December 29th, 2014
I just love white on white on white for Christmas this year. I’m also working on keeping things simple. So I created a few simple DIY banners to put the finishing touches on my Christmas Mantel.
This Crepe paper banner is super fast, cheap and easy. I just bought a roll of cream crepe paper (for $.99!), and gathered it by bunching and pushing it through the sewing machine. Easy peasy!
I created a tiny felt flag banner using my Cricut Explore to cut a sheet of white felt. The best way to cut felt with a Cricut Explore is to iron-on Heat n’ Bond to the back. You’ll need to peel the backer paper off, and press the bonded side down on the mat.
I cut a ton of little diamonds out of the mounted felt. These are 1.25″ tall.
I used white thread to string the triangles. A thin white twine would have been a bit easier to work with.
I placed each diamond about 1/2″ apart, and then folded them down into triangles and pressed them with my iron.
I love the sweetness of the final banner.
For the scallop banner, I sewed 2″ circles down the middle, and folded them over. And the ball banner was a super affordable pom pom banner from Michaels.
I also created these super simple doily trees to finish off my little villages houses by cutting a 12″ doily into quarters.
And then used some hot glue and my Ad Tech High Temp large format glue gun (my fav!) to glue it cut-end to cut-end. I do recommend possibly using a low-temp, or using a finger guards when glueing thin paper with holes.
And there you go, doily trees!
Check out more pics of my Christmas Mantel:
December 19th, 2014
Decorating for holidays is always harder in a new house. I love all my Christmas decor, but our new house has a more simple feel to it. So as I was brainstorming my mantel, I kept trying to distill it down to a clean and simple design. I just love how it turned out. It’s so striking in person. Simple, but makes a statement. literally.
I created the “Oh Come Let Us Adore Him” using Silhouette matte black vinyl and my Silhouette CAMEO and Silhouette’s really awesome Vinyl Roll Feeder which makes cutting big lengths of vinyl a breeze. .
I kept the decor simple by using a monochrome color pallet. White everything, with simple fresh greenery and black text. I made the same white village houses that I had made for my Christmas tree this year.
Simple white doily trees add a little variation to the simple skyline. And I made a few white garlands to layer over the white stockings.
All the textures and layers of white give the monochromatic scheme a lot of depth, and nothing competes with the gorgeous reclaimed wood fireplace surround.
I love how this mantel looks and feels in my house, and am excited for not having to think so hard next year!
December 1st, 2014
For the Michaels Makers Challenge this month, I was asked to make a creative gift and custom gift-wrap.
For my gift, I decided to create some sewn journals. These are an easy and inexpensive gift, and they also make great stocking stuffers.
I ended up making 5 journals for this gift, but a set of 3 is pretty standard, or just one with a ribbon and a pen is still a great gift.
Paper Pad (the one I used is only $5 today! And you can make up to 48 Journals with it!)
Basic Sewing Machine
Step 1: Cut your cover to size. I used full-sized letter paper (8.5×11) and placed it on a 12×12 sheet of paper that I had cut down to 8.5″ leaving the width 12″. I used 12 sheets of paper – this will create 24 papers, and 48 pages (back and front).
Step 2: Fold and sew. The way that I do this is to fold the cover sheet ONLY, crease the fold and then unfold. This gives you a guide for sewing. Then place the papers centered on the fold, and sew up the middle.
The end result will look like this.
Step 3: Use a bone folder to crease the spine. I can’t think of a single tool that does this job as well as a bone folder. I’ve had this one since my bookbinding days at college. Definitely a great investment!
Step 4: Trim. Once your spine is folded. You’ll need to use a NEW xacto blade to trim ALL of the edges. Place your straight edge firmly where you want to cut, and then use the xacto knife with medium force to slice through all your pages. You may need to cut more than once, thats okay. Better to cut a few times with medium force, than to hit it with full force and ruin the edge.
Trim the top, bottom, and side for a perfectly-edged journal.
Step 5: Repeat for as many journals as you want to make!
For the wrapping part of this project, I wanted to create a box that perfectly fit the journals. I did this by hand, but you could use a Cricut Explore (that cuts and scores in the same pass!).
Ad tech Permanent Glue Runner
Ad tech Hi Temp Glue Gun
Step 1: Measure your journals to get the finished size of the box. Mine was 8″ x 5″. Then add on the height of the stack of journals. Mine was about 1″. You’ll have to add the height measurement to each side of your original rectangle. Then if you desire, you can add another .5″ to fold back over so that you don’t have raw edges on the final box.
Step 2: Use a bone folder to score all of these folds. Then use scissors (or xacto knife) to trim around edges, and cut out flaps like this:
Step 3: Fold box along all score marks, glue tabs with a glue runner, and then glue the flaps and fold into place.
Step 4: Cut a cigar band to hold the journals together, and tie a ribbon around them. Then place inside the box.
Step 5: Measure the size of the top of the box using the bottom of the box as a guide. Add about 1/8″ total for the top to fit on the bottom. Cut glitter card stock and score.
Step 6: Cut flaps, fold all scores, and use a hot glue gun to glue flaps in place.
Step 7: Put top box onto bottom box, and tie with ribbon, and embellish with ribbons, wood veneer tags, and a stem.
Check out the other Michaels Makers this month:
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*This post contains affiliate links. Product for this project was provided by Michaels Craft Stores