Saturday, December 27, 2008

I'm back!

Well, so much for my intentions of blogging every day!

Our daughter and I own a small, independent $1 store, which she has been managing while I managed my husband's business from home, although I was doing the bulk of the buying and "going to get stuff", and working on the weekends. As a single mom, she also had a part-time job on the weekend. The manager's position at her part-time job became available, so she applied for it because she needs the benefits...and got the job!

As a result, I am now running our $1 store full-time...6 days per week! I'm loving it!

However, my work hours were leaving me no time to craft or sew, so I set up a sewing area at the store and moved my sewing/embroidery machine down there. I am planning to create items to sell at the store, and I'm seriously considering selling on Etsy.

First, though, I had to get Christmas gifts out of the way. I have been one busy gal for the past couple of months!

Here are some of the gifts I've made!

First, a friend's husband built a Barbie doll house to scale for their daughter. I decided to help out by making the bedding. My friend built the basic bed, and I made the mattress, sheets, comforter, pillows, and headboard.

Here is the bed with its sheets and dust ruffle. The mattress was made from some old antique satin drapes. I quilted the top and bottom and stuffed it with a piece of an old memory foam mattress topper. The sheets were made from a scrap of a skirt that I had cut out for my granddaughter which turned out to be too small. The dust ruffle is two rows of pleated satin ribbon sewn onto a base.

Here is the finished bed. The comforter and twin pillows are made from some white satin that a friend gave me. The embroidery is a pink "B" inside a metallic silver heart. The headboard is a thin piece of plywood, upholstered with some more white satin, with a toy tiara glued on top for "bling".

Our oldest grandson has a hunting theme bedroom, so I made this pillow for him.

Our #2 grandson drew a picture of a cardinal, which is their school mascot. I copied his picture, cut the copy apart for a pattern, and cut the appliqued pieces out of felt. The lettering is embroidered. It was a BIG hit! Our #1 grandson now wants me to make a pillow for him, using one of HIS drawings!

Here are the bitty booties that I made for our toddler grandson. They are made of ultrasuede, backed with felt to give them body, and lined with fleece. The soles are sueded leather that I cut out from an old leather purse.

Unfortunately, they would not go on his feet, which apparently had a growth spurt between the time I tried the prototype on him and Christmas Eve! I am enlarging the opening in hopes that the basic bootie still fits him. If not, then I need to find another old leather purse to cut up for soles to make another pair!

Our granddaughter is 12 and into going on sleepovers and also traveling to visit her mom, so I thought she could use a travel toiletry/makeup bag. I had some Kool-Aid Jammers drink pouches, so I whipped one up for her.

I also made a purse for our granddaughter, with a cellphone holder that loops around the handle. I also made a matching eyeglass case, but didn't take a picture of it.

The purse is carried by looping the long handle through the short handle.

One of the customers at the store saw the purse, and wanted me to make two for her granddaughters. I made another one just like my granddaughters, and the purple one with frogs like this one. My customer later asked me if I could make a smaller one for her 2 year old granddaughter, so I scanned the pattern and reduced the size. I forgot to make a picture of it, but it turned out cute. It was red, printed with tiny stars.

I made quite a few purse organizers like this one. It is simply a long strip of interfaced fabric in coordinating prints, with pockets sewn all across.

You simply load your pockets with your essentials, roll it up and place inside your purse. When you are ready to change purses, just pick the whole thing up and place it inside the new purse!

Thinking of things to make for BOYS is HARD! I found the tutorial for these sun visor CD holders online. There are 12 CD pockets, and it was easy to make...EXCEPT that I cannot sew binding on worth a darn! Because of the stiff Veltex innerfacing, the binding could not be pinned, so I had to keep it pulled tight as I sewed. I am not pleased with my messy stitching on the binding, and I also broke a few needles, but the boys were impressed!

I also made quite a few personalized, fleece seatbelt cushions. Easy-peasy!

I made several checkbook covers like this one!

I also made a purse for our daughter, but didn't take a picture of it. I embroidered and personalized a few dish towels, and made a few more checkbook covers. I also made my sweet hubby a snuglet to keep hm warm and cozy while he kicks back in his recliner to watch TV.

All in all, I spent just a little over $100 on Christmas, and all the gifts were well-received!
My best gift was spending time with ALL my family, and I also finally got a beautiful picture of all 5 of our grandchildren! I forgot to get the wallet-sized copy before I left our son's on Christmas Eve, so I'll have to post the picture when I get that.
My sweet hubby expressed great appreciation for my efforts in giving our family the gifts. He's in construction, and with very few new homes being built, our work is very, very slow. He was very upset over not being able to do much in the way of gifts for the grandchildren this year. He said that the gifts I made were better than any store-bought gifts, and that he was very grateful for my hard work in making sure that our family had a nice Christmas.

I hope you all had a wonderful and happy Christmas with your families, and wish everyone a happy, peaceful and prosperous New Year!