Sunday, June 20, 2010

Zippy Potato Pouch Tutorial

I am submitting this post to Tea Rose Home's Wednesday Link Party. I love it! Check it out!

Do you love baked potatoes? Except that you have plan about an hour in advance if you want to eat one? Or you have to wrap it up in yucky saran wrap and risk getting cancer to make it in the microwave? Okay, maybe nobody else thinks like that, but I sure do. I've seen quilted potato pouches at craft fairs, and of course thought, "I can make that!" Therefore, I present my Zippy Potato Pouch to you. Just pop in a clean potato, microwave and you have a quick, yummy, healthy lunch!And here is how I made it:

You will need:

-2 fat quarters, or roughly 1/4 yard of main fabric, and an 1/8 yard of contrasting fabric (for binding), all 100% cotton
-9" x 17" 100% cotton batting
-Cotton thread in a neutral color (mine matches my binding fabric, since I am topstitching on it)
(I'm really pushing the cotton because I'm afraid if any polyester or other synthetic fiber is used, it may catch fire in the microwave)

Here's my fabric choices:
First, cut your main fabric into 2 8" x 16" rectangles:

Sandwich your batting in between your 2 rectangles. It's good for your batting to peek out a little since it may scrunch up a little during quilting. Make sure both of your main fabric rectangles are facing out:

Since this is so tiny, and it will be touching food, I did not use basting spray before quilting. I just carefully pinned around the edges, trying to line up the rectangles on either side of the batting:

Before quilting, choose one of the 8" edges to taper. Make a mark on both sides about 1 1/2" down:

Then cut of the corner at a 45 degree angle:

Do this to both sides so that they taper:

Next, quilt however you desire. It doesn't have to be fancy, I just drew lines with a water-soluble pen about every 3 1/2 inches at 45 degree angles:
Then I sewed along my lines. When you are done, be sure to cut off the excess batting:

Next, cut three 2 1/4" strips from your binding fabric:

To make binding strips, you must lay out one piece, right side up. Then run another strip lengthwise over the corner, right side down. Pin in place:

Draw a line from corner to corner (another 45 degree angle) Sew along this line and when you fold up the strip, it will be one long piece. Sew together all 3 strips so that they are one long strip:

Cut one 8 1/2" strip from your long binding piece. This will be for one edge of your pouch. The rest of the binding will go all around the edges. To make double-fold binding, iron the strips in half first(ugh, I really need to make this):

Unfold, and fold in each edge to meet the middle. Iron so that they stay:
Then fold in half again and press. Do this to the 8 1/2" strip and the long binding strip:
Take your 8 1/2"strip and pin over the 8" edge (the non-tapered one) of your pouch. Sandwich the pouch material between the strip. Sew in place and trim the excess binding when done:

Fold the pouch so that the finished edge meets the point where the pouch begins to taper:

Pin the long binding strip all around the edges. When you get to the end, fold the raw edge under a bit so that it doesn't show:

Sew all around. I used the left side of my sewing foot as a guide, lining it up with the binding edge. Turn the corners carefully:

That's it! Your done!
You can cook 1-2 potatoes at a time, about 3-5 mins per potato, depending on size. Just make sure to tuck the tapered edge into the pouch first.

Friday, June 18, 2010

A Little Mystery

Here's a little clue as to what I've been working on for the last week (when I haven't been laid up in bed, high on allergy meds): Hopefully I will have a tutorial up soon!
Speaking of mysteries, I just finished The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime by Mark Haddon and I definitely recommend it as a good (and quick) read!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

You Are What You Make: Yo-Yo Tutorial

My friend Wendy came over today and reminded me how simple and fun yo-yo's are to make. They are everywhere in the sewing blogosphere, so there are probably a million tutorials, but I decided to make my own (I like the practice!).
These require NO SEWING MACHINE to make, so they are a great project for when you are just chatting, watching TV or anytime!
First, cute a scrap of fabric in a circle. Wendy let me make copies of her templates, about 3", 4", and 4.5" in diameter:
Next, sew a simple stitch around the edge of the circle of fabric (I know, white thread on white fabric--not a good shot, but you get the idea). I try to sew mine as close to the edge as possible, maybe 1/8" in:

Slightly pull on the thread so that the circle begins to pucker:

Pull until the sides completely fold in and you have a circle. There it is! That's your yo-yo! Make sure and tie a good knot so that your thread doesn't unravel:

You can layer them, put a button on, and use them for a million different things!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Finn's Spacey Sleeping Bag

I am submitting this to Tea Rose Home's Wednesday link party. Check it out!It just struck me that I never showed-off Finn's quilted sleeping bag! He picked out all the fabric himself--Space Robots for the pillowcase on top and what he likes to think is "Super Mario Galaxy" space fabric for the main part of the bag. I sewed this thing up both sides, cocoon-style, so the boy can get nice and cozy. However, I still need to find a small pillow insert for the top since I made it a little less than standard size.
His words: "I love it so much!"

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Show Off

Just checked in on one of my favorite blogs and, lo and behold, she is featuring TWO of my projects on her show and tell!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Finn's Spaced Out Bedroom

I kinda love Finn's room. It's a pretty good reflection of his love of outer space. We just recently moved around his furniture, so I thought I would take a few pictures to document his childhood space.

His rocket fan (which doesn't actually give much light, but looks really cool): Reminders of family:

Leo the Lion picture that Scott painted:

Another Scott masterpiece. It's a replica of something we saw at Target:

His new super big Mario poster that my friend brought to him:

His toddler bed, with the robot quilt I made him:

His spaced out switchplate that a friend painted:

Glow in the dark stickers, rocket clock, Wall-E message board and the star curtains I sewed when I was pregnant with him:

A favorite quote:

Pool Time

Today I made this cute beach towel dress from Dana over at MADE. I admit, I did not shell out $6 for the pattern, but maybe I should have because it was a little touch and go when I was trying to figure out how to use elastic thread. But part of the thrill of sewing is in figuring out stuff on my own, so I worked it out. Perhaps I should write my own tutorial on it since I didn't find too much help on the web.
Here it is: Bon-a-fide shirring!

And of course it wouldn't be complete without a miniature version for Kiki, right?

We are ready to hit the pool!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Is it Naptime Yet?

I am submitting this post into Tea Rose Home's Wednesday Link Party.

The kids are always dragging around sheets, blankets and pillows all over the house to make little "beds," so I thought I would just make them some napsacks instead! Here's Kiki, getting snuggly in hers: I'm nearly done with Finn's, check back soon!
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