of their favorites not included. As you can see, it isn't just for dolls. It is also for bears or puppies or ponies.

Because of it's size, I actually made a second attempt at hand quilting. This time I tried outlining each block. Except that got boring so on one of the rectangles, I followed the dots diagonally and on another one I followed the swirls of the flowers.

I tell you, that is enough hand quilting for me for a while. Binding is enough to fill my quota of hand work for a while. I think it will grow on me, but now school has started and soccer, gymnastics, etc so busy off and running instead of sitting and fiddling.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Scrap Quilts for Charity

What to do with leftover strips 9" long of various widths? Make a couple charity quilts of course!

Here is what I came up with:

I used the strips between 9" squares, rotated every other row since they weren't going to line up anyway and trimmed the rows to the same length. The striped fabric separating the rows was the binding for the quilt the leftovers were from that I decided not to use.

These quilts are going to one of my aunts who is made 5 quilts for a silent auction to raise money for two of her grandson's football team. Her quilts were all bed size so I told her I would send her some smaller quilts to add to her silent auction. The school colors are blue and gold.

My sister said she wanted to make a quilt for them as well so we got together yesterday and each made a row quilt. These are quick quilts to make that get quilted as you sew them together so you don't need to send it off to the long arm quilter. We made these two in about three hours which included checking on kids, making lunch for kids, etc. That includes the binding.

If you are interested in making a similar quilt, check out the tutorial link.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

Hungry Anyone?

First you should know that I am not a great cook. Second you should know that one of my favorite places to eat is IHOP. I usually go about once a year. I always order stuffed french toast. Once, years ago, they had a cinnamon roll that was cooked like french toast. Also yummy.

A few days ago, I tried it myself. It turned out great! I took a package of Pillsbury Cinnabon Cinnamon Rolls with cream cheese frosting and made the cinnamon rolls. After they cooled a little, I cut them in half -- like you would slice a cake to make layers -- to make two thin cinnamon rolls instead of one thick one.

I dipped the thin cinnamon rolls in whipped eggs and fried them like french toast. Then I took the cream cheese frosting and put it on top of the french toast cinnamon rolls and topped them with cut up fresh strawberries. Yummy!!!

Did I mention that I am pregnant. I will worry about calories in a few months after the baby comes. Until then, I think I have another package of cinnamon rolls in the fridge. Better go get some more fresh strawberries. . . .

New book coming soon! Freebie coming soon!

I am finally back after having fallen off the face of the earth for a little while. I do that some times. First I was cleaning, cleaning, cleaning to have company come. Then I was working, working, working because Grandma and Grandpa took the three oldest kids for a week of summer fun. Then we were driving, driving, driving down to Southern Arizona to pick up the kids. It is hot in Arizona in August. Whew. Then getting kids ready to start school. Now adjusting to the new routine with kids in school.

With all of that I have a cover for the new book, Simply Charming FUN!

I am pleased with how the cover turned out. This book has some fun patterns in it -- fish (obviously), hearts, rick rack, stars, stripes, etc. Yes, I haven't tired of charm packs yet. They are so much fun to work with!

While the exterior is ready for market, the interior isn't yet. I didn't realize how much having market a week or so earlier would sneek up on me. Deadlines for everything are earlier. Ahhh! Now to take pictures and of course, editing, editing, editing. Always editing.

I should have the book in hand by the end of September. I have a great printer.

Just for fun I will give one of my books away when I get them.

Stay tuned towards the end of September -- should be around the 21st -- for the freebie!