Monthly Archives: October 2013

Sock Monkey Hat

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Sam decided that she wants to be a sock monkey for halloween, so we looked on line for inspiration. We found a few photos to choose from, but this is the one she liked the most…So,this is what we are aiming for…

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We went to Fabricland last week and we bought red, beige and brown polar fleece, and we also bought some tule for the skirt.
So, to make the hat, we started with a hat she had already. I turned it inside out, laid it down on some old wallpaper, and I traced around it, estimating the dart on the top…

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Then, I cut out the pattern and I pinned it and cut it out of the polar fleece. (I folded the polar fleece in half, to cut out two pieces) I decided to make the hat lined with red polar fleece, so I started with the lining. Then, I sewed the dart and around the sides to connect both pieces together.

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Then, Sam tried on the hat, and I made a couple adjustments to make it fit better.

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Once I was satisfied with the fit, I cut out another hat out of the darker fabric using the same, adjusted pattern.
Then, I used the pattern to cut out a curved white stripe to become the monkey’s hat.

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Before I sewed down the stripe, I roughly cut out a snout out of white and mouth out of the red. I pinned everything to the hat, then, she tried it on again. I wanted to make sure that everything was in the right place.

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Then, I sewed the darts on the brown fabric, and sewed down the white stripes.

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I trimmed off the white stripe, by using a sharp pair of scissors to clip near the seams.

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I then realized that I almost forgot the ears! (should have thought about that before!) I cut out four ear shaped semi circles and sewed around the perimeter, leaving one side open

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The problem was, I couldn’t figure out how to attach them…I decided the easiest way was to cut a slit at the end of the darts. Next time I would make a slit in the pattern to accommodate the ears, but this seemed to work fine.

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So, what I did was slip the ears into the holes so they were on the right side of the fabric, and sewes a narrow seam to attach them in. Here is what the seam looked like from the outside…

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Before I sewed the side seam, I thought now might be the easiest time to add the pom-pom, so I cut up a bunch of thin strips of the white polar fleece…

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I tied them together in the middle…

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Then, tied them tight, and to neaten it up, I trimmed the ends so they were even…tada, polar fleece pom-pom! Here is what it looked like before and after trimming…

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Next, I sewed around the center front and back, and I pinned the ties of the pom-pom to attach it at the very top….

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It’s starting to like like a monkey now! Next was the mouth, I pinned the mouth in place, sewed around the perimeter. Be sure to leave space at the bottom for the seam.

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Time to put the inside and outside together! I pinned it first, then left a spot at the center back open in order to turn it right side out. Be sure you have pinned right sides together…

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Then the final step was to turn it right side out, sew on some button eyes and stitch the hole closed…

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And… Here it is!

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Now, I wish I could say that the costume was finished… but yesterday I made the hat, shirt, pants, skirt, and a matching monkey…yes, I know, the monkey wasn’t really necessary, but look how cute it is!

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So, I managed to get everything done in time to go trick-or-treating on Main Street yesterday afternoon. The bad news is I didn’t have time to blog about every piece as I made it…. sorry! I will tell you that I used a pair of her pants, and a shirt the help make the patterns. By the way, you like Dylan’s costume…he decided he wanted to be a grampa!

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Three ingredient fudge

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Like the title of my post said, this recipe has only three ingredients… 2 tablespoons of butter, 2 cups of chocolate, and 1 can of sweetened condensed milk. And, it is ridiculously easy to make….you just melt the chocolate, then mix everything together. So the other night, when I had a craving for fudge, it was actually faster for me to whip up a batch than to drive 5 minutes to the Chocolate Factory (for real…there is a Chocolate Factory Store five minutes away from us, on Main Street… we are regular customers) So after I put the kids to bed, I went straight to the kitchen…
Anyways, for those of you poor unfortunate souls who don’t have a Chocolate Factory five minutes away, here’s a recipe.

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Dump everything in a pot and melt on low heat. I ended up using a cup of milk chocolate pieces, and I added a cup of semisweet chocolate chips. I also added two tablespoons of butter.

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I lined the pan with parchment paper first. (That way it would take less time to get it out of the pan and eat it. That’s me, planning and thinking ahead for the future!)

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Here it is, melted. If you can actually wait until it has melted to taste it, try a spoonful…(come on, like you weren’t thinking about it already)

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Then once you have mixed everything together, pour it into a pan….

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Now, here is the part I didn’t really think through before I made my decision not to get in the car to pick up fudge…you have to wait for it to harden! Dang.
The recipe says 2 hours, but I can tell you now that 2 hours of cooling time didn’t happen. Its good to eat after an hour, even if it is a little gooey!

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This recipe turned out so well, that I had to share some with friends, and bring some to work to share! Yes, that is how little will power I have…
Anyways, it is by far the best fudge recipe I have tried, and also the easiest! Enjoy

How to make a dress from a dress!

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So, the Markham Fair was last week…it was really fun to go there and see our artwork on display. The kids were so excited to find each of their pieces. we even won a few ribbons! My Christmas bag I posted won first place! I think I won $5.00! (we enter not for the financial reward, but for bragging rights) Anyways, one of the categories was to sew an article of clothing out of polar fleece. So, I decided I wanted to make Sam a polar fleece dress….with a little extra.
I have to say that (I have said this many times before) I am a lazy sewer. I couldn’t be bothered seeing if I could find a pattern of a girls dress, so I just found a dress that fits Sam pretty well. I spread out the polar fleece on the floor, and pinned the dress down, making sure it was pretty flat.

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Now, I could have used some chalk, or a fabric pencil to trace around it, but once again, due to my sheer laziness, i grabbed a pair of scissors and started cutting. I cut around the perimeter of the dress leaving about 3/4 of an inch around. I cut around only half of the dress…

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Then, I unpinned it, and folded the polar fleece in half, and pinned it. I did it this way to make sure the dress was symmetrical, and even on both sides.

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And then I cut it out. I trimmed off a little more on the neckline of the front.

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So, I could have stopped there, sewed the side seams and shoulder seams, and it would be a perfectly cute dress, but instead I headed to the basemeent to find my bin of polar fleece scraps…

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So I started cutting scraps…

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And adding stuff…

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And adding stuff…

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Then adding a little more….

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Then I pinned everything down…

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And, I sewed around each

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Then, the trick to sewing polar fleece is not sewing perfetly, but arefully trimming around your stitches
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And…the finished dress!

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And, guess what…the dress won third place!
Sam will be thrilled that she can actually wear it now!