Wednesday, October 2, 2013

DIYing and also DIEing - pom pom garland

I have my "big" craft show this weekend. It's at my church. Our church is big, and the festival is a pretty big deal.

This entire summer kind of feels like it's been leading up to this weekend. Let me remind you that I didn't know how to sew until June. And since then, it has been non stop every day. I do it because I love it, but it would also be nice to get some extra money in my pocket. I mean I really do love sewing, but like anything else, making the same thing over and over (ie burp cloths) gets tiring and tedious. And tired can't even begin to describe the level of exhaustion I am. 

Anyway, one thing that's awesome about making stuff all the time is that you get to a point that you just "have" supplies. Seeing an awesome DIY on pinterest doesn't seem out of reach when you already have all the supplies sitting on your table. On the flip side, I don't really think it's worth it to do a lot of DIY projects unless you plan to do more stuff in the future. Craft supplies are a huge rip off, and if you starting from square one, you are going to get up spending more than you thought you would have to. Like even if you just need to buy thread and needles, you'll be spending close to $10. 

So my random DIY tonight was fiesta garland to potentially decorate my craft show booth. I see a lot of cool pom pom accents all over pinterest, and I suggest you look around, because they are all super easy to recreate. 

I have always loved this for inspiration...

So today I picked up a multi pack of pom poms at Hobby Lobby and created some pom pom garland.

Eleanor deeply mistrusted my vision and would not comply, so this is the best shot I could get...

If you want to call this a "tutorial," fine. I guess. Buy some pom poms and thread them...

Is your mind blown?


Monday, September 9, 2013

Some DIY nursery action - crib sheet, teething guard, and a book hammock...

I usually spend my weekends making something for our house, these days. I have been wanting to make Henry a crib sheet for some time, mostly because the tutorials all seemed super easy. It took me a while to commit to the right fabric because Henry's glider has a white with navy ikat-ish print. But the navy isn't really navy, its like dark dark blue. So when I stumbled upon Sari by Dear Stella, I just knew that it would be perfect. Also, his nursery is mostly very soft colors, and I feel this dark fabric really adds some punch and personality to a room for a boy that is soon to be 1!

To make the sheet, I followed the tutorial at Dana Made It. It was SUPERRRRRR easy. If you are a true beginner, you could easily make one! There are probably millions of tutorials out there, and I assume most are exactly the same. I would suggest making a casing for the elastic, and then sliding it through at the end. Some tutorials show you how to sew the elastic onto the sheet, and that just seems dumb and hard to me. Also, I love everything on Dana's blog. A lot of crafters don't necessarily have... the best taste? But everything she makes is super cool and simple, and I feel her aesthetic lines up with mine about 90% of the time.
Here she is...

Pillow made from corner scraps and leftover pompoms...

Matches the glider beautifully!...

I also made a rail guard for the crib. About one second after Henry could pull up in his crib, his mouth went straight for the rail. I looked around online, and all the fabric guards were made for a crib with a larger top rail. We have a Jenny Lind crib (which I cannot recommend enough - so cute and cheap), and the top rail is really skinny. I found one I loved on etsy (before I could sew), but it was going to be like $100 and I just couldn't pull the trigger.

I am not going to present a tutorial, but I will tell you in general how I made it...

1. Roughly measured how big it needed to be
2. Cut 1 piece of fabric and two identical pieces of fleece to give it "padding"... So actually, the blue fabric was not long enough, so I pieced the two mint green panels in so that it would stretch the entire length of the rail. 
3. Sewed them all right sides together, flip right side out, top stitch a 3/4 inch border
4. Make fabric ties, and then sew them into place... No matter what your ties are like, you need to have some on the end that tie onto the posts horizontally. I made another one of these a few months ago, and I didn't do that, and Henry was able to move the guard all around. 

The bumper is from Carter's. It's just plain white, and about the only one I could find that I didn't hate under $100. I have considered making Henry a new one. They sell the pads to use at craft stores, but the pads are like $30+ and you would have to buy several yards of fabric, so I abandoned the idea. I also used to have a crib skirt, but I decided that now that his crib is lowered, that it just looked goofy and unnecessary. 

Here is the crib before he ever slept in it and needed all the ACCESSORIES. Obviously, that pillow was just for decoration...

Lastly, I have been wanting this book caddy from the Land of Nod for months. Obvi, I didn't want to spend the money, so it never happened. The thing I am probably most secure about as a mom is that I read Henry AT LEAST 15 books a day. He gets 5 books before every nap and bed time. I didn't really do this out of any sort of literary goal, I just needed a good sleep routine, and reading books seemed like the best option. (PS - Henry freaking loves books now... even more than the iPad!). 

Anyway, we had the books just stacked up on the side table, and because we have like 20 in rotation since we read so many a day, they would stack up and fall over, and it was super annoying. I racked my brain trying to think of how I could make the same book caddy in a DIY version with fabric. I originally had thought I could get a drying or luggage rack and make a fabric thing on top to hold the books. It proved to be harder than I would have thought to find a cheap frame. I also considered making something out of PVC but that would involve spray paint, and I HATE painting things. Then it dawned on me that I had this laundry hamper that could work. 

So I took this...

And turned it into this...

I somehow really messed up the dimensions of the fabric. It should have been wider so that the fabric fell down into a 90 degree angle when books were in it, but this is more of a shallow hammock... and it works. I literally gave myself ONE nap time to make this, and I pulled it off, and was not willing to "rework it" in any way. I just took the bag that I already had and sewed some random scraps of fabric on in lines. You can tell, the lines aren't even straight, but the better you get at sewing, the more you realize how unnoticeable a lot of stuff like that ends up being. I was not willing to use anything but scrap fabric for this project which means it literally cost me ZERO DOLLARS. My fabric is so precious to me that I will only cut into if it I am making a sellable item or a gift. 

Sewing is just about the most fun thing ever. In a couple hours, I transformed my baby's nursery into something that feels so much cooler and so much more in tune with what I like for our house. 


Monday, September 2, 2013



Wednesday, August 28, 2013


So the main reason I hadn't posted a lot of my stuff for sale is because I wanted to wait until I had proper packaging. I thought about ordering some, but because I already know how to do graphic design, I figured that my money would be better spent investing in a nice printer and making it myself. I am really happy with the results, and I hope you guys like it!

Happy Shopping!


Thursday, August 22, 2013

I'm back... until the next time I am gone...

So what has happened to me?

After I started making Strolli Cools, which people are still buying and enjoying!, I was like wait... I can make OTHER stuff, too. I told my husband last night how weird it is that when I first started making the Strolli Cools that it didn't even occur to me that I would be able to make/sell other fun things. And now, it's like I dread making Strolli Cools sometimes because it's like old hat at this point.

To be honest, I taught myself to sew at the beginning of the summer. So the Strolli Cool was the first thing I ever made. As far as being the first thing you've ever sewn, it's not exactly an "easy" thing to make. It's not super hard either, but compared to a burp cloth, it's more challenging for sure.

I think I have even impressed myself with how quickly I have picked up sewing. I do think that I have an advantage over the average person because I have a college degree in understanding and assessing apparel. Even though I never used a sewing machine once in college, I took a class where I had to learn every type of stitch, pleat, hem, seam, etc., and how it's done. I also took a science lab where I had to learn just about every single type of fabric and how they work in apparel applications. With that said... I have always known how the clothes are put together, I just had never taken a crack at it with a machine.

So. I have made a lot of shit since the last post. A lot.

5 blankets
20 burp cloths
2 dog beds
30 headbands
4 skirts
2 bathrobes
6 sensory toys
2 pairs of shorts
10 dog bows
5 lovies

Basically, I sew when Henry naps, and I sew as soon as Tom gets home until I go to bed. Recently, I have chilled out a little bit. I am really tired, plus I have been doing a lot of work on the computer with rebranding my etsy store and researching supply vendors for all the wacky ideas I have in my head. And then of course, I am also supposed to be a good wife and a good mom, and keep my dogs alive, and clean the house. And plus PLUS, people keep ordering invitations from me! Which is really great, but it kind of mentally derails me from designing and making things.

The irony of all of this is... I will sew for five hours straight, but I am too lazy to post any of this stuff to etsy to actually sell it. The main reason is, it's REALLY hard for me to take pictures of things. Good pictures have to be taken outside during the day... and with Henry, it's just never feels like a good time. Plus, I also want to get some of the packaging I have had made in my possession before I try to market this stuff.

My new etsy store is called PRINCIE and you can visit it at . Princie was an amazing woman I worked with in Tulsa, and one day I will tell you all about her.

I do not know how often I will be able to blog these days. I would like to be consistent about it, but please just accept that the quality of posts may not be as good. They will probably be more diary-like going forward, and I simply cannot allocate any time to making cool graphics that really serve no purpose other than looking good. Not until this moment in my life have I ever understood the phrase TIME IS MONEY... And girl, this blog has made me about $3 this past year. Speaking of, I got a credit card reader for my iPhone. I have never had the opportunity to use it, but I feel pretty awesome just having it.

The remainder of this post will be pictures from my iPhone that showcase what I have been up to. Everything you see, including Henry's shorts were made by me. There is no time for extra editing or any of that nonsense...

If you follow this blog because you are a stranger on the internet who happens to like reading my posts, your best bet is to follow me on instagram at PRINCIEDESIGNS. For the other 99% of you who know me from real life, you know where to find me. 


PS - OMG I left my laptop at airport security out of state a couple weeks ago and didn't realize until I was mid flight. Because Henry's birth was in 2012, this might have been the most dramatic moment of my life this year. Many phone calls and $108 later, it's back. Safe and sound...