Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Done in a Flash DIY: Infinity Bracelet

You know, I originally had one more chilly weather project ready to go, but I'm so over this cold I've decided that the time has come to just ignore it and hope it goes away. 

So on to more fun things! Like making some colorful new bracelets to stack up my (soon to be in short sleeves) arms. This one is so easy - takes less than 5 minutes easy - and utilizes hair elastics. Working with used elastics is just fine, but remove any lingering strands of hair or this can quickly go from so pretty, to pretty nasty :P
What you need:
-2 hair elastics
-2 jump rings
-2" of chain
-a pair of jewelry pliers

Step 1: Place the two elastic bands so that they are layered, with the adjoining seam on each facing out.

Step 2: Fold the top band so that half of it is now on the backside.

Step 3: Pull the seam of the folded band to the left.

Step 4: Tighten.

When you're done, the elastics will now look like this:

Step 5: Open a jump ring and slide on one end of the elastics and one end of the chain. 

Step 6: Use your pliers to close the jump ring. 

Step 7: Finish the project by repeating steps 5 and 6 with the 2nd jump ring on the other end of the elastic and chain.

<<<<<Warm thoughts, everyone!>>>>

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Upcycled Denim and Fleece Scarf

I don't know about where you're living, but here in New York, this has been the LONGEST winter I can remember! This denim scarf has been a happy addition to my many, many layers. If you've got a worn out pair of jeans, repurpose this into a modern accessory by adding some cozy fleece and a few snaps!

-old jeans
-1 yd fleece (or flannel)
-3 snaps

Step 1: From the bottom hem measure up 28" and cut.

Step 2: The top it will flare out, but for our purposes we need the pant leg straight. Place a ruler on the straight seam extending on the flared area and mark with tailor chalk.

Step 3: Cut straight across a 1/2" above the chalk line.

Step 4: Flip the pant leg inside out and stitch 1/2" down from the cut edge.

5: Follow by stitching the top of the pant leg closed.

When you're done, flip right side out again.

Step 6: Lay your piece of fleece out flat... (The bears? I know, they're amazing! Thank you, Etsy!)

...and place the pant leg over top of it.

Step 7: Cut the fleece so that it is the same length as the pant leg, and same width plus 1".

Step 8: Fold back 1/2" allowance on the fleece and pin to the bad side of the jeans.

Step 9: Pin the bad sides of the fleece and pant leg together.
(The extra denim you see on the left and sides is where the snaps will be placed. You'll need at least 1/2" on each side, but you can fold back as much as an 1" if you'd like.)

Step 10: Stitch around all sides to secure the denim to the fleece.

Step 11: Finish by stitching closed the bottom of the pant leg, near the hem.

When you've finished sewing it will look like this:

Step 12: Lastly, Add the closures by marking the placement for the snaps on each end and setting them with a pedestal and snap setter.

Ta-da! It's a scarf! 

*Please remember that textiles are not trash! With what's left over from the jeans, you can turn into new cutoffs, make another scarf for a friend or even split the seams to upcycle the fabric for other projects. If you still have that desire to kick the remnants to the curb, try to find a textile recycling program in your area. They'll be happy to take these and  any other fabric scraps you're looking to ditch.

++Warm thoughts+++

*tailor's chalk
*sewing machine or needle and thread

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Conversation Heart Valentine Holders

I don't know if it's all moms everywhere or just me, but I realized that I have had a cache of party hats somewhere in my house pretty much since my daughter was born... she's almost 12 now! On one hand I think it's kind of fun/funny that I am fully prepared for any spontaneous party emergencies (yes that can occasionally happen), but on the other hand, some of these hats have got to go! 

These sweet conversation-heart valentines are fun and personal, and they let me reclaim some much needed space in my kitchen cabinets. What's not to love?
Happy Valentine's Day, everyone:)
-paper party hats
-ballpoint pen
-gel pen

Step 1: Flatten the hat, with the seam in the back.

Step 2: Trace the shape of the hat on to a piece of scrap paper and cut out. (Pages from old magazine are great for this!)

Step 3:Fold this paper in half  and then cut a curve about 2" down from the top edge.

When you're finished cutting open it up and it will look like this. This will serve as your template.

Step 4: Lay the heart template on top of your hat and trace around the top curves.

Step 5: Cut directly on the line and then snip off a tiny bit from the bottom point. This will make it more closely resemble the shape of  a conversation heart.

Now you've got your heart!

Step 6: Now on to the messages! Type up a few typical conversation heart phrases and print them out. Then, cut around each messages.

Step 7: Place a message over your flattened hat, centered as best you can.

Step 4: Trace around each letter with a ball point pen.

When you lift up the message, you'll see the impression of the words on the hat.

Step 5: Trace the word impression with your gel pen, then fill in.

Step 8: Fill it up with goodies.

Step 2: To seal, place some double stick tape around the top and press firmly.
*You may want to note that if your double stick tape is on the wimpy side, you can just as easily close this with a couple of staples.

**Repeat for as many valentines as you need to make.**

If this sudden depletion of party supplies has you feeling a little unprepared, the tops that you cut off in step 5 can be saved and used as crowns. They're cute, but even better, they take up very little space:)

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Handmade Gifting: Coffee Cozies 2 Ways

Wow! Can't believe that it's already time to start getting holiday gifts together, but alas here we are again. Originally this was something that I made for myself, but I was so pleased with the results that I wanted to share them with friends! Maybe you'll want to share them, too.

If you're going to drink to-go coffee at least you can cut down on some of the waste in style.
-colorful yarn
-paper coffee sleeve

Step 1:Make a sharpie mark on to the paper cozie where the two pieces overlap. Then pull apart.

Step 2: If the overlap area is excessive trim down to a 1/2" or so. This cozy will now serve as your pattern.

Step 3: Trace the pattern onto you felt and cut out cleanly.

Step 4: If you haven't already done so, make a plan for you design.

Step 5: Choose your favorite(s) and draw them right onto the felt.

Step 6: Stitch in the drawn design with yarn.

Step 7: Now use doublestick tape (or pins) to overlap the 2 ends by 1/4".

Step 8: Quickly slide the sleeve over a coffee cup to make sure that the fit is correct. (If it's too tight or loose make the proper adjustment before going on to step 9.)

Step 9: Finish by stitching across the overlapped area until you're sure the pieces are well connected.

Oh, yeah... as said in the title of this post, I made another one. An easy applique...again in the eye motif; I can't get enough of it! I reused the patterns I had left over from the Eye Elbow Project (and made a few smaller ones, as well). Except this time I played up the colors. A lot.

To make this one, just follow steps 1 through 3 above and then add the eyes as instructed here.

Ha! I look so attached to it already. This is probably the one I'm 
going  to be keeping for myself:) Happy gifting, friends!

-tailor's chalk