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pink floral headband

This floral headband was one of the quickest and easiest projects I’ve completed.  I was inspired by some trash.  My friend, Lisa, came over and had me serge the edges of some flannel blankets for her new baby.  All the flannel edges that are basically trash,  looked so amazing in a pile and I knew I had to make them into little rosettes.

I made three rosettes.  The larger one had a bit more fuzz along the edge.  The smaller two…not so much.  All you do is roll up the strip of flannel until it is the size you want.  I added a bit of tacky glue along the edges to keep it rolled up here and there but that is it.

I had a spare headband that needed embellishing so I got out my trusty glue gun and added the rosettes off to the side.

I made this the night before I went to the Big Omaha conference.   I went with my Toolulu business partner, Deb, and we had a blast!  Here we are in the photo booth with our friend, Nia.

The guest blogger today is Nova, Glass Half Full Gal. We follow each other on twitter and have all sorts of crafty conversations! Nova’s so crafty she did about 8 different crafts before settling on this one. Enjoy!

napkin rings

I love to reuse and recycle. Though, where we live in the country a convenient recycling program. So, I’m bigger on reusing items. I think everyone can come up with a use for empty paper towel holders. The most common is probably binoculars. My son has created them on his own quite often.

Napkin ring holders are a great craft that kids can participate in making. Hosting a family dinner or event? Crafts like this keep the kids busy while you tend to the menu and are decorative table art too!

For my summer napkin ring holders, I’m using a ladybug to decorate the top of the ring. If you have a die cut for this pattern, it will make things a snap.

IMG_0300 Supplies:

Empty paper tower roll (this will make 7 napkin rings at 1 1/2 inches in length)

White acrylic paint

Cardstock: Black, Red

Ladybug die cut (or cut out manually)

Hole-punch (if you don’t have a die cut)

Black or silver pipe cleaner (chenille sticks)

Googlie eyes (optional)

Cut your empty paper towel holder at 11/2 inch increments to make 7 rings.

Paint your napkin ring holders with acrylic paint. I prefer white, however, the color may vary depending on how you plan to decorate your ring.

Cut one black circle and one red circle for each ladybug body. I used my Sizzix Originals Circles #2 die to cut a circle at about 1 3/4 inches in diameter. I then used the smallest circle on the die to cut out two black circles for heads (about 3/4″ in diameter).

IMG_0298Cut out a triangular section for the wings on one side of each of the red circles. Punch two holes on each wing for each red ladybug body. I used a larger hole-punch for the back and a smaller for the front. These make the black spots on the ladybug. Adhere the red body circle to the solid black body circle. I used ‘sticky do’ foam dimensional adhesives to give the ladybug some dimension. You can paint eyes on your ladybug head or leave black. I used googlie eyes on mine for a fun affect for the kids.

Cut a piece of chenille stick about an inch long. I folded the ends to make the tips of the antennae and then folded the piece in half. Attach to the back of the ladybug head. Attach the head to the body. Now, simply use craft glue or an adhesive of your preference to attach the ladybug to the painted napkin ring.

Other ideas you can do are to adhere jewels, or paint an initial as a monogram. Decorate with patterned designs with glitter glue. Wrap ribbon around the ring to fancy it up at bit.

I did a few of these for demonstration. The options are endless!

Nova Ordner a/k/a Glass Half Full, formerly owned and ran a Litigation Record Procurement Company for 12 years. Currently, she is a Household Manager, mother of two children and wife to a farmer. Nova is also proud to be a Team Writer for Root & Sprout. She’s an optimist who sees life from the greener side. She’s a Glass Half Full Gal.

Today’s guest blogger is Mandy.  Mandy has been a craft challenge participant for a while and we’ve gotten to know each other through twitter.  Her blog is rather new so I hope you’ll go and check it out!  She has a lot of great things on there.

Hey everyone…this is Mandy from Id Rather Be Crafting and I’m so excited to be filling in for Christy. This post will show you one of two things:

First, I suck at laundry.

Second, (and in the vein of a Craft Challenge) if you use just a bit of craftiness, even a nasty old shirt bound for the trash can be turned into a cute dress or cover up, without using any thread!

sara remade tshirt dress

before undershirtThis is the undershirt I started with….

I swear it was washed. Several times. But, as my husband is all man, it has gotten a “little” yellow around the pits. Despite that, it took only a few supplies and some elbow grease to give it a second life in my daughters wardrobe. Want to give it a try?

Take the nastiest shirt out of your husbands pile of dirty clothes drawer of freshly laundered undershirts and get to work. Our first step was dying the shirt. This isn’t really necessary, but it does make it look less like an undershirt. Grab a box of dye from the craft store and follow the directions. Easy.

Once it is dry, throw it on your child. You will want to kind of pinch the front and back together around her side to get an idea of how tight or loose you want the dress. Also take note of where her arm pit is to make the arm hole later. I marked mine off with pins, but if you have a particularly wriggly child, I would suggest using a marker, just outside of the line you plan to cut. Then cut that bad boy all the way from the bottom of the shirt to the shoulder. Don’t worry about cutting neatly, as most mistakes will be hidden as the t-shirt rolls and comes together.

tshirt cut and dye

Once you have your sides cut, take your scissors and make holes on the side you just cut, going from the bottom of the shirt, and stopping where you marked the arm pit. The holes should be about one inch apart from each other, and one inch in from the cut side. You will probably have to do the front then the back, but just try to make the holes line up. Then do the other side of the shirt! Once you’re done, lace up the holes using either a ribbon, shoe lace, or some other scraps in any fashion you choose. If you tighten and scrunch the lacing, it will make the dress shorter – kind of like ruching.

riley remade tshirt dress

For my oldest daughter, this is where the construction ended, but for my 4 year old, it was still too baggy. We ended up cutting the top of the shirt off (where the arm pit marks were) and making it a spaghetti top. I braided a few t-shirt scraps together and just poked a hole where they were placed, threaded the braid through, and made a knot on the back side to keep it in place.

making tshirt The fun for the kids is decorating. Gather a bunch of different sized circles (using tupperware, bottles, cups, lids, etc) and put different colors of fabric paint on plates. We stuck a cereal box in between the layers and then I handed the reins to them. They turned out perfect!

After it dries, you are good to go! Make it unique with a different neck line, or fringe the bottom, or a different painting. It takes a little time, but was a great way to show my girls how to turn trash to treasure.

Meet Lisa, our guest blogger for today! I know Lisa from my local knitting group. She’s super funny and always has the best stories from her adventures in teaching Kindergarten. Enjoy this post from her!

My name is Lisa. I’m a teacher, knitter, quilter, and all around crafter. During the summer months, I tend to find myself neck deep in ongoing projects and I blog about them here.
A month or so ago I found a chair for sale. It was a beautiful wooden number with a rattan seat. The seat needed reworking (which I had never done) but the chair itself was sturdy and had such beautiful lines, I couldn’t pass it up.
I knew I had to repair the seat, but wasn’t sure how. After walking through my favorite fabric store ever, The Cosmic Cow, and drooling on a new fabric I was considering eloping with, the idea came to me. I’d incorporate the print into the seat.

woven chair

  • Here’s what you need:
  • 100 feet cotton clothesline cording (must be cotton)
  • 2 yards of fabric (pre-cut jelly rolls purchased from quilting stores will work if you’re not interested in taking the time to cut the strips)
  • matching cotton thread
  • sewing machine
  • ironing board & iron
  • chair

After cutting the fabric into 2 1/2 inch strips, iron them as if they were bias tape (folding the cut strip in half the long way and ironing), open the strip, fold each half in half again and iron. (you will have four equal sections after final ironing) This will hide the long side raw edges.
Next, you will wrap each ironed strip around the clothesline cord like a burrito. I found it easiest to position the cording in the center of the strip, folding the right half over first, followed by the left. Make sure to fold the beginning of each strip over to hide the short side raw edges and sew down the center of the wrapped cording using a straight stitch.
For my chair, I used the entire 100 foot strand of cording.

Below are pictures of the ‘naked’ chair and the different stages of weaving.

Here is the chair sans webbing. It received a good scrubbing then I stained the dowels in case any of them showed through after installing the new seat.

Prior to securing cording to the chair, I found the half-way point on the cording and marked it. I wanted to make sure I had enough for both sides of the chair.

I stapled the cording to the bottom of the dowel using a staple gun.


I wrapped the cording around the chair tightly. You can see the rope I used to mark the 1/2 way point. I decided that if I ran out of cording before finishing wrapping in one direction, I would space it out evenly. Fortunately, that didn’t happen.

I stapled the cording to the chair and cut. Using the same wrapping method, wrap the chair in the opposite direction but weave as you go. I made sure to weave the upper and lower part of the seat. Pull tightly as you go. I figured the fibers would loosen the more the chair was used.

This part is not for weak fingers. My fingers began to get sore trying to squeeze as many weaves as I could into the seat. I would up getting a knitting needle and using it to help me pull the cording. The end of the needle (not the point) was great for hooking the cord when the space got too small for my fingers.

When I couldn’t weave another row, I spaced the cording out evenly in both directions.

This is my favorite craft project of the summer. It was lots of fun to do. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me via my blog and I’ll do my best to answer them. Have fun!

Love him or hate him, you can’t deny Michael Jackson a place among the music greats.  Michael Jackson was one of the first artists I really loved.  I had an MJ wallet, purse, and we rented The Making of Thriller as often as our mom would let us.  Michael Jackson has always been a favorite subject of pop culture crafters.  I’ve searched out some of my favorites to share with you today.

i glove michael jackson shirt

This shirt is so awesome!  I “glove” MJ.  I found this on Craftster from user laxeagle3.

6887_DSC00974

Here is another t-shirt found on Craftster.  This one was stenciled and uses some glitter on the socks.

Do you have a favorite Michael Jackson memory?  Will you craft something special today?

I spent last week at my mom’s house.  She bought a brand new Baby Lock sewing machine and was anxious to use it.  Her first project were curtains.

IMG_2139She had a bed skirt from her bedroom set that she wasn’t using and she loved the colors.  So, she cut it up!  IMG_2138

She cut off the fabric sides and added interfacing to the back to make them a little stiffer.

In this photo you see how she ironed on the interfacing.

She folded over the top and sewed it shut to make a casing for the curtain rod.

The biggest part of her project was making her side panels.  These weren’t difficult, just a little bulky to work with.

I think they turned out great!   I’m sure that new sewing machine is going to see a lot of use.

refashioned curtains

Have you ever used a bed skirt for any other purpose?

The skirt pattern will have to wait until tomorrow.  We’re having a rainy day and I want to get some better photographs for the pattern.  Instead, I give you this t-shirt tutorial a day early!

t-shirt refashion

Here is the finished shirt on my duct tape dress form.  I really like the way it turned out and I can see myself making even more of these!  There are so many variations you can do and it was super quick and easy.IMG_2045

I started out with two t-shirts.  The green one was ripped and the white one was stained.

I cut up the green shirt so it would fit in my die cut machine.  I used the scallop circle die from Stampin’ UP.  You don’t need to have a die cut machine for this.  It was just super quick for me to run my t-shirt through there and get some uniform shapes.  You can cut out your own shapes using scissors.  I found this tutorial using cut up heart shapes.

IMG_2046

Here you can see my stained shirt and my stack of scallops.  Get some embroidery floss that matches your embellishments.  You can also use doubled up thread.

You’ll want to do a running stitch through the scallop shapes.  All that means is you want to run your thread and needle up and down across the shape two or three times.  This will gather up the shape and then you’ll want to tack it down on the t-shirt.

Once you have one down, pull the needle and thread through the t-shirt to the front.  You’ll want to make sure you pull it up underneath your shape so it is hidden.  Repeat for your next shape. I used six scallop circles for this shirt.  IMG_2047

I have several ripped t-shirts that I have big plans for.  Next time I’m going to use smaller shapes and different colors for a new effect.

I’d love to see your t-shirt creations!  Share them at my flickr group.

Last week Julie blogged about making over some denim capris into a skirt.  That very day I was wearing some khaki pants that didn’t fit me that well and I was inspired!  Over the weekend, I made them into a cute knee length skirt.

khaki skirt

These were low waisted pants.  Not a fan, but they were cheap when I needed some casual khaki pants.  It finally got to the point that I hated the way they felt in the waist and crotch areas.  So, I would rarely wear them.  By turning them into a skirt, I get rid of the whole crotch issue and I can wear them where I want to on my waist!

This project is pretty straight forward.  You cut up the inside seams of the pant legs and then seam them back together, front to front and back to back.  The tricky part is cutting off the extras from the crotch and the butt.  IMG_2050

Here you can see how the extra fabric for the butt sticks out.  I just cut that part off so I could have a straight seam up the back.  Do the same for the extra fabric in the front.

After you do that, all that is left is sewing it up and putting a hem along the bottom.

What a great way to make something new out of something I was ready to give away!  Now I have a khaki skirt that I love.

upcycle a dress into a skirt

Yesterday I was cleaning up some clothes and came across a dress of my daughter’s that was a little too small.  It was still in good shape so I thought I might chop it up and make it into a skirt.IMG_2011

Chances are, if you have a little girl, you have a dress like this one lying around.  It is just a knit dress with a tiered bottom.  Perfect for turning into a skirt!

The first thing I did was measure some elastic against my daughter’s waist.  I know this probably isn’t the most precise way to figure out the measurement, but it is the quickest!  It’s just elastic, right?  No need for precision.  IMG_2013

Once I had the elastic cut to her size, I cut the dress at the armpits.  This left a few inches of fabric above the beginning of the tiers.  This is what will now be my elastic casing.

My most clever moment of the evening came when I realized that I could sew the raw edge to the seam from the beginning tier!  IMG_2012This would mean that you wouldn’t be able to see any of my sewing!

I folded the top inside to the seam and then pinched it together.   Actually, my husband folded it for the picture.  Anyway, you’ll take that to your sewing machine and zig zag all the way around being careful to leave a 1-2 inch opening so you can thread your elastic through.

IMG_2014

Place safety pin on one end of your elastic and thread it through the opening.  Be careful not to twist the elastic and make sure the other end doesn’t go through the hole.  When it is all the way around, stitch the elastic to itself, slide it up into the casing, and stitch the opening closed.

Now all that’s left is to take pictures of the finished product!  This was the most difficult part.  You can catch a glimpse of blurry little hands that can’t wait to get a hold of their “new” skirt!  IMG_2015

I think she likes it!  IMG_2018