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A Gift a Day: Day Nine--Velvet Headbands

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For the eigth day of A Gift a Day, I made velvet headbands.

 Velvet headbands

Supplies:

velvet fabric (Approximately a 4 1/2" by 17" piece per headband)
headbands
matching thread
tutorial  (An important note--I love this tutorial and I have used it several times in the past, but I disagee with the measurements. You need the fabric to be 4 times the width of the headband plus 1/2". Otherwise, it is not wide enough to accomodate the fabric lost in folding and the 1/8" seam on either side of the headband.)

Tools:

scissors
sewing needle
sewing machine

Time:

The total time for one headband was 15 minutes.

Today I made three headbands.

Cost:

$0.04 per headband.  My cost was very low because I used a $10 off $10 coupon at Kohl's to get 18 headbands for $0.64. I also had the fabric already; I've had it for many years. You can use a repuposed shirt, skirt, or dress for the fabric; I often see black velvet pieces of clothing at garage sales for $1. If you are buying the fabric you can purchase 1/4 yard on sale for 50% off to make several headbands for around $2.50.

You can find these headbands at Target, Walmart, Kohl's, and at grocery stores, for around $5 for 4 wide or 5 skinny headbands. I recently found them at the dollar store. They had just one less in each package. They had 3 wide headbands for $1 or 4 skinny headbands for $1.

Did you make any presents today?


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A Gift a Day: Day Eight--Ballet Slippers

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For the fourth day of A Gift a Day, I made ballet slippers for my two-year-old.



Ballet Slippers

Supplies:

satin fabric for outside
fabric for lining (I used fleece)
fabric for bottom of the slippers (this can be anything; last year I made the outside bottom in satin as well, but this time I used ultrasuede)
elastic (I bought both the kind I used today and the kind the pattern calls for from here)
interfacing (I bought a few bolst on super discount last year on Black Friday)
matching thread (read how and where I buy thread)
pattern (I used this one) You can spend less by buying a particular size set from her shop.

Tools:

scissors
sewing needle
sewing machine (optional; you could sew these by hand)

Time:

The total time for one pair of ballet slippers was 3 hours.

Today I made one pair of ballet slippers.

Cost:

$0.25 per pair (for materials).  I already had all of the supplies on hand, so nothing out of pocket for myself this year. These take just a tiny amount of fabric, especially in children's sizes.  I bought the pattern last year and used it last year, so I did not have that expense this year, but that would be an additional expense if you are just buying the pattern. I bought all of the sizes for a slight discount, which means I have all of the sizes from baby to adult. Since this is a pdf pattern, I can just print the pattern in the size that I need this year.

I bought the fleece on a huge sale at Joann's last year on Black Friday, and I bought the satin (just a 1/4yard, and I've used it many times for small projects) many years ago on sale. The ultrasuede was some that my grandmother bought years ago.

A note about sewing with satin--it literally unravels right before your eyes. I recommend zig zag stitching the edges of any satin pieces that you use. You can also choose to use another fabric that is less frustrating; it will cut the time down considerably.

I did some changing of the way the elastic was sewn, as I chose to modify the way the elastic goes in this particular pair. This added in a little time for figuring out how to change it.

Elsa loves to "do ballet" with a little chair and this dvd. All of my children (even my boys) loved this video.

These take so little fabric that you could make them by repurposing other clothing. An old t-shirt or sweatshirt could be your lining. The tops could be made with a piece from a shirt or skirt. The amounts for a 2-year-old are so small that you could use scraps leftover from sewing other projects. If you make these as called for in the pattern, you will need 2 butttons. Old buttons that you have saved are just perfect for this project. When I made these last year (I made 4 pairs) all of the buttons were repurposed buttons.






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A Gift a Day: Day Seven--Embroidered Socks

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There are lots of tutorials for Pottery Barn knockoffs, and some for Anthropolgie knockoffs.

For the seventh day of a Gift a Day, I am bringing you a very simple Janie and Jack knockoff.

Today's project:


Embroidered Socks

I embroidered both the flower and the leaves using three strands of floss.

I did a three wrap French knot in the center of each rose. I did 10 wrap bullions on either side of the French knot. I did  four 12 wrap bullions around that.

The leaves are each one lazy-daisy stitch. I embroidered 2 leaves on either side of the flower.

Make sure to only go through the top layer of the sock!

If you are new to embroidery, I have links to embroidery stitch tutorials and free embroidery patterns here on my website.

Supplies:

pair of bobby socks  (the kind that fold over once)
embroidery thread in 2 colors

Tools:

scissors
sewing needle (preferably an embroidery needle)

Time:

The total time for one pair of socks was 10 minutes.

Today I embroidered one pair of socks.

Cost:

$1.15 per pair. (I actually already had some socks put aside, and I had embroidery thread, so these cost me nothing this year, but I did buy both things in the past).

Target has socks like this for $1 a pair in smaller sizes, or lace-edged ones in larger sizes for $2 a pair. Right now they have a 20% Kids' Apparel coupon on their site for 20% off one item on certain brands, including Circo.

Though embroidery thread is not expensive, I always wait to buy mine until it is on sale. I buy several colors then to have on hand for future projects. Joann's usually has embroidery thread on sale during most major holiday sales Most likely it will be on sale for Black Friday.

Michael's carries embroidery thread as well, though they are slightly higher priced. I have not seen it go on sale in their ads.

The Janie and Jack socks have a picot edge on them. You can crochet a chain stitch on the socks with cotton crochet thread. I have done this before and it is actually the reason I had some extra socks in my sewing closet, as I had bought them with the intention to crochet a simple edge on these socks. I did many pairs before, and I had 3 pairs left. If I have the time (hahaha!), I may do that to this pair, but if not, these are fine the way they are, too. Be aware that the crochet thread will shrink and tighten in the wash. I find that 5 or 6  chain stitches between catching the edge of the sock each time works well.

You can also embroider on an existing pair of socks.
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A Gift a Day: Day Six-- Flannel Pajama Pants

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For the fourth day of A Gift a Day, I made flannel pajama pants.

I'm late in getting these up because I didn't finish them until today. I was only able to cut them out on Thursday night at 10:30 pm! I'm working on getting caught up on gift making.


Pajama Pants

Supplies:

fabric (2-3 yards, depending on the height of the person)
matching thread
elastic for the waistband

Tools:

scissors
sewing needle, or a sewing machine
measuring tape (to measure child's waist)
chalk pencil
existing pair of pants that fit the child to trace for a pattern (don't forget the seam allowances and room for elastic
safety pin for threading elastic through casing

Time:

The total time for one pair of pants was 1 1/2 hours.

Today I made two pairs of pajama pants.

Cost:

You cost will vary depending on the price of fabric. I made one pair from flannel sheets that were given to me, so I only had the cost for thread and elastic (about .25 for the white nad blue pair). I made another pair with flannel that I bought on sale last year at the Black Friday sale at Joann's, where I purchased the fabric at 60% off. These  (the green ones) cost me around $6.40 a pair. I stock up on fabric that I know I'll use when it goes on great sales. I bought my elastic in bulk at Wawak for these pants.
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A Gift a Day: Day Five--Pajama Shorts

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For the fourth day of A Gift a Day, I made pajama shorts. It's warm here most of the year, so comfortable pajama shorts work well for about 8 months of the year.In fact, today was really warm, so these would have been appropriate for today.

 

Pajama Shorts

Supplies:

fabric
matching thread
elastic

Tools:

scissors
sewing needle, or a sewing machine
ruler
existing pair of shorts that fit the child

I drew around a pair of shorts (that was folded in half) and made a pattern from those.

Time:

The total time for one pair of pants was about one hour.

Today I made one pair of pajama shorts.

Cost:

$0.05 per pair of shorts, as I used repuposed fabric (an old sheet that belonged to my mom) and the thread was a very tiny amount  I bought the elastic at a garage sale last year. If I were buying this fabric on 50% off sale at the fabric store, my total cost would be around $3.00. Another option for fabric is to look at garage sales and thrift stores. I have made pajama shorts in the past from old men's t-shirts and polo shirts from my husband. I prefer to make them from those, or from plaid fabric, but this was what I had, so I used it.
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A Gift a Day: Day Four--Tie

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For the fourth day of A Gift a Day, I made a gift for my son. His favorite color is purple, but he doesn't have a lot of purple in his wardrobe. I received some fabric from a friend of my mom's in September. Included in the bag of fabric was a piece of thin purple fabric. I used it to make my son a tie, and I hope this means he'll have more of a desire to wear a tie to church!

Yes, the bottom of the tie looks crooked in this picture. It doesn't look crooked in real life, though.

Tie

Supplies:

thin fabric (it doesn't have to be silk; I'm using polyester)
lining fabric (a satin-like, coat lining-type fabric)
interfacing
matching thread
paper and ink for printing pattern (I used this free pattern and tutorial for a man's tie; if you want to make a toddler tie, try this tutorial)
ribbon to make a loop on the back of the tie

Tools:

scissors
sewing needle, or a sewing machine
ruler

Time:

I have no idea how long this tie would take to make if I was uninterrupted. I started at 11 am and ended at midnight. My husband commented that that meant the tie was really a $120 tie. Of course, I made two meals, ate those meals, took care of my family, etc. in between.

I think the next time I make a tie (and I will be making more) it should be quicker, in part because I don't need to put the pattern together again.

Today I made one tie.

Cost:

$0.10 per tie, as I used fabric that was given to me, including the lining. I used interfacing that I bought on sale last year on a Black Friday sale for around $3 a bolt. If I were buying this fabric on 50% off sale at the fabric store, my total cost would be around $4.00. Another option for fabric is to look at garage sales and thrift stores.

I was really amazed at how little fabric this tie required. I thought it would take quite a bit of fabric, as it is cut on the bias, but it actually didn't take much at all.

The tie has an option to extend it for taller people. I am going to make the tie again, and make a longer one (two, most likely) for my husband. The finished tie was about 3 inches shorter than his current ties, so if your husband is tall and/or has a larger neck size, I would extend the tie.

I am going to make the tie again for my son, and I am going to taper piece 3 (the largest piece) to make a thinner tie that is more appropriate for a young boy. I am also going to shorten piece 2 (almost completely) to make the tie the right length for him.

Hopefully next time it will go faster!
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