November 29, 2010

Pieced Heart Applique Tutorial

Our grandmothers, aunt and mother are all quilters and while I love quilting too...I don't seem to get around to making any since they're large projects. I need something quick and easy but that will give me the same satisfaction of putting together scraps of fabric. Here's my solution: pieced applique!

1. Choose 3 pieces of coordinating fabric. I went with my trusty combo of pinks and greens - taken from my stash of scraps. Other choices could be navy and pink, blue and brown, yellow and red, turquoise and red... you get the idea! (Just make sure they are pre-washed and ironed.)

2. Cut fabric into strips that are 1.5 to 2 inches wide and 3 to 6 inches long. No need to be precise! I was too lazy to make them the exact same and it doesn't matter AT ALL! Great, huh?

3. Sew 2 strips together - right sides together using a quarter inch seam.

4. Sew the 3rd strip on- same as above.

5. Iron seams flat toward darker fabric so that they don't show through the light fabric. That's a quilter's rule!

6. Iron Heat N Bond onto the back of the strips making sure to keep seams flat and the fabric flat. Again, no measuring. Watch your fingers! (I use Heat N Bond Lite that you can sew with. It comes on a roll with a purple label at JoAnn's.)

7. Let cool for a minute!

8. Draw a heart shape onto the Heat N Bond but be careful not to press too hard and poke a hole through to the fabric. I like to use a stencil but the more adventurous might like to draw it freehand and fun! (I find my shapes online, print and trace onto plastic found at JoAnn's in the quilting section.)

9. Cut out heart.

10. Iron onto shirt per Heat N Bond instructions. Let cool!

11. Zig zag stitch around the edges.

12. Hand sew a vintage button for an added detail.

*Fabric choices and color combinations are endless!

*The number of fabric strips can vary anywhere from 2 to 5 or more pieces depending on the strip widths and size of the heart. Don't be exact... cut the pieces different sizes!

*Appliques can be added to shirts, placemats, hand towels, bath towels, aprons, bags, scarves, etc.

* Applique shapes are endless. Search online for outlines of shapes or draw freehand.
Stars, numbers, letters, animals, etc...

If you have any questions, leave it in the comments section for us to answer.

And make sure to find us (and some pieced applique shirts!) at the Lankenau Hospital Christmas Fair  in Wynnewood, PA: December 2, 9:00-5:00, December 3 10:00-4:00.

November 22, 2010

Bead Wreath

I'm jumpin' on the wreath bandwagon.  There have been so many marvelous wreaths blogged lately!  It's such an easy and fun way to spice up your front door, your mantel or a wall.  Here's what I did with some beads.  What do you think?

Glue gun with extra glue sticks (lots of em)
Styrofoam wreaths (I did two little ones but you can do any size!)
Beads (I got natural wood beads @ Michaels.)
Pretty Mexican oilcloth to protect your table (totally optional!!)

Start gluing!  It's seriously so easy and I did it during naptime.  
(By the way, do you see the bite marks on the styrofoam?  I totally let Ginger chew it while we walked around Michael's.  A mom's gotta do..... )
I didn't bead all the way around--just enough so that when flush against the wall there was no green styrofoam showing.  I wanted it to lay nice and flat. BUT, I do think I will go back and bead all the way around because I like it in my window and I don't want any green showing when you are looking in.

Here it is hanging in the window with a red grosgrain ribbon.  It's so versatile that you could just change the ribbon for the season.  I toyed with spraypainting it because I was originally inspired by this awesome acorn wreath but I do like the color of the beads with my chestnut woodwork.  Maybe in the future I will when I tire of it?

And again on my mantel.  Another idea for these is to put on a table with a big pillar candle in the middle.  Could be another reason not to bead all the way around....crafter's choice!

Have fun!

November 17, 2010

A moment of thanks-giving.

One of my favorite blogs, Tea Rose Home, is doing a Thanksgiving Giveaway.  How do you win?  Go on over to her blog and comment about what you are thankful for this year.  She has a gorgeous necklace, handbag and a $50 gift card to M&J Trimmings to giveaway.   Initially I was a little bit shallow thinking, ok I am going to enter I must have that necklace!  But as I was typing "I am so thankful for the love and health of my family...." I got a little teary-eyed.  Truly it's been a wonderful (albeit stressful at times) year for us but I do feel so blessed and it was nice to get it down on paper.  Okay, well, type it out and blog it.  Whatever.  I am grateful!!

Here's to another great year and a happy holiday season!  Now go enter Tea Rose Home's giveaway.  Cheers!!

November 16, 2010

New Link Party @ Vintage Pollyanna

Hello friends!  Check out the new Tuesday link party we're thrilled to be linky to today with our American Girl Headband tutorial.  Allison over at Vintage Pollyanna is very talented in all things crafty and homemaking so take a look and please, share your talents!!

November 15, 2010

Easy Peasy American Girl Headband Tutorial

My girls just got American Girl dolls and they love them.  One of the outfits they have came with a headband.  I took one look at it and in my best mom voice I said, "I can make that!"  And the result is the easiest accessory.  Seriously, maybe 20 minutes.  Maybe.  Give or take a few because of three girls running in to ask, "Are you done yet, Mom?"  It's not unlike other tube-type headbands out there but this one makes use of a hair rubberband as opposed to elastic.

Sidenote: If you haven't already, pop on over to Cleverly Inspired and enter her giveaway for a matching toddler and American Girl dress!!

Another Sidenote: I don't pretend to have any talent taking pictures.  And, I also took pictures as I was making several of these bad boys.  Don't hold it against me!

Here is the headband to be replicated.  See how they snipped the hair rubberband?  

Cut a piece of fabric 12 in by 2 in.  
 Iron in 1/2 in at each end, wrong side touching wrong side.
Fold fabric in half lengthwise, right side touching right side.

Stitch up the side, about 1/4 in (I'm not a terribly exact sewer.). 
Zig Zag stitch to finish.  You should now have a "tube" with both ends turned in.
Iron the tube directly on the seam, flattening it to one side.  
You'll be glad you did this after turning it inside out!
Pin safety pin to one end and turn tube inside out.  
It's tough at the beginning to get the pin going, but then it takes two seconds!

 Iron the tube directly on the seam, to get rid of wrinkles and 
get you a nice smooth headband.  Here is where you are glad you ironed 
down the seam on the other side, yes?
Take a nice hair elastic (preferably a small Goody) and slip it under one of the folds.  Straight stitch to close.  I began in the middle, backstitch and then forward stitch.  It's not pretty, but my machine is not good *at all* 
in tight spaces. Slip the other side of the elastic under the other side's fold.  
Do the same as above and stitch that closed.  

Voila, you are done!  Isn't it cute?  An almost exact replica of the American Girl version.  
And guess what, it's way cuter fabric, yes?!

See the rubberband underneath?  The "real" deal cut the hair rubberband, slipped it through the seams and then tied the ends of the hair rubberband together with some string.  I think this way is much sturdier.
Ruthie is sooooo happy!

November 11, 2010


I met Flannery in New Jersey and picked up my niece last Saturday to come visit with us. My three girls were thrilled. The little girls, who are only 6 weeks apart in age, have had a great week playing dress up, building forts for only girls, eating ice cream sundaes, going on preschool field trips and lunch dates, getting in trouble with markers and scissors and... getting sick. They both have head colds now so they had to do some snuggling this afternoon. They love each other like crazy and fight like crazy. It's funny to watch.

I love having my niece here. She said, "Corney, when I grow up I want to be you." Doesn't get much better than that!

November 8, 2010

Wine Cork Wreath

I looooove collecting wine corks.  I usually display them in a pretty vase on the bookshelf, much to my husband's dismay.  :)  I put the corks to good use last year and made a Christmas ornament.  This year, I made a wreath!

Supplies needed:
glue gun & glue
wine corks (A LOT!)
styrofoam wreath

I'm definitely going to make this wreath again (maybe for a lucky sister or friend!?). Lessons learned:  Next time, I will wrap the wreath with ribbon before gluing the corks, to make the spaces in between the corks less noticeable.  Also, I'm going to buy a thicker ribbon, possibly in a deep red color, to hang the wreath.  FYI, have a knife on hand in case you have to cut a cork or two in order to make them fit!

November 4, 2010

Not-Quite-Vintage Three Sisterz

Vintage is described as being atleast 20 years old. Well, this picture was taken 10 years ago and it might not be true vintage, but it feels like forever ago. Before boyfriends, before 2 husbands, houses, minivans and babies... but ALWAYS Three Sisterz! Thanks Mom for always saying, "Get one of the three girls!" So glad you did!

Circa 2000.

Courtenay (pregnant w/Colleen) age 27

Flannery age 23

Molly age 18

November 2, 2010

Pick a pin, any pin!

Okay, so I was going to hold off on this post until next week.  You know, try and stretch out my creative madness since it ebbs and flows these days.  BUT, I'm in some serious accessorizing heaven at the moment.  And I'm having some serious bloggy blog love with Vintage Pollyanna.  We got together last night to do some cross-bloggin-craftin-chattin.  It is seriously so much more fun to craft with someone else who a) you admire their abilities; and b) you like their sense of style and artiste.

So here is what I made yesterday.  I'm in love.  My OCD (and the dark roast coffee) kept me up until past midnight wanting to do more.  (Stupid when I have three sick kids and one sick hubbo.)

Here is it modeled after Plumtickled's Rosette tutorial.  It goes against my need to sew a straight line but I love the finished product so.  Seriously, am I the only type A sewer/crafter that is hating the gathered ruffles thing?  Love the look, hate the process.
Here it is adding some spice to a jean jacket.
And a little bit of color to a gray top. Can it get any cuter?!

Um, yes it can.  Look at it on a bag!

Another up close shot because you need to see it again.  Well, really, I need to because I lovingly (slightly begrudgingly?) handed over to Vintage Pollyanna.  It looked too good on her.