Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Petal Pouches

I've been longing for spring which has prompted me to start shopping for pretty spring fabrics. These two coordinating fabrics in pastel purple and blue, caught my eye and I thought they would make the sweetest little petal pouches. They turned out pretty cute and I love the fabric. I think I will hop on back to the fabric store to get some more of these prints.

My mom made me one of these a long time ago. I think it might have been over twenty years ago. Yikes! I still use it and it looks pretty sitting on my dresser. These can be used for so many things--the obvious: like storing jewelry, cosmetics, sewing notions and the less obvious: using them for gift bags, Easter baskets etc. The smaller ones pictured here make wonderful gift bags for gifting a nice piece of jewelry and the wrapping becomes an extension of the gift. These also look adorable in the larger sizes filled with pastel Easter grass and Easter candy and gifts for older gift basket recipients.

The drawstrings can be pulled tightly and left dangling....

or the drawstrings can be tied in a bow.

I made some up in a Paris themed print with some matching  little tags.

Here you can get an idea of how wide they open. I like the fact that you can see everything inside pretty easily!

Here's another made up in gray, white and aqua prints....

The little bag at the top right is another pretty floral fabric I recently purchased. I have stitched up quite a few of these little bags in different sizes. I also have some cut out in lace and I can't wait to finish them up. They are lots of fun to sew and very simple to make. I will be putting up a tutorial very soon.

Hope you are enjoying your day! Enjoy the rest of the week too friends!

UPDATED: Tutorial found here!

Friday, February 17, 2017

Strawberry and Cream Cheese Filled Cupcakes

Hope you all had a lovely Valentine's Day! This post is a few days late but things got complicated. The day came and went very quickly! It wasn't the day we had planned because we can't always predict what life will throw at you on any given day. Suffice it to say that we received some bad news that day and it pushed Valentine's Day aside in a not so gentle way. But I had baked these cupcakes the night before and despite the mood of the day, they were gobbled up and very delicious!

I usually make this treat as a trifle but since I was giving half of them away and did not have two trifle dishes, I opted for layered cupcakes. I've done it as a layered cake too but it did not travel well...

HOW TO MAKE:  You can use your favorite white cake recipe or even a white cake mix. I added almond extract to mine, about 1 tsp. Bake as usual.

Once cooled, slice off the crowns of all the cupcakes.

Next prepare the filling. The whipped cream layer is a combination of 1 carton of heavy cream, 1/3 C confectioner's sugar, 2/3 bar cream cheese, softened (I used 1/3 less fat) and 1 tsp almond extract. This delicious creamy concoction is then layered by the spoonful, below and above a layer of fresh sliced strawberries! After placing the crowns on top of the whipped filling, they can be lightly sprinkled with confectioner's sugar. Or if you are not toting them anywhere, some sweetened berries and juice and an extra dollop of whipped cream can be place on top and served immediately. It is a very pretty dessert!

 They are absolutely delicious too! I saw a couple of variations on Facebook and Pinterest. One recipe called for mixing the berries into the whipping cream. Another used a pudding mix. All of them looked wonderful! But since my family enjoys this filling I decided to stick with it.

Now on to some sewing:

I have been wanting to make some tea wallets using vintage graphics that I purchased from French Paper Moon--shortly after Christmas. (French Paper Moon Etsy Shop found here) I finally had some time to work on them and I love the way they turned out.

I made the blue one first. I used mostly lace embellishments on it with some ivory buttons. I edged the inside pockets in lace too.

Next I made the brown one using some brown ticking that I had in my stash.

It's always teatime in my opinion....

The last one I made was this red one with the sweet little teapot and flowers graphic. So pretty!

Inside view of all three....

I have several others in various stages of production.

I really enjoy using these pretty vintage graphics in my sewing projects. I think they add the sweetest vintage touch to just about any project. I've added them to totes, zipper bags, pillows, bookmarks, pincushions and now... tea wallets. Soon I will be showing you some wall art I've been working on using some pretty graphics. Stay tuned.

Well friends, hope you all have a wonderful weekend! I apologize that my Valentine's Day dessert post is so late. I am looking forward to some blog reading over the weekend to see what my blogging friends have been up to. I will also be posting photos of some petal pouches that I have been working on....Good night!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Double Bagging It

Howdy friends! It's Superbowl Sunday and I am looking forward to the game tonight. After I am done writing my post I will be getting some yummy appetizers ready  for tonight's game. Go Patriots!

Last week I stitched up a pretty tote and it got me thinking (no, obsessing is more accurate) about spring! Not sure what it was exactly--maybe the color of the bold floral print against the pale aqua background, the light cotton fabric....I immediately started to picture vintage sheets hanging on the clothesline, billowing in the breeze....and then I could actually smell that smell that only line dried sheets have when they are being taken off the line and folded. Ahhhh, I cannot wait for spring!.....and now I want a clothesline!
(for sheets and towels.....not so much for clothes. I once had a very bad experience with a bee and a nightgown but that's a trip down Memory Lane you do not want to take with me! Just trust me!)

Anyhow, back to the bag.....

I used my basic tote bag pattern and because I was so in love with the fabric I decided not to do a darn thing to the front. No embellishments, no pockets to hide the pretty flowers.....nothing, nada! I also stitched up a matching set of zipper bags as usual.......

I used some scraps to make tags for the tote and the zipper bags.

I attached the tags with a pretty pink ribbon (though it looks red here, I assure you it is not)

The inside is lined with a coordinating pale aqua fabric and a divided pocket the runs the entire width of the tote. As you can see, the tote is very roomy as the zipper bags only take up some of the space in the left side of the pocket.

This tote was so much fun to stitch up. I couldn't wait to complete it so I ended up sewing into the wee hours of the morning to finish the set. I have another tote cut out and ready to go among about a million or so other things that need to be sewn. It's going to be a busy week for sure!

Another bag I wanted to share is the 2-hr Tulip Bag (by Janice Pope) I made for my mom for Christmas. She was going to get rid of a pair of barely worn, off-white corduroy pants and I snatched them right up because she had said that she would really like me to make her a cream colored bag. They looked perfect for the project and they were. I love her little bag!

This purse went together quickly and easily. The one thing I did not anticipate was the slight stretch to the corduroy so if I were to use a similar fabric again I would stitch the top of each bag piece (in this case there are 4) to prevent additional stretching. As it turned out I was lucky and there was no puckering when I stitched the stretch corduroy to the cotton lining.

Here it is hot off the press! I really love using this pattern and it's fun too whip up a bag from recycled pants. I have even used jeans!

I especially love how nice and wide it opens! It's always easy to find what you are looking for. My mom now has four of these bags. I have three myself!

Well, that's all for now folks! It's best I start popping some goodies in the oven. I am making some bacon-wrapped sea scallops and some "boneless chicken wings". I already sliced some cheese, have the veggies and dip ready to go and some jumbo shrimp for shrimp cocktail!

Wishing you all a lovely week ahead!