September 29, 2015

Clothespin Math Gnomes

Deep down in the caves of jewels, there are a quartet of Gnomes- and one kindly King- who are perfect for helping children learn marth. If you've never heard of the Math Gnomes before, you are in for a treat! Each of these Gnomes wants to gather jewels for King Equal- but they each have a different talent. I'll be sharing a little of the story first, then directions on how to make these sweet gnomes- with a free printable too!

September 25, 2015

Clothespin Fairy Dolls

This started as an afternoon project, then grew from there. Because why just paint some clothespins on a sunny afternoon when the baby is sleeping and Billy's digging tunnels in the woods- when you can paint All the clothespins? So that's just what Isia & I did. Later, when they were painted & dry, we knew we needed some for homeschool (more on that in the next post), but wondered what to do with the rest? We decided on fairies, and the search for wings and dresses began!

September 15, 2015

Rope Baskets: Tips & Tricks

As I mentioned in my last post, this "quick & easy" rope basket project was initially neither quick or easy. I kept having thread pool up underneath, no matter what I did. I researched online about sewing rope baskets on old Singers, about getting the right tension, and about the proper way to do a zigzag stitch. Then, in the last article about a zigzag stitch, the kind author noted that if you're having a problem with tension you might to want to check the pressure bar "because we've all left it up time to time."

And that was it! The pressure bar. The cause of all my troubles.

In an effort to fit the clothesline under my sewing machine, I hadn't lowered it. May I chalk up a bit of that to recent late night teething sessions? Anyways, it turns out if your pressure foot is lowered properly, these really are a dream to sew up. I even learned a couple more things along the way, and I'll share them below.

Rope Basket

September 1, 2015

In Process

In Progress

Because sometimes what I start with, and what gets posted in the end, are two different creatures. Everywhere I have read about how simple "rope baskets" are to sew. Since I had already created the fabric portion a couple years ago through hand-sewing, I thought it would be easy to add the rope part on top on my machine. I thought I only needed an hour and my basket would be complete.

I am sometimes wrong (ahem).

Not that it won't be easy someday, I think I'm on the cusp of getting it figured it out. And not that I won't enjoy it in the future. But it was decidedly not easy yesterday, and it was not enjoyable. It was a lot of tweaking and adjusting, and an even more lot of thread. But this is what we do, is it not? We work at it, tweak it- sometimes toss it around a bit when the littles aren't looking- and finally figure it out in the end. I will definitely share the result- it's not bested me yet- but I think the process is important too. Maybe even the most important part. 

Are you struggling with a project right now?