Thursday, December 25, 2008

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

It's Finished!

Oh, joy! This project has been on-again, off-again since May and I've finally given it to the recipients this past weekend. I also just finished it less than a week ago and couldn't wait to share.

I know that the girl in this pair loves blue and so do I, so finding fabric was very easy. In the beginning...

However, through trial and error, I found that I needed MORE blue fabric since I ran out. Fortunately, my trusty fabric store had a few of the patterns I already used still in stock. I made it work. You could never tell.

Thank you to everyone who inspired me to make this thing (example 1, example 2, example 3).
Thank you to all of those online tutorials and how-tos that gave me the courage to even try. Wow, this is starting to sound like an award-winning speech. So, on that note, I'll end with saying:

Stay on the path...

Friday, December 12, 2008

Favorite Friday - Etsy Pick

One thing I love about shopping for the holidays is searching online for great handmade gifts - mostly on I have been combing Etsy's vendors and wares for the perfect gifts for a lot of people and stumbled across this perfectly LOVELY shop:FreshlySkweezed.

Deb, who I am pretty sure is a glitter-lover and paperphile, runs this lovely shop and offers very cute, three-dimensional monogrammed notecards (among other printed items). She also seems like a very sweet gal, so check out her shop this weekend. If you order before December 15th, your items should arrive in time for Christmas!

Stay on the path...

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Felt Hair Barrettes - A Tutorial

Christmas is definitely upon us - only 15 days away! I, like most of you, have been way too busy with a pile of to-dos for this holiday. A scarflet to knit, a quilt to finish and MANY other items to bake, sew, knit, draw and stamp. Many apologies for not posting for almost a month!

I wanted to share with everyone a quick tutorial for a very fun and pretty stocking-stuffer: Felt Hair Barrettes. They are really very easy and very fun to make and since I love free guides and tutorials, I am posting this in the hopes that it might inspire.

Step 1: Supplies

There aren't very many supplies that you will need in order to make one of these barrettes - but it is very easy to build upon those supplies to create a wide variety of styles. The basics are: Felt squares (real wool or synthetic. I find that the synthetic goes through the punch machine easier), a glue gun, snap barrettes in varying sizes, decorative or plain buttons (1/2" or smaller), craft punch machine (I used a Sizzix - or you may cut our your decorations by hand), ribbon (5/8" width for the regular sized snaps and 3/8" width for the mini snaps), Fray Check, and a needle and thread.

Step 2: Cutting the Felt

If you have a punch machine, this makes cutting the shapes much easier and faster. But don't let that stop you! If you only need to make a few barrettes, just cut out the felt in simple shapes in varying sizes.

I used the Sizzix Sidekick machine with Cricut punches! I used the round flower cutouts in varying sizes in order to make the layers in my barrettes. Cut the felt down to the size of the punch (see picture) and run through the machine. Cut out enough sizes to make a few layers for the flower.

Step 3: Cutting the Ribbon

Okay, so now I have a nice assortment of flower shapes cut out and I want to choose a color scheme. I think I'm going to go with the pink and brown to match this pink and brown ribbon. I am going to use a mini-snap clip for this tutorial but will provide additional measurements for a regular snap clip as well.

Using the 3/8" wide ribbon (5/8" for the regular snap clip), cut approximately 3 " (approx. 4.5" for a regular snap clip) to cover your mini snap clip. Seal each end with Fray Check and set aside to dry.

Step 4: Assembling the Flower

While your ribbon sections are drying, heat up your glue gun and put together some layers of cut out felt to see how they look (this is important to do before you glue!). I am going to do a small brown flower on top of a larger pink flower. Just one dot of glue will hold, any more and the felt will be too saturated. I top off my flower with a little white silk flower, but you may also top yours off with a small button. If that is the case, sew the button on to the top (smallest) flower FIRST before gluing it to the larger flower.

Step 5: Assembling the Barrette

Okay, my flower is glued and ready (see it up there in the top left corner?) and I've set it aside to dry. Now, back to the ribbon we sealed with our Fray Check. It should be dry by now so take your glue gun and put a dot of glue on one end of the ribbon. Lay the top edge of the clip onto the glue, leaving about 1/4" of ribbon to fold over. Immediately fold over the tip of the ribbon onto the other side of the clip (see top clip already glued), using the additional glue from your initial dot to seal the sides. I only suggest using one dot of glue for each end so the barrette will not be oozing with glue out the side of the ribbon!

Now, on the end of your clip where the three holes are, place a small dot of glue and bring your ribbon along the top of the clip, pushing it into the glue and guiding the ribbon along to the underside, pushing it into the glue on the other side (your glue should have come through the three holes to give you adhesive on both sides). Please be sure to guide your ribbon into the curve of the clip before you guide it into the glue on the other end so that you will leave enough room for the clip to close once you've lined it with ribbon.

CAUTION: You do not want much glue on this end of the clip. If there is too much glue on the end of the clip where it snaps, the glue will act as a block to the clip and your barrette will not close or will not hold very well.

Finally, put a dot of glue about 1/8" away from the end and fold it over the bottom tip of the clip and seal the folded edges.

Okay, this is what your clip should look like. NOTE: there is no glue on the top middle or bottom middle portions. This allows the clip to close and open easily. Test your clip!

Step 6: Finishing

Glue your flower onto the back end of the barrette, leaving the two tips of the barrette open (see photo).

You are finished! Congratulations on your first felt hair barrette. Now go make some more!

Stay on the path.