Tuesday, June 18, 2013

{Create} Fabric Hairbow

As much as I craft you would think I could make a decent ribbon hairbow.  But the thing is - I really stink at making ribbon hairbows.  I just can't seem to get it right - even when I follow really great tutorials.  So instead, I dug through my fabric stash and created this little bow.

I love it.  
It's so simple to make.  
It will be the perfect accessory to your girl's summer wardrobe(or yours!).  
Just follow the easy instructions below!!!

You'll need:
 a small square of fabric - about 6"x6"
a hair clip
some trim or ribbon for the center
a glue gun
a sewing machine/thread/scissors/etc.

Cut a 4"x2" rectangle out of card stock for a pattern.  You don't have to do this, but I like to so that I can position it anywhere on the fabric.  Cut out two rectangles.

Pin the rectangles right sides together.  Place marks 1" apart along one of the long sides.  
Preferably in the center.  This will be your opening for turning.

Use a 1/4" seam allowance and stitch around the rectangle, leaving the 1" opening.  Clip the corners.

Turn it right sides out and topstitch the opening closed.  Press well.

Now, scrunch up the center of the bow.  Just fiddle with it until you like the way it looks, then top stitch right over the folds to hold it in place.  

 STEP 6:
Select your trim and wrap it around the center of the bow - gluing it or hand sewing it in the back.  Lastly, glue the clip to the back of the bow and enjoy!!

Happy Sewing!

Monday, June 10, 2013

{Educate} Sew By Number

Hey!  Well, I've been changing things up a bit around here.  A new look and a new sense of organization.  Now all of my posts will fit into one of four categories - which you can browse using the tabs beneath my header.  Decorate.  Create.  Educate.  Nourish.  

We have decided to homeschool in the fall - and so I'll be coming up with lots of crafts and projects for children.  You can find them under the Educate tab.  Today I wanted to share this super simple activity - which can easily be used for either gender.  
It also makes a great rainy summer day activity ;)
While we love lacing cards, with their sturdy frame and nice laces, we had a little difficulty grasping the concept of moving from one hole to the next.  So I decided to print out some pictures, punch holes around the edges, and number the holes.  Kind of like connect the dots with sewing.  
They have been a hit!  So here's how you can make your own!

Step 1:  Find a free printable coloring page through Google.  You can choose a character your child likes, or use something relevant to your unit in school. Print this picture onto card stock.

Step 2:  Cut around the picture - leaving a small border.  Punch holes around the border.

Step 3:  Number the holes.

Step 4:  Give your child some yarn and either a large darning needle or a piece of pipe cleaner folded in half and twisted to make a "needle".  I actually like the pipe cleaner option because you can make the eye as large or as small as you like, and your child can practice threading the needle.  Tape one end of the yarn to the back of the card.  Then start at number 1 and sew sew sew!  

Enjoy watching your child learn to sew!

Monday, May 13, 2013

{DIY} Faux Boat Wood - how to make painted wood look chipped and old

I have been in love with boat wood for a long time.  The vibrant colors, texture, and the story - salvaged wood that's been a part of countless voyages on the sea...it all appeals to my sense of style.  Unfortunately, it's really expensive.  So, as the Officer and I were discussing our headboard options, I pointed out that I'd really looooooove a boat wood headboard.  We studied several photos and realized we couldn't think of any distressing method that would create the look we desired. 

It doesn't look sanded or faded.
It looks like it's been chipped away.  Now, for a moment I actually considered painting the wood then taking a chisel and chipping pieces off... it was a crazy DIYer moment.  

Thankfully we did more research and came across a very simple technique that worked perfectly.  Lucy of Lucy Designs demonstrates this method, and even though she's not trying to emulate boat wood - it creates the same effect.  And here's the best part:  the only tool you'll need is a block of wood.  I'm talkin' a hunk of a 2x4.  I think anyone can come across one of those.  
Once you've found a block of wood and selected your paint colors, simply pour one color of paint onto a paper plate, dip the wood block in it, and slide it across your wood in a long sweeping motion.  Follow the length of the board.  It will create this really cool weathered and chipped look.  Once the first layer has dried, paint another layer - continue this method until you are happy with the results.

We painted the boards in groups of 3 or 4 so it would look like some of them came from the same boat.  The entire project only cost us $20, because the wood we used was from reclaimed pallets.

The Officer also fashioned that awesome anchor from some of the scrap wood - he's amazing.
I know this style isn't for everyone - but we really love our eclectic, beachy, colorful bedroom!  Hope you had a great weekend!!

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Barndoor Baby Gate

Well, I can't believe it but next week little Miss Lila turns 1!!  She has become extremely mobile...including walking :)  So a few weeks ago it was time to put up the baby gates.  
Our not-so-lovely-but-thankful-we-have-it military housing comes with the really steep stairs.  With really sharp edges.  
So we needed to stop little Miss from climbing them (and she IS a climber!).  I'm really not a huge fan of the plastic baby gates...they don't have a lot of character and are really expensive for what you get.  So my crafty husband searched the internet for a better solution and came across this lovely barndoor baby gate plan from Remodelaholic.  He used mostly pallet wood - so they were very inexpensive.  Like most everything else in our house we decided to add color.  In fact my daughter has been known to punish her dolls by making them wear all white or all grey...the horror!

The gate at the bottom of the stairs had to be hinged in the center - there wasn't enough room to open it all the way.  

It simply folds neatly against the wall.
(don't you love that handrail...?) 

My thanks to the Officer for his mad woodworking skills. 
I love them, and they add just a little more character to this big white box we live in...that I'm very thankful for ;)
p.s. Be happy with what you have and you will have plenty to be happy about.

Monday, January 14, 2013

{DIY}The Fat Quarter Infinity Scarf

**I've recently started blogging again! Come see what I've been up to: click here**

Meet my newest cold weather accessory - the fat quarter infinity scarf.

I really really love infinity scarves.  
You know why?  
They're easy.  
Easy to make, easy to wear.  What more could you ask for?  I recently made one for a friend, and decided I needed one too.  The scarf comes together in about 30 minutes, but the handwork took several hours.  I used two fat quarters(which makes this scarf inexpensive too!), and since fat quarters are usually used in quilting, I decided to make my scarf like a mini-quilt.  It has batting inside for added warmth, and then I hand quilted it (but you could machine quilt it if you're in a hurry).
Here's the tutorial if you'd like to make your own!

2 Fat quarters (fat quarters are 18"x22")
a piece of batting 63"x 5"
Sewing machine/thread
Perle Cotton Thread (if you want to quilt it)
Quilting Needle

Step 1:
Cut both fat quarters into 3 pieces 6"x22"

Step 2:
Choose one fabric and sew the three pieces end to end, right sides together, to create a long strip 6"x64"(this number may be a little different depending on the seam allowance size you use).  
Repeat with the other fabric.

Step 3:
Choose one of the long strips and lay the batting on the wrong side.  Use a basting stitch (the largest stitch on your machine) and sew down the center of the batting - this will hold it in place until you quilt it.  Lay the fabric strips right sides together.  
It should look like this:

Step 4:
Pin along the two long edges, making sure to mark a space to leave open near one of the ends.  Your opening should be about 8".

Sew along the two long edges, except for the opening.  Leave the ends open.  Turn right sides out.

Step 5:
  Take the end with the opening near it, and pull it inside out until one end lines up with the other end.  You must be able to see the 8" opening.

Line up the ends and pin.

Step 6:
Sew, right sides together, all the way around.  
Now reach through the opening and pull the scarf right sides out.

Step 7:
Hand whip the opening closed.

Now you are ready to quilt your scarf, either by hand or with your machine!
Once you've quilted it, you can remove the basting stitch, and it's ready to wear!

Hope you're staying warm this winter!
love from Japan,

Linked to this party today! :)

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