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Monday, March 31, 2014

Free Spoonflower Template (Inkscape)

Hey friends!
I've seen multiple people ask in FaceBook groups about custom labels to sew onto handmade's a free template to make your own!

First, let's talk about INKSCAPE!

This is a free vector art program that can do so much!  It's basically the free version of Adobe Illustrator.  You can create artwork using shapes, text, import images, etc. and customize the size for any unit of measurement!  

(If this is a brand new program to you I will hold your hand through the process and even give you an extra freebie that has a design already made for you at the end of this post.)

Now, let's talk about SPOONFLOWER

This is the first time I ordered anything from Spoonflower and in my trial and error on getting the sizing and pixels correct for uploading they were there to answer any of my questions through e-mail!

For this tutorial we are going to use the sizing for a swatch (8"x8" which is a square that is 1200px by 1200px..... if you try to change from px to inches in the program it will not come out to be the same because of how Inkscape saves images by dpi..... a lot of that is over my head which is why I was thankful for Spoonflower's help!)

Step 1.
Open the 8"x8" template file that I've created for you
****Open the link, save the file by clicking the little arrow at the top left of Google Drive and then open with Inkscape.****
(If you try opening directly from the link above you will see the grid but it will not be open in the Inkscape program.  You need to save the file to your computer, open Inkscape and in the Inkscape program, click "File" > "Open" > then select the spoonsflowerswatch.svg file that you downloaded to your computer.)

Step 2.
Using the grid lines that I've marked (1" squares) create your own custom artwork that you would like to have printed.

Step 3.
Delete the grid lines in the background by selecting the image and hitting control x
Step 4.
Save your swatch design as a .png
Step 5.
Step 6.
Select "swatch" and the type of fabric you would like to have it printed on.

Step 7.
Order and wait impatiently for your new design to come in the mail!!!

Now, some things you should think about when designing.  Do you want to give yourself enough of a border to fold the edges in and hem?  I didn't hem my edges.  Instead, I used Fray Check to keep my labels from fraying in the wash.
Also, if you are doing folded tags, and plan to sew the raw edge into the seam, allow enough space for a seam allowance.

Here's a look at my labels on my daughter's new Easter Basket!  Look out Pottery Barn!

 If you would like a file that is already made you can download:

Spoonflower Swatch Sample .svg (you can modify)
Spoonflower Swatch Sample .png (ready to upload to Spoonflower)

Comment with any questions and I will respond and help as best as I can!!!


I got my canvas labels in the mail and they are a little smaller than the labels used in this tutorial (I messed up on the sizing!) but I like the consistency better.  I ironed Heat N Bond to the back of the labels so that I can iron them in place and then stitch for extra security.  The HNB will prevent fraying so no hemming or Fray-Check is needed!

Sewing Mama RaeAnna Blog

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Cuddle Bouquet Peasant Dress and Ruffle Pants

Sometimes the weather may not be very warm during early spring but color and comfort can come together for this great outfit!
I had so much fun designing this pattern for my daughter and I hope you are able to use it for a special little girl in your life!  Here in the south we love our ruffle pants and peasant style dresses/tops! 

I used Cuddle™ fabrics to create an outfit for my daughter and I'm happy to share the free pattern and tutorial with you! 

The fabric you will want is:
Many Peasant dresses and tops will use shirring for the sleeves but in the tutorial I will show you how to add 1/4" elastic to the sleeve for quick and easy gathering.

My daughter is complimented everywhere we go when she wears this outfit!

And you can tell she loves to strut her stuff!

We live in Tennessee and there are days that the sunlight is very deceiving!  In fact, the day I'm writing this post we had gorgeous blue skies and sunlight but it was only 24° outside!


Shredded Raglan Shirt

Shredded Seraphic Raglan Tee

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Going to the Zoo, Zoo, Zoo

"We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo!  How about you, you, you?  You can come too, too, too! We're going to the zoo, zoo, zoo!"  Did you sing along?  You're welcome for the earworm!  If you've never heard the song before, DO NOT CLICK THIS LINK!  (<---- I'm serious.  One of the hazards of being a music teacher is that you have silly kids songs always stuck in your head! Of course I guess being a parent of a toddler is pretty much the equivalent! If you do click the link, don't say I didn't warn you!)


Sewing along with Project Run and Play was actually not part of my schedule this time around..... I have a full plate and I didn't know if I could squeeze in the challenges!  There's nothing like a trip to the zoo to get my behind in gear though!  I decided that I would put an applique on the kids shirts before we went on our adventure!  Eva Mae is wearing a cute peasant type dress that I made for a craft fair this past fall - the color combos aren't perfect but I think she looks adorable! 

The appliques are at Planet Applique (Cute Giraffe and Cute Zebra).  I love being able to match my kids and I know it's not going to be too much longer that I can get away with it for Christian! 

I can't believe he will be 5 in July!  Time flies!

Eva Mae looooved the monkeys!  This picture of her is so pretty!  I got a new 50mm lens and it's not the best for a zoo trip (can't zoom in or out) but I'm excited to do more shots like this with more depth perception!

The highlight for Christian was probably the train ride! Now that the weather is starting to warm up I can't wait for more outdoor adventures at the zoo!

Thanks for stopping by today!!!  I have been sewing a lot and can't wait to share some of the recent creations with you! If you're on Instagram I would love to connect with you - my profile is
 I finally have a smartphone!!!
I'm looking forward to seeing all the unique looks this week on Project Run and Play!

(Check out this cool pic I got with my lens!  I love that you can barely tell it's behind glass!)

And since this fishy looks like Dory I will leave you with another earworm:
Dory: Hey there, Mr. Grumpy Gills. When life gets you down do you wanna know what you've gotta do?
Marlin: No I don't wanna know.
Dory: [singing] Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming. Just keep swimming, swimming, swimming. What do we do? We swim, swim.
Marlin: Dory, no singing.
Dory: [continuing] Ha, ha, ha, ha, ho. I love to swim. When you want to swim you want to swim.
Marlin: Now I'm stuck with that song... Now it's in my head.
Dory: Sorry.
Sewing Mama RaeAnna Blog

Monday, March 17, 2014

A Sequin St. Patrick's Day!

Nothing like a last minute project!!!  I had so much fun making this on St. Patrick's Eve that I wanted to stay up late so I could share two fun tutorials for you!

First, I want to say THANK YOU to Cali Fabrics for sponsoring the sequin fabric in this post!  I have several fun projects planned over the next few months to use up my happy mail!
(Fabric was provided for promotional material but my opinions are 100% my own)

These bodysuit embellishments could be made with any sort of semi-stretch fabrics!  Add fabric flowers, buttons, and more to give a bodysuit a little more flair!

Sequin Ruffle Skirt Tutorial

For my size 2T ruffle skirt I used:
  • 18"x4" black knit fabric
  • 40"x4" top sequin strip
  • 30"x8.5" bottom sequin strip

Step 1.  Fold each sequin skirt section with right sides together and sew the side seam.
Step 2.  Turn under the bottom of each skirt section 1/2" and hem in place.
Step 3.  Add a basting/ruffle stitch to the top of each skirt section.

Set aside and we will now work on the knit waistband.

Step 4.  Fold the knit in half so the short edges line up.  Sew with a 1/2" zigzag stitch.
Step 5.  Now fold the waistband in half so the long edges match.  The top of this fold will be the top of the waistband and the raw edges will be sewn to the top of the skirt.
Step 6.  Now, gather your skirt pieces.  Gather the bottom skirt to loosely match up with the size of the waistband.  Gather the top of the skirt section to match up with the bottom of the skirt section.
Pin the waistband and the skirt pieces together as shown in the picture.  All raw edges will be lined up.  The waistband is facing down while you sew around the big circle.  Make sure to sew through each layer.

Fold the waistband up and you have a finished skirt!

I look forward to taking some sweet pictures of Eva Mae in the morning!  Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Sewing Mama RaeAnna Blog

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Tutorial - Jumbo Turtleneck in 20 minutes!

Ok, so it is official that March has come in like a lion!!!  This fun and quick project will be perfect for any leftover Cuddle™ scraps and it makes a comfy and warm built-in scarf to any t-shirt pattern!

What you'll need:
1/2 yard of Cuddle™ (I used Fly Away Turquoise)
Thread and sewing machine!

Step 1
Take your pattern front and back and sew the shoulder seams.  You can measure around the opening or you could take the measurement from the pattern for the neck binding and add 4" to the length.

Step 2
Cut your 1/2 yard Cuddle™ the width of the neck binding + 4" - make sure the stretch is going in the direction you see in the picture.  If you are using 1/2 yard (18") you won't need to cut the height.  Or, if you want a turtle neck that is not so JUMBO you can adjust to your taste!

Step 3
Fold the Cuddle™ right sides together so the 18" sides are matching (your binding + 4" is the top and bottom edge measurement) Sew 1/2" seam allowance with a zigzag stitch.  Finish the seam with a zigzag stitch or serger.

 Step 4
Now fold the Cuddle™ halfway out so the bottom raw edge meets the top raw edge and wrong sides are facing each other.  Sew all around the opening with a zigzag stitch and finish the seams like you did in step 3.
Step 5
Now, starting at one shoulder, pin the Cuddle™ to the t-shirt.  Since we want the turtle neck to fold up and out you will pin the right side of the Cuddle to the WRONG side of the t-shirt.  Here's an aeriel shot of what that looks like.  See how the t-shirt is right side out and I pinned the Cuddle™ to the inside of the t-shirt (the Cuddle™ is against the wrong side of the t-shirt.)  Pin all the way around.  You may need to stretch the fabric a bit to make sure that it's pinned evenly.

Step 6
Sew with a 1/2" seam allowance with a zigzag stitch.

Step 7
Fold the turtle neck out to the front of the shirt!  The Cuddle™ will fold over the seam and will keep it hidden from view!  The inside of the shirt will have a nice finish since there are no exposed seams! 

Finish up sewing the sleeves and sides according to the instructions and hem the sleeves and bottom.  You're done!  Did you time yourself?  Who can finish it under 20 minutes?!  I want to hear how quick it took you!

It's like a built in scarf to keep a little neck nice and warm!

Eva Mae had fun in our snowy yard!  I'm glad we didn't have anywhere to go today!

I had to take a picture of her boot - she was a little upset that there was snow on it!

Here's to hoping the weather will warm up soon!!!  I want to see my pretty daffodils bloom!
Sewing Mama RaeAnna Blog


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