Summer Sew Camp!

I am so excited to announce a project I’ve been working on for weeks and weeks… Summer Sew Camp! This is a week-long set of projects designed specifically for teaching kids how to sew.

Summer Sew Camp

First of all – YES! Adults can play along as well (of course!) But I have designed this with kids in mind. Before we get down to things, let me answer a couple of questions I know you’re going to ask:

How much does Summer Sew Camp cost?

It is free. The instruction pages are free. The videos are free. And they will stay free. It is my pleasure to pass on my love of sewing to the next generation.

How old do kids need to be to participate?

That is up to you. With 100% support from an adult, I think a child as young as 6 would have fun “helping” to make these projects. And older kids will be able to make them with little or no help. If children can operate a sewing machine, wield a hot iron, and are comfortable with scissors and pins, then they can make all of these projects.

What about rotary cutters?

No rotary cutters. I made all of these project instructions and videos without using a rotary cutter. Yes, really.

When does it start?

It is all live right now. You can scroll down to watch all the videos in the playlist. Or, if you prefer, you can subscribe below to get daily emails for a week with all the links you need!

I’m sure you have more questions … I answer lots of them in this video:

If you’d like to get started, you can download the introduction and get a detailed supply list by clicking hereyou’ll also find the full instruction packet here.

I also made a quick video just for kids … so if you’d like to show your child this video (it is less than 3 minutes long) to find out if Summer Sew Camp sounds like fun to them, check it out here:

You absolutely don’t have to subscribe to access Summer Sew Camp. You can head to the link above to download the files, and head to my YouTube Channel to watch all the videos.

However, if you’re like me, your email inbox helps you organize your life. If you sign up below, I’ll send you an email with links to the supply list and intro details, and starting on Monday, you’ll get an email each day with the two lessons for that day. When the week is up, you won’t get any more emails from me unless you subscribe to my main mailing list.

 

Summer Sew Camp!

Sign up below to get notified about all things Summer Sew Camp. You will NOT be added to our main email list.

Welcome!

I always recommend buying supplies at a local quilt shop, whenever possible. Local quilt shops have experts right behind the counter who can help you with just about any project. Every place we have lived, finding my LQS (Local Quilt Shop) has been as essential as finding the grocery store and a new dentist! However, if you need a quick link to a couple of the supplies I mention in the video, you can use these affiliate links:

Pins at the Fat Quarter Shop
Fabric Scissors at The Fat Quarter Shop or Fabric Scissors on Amazon
Fabric Marking Pen at The Fat Quarter Shop or Fabric Marking Pen on Amazon
Rectangle Quilting Ruler at The Fat Quarter Shop or Rectangle Quilting Ruler on Amazon
Square Quilting Ruler at The Fat Quarter Shop or Square Quilting Ruler on Amazon
Sticky Back Velcro for Fabrics on Amazon
Sew-in Magnetic Snap on Amazon
Heavy Weight Interfacing on Amazon
Fusible Fleece at The Fat Quarter Shop or Fusible Fleece on Amazon
Polyfil Stuffing on Amazon

If you’d like to watch the whole series, it is all in this playlist. There are 13 videos and it is over 250 minutes that teaches over a dozen projects. I don’t recommend you binge it all in one day!

Or you can head to my YouTube Channel and Subscribe there.

Pincushion Necklace

I always need a place to rest my needle between stitches. I can’t tell you how often my sleeve, or pants leg, or the arm of the sofa have become my pincushion in a pinch! This Pincushion necklace is both much more convenient and much more fashionable when it comes to putting your needle somewhere! You can make this pincushion necklace with just a few supplies – most you probably already have at home! And even better – this pincushion is a no-sew project!

This post contains affiliate links which provide a commission to this site when a purchase is made.

To make your pincushion necklace, you’ll need:
Fabric of your choice (I went with this beautiful Bari J. Floral from Art Gallery Fabrics)
Batting Scraps
Pen or other marking tool
Hot Glue and Hot Glue Gun
Mini Wooden Hoop (or find similar here)

Take the hoop center from the hoop. Place it on the fabric. I found a pretty flower to center on my hoop. You’ll want to cut an inch away from the line to give yourself plenty of extra fabric! If you look closely you can see that I traced my line an inch away from the edge of the wooden circle so that I wouldn’t leave lines on my fabric that might be visible in the finished pincushion necklace.

Trace the hoop center onto your batting. You’ll want between 3-5 layers of batting, depending on how thick your batting is. Cut out the batting on the line.

Place your fabric right-side-down on your table. Place the batting pieces on top, and then the wooden hoop center on top of that.

Lift the stack up, and place on top of the hoop front. Make sure the screw on the top of the hoop front has been loosened. Here I have it as loose as possible.

Gently push through until the hoop front is flush with the hoop center. Tighten the screw on the top to secure the hoop in place.

Carefully hot glue the fabric to the hoop center. You’ll want the fabric tight, but not stretched.

You’ll want this fabric as flat as possible.

Once the fabric is on, add some extra hot glue to the back and secure the back on. You can press it down on the table to make everything is as flat as possible.

Your pincushion necklace is complete! This necklace also makes a great gift for friends!

Custom Fabric Letterboard

Have you ever wanted a letterboard that fit your decor perfectly? One that wasn’t just made from plain felt? Do you have a favorite fabric that would make a perfect letterboard but no idea how to make it happen? Well, here you go! Step-by-step on how to make your a custom fabric letterboard out of your favorite fabric!

I do want to mention that it is the texture of the felt that helps keeps plastic letters in place. Using a quilting cotton like I have here makes them more likely to slip out if the board is hanging up. But it is still perfect for flat-lay photos.

To make your custom fabric letterboard, you’ll need:

1/2 yard of main fabric
1/2 yard of fusible fleece
1/4 yard of border fabric
Cheap or old letterboard
Hot glue and hot glue gun
Rotary cutter and ruler
Marking tool
Plastic cards such as gift cards or hotel key cards

Start by taking apart the old/cheap felt board. Usually they are just glued together, so it is pretty simple to do.

Once you have removed the frame and felt, you’ll have a wooden board with grooves on it. If you have access to a woodshop (or access to someone who has access to a woodshop) they could probably make one of these base boards for you. But, for most of us, just buying a cheap letterboard and taking it apart is easier.

Cut your chosen fabric 1-2″ wider than your board. You want to give yourself a little room. Keep the length of the fabric, don’t trim this down. You can trim it down at the end.

Then back the fabric with fusible fleece.

Then, start tucking the fabric into the grooves. I found this was easiest to do with a plastic card – you could use a gift card or a hotel key card or a store loyalty card. Just something sturdy that will help press the fabric down into the crease.

Keep going, inserting the fabric into each crease. I found that holding the previous crease in place with one card while pushing in the next crease was most successful.

Keep going, inserting the fabric into all the creases.

You may find, if you always start from one side, that the fabric starts to “creep” in that direction. To prevent the creeping, alternate the directions in which you make the creases. Crease one from right to left, and the next from left to right.

When you’re done, trim off the excess around all four sides.

Glue down the edges with hot glue.

Use a fabric marking tool to mark a border around the letterboard. I went with a 1/2″ border, but you can choose what feels right for you.

Measure from this border line all the way to the back, with a 1/2″ overlap. Then double your measurement. This is the width you need to cut for your border strips. Cut a strip this width. Fold the strip in half so that it is just as long, but half as wide (as you would for quilt binding).

Cut a length of this strip as long as the side. Glue this strip to one side of the felt board, with the fabric fold right on the line you drew marking the edge of the border.

Wait for the glue to set, then wrap the strip around to the back. Glue in place. You’ll need to glue down both layers. You can trim the corners on the back to reduce the bulk.

Repeat for the other side. Then repeat for the top and bottom. If you like, you can fold the edges of the top and bottom in to create more finished corners.

That’s it! Your custom fabric letterboard is complete!

Make a custom fabric letterboard in whichever fabrics suit your mood! Once you know how to make it for yourself, it will be hard to make just one!

Double Zipper Pouch

If you’re looking for a fun twist on the basic zipper pouch, this is it! This double zipper pouch really doesn’t take much more time to make than a regular zippered pouch, and it gives you the perfect place to stash extra stuff! The smaller pocket makes a great coin pouch, or place to stash some cash or lipstick. And the larger pouch is big enough to hold a cell phone or notebook. You’ll find so many reasons to make (and gift) this great zippered pouch!

This project is part of the Little Gifts series that Underground Crafter put together. Every other week, she or one of the other participants is sharing a fun project you can stitch up with a few fat quarters of fabric. Each of these projects is small enough to fit in a stocking. So, if you follow along, you’ll have over two dozen stocking stuffers ready by Christmas time!

To make this double zipper pouch, you’ll need:

2-3 Fat quarters of fabric
2 zippers (8″ or longer)
1/4 yard of medium or lightweight interfacing
ribbon (optional)

Cut the fat quarters as follows:
Outer fabric: 2 – 8″ x 6.5″
Lining fabric: 2 – 8″ x 6.5″
Outer pocket: 2 – 8″ x 4.5″
Interfacing: 2 – 8″ x 6.5″, 1 – 8″ x 4.5″

Fuse the interfacing to the back of the two outer fabric pieces, and the back of one of the outer pocket pieces.

Grab your two outer pocket pieces, and the outer pocket zipper. Place the two fabric pieces right sides together. Put the zipper between the two, with the zipper flush with the long edge, and the zipper top facing the fabric that has the interfacing fused to it.

Pin in place.

With the zipper foot on your sewing machine, stitch right up against the raised part of the zipper. Your stitches should be at least 1/16″ away from the raised part of the zipper.

Press both fabrics away from the zipper, so the right side of the fabric is now facing out. Top stitch along the top of the fabric to secure in place, and give your zipper a nice finished look.

These are the basic steps for adding a zipper. We’re going to do these steps two more times, but first we’re going to stitch the zippered pocket we just made to the front of the zippered pouch.

Lay a piece of the outer fabric on your cutting mat, right-side-up. Place the pocket on top. Then move it so that the ends of the zipper line up with one of the lines on the cutting mat (see where I’m indicating with my finger).

Then flip up the pocket so that the bottom of the zipper now lines up with these lines. Pin, and stitch in place.

You’ve now added the front pocket. Pin it down on the edges to keep it secure for now.

Place the second zipper on top, right side down, and then a piece of lining fabric on top, right side down.

Pin. Then stitch using the zipper foot. Just as before, press the fabric away from the zipper, and then top stitch.

Repeat for the other side of the zipper. This time you’ll have the lining fabric right side up, then the zipper (which has one side of the pouch stitched to it already), and then the other outer piece of fabric.

Pin. Stitch using the zipper foot. Press fabric away from zipper. Top stitch.

Your double zipper pouch is nearly complete! Before you move on to stitching it all together, open the second zipper halfway. This is super important and what makes it possible to turn the pouch right side out later. Make sure not to skip this step!

With the zipper in the middle, move the fabrics so that the the two outer fabrics are right-sides-together, and the two lining fabrics are right-sides-together. Pin all the way around.

Starting on the bottom edge of the lining, stitch all the way around. End a couple inches before where you started, leaving a 2-3″ hole along the bottom for turning.

Clip off the extra zipper ends and clip the corners.

Turn right side out through the hole.

Find the hole in the lining.

Stitch closed.

Tuck the lining inside the zippered pouch. Your double-zippered pouch is complete!

If you like, add some ribbon to the zippered pulls.

Check out all the other fun projects in this Little Gifts series!



Cricut Maker Block of the Week: The Sequel

It has been long-awaited, and I’ve finally shared the second set of 9 blocks for the sequel of the Cricut Maker Block of the Week!

If you’re not familiar with the series, the Cricut Maker Block of the Week is a 14-week long series I developed to teach people new to quilting, new to Cricut, or new to both Cricut and Quilting, how to make a mini quilt using their Cricut Maker.

This post contains affiliate links which help support this site at no additional cost to you.

The results were amazing! I loved seeing all the fabulous quilts that everyone made using these tutorials. And some people asked if I could make even more blocks. And so I did! I created 9 more quilt blocks, filmed all the videos for them, and then had technical issues that delayed the launch of the series.

Finally, I sat down for two days and went through all the tech issues. I re-stitched each block to make sure that everything was correct. And then I launched the Cricut Maker Block of the Week: The Sequel. Here are all the videos for you to enjoy!

Each of these 9 blocks works with the original 9. So, you can use the same tutorials on sashing, borders, quilting, and binding to go along with these if you like.

Cricut Maker Block of the Week The Sequel: Intro

If you plan to make all 9 blocks, I’ve made it easy to do all the cutting at once. You can use this cut file to cut all the pieces for all the blocks now. There are numbers on this file that numbers each piece to let you know which block it belongs to. Cut file for all 9 blocks (sorted by color): http://shrsl.com/1dlh5

Here are links to supplies mentioned in the video. I’ve tried to give you two different places to find the supplies, so you can compare pricing. Cricut Maker Machine: http://shrsl.com/1e722 (on the Cricut site) http://amzn.to/2wWOPjf (on Amazon) Fabric: http://shrsl.com/1e71vhttp://shrsl.com/jv99 (on the Cricut site) http://amzn.to/2f1AKuS (on Amazon) Fabric mat: http://shrsl.com/1e71s (on the Cricut site) Fabric pen: http://shrsl.com/1e71o (on the Cricut site) http://amzn.to/2xsaGAR (on Amazon)

Block 1: Plus Block

Cut file for the plus block: http://shrsl.com/1dmu4

Block 2: Windmill Block

Cut file for the windmill block: http://shrsl.com/1doau

Block 3: Quarter Log Cabin

Cut file for the quarter log cabin block: http://shrsl.com/1drti

Block 4: Friendship Star

Cut file for the Friendship Star block: http://shrsl.com/1dwif

Block 5: Modified Pinwheel

Cut file for the Modified Pinwheel block: http://shrsl.com/1dz94

Block 6: Star Quilt Block

Cut file for the Star Quilt Block: http://shrsl.com/1e71g

Block 7: Dutch Puzzle

Cut file for the Dutch Puzzle Quilt Block: http://shrsl.com/1e9t0

Block 8: Card Trick

Cut file for the Card Trick Quilt Block: http://shrsl.com/1ebn3

Block 9: Heart Block

Cut file for the Heart Quilt Block: http://shrsl.com/1ebnm

Go to the original Cricut Maker Block of the Week to get all the details on sashing, borders, quilting, and binding!


Pizza Pillow

If you’re looking for some fun and whimsical decor, whip up this fun pizza pillow! It is super fun to make, and super comfortable to lay on!

These steps will give you the basics of how this pizza pillow comes together, but you’ll need some basic sewing skills (or a friend with some basic sewing skills).

You’ll also need a giant circle pillow, fabric for your crust, cheese, and pepperonis, matching thread, some plain white fabric, and fusible web.

Use a water soluble pen to draw a slice on your pillow.

Cut into the pillow. Once you’ve cut the lines on the top, you can remove the stuffing and cut the bottom layer to match.

Use the wedge and remainder of the circle as templates to cut the crust pieces.

Measure the edges of the wedge to determine how large your strips need to be. Cut two from the white and two from the crust. These create the depth on your wedge and circle pieces.

Re-create the casing piece for your wedge. Make it 1/2″ larger than the original wedge. This makes up for the seam allowance that will get used up on both the wedge and the main pie.

You can use a can lid to curve the edges to prevent sharp corners.

Put fusible web on the back of the pepperoni colored fabric. Draw circles, and cut out.

Cut the cheese the same size as the top crust, then measure in and trim off the extra.

Fuse the cheese to the crust.

Fuse on the pepperoni, Make sure to fuse them onto the slice as well.

Overlap the slice (which is a 1/2″ larger to make up for the lost seam allowance, and place the pepperonis accordingly.

Applique stitch on the cheese and pepperoni.

Now add the strips to create the depth for the wedge and main pie.

Finish up the casing as well. Fill the casing. The outer layer you can either stitch up by hand or add a zipper to make it easy to remove and wash.

Fortnite Party

For my son’s birthday, he wanted to celebrate with a Fortnite Party! My kids love playing Fortnite, but I didn’t want the party to be a bunch of kids just staring at a screen watching each other play. So we changed it up a bunch! In fact, the actual Fortnite game wasn’t on in the house at all during the party. Instead, the kids were active – which is this mom’s favorite kind of party!

This post contains affiliate links which help support this site at no extra cost to you.

For favor boxes, I made simple boxes on the Cricut Machine, that I customized for the party. These Fortnite Drop Boxes were cut on the Cricut, and the lines were drawn on the Cricut as well. I had the Cricut cut a stencil that I used to stencil on the sides with yellow paint. Then I glued the boxes together, tied on a balloon, and DONE! Honestly, these Fortnite Favor Boxes are some of the easier favor boxes I’ve made. You can use my Fortnite Favor Box File for the Cricut if you like.

I found Fortnite Stickers online that I placed on the coffee table for kids to choose from. The set I purchased is no longer available online.

Of course for a Fortnite Party we had to have a loot llama as a pinata.

When I looked online, the loot llama pinatas were very expensive! So I bought a unicorn pinata at the dollar store, and transformed it into a loot llama pinata. You can see the how-to in this video.

The main activity was laser tag. We collected cardboard boxes and sheets of cardboard, randomly sprayed them with leftover spray paint we had in the garage, and left them around for the kids (and adults) to hide behind. I found a great deal on laser tag sets online (for 8 vests I paid less than half of what it would have cost us to rent a laser tag arena). They are no longer on sale, but you can find the laser tag sets we bought here.

My son requested that I make a drop bus as party decor. I bought a cheap bus online, painted it, opened it up and disconnected the speaker (I still wanted it to light up when turned on, but the noise was too much), and created a hot air balloon above it using a styrofoam ball and air-dry clay.

I found these great Chug Jug Can Koozies online, but the price is for a single can cover. So I made my own using vinyl and these plain grey Can Koozies.

The party was a great hit with all the kiddos.


Cricut Embroidery Hoop

When I first started playing with my Cricut Maker, I was super excited that I could use it to cut fabric. But then I learned that when they added the rotary blade, they also added another tool to the Cricut arsenal – the water-soluble pen! This pen can be used with any of the Cricut machines with a pen adapter (so the Explore and Explore Air certainly qualify), and is perfect for drawing lines to make your own embroidery designs!

I used this Jen Goode Butterfly design that I thought would be perfect, but you can use whatever line-art style art you like.

Use the water soluble marker to have the Cricut machine draw on your fabric.

Then you can stitch on your design.

When you’re done, just rinse of the ink under the sink and let the fabric dry.

Super simple, and super cute!

Cricut Maker Block of the Week Quilt: Block 5 – Economy Patch

Today for Week 5 of our Cricut Maker Block of the Week, we’re going to be making the Economy Patch block! And, I have a surprise for you! I’m showing you two different ways that you can make this same block! I love teaching new quilters. To me, teaching new quilters means breaking down the process of quilting into manageable steps while introducing new quilters to tips and techniques. You don’t have to know how to execute every quilting technique to be successful. But knowing about the different techniques out there will help you explore new projects you might want to try next. And knowing which technique to use, and why, is always helpful!

That’s why I’m showing you how to make the Economy Patch Quilt Block with both traditional piecing as well as using Foundation Piecing (also known as Foundation Paper Piecing, but NOT to be confused with English Paper Piecing, which is a whole different technique). I have two videos that will take you through each step-by-step process, as well as step by step photos below for the traditional pieced method for the Economy Patch Block.

Cricut Maker Block of the Week - Week 5 - Economy Patch Block

This post contains affiliate links. These links help support this site at no extra cost to you.

If you’re just joining in, make sure you check out the Cricut Maker Block of the Week Reference Page. You can start from the very beginning and follow along there.

If you would like to learn the traditional way to piece this block, you can watch this video, or follow the steps below.

 

If you would like to learn about foundation piecing this block, you can watch this week’s bonus video.

 

The new products in the video include Thermoweb Foundation Papers or Traditional Foundation Paper, the Cricut Bright Pad (buy it on the Cricut site or on Amazon), the Fabric Glue Stick, and the Finger Presser or Finger Iron.

To make the block, start by cutting out all the pieces on the Maker, just as we have in the past weeks. Use the Cricut Maker Economy Patch Design Space File. If you’re making the Foundation Pieced block, you’ll also want the Cricut Maker Economy Patch Foundation Paper Design Space File.

Lay out the pieces.

lay out pieces

This block might look a little like the diamond in a square. That’s because it is! The size is different, and it has an extra border of triangles around the outside. So this is a square in a diamond in a square! And we’ll be making it the same way we made the diamond in a square.

Start with your middle piece. Stitch on the two opposite sides.

add sides

Press. Then add the other two sides.

Cut off the dog ears.

cut dog ears

Press.

finished first layer

Fold the second layer triangles in half to make sure the placement is correct.

fold to find center

Stitch in place.

add sefond layer

Add the triangle on the opposite side. Press.

Keep going, adding the third and then the last piece.

third piece

Press one last time – you’re done!

add last sides

finished economy patch

Come back next week to make week 6 of our Cricut Maker Block of the Week!

 

Cricut Maker Block of the Week Quilt: Block 4 – Broken Dishes

I’m so excited to share week 4 of our Cricut Maker Block of the Week with you! Today’s quilt block is called Broken Dishes. I’ll show you step-by-step how to make this quilt block. And, if you watch the video, I’ll show you how a quick twist turns Broken dishes into a Pinwheel block! Two blocks using the same simple steps!

Cricut Maker Block of the Week: Week 4 - Broken Dishes

This post contains affiliate links. Making a purchase through these links helps support this site at no extra cost to you.

If you’re just joining in, you can start from the beginning by going to the Cricut Maker Block of the Week Reference Page.

 

You can follow along the photos and written instructions below, or you can watch this week’s video:

 

You’ll start by cutting the fabric, just as we have in weeks past. You’ll want to start by opening up the Cricut Maker Block of the Week Broken Dishes file. Note that you can only open this on a laptop or desktop computer, clicking the link from a tablet or mobile device doesn’t work. However, once you’ve opened it, you can save it to Cricut Design Space, and open it on any device that you can log in to Design Space on.

 

If you feel super comfortable with your 1/4″ seam at this point, you can turn off the pen using the little toggle switch on the left. I’ll be keeping mine on, though.

turn pen off

Lay out your pieces.

lay out pieces

Grab two triangles (which make a square – that’s where the term “Half Square Triangle” comes from), and stitch them together along the longest edge.

stitch triangles

Repeat for the other 3 sets of triangles. Press all the seams towards the dark side.

press seam

Lay out your block again. Now we have a four-patch made of half-square triangles.

half square triangles

Stitch the top to half-square-triangles together, and the bottom two together. Press the seam allowance towards the darker side. This will automatically make the top seam allowance go in the opposite direction of the bottom seam allowance.

stitched pairs

Put your top row on your bottom row. “Nest” the center seam – this means that you feel with your fingers so that the seam allowances butt up against each other. When your seams are nested, your points will match perfectly.

Turn the block over. You’ll see that the two seam allowances are going in opposite directions. In this case, they go clockwise. Press the other two seams so that they follow. In my case this would mean all my seams are going in a clockwise direction. On your block, it might mean that all the seams go in a counter-clockwise direction. Either way is just fine.

stitched together

When you do this, you’ll be able to swirl the center, where all the seams come together. Swirling the center means there will be less bulk in the middle – which you’ll appreciate when it comes time to quilt!

swirl seam

Press the swirl flat, and your quilt block is complete!

broken dishes quilt block - part of the Cricut Maker Block of the Week series

I want to add a little comment here that will help out the new quilters. See how the points match, but thy are not all the way on the edge of the fabric? At first glance, you might think that is wrong. That nothing lined up the way it was supposed to. But fear not! You should have 1/4″ between the points and the edge of the fabric. This is your seam allowance for when you put the block into the quilt.

To make sure you’re doing it right, just flip your block over. You’ll see that your points line up with the blue seam allowance line on the back.

seam allowance back

That is it for this week’s Broken Dishes block! Next week we’ll be on to block 5!

 

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