Thursday, September 24, 2015
Looking for some easy Halloween or fall decorating projects? Stacked pumpkin topiaries are easy to make and provide festive color and just the right amount of autumn cheer.
I made a few of these stacked pumpkin decorations last weekend to decorate my porch and my mantle, and to use as a table centerpiece.
They're a lot of fun and easy to make. Check out my full tutorial on my Hubpages!
Sunday, September 20, 2015
A few people have asked how I folded my linen napkin in the photos for my Scrap Fabric Leaves and Napkin Ring tutorial, so I decided to post some step-by-step photos here. I like this folding method because it's easy and gives a nice casual look, but still feels special. You could create a more formal look by pressing each fold in place.
Step 1: Start with freshly washed and pressed napkins. If your napkins are made of a light weight fabric, you may also want to give them a light starch. My napkins are mid-weight, so I did not starch them before folding. (They look creased in these photos, because I was unfolding my fancy fold).
Step 2: Place your pressed napkin face down on your folding surface with one of your four corners pointed toward the 12 o'clock position. Then take your bottom corner and fold it up toward your top corner but place it about an inch to an inch and a half below your top corner (see photo above). You may want to press the fold you just created. I didn't so that my folded napkin had a more casual look.
Step 3: Fold the bottom section up so that you create a 2 to 3 inch band at the bottom (see photo above). Again, you may choose to iron this fold.
Step 4: Now turn your napkin over so that the right side is facing up (see photo above).
Step 5: Take the right side of your long bottom band and fold it toward the left side. Place it so it is about 1 inch short of meeting the left edge (see photo above).
Step 6: Continue to fold your napkin toward the left side, creating a center section of your napkin that is about 3 inches wide and an even point at the top of your napkin (see photo).
Step 7: Continue to fold your napkin to the left.
Step 8: Fold the last remaining tab of your napkin over.
Step 9: Fold in half lengthwise to slip through a napkin ring if you choose and fan out the top of your napkin to show off your interesting folds.
Step 10: Then check out my tutorial on how to create your own fall-inspired napkin rings!
Sunday, September 13, 2015
I've always loved Matryoshka dolls (sometimes known as Russian nesting dolls). I also love using recycled items in my craft projects. So I couldn't resist using a pull tab from a recycled can to create a polymer clay Matryoshka-inspired doll to use as a jewelry charm.
on my Hubpages.
Once you have a few dolls made, you can use them to make a necklace, charm bracelet, brooch or key chain. Check out more photos and directions here.
Monday, September 7, 2015
So I'm super excited to share this clay bird necklace I just completed. I've been thinking about and planning for this necklace project for a while and I'm really happy with how this finished necklace came out.
I love the necklaces on ElvaFields.com and her use of unexpected accents in her jewelry to make each piece special and unique. I have a couple of her necklaces and really love them, but I think a lot of her pieces are a little too dressy for my definitely-not-dressy lifestyle. So I got to thinking about how I could make my own unique-but-maybe-more-casual version.
First I bought a bunch of beads and jewelry findings at my craft store. Then I found this bird-shaped bezel on etsy.
I needed a bezel that had connectors on the top and the bottom so I could use it for a necklace, and I needed two connection points on each side so I could make my necklace in a double-stranded design. This bird bezel was perfect.
Next step was to string my beads and connect them to my necklace clasp and my bird connector. I mixed in a few other beads among the ones I had bought to add a little more color and interest. I didn't want all my beads to match. Then I started thinking about how I wanted to fill the bezel on my bird connector.
My original plan was to fill the bezel with a grouping of vintage buttons. But when I laid out a few designs, it seemed a little too busy for my necklace. So I went to Plan B. I filled the bird bezel with Sculpey polymer clay. Then I took a couple of my favorite vintage buttons and used them as stamps to create a design on my bird shape. When I was happy with the way it looked, I *very carefully* lifted my clay design out of the bezel and baked it according the the clay directions. (Had I known I was going to use polymer clay to decorate my bezel from the get-go, I would have done this part first, before putting my necklace together, and baked the polymer piece in my actually bezel before stringing and connecting my beads).
After my clay bird had cooled, I carefully placed it back into my bezel and glued it in place. Again, this would have all been a little easier had I done the clay bit first, but it all worked out fine. And I really enjoy wearing my finished necklace.
Tuesday, September 1, 2015
As we turn the calendar to September, I can't help thinking about cooler temperatures and Fall colors. Autumn is definitely my favorite time of the year, and I particularly enjoy decorating my home for the Fall season.
My first decorating project is these easy-to-sew scrap fabric leaves. These leaves are fun to make and decorate using whatever fabric and notions you have on hand. I've posted the full tutorial on my Hubpages.
Once you have a small bunch of leaves made, there's many ways to use these scrap fabric leaves to make a table centerpiece or a smaller decoration for your home. I've included a number of ideas in my tutorial on Hubpages.
And to complete your Autumn-inspired table, I've included directions on using this same tutorial to make scrap fabric napkin rings. Here, I've decorated my ring with a cute little acorn, but you can use a number of leaf or other shapes as decoration. Check it out :)