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Monday, October 24, 2016

Fabric Letters

I've wanted to make fabric letters for a long time. Then I found this version on Pinterest and I fell in love with it - I wanted my letters to look EXACTLY like these - I wanted the same frayed edges and adorable fabric (which I discovered is Toy Chest by Penny Rose Fabrics - to me it has the look of vintage children's books and that is so perfect for these letters).

 BUT the fabric is no longer available to buy. Luckily, I found exactly what I needed for sale on Etsy (shoutout MixFabrics) for a reasonable price and it came in adorable packaging!  win/win/win

Step one was to create the alphabet patterns and cut them out.  If you want to use the font I used here is the free template.

My fabric came already cut in 5 inch squares.  So the next step was to cut fabric backing and batting into just a little bigger than five inch squares.  Use your rotary mat and cutter and this goes pretty fast.

Then I laid out my fabric squares to make sure I liked the color order.

Then you make a fabric sandwich and put your letter template on top and trace around it with a fabric marker.

 Then you sew about a 1/4 inch inside your drawn lines, because the lines will be your cut line.

I had a lot of fun playing with the letters - hopefully my littles will too!

Then I took a leap of faith and washed and dried the letters in the washing machine/dryer.

They came out like this - which was scary!

But after a lot of thread clipping and ironing - I think they turned out very:

Monday, October 17, 2016

Rope Bowl - "Make it Work Moment"

I saw this DIY rope bowl on Pinterest and I really wanted to make one - I thought it would be perfect to use when trick-or-treaters came by my office. I planned to use orange, yellow and white thread to make it look candy corn inspired.

At first it went fine, but then after you make a flat coil, you're supposed to hold the coil up and then sew more layers around - making the edges of the bowl.

I made two different attempts and ended up very frustrated and it just did not work. This doily-looking thing is what I ended up with.

So I tried a different approach.  I had a "make it work moment" (for anyone who doesn't watch Project Runway, that's become Tim Gunn's catchphrase).  I had read that you could do a no-sew version, by hot gluing the rope, so I tried that.  I used a glass bowl as a form and covered it with saran wrap to protect the bowl.  I think parchment paper would have been a better idea, because the glue got on the saran wrap and it became an integral part of the interior of the bowl.

I left a space on both sides and did two more rounds of rope and that created handles.
So - I got my bowl even if it wasn't exactly what I had envisioned.  On to the next project!


Monday, October 10, 2016


I have some ideas in "pre-production" and I have some ideas at the back of my mind and I'm still in the brainstorming phase with some ideas.  But I don't have any finished, well-photographed projects to share today!  So I thought I would share my ideas.

1. Fabric letters - I have fabric ordered - this one is definitely happening!

2. Felt trees - I have the materials but I don't have the drill I need - this one is on hold for now.

3. This is a pin I keep thinking about - I'll try it sometime in the future.

4. Mmm- fried mac and cheese is my favorite food! I keep thinking I'll make this sometime, but it hasn't happened yet.

5. I'm also trying to figure out a creative way to display some of the Christmas printables that I designed (and are for sale on my Etsy shop). This one I'm still brainstorming.

Come back next week to see what I have accomplished!

Monday, October 3, 2016

DIY Felt Paper Clip Bookmarks

Starbucks coffee cup from felt, DIY bookmark, gold paperclip
I've been using my prayer journal that I created here recently but it's been driving me crazy to have to flip through the pages to find the next day, so I knew I wanted to create a bookmark - and not the traditional kind, since it's a small 3 ring notebook, because it wouldn't stay put. So I settled on a paperclip bookmark. Since my journal has gold dots on it's cover - I wanted a jumbo gold paperclip and I also needed felt (luckily I had a bunch left from when I did Hadley's Quiet Book

I made several and decided the method I like best is to cut a front and back for the main piece and sew the design to the front piece (sequins or other felt pieces) and then sew the plain back piece to the paperclip.

 I made this one because my most recent nickname from my family is Kitten Paws and any time we're talking on Facebook, when my nickname comes up, I use this Pusheen paw as my signature!
Cute coffee cup, evocative of Starbucks!


Monday, September 26, 2016

Instant Download Fall and Christmas Art

Last Thursday was the official First Day of Fall - let's celebrate!  I have presents for you - at the end of this blog - keep reading!!

The past several weeks I've been re-vamping my Etsy shop and its new focus is Instant Download Digital Art.

It's fun for me to create it.  My process includes painting watercolor pieces and then scanning them to use in digital design.

I have always loved decorating with words.  I love to read, I love the written word, I love setting the tone for the space with the words you use - I believe in the power of words.

A couple weeks ago, I updated my blog header (see above ↑) to a watercolor turquoise background that I painted - to add some consistency to my brand - watercolors and modern calligraphy!

Soon after that I designed and unveiled my new Etsy logo:

and today I'm revealing my new Etsy header:

Here are some of my favorite designs for sale on my Etsy shop, The Burlap Flower and I would LOVE for you to go check out all of my designs and let me know what you think!


Thank you for reading my blog, thank you for checking out my 
Etsy shop and thank you for your support!! ♥

Present #1 - use coupon code FALL2016 to get 10% off anything in my Etsy shop

Present #2 - one of my Fall designs that you can download here for free!

Monday, September 19, 2016

Transferring a Printed Design to Wood

Last week, I posted about how I found a wooden box at Goodwill and upcycled it by removing the dated handle and painting the box with milk paint.  The other part of the project was to transfer a design onto the top of the box to make it even more Christmas/vintage looking.  My step 1 was to design what I wanted to transfer.  Taking it back to before step 1 - here is my design inspiration - the fictional Inn in one of my favorite Christmas films - White Christmas.

Back to step 1 - here is my design:
Step 2 was to reverse the image using photo editing software:

Then I did a test using a method I found online - which was to print on regular paper and brush the back with water and then rub the ink into the wood.  This method didn't transfer very well and came out kind of blurry and light.

So I searched for another method and found this tutorial on Pinterest that was very helpful: 

It directed me to print the reversed image on freezer paper, on the shiny side and then position it and rub over the back it with a credit card. The freezer paper is very important - not saran wrap, not waxed paper, not parchment paper - FREEZER PAPER.

Since I was using milk paint, which requires an oil rubbed finish, I decided to transfer the image on after I'd painted but before I applied the oil.  This is how it looked after that step.  I think I could have rubbed it harder and it would have come out darker, but I was worried it might smudge.

I gave time for the ink to dry and then I did applied the oil.  I was really concerned that the oil might smudge the ink, but it didn't!



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