Thursday, January 13, 2011

Bead & Ribbon Necklace

So I know that this week was supposed to be all about T-Shirt redo's and it still is, but my new sewing machine and I are still in that getting to know you phase and sewing flimsy t-shirt material is kinda like going all the way and lets just say things have been a little awkward for us.  The next t-shirt project is super cute but not perfect just yet, so I didn't want to blog it just yet.

While I had the machine out I wanted to make a really quick and cute bead and ribbon necklace.  This tutorial is really easy so don't be scared of the sewing part, really, I promise.  If you can (basically) sew a straight line you are golden. There are so many versions of this out there and I had anticipated doing this with an old t-shirt instead of ribbon, but my giveaway bag of old things was in Oliver's room and I generally sew during his nap.  If my kids didn't wake up from a creaking floorboard three houses away I would have grabbed something and ran out but I never chance these things.  Two hours to craft, cook and straighten up is too precious.

What You Will Need:
Ribbon (or any lighter weight material) about 44" long
Beads (about 10 depending on size and desired length)
Sewing Machine with matching thread to your fabric
Embelishments of your choice

1.  Fold the fabric or ribbon around one bead and leave a 1/4" on each side for your 1/2" seam allowance.  Next cut the fabric or ribbon to size.

2.  Fold the fabric inside out and sew along the edge to form a tube.

3. Turn your tube right side out.  Place your first bead at the center point in the tube and knot on both sides.  Continue using the same method for all of your beads.

4.  Fold the ends inside the tube leaving a finished edge.  Measure to make sure both sides are even.  Insert your ribbons into the tube and sew down.  I secures the ribbons twice to make sure they dont pull through.

5.  To finish you can use a fray sealer so the ribbons wont fray but I decided to glue two black rhinestones around the edge for a more finished look.

That's it! Pretty stinkin easy.  I didn't have anyone around to shoot a picture of it on but I promise it looks really pretty.  I will upload one later.  This was my snow day project with Ruth.  She put each bead into the tube and I tied them up.  It took me all of 15 minutes and if I didn't have the best 2 1/2 year old assistant helping me it would have taken me under 10.  It did feel a bit like life coming full circle sewing with my daughter Ruth who is named for my grandmother Ruth.  When she passed I was only 12 but I gave my father strict instructions that I needed to have her sewing machine, sewing box and vintage buttons (which are amazing!).  She taught me how to sew many many moons ago and I still use her sewing kit and tools to this day.   Now I'm making new sewing memories with my little Ruthie and it feels very special.

Friday, January 7, 2011

The Weekender

Image from Sweet Paul

So its been a while and it feels really good to be back in the game.  I have so many exciting things planned for next week so here's hoping that I can get my act together and post about them.  I can't believe its supposed to snow again this weekend.  This has been a crazy winter so far and it just started!  I remember snow days being much more fun when I was the kid not the adult.  Don't get me wrong one snow day is great but the last blizzard kept us inside and home from school for five days...not so fun (although Ruth did get potty trained so it wasn't all bad).  Here's what I was thinking for this weekend:
  •  Do you remember these? I picked them up on my last trip to Ikea and I've been waiting for the perfect time to break them out.  Good thing my iron is ready from my last post!
  • I think the snow is the perfect time to bake something homemade.  I saw this on this recipe on Sweet Paul and it looks perfect.  
  • Do any of you watch Mad Men?  I Just finished Season 1 Disc 1 from  and Disc 2 is set to arrive this weekend.  I cannot believe that I am just getting into this show now!  Super awesome in every way other than the fact that it gives me the urge to chain smoke and drink cocktails throughout the day. Thank you to my awesome brother Jeremy for always being on top of all good things pop culture.  One day he promises to do some guest blogging and let us in on all things cool, one day...
In other news, here are a few things that I thought were cool:
  • I just used the Martha Stewart Living Paint Collection available at Home Depot for my husbands new offices and man did those colors come out awesome.  There are very few things that Martha can't do right (well there was that one big thing around 2005...I kid, still gotta love Martha).  
  • Have you ever hear of Alt. Summit?  Its a super great resource for bloggers that takes place ones a year in Salt Lake City, Utah.  This years guest speakers are none other than Mondo Guerra and Seth Aaron from Project Runway!  I am jealous of everyone going...I have major L.O.V.E. for Mondo.  Air kisses Mondo... 
  • I saw this video on Design Mom and I had to share.  This is one of the coolest pieces of technology that I have seen.  I am awed by the people who create this stuff.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Sparkle T's

Over the next few posts I will be doing a few easy tutorials on how to remix some t-shirts for your kids (or possibly yourself).  The posts will start off at the easiest and fastest  and gradually get a little more advanced.  Today is the most basic of remixes the super simple sparkle t, and older child could easily help you with this with proper supervision.

First start with any plain t-shirt, mine was $2.49 on clearance at The Childrens Place.  Any t-shirt will do, but a cotton shirt tends to work best for this. My shirt actually got a pizza stain after one wear and would have otherwise been relegated to the pajama drawer if not for this redo, so its a great way to salvage an otherwise good shirt.

Wash and dry your shirt, but skip any fabric softener.  Almost all of the manufacturers directions are the same but make sure to read yours carefully.  My decals came from Michaels (where else?) and cost $0.99 each. 

Peel off your iron-on and place onto your shirt.  Heat iron to the cotton setting.  Flip garment inside out.  Hold iron firmly in placefor 15 seconds and then move in circular motion for an additional 10 seconds.  I generally find that I need more time than this, but take it nice and slow because if you overheat the decal wont stick.  I like to press with the tip of the iron until I see the glue on the rhinestones adhere though the back of the shirt.

See I told you is was simple.  Voila! You're all done! This shirt cost under $5 and took me 5 minutes to make.  Doesn't get easier than that. Already working on my next t-shirt, be back soon...

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Tableware for Tots

Smaska 3 Piece Cutlery Set, $3.99, Ikea

I'm back from my blogging hiatus (its never too late to take a vacation, right)! Over the holidays I was remodeling and decorating my husbands new offices (that post is coming soon and the transformation is amazing).  Most all the furniture was purchased at Ikea and since its not like me to completely stay on task,  I was able to steal away to the childrens department for a few minutes.  I found so many cute (and inexpensive!) things.  My favorite find was the Smaska tableware collection.  A set of three plates is just $3.99, and the bowls are only $2.99 for three.

Everything about this set is perfect.  The sizing is just right, not too big but not too small.  The plates have high sides which makes it so much easier for younger children to scoop up food without it getting all over the table.  Best of all?  They are microwave safe!  Is it just me or have the rest of you noticed that so many childrens plates are not microwavable?  Why, why, why?  Has no one else heard of leftovers?  Is every other mothers food going fresh out of the oven onto the plates every single night? I hope not because if so I am doing something way wrong, and my children will have what to tell their therapists about me when they get older. Seriously though, I was using a paper plate to reheat leftovers and then transferring it onto the kids dishes.  A total waste, right?  An added bonus is the easy color coding for those of you that keep kosher: blue for dairy, orange meat, and green is parve. So simple.

I'm not gonna lie, I was a little nervous that my daughter might not like them since they didn't have Dora or Diego plastered everywhere, but actually this is her favorite tableware set so far.  Last night we did a color themed dinner.  I cant seem to remember who or where I stole this idea from but I didn't realize the genius of it until it was put into action.  We used the orange plate and bowl and and made an all orange dinner.  We had meatballs (okay not exactly orange, but cut up into the pasta they didn't stand out), pasta with marinara sauce that I lightened with a tiny bit of soy milk, mashed sweet potatoes (which we must call yams in our house or Ruth won't eat them, since she is adamant that she "doesn't like potatoes."), and orange juice.  She was so excited by the monochromatic color scheme that she ate everything without question!  This is a great idea for all the colors: yellow (mac and cheese or eggs, corn, apple juice, and a banana), red (hot dog, pasta, red peppers and apple slices), etc.

Kladd Prickar 2 pack bibs, $3.99,  Ikea

We also got the Kladd Prickarr bibs.  A 2 pack was just $3.99! These long sleeved bibs have been working out great for my little guy at supper time and my older one likes to use them for arts and crafts since they have a big pocket in front to hold crayons and markers.  I also picked up a bunch of great textiles on clearnace for $0.99/yard.  I'll show you what I'm going to use them for in a future post.  Glad to be back!