Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Aromatherapy cold day friends

I made some cute, rice filled handwarmers for Christmas gifts. When I showed them to my aunt she had a wonderful idea to make them bigger for the kids to snuggle during cold car rides. I thought that was great and could even make them teddy bear shaped and put some lavender in them to smell nice. So what do I see at Kroger today?These aromatherapy buddies. Stuffed animals, filled with rice or something similar and lavender. So, I'm thinking, what a wonderful way to use some of our multitude of stuffed toys, I picked out a few small toys that aren't played with much.

They all turned out to be Ty beanies, which made this whole process much easier. I undid the stitching in the back and removed the beanbag (some are attached and had to rip out a few more stitches to release it.)

 The blue teddy had bean bags in the hands and feet in addition to the butt bag. I unstuffed teddy completely (except the nose due to embroidery) so he could get a good washing.

 I made rice / lavender bags to match the bean bags that were there originally. I did make the rice bags slightly larger so there will be more warm area.

I filled the bags about half full (like the original bags) with mostly rice, maybe 1/3 lavender.

I put the bags in the arms & legs first, put some stuffing in the tummy first then added the rice bags and more stuffing on top. Stitch the back closed again and they are ready for 30 sec in the microwave and a snuggly car ride. The kids enjoyed them. The lavender helped calm the baby down for a peaceful car ride and they even like sleeping with them!

PS.  My eldest requested one of her little care bear toys be converted. This was not a Ty beanie, and is a very small toy (no bigger than my hand). So we took out all the stuffing from the body, leaving the head and legs stuffed. We stuffed it with plain rice (she didn't like the lavender scent, and no bean bag for this one) using a pencil to get rice into the arms. Then we stitched up the back nice & tight so no rice escapes and it was ready for use - start to finish - 1/2 hour.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Headbands and minimalism

Our family goal this year is to pare down our "stuff." Phil and are both like the idea of the minimalist lifestyle, plus it will help our family of six plus two cats fit a little better in our little two bedroom house.

So my personal goal this year is to not acquire any new fabric or yarn but to go through and actually use my stash. By the end of the year I hope to have my stash down to one storage container and have lots of cool gifts to give away. The corner that is currently holding several containers full of fabric/ yarn could then be converted to a permanent sewing nook. Currently, I just set up shop on the dining room table.
yeah, it's a little messy! six containers, plus a couple in my bedroom closet

So my first stash buster has been scarves and hats to give away to anyone that needs them. I used up a few old t-shirts, some fleece and some flowery flannel and got about ten scarves and a few hats.
Just a couple of the scarves and a funny shaped hat.
My second project, found on pinterest, is these braided/ woven headbands. Excellent for using up some more t-shirt fabric. Most store headbands either pinch my head or give me a headache or don't stay on. These are stretchy all around and have enough texture to stay put and made to fit my head snugly without hurting. I love them.

My favorite one is this green one I used the seams cut out of tshirts. One of the strips has black stitching on it and looks nice with the greens. It's super stretchy, soft and (here's my geeky side showing) it makes me feel like Princess Leia on Endor. And who doesn't love being Princess Leia!!
The dark green braids reminiscent of Leia's braids.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


Slowly getting back into the swing of things. We're getting our homeschool routine back in order and baby boy is getting a sleep routine so I have a bit of free time in the evenings. I did a lot of crafting for Christmas. Pinterest & Tipnut are my big inspirations lately.  I like to have lots of stocking stuffers to give away, so I worked on some crochet scarves, some t-shirt scarves, crochet washcloths and beaded necklaces/ earrings. I also found this this cute idea for hand warmers on pinterest and used up some of my small pieces of fleece and a bag of rice.

I'm slowly working on a countdown calendar in the form of a Christmas tree wall hanging and ornaments to add for each day. Pictures to come later. I was inspired by a couple I saw on pinterest, this one for the idea and buttons and this one for the big size for the kids to decorate . This will give us a tree without using up precious floor space and also a tree the kids can enjoy decorating. I finished the tree and pockets part for this Christmas and we'll work on it throughout the year so we'll have a complete tree/ countdown for next Christmas.
Found this very cute flower vine scarf on tipnut to make for my oldest who loves flowers and I found this cute pattern for a simple wallet that I made for the younger kids and carrying case for a Nintendo DS here.

So that was my Christmas crafting. Didn't get everything done that I dreamed up, but I got lots finished and everybody was happy. I have a bunch of projects pinned that I really want to try, so hopefully I'll be a bit more regular on this blog now that we're done with the big holiday season.