Thursday, July 28, 2011

Using T-Shirt Scraps

Here's my latest creation using T-Shirt scraps:

These pouches were made using the sleeves from t-shirts. I just randomly sewed scraps onto the t-shirt sleeves and made some (odd-shaped) drawstring pouches.

I think I'll use some of them to keep my son's toys together. I'll have a tutorial on how to make them soon.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Fuzzy Ribbon Baby Toy II

I made another one of these fuzzy ribbon toys the other day. I actually made two before we had our little boy (one for a girl and one for a boy...just in case!) but I ran out of stuffing for both. So far, only the girly one has been completed. The embroidery isn't quite as good as my first attempt (the bear, found here).

So my little boy doesn't have a fuzzy ribbon toy right now! I don't think he minds...

Sunday, July 24, 2011

It’s a BOY!

july 18 (10)I am so excited to say that we had our baby last Monday! It has taken me this long to get it onto the blog…I LOVE being a mommy to two boys but wow, newborns are lots of work! I’ve been trying to rest when possible (going to bed at 9 pm! napping when I can get both boys to nap at the same time!) so that I don’t turn into a complete grouch.

The baby weighs 8# 14 oz and is 21.5 inches long. He was a big guy! And if anyone is interested…I had a successful VBAC. (I had a C-section with our older son because he was breech.)


We’re moving into our house next week!

Talk about a lot of changes in our lives!

Here’s two pictures of this last week’s progress in the kitchen and our fireplace in progress.IMG_2323 IMG_2325

Friday, July 22, 2011

Zipper Pouch with Flower

Here's another zipper pouch I made using the tutorial I posted here.

This one is tiny, just the right size for change. I made it out of the remaining pants I repurposed into a maternity skirt.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Taffeta Flower Headbands

My 6 year-old cousin will be getting a few new headbands next time I see her...
I made one in each color for myself, too. I used the same steps I wrote about in this tutorial to make them.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Yellow and Gray Ruffle Bag

A few weeks ago, I posted pictures of my yellow and gray ruffle zipper pouch. Here's a follow-up project in the same color family!
ruffled bag, up cycled from pants
I created this bag from the remains of a pair of pants (the pants I made into maternity shorts, tutorial parts I and II). The yellow ruffle is from a t-shirt (the same shirt from my ruffle scarf tutorial).

Here are the pieces I started with for the bag:

The only pieces I measured were for the bag; they are 11.5" wide x 13" tall. The lining is slightly shorter. I sewed the ruffle on before I sewed the bag together, then followed the same steps I specified in the tutorial for my "Cute Little Bag".

I did buttonholes instead of velcro because I currently have NO velcro in my house. I confess, I don't actually know HOW to do button holes. I use the button hole foot and hope for the best. They turned out well, but completely off-center. So I decided to place the buttons on the inside of the bag to hide my mistake of off-centered button holes.

I really love how it turned out. If only I'd used interfacing! If I'd known it was going to turn out well, I would have purchased some (I have none!)
ruffled bag, up cycled from pants
No velcro, no interfacing....If you can't tell, I'm in need of a trip to the sewing store!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Baby Burp Cloths

I took the scraps I had left from the "just in case it's a girl" blanket I made and sewed two girl-theme burp cloths. I just love pink elephants.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

No Baby Yet…

My due date is tomorrow! Sorry for the lack of tutorials and posts this week, I've scheduled some for the next few weeks to keep everyone entertained while I welcome our new baby (hopefully soon!)

Just waiting around in this mid-July heat and trying to keep my 2-year old entertained!

Meanwhile, check out this super good idea for using old trophies. I've always wondered what to do with those things....

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

More Baby Shoes

I made tons of baby shoes back in November. (Here's the tutorial link if you're interested in making your own!) Instead of hoarding them, I gave many pairs as gifts. People really liked them! But this week I realized I had no shoes left made from girly fabric...
''in case it's a girl''.

I made two pairs.
(They still need elastic, I'm out of the 1/4" thickness they require.)
My new favorite way to make them is to cut the soles on the bias. I think it adds a nice touch!

This yellow color is really hard to photograph. I don't know how to improve that.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Quick and Easy Pillowcase Alteration!--Guest Post

Hello Bloggers!

My name is Sarah Allman and I am the creator and founder of
B.I.B.S. (Baby Items By Sarah).
I hope you will take a few moments to learn more about my company by
visiting the links at the end of this blog!

I am so excited to do a guest post for Monkey See, Monkey Do and I hope you enjoy my
tutorial below for a quick and easy pillowcase alteration!

My daughter absolutely loves her toddler sized pillow but the pillowcase that came with her new toddler bedding was for a standard sized pillow. Nothing a few quick adjustments with the sewing machine can't fix!

First measure from seam to seam both width-wise and length-wise. This toddler pillow was 16" length-wise and 12" width-wise.

This alteration can be done in just two straight lines with your sewing machine!

Turn your pillowcase inside out and pin the open edge together to keep your seams straight; add a few extra pins along the way to keep your material together. Starting from the open edge, measure 17" (add a half an inch to each edge to accommodate for your seams) inwards. From the bottom edge of the pillowcase, measure 13" upwards (add a half an inch to each edge to accommodate for your seams).

It does not matter which seam you start with, but line the edge of your foot up to your markings as shown in the above photo. When you reach the end, you can either keep your needle down and pivot the material under the foot so you don't have to cut your thread, or you can finish the edge and turn the pillowcase and sew the other seam.

Trim your material about a 1/4" to 1/2" away from your seam.

Turn your pillowcase cover right-side out and voila!

How B.I.B.S. Began:
My Mom and Grandma taught me how to crochet at a very young age. I always loved to make afghans during the winter months and as I got older I began to make baby blankets for family.

In May of 2009, I gave birth nearly two months early to our daughter. As a result, she spent three weeks in the NICU. During that time I became incredibly touched by the people that donated crocheted beanies for the preemies to wear during their hospital stay. In an effort to give back, I spent the next months crocheting tiny beanies and by Easter of 2010, my husband and I made a trip back to the NICU in St. Louis where Ava was born and donated a hat for nearly every day that Ava was there (I was ONE short!). My love for crocheting and children has since developed into B.I.B.S.!

Find me on Facebook for the latest products and specials!

Visit my Etsy Store!

Thanks again to Jen for my guest post!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Guest Post from Michelle of Delicate Construction

Hello Monkey See, Monkey Do readers!!! I am soooo happy to be here!!

My name is Michelle and my blog is called Delicate Construction! I am a wife, mommy, full time caregiver and teacher living in San Diego, California. I blog about crafts, family, decorating, and kids activities in various features and linky parties; Made by Little Hands Mondays for the kiddies and Delicately Constructed Fridays for the Mamas! I also love to share tips in one of my favorite weekly posts; 10 New Uses Tuesdays! I would love to have you come visit!! I am also always looking for guest bloggers for my Sunday feature and interviewees for my Seven on Saturdays!

But back to the crafting, it is why we all gathered here right?!

I am going to share a tutorial for my 'his' and 'hers' pillow cases I made as a kind of cheeky little joke...cause I am like that. 


Cute right?! It is funny because of the drastic differences in my husband and my pillows... can you tell now?


Do you see it?! My husband is a self proclaimed pillow SNOB. LOL. He likes the expensive plush, good for your posture blah blah blah and mine is flat and dilapidated. I think it has a lot to do the way we sleep, he sleeps on his back and does.not.move. I sleep on my stomach and I am surprised I don't end up down the street from how much I toss, turn and change position, a big pillow would just get in the way. So needless to say when, on the rare occasion our pillows get swapped, he is quick to switch them back so I thought I would give him a little laugh and make some new, labeled to avoid confusion, pillow cases. 

(did I mention sarcasm is my second language, even in sewing, because it is...just sayin' lol)

And here is how I did it:


  • Pillowcase (I made mine using this tutorial from Made)

  • Letters (any template you have, I made mine from word art in Microsoft Word)

  • Steam a Seam or other fusible webbing or iron on seam

  • Scissors

  • Sewing machine

  • Iron

  • Pen

Here is the starting pillowcase I made, you will want to take into consideration which way you like the openings, we put them both facing out, some do it facing the same way. It matters when you go to add the letters and which direction they are sewn on. 

Cut out your letters or use a pre-made template, in Microsoft Word there is word art that is just outlined block letters and I typed in my words, enlarged them and printed them out. 

Next, (this is dependent on what you use, I am following my package directions for the next couple of steps) trace your letters on the steam a seam BACKWARDS, also make sure this is the side that webbing is connected to on the underside.

Since mine fit on one page, I then cut them apart. 

Next, lay out your white fabric (or whatever you are using for the letters) FACE DOWN and iron it to warm it up. 

Then, peel off the underside of the paper and lay the webbing/ second paper that you traced on, on top of the fabric. 

Then, carefully cut out your letters once again with the fabric. 

Now, you are ready to iron them on but I found it difficult to eyeball it with the pillow case laid out flat so I turned it over and folded each edge to the center, kind of like bias tape.

Then, flip it over, this was much easier for me to eyeball the center for the placement of my letters.

Then, arrange them how you want,

and iron them down in place. 

Last, all you have to do is sew very close to the edge as best  you can, just to make sure everything stays in place. 

Now, they are all ready for a laugh! 

I will do a lot to make that hubby of mine chuckle. 

Thanks Jennifer, so much for having me today!! I really appreciate it!! I hope to see all of you over at my little corner of the internet soon!!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Baby Blanket with Double-Needle Stitching

Told you I've been in full baby-prep mode lately. We don't know if we're having a boy or a girl. We didn't know with our first baby either, but I made a bunch of girl things I never used. Unfortunately, they're in storage with most of our other household things, so I just had to make a girly blanket on the chance that the baby is a girl!

My mom picked out the fabric and I love it! I love elephants and I love pink and green together. I used a new-to-me technique to finish the edges and emphasize the pink and green colors--double needle stitching.

I used the tutorial found here. Here are some highlights from my own struggle with double-needle stitching.

First, take both colors of thread and put them on top of your machine. You'll probably need to wind one onto a bobbin to make them fit on the thread post. (Note: you only need ONE BOBBIN--just like normal--to use a double needle.) Also note, you need a double needle. I don't think I mentioned that. They're super cheap; mine came with the last set of needles I purchased for my machine.
Next, I just threaded the machine like normal, even though I had two threads. I separated them at the end to thread through either needle at the double needle point (does that make sense??)

It worked really well. For a while. This is the result toward the beginning:

Then I started to struggle. The threads became tangled and would often just get stuck. Each color broke at least once. I'd have to stop, cut the thread, unthread the whole thing, and then re-thread. I probably had to cut and rethread about 6 times. But I got through it!

This is what the double-needle looks like from the back:

I added a little ribbon tag to the edge of the blanket. I thought it would be cute.
My conclusion on the double-needle: I think I'm missing something when I thread the machine. I don't know what causes all the tangling, but it was frustrating. I will probably only use this technique on short seams until I can find some guidance.
I do love how the blanket turned out and am super excited to find out if I will be using it for a little girl! I will say that not knowing the baby's gender prior to birth saves me money but not time. I think I do twice as many sewing projects to prepare for either option.