Superhero Capes

Its birthday season around here which means sewing time. Ive joined Stashbusting sewalong 2015, so its a chance to de-stash and make some pressies. First up are these super hero capes made from a duvet which has been languishing in my fabric draws for a few months since it was gifted to me. Not quite our thing as a duvet but some nice slipperly shiny fabric for childrens dressing up.

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I unpicked a panel, the one Im least likely to use for the girls, then measured it around the smallest ones back. It was a perfect length, I wrapped it around her and cut the width one and a half times that, to give it some flow.

I hemmed the sides and bottom.

Next, I took some elastic that fitted most of the way along the neckline of the cape when stretched to its full extent. (I wanted to leave a non elasticated segment at the end for fastening). I sewed this on top of the raw edge with a long stitch (5) then folded this over and stitched again to enclose it and to hem the edges.

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I added a rectangle of velcro for fastening, I chose this option beacuse if the cape gets caught or pulled by another child it will undoo rather than pull at the neck. I put the “teeth” edge of the velcro facing out, so it would not catch on the childs clothes.

I also, added initials on to the cape, I stashbusted some other material just to give myself a challenge, felt would have been much easier and neater. Beacuse my fabric was stretchy I sewed about 2 cm in around each edge in a long stitch to stabilise it (I used a contrasting cotton to add interest). Next, I folded the cape into quarters to centrailse the initial and pinned. When I was happy with the palcement I stitched the initial to the cape.

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fold in quaters to centre logo

Ta dah, shiny floaty superhero capes, even suitable for dogs…..

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Every Superhero needs a mask…..

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PS heres our last super hero outfits:

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Incredigirl made from clothes in the cupboard plus badge which was layers of felt cut to resemble the incredibles logo with a safety pin on the back.

Catgirl, cat hat made a few years ago using the pattern from cute and easy Costumes for Kids, which has had loads of use. She also used her “Elsa cape” which is a dyed muslin, with a small pice of elastic tied to two corners (tied to if under pressure it comes undone rather than strangling her).

 

 

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Hello Strangers

Hiya, long time no blog.

We had an adventurous 2014. Heres a potted version of what went down. We have moved out of our lovely van and it has now been sold to a shepherdess.

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It was a bit muddy to drive into her final position so a local farmer lent a hand.

We now live in a house, the journey has been very windy and interesting I may share it with you one day.

We have also worked hard on our Wild Woods with the upshot being that all our blueberries and most of our flowers were eaten by deer, rabbits or two-legged mini beasts. From 300 bushes we didn’t even manage to scrape together 1 punnet to sell. The upshot being that we could no longer afford to rent our Wild Woods and have just finished clearing and saying goodbye.

The grand finale was a new year mega bonfire, den building session and marshmallow munch. I have no photos, we were to busy making the most of it.

So goodbye 2014 with its fun and exciting times, and hello 2015.

Anyhows, what this all means is that I have some time to get back on here. Just to warn you, although I didn’t get much blogging done last year (1 post people!) I did take some photos of things to blog.

Heres the plan….

I have carved out some time each week to dedicate to this corner of the internet.

I am moving over to a shared blog with my lovely and slightly crazy hubby. GuCu

So…. you should get some regular posts, most will be linked from here to there. so if you would like to get to them directly you may like to follow GuCu instead.

Happy 2015 and thanks for your loyalty.

xxx

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DIY Catapult

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These are really simple, frugal and quick to make.

Supplies

Hole punch
Elastic bands. I bought a cheap box from home base, it has smaller and larger bands in a range of colours. I used 8 longer and 24 smaller for each catapult.
Eyelets and eyelet tool.
Leather piece approx. 16cm by 4cm.
Cut leather on grain so non stretchy
One Y shaped stick, try and find one with relatively equal top forks. Cut to size by eye. (The Hand hold part of mine range from 10 cm which fits my hand to 8 cm (for a 5 yr old)this one is also a smaller circumference. Total height from 16-19 cm.

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Method
1. Fold the leather in half widthways. This is to increase the strength. Also I had “fake” leather left over from a car job so I wanted to hide the reverse of the fabric.
2. Punch a hole in the centre of each shorter side.

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3. Add an eyelet to each hole.

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3. Select 4 longer elastic bands, I chose 4 of the same colour. These are going around one of the “prongs” of the Y shaped wood.

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4. Now chose 4 of the smaller bands. These are going half way through the longer bands. Then one end if them goes through the loop of the other end to secure a knot.

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This is how I do it I grab the two ends of the 4 longer bands around my finger then. Feed the 4 shorter bands half way through, with my finger still there so they don’t ping off the wood. Next pass one end of all 4 bands through the loops of the other ends. Sorry I could not work out how to hold the camera and demonstrate this, but here what it looks like when you have done that.

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5. Continue this with two more groups of 4 bands. You won’t need to stick you finger in these and they are not under tension.
6. Repeat for the other side (fork).
7. Now to attach the leather. Take one set of the longer bands off the forked wood and on to a finger. Sorry fuzzy picture can’t do one armed camera, need a tripod.

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8. Now feed the final smaller bands through an eyelet, half way and create the same loop with the chain of bands.
9. Slip the larger bands back on the fork.
10. Repeat with the other side.
11. You are done, time to play.

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Opps I’ve tagged this as boys toys, but honestly my girls are pretty keen on them too.

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Christmas Wreaths

My second farmers market is tomorrow, I’ve been busy wreath making. We have loads of willow and hazel withies at the wild woods. So it was time to make use of them.

It’s a bit early to add greenery and expect it to last to Christmas. This is my favourite…

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I started by making a pile of hoops.

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These are available for sale leave a comment if you are interested.

Next I had fun decorating, here’s a sample….

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Lacy crochet Christmas Decorations

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Oh the fun of making for Christmas. I have been given a ball of cream crochet cotton and had a play with a Teeny tiny heart pattern I have made several times before. I loved it, it came up all lacy and quite different looking to the yarn ones I made previously. I used a USA size H hook, mainly because it is a lovely shiny green Christmassy colour. (Quick google suggests its a 5mm hook).

I next tried the lovely Lucy’s teeny tiny star.. I decided to turn the second round into dc (double crochet) instead of tr (treble crochet) to make it even more teeny. Again it worked beautifully, thank you Lucy.

However I wanted more Christmas, I thought about trying her jolly holly but wasn’t sure how it would look as a hanging decoration. Time to go it alone, I’ve come up with my own pattern it’s for a teeny tiny tree. As you can see it works up to be the same size as Lucy’s star and heart patterns so would make a lovely garland.

Here’s the instructions:

1. Chain 4

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2. Join with a slip stitch.

3. Crochet 12 dc into the loop you have just made. That’s hook through the loop, yarn over, pull back through the loop. Yarn over then back through all loops on hook.

4. Slip stitch to first dc.

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5. Now for the shaping. This is half of the top of the tree. 2tr into first dc. (Treble is yarn over, through stitch, yarn over, back through two loops on hook( stitch and 1st yarn over) yarn over, back through two loops, leaving one loop on hook. The way I remember it is that a treble has 3 yarn overs and a double has 2).
6. Now 1/2 tr into next stitch. ( yarn over, through stitch, yarn over, back through 3 loops leaving one on hook.)
7. Dc into next stitch.
8. 1/2 tr into next stitch.
9. 3 tr into next stitch, this is the first bottom corner.
10. Now repeat the 1/2 tr, dc, 1/2 tr into the next 3 stitches.

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11. 3tr in the next stitch for the next corner.
12. 1/2tr, dc, 1/2tr into next 3 stitches.
13. Finally 2tr into first stitch with the original 2tr.
14. Make a picot point for the top of the tree. 2ch then slip stitch into first if these 2ch.

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15. Slip stitch picot point to first treble made. You are done.
I finish and make a loop with the last stitch which I weave to the very top of the tree and fasten off with a few 1/2 hitch knots.

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Having a go at a bell or maybe angel next….

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Turning Children’s Drawings into Soft Toys

From an old sheet to soft toy.

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We have done this a couple of times. It started with the Jane Bull book. She has a pattern for a figure shaped like a ginger bread man which can be made into a variety of characters from pirates to cats.
We took it one step further and I let them draw on a piece of old sheet, with fabric pens.
1.I cut a piece of sheet about 60cm by 30 cm which I folded to make a 30cm square.
2. Next I taped this to the table cloth with masking tape, so it did not move when the used the pens.
3. Abi who was 6 at the time drew her own out line ( a unicorn) then coloured it in and drew on features.

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4. For Mia who was about 2 I drew the outline if a cat and she coloured it in.
5. The outline was then cut out adding a 1 cm seam allowance.
6. The reverse of the bottom piece was then illustrated by them in the same way.
7. The pieces were pinned together right side in.
8. I showed Abi how to do a running stitch around hers. It took nearly a year of her picking it up and putting it down to complete. But she did it including a wool tail.
9. Mia had a go then I machine sewed hers. Leaving a gap of a couple of inches for turning and stuffing.
10. When you turn the character the right way round (through the hole you have left). Make sure you use a blunt instrument such as a chop stick to poke small pieces like cats ears to get definition. Also if you have sharp corners or steep curves you may need to clip off some v’s into the fabric to enable it to lie flat when turned the right way round.
11. You can stuff it with toy stuffing or cut up old clothes into small pieces to use as filling. Or even add a some rice or dried beans to give it some weight or turn it into a warmer. ( if you are doing this you will need to make sure the stitches are very small).
12. Stitch up the gap.

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There you have your child’s designed and made soft toy.

Abi is making her second now. This is the start of it….

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Posted in Abis outrageous wonderful inventions, hand sewing, upcycling | Tagged | 1 Comment

Fun with Cardboard Boxes

We had a delivery with two enormous cardboard boxes. The girls have had so much fun, they have been cars, boats caravans. I lost them one morning, they were both in one both together with blankets, teddies and pillows.

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Smaller boxes have been used to make “dolls houses”.

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Finally, I think they wanted to make dressing up dolls. One if the boxes had split down one side by this time. We opened it right up and split it in two. This made enough cardboard for each girl to lie on and be drawn around. I then cut them out.
Today they wanted to give them faces and clothes. As they are the same size as the girls they borrowed from their own wardrobes.

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Mia dressing her “doll”.
Next they decided they needed shoes, this was a bit more tricky. They attempted to cut slits in the feet for flip flops.

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Didn’t work. But crocks and sandals did…

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here’s Abi’s nearing completion

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And here’s Abi with her creation

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Finally the pair if them with their alter egos

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Happy boxing.

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