Creative Office Gallery Wall and Burlap Canvas Project

July 15th, 2014

I’m so excited about my Michaels Makers project this month. A few weeks ago I received a surprise package in the mail. I opened it up and it was full of so many fun “raw” items from Michael’s new RAW BAR line of products. I love all things burlap, so I was drawn to the 6×6 burlap canvas and immediately knew what I wanted to create.

Makers

Since we just moved into our house, all our walls are bare. This little burlap canvas was just the push I needed to create a gallery wall in my office.

burlap1

When I saw the canvas I knew I wanted to use the Hazel & Ruby stencil masks because they are pretty much the easiest way to make cute crafty projects.  I had a sample of their brand new “cut your own stencils” and used is to cut this “Joy” (that I hand-wrote on my computer and turned into a digital cut file) on my Silhouette cameo.

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I placed the stencil mask directly on the burlap (it’s adhesive on the back), pressed around the edges to keep the paint from bleeding, and then painted over the “Joy” using a white acrylic paint.

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Then all I had to do was peel off the mask, and there you have it, an adorable little canvas and the burlap is pretty much perfect for any decor. How easy was that?? Hardly any work at all.

burlap4

Okay lets move onto the gallery wall. So my office had nothing on the wall, just a big white space waiting to be decorated. Inspired by this little burlap canvas, I gathered things from around the house, old frames, picked up more items and frames from Michaels, and even painted a few things. This is what I put together:

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Each of the items on the wall has a story. Spencer drew this illustration of San Francisco for me 5 years ago when we lived in San Francisco.

sanfransisco-print

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Michaels one-click projects – 4th of July Party

June 13th, 2014

MichaelsMK
I was recently asked to be part of the Michael’s Makers team of bloggers, which basically means that I get to create and post projects on my blog once a month for Michaels, and I get to be part of a talented group of crafty women. I was thrilled to be asked to be part of this team, but when I saw what an amazing group of bloggers they assembled I was blown away that they asked me.
This month I chose to create these cute 4th of july projects with the help of the new Michaels.com one-click projects feature (which is ingenious).
4th-party-all
Michaels just recently launched their new online shopping website (long awaited for internet shopping junkies like me). One of the best features of their new site is the Projects section, where you can see projects and, with one click, add pretty much all the items needed to your shopping cart. Brilliant.
Surfing through the projects available, I came across a ton of great holiday projects, including many 4th of july themed projects. And because I love to plan a good party, my two favorite projects were these USA Mini Cupcakes, and Silverware Holders.
michaels-4th-utensils
I was able to easily add the items to my cart and then I only had to buy a few more items to be able to tackle these projects. 
Like a cake mix, coconut, and berries! This was actually my first time making mini cupcakes. And let me tell you, I don’t think I’ll ever make regular sized cupcakes again! They are so cute, and each cupcake uses like 1/3rd as much batter as a regular cupcake, so you get a bajillion cupcakes out of one cake mix. Perfect for my two little boys (the size, not the quantity hehe).
4th-cupcakes-1
 I also love that part of the project is displaying the cupcakes in the cupcake tin. So if you are taking this to a party, not only can you make several trays worth out of one cake mix, you have a super easy way to transport and display them.
4th-blueberries

How To: Sew a Diagonal Strip Quilt

January 18th, 2014

quilt_full_theprojectgirl

Strip quilting with the Quilt As You Go method is pretty much the only way I can quilt these days. It’s such a quick and easy way to make a simple quilt, and be done with it in a matter of hours. I call it my 2-nap quilt, as I really can only quilt when my boys are napping, and a strip quilt takes about 2 nap times to get done start to finish. And lets be honest… I haven’t had much time to practice extensive quilting techniques, so this is pretty much as good as it gets for me right now.

Here’s a quick tutorial on my diagonal strip quilt, it’s a little bit more tricky than a standard strip quilt. First step is super easy – I cut 5″ strips out of all of my fabrics – You can do this with any size strip – a jelly roll would save you time on the cutting, but take more time on the sewing. I like the 5″ because I can cut all the left-over strips in half and use the 2.5″ for binding strips.

All the fabric is from my new line with Riley Blake Fabric - Lost & Found 2.
quilt_patterns_theprojectgirl

I laid them out in an order that I liked, and then moved onto the batting and backing. You want to cut your backing to your final quilt size (give or take for squaring up). For this quilt, I used the whole width of the fabric – so like 44″ and for the length I went about 64″ Then I cut the batting to match. I use a 100% cotton backing because it has a nice tack to it and sticks with the cotton fabric without any shifting. I iron the backing to the fabric with a hot iron to make the two pieces stick better to each other, and to remove any wrinkles. And I’m laughing as I look at this really wrinkly picture! I must have ironed it after this!

I wanted to make a diagonal strip quilt (never done this before), and thought it would be cool if I started at one corner, and then reversed the diagonal. So first step was to make a base-line to end my first set of strips.

quilt_layout1_theprojectgirl

I used my fussy cutter, to get a good straight edge from my fabric. I used my long ruler to follow that line and draw directly on the batting.

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Okay so I don’t have a photo of the next step, but basically I laid out all my strips FACE-UP on the batting, starting on the baseline I just drew, and trimmed the ends about an inch longer than the end of the quilt.

Then all you do is start sewing. I rolled up the majority of the quilt so it would fit in my machine arm, laid down my first strip and sewed it down right-side-up. I just use a standard sewing foot and keep my feet in a normal position.

quilt_sew1_theprojectgirl

I took my second strip, and placed it right-side to right-side – matching up the seams, and sewed down. quilt_sew2_theprojectgirl

Flip the strip over – exposing the right-side. I recommend pressing this down to keep all your seams nice and flat. Then you take the next strip and again place it right-side to right-side – match up the seams, and sew.

quilt_sew3_theprojectgirl

 

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