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Posts Tagged ‘recycle’

Hi everyone!! I know its been a while and I’m so excited to get some new tutorials up for spring!  I have been feeling “bluesy” (blame it on the medication and the weekly injections I have to take for my high-risk pregnancy) and so I thought I’d spruce up my house (and myself) for spring to get my mood up and creativity flowing again.  I made a trip to one of my favorite $Dollar Stores and found some great stuff that has inspired some new springtime projects.  I could hardly wait to make this easy DIY pillow and I’m SO loving the way it turned out!  Hope you do too!  I thought since my last tutorial was on applique that this would be a nice follow up now that you’ve had a chance to discover the world of transfer webbing!  Heres the breakdown for this simple and inexpensive spring throw pillow:

Cost: $2-$8 depending on what you have on-hand.

Supplies:

  • 2 cloth place-mats in the same color (or coordinating colors if you want a different color on the back).  I got my pink place-mats at the $Dollar Store.  They have tons to choose from usually and I LOVED the bright colors that are there right now!  Perfect for spring!
  • Scrap fabric or quilting fat quarters in coordinating colors/designs.  I used 3 fabrics for my pillow making the bird out of the busiest fabric.
  • Coordinating or contrasting thread.
  • Pillow batting or poly-fill.  I took apart an old pillow I didn’t like anymore and used the batting.
  • Transfer webbing.  This is the iron-on adhesive that allows you to stick your applique to your pillow before you stitch.  I LOVE this stuff and use it ALL THE TIME.  You can sometimes find it (or versions of it) at Walmart in rolls or you can buy it at the craft/fabric store by the yard for about $2 a yard.  You barely use any of it for these little applique projects so even 1 yard will go a long way.
  • A dry iron.
  • A sewing machine with a simple straight stitch.
  • Scizzors and a needle and thread.
  • The bird and branch template from this tutorial (if you’re not feeling confident in freehanding it).

Ok! Thats it!  Ready to go?

  1. If you’d like, print off these bird and branch templates I made from my own pillow design to use as a stencil for your pillow.  Or, you can find an image online, or freehand draw your own quirky version of a bird and a branch.
  2. Choose your fabrics for the bird and the branch and cut out rectangles large enough to use as those elements.
  3. Roll out some transfer webbing and lay your cut pieces down onto the nubby side of the trans web.  Cut around the fabric making the trans web pieces as close to the same size as your fabric pieces as you can.
  4. Keeping your nubby trans web sides inline with your fabric pieces, adhere the trans web to the fabric with a hot dry iron (or as instructed on trans web packaging).
  5. When both your branch fabric and your bird fabric pieces are cool, flip them over and trace your template image (or freehand draw an image) onto the paper side of your fabric with a marker.  Its okay if you have to redraw again until you get the desired look you’d like in the appropriate size etc.  It doesn’t have to be perfect!  Nothing I make ever is!
  6. With your sharp scizzors, cut out your design elements.
  7. Carefully remove the trans web paper backing from your fabric pieces.
  8. Grab one of your place-mats and arrange your bird and branch onto the front of it how you’d like it.
  9. With a hot iron (some trans web requires steam at this point), iron your applique to your place-mat.
  10. Once your place-mat and applique has cooled, take it over to your sewing machine and stitch the edges of the applique down.  If you’d like you can actually skip this step since its not too likely that you’ll be washing this pillow too often and the trans web will adhere it fine temporarily.  But, I like to stitch around all my appliques with contrasting thread just to secure it a bit more and give it some more character.  And don’t worry about it looking a bit “messy”!  It just adds to that character!
  11. Set your appliqued place-mat aside for a minute and grab your third fabric for your flowers.
  12. Cut your flower fabric into roughly a 1&1/2″ strip.  
  13. Fold your fabric strip over and over itself into a square.
  14. Cut the stack into rough circles.
  15. Stack circles by twos to use as your flowers.
  16. Take one of your double stacked circles and scrunch it together in the middle to make it ruffley.  Using a needle and thread stitch through the base of your ruffle flower a couple of times to secure the folds.
  17. Sew your little flower bud onto your tree branch applique.  I sewed mine through the center of each flower to open them up a bit more and to make them lie somewhat flat.
  18. Try to place your flowers randomly using as many as you’d like.
  19. Once your place-mat front is complete and all your flowers are securely sewn into place, take your other place-mat and line it up under the top one (wrong sides together if your place-mat has “wrong” sides).
  20. If you’d like you can pin your sides together for more stability while you sew.  Head over to your sewing machine again and sew both top and bottom place-mats together with a topstitch and about a 1/4 allowance.  BUT leave a section unstitched so that you can add your batting here in a minute.  TIP:  when going around the corners, reverse stitch a few times to secure the corners and keep them from pulling when you stuff the pillow.
  21. Grab your pillow batting and begin stuffing your place-mat pillow paying special attention to the corners and stuffing it as full as you’d like.
  22. Topstitch your stuffing opening closed and YOU’RE DONE!! Now find a cute place to showcase your new cheery pillow!

How fun was that!?  So easy and cute it just makes me SMILE!

Hope you enjoyed this springtime tutorial!  Please remember to share this blog with your friends and family and keep coming back to see more!  Next:  How to Make Easy 3-D Flower Push-pins for your Walls!See you soon!  Have fun crafting!

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Welcome back!  Well, my hubby is off to his brother’s wedding in Seattle, leaving me with a sick toddler and doctor ordered “bed-rest”.  Of course.  Not his fault though, just one of those things, but I am feeling much more positive after putting my son down for his nap and getting my hands on some feathers for this next tutorial.

Today I will be showing you how to make a vintage inspired feather hair clip for under $5.  If you have gone shopping, picked up a magazine, or turned on the TV in the past several months you may have noticed this trend of feathers in fashion.  You may have also noticed the steep prices of some of these feathered accessories (remember I’m cheap, so even $15 seems like a lot to me).  As I mentioned in a previous post, I love vintage fashion and started making feathered and flowered accessories for myself (and several friends and family members who saw mine) almost 2 years ago after looking up “pin up hair and makeup” on google.  (P.S. If you want to know how to do pin up hair and makeup check out my last few posts).  Since then, I have made hundreds and have sold quite a few at craft fairs and such.  But, I have a little secret, although I sold my accessories for a relatively low price (keep in mind, handmade is always better than mass produced so higher prices are to be expected), I really only spent about $3-$5 making each one.  And sometimes even less than that due to my dollar store finds and thrift store shopping.  Even my most “expensive” (if you want to call it that) custom piece only probably cost me around $10 to make.  So, now that you know you can have an expensive looking accessory for less than $5 aren’t you excited to find out how to do it yourself?!  Actually, I think you’ll be surprised at how EASY it is to make these and how little time it takes.  Yet, without fail, I guarantee that they will always IMPRESS.  So lets get started.  Heres the breakdown:

  • Cost: Between $3-$5 or so depending on what you already have on-hand.
  • Supplies: Felt (about $0.32 a sheet at Walmart or your local hobby store.), Feathers (about $2.00 for a bag of multi-colored feathers at Walmart), Peacock Feather (I get mine when they go half off at Hobby Lobby, a pack of 3 is about $4 or $2 on sale), Alligator Clip (beauty supplies stores sell these for less than $3 for a bag of 20 or so; I find this is a better deal than to buy them at the craft store), Vintage Looking Earring (I get a lot of mine at the Dollar Store or at thrift stores where they will sometimes have bags of old earrings or jewelry you can re-purpose), Hot Glue Gun (and hot glue).

This hair clip took me only 15 minutes to throw together so you can see with all the extra supplies you can crank out several in a couple of hours and give them out to your friends (since they’re bound to have “feather envy” once they see yours).  Alright then.  Lets do this.

  1. First off you want to pick out what feathers you’d like to use for your clip.  I usually base this decision on the type of earring that I’m using for my clip.  In this case I chose really bright green feathers to match the bright green colors in my earring.
  2. Next cut out a round piece of felt (try to match the felt color to your feather colors to make it cohesive looking and “polished”), a little bigger than the size of a silver dollar.  If you’re a real perfectionist you can trace a circle onto your felt and then cut.  But I’m a “get-her-done” kinda girl so I just eye-ball it since it will be the backing and no one will be able to tell if its not perfect.
  3. With the same felt, cut a small rectangular piece to use later when you need to adhere the alligator clip to the back of your feather pad.
  4. Lay out your pieces so you see what you’re working with.  I used 3 green fluffy feathers, and 1 peacock feather that I trimmed up a bit.  Have fun with yours!  Layer those feathers on anyway that seems appealing to you.
  5. Next, break the back off your earring.  This earring was a clip on and pretty easy to manipulate with just my hands, but you may need some pliers to get the back off of yours.
  6. Now you just need to layer your feathers on your round piece of felt to create your feather pad.  I usually start with the shortest feathers on either side of the pad and then layer the longer ones in toward the center to give your hair clip an oval shape.  But you can fan them out, make them go all the way around, there is really no right or wrong way.  So take your hot glue gun and put a thin line up the felt circle to and attach your first feather.  Keep in mind, these are feathers folks, so less is more with the glue.  If you get too much glue on there then your feather will become saturated and…not pretty.
  7. Continue this way until your base feathers have covered the felt.  Try to hide as much of the glued parts as possible by layering feathers from the outsides inward.
  8. Next, run a small line of glue about 1/2 the way up the center of your feather pad and attach your “fancy feather” (in my case its going to be a peacock feather).
  9. Now you’re almost done!  Put a pretty generous glob of hot glue at the base of your feather pad (but not TOO generous so where it seeps out around the edges of your earring).  Now firmly press and hold your earring into place until the glue sets up a bit.  Wait a minute or so before moving on to step 10.
  10. Once you feel like you can move your hair clip without the earring sliding off, flip your feather pad over and grab your alligator clip and little rectangular piece of felt.
  11. Pinch open the clip and slide the felt in between the prongs.
  12. Apply hot glue to one side of the felt while in between the prongs.
  13. Press the clip and felt (glue side down) to the back of your feather pad.

All done!! Isn’t she pretty!?  Just give it a couple of cool-down minutes before you clip it up into your hair and go to show it off.

Feather Hair Clip Tips and Suggestions:

  • Use buttons, beads, lace, ribbon, netting, scrap fabric, or anything else you can think of to create something fabulous!
  • Instead of an alligator clip, attach a pin back and use it as a brooch on a cute sweater, blouse, dress, or jacket.
  • Visit store sites like Anthropologie, ModCloth, and Etsy for inspiration.
  • If you’d like to purchase one of my feather pieces or order a custom piece for a special occasion, please visit my online shop BareBirdie.

Thats it!  Hope you had fun!  Come back for “Home Makeover Mondays” where I will be teaching you “How to Make Fabric Wall Art for a Hip Baby Room”.  Have a great weekend!

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