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Love That Fabric: Pretty Pre-Cuts

Friday, 27 January 2012 9:00

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Often, when I first get up in the morning, I like to enjoy my coffee while browsing fabric at some of my favorite online sources. Seeing what's new and what's coming gives me inspiration for future Sew4Home projects. Sometimes, I have a design in mind and search for the perfect fabric. Sometimes I see fabric and it spurs a project idea. A few weeks ago, we made a wonderful and amazingly easy patchwork throw from Circa 1934 by BasicGrey for Moda using a layer cake containing forty-two 10-inch squares. It went together so quickly, I thought I would make up a few for three upcoming gift-giving events. I have one I keep by my computer. It keeps me warm and I don't feel a need to notch up the heat to overcome the morning chill. I'm sure that throw has more than paid for itself in reduced heat bills! Today, I'll show you what I've picked for my three easy-to-make gift throws while browsing at Fat Quarter Shop. This is a frequent stop for me, and a fabulous source for pre-cuts.

Key Fobs With Secret Pocket & Lanyard

Thursday, 26 January 2012 9:00

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This handy little fella is modeled after the lanyards you often get at conferences or other events, in fact, you could certainly use it for that or to hold travel documents and ID. But it's also a perfect size to hold credit cards, cash, even your keys... all on a removable lanyard. The secret back pocket is held together with Velcro so nothing will tumble out. This is a great ScrapBusters project; you can mix and match the three fabrics needed to create just the right look. Choose a fabric combo that highlights the recipient's hobby or just his/her favorite colors. If you have an embroidery machine, add a special design or a monogram on the outside. Quick, easy and fun!

Cedar Sachets For Closet Or Drawers

Wednesday, 25 January 2012 9:00

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We took the idea of a traditional closet/drawer sachet and super-sized it as a Great-4-Guys Valentine's Day gift idea. You can make a simple pillow design or add a ribbon loop or ties so it can stash in the closet on the rod or a hanger. Our Valentine's love letter fabric is another one of the great Japanese Kokka designs, courtesy of Callie at CityCraft. It would be so sweet if you typed up an actual love letter and tucked it in with a box of these sachets! We filled ours with aromatic cedar shavings, which is another reason for the larger size. Plus... cedar is a better choice for most guys over the more common rose or lavender sachet scents.

Deep Dish Candy/Gift Baskets

Tuesday, 24 January 2012 9:00

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Sweets for your sweets look even more delicious in these beautiful baskets. Yes, I realize our photos do not feature homemade goodies, but I don't want to hear any grief about that... no one says sewing and culinary creativity must go hand-in-hand. Extra wide and just the right depth for cookies and candy (and more!); they are not too thick, not too thin... deep dish, like a good Chicago pizza. Our design ties with a big, pretty bow so there's no need for separate gift wrap.

His & Hers Pajama Shorts

Monday, 23 January 2012 9:00

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Jazz up your jammie-time with these adorable sleep shorts. There's one pair for Him with a drawcord and pocket, and one pair for Her with kicky ruffles and a satin bow. We show you how to make a pattern using an existing pair of your favorite shorts. Super easy, super comfy and a super cute idea for Valentine's Day, especially in pretty pinks (remember... real guys can wear pink) and grays. We used a combination of fabrics from both Dena Designs and Robert Kaufman, courtesy of Fat Quarter Shop.

Vase Skirts With Velvet Bows

Thursday, 19 January 2012 9:00

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I don't know about you, but I always seem to have a cabinet full of plain glass flower vases. I can never remember exactly where they've all come from, but there they sit. I don't want to throw them out, but they seem to multiply like bunnies. So, here's a great Valentine's Day... or ANY day project to dress up your vases with a pretty fabric skirt. Turn them from kitchen cabinet dust collectors into bright and beautiful flower stem vessels. Our skirts are ruffled and be-ribboned for a pretty and playful feel -- perfect for simple Valentine bouquets of daisys or carnations. But just think of all the other options: satin and lace for roses or silk and voile for giant peony blooms. You could make a whole vase-skirt wardrobe... and empty a cabinet in the process!

Glasses Case With Pretty Ruffle & Handy Key Ring

Tuesday, 17 January 2012 9:00

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Our cute quilted case is sized to hold everything from thin readers to designer sunglasses. Batting makes it soft, and the smooth cotton lining will help keep your lenses scratch-free. We added a perky ruffle to crank up the cute factor. Plus, there's a carabiner key clip so you have all the essentials at hand: glasses and keys; "I can see... I can drive. I'm ready to rumble!" We picked the pretty Oh La La fabric collection by Pillow & Maxfield in Red Petite Fluers and combined that with Dear Stella's J'Adore Stella Pink Sunburst Stripe. Two different designers but both with a French accent! Together they create a wonderful color and print combo for a lovely Valentine's Day gift.

Long, Ruffled & Lush Velveteen Scarf

Monday, 16 January 2012 9:00

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One of our S4H New Year's resolutions is to experiment more with the wonderful variety of fabric types available. Called 'substrates' in the trade, this refers to the base fabric onto which the design is applied. For today's project, we've chosen two of Anna Maria Horner's gorgeous velveteens to create our fabulous scarf. What a great project to chase away the winter blues and still stay toasty warm. Ours is done in rich Valentine's Day colors and would make a lovely gift. No need for wrapping paper; simply tie the scarf itself into a big beautiful bow.

Re-imagine & Renovate: Three-Tiered Spring Skirt Becomes Hip Batik Maxi

Thursday, 12 January 2012 9:00

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When we decided to call our website: Sew4Home, we liked it because "home" is a word that expands beyond the traditional elements of home décor pillows and linens to encompass so much more: the family within your home, the friends you welcome into your home, all the things both inside and out that make a house a home. Many times over the past months and years, we've brought you projects that fall into these special categories, including our Gypsy Romance tiered skirt that debuted in March of last year. Even when venturing into garments and other accessories, we still follow our goal to make everything as easy as possible. This skirt is rectangles gathered together and finished with a drawstring channel waist. Simple! As a "Re-imagine & Renovate" project, it's fun because you can experiment with everything from three casual organic cottons to three shimmering layers of silk. Since the "maxi" is back with a vengeance, our beautiful new batik version is long and lovely.

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Re-imagine & Renovate: Slouchy Corduroy Book Bag Becomes Retro Linen Cool

Wednesday, 11 January 2012 9:00

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My personal choice to "Re-imagine & Renovate" was this book bag. Not only was it super fun to make the first time around, I love the slouchy style. Sew4Home calls Portland, Oregon home, where we have a huge number of cool boutiques filled with locally designed and made fashions and accessories. I know this bag would fit right in with the urban cool kids. And for those of you familiar with the hit TV show, Portlandia, you'll enjoy the fact that our Echino cotton/linen fabric choice allowed us to, "Put a bird on it!" We hope you've been enjoying our R&R series, which shows you how we re-made eight original projects. We also hope it inspires you to experiment on your own with new fabric, trims and notions to make something old new again.

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