Saturday, April 30, 2011

Lola Dollie

This is my first Lola

And this is the story of her birth

   In the past few weeks I've dedicated my time to learn everything I can about fabric doll making. I found SO MANY pretties that I'm still recovering from the cuteness. Among all, I found out about Waldorf Dolls which I think are very interesting and really cute, but making them is out of my budget for the time being. I just started wandering into the doll making world and I don't know if it will work for me but for now I'm just enjoying it. It's so rewarding.

   Everything started with this doll by Amy from Lots of Pink Here, which she blogged about here:

birthday gifts for Penelope
Go see her awesome Blog!

   I saw it and couldn't stop myself from going to the pattern shop and drooling over all those pretties; after a little thought I finally bought a pattern . I researched Etsy and found so many cute patterns that I couldn't decide, but I loved Beth's super cute glasses and braids.

   I must say I have mixed feelings about my first doll making experience. I had real issues with the skin fabric, it frayed like crazy and the doll basically came apart when I was stuffing it so i had to handstitch it back together. I guess it was not so bad because I tried my best to make very small stitches and used matching thread. The other issue I had was with the face embroidery. I couldn't figure out how to transfer the face template to the fabric so I winged it (it was also the first time I ever embroidered). I think the outcome was very cute in spite of all the trouble. The bad news is that I can't show you the pictures because of the changes I made to the original pattern, I would be infringing the terms of use policy. :*(

   That was my first doll and I love it so I had to get more. I decided to give it a try and make my own dollie pattern. So I did and I must say that it was a draft. I wanted big head, big button eyes, small mouth, felt hair, and a small body. I printed the pattern and made the doll. It turned out her head was TOO big for her neck so it was wobbly, her arms were too long, her button eyes were not safe enough and her body too skinny for my taste. So I redrafted it and came up with Lola's pattern, smaller head with embroidered eyes, thicker neck than the previous doll and chubbier body. I'm still thinking of designing her feet again so they're chubbier. But this is the result, I hope you like it and sorry for the babbling.

   I made her this pillowcase dress but I'm not happy yet, I want to trim it with bias tape. The shoes are made from handstitched purple felt.

Friday, April 29, 2011

My Woodlands Clutch

   Remember when I told you that I wanted to make a fold over clutch for myself? Well, I did. I combined a few of my favorite fabrics from my stash and came up with a woodlands concept. I l<3ve combinations that remind of the forest and this woodgrain fabric was just perfect for the mushroom fabric. I couldn't be any happier with the results. I must say that I'm in love with it and I can't wait to carry it around. What do you think?

My new woodlands fold over clutch

   I changed the front flap for a leaf so it suited better the fabric combination. It was a risky change because I didn't know how well it would work. I wasn't sure if I wanted to use the button closure with the leaf and gave it a little thought. I remembered that I had some of those sew-on snaps (which I'd never used before), so I grabbed a set and used it instead of the button. I loved the change because I really like the look of the leaf by itself in front of the clutch.

   I like how they work and it was easy to sew them on the purse. Another new thing I added to the clutch was a zippered pocket on the back, the first of this kind I make. It wasn't exactly difficult, but I think I needed something that would help me get closer to the zipper. I sewed it with my normal presser foot and hand-stitched another row very close to the fabric opening with brown thread to make it very secure.

The zipper pocket on the back

   I completely forgot to add a tab with a d-ring to be able to attach the wrist strap. I added a lobster clasp to the zipper to still be able to use the clutch with the strap. I also added a charm that I was using as zipper pull before I noticed VERY LATE that I missed the fabric tab with the d-ring.

   Don't you Love it? I sure do. As I told you previously, this purse is very me and I like almost everything on it. Look at the inside fabric combination, I really like those mushrooms and it is a little brighter than the outside so it makes me happy every time I open it.

The inside of my clutch

   The only part I don't like about it, is that when I was making the wrist strap I added way too much fleece and ended up with the fleece showing on a corner; it was impossible to hide it and almost impossible to sew even with a jean needle. I just didn't want to waste the fabric, so I tried to do what I could.

   This is the result. Don't you think it looks awful? The good news is no one has to see it because it's all mine.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Am I Crazy?

   When I started sewing I had no idea of what a quality product should look like. Along the way I found a few blogs of sewers that were very picky about their seams, and I started to understand the reasons behind everything. A handmade product doesn't have to look less "perfect" than a mass made one. In fact it should look better. So all this newly learned tips and tricks started to show on everything I make; I hate to see exposed raw seams and a sloppy work (even in my "not sewn" accesories). I do know that I'm not perfect but at least I try.

   So when I found out that I have crooked topstitching in my "new"car it is like I'm paying some kind of karma and I have to live with it everyday, in front of me.

   I say "new" because even when I just bought this car, it is a '94 Chevrolet Cavalier. So it is new to me but very old to the rest of the world. I must say that it was a bargain and I had to travel almost coast to coast in public transportation to find it but it was SO worth it. I <3 it.

More of the ugly topstitching:

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Fold Over Clutches (The genesis of my digital purse designing)

   I just wanted to make clear that I'm posting about things I made in the past few months for 3 reasons: 1) I just started this blog, so anything I post will be new to you. 2) I really like (or really hate) the outcome of these projects and 3) They mark important moments of my crafty life and I want to share them.

   For example, these clutches were the first thing which pattern I designed digitally, and I really like how they turned out. Previously, I was designing my things directly on paper but I didn't feel that was accurate enough.

   I also wanted to share with you that I normally print my patterns on paper and reinforce them with stiff cardboard. It is easier to trace the pattern that way (time saving), I can keep using the same pattern forever (less waste) and make as many pieces of the same purses as I want (production). I don't know if anyone else does that, but it makes my life much easier.

Foldover Clutch with a front pocket and button closure

   This one was the first one I made and I loved it so much I didn't want to let it go (that happens to me quite often). If I'm not mistaken it was the first to find its way into a loving home.

Foldover Clutch with a front pocket and button closure

   I really liked the fabric combination on this one. It's not something I would personally use but I find it so cool.

Foldover Clutch with a front pocket and button closure

   I think I still have this one available; its been tough to not to keep it for myself. The only thing that stops me is that there is a fabric combination that I would like to use to make the purse very ME and it involves Woodgrain in Bark from Joel Dewberry's Aviary 2.

   Stay tuned so you can see how it turns out! I think I might make it today because I'm so in need of a new purse. ;)

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Recessed Zipper Tote

   I'm always searching for new techniques and tips that I can learn from. That's how I found Jane's Blog: Projects by Jane. I was trying to figure out how to add a recessed zipper to a purse when I found this tutorial. I read and studied it for a few days before I tried it myself and this was the result:

Recessed Zipper Tote

   I made this bag a few months ago, but I wanted to blog about it anyways. I really liked the outcome. It was pretty easy to understand the idea behind the tutorial, but I think I messed up somewhere. I guess I shouldn't have used an invisible zipper; it was a bit hard to close when it was open but I'm guessing that a normal zipper could have done the trick for me. Anyways, I loved it and despite its minor flaws it found a loving home. 

BTW I really like that owls fabric and I'm going to tell you more about it later.

Monday, April 25, 2011

My First (but not last) Ditty Bag

   The first 2 weeks of April, Keyka Lou, one of my favorites pattern designers, held a sale to celebrate her anniversary. Every pattern was just $5. As you can imagine I couldn't resist and purchased 2 that I had in mind for a while. One of them was the Ditty Bag; a pattern that caught my eye right away when Keyka Lou mentioned she was designing it.

Ditty Bag - Medium Size

   So I made it, and I must say that as always a Keyka Lou pattern never disappoints. It was very clear and the instructions were easy to understand. I love its shape and the fact that it closes securely with a zipper. The focus fabric was my partner's choice and the woodgrain loop was my twist. The only issue I had while making it was the zipper, I wanted to make it with covered ends and somehow I missed the correct measurements. I even had the ends covered already when I found out about the mistake so I just made it without them. I had a lot of fun making it and enjoyed the process. I'll tell you about the other pattern I bought in another post.

Ditty Bag - Medium Size

Hi! Welcome to my crafty blog.

   My name is Yadira I'm a 22 y/o lady and I'm very eager to learn everything I can about crafts. I started this blog because I really want to be part of the crafty community that takes place on the internet. It's everywhere and I don't want to miss it.

   I personally follow over 50 blogs (no, I'm not exagerating), and I find it fascinating to be able to be part of other people's lives. So here I am, extending my world to you so you can be part of it too. I love to create no matter what, but my favorite crafts are sewing and crocheting. In this blog I'll be sharing a little bit of everything: updates on my progress since I'm learning new things every day and a little bit of my daily life. Join my journey!

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