Thursday, February 17, 2011

Goodwill Wingback Chair

In a previous post I mentioned my wingback chair that I am attempting to reupholster. "Attempting" is the key word here. My crafty friend, Jennifer, saw it at Goodwill and snatched it up for me. Turns out, it's a reclining chair, which makes it that much more complicated. I had looked up ways to easily recover this thing and found great tutorials here and here. But when I found out it was a recliner, I kind of cringed. This makes it twice as hard.

One post mentioned 11 yds of fabric...the other mentioned 5 yds. Of course, because I'm cheap and all, I bought 5 yds and another half yard for a coordinating pillow. Then, I ran to the remnant bin and grabbed up two more yds of green fabric. Love the remnant bin at Jo-Ann's...half price baby!

I had serious issues regarding the fabric choices for the chair. Here were the options.

I ultimately chose the yellow print. I really liked the navy and white but when I saw this yellow Pottery Barn chair on The Creative Maven's tutorial, I started obsessing over yellow.

Man I wish my house looked like this!

I searched long and hard for this fabric. I found some here and there but was all out of my price range.  So I settled with the Jo-Ann's yellow. I'm happy with it. So here is a small picture of all the fabric I came home with, including the remnants.

The gray coordinates perfectly and will look too stinkin' cute as a pillow. I may ad some tufted buttons in covered in the yellow or green fabric for contrast. We will see how much patience energy  I will have after this chair is finished.  The printed green fabric is an upholstery weight, where as the solid green is more of a satin weight.

I would love to post some before pictures, but my phone was going dead so I had to snap the pics on the hubby's phone. When I called today to have him send them over, he informed me that he had deleted them, asking "why would I want pictures of an old chair on my phone?" Um, because I took them for a reason. Really? Not only did I want to post them, I needed them to help me figure out where everything was stapled and where to start reupholstering my "onion". Gah. Men.

Fortunately, I am out of school tonight, tomorrow, the whole weekend, and Monday! Woo-freakin'-hoo! And the weather is beeeautiful! Hopefully I will have that chair finished and ready to enjoy by Monday night!

Baby Blanket(s) Sewing 101

Before my lil' fella was born, my aunt knitted ablanket for him. I also recieved like 100 more blankets at my showers. Really, only like 15, but that's still a lot.  Most of them are really small and he is getting too big for them at a year old. So, when my cousin's baby shower rolled around, my aunt made 3 blankets for her baby, and I got a little J :) So I asked if she could make one for Lil' Man, he was outgrowing the baby ones anyway. I went to Jo-Ann's, muh favorite store, and found some flannel fabric to get started.

Now, I have never sewn before. Except when I was little my grandmother had a fancy schmancy sewing machine that made all sorts of neat seams and designs, as well as letters. She used to let us practice sewing our names on fabric. I still have one of the little pieces of fabric she let me design. Sigh. Oh the memories.

Anyway, back to the story, since I am a beginnner, I asked her to sew it for me. She informed me that for the size I wanted, I would need 2.25 yards of fabric. This would give me a square blanket when she was through with the seams and all. It took me a while to find the perfect fabric, mainly because there is so much cute girly prints there that I couldn't stop looking at them! Ah! So I ended up finding a super cute print that was white with a bunch of different colored shapes and dogs on it. Not too baby-ish.

I ended up the the cutest stinkin' blanket eva! Previously, I had tried to sew a cushion and pillow for the rocking chair in Lil' man's room, and it turned out pretty funky looking. This blanket, however, was puuuurfect! How in the world did she do it? I mean, the seams were flat and perfect!! SO I called her up and begged her to tell me her secrets. Now, I'm sure many people know these secrets, but I was totally oblivious! So I will lay it out for you. I am one that over-analizes everything, and I want directions that are
S-P-E-L-L-E-D out for me so I know exactly what I'm doing, and why I am doing it!

Here goes....

Most flannel fabric bolts at Jo-Ann's are 41" wide and a yard is 36" long. So 2.25 yds of fabric will give you 81" of fabric. When you divide that by 2(because you need a front and back) you get 40.5. Now, by my sinple calculations, that's about as close as you'll get to square. Also, Jo-Ann's fabric has sections at the bottom of the fabric that say "Made exclusively for Jo-Ann's", you will have to work around that. I bought the same fabric for the whole 2.25 yds for the blanket she made. For the blanket I made, I bought two different fabrics.

I'm pretty sure I got a 1.25 yards in each fabric for some wiggle room in case I totally screwed it up.  I didn't cut them to size, I just lined them up and started sewing. I faced them towards each other and sewed a zigzag seam about 1/4 inch from the edge. Any seam will work I'm sure, my machine is ancient and refuses to sew a straight seam, hence the zigzag. 

After I got to the end and my blanket was almost sewn together, I stopped and ironed the edges. My aunt told me that this step is not necessary, but makes the seams flatter and straighter when you flip it right-side out. AND IT DOES. Probably why my rocking chair cushions look like a 5 yr old made them :).  I had left about an inch and half space open to flip it. A bigger space would be easier to pull the fabric through, but then, that's more space I'll have to hold together while I'm trying to sew.  When I get the fabric pulled through and face up on both sides, I have to sew together the opening I left.  So fold the pieces inward to match the other seam and sew it together. BUT before you do that, you need to  decide on what type of seam you want to use for the "border"(that's what I call it, I don't know the technical term). I had to use zigzag of course. My border is about 3/4 of an inch thick. 

You can use that same seam to sew the space and to make the border. I only stopped the machine to turn the fabric for the corners and that's it. I continued all the way around the square until I met the start seam. My blanket(including the seams) ended up being about 39.75 inches and a 3/4 inch border.

 This blanket was easy peasy for real!

I bought 4 more types of coordinating fabric for 2 more reversible blankets, but just haven't had the time to sew them up. When I get a chance, I will take pics of the process which may help more.

Hope this has helped anyone out there. I'm so lucky to have such great knowledge just a phone call away!

(Oh, and sorry for the dark and blurry pics, my camera is not-so-great. Hope to get a better one with tax money. Here's to wishful thinking:)

Monday, February 14, 2011

My First Post! How stinkin' exciting!

So, I've been contemplating on how to start out my first post and what exactly I should write about. Finally, I just decided to start out and give credit where it is due.

I want to share the blogs that inspired me to start my own blog.  The following is a list of blogs that I have kept up with or just come across that have stopped me in my footsteps and made me go "ahhh"! These ladies are so talented and I have even stolen some of their ideas ;). These blogs are the reason my home looks so dang good now!

One of the main ones I started following is Thrifty Decor Chick. L O V E this chick! She has great ideas and is so talented(check out her son's big boy room)! And did I mention?? She's recently DEBT FREE!! Shut up, how many people do you know are debt free?? I have branched off her blog to many others that have linked up with her.

Another I love is Allison at House of Hepworths. Such a great personality and she lives in Texas, which means she's a country girl like meeeee!

Other blogs I love are

Sweet Something Design
i heart nap time
mormonchic (this blog and the next are where I learned how to reupholster my Goodwill chair that is currently in the works)
The Creative Maven
Better After(one of my FAVES)

These are just a few of the maaannnnyyyy I look at each day! I promise I will mention more throughout future posts.

I have more post coming, including the old, stinky Goodwill wingback I've been tackling the past few weekends. It's a booger, I tell ya!

Oh and DUH, HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY! And Happy 30th Anniversary to my wonderful parents!!


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