Monday, December 26, 2011

Sew Cute Apron!

I decided to make this apron for my mom for Christmas.
It was fairly easy and all you need to make it is fabric and a sewing machine!

I personally thought the apron would turn out much thicker and comfortable if I attached it to a pre-made canvas apron, so I purchased one for about $3. 
I started off by taking fabric #1 (black)and cutting it and hemming it to make the top shape of the apron.
I sewed it onto the pre-shapped canvas apron.
Then, I took the same fabric and cut and hemmed it into a long rectangle.
Just below where I had sewed the top fabric, I took the new rectangular piece and I folded the fabric and pinned it into place (creating that pleated/ruffled look)

Then, a few inches under that, I did the same (cut, hem, pleat, pin, sew) with fabric #2 (green).
And again...with fabric #3 (white)

So, the three-layered ruffles were finished!
After that, I took fabric #2 (green) and cut it into a long ribbon-like tie.
I placed it over the middle of the apron and pinned it into place (did not hem!)
...making sure to fold the edges over to make a nice clean edge.
Then, I sewed it all the way across, starting at the edge of the tie 
and then onto the apron then, again, hemming the other end of the tie.
I did this for both the top and the bottom of the tie.

And, the sewing is done!

I chose to use iron-on letters to write "Kiss The Grandma" on the top!

I gave it to my mom for Christmas, and she loved it!
A craft well done :-)

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Thursday, December 22, 2011

Melted-Crayon Art!

This project was definitely a case of guess and check. 
I have always seen different versions of melted crayon art on, 
and I thought it would be super easy to make!  
Here are some that I have liked:

After seeing a few with the negative letters or pictures, I decided I wanted to do one with Quinn's name.
Here is my process of trial and error.

I started off with buying just a standard canvas board. I went through several old boxes of crayons and picked out pinks, reds, and oranges for my color scheme.
I started off with painters tape, which I had heard worked on for others (not the best choice!)  and I traced my  letters on top of it and then cut them out. After cutting out all of the letters, I put them on the canvas.
Then, I hot-glued the crayons along the top. (It was all pretty easy up until this point)


 Then...I attempted to melt the crayons with the blow dryer.
1.) Make sure you use a blow dryer with a very hot setting.
The hotter, the better.
2.) Works best if you use the blow dryer on a slower setting.
Too fast will blow the wax right off the canvas.
3.) Take your time.
Patience is key.

At first, I wasn't having any luck. The painters tape was not staying on the canvas, so the colors were bleeding down behind the tape, the crayons weren't melting fast enough, and I was very, very frustrated.
So, after day one I decided I would work on it more the next day.
I tried using a hotter blow dryer and I knew I needed different tape.
I used duck tape. I do not recommend this, but I was desperate to find something that would stick!
If anyone has done this before, please share your tricks!
I attempted it again. With the hotter blow dryer, It worked much better! Anddddd the duck tape sticked!
If you do use duck tape, be careful. It will melt if it gets too hot.
After having the tape not work the first time, I decided to paint the letters.  
So after lots and lots of patience and melting the crayons until I got it justttttt right.... I was happy.

One of the very exciting things about this project is that you never know how it is going to end up.
There is lots of room for trial and error because the wax is never permanent.
If you don't like the way it looks in a certain area, you just heat it up with the blow dryer and move it around some more! You can also chose to melt more wax to make it chunkier, or just a little and move it around more for that painted look.
But most importantly, remember to take your time.

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Picture Plaques!

While browsing online I kept stumbling across very cute decorative frames, that almost made the picture look like it was mounted on a plaque! Something like this:
And for the life of me, I could not find frames like this anywhere! So, I decided I could make something similar!
I started off buying small wooden plaques (from Walmart for less than a dollar), 
some paints, and I already had some Mod Podge laying around the house!
 The  wooden plaques I decided to use were a little bigger than a standard 4x6 picture, 
you could of course use larger or smaller plaques!

I used 5 plaques and painted them all different colors. Black, Grey, Cream, and a contrasting Pink.
I painted the plaques and waited for them to dry.
(the wood dries fairly quick!)

Then, I used a little Mod Podge on the back of the picture to help in adhere to the frame. Placed the picture in the center of the plaque and applied Mod Podge over the entire thing.
(Don't worry about the Mod Podge ruining the pictures, it doesn't wrinkle or run the colors.)
Letting it dry in-between, I applied several layers.
When they were all good and dry, I stapled ribbon to the back and hot-glued some handmade bows in the center!
They are very easy to hang, a simple nail will do!

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Monday, December 19, 2011

DIY Frames

Amanda wanted to make some sort of framed wall hanging that included a picture and the quote "distance means so little when someone means so much"- because her boyfriend lives in Mississippi, and she lives in Michigan. 
We took a trip to Michael's and purchased two plain wooden frames, and a piece of cream-colored scrapbooking paper (we already had the paint and glue at home). 


First, she painted one of the frames a cream color to have a base coat for the stripes. While she let it dry, she painted the other frame black. They both took a very minimal amount of paint. 


After the cream frame was dry, she took blue paint tape and created diagonal stripes across the frame. Then, she painted grey across the entire frame. 

While letting the stripes dry, she worked on the black frame. She took the piece of scrapbooking paper and wrote her quote in black Sharpie. She cut the paper to fit the frame and secured it into place. 


When the striped frame was dry, she peeled off the tape! It turned out very cute!

To attach the two frames, she used all-purpose craft glue and let it dry. Then she put her picture in the frame. 

After the glue was completely dry, she used white ribbon to create the hanging piece. She simply stapled the ribbon into place on the back of each frame and this is how it turned out! :-) 

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Thursday, December 15, 2011

Reindeer Feed!

While roaming on, yet again, we came across a yummy snack that we wanted to make!
It is called Reindeer Feed and is made of Rice Chex, white chocolate chips, and candy canes!


It's really simple to make and it takes about a half an hour.
We started by putting 6 cups of Rice Chex into a large bowl.

 We crushed about 4 candy canes, enough to make 1/3 cup
(you can also use peppermint candies. We found it easiest to crush the candy canes in a plastic Ziploc bag.) 

Then, we melted 2 cups of white chocolate chips in the microwave (takes about a minute and a half).

After it is completely melted, we mixed in HALF of the crushed candy canes.

After mixing, we added it to the bowl of Rice Chex, making sure to thoroughly cover it all. 
We laid out clear plastic wrap on the table and spread the mixture flatly on top.

Finally, we sprinkled the rest of the crushed candy canes on top.

And after letting it cool for about 20 minutes, we broke it up into many pieces and enjoyed!
Yummy, Yummy!