Thursday, January 7, 2016

Penny Key Chain, Press Cloth, and Hair Cutting Apron Tutorials

I got really into Christmas this year. David was Santa at our ward Christmas Party, we got matching Christmas sweaters, and I used a vintage 1920's typewriter that I love from my great-grandparent to write gift tags on very cutely wrapped gifts.

And like every year, I made some gifts because I'm as frugal as they come. These are some of the gifts I made as a present to my sister, Stefanie. The total cost $0.05 because I had everything on hand except the pennies.


This keychain has pennies from the important dates for Stef and her husband Sam. I found pennies for their birth years (1989 and 1992), the year they met (2013), the year they started dating (2014), and the year they got married (2015).

To turn it into a keychain, just drill a hole near the top of each penny. I used a 1/8" drill bit with my electric hand drill. There are drill bits that are made specifically for metal, but the one I had already worked just fine.

Set the penny down on top of a piece of scrap wood so that once you drill all the way through, you won't be damaging whatever is underneath. I did this in my garage, so I didn't want to damage the cement floor. Take a nail and place it exactly where you want the keychain hole to go. Hammer it once with a hammer so it makes an indent.

IMPORTANT! The indent from the nail helps to center the drill. If you don't do that, the drill bit just kind of wanders all over the penny without actually drilling a hole (in my experience). It does the same thing as "center drilling" for all you engineers who know what that is.

Then just drill the hole! Just get as close as you can to drilling them all in the same place. It doesn't really matter if it is not exact.

I didn't have a keychain ring on hand, so I took a paper clip, stuck it through the pennies, bent it around into a circle, and cut off the excess. 


A press cloth is a thin sheet of fabric that you put in between your iron and the clothes you are ironing. If your iron heat is on too high, it stops the iron from making the fabric shiny. If your iron is dirty it stops the dirtiness from getting on your clothes. It is just good practice to use when ironing things, and Stef wants to get into sewing, so I made two for her.

The first one was out of this mega thin fabric that I accidently tore when handling it. The second one is out of a thin fabric, but not quite as thin.

Cut out a square of fabric roughly 18"x18" (or however large you want it). Then I used my overlock foot (which I just discovered I owned!) and sewed all around the edge. A serger would do the same thing even better, but I don't own one.

The super duper thin fabric didn't like the overlock stitch as much and ended up curling over on itself. That's fine, but the slightly thicker fabric did better.


This apron is for Stef to wear when she is cutting Sam's hair to hold all her accessories. I had some leftover black fabric from my Sanderson Sisters coat from Halloween 2014 (yay for saving fabric!):

Fabric from the center coat that I had painted green for this outfit

It is a pretty thick black woven fabric. Similar to black jeans fabric. I cut out two large rectangles that went across my front from hip to hip and down to maybe mid-thigh. One was about 1" smaller on all sides. I also cut out three strips 3" wide of fabric that I would sew together (because I didn't have one long strip) to be the waistband of the apron.

First I took the biggest rectangle and ironed 1/4" on each side over twice and sewed it so there was to exposed edge. At the corners, I mitered them. 

The smaller rectangle I only folded/sewed over on itself 1/4" twice on the top edge. This was the edge that would be open and not sewed to the larger rectangle. The other three edges I ironed back 1/4" once, but did not sew it like that yet. I took the smaller rectangle, and sewed it right in the middle of the larger rectangle along the 3 un-sewn edges. I had to sew the shorter sides at an angle (like a trapezoid, narrower at the top) because otherwise the pocket was hard to reach into.

At this point there is one big pocket. I then sewed lines up the middle where I wanted pocket separation to be.

The strap I folded over on itself, sewed the edge except in the middle where it would overlap with the apron, then flipped it inside out. I put the pocket piece of fabric between the opening of the strap, and sewed it in there so there was no exposed seams. (Stitching in the ditch was involved). This is a hard process to explain without pictures. 

I added a loop from extra fabric for her to hang a spray bottle on, and then placed paper pictures into the apron so she knows what each pocket is for.

Spray bottle loop.

Scissors and comb go in the left narrow pockets.

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