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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Ready to dye?

Sometimes when you are getting ready to do a craft, you can't find the right material to use. You can find the fabric, but not the color you would like it to be.  So don't forget there are many things you can do to fabric to change the color.  In the background of this bunny is white plush felt.  White felt/fur is pretty easy to find, getting it in colors? that's another thing.  Didn't really want the bunny white, so I coffee stained the felt and got the color I liked.  I did the same thing with the cotton that was used for the body as well.  After I finished this one bunny, my husband suggested bunnies in other colors for Easter.  Wait....what?  It was a good idea, and then came the use of Rit dye.
 If you didn't know there are different kinds of dye and the have different purposes.  There are dyes that are intended to be used with plant based fibers and ones that you would use with animal based fibers.  For example, you wouldn't want to use Rit dye (dye intended for plant based fibers) on wool (animal based fiber)  Hope this isn't confusing, just thought you would want to know.  Actually, I should say, I couldn't guarantee what kind of results you would get.  I had done some work with Rit in the past so it wasn't my first time using the product.  I would recommend the liquid dye, it is more expensive, I think a $1 more for liquid then powder, but it doesn't like undissolved dye spots on your fabric.  I wanted the plush felt pastel looking in color, so I went easy on the dye in the water.  I added hot water to my kitchen sink, its the easiest to bleach clean, you will want to think about how much water you will need to cover your material.  I used about 12", so I didn't need much water, probably a gallon at the most, and about 1-2 T. dye.  I soaked the fabric in the dye solution for about 30 minutes.  Because I knew these rabbits weren't going to be washed I didn't cold water rinse the fabric.  I rung it out by hand and allowed it to air dry.
Here are the colors I ended up with.  Sorry there aren't bigger pieces for you to see the colors better.  In my excitement to see the finished bunnies, I quickly cut them out.  But the results were a soft pink, blue, yellow and , of course, lavender.  Hope this makes you want to try your hand at using dye.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Where do ideas come from?

 This was a Christmas card that my daughter got this past year, she loves birdies. I thought this would look good on a towel.
 So I picked out some fabrics and drew out some birds.
 Here's kind of what I kind of came up.  I picked out which bird and which wing I wanted on each piece of fabric.  You will need to iron Wonder Under or some other fusible web, onto the wrong side of the fabric.  Then take your pattern piece, and place it on the paper side of the Wonder Under, and trace this design.  Cut this out.

 Here you can see the bird and the fabric through the Wonder Under.
 You will need to take the paper off the back of the bird.  I like to use a pin to help with this.  Put the birds on the towel and iron them into place.  I machine stitched around the edge of the birds and the wings, you could do this by hand if you like.  You can add whatever else you would like. 

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Take an idea and run with it

 Sometimes some one else does a turn on your post - amps it up a level and its just too cute not to share.  So, in a previous post we took a pop can and turned it into a scoop and a candle holder.  Painted it and added some spice.   How about a soup can that you paint and add a candle and a pick to the top?  How cute is that!
 Here is a salt dough bowl, that wasn't painted.  The 'fabric' pieces are salt dough that has been painted and then several sewing items are placed in the bowl. This one is my personal favorite, gift from a friend!
Remember the snowman bowling pin?  This is a bowling pin that was covered with wrapping paper that looks like sheet music.  What would we do with out Mod Podge?  Hope this inspires you to try something new today!

Snowman-no snow required!

 So how much do we love snowmen that we can make and not get cold making? 
 So the container these little guys are in is a black lunch bucket,  you could use anything you wanted, but these are pretty easy to pick up at a thrift store or garage sale.  It would be a great way to re-use an old tool box that had sentimental value to you.  You are also going to need some screwdrivers.  Probably not a good idea to use your husband's, just saying, so go ahead and pick some of these up and an antique store, or garage sale as well.  I used some that had wooden handles and some that had plastic,  you are going to paint them, so either will work.
 Next I hot glue a styrofoam block to the bottom of the lunch bucket. This will be what you poke your screwdrivers into to help hold them up.
 I used shredded up sheet music, but you could use whatever else you had or can come up with. That will cover up the block of foam.
 Now for the snowmen.  I used aluminum foil and made balls, covered the balls with oven bake clay. Baked them, like the clay will tell you to, and then hot glued them onto the end of the screwdriver.
After they were baked and cooled, I used acrylic paint and painted the whole thing with two coats of paint.  Add eyes and nose and wahla! you are done.  I used Sharpie markers for eyes and nose, black for eyes and mouth and orange for the nose.  Stick those little guys in the foam and add some lights if you like and you are finished with a cute little arrangement that can smile at you on even the coldest days.  Hope you enjoy!