DIY Phone case

The good part about cleaning your apartment is finding random things that you could upcycle.  The bad part is that these things only add to your growing pile of must upcycle.

Such is the case of these old jeans.  They were just sitting in my stash box until last weekend when I suddenly had an epiphany.  A phone case it’s going to be!

My very cheap case has seen better days but I refuse to buy a sturdy one from Samsung or any fancy one from any fancy store.  Phone cases in Prague are so ridiculously expensive. Lucky me Lillian gave me a pink one for my birthday, but if you’re around preschoolers it’s advisable to have your gadgets fully armored.  A case in a case is how it is.

DSC_0510 (2)

I can probably make at least 5 more phone cases from this pair of jeans, or even a purse! Ah focus, focus.


I just traced my old case near the hem, adding half a centimeter to the dimension before cutting. I also traced the loop. I have no tool for snap buttons but I figured I can just use any normal button I can find.

DSC_0513 (2)

Because the fabric isn’t sturdy for a case, I had to to use fusible fleece to pad and stabilize it. See next photo below.


Now the two pieces are more stable. There’s no need to use interfacing for the loop pieces though. Note to self: Always have fusible fleece/interfacing in your stash. They often come in handy.


Next step is to run a zigzag stitch on top to prevent the pieces from fraying. I used two different thread colors for fun.


Sides and bottom were sewn with a half centimeter seam allowance.


Time to flip the case inside out with my ever favorite tool for this job; a chopstick! Et viola the phone case is ready, that is if you don’t want any loop to button/snap it shut. But if you do, sew the loop like in the photo above and also flip it using a chopstick.


Sew the open bottom of the loop to the top edge of the back case.


Sew a buttonhole to the loop. This was my first time ever to sew one and it was a bit of a nightmare. I don’t know if it was me or my buttonhole foot but I couldn’t get the right size of the hole. In the end I sewed it using the usual zigzag foot but adjusting the pattern selector for buttonholes. I also hand sewn the button because I had no more patience left for errors.

DSC_0518 (2)

Woooh, it’s done!

Now what would I do next from those jeans? Another phone case? A purse or another cosmetics bag? Ah, the choices are endless…

Posted in Accessories, DIY, Sew | Tagged , , , , | 12 Comments

Flutter in Winter

DSC_0349 (2)DSC_0421 (2)

Am I obsessed with this pattern or what?  This is the fourth time I’ve sewn Flutter,  three for me and one for a friend.  I love how you can finish this tunic or top in a day.  I also love how comfortable it is, how I can wear it at school  without feeling overdressed sitting on the floor trying to make several munchkins concentrate on an activity, and still feeling feminine and stylish.  Stylish and pre-school may not rhyme for other people, but I’m one of those who have to be satisfied with how they’re dressed so they function properly at work.  My mantra is ” Do good, feel good, look good,” but the sequence gets jumbled oftentimes.  Heh.

I wanted to finish this tunic just in time for a pre New Year party with friends.  The theme was shiny, shimmery, splendidly blue.  (That’s what happens when a self- appointed organizer gets high on white flower or efficascent oil haha).  I thought I would just accessorize it well and it would be perfect for the occasion.  It could have been if I had the energy to have it done on time.  Shoulda, woulda, coulda are the last words of a procrastinating seamstress.

DSC_0351 (3)

DSC_0365 (3)

The fabric is a lightweight cotton that’s quite slippery and stretchy.  I don’t know what it’s exactly called except that it’s a pain to sew.  Annoyingly, the two back pieces ended up in differently lengths.  Beats me how it happened considering how meticulous I am with the cutting and all.  Even with all the adjustments I did, I still ended up with an asymmetrical tunic with a back seam that stubbornly swerves to the left.

Note to self: be wary of fabrics that are suspiciously cheap.  I guess for less than €4, this one is expected to act up.  I shouldn’t also be bitching about it since I got it for free hehe. Thanks, Marianne! Yes, this is the one you bought for me at Látky Mráz.

DSC_0388 (2)

DSC_0445 (2)

So it finally snowed a lot in Prague.  Last month was pretty warm with the day temperature abnormally reaching 16°C.  Everyone thought winter would never happen, even the plants and animals.  The trees were flowering thinking it was already spring, the birds seemed to have delayed or cancelled their trip down south, and the kids at school grumbled why they were going to a winter camp when there was no snow.  You bet a lot of people squealed in delight when the landscape finally transformed into a white wonderland.  Me being the loudest.

These photos were taken today at the woods near our apartment.  Good thing my photographer, aka my husband,  has already recovered from a two-week sickness to be out for a very quick photo shoot.  The temperature was -1°C so kids, don’t try this at home.

DSC_0399 (3)

DSC_0503 (4)

DSC_0478 (3)

Happy 2016 everyone!  May this year be our best ever!


Posted in DIY, Dresses, Sew, Tops | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

Handmade presents: cosmetic bags

Now that Christmas is over, it’s safe to slowly start posting some of the items I sewed for friends and family, some as presents while a couple are dresses two friends wanted to wear for Christmas and/or New Year.

For presents,  I sewed a lot of cosmetic bags in different fabrics and sizes.  Adi and I did well this year as our Christmas presents were all ready at the beginning of December.  The only drawback is that I dilly-dallied in taking photos of my makes thinking I had so much time for it then totally forgot about it.  Good thing I was able to snatch photos of the ones for my sister-in-law, just a few minutes before driving to the in-laws’ place for Christmas.

DSC_0275 (2)




The pattern is again from So Sew Easy.  To make a smaller bag,  I just took an inch off from the original dimension.  These two fit perfectly well together.

I can’t stress it enough that I love handmade items.  The time and energy given to create them is what makes each item so special.  In a world where everything moves at a breakneck speed, time is the best gift you could ever give to someone, right? Right!!!  * That’s about a thousand of  my clones agreeing in unison.*

How was your holiday sewing been like?  Mine isn’t over as I thought.  There’s still this blue dress glaring at me.  I promised to finish it today so I could wear it to a party tomorrow but after a sleepless night (maybe I ate too much nuts in my cookies that I couldn’t sleep?), even glaring back at it is already draining me out.   We’ll see.

Posted in Accessories, DIY, Free Patterns, Sew | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Christmas baking: Chocolate chip cookies

DSC_0294 (2)

I can’t believe I left my blog unattended for over a month!  I had a few sewing projects since the last update but just didn’t find the time to sit and write them down.  I also came up with a few baking recipes.  Hopefully I’ll be able to blog like crazy now that Christmas break is just a few blinks away.

Speaking of Christmas,  everyone’s been on a baking frenzy here in CZ.  Me and husband dearest already baked two boxes of traditional Czech Christmas cookies last weekend, and just a few hours ago I baked a batch of chocolate-chip cookies to bring to his Aunt’s for our visit tomorrow.  Adi’s family loves these cookies and since it’s the season for sharing,  I decided to share my “secret” recipe here. 🙂

DSC_0290 (2)DSC_0291


  • 125 g melted butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla essence
  • 1 cup crystal sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 sachet baking powder (about 5 grams)
  • 1 cup desiccated coconut
  • 150 g coarsely chopped dark chocolates


  1. Pre-heat oven at 200°C.
  2. Mix eggs, sugar, vanilla and melted butter.
  3. Add flour and baking powder mixture. Mix well.
  4. Fold in coconut and dark chocolates.
  5. Refrigerate or put in the freezer till dough hardens a bit.
  6. Roll into small balls.  Gently press on a baking paper covered tray.
  7. Bake for 8-10 minutes or til cookies begin to brown.
  8. Let cool and serve.  Yields about 20 medium pieces.



I found these super cute cookie boxes in a shop by Metro Skalka and bought four pieces in different sizes.  These cookies in a pretty box will really make a nice Christmas gift, don’t you think?  Or you can wrap them in a plastic like I did in the photo below.  Ah, the creative minds work nonstop this season. 🙂

DSC_0301 (2)
Happy Holidays from our home to yours!  xoxo

Posted in Dessert, Eat, Snack | Tagged , , | 4 Comments

Flutter x Illusions

When I’m uncertain about the Is and the Now, I leaf through Richard Bach’s novel, paying close attention to the “handbook.”  I don’t usually get answers, but it has this uncanny ability to calm me as if saying “You’re okay, you’re on the right track.”

Sharing with you some of the quotes I like.  And yes, I finally took the second  Flutter I sewed out for a stroll and for its much-needed photo shoot.

DSC_0154 (3)

DSC_0143 (2)

DSC_0149 (2) DSC_0218 (3) DSC_0194 (3) DSC_0207 (2) DSC_0221 (3)


Top/Tunic pattern:  Flutter by Papercut Patterns

Quotes from “Illusions, The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah”  by Richard Bach


Posted in DIY, Dresses, Sew, Tops | Tagged , , , , | 5 Comments

Floral skirt

The other day I woke up to a sunshiny day and felt inspired to sew something.  It’s amazing how my mood gets easily affected by the weather.  I don’t mind if it’s freezing out just as long as the sun’s out as well.

I have this massive light knit fabric which I bought a few months back.  I toyed with an idea of making a cardigan out of it just to stay away from my boring routine of black and brown ones.  I guess, judging at how it hasn’t happened yet,  I still need a little bit of prodding in breaking my own style.

So instead of a cardigan, a skirt happened.  And it happened without me breaking a sweat.

DSC_0104 (2)

DSC_0086 (2)

DSC_0115 (3)

If this wasn’t a stretchy fabric, the skirt would be done in a blink.  Knits can be very tricky to sew that’s why I was scared of them at first.  But this time, I knew what needle to use and remembered to reduce the pressure on the presser foot so it was easier to maneuver the fabric.  Sometimes all you really need is read the manual.

The steps are similar to the very first skirt I’ve sewn.  The only difference is this skirt is pleated and not gathered.  With pleats you have the option to wear the skirt either with the elastic shown or folded and hidden.  See fourth photo below.





These days I don’t buy clothes from the shops because either they are overpriced or I know I can make them anytime I fancy.   And really, one of the best feelings in the world is walking around wearing your own creation, knowing very well that you’ll never bump into someone wearing the same clothes as yours.  Unless of course you made a copy for them.

DSC_0119 (3)

DSC_0130 (2)

DSC_0126 (3)

Credits to Fall and my husband for the lovely photos.  xoxo

Posted in DIY, Sew, Skirts | Tagged , , | 16 Comments

Cosmetics bag

Just a quick post on the first cosmetics bag I sewed.   I mostly don’t wear make up at all but as a preschool teacher I have to have my daily load of hand moisturizer, nail kit, tissues and whatnot.  This bag does the job of carrying them all.  A bag in my bag, is what it is.

The pattern is from So Sew Easy.  It’s an easy project that’s perfect for beginners especially if you’re new in sewing pouches and bags like me.  I also find it perfect for fabric scraps so yeah, this pattern is a keeper.  Big thanks to So Sew Easy for sharing.





I only had light interfacing  in my stash so I cut two for each front fabric to stabilize the bag. It did the trick but next time I’d sew it also using a fusible fleece as recommended.

The blue fabric is a leftover from my Flutter tunic which I finished sewing ages ago.  I haven’t blogged about it yet because I’ve been so lazy and just not up for a detailed photo shoot.  The lining is of course from a shift dress I’ve sewn in summer.   The pattern requires a 9-inch zipper.  I had a much longer one so I  cut it and sewed  the teeth at the 9-inch mark.

Because it’s my first ever cosmetics bag, I took it out at grandpa-in-law’s garden for a couple of photos.  I don’t know which is prettier –  the cherry tree in autumn or this bag. Or both. 🙂


DSC_0025 (3)

Pattern: Cosmetics Bag by So Sew Easy


Posted in Accessories, Free Patterns, Sew | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments