Scrap Wood Shamrock Signs

2-DSCF3176Scrap Wood Shamrock Signs

This project really took on a life of its own.

I sell lighter, smaller things on Etsy, mainly because bigger, heavier things are more expensive to ship. So what do I do with the furniture and wood things that I make when I am not doing craft shows?…I sell them on Facebook.

Facebook has several local selling pages for people that want to sell just about anything. I post a picture of the item, describe and price it. When someone is interested, they contact me and I send them info on where to pick it up.

1-DSCF2844A customer that bought one of my scrap wood hearts a few weeks ago asked if I would be making anything for St. Patrick’s Day. Honestly I hadn’t even considered it. With the cold weather and snow I was pretty sure it wasn’t going to happen, but then last weekend there was a few hours that were almost spring-like. I knew it wasn’t going to last so I gathered and cut wood to make signs.

1-DSCF3162Construction…

5-DSCF3189…and painting could be done indoors.

4-DSCF3181I made four and posted them on Facebook…and WOW! Within a couple of hours I had sold all four and had orders for nine more.

Who knew St. Patrick’s Day was such a popular holiday!?!?!

Making the extra orders was not as much fun. We didn’t get a lot of snow, but the wind managed to pile that small amount of snow around, on top of and in every crevice of my wood pile. I was about frozen by the time I pulled out the wood I needed for the signs. Then, of course, there was the time I spent freezing in the garage while I cut the boards.

4-DSCF3186Since the wood was in the snow, it was pretty wet. I went ahead and built the signs, but then I had to allow them to air dry overnight before I could paint them.

7-DSCF3197When they were dry, the assembly line really got moving. I made five more than I needed to fill orders because I knew we were in for more frigid weather and the idea of digging for more wood was/is definitely not appealing.

Enjoy!

Cutter Quilt Knapsack

knapsack 7Cutter Quilt Knapsack

I made this project last year, but I never posted it on my blog. I had cut pieces to make a few more, but didn’t get around to finishing them. Since the weather has turned frigid again, it’s the perfect time to pull them out and complete them. That’s what I’m working on today.

Stitch up a shabby chic knapsack using an old worn quilt that is no longer useable as it was originally intended. This quick-to-sew project is designed with exposed seams, giving it a charming scrappy appearance. If you would like to give this project a shot, here is my tutorial.

Things You Will Need:

Old worn quilt
1/8 yard muslin
Measuring tape
Scissors
Sewing machine
Straight pins
40-inch cord of your choice
Bodkin or large safety pin
Button, velcro or snap

2-DSCF1107Cut knapsack pieces from an old cutter quilt:

Body-(2) 15-inch-tall by 17-inch-wide
Pocket and Flap-(1 each) 7-inch-square
Handle Loop-(1) 2-inch-wide by 8-inch-long
Straps-(2) 2-inch-wide by 36-inch-long

From muslin, cut one 4-inch-wide by 32-inch long strip for the drawstring casing.

Top stitch around all the cutter quilt pieces 1/4 inch from the edges. This will secure the layers of the quilt together.

knapsack 1Lay one body rectangle on your work surface with the right side facing up and the long edges running horizontal. This rectangle will be the front of the knapsack. The long edges are the top and bottom edges of your knapsack. Place the pocket square on the rectangle with the right side facing up. Position the bottom edge of the pocket 2 1/2 inches above the bottom edge of the rectangle. Center the sides of the pocket between the sides of the rectangle. Top stitch the sides and bottom of the pocket, 1/4 inch from the edge, connecting it to the rectangle. Note: The edges will be exposed throughout the project unless otherwise instructed.

Place the two body rectangles together with the right sides facing out. Align the edges. Cut a 3-inch square from both bottom corners, through all thicknesses. Pin the side and bottom edges. Do not pin the cut out square corners. Sew the pinned edges using a 1/4-inch seam allowance.

knapsack 2Open a corner and diagonally squeeze the opening. Match the side seam with the bottom seam, with the right sides facing out. Pin the edges together. Sew the pinned edge using a 1/4-inch seam allowance. This creates a boxed corner. Repeat on the remaining bottom corner of the knapsack.

knapsack 3Lay the knapsack body on your work surface with the back facing up. Measure in 3/4 inch from one bottom corner. Place one end of a strap on the bottom seam at this measurement. Pin to hold. Pin an end of the remaining strap 3/4 inch in from the other bottom corner. Sew over the pinned ends using a 1/4-inch seam allowance.

knapsack 4Lay the knapsack body on your work surface with the back facing up once again. Find the center of the top edge. Stack the unsecured ends of the straps together and pin to the top edge of the body back. Pin an end of the handle loop on each side of the stacked straps. Center one edge of the flap square over the pinned loop and straps with the flap facing wrong side up. Fold the muslin casing strip in half with the long edges matching. Find the center of the casing length and pin the raw edges to the top edge of the knapsack’s back through all thicknesses. Continue to pin the raw edges of the casing around the top edge of the knapsack. You will have a gap between the ends of the casing on the front of the knapsack. Sew the pinned edge using a 1/4-inch seam allowance. Yes, all the layers make the back section quite thick, but it can be sewn through. A heavyduty (jean) needle is recommended.

knapsack 5Attach a bodkin or large safety pin to one end of a 40-inch length of cording. Thread the cording through the casing. Adjust the cording with an equal amount exposed from each opening of the casing. This is the drawstring closure for the knapsack.

knapsack 6Flip the flap over the top and to the front of the knapsack. Attach a button, velcro or snap to the front and flap of the knapsack to close.

knapsack 7(sigh) I love my machine and I used to love the buttonhole foot, but the finished one in the photo has a button/buttonhole closure. My sewing machine seems to have issues lately with making buttonholes, so the ones I am finishing today will have velcro closures with buttons for decoration. Since I’m sure Brother reads each and every one of my blogs with immense interest, Brother Sewing Machine company, I would be happy to test out new models. ;) LOL! Just saying…

Enjoy!

Scrap Wood Heart

8-DSCF2841Scrap Wood Heart

What a beautiful day! I’ve been itching to get outside and work with my wood and today was the perfect day.

My wood is fairly organized since our move, it just isn’t in the place I want it to be. I probably should have worked on moving it today, but since it’s a job that will take a day or two I am hoping for some help. I decided today would be a creative day. Hey, at least that would mean a few less boards to move when I get around to it. ;)

1-DSCF2822With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, I could see lots of hearts in my wood pile. I cut a large heart pattern from wrapping paper and started pulling out a few boards.

2-DSCF2828After placing the boards side-by-side, I traced the pattern on top of the arrangement. After that, cutting each individual board was a piece of cake.

3-DSCF2826I dry brushed the front of each board either red or pink.

4-DSCF2824Finally a project I could use my pink paint on! Yippee! I like pink anything.

6-DSCF2830I cut two braces for the back of the heart shape and attached them with screws.

7-DSCF2834My heart shape was approximately 17 inches both ways. Perfect for hanging on a door or an entryway wall. I attached rusty baling wire for the hanger.

8-DSCF2841I’m hoping to make more this week since the weather is supposed to be nice for a couple more days.

Enjoy!

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!