my new video….all about zippers!

by Dana on January 28, 2015

For years you guys have asked, “how do you sew a zipper?”
And I’ve always meant to show you.
So TODAY is the day!

I’m totally excited about this….
(especially because there’s fun stop-motion photography and crazy music)

But also because we’re learning some clever, zippy skills….right? right?

I’ll show you TWO ways to sew a basic zipper.
It’ll be easy.  It’ll make sense.

And then you’ll never have to fear zippers again!


Now hurry up and watch before one project eats the other one…..

Hit the play button below and enjoy!

MADE EVERYDAY with Dana is a fresh new sewing show, where we create everyday items  you will love and use.
To watch other episodes:
• Click the VIDEO tab at the top or….
• Subscribe to my Youtube channel so you’re updated as soon as the episode goes live.

(most zippers pictured above were purchased on


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the week from hell

by Dana on January 26, 2015

Last week was one for the books.
But we made it out alive on the other end.

First Lucy and Clara came down with the flu and had 103 fevers for days in a row.

At one point Lucy started hallucinating.
(which, if your child has ever done that, it’s the freakiest thing).
She gave me a rundown of crazy talk—through a stream of tears—and I asked “do you know who I am??”
She cried again. “Yes! You’re the Galaxy…..”
(Which…I guess I’ll take as a compliment.  I sorta was their Galaxy for the week)
( )

So, the fevers finally broke after 5 days, after a lot of coughing (and continuous Peppa Pig episodes)
But in the middle of it, Clara woke up screaming with an ear infection.
And on Wednesday night right before bed, I discovered that all three kids had lice.

I always knew lice was coming one day.  It’s that dreaded fear in the back of your mind….the quiet worry that inevitably bubbles it’s way to the top.  And in most instances, in the most inconvenient time possible.

I know.
When does lice ever happen at the “right” time?

So I picked bugs and nits from Lucy’s feverish head, listening to “ouch” on repeat.
There were a lot of tears, for hours.
And more picking.
And we shaved Owen’s head.
And I did 15 loads of laundry.

And…I really don’t mean for this to be a complain fest.
Because somehow it all comes to an end and life goes back to normal (which it finally did on Saturday!  Yay!)  And there are always some bright spots in the chaos.

Like warm showers.
And a warm dinner dropped off by your sister-in-law.

A husband who takes time off work to help you.
A basket on your doorstep from a friend, filled with cleaning supplies and chocolate.
And kids who are suddenly happy again.

And there’s always some comfort knowing that someone else is going through a tough week too.
So if you’re having a rough one, hang in there!!  We feel ya!
We promise there’s a light at the end.
And hopefully chocolate.

And please.
Please will someone share their expert tips for keeping lice away??
That whole process has so much room for error.
Cause if I happened to miss one tiny white nit, the color of my kids hair….
We’re in trouble…

Here’s to a better week for everyone!


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houndstooth corduroy for Corduroy

by Dana on January 15, 2015

Having kids at the same school means you get to watch (and help) them with the same projects over the years.  So I was just as thrilled as Owen was when Corduroy the bear got to come home with him for the weekend.

And I really couldn’t believe that it had been TWO years since Lucy was in First grade and brought Corduroy home!….and I made that overalls tote for him?…..and we went to the laundromat to take photos?

Was it really two years ago??

Yep. I guess it was.
And now it’s Owen’s turn.

I love the corduroy books.
And you know, I’m really not a very emotional person….I rarely cry at chick flick movies (in fact I don’t even really like chick flick movies)…BUT, show me a book about a child, or a child’s play toy that’s lost or just needs some love?  And I get misty eyed.
There’s something about being a mom makes you want to scoop up and love all who need it.

And in the Corduroy book, all he wants is to be chosen and loved by a child—to go home from the toy shop with a new owner.  But he’s a bit disheveled looking, with a missing button.  He doesn’t look like all the other brand news toys.
But one little girl spots him on the shelf and tells her mom that he’s the bear she’s always wanted!

Her mom discourages her from buying Corduroy because he’s doesn’t look new and they walk away.
(dagger to the heart!)

So Corduroy spends all night roaming the department store where he lives, looking for his missing button so he will look new again.  He gets into some mischief of course, and has a little fun.
And to his surprise in the morning, the same girl comes back and says she has enough money in her piggy bank to buy him and that he can come home with her.

It’s such a simple story.
(And a good reminder to me of how often I need to see things through the eyes of my child… letting Owen buy the super lame $1 book he wanted to get Clara for Christmas….which I thought was kind of silly and wanted to encourage him to get her something different…but I decided to let him pick….and Clara loved it!
* sigh * )

Oh man.
Parenting.  It’s so hard.  And so rewarding.
Tears yet?

So when Corduroy came home, he and Owen went straight to work….or I guess, to play.  Owen knew exactly what he wanted to do with him and how he wanted to document the weekend (each child takes photos of the things they do with Corduroy and adds them in the classroom scrapbook)

So they went hiking together in our backyard, had a picnic, swung on the rope swing, played Minecraft.  And Owen even directed me with his photos, “Hey, why don’t we have Lucy holding him up so it looks like we’re having a real sword fight and then you can cut Lucy out of the photo?”

I love it.

And while the boys were busy, I got busy making a new bag for Corduroy, out of….corduroy!
I’ve had this houndstooth fabric for years and it just keeps giving, year after year.

Cause year after the year, these corduroy dolls get so much love that they’re coming home in bags that are falling apart!…or can’t fit all the books and things that go inside.
This is why I originally made the first bag for Lucy’s class.

So when Owen brought home a very tiny bag for the bear and the books, I thought I’d make one for his teacher too.  It was one of the first projects I sewed on my new machine.  Woohoo!

I used the Reversible Tote Bag Tutorial for the project.
And my new video to box out the bottom and sides.
And it all reminded me how fun it is to sew themed school bags….like the ones I made for Lucy’s Kindergarten teacher (click on a pic below for more info):

And there you go!
Houndstooth corduroy on one side, duck cloth on the other.

And plenty of room inside.

….for bears and scrapbooks.

Thanks for the visit Corduroy!
See you in 4 years, when Clara brings you home….


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Happy 2015 friends!
2015.  I like the sound of that—-I like numbers in increments of 5.
It just feels right.

And I hope all your holidays felt right…and were all merry and bright!

I couldn’t close out the year without saying a very merry Christmas and sharing our annual card.
I love getting Christmas cards!
So here’s our card, to you.

Because it’s that most wonderful time of the year….
When mom announces right after church, “hey, before anyone changes their clothes, let’s take a quick family picture!”

And he’s all like:

And I’m all like:

And most of them are like:

And eventually it’s kind of like:

And then Clara kicks up her Sparkle Skirt and red boots (which she insisted on wearing for 2 days straight.  Good thing they go with the Christmas theme).
And we call it good.

And a couple weeks later this stack shows up at my house.
And Lucy and I address them all and pop them in the mail.

And then he’s all like:

And then we start getting cards in the mail.
And my friend Lyndsey is all like:

Dude. Seriously?
Best. Handwritten address.  Ever.
And my house is all happy like:

It’s like friends and family were hanging out with us all season long.
And YOU guys are what makes the season bright.
So thank you for popping in on us throughout the year, for leaving comments, for sewing and having fun.   Have a wonderful 2015!

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