Posts Tagged ‘handmade gifts’

In Print!

December 10th, 2012 by zoe No Comments

Here is my Make Recycled Necklaces project in print!

I was contacted by Family Fun Magazine this summer – and low and behold here is my little project in the December issue of the magazine. I have a lot to learn about working with magazines and such…. next time I need to try to get credited in print!

 

 

Make Hand Painted Tote Bags

October 22nd, 2012 by zoe 3 Comments

This quick project has big results! It would be the perfect craft project for a big girls birthday party.

Blank tote bags can be found very cheap at most major craft stores or HERE.

All you need is masking tape, acrylic craft paint, brushes and of course your blank bag.

Lay tape in stripes across the front of your bag. Laying tape at angles will add to your design.

With your hand smooth and press tape firmly onto fabric for best adhesion. Paint your stripes in the spaces between the masking tape alternating colors.

Try not to apply any more paint than necessary.

Allow to dry for a few minutes and then carefully peel off your masking tape,

Revealing your fabulous new Hand Painted Striped Tote Bag!

Now I know you are excited to fill your new fabulous bag with stuff but do make sure to allow the paint to fully dry before using it!!

Fall Craftyness

September 26th, 2012 by zoe No Comments

I am a bit under the weather with a cold, out the window the leaves are popping red and orange. Here in the studio I am getting ready for craft fairs. Working out new patterns.

I always hope to make more than I possible can, my head is reeling with ideas. Alas there are only so many hours in a day and a girl with a cold must have a bit of rest (while stitching up little dolls like mad).

Kid Friendly Batik Scarf

June 7th, 2012 by zoe 1 Comment

We are zooming to the end of the school year. For my boys that means moving on from preschool, exciting and scary!

This week we worked hard to come up with a unique and special thank you gift for their teachers – made by them.

Inspired by this tutorial, join us for our experiment in kid friendly batik.

For this project we used -

*2 yards of white Kona cotton, we cut the fabric lengthwise into four scarves. Next we pulled the first few strings from all four of the cut scarf edges, washed and dried them on hot. Pulling the strings from the edges and washing leaves your edges frayed but “finished”.

*Elmer’s Washable Gel Glue (Blue or Clear)

*Cheap Acrylic Craft Paint

*Saran Wrap – for protecting our work space

*Blow Dryer – for speeding up the dry time!

*Paint Brushes and Glass Paint Jars

After our scarves were washed and dried we lay them out flat on a layer of Saran wrap and the boys decorated them with Elmer’s Gel glue —

After the fabric is sufficiently glooped with lots of glue patterns you must let the glue dry overnight. We found that the glue tended to spread a lot so if you are attempting to make images or letters make sure to make them thin and large.

Next we made our “Fabric Stain” by taking about 1 teaspoon of craft acrylic and mixed it with about 1/2 cup of water – mixing well so that no clumps of paint remained. Your stain should to so thin as to have the consistency of water. For darker colors you should use more paint but for making scarves we want to ensure our fabric didn’t get too crunchy!

Liberally paint your fabric with your “fabric stain”, allowing it to soak all the way through your fabric. Ideally paint the entire scarf with color!

We then used a hairdryer to speed up the drying process.

After the scarves had completely dried we soaked them in cold water for 15 minutes and scrubbed out the gel glue.

next we popped them into the line to dry.

We love how our fabric came out!

Not the best shots (in my bathroom mirror) but here are our

Kid Made Batik Scarves!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sewing for the Walls

May 28th, 2012 by zoe 1 Comment

Remember this from awhile back?

It’s an old frame I found that gave me an idea for stitching up some fabric appliqué art for my boys wall.

I drew a picture and mapped out some fabric pieces and started to stitch my fox onto a utility fabric bought at Joann’s.

With this and this as inspiration here’s what I wound up with -

Meet my Mr. Fox.

He’s all machine stitched with felt, cotton, silk and cashmere fabric scraps. The kids are pretty floored by him but I dare say a bit scared too! I myself am pretty floored that after a year of thinking about this project I can now put it out of my head and onto the walls.

Also up on the wall my little Amy Butler banner, some tiny thrifted paintings and a silly Green monster I  made from a log slice. Perhaps one of these days I will get a better shot of how this newly done up kids room is coming together – someday..

Homemade Angry Birds Shirts

April 29th, 2012 by zoe 2 Comments

Sometimes I feel compelled to shut out the world of commercialized characters – I want to hide under a rock and shield my kids from having logo branded toothbrushes, lunch boxes, underwear, sneakers, hats, shirts, coloring books,Band-Aids, action figures, jackets and everything else.

It’s not that I am a complete partypooper (okay maybe I am) it’s just there is so much STUFF with, let’s say, a certain man turned spider on it. For lots of reasons all this STUFF starts to overwhelm me. I know that these comic book characters, video game characters, movie characters are really important to kids – they inspire, bond and excite them.  But this herd of merchandising is also a multi billion dollar machine that seeks to take over the hearts, minds and wallets of our wee lads and lasses. They compound stereo types, promote violence, gender conforming and commercialism – joy!

Unless you want to your kid be a walking advertisement where do you draw the line? I guess my tactic is to insert creativity into the mix a much as possible – I often talk to the kids about inventing our own superhero characters, we have fun drawing, bestowing powers and acting out the roles of our very own captain super people. I draw our own coloring pages with super kids for us to color. I have even wagged fingers at Grandma’s in my efforts to minimize super hero’s daily impact – sorry Mom!  I also try to turn their desires into craft projects – such as these Angry Bird inspired applique shirts.

Did I stay up late stitching these, yes – am I crazy YES. I could have said no, I could have bought them for $20 – but somehow somewhere in my mind it just seemed the right thing to do. The kids wanted Angry Birds shirts so being the dorky crafty Mom I am I said “Let’s make some”. They chose their favorite birds and we made a sketch together of what it should look like. They diligently colored their sketches. We then made a bigger pattern together that would completely cover the printing that was already on the shirt just like I did on this project. We gathered colored T-shirt scraps and cut out our pattern pieces. Next came the late night stitching! I must say I am quite smitten with stitching t-shirt scraps, the results are fantastic and the materials (unlike snazzy wool felts) are FREE. Again, many thanks to Natalie Chanin!

The kids are way psyched which is pretty cool too.

So much so that the very next day I was commissioned to make a ninja mask

Wherever you are in your battle of good and evil – may the crafty force be with you!