Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Vintage Book Page Garland

This is probably one of the easiest crafts you’ll ever make! It just takes a little time to prep and string the items, but other than that no creative genius is necessary.

What you’ll need:
100 vintage book pages
50 white coffee filters
50 natural coffee filters
2 yards dark brown ribbon
2 yards light brown ribbon
½ yard cream tulle
½ yard light brown tulle
Tapestry needle
1 yard natural postal string or crochet thread

If you would like to substitute any of the above items with items you already have in your craft stash, feel free. The more eclectic, the better!

  1. You’ll start off by prepping all of your materials. Take your book pages and fold them into quarters. That just means fold them in half and then fold them in half again. It looks best if they are not folded perfectly
  2. Crumple a coffee filter into a ball to give it some texture. Flatten it out slightly, fold in half, then fold again. I like to fold it one more time when I’m stringing the filters onto the garland. Repeat with all of the coffee filters.
  3.  For the ribbon, all you need to do is cut it into strips with the ends at an angle. Each piece should be 4” – 5” long.
  4. With the tulle, you will want to end up with 2” – 3” pieces. Really it doesn’t matter if some pieces are bigger than others. I like to fold my tulle several times in the same direction and cut long strips. Then I cut those strips into squares.
  5.  Thread the needle with the same string and knot the end, leaving about 8" of string. Starting with a book page, thread it on. Then a white coffee filter and the dark brown ribbon, followed by the cream tulle. When you put on the ribbon, fold it in half and thread through toward the ends. This way, the loop part will be bigger. Add another book page, then a natural coffee filter, a light brown ribbon and the brown tulle. Repeat until you have used up all of your materials.

     When I hung mine, I just tied the loose ends of the string to some ribbons I had on a frame. You can also tie it to the back of a chair or across a window or mantle.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Ruffled Kitchen Towel

My family just made a big move from Virginia to Utah. Back to what I know and where I grew up. It’s definitely refreshing. But moving to a new home can be stressful; boxes to unpack, a yard to care for (a totally new concept for us), an unfamiliar neighborhood to come to know. It takes awhile to get into your normal groove and feel comfortable. And let’s be honest – I am hoping that in two years I’ll all of my pictures hung on the wall!

But one thing is for sure--clearing out all of your stuff and starting anew allows you to look at things from a different perspective and make a few changes by way of d├ęcor. Adding a pop of color here and there can go a long way in brightening up your room. And why not create a pop of color that’s not only attractive to look at but also has a function? Here we go with the Ruffled Kitchen Towel.

And as a side note, not all of my articles are going to involve sewing or any other complicated skills. I’m more of a simplified glue gun type of girl. I wanted to keep these “Small and Simple” tutorials just as they suggest – small and simple.

What you’ll need:
White kitchen towel
6 fabric strips -  3” x 2x width of towel
Sewing machine with white thread
Needle ­­­­­­­­­

       1.  You’ll want to start off by clean finishing all of the edges of your fabric strips. If you have a serger, go ahead and use that for this step. I don’t have a serger, so I just did a zig zag stitch as close to the edge of the fabric as I could make it.

2   2. Once you have done the clean finish on all of the edges, go ahead and fold over one of the long sides of each strip and stitch a straight stitch. This will be the bottom edge of the ruffle and will show, so you want it to look nicely finished. You can stitch the short sides of each strip as well.
3   3. Now for the ruffles! There are lots of different ways to create a ruffle. I recently discovered that you can just gather and sew the strip into a ruffle as you sew it onto the towel. So simple!

I like the look of the diagonal ruffle, so I just made sure to pin 4 pins to hold my fabric strip in place so I could sew the ruffle that way. Just work one ruffle at a time, overlapping the ruffles by about ¼”so you don’t see the towel underneath.

4    4.Once your ruffles are all sewn on, you’re ready to embellish. I had an extra large vintage button that happened to match some of my fabric. I just took the last ruffle and hand sewed it into a circle, then sewed the button on top.­­­­­