Friday, December 30, 2011

Top 10 of 2011

I have been more than a little busy this week!

I wanted to do a “Top Posts of 2011” post like I did last year for 2010.

However, I don’t actually know how to manipulate Google Stats to just show the top 10 of this year.

I took the posts from my top 10 all-time views (there are 7 of them from this past year!) and then I added three of my favorites that are also popular.

#10 (my pick)


Repurposed Craft Supply Organizer

#9 (my pick)

Child's Rocker

This little reupholstery project is really popular.

#8 (my pick)


Felt Car Mat Tutorial


Toddler Slipper Pattern


Taffeta Flower Tutorial


Non-gathered, flat front Yoga Skirt Tutorial


Cute Little Tote Bag Tutorial


Ruffle T-Shirt Skirt Tutorial


Big Flower Tote Bag Tutorial


Stuffed Dinosaur Tutorial & Pattern

Thanks for reading my blog! I have taken a needed break from sewing/crafting during this time of Christmas/New Year’s, but I’m itching to get back to work soon.

My husband and I just finished a project that I’m anxious to share. I just have to get some good sunny days to take pictures of our final product!

Happy New Year!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Freezer Paper Stenciling

Guys are so hard to craft and sew for! But I had the perfect idea this year. I made some pretty sweet shirts for my husband and one of our little guys for Christmas.

They have bikes on them. My husband loves to bike. I not only made the shirt for him using a raglan shirt pattern I drafted myself, but I hand cut the stencil for it from freezer paper.

(Hello, Silhouette??!? I’d love to be given one of your products to try. Or win one. Whatever works. But I don’t have $300 to buy one! Not even on Black Friday!)

I digress.

I cut the stencil using a bike picture I found online. I cut it with some guides from my dad’s shop to help go around the curves nicely. I used a utility knife (not shown) and cut on my self-healing mat I use with the rotary cutter.


After I got it all cut out, I found out I had to carefully place the pieces inside the wheels. So it was like putting a puzzle together. I then ironed all the pieces into place. IMG_3372

I applied fabric paint to the stencil. I didn’t actually use a brush. I used a scrap piece of fleece. It worked out fine.

Here’s my first draft of the stencil. I actually cut three of them. I had to test it out before I tried it on the shirt I’d made.IMG_3373

Here’s me doing it to the actual shirt. Same steps. Just more fear. IMG_3374 IMG_3375 IMG_3376

I spent a lot of hours on this shirt! I am so excited to give it to my hubby—sorry this post won’t be up before Christmas, but I can’t risk spoiling the aura of surprise!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

“Window” Blanket

Before I start, I just want to warn that it is really tough to get a good picture of a large blanket.

I made a blanket for my 2-year old for Christmas. He needs a large blanket. He’s still in a crib, but soon will move to a toddler bed. We’re planning to wait until he starts climbing out of the crib. (He totally could climb out if he wanted to. He’s very tall! In fact, I've seen him climb into the crib before to retrieve his favorite stuffed animal.)

Anyway, I wanted to make one to match the fabric I used for his pillow shams and rocking chair. However, I didn’t want to buy more fabric. So I just used a little bit of the zoo print fabric and used other fabric that picked up the colors. I made the majority of the blanket out of some inexpensive fleece fabric I found in the remnant pile at Jo-Ann Fabric.

I decided to use the ‘special’ fabrics and sew them to the wrong side of the fleece. I made “windows” for the special fabrics to show through. Since fleece won’t fray, it was easier to have it be the raw edge rather than the other fabrics.


One of these fabrics is a towel. (I wanted to add some texture! Add this to the list of uses for an old towel!)IMG_3144 IMG_3146This is most definitely NOT my favorite project! It did not turn out to be as cute and perfect as I’d imagined.

However, I think my little guy will like it. It is soft and warm. And BIG. Hopefully it will help him keep the covers on this winter.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Last-Minute Felt Wreath Tutorial

IMG_3562 This past weekend, I thought my single wreath looked lonely. So I made two more wreaths to hang on the mirror.

I am so excited about these two wreaths! They were really easy to make and fairly inexpensive. Looking at them makes me happy!

IMG_3557 If you would like to make one, keep in mind they can be any color and any size. Mine were pretty small (dinner plate size) and required about 1/2 yard of red felt per wreath.

You’ll also need your hot glue gun, a cardboard box, large needle and some embroidery floss (the same color as the felt you’re using for the wreath).

I needed a base to attach the felt. It was 8 pm on a Saturday evening, so I couldn’t run to a craft store. We had some boxes in the garage, so I just took a dinner plate and used it to cut around. IMG_3544 IMG_3545

Then I used a smaller plate to cut out the middle. You’ll want the wreath form to be skinnier than the felt squares you’ll be using. It doesn’t have to be perfectly cut. You’ll be covering it up. IMG_3546

To cover it, I just took some felt strips (doesn’t really matter how wide) and hot glued them to the cardboard circle outline.


When you run out of length on one strip, hot glue the end and start wrapping with another strip.IMG_3548

Next, start cutting some squares from your felt. Precision cutting is unnecessary. The size of the squares just need to be in the same ballpark. They can be rectangles, too. Make sure you save a strip of felt to use as a hanger for the wreath. (You could also use ribbon.)

Take some embroidery floss and a large needle and tie a knot in the end. String the squares onto the floss and push them against the knot. Keep stringing squares until you have enough to go around the diameter of the wreath.

Here’s the wreath. I didn’t completely fill it with squares, as you can tell. (I covered the empty part with the strip to hang the wreath.)


I took no pictures of the last step, but in order to attach the string of squares to the felt-covered cardboard base, I used more embroidery floss to wrap around the base and in between the squares. I wrapped once around every inch or so. I tied it off tightly using the needle to take a few stitches into the felt to make it super-secure.

Here’s two wreaths…


And all three! I am so happy with how they turned out. I love that they’re not all perfectly the same. The texture of these wreaths add a lot to my Christmas decor!


Here’s a close-up of the middle wreath.


I can’t wait to make some more non-Christmas wreaths for around my house!

Merry Christmas and happy decorating!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

My Christmas Decor

Let me preface this post by saying I am not a super Christmas decorator. None of this is going to wow you. I do not anticipate anything being 'pinned' to Pinterest. (I'm a member now. Follow me here.)

I made the red wreath. I just bought a small foam core at dollar tree, wrapped it with felt strips, and then hot glued a few felt flowers onto it. My dad made us the mirror a few years ago.
I love it.

I decorated a few things around our home. I used some greenery and some Christmas-y china pieces I've been given.

I made stockings for everyone (except me.) My great Aunt made mine years ago and it's too cute to redo.
I like other people's Christmas ideas, but I don't get too excited about starting a bunch of DIY Christmas projects in October. All the decorations I have were purchased at an after-Christmas sale. I wish I had the drive to go with a specific color scheme and make new decor every year.

Maybe someday.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Bird Wall Art with Plaid Products

I was so excited when Plaid sent me a bunch of paint and stencils to try out!!!!

Here are the paints they sent:


I wanted to do another project for our bedroom. I had already made some bird wall art (that still hasn’t been hung). Here’s what I came up with this time. IMG_3382

I started with a textbook. Now, this is the 1970’s version of a textbook I had in 2003. Why do I have this book? IMG_3378Friends of mine bought it at the school’s book sale for $1 because they thought it was funny.

This picture is what makes it so funny! IMG_3379

I became the proprietor of the book when I transferred. They gave it to me. And I can’t part with it. However, I wanted to use some of the pages for my project. Who is going to miss the glossary, right?

I stenciled a few pages.


I used a combination of white and purple paint. IMG_3380

After the paint dried, I cut two bird silhouettes and glued them to the paper. IMG_3383

I had already spray painted the frames antique white and then glazed them with purple acrylic paint. They match the other wall art perfectly.

Now I just need to decide where to hang all of it!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Winner of the Gingercake PDF Pattern!

I used to generate a winner from all the comments about the PDF pattern giveaway!

True Random Number Generator 3 Powered by RANDOM.ORG

The winner is #3 who said:
Kristy said...

Very nice! Her patterns are so cute! I'd choose that sweet Penguin!

Thanks for the chance!
Kristy, I will email you. You can let me know if you still want the penguin and I'll have Virginia email it to you!

Thanks to everyone for entering! I'll be having another great giveaway in a few weeks...probably after Christmas. It is always good to have a January surprise!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Repurposed Frames

Step one of another project: spray painted and glazed frames. You can’t tell very well, but I glazed these frames with purple acrylic paint. I used the same process found here.


Thursday, December 15, 2011

Toddler Wall Art

I showed you these a few months ago. I really loved them, but the frames I used didn’t like the spray paint too much. Some of them bubbled and then peeled. I was quite sad.

Then, my dad, being the fabulous Grampa and avid woodworker that he is, said he wanted to make some frames for my little guy’s room. This led to me completely re-doing the pictures. Here’s what transpired:IMG_3272

Love, love, love these frames. IMG_3273

I painted the backgrounds using foam board from the dollar store and cheapo acrylic paint from the craft store. I re-used all the animals except for the rhino. The jersey fabric I’d originally used wasn’t sticking well and so I ended up using some scrapbook paper. IMG_3274

I love them. And as my husband points out, the time, energy and thought I put into room decor for our two boys is completely for me, not them.

So thanks, Dad. I love the frames you made for both of their walls.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Bird Christmas Ornament

I made a bunch of these ornaments last year.

I still had the pattern so I made one more. It is for someone in my MOPS group. We picked names and are doing little gifts for the other person we picked.


I know blue fabric isn’t very Christmas-y, but I really liked it. IMG_3292

Just thought I’d share.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Scrappy Christmas Stocking

Today is the final day to enter to win ric rac! See the giveaway post here.


I made this Christmas stocking for my mom using the tutorial I shared the other day. However, I made the front from scraps on fabric I used last year to make ornaments for friends of hers. (Looking back, I never posted pictures of the ornaments I made for her, just some that were made from other fabric. Oh, well.)


I wasn’t a huge fan of the fabric she had chosen, but since I can’t let anything go to waste, I had planned to make a bunting from the scraps. I cut it out last year, got busy, and never actually sewed it. (It isn’t appealing to make Christmas decorations any other time than Christmas!)

The triangles were just sitting in my scrap bin. So I took the triangles and made a stocking front and back.


I added some scraps of gold ric rack I had sitting around from a project I made for church. I added these to the front before I joined the front and back pieces.

While it doesn’t fall into my favorite style of decor, I think my mom will love it.IMG_3289 She loves red and gold and really had liked this fabric.