Monday, July 29, 2013

Beautiful Burlap Wreath

Burlap seems to be everywhere. Due to its durability, it is a popular fabric option for rugs, bags, and lately, wreaths. I've been excited to see a little bit of fabric in my local Michaels recently (see some of that excitement on my Chic Decorative Trays post.) I found they were carrying some cute burlap and decided it would be perfect to use in making this wreath. Here is what I needed:

~ Foam Wreath ~
~ Burlap ~
~ Ribbon (not pictured here) ~
~ Decorative Flowers ~
~ Glue Gun ~

I used two packages of the below burlap. As you can see, it's 3 yards and more of a trim. I probably could have used just one package but I was a bit generous when wrapping it around the foam and figured I could use the excess of the second package on a future project.

I grabbed my trusty glue gun and put a line of glue on the inside of the burlap.

Next I positioned it on the foam to begin wrapping it around.

I slowly wrapped the burlap around the foam wreath.

Here is how it looked once completely covered in the burlap.

I already liked how it looked but decided I wanted to cover up the raw edges. Since I had previously picked out the flowers I would be using, I found a ribbon that matched one of them.

The color of this ribbon was perfect but because I felt it was too wide, I cut it in half lengthwise. 

Next I dabbed some hot glue on one end.

I used a few long pieces so I would not have to stop and keep cutting ribbon. I then wrapped the ribbon along all the raw edges, dabbing a bit of hot glue as I went to keep it secure.

This is how the wreath looked once I was done attaching the ribbon.

The criss cross in the top left is where I started so there was bound to be a bit of overlap. Never fear, this is where I can cover this up with the flowers.

I'm not a big flower person. I enjoy receiving them and smelling them but about the only time I would use them in crafts is on a wreath.  What you choose for your flowers (and how much you use) is a matter of personal preference.

I happen to like the below colors together.

With my glue gun still blazing, I popped the stems off these silk flowers and strategically placed them on my wreath (by strategic, I mean I covered up my initial ribbon criss cross situation).

Finished product:

Now I need to squelch my compulsion to make a wreath for every month....

~ B

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Fasten a Felt Flower to a Pillow

Back when I first joined Pinterest (and I barely remember life before it), I saw a version of this pinned on there. I went back to  get the proper link but it is now broken.  My version is pretty different but I still like to give credit for inspiration so I did a little sleuthing, and although Classy Clutter's blog link seems broken, or down momentarily, I did find them on Facebook. Check out their page there and hopefully they'll get their site back up soon.

Anywho, the reason I love this project so much is because it's an easy and cheap way to update a throw pillow. And before you judge, YES I jumped on the Chevron pattern train. I normally resist such things but I have to admit, I do love it. So here we go:

Now, if you were any kind of Simple DIY Home friend, you would already know how to make a throw pillow. In case you are new, or simply forgot, here is the link for that tutorial

Moving on.

Here is what I needed to add my felt flower to the pillow:

~ Stencil with various sizes of ovals (or circles, if you prefer). ~

~ Felt. I bought 4 sheets at Michaels for 29 cents each. ~

~ Freezer paper. This helps to keep the ovals smooth when cut from the felt. ~

~ Scissors & and an iron. ~

I first traced my ovals onto the plain, NON-SHINY side of a piece of freezer paper.

I normally don't cut a set amount of ovals, I just eyeball it as I go, often laying the ovals on the pillow (before gluing) to get an idea. For this particular felt flower I used the following amounts:

13 - Large Ovals
20 - Medium Ovals
7 - Small Ovals
5 - Extra Small Ovals
6 - Small circles (center of flower)

I put the freezer paper with the stenciled ovals on top of the pieces of felt. Since I stenciled the ovals onto the plain side of the freezer paper, the shiny side of the freezer paper is what is in contact with the felt.

I then ran the iron over the freezer paper a few times.

Once I felt the freezer paper was stuck to the felt I stopped and began cutting out the ovals. The heat from the iron helps seal the two together and makes the cutting of the felt smoother.

I cut each oval in half and peeled the freezer paper off.

Now that my felt petals were ready, I got out my glue gun and added a line of glue to the flat section of each oval.

Where you put your first felt petal is a personal preference. I prefer the flower in the center of the pillow but putting a smaller flower in one of the top corners would look pretty cute.

The first row had all large ovals. The second and third were medium, then small ovals. I just kept layering. One note: Hot glue dries quickly so I had to commit to where I wanted my petal to go. Repositioning is tough and messy. I had my next few petals laid out so I could decipher how I wanted it to look before I got to them.

I kept going until I got closer to the center.

Once at the center, I began to make my circles for the center petals of the flower. I decided I wanted a smaller circle than the can I put in the initial supply picture I posted above, so I used the top to a vitamin bottle. I stenciled, ironed, and cut to make six circles.

I then folded each circle in half.

Then folded each in half again.

I put some hot glue in the middle of those top pieces you see in the photo to keep it together.

I made six of the above center petals and began to add them to the flower.

Note: After I hot glued the first center petal to the flower, I decided to cover up the little section of chevron that was showing. I just glued some extra petals flat to the center.

Here's the final product:

Super easy and a lot cheaper than buying a new throw pillow.

~ B

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

DIY Personalized Mugs!

Sharpie + random plain mug = easy personalization. This project is so easy I almost feel guilty posting it. Almost. There are several references on Pinterest but I have to give credit to this crafty lady at DIYopolis. She went through a lot of trial and error to provide some helpful tips.

I started with this random cobolt blue mug I found in my cupboard.

Who doesn't have a random mug lying around? This mug is nothing fancy, in fact, the less fancy (think Walmart or $1 store), the better. The marker will take best to a ceramic mug without too much glaze to fight with.

Make sure your mug is clean! Not just washed but wiped down with rubbing alcohol and dry.

I've noticed recently that I hardly use cursive anymore, so I'm trying to get better about that. I decided to write one of my favorite quotes on the mug.

Once done writing, I turned my oven to 425, placed my mug on a cookie sheet, and baked for 30 minutes.

Once I realized how easy it was, I kept going with other random mugs.

The orange one is my happy mug that I drink my tea from (when I'm trying to be good about not drinking as much coffee).

The back has our anniversary date and a line that is inscribed in our wedding bands. Clearly I was in a sentimental mood today.

I am so impressed with myself that I stopped at 3.

I tend to hand wash my mugs as it's usually the only thing in/near the sink and it takes 20 seconds (see my Decorative Dish Soap post to see my craziness regarding dishes left in the sink). Although the high temperature and low glaze, helped the mugs pass the initial dishwasher test, after several washes the writing did begin to come off. It really depends on your mug. If the mug you create has sentimental value I would hand wash, it only takes a minute.

You can draw pictures, write inspirational quotes, the possibilities are endless.

This is an easy and fun project you can do to motivate yourself and inspire your kids to be creative as well. 

~ B

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Chic Decorative Trays

I have referenced Michaels Stores several times on this blog. They have almost everything I need when it comes to craft projects. I have always wished they would carry fabric. I understand why they don't, they're not a Joann's Fabric kind of craft store, but it would make my life so much simpler if they did. With all that said, maybe Michaels is finally headed in that direction! Granted, the great fabric print I found was made of canvas, but I will take what I can get. They also had a great Chevron pattern in canvas and a fun Fleur de Lis in burlap. I loved the antique key pattern I found and stuck with that.

This project is incredibly simple and I found it on one of their "Take me I'm free" craft project idea cards they have in the store. Here is all I needed:

~ Fabric of your choice ~
~ Picture frame (Above is 11 x 17) ~
~ Grosgrain ribbon (2 pieces about 43 " long) ~
~ Scissors ~

First I cut my fabric:

Since my frame was 11 x 17, I added an inch to each figure and ended up with a cut piece of 12 x 18 inches.

Next I cut my ribbon.

You can use any color/pattern ribbon you desire, since my fabric was a print I just wanted a solid colored 1 inch black ribbon to match.

My next step was to remove the backing and paper from the frame and then add the fabric* (face down).

*Make sure fabric is ironed and wrinkle free.

I then placed the cut ribbon down the center of the back of my fabric. I left about an inch between them since they would be tied at each end.

The length cut for the ribbon is a personal preference. I cut the length suggested on the craft sheet (45 in.) and found it to be a bit too long for my handles. However, it is better to have the ribbon too long and able to be trimmed than too short and unable to create decent handles with it.

Next I replaced the backing.

And tied my ends:

Since my tray is most likely going to just stay put, I tied my ends into bows, however, they can be knotted as well. I did carry a couple glasses and a martini shaker on my tray and it felt sturdy. Since the ribbon runs underneath the entire backing, the tray is as sturdy as how strong/sturdy the latches are that are keeping your backing on (mine felt pretty strong). Keep this in mind if you are tempted to use a frame with cheap/flimsy backing latches.

How cute is this?

I'm using this tray on our bar to hold glasses, barware, etc.

Having a tray on a bar top, nightstand, or coffee table keeps the area from becoming cluttered and also helps everything in a central location.

Since my 11 x 17 inch frame came as a 2 pack, I decided to use the other frame as a tray for my bureau in our bedroom. 

I love that even though I throw my jewelry on the bureau it somehow looks organized when it's on this tray.

I'd like to point out here how difficult it is to take a picture with a mirror involved and not capture yourself in it. 

I would have bought these trays if I saw them in a store so the fact that I only needed a few simple items, and could personalize it by choosing my favorite fabrics, made me so happy.   

~ B