Thursday, April 30, 2015

Fabric Bird House Tutorial

Earlier this month I made a fabric bird house to store my sewing notions in beside my favorite chair.  I had so many requests for the pattern so I promised to do a tutorial on how I made it.  Since I have a little girl who visits frequently and is constantly emptying my little house so that it can store small dolls, I thought I would make a second one just for her. 


Let’s start with drawing the pattern.  You should be able to click on the photos to enlarge for the measurements.

We are then going to cut the pattern out on a stiff fusible interfacing.  I am using Peltex for mine.  At this point you could cut each piece separately, but I do mine in one piece – gently scoring on the fusible side of each line in the center 6”x4” section that will eventually be turned to shape the house.  If you have cut the pieces individually, you will lay them out right next to each other when fusing to the fabric.

Next you will cut your fabrics for the outside of the house.  My fabric – the yellow – will be cut at 12.5”x6.5”.  The end fabrics – the zebra stripe – will be cut at 7”x5”. 

Fold the 12.5” fabric in half lengthwise and mark center.  Likewise, fold the end fabric in half along the 5” side and mark the center. 

With 1/4” seam allowance, sew the end fabrics to the center, matching center folds that you just made.  This will form a cross shaped piece of fabric.


Clip at point where seam starts so that the main fabric can be pressed open.


Place the fusible interfacing on the wrong side of fabric – matching the seam lines with the mark on your pattern that will now form the ends of the birdhouse.


You will notice that you will have 1/4 inch overlap for sewing.  This keeps the interfacing from being sewn into the seam.


Trim the ends by cutting with the additional 1/4” seam allowance.


You are now ready to sew up the sides.  With right sides together, bring up one side of front and join it to one side of adjoining side panel.



I sew from the top down using 1/4” seam allowance.  Repeat for next three sides and you should now have a rectangular shaped box. 


Turn right side out.

Place to the side and it is now time to start the lining.  I used one piece of fabric for mine, but you could always repeat the technique to make the ends a different fabric. 

Take your original pattern and lay it on the lining – cutting it out by adding 1/4 inch all the way around.  Again, bring the sides up and sew the same way as you did the house, forming another rectangular box. 


Now for the fun part…. place the outside of the birdhouse inside the lining with right sides together. 

Wiggle to match all seams and sew all around the top – leaving about 4” open on one side panel to turn right side out.


Trim the top points and gently turn right side out.  This is a little fiddly, but work slowly to pull it all through.  Slip stitch the opening closed.
Every house needs a roof so here we go.  This is much easier. 

Cut a 7.5” piece of the fusible interfacing.  Cut (2) 8” pieces of roof fabric – mine is the black and white check. 

Fuse interfacing on one piece in the same manner as the house – leaving 1/4” seam allowance.  Stitch all the way around – leaving about 4” open for turning.


Turn right side out and slip stitch opening closed. 

Slip stitch roof to main house.  I did mine down from one point of the roof, across the side, then back up to the other point.  This allows the top to be opened like a box. 



For a closure on the other side, I made a small loop with narrow elastic and sewed it to the roof – adding a button to the house to close it.



Decorate as desired.  I added a button and a welcome sign, but I think a grommet would be darling too. 

Enjoy your birdhouse.  Please ask if you have any questions.


Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Have a Latte



Welcome to my day of the Have a Latte Blog Hop.  A million thanks to Madame Samm for another wonderful hop and also to Joan for being our wonderful CHEERLEADER for this hop.  Hasn't it been inspiring? 

The great fabrics that I used are from Dan Di Paolo's and Clothwork's line of Have a Latte fabrics.  They were such fun fabrics and the colors are sooooo me!  

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Shortly after this hop came into being I had an e-mail from Jamie of  Busy Bee Quilts.  She had a book and was wondering it might be something that would interest me.  Wow!!  The timing was perfect and she mailed it off to me.  Aren't blogging friends the best?  The paper pieced teapots became coffee pots to me.  Anyway,  the dancing pots quilt ended up at 60" square.  I love the pots with their little buttons for lids.   

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This is my fussy cut center pot.

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This is the back with a solo coffee pot.

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I’ve had this mug forever and it was perfect for the hop so I made a mug rug to go with it.

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Thanks so much for stopping by for a visit.  Please be sure to visit the rest of the participants to view their creations.

April 13
April 14

April 15

April 16

April 17

April 20

April 21

April 22

April 23

Friday, April 17, 2015

A Bit of Everything

Since I don’t have much sewing that I can share yet I will show you what the week was like around here.
We escaped for a few days to Carmel By The Sea with my sister, brother and their spouses.  It was beautiful – warm and sunny.  Often it is foggy and cold so this was a welcomed change for us. 


I was certain that this charming little house must have belonged to a quilter with the wonderful roof.  In researching it, we discovered it is called Casita de Lemos after the owner of the home who was an artist, architect, printer and apparently creative individual.  I still think it would be a great home for a quilter. 

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We drove up Hwy 1 on our way north and the ocean views were spectacular.  There is one location along the journey that is home to the elephant seals.  The males have already headed north, but the females and the juveniles are in the molting stage on the beach.  There are seals for as far as you can see.

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With our very dry and warm winter, our tortoises came out of hibernation early.  That also meant that the female tortoise laid her eggs early too. 

Head in………

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egg out…….

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She generally lays around seven eggs.  We had to leave shortly after the first egg was out and she had them all buried when we checked on her next.  Incubation takes 90-120 days.

It’s a busy weekend ahead for us with several birthdays in the family.  It should be a fun one. 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Unscheduled Days

My scheduled days this week got canceled which allowed for me to have a little fun in the creativity corner.  Don’t you love it when that happens?  No guilt allowed!

One of my DILs asked me to come up with a spring table runner.  My thoughts immediately went to flowers.

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The exceptionally talented Wendy at Ivory Spring blog had a fabulous Thread Talk tutorial on what she calls her Riley Blake-ish quilted flower.  I thought this would be a perfect time to give it a try.  They are not nearly as perfect as Wendy’s, but they were quite fun to stitch. 

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I also finished up my mini quilt for the ALQS9 swap.  I am calling it "Loose Marbles" because it reminds me of spilled marbles.  I have participated in this swap for many years and LOVE the way this one is handled.  The deadline for participating was extended to April 20th in case anyone is still interested. 


The other day I popped into my favorite “fun” shop (Home Goods) and saw this great storage box.  How could I pass it up?  I can think of a million things to store in it.


……and it is big!

Monday, April 6, 2015

Tea for Two - Last Day

How can it be the last day already?  Haven't we had fun?  I wish to thank everyone who participated in the hop for their hard work and timely completions.  I know that I have been inspired and have seen so many pieces that I would love to own.  You have been a GREAT team!

A special thanks goes out to Cori for the perfect pattern and to Madame Samm for her endless ideas and energy to gather the world of stitchers to share, inspire and motivate us.  

It has been my pleasure to have been your cheerleader through this hop.  Now we can fill our cups for the last time and enjoy it with our Tea for Two-ers for today.

April 7th

Sunday, April 5, 2015

Tea for Two - Day Three


Did everyone have a great weekend?  Are you ready to get back to more Tea?  I know that I am.  Grab that cup again and come along for the fun.

April 6th

April 7th

Friday, April 3, 2015

Eye Candy

Since I have been doing some sewing that can't be shared quite yet, I will show you some pretty eye candy.  Do you remember the NY Beauty blocks that my sister was making?  Well....she sent me a picture of her finished top.  Isn't it gorgeous?  I love the border fabrics that she used.  It is a queen sized quilt.


Having finished that, she said she was ready for some no-curved, mindless piecing and started her next project.  I love this one too.  The colors are beautiful.


We will have houseguests for the weekend so it will be a busy one here.  I hope it is a delightful one wherever you are.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Tea for Two - Day Two

Did everyone enjoy their cups of tea yesterday?  These hops never cease to amaze me with the creativity that is poured out.  I so enjoyed the different takes on the same wonderful pattern.  

We have more tea stops today.  Be sure to grab those cups and sit a spell with today's participants.

We will have a short break but we'll be back on Monday.  I wish a blessed Easter to all who celebrate the day.  

April 2nd

April 6th

April 7th