Saturday, February 6, 2010


I have been busy lately trying to find something to send to the grands each month.  Three years ago I sent them pillow slips each month for their travel  pillows. Each was made in the theme of the month.  When Halloween came around I was able to find some glow in the dark star fabric.   They loved those.  The following year I made them place mats to use each month.  Last year I made full size pillow slips.  This year I hadn't found anything I thought would be something they could use until I came across a blog where someone had made mailbox covers.  These were weather proof.  I don't have fabrics available right now in the weather proof line and I am not where I can get the exact fit for the box so I am winging it.  My Grandson will be 9 this month so I thought I would give this idea a trial run.  I asked my daugther to take time and measure the box for me.  Why is it like pulling eye teeh to get our kids to do something?  It was a week before she got back to me with the measurements.  They are always so busy.  It a cinch I couldn't go measure it.  She's a Thousand plus miles away.

A trip to the stash to find the appropriate fabrics was the next thing to do.  I found this great Denim fabric that is canvas weight.  I figured it would be heavy enough the wind wouldn't blow it around.  Then I searched for my "stitch witchery".  It has been so long since I did any iron-on that I knew it was buried under other "material things".  In fact I usually stay away from iron on.  I am a little bit of a snob when it comes to iron on stuff.  I would rather hand applique.  I decided since it wasn't going to be a cover to stay out in the weather for a month that I would also make the appliques out of felt.  I would be able to use the little bits and pieces that had been migrating around in the stash. 

The first thing I did was to cut the canvas 3 inches wider and 3 inches longer than I needed.  Then I hemmed the sides so the fabric was to be the length of the box   Then I measured for over the hump of the box and pressed a fold that would be the part that would go under the box.  After that was done I hemmed the one side with a rolled hem.  With the heaviness of the fabric I had to press the first fold and stitch it down with a basting stitch on the machine.  Then go back and press another fold and stitch again.  I could have serged it but my serger and I are always at war and I was not in the mood for a frustrating fight.

The next step was to place the hole for the flag and the slice so the flag could slip in. I drew it on the fabric and proceeded to heavily zig zagged the area.  Then I clipped out the hole  and zig zagged some more before I clipped the slice for the flag.

Now for the design.  I didn't want to obsess over this, I just wanted to get it done and in the mail before the birthday was over and gone.  I didn't even make patterns for the pieces.  I just cut them out and set them on the fabric.  On the first side I used the stitch witchery clipped in little bits to hold the pieces on.  I will tell you this, it was a pain in the "A" to iron the pieces.  I just wanted them to hold on till I could widely zig zag around the pieces.  On the opposite side I thought why not glue stick them on.  It won't be washed.  Wow did that make life easier. The glue stick worked to hold the felts pieces while I stitched them on.

 The stars you see on the other side are made from silver lame' that I had already used iron on stabilizer on (from an astronaught halloween costume).  I placed stitch witchery on a piece of freezer paper and then placed the stabilized lame on top and pressed it.  This put the  stitch witchery on the back of the lame'.  I then cut out the stars and peeled off the freezer paper and then ironed them onto the canvas.  It is harder to iron on to canvas than other materials.  You have to heat it longer and for sure don't move it till it's cold.

Voila, I have a mail box cover.  To display it I used a box with an aluminum pan on it and then my sweat hirt to round the top. (You can see it peeking out frm the mail box flag hole.) I also used two yard sticks to support the cover.  As you can see I don't have the straps on it yet.  I think I will use wide elastic with those large flat snaps.  This way it will pull nice and tight on the box.

I figured the flag will hide the cake on the one side so I will tell DD to put it up and put a party hat on it to hide the flag.  Or use the flag to tie balloons from and put a bow over the flag so the postman won't think there is mail in the box.

 New Article on my blog: 
A mystery quilt designed with the novice in mind
Other blog sites by me:
Where I have stories of my cats and other pets
a blog about my courtship with my husband,
and a blog about my most embarrassing moment.
A "Soap box" blog where I do air my opinions.
blogs about the wildflowers on our farm
Organic methods we use, some cooking and some poetry,
blogs about Seed sprouting, insects, and garden pictures
Blog about an endangered beneficial beetle
New Blog:
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I give credit for items which belong to other people in my blogs .
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