Tuesday, December 16, 2008


I missed the boat with Christmas cards this year, so I'm curing that bug to "make something with paper" by putting together gift tags. The best part is I didn't buy anything new -- it's all stash stuff. These came together pretty fast -- a Lipstick Jungle and part of Law & Order SVU episode's worth -- so I guess about an hour and a half. Would definitely go faster if you made multiples of one or two of them.

Scallop dies, letter "A" die: Stampin' Up!
"K" monogram: My Mind's Eye
Letter stamps ("Katie"): Heidi Swapp
Brads: Making Memories
Paper on the polka dot tag: Basic Grey
Misc. ribbon
Many of the supplies came from the October Studio Calico kit.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Ornament Week: Thursday

Some variations on Saturday's ornament. These little felt flowers from American Crafts are great for this. Just hot glue them together with some ribbon in between, glue on a button and you're done!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Ornament Inspiration

1. Button Ornaments by Martha Stewart
2. The Light of Stars Paper Wreath by haru (make mini ornament wreaths with scraps!)
3. Clothespin Dolls by nillakitty
4. Froebel Star by Jeanette Lund
5. Cookie Cutter Ornaments by Martha Stewart
6. Red & Turquoise Felt Ornaments
by Constança Cabral

Monday, December 8, 2008

Ornament Week: Monday

Our Monday offering is another cute felt ornament by Salem Morin.

You'll want to gather the following:
• Felt
• Fabric
• Ric rac
• Floss
• Poly-fill

1. Cut out your star. Cut a star from two pieces of felt (front and back pieces). Cut another star, same shape but a little smaller, from your fabric.

2. Sew fabric star to felt with floss.

3. Sew front and back together. Add the ric rac between the front and back as you sew, leaving part of it hanging out. It's a little tricky to get it started, but once you get going it gets easier. Add a loop to hang it from before you start and remember to leave a nice big hole to fit the stuffing through.

TIP: Crimp in the ric rac on the inside corners and fold over on the outside corners.

4. Stuff it.
5. Embellish. Add buttons and bows for a little more excitement.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Ornament Week: Saturday

Hey peeps, sorry for no ornament yesterday, I've been choosing stuff for the April-May issue. As a result, I don't have how-to pics for this one, but it's pretty dang easy.

1. Die cut two 2" scalloped circles from corrugated cardboard after you've torn the top layer off. (You know the free photo book Snapfish did in conjunction with Oprah? I used the box mine came in. It's nice and thin, and it's white, so it would look pretty to leave it untorn.)

Die cut machine (Big Shot) and scallop die (Scallop Circle #2) are both Sizzix for Stampin' Up!.

Hot glue them together, with a loop of red velvet ribbon in between.

3. Accent the front and back with a little sumpin sumpin.

Super-cute button flowers are from evalicious, I love them. Self-adhesive, too.

You know, these would make really cute little friend gifts, and they're so easy. By George, now I know what I'm making for the other playgroup moms.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Ornament Week: Thursday

Is your snowman feeling a little lonely? This little tree was created to coordinate with our felt snowmen from Wednesday. It would be so fun to carry the green houndstooth through a bunch of handmade ornaments to pull together a gorgeous Christmas tree. So, 3 down and 17 to go. Wow, how many days left til Christmas? I better get on it!

To make this tree you'll need the following items:

• Fabric
• Ric rac
• Sequins
• Thread
• Poly-fill
• Floss

1. Cut out a front and back tree shape. I did a tall, skinny triangle, but you could do a more complex tree shape too.

2. Trim the tree. Stitch on some ric rac with contrasting floss. Add sequins by knotting some thread and pulling the needle through the sequin so that the knot is on the front and you can tie it off in the back.

3. Add a trunk. Cut out a little tree trunk rectangle out of a scrap of folded over fabric. Stitch the bottom and side closed, turn right side out and stuff before closing it up. You can be messy closing up the top because it will be hidden inside your tree.

4. Add a loop. I used the same ric rac/ribbon that I used for my snowman so that they look even more related. Same technique too - just glue the ends to the back of the front piece to hold it in place and then you can sew around it when you stitch up the final product.

5. Stitch and stuff. Stitch around the tree with floss, leaving an opening at the bottom for the trunk. Fill with poly-fill, add your trunk and then finish stitching around the tree, stiching the trunk into place.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Ornament Week: Wednesday

Next up on "Handmade Ornament Week" are these felt snowmen designed by Salem Morin. They come together pretty quickly and we have lots of pictures to help along the way.

You'll need the following items:

• White Felt
• Fabric
• Thread
• Ribbon
• Buttons
• Poly-fill
• Floss
• Sticks

1. Draw a pattern. Use it to cut out two felt pieces (front and back) for your snowman.

2. Add a hat. Pin on a scrap of fabric and cut around the snowman's hat. We were going for imperfection and just trimmed along the edge of the felt, but you could get more intense if you want and leave extra room to fold under when you're sewing.

3. Sew it. If you just set the back down and do all your work on the front part then it will be hidden nicely inside after you put it all together. Stitch around the hat and then tie it off on the back.

4. Add a scarf. Arrange a piece of ribbon around your snowman's neck, leaving some extra room so that it will still fit after you stuff your snowman. You could tie it, but it might look better if you just loop it around and then sew it together. Don't sew it to your felt though, we want to remove the scarf when we stitch the snowman together. By the way, isn't this American Crafts ribbon perfect? I love that it's gathered - plus it hides my stitch well because I just sewed right over the existing white thread!

5. Add a nose. A carrot nose, of course. I just stitched along the wide end so that the small end could poke out.

6. Add Buttons. A snowman is never fully dressed without buttons.

7. Add arms. We just rooted around for some twigs in the backyard, but you could use wooden skewers if you live in a land with no twigs. Like Death Valley. Or the Sahara. Use a hot glue gun to attach them to the back of the front piece.

8. Close up shop. Now that you're done with the front of the snowman, you can add the back. Before you sew the pieces together, pull out the glue gun again to attach a ribbon loop on the top to hang it with. Stitch all around, leaving an opening where you can add in the stuffing. You can use a pencil to push the stuffing around, filling up your snowman so he's nice and healthy looking. Snowmen are like Santa's - something's wrong if they're not a little on the chubby side. Once you're done with the stuffing, finish off your stitch.

9. Add mittens. If your twigs were kind of sad or you had to go for the skewer option, or if you just have lots of cute fabric scraps that you want to use, you can make your snowman even warmer with some cute mittens. A little edge of ric rac (also from American Crafts) along the top makes these mittens even more fun.

Don't forget to add your own handmade ornaments to our Flickr group!

Ornament Week: Tuesday

We're kicking off "Handmade Ornament Week" (Oh, haven't you heard about that? Probably because we just barely made it up. Oh it is Tuesday? Tuesday is the new Monday!) with a little stamped, stuffed ornament that would look cute on your tree, or hanging from a doorknob or cabinet.

Or, if you're like me, on a little potted plant from Ikea because it's the only green thing in your house because you haven't set up your tree yet because it's in your storage unit and that's an hour away and when on earth are you going to find time to get down there and good grief when you put it up it's just going to be a constant battle to keep two toddlers from knocking it over seventeen times a day so is it really worth it?? Where is my holiday spirit? But I digress.

ANYWAY, you'll need the following items:
  • A rubber stamp with a holiday image
  • Craft/fabric ink, made for stamping on fabric (in a pinch, StazOn -- or any ink, really -- will probably work, especially since this won't be getting washed)
  • Fabric
  • Poly-fill
  • Ribbon or cord
  • Floss

Stamp is Stampin' Up! (Winter Post set). Ribbon is unknown.

1. Stamp it. Ink the stamp really well (wipe off the edges if you need to) and press it down firmly on your fabric for about 20 seconds. A tight weave will give you the clearest image. I used plain muslin, but a really subtle pattern would look cool.

2. Heat set it. You can use an iron or an embossing gun. Or a straightener! (I found this to be handy because you need to use dry heat and this way I didn't have to mess w/ the steam from my iron.) I placed another piece of muslin (the back of the ornament) over the stamped side to protect it.

3. Sew the ribbon. Fold it in half and sandwich it between the two pieces of fabric with the ends at the top. Sew back and forth a couple times to get it very secure. You can skip this step and catch the ribbon as you sew around, but this way is a little more accident proof... right up my alley, in other words.

What it looks like from the other side.

4. Sew around your image. Easy breezy. Bunch up the ribbon inside and make sure not to catch it as you sew. Leave a spot to turn the ornament right side out, and reinforce your stitching at the starting and ending points, or it will open up as you turn.

5. Trim the edges.

6. Turn right side out. Stuff. Whip stitch the opening closed. I felt like it needed something more, so I blanket-stitched around the edge with some cranberry-colored floss. Maybe it was too much? I can't decide.

Think about all the stamps you have. Isn't this a fun way to use them? I love it! Here are some other ideas for stamped ornaments:
  • Stamp a name or a monogram
  • Add some color by embroidering details (like a scarf) with floss or narrow ribbon
  • Do a bunch of snowflakes in non-traditional holiday colors: hot pink, light blue, and bright green
Show us your handmade ornaments! Upload them to our Flickr group. We'd love to see the lovely things everyone is making for their trees this year.

COMING TOMORROW: Felt snowmen!