Δευτέρα 3 Νοεμβρίου 2014

How to Make a Needle-Felted Mushroom

Needle-felted mushrooms are a beautiful autumn craft. Creating something organic brings an earthy and simple elegance to the day. And the roving (wool fleece) feels and smells so good.

Santa Hat Chair Covers

Today’s project is a little nuts-o.  A totally unnecessary, non-functional, can only be used a few-weeks-out-of-the-year, type of project.  But don’t you dare Bah-Humbug this.  Because every time to take one little step into the kitchen (or dining room)……..you won’t be able to stop that smile from spreading across your face.   And you may find yourself humming ‘jingle bells‘ or ‘rudolph‘ as you clean up after meals.

How to Make Cowl Scarves from Old Sweaters

Today’s scarf idea is all about ‘using what you have’.I was excited to be able to recycle a couple of my old sweaters!I loved the color and textures of these two sweaters, but both of them did not fit quite right on me. As a result, I hardly ever wore them.

How to “Unshrink” Your Clothes!

I got an email from someone asking if I knew how they could UNSHRINK some article of clothing that had shrunk in the dryer. Hmm…sounded familiar. Of course I immediately thought of my blue pants that were wadded up in an old pillowcase with a bunch of other t-shirt cast-offs. Was UNSHRINKING something even POSSIBLE?  Sounded like some voodoo magic to me. But what the heck….it was worth a try.

Creating a Pallet Garden

This year I will be planting a large salad garden, and I thought it would be fun to grow my lettuce and other greens in pallets to change things up a bit in the backyard.All you really need to do a little pallet gardening is a wood pallet, some good soil and a few seeds. Using a wood pallet to start a garden can be a great space saver, plus as a bonus, there is no soil to til or weed. This is exactly the kind of project young children would love, especially if they could have their own wood pallet.

Κυριακή 2 Νοεμβρίου 2014

Frame Key Holder

We always lose the keys and spend time looking for them in a hurry. Here’s a way not to look for them and not to be late everywhere. Make a frame where you could put your keys not to forget them. Such a thing would display all the keys you have.

DIY Vintage Ruler Coat Rack

Finding new vintage rulers is like hitting the jackpot.That turquoise one...have mercy!

Pet pouches

I don't want to offend anyone by being too graphic, but Lola and I take a lot of walks and jogs and sometimes I forget to bring along a little baggie for...well, you know. So, it dawned on my on a recent excursion that I could make a little "wallet" to store a plastic baggie right on her collar. Anyway, here's a quick little project to make such a pouch. Of course, you could keep a card or key in it, too, if you're so inclined. This pouch fits one large or a few small plastic baggies inside, just to keep you prepared.

Kids Snowman Hat

A cutie hat that is perfect for all winter long after the Christmas Season has ended. I bet you have most of the supplies on hand too except the white hat so it’s a great inexpensive gift too!

No Sew Snowman

One of my favorite things about the winter time are snowmen! They are so stinkin’ cute! But sometimes it’s just too cold to go outside or sometimes there’s no snow to make a snowman, so how about just making one right at home where’s it’s warm and cozy. A no sew snowman, that is! Hey, sit in front of your fireplace if you would like… I promise he won’t melt away!

Grab the following supplies and let’s get started!

  • White crushed velvet fabric (37″ inches x 31″ inches)
  • Jute (6 ply)
  • Fiberfill
  • Piece of yarn
  • A sleeve from an old sweater
  • Buttons
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun
  • Something to act as weight (rice, beans, rocks, etc.) [See note in step 2]

Step 1. Fold your fabric with the shorter ends together, and cut out a wide half oval shape. Don’t worry, it doesn’t have to be perfect.

Step 2. Unfold your oval with wrong side of the fabric up, and fill with fiberfill. (*Note: I realized that I forgot to mention one optional step when I did the guest post. If you want your snowman to be able to stand on its own, at this point you will want to add some sort of weight under the fiberfill; like beans, rice, rocks, etc.)

Step 3. Gather the ends of the oval together. At this point, you can add or subtract the fiberfill if needed. Once satisfied with the amount of fiberfill, tie off the gathered end with a piece of yarn and trim the long ends of the yarn.

Step 4. Take a long piece of jute and wrap it at the center of the oval to create two “snowballs” making the top half slightly smaller than the bottom. Tie your jute into a bow and separate the ends into strands. Also, at this point, go ahead and trim off the access fabric from the top of your snowman’s head.

Step 5. Take the sweater sleeve and cut it a bit more than half way from the wider end. Place the larger sleeve half on top of the snowman’s head, fold the bottom end of the sleeve up, and tie off the top end with a piece of jute with a double knot. Optional: With your glue gun, glue the hat to the snowman’s head. All you need is one dot of glue on the front, back, and sides.

Step 6. Take a smaller piece of jute and tightly double knot it with the second knot directly on top of the first knot. Make three. Then for two of the knots, cut off both ends. These are the eyes. For the the third knot, cut off only one end and trim the other end to shorten if needed. This is the “carrot” nose.

Step 7. With your hot glue gun, glue on the eyes, nose and buttons. Optional: embellish your snowman’s hat with a button.

Your no sew snowman is all done!

 Decorate your snowman any way you would like. Use different fabric too! Have fun with it!

via odetoinspiration

Σάββατο 1 Νοεμβρίου 2014

Christmas Advent Calendar Wall Chart

I love Christmas. It’s my favourite time of year. So, it seemed only fitting that my advent calendar should bring together a few more of my most fave things; wall charts, chalkboards, typography and bakers twine!

The countdown to Christmas day isn’t something I’ve given much thought to since childhood, though now with little kids of my own, it’s once again a time to celebrate. My vision is for this advent ritual to become a special family tradition which builds fond future memories (for myself, hubby and the kids).

This calendar was part-inspired by the old-fashioned borrowing system used at my primary school library (where there was a wall of modified envelopes filled with laminated borrowing cards) and features faux chalkboard date pockets which each hold a cute little shipping tag ready to be hung on the tree. The tags are adorned with a decorative snowflake and lyrics from ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’.

I really love the look of this calendar – it’s big, eye-catching, vintage-esque and gives just a subtle nod to the festive season – and am already kinda lamenting having to eventually take it down :( Though, thanks to its re-usable nature, I’m also looking forward to hanging it again next year!

This project is really easy, super affordable and completely rewarding (oh, and kinda awesome too :-). It’s also a project the kids can help with, and…there’s still plenty of time to have it complete before the start of December!

You will need…

1 Fabric. I used lined (backed) seeded calico . Of course you could use almost anything. I chose the calico because it had a lovely organic look and a nice medium weight (due to the backing). Plus, at only $5 a meter (on sale) it was also super affordable.

2 Hemming tape. Obviously, this is to hem the fabric. You could choose to sew the hems, use fabric grade double sided tape or fabric glue.

3 Timber trim. I used 18mm (3/4″) half dowel.

4 Timber stain. I used water-based interior stain in Walnut.

5 Double sided tape.

6 Thumb tacks or upholstery pins.

7 Hanging string. I used twine.

8 Paper. I used good quality photo paper though you could simply use standard copier paper. Light cardstock would also be good.

9 Shipping tags. I used 108mm x 54mm (4 1/4″ x 2 1/8″) tags. I wanted the simplicity of traditional buff though you can find them in lots of pretty colours. Red would be nice.

10 Bakers twine. I used traditional red and white  though you can buy it in lots of colours.

11 Acetone. For transferring the chart title onto the fabric. There are quite a few different mediums you can use for fabric transfers (Citrasolv and Artist Gel Medium being two popular ones). I found the acetone worked really well for me.

You will also need these completely free printables (click to view and download)…

Calendar Chart Title             

Free for personal use only.
Republication, reproduction or redistribution in any form is forbidden.

 STEP 1 Cut and hem your fabric.

Cut your fabric into a rectangle measuring approximately 950mm x 650mm (1 yard x 25″) then hem all four sides. As mentioned in the supplies section, I used iron bond hemming tape to fuse my hems though you could sew them, or adhere them with fabric grade double sided tape or fabric glue.

STEP 2 Cut and stain your trim.

Cut your timber trim so it overhangs the fabric by around 15mm (1/2″) at each end. If necessary, lightly sand it then tint with timber stain.

STEP 3 Attach your trim and create the hanging string.

Run strips of double sided tape along the rear of your trim, lay the pieces in place on your fabric then press down firmly. Flip the fabric over and push in five thumb tacks along each length of trim to secure them in position. At one end, create the hanging string by winding some twine around two thumb tack stems prior to pushing them in completely. Depending on the density of your timber trim and/or the strength of your fingers, you may need to tap the tacks in with a hammer (or, in my case, the flat end of a logistically convenient meat mallet!).

STEP 4 Make and attach your faux chalkboard pockets (printable supplied).

How to assemble a pocket (visual guide above):

1 Print out page one of the ‘Chalkboard Tag Pockets‘ printable.

2 Cut around the outline for the number ‘1’ pocket.

3 Fold along the dotted lines. Take care to fold a smidgen inside/outside (as applicable) the lines so they aren’t visible on the finished pocket.

4 Use double sided tape to secure the top and bottom ends first (these ends are both doubled-over to hide any white paper and reinforce the pocket opening).

5 Punch (or cut) a semi-circle in the top of the pocket front. This isn’t essential, I just think it looks nice.

6 Fold up the back and use double sided tape to secure the rear flaps.

Once all 25 pockets are assembled, lay them out in position on your fabric then attach them using double sided tape. I just eyed this process though you could measure and mark.

NOTE: Double sided tape works fantastically for this project. It holds the pockets perfectly in place though can be easily peeled off the fabric if required. This is great if you need to reposition a pocket. It’s also handy if you want to remove the pockets for storage purposes – simply peel them off and stack them with a square of grease proof baking paper in between each layer. And, if in a few years time the pockets need updating, you can also easily and super cheaply create a whole new batch!

STEP 5 Print onto your tags (printable supplied) and attach the bakers twine.

How to create the tags (visual guide above):

1 Print out a copy of the shipping tag template (page one of the ‘Shipping Tag Template and Graphics‘ printable). Remember, this template uses 108mm x 54mm (4 1/4″ x 2 1/8″) tags.

2 Place a tag over each tag outline and secure temporarily in place with low tack tape. If your tape is too sticky it could tear the tags when you remove it so if necessary dull the tack by pressing on a cloth.

3 Insert the sheet complete with tags into your printer as per usual and print page two (remember, page one is the template) of the ‘Shipping Tag Template and Graphics‘ printable onto the tags.

4 Repeat with the remaining four pages until you have printed onto all 25 tags. When printing the 25th tag you need only tape one tag over the top center outline of the template.

5 Carefully peel off the tape.

6 Thread each tag with a bakers twine loop then insert into the date pockets.

I chose to adorn my tags with decorative snowflakes and the lyrics from ‘Santa Claus is Coming to Town’ for something whimsical and light-hearted.

STEP 6 Add the calendar chart title (printable supplied).

How to transfer onto fabric:

1 Print out the ‘Calendar Chart Title‘ using a laser printer or have it copied using a laser photocopier (inkjet will not work for this process) then cut out each line of text (it has been fragmented because it is larger than one standard letter sized sheet of paper) and reassemble it in position right side down on your chart. Secure temporarily in place with tape.

2 Working in small sections, brush on some acetone.

3 Whilst still damp use a hard smooth implement (such as a spoon) to burnish the text, transferring it from the paper to the fabric. Lift the corner of the paper from time to time to check the transference progress.

This transfer method creates faded, distressed, aged looking graphics, which is just what I wanted for this project. It also leaves no visible residue so post washing isn’t required.

STEP 7 Hang your chart and let the countdown begin!

On each day of December leading up to Christmas take a tag from the corresponding date pocket and hang it on your tree. I couldn’t resist sneaking in a few random sweets too and I’m also going to include a simple activity every third day (such as ‘write a letter to Santa’ or ‘choose a toy to donate’). Of course you could fill the pockets with whatever you like!

There are so many ways you can tweak this project to really make it your own. And whilst I know super fast crafty projects are all the rage right now, occasionally it’s nice to take a little more time to create something that’s just that bit special (not that this particular project is overly labor intensive).

via  thepaintedhive