My boys


I don’t usually include much in the “family life” department on the ol’ bloggityblog, but since there’s been no sewing this week, I thought I’d share this picture from Father’s Day a few weekends ago. Elliot helping Mr Rae assemble a grill at Uncle Don and Aunt Sara’s (“Zahzee’s”) house. (picture by Aunt Zahzee)

Have a Happy Weekend!

Rally, people, rally!!!

Oh my…luvinthemommyhood has been kind enough to feature my Spring Top Tutorial in a Top Tutorial Vote this week. Just yesterday I finally figured out what was going on and realized I’d better get out the vote! There’s too much firstborn in me; I can’t help but get an eensy-weensy competitive. But of course I’m such a doofus, today’s the last day to vote! Durr, Rae.

:: click on image (courtesy of luvinthemommyhood) above to go vote ::

Of course, it makes it so much better to be featured along side of some of my favorite creators in Craftblogland (Dana, Traci, Alexis, and Chris) so I won’t be TOO disappointed if I don’t win…

Anyway, if you have time, go and vote for one of us (translation: me)!

Buttercup Bag Sellers List

Here is a list of fabulous sellers who are authorized to make and sell Buttercup Bags! Please support them by checking out their shops, adding them to your favorites, and buying their handcrafted stuff!

Need a license to sell? You can read more about selling Buttercup Bags or purchase a license here.

Alisia Domer
alisiadomer.etsy.com

Annika in Chautauqua
http://www.etsy.com/shop/AnnikainChautauqua

Barefoot Bags
BarefootBagShop.etsy.com

Bébé Bijou Boutique
http://www.etsy.com/shop/bebebijouboutique

Blue Canoe Farm
http://www.etsy.com/shop/BlueCanoeFarm

CaneelieaBags
http://caneelieadesign.blogspot.com/

Firiona
firiona.etsy.com

Freakadoodles
http://www.etsy.com/shop/freakadoodles

Grams Buttons
gramsbuttons.etsy.com

Greenasian’s Creations
www.greenasianscreations.etsy.com

Gypsy Threads
http://www.etsy.com/shop/GypsyThread?ref=top_trail

Handmade Therapy
http://www.etsy.com/shop/handmadetherapy

Here and There Gifts
http://www.etsy.com/shop/HereAndThereGifts

The Hip Catch
www.thehipcatch.etsy.com

The House of Random
http://www.etsy.com/shop/TheHouseofRandom

J. Stone Accessories
http://www.etsy.com/shop/jstoneaccessories

JSF Creations
www.wix.com/jfrank5427/creations

Justcrafts (ENGLAND)
http://www.etsy.com/shop/justcrafts71

Lily Threads
http://www.etsy.com/shop/lilythreads

Lindsay Nicole Designs
http://www.etsy.com/shop/LindsayNicoleDesigns

Paramount Purses
http://www.etsy.com/shop/paramountpurses

Patch & Stitch (SINGAPORE)
http://patchnstitch.storenvy.com/

The Poppy Grove
http://www.etsy.com/shop/ThePoppyGrove

Pretty Cool Shops
prettycoolshops.etsy.com

Proverbs 31 Crafts
http://www.etsy.com/shop/proverbs31crafts

PurseStrings
www.PurseStringsShop.com
Purses, Bags & Wallets Impeccably Handcrafted. I do custom work.

Sewing Sunflowers
http://www.sewingsunflowers.com/

Stashmonsters
http://stashmonsters.com

Steady as She Goes
http://www.etsy.com/shop/jmaybe

Stitchings by Ellen
http://www.etsy.com/shop/StitchingsbyEllen

Stitchy Witchy Designs
http://www.etsy.com/shop/stitchywitchydesigns

Two Bees Creations
http://www.etsy.com/shop/twobeescreations

[Updated January 9, 2012]

Sellers please note that shops without Buttercup Bags currently for sale, or that don’t give proper pattern design credit (see instructions in your License to Sell), will be deleted from this list. I’d be happy to put you back up once you have bags in stock/you have corrected your listings!

PLEASE let me know if I have missed you (and please know that it is not of any sort of malicious intent, it’s probably that I just misplaced your email!), if you would like to change your info, or if you would like to be added to this list (once you have purchased a commercial Buttercup Bag Pattern from my shop and have bags ready to sell!

VOTING UPDATE

From 9 am-12:15 pm Thursday morning my voting software accepted names but no votes. Unfortunately this means that if you cast your vote during this time it was not counted. Please vote again if you fall into this category!

Voting is working again now and I have been assured by my VP of Programming that it is working correctly. I am so, so sorry for the inconvenience.

If you are unsure if you voted before or after 9 am, feel free to email me and I will let you know!!!

A Little Bit of Quilting: Mendocino Table Runner

I’m working hard on my Spring Tops, determined to make my self-imposed challenge by next week. It’s been pretty exciting, especially when I see the tops that you guys are working on showing up in the Spring Top Sewalong pool and in my inbox (remember to send me your name, top info, and blog link). You can post and send them in all next week too (for more info, click on that Sping Top button over there on the sidebar.

Plus have you seen the great bags in the Buttercup Bag pool and all of the adorable Itty Bitty Baby Dresses? There’s just all kinds of creativity popping up around here. I used to try and comment on all the projects in the pools, but to be honest I simply can’t keep up anymore. If you’ve posted one, please know that I’ve really enjoyed seeing it.

So since I can’t show you any tops yet, here’s a project I just finished (alluded to here), a quilted table runner. My apologies to those of you who actually quilt for the presumption that this actually counts as quilting; having no formal quilt training my abilities are limited at this point to rectangular pieces and machine quilting. Which, surprisingly, one can do quite a bit with actually…


There actually is no separate back piece; that polka-dotted material there is all part of one big piece that wraps around the back. I quilted the small pieces together in a line and then made it into a big tube using the polka-dots, stuck some batting in the middle, ironed it flat and folded the ends over as a sort of pseudo-binding.

The fabrics are all Heather Ross’ Mendocino except for the stripe (Amy Butler Belle) and the dots (Anna Maria Horner Garden Party) and the Heather Ross Happy Campers (which is no longer available; I had a few scraps leftover from the boys’ shirts).


Here are some rudimentary notes from my sewing notebook just in case you’d like to create your own:
- 14 strips: 4″x10.5″ (although I ended up with 13, not 14…not sure what happened there)
- Back/side piece: 21.5″x51″
- Batting: 14×47″
Use 1/4″ seams to sew all together (sew strips first, then trim, sew side seams, press)
Place batting between two sides, pin all layers. Draw zig-zag pattern on with fabric marker, sew. Stitch in the ditch along all seams. Voila!

: : Happy Birthday to Moi : : Placket Tutorial : : Small!

So yesterday was my birthday, but I was too busy opening all of the prezzies that arrived (yay!) and getting ready for a party that I didn’t have time to post…but here’s a taste of the day:

: : Martha Stewart Tissue Flower Decorations : :


: : Birthday napkins by Tag : :


: : Cosmos and Zinnia centerpiece : :


: : Placket Tutorial : :

I want to draw your attention over to the sidebar where you will now find a MadeByRae placket tutorial. Now you too can make a placket like you’ve seen here numerous times! Yay! Please keep in mind that the pictures are large (so you can see more detail) and the presentation is campy.
With that said, I hope at least some of you will find it useful. I have a few others in the works as well; if you have a tutorial request please let me know in the comments section.

: : Small : :

I spent almost an entire morning last week with my coffee and chocolate biscotti perusing the Autumn issue of Small magazine because it is so awesome. If you haven’t seen it yet, do yourself a favor and go take a look. The online magazine is free (!) and they’ll send you an email when it’s up each season. Their stuff is so cute. Someday maybe I could be as awesome as Alicia and get something in there…

Vacation. Flowers. Origami Card.



: : Fresh flowers from the farmer’s market for you to enjoy, dear blog readers : :

(Grown locally, i.e. NOT sprayed with preservatives and shipped across the globe)

Man I had no idea that over three hundred people even read this blog, not to mention would bother to vote. But there it is, 300 of you and counting (wait a second…Mom? Is that you voting over and over just to boost my self-confidence?) have put in your two cents. Or it could be those devilish “automated robots” out there. And yes, that was a dig at typepad…who ever heard of a non-automated robot? Dum-dums.

Thanks y’all for the wonderful comments! It’s really exciting to hear how many of you have been inspired to make tops of your own, and I can’t wait to see them popping up on your blogs. We have been on vacation for the last week and next, so I have to admit to being a little snowballed by all the comments when I finally checked in, especially with all the visitors who dropped in from Sew Mama Sew. I’m feeling really bad about this but I’m pretty sure I’m not going to be able to respond to all of them. I hope you will all stop by again and please don’t feel insulted if you don’t hear from me directly. I will try to be better.

Here’s a little something that I whipped up for my mumsy’s birthday:


No that is not your computer screen, my camera produces that blasted dot in every picture. Ack. Usually it’s not so noticeable.

Here are some basic instructions for those of you who want to try it. I am too lazy to take tutorial pictures (VACATION!) so this will just have to do. At the very worst, do the first four steps and then use the picture to slap the rest together.

Materials:

4 sheets of 6″ origami paper, in different colors
1 plain card
piece of scrap cardstock, preferably matching the card, 4″ square or so.
glue or sewing machine

Instructions:

1. Cut each sheet of origami paper down the middle lengthwise and widthwise to make four 3″ squares from each.
2. Fold each 3″ square diagonally to make a triangle.
3. Turn each triangle into a square as follows: Take each of the triangle’s two smaller corners (the ones that share the fold you just made) and fold them down directly over the other bigger corner, lining up edges. Another way to think about this is that you are taking the two 45-degree corners and nesting them together inside the 90-degree corner. Repeat with the other pieces.
4. First layer: Take four matching squares you just made and put them in the middle of the piece of scrap cardstock, matching their points together. The mid-fold on each square should face up. Sew or glue these to secure them. If you are sewing, you can sew diagonally across each square (sew over the mid-fold, not along it); the stitches will not show once you put the next layer over.
5. Next layer: place each new square so that its tip lines up along the “X” formed by the mid-folds of the squares on the layer below. When you do this, two of its corners should also line up along the edges of the bottom layer. Repeat for the other three of this color on the other sides. Sew or glue in place.
6. Continue layering until you have all four layers complete.
7. Cut out a window from your card using an exacto knife. Trim edges of layered piece to fit inside card. Sew around window of card to secure in place.
8. Stand back and admire card. Then send to loved one.

I leave you with a snapshot from my vacation:

Linkadoos

It’s come to my attention that some of you (Meg!) don’t know what Bloglines is. I read so many blogs (including those belonging to those of you who comment here) that I like to have a nice organized way to keep track of them all. My dear seester Elli introduced me to it a long time ago, back in those dreary days before I’d ever read Angry Chicken. Maybe you will find it useful. Or maybe not.

Here’s a few of my new favorites that I’ve bookmarked recently:

Disdressed by Liesl who designs the Oliver + S patterns and paper dolls

True Up which is all about fabric; also posts all the current fabric sales she can find

Orangette – yummy looking recipes and really beautiful pictures of food

Flour – vintagey children’s clothing, awesome ruffled collar tutorial that you’ll be seeing here next week!

Ta-dah! Clothespin holder


I’ve heard many other new mothers suffer from anxiety over things they have little to no control over. My issues are global warming, toxic plastics (like those containing bisphenol-A and PVC) and other environmental toxins from things like mattress flame-retardants and cleaning products.

On a few occasions when Elliot was really little I had this feeling like the house was caving in on me as I realized that it was not possible to eliminate all potentially deadly factors from my baby’s environment in one day. It did not help that I spent every nap reading Healthy Child articles (a website I had found, ironically, in the eco-issue of Elle last year. WARNING: If you are pregnant or a new mother do NOT look at that site until you are absolutely sure your hormones will not cause you do something rash like throw everything in your house into the dumpster. I cannot be held responsible for ensuing mayhem).

I still care alot about these things, but it does help a ton that my hormone levels are pretty much back to normal. You have no idea how serious I am about that. It also helps (really) to tackle things one step at a time. So one thing I did was put up a solar clothes dryer (a.k.a. retractable clothesline) to help cut down on our energy use. I heard somewhere that running a dryer for one cycle costs about $1, and when you use it during the day, you’re more likely to be purchasing energy from backup power plants which are older and give off more pollution and carbon dioxide (can anyone confirm this?). So I at least feel like I’m helping with the whole global warming thing a little bit. And now that I’ve got this handy-dandy clothespin holder, I can stop rummaging around in the ground-cover for dropped clothespins. Man I can’t believe I waited so long to make one of these. Night and day we’re talking here, people.


Fabric: Michael Miller cotton laminate (you may remember previous projects from other prints), which is waterproof on one side.

Pattern: I just cut out a couple of pieces of fabric and then found a round cup to trace for the hole and corners. The hanger pieces are rectangles which I put snaps on with my snap press.

Finishing: Lime green double fold bias tape, which is about 1/4″ wide and can be found at just about any JoAnn’s.