Saturday, February 21, 2009

The Homemade Gifts are Done!

So giving away five homemade gifts from me was really just an excuse to try out some crafty things I'd been looking into. I hadn't yet thought up an excuse to experiment, and this giveaway was the perfect chance! So for those lucky five (Andrea, Monique, David, Angela, and Julie), you get to be my guinea pigs! Now don't you feel lucky?

So the craft of choice for this giveaway was embroidery. I've been trying to decide if I like hand embroidery, machine embroidery, freehand machine embroidery, etc. I didn't want to go out and buy all the stuff to try each one out only to discover I didn't like it. So being the weirdly anal person I am, I read a lot about all of them on the internet. Then a foray into the dusty craft bin led me to discover I had all the materials I needed right here at home! I was soooo excited. Yes, double-sided interfacing got me excited. So without further ado, here are my five homemade crafts.

First off, we have a lovely example of the hand embroidery.

A simple little village-esk scene. The clouds look pink because the transfer paper was red. Note to self: Don't use red transfer paper when you are going to be stitching in lighter colors.

Next up, the repeating pattern hand embroidery. Back in the day when my mom would buy us stichery kits when we drove to California every summer, I knew how to do things like French knots and such. Well, this sure wasn't like a duck to water. I think I had to do each one of their eyes over at least twice. French knots, ugh.

Then I moved on to the applique with hand embroidery. The little wings didn't feel like staying put while I was trying to sew around them. But there is just something about that little "hoot" that makes me smile every time I see it. Then it makes me think "Give a hoot, don't pollute."

At this point I said, forget the hand embroidery. It's too slow and makes my fingers hurt. I need something with more immediate results. So out came the sewing machine. Now, I have no sewing skills. I took the obligatory Home Ec in Jr. high, but everything I sew manages to fall apart at the seams. So pulling out the sewing machine to do anything is quite daring. But let me tell you, I think I'm in love.

I'm tempted to keep this pillow all to myself and make something else to send away. How totally cute is that little apple and pear?!? I sewed them on freehand with my sewing machine. While this is a difficult thing to do when you have a nice, calm crafting area, I am doubly plauged. My "sewing area" happens to be at our kitchen table. And it seems like no matter how involved my kids are in something else, as soon as they hear my sewing machine they come running. I had a kid hanging on each arm while I was trying to sew that. So whichever of the five winners that gets this one, just ignore the squigly line that goes up the right side of the pear. That would be Alex's fault.

And last but not least, the piece de resistance.

My sister saw the pattern for this chicken and fell in love. So I had to make the chicken. And since he's obviously dancing, what other dance does a chicken do beside the Funky Chicken? He's also machine embroidered. I love his little crossed eyes.

This one got a fun back too.

Those are all leftovers from a really hideous quilt I made when I was pregnant with Ella. I am so not a quilter.

And there you have it. Five little embroidered pillows for five of my lucky friends.

And those of you who were too cool to play along (you know who you are) maybe next time you'll think twice. :)

And for those who won, email me your address so I can send these out poste haste! travelgirlut [at] hotmail [dot] com


Chapman Family said...

Where do your talents end??? I tell you what! They are all really cute. My favorite is the owl and fruit! What a fun thing. Okay, so I am blogging it. Ready, set, GO! :)

Dasha said...

i'm just amazed that you found the time to do all that. they look great! i also would love to do more with embroidery but did not grow up crafting so this whole world is just new to me. fun but new and time-consuming. any tips?

Sarah said...

Man. I'm so bummed I didn't play. I love the hedgehogs and owl. -Sigh. That's what I get for being lazy.

Harmony said...

That is FANTASTIC! Seriously, I'm with Mo--is there anything you don't do?

I was going to enter this, but then couldn't figure out what I would make for people. The owl one just kills me--maybe there's an etsy shop in your future!

Great job!

Andrea said...

OH I love them all!! How cool are all of those??!!! Of Coarse I love the chicken the best!!! Those little hedge hog porcupines are adorable too!!