Monday, May 10, 2010

Dollar Dress

What can you do with an old sheet?

How about make a dress!

I got this sheet--for a dollar at a thrift store. It had the really great edges.

Now it is a summer dress!

To see up close pictures, click here.

-- Tara--

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Floating Flower Chandelier

I have a corner in my house that screams, "Do something with me!" whenever I look at it.  I'm going to hang a floating flower chandelier in the corner.  Well, really, you could do flowers, leaves, snowflakes, clouds, butterflies, lollipops or bows depending on the season or your mood.  Be creative and resourceful and this project will cost you nada!  It's very simple.  You need only a few things: pliers, wire hanger, organza ribbon (1 yard in length), needle, thread (strength depends on what you hang), and your favorite colored tissue paper (or other artistic something).

Step one: straighten out the wire hanger out with pliers.  Then bend it into a circle and twist the ends together so the end product looks like the picture over there.

Don't worry about it looking perfect.  It doesn't need to.  However, make sure to twist the ends of the hanger together tightly so that they don't accidentally poke you when you're putting the ribbon casing around it.  Speaking of...

Next, grab your ribbon and fold it in half vertically (hot dog style) with the hanger ring in the fold.  Thread your needle and tie a knot in the end of it.  Use a simple loop stitch around the open edge of the ribbon (like shown).  When you reach the other end of the ribbon, use a hidden stitch to make a seam that makes the casing one continuous circle around the wire ring.

Third, make your grid.  I started in the center to keep the ribbon as evenly gathered around the edge as I felt mattered.  Then stitch your threads to the ribbon about an inch apart.  Being precise here doesn't matter.  In fact, it doesn't matter in this project anywhere.  Nice, huh?  You could do clean straight grid lines, or zig zags, or combine them like me.  Once you've finished stitching one direction, cross the threads to make a basket type weave.  It should look similar to this picture:

Now, fold your tissue paper in half, then half it again and again until you get about the size of flower you want.  My flowers are about 3 1/2 inches in diameter.  I folded my paper until it was about 4 inches across and drew my flower pattern on it.  Cut out your flowers, and save the scraps.  *Style note here: I like the look of a more crinkled petal, so my tissue paper is like that.  A flatter tissue paper would look nice, too.

Use two pieces of tissue paper per flower.  Rip a small edge of tissue paper off of the scrap pile, and fold/crumple it into a small wad.  That will help hold each flower in place on the string.

Thread the small wad of paper where you want your flower to "float" and loop the thread through again to help it stay put.  Next, pierce the two pieces of tissue that make up one flower in the center.  Allow flower petals to slide down to where the wad is stationed on the thread.  Continue attaching flowers at variable distances to create a falling effect.

When you have the desired number of flowers on a string, tie it to a corner in the grid.  Mine isn't finished yet, but you get the idea.

When you have the number of flower strings you want, it is time to add the part that holds this beauty up.  Double thread your needle, so that you have a very durable string.  You will need enough to make 3 strands.  Space the string evenly apart on your wire hanger so that it has three touch down points.  Make sure that there is enough give to hang beautifully from the ceiling (I suggest each strand be at least 12 inches long).  Attach each string by sewing around the wire hanger and through the ribbon.  Then, attach the three strings together in the middle with some amazing knot tying.  You can even make a small loop to hang them with.

You're finished!  Now, you can dress that forlorn corner of your house, too.  It will feel much better, just like mine.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Boring Cards Get a Makeover

I found these boxes of "Thank You" cards on clearance at Target... 50 cards and envelopes for $2.50. What a deal! I bought them.

Only problem is they bored me to tears.

With one ink pad and a few rubber stamps, I had a whole new set of cards! It sure made for a fun, easy craft idea.

To accompany the gold lettering, I figured a mustard-ish yellow-ish ink would look good (later I toyed with reds and greens and those looked classy too).

All I had to do on this one is stamp a flower over the top.

And of course you must stamp the envelope too! That makes it a complete set.

This one was two stamps and a sponge. I simply pressed the sponge on the ink pad like it was a stamp and dabbed it around the words and then add the other stamps.

The next one used the sponge technique (you can also use a rag for texture) and the simple star stamp.

Of course, I couldn't leave the back of the cards bare! People want to feel worthy of a Halmark card, so I always use my own Halmark-style logo... although I try to make it match the card.

And there you have it! Bunches of boring cards turned into classy notes worthy of a wedding gift! Of course, if you're giving the gift then THEY should be the ones to send YOU the thank-you card. :)

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