Easy Kindle Case

I used to have a hard case for my Kindle. At some point I took it off and I’m sure I’ll never see it again. So I decided to sew a new one. It took about half an hour from start to finish and was super simple.

Materials

  • Two pieces of outer fabric
  • Two pieces of lining fabric
  • Interfacing (optional)
  • Elastic cording (I used an old hair tie)
  • Button

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Start by measuring the Kindle all the way around. Mine was roughly 10″ width wise and 14″ length wise. Now take those measurements and divide by 2. (I don’t know why, but you have to.) Add 1″ for the width and 1/2″ for the seam allowance.

My measurements, after the math, came out to be 8.5″ by 6.5″. Cut two pieces this size of your outer fabric and lining fabric.

If you want to use interfacing for some extra cushioning you can. I used a really light weight interfacing because it’s all I had. I cut two pieces the same size as my fabric and ironed them to the wrong sides of the outer fabric.

Before you start sewing, place your elastic at the center top of one of your outer fabric pieces and tape it down.

Line up the outer fabric with the lining fabric, right sides together, and sew across the top. You might want to go back and forth a little where the elastic is to really keep it in place. Then remove the tape. Repeat that step for the other pieces of fabric.

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Unfold your pieces and line them up, right sides together, and pin. Then sew along all edges, keeping a few inches open at the bottom of the lining so you can turn it inside out.

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Clip the corners if you want a smoother corner with less bulk

Now, pull your fabric through the opening in the lining

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Close the opening in the lining either with your machine or hand sewing with a blind stitch. I used the machine since no one will see it anyway.

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Push the lining fabric in and figure out where you want to place your button, then sew it on.

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And now you have a new Kindle case!

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I Tried To Sew A Stuffed Animal And Failed

My sister is about to have her first baby and she chose a woodland kind of theme for the nursery. I came across a really awesome pattern for a stuffed fox and decided to give it a shot since it would match the nursery. I want to preface my story by letting you know that the tutorial from Stitched by Crystal is amazing! It’s really detailed and super easy to follow. My issue was completely due to my fabric choice.

I didn’t like any of the large pieces of fabric I had for the fox, so I used some scraps I had on hand. They were from old clothes I had cut up and, as I would find out, was way too stretchy for me to work with considering how new I am to sewing. Anyway…

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I cut out all my pieces and pinned them where needed. I started with the face and hand sewed the eyes and nose since they were small and hard to maneuver on my machine.

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Next, I stitched the face to the front of the fox’s body.

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I thought it’d be cute to use a contrasting thread color. You can see how the material has already started to stretch in a few places and pucker.

I worked on the fox’s tail next. It came out pretty well despite my not being able to sew straight.

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I thought it’d be cute to use a contrasting thread color. You can see how the material has already started to stretch in a few places and pucker.

 

 

 

This was the last picture I took of the process because it went downhill from here. I tried sewing the arms and legs but my fabric was so stretchy that each piece moved and ended up not coming out straight. I ended up scrapping the entire thing and am going to get a nice fleece or cotton fabric that won’t drive me absolutely insane to sew with.

Do check out Stitched by Crystal’s blog. She has a lot of amazing and simple tutorials for a ton of projects – for free! I’m going to use her tutorial on how to make a Kindle cover next! After I remake the fox of course.

A Simple Garden Apron

Spring is almost upon us even though it’s snowing and 12 degrees outside, so I decided to get a head start on my gardening. Not with plants, but with an apron. I know it won’t keep me free of dirt, after all, that’s half the fun of gardening, but I did want a place to keep my trowel, hand rakes, scissors, etc.

I pulled out my tub of scrap fabric and found the biggest coordinating pieces I had.

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I used the gray and white fabric for the main apron part (does it have an actual name?) as it was home decor weight, and the yellow and gray fabric for the apron pocket and ties.

Before I go any further, I should tell you that I’m sure I didn’t put this together in the traditional way. I sewed it how it made sense to me, and after all, I’m only using it in my garden so who cares?

I started by pinning and hemming the gray and white fabric, roughly 20″ x 15″ with a 1/4″ seam allowance.

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I didn’t have enough free pins, so the hem was gapping, which is why….

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….you press your seams before you sew!

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Much easier than trying to sew the mess in the first picture

This is where I’m sure I didn’t put this together right, but like I said, it worked in the end. I hemmed the top and bottom edges of the pocket, 21″ by 8.5″, then folded the edges around the main fabric and sewed them together on the right, left, and bottom edges.

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I used the same yellow fabric for the apron ties. I didn’t have pieces long enough, so I had to sew some together.

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I used a zig zag stitch just because I wanted to

The ties ended up measuring about 26″ x 1″. My waist is 30.5″ and the ties fit well since the apron fabric was wide. I cut the ends of the ties at an angle and sewed along all the edges for a more finished look before attaching them to the top of the apron.

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I would have liked for the ties to have been long enough to make one piece that wrapped around the entire front, but you work with what you have. I’m still happy with how it turned out, and I can’t wait for the snow to melt and the ground to thaw so I can use it!

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The finished product!

An Ottoman for our Sectional

A few weeks after building our sectional, we started work on an ottoman. I didn’t take any pictures of that process because I didn’t think about it at the time, but I took a few of how I upholstered the top for a foot rest.

We made the top completely removable so if needed, the ottoman could become a table. I started with a piece of plywood and pieced together the extra pieces of foam left over from the sectional. They were different heights because I can’t cut straight, so I added a layer of cotton batting to the top to try to even things out and make it a little softer.

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See how uneven that left piece of foam is? Gross.

I didn’t have enough of the sectional fabric left to cover the ottoman in one piece and I didn’t want seams, so I got a fabric that closely matched. I laid it out flat and then placed the ottoman upside down on the fabric.20160205_102309_HDR

Then I pulled the fabric taught and used a staple gun to attach the fabric. Unfortunately I only had five staples left, so I used one on each side. I hot glued the rest of the way.

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The finished product is a little rough and bumpy, but hey, we’re going to put our feet on it, so who cares?

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I’ll get more staples and make it better though

DIY Painted Cabinets

My husband went out of town on business for a week, so I decided to remodel the kitchen. Not the entire kitchen, just the cabinets. And my husband knew about it, so it was okay.

My kitchen was by no means unusable, but it just wasn’t my taste. Even after painting it a lighter color and updating the light fixtures, the dark cabinets still made it seem dreary.

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I had plans to use one of those fancy kits where you don’t have to sand or prime because I’m pretty lazy, then I saw how expensive they were and decided I’d rather take the extra time and do a little more work to save $100.

My first step was to take off the hardware and clean it because it was disgusting! I thought I’d be brilliant and save time by just soaking them in some vinegar, lemon juice, and water so I wouldn’t have to scrub them all down. Unfortunately, I didn’t realize they had been spray painted, so when I went to rinse them off, flakes of paint came off too. So maybe don’t do what I did. DO number the cabinet bases and the doors so you know where they go when it’s time to put them back on.

I started unscrewing the cabinet doors when my husband called. I began complaining about how long it was taking and how much my arm hurt because I was too weak to loosen the screws easily. He then asked me why I was using a regular screwdriver and not the power drill. In all honestly, using the drill hadn’t even occurred to me. Apparently I like doing things the hard way.

After the doors were off, I cleaned the bases and doors with a TSP substitute to get all the gross, gooey buildup off the cabinets. I used a sanding sponge on all the surfaces that I would have to prime and then went back over them with a damp wash cloth. *Please wear a mask when you sand. I didn’t and I regretted it.

Finally I got to start priming and painting! I used this Zinsser water-based primer. It says you don’t have to sand, but I didn’t want to risk it. I used a brush to apply the first two coats, but wasn’t happy with the look. I realize it’s just primer, but I was afraid that if the primer looked bad, the paint would look bad.

I went to Wal-Mart and found this Shur-Line foam roller for cabinets and it was the best decision I’ve made since marrying my husband. No exaggeration. Not only did it cover better, it didn’t leave streaks like the brush did.

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So much better already!

I waited for the primer to dry overnight before painting. It doesn’t require a long drying time, I was just really tired. The next day I started painting! I used Dutch Boy Cabinet and Trim Ultra White Interior Acrylic Latex Paint. I used two coats on the cabinet bases and three coats on the doors to make sure I got good coverage. You do have to wait four hours in between coats, but it’s worth it!

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I had to take the doors to the basement so I could paint them all at once. You wouldn’t think small doors would be heavy, but they are! Or I’m just weak…it’s definitely because I’m weak.

While the doors were drying, I spray painted the handles and hinges. I also spray painted my white shoes brown because spray paint travels in the wind.

The next day, everything was dry and ready to be reassembled. I screwed the hinges back on, realized I had spray painted the wrong side, decided I didn’t care, and then put the doors and handles back up. And I could not be happier with the new look of our kitchen!

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I finished this project in four days for about $70. The kitchen looks brighter, feels cleaner, and I even like the look of the counter tops now!

 

 

 

My Husband Built A Sectional

We were sitting on the couch watching television and my husband turned to me and said, “We should build a sectional. It’ll be cheaper than buying one.” And we did. And it was.

Here’s a little backstory for you. My husband and I just bought a house and we wanted some new furniture. We were still using the couch my in-laws gave us and even they didn’t remember how old it was (to put it in perspective, they’ve had two sets of furniture since buying the couch they gave us). It had sharp wire sticking out from the side, green, red, and cream plaid upholstery, and when we moved it, a little He-Man action figure fell out of the bottom. My husband is 27. I’m hoping it was in there for a long time.

We didn’t really come up with any plans other than the dimensions we wanted the sectional to be. We went to the hardware store and bought the supplies, most of the tools we borrowed from my in-laws. Then we got home and started building! *When I say “we,” I really mean my husband. I give credit where credit is due. I took care of the cushions and upholstery, he did all the building.

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I’m not sure what this piece was for, but it needed cutting.

I apologize that I skipped a few steps when it came to taking pictures. I’m not used to taking pictures, but I promise I’ll get better.

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See what I mean? I went from sawing a little piece of wood to having the entire frame built.

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Again, I missed capturing a few steps.

I did help out with the staining which is why it looks splotchy at the bottom. In my defense, I’ve never stained wood before and I don’t recommend doing it in a dark garage. Just an FYI.

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I want you all to know that my sister is a professional photographer and clearly there was not enough of that gene to split between the two of us. Also, plywood is hard to cut with a regular hand saw.

Once we had all the plywood nailed down, it was time to add the cushions. We bought 22″ x 22″ x 2″ foam cushions for the back rest and about 2.5 yards of 3″ foam sheets for the seat cushioning, aka the most expensive part of the sectional.

I had to cut the big foam sheet to fit the seat. I didn’t have one of those cool heated foam cutting knives – like this one – so I used a box cutter and scissors. I wouldn’t recommend this method. Your foam will be uneven, you’re hand will cramp, and you’ll come out looking like the Green Monster because little foam pieces will be everywhere!

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All nice and neat and cut to size

I attempted to staple the foam to the wood, but my staples were too small and wouldn’t go through the foam. Instead, I used spray adhesive. Please open a window while using or you will get a headache. Trust me on this one.

After the foam was in place, I topped it with a layer of batting to make it a bit softer before upholstering.

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Don’t judge my upholstery job. We chose an unforgiving fabric. Also the angle was weird.

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This view is better. We were going for a chaise-type thing one the side, but still wanted arm and back rests, so it’s an in-between sort of thing. Is there a name for that?

It took us about a week from start to finish. And it definitely cost less than buying a sectional from the store. Yes, it looks homemade, but we made it and we’re proud. Plus, it’s so comfortable! My husband and I actually argue over who will get to sleep on the couch if we ever have a fight.

Here’s a breakdown of what we spent and where:

Lowe’s: $52.56 – $46.66 after discounts

Menards: $195.20 – $78.68 after discounts

Wal-Mart: $57.17 – no discounts

Hancock Fabrics: $245.54 – $113.04 after discounts

Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores: $482.90 – $304.18

We would have paid a bit over $1,000 without the discounts and coupons. With our discounts, we spent right around $600, including purchases not for the sectional.

Oh, I almost forgot my husband’s favorite part.

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It does make a pretty awesome nightlight

Hi, Everyone!

Welcome to Krafty Katherine! As you have probably guessed, I’m Katherine.

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That’s me getting ready for my wedding at 5am

I decided to start this blog to share the various projects I’m taking on now that I’m a housewife and have a lot of time to finally get things done!

Here’s a little bit about me: I studied anthropology, art history & archaeology, and religious studies in college, with the goal of wanting to work in a museum after graduating. I worked for a year at a local house museum, but realized I was becoming increasingly unhappy. Since high school, I’ve had generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety, and panic attacks. Working with the public was NOT the job for me, as I noticed my conditions were becoming worse.

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My awesome husband!

Luckily, I’m blessed with a wonderful husband with a great job that allowed me to quit mine and take some time to recoup my mental state. And I LOVE being a housewife!

This is a place for me to share all my accomplishments, however small they may be.

I hope you enjoy this blog as much as I enjoy sharing with you!

Katherine