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Saturday, July 30, 2011

Easy Ruffle Gift Bags

I'm heading out of town today to attend a friend's bachelorette party. When trying to find gift bags for the occasion last night at Target I was disgusted (like I am every time) at the prices for the pretty gift bags and wrapping materials. When I saw a 10 pack of the ones below for $5, I knew I could just figure something out from my stash at home to make them pretty instead of paying $3.99 for one!

I was originally going to stencil or stamp, but I couldn't find those supplies and since I've got fabric and fabric scraps out the wazoo, ruffles were the obvious solution.
And here's another. 
Since this was a last minute project (let's be honest, which of my projects aren't?) and I'm leaving in a couple hours I didn't have time to do a tutorial. So you'll get that tomorrow night or Monday. Keep a look out. I might even throw some different styles into the mix. 

See you soon!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Doily Art in Progress

Well I wish I could hole up in the craft room and work on this all day, but I'm about to drive 5 hours to a teaching conference. It'll be helpful I'm sure, but I'm kinda dreading the drive. Too bad it's in Michigan and not Hawaii. I might stick that in the suggestions box on my way out.

So I'm loving where this project is going, I think, but it still needs something. 
I'm thinking ruffles and lace? What do you think? Excited to finish it on Friday when I get home. Enjoy the rest of your week! Thanks for reading! 

Saturday, July 23, 2011

The Unfinished Summer

 Wow. It has been way too long since I've posted. I've missed you!! I think I've been reluctant to post due to not finishing any projects I've started in several weeks. And, well, I've kinda just been living and enjoying this summer for what is left of it... So just to catch you up to speed with the happenings of me and my summer of unfinished profjects...

That lovely vintage sheet up there was being turned into a dress. It still could be but I'm done with it for a little bit. After seeing this post on making your own pattern I felt compelled to just try making my own pattern and give a go at recreating a dress that I love out of that fun sheet. Being a beginner at sewing, I screwed it up and fixed it several times, but it's still not quite right so the dress and I need a break from each other.  
 Remember my last post about trying mosaic art?  Yeah, I know it was forever ago, and yet I'm still in the same place I was. My pieces of glass and ceramics have been broken and sorted, but there they sit on my porch with the pots that haven't been touched, the flowers that haven't been planted, and still more dishes that haven't even been broken yet. I got to this point and kinda got restless and moved on to other projects... By the time I finish it, summer will be over. and my flowers will be dead. Oops.
 The past few days I've been working on this doily art-which I also haven't finished either, of course. 
Along with the doily art I've been working on this framed card art. And you guessed it -  it's not finished either. LOVE Curly Girl cards, art and accessories! Any cards I've been given or have bought, I like to turn into something I can keep because they're so pretty and unique and have the sweetest sayings. The framed card art and doily art will go in our guest bathroom when finished. Eventually....

The reason I haven't finished any projects is because it's summer, and in the summer there are just so many other things that need to be done...

like learning about Antarctica and building igloos and penguins with my summer school class...
Like catching up on DVR (I heart So You Think You Can DANCE, dance dance dance! HGTV Design Star, Project Runway SOOOOOON, and I embarrassingly admit, The Bachelorette.)...
Like playing with this cute little cuddle dog and her new toy, Mr. Foxie....
Like shopping in little hometown boutique stores and almost buying Kentucky Blue skinny jeans....
Like running in a (surprise) all-terrain 5K with Mr. Lovie and surviving, while still beating my time from the last 5K! 
 And like going out of town to visit friends and family and play with their new puppies. 

So even though I haven't finished anything, I've been busy. With fun things. What have you been up to this summer?! Have you had trouble finishing your projects like I have? 

I will finish something soon and share. Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Thinking About Trying Something New

I'm thinking since it's summer (and summer = fun times), I will try something new. Trying new things is fun. In fact, I think I am so addicted to trying new things when it comes to crafting that I rarely truly perfect something. It's always so much more fun to create something new. So really, when you see stuff on my blog, chances are it's the first time I've ever attempted that kind of thing. If I do something twice, I either really really love it or it's a variation of something I've done before so it still feels new. Anyone else do this? 

So I'm sure my first picture gave you a hint, but the new thing I'm trying is: Mosaic art.  
The idea really came because I already have these lovelies:

Yeah. Hideous, I know. They were given to me once by a family member who knew I needed kitchen supplies and didn't want them anymore. I am very grateful for the donation and I even used them every now and then, but that eagle is just too much. I just knew those plates would be much prettier in little pieces.

Another reason I thought I might try mosaics is to add some excitement to my porch. 
Since I currently live in an apartment, the only way I can garden is through pots. I'm cheap so I don't buy the super cute fancy pots and instead plant mostly in terra cotta pots. The beauty of the flowers usually make up for the lack of excitement from their containers, but more color is always better, right?

Here are some beautiful mosaics I've found while searching for inspiration. No, I don't expect mine to turn out anywhere close to being as awesome as the following, but I can dream, right? 
MOSAIC DRESS!!!! Yes, please. 
Medium and Large Flower Pots
This is probably my fave.

I found some more dishes while thrifting so I'd be able to add more color.
Now, do I really know how to do mosaics? No, of course not. But I watched a video series from youtube on what materials to use, how to get started, and the process... and I'm feeling ready to try it.

If you need me, I'll be breaking stuff. 

 Told you they'd be prettier. Yesssss.

This project isn't meant to be professional, just fun. Have any of you tried mosaic art? I'd appreciate any friendly advice if you have!
Stay tuned for an update! 

Sunday, July 10, 2011

T-shirt Refashion: Fancy Ruffle Tee

Yay! My first (successful) t-shirt refashion! It's kinda hard to believe that's actually true when I have probably a billion t-shirt refashion ideas bookmarked. I've somehow not done any of them yet. Too many crafts-not enough time. Story of my life.  

Hope you enjoy reading about my version!
I got my inspiration from this cascading ruffle on this dress  done on Grosgrain's Frock by Friday Series
I wanted the ruffle to start up on the shoulder and cascade down. I did make it like that, but then it didn't quite work out. Read on to see what I did instead and to make one yourself!

Materials needed:
1 t-shirt- I got mine on Target special ($8 or $9?)
1/4 yd of cotton, 1/4 yd of gray tulle, 1/4 yd of lace
Sewing essentials
Step 1: Make ruffle(s)
I added the (s) because my original plan was to make only one ruffle, but I ended up needing a couple more. Make what you need. You'll see what I mean. 

To make the large cascading ruffle: Cut a 4.5inx28in strip of gray cotton, a 4 in. strip of tulle, and a 3 in. strip of lace. Fold all these in half and press each one separately. Set aside lace and tulle strips. Create a tube out of the gray strip. (To see how to make a tube go to Step 4 of my tutorial and use the directions on how to make a tube there). 

Once the tube is created, zig zag the edge of the tube that is opposite the seam. This part is optional, but it adds nice texture.
 Take the folded tulle strip and put it around the gray strip with the seam nestled inside the fold of the tulle. Pin as you go being sure the gray is flush against the tulle.
Do the same with the lace. 
Using a 1/8 seam allowance, topstitch to hold the layers together, removing pins as you go. Then stitch again to ruffle the strip, but with a 1/2 in. seam allowance and change the setting on your machine for ruffling (set tension as high as it will go and stitch length as long as it will go.)
Step 2: Pin ruffle to shirt and sew.
Pin the ruffle wrong side down to the top of the shoulder.  
Sew across the top 
and press down. 
Create a zig zag pattern by folding ruffle on top of it self each time it is turned. Pin so that the ruffle looks as if it is cascading.
 Sew ruffle down. 
 When you come to a spot where the ruffle is folded on itself, keep the needle down in the fabric and rotate the shirt and sew the ruffle down. 
 Here it is with only one ruffle. It looks okay off, but when I put it on, it was totally weird looking.
The ruffle at the top was not ruffly enough and the other parts of it looked weird. 
Plus I sewed part of the collar to the ruffle on accident and had to pick it out thus creating a hole. Awesome. I almost tossed this shirt in the "to be turned into something else pile". But then I thought, "More ruffles is always better, right?" and made a couple more.
If yours looks weird, too, create 1 long thin ruffle that will start at the top of the shoulder and then all the way down the collar (to cover up that hole) and anther tiny one (not shown in the picture above) to go on top of that piece at the top that wasn't ruffled enough. Just added ruffles in the empty spaces or in the spots that looked strange. To make the thin ruffles adjust the measurements of your strips. The length should always be almost twice the length of where you want your ruffle to go. The gray strip should be 3  in. wide, the tulle 3 1/4 in. wide, and the lace 2.5 in. wide. 

Step 3: Look cute. Yeah. 
Turns out, I like the final product better than my original vision. 

Hope you enjoyed the tutorial. 
Also check out how to make the lace and pearl earrings I'm wearing here
Send me a pic if you create your own Fancy Ruffle Tee! 
Or add it to my flickr page.

Linking to these parties.
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