I am generally not a resolution maker. I think I’ve made them occasionally, but they never really pan out. I’ve been thinking a lot the past few days about good goals to have though. Things that are a bit more short term, and not crazy ambitious and probably unreachable like hitting the gym 3 times a week or cutting a bad food from my diet for the entire year. So here are my ideas for January…if they go well I’ll renew them for February or adjust accordingly.
Fitness: I’ve had a Fitbit for a year, and I love it and wear it every day. My Fitbit goal is set to get 10,000 steps a day which working a desk job can be hard and probably only happens once or twice a week (if that). Fitbit is doing a January challenge and setting small weekly goals. I figured why not follow along with them and give that a try. Also a longer term goal: this year I would like to do another triathlon or if that doesn’t pan out I’d like to run a 5K race.
Healthy eating: Nate got me some sweet new Bento Box accessories for Christmas, so goal is to make use of them and pack some really tasty lunches this month.
Reading: I’m going to read two books this month. Maybe more! I love reading I just never do it enough.
Creativity: Finish a project or two. I’ve got a painting project, an ornament project, a couple crochet projects, and probably other things I’m not thinking of. So there is plenty to do!
That’s probably good for this month. Did you set any resolutions or goals this week?
I attended a baby shower this past weekend, and the couple isn’t finding out what they’re having. I discovered that it’s kind of hard to find cute gender neutral baby fabric. When I make the taggies I like to buy the quilted fabrics because they end up looking really nice without too much work. I was fully prepared to make my own mini quilt, but luckily I found this cute animal print and brown set that hopefully is neutral enough.
She registered for some nice little bins, so I cheated on the wrapping.
My super talented friend Elyse asked me late last summer if I would be interested in putting a bunch of their t-shirts together into a comfy blanket. I was hesitant at first, but she convinced me that they didn’t want anything too fancy and that I could take my time with it. I finished it all up last week (seven months to the day), and I love how it turned out! I kind of wanted to keep it for myself!
T-shirt Quilt/Blanket tips and what I did:
- Iron interfacing to the back of each shirt square. It takes some extra time, but is very helpful when sewing on the really thin shirts.
- I used fleece for the back of the quilt, and I didn’t use any batting or extra layers of fabric on the inside. Elyse wanted it to be pretty lightweight (like a throw), and I would say it’s borderline heavyweight with the fleece alone.
- After getting the quilt sewed together I added a stitch (see the detailed pictures above) around the entire outside edge of the quilt. It really gives the quilt a finished look since I didn’t use any binding.
- I “quilted” down the seam of each column. The stitch is in the ditch, so unless you look really closely you don’t even notice it on the front. This holds the front and back securely together.
- My steps for the front were: wash and iron shirts, outline a square that I want to cut, trim shirts a bit bigger than the square, iron interfacing to the back of each shirt, trim down to my outline, arrange squares in a good layout, sew squares together in rows, sew rows together.
When I delivered the finished blanket Elyse’s husband Ryan said, “Oh I’ve been looking for that shirt, and that one!” (Elyse reminded him that he’d okayed all the shirts included in the quilt.) After a weekend of spring weather it’s turned cold again today, so hopefully they’re enjoying their re-purposed shirts!
I love washi tape. I bought a roll of it when I was in Japan thinking it was really cute tape and I could use it to tape up a box to ship home. After trying to tape a box closed I thought man that’s some crappy tape! Now I know what washi tape is and I keep kicking myself for not buying more when I was in Japan, but back then I don’t think any of us Americans knew what it was!
I’ve been wanting to buy some rolls for a while now, but they’re so dang expensive and I’m cheap. Wandering around Target last month though I stumbled across Up & Up brand Paper Tape which is essentially the same thing (although I’ve heard not acid free). The best part about the Target Washi Tape is that it’s $4 for 4 rolls! They have a red/pink pack, an orange/yellow pack, a green/turquoise pack, and a blue/purple pack. I thought they were so fantastic that I bought a few packs and gifted some friends with a roll each. I’ve also been using them to fancy up Christmas and birthday gift wrapping.
As I write this it’s the beginning of September, however I’m going to have to wait until Christmas time to post this because it concerns Christmas presents. I love the Christmas season, and for quite a few years now I’ve been making gifts for friends, family, and co-workers. My rules are the gift ends up being fairly low cost and I make it. Among other things I’ve made jars of granola, little clutches, pies in jars, and my mom’s wheat bread.
This year some friends and family will be getting sets of these little hair ties. Anthropologie sells sets of 5 for $12, but they are super cheap and easy to make. I think they look much cuter on your wrist than regular hair ties too.
Fancy Hair Ties
Fold over elastic (I bought mine from www.hobovian.com, but you can find it all over Etsy under fold over elastic or FOE)
1. Cut the elastic into strips around 9″ long (5 yards will make you 20 hair ties).
2. Fold in half with the shiny side out and knot the end. Try and get the knot pretty close to the end of the elastic and pull it tight.
3. Run a flame over the cut ends of the elastic to prevent fraying.