During the winter months I have to really work to stay productive. The shorter days and cold temperatures make me want to curl up with a blanket and a good book. Friday, I found a real burst of energy and began to get some work done. I should have known something would go wrong.
That is the ceiling over my bed. It sprung a leak. I couldn’t for the life of me figure out where the water was coming from as I have an apartment upstairs of me. After checking the obvious, my neighbor, to make sure the water wasn’t coming from his apartment maintenance had to cut open the ceiling. We found the pipes from the boiler which bring us heat and hot water, one had sprung a leak. How would this happen? It seems when the dry wall was hung on the ceiling a screw was too close to a pipe and over the years had slowly worked to puncture a hole. Boiler problems have resurfaced.
My plans were now shot along with the motivation, one sewing project is still here waiting for a day alone to complete. This is only the beginning as only a temporary fix could be done at this point due to the super low temperatures we are experiencing. Once the weather warms a bit repairs will be made, new drywall hung and final clean up. I’m just glad I don’t have to pay for this.
That’s not to say I didn’t get anything accomplished.
I have been collecting kraft paper from the cardboard boxes that are left for me to build new garden beds with. I knew this paper would make great books for the little ones but needed to find some thin cardboard. I sent out the word I was looking for cereal boxes and received a couple of boxes so it was time to make the books and move that pile of paper out of here.
I carefully separated the paper along the dittoed lines then cut them in half to fit the cardboard I received. Once that was done I folded each individual sheet down the middle to keep them together and sewed a tight stitch along that middle crease.
Once the pages were sewn it was time to work on the cover. I pulled out two pieces of fabric, one for each child, and glued the cardboard to the fabric leaving a gap between the two pieces to allow the pages to fit nicely between them. This gap would be determined by the thickness of the paper you want to add. I first learned how to do this using contact paper to cover the cereal box pieces. Not having contact paper, (it’s plastic with toxic glue) I decided to use fabric. To adhere the fabric I used my hot glue gun.
You can see above that once I had glued the cardboard in place I mitered the corners.
I glued both the top and bottom pieces of fabric in place before inserting the paper pages. You can use rubber cement to glue the paper to the cardboard, one sheet from both back and front, but not having that on hand I again used the hot glue gun. Once the paper was in place I reinforced it by gluing the side pieces of fabric down overlapping the kraft paper. That’s all there is too it.
I forgot to take a picture of the finished one for my grandson, but his has green fabric with parrots on it. The children were excited by their new books and took to having us spell words for them they wanted to learn to spell on their own.
While my granddaughter was here I had her try on a tank shirt passed down to me from a friend in a women’s large. I loved the picture of Tinkerbell on it and knew the little one would love it if I could cut it down enough to preserve the design while fitting her tiny body. I can say this one was a success from the look on her face.
Last summer I had bought a bag of fabric from the thrift shop. It was huge and cost me $3. I have used some of that fabric but it didn’t seem to make a dent in it. But one piece of fabric I found in the stash I bought was a piece of red cotton with tiny trees on it. My oldest son wanted a tree skirt and this was already cut ready to make. I found a thick piece of padded fabric I thought would work. Unfortunately, I didn’t complete this when his daughter informed me they already had a tree skirt.
I learned, after Christmas, that the tree skirt is cheap and something they hate and would love to have one handmade. I started with the Christmas piece and added a thick quilted blue plaid fabric I bought from the local florist shop. I find remnants there for $1 to $3 on a regular basis. This one cost me $3 and was larger than the red fabric which made this job really simple. Pin the two fabrics together, sew a simple seam, then turn the fabric around and add another simple seam to keep the bottom fabric from showing and close the opening left to turn the fabric around. Very easy.
I handed the tree skirt to my son when he stopped by. He loved it and it is one project I can check off and has been moved out of the stash pile, and my home.
The plan was to make cloth napkins for my sons’ families as they want to move away from paper products. I had just finished cutting all the fabric that I thought would fit in with the decor of each of their homes when the leak was discovered. In total I have cut 109 cloth pieces which now need to be hemmed. Some are specifically for the children with cute designs, many of them are vintage fabrics which the children will enjoy. But it was at this point with the fabric ready to press and hem the ceiling leak drained me of my motivation or ability to work with the mess.
As I was cleaning up and putting things back after the leak was patched I received a call from a neighbor who had made a beautiful baby blanket on her loom for a newborn nephew but needed help attaching the satin binding. I didn’t mind, hoping it would spur another burst of energy to get back to my own sewing. I had to tell her I didn’t have much variety of thread left so she would need to bring some down. I have never bought my own thread I have simply been using the threads left to me when my grandmother passed away. I was planning a trip to the fabric store to pick up some in a few days. As a thank you she left me with 9 new spools of thread she didn’t need or want. I can put off that shopping trip now.
I hope to get back to my napkins tomorrow. For now I’m still finding flakes of the popcorn texturing from my ceiling and I continue to clean up. For now I can at least be happy knowing the few things I did get accomplished are being enjoyed. I hear the books are rarely set aside for long. The children carry them everywhere including to visit me.