Thursday, April 7, 2016

Little Girl Spring Purses

When I wrote about the tea party I had for the little girls at my house I told you about the purses I made the for them.  I promised a tutorial and here it is!  The easiest little purse you'll ever make!

Here are the supplies you will need:

1/4 yard of fabric for outer bag
1/4 yard of contrast fabric for lining and strap
1/4 yard of batting or fusible fleece
Velcro (both hook and loop)
Buttons for "bling" (optional)

(You can conserve fabric by not doing a contrast, a 1/4 yard of fabric will be enough for one purse, with no contrast.) 


Using the link at the bottom of my post, print out the page of pattern pieces and cut all your pieces from the fabric outer, lining and batting.


Cut a strap  3 inches wide by 30 inches long and a piece of fusible fleece (or batting) 1.5 inches wide by 30 inches long.  If you use the fusible fleece, iron it to the middle of of the strap.  

Fold both edges of the strap towards the center and press well, using a clip or pin to hold in place.  

Now, fold it in half and press again.  I then use the clips (or pins) to hold the fold in place for  sewing.

I like to sew 1/8 of an inch from each edge and then straight down the middle.  It gives a nice uniform look to the strap.  But you would technically only need to sew the long open edge closed. Set aside your strap.

Take your two outer fabric pieces and your batting and layer them together like this:  batting, fabric piece right side up, fabric piece right side down, batting.  

Pin or clip in place.

Sew 1/4 inch all the way around, leaving the top edge open.

Turn right side out, making sure to push out rounded corners.  Press well and set aside.

Repeat the exact same thing on your purse flap.

Cut a small piece - about 1 inch long - of velcro from both the hook and loop.  

Take one of the velcro pieces (doesn't matter which one) and center it about one inch from the bottom of the purse flap.  Zig Zag in place.  

Pin or clip the purse flap to the center of the purse front, the side with the velcro piece facing up.  Sew in place.

Now take your completed strap and pin or clip each end to the side edge of the purse.  Sew those in place also.  (Make sure your strap isn't twisted at the bottom!)

Your purse will now look like the above picture.

Take your purse lining pieces and place them right sides together.  On the bottom edge you will leave about 2-3 inches open for turning.  I place pens so that I am reminded to leave that open.  Sew, leaving the top edge open and the bottom 2 - 3 inches.

Keep your purse lining wrong sides out.  Take your outer purse body and place it inside the purse lining as shown in the picture above.  Right sides will be together.

Pull your purse strap through the bottom opening of the lining, as shown above.

Pin or clip the edges together and sew in place using a 1/4 inch seam.

Pull outer purse through the opening in the lining.  

After everything is completely pushed through, close the opening in the lining with a 1/8 seam.

Push the lining into the purse.  Iron in place if necessary.  Top stitch 3/8 inch from the edge of the purse all the way around the top.  This will hold the lining in place and give it a more finished look.

Determine how far down from the top edge of the purse you want your remaining velcro piece to go.  Center it and sew with a zig zag stitch, being careful to only sew on the front purse and lining and not the back of the purse also.  

Your purse should now look like this!

Your purse is technically finished but I added a little bling to the ones I made.  You can purchase fun buttons and sew them onto fabric yo-yo's that you attach to the side of the purse and also to the flap, covering the velcro stitching.  

(A great video tutorial for making fabric yo-yos can be found here.)

Just that little bit of added embellishment gave the purses a final finished look and made them a little more fun for the girls!

I hope you'll make some right away for those favorite little girls in your life!

Link to my pattern pieces here.  Please email me if you have any questions on making the purses!


Tuesday, April 5, 2016

It's Spring Tea Party Time!

I had the privilege last week of having a little tea party for four little girls, two Mommas, and two Grammie's.

It was such a fun day and probably made even more fun by the fact that I really didn't spend a lot of time pulling it together and I spent very little money.

I went to the Dollar Store and Party City for little junk goodies for the little girls to play with and also to decorate up the tables a little bit!

I made little place tags for each of us by using a Cricut tea pot cartridge, printing up our names and glueing them on.  I already had the cartridge and the paper.

Several years ago I held a Valentines Party at my house and made the table runner and the cloth napkins, so I was able to re-use those again.   I used one of the plastic rings I bought at the dollar store as napkin rings!

I purchased the Tulips at Whole Foods - three packages for $9!

I had crepe paper and tissue paper left over from a birthday party so I made pom ponms and hung them.  Tissue paper pom poms always add such a fun touch, don't you think?

I pulled together some of my old tea cups and saucers, used a few things of my daughters and purchased sugar cubes because Jillian said, "Gram, make sure you get sugar cubes.  You have to have those for a tea party"!

For dessert I made Red Velvet Cupcakes frosted and sprinkled with pink and blue!  You can't have a tea party without fancy cupcakes!

And Cake Pops wrapped in plastic, tied with a bow, and placed in a vintage milk glass add a special touch to the table centerpiece!  I love making cake pops!

Somehow I didn't end up with any pictures of our lunch, but it very simple.  Peanut butter and honey sandwiches cut into hearts for the little girls, Chicken Panini sandwiches for us adults, and a big bowl of fruit for all of us.

The last thing I did was make a little purse for each girl.  I made the pattern myself, they were very simple and the girls loved them.  (I have a tutorial coming soon!)

These darling little barefoot girls are so precious!

I love the above picture of all three older girls focusing on the baby.   Jillian's hand on Ivory's little head is so precious!

We drank tea with our pinky in the air...

slowly stirring...

... and grinning at our first taste of a sugar cube!

The little girls had a really good time at their tea party.  

And so did the big girls!

It was a great way to celebrate the start of Spring!  

Friday, March 25, 2016

Seriously Amazing Strawberry Scones

This week I made some strawberry scones and posted a picture on Facebook and Instagram and I received many comments and emails asking for the recipe.   So for all my wonderful readers, I decided to make the sacrifice and make more scones today...  you know, so I could take some pictures and write about them!

Certainly not because there were none left and I really wanted more!

So, the back story.  I recently cleaned out my freezer and had two little tiny bags of frozen strawberries left over from our amazing May and June strawberry season last year.  We have a strawberry farm just down the road from us that grows and sells THE BEST strawberries I've ever eaten.  (And I'm not kidding about that.)  And since I had that little bag of strawberries on the brain... and scones on the brain, it just made sense to indulge!

So, here is how I made them!

Into a large glass bowl place: 3 cups flour, 5 teaspoons baking powder, 1 teaspoon salt, 1/3 cup sugar. Mix well and add 2 sticks of chilled butter cut into cubes.

Using a pastry cutter, cut your butter into small pea size pieces.  

Whisk 3/4 cup of heavy cream and 1 egg together in a small bowl...

...and add it to your flour mixture.

I also like to add about 1/4 of a cup of chopped strawberries to the dough.  Since mine were frozen, there was also a lot of juice so I didn't need more than that.  If you were using fresh strawberries, you might want to try to mash them just a little bit to get the juice out... it makes the scones so good!

Mix together until it is looks like this.  Kind of mixed together, but yet crumbly.

Prepare a surface to roll out your dough.  I use a pastry sheet, but you could just use your counter top.  Add a little flour to keep the dough from sticking.

It will be very crumbly.

Use your hands to knead in all the crumbly pieces and form a nice ball.

Roll out the dough to a large circle about 3/4 inch thick.

Using a pizza cutter, cut the circle into about 8 - 12 wedges.  I actually like to cut some smaller wedges for me since I don't eat that much.  

Ha!  Kidding!  (Smile!)   I actually cut small ones for my grand-girls. 

Cover a jelly roll pan with parchment paper and place your scone wedges onto the paper.  Be sure to leave a little distance between them so the edges get crispy!

Bake in a 350 degree oven for about 25 minutes until they are firm and a little brown.

Set them aside to cool and make the frosting.  I do not use a lot of frosting, because I like the sweetness to come from the strawberries.  But I do make enough frosting to drizzle over the berries.  So, I only use about 1 cup of powdered sugar, 1/2 teaspoon of vanilla, and a tiny bit of heavy cream... adding a little more as you stir.  You can also add a tiny bit of strawberry juice if you have it left over from your strawberries.    Mix it all together well; you want it to be a bit runny so you can drizzle it.

Place a few slices of strawberries on each scone and drizzle the frosting over each one.

Serve when they are warm!   But, I won't kid you... they are just as good the next day (if you have any left)!

Click here to upload and print the recipe!