Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Christmas in July Holiday Wreath!

Today I am joining other artists, combing fun shapes from Smoothfoam and Holiday papers and embellishments from The Robins Nest.

For my project I made this Holiday wreath. It was so simple and fun to make, a easy afternoon project!

Materials: 

From The Robins Nest -

 Instructions:
1. Paint top and sides of wreath with red paint, set aside to dry.
2. Cut the snowflake design from the cardstock. One 12x12 sheet will give you 4 strips for the the outside of the wreath and 3 strips for the inside.
3. Attach the strips to your wreath using the straight pins.
4. Cut out the holly shapes and attach with the pins, leaving space at the bottom of the wreath open.
5. Randomly glue the metallic dew drops and seeds to the wreath. Color in some of the seeds with the gel pen.
6. Embellish the sides of the wreath with the black diamonds.


7. For the pine needles, cut the paper as shown below using the back side of black and white pine tree. You will need 6 sprigs total.
8. Dab the chalk pen at the edges of the pine needles for a 'snow' effect.
9. Pin two pine sprigs each on both sides of the bottom of the wreath, then attach the third for each side with 2-3 layers of foam tape.


 10. Cut out 2 snowmen and round their bottoms. Attach the scarf (ribbon) to one snowman with double stick tape.
11. Pin one snowman in place then attach the second with foam tape.
12. Trim the words Merry Christmas from the christmas words cardstock. Adhere to some black and white pine tree paper.
13. Attach to base of snowman with foam tape.
14. Adhere some wire to the back of the wreath for easy hanging.

Now you have one less wreath to worry about for the Holidays!


Now on to the Giveaway!
For your chance to win, just leave a comment on any blog(s) in the hop, the more you comment on, the more chances you have to win!.
 The prize is a amazing selection of products from The Robin's Nest and Smoothfoam, valued at $85.00 (available to ship within the US only). 
Visit the DCC blog to hop through everyone's links and good luck!
 Deadline to enter is July 28th.


Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Back to School Craftts with Deflecto!


 Ever since Dyllan was in diapers I have been stocking up on School themed scrapbook paper.
I've had this collection by WeRMemory Keepers for a few years and now its 'perfect' because Dyllan starts 6th grade in the Fall!
 The Deflecto 4"x6" Craft Frame makes it easy to see a class schedule. It comes with a colored border letting me accent it with School themed paper.

 The Deflecto 3"x5" Flexible pouches are fantastic for making door knob signs. Simply decorate both sides of the pouch, inside and out, then loop a rubber-band in the hole at the top and hang on a knob!


 This Deflecto Pencil Cup with Photo frames is super easy to decorate.  I simply cut cardstock to fit inside the photo slots and added a tab at the top for easy removal. Perfect to add a photo or encouraging words. Embellish with stickers or washi tape.

This Pencil Cup is also ideal for those of us that go on weekend craft retreats. We can show off photos of our family in the windows and have a place to store craft pens and tools!

The pencil Cup also folds up perfectly for easy transport!

Supplies used:

3" x 5" Deflecto Flexible Pouch
4" x 6" Deflecto Craft Frame
Deflecto Pencil Cup with photo Frames



Sunday, July 5, 2015

Jump into Summer! With Easy Colorful Tie-Dye!

 I really love color, but the retail stores just don't have the hues I like for what I'm comfortable to spend. So I went ahead and made up my own shirts with paint and dye.

 Easy, fun and best of all? Colorful!
 

Materials needed: 
Tulip Tie Dye Kits
      -Best for 100% cotton. Should be used with in 60 minutes of mixing.
Plaid Acrylic Multi-Surface Paints
        - Paints can be used on any fabric. No rinsing required!
White T-shirts or Mens undershirts.
     -Pre-washed, just detergent. No softeners, no dryer sheet.  Keep shirts damp.
Plastic drop cloth for table or ground
Gloves- rubber or plastic
Rubber bands or waxy twine
Zip ties
Sharp scissors
Containers and wire racks
Hangers and places to hang shirts
Bags- for setting over night.
A rinsing bucket or tub
Access to water/hose.
These come with the powdered dye inside the bottles, rubber bands and one-size-fits-all gloves
 
Save the Tulip dye bottles for paints and other dye mixes. The narrow Tip is ideal for tie dye applications.
 
When using the powdered dye in the bottles, I never fill the bottle all the way with water. This way it's easier to mix thoroughly and the colors are concentrated. When ready to add the paint, I rinse the bottles out, add paint to the shown line, then water as before. The more paint you use, the stiffer your finished shirt will be and you may need to wash with a softener before wearing


I use rubber bands for the spirals and zip ties for the rest. You just need to be careful you don't "cut" the shirt when removing the zip ties. For bags I use fold and close bread bags and large ziplocks bags. Gloves are optional. Some times I use them, sometimes I don't. If you don't like using them, make sure you have Lava soap to remove the stains on your arms and hands.



This is what I use when I tie dye.


Bakers racks work too.


 For the spiral shirt:
  1. Lay your damp shirt flat on your protected surface. Decide where you want your spiral center to be. Pinch there and start twisting.
  2. Keep on twisting. Make sure the shirt stays flat and does not buckle up.
  3. When you can twist no more, gather the loose parts and form a flat circle.
  4. Wrap the first rubber band, careful to cross the center. Add the second rubber band making a "X" in the center.
  5. Add 2 more rubber bands corner to corner, aligning in the center. You should have 8 sections.


Place your piece onto a screen over a container, then carefully apply your dye/paint by section.  Make sure to fill in some of the folds with dye/paint too.
____________________



 For the Diagonal shirt:
  1. Lay your damp shirt flat. Gather in folds from the shoulder downwards.
  2. Try to keep the folds nice and even.
  3. When you are at the end,  twist as if you are wringing a towel. 
  4. Keep twisting until it makes a loop. Place onto a bakers rack before applying dye in sections.


 ____________________

 Wavy stripe shirt:
Lay your damp shirt flat. Then starting at one side, gather the shirt in folds, pleating towards the other side. Secure folds with zip ties and apply your dye/paint.

 ____________________


 For this one.....
Lay your damp shirt flat. Then starting at the bottom, gather the shirt in folds, pleating towards the top. Secure folds with zip ties and apply your dye/paint.

 

As you can see, this one done with diluted paint, has a more solid less vivid look you would get with the dye. But its still a fun process and I plan to finish it off with some other paint colors and stencils.
 
The shirts with dye are wrapped up in plastic and left over night to set.
  When you are ready to rinse the items with dye:

  1. Use gloves for the rinsing. The dye will be super concentrated.
  2. Hold over your bucket/tub and use a hose to gently rinse the color while your shirt is still wrapped up.
  3. Then carefully uncurl, unwrap, take off any rubber bands or cut zip ties.
  4. Rinse until water is nearly clear.
  5. Empty bucket/tub into thirsty (non-food) vegetation.
  6. Fill bucket/tub 1/4 way with water and use hand to swirl shirt in water like a washing machine until water drips clear from shirt. Hang until dry. 
  7. If later when checking on hung shirts....you notice dye drips....you can do a cold water rinse-only in your washing machine and always hang dry before wearing.

 The items made with acrylic paint, are left in the sun to dry a bit. They are carefully undone and hung until fully dry. No rinsing required before wearing!

This red spiral painted shirt will also receive some stencil detail.


Leftover paint or dye? Why not give 'new' life to some boring old socks? You can dry them on  tomato cages! Socks take a day or two to dry.

Thanks for coming by, I hope I've inspired you!
Comments welcome! :)

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Make a Feather Decorated Pillow with Oly-Fun!

 OK, so this month some craft designers and I have teamed up with Fairfield World, the makers of Oly-Fun.


 I first discovered Oly-Fun at CHA earlier this year and fell in LOVE with this versatile fabric!
You can sew it, glue it, staple it, pin it or tie it. You can write on it, paint it, embellish it, stamp it or stencil it. You can scissor, rotary, or die cut it. The only thing it won’t do is fray, tear, or fade. It's water resistant for outdoor decorations and you can spot clean it.
Plus you don't need to pre-wash it.
Yea!

Everyone knows I LOVE to sew.
It's therapeutic, fun, relaxing.Like painting but with fabric.
But I don't really follow rules or patterns. I usually make it up as I work, taking notes as I create in case something turns out really fantastic.

I hope you find my tutorial easy enough and are inspired to make your own! I really love how these pillows turned out and hope you like them too!

 Materials:
  1. Oly-Fun Craft Pack in Snow White, Jelly, Kiwi and Sea Green.
  2. Poly-Fil Fiber Fill
  3. Pre-washed fabrics.
  4. Coordinating colorful threads plus one in metallic gold.
  5. Sewing machine and accessories.
  6. Sewing mat and ruler.
  7. Scissors and a rotary cutter.
  8. Permanent black marker.
  9. Thin cardboard or a cereal box.
My tutorial is how to make a pillow and a pillow cover that can be changed out according to styles and seasons!
 1. With the Snow White, you will need (2) 10"x10" squares for each pillow you plan to make. Stitch  1/4" all the way around on your sewing machine, leaving a 4"-5" opening , large enough for your hand to fit through while adding the Fiber Fill. You want to make sure to push the stuffing into the corners. How much you add to each pillow is up to you. Just remember that you still need to stitch the opening shut- use the sewing machine- way easier than by hand.

2. Each Pillow Case will need to measure 15"x 25" total. You can use one solid piece of fabric or mix it up as I did here. Use your rotary cutter and ruler to get a clean straight cut. Bind the ends of the fabric however you want. I just folded by 1/2" then I stitched them on the machine.

3 & 4. Place your fabric face down onto your sewing mat. Next place your pillow on that and bring up the fabric as shown. Somewhat loose but not tight. You need to have some space allowance for sewing and later inserting the pillow. Set aside.

 5. Draw a 8" feather onto your cardboard. Cut out.
Feel free to use my design. :)
Trace your feather template onto your colorful Oly-Fun. You'll  need (2) cutouts per feather.
6. On the pillow you set aside, flip over and mark the corners near the fabric edge with the marker. This will give you a idea of the space needed for the feathers.

7. Unfold the fabric and lay flat. Arrange your feathers to your liking. *Remember that you need 2 per each feather to make this work.

 If desired, use pins to hold them in place while you sew or just wing it like I did. :)

8. Start at the top of the feather and stitch down, following the curve of the feather.

9. When you get to the tip, turn it around and stitch back up. Be care free with the stitching. Use lots of bright colors that match your feathers and fabrics. I used orange, lime, fushia and turquoise threads. Lastly accent all the feathers with the metallic gold thread. It really does add that special sparkle. Perfect!
 10 & 11. Lay your fabric flat again, now with the sewn on feathers. Remember those pen marks you made? Use them to gauge where to fold the fabric up.
12. Stitch sides on the sewing machine. Just a simple stitch up, then a simple stitch down.
13. Turn case inside out, using your fingers to push out the corners. Then use the sewing machine to stitch the sides again. Once up, once down. Super easy. :)
 14 & 15. Place the pillow inside the case as shown.
16. How easy is that? And such a nice clean finish!
17. Now you are ready for the best part! Yea! Are you excited? 

 18. Cut your feathers at a angle. Use your non cutting hand to keep the feathers away from the pillow case fabric as you cut. Go slow and be careful not to snip any center stitches.

 When you are all done, ruffle the feathers lightly and enjoy your colorful creation!
Final pillow size- 12" x 12".
Share with me your take on this, I'd love to see it! Drop me a line here or find me on FB.
Save with Fairfield and Oly-Fun until the end of June with this 20% off coupon.
 use code: AMYCOUP

Are you ready for more inspiration? Visit the Designer Crafts Connection blog for more pillow fun!
 




Thanks for coming by!
- Michelle

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

How to Make a Faerie Garden Umbrella

 Hi Everyone, Welcome to the International Fairy Day Blog Hop hosted by Leslie Rahye!
Every year bloggers around the world come together to share hand made crafts and treasures all based around the theme Faerie's!
Here I have a created a fun "Faerie Garden Umbrella" tutorial for you, complete with a giveaway at the end of this post!
Let's get started, shall we?

 Materials:
  1. Pretty patterned paper.
  2. A cup or small bowl measuring 4" across.
  3. Bamboo skewers cut to 5 ½".
  4. Decorative washi tape.
  5. Double stick tape.
  6. E600 or other equally strong adhesive.
  7. A colored bead for the top.
  8. Lace trim.
  9. Clothespins
  10. Scissors and a pen.

 Instructions:
1. Trace your cup onto the patterned paper and cut out.
2. On the backside of the circle, draw a line across, turn the circle and draw another line. You should have a "x" marking the center. Poke one of the skewers through the center to make a small hole.
- Secure the washi tape to the bamboo skewer with the double stick tape.
- Cut a slit from the outer edge of the circle to the hole in the center.

 3. Form your circle to make a umbrella shape. When you are happy with the size, draw a line with your pen as shown.
4. Place double stick tape on the outside edge of your circle, starting at the drawn line all the way to the cut slit.
- Lay down your trim onto the tape.
- Fill the remaining tab (should be a triangle shape) with double stick tape.
5.  Place this tab under, joining the trim together, completing the shape of your umbrella dome.
6. Turn your umbrella dome over and place a bit of glue at the hole.

Swirl the pointy end of your washi tape covered skewer in that glue and push through the hole.
Quickly place bead onto point of skewer.
lay your clothespin  onto a flat surface and use it to hold your umbrella upright while the glue sets.
Then place in your indoor or outside faerie garden for all to enjoy!

Would you like to win a 'starter set' to make 4 Faerie Garden Umbrella's?
Leave a comment for chance to win!
I will be giving away 3 sets of what you see below.
I will use random.org to pick the winners on July 1st, 2015.
You are also invited to join my Charms and Faerie Garden Miniatures Swap group on FB. You can view our past swaps here and here.

*Update- Congratulations to Barbara Rankin, Maria Soto and Carol Hoffman for winning the the mini umbrella kits!

Please enjoy the rest of the International Fairy Day Blog hop!

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