Vintage Hankie Chicks

6-DSCF2810Vintage Hankie Chicks

I’ve got spring fever. Yep, I said it. I also knocked on wood just now in hopes that I don’t jinx it. We have had a few days of mild weather and I am excited. I shouldn’t be…it seems like a good portion of the country is bracing for a doozy of a winter storm. We’re bound to get some kind of trickle down from that. :(

8-DSCF2818Rather than dwell on what could happen, I am enjoying what we have now. I dug out my vintage hankie collection to make spring chicks. I think they will look cute for Easter and decorated spring vignettes.

2-DSCF2699I have lots of hankies to choose from. They’ve come from grandmas, aunts, yard sales, auctions and thrift stores. I pretty much collect them from every possible place they may be available.

01-DSCF2642I think the colors and designs are more interesting and unique than fabric by the yard, not to mention the memories or conversations they will evoke.

02-DSCF2644I was able to get three chicks from one hankie. I could have gotten more, but I focused my cut pieces on the best design areas on the hankies.

03-DSCF2650I used one pink hankie for the combs on all of my chicks, and I used a scrap of yellow fabric for the beaks.

7-DSCF2814The eyes were beads from old broken jewelry.

Enjoy!

Scrappy Quilt Bracelets

21-DSCF2694Scrappy Quilt Bracelets

16-DSCN4483You may remember my scrappy fabric tags I made a couple of years ago. I loved that idea.

02-DSCF2577I have been working on expanding on that idea by turning scrap cutter quilts into wearable art…more specifically I wanted to see if I couldn’t turn these scraps into bracelets.

I’m a little embarrassed to say that each step took a little bit of refining until I was able to get a consistent result with each one that I tried. I almost threw in the towel a few times, but the time wasted and each failed attempt just made me even more determined to make it work.

My first fail was cutting the strip for the bracelet. I didn’t take into account the quilting stitches on the quilt. Quilting stitches hold a top, middle and bottom layer together. When I cut a small strip, it basically peeled apart in large areas. Stitching on vintage quilts is also unreliable. There were areas where the seams came apart. AARGH!

01-DSCF2580My fix for those problems was to top stitch over the surface of a scrap of quilt. I emptied a spool of thread while meandering in a scribble design.

03-DSCF2586I was then able to cut my bracelet strips without them falling apart.

04-DSCF2601The next step was getting the words onto the strip. I decided to use my character stitches on my sewing machine. That worked the first couple of times and then…AARGH! Old quilts can be kinda lumpy and my machine didn’t want to stitch the tiny letters over the lumps. I finally tried stitching the words on muslin. Eureka!06-DSCF2608

I then stitched the the muslin to the strip in my favorite shabby way.

15-DSCF2673If you want to try this and you don’t have character stitches on your machine I also tried it with stamps as an alternative.

07-DSCF2616I embellished around the words with little pearl beads.

The next failure was the buttonhole. Yep, for the same reason the character stitches didn’t want to stitch…those !@#$% lumps. AARGH!

Deep breath. I was not going to let this project beat me!

17-DSCF2682Light bulb! I finally had good luck with a button/loop closure. Elastic cord formed the loop.

09-DSCF2625With the bracelet strip placed on canvas fabric and the knot of the loop inserted under one end, I stitched around the edges of the bracelet a couple of times. Just like the shabby tags, I didn’t stitch perfect lines.

13-DSCF2637After stitching the canvas backing to the bracelet I trimmed the excess away and added a button to complete the closure function.

14-DSCF2686And then like eating potato chips, I couldn’t stop at just one.

Enjoy!

Red and White Quilt Valentine Charm Pillows

08-DSCF2541Red and White Quilt Valentine Charm Pillows

My husband and I went to an auction this past weekend and didn’t get anything that we went there for. That’s okay! We didn’t leave empty handed.

01-DSCF2518My hand went up for this fantastic vintage quilt. The colors and the basic patch square design had the wheels turning in my head. Classic country, Americana accents and, of course, Valentine’s Day were just a few of the ideas that came to mind. Since Valentine’s Day is right around the corner, I decided to start there.

02-DSCF2575I dug out a couple of heart shapes from my pattern stash. I love the shape of the large heart. The humps are kinda squared and the center has a wider, deeper valley.

03-DSCF2522I make a lot of bowl fillers and pillows, but theses little hearts fell in between the sizes I normally do for either one. I still thought the size was charming, so I am calling these “charm” pillows.

10-DSCF2544They can still be placed in bowls or baskets, but they also look sweet on a shelf or tucked up next to a regular size throw pillow in a chair or on a bed.

04-DSCF2530I used the smaller heart to cut out red velvet hearts. I appliqued them to the pillows, along with a flowers I snipped from doilies.

11-DSCF2547Old pearl beads stitched to the center of the flower and an old button stitched to the appliqued heart completed the charm.

I still have some of the quilt left for the country and Americana ideas I mentioned. Stay tuned. ;)

Enjoy!

Valentine’s Day Etsy Listings

5-1-DSCN4402New/Old Etsy Listings

Finally!

Yes, Finally!

I have finally been able to unpack my Etsy merchandise that I had packed away when I was preparing to sell my house. Yep, do the math. That was eons ago. I had added things to my shop as time went on, but the things that were packed up and stored stayed that way until now. It was kinda like Christmas when I opened my boxes!

I added all my stash of Valentine merchandise yesterday.

1-fb scrappy tagsDo you remember these scrappy tags?

6-2-DSCN4406How about these owls?

4-Etsy HeartsThe chenille and quilt hearts?

3-Etsy Hearts-001Ticking hearts?

2-DSCN4786Painted blue jean hearts?

I don’t have a lot of each one left, but it felt good to get what I had posted. I’m working on some new things made from a great “junk” find I found at an auction last weekend. Can’t wait to show you.

Enjoy!

Recycled Sweater Christmas Stocking

DSCN3830Recycled Sweater Christmas Stocking

When I see old sweaters at yard sales I have to buy them. The fact that yard sales in my area are often held when the temperature is over 100 means sweaters are practically given away. These sweaters are a cheap craft resource for holiday crafts. In my opinion, this Christmas stocking design looks much more upscale than the original sweater it came from. Can’t you just see a bunch of these hanging over a cabin fireplace, or down the rail of a pine garland clad staircase? Depending on the size of the sweater and the size of your stocking pattern, you should be able to get at least two stockings from each sweater. Three, if you open the sleeves and use the cuffs as the top edge.

Things You Will Need:

Adult-size sweater
Stocking pattern
Straight pins
Scissors
Sewing machine
Iron
Measuring tape
Rickrack
2-inch pompoms (two)
Hot glue gun

DSCN3812Turn an adult-size sweater wrong side out and lay it on your work surface. Align the bottom edges of the sweater. Place an existing Christmas stocking, or a paper stocking pattern on the sweater. Align the top edge of the stocking shape (pattern) with the bottom edges of the stocking. Pin the pattern through both layers of the sweater. Cut around the pattern. Note: The top of the stocking (bottom edge of the sweater) is not to be cut. It will be the finished edge for the the top opening of the stocking.

DSCN3820Remove the pattern. Pin the side and bottom edges of the sweater stocking shape together. Sew the pinned edges using a straight stitch and a 1/4-inch seam allowance. Sew around the edges once again using a zigzag stitch on the seam allowance. This will finish the raw edges and prevent the knitted stitches from unraveling. Turn the stocking right side out. Press the seams with a warm iron.

DSCN3828Lay the stocking flat on your work surface. Measure across the width of the stocking at its widest point. Double that and add 24 inches. Using your new measurement, cut a length of rickrack in a color that coordinates with your sweater.

Measure 1 inch down from the top edge of your stocking. Starting on the front seam of the stocking and 12 inches from one end of the rickrack, pin the rickrack around the stocking. The rickrack will meet again on the front seam of the stocking. Both ends of the rickrack will have approximately 12 inches extending. These tails will be ties. Top stitch the pinned rickrack around the stocking.

Tie the rickrack tails in a knot against the seam, then tie into a bow. Trim the tails to the desired length.

Burrow a hole on one side of a 2-inch diameter pompom. Apply hot glue in the hole. Place one end of the rickrack in the glue. Squeeze the edges of the pompom hole around the rickrack end. Repeat with the remaining pompom and and rickrack end.

Cut a 5-inch length of rickrack. Fold the rickrack in half, matching the two cut ends. Place the ends inside the stocking, against the back seam. Sew across the cut ends of the rickrack. This is your stocking’s hanger.

Other trims and tassels handmade with yarn can be substituted.

DSCN3830Enjoy!