Rag Baskets

Fabric strips, piping cord, a little time and patience….you have made a unique one of a kind rag basket!

Materials:

  • Fabric – torn into strips
  • Piping (cording)
  • Large needle or large safety pin
  • Masking tape
  • Wire 18 or 19 gauge
  • Scissors

Directions:

The piping (cording) that I like to use for my baskets is found in craft stores in the upholstery area.  It comes in different sizes, the cost is around 30 to 40 cents a yard depending on size.  For the multi colored basket (6” round bottom) I used 7 yards of piping and about 1 yard of fabric, the oval basket (9” by 6 1/2″) made of all the same fabric, I used 10 yards of piping, and all use 2 yards of fabric.  So it takes more piping than you think!

The needle: I’m using a plastic yarn needle (it has a large eye) but a large safety pin will work.

First you want to tear you fabric into 1” to 1 1/4” wide strips, if you are using scrap fabric you do need the strips to be at least 18” to 20” long.  With masking tape, tape one end of the cord, then cover and wrap with a strip of fabric, wrapping 4” to 5” on the cord (wrap with a slight angle) and start to roll into circle.  This might take one or two tries, don’t give up, the starting point is the hardest!

Slide on your large needle, or pin a large safety pin to the end of fabric strip, holding fabric wrapped piping in a circle, pull needle through, then push needle back up on other side of fabric strip.  If it is not holding tight, try again…remember this is the hardest part of making the basket….do not give up!!

In the picture below, I have loosened up my circle so you can see where to put the needle. But you do want a tight stitch that will hold!

The picture below shows where to push the needle back up, making sure you are holding on tight to the circle! Now push needle down on other side of the fabric strip and wrap the fabric 2 times around piping and make another stitch!!

This is what up should have!  Now it’s time for a new strip….just lay the new fabric strip under the one you have been stitching and wrap the new strip around (you want it tight)! And keep going!!

Keep going until you have the size bottom you like!! Tip: before you start the sides, count the rows, in the picture above there are seven rows for the bottom, all sides need to be equal, and I’m ready to start up the side! To make the sides going up (no worries the hard part is done), you want to push the piping up on the fabric wrapped cord and keep stitching!!!

You want the sides of the basket to be even also!  So count up on all sides, you want one side to have one row more than the other.  The handle will even out the sides!  But I like to add wire for extra support!  I like the wire to run around the top row and handle of my baskets.  This means you need to start the wire when the side count is 7 on one side and 6 on the other (for this basket).  Cut wire to your size (top rows and handle) and use masking tape to hold in place (it is easy to add more wire if needed).

Now that the wire is in place, go half way around, again the side count is not even. Now we are ready for the handle, this basket has a double handle, below I show a single handle and side handles!! Make a tight stitch and bend up and over to form the handle. The first side you will just wrap with a fabric strip, until it gets to the other side.  Now bend cord with wire back to the other side.  In the bend area make a stitch, keep tight and keep making more stitches around the wrapped handle side, holding the handle together.

Now bring the wired piping down and bend around the top of the basket, this will be the last row….All most done!!  Cut the piping and wire where it meets back to other side of handle.  Cut piping at an angle and wrap tight with tape.

Keep wrapping and making stitches.  When you come to the end, wrap all the way to the tip (you do not want the piping to show through) then back to make the last stitches.  With the needle push through a stitch inside of basket and make a knot and cut off any extra fabric.  Done….now that wasn’t so hard!!!

This is the inside of the basket.

For a single handle basket, again the side count will be off by one!  Add wire before you start the last row on the side, continue the wire for the handle, and for the last row on the other side of the basket.  The single handle you bend over shaping into your handle size and then back the other way, making the last row of the basket.  Make a good tight stitch before and after the handle on each side.

Easter basket!

The oval (oblong) basket, you just need to shape the bottom and then make the sides!  This basket I use smaller size piping and used the same fabric!

This is the bottom. I placed a button so you can see the center, and how I’m making both sides even.

Starting to make the sides!

If you run out of piping, it is easy to add more, cut the piping at angle (both the new and what you are using) fit them together and tape tight and keep going!

No one will know!!

This basket has side handles, and again I used wire to help shape them!

I love making these for gifts!

My next basket I’m going to try using ribbon instead of fabric….I need to find a sale on ribbon!

Hope you will be inspired to make rag baskets!

Hand Print Ornaments

They grow up so fast, cherish the moments!  These hand prints are easy and make great memories, it’s much fun to see how much they have grown for year to year and with a picture on the back, it’s the perfect keep sake!  You will want to make more than one…one for you, one for grandmother, and one for the scrapbook!  How cute would these hand prints be if made into a Christmas card!

***Note* I used acrylic paints for the snowman and Santa, be aware most acrylic paints will not wash out of clothing!

Santa hand print: on green card stock, paint red acrylic paint on thumb and across top of palm, paint flesh tone paint in the palm of the hand, and white on the four fingers, (when painting the hand try not to run the colors into each other) and place hand on paper.  After print has dried, dip the child’s finger in white paint let or help child make a mustache using their finger, several finger prints across the bottom of the hat and one finger print on end of hat.  Red or light red finger print for his nose, and two finger print eyes in gray (or blue).  Once all dry, cut the Santa  print out, punch small hole for a ribbon, add name and date….and of course a picture on the back.

Snowman hand print: Paint or dip child’s hand in white paint, and press hand on green card stock, let dry.  For the snowman’s hats and scarf I used acrylic paint and small paint brush, orange paint for each carrot nose (paint pens and Sharpie markers will work), for the eyes and mouth I used a fine point Sharpie marker and the blue bow, green hearts and white arms are gel pens.  Once all dry I punch a snowflake in the hand and add another snowflake, 2 snowflakes because it’s a 2 year old!!  Cut the green paper around hand, back with red card stock, cut into hand shape and add white card stock, cutting in the hand shape.  Punch small hole and add ribbon for hanging, add name and date to front or back…and a picture on back!

Little Deer “Rudolph” hand print: Trace the hand, and cut it out of light brown card stock, cut green glitter paper for back, punch a small hole for ribbon on the green paper where the deer will cover the hole. With small hole punch (or extra large needle) punch hole between thumb and pointer finger of the cut out hand, string a small bell on ribbon and pull through hole and tie, place 3-D scrapbook adhesives squares on back, and place on to green glitter paper. Using Tacky Glue, glue small red pom pom for nose, and glue small sticks for antlers, with brown fine point marker or gel pen add eye and mouth.  I added 3 small snowflakes, because it’s a 3 year old hand print!  Add name and date to front or back, and a picture on the back.  I used my corner rounder punch on each corner!

I like adding my painted and traced hands to my scrapbook, but for the little deer these antlers would not work!  Instead I used a brown Sharpie and make the antlers and made a red nose with paint!

      

Hope you are inspired!

Make an extra one each year and save, to give your child when all grown up!!

Beaded Glitter Christmas Ornament

Transform a plain glass or plastic ornament into a beaded glittery gem!

Materials:

  • Glass or plastic plain Christmas ornaments (no added designs)
  • Mosaic Mercantile (glass tile glue) or Weldbond Glue
  • DecoArt Craft Twinkles in Crystal
  • Paint brush
  • Seed glass beads
  • Glass bugle beads
  • Ribbon 1/4″ to cover hanger top
  • Pipe cleaners or hook for hanging during drying time

Directions:

This will work on any color of glass or plastic ornaments.  Glue ribbon around the top of each ornament, or glue bugle beads around the top.  Paint a coat of Crystal Twinkles on each ornament, let dry.

Lets talk glue, I do like the Mosaic Mercantile glue the best…but not all craft stores carry this brand.  I order it www.mosaicmercantile.com.  Weldbond will work (slower dry time).  You should have not problem finding the Crystal Twinkles, you might want to buy two…I love this paint!

Run a thin line of glue in an “S” shape, and place bugle bead in glue. Let dry before moving on.  (I like to use pipe cleaner for hangers)  If you are making more than one, the glue will set up in less than 10 minutes, so you could make an assembly line and just keep going making several at a time.

 

    

Keep going until you have covered the ornament with your design.  Just be careful that you make thin glue lines.

Add 3 red seed beads to each end of the “S”, and 3 green seed beads in center of “S”.

The possibilities are endless!!!

  

  

  

 

Are you inspired!

 

JOY

Quick, easy and inexpensive!

 

Materials:

  • Wooden letters “J” and “Y”
  • Wooden star with small hole for ribbon or fishing line
  • One sheet 12″x12″ scrapbook paper or wrapping paper
  • Wreath size of letters
  • Mod Podge
  • Brush
  • Scissors, pencil
  • Acrylic paint (matching paper)
  • Sandpaper
  • Ribbon or fishing line to tie star to wreath
  • Satin (or Gloss) varnish sealer

Directions:

I found my wooden letter on clearance at Michaels, they are 1/4 thick and 10 1/2″ tall.  This process will work on wooden or paper letters.  Trace each letter and on back side of paper, make sure you have the letter in the correct direction.  Cut each out, checking the fit, trim if needed.

Paint the edges (sides) of the letters and paint the backs if you want.  If your wooden letters are rough give them a light sandy first.

Brush a coat of Mod Podge on to the wooden letter, make sure the Mod Podge goes to the edge.  Place your paper letter on top, gently pushing in place, making sure of the fit (move gently if needed). With the side of the paint brush, run it gently across the papered letter pushing out the extra Mod Podge with your finger remove the extra glue. Brush on a coat of Mod Podge on top of paper, let dry.  Do the same to the star.

Once totally dry, with sandpaper, sand the edges, the wooden part up into the paper giving a rustic look.

Clear off all sandy dust, and paint a coat of clear (satin or gloss) sealer/varnish, let dry.

When dry pull a ribbon or clear fishing line through hole in star and tie onto wreath.

Snowflake Candle Holder

Every year I love having my holiday candle exchange party just with the girls!  Instead of an ornaments, I came up with exchanging  holiday candle or holder, so everyone goes home with a beautiful candle (and I always make a party favor).  It so much fun, but the twist is…it can not cost more than $8.00!!  So everyone gets very creative, they want to hear the biggest WOW…and I wanted that one!  Ok enough about the party..so this my candle holder idea that one of my friend will get!  With a sheet of white tissue, scissors, Mod Podge, a brush and glass vase or recycle a jar, done!!

Materials:

  • Any glass vase or jar or recycle a glass jar
  • Mod Podge Gloss
  • White tissue paper 1 sheet
  • Scissors
  • Paint brush
  • Old paint brush
  • Candle
  • Optional: DecoArt Twinlkes glitter paint in Crystal

Directions:

Cut snowflakes from the white tissue paper.  If you are using a recycled (used) sheet of tissue, iron it with low setting to smooth, making it easier to fold and cut.  Remember snowflakes are about the folding and they should be unique!  I cut more than I needed, but I used about 16 snowflakes in all different sizes and shapes.

Wash and dry the outside your vase or jar.

Brush an even coat of Mod Podge on the front side of the vase, gently place a snowflake in the glue.  Paint a coat of Mod Podge gently over the snowflake.  Once the tissue is in the glue, it will tear or move easily.

Now go over the entire area with Mod Podge using an up-down movement.  You want to create texture and cover up any brush strokes.  This can be done after you do each snowflake or after all snowflake are glued in place.

Let dry!  If you should notice any areas where brush stokes are noticable, add more Mod Podge in the up-down motion.

Loved the shape of this jar, sprung white glass beads on wire and wrapped around the top.  This will make a perfect Christmas gift!

If you like a little sparkle, add a coat of DecoArt Twinkles in Crystal (glitter paint)!

Isn’t this the perfect inexpensive, homemade gift!!

Grape Vine Wreath Snowman

How adorable is this snowman made out of grape vine wreaths!  This idea has been around for awhile, but he is so simple to make and fun to add your own personal touches too!  He can hang from your front door or hang him inside.  Even quicker, make him out of green wreaths.

Materials:

  • 1 18″ grape vine wreath
  • 2 12″ grape vine wreaths
  • Foam black hat
  • Red felt 56” long by 8” wide ( about 1/4 yard)
  • 2 Bells 1 1/2″
  • 1 Bell 1″
  • 1 1/2″ Red ribbon for hat about 14” long
  • 3/8” Silver ribbon (about 1 yard)
  • Black wire or black pipe cleaner
  • 3 white pipe cleaners or wire
  • 1 red pipe cleaner
  • 2 silver plastic 2 1/2″ ornaments for “buttons”
  • 1 can White spray paint
  • Scissors
  • Optional: bird for top of hat, 4 snowflake picks, holy pick for side of hat

Directions:

The first and second wreaths are both 12″ in size, however I did look through all the wreaths to find one smaller than the other!!

Start by spray painting white all 3 wreaths.  You can leave them natural or even use green wreaths, it’s all about the look you want.  While the wreaths are drying, cut the foam black hat in half.  I found this hat at Michaels ($3.99 without coupon).

  

Once the paint is dry, lay out the smaller 12″, the other 12” and then the 18” wreath, with white pipe cleaners attach them together (12″, 12″ 18″).  With a black pipe cleaner or wire, attach the hat to the top of the wreath.  The wire or pipe cleaner easily pushes through the foam hat, and around the wreath.

   

With a white pipe cleaner or wire make a hanger, under the hat on the wreath, this will give a hanger for a door hook or nail.  Wrap ribbon around the hat and add a holy pick.

   

At this point I think it is easier to work on him hanging up, slide him on a door hang!  Add the bird to the top of the hat.

For the scarf I’m using red felt, but if I had a holiday scarf I would have used it!  Cut the felt 56″ long (longer if you like) by 8″ wide, cut “fringe” on each end.  Lay out the scarf and fold over each side, this way you will not see any raw edges!  Now wrap scarf around the snowman and just loop it on, it’s too thick to make a full knot!

   

String all 3 bells onto a red pipe cleaner, then wrap bells around scarf and tie onto wreath, keeping the scarf and bells in place.

   

Slide plastic (silver) ornament onto 3/8” silver ribbon, slide one end of the ribbon through wreath, tie ends in a bow and let the ornament hang down.  Tie ornament/ribbon on the other wreath…how cut are the snowman buttons!!

Add a few snowflake picks.

   

Done!!

The wreaths were about $4.88 each (without a coupon!!), 1/4 of a yard of red felt $1, foam hat $3.99 (without a coupon), bells $1, holiday picks (4 snowflakes, 1 bird, 1 holy) on sale $2.50 and spray paint from Home Depot under $2, I had the ribbon and pipe cleaners!  Using coupons with Snowman cost under $15.00.

Frosted Glass Candle Holder

A can of Frosted Glass spray paint, stickers, decorative punches, and a glass vase or recycled jar, the possibilities are endless!

Materials:

  • Frosted Glass spray paint
  • Glass vase, candle holder, glass jar
  • Stickers
  • Decorative punches

Directions:

I’m using two sizes of snowflake punches.  Punch out the stickers and firmly place on outside of the glass piece and spray with Frosted Glass (outside) let dry and remove the stickers!

 

This one I just used the round stickers!

I wanted to make a stripped vase using masking tape, but my tape was too old, so I used rubber bands!

I think my oil bottle has a new life as a vase!

This is a vary inexpensive project, the spray I purchased from Jo Anns with a 50% off coupon for about $3.00 and sprayed four different pieces, (I had the stickers and the snowflake punches), Micheal’s had the glass candle holder/vase on sale $2.50!

 

Beaded Serving Spoons

Add some sparkle and fun to your serving spoons, dip spoons and spreaders!  These are so much fun to make, and add the personal touch to any party!  They make a great gift.

Materials:

  • 16 gauge aluminum Jewelry Wire
  • Spoon
  • Beads different sizes
  • Wire cutters
  • Needle nose pliers

Directions:

Double check your beads to make sure they will slide on to the 16 gauge wire.  Pick a spoon or spreader, you want to choose one that is not to decorative, you will be covering it with beads.  If you choose a sterling silver piece once the wire and beads are on it will be very hard to polish!  Bed, Bath and Beyond have serving pieces from $2 to $9, bring a coupon!

The  aluminum jewelry wire bends easily and is very easy to work with.  The pliers will leave marks, so I use double stick tape to tape down a little strip of felt.

Cut a piece of wire about 18” long (the length will depend on how many times you wrap and the number of beads), with the needle nose pliers, gently start to form a circle.  Place on the top center of spoon and wrap tightly 3 times with your fingers.

   

You want to keep the wire tight and close together.  Slide on a bead, with your finger or with pliers, gently bend the wire down the center.  With your fingers push bead into place and hold.

  

Holding the bead in place, start wrapping 2 to 3 times in the opposite direction, add more beads and wrap.

  

Remember you want to wrap the wire tight.  End with another circle swirl.  When wrapping check the back, to make sure the wire is straight.

  

When making your designs, you want to wrap the wire 2 to 3 times between each bead.

  

Note: beaded wired spoons and spreaders should be hand washed, not in dishwasher.

 

Pine Cone Deer

How cute are these little deers!  Just pine cones, sticks and glue, add a red pom pom nose or a jingle bell, couldn’t be easier.  The kids will love helping find the perfect pine cones and sticks!!

Materials:

  • Pine cones different sizes, and not broken or too old
  • Sticks and branches for legs and antlers
  • Glue: Hot glue or any strong holding clear glue
  • Scissors and or small branch clippers
  • Optional: gloves, bells, ribbon, small ornaments, small birds, red pom poms

Directions:

Time for a pine cone hunt,  you do want to be picky picking your pine cones!  You do not want them too old, falling apart or broken, you also want different sizes, I like the head to be smaller than the body!  For the legs and antlers, I cut a branch from one the oak trees (it needed to come down), and cut the ends for the branches for the antlers and the thicker straighter branches for the legs.  I did let them dry out for about 2 days!  If you are using branches that have fallen to the ground, check to make use they are still in good shape, not too old!

  My box of branches….ready to go!

For the legs you want them some what straight, and the same size (thickness) for all 4 legs.  Cut off any small branches off.  Do not cut them too short, wait and cut them to the size of your deer pine cone, mine were  4” to 4/12″ long!

Have different sizes and shapes of end branches for the antlers.

Match up the pine cones, find the pair that look the best together.  I like the head (pine cone) smaller than the body.

You may need to wear gloves, then gluing!  I using hot glue, it’s just quicker, but if the kids want to help (please be careful using hot glue around children) but if they are willing to hold the pieces together while the glue sets…why not (try Weldbond glue)! For the deer body, as you see in the picture above, the head (pine cone) goes one way, the smaller end is the nose, and the body (pine cone) the other way.  Find the best spot for both pine cones, where you can push them together and get a good hold, now that you have a good spot, pull them apart and glue, hold in place until glue has set.

See how the two pine cones are pushed down together.

For the legs, before you glue, find just the right spot, 2 for front legs and 2 back legs.  Cut the leg branch to the right size and glue ( about 4” to 4 1/2” long).

    

Make sure your deer can stand on it’s own!

Now for the antlers, pick 2 branches, and fit them to the top of the larger end of pine cone, pushing into pine cone for a good fit. Make sure the antlers do not make the deer top heavy, if the deer falls over, the antlers are to large and or too heavy.  Now glue antlers into pine cone.

   

Done…now maybe a red pom pom nose, tie on a jingle bell or small ornament!

 

How about silver spray paint!

     

Maybe add a little bird in a nest, and jingle bell.

       

Are you inspired!

 

Paper and Bead Ornaments

So fun and fast to make these beautiful balls using decorative paper punches!  Every year I like to have a “girls” holiday party, and what would a party be without a party favor, these are this years party favor!

Or maybe a bowl of the flower balls to match your decorator!

 

Materials:

  • Decorative punch (I using a flower punch)
  • Card stock paper
  • Glass seed beads in coordinating colors
  • Sequin pins: gold or silver
  • Smooth foam balls, your choice of size I’m using 2″ and 3″ balls
  • Acrylic paint for the foam balls
  • Paint brush
  • Optional: for hanger, eye pins or wire,  fishing line, ribbon or string, Tacky glue

Directions:

I do think it is best to use the smooth foam balls!  Start by deciding on your colors, and paint the foam balls.  I find it easy and fast to stick a tooth pick into the ball, paint it and then stick into foam sheet or card board box to dry (the tooth pick hole will be covered with a flowers)!   You do want a good coat of paint, but remember you will be covering with flowers!

While the balls are drying, start punching, and punching and punching.  I tried to count when I was making a 3″ ball, it was around 80 flowers and it will depend on how close together you put them.  Since I was making about 75 covered balls, I just punched each of the colors I wanted to use and put them in bags, when I ran out of that color I just punched more!

I found the Sequin pins from Jo Anns for 99 cents for 300 and of course I used a coupon!  But any thin straight pin will work, you just have to make sure the seed bead will slide on and stay on!

Pick your seed bead color and slide one bead on the pin and stick on a flower. Now I just pushed it right into the ball, but you could dip the end of the pin in Tacky glue if you felt like it needed it.

Since I was making sooo many, I found it easier to sit and watch TV 🙂 and slide on the bead and flower and make a bowl full and then put them on the balls!

I also found that if the card stock was super thick (like some of the heavy glitter ones from Micheal’s) they were too hard to punch and way to hard to push a pin through….just thought you should know!

Remember it’s up to you on how close together to put the flowers, it gives you a different look when the flowers are on top of each other!  If you do not do the pin gluing, it’s no problem to move the flower pin around, which you might need to when you are fitting in the last ones!

To make a hanger, I’m using an eye pin (which is used to make jewelery) but works great for this project or you can use wire. First slide the seed bead on, then the a flower and dip the end of the pin in Tacky Glue and push into ball!  Tie fishing line or ribbon on and hang your ornament!

Here is tip, I found that Velum paper works great (I used velum paper for the snowflake balls, second picture from the top) and it’s a beautiful look, it comes in colors like red, gold and silver!

Think about a different shape of punch, hearts, snowflakes, two different sizes of flowers…what shapes do you have!

I also love them just in a large glass bowl!  A fun and inexperience way to add color and or texture to your coffee table?

Did you know you can get the foam in an oval egg shape….Easter eggs how much fun!

How about making a topiary, one (or two) large ball covered with flowers, use a ribbon wrapped wood dowel as the stem, and placed in any vase or pot!  So pretty for a baby shower or bridal shower center piece.

 

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