Saturday, March 27, 2010

Easter Decorations?

I cannot lie - I'm not great with the holiday decorations, especially for anything outside of the Christmas season. I love Christmas. I happily decorate for Christmas. Easter, on the other hand, I just can't get jazzed about. But, as there are mini-people running around here, I do need to put in an ounce of effort. So, my solution? Head to Wal-Mart, grab 3 bags of the coloured plastic Easter eggs (94 cents each bag!! The kind you can pop open and put stuff into...who knew??), and drop them in a nice glass bowl. Ta-da! Decorating done.

This works well for me for a lot of holidays - you can put just about anything in a glass bowl and call in decorating. Christmas tree decorations, a string of lights, a pile of skulls, flowers, etc., try it, you'll see what I mean. And send me pics when you do!:)


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Business Card Holder

A while back....okay, a long, long time ago...I promised a tutorial on making your own business card holder from felt. Well, I finally got around to doing it!

The original one that I showed you was one that I made for the Lumberjack for Christmas. So, for the tutorial I decided I should make a new one, just for you. Aren't I cute?:) So, here is the final product, and I swear, it takes less than an hour to make (embellishments notwithstanding).

What you will need:
Small piece of felt (a scrap could cover it, if not I got mine from this seller - good prices and great product!)
Thread (either matching or contrasting)
1 button (either matching or contrasting)
1 snap fastener (see below, if you're not sure what I mean)

So, first things first. Cut your piece of felt to 6-1/2" x 4-1/4".

Fold up 2-3/8" from the bottom and pin in place.

Sew from top of fold to bottom somewhere between 1/8" and 1/4" (but closer to the 1/8").

Measure up 1/4" from the top of the fold and cut from there to the centre of the flap. Repeat on other side.

Fold over flap and position it where you would like it to sit when closed. Pin in place.

Handsew snap fastener into position.

I felt like mine needed a little decoration, so I ran the bottom of the flap through the sewing machine using a decorative stitch.

Sew button over top of snap on flap.

Then I felt like the sides could look a little better, so I ran them through again using the blanket stitch.

And there you have it! A pretty new business card holder in no time flat.

But think of all the ways you could decorate this. Trim, ribbon, beading, different stitches, contrasting threads and materials - the list is endless. Let me know if you make this, I would love to see what you do with it!

Pinwheels & A Little More Bunting

I somehow ran out of time and didn't really get a chance to take pictures of the party room before everyone began arrviving. But I did get a few pics of the bunting - and let me tell you, it made a pretty bland taupe room much more festive!
The bright spring colours were also reflected in the cake (care of Grandma and bought at the fabulous Novello Desserts bakery - not just beautiful, but also sooo yummy!).
And with bright blue and orange tablecloths to cover everything, it was an all-round cheery room. The kids got to decorate their own sugar cookies and make tealights (just like in this post).
But my favourite part was definitely the pinwheels. You just never see them anymore, and I had sooo much scrapbooking paper left over from the bunting that I thought I would make a few. Well, a few turned into 32! So I dropped them all into jars around the room, a little like flowers - and I just loved them!
The best part is how easy they are to make. Here is what you will need:
1. Scrapbooking paper (double-sided, if you like, just remember that you will see both sides)
2. 1/4" dowel (usually comes in 4ft sections at your local hardware/big box DIY store)
3. map pins
4. Small beads

The first thing you want to do it cut your dowels into 12" pieces - a little hacksaw will do it quite nicely. Then I put all the dowels into about an inch of water while I was getting the paper ready, this helps to put the pin in later.
As I mentioned, I used leftover scrapbooking paper that was 12"x12", I then cut it vertically and horizontally down the middle so I had 4 pieces of 6"x6". Then from each corner, I cut in towards the middle 3" (pardon the pic, but I didn't have any fresh paper left so I had to undo one of the pinwheels to show you how to make one!). So you will now have 8 corners to work with (2 at each original corner - clear?).
Then, use your map pin to punch a hole in the middle (eyeball it, don't be too precise), and move the pin around the hold to enlarge it a little - this will help the pinwheel spin once it's assembled.
Then, using your map pin, poke it through one corner.
Then, grab every other corner and push the pin through each one, layering them as you go.
You should now have four of your eight corners all pinned together. Once you do, push the pin through the hole in the middle of the paper, as above. Once you've done that, grab your bed and thread it onto the pin on the other side.
Then firmly push the pin into the end of the dowel that was soaking in water.

Be careful not to have a finger on the other side of the dowel, just in case the pin goes right through (happened to me, ouch!), and be sure not to push too hard too fast, or the pin will bend.
And you're done!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Birthday Bunting

While perusing the internet to find a quick and cheap way to make some decorations for my daughter's upcoming 1st birthday, I found quite a few sites that had ideas on how to make bunting. Now, I haven't really seen bunting done in quite some time, so I thought this would be a sweet idea. But every idea seemed to involved a fair amount of effort (and clearly, I must be rather lazy!), as I'm not interested in any ideas that involve sewing or glue of any kind. Also, I want to be able to tuck this away afterwards, or break it down and use it for other things.

This idea was knocking around in my head this past Christmas as I was trying to figure out where I was going to put all the cards we received out on display (we are woefully short on empty spaces, mostly due to various paraphenalia the Lumberjack picks up on his travels). Anyhow, the only thing I could find in the junk drawer was some jute twine

and clothespins (no idea why we have those when we have never had a clothesline to use them on...).

So, I strung the twine up between some hooks in the ceiling, clipped the cards to it with the clothespins, and voila - a rather nice looking way to display the Christmas cards.

Then the little light bulb turned on over my head.

I picked up a pad of scrapbooking paper (the double-sided kind). Of course, I waited for them to go on sale at Michael's, and then the hardest part was choosing which pad I many choices!! This is the kind I bought - and this was the only brand I found that did them double-sided, at least at my store.

I then cut each sheet diagonally from corner to corner, which gave me four triangles per sheet.

String up your twine where you would like it to go and clip on one triangle as far apart as you would like them to be.

I did the ones in the picture every 18" or so.

The best part of this is that you could use regular construction paper and keep them plain, or let kids colour them and paint them, or you could paint them (think avant garde!). Then, once the party is over, you can either stack the paper away until the next time you want to use them or use them for crafts; the clothespins could actually be used as clothespins or for crafts (everything can be used for crafts, can't it?), and the twine can just be rolled up and used for whatever people use jute twine for. I'll post more pics after the actual party!


Tuesday, March 2, 2010

The Stacked Coins Quilt

I bet you were all on the edge of your seat wondering what the "I Love You" business was all about in my last post? No, not on the edge, eh? Maybe a little curious? Well, it is my little one's first birthday coming up and I thought she deserved a little quilt of her own. When I saw this design I knew it would be perfect.

The "I Love You" was embroidered (rather badly) onto one of the squares on the back of the quilt before I layered and quilted it together.

I got the design from the Moda Bake Shop here. And it really is so easy, and so quick too - couldn't believe how fast I was actually done with it!

My only suggestion when you're doing this quilt is to be sure to pin your stacked coins to the sashing before you sew them together. I know, I know, that should be a given right? Well, I didn't and a couple of rows got a teeny bit stretched out. Otherwise the directions are wonderful and clear.

Oh, and for the backing, since I had enough for two more rows I added them both to the back, instead of just the one as shown in the tutorial. I think it looks great!

Yay for Moda Bake Shop!! Do you love them as much as I do yet?:)

Still working on the other tutorial for the business card holder - will be up soon, I promise!

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