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Thursday, March 21, 2013

Potting and Pillow Making...

I am in the midst of re potting a lot of the plants on the patio right now. 

I have a lot of Euphorbia of different types.  Most look like some form of cacti, but they aren't.  I like them better than the native cacti for the porch.  They don't have mean prickly needles sticking out all over.

A lot of them, I have had so long that I don't even remember the name....

This is one such plant.
I bought the main stem that you see behind Tessie years ago.  It has to be re potted every year or two.  It throws out babies all around it's bottom and they can be separated from the main plant and simply put in dirt to grow.  For about 6 months, they are minis.

There are a lot more where these came from...It's a very prolific plant. A lot of my Euphorbias are like that.  Very easy to start new plants.

I am, by no means the best gardener around.  I have killed off a lot of plants in my time.  But the Euphorbia seems to be a variety that I get along with.

So, Tessie will have some cacti  in her house for a while.

The brown crockery bucket, with the two plants is one that my dad had when he was little.  I think that his dad passed it to him.  I don't know how old it is, but I imagine it is 19th century or early 20th. See.  Love of miniatures is inherited...
When we got tired of potting, I came back in and got out the sewing machine....Yes.  I do actually sew.  I used to make most of my own clothes...I don't have time, what with minis and other projects. 

It mainly gets used for making regular sized pillow covers, once in a while a bit of patchwork or other crafty project.  I really should leave it out where it will make me want to sew.  Nope.  Strike that.  I know what closet it is in if I really need it.

Anyway, I wanted to do some black and white pillows for the cottage.  I thought you might like to see the assembly line method, if you don't already do it this way.  I learned the technique from Judee Williamson many years ago when I took one of her bed classes. 

Rather than cutting out individual pillows and doing little fiddly sewing, we learned to do them in strips.

If you are using a single piece of fabric, with a fold at one edge, you need to stitch a narrow seam along the fold.  Otherwise your pillow will look like a bag.  You want a nice knife edge on all four sides.

If you want all of your pillows the same size, you do it like the front row here. I folded the fabric strip wrong side out.  Stitched along the fold.  Then I turned under the top edge of the fabric on either side.  If need be, you can pin it. in place.  Mark where you want the seams, leaving a half inch between one pillow and the next....In other words, two pillow seams, half inch space that will be cut through, another two pillow seams, half inch space....You can keep going like that for as many pillows as you need to make.  This is especially good for doing a set of bed pillows...Two or four at a time. They will all turn out the same size.  The ones in the back row will vary in size.
Then you cut them apart. Clip the corners and turn them right side outand stuff them.

A lot of times I use salt, but I found this bag of coarse sand in the floral department at Walmart yesterday. 

As soon as Zar finishes pushing into place on the work board, I will start filling pillows.

She's not a lot of help when I comes to moving things....The zapping is totally forgotten...

Anyway, I will have lots of pillows to show you tomorrow.  It takes a while to turn and stuff them.  I am not going to make you wait whilst I do that part.

See you tomorrow, with finished pillows.


Phyllisa said...

Hi Casey. I have not heard of stuffing mini pillows with salt or
sand. I think the next time I make
some I will use my homemade bath
salts, which is scented salt.Then
the dollhouse will have a lovely
scent.I might try it today.

Phyllisa said...

Hi Casey. You could also scent the sand with a few drops of potpouri.
BTW, I love your mini cacti.

hopeful said...

Hi Casey. I like the idea of doing so many pillows at once. Great tip. For filling, I find that really tiny micro beads are great as well. They let pillows and sofa cushions sit quite realistically. Salt will sometimes absorb moisture from the air and turn hard. I've not tried sand though. I'll have to give it a shot. - Marilyn

Lucille said...

Wow, Casey! Brilliant! First time I ever hear of this wonderful method! It makes so much sense. It's like a production line. I have seen that sand you mentioned at the dollar store. I also like Phyllisa's suggestion of using scented bath salts. Thank you once again for a wonderful and most helpful tutorial. I look forward to seeing your pillows tomorrow.

12Create said...

Thank you for the tutorial. I was going to have a go at making some mini pillows and this looks like a good method.

Caseymini said...

Marilyn, that's the advantage of living in AZ. There is seldom a problem with moisture here. I have never had a problem with salt. I like the texture of this sand. It's course and doesn't seep out of the stitching.

Caseymini said...

Phyllisa, as Marilyn said, do be aware that bath salts, like regular salt can be a problem in damp climates. Also, be careful with the kind of scent you use. Probably not a good idea to use oils.

mcddiss said...

vaya no se me habia ocurrido hacer algo asi, creo que es una buena idea y facilita mucho el trabajo, gracias por compartirlo, por cierto me gusta mucho esa tela



Steinworks said...

Thank you Casey, I have two beds to dress and the production line method sounds great to me :)

Marisa :)

Elizabeth S said...

Hi Casey! Things are really looking good with the cottage and the idea for the 'All in One" cushions, is simply Clever!
I also used to use salt for the filling cushions until the salt began to absorb the moisture in the air and either melted or solidified and then precipitated the corrosion of anything that it was in close contact with. Bird gravel and or sand is Much Better and saves you any future grief!