Tag Archives: back to school

Treasury time!

Made this as part of Back To School month over at Meremade. It’s sort of my fall/teacher/learning/girl wish list. Sharing it with you!

‘Back to school’

















Treasury tool supported by the dog house

Back to school prep

I have a bit of a Mabel’s Label’s addiction.

Just a little one. I have oodles for the kids and I have some ‘Mrs K’ ones for school. They’re super awesome, they stick to anything and our 13 letter last name fits, even with first names!

Nate starts JK this year, the all day everyday program. Aside from it being absolutely mind blowing that my kids will both be in school all day, I’m a bit worries about how Nate will do since his birthday is December 23rd, but I suppose he’ll cope. It’s going to be an interesting first week of school around here. I’m usually pretty pooped that first week and then the kids will be going full days for the first time. I think there are going to be lots of quiet evenings around here that week.

Anyhow back to the reason for this post, so I was tagging the boys shoes and I did a whole ‘right is red’ thing for Nate since I have blue and red shoe labels for him. They sell some Preschool Shoe labels now, but since I have a stash I was just working with what I have in a fun way. I also bought and tagged some cointaners for them to use. It’s going to be a HUGE adjustment to make 2 lunches and 4 snacks . . . *sigh*

I also married all my Mabel’s Labels into one of the fun little zip locks they come in and then I’ve kept the rest for all that trip money and other fun stuff that will need to be sent in this year. I also keep all those bill return envelopes for that purpose too.

School morning organization help

This post was originally posted over at Meremade as part of her September Back to School posts. My opinion may be biased but it’s a pretty handy idea and so I’m sharing it here.

Now that it’s back to school time things are a little busier in our house. I’m a teacher and with 1 in SK and having to get the kids out the door and over to the sitter I can use some help. This year I work in the mornings and not being a morning person doesn’t help when I have to get 3 people ready and out the door.

I usually lay out all of our clothes the night before and now I’ve come up with a handy little DIY that can help us all do it for the whole school week!

You will need:
Fabric for the tote bodies (you will be cutting 10 8×8 pieces)
Contrasting fabric for cutting the letters (I used a charm pack I had lying around)
Ribbon for the handles
Heat and Bond (really helpful but not necessary)

The first step is to cut your letters. I was planning on getting all fancy and cutting mine with my Cricut but I decided to just give it a go and do it by hand. Once I saw the size of my letters I decided that 8×8 would be a good size for the tote bags. I have 2 little boys so I’m only tossing some socks and underwear in there. If you have girls and might be including hair accessories or tights you may want to make your totes a tad bigger.

Cut your 8×8 tote pieces, set aside. Cut Heat and Bond as backing for your letters. This product saves a lot of time and allows you to just iron on your letters rather than having to sew them all around. If you like the look of stitching on top you can still do that of course, the Heat and Bond just makes extra sure those letters aren’t fraying or budging!
Iron the letters onto the bag tote front pieces. So 5 will get letters, 5 will stay blank.

Now you’ve got 10 squares of tote worthy fabric. We need to hem the top edge. So turn the fabric down to make a little hem, I did about 1/2 inch, press and sew.

At this point you could make yourself handles using coordinating fabric but I looked up and my ribbon collection was staring back at me so I choose to go to the easy route. Attach the ribbon slightly off center on the tote pieces. So sew it left of the center line on one piece and right of the center line on the other. If you lay it all out it will look like mine.

So you’ve created a loop to hang over the hanger.

Place the tote pieces right sides together and stitch around the 3 raw edges. And you are done!
If you happen to have some of those hangers from the store lying around you can use those to hang a top and bottom and then slip a handy little tote with the right day of the week on it over the hanger, fill with needed accessories, in my case socks, underwear and a diaper.

Hang in a handy spot (like on my linen closet door) and you’re ready to go!

Oh and keep the empty ones in a safe place. This picture is moments after Nate saying ‘Thanks Mom’ and wandering off with the Tuesday-Friday totes.

Lunch bag reveal.

I’m such a nut. So I sat down with the pattern I intended to use for my lunch bag loaded up on my iPad, read the materials, gathered them up and then read the finished size and said to myself “Oh that’s too small!” and wandered off to do my own thing. Welcome to the way I sew my friends. I’m a terrible pattern follower. The truth is out. I’ll share the dimensions I used soon.

So onto my awesome lunch bag.

I used some of that wonderful elephant print I had lying around and matched it up with some red $1 bargain cut from a quilting shop, and some aqua damask. I had a piece of handle bits that was just the right size.

I used iron in interfacing and recycled some fleece I had lying around for the padding.

It’s a big hit at school!

Eeep! It’s the first day of school.

And with that summer was gone. Imagine a tear slowly running down my cheek.

In more funner news, later this month, the 20th to be exact I’ll be posting a great keeping organized for school tip over at Meremade. Starting tomorrow Jennifer is going to be featuring a load of ideas for back to school crafty fun.

Mine will be awesome, just a heads up. It also posts on my birthday which makes it super-duper cool.

Well I’m off to prepost some more . . . posts. Not only do me and my son go back to school today but we’ve flipped our schedule from last year and we go in the mornings this year, something we’re not used to. AND my hubby is going away tomorrow and will be back Sunday night! I’m going to be one sleepy mommy this week. So I’m cheating on my posts. It’s for the best really, otherwise who knows what I’d be writing about!

My plan for today.

In an attempt to procrastinate from the really important things I should be doing I plan on making myself a lunch bag using this pattern.

I don’t have those particular fabrics but I do have other things that are equally as cute!

I’m also hoping to whip one up for Wesley. He turned a blank white pie box into his lunch box (or so he thinks) by drawing police cars all over it. I decided to make him one with some plain cotton fabric and give him my pile of Sharpies to draw all over it. He only goes to school 1/2 days and so only carries his water bottle and a snack so I hadn’t made him one last year but I think I’ll go with this design and I’ll use this tutorial as a guide.

I’ll post when they’re all done.

Have a great labour day and for all your back to schoolers have a great first day tomorrow!

Snack pouch tutorial, complete with teaser.

We’ve been making the switch to glass and stainless steel lunch containers. Both my school and my son’s school push for the whole literless/boomerang lunch thing. Bomerang lunch basically means if you send it in packaging or it creates some sort of garbage they’re going to send it back home to you. Strangely we teacher folk are free to load up the garbages at school with our lunch litter but I’m trying desperatly to avoid that. Hence my binge to create some snack pouches!

Now I created a few for my son and I’m going to show you how to make some yourself. I was really hardcore with his and used parts from one of my hubby’s practically new shirts. Somehow he got a weird big circle stain on it right in the front and tossed it into the donate pile. I rescued it.  Oh, lookie a Mabel’s Label.

I also tried to use fabrics I had on hand and chose some of the bright colourful kid prints I have to jazz the pouches up a bit. There some debate online about materials to use for the inside and what is and isn’t food safe. To just avoid having to buy something or find out later what I chose was wrong I’m sticking with cotton fabrics. If you plan on carrying something that could get things wet I suggest adding a layer between the inner and outer cotton pieces to help prevent everything else in your bag getting soaked. Cutting up a freezer bag would work great for this and you could probably get a few out of just one.

You will need:

– lining fabric 4 1/2 x 6ish

– printed fabric for outside about 4 1/2 x 3 1/2

– plain fabric for outside 4 1/2 x 3 1/2

– 4 inch length of velcro, hook & loop piece

– strip of fabric to make tabs

Pin the 2 outside fabric pieces right side together and sew together. I use 1/4 inch seam, or slightly less.

Unfold the pieces and press the seams flat.

Stich on the rightside of the fabric to each side of the seam.  This will help reinforce where the fabrics are joined and adds a nice little decorative stitch.

Because I repurposed an existing garment I didn’t have to make my own little tabs but if you do it’s really simple.  Take 2 pieces of fabric shaped like rectangles and fold it in half so it’s a long piece and then sew down the edge. Turn it right-side out and you should have a nice long thin rectangle.  If you want the little decorative top stitch mine has you can just do a straight stitch down one side.  Trim one tab so it’s slightly shorter than the other.  I’ve found it’s easier to separate them when opening the pouch.

Fold your tab piece in half and sandwich it between your lining and outside piece, placed right sides together.  Sew through all 3 pieces.

You should now have this sort of looking thing, with your tab sticking up.  Now position the velcro about 1/4 – 1/2 inch from what will be the top of your pouch.  Stitch along at least the top and bottom of the velcro, you can do the sides too if you like.  Secure the velcro on the opposite side of the pouch, measuring them against each other to get the positioning correct.

Fold the pouch over completely so the outside is outside and you’re looking at the lining.  Press to get a nice clean edge and then topstitch along near the edge of the pouch.  This will create a nice finish stitch on the inside and outside and reinforce the tab.

Once you’ve completed all these steps for both sides you should be left with something that looks like this.

Place the 2 pieces with the outsides together and stitch all the way around 3 unfinished sides.  This would be a great place to use a serger if you have one.  I don’t so I just went back and did a zig zag stitch just beside the straight stitch and then trimmed the fabric really close to the stitching.

These are really fun and easy to make.  It’s a great way to use up some scraps.  I’m thinking of making them to use as loot bags for my son’s birthday party this year, then the kids leave with some goodies and a fun little reusable snack pouch.  Since things will only be in there a few hours I’m not worried about them getting stale but if you were, or plan to put wet-ish snacks in there, then you can put a water resistant lining between the fabrics.

Also, I’m going to tease you with a little fun embellishment you could add to these.  You’ll have to come back tomorrow for the full explanation.  All I can say now is it involves a guest post and it will kill you with cuteness.


1, 2, 3, Mabel’s Labels giveaway day 3.

Well I’m sad that today is the last day of my fun Mabel’s Labels giveaway. Today is the day to enter if you have 3 little people in your life who could use some amazing personalized labels for some of their very “I don’t want to lose it” stuff! I also have to say that yesterday’s winner is Heather! Cece and Hannah are going to look quite smashing going back to school in style.

This has been so much fun and I’d like to thank the lovely people at Mabel’s Labels for working with me to ship the items straight to the winners, honestly, this company/product is awesome!

Please head over to Mabel’s Labels and leave me a message letting me know the names of your 2 little people and what colours/designs you would like!

Once again, the giveaway closes at midnight when I pick the lucky winner!

1,2,3 Mabel’s Labels giveaway Day 2!

Okie, so I fancily wrote everyone’s name on a little slip of paper and tossed them into an empty plastic green strawberry basket and pulled out Laura C’s name! Congrats Laura, looks like Chrissy can at least have her things returned to her should she lose them!

That means today my friends, is the day to enter if you have 2 little special people in your life who could use an awesome Canadian made personalized product to label some of their very important stuff! Have 3 important little people in your life? Uhhh, come back tomorrow then.

Please head over to Mabel’s Labels and leave me a message letting me know the names of your 2 little people and what colours/designs you would like!

Giveaway closed at midnight when I pick the lucky winner!

Also, if you happen to sew or craft at all today is the last day to sign up for my fabric scrap swap, come play!

1, 2, 3, Mabel’s labels giveaway!

Hello there, so here’s my first venture into the world of a video blog. I figured I’d make it a fun giveaway and that way people won’t notice the silliness. Please excuse the over use of the word “um”, I did 2 takes and it didn’t get any better so, um, oh well.

Here’s the link to Mabel’s Labels so you can see all their nifty products. Here’s where you go to design your own Loot Bag Combo Builder, it shows you a proof right there.

Remember today’s winner gets 1 set of personalized labels and a Tag Mate. This is open to everyone world wide. Please only enter once.

***OOOPS There was some technical difficulty loading this video yesterday so I had to work around what I had planned. Soooo the giveaway was bumped a day (I don’t have a nice quiet house to re-shoot). When I say “Friday” is the last day, it’s now Saturday. Sorry about that***

Leave your comments below and good luck!