Sunday, July 31, 2011

Another slow day

I did start out with good intentions.  Planned to visit the local market, do a quick grocery shop and then home into the studio to start on some small gifts.  The first two, went off without a hitch, and I did find a little metal Ute car that I am going to turn into a pin cushion.... only 50 cents  - can you imagine the tray part as a pin cushion, looking like a covered load?  It is in such good condition.

When I returned home, that is when all my plans went amiss.  I had just put the groceries away, when the power went out.  It was not isolated to just my home, the whole township was without power. No sewing machine, no glue gun, no lights, no computer ... what a shame.

However I did get a little bit of gardening done, which was a bonus as it has been neglected, like everything else lately.

Power was returned at approximately 4:30 pm - just enough time for me to make a Magnetic Fabric Photo Frame so that I could say that I had made at least one thing.

This is just a little quilted frame with two diagonal ribbons sewn in, so that the photos can be interchanged.

Hard to see ribbons in this photo

Back with magnetic strips glued on
I glued magnetic strips on all sides, so that you can position your photos vertical or horizontal.  I think this would be a great gift for grandparents, to easily display photos of their grandchildren on the fridge.

Sister Sue made a black & white 21st card, using one of the new Delish Bistro Keys that have been added to the store this week.

Hope you have had a really crafty weekend

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Craft Drought

It has been over two weeks since I have been in the craft studio.  My online business has been keeping me busy (no complaints) however it has been taking up too much of my "play" time.

Today I set a couple of hours aside to make two small gift bags - these bags are based on one fat quarter only - see original post here.  These will be filled with little gifts for children.  Cute little monkey print.

Photo showing secret pocket
 The next used a dog print, although a lot of the design was lost when completed.  Hope the little boy still likes it.

Girly goodies for display only

Inside pocket big enough for a DVD
I am going to make a stash of these in all designs, to have on hand for gifts. You can fit so many things inside all the pockets.

I still have to make a gift for the "Sew Many Ways" "Make a gift on the 25th" so fingers crossed I will be able to get started on that tomorrow.  I am planning to start on small gifts for my co-workers.

Well, I had better get back to updating the online store with new products, and then they can be put away and my office can get back to normal (ie being able to see some floor space)

Hope you are having a great weekend, it has been a beautiful winters day here, with the sun shining brightly and allowing all the washing to dry naturally (for a change).


Tuesday, July 26, 2011


This title has two meanings:

1.  Missing In Action (which is what this post is about)
2. Murrumbidgee Irrigation Area (the region in south west NSW, Australia, where I live)

I had an unexpected 5 day medical emergency, which resulted in a visit to hospital.  It is times like these I am extremely thankful for my wonderful family and friends.  My sister Janet was a rock, she was there with me the entire time.  I am not the best patient, so to have that support was very reassuring.

Home now, and will be back in action, but unfortunately I missed my first "make a gift on the 25th" commitment.

I will try and make up for that this week, as well as catch up on all the other things that I have not done.
Facebook, Blog, Online Store all waiting for updates, not to mention the many household chores - (and I had a competition running for my mailing list readers) oh well -  everything always gets done, maybe just not when they should have been done.

Hope you are all in good health

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Great idea for printing on fabric

It is amazing how kind our fellow bloggers are! A lovely lady, Selina,  from the other side of the world (or nearly, in the USA), left a comment on my blog post about printing on fabric.  She also left a link to her blog Selina quilts showing what she had made from printing on fabric.  Go across and check out her blog, get inspired, and let her know where you come from ....

Here is a photo from her blog to tempt you ... they are so cute and personal

Photo used with permission from Selina Quilts

I will be busy the next couple of days uploading products to my online store, however hope to get into the studio at least for a little while.

So many ideas, so little time


Saturday, July 16, 2011

Two Bags Completed

Remember when I gave you the hint about printing on fabric, and I had these?

Last night, I made two of them up into Breast Cancer Drain Bags, and am very happy with the results

What craft are you going to be doing this weekend?  What are you making?  Let me know.


Friday, July 15, 2011

Cards - printed fabric embellishments

Cute Christmas Cards using printed fabric embellishments.  This one also incorporates a recycled business card behind the Joy lettering.

Trying the same technique on the recycled business cards.

Oops, just realised that I had not put the hangers on these tags ... better go and do that now before I forget.

Have a great weekend

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

More playing - fabric and tags

I have continued to experiment with the recycled business cards and printing on fabric.  In some cases combining the two.

As I did not have a variety of Christmas stamps to add greetings onto the business card tags, I thought I would try printing some out onto calico.   I just created a table in Microsoft Word and entered in "one word" sayings.  Printed onto fabric, and then cut and glued them onto the tags.  Add some cute Christmas buttons and this is the result

Not one to be faint hearted, I decided to see how a larger coloured graphic would work in the printer.

I had downloaded a prim stocking pattern from The Olde Country Cupboard, which included a page of prim Santa photos.  So off to the printer I went, with my calico attached to the cardboard.  SUCCESS.

Here is a photo of a small Stocking Ornie I made from felt with a small printed Santa  graphic.  Next time I will make them more prim and with fabric as shown in the pattern, however the felt, bakers twine etc were still out on the studio table, so I used them

So much fun,

Until next time

Monday, July 11, 2011

Little Tissue Holder - link to tutorial

My readers have been requesting that I give a tutorial on the little tissue holders that were featured in these two blog posts.

I have been procrastinating about this, as it was not my pattern to share, but as luck would have it, we have found the designer.

The very talented Clare Bower from Clare's Craftroom - here is the link to her instructions.

The only changes I make are to use three pieces of fabric, cut 8" x 5", placed on top of each other, and treat as one - this is to give stability to the holder.  Good opportunity to use scraps of fabric as the middle two are not seen.

To save time & money, I usually just sew the 1" folds down with a decorative stitch, although my friend Sonia does sew ribbon on at this stage.

Any questions / problems, just ask and don't forget to go across to Clare's Blog and say thanks ...


Sunday, July 10, 2011

Printing on Fabric Hint

Do you want to print on fabric, but do not have any fabric sheets available.  Today I found a way, very easy and economical. 

Note: I will not take any responsibility for printer problems, if you try this hint.

Take a A4 sheet of card stock and press double-sided tape around the entire edge.  This acts as a stabiliser for the printer and gives weight to the fabric.

Cut your calico (fabric) to the same size.  Press it onto the card stock, ensuring you smooth out all bubbles, and snip off any threads from the sides.

Take it to your ink-jet printer, and if possible feed it through the back, so that it goes straight through the printer.  ( I am using a Canon MX340 printer).  I selected "high" print quality to ensure that I got the darkest print possible.

Slowly remove the printed fabric from the cardboard, try not to pull too quickly, else you will have loose threads

The same card stock, with the double-sided tape can be used at least three times successfully before being replaced.

These printed sheets are going to be made into bags. It is a good idea to heat set the ink by ironing on the reverse side before sewing up.

I used the Tagxedo site to create these graphics

What would you print onto fabric, using this tip?


Saturday, July 09, 2011

Coasters Make Over

These coasters were dull and boring, so while I had the ModPodge out, they had a makeover.

I purchased the coaster graphics from Sunflower Friends - Sondra has the most amazing printables, and I purchase a lot of graphics from her.

A new look for my coasters... printed graphics on cardboard, cut out and ModPodge to the coasters.  I put three coats of ModPodge on top, so that they would take the wear.

A quick look at another couple of recycled business card tags - these were quick and easy using Theodora Cleave hand painted wooden buttons

I need to purchase more Christmas Stamps, as I think they need just a little extra on the tag. Maybe a background? I think I need to play with them a little more as I am not quite happy with the final result.

Till next time

Friday, July 08, 2011

Recycled Business Cards

Do you have old business cards laying around, maybe from a previous job, or just ones you have collected over the years?

Here is something that you may like to do with them? Make them into Christmas Tags

This is what I did -

Get your business cards, they must be blank on the reverse side.

Age them, using your preferred method.  I used Parisian Essence (a Browning Essence in Australia), Vanilla and a sprinkle of cinnamon.  Allow them to dry.

I used a corner punch to round the corners, in the above photo. This is not necessary as I made them without this step and they look great.

Glue your aged business cards to the felt with ModPodge (ensure the printed side is face down).  You can fit 8 business cards on one sheet of felt, however to be really economical you can use up your smaller scraps of felt for this project.  Leave a little space between each card, so that you can cut around them.

Allow to dry.  You may need to place a weight on top of them, while they are drying.  A couple of heavy books will do the trick.  This ensures that they dry flat.

Use pinking shears to cut around each card, ensuring you leave a little bit of the felt showing.

Now comes the fun bit, glue on your decoration, in my case a Santa bottletop.  Use a strong glue like E6000 or Tiger glue.  Both of these are quite expensive in Australia, and I have found a really good glue from my local $2.00 shop.  It is called Silicon Glue by Craftworks. It did literally cost only $2.00 and it "Bonds metal, wood, fabric, card & glass" and "Glues like hot glue".
I am impressed with it, although this is the first time I have used it, so I will be interested to see long term results. It took a little longer to bond, but the adhesive is very strong when set.

Punch your tag hole in the top - use a strong metal punch, so that you can cleanly get through both the felt and card.

Stamp your greeting, I only had one stamp that would fit "Merry Christmas", although I like the finished result.  You could use rub-ons, stencils, write a message..

All that is left is to add a lovely Bakers Twine hanger to your tag, and you are finished.

I have about another 200 of these business cards, so I am sure you will see more projects with them being used in the future.
Imagine family gift cards, with a photo of the recipient in the bottle cap, and maybe birthday wishes?
You could glue pretty scrapbook paper to the back, or even newspaper or magazine pages?

Quick and Easy Project, and certainly one that you could do with your children.


Thursday, July 07, 2011

Cute finds

It is interesting what you can find to assist you in your craft ...

Patterned paper-clips from the "junky" shop - what can they be used for:
Book marks, tag holders, card making, I am sure there will be a lot of uses, I bought them because they were cute and CHEAP ($1.47 a jar)

Then there were the pins that attached the tags on some new work clothes, a great alternative to rusty safety pins to attach rusty bells etc on my Santa's.  Best price, Free!

Will show photos when I use them.

I have had a request for a tutorial for the little tissue cover, I will do one, but I must admit upfront, it is not my pattern, verbal instructions were given to me .. so I hope I do not break any copyright laws by passing it on.

Does anyone know the legalities of this?


Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Party Hat

Making a party hat during school holidays. 

Materials required:
Plastic disposable plate, headband, pipecleaners, lots of glitter and feathers and one talented niece.


Tuesday, July 05, 2011

Personalised Subway Art Printables

Before I start this post, I must say, how invaluable the Internet is for making it easy to be creative.
I have found two sites that allow you to type in any words and they create the most wonderful jumbled up "works of art".  The possibilities are endless.

First I tried Wordle - entered in words to assist my niece with a printable to help celebrate her Grandmothers birthday.  You can print from this site, however cannot save the results.

Then I discovered Tagedo - this one has a variety of shapes etc you can choose, you can also save the results as a jpg or png and then use these files in any of your crafts.

Just for fun, I entered in my online store address and was astounded with the results, of course I chose a CAT layout to reflect my store name 

This is the result -

How fantastic does this look?  I have printed it out and will purchase/find a frame and hang it in my craft studio.  I have not done that yet, as I was so excited with this find, I wanted to share it with you.

Just for fun, this is the same link, however in a map of Australia...

I just played around with all the different settings. There are so many different options, shapes, colours, etc. Warning, it is very addicting, Save your artwork as a jpg and you are ready to start creating all kinds of things.

Have fun

BonBons for a Cause

A friend, Sonia, came to visit yesterday and she bought a fabulous idea for table decorations for the annual pink ribbon dinner.  Lovely fabric bon bons which we can fill with a lot of different goodies.  Sonia has made a tissue cover to go with the bon bons.

The bon bon is a "Hatched & Patched" Christmas Bon Bon pattern.  This is my attempt, only the fabric is a little too light to photograph well.

This is the start, only about another 20 to go ....but luckily Sonia is helping and we have until early October to have them all completed.  Do you have any suggestions to what we can put in them?


Monday, July 04, 2011

Breast Cancer Drain Bags

I have completed 4 breast cancer drain bags today, so only 2 more to make for my monthly quota.  We have started making a little tissue pack to put inside the bag as a gift, which is a little extra to show we care.  This was at the suggestion of a friend, Sonia, and the feedback we are getting is really positive.  It does not take much to help out.  If you want to help your local hospital, check out this link for more information on how to make the bags.

I have a chicken theme happening here.... this one is from leftover blocks...

Another from a chicken print fabric ... it really is a good way to use up fabric, and only takes approx 1 hour to make a bag.  Go on, make some for your local hospital, it will make you feel good, and help someone else in need.


Sunday, July 03, 2011

Zippered Bag and Card Holder

Continuing with the theme of "being prepared" with handmade gifts this year.  I made a pencil case for my nephew with a zip.  I still dislike working with zips, however I figure if I keep practising it may become easier.

Lined inside with green checked fabric.

Another design was tried for the loyalty / business card holder... being from a large family I did not want to make everyones holder the same, so I am trying different designs.  The plastic tie in this photo looks quite bright, although it does tie in nicely with my new business cards.

Tomorrow I am sewing more Breast Cancer Drain Bags.  I donate 6 bags each month, and with the help of family and friends I have been able to honour this commitment.  However, I handed over the last lot of bags I had made today, so that they can be donated to the Wagga hospital tomorrow, so it is back to the sewing machine to make more.

Until next time