Posts filed under ‘quick project’

New artwork for the walls

So the embroidery attempt is still a work in progress. Yay, Illustrator!

  

April 20, 2011 at 9:00 pm Leave a comment

Christmas is just around the corner …

So if you read many craft blogs, you know that others have been preparing for Christmas since, say, July. I am not that kind of crafter.

Instead, I’ve been searching for Christmas ideas for easy crafts to make, with existing fabric. Times are tight in our house and I need something I can make for gifts for people, with my existing stash.

For others in the same situation, I’m including links of possible project ideas, so you can benefit, too!

I am really loving the idea of some homemade Christmas stockings. Here are some patterns/ideas I’ve found online:

Moda Bake shop pattern

Martha Stewart stocking

Easy pincushion for sewing friends

A rag rug

Adorable fabric house – I am super excited to try this

Cute mitten ornament

Sock reindeer stuffed animal

Lots of great softie inspiration

October 6, 2010 at 4:00 pm 4 comments

Progress!

With a friend’s baby due pretty much any day now, it was time to finally get in gear and start making something out of the fabric I bought months ago.

So today, I sat down, decided on a pattern, cut out the fabric, and finished the top!

After this part was finished, I realized it was just a bit too small. I added some coordinating strips to two sides, and it was the right size and looked more tied together.

The quilt will be kind of a wonky size – 35 inches by 43 inches. But hopefully just big enough to snuggle up with a sweet little baby boy. The quilt is made up of 6.25 inch squares cut from 3 patterned fabrics and 3 solid fabrics, so finished four-square blocks are about 11.5 inches by 11.5 inches. They are sewn for a diagonal pattern with the solid colors. I designed it to be super simple to balance out the busyness of the transportation fabrics. Colors were chosen to coordinate with the anchors in one of the pattern pieces. The pattern with little boats says “Little Sailor.” Too sweet.

Now, it’s a race to finish this quilt before we leave for vacation next weekend. The baby is due while we are gone!

July 25, 2010 at 8:53 pm 1 comment

Homes that are truly for the birds: how to

So the daily blogging thing comes and goes on here, as you may have noticed. Work has been crazy, life has been crazy, the house is a mess, the computer was under repair …. and to be honest, what I really needed for awhile was to disconnect from the world a bit. I love being connected. I love people. But sometimes, between Facebook, Twitter, blogs, LinkedIn, news feeds, Google Reader, work emails … the amount of information is overwhelming. Sometimes, I just need to disconnect for a bit and recharge.

What better timing and chance than this beautiful Easter weekend? Two full days of sun, warm temperatures, warm soil and a relatively free schedule. I buried myself in the garden, and enjoyed alfresco lunch with my long lost husband who has been overwhelmed with work and grad school. Weeding, pruning, planting herb seeds (slow bolt cilantro, three kinds of basil, dill, tarragon, thyme, rosemary, oregano, lavander), green onion bulbs and wildflowers. Building a partial fence around our back garden so the dogs can’t destroy it now that our backyard is fenced in. Where they previously ran rampant and destroyed, is now a beautiful black iron fence and even better, green things are returning to the garden! (Still much work is needed, so please only look at the fence :))

One dog was particularly glad to accompany me with so much time spent outside:

Back to the main theme, though: birdhouses. I was inspired when reading the April 2010 edition of Country Living and looking at the stunning gardens that were featured. One included four birdhouses, of different shapes, painted the same color and installed on stilts amidst the garden. It was beautiful. I decided I had to have birdhouses, and then about fell over when I saw the price (especially as I was wanting 5 of them).

So, I was determined to semi-make my own. Sure, you could make your own entirely from scratch, but this is much easier.

What you will need:

4 unfinished wooden birdhouses, similar sizes, with different shapes. I found mine at Michaels, where there were about 8 designs to choose from, and all sold for $4.99 regular price. (Though they were on sale for $3.99 when we bought them)

1 can Rustoleum (or similar brand) primer

1 can Rustoleum paint (I used 2 cans because I wanted 2 different colors)

1 can Rustoleum clear gloss sealer paint

1 tube water resistant epoxy glue

2 packages 72-120 inch adjustable closet rods (we found some at Home Depot. For $13, you get 2 6-foot-long poles that can be easily driven into the ground. This was much cheaper than the $15 birdhouse poles we found at WalMart, and saved us about $19 per birdhouse)

Large black trashbags

Layout large black trash bags, forming a safe place to spray paint. Put birdhouses on top of trashbag. Spray first with 1-2 coats of primer paint, thoroughly covering bare wood. Let dry for 45 minutes. Then, spray 2 coats of desired paint color, with 2 minutes of drying time between coats. Then, let houses dry an additional 30 minutes, and spray 2 coats of clear coat, with 2 minutes in between each coat. Let dry for an additional 1-2 hours.

Position poles where you would like your birdhouses to be, with the open end driven into the ground, and the plastic-capped top facing the sky. Your soil and location will depend on how far you want to push down your poles. Mine are implanted 1 foot into the ground, leaving 5 feet of pole out of the ground. With bird houses, the structures measure about 5-feet 8-inches.

After you have your poles positioned where you want them, mix water-resistant epoxy and apply to the plastic capped end of the closet rod, and to the underneath of your birdhouse where it will be attached to the pole. Attach to the pole. It can take up to 5 minutes to set, so stay near the pole for 5 minutes to make sure the house affixes. Repeat with all houses, and voila! You are finished!

(Pardon the terrible lighting in these photos)

April 6, 2010 at 7:49 pm 1 comment

Another owl – sensing a theme?

Oh, the powers of social media. I made a stuffed owl for my baby cousin, and her mom posted an adorable pic of the sweet baby and the owl. One of her friends saw my owl, and requested one herself! So fun, and so amazing that someone in Missouri can make something for someone in Iowa and someone in North Carolina sees the post and orders one. Small world. 🙂 I really hope she loves him – I think he turned out really cute!

February 27, 2010 at 10:48 am 3 comments

On the button necklace bandwagon

I don’t know if you have noticed, too, but button necklaces have been popping up everywhere. I’d seen them all over Etsy, and in the windows of the fabric store in downtown Maryville. I’ve thought about making them but hadn’t gotten around to it. When I saw it on this blog, I finally decided it was time. It’s the perfect mindless task while watching TV. Plus, I already had all of the supplies – score!

I used white satin ribbon instead of cord, because I had it on hand. I also made a crazy long necklace – I can wear it with one loop down past my waist, or a double loop or a triple loop – the triple loop is my favorite. It would also make a super cute garland for a small tree.

I’m not really sure this necklace was business suit/job appropriate but … meh. You have to have some fun, right?

February 22, 2010 at 6:40 am 3 comments

An owl softie for Cameron

I have made some improvements over my last owl. I love the bright, springy, girlie but not icky fabric. And the sewing has improved drastically since the last effort, if I may say so myself.

This owl, along with some baby blocks, was a gift to my cousin Cameron for her first birthday. She was giving the owl hugs before we left, so, I am hoping that’s a good sign!

February 21, 2010 at 7:35 am Leave a comment

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About me

My name is Mallory Murray and I have a love of all things oldfashioned. I'm a modern day feminist who also adores Martha Stewart. Read on for my sewing, crochet, cooking, gardening, quilting and crafting projects. I am the chief officer of marketing and design at Northwest Missouri State University, so expect the occasional random post about marketing/universities/design. I dream of a hobby farm with baby doll sheep, a sheep dog, a small flock of chickens, and other animals to be announced. I'm also a Pitt State grad, football lover, HGTV addict and obsessed with the color aqua.

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