Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Twill Ribbon Headbands

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

This post first appeared on the Ribbon Retreat blog.  I was given product to complete the project, but the ideas and opinions are my own.

I love these simple headbands, they require few materials, are easy and quick to assemble and are easy enough, kids can make them.  They would be a fantastic party activity, great for craft camps or just to make on a day when you need something creative and fun to do.

Ready to make one?  Let's do it:

Supplies-
 Directions-

 
1.  Cut a 12" section of Twill Ribbon.
2. Embellish as desired.  I cut shapes out of felt and stitched them down, I also just added simple embroidery.  You could also take out the sewing by hot gluing the felt shapes if you want.  Other ideas would be adding buttons or gems.
Now to finish the edges.
1. Fold over the end of the twill ribbon 1/4" toward the WRONG side of the ribbon. Press.
2.  Fold over the end of the ribbon another 1/4" to hide the raw end, press.
3. Cut a length of elastic.  For toddlers cut 6", for older children 8", for adults 10".  *note that these are approximate- if you want a more accurate measurement, measure the distance around the back of the wearers head from ear to ear.  Tuck the elastic under the pressed edge with the shiny or RIGHT side facing up. (the wrong side of the elastic should be against the wrong side of the ribbon)

 To finish the headband, fold the elastic away from the ribbon as shown.  Stitch down the end of the ribbon using two rows of stitching as indicated in the picture.  Make sure to back stitch when you start and stop.  Repeat for the other side, and you are done!  Easy, right?  If you want a totally no- sew version, use Fray Check or clear drying glue to seal the cut edge of the ribbon.  Once it's dry use hot glue to attach the elastic to the ends.  Easy, peasy!

My girls definitely enjoy wearing theirs, and I hope you will too!

xoxo,
Amy

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Wonderland Tiered Pillowcase Dress

Wednesday, March 16, 2016
 Welcome Friends!  I'm so excited to share with you this fun fabric today- oh, and a cute dress made out of it as well, as part of the blog hop celebrating Wonderland Fabric by Melissa Mortensen for Riley Blake Designs!
 My sweet friend Melissa from the blog Polka Dot Chair is a relatively new designer for Riley Blake Designs, in fact, this is only her second line of fabric- which I'm sure would surprise you when you get a look at how beautiful and fun it is!  Her line of Wonderland fabric is full of bunnies, flowers and get this- sparkle!  The gold in the flowers and on a couple of other fabrics is metallic with the most beautiful sheen!  As soon as I saw it, I knew it would make the perfect Easter dresses for my three littlest girls.  Today I am here to share with you the first of the dresses- this Tiered Pillowcase dress.  It's a pretty simple sew, but has a fancy look and a perfectly twirly flow to it.

It just so happened that Melissa had a similar idea and posted a simple pillowcase dress tutorial yesterday- so if you don't want to deal with the gathering, or if you are looking for different sizing- head over to her blog for more information!

Supplies (size 3/4 T):
  • 1/2 yard dark pink geometric fabric
  • 1/4 yard flower fabric
  • 1/4 yard bunny fabric
  • single fold bias tape
  • ribbon (optional- can also use fabric and turning tool to create straps)
  • sewing supplies (including turning tool if available)
Cutting Instructions:

  1.  Cut two rectangles from the dark pink geometric fabric 14" X 8"
  2.  Cut two strips from the dark pink geometric fabric 4" X 30"
  3.  Cut the flower fabric to 8" X WOF, then cut in half.
  4.  Cut two strips pink bunny fabric 7" X 41"
Sewing Instructions (all seams are 1/2") :

Prep the bodice-
The width of the bodice is 14" and the length is 8"- position the pieces so they are facing you in that direction.  Fold in half so you have one piece that is 7" X 8" and 4 layers thick.  Pin.
1. Mark a rectangle on the top corner that is 5" long and 3" deep- this will create the arm hole, but we don't want it square, so use a round object (I used a lid) to round the corner.
2. Cut out this "J" shaped armhole.
3. Lay out your two bodice pieces and position them so they are on top of each other right sides together.  Sew down the two straight sides.  ** I do not own a serger- if you are lucky enough to own one, surge all the seams as you go- if you, like me aren't so fortunate- a fairly tight and wide zig zag stitch will accomplish the same thing.
4. (I profusely apologize for the lack of pictures for this part- I am not a garment sewer and worried about doing things wrong.  If you aren't sure how to use bias tape- there are many good tutorials online) Use single fold bias tape to finish the arm holes.
5.  Use a zig zag stitch, or serge the two top straight edges.
6. Create a channel to hold the ribbon or sash- On each of your top edges- fold down the fabric 1/4" and press, then fold down another 3/4" and press.  Sew as close to the fold as you can (just shy of 3/4").

Prepare the tiers:
1. Take each of your tier layers and sew the short sides together.
2. Make sure you finish the edges of the seams.
3. On your bottom layer (the bunny fabric) create a hem.  Fold the bottom of the layer up 1/4" and press.  Then fold it up another 1" and press.  Sew down as close to the top of the fold as possible. (sorry about the lack of picture for that)
4. On the top of each layer extend your stitch length as long as you can and sew a stitch all the way around (use a 1/4" s.a.) *Tip- I like to start and stop my gathering stitch at both sides of the layer- it makes it much easier to gather one side at a time if you can pull from both ends of the side.  Also, make sure you leave a length of thread each time you start and stop.

Assembly:
Start with the bottom layer and the middle layer (the bunnies and the dark pink layer) right sides together, with the top of the bunny layer at the bottom of the pink layer, and gather the bunny fabric so it is the same length as the straight edge of the pink layer.  This will take some time and patience- just keep working with it until the gathers are evenly spaced and the fabric is the right length.  **Tip- I find it easiest to pin the two side seams together and then gather the front side of the layer- pin it in place, then work on gathering the back side of the layer.  Once they are ready- sew together (1/2" s.a.) and finish the seam.  Press the bunny layer down with the seam toward the pink layer and top stitch the seam down.  Repeat for each remaining layer, gathering and sewing and finishing the seams with a zig zag stitch and top stitch.
Once you have all the layers sewn in you are finished.  If you want, you can use ribbon to create the "sleeves" to hold the dress on.  I used the bunny fabric to create a tie.  Cut a 2" by WOF strip of fabric and sew the long sides right sides together, turn right side out (I wish I had a turning tool for this) and press.  Finish the ends by tucking under the raw edges and stitch down.  I actually like to top stitch around all four sides of the tie.  Use a safety pin to thread the tie through both the front and back channels.  If you like, you can secure the tie in the dress by sewing a couple of stitches through the channel and tie on the back of the dress.

Now you're ready for egg hunting, Sunday Worship Services and everything else this wonderful holiday brings!

Have a very Happy day!
XOXO,
Amy

Monday, March 7, 2016

Embellished birdhouses and a Giveaway

Monday, March 7, 2016
I love working for the Wood Connection (they provided the birdhouses and papers for this post) they always inspire me with their darling projects.  Today, I am sharing how to make these fun embellished birdhouses over on their blog. 
As a bonus- I posted a tutorial on how I made the extra flowers right here on my blog- with new ways to use them in home decor.
And, because I think you'll also be inspired by The Wood Connection- they have offered to give away one $25 gift certificate to one of you!  Just enter below to win.  Contest will close Friday morning.  Good Luck!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Springtime Felt Flowers



It's always this time of year when I start itching for warmer weather and sunshine.  We seem to always have a warm spell that gets our hopes up, which is quickly followed by colder weather and snow.  So, until spring gets here for real- I decided to create some sunshine of my own and make this fun springtime floral frame.  It's just the right colors for my living room and it might just live in there all year round.

These flowers are so versatile, you could use them for clips or headbands, on purses- or just use them to embellish any home decor project you have going on- I have the how to, right here for you!


Here's a close-up so you can get an idea of what we're making.

A few notes to keep in mind: 1. flowers in nature are not exactly the same, and your flowers won't be either- this is good- it adds interest and depth to your project.  2. I used acrylic felt on these- it's cheap and I had it on hand.  But, feel free to use any kind of felt you want.  Wool felt is gorgeous, but can be expensive.  I really like bamboo felt as well.

Supplies:
  • felt
  • hot glue gun and glue 
  • sharp scissors

Fringe Flower 
 
 1. Begin with a rectangle of felt.  Mine was about 1 1/2" X 3"- the wider the piece the taller the flower, the longer the piece the fuller the flower.
2. Fold the felt in half along the length of the rectangle.  Using your sharp scissors cut a fringe on the open side.  Mine were approx. 1/8", but it will vary.  Don't cut through the fold.
3. Run a line of hot glue along the center of the rectangle and glue the felt in half.  (I do this after I cut so I don't ruin my scissors by cutting into the glue.)
4. Put a small dot of glue on the bottom corner of the rectangle and begin rolling the felt.  Keep the folded edge lined up and flat.  Add glue as you roll- about 1/2" at a time.
* You can either keep the flower bunched up like it is, or flatten it out a bit.  You may want to trim it up a bit when you're done to get the shape you want.

Felt Daisy

 1. Begin with a rectangle about 2" wide and 12" long. (the piece in the picture is smaller than that)
2. Take your long rectangle and cut it in half with scissors using a steep wave as shown. (I fold it in half to do this so it goes faster, but you might end up with the same weirdness I did in the center- it's totally fine and you can either cut the large bump in half, or just leave it- it adds character. ;) )
3. Take a small rectangle of felt about 2" X 3" and cut it so you have a 3/4" piece and a 1 1/4" piece.
4. Cut fringe along one side of both pieces.
5. (not shown) begin rolling the pieces together as we did in the last one.  Start with the short fringed piece, when you get to the end of the short piece, add the taller fringed piece then move on to the wavy pieces.  As you are rolling the wavy piece, try to get the petals to stagger a bit- you may need to fold in some of the felt between the petals to get them to offset each other so you don't have them all stacked up.  When you have added both wavy pieces, flatten out the petals to create the flower.  You may want to trim some of it up to get the shape you want.
Folded petal Posie

 *this flower is a bit more involved, but just a bit.  It looks complicated, but it's really not- just follow the steps and you'll have it down.

1. Cut a rectangle 1 1/2" X 12" of your lighter red felt.
2. Cut this rectangle in half using a rolling wave shape.
3. Use hot glue to fold down the tops of the waves.  You may need to hold them in place until the glue cools down a bit.
4. Cut a rectangle 1 1/2" X 4" from your darker red felt.
5. Repeat the same steps as you did for the lighter red felt- cut in half and glue down the petals.
6. Cut a 2" X 2" piece of yellow felt.
7. Fold in half and cut a fringe along the folded edge.
8.  Glue the long ends of the rectangle together.
 Assembling the flower:
1. Start with your yellow piece of felt and begin rolling it up- use glue to hold it in place.  Stop when you have about 1" of felt left.
2.  add in the dark red piece.  Make sure the folded petals are facing away from the center.  Roll and glue until you have about 1 1/2" left.
3.  Add the light red piece and roll and glue it on. *you will only use one of the light red and dark red pieces per flower- just make another center and you will have two flowers made.

Now you will just want to use some green felt to create leaves.  I just free-hand cut the leaves using two different colors of green.

 Add them to your frame or projects as desired.
 I made mini versions of the flowers (using about 1/2 the size of rectangles in this post) to embellish these birdhouses from The Wood Connection.  You can find the tutorial for the birdhouses- and the Rose flower over on their blog here
 You can also see a few more flower ideas and a fun way to embellish your home or holiday decor in this Holiday Deer Head post.

I hope you have lots of fun creating all these felt flower ideas!

xoxo,
Amy
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