365 Days Handmade

Making life a better place, one day at a time

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Day 262/365: Parasol Print Cotton Luncheon Napkins


Ever since I took a fabric napkin sewing class back in November, Sean and I have completely stopped using paper napkins.  Cotton napkins are so much more nicer.  They’re not that complicated to make, either.

You wash, dry, press, and cut your fabric into 17″ by 17″ squares.  Then you press the hems.


You mark the corners where you would miter them…


…sew and snip…


Press the mitered corners and tuck the hems under…


…sew the borders, and you’re done!



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Day 220/365: Vintage Campers Pink Cocktail Napkins

I spent most of today cleaning the house and running errands, and then Sean and I drove down from Morro Bay to Ventura this afternoon.  I did make some time to whip up three cocktail napkins, though.


This was a fairly quick project and a very satisfying way to use up a fabric remnant.


It’s also a fun way to enjoy a plain old glass of unsweetened iced tea.


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Day 217/365: Blue-Green Flowered Print Dinner Napkins, Completed

This particular fabric had a cool name, but I don’t remember it. I do remember that the remnant roll consisted of 1.22 yards, enough to make four dinner-sized napkins.  Each one is approximately 18″ x 18″.  I would have staged a better photo with a plate of food or some delicious-looking edible thing to go along with the napkins, except there’s nothing photogenic in the refrigerator right now.  A slice of key lime pie would have looked beautiful next to one of these napkins.





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Day 216/365: The Start of a Fabric Napkin Phase

This past Christmas, Sean gave me a gift card to spend at Superbuzzy, my favorite local independent fabric shop in Ventura.  Unfortunately, for one reason or another, I wasn’t able to get to the store to spend my gift card, and it was burning a hole in my wallet.  So finally, while we were down in Ventura this weekend, I made time to go to the store.  I spent an hour browsing while Sean read a book in the Husband Waiting Area, where there is a sofa and coffee table for that reason.  I chose two yards of cute Japanese fabric and a handful of remnant rolls.  Since I’ve been on a sewing kick lately, I thought I would turn those remnants into assorted sizes of napkins (cocktail, luncheon, and dinner).

After washing, drying, and pressing the fabric, I got to measuring and slicing with my trusty blue Olfa rotary cutter.  Now I’ve got a pile of squares ready to be transformed into the best reusable napkins you could have on your dining table.



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Day 199/365: Fusion Breakfast with Handmade Placemats


Sean is the breakfast maker in our household.  He always cooks my eggs exactly the way I like them, over medium.  This morning’s eggs were so pretty that I had to take a picture of them.  As I was framing the shot, it occurred to me that a lot of objects in the photo tell you a lot of things about us.  There are the quilted placemats that I made, along with a luchador cocktail napkin that I sewed.  In the background to the left are an aqua chair that I upcycled (I should post a blog entry with Before and After photos of that project), along with a white side table that I also painted.  And Sean’s t-shirt tells you who he’s supporting in Major League Soccer.

Our meal is also reflective of our backgrounds:  you take a Filipino girl from Hawaii and a Southern boy from Florida, have them living in coastal California for a dozen years, and you’ve got a breakfast of rice, eggs, vegan sausage, and unsweetened iced tea.  Total Hawaiian-Californian-Southern fusion.  And it was good.


Day 192/365: Kawaii Dessert Print Napkins

A few months ago, I bought this Japanese printed cotton at my favorite local independent fabric shop in Ventura.  I thought it would be perfect for luncheon napkins.


Last Saturday, I finally got around to making those napkins.

After washing, drying, and pressing the fabric, I used my rotary blade to cut squares.


I pressed the edges to make neat hemlines, and then I marked off the corners to miter them.




Right after I took the above photo, I realized that I made a mistake.  I would have to rip out a few stitches so that I could fold the hems under.

Other than that, I didn’t have any more problems.


The napkins turned out pretty cute, I think.


I almost hate to get them dirty… even though that is kind of the point of having napkins, right?


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Day 188/365: Week 6 of Half Marathon Training

I got home from work–10 hours of what is my Monday after a 3-day weekend–and I was fully prepared to camp out on the couch for the rest of the evening.  But, nooooo.  Sean said, “We have to run today.”

“Can’t today be a rest day?” I asked.

“No,” Sean said, “because tomorrow is supposed to be the rest day.”

Drat.  He was going to be disciplined and stick to the half marathon training plan that I’d printed out and stuck to the refrigerator door.

So I changed into my running clothes and put on my running shoes, and we went out for a forty-minute run, according to schedule.  I spent the first half hour alternating between being mad at my husband and trying to distract myself from the various aches and pains that were developing along my hamstrings and shins and the arches of my feet.  I spent the last ten minutes focused on just getting home and putting this run behind me.

Just as it is with every long run that I complete, by the time I got home, I felt pretty good about what I’d accomplished, and I was back to liking my husband again.  Especially since he’d made puttanesca while I was at work, and we would be able to sit down to eat in a matter of minutes.

I didn’t take any photos of our dinner, but here is one from our 4th of July breakfast that Sean made.  My contribution was the handmade quilted placemats and handmade napkins.


Even though he won’t let me slack off the training schedule, he does make the best breakfast.


Day 20/365: Dismissed!


I returned to the courtroom this morning for jury duty, just as the judge ordered last week Friday.  He informed us that both parties had decided to settle out of court.  So he was dismissing the case, and we were free to go.  Hooray!

On the way home, I stopped at Picking Daisies to check out their fabric sale.  I saw this pre-cut fabric and immediately thought of this fabulous placemat I recently made.  Of course I had to bring these bad boys home with me.  They’re the perfect size for napkins and will make for the most badass dining companions.