Thursday, September 30, 2010

Body Pillow Redo

Alright, so I had this horrible ugly body pillow. I bought it last time I was pregnant just for comfort. It was cheap, and it was ugly. I had to break it out again for this pregnancy, so I decided to give it a little makeover.
It just so happens that I was in Joann's a few weeks ago, digging through the remnants bin, and found this gorgeous cut of fabric, almost the identical color of my bed spread. Best yet, it was a 1 yard cut, and it was only $3! I bought it, thinking I'd find SOMETHING to use it for, how can I pass that up? I got it home, only to find that it was slightly too small for my body pillow. It was long enough, but just barely not wide enough to wrap around the width of the pillow. So I improvised. I got a cut of black fabric, and added strips to both sides of the cut of fabric. You can't really see it too well in the picture, but it's there! Then I sewed up a cute little ruffle and some fabric flowers, and viola! It turned out perfect. There were a few hurdles, and I had to adjust the size of it a couple times, but all in all, I'm SO happy with how it turned out. Even with the revisions, it only took about an hour and a half to sew up. I hope I inspired some of you to get creative and make something new!

Autumn Wreath

This somehow got forgotten when I was uploading pictures of my other fall decorations. And it was one of my favorites! 
I got everything I needed from the DOLLAR STORE! (except the burlap).
I used a medium sized wooden wreath and wrapped strips of burlap around it. Then I glued fake wheat and two different color leaves to it. I loooove the look of the wheat, I'd never seen it done before, but was struck by inspiration when I saw it in the dollar store! The sunflowers I just had laying around, but I also saw some at the dollar store. Total, it cost me $4! How awesome is that. 

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Autumn decorations

This past week, I've been crackin' on the autumn decorations! I've seen so many good ideas out there, I just couldn't help myself! And best yet, most of these were FREE. Or cheap. I had all the things I needed right here.
I made these adorable pumpkin cats, I saw them here. 
Aren't they cute? I got them all put together, and decided they needed a little something more... So I made collars for them. Perfect! I just took a little bit of ribbon, wrapped it around the neck, and secured it with a pin. I didn't hollow out the heads and put candles in though, I just used scrapbook paper for the eyes. For the tails I used stems (I couldn't find any good gourds).

And I made these adorable pumpkins from toilet paper and burlap! 
In order to get them to be different sizes, I wrapped one TP roll with extra stuffing (uuuhh, an old shirt). I saw the idea here.

I got the idea for this hoop art here. And here's where she has the tutorial on how to make them.
I love it! I kept seeing these online on other blogs, and happened to come across some hoops at a thrift store, so I snatched them up! I'd love to do more, but I don't know where I'd find more of these hoops. The ones I saw in the store were way more expensive than what I expected to see. Maybe I'll just wait until Christmas and reuse this one to look like an ornament!

My next project is decorating some pumpkins with ribbon! I've seen all sorts of cute ideas, I can't wait to get started. I'll post pictures when I get around to making them!

Zebra Mod Podge Wall Letter

This is the newest edition to Emma's pink and zebra room! I love love LOVE the way it turned out! I got a plain wooden letter from Hobby Lobby for $1.99. Awesome price. I painted the edges of the letter with my black acrylic paint. Once that was dry, I traced my letter on the back of a piece of zebra scrapbook paper and cut it out. I covered the front of the "E" with Mod Podge and pasted the paper on it. I used sand paper to clean up the edges a little. Then once it was dry, I did a top coat. Add some ribbon to the back, and it's done! Easy peasy! 
For more tips on using Mod Podge, see my post here.

Zebra Mod Podge nightstand

I started out with this. It's a nightstand that we found that was completely unfinished. We'd been using it for a while, just like it was, but I decided to fix it up to match my daughter's room decor!
I gave it a quick coat of primer, and then added a couple coats of pink spray paint. The color turned out different than I expected, and I was a little unhappy with it. It doesn't look too bad other than that, though!
I didn't bother to cover the top with spray paint, I had other plans for it. MOD PODGE! That's right. I have this awesome zebra scrapbook paper, so I figured I'd do a zebra top!
I didn't have a single piece that was large enough for the entire top, so I had to kind of patchwork it. Not too shabby though, you can barely tell it was 4-5 different pieces of paper.
Next, I broke out the Mod Podge and a paint brush. Since I'm doing a large area, I used a large brush. Mod Podge tends to dry faster than you want it to when you're laying paper, and not fast enough when you're waiting for it to dry.
Doing it one section at a time, I slathered my table top with Mod Podge and layed down each piece.
You see that rock?! That's 100%.. fake. My fat preggo hands are too swollen, so I had to ditch my wedding band. Now it looks like I'm married to a millionaire. Yup, I got married to a millionaire for $8.88 at Walmart.
I found that I applied the Mod Podge just a little too thick, and it bubbled on me. :( I was able to salvage it though, and it didn't turn out too bad. This was before I'd done the top coat, too.
Make sure you let your Mod Podge dry COMPLETELY. Be patient. I've been a victim of Mod Podge impatience before. I nearly ruined a perfectly good picture frame because of my impatience. If you don't wait for it to dry completely between coats, it will bubble. So make sure it's dry! Then add another coat of the Mod Podge. It'll look kind of gross, but I promise, it'll dry clear. 
Since the handles of the drawers are showing, I decided to cover them with scrapbook paper, too. With this though, I painted the Mod Podge directly onto the paper, and pasted it on the handles. Once it was dry I did a top coat.
Here's the finished product!

Covered Clips

Alright, here's the promised clip tutorial! I made this adorable clips to go with baby A's tutu for her birthday. 
What you'll need:
Hot glue gun (preferably low temp, the high temp one I had leaked constantly! It makes for neater projects with a low temp gun)
Single prong alligator clips (can be found in a lot of craft stores. Usually Hobby Lobby has them, Joannes doesn't always have them in).
Ribbon (grosgrain works well, I used whatever cute Halloween skull ribbon they had available)

You need to measure how much ribbon you'll need. I believe I used 4 1/2 inches for a partially covered clip, and 7 1/2 inches for a fully covered clip. Just wrap the ribbon along the clip where you'd glue it, then cut 2 strips the same length. 
Hit your ribbon ends with the lighter. Just a quick run through the flame should seal the ends.
Put a small drop of glue on the alligator clip like shown in the picture.
Stick your ribbon to the clip.
Add another strip of glue to the ribbon, a little over an inch. I like to do small segments at a time, that way your glue is still really hot and will dry flat. If your glue cools too much, it'll stick without a problem, but it'll dry really thick and your ribbon won't lay flat.
Stick that portion of the ribbon to the clip, and then do the last little part.

For the bow, measure your ribbon. It really depends on how large you want your bow as to how long the ribbon should be. Make sure you cut two pieces of ribbon the same length, you don't want your bows to be different sizes!
Glue your ribbon ends together to make a circle. Glue it down together in the middle to make a figure 8.
Glue your figure 8 to the covered clip. Take a second piece of ribbon, about 1 1/2 -2 centimeters long, and glue that down sideways in the middle of the figure 8.
Wrap it around the inside of the clip and glue it in place.
If you want to add a no-slip grip, it's easy! I've seen people take the foam mats that you use for shelf liners and cut them to size. I like to use plain 'ol hot glue.
Put a strip of hot glue on your alligator clip, I usually just ooze it through the opening. Keep the clip open until it's dried, about a minute.
You're done!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Pocket Diaper Tutorial

What you'll need: 
An absorbent or wicking material (I used flannel)
Snaps or Velcro
Elastic ( 3/8 inch is usually good)
Diaper pattern
Sewing machine, thread, scissors

To get started, cut out your materials. Since I'm showing you how to do a pocket diaper with a top stitch, you'll need to leave a seam allowance for this one! I did one layer of PUL, a layer of flannel, and 2 tabs made out of the same flannel pattern. 
Start by sewing on your tabs. Tuck the edge under and hem it, if you have tags, get them in there too! Sew around the entire edge of the tag and along the edge of your tab. 
Take your flannel and fold down the back edge. I folded mine over twice to avoid any kind of fraying. Give it a quick hem. As you can see from the pictures, I only hemmed it in the middle. The rest of it will be sewed into the tabs, so there's really no reason to hem this part.
Whether you're applying snaps or velcro, you'll need to do this part BEFORE you sew. Don't worry about the snaps/velcro on the tabs, just what's in the front. Mark where your snaps need to be, and apply them. Since this is a pocket diaper, the insert needs to go between the layers, so you can't have your snaps gluing those layers together!
Now, time to sew it up! Place your layers together, right side in. The shiny side of the PUL will be on the outside, along with the non-printed side of the flannel. Place your PUL facing down. I mentioned in my FOE diaper tutorial some good tips about working with PUL. Make sure you read them!
Start sewing where your hem ends on your flannel. This will be where the pocket opening begins. It's also right next to where the tab begins. While you're sewing, leave enough room so that your stitch won't come undone when you turn it back right-side-out. Flannel will fray just a little bit, so leave enough room! 
If this is one of your first diapers you're sewing, it might be a good idea to mark out where your elastic begins and ends. I didn't do it with this diaper, and ended up starting my elastic about in inch late! I can still easily fix it because of the way I sewed it. 
For this diaper, I chose to sew my leg elastic right into the seam. You can also encase your elastic, which is how we'll do it in the back. Measure how much elastic you'll need by stretching it along the leg opening. Cut two pieces the same size for both legs. You'll need to use a zig zag stitch for the elastic. When you get to where your elastic begins, sew a couple zig zag stitches to secure it. Stretch your elastic as far as you want it stretched (I stretch mine as far as it goes), and start stitching! When you get to the end of the elastic, switch back to your straight stitch. 
Finish sewing the rest, get the other leg opening sewed up with elastic, and finish off the tabs. Don't forget to NOT sew up the back opening! This is your pocket opening, and will be used to get the insert into the diaper. Turn your diaper right-side-out and make sure you don't have any gaps in your stitches. There were a few spots that I had sewed too close to the edge, and when I turned it back out, the came undone. Just re-enforce it with another stitch on the inside of the diaper, and you should be good go to!
For the back elastic, measure your elastic by stretching it along the back opening. Fold over the PUL and place the elastic inside the opening. Make sure the PUL is folded over far enough that you can sew a little pocket for the elastic without accidentally stitching the elastic in. Secure your elastic by stitching back and forth the end of the elastic. Again, the elastic will fray also, so make sure you leave enough room for this. It's difficult to fix a problem like that once the diaper is sewed together. Try tugging on the elastic a couple times to make sure it's secure. Stretch it along the back, and secure it at the other end of the pocket opening. Now do a straight stitch to encase the elastic into it's own little pocket. 
Finish it off with a top stitch. I only did the top stitch along the edges of the diaper, I chose not to case in the elastic. I kind of like the look if gives this way.
Now it's time to add your last snaps! Add them to your tabs, and you're done!
As you can see in the pictures, I didn't make the leg elastic long enough. It should have been stretched almost all the way to the tabs, but I wasn't paying enough attention. Because of the way that I sewed them, I can just go back and add a little more elastic to the legs and sew it right in. if I'd done it in a casing, it would be a lot harder to fix!
If you found this tutorial helpful, make sure you check out my FOE Diaper Cover Tutorial!