Monday, December 17, 2012

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

This weekend, my friend Julie texted me a picture of her kitchen. It was a mess! It's okay for me to say that, because that was the point of her text.  I texted her back: "I see your mess, and I'll raise you mine." and I sent her a picture of my living room. 

I had spent the afternoon sewing some Christmas gifts and the kids compounded my mess as soon as they got up from nap.  Thankfully it doesn't look exactly like that anymore. Mainly because we've had to keep the carpet-area clean because that's where the kids have been eating dinner.  Did I mention that the dining room table is covered in Christmas projects in various states of completion?  The kids have those nice trays there that they like to sit at to eat dinner. That keeps {most} of the food messes off the carpet.
The good news is that I am almost done with making Christmas presents. I wanted to share some of them here, but I don't want the people that I made them for to see them. I can, however, post these with confidence as I am sure there are no children who read my blog (except Frances and then, only when I let her).
I haven't completely finished these yet, but I am pretty close. I am making t-shirts for my kiddos.  I used Word to create a letter on an oval background.  I tried lots of different fonts for these.  My favorites ended up being: Goudy Stout, Gungsuh, Harrington, Segoe, and Showcard Gothic.  I made the oval with a text box over it for the letter. Then I upped the font size to between 300-450 (depending on the letter and the intended recipient) and printed them out.  I took the printouts home and decided on some fabrics from my extensive stash (with a sewing grandmother and other sewing friends, I rarely pay for fabric).  Then I pinned the paper on top of the paper and cut it out.  I set the resulting cloth oval aside and then pinned the paper oval to the coordinating fabric and cut out the letter.  For letters that have an inside (B, A, D in this case--haha!) I took the paper letter and pinned it to a small scrap of the original fabric.  The mid-part of the A, for example, is three layers of fabric.

After I had all the pieces cut out, I put them back together in a stack like you see above and pinned them together. In the case of middle pieces, I put the paper templates back together to help me get them in the right place. 

Next I will use my zigzag stitch on my sewing machine to go around the letters, starting from the middle out.  Once the letter is secured to the oval, I will use the same stitch to sew the oval to the t-shirt.  I have found in making these shirts in the past that sewing one oval onto a shirt is MUCH easier than sewing around a letter like that funky "F" up there!

I have made these shirts for the kids for their birthdays in the past and the LOVE them.  Since I am aiming for a mostly homemade Christmas this year, I thought I would go for initials. I hope they LOVE these just as much.  Plus my favorite part is using the same fabrics for different kids. All the girls have the same pink in their letter. Henry and his cousin have the same background, and Benjamin and our friend "D" have the same fabrics.  I also know that one of those fabrics is from a receiving blanket the kids used to use, at least two of them are from quilts my grandmother made, and another one is from a dear friend. I plan on telling the kids the story of their fabrics when they get their shirts.


  1. I love the idea of a mostly homemade Christmas! Those shirts will be so cute!

    1. I'm hoping to get them completed tomorrow and then I can post a picture! Thanks for stopping by!


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