Wednesday, July 27, 2011

WFMW: Sew much fun!

Since I obviously haven't been blogging lately, what have I been doing?

You mean besides searching eBay,, and (and a few other sites) for the last remaining school books we needed for the rapidly-approaching 2011-2012 school year?

I've been sewing.

Years ago, I ran across an old bed sheet (the tag says 1978) that was in perfect condition. I kept it because, even back then, I imagined using the sheet to make some cheerful-looking curtains. Well, I finally did it! Presenting...

My new laundry room curtains!

Jason's first words? "Woah! Those are...some curtains!" Hey, they're behind the door in my laundry room and I'm likely to be the only person in this house who sees them for more than five seconds. Nobody else has to like them. :)

The sheet was in great condition and the gingham print made it very easy to make precise, straight lines. Oh, and I left the "1978" tag on my new curtains...well, just because.

There is more than enough of the bed sheet left over to make Grace a dress from it. (She asked.) Hopefully that won't take as long to get around to doing. ;)

For more details on sewing curtains using bed sheets, check out this post where I made curtains for our French doors.


What else have I been sewing? "Bean bags" for a bean bag toss game! Inspiration for this idea struck after going to my sister- and brother-in-law's home and they had a new bean bag toss game in the back yard. I (eventually) thought of this structure

February 2009
Left to right: Robert (11), Grace (2), and Josiah (6)

which no longer looks anything like that because two sides were damaged with holes. Still, there are two sides of the playset that are in great condition, and these are the sides with the round holes which would be great for a bean bag toss game, right?

Of course they would! This is what Josiah (a.k.a. Josiah the Builder) came up with to secure the two functional pieces together:

I was thinking of looping rope through those holes at the top, but I guess metal stakes would work just as well.


I looked through my little box of fabric and found some pieces of Jason's old work pants in two different colors for two "teams." I sewed to make three closed sides

and turned it right side out.

Instead of the more expensive plastic "beans" you can find at Michaels, I put about 2/3 cup of uncooked rice in a ziploc bag

and folded the bag to fit inside the cloth so that the rice would be protected from moisture, dirt, mud, bugs, etc.

I pinned the remaining side

and carefully sewed the last side shut, taking care to avoid sewing the plastic bag.

I could have sewn the bags closed with matching thread but these will be sitting in the dirt. I'm not as picky about things that will be sitting in the dirt.

I made sets of bean bags for Josiah (9) and Grace (5) to play with inside, too. Josiah practiced his running stitch with some of these.

Grace wanted to learn to sew, too, so at first I was letting her practice handling pins at the table while I was there sewing with the sewing machine--she practiced running pins in and out of a scrap piece of cloth. Next, I let her loose with a threaded needle and a scrap piece of cloth, and she stuck herself with the needle less often than Josiah did. When she was done, Josiah saw her work and commented, "Wow! She's really good at making BIG stitches!" :) He's such a good brother--there truly wasn't even a hint of sarcasm in that. But there were some really BIG stitches.

Grace persisted with wanting to sew, so I drew some small dashes on another scrap piece of cloth and showed her how to cover up the dashes with her stitches. She did a great job! She can be pretty precise when she wants to be. Future seamstress in the making? Hmmm...


Jana said...

Hi! Just wanted to say that your curtains made me smile! And I have an 8 yr old Josiah! Yours sounds like mine: an encouraging sweetheart! Since my boys are stuck inside with the extreme heat, we might have to make some of those bean bags to have a little fun!!

Anonymous said...

That seems to be a lot of hard work, but I guess you reap what you sew**

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