Thursday, July 30, 2015

DIY Gift Boxes and a Sewing Project

Hello Friends! I haven't been avoiding you, really! This summer has been very busy! When I realized in the spring that we would be totally childless for the summer for the first time since 1983, I thought for sure that this would be the summer that I would get everything done. That really has not been the case. The next two to three weeks are even busier so if you don't see me here much, that is the reason why. BUSY!!!

Today was no exception! Busy again.....We ran out to buy chickens to roast for an event that my husband will be providing lunch for tomorrow. When I suggested that I would roast chickens for him to take, I was not anticipating that we would be in the middle of a heat wave with very high humidity. Today was not a great day for roasting chickens. I'm pretty sure my kitchen was 350 degrees. I turned the range hood fan on and it apparently sucked all the hot air out of my kitchen because thankfully it returned to a pretty comfortable temperature after a while.

While the chickens were roasting, I dug out some paper supplies including  a collection of card stock that I purchased from Michael's during the Christmas clearance. I needed some gift boxes and decided to make up a few from 12x12 cardstock. These are fun to make and can be custom designed to match party decor or a theme. Today, I had no theme....I used gold and white paper along with some black chevron and black and beige floral.

These papers, though a bit trendy, will coordinate nicely with twines, jutes and other gift wrapping supplies that I have on hand.

Here you can see the metallic gold dotted box. I like to mix and match prints.

This collection of paper even had some tags and other cute little things to attach to the gift boxes. I also pulled out a manila tag to use.

After completing three boxes, I begrudgingly returned to a nasty little project that I put on hold for a day. It is a kimono styled jacket that i made and it needed hemming. Actually, just the sleeves needed to be hemmed. I saved the hemming for today because yesterday I wasn't feeling well, the fabric was very difficult to work with and I just was not in the mood for a challenge.

Here is the fabric that gave me such trouble over the last couple of days. It is a very lightweight, flimsy, scarf-like material in shades of cream, taupe, beige, black, brown and light periwinkle blue. I am not completely sure of the fiber content other than the fact that it was 100 percent pain in my neck! It was so light that the overhead fan was blowing it around while I was sewing and pins would not hold the edges together! GRRRR! I could not turn the fan or the air conditioner off because it was so hot and humid on the porch where I was sewing. I was not feeling great to boot. Shouldn't have been sewing at all but wanted to finish this jacket. So I did it in baby steps because I got so frustrated with it!

Most of this kimono was completed on my serger. That part was easy! Today I finished it by hemming the sleeves. It was worse than any other part of the project except perhaps the cutting out the very slippery pieces. It is nothing short of a miracle that it is even wearable! On a positive note, it fits perfectly and is a perfect, lightweight layer to wear with a sleeveless dress!

Here it is hanging from my porch door with a black dress of mine. The jacket had not been ironed yet in this photo. The drape on the front black pieces is very nice. I used  Simplicity Pattern # 1588. I will use the pattern again since there are several options including a ruffled layer which I love. BUT I will definitely be a bit more selective with the type of fabric I use.

Here is the back. Again it hasn't been ironed. It was much too hot. I will iron it in the morning when it is still cool.

That was my morning. My afternoon was busy as well with errands and an appointment.  I wish it did not seem as though summer is flying by at warp speed.  In about two weeks we will be moving my daughter out of her summer dorm and in to her dorm for her junior year. I cannot believe she is going to be a junior! Though she stayed at school for the summer to work, she will be able to come home for about two weeks so I am looking forward to spending some time with her. She will arrive Sunday evening.

Well friends, that's all for now. I hope you are keeping cool and keeping your cool wherever you are!


  1. Hello dear Linda...oh! How I wish I could send you some of my blissfully cooler weather...and here I was just fretting about being chilled to the bone!
    I love the pretty gift boxes you've been working on and ever so impressed with your jacket! I too have projects like these that make me quite cross and frustrated...a big well done on completing it, though! Hooray!

    Enjoy your visit with your dear daughter and all the busyness of summer...sending much love and hugs your way!
    Stay cool! Smiles...


  2. Hi Kelly-Anne,
    We had such a long cold winter that I am trying very hard not to complain about the heat. Very high humidity with high temperatures though, knocks the life right out of me!

    Thank you for your kind comments. Yes, that jacket almost did not make it! I seriously contemplated putting it away permanently! But in the end, it turned out fine! We will definitely enjoy visiting with our daughter. It will be nice to have her home!

    Hope all is well with you! A bit envious of your cooler weather, but ours will be here before you know it. Fall is my favorite season of all!
    Take care Kelly-Anne, Hugs

  3. Dearest Linda, your jacket turned out beautifully! I love the fabric and I know it must look delightful on you :)

    The summer days are always so's hard to believe today is the last day in July. Our days are still warm, but there is an autumn breeze in the air :) Hugs to you, my friend!

    1. Thank you Stephanie!I know, it seems as though July just got here but then as I think about it, for some reason, the 4th of July seems so long ago! Strange!!!OOH, I envy that autumn breeze. Looking forward to fall but not trying to rush summer! Autumn really is my favorite time, though it is pretty short here and can turn ugly real fast! LOL. I am still traumatized by last winter! Hugs to you too my friend, glad to be part of your party this week!!!

  4. Hi Linda, you are a busy girl and I hope you are feeling better today. In spite of that you still design the most gorgeous treasures. I love the boxes and would love to know your pattern or formula. The design on the card stock is beautiful and like you said, will coordinate with jute and twine burlap ribbon etc. Love the gorgeous jacket you designed too. I know what you mean about the fabric slipping but it sure turned out great and looks gorgeous with your dress.
    I bet the roasted chicken turned out delicious. It's really hot here too but the humidity has been only around 25 percent so even though very hot it helps not to be too muggy. But hot is hot when it's over 100 degrees.

    Best wishes to your daughter as she begins her junior year. Blessings to her for great success.
    Have a nice weekend and stop by to enter my giveaway if you'd like.
    Hugs and Joy!! cm

    1. Hi Celestina,
      Thank you so much for your kind comments. I will head right over to your blog after I post this reply!!! I will send you an email regarding the boxes hopefully today or tonight! The boxes are quick and fun but I like to have a stash of them so they are ready when I need them! Yes, slippery fabric is not the most fun to work with. this is lighter than chiffon....You are right about the heat, HOT IS HOT! humidity or no humidity! We need rain desperately, storms are all around us but somehow miss us every time! thank you for wishing my daughter well. She is having a wonderful time at school. So wonderful to hear from you, now I'm heading over for a visit.