Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Mission Complete! (Almost)

I have almost completed the Find It Game projects! Hooray! Christmas here I come!

Here's how they look:
Click on any of the pics for more detail!

This should have been a relatively easy, simple and enjoyable project. The keys words there are "should have been" for those of you watching on television. It's an easy pattern, great concept, few supplies needed, so why the "should have been"?

First, my sewing machine desperately needs a tuneup.

Second, the tension somehow got off and the sewing thread kept getting caught in the bobbin doohickey thingy and would stick and then the project would be pinned to the machine by both thread and needle.

Third, I had to replace the bulb on my sewing machine and that seemed to require a Rocket Science Degree from Princeton or wherever you get one of those degrees.

Anyway, that's enough numbers, let's talk about the project.

Here's some tips for making this project a little easier on the next person to make this:

1. If you decide (like I did) to enlarge the size of the pattern, do so by more than one inch on all the numbers. Obviously, I did not do well in geometry in school. By adding that one inch to all the numbers, it somehow threw off the ratios and I ended up having to cut some of the pieces down to make the puzzle all fit. In summation, math are hard and I shouldn't be doing it.

2. Add interfacing to your fabric pieces to add more durability to your project.

3. Ironing tip - I turned the steam off to put the interfacing on and I also put a paper towel in between the iron and fabric. I can't tell you how many times in the past that I have used interfacing and an iron and had all sorts of sticky gunk left on the iron from it. The paper towel prevented all that gunk getting on the iron.

4. Instead of rice, I used the one pound bags of pony/crafting beads that you get from any craft store. This added more color and makes it a bit more complicated to find all the lovely stuff you've put in the bag.

5. Buttons! Buttons make great things to put in it. I picked up these little packs of colorful buttons at Michael's that had themes to them - Wizardry, Rescue Vehicles, Zoo, Vacation, Safari, Dress Up, etc. Makes gathering some of the little stuff easier and if a child is into a particular subject, you can get a bunch of stuff for less money this way.

6. Hand sew the ribbon that holds the card into the inside seam of the bag before you stuff it and sew it back up. Also make sure that you put a warning on the card not to carry it by the ribbon. There's no way that tiny ribbon will be there for long if a kid picks it up by it and runs around with it. That being said, I'm sure that's what my kids will do to it. :)

Obviously, the cards are not attached yet. I need to print them out and get them laminated first. When I do, I will turn that long ribbon into a loop to hold the cards on, so they won't be quite as long as what is in the pictures above.

All in all, this was a fun project and if I ever get my machine tuned up, I'll be making this again! Thanks so much to Angie for setting up the tutorial on the Find It Bag Games!