How to Sew an Easy and Fast Pencil Pouch with a Zipper

How to Sew an Easy and Fast Pencil Pouch with a Zipper

Back to school is in full swing at my house!  All FOUR of my kids are now going to school all day long.  Yes, I am crying a little but also looking forward to this new chapter of my life.  It actually feels pretty hectic getting everyone ready.  I took an afternoon last week to make some really cute and easy pencil pouches.  This pencil case DIY project is easy and great for beginners.   Feel free to Pin the image below for later use if you don’t have time to make one now! You all my know by now that my favorite way to do tutorials is by video!  I feel like I can really explain what is happening and this is great for beginner sewers.  You experienced gals, just fast forward through the simple parts! You will need a 7” nylon zipper, 10” x 9.5” exterior fabric, 10” x 9.5” lining fabric, and 10” x 9.5” fusible interfacing.  Let me know your thoughts about going back to school and how you like the look of this pencil case below!  ...

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Perfect Gift for your Favorite Teacher and FREE PRINTABLES!

Perfect Gift for your Favorite Teacher and FREE PRINTABLES!

Last week Marion finished preschool!  Kindergarten here she comes!  So, I rushed around and made her 3 teachers quilted fabric frames.  You know that is my favorite gift to give, right?  I love how you can give it with a cute saying or special picture and then the recipient can then hang it as is, OR put their own saying or picture in there.  Thus, the perfect gift for your favorite teacher! Alas, in my rushing, NO PICTURES!  but I did make new printables for the frame over on Canva.  Now, I warn you, I am not a graphics expert and I have seen much cuter fonts and configurations than these, but they are still pretty good!  And, Marion colored in the apple, flowers and hearts, so they turned out really cute.  AGAIN, SORRY NO REAL PICTURES :(.  But I still wanted you to see the quotes in action, so I did a little photo shop trickery!  Basically, I superimposed the new quotes on old frame photos.  So, let’s pretend this is what my frames looked like…  (and to get the FREE printables, scroll below!)   Cute, right?  Thoughtful AND EASY!  That is my favorite part because this time of year I am totally swamped with end of the year activities.  As a result,  putting together a nice teacher gift can be challenging.  So, the quilted fabric frame pattern to the rescue- AGAIN! So, here are the PDF printables!  Just click on the blue letters below.  I would recommend printing them on white cardstock and then trimming down.  I usually take the piece of glass/ plexiglass and put it centered over the printed quote.  Then lightly trace with a pencil and cut it out.  Then it will fit perfectly every time!  The printables are for a 5” x 7” frame (which is the standard size of the quilted fabric frame sewing pattern!). Big-heart-to-teach influence of a good teacher teachers plant the seeds Here are the quotes up close so you can see them!  But to print out, you need to download the PDFs above in blue 🙂 I hope you get some use out of these fun quotes!  I know my MOM is going to call me soon and say “Well, Ginny, your quotes were cute but down here in the SOUTH, kids are already out of school!”  Sorry I am late for you on the teacher gifts, southern friends!  But you can PIN these to pinterest and use them next year!  Yay!  And, follow ME on pinterest while you are at it 🙂...

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First Day of School 2014

First Day of School 2014

I realized long ago that this blog is about sharing with YOU but it is also about keeping a record for ME! The first day of school is bittersweet and has to be documented. Ours went as expected- new school supplies were ready, lunches were packed, pancakes were made, outfits were arranged, and photos were taken. And then the bus came too soon and everything was rushed and after they left I had myself a little cry… The day went by fast of course but this little person (with her black eye from rough housing with the big kids) waited not so patiently for their return. And finally they came home! And everything was wonderful for about 15 minutes until their exhaustion began to show and the bickering and grumpiness began.  But I knew that would happen (it was a disappointing shocker back when my first started school!) and I know today will be a little easier…...

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Heart Monster Craft

Heart Monster Craft

Everytime I go in for a class party, I am so grateful and amazed at the job that elementary school teachers accomplish everyday.  When you do the craft at these parties, you wonder how these women and men get anything done!  The kids are fun and awesome but the range in their ability to listen and understand is pretty broad- even on a super simple craft like the one I am about to share with you.  Teachers, I salute you yet again! I like this because you can share it with kids who are a little older ( 7 & 8 year olds) but with help, little ones can do it too.  It is also great for boys and girls alike.  And I like that the materials are super simple and all found at my local dollar store.  Cool.  Also, your kids can spend some time playing with them after school while you chill and have a glass of wine after dealing with making crafts with 20 kids all amped up on valentine sugar.  Very Cool. This is pretty simple so I am just going to give you an easy photo tutorial. First, the materials~ To make this with just a few kids, they can cut out the heart, glue the googly eyes on, etc.  To make this with 20 kids in a short amount of time (like 7 very hurried minutes of a 20 minute class party), I prepped  quite a bit before I went in.   I cut out all the hearts (in a variety of colors so they could choose), I glued the googly eyes to the styrofoam balls so they wouldn't have to wait for glue to dry, and I prepared all the TP rolls by cutting them in half and cutting out the finger circles. The kids chose their pipe cleaner (and cut it in half) chose their googly eyes, chose their hearts, and drew the mouth and stuck on the teeth. And, of course, they assembled the monsters themselves! I love the rainbow of teeth on this one… Many of them decided to use the 2nd half of the pipe cleaner to make arms.  Very cute!   The only thing about this craft with a class party is that you have to have 20+ TP rolls!  I was collecting them since I knew I wanted to do some kind of craft with them.  To reach 20, I had to cut paper towels rolls down to size and they were not as nice to use as the actual Toilet Paper rolls.  The kids did not notice at all though! Hopefully you may find some use of this tutorial for doing some easy crafting with...

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Special Sculpture

Special Sculpture

First!!  Sorry for the delay about the winner.  The winner of the vintage sheets bundle is… That sounds adorable!  Congratulations GS.  I would love to see a patchwork animal from vintage sheets. Over the past few weeks my oldest daughter Elsie has been having a special program at school.  Her art teacher, Ms. Henry raised funds outside of the school to bring an artist to the school to create a lifesize sculture of one the students.  His name is Dave Poulin.  We had such an amazing experience with him. I visited 2 class sessions with "Artist Dave" and brought Cal with me.  The 3 week program begins with students in grades 3-6 submitting stories (the theme was Freedom since we live in Freeport, PA) on which to base the look of the sculpture.  The student whose story is chosen gets to be the model for the sculpture.  The story of this sculture is that a girl is at a birthday party and she is holding a big bunch of balloons.  The balloons begin to lift her up into the air and she is surprised but also excited.  This is her idea of what freedom feels like. The kids helped the artist by adding clay to the sculpture.  The older kids do a little more with shaping but for the 2nd graders (Elsie's class), the sessions were about thinking creatively and pushing yourself to solve problems.  He gave each student and visitor a small chunk of clay and he would give us assignments about shaping the clay with eyes open and then shaping with eyes closed.  It was wonderful to see all the kids concentrating so hard and really getting into the experience. Above was Elsie's favorite part.  On their last session with him, he had a sculture of a head without ears, nose, eyes or mouth.  He divided into groups and each child was assigned a part of the face to add.   This head was separate from the main sculture.  Elsie did ears. Cal and I were also assigned face parts… After all this scupting, we smooshed up our face parts and added them to the main sculture. The sculpture was completed last Friday and Artist Dave (as Elsie called him) took the whole piece back to his studio in Jamestown, NY.  There he will cast the clay part and using real balloons, in plaster.  From there he will create a bronze casting that will be returned to our school in the Spring.  The process of going from the clay to the bronze is truly amazing.  Here is the link to his process. This was so fun and I was so proud of our little school for coming...

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