Saturday, March 17

Easy diy Fabric Box

Sewing fabric boxes isn't an original idea, but they are fun to make, especially if you use pre-cut fabric squares from a 5 " Charm Pack, like I did! This makes a neat little box to store craft supplies. Filled with folded up fat quarters, thread and a sewing kit it also makes a cute gift for a sewing friend!
Dies ist keine originelle Idee, aber Stoffkörbchen nähen macht einfach Spaß und geht schnell, vor allem wenn man vorgeschnittene Stoffquadrate verwendet, wie z.B. aus diesem hübschen Charm Pack. Das fertige Körbchen ist ca. 11 x 11 cm. Befüllt mit Fat Quarters und Kurzwaren ist es eine nette Geschenkidee für die nähende Freundin!

You will need

Charm Pack 5 x 5"
fusible interfacing, like Pellon to add stability
bias tape
sewing machine
basic sewing utensils

Ihr braucht

Charm Pack 12,7 x 12x7 cm
Decovil I Light, für die Stabilität

How to:

  1. Select 5 squares from your charm pack stack for outer box.
  2. Cut 5 x 5" squares from Pellon and iron on wrong side of fabric squares.
  3. Sew the four box panels together, right sides facing, using a 1/4" seam allowance. At the bottom of each seam stop sewing at 1/4". Press seams open.
  4. Attach bottom panel right sides facing, making sure corner seams meet all four points. Pin all around.
  5. Starting in the center of one side seam stitch all around, pivot at corners. Go slowly!
  6. Select 5 squares from your charm pack for inside box.
  7. Repeat steps 3 - 5.
  8. Turn outer box right side out and push out corners. Slip in inside box, left sides facing, seams aligning. Pin all around and use a narrow 1/8" to stitch layers together.
  9. Starting in the center of one side pin the bias tape all around. When you come to the starting point, fold under the opposite end and overlap. Pin and stitch through all layers, catching both sides of the tape.
So geht's:
  1. 5 Quadrate für die Außenseite aussuchen.
  2. 5 Stück Decovil auf die Größe der Quadrate zuschneiden und auf die linke Seite bügeln.
  3. Vier Panele rechts auf rechts zusammennähen (1 cm Naht), dabei am unteren Ende ca. 1 cm aufhören zu nähen. Nähte auseinander bügeln.
  4. Unteres Panel rechts auf rechts feststecken, dabei treffen die Nähte auf die 4 Ecken. 
  5. An einer Seite mittig anfangen und langsam um das Quadrat nähen, in den Ecken Nadel stecken lassen, Fuß anheben, Quadrat drehen, Fuß senken und weiternähen.
  6. 5 Quadrate für das Futter aussuchen.
  7. Schritte 3 - 5 wiederholen.
  8. Box vorsichtig auf Rechts drehen, Ecken rausdrücken. Futter links auf links in die Box schieben, Nähte treffen aufeinander. Obere Kante feststecken und knappkantig steppen.
  9. Schrägband an einer Seite mittig befestigen. Um die obere Kante legen und feststecken. Das Ende einschlagen und etwas überlappend über den Anfang legen. Knappkantig durch alle Lagen steppen, dabei darauf achten, dass beide Seiten des Schrägbandes genäht werden.

Happy Sewing

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Monday, February 12

We will never forget you, Sammy

Sammy was found abandoned in a plastic bag. The person that found him brought him to the local shelter where he was adopted by a family with small kids and a dog. Needless to say, traumatized cats don't do well with boisterous families. A couple of months later he ended up back at the shelter and remained there for about a year, until my husband and I found and brought him back to his forever home. The previous family had given him such a daft name, so we changed it to Sammy immediately.

The first two days in our home Sammy hid in one of the lower kitchen cupboards and no amount of cajoling or tuna made him come out. So we kept the cupboard doors open, set out some water and food and hoped he would eventually calm down and come out on his own. I guess it got boring in there, because on the third day he started exploring his new surroundings. Most shelter cats are skittish and it took about a year for Sammy to fully trust us. He bonded with my husband first and spent many happy hours in my husband's mancave thereafter. One day I was sitting on the couch and he jumped up and curled up on my lap. That's when I knew he finally felt safe. Over the years Sammy grew into a quite a large (and heavy) cat. The above photo was taken when he was in his prime. He was unusual in that he didn't display typical cat behavior. He didn't "hunt" flies or other small insects nor was he interested in bird watching. He basically preferred laying in a sun puddle all day watching me! 

He had a few annoying habits, like shredding our soft furnishings, but despite that we loved him to bits and spent many happy years getting to know each other. He was an expressive cat, meowing in agreement (or not) when we were having a conversation - it was too funny. When he slept he snored and the sound was somehow comforting. And most unusual in all the years he never once hissed.  Not once.

Last year we noticed that he was showing signs of old age. We had bought some plush covered little steps to make it easier for him to get up and down from the couch. We exchanged his big litter box for a flat tray as he seems to have difficulty getting in and out. We exchanged the food to an easily digestible one. We spread out blankets and cushions everywhere. 

Then last August we discovered a little lump on his left hip that turned out to be a tumor. He had it surgically removed and sadly it turned out to be malignant. He recovered surprisingly well, the scar had healed nicely and he was basically back to his normal self, when in January I discovered another lump. We were devastated. We went through all the options, then decided on a second surgery. Second time around it took longer for Sammy to recover, so we helped him all we could. Made sure water and food was close by. We took turns checking on him at night. Apart from being a bit wobbly on the legs he seemed to recover bit by bit and even played with his mousie. Then in the last week of January something changed. There was a noticeable decline in his overall health. I think Sammy felt it too, but still fought on like a brave little soldier.

Last week my husband and I had to make one of the most difficult decisions ever. It broke our hearts, but we needed to end the suffering and put our beloved Sammy to sleep. To make matters worse my pain symptoms that I had managed to get down to a tolerable level have come back with a vengeance. I'm up to my eyeballs in painkillers in order to write this blog post. But Sammy deserves a post. I featured him several times on this blog and through him I have met a bunch of wonderful blog friends with pets (you know who you are).

We had the vet come to our house to perform the euthanasia. We laid Sammy on his favorite pillow, gently stroking his furs and talking to him in a calm voice right until the end. It was beyond awful and I had to pull myself together not to break down. We had a proper burial and Sammy is now at peace in our garden beneath the oak tree. It's been almost a week without Sammy and it feels so strange. Apart from us crying in turns it's eerily quiet at our house. So much for a "happy" new year.

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Tuesday, January 2

Happy Hoop Art

Kicking the year off with a fun do-it-yourself project! This cute hoop art is wonderfully versatile - choose any color yarn for the pompoms and tassels. I went with grey, pink and mint and I chose the word "Happy", because I decided that's my motto for this year. You can choose any other word (or words) and if you plan to hang this in a nursery you can, of course, add your baby's name.
Das neue Jahr  2018 fängt bei mir gleich mit einem süßen DIY-Projekt an! Dieser Wandbehang mit Pompoms und Quasten lässt sich beliebig in der Farbe variieren. Ich habe mich für Grau, Rosa und Mint entschieden. Und da mein Motto dieses Jahr "Happy" lautet, musste es natürlich als Schriftzug in die Mitte. Ihr könnt selbstverständlich ein anderes Wort aussuchen oder z.B. einen Namen. 

You will need

wooden hoop (any size you like)
wool yarn (three colors)
white or natural solid color cotton fabric, enough to cover hoop
felt tip marker suitable for textiles (color your choice)
iron, ironing board and piece of parchment paper 
stiff cardboard (from a cereal box)
super glue

Ihr braucht

Stickrahmen (Größe nach Wunsch)
Wolle (drei Farben)
Baumwollstoff - Weiß oder Naturfarben uni
Textilmalstift mit Rundspitze (Farbe nach Wunsch)
Bügeleisen, Bügelbrett, Backpapier
Stück Pappe
Starker Kleber

  • Choose your word and font (bold works best), type it in your computer, size it to fit the inside diameter of hoop and print. This is your template.
  • Steam iron your piece of cotton fabric. Place the cloth over the template and the hoop over the fabric to determine placement. Make small markings top and bottom to aid placement later. 
  • The fabric marker will bleed a little into the fabric, so outline the letters first, then fill in.
  • Next place the piece of fabric on the ironing board, cover with parchment paper and press the iron (no steam) on the word.This will set the paint color. Let dry.

  • Wort (oder Name) sowie Schriftart aussuchen (ich empfehle Fettdruck). Wort im Computer schreiben, Größe an den Innendurchmesser des Stickrahmens anpassen und ausdrucken.
  • Baumwollstoff glatt bügeln. Ausgedrucktes Wort unter den Stoff legen und Rahmen darüber legen. Kleine Markierung oben und unten mittig des Rahmens machen - für die spätere Platzierung.
  • Da die Textilfarbe des Stifts etwas ausläuft, zunächst die Buchstaben des Wortes umranden, dann ausfüllen.
  • Zuletzt das beschriftete Stoffstück auf das Bügelbrett legen, Backpapier darüber legen und mit dem Bügeleisen (ohne Dampf) die Farbe auf dem Stoff fixieren. Trocknen lassen.

Meanwhile, make the pompoms! You will need one large, two medium and three small pompoms.
Make your pompoms the same way as in this tutorial.

In der Zwischenzeit die Pompoms fertigen! Für dieses Projekt, ein großes, zwei mittlere und drei kleine Pompoms fertigen. Wie das geht zeige ich in dieser Anleitung

Lastly, make the three tassels! The middle one is longer than the other two, therefore cut two pieces of cardboard -(example: mine are 4" and 5.5"). Follow the steps above.
  • Wind yarn around piece of cardboard until you're satisfied with the thickness. Slip a length of yarn through the top part and tie loosely. 
  • Cut through yarn at the bottom and lay the tassel flat. Tie off and knot the center.
  • Fold over, so that all yarn is now facing down. Cut a piece of yarn and tie and knot the top about 1" from the top. 
  • Even out the bottom edge and cut off any stray yarn.

Zum Schluß die Wollquasten fertigen! Die mittlere ist etwas länger als die anderen beiden, daher zwei Stück Pappe schneiden - (meine sind 10 cm und 13 cm lang). Schritte wie in der Collage folgen.

  • Wolle längs um die Pappe wickeln bis die gewünschte Dicke erreicht ist. Ein Stück Wollfaden abschneiden und unter die oberen Fäden schieben. Locker zu binden.
  • Unten aufschneiden und Quaste mittig mit dem Faden fest binden und knoten.
  • Alle Fäden nach unten zusammen legen. Ein weiteres Stück Wolle abschneiden und ca. 2 cm von oben fest umwickeln und verknoten.
  • Quaste unten begradigen und überstehende Wollfäden abschneiden

  • Tie the tassels at the bottom center of outer hoop ring, the longer one in the middle. Make sure the knots are at placed at the back.
  • Tie the pompoms the same way: Medium, large, small on the left side of outer hoop ring / Small, medium, small on the upper right side of hoop ring.
  • Place fabric over inner hoop ring and slip under outer hoop ring. Straighten fabric as necessary. Tighten the screw at the top to secure everything.
  • Cut away excess fabric, leaving about 1/2 ". Spread a little super glue on the inside frame and press fabric down, hold for a few seconds. Release and let dry
  • Final step - cut a piece of wool yarn, loop through top screw and hang your cute handmade hoop art in your favorite place!

  • Die Quasten unten mittig an den äußeren Stickrahmen fest binden; die längere in der Mitte. Dabei die Knoten nach hinten schieben.
  • Die Pompoms ebenfalls an den äußeren Rahmen binden: Mittel, Groß, Klein auf die linke Seite / Klein, Mittel, Klein auf die obere rechte Seite.
  • Stoff über den inneren und unter den äußeren Stickrahmen legen. Anhand der Markierungen in die richtige Position rücken. Die Schraube oben festdrehen, so dass alles fixiert ist.
  • Überschüssigen Stoff bis auf 1,5 cm abschneiden. Etwas Kleber rückseitig auf den inneren Rahmen geben, Stoff ein paar Sekunden gut andrücken. Trocknen lassen.
  • Letzter Schritt: ein Stück Wollfaden abschneiden, durch die obere Schraubhalterung schlingen und Stickrahmen im Lieblingsraum aufhängen!

Happy New Year! Frohes Neues Jahr!

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