|Ethan and Alanna opening their special pillowcases from Tia.|
Have you recovered?
Cindy made menudo, I made split pea and chicken noodle. We had corn bread and ciabattini with lots of cookie desserts.
I made the rum balls, ginger cookies and cranberry pie. The rest I bought - no reason to go crazy! If I were home I would have hit the deli (DZ Akins), but here I am good with Trader Joes. We then headed out for church that night.
Christmas day was spent at Cindy's with everyone. Lots of goodies and gifts, ending with a great dinner and relaxing.
Then came December 26th. All of it gets put away, cleaned and we return back to normal. We will continue to snack on leftovers, lay around and watch movies, and generally do nothing, but I have to get that put behind me and cleaned up to relax. Now it is time to plan New Years!
But now to tell you about my last minute Christmas project:
I got a crazy idea on December 10th: wouldn't it be great to make the kids a pillowcase for each month (like a banner of the month) with holiday themes and then one bonus for their birthday? Great idea - but there are only 14 days left and I am working five of them. Oh come on, how hard could it be? So off to my stash I went pulling fabrics to create a boy set and a girl set. Note: These are ideas that should be hatched during, I don't know, July? Really. Michael and Chich were giving me the "have you lost your mind" look, but I ignored them.
After cutting out 12, it was time to take a break. I could start on these and continue later. Later like when, next summer? I was still determined. I started sewing and made four. Okay, this isn't so bad.
On December 19th, I still only had four. Time to get going! I made quite a few. But on December 23rd - D-day for gifts - I had 8 left. For six hours I plowed through with the help of streaming video. Done! Let me say it again, DONE!
I was able to make them completely on the machine, and while my method is probably not the "proper way," I wanted to share the process. Seriously, it took me 45 minutes to make one, which isn't bad if you are making ONE. You could make one and put a book inside (use it as wrapping paper) for a birthday gift, which would be a much better idea.
Over 50 kits are available on the website (www.quiltintia.com) so you can get started early with holiday themed pillowcases and not wait until the last possible moment (you can thank me for helping you get started early). They are priced at $9.99 each and include the pattern. But, the directions shown below are step by step - much easier to follow!
Making the pillowcases:
You will need three fabrics: one for the body of the pillowcase, one for the flange, and one for the header.
|Multi-color print is the main fabric, cream is the flange and blue is the header.|
For the seams, I prefer a french seam. If you have a serger, you could just serge the edges all in one step. Or, you could do a straight seam and zigzag the seams closed. It is necessary to finish them off to keep them from raveling.
Using the main fabric, fold with wrong sides together, piece now measures 27" x 20". Sew a scant 1/4" along two of the raw edges as shown. The open end is the opening of the pillowcase.
Turn the pillow case inside out (right sides are now touching). Press. Along the two seamed sides, stitch a 3/8" seam. This encloses the previous seam and keeps all those raw edges sealed.
Using my iron, I fold back the flange fabric at the seam on the pillow case. This crease will be my sewing guide. Could I just measure the main piece and then measure the flange? Yes, but to me this saves a step.
I turn the flange right sides together and sew the ends together along the ironed crease. Now my flange is the same circumference as my main section.
Repeat the process for the header.
Sew along the ironed crease again.
Take the flange section and press the seam open.
Fold the flange lengthwise and press matching the raw edges.
The flange will now be a big loop as shown.
Press the seam open on the header.
Along one of the edges, press 3/8" of the fabric over around the entire circumference of the loop. This will help later when completing the pillowcase.
Time to put it together! Pin the flange to the right side of the main section of the pillow case as shown. The raw edges will match. I line up the fold to the main pillowcase section seam, and the seam on the flange to the fold on the pillowcase. This keeps me from having the seams together and reduces the bulk.
Add the header, pinning it over the flange. The flange is now trapped inside the header and the main section. All the raw edges are still meeting at the top. Ease fullness as needed.
The folded edge should be visible inside (see the diagram)
Stitch a 1/2" seam around the pillowcase.
Press. But not just any kind of press - this is the key to not having your seams show. Press all of the pieces to the opening. This includes the flange (it will want to go the opposite direction).
This diagram shows the seams. All layers and seams are pressed to the header (opening).
Bring the header around to the seamed edge. Since it is pointing upward, you can bring the ironed edged over and enclose it. Pin in place. I bring the folded piece down over the seam about 1/4" so that I do not catch any of the flange in my seam. The blue header is sewn only to the main fabric.
Here is the header pinned in place
I like to flip it over and make sure I have not caught the flange in my pinning (saving me ripping many times).
After sewing, press. This time, press the flange back over the seam (covering it) and away from the opening. This helps distribute some of the bulk and allows more of the header to show.
Seriously, after you make the first one, they go quickly. You will have a nicely finished pillowcase that will be enjoyed for many years!
|Alanna (top row) and Ethan (bottom row) - January - December and a birthday one for fun.|
|It really is worth it. This is the moment we all love, when they receive the special gift!|