Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Lace Cowl

I don’t know how to knit, even though I would love to learn how I haven’t taken the time to learn, so I resulted in plan B for making a cowl (an endless scarf).  Plan B=sewing! If you are a beginner seamstress like me, then you will love this project. It’s easy and the end result is fashionably fabulous! I chose to use two different types of fabrics to make it a little more interesting, so I went with a gray cotton knit and lace. The cotton knit is super soft and comfy.

What you need:
2 different types of fabric (I bought enough fabric to make 8 cowls)
Sewing machine

1.       Lay the “gray” fabric (the fabric you want to use more of) out on a flat surface and cut it in strips. My strips were 4’6’’ long by 18’’ wide.  I know it’s a little odd of a number, but I gave myself a couple inches of breathing room for sewing so I would have enough room for a hem. (When the cotton knit fabric is cut, the edges tend to roll a little…at first I thought it would be a problem but it actually ended up helping me keep a straight stitch along the edge.)

2.       Then I did the same thing for my “lace” fabric (the accent piece of fabric), lay it out and cut in strips 16” long and 18” wide.

 3.       Line up the short edge (end) of your “gray” fabric with the short edge (end) of your “lace” fabric. It looks like this:

and sew them together. I sewed them together about an inch in.

Ryan made me a sweat band since I was working so hard

So now you just have a strip of the “gray” and “lace” sewn together. The strip should be the same width all the way down.

4.       Fold the fabric strip lengthwise with the hem of the stitch you just made showing, (facing out).

5.       Run a stitch all the way down the open folded side of the “gray” fabric and “lace” fabric-once you have done this, you should have created a long tube that’s open at both ends.

 6.       Now flip your fabric tube outside in-so that your pretty edges are showing.

Pretty seam, success!

7.       Take the “lace” end of the tube and feed about an inch of it onto the “gray” end of the tube. (I made sure that my seams are lined up so it looks like the stitches are even.) This makes a circle-endless scarf! See, it’s all coming together-just one more step!

8.       Run a stitch width wise across the part you just fed into in step 7.

9.       You’re done! Enjoy your no-knit cowl!

Pretty simple! When mine was complete it measured out to be 2’ 10’’ long and 9’’ wide. It’s a big enough loop that you can wrap it around your neck twice to get a cool layered look. This is the second thing I have ever sewn; it was good practice, fun, and definitely do-able!
I gave them out as gifts for Christmas and everyone loved them. They look fabulous on and will add swag to any outfit. Here are a few of them...
Aunt Carol

My Sis-Sara

Want one?

Monday, March 25, 2013

Firewood Rack

Our home has two front doors, which is a little odd, but that’s just one of the many cute little quirks of owning an old house. One of the front doors is the obvious, main front door that goes into the foyer. The other door is off the den where our fireplace is. (Neither of these doors get used as front doors-everyone comes in the garage and back door. That’s okay, that just means we have great close friends and family!) The sole purpose of our den front door is to store firewood for the fireplace. It’s so convenient to open it up and be able to grab a couple of logs sitting right there. The front door opens up onto a little covered front porch area, so the wood stays dry as well. The only thing is the neat stack of firewood very quickly becomes a disheveled pile of wood and bark that looks messy from the street, not to mention the mess that gets tracked into the house. (There's usually more wood than this but we just had a fire..seeing that it's still snowing!! <sigh>)

 Ryan’s idea and fix? Weld up a firewood rack of course!  We bought a ton of scaffolding off Craigslist to build the porch and have several odd pieces left over, which is what Ryan used to make it. Here are the two pieces of scaffolding that he used. 

 They were chipped, rusted, old and basically thrown over our stone wall for trash. Trash to treasure…since Ryan has recently gotten into welding I should start a section called reclaimed metal…
He cut some pieces out of the middle, then he welded it all together basically making a regtangular frame…<insert magic sparks flying here> .  He flipped it over so it has legs and isn’t sitting on the ground; which will be ideal for keeping bugs and things from getting under the wood. The only input I had in this was to spray paint it a flat black to make it look more finished. And here it is:

a much neater stoop!
He’s pretty creative himself…It’s a great feeling to reuse a piece of “junk” you already have and make it into something new, better, practical or a piece of art. I challenge you to do the same ~ modern recycling.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Stone Steps

We never thought we would say this….all the stonework is done!!! It’s such a huge chunk of the project finished, fin, complete! The steps in the last post that were halfway done were the last bit of it and they are finished. We made them a little deeper and shorter so they aren’t as steep to go down. And the porch door now has a nice landing!
Our next step is to finish the ceiling…screen and doors..and we are, dare I say? Done! well not done, done…nothing is ever done here..we ARE an ongoing project, :) but that’s the way we like it.
I have been stocking (junking) up my laundry room of thrift store finds to re-do for the porch. You'll probably see a post about those soooooon.

What projects are you working on? Need advice on a DIY? Feel free to comment and I'll get back with you!