Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Beach Chair Towel Cover

I am so excited about our girls only beach trip this weekend! 4 girls I have known since we were young (I have known one since we were 3 years old!) all celebrating our 29th (HAHA) Birthday with a girls beach trip to Destin, Florida. We are all moms of small children so we need this get away! I saw cute beach chair covers online and in a local gift shop but there was no way I was going to pay $30 or more for something I knew I could make myself. I searched everywhere for a tutorial and could not find one anywhere! Since I had those cute $1.25 towels on hand, I decided to make my own and take pictures along the way to make a tutorial for anyone else wanting to make one for the beach or for lounging by the pool. This is my first time posting a tutorial so I hope I make the directions clear and easy to follow
First off you should know I am a messy sewer. My grandmother is a professional seamstress and would shudder if she saw my sloppy seams etc. But since this was for my own use and just something I threw together in less than 30 minutes, I did not go to any great lengths to make it perfect.
First I started with one of the cute Target Dollar spot beach towels. The covers I had seen online used longer towels but I had these, they were cute and CHEAP so they were perfect for my needs. I had some cheap light pink terry cloth material on hand (I seem to have a hobby of collecting fabric!) but you could also use a 2nd towel for the back and pockets. If you were clever enough you could cut around and use all the seams the towel already has to prevent hemming or using the serger on the ends. A serger would have came in very handy for this product but I don't have one and did not want to drive 40 minutes to my grandmothers to use hers. I used a simple tight zig zag stitch on the raw edges of my pockets and back. You could fold it and hem it to make it look more professional.
I had not used my embroidery machine in almost a year so I needed to test it out, the back of the chair cover was the perfect way to do so. I embroidered an L on it just to make sure my machine was working. I cute the light pink terry cloth wider than my towel because A) it was a wider material and B) I wanted the cover to fit any beach chair and this was the easiest way to make sure it would work on wider chairs. Sew the back section onto the top part of the towel to make the part what will slide over the chair to keep the wind from blowing your towel away or slipping once you sit down.

Next I laid out all my "beach" items. A book, sunscreen, sunglasses, camera, cellphone etc. and cut the pocket sizes to make sure all my items would fit in the pockets. On the back part I made it longer so it could be folded down to "close" the pocket.
gotta love the Dollar Tree for Cheap Beach reads! Of course I will end up with more than this in the pockets but I used these items as a guideline when deciding on the sizes.

Sew the pockets up and then sew them onto the towel with a single straight stitch. TA DA... Your beach towel chair cover is ready for some fun the sun! These pictures aren't the greatest but they are the only ones I took before the rain moved in.
The pocket in the picture above should probably have been sewed closer to the bottom, but I am lazy and didn't want to rip the seam out to resew it. Next time for pocket placement, I would fold the towel in half and use that as a guide to sew on the pockets toward the foot area of the towel like the other side pictured at the top.

You can personalize them with coordinating colors, embroidered names/initials ( I did my initials on the top of the cover). Use a design stitch on the pockets, add velcro or buttons to keep your items secure in the pocket, sew in a built in cellphone pocket and so much more! You can make the back flap shorter, I was using a piece already cut and didn't know what to expect so I figured it was better to use too much than not enough. I have a few sections gathered at the seam to create a wider area to fit large wider chairs.

I am going to use another towel to make a large beach tote so my chair cover, beach towel and all other beach items will fit inside. I hope you enjoyed this simple tutorial and are ready to make your own chair cover. Send me pictures! I would love to see your creations. If you have any questions please feel free to ask.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Craft to do list

I am the queen of starting craft projects and never finishing them. I seem to have a hobby of collecting craft supplies. With the help of the internet there's so many awesome blogs full of craft ideas and tutorials. More than I can ever find time to complete but so many that I would love to try!
Some things on my to do list:
  • complete more washer necklaces. I made a few as last minute gifts for my daughters last day of school. Had her daddy stamp their names (that was hard!) on them and tied them onto long pieces of pretty ribbon. It was a last minute project and I didn't have anything else to use in place of the ribbon. I want to make more with cute scrapbook paper and diamond glaze (that stuff looks oh so much fun!), and more with names, words and pretty cords.
  • beach towel chair covers - hopefully I will complete my first one tomorrow
  • decorative magnets - I have a bag full of circle magnets that are just begging to be embellished
  • more post it note holders for desks. These were a hit during teacher appreciation and I want to make more.
  • Mod podge a cute storage box. not sure what my plans are for this box but it looks like a fun project to work on.
  • more notebook "purses" these have been a hit at birthday parties
  • candy sprinkle charms - just saw a tutorial for these today. I have everything but the epoxy (not sure if thats really what its called) to make these so hopefully I can find the last item soon to get started on these.
So what's on YOUR to do list? Please share! Inspire me with new ideas and keep me motivated to finish my to do list.

Back in the craft groove

Finals are over and I have a few days off till my crazy summer class schedule starts. I finally drug out my embroidery machine and craft supplies and after a few road blocks (took forever to get the futura software loaded on the computer) I managed to embroider names on towels for our girls only birthday beach weekend. More on the trip later I promise!
I hit the jackpot at target last week, their dollar spot purple dot items were half off. Guess what I found in the $2.50 section? BEACH TOWELS! only $1.25 each! they are normal length and actually soft! they held up great in the washer so even at full price they were a steal! Cute colors too! Since we have a pool, towels are always useful around our hose and cute/cheap ones are even better. I promise to upload some pictures soon. I am working on making a beach chair cover using the towels. Better get busy since we leave in 2 days! YAY! I have seen the covers in stores and online but the cheapest I could find them was $30. With my awesome deal on towels, the chair cover will cost me less than $5 and will even have my name embroidered on it. Hopefully I will be able to take pictures and write a simple tutorial to post since I searched all over for one but didn't find any directions. It looks fairly simple (famous last words! haha) so tomorrow we will see just how simple it is.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

A little about me

I am a mom in my mid thirties (34 forever!), with one child aka the Princess. I have been married for close to 15 years and recently decided to go back to school to pursue my nursing degree. Yeah I sometimes think I have lost my mind! So far, school has been going well and proud to say I had all A's this past semester! First time EVER!
I love a nice long hot bath, sleeping late, General Hospital, Moscato wine, bubble tea, and crafts. I can't stand to be hot and sweaty even if I was born raised and still live in the south! I can be the Southern Belle INSIDE instead of sitting on the porch sipping iced tea (which I am not a big fan of btw). I am addicted to facebook and have enjoyed catching up with all my childhood friends.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

So it begins

I have finally taken the plunge into the blogging world. I can't even promise you what this will be about. I do want to make a personal challenge to myself to post at least 4 times a week.
In those posts you will find a few things each time at the end:
One random fact about me:
favorite part of the day:
least favorite part of the day:
I promise not to turn this into a groan and moan session, but I also promise not to be all fake with lollipops and sunshine with all my posts. Those blogs give me a headache from all the fake, always happy things that they think if they can convince their readers it's true, then maybe they can convince themselves.
and so my blogging journey begins... buckle up and prepare for the ride!

One random fact about me: I am mid 30's and going back to college!
listening/watching/reading: just finished Dancing with Stars (train wreck Kate)
favorite part of the day: have the house to myself after hubby has been home all week for vacation.
least favorite part of the day: cleaning! But I did manage to make a dent in the "danger zones".