My kitchen is currently full of canning jars. It's been a few years, but my team (husband and daughter) and I are making pickled garlic this weekend. A LOT of it. We're also throwing in some regular pickles and pickled green beans. It's only supposed to be about 100 degrees outside, which is perfect canning weather, right? If you don't hear from me next week, send ice...Read more
The big eclipse is over, summer travel and events are winding down and I've heard talk of pumpkin spice already. It looks like Summer '17 is almost a wrap, and I feel ready for autumn. It was way too hot for me this year, and my boots are calling. The funny thing is, I'm sure I talked about being excited for summer when spring was ending. I guess I know why I live somewhere with clearly defined seasons - I need them all...Read more
You know that feeling when you haven't made anything (that wasn't shop-related) for a while, then you get a minute and inspiration at the same time and start creating again? It's my favorite. I had that this last week with my newest hoop art. I also designed a little Christmas quilt for an upcoming challenge in my quilt guild and gathered the supplies to try a new thing I'm really excited about. More news on that soon...Read more
With the kids grown, the back to school season is getting a little more surreal for me every year. There’s no shopping for new clothes, taking special care to find just the right outfit for fall photos. I have no good excuse to check out the new binders or markers. No bus schedule or parking passes. It feels weird. But even though I’m out of the back to school loop, I can still appreciate a good school-related craft!
This Big Bow Bookmark from Make It and Love It makes me wish I hadn’t been reading books on my phone lately.
It seems like this Chalkboard Fabric Pencil Pouch from Polkadot Chair could pull double duty as a pencil pouch and place for daily reminders or notes.
It seemed like my kids were always working on homework in a different part of the house. This Portable Homework Station from The Benson Street would have been pretty handy.
How can I get someone to make me these School Book Sandwiches from Kids Activities Blog every day for lunch?
This Pool Noodle Pencil from Lalymom is just fun.
These Back to School Board Games from Teachers Pay Teachers seem like a great idea for starting the year off on the right foot.
It’s a toss up whether this First Aid Kit from Crafty CPA would be more useful at home or as a gift for the teacher. If your kids are anything like my boy, maybe one for each.
This Back to School Fashion Show from Eighteen25 is an adorable idea. Let those kids show off their new clothes!
This Chalkboard Notebook from Warm Hot Chocolate is a simple, easy idea to spice up a boring composition book.
These Pencil Drink Sleeves are a great teacher’s gift (I'm guessing, since I make about a gazillion of them every year)! If you want to make your own, you can find the pattern on my blog or if you’re less inclined to sew, they’re also available in my Etsy shop.
I love curating my Friday Favorites each week, and I want to make sure that the talented people who have created these projects are fully acknowledged for their work. Before you pin or share, please click through the link or photo to the originating website. You can also find all the projects each week on my Friday Favorites Pinterest board. Thank you!
I cannot believe it. After spending 18 years getting kids ready to go back to school in the fall, I’m done. My youngest starts college near our home next month, but it’s just not the same. He doesn’t need anything from me, and I’m pretty sure his professors won’t be asking for party parents, or help with classroom projects. It’s the end of an era, but I’m really okay with it. I enjoyed all those years, but I’m excited to move on to this next phase of our lives. And avoid the giant mom-line at Starbucks on Tuesday morning.
Start the new school year off right by getting organized with this School Binder with Printables from Thirty Handmade Days.
If you or your kids pack their lunch, you know sometimes an ice pack makes it a little more edible come lunchtime. Make them cute and less drippy with these DIY Ice Pack Covers from Little White Whale.
The ruffley girliness of this Bustle Backpack from The Sewing Rabbit is so sweet.
If you have kids of THAT age, you might have noticed all of the options for interior locker decoration available in the stores these days. Why not make your own? Sassy Style has you covered with this set of DIYs.
How come I never noticed that a Twinkie looks like a pencil before? Thanks to Club Chica Circle, that’s all I’ll see now.
This First Day of School Sign from Pinkie for Pink is a great way to remember what your kidlet was like each year. You know, once they’re almost 19 and in college. Sniff.
If I needed a lunchbox to head back to school with, I’d make this Bento Box from Lark Crafts.
This Back to School Gift for Teacher from Skip to my Lou is a fantastic idea. You can write your phone number on the tag so the teacher knows how to contact you if they need help in the classroom.
My kids were always big readers. They got it from me, which means someone was always trying to find a bookmark. We really could have used these Printable Back to School Bookmarks from Simple as That.
I don’t remember daily wardrobe being a huge issue for my kids, except for the phase my son went through where any camo was good and it all matched. In his head. These closet dividers from West Side View would have been handy to space out the Army green a bit.
To those of you who are getting back in the swing this week, or have already braved those first few days of school, my thoughts are with you!
I’ve been volunteering in my kids’ classrooms and at their schools since my oldest started preschool. That puts me at sixteen years of hanging out with teachers. They are awesome people, doing an increasingly difficult job, and deserve a little something special once in a while. I decided since a friend of mine, the voice behind a lovely blog called Welcome Company, suggested my Binder Bandolier would make a good teacher gift, I’d throw out a few more ideas I found.
I’ve watched many a teacher spend his or her own money to buy things for the classroom. Sometimes it’s a book, other times it’s supplies for students whose family may not be able to afford everything they need. Sending a few extra supplies is always welcome, and why not make it cute like these Back to School Bouquets from Oleander and Palm?
This Pencil Cake from One Charming Party is almost too cute to take apart and use.
Craft Quickies shares a list of gift ideas teachers like to receive. Be sure to read about #1: A heartfelt letter.
A beverage of some sort is a common sight on a teacher’s desk, and I’ve often seen that take the form of a jolt of afternoon caffeine. This Soda-Lighted Teacher Appreciation Printable from Seven Clown Circus on Skip to my Lou is a great way to gift it.
You could fill this Apple Sachet from Willowday with just about anything teacher-related.
I’ve heard some teachers like chocolate. These Printable Candy Bar Wrappers from Skip to my Lou might stay on until lunch.
There isn’t enough hand sanitizer in the world when you’re spending time in a classroom. This Hands Down Teacher Appreciation Gift from Eighteen25 is shown on a bottle of hand soap but either way, goodbye germs.
This Edible School Glue from The Celebration Shoppe makes me smile. Just be sure the little ones understand the difference.
This Summer Survival Kit from Today’s Creative Blog on Skip to my Lou is intended for a male teacher at the end of the school year, but my kids have had teachers of both genders that would love this anytime.
You could fill this Terra Cotta Apple from Seven Thirty Three with school supplies or edible treats. Or a little of both.
If your school supply list is as long as many I’ve seen lately, you might not have any extra resources to buy or make a gift for the teacher. No worries. A heartfelt “Thank you” is always welcome. Teachers rock!
If I can be accused of having too much of something in my house, besides crafting stuff, it’s office supplies. A colorful set of file folders or cheap spiral notebooks get me every time. I’m still on the search for the perfect pen. Long after my kids have moved on, which is very soon, you’ll still find me in the back to school aisle, scoping out my next package of Sharpies. In my defense, I do use what I collect. Eventually. I’d be especially lost without my three ring binders, but if I could throw a few extra supplies inside they would be even better. Done. Want to know how I turned this:
With this inside?
To make the bandolier, you’ll need a piece of fabric for the part on the front of the binder cut to 14 1/4” by 4 1/2” with a matching piece of iron-on interfacing. Cut a second piece of fabric and interfacing to 12 3/4” by 4 1/2” for the inside section. You’ll also need a piece of 1” wide elastic cut to 12 3/4” and 3/4” wide Velcro cut to 3/4”.
Apply the interfacing to the wrong side of both fabric pieces. Fold the smaller piece in half lengthwise and press the fold. Unfold. Pin the elastic down the center 1/2” from the fold.
Stitch across the elastic at the following measurements from the top (with the fold to your left):
Add a final row of stitching 1” from the bottom edge.
With right sides together, stitch the two fabrics together at the top of the piece with the elastic with a 1/4” seam. Press the seam open.
Fold both remaining short ends under 1” and press.
Fold the entire piece right sides together and stitch 1/4” from the edge down the long side.
Turn right side out through the end. It’s easiest if you start from the end without the elastic. Press, carefully avoiding the elastic. Topstitch close to the edge all the way around and across near the seam where the two fabrics meet.
Position the Velcro 1/4” from the end on the back of the piece with the elastic. Pin the other piece 1/4” from the other end, on the front. Stitch in place around the edge and with an X through the center.
To add fabric inside a windowed three ring binder, cut a piece of freezer paper the size of the front. Iron the shiny side onto the back side of the fabric.
Cut it out and slide into the front of the binder. You can do the same to add fabric to the spine.
Wrap the bandolier around so the elastic is on the inside and the Velcro is at the bottom.
Add the supplies of your choice and you’re ready to go.
As soon as I find that perfect pen, I know exactly where it’s going.
Thanks to ongoing budget reductions, my son doesn’t start his final year of high school until September 10th. It feels so late. And my daughter doesn’t actually start her sophomore college classes until the first week in October. However, I know we’re the exception and that many of you are already back at the bus stop, or at least have started your back-to-school shopping. I’m here to share a few ideas to ease the transition from summer sun to autumn school books.
When I was a kid, I always wanted some of those personalized pencils that were sold everywhere. However, when your name is “Staci” that doesn’t work. It’s not too late though. Thanks to instructions from Camille Styles I can make myself some and not settle for “Stacy” or “Stacey.”
My extremely organized daughter would love these Sticky Notes Books from Greeting Arts.
Sometimes those first few days of school can be a little stressful for a kid. Lighten up lunch a little with these printable Back to School Lunchbox Jokes from Paging Supermom.
Before the doors to the school are even open, the avalanche of school-related paperwork begins. This Back to School Crate Station from Tatertots and Jello would be a great way to keep it under control.
This Hug-To-Go 1st Day of School Bracelet from Little Pink Monster is such a sweet idea for a little one unsure about leaving home.
I love the sneaker look of these storage containers from Quilting Daily. Perfect for a work desk, dorm room or homework area.
How smart is this? Learn how to make an Interchanging Tote/Backpack with Somewhat Simple.
I like the fun, retro look of these Printable Lunch Box Notes from Skip to my Lou.
Looking back, it’s kind of hard to remember what my kids were like at the beginning of each school year. If I could go back, I’d love to have this Back to School Interview from Giggles Galore filled out for every single grade.
I really like the simplicity of this Back to School Lunch Bag on the Purl Bee. Just enough embroidery.
I hope your school year is off to a good start!
When I was working on the most recent entry into my Coffee Sleeve series, I was thinking about school. With my youngest starting his senior year of high school next month, I’m finding myself focused on this being my last year to help anyone get ready. Of course, one of the biggest tasks to tackle is back-to-school clothes, with new jeans on the top of the laundry pile.
In order for you to fully understand what I’m about to tell you, I need to show you my fabric shelf.
It’s not as full as it could be, and definitely not as full as it used to be, but I have a little bit of everything in there. Except, apparently, denim. I’ve always had a bit of denim when I needed it, but I took every single thing off those shelves and there was not a scrap of denim to be found. That’s like having a kitchen with no knives in it. I even asked my son if he had any outgrown jeans I could have, but no luck. I actually had to go to the fabric store specifically to buy a piece of denim for this project. I’m still shaking my head.
Anyway, on to the project. To make this one, you’ll need this pattern, DENIM, cotton fabric for the back, InsulBrite, a button and a 3” piece of elastic cord. This will also have a look much closer to a pair of jeans if you use some gold thread made for matching denim stitching. It’s great for hemming too. I’d also recommend using a denim needle in your sewing machine. You need the larger hole for the gold thread to flow through smoothly.
Cut the sleeve from the denim, then flip the pattern over to cut the back from the cotton. Cut a piece of InsulBrite. Cut the pocket on the fold.
Fold the pocket right sides together and stitch 1/4” from the edge, leaving about an inch open for turning. You can use regular sewing thread for this part. Tie or stitch the ends of the elastic together.
Clip the corners. Turn right side out and press, turning in the opening.
Thread your machine with the gold thread and add some decorative stitching to the pocket.
Center the pocket on the denim sleeve. It should be about 1/2” from the top and bottom. Pin in place, adding a tag under the edge if you’d like. Stitch around close to the edge, then again about 1/8” away, leaving the top of the pocket open.
Layer the pieces with the denim sleeve face up and the elastic centered on the right.
Lay the cotton piece over that, right side down, then the InsulBrite on top of that. Pin in place. Stitch around 1/4” from the edge, leaving 2” open at the bottom for turning.
Clip the corners, turn right side out and press. Stitch all the way around with the gold thread, close to the edge. I added an extra row of stitching at each end to give it the look of seams.
Sew the button on where the elastic reaches and centered.
Slip onto a cup and you’ll be the most stylish parent at the bus stop.
Or, maybe you’re looking for a bribe, err, gift for your kid’s new teacher. Ta-da! Coffee gift card fits perfectly.
Previous coffee sleeves, in case jeans aren’t your thing:
My son hates that I’m writing this. He cringes every time I mention school supplies, clothes, or schedules. He wants his summer to continue, blissfully unaware the first day of school is knocking on his door. Poor kid.
I might have squealed like a little girl when I saw these Pencil Nails from The Daily Nail.
I always want to make a special treat for the kids to have when they get home from their first day of school. It rarely seems to work out, but I might find some time this year to make these Krispy Apple Treats from Gourmet Mom-On-The-Go.
What I like about this Lunch Bag from The Long Thread is that it can hold larger items than the typical lunchbox.
The see-through window on this Binder Pouch from Sew, Mama, Sew makes it special.
I’ve seen some very plain stand-up folding iPad cases, but with this pattern you can purchase from Sewspoiled on Etsy, yours could be unique and colorful.
Don’t forget the teachers when school starts again! This gift by Fireflies and Jellybeans is cute, easy and would work for anyone.
This Checklist Place Mat from Family Fun is genius.
I love this Lined Paper Tee from Ucreate. Click through to see the even more adorable onesie.
I’m off to help my poor kid dry his back-to-school tears.