Saturday, December 13, 2014

Quilted Zippered Ipad Mini Case Review

Just wanted to do a quick post about the quilted zippered ipad mini case I sewed last night! (that's a mouthful) I ordered myself an ipad mini during Cyber Monday week and it finally came!! I wanted to whip up a case so that I could safely take it on the plane with me this week; I followed Sew Caroline's tutorial. I do have an iHome smart book cover on it. Here's my finished product and some thoughts about the process.

Isn't it so cute?? I got the fabric in Taiwan and had no idea what I was going to use it for so it sat in my closet for over a year. I also added a "From Woo to You" tag :D

This was the first time I had attempted free motion quilting, where you control the fabric under the needle to create a pattern. And yes, I had to google, "what are quilted lines called" to get to the term "free motion quilting" haha! Notice the black wavy lines in the picture below? It's actually pretty satisfying! In order to get comfortable with free-handing the wavy line process, I practiced on a scrap piece of fabric. I actually initially chose a yellow thread to match the inside fabric, but it seemed to clash too much with the cats. The cats need to stand on their own!

Also, I thought using safety pins to pin all over the fabric instead of using straight pins was interesting. Apparently, that's so you don't stick yourself since you have to have a good number of them across the fabric to hold the layers in place and move the fabric around under the sewing needle. No bleeding on the project, please!

I've completed a few zippered projects (e.g., pencil skirt, zippered pouch) but I'm still afraid of installing zippers! The whole process confuses me so I have to always double, quadruple check that I'm sewing it the right way. Sew Caroline's tutorial kind of glossed over this step so I had to spend quite a bit of time trying to figure it out!

Sew Caroline's Instructions:
Step Four: Place your zipper face down on the RIGHT side of the outside of your pouch. The zipper teeth should be about 1″ from the top edge. Stitch in place.

Step Five: Repeat this with the other size of the zipper and the other side of the outside of the pouch.

Instructions Deciphered:
Step Four: Stitch in place along the TOP edge of the zipper, like where the pointed needle pokes out in her picture.

Step Five: Then flip this piece over and place it on top of the other piece so that the Right sides are facing each other on the inside, and Wrong sides are outside. Fold the top piece down, so that you see the zipper. The zipper pull should now be on the left side and the stitched line should be on the bottom. You'll sew along the top edge of the zipper now to the bottom fabric. Does that make more sense??

The thing I don't like about this method of installing the zipper is that once you flip it inside out, you see the outside fabric sticking out... The next time I sew this, I'll have to figure out a way to hide this...

Also, I used a 7" zipper. I'd probably use a 9" zipper next time, just because the opening to put the ipad mini in is a bit tight...

Machine Feet
I used a walking foot for the majority of this project, except for the zipper part where I used a zipper foot. A walking foot is good for quilting or working with slippery fabrics since it pulls the top fabric along with the bottom fabric. Ever sew pieces of fabric together and then they don't line up at the end? So frustrating! A walking foot helps with that. I used this YouTube video to understand how it works and how to install it.

Overall, I'm pretty happy with the end product. What do you think?

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

DIY: Quick Halloween Costume - Gumball Machine

Just wanted to do a quick post of a Halloween costume idea for those of you who are scrambling to get a costume by Friday and now there's no time to order it from Amazon! I think this idea is so cute and doesn't require any sewing.... just glue... a lot of glue.

  • Spaghetti strap top 
  • Red skirt
  • Medium-size Pom Poms
    (I couldn't find just medium-size ones, so I bought assorted packs that consisted of mini, medium, and large ones. I bought 7 assorted packs, and 5 individual packs of just red and white colors)
  • A piece of black, gray, and white felt 
  • Hot glue gun and refill glue sticks
    (I originally bought fabric glue, but it doesn't dry fast enough so the pom poms kept falling off! Hot glue is so much easier and faster)
  • Sharpie

The Quick and Dirty:
  • Where I bought my materials and cost: 
    • Spaghetti strap top - Forever 21, $1.90
    • Red skirt - Forever 21, $4.90
    • Pom Poms - Walmart, $0.97 per packet
    • Felt - I already had some, but Walmart has these too
    • Hot glue gun - I had this as well, but Walmart or CVS has this
  • Total Cost : ~ $20
  • Time to put together: 
    • About 2 hours. I was watching Project Runway as I was making mine, so I was a bit distracted! 

  1. Try on your top with your skirt and use a safety pin to mark off where the top meets the skirt. This is where you want the pom poms to stop.
  2. While you still have the outfit on, lay the gray felt down over the skirt and determine how big you want your dispenser to be. Keep your skirt on. 
  3. Cut your felt pieces and glue the parts (e.g., coin holder, knob, chute) onto the gray felt. Now originally, I used the fabric glue to glue the felt pieces on, but when I went to try on the skirt later, since the skirt is stretchy and the felt is not, it ripped the felt piece right off! I ended up hot gluing the felt pieces onto the skirt while I had it on so that the stretch was maintained.
    Disclaimer: Do not burn yourself while doing this! You may want to put a towel under the skirt to add additional layers between the hot glue and your skin... Wait a little bit before taking off the skirt so that the glue is dry. 
  4. While the top is not on you, hot glue the pom poms onto the top. I originally wanted to have the pom poms go all the way around but I didn't have enough pom poms, so I just did the front! 
  5. Once the glue is dry, try it on and admire your handiwork! 
And a silly vine of my gumball machine costume! (click bottom right corner for sound)  

I got my inspiration from Rachel's post from Life Unsweetened; check out how she made her costume!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Coffee Jello!

Coffee jello doesn't seem to be a common treat here in the US, but it's everywhere in Taiwan! and it's oh so good! They sell them in individual cups with a creamer to go with it, and it's such a delicious treat especially for the summer! This is a great snack or dessert that is SUPER low cal, I mean less than 10 calories?! and a fun alternative to traditional ice cream. (Recipe adapted from

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

DIY: Reupholstered Office Chair

I finished this project ages ago and it's about time I made a post about it! I decided that I would try to reupholster my office chair since the seat cushion and fabric had developed a good sized hole, I guess from all my squirming! All the online blogs with reupholstering tutorials that I came across were for chairs that were 2 separate pieces, like a back piece and a seat piece. My desk chair was just one whole piece so I wasn't really sure how I would go about doing it. The following directions are by no means how you're supposed to do something like this, but it's how I did it! My dad actually got me the desk chair a few years ago when his office was throwing a bunch of them away and he took as many as he could fit in his car from the dumpsters! (They were clean though!) That's probably why I had the attitude of if this worked, great!, If it didn't, I'd just go buy a new chair. I started the project at 10 PM, always a good time to start something, and not gonna lie, it was kinda a haphazard process, but I think it turned out pretty good!