Friday, December 9, 2011

Flag Banner Tutorial!

Need:  Fabric (as many or few patterns as you choose!)
           Sewing machine
           Ribbon (I used 7/8” grosgrain)
           Triangle Pattern- I made a ‘pattern’ so each triangle would be cut the same size

Ready?  Lets go!

I cut out the triangle shapes from the selected fabrics.  Two triangles per flag. I used the same fabric for each side for the triangle.  You could use different fabrics for each side of the flag if you wanted, which could be fun because then the flag banner could be reversed and have a completely different look!

I then sewed the triangles together, right sides together.   I used a ½” seam allowance, but I suppose it doesn’t really matter.  :) 
I trimmed the ‘point’ of the flag as close to the seam as I could.  (One thing you can do on those points, is put fray check so that they are less likely to fray when you reverse them)

Turn the triangles right side out and press them flat.  

Measure the ribbon to the desired length of the flag banner.   I added about a foot on each side, for hanging purposes.  

Cut two pieces of ribbon the desired length.  I used two pieces of the same color grosgrain ribbon- one for the back, and one for the front.  This allows you to cover the unfinished tops of the triangles!  This also allows the banner to be reversible.  If you want the banner to be different when reversed, you could use two colors of ribbon- one for each side.   I’m going to try that next time!

Pin the ribbon on top of the triangle pieces, making sure the distance between each triangle is the same (I left about 1.5” between each). 

Sew the ribbon together, securing the triangles between the two pieces.  I recommend sewing the bottom side together first, because it will allow you to secure the triangle pieces in place as well. 

Sew the top of the length of ribbon together. 

Cut ends of ribbon to desired length (if one side is longer than the other).

Voila!  You have a fun triangle flag banner to hang!  

Monday, December 5, 2011

‘Tango’ Turns Six!

I started writing a post about a birthday banner I made, but I got myself off on a little tangent and started rambling about my little birthday boy!

So, let me try again.  I will try to stay focused!  Today I want to talk about another birthday.  The birthday of one of the sweetest little girls I know, ‘Tango’. 

Her mom is a good friend of mine and she asked if I could make a banner for the birthday girl- absolutely!  I had wanted to make a flag banner, but never had, so this little project benefited us both!

With our project in mind, the two of us headed to the fabric store and picked out three fabrics her mom loved.  Why three?  No reason really, she just picked the patterns she loved.  Then, we raided my fabric stash to find other fabrics with colors and patterns that would work with the other three fabric selections.  We ended up with seven different fabrics.

Together we chose the order the various fabrics should go, the color ribbon that should be used to ‘tie’ the flag banner together, the preferred size of the triangles for the banner, and whether or not it should have her name on the flags.   Once some decisions were made (which tends to take a little longer when only half of the conversation is really about the sewing project!), I got to work. 

Miss Tango woke up on her special day to the banner hanging up in the dining room and a little birthday ‘tea party’ complete with fancy china and cupcakes!   So fun!  I’m thinking I want to wake up at Tango’s house on MY birthday!   

I hear the banner is now proudly hung in Tango’s room.  Makes me smile knowing that HankOrange can add a little color and fun to her room.  Sometimes the simple things are most rewarding. 

Happy 6th Birthday Miss ‘Tango’!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Birthday Boy!

My little man just turned three.  THREE!  I can hardly believe three years have gone by! 

You might be thinking this post is going to be about the decorations I made for his party, or the shirt I made for the birthday boy.  But it is not.  I did not make any decorations for his party, or anything special for him to wear. 

Nothing.  Not one thing.
Not for lack trying; I had plenty of ideas.  I even had an awesome idea for a birthday shirt for him to wear.  Which, I must say, I was excited about creating!  But he didn’t share in my excitement.  So, I didn’t even bother. 

When I asked him about it (which I did several times hoping he would change his mind) his response was ‘I not wear that Mommy’… and I knew it was true.  He wears what he wants to wear.   He is somewhat strong willed!  And, for me, it is just not worth the battle. (My Mother likes to tell me it is ‘pay backs’… HA!)

Oh well.  Saved me some time.   Time that I used to make a special banner for a birthday girl who I know will (and does) appreciate it!

But, I wouldn’t trade my little man and his opinionated self for anything.  His little smile and his contagious laugh can brighten even the worst of days.  The last three years could be described as a roller coaster, but one thing that was a constant was my little man and his big blue eyes and smiling (most of the time) face!  L.O.V.E his sweet face!

He turned three the day after Thanksgiving.  And for him, I am thankful.  I often hear women say how much they love being a mother, and I couldn’t agree more.  Sure, he has his own opinions, but don’t we all?  I know I do.  I want my little man to be who he is.  And, if that means he doesn’t want anything to do with the things I make, then I am okay with it.  I wouldn’t trade it for the world.  It has become a joke among some friends that every other kids loves what I make except my own.  Oh well.  He is my son and I love him more than words can express! 

Happy #3 Henry James!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Running Headbands

As you probably know by now, I’m a runner.  Actually, a better term for me might be a ‘jogger.’   Either way, when I’m exercising, the last thing I want to worry about is my hair and whether or not it is going to stay out of my face.  I am not a fan of hair in my face, especially when running. 

These non-slip headbands, however, are great for other times of the day too- not just during exercise.  Throw on a headband if you don’t have time to fix your hair in the morning.  

Enough of what I think of the headbands!  I will share with you some feedback I’ve gotten from some happy-HankOrange-headband-wearing ladies! :) 

“I Love my running headband!  It is fashionable AND functional!  I look great while I'm at the gym and also it looks great for an errand afterwards!  The color is super fun and stylish!" 
Jamie, Tennessee

“This headband does a great job at staying in place.  I wear it when I work out and I rarely have to adjust it.  I have also recieved quite a few compliments on it when I wear it out and about.  Even when I do not have time to tame my hair the band still makes me feel sassy.” 
Cassey, California           

“Love the colors and how it STAYS IN PLACE!!!”
Rachel, Colorado

There is not a day that goes by now that I don't wear some sort of headband, whether it is for my run/workout, or for my daily life as a mom.  Thanks to HankOrange, I now have multiple options to get me through my days.  HankOrange creates stylish and fun options that stay in better than any others I have worn in the past.  I wear them out of function but love them because they make me look better and feel fashionable when I am on the go.  You will get hooked after your first one!”
Allison, Oregon

Don’t you think you want one?  Get yours here!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

New ‘Allison’ Clutch/Wristlet

Another product born out of a request from a friend!  
My good friend Allison asked me if I could make a wristlet/ wallet that she could easily throw into her diaper bag.  Being a busy mom of three, she is constantly on the go and wanted something that could hold all the ‘essentials’ but also small enough to slide into her diaper bag.  

I have actually made a clutch type purse before, but I wasn’t totally thrilled with the outcome.  I thought I could come up with a new and improved version!   

So, I accepted the challenge!   

And, the ‘Allison’ wristlet was born!   
I think it turned out really cute!  I’ve made a few so far.  I liked it so much I even made one for myself!  Thanks for the great suggestion Aly, AND trusting that I could create exactly what you wanted!


You like this?  You can get yours here!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Another Angry Bird!

I've added another 'angry bird' to the collection.  After purchasing a red Angry Bird shirt for her son, a customer asked if I could make a blue angry bird onesie for her baby.
My response? Of course!  I can try that!  So, here is what I came up with.

I love the idea of the two brothers being angry birds :) 

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Angry Birds

The boys at my house (husband and son) have a slight addiction.    And by ‘slight’ I mean when the two of them are together, they are usually found feeding this addiction of theirs. 

What is their addiction?  Angry Birds, a game they play on the iphone.
I don’t really understand the game, and honestly, I don’t even care to understand it.  I’m not one who finds much entertainment in video games.  I have my own addictions (see fabric addiction post) so I guess I shouldn’t complain. 
I do, however, think it is funny that my three year old son can beat my husband!

A friend of mine made an ‘angry bird’ pumpkin and that gave me an idea.  Maybe I could make my little man a shirt?!   Knowing how excited my son gets about Angry Birds, I figured he’d love it.  He did love the shirt - for about five minutes.  He was thrilled when he saw it, but he refuses to wear it.  Typical!   

I guess I will just let the boys play their game.  And I will do what I do.  And I will make Angry Bird shirts for those who will actually appreciate them!  

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Sweatshirt re-do

Occasionally I look at other crafty blogs-- Sometimes for ideas and inspiration and sometimes just to see what others are doing.  I am repeatedly impressed by the creativity I observe on various blogs and often I see tutorials I want to try.  Often, however, I don’t.  I have a list of “I should try this” ideas, but the list “to-try” keeps getting longer, while the list of “did-try” remains about the same…short.

I did, however, try out a tutorial this past week.  I saw this “sweatshirt liposuction” tutorial on this blog: See Kate Sew.  Super fun blog, by the way! 

I loved what Kate did to the oversized sweatshirt and I wanted to try it!   So, I headed off to the local Goodwill and found myself a sweatshirt that looked like a good candidate for the ‘re-do.’

Here is the sweatshirt I found:
 I liked the design on the back!

And the what it looks like now:

I think next time I will try to find a sweatshirt that is much bigger to begin with, but I think this one turned out cute!  And, I have worn it just about everyday here since the temperature has been dropping!  

Monday, October 31, 2011

Running and Sewing

I enjoy sewing.  I probably enjoy time with my sewing machine a little too much, in fact.  If given the opportunity, I might choose to take my sewing machines and lock myself in a room for a day- oh the things that could happen! 

Sewing can be an escape for me at times.  Maybe I’d call it my ‘happy place’.   I have a shirt that says “running is my happy hour”… but this is also true for sewing.  I think I need a sign for my sewing space that says “sewing is my happy hour,” or maybe “sewing is my happy place”…or “I’m happy when I’m sewing,” or…you get the idea.  

While my running shirt reads true, I think sewing is a totally different ‘happy hour’ for me.   Sewing, in a way, is the opposite of running.

Running means getting my heart rate up and pushing myself physically to improve and achieve new goals.  And, it means getting outside and soaking up the quiet neighborhood before the hectic day begins.   Running can also be a social time too; some of my favorite runs and best conversations have taken place while running with a good friend!

When I run (and I mean run outside, this doesn’t happen on the ‘dreadmill’) I often have many new ideas for HankOrange – things I could sew or a new topic to write about.  While out on a morning run, when few others are out (or even awake) my mind is free to think, to dream, to imagine.  Maybe thinking about sewing makes the run go by quicker, loosing my thoughts to something other than the running itself.   And, for the record, I don’t ONLY think about sewing when I run.  I think about all sorts of things… but that is another topic for another day!

Sewing, for me, is less social and more personal time.  It is relaxing with a purpose of accomplishing and creating something new- it probably even lowers my heart rate (as long as what I’m trying to do is going according to the plan)!  Sitting in front of my sewing machine can be calming and quiet.  Even the humming noise my machine makes is almost a comfort at times.  I grew up hearing the hum of a sewing machine as my Mom would be in her sewing room working on various projects (oh, I could only be so lucky to have a ROOM!).  Finishing a project or coming up with something new to try brings a little excitement or even a thrill to my world.  Not everyone can say, ‘hey, look what I made!’

Running makes me happy.  Sewing makes me happy.  I do both and enjoy both, at different times and for different reasons.  I probably need both.  Maybe one balances the other out.

I run.  I sew.  And I can’t get enough of either ‘happy place!’

That is a little about me, the girl behind HankOrange.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Halloween ‘craft time’

I wanted to do something fun with the little man for Halloween.  Since he is three and his attention span is almost non-existent this limits our options greatly.  But I wanted to create something with him that we could use to decorate.

I can’t remember where I saw it, but the idea of turning a footprint into a ghost was something I kept thinking about.  I wanted to try it!  All we would need is a little paint and something to put the footprints on.  It could be fun, right?  Might get a little messy, but that is what crafts are all about when you’re young…mess. 

Sometimes I’ll ask H if he wants to have ‘craft time’.  He just looks at me and gives me a canned response “okay” or “sure”… the same response he gives to most any question.   But hey, if he says ‘okay’, then we are going for it! 

I got out the little tube of paint I had, found a sponge brush, cut open some large paper bags, and we were ready to go. 

First step- wipe off our feet.
Second step- put a little paint into a dish
Third step- dip paintbrush into paint and paint your foot
Fourth step- place painted foot onto paper bag and make a footprint!

By step three, H was WAY into this little project.  I think we could have painted our feet and stamped for hours!  I’m not sure who had more fun, him or me.   I figured we would just paint our feet and stamp the paper a few time, but we had such a good time, we ended up covering three large paper bags with footprints and had to stop because we ran out of space!

Here are some photos of our little ‘craft time’

H having fun painting! The hairy foot belongs to his Dad, not me! ;)

And Finally... the finished product!  
Lots of little feet 'ghosts'
Then 'we' made some Halloween cards to send to the grandparents!

What is YOUR favorite Halloween related craft?

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Monster shirt, Take Two!

I spoke too soon. Remember when I wrote this post about the monster shirt I made my son?  I said he liked the shirt, and he did, for about two days.  My ‘biggest fan’ turned on me.

He didn’t totally give up on me, he just changed his mind on what type of monster he wanted.  Actually, I should say, what color he wanted. 

Pink.  He wanted a pink monster.

The first time he asked, I didn’t think much about it.  But after he kept asking off and on for a few weeks, I figured he was really serious.  So I gave in.  And together we made a ‘pink’ monster shirt.  

Not so thrilled to get his picture taken!

We went to the fabric store and I let him pick out which pink fabric he wanted for his monster.  And then I asked him to help me while assembling the monster shirt.  The process went a little like this:
Me: “What color eyes should the monster have?” 
Him: “How about pink, mommy!”
Me: “What color horns do you want for the monster?”
Him: “How about pink!”
Me: “What should the mouth look like?”
Him: “Pink!”…
You get the idea…he was seriously all about a PINK monster!  I did manage to get him to change his mind on a few body parts, but basically, we created a pink monster!  

 I’m not sure if this new ‘pink’ monster is scary or just goofy, but he was excited about it when I finished it.  I did have fun working on the little project with him, and really, that is what is most important, having fun together.  I cut out pieces and he put them where they ‘should go.”  (I might have moved a few parts when I sewed them on, but for the most part, he really did put it together.)  Watching the expressions on his little face as we worked together was worth the time, even if he only wears the shirt once… But I really do hope he likes this one for more than two days!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Custom Projects

I’ve said it before, but I will say it again- I love to create custom gifts.  I love to sew and I love to make things, but knowing that the item I’m working on is for someone specific brings a whole new level of enjoyment.  There is something about the opportunity to create a personalized gift that gets me excited!   It is not just a gift.  It is a gift that has been created with a specific person in mind, a gift that is going to be given to someone with love, from someone with love. 

I love getting an email from someone- often a person I don’t even know- with a request for HankOrange to help create the ‘perfect’ gift.  I almost thrive on this sort of email!  I get myself caught up in the story, in the ‘why’ behind the gift and what makes it special for the giver and the recipient.   Sometimes I find myself getting a little too caught up and I spend too much time making it perfect.  I can’t tell you how many times I’ve sat staring at my sketch pad (which is often times a piece of scrap paper, or post-it, or the back of one of the many ‘works of art’ done by my son (…shh, don’t tell him) thinking “I could to this, or this, or maybe this…OR what about this…”  I probably waste a lot of time in the thinking stage.  But I want this personal gift to be perfect.  I want the giver to love it just as much as the recipient will.  I want the giver to be glad they choose HankOrange to create this special gift. 

I recently got an email from a lady who wanted me to create some kitchen towels using the same candy corn idea as I’d used on this onesie.  The towels were going to be for her daughter- who happens to love candy corn- who was moving into her first apartment.  Her mom wanted something personal and special to give her daughter as a house-warming gift.  So sweet!  What a great idea!  Why didn’t I think of that? :)  So, I made these kitchen towels for her.  

And now I have a 'sweet' version for sale on Etsy!  

It is all a process.   Sometimes I wonder if the process is more for me, than for the actual gift.  The process of creating the gift can be just as fun as giving the gift itself!  Whether it is a gift I’m making for someone I love or a gift I’m making for a person I’ve never met, I enjoy the process of creating (usually!) from start to finish.   Often times, because my business is mostly done through ETSY, I don’t know the giver or the recipient.  I just wrap up the finished product and mail it off, left to wonder how the gift was received. Is the recipient enjoying it as much as the giver (and the creator!) had hoped?  Did the gift get a huge smile or laugh from the recipient as they opened the package?  Or, was it ‘just another gift’?  I might never know, but either way, getting the opportunity to make those special gifts is an honor, and I enjoy the process from start to finish!

Well, enough of my ramblings ;)  Onto some of the projects I’ve done and loved!      

Custom Bibs and Burp cloth sets:
For the little one who was born on St. Patrick’s Day: “Born Lucky”

For the new baby of a professor at Kansas State: “Future Wildcat”

For the son of USC Alumni: USC burp cloths/ bib  “Future Trojan” bib

For my cousin who loves Zebra print and hot pink (her thoughtful mother ordered these for her shower!)

Custom Chenille burp cloths:

Custom Onesies:
A former bible study leader of mine had a daughter who was pregnant with their first.  They always referred to the baby as “sparky”; until she found out she was having a little girl!  Then, the baby’s nickname became “sparkle”…

A good friend of mine found out she was having a little boy.  I wanted to make her something special, but since she didn’t have a name yet, I wasn’t sure what.  I thought I’d make her a ‘little man’ onesie.  But then I had a better idea- “little Guy” Her husband’s name is ‘Guy’ so I was extra excited about this idea!

Another friend was pregnant with her first baby.  She hadn’t yet found out what she was having.  When I asked her names she said she was hoping it was a girl because her husband was convinced that if their baby were a boy his name would be Bruce Wayne!  As funny as that idea is, she was not thrilled!  But, she is having a girl!  So, I had to make this little onesie for her baby girl.  Now her husband can have his ‘baby Batman’ after all ;)

 More photos of 'custom items' to come soon!


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