The BEST 1/2 yard tote EVER :)

The BEST 1/2 yard tote EVER :)

Does anyone else out there always click on the Pinterest recipes that say (for example)”BEST MEATLOAF EVER”?  I do!  I can’t help it.  I think, if they claim it is the best, it must the BEST!  Well, I think this 1/2 yard tote is pretty great, so I am going to go ahead and call it THE BEST.  Haha!  I will let you be the judge but I may as well shoot for the moon 🙂 I am teaching a little sewing class to a few local kids.  They are so fun and I am really enjoying sharing my love of sewing with them.  Our first project was pin cushions and now we are making our second project, this tote bag!  I think it is perfect to teach them how to follow a simple pattern, learn If you are coming from my Youtube channel, WELCOME!  If you are already a blog follower, head over to my channel and watch this new video and learn how to make this adorable tote bag. You can download the cutting guide to by clicking on these BLUE words below.  Print out this page for easy reference when making these bags (because I KNOW you are going to make more than one!). QuickEasy1:2YardTote-byGingercake Here is the stabilizer I use.  It is my favorite now and I love only using that expensive fusible interfacing when I have too.  I love saving the $$$, the time, and I love how sturdy this stuff make my bags!  Here is for sale on amazon.   Here are a few more photos of the bag!  I used chambray fabric from Andover for the lining and the exterior fabric is from Blend fabrics.  I love this combo, don’t you?  What would you use this bag for?  Library tote?  Piano bag?  Crafts on the go?  Let me know your thoughts in the comments!...

Read More

The Jedi Penguins! Another chance to enter the giveaway

The Jedi Penguins!  Another chance to enter the giveaway

Do you all see the Penguins made by Amanda of Jedi Craft Girl last friday?  Love them!   Thank you so much to Amanda for participating in the Gingercake Holiday Gifts Sewing Series.  You can read more about her cute penguin pair by visiting the Jedi Craft Girl Blog.  She made these gifts using the very popular Annie’s Penguin Pillow Pattern. I have never tried to use minky before at the belly but it looks so soft!  She used a basting spray to keep it from shifting all around.  Very clever! I have made many many penguins myself over the years.  Including the Valentine penguin that is my favorite!  You can visit that blog post here.  It is a free upgrade tutorial! Back in 2013 when I did this gifts series before, 4 bloggers sewed up penguins to give as gifts.  They were all so cute!  First is Caila’s from CailaMade... My good friend Amy (in real life!) of Mindfully Made Studios sewed a cute penguin too.  She made her penguins from fleece- again as a baby gift for a brand new niece… Next, the talented Jenny of the Southern Institute had her daughter Abby sew up the Annie’s Penguin Pattern as her first project.  WOW!  awesome job Abby!  This girl has a future in sewing!   My last penguin to share was sewn by Jess of If Only They Would Nap.  She always brings a fresh eye to sewing projects.  Jess also has 4 boys and sews for them all the time!  That is an accomplishment.  I love the boy spin on this guy below. Now that we have walked down penguin memory lane (and I feel so grateful to my blogging friends for sharing their projects!), I don’t want you to forget about the Week 3 giveaway happening!  Just click below to enter.  It is so easy! a Rafflecopter...

Read More

Adventurer Waste Free Lunch Bag

Adventurer Waste Free Lunch Bag

My kids really wanted to keep this lunch box for themselves.  “OOOOHHHH.  It’s so different!  Like a picture on your lunch bag!  So So cute.”  That was from my 11 year old daughter.  But, alas, this lunch box is going down to Atlanta GA to be with the other things sewn for Blend Fabrics Quilt Market Booth. This adorable fabric is The Adventurers Collection by Cori Dantini for Blend Fabrics.  The panels are really really cute and they fit really nicely with the Waste Free Lunch Box.  Each panel is a different adventure drawing-  this bag has a swinging boy on one side and a beach digger on the other. The panels were only 10” wide, so I added this textured yellow fabric to the sides.  I think this is my favorite feature, since it really frames the panels.  And to think, I was worried that it would look patched together! I made this bag in the zipped style as posted here.  It really is an easy way to finish the Waste Free Lunch Bag pattern.  I also love that it means there is no flap to cover up the panel graphic AND no inside snap or velcro that would reduce the space inside. Now time to package these up and send down to Blend fabrics.  Admittedly, I will be said to see this one go.  It is just so darn cute!  If you are at quilt market next month, be sure to stop by their booth and see all the cute things from all their lovely new fabric lines....

Read More

MAN time: Day off Backpack for my man…

MAN time:  Day off Backpack for my man…

Honestly, my husband might have asked me to make him a backpack to take to work about 5 years ago.  FIVE YEARS!   But I still get the credit for finally making him one!  He rides his bike to work in the summer and need something to take his change of clothes in.  He is pleased to have his own Day Off Backpack (even though he will be using it for work days!).  The only one without a backpack now is my 7 year old son, so expect some cute boy version coming in the next couple of weeks… I might actually have change out the flap and just do a magnetic snap for him since he thinks the button will be too hard (I guess buttons on backpacks are too hard for men-  haha).  This is the MASH UP version of the backpack.  The Mash up uses the boxy base, adult measurements, and zipper pocket of the adult size and also the flap and snap sides of the child version.   There are instrutions to make the mash-up in the pattern… For the fabrics I went over to JoAnns and bought a yard of the Khaki duck cloth and a 12” cut of the dark brown duck cloth.  On sale for only $6.99 a yard right now and duck cloth has a 60” width!  I used a brass zipper (but had to pull out those metal pieces which was kind of a pain) and a toggle button.   I did not use any fusible interfacing since the duck cloth had plenty of structure.  I also used duck cloth for the lining. One mistake I made was adding batting to the straps.  I thought it would be nice for him to have padded straps for the bike ride.  But, they are already made of the thick duck cloth and adding the batting made them way too thick for the triglide slides.  I had to really work them through the slides! Today is the last day to enter the Pattern and kit giveaway!  Head over to my last blog post here to enter!  While you are there, read some of the day off activity comments- they are so fun and relaxing.   AND, don’t forget that the pattern is on sale for just a few days longer!    ...

Read More

Sweet KM makes a modern awesome Love Your Lunch Box

Sweet KM makes a modern awesome Love Your Lunch Box

Kristi is a personal friend of mine and she is truly as cool and creative in person as she is on her her blog Sweet KM.  She is also a contributor to KCW this time around!  She made this Love Your Lunch Box for her son and it is awesome!  Go check out her blog to learn how she dyed this fabric herself AND leave a blog comment for a chance to win a lunch bag pattern for...

Read More

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series: Endlessly inspired sews a Waste Free Tote!

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series:  Endlessly inspired sews a Waste Free Tote!

The sewing inspiration continues!   Jennifer Young of Endlessly Inspired brought her sewing machine out of the closet and sewed up an adorable Waste Free Lunch Bag for her 2 year old.  Jenn's blog is more about crafting and parenting than sewing, but we may make her into a convert after this adorable creation!  She can do it all!  Head over to Endlessly Inspired to see more of her cute bag and leave a comment for a chance to win the Waste Free Lunch Bag pattern for...

Read More

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series: By Mary sews a vintage inspired Owl Bag!

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series:  By Mary sews a vintage inspired Owl Bag!

Today we have Mary Emmens sewing up a really fun Lola Owl Bag.  Mary has sewn up several of my patterns in the past and I always admire her beautiful attention to detail and vintage style.  Her quilting and piecing are amazing!  If you are a quilter, you need to start following her blog!  Mary sewed up a great looking owl bag from the Lola Owl Pillow sewing pattern.  Head over to her blog to see the details and leave a comment for a chance to win your own Lola Owl...

Read More

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series: Lego Lunch Box from Girl Like the Sea

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series:  Lego Lunch Box from Girl Like the Sea

I am having so much fun with this sewing series!  Today we have Tara Fauls from Girl Like the Sea.  Her blog is fresh, natural, a little bit funky.  I have really enjoyed looking at all her sewing lately!  Tara is crazy talented.   She made the coolest lego Love Your Lunch Box pattern for her husband.  Go over to her blog and check it out!  Leave a comment for a chance to win your own copy of the the Love Your Lunch Box...

Read More

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series: If Only They Would Nap sews her boy a Penguin

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series:  If Only They Would Nap sews her boy a Penguin

You may not even know that I have a boy in my house with all the girly things I show here on my blog.  But today's sewing guest is all about boys and she does a beautiful job.  Jess of If Only they would nap has FOUR boys and she is all about stitching up fun and unique things for her little guys.  She chose to make an Annie's Penguin for her lower middle (I can say that because I have a lower middle too!).  Go check it out over at her...

Read More

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series: Skirt as Top sews for her Spider Man Lover!

Holiday Gifts Sewing Series:  Skirt as Top sews for her Spider Man Lover!

I was so happy that Kristin from Skirt as Top agreed to be part of my handmade gifts series!  She is so stylish and talented!  Her kids clothes have so much personality and I knew she would create something unique and useful.  I love the bag she made for her little man-  a great take on the Love your Lunch Box!  Head over to her blog so see more pics of the bag and leave a comment for a chance to win the Love Your Lunch Box...

Read More

One for the Boy…

One for the Boy…

My poor boy.  His sisters get new stuff from Mom all the time but the last time we went somewhere, he had to pack his stuff in a reusable grocery bag!  If you have a boy, you will know that they just don't seem to care about that kind of stuff.  At all.  They care a lot if their sisters get more bacon than them on their breakfast plate, but not so much about sisters getting new handmade clothes or duffle bags.  He needed this one though-  Our lake trip is only a week away and now he can pack his bathing suits in a duffle bag instead of a grocery tote!   The fabric is  AnnKelle's new funbots in royal.  It is so so so cute and fun.  Kelle's fabric makes everything adorable and the kids are always so happy.  I swear, all the favorite kid things are made from AnnKelle fabric.  AND- Cal loves the new bag!...

Read More

Cal’s backpack

Cal’s backpack

When I picked up Cal from preschool on Tuesday he actually asked me to make him a backpack. WHAT??  He is not interested in my sewing for the most part- except actually the machine itself.  He likes that a lot!  So we came home and I fawned all over him and we chose fabrics together (aka I picked out the fabrics and he happily agreed).  In a couple hours we had a cute backpack!  This morning, we walked the girls to the bus and I took pictures of him.  He was so proud. This is the toddler backpack from made by Rae.  I have lost the actual instructions and now only have the pattern pieces left.  They must have been on my old computer.  After making this I realized that the last time I made one was for Elsie going to Kindergarten. The blog post about Elsie is here.  That was my second blog post ever and I laughed when I saw my formatting troubles.  She looks so little in those pictures and was so excited about her first day of school.  It would have been nice to have the instructions and I am sure if I had emailed her, she would have sent me another copy but Miss Impatience decided I could handle it on my own.  No serious problems but I am sure that clever Rae has it all worked out perfectly.   I added a simple zipper panel to the front.  I used some more of my AnnKelle fabric.  So so cute!  The sides are green duck cloth and the striped is a decorator weight from the Joann clearance section. Thank you all for your help on my bunny!  I replaced the eye with smaller buttons and I am now playing around with embroidering a nose.  I also bought some BEAUTIFUL fabric from Amy and I am working on another version of the 3 layer clutch.  I don't have that pattern out of my system just yet.  I just love watching it all come together and this Heather Ross fabric is making such a pretty spring version.  What are you...

Read More

Hooped Valentines

Hooped Valentines

Whenever I see embroidery hoops at the thrift store, i gather them up in my basket.  They are addictive!  I have too many now and it is time to start using them up.  I thought Valentine's day would be the perfect time to get started! These are on our stocking nails which I thought was the perfect place.  The idea began as just hearts with fun fabrics and I could practice my embroidery stitches.  I then changed them into including envelopes to encourage valentine notes (more about this later). I made Cal's first.  I also tried chain stitch for the first time.  Remember when I made the quilt I said I was trying to flex my crafty muscles?  Well this is about doing that again.  The stitching is a little messy and the fabric choices are a little more country than I usually like.  I was going for boyish though so this is what I got… Not bad.  He likes it- especially the truck. Next came Elsie's valentine hoop.  She is 7 and loving purple, pink & girlyness in general (You would never know she loves getting dirty in the garden and pushing kids over on the soccer field). Again, I wanted to practice some new things here so I used Jessica's felt flower tutorial (fun and EASY) and worked again on the chain stitch.  It turned out nicer this time!  Loving the chain stitch.  I also told Amy recently that I didn't know how to use trim so I stuck some trim ribbon in the corner.  Hmmm?  Not sure about that choice but I DID use some trim! Finally came Anne's which is my favorite.  She wanted (after my suggestion!) a rainbow theme.  I tried all sorts of different ways to get the look I wanted and then remembered this technique that I saw on pinterest.  It worked great and I loved the final look. The rainbow and thrifted crochet doily took up the entire hoop so I added this simple duck cloth envelope to the bottom.  The heart is made from wool felt and then I used my embroidery threads to do a simple stitch to mimic the rainbow colors.  Whole lotta cuteness.   And one more shot of the rainbow.  Wouldn't this make the sweetest baby quilt on a biger scale?   The kids are really excited about these.  Valentine making and giving has been at an all time high. Aren't they cute?  You would never know with all this love going around that I had a crazy meltdown last night after I had to clean up yet another HUGE valentine making mess.  This time included glitter EVERYWHERE.  I yelled at them that I was going to...

Read More

This little boy doesn’t care about sewing equality for all…

This little boy doesn’t care about sewing equality for all…

I know I am not the only one to say this, but I almost never sew for boys.  I get requests to make things for boys and I kinda cringe since I know I will have to search and search through my fabrics to find something that is boyish enough and not ugly or boring.  Usually I just say no, but about 2 weeks ago, 2 different people requested items made for boys.  AH HA!  An opportunity to buy fabric!  I  bought some Henry Alexander 2D zoo I had been eying up and added some plaid and solids for a cute combination. I set up to take a picture of my newly made crayon art folio and art caddy tote and Cal happened to be walking by.  I noticed that he matched the photo shoot.  So, I asked him to come over and look at the things I made.  I figured he might pick up the crayon hold and try to take out the paper pad.  Not so!  It was hilarious.  He is TOTALLY un interested in anything I sew for him.   I had to ask him to touch a crayon so it at least looked like he liked this "boy" stuff.  He agreed but only if he got to keep holding his new zamboni and steeler beads.   I said, "drop your beads and zamboni in the bag and get them out."  He looked at me like I was crazy.  Why in the world would he put his new beads in that silly bag?  I said "I'll look at the new tractor catalog with you if you put the beads in the bag and then take them out." In an ad, the caption would read  "This little boy just can't wait to check out what is in this adorable zoo fabric art caddy!"   I am hoping the artist bug will hit him soon.  Right now his favorite thing to play with is his big plastic sword and a discarded bungie cord.  The latter has to be taken away from time to time since he tries to swing it at people.  No matter!  He is my baby and I love all this about him.  Moments after this rejection of my sewn items, that quirky little fellow had me wrapped around his finger as we gazed over the new tractor catalog and he told me all the different types of machinery and brands of tractors he likes best. Here are more pictures of these 2 cute items… This fabric was super stinking cute.  I can't wait to make more items from it.  Maybe a lunch box and an extra crayon holder to go in the shop.  Do you...

Read More

Recovering from the Christmas Coma

Recovering from the Christmas Coma

I always feel like I am in a coma on the day after christmas and sometimes it spills into the days following Christmas.  This year I stared off into space and watched movies on the couch with kids for 2 days and finally snapped out of it last night.  Whew!  I was a little concerned for myself.  Dishes piled up, wrapping paper still around, toy pieces everywhere.  Miss Santa may have been experiencing some  post christmas traumatic stress. So, dishes, toys and wrapping paper are still around but at least I went into my sewing room and made something fun.  MadebyRae hosts a celebrate the boy month and I thought it would be a chance for me to make something for my little man.  He loves to carry around his little tractors and I thought it would be cool for him to have a stylish messenger bag that turns into a play mat.  Turned out cute & was fun to make.  Tutorial to follow in a month or so hopefully… and here he is playing … and he wore those Star Wars PJs all day today.  And to bed tonight! So there....

Read More