CELEBRATE THE BOY in February 2010

I am so excited to introduce the theme for February here on Made by Rae:

I will be co-hosting an  E N T I R E   M O N T H of boy posts called “Celebrate the Boy!” along with Dana of MADE for your enjoyment and inspiration!  We’ve both been working very hard to make this happen, so I’m pleased to announce that we have a line-up of over 20 guest bloggers who will be presenting tutorials, roundups, and giveaways for boy-related sewing and crafts on both of our blogs during the month of February!

The boys in our lives often get overlooked when it comes to our crafty endeavors, as it is often harder to find cute and unique stuff to make for them.  So we hope that our blogs will provide an excellent resource for finding ideas when it comes to making things for our boys.

We’d love for you to join us!  Please feel free to take a button for your blog:

or post your pictures in the CELEBRATE THE BOY! Flickr pool!

Stay tuned for more next week!

PS.  Special thanks to Dana for:
a) coming up with this spectacularly-simple-yet-simultaneously-brilliant idea,
b) so kindly inviting me to share the fun, and finally,
c) making the totally awesome graphics!

On the bookshelf

Since I posted a picture of my sewing library here, I’ve had a few requests for a list of my craft and sewing books, so I put together a shelf on Goodreads. I like the site a ton (it’s amazingly easy to find books and so fun to read everyone’s reviews) but if you see something you like, I hope you’ll support your local bookseller or check it out at the library.

Rae's sewing-and-crafts book recommendations, reviews, favorite quotes, book clubs, book trivia, book lists

I’d also like to point out that a rating of 3 stars means “I liked it” with a rating of 5 stars meaning “It’s amazing!” so these are all books I’d recommend!

Posted in book

The Easiest Heart Garland. Evar.

When the going gets rough, you know it’s time for an easy craft.  Cue: felt.  And if there’s anything my elementary school education prepared me for, it’s cutting out hearts (and I know that may sound suspect coming from a high school teacher, but I don’t mean that as a diss).  It’s downright therapeutic.  Just fold the felt and go to town with the scissors, machine sew them together in one long string, and voila, heart garland!

Construction hint: I thought it would be easier to go pointed side first, but turns out I was wrong.  The presser foot does better with the top side of the heart than the point.

I had the idea for this after seeing these at Shim + Sons, but I feel this must have been done somewhere else before…maybe Martha (which, now that I have AdBlocker, is much much more enjoyable)?  I don’t know.  The felt came from Heather Bailey.  And I have to also mention: those lovely pieces of lenticular art above the mantel were Mr Rae and my Christmas gifts to eachother last year.  They are both from the Science Shows You How series by our friend, Detroit artist Chris Dean
If you’ve made a Valentine’s Day garland, please share!

Oceana Tote for Craft Hope

If you want a chance to own the Oceana Tote (blogged here and pictured below), it’s headed over to the Craft Hope shop (virtually that is) to help Doctors without Borders in Haiti.  According to the Craft Hope website, it takes about 24 hours for them to post each item, so if you’re interested you’ll have to watch and pounce.  And maybe this is overly ambitious, but I’m pricing it at $80.  I figure it can’t hurt to aim high since the entire purchase = a donation. 

If you think you would like to donate something to Craft Hope, the instructions are here.
Related: Some of you have emailed asking if you may use my patterns for Craft Hope donations, and the answer is yes.  Please feel free to use my patterns for the Haitian relief efforts, and honestly any other humanitarian cause.  No need to ask there, I say!

Ooh look at the pretty trims! (say it like Mrs Bennet)

I almost quit sewing for good the other day. I was on yet another sample for this pattern when I realized I had royally botched not only the sample in multiple places, but the pattern itself, the instructions, and oh yes the graphic embedded in the pattern instructions. I may have even thrown the sample against the wall, which by the way was vastly unsatisfying as (tends to be the case when sewing) it failed to break anything, dent a wall or even make a noise.

Later I sat at the kitchen table with my seam ripper tearing seams while Elliot ate his snack. He looked at the mess and asked “What you doing Mama?” and I thought, “My thoughts exactly!” It’s on the floor in a pile right now. I’ll get to it later.

Sometimes I really need take a deep breath, sit back and evaluate what I’m doing. With only a couple of hours post-bedtime to sew and email every day (unless I’m very lucky and they both sleep at the same time, which by some miracle they happen to be doing right now… doh! Don’t jinx it Rae!!!), I have to be really careful about what I choose to do with that time. I want to make sure that I’m enjoying it. It’s still a hobby for me, not a job, and so when it stops being fun, I need to take a break. How do you prioritize your projects? It’s something I struggle with constantly.

I’m providing you with that lovely picture of my favorite trims up thar to give us all hope that beautiful things will again appear on this blog. Based on the number of WIPs lying around me right now, it might happen in the next couple of days. But if not, I want to let you know that I am currently working on something with a slew of other bloggers for the month of February (will tell more next week) that is going to be very very fun!

UPDATE 4:04 PM: Have just been to the long thread, and how about this great little craft for those trims?

Posted in at home

Happy New Year!!!

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas. These are a few shots of the kids in their Christmas outfits for you to enjoy.

Also, new header for 2010:

Here’s to crafting in the new year!