8.25.2008 :: join the long beach craft mafia!

Applications for the Long Beach Craft Mafia are now being accepted year-round!

first, take a look at our about page to learn more about who we are and what we do! you'll also want to read up on our policies to make sure you're up for the challenge.

still want in to the mafia? then download our application! fill it out and send the following materials to longbeachcraftmafia@gmail.com:

* completed application

* 3 photos of your work

* brief bio about yourself (150 words or less. this will be used on our home page if you're accepted!)

* bio picture (must be 200px high by 150px wide, 75 dpi. need help with this? email steph calvert at heartsandlaserbeams@gmail.com.)

that's it! please submit all application materials at the same time; incomplete applications will be sent back until all materials are able to be submitted at once. once we've received your materials they will be reviewed by the group, and you should hear back on if you're approved for membership within 2 weeks. thanks so much for considering us, we look forward to hearin from ya!

8.12.2008 :: coming to the long beach area?

Long Beach offers all the amenities of a sophisticated, cosmopolitan city, while retaining the charm and tranquility of a seaside community! check out longbeachairporthotels.com for all your plannin needs!

:: hearts and laserbeams how-to #1: sisterhood of the pocketed pants!

hi folks! here's the first in a new series of tutorials i'm going to be doin', on how to transform your almost-favorite new pair of pants into your totally favorite new pair of pants by making the pockets deep enough to hold things like your cell phone! enjoy!


Today we're talking pants pockets. As I said in an earlier post, one of my pet peeves is jeans pockets that are nowhere deep enough to hold things! Found some good pants recently that I couldn't pass up because they actually fit right AND weren't so low-rise my crotch was hanging out. Alas, the pockets were awful! I could put my phone in the pocket, but it always felt like it was gonna fall out and it looked weenery, something that classy ladies just aren't into. And me, I'm a super classy broad.

So here it is in detail, all you ever wanted to know about making your pants pockets deeper but were afraid to ask! (including some pics of the first pair I did that turned out a little off, resulting in THE DEEPEST PANTS POCKET EVER CREATED!!!

How to make deeper pockets for your spanky new pants!

you will need:
* new pants with pockets that aren't deep enough
* old pair of pants with pockets you like (for making the pattern)
* piece of paper big enough to draw your pocket pattern on and a pencil or pen to draw the pattern
*needle and thread or sewing machine
* fabric – the amount and kind depends on you – if you're making massive pockets you'll need more fabric than if you're making standard sized pockets, and maybe you want to use something in a fun print! Take a look at the pockets you'll be using as a pattern, and use that as your guide on how much fabric you'll need. Remember you're making 2, and get a little bit extra so you've got room for cutting and sewing. I'd recommend a heavier cotton for the material, but lightweight quilting-type cottons would probably be fine, too, if you reinforce your seams (by sewing them twice!).

step 1: make the pocket pattern!
1. Turn your new pants (with the pockets you hate!) inside out.

2. Notice there's already some front pocket on those pants. You'll need that too-short pocket to attach the new pocket to. Hold your piece of paper so the top edge is ½" above the end of the too-short pocket. Using the edges of the original pocket as a guide, draw the edges of the pocket for as long as you'd like your pocket to be. (if you've got another pair of pants with pockets you like you can use those as a guide.) then connect the sides by drawing a curve at the bottom to match the bottom of the current too-short pocket.

3. Add ½" around the entire outline for cutting and sewing.

4. Make some marks on your pattern piece so you remember what's going where when you're cutting your fabric – check out my example here, remembering it's not to scale!

step 2: sew the new pockets!
1. Cut 2 pockets using your newly drafted pattern piece. I recommend finishing all edges so they don't get frayed and stringy in the wash. (something that's happening with the first pair of pockets I did!) there's nothing anyone hates more than a pantsleg ful of stringy pockets!

An easy way to finish the edges if you don't have a serger is to use your standard sewing machine to zigzag stitch around the edges. If you don't have a sewing machine at all how about a nice blanket stitch around the edges? If you don't have a needle and thread to do that then I have no idea what to tell ya, this is a sewing tutorial… maybe use duct tape?

2. Fold your pocket piece on the fold line and sew along the side seam. Repeat for other pocket piece.

It's just that simple! Bam! Now you've got your new pants with too-short pockets, and two pockets you're gonna add on! Pow! Lets' get to makin a connection!

step 3: sew the new pockets to the short pockets!
1. Ok take a deep breath, you're about to cut up your new pants! They should still be inside out from when you made your pattern piece. Using your scissors, you're going to cut off the very end of your too-short pocket, where it's sewn shut. Go on, try it. I'll wait.

Is it cut? Good. Okay, do the same for the other front pocket. You should now have a pair of pants with completely useless pockets, meaning they have humongous holes in em! Do not carry money in these pants til you've finished fixing the pockets! I would recommend finishing the cut edges of your too-short pockets, too, to avoid a stringy mess in the wash.

2. Take one of your pocket pieces and turn it inside out. The seam you've sewn should now be on the inside of the pocket piece. Take that piece, and insert it into your too-short pocket with the bottom of the pocket piece pointing towards the waistband of the pants. match up the open edges of the too short pocket and the new pocket piece, matching up where the fold and the seam meet.

3. Pin the edges together and sew! Use a ½" seam allowance, and a sewing machine if ya can. When I wrote this tutorial my machine was in storage, so I handstitched it with a nice strong backstitch, and it's held up beautifully in the wash.

4. Repeat for the other pocket.

5. Turn everything right side out and marvel at how awesome pockets you can actually put stuff in are!

6. Do a happy dance!

7. Send me 20 bucks!

8. Repeat steps 6 and 7 as needed.

When I first tried this out, I was working a little out of order, making the pocket pieces first using an old pair of pants as a guide, and cutting them down to fit the new pants pockets if that makes sense… which worked out fine until I forgot to cut one down, meaning it was time to revise the steps for public consumption. But I still gotta share the fruits of the labor with ya, and now without further ado, as promised, here are pics of THE LONGEST PANTS POCKET IN THE WORLD!

Ahahahahah false alarm folks, I just realized I have no idea where my digital camera's battery is… so you're gonna have to wait a bit on actual photos… sorry! but it'll make it that much awesomer when you finally see it, i swear!