Sunday, May 29, 2011

Custom High Chair Cushions

I've mentioned a few times now that I was asked to make a set of custom high chair cushions for a friend.  I'm happy to say that they are now complete and delivered!  So how did I create this masterpiece, you ask?  Well thanks for asking. 

First I took a look at their high chair, took some measurements, and talked about their needs for the cushions.  For instance, was it important to have the cushions be completely washable, just the cover, or is spot cleaning the best plan for washing?  What types of fabric and color schemes were they envisioning?  I took these answered and off to JoAnn's I went. 

I found this really great micro suede fabric,  shown here which I thought was perfect for their cleaning and color needs.

Next, I grabbed some newsprint and drew out a pattern based on my measurements.  I went back over to my friends house (yes I realize this isn't always an option, but when it is available, use it!) to confirm my measurements so I only had to cut the fabric once.  There were a few minor adjustments that I had to make with the final patterns, but overall it was a good fit.  On to construction!

Before I began cutting anything, I laid out all my material.  So you could see everything I was starting with. 
Then I took my patterns and pinned them to the fabric.  To keep things efficient and to ensure that my top and bottom pieces were cut to the same size, I folded over the fabric so that the right side of the fabric was facing itself.
Then I cut the fabric slightly larger than the pattern to allow for the depth of the cushions and for a 5/8th in seam allowance. 

Next, I pinned and sewed around three sides of each of the cushions.  I lined up the patterns again, this time with the foam cushion and cut the cushions down to size.  Sorry, this was when my photography slacked.  Then I stuffed the cushions into the fabric and began pinning the open side closed.  It was at this point that I realized that I forgot to add the belting connectors.  Oh no!

Fear not, I was able to solve that problem.  Below is how I initially pinned all the  belting in place.
Next I pulled out some of the thread and slide the belting into place, re-sewing as necessary.  Here is a close up of one of the fasteners.

And now the finished product:
I'm very happy with the way it turned out.  Hopefully my friends are too!

And for those of you interested in photography out there.  I am officially sold on using natural light in my photography now.  The pictures taken under natural light turned out much better than my other pictures.  I will be sure to keep that in mind when I begin posting other products on Etsy

Friday, May 27, 2011

Next Project

As you may have notice I've been doing a lot of brainstorming of late for a new project/product for Stitch Silly.  I want to create and post a few products that are not baby centric so as to not get pigeon holed into just the kids scene. 

I've been wanting to put together a picnic set.  So today I started research fabric and styles.  My first thought was to create a two toned blanket.  The back would be a nylon material and the top would be a softer material, but after some thought, I am not sure I like the idea of a nylon bottom layer.  I think this design will take some additional thought as to specific materials.  I almost want the blanket to be reversible with coordinated napkins.  This is why I need more time in my day, so I can go to JoAnn's and actually feel the fabric instead of just looking at fabric online. 

Does any one have an opinion on such a product?  

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Tomorrow is Big Day

I mentioned in a previous post that my son's daycare is going to be putting an advertisement and order form for nap blankets into their paperwork to transition kids from one classroom to another.  In essence, this is a moving up ceremony, sans the ceremony part.  Each child that is developmentally ready to move to the next classroom moves up.  For instance, in my son's classroom there are 11 kids right now (I'm not exactly happy with that number, but that's a whole rant unto itself) and there are approximately 5 kids all transitioning from the toddler A to toddler B side. 

Each one of these kids will receive at transition packet, giving them information about the new classroom new fees if any, etc. Well part of this packet will be my order form if a parent wants to order a new nap blanket for their child.  There are 7 classrooms and probably 5 - 10 kids transitioning in each room. 

I don't anticipate all the parents ordering new blankets for the kids.  Not every child uses a nap blanket, some parents just bring in crib sheets and a blanket for their son or daughter.  But I could have quiet a few orders out of this.  It's a great first step in building up my name, so I'm pretty excited about this. 

My JoAnn VIP card came last night, perfect timing in my opinion.  I will be going shopping this weekend to get some material for the nap blankets as well as some different material so I can at least put something on Etsy during my nap blanket crush.  Maybe I'll try to sneak in my trip tomorrow as a celebration for a great advertising venue. 

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Reader Poll and Other Fun Items

To my readers out there.  I am currently taking a poll on StitchSilly's Facebook page, but I also wanted to include you in the process.  Leave a comment listing 5 fun family activities. 

The goal of this exercise is to help me identify common family activities outside of my circles, then to begin identifying common products within those activities that I could design.  

Other fun items are that it is official that I have my first custom order!  Wahoo!  This should be a fun project.  I will be starting the project tonight.  Since this is my first custom order, I am going to photograph the progress of it then once it is complete, I will post the progress from start to finish.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Family Weekends

I'm back in the real world today.  My husband and I took a long weekend to go to New England.  He visited with his brother for a action packed boys weekend while I visited with my aunt, uncle, cousins, and parents.  I was wonderful to get away for a few days.  The drive up gave me some time to work on my knitting, which I am approaching the halfway point for. 

I also was able to make a trip to JoAnn's while we were up there to get some fabric.  I'm not sure what this fabric is going to turn into.  The original plan for this fabric is to make two cushions for a friend's high chair, but I haven't heard back from them once I gave them the quote.  If it falls through, I will probably turn the fabric into at least one boppy cover if not two.  I'll have to play with my pattern to see if I can fit two boppies on the material.  I will keep you posted! 

In other news, Etsy may be low key for a while as on Friday advertisements and order forms are going out at my son's daycare for nap blankets.  Depending on how many orders I get I may be pretty busy with those for a while.  Sales are a good thing so I'm not going to complain, but it may make my shop look a little dormant.  I will be brainstorming on how to minimize this.  Maybe I'll through a crib sheet or boppy cover in occasionally just to keep my sane.  

Saturday, May 21, 2011

House Keeping

I've done a little more housekeeping on the blog and in my shop recently.  I've reworked some of my product descriptions to be more clear.  Hopefully that result in a few sales.  I've also added a new page that links directly to my shop.  Be sure to check it out some time.

I've also been brainstorming about other products to offer on through Etsy.  Since ultimately I want to focus on families I have been brainstorming about products for a picnic or the beach since summer is fast approaching.  I have a few ideas, that I plan to start working on once I clear out my current queue of projects.  I mentioned the blanket I am knitting, but I have also been commissioned to design and make a high chair cushion for some neighbors.

This is a great story.  The high chair is one of those great family heirlooms that has been passed down from her father to her.  It's slowly been modified over the years with updated safety features.  Now it's getting cushions and a belt to latch their son in.  I have a few materials picked out for it, but am still in search of the belt material.  I will keep you posted as the project progresses.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The World is not on My Side this Morning

I was so proud of myself last night I took some great photographs of the butterfly crib sheet only to leave my memory card at home so there will be no updates to Etsy this morning, it will have to wait until tonight.  

But on there is good news.  I will be featured on my first blog today!  Mad props go to Jazzies and Lillies and her blog  She will be featuring one of my great creations.  Please stop by her blog and or her shop on Etsy.  She makes some fantastic jewelry, I especially like her music themed pieces.  Here's a picture of one of her pieces:

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

No New Pictures, Yet

I wasn't able to get the photographs done last night that I wanted so it will have to wait until tonight to get some pictures of the Butterfly Crib Sheet in it's finished format.  I'm trying to think of different ways taking photographs and to increase their professional appearance. I have several friends who dabble in the world of photography, maybe they can comment and give my photographs some critiques.  I look at some of the photographs on Etsy and boy am I intimidated!  They are good!  It gives me something to work towards and yet another thing to learn about. 

On another note, I decided to get out my knitting needles last night.  We are getting ready for a few trips in the coming weeks and as I've stated before, I don't sit idle well so I need something to do in the car.  Unfortunately I will have to do some studying for my upcoming test.  The knitting will be my treat to myself.  The first project is a yellow knit blanket, it will measure 30in. square.  Keep your eyes peeled for it to be posted.  I have a secret suspicion - I guess it's not that much of a secret if I'm sharing it here, but oh well - that it will sell rather quickly.  Only time will tell.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Logo and Blog Update

As you may have noticed, the blog has a bit of a new look and feel.  Last week I redesigned our logo to something a little more fun as well as more thought out.  With the business still getting off its feet, I am still making modifications and trying to figure out how I want to run things.  I think this was a step in the right direction. 

I am also putting this logo on all of my products that go out the door.  Now you never have to worry about remembering where you got that great item.  Just look for the Stitch Silly Tag! 

Speaking of which, there have been a few great new items posted to Etsy.  A new crib sheet is up.  It is the heart and circles fabrics I posted last week. I am actually almost done with the butterfly sheet as well.  I was sewing it last night and everything was going beautifully when poof! I realized I had run out of thread on the bobbin on the bottom.  There was a moment of silence cursing at myself for taking so long to realize it.  Tonight's job it to re-pin and then sew it up.  Keep your eyes peeled for a new etsy posting soon. 

Looks like I may be heading back to the fabric store soon for a custom order project.  Before I go, as always I am taking requests for fabric selections.  Leave a comment here or on Facebook.  While you are on our Facebook page, don't forget to LIKE us!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

New Listing and Inventory Pictures

I just listed a new set of burp cloths on the store.  Check them out at: Gender Neutral Burp Cloths

To give you an idea of other product that are currently in the works, I've taken a picture of each swatch of material that I have. 
Jersey Knit Fitted Crib Sheet

Jersey Knit Fitted Crib Sheet Fabric

Currently I am making the hearts into a crib sheet.  Working on it sporadically, it should be done this week.  Keep your eyes peeled for it getting listed on Esty.  The last crib sheet didn't last too long before it was sold.

Some other  products I have working in my head will be some fitted crib sheets with a matching toddler pillow case.  These sheet will probably just be cotton and not Jersey Knit and I will have some boy and gender neutral colors with these products. 

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Please Like us on Facebook

If you hadn't noticed, we are now on Facebook!  You can find us at

Please like us, you never know when a deal or sale exclusive to our friends will pop up!

Today I am off to the fabric store to get more material.  Today's plan is to purchase some additional fabric for crib sheets.  Please leave a comment or post on Facebook if you have a request for a product or type of material you are interested in seeing.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

First Sale! Wahoo!

I was going to post a few pictures of the finished product last night, but the crib sheet has already sold.  I guess that isn't a bad problem to have.  But to appease your curiosity, here are a few shots.

Up next will be another crib sheet.  This one is another girl sheet that has hearts and circles on it.  Hopefully that one will sell just as fast.  Until then..happy sewing!

Monday, May 9, 2011

First Crib Sheet Done!

Last night I finished my first crib sheet.  I was hoping to get it posted on Etsy last night, but my husband had put away the camera and guess where is was.  In my son's room!  He was already a sleep and I wasn't going to go rummaging around in his bed room closet when an extra day isn't going to kill me.  So tonight my newly hired photographer (i.e. my husband, he works for cheap!) is going to photograph the crib sheet and then it should be posted. 

So how did it go you ask? Great question!

The construction took a little longer than I anticipated, probably 3.5 hours when it was all said and done.  To be honest, I was watching True Blood episodes while pinning so that may be partially to blame.  Overall, I am very happy with the product, and I hope that the home it goes to appreciates it as well. 

Up next is another crib sheet.  I do have several burp cloths teed up for sewing so I may sneak those in first, we'll see what I'm in the mood for doing tonight after I'm done studying for my Project Management Professional's PMP exam that I am taking for my day job next month.  Now that I have one sheet under my belt I have a feeling that this next one will not take as much time.  One can only hope!

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Mistaken, sorry.

I misspoke when I said that crib sheet material was snuggle flannel.  I did end up getting jersey cotton.  I guess I walked around the store so long with the flannel I had it stuck in my head.  Minor detail, at least I corrected myself before I posted the finished product on etsy.   But by me realizing that I blogged the incorrect fabric, you know what that means?  It  means that all my material is cut!  Yay!  I even started to do some sewing this afternoon while my son napped.  I'm not as far along as I would like, but this is my first crib sheet.  I'm sure as I get better it will get faster.

One feature I am including on my crib sheets is that I am straight sewing two lines at the corners to reinforce the corners to make sure they withstand the constant pulling on and off of the crib.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

First Fabric Purchase

This past weekend, I made my first fabric purchase.  I purchased some neutral terry cloth material to make some burp cloths and snuggle flannel to make 2 girl crib sheets.  I was looking for a jersey knit for the crib sheets, but I couldn't seem to find any.  I'll look harder the next time I go to the store.  I've started to cut the future burp cloths down to size.  By this weekend, I should be able to post a few more for sale. 

The crib sheets will take some additional measurements and cutting.  I had to buy the fabric wider than I needed, so I will be taking some extra time this weekend to measure twice and to cut once.  Then it's on to a marathon of sewing! 

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Hello World, from StitchSilly

I've been a crafty all my life and have always been working on some project or another.  For a while I was selling homemade knit baby blankets to my allergist.  I recently opened an Etsy shop on a whim and a recommendation from a friend.  Honestly, I had never heard of the site previously, but now that I've signed up, I'm hooked.  I think it's a great place to create and share your wares.

In parallel to my new shop, I thought I would blog about my trials and tribulations of 1.) fulfilling a life long dream of opening my own business, 2.) learning the ins and outs of business ownership, and most importantly 3.) creating my items that I will post for sale on StitchSilly. 

My goal is to post regularly as I purchase and create my items to show them in progress.  I hope that you will follow me in this journey. 
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