Sweet Heart Mini Quilt

For Valentine’s Day I designed this little heart mini quilt. Size it up or down for a wall hanging, pillow cover, baby quilt or whatever you feel like!  To make…

Fabric Covered Buttons

I’ve been making a lot of covered buttons lately, to turn into adoption fundraiser earrings. Today I wanted to share with you a basic tutorial on how to make fabric…

Patchwork Scarf Tutorial

Hello, and welcome to visitors of the 12 Gifts of Christmas blog hop! Twelve sewing and quilting bloggers have joined together to share handmade holiday gift tutorials to get you…

Tiered Plate Stand

This was my week 2 entry for One Month to Win It contest. Thanks to all those that voted! The contest started with 12 contestants and each week 3 are voted off. I just found out that I not only made it to week 3, but I was the winner for week 2 with this entry!

Besides sewing and crafting I also really enjoy baking (yes, I did make the cupcakes above). So I decided to make myself a spring/Easter inspired tiered dessert tray using Mod Podge, which was the required item for the contest this week. This ended up being a lot more work than I was expecting so I came up with an easy method option for those without access to a workshop. The great thing about making one of these is that you can customize it for a special event or match it to your decor. And if you don’t bake you can always use it for displaying decorative items!

Easy way: Buy melamine plates and short (around 6″) table legs or candlesticks. Paint the table legs or candlesticks if necessary. Use epoxy to glue it all together. Our local Target has a nice selection of everyday and seasonal melamine plates and bowls that can be individually purchased. I think this would be fun with a bowl as the top piece that you could fill with M & Ms, nuts or candies.

Hard way (also known as the way I did it):
Materials list: one 8 oz. jar outdoor Mod Podge, three ceramic plates, two 6″ table legs, one can of white enamel spray paint, one piece of 1/4″ all thread, one 1/4″  bolt that fits the all thread, one 1/4″ T nut (it’s the lower left item in the photo), a rubber washer, enough fabric to cover your plates, six self- stick 1/4″ rubber feet (or three 1/2″ if you can find them), 1 bottle white puffy paint
Other supplies: pliers (depending on your table legs), drill, 5/16″ ceramic bit, wood saw (optional to trim down table legs), hacksaw

The photo below shows my plates (I started with two of each just in case any broke during drilling but none did) and the rubber washer, all thread, T nut, and bolt.

1. Remove any hardware from the table leg with pliers. 2. I cut the 2″ ball off the top of one of my two 6″ table legs with a wood saw. Then I drilled all the way through my 6″ and 4″ pieces, and drilled 3/4″ into the bottom of the 2″ ball. 3. Drill a 5/16″ hole through the center of each plate (the photo shows only partway drilled through). Make sure to wear eye protection and a breathing mask to protect you from ceramic bits and dust. 4. Hammer the T nut into the bottom of the ball.

Next, clean any dust and dirt off the plates and table legs and spraypaint them all white. Do several light coats of paint.

Then, working on one plate at a time, paint a thin layer of Mod Podge onto the bottoms of the plates. That will help hold the fabric in place as you brush more Mod Podge on top of the fabric to permanently hold it down. I found it easiest to 1. Brush Mod Podge on the fabric around the bottom of the plate 2. Mod Podge the sides 3. Add any pleats if necessary to keep the fabric from wrinkling 4. Trim off any excess fabric.

When the bottoms of the plates have dried, flip them over and do the same process on top. For the top two plates 1. Brush the plate with Mod Podge first then place the fabric on top 2. Brush Mod Podge on top of the bottom of the plate 3. Work your way up the sides 4. Trim any excess fabric. 

For the bottom plate 1. Brush the bottom of the plate with Mod Podge 2. Position strips of fabric touching but not overlapping 3. Brush on a heavy coat of Mod Podge so you don’t disturb the edges of the fabric and cause them to fray 4. Use an x-acto to trim excess fabric.

Adding the border to all 3 plates was done the same way just with different widths of fabric. 1. Use a brush to put a line of Mod Podge around the edge of the plate. 2. Attach the fabric. You can choose to fold under the edges or leave the raw edges. I tried both and both ways worked. 3. Mod Podge around the edge of the plate in sections, adding pleats as you go to allow the fabric to lay flat. 4. Cover the edges of the border and inside the pleats with several coats of Mod Podge, allowing it to dry between layers.

Once all your Mod Podge has dried 1. Use white Puffy Paint to add a circle of little white dots just inside the fabric border of each plate and let that dry. 2. Cut the inside of rubber washer so it fits around the T nut. 3. Use an x-acto knife to cut an X over the hole you drilled in the top and bottom layers of the fabric on each plate then put the all thread through the bottom plate and screw the bolt onto the bottom side of the plate Then (not pictured) affix the rubber feet to the bottom of the plate. If necessary, stack up two rubber feet to raise the plate high enough that the bolt isn’t touching the table top. 4. Stack everything up to the top plate then mark the all thread 1/2″ above the top of that plate. Remove it and use a hacksaw to cut it. Then stack everything back up again and screw the ball you prepared in step 2 of this segment on top. Once the ball is tightened everything should be very sturdy.

Now stand back and admire your work!

Fresh Picks for Friday, 4.15.11 and Giveaway Winners!

Sunburst Pillow from Noodlehead

Here Comes the Sun: Anna from Noodlehead guest blogs at Versus to show off this stunning Sunburst Pillow with a tutorial.

Needle and Spatula

Time for Tea: Kate spruced up plain sugar cookies with springy pastels at Needle and Spatula.

Gen X Quilters

Baby Blues: AnneMarie at Gen X Quilters quilts with an unexpected fabric.

Winners!

The 10 winners of the bias tape giveaway are:

37: Tracy (April 9, 2011 at 9:11 am)

29: Christi (April 8, 2011 at 8:13 pm)

90: June B (April 14, 2011 at 9:12 am)

32: Savannah (April 8, 2011 at 10:06 pm)

17: robin (April 8, 2011 at 3:00 pm)

18: DianeH (April 8, 2011 at 3:11 pm)

43: Michelle T (April 9, 2011 at 7:38 pm)

62: Kathy h (April 11, 2011 at 9:33 am)

11: Mary Ann Miller (April 8, 2011 at 2:21 pm)

82: Sarah (April 13, 2011 at 9:59 am)

Congrats to the winners, who have been notified by e-mail. If you didn’t win, but would like to learn how to make your own bias tape, stay tuned for a tutorial next week!

Giveaways Roundup
Check out the Craft Buds Giveaway Roundup this week, with 25 current giveaways to enter! It’s updated each week, and you are always welcome to link up your craft supplies or handmade giveaways.

Start a Craft Business: Online Fabric Store

Remember when we heard from Anna at Crafty Girl’s Workshop about starting her own fabric retail business? Today, we’ve got some great inspiration from another craftyprenuer, Sarah Lang!

Sarah was so kind to share with us about how she decided to start her online fabric store Fabric Seeds. It’s a new venture, formed just this year, and we’re excited to watch it grow like seeds, planted and nurtured. (There’s also a coupon code for her shop below.)

 

1) What made you decide to take the plunge into fabric retail?

I have always enjoyed going to a fabric/quilt shop. Even if I was there the day before, I have to look at every bolt before I can leave. I never thought I would one day have my own business selling the fabrics I love.

I used to work for a major airline, in the reservation center. I had a desk job that was not always busy and was allowed to bring something to occupy my time. I started doing my quilting there. I would even bring along my graph paper and colored pencils to draw out new patterns. And, to my great surprise, my quilts started to sell.

Last April I was affected by one of the many lay-offs my company had to endure. My first thought was how nice it would be to have my own little quilt shop. I could spend all day surrounded by pretty fabric. I really didn’t have many options, however. I was pregnant with my second child, and due in 4 weeks. As the months went by, I thought more and more about doing an online shop.

2) What were some of the logistical things you had to think through when starting a business?

The biggest thing I had to think about was taking money away from supporting my family to support my business. After many discussions about operating a business and if my family could support it and any possible loss, I decided to go ahead and follow my dream. I did online searches on how to start a business in my state, made multiple phone calls to each department, asked the same question over and over until I understood what I needed to do, what forms I needed to fill out, and in what steps. Doing this on my own was a great learning experience. Lucky for me, the state of Utah has a one-stop business registration application.

3) Which tools did you choose to start your shop and why?

Now that I had been registered as an official business, I needed set up the rest. I went with a hosting company that I had heard of and I was familiar with some of their products. I knew absolutely nothing about putting a website together or how to add a store, so it took longer than I’d anticipated. The website has been the most frustrating part of the whole process. I wake up in the middle of the night and wonder if I had set up the credit cards the right way, did I list a particular product right, or did I forget about shipping, or taxes?

4) What are some of your favorite fabric lines?

I am a lover of all fabric. I love paisleys and argyles, stripes and polka dots. Some of my recent favorites have been Lollipop by Sandy Gervais, Urban Remix by Ann Kelle, Central Park by Kate Spain, Sugar & Spice by The Quilted Fish and Tailor Made by Cosmo Cricket. I like that Moda has a large number of SKUs per line, the boyish prints from Robert Kaufman & Riley Blake Designs (they are sometimes hard to find) and the many color combinations that can be acquired through pieces of fabric. There are so many great fabric manufacturers and designers. We are lucky to have the awesome selections we do today!

5) Any favorite quilting or sewing tools?

I love my 1/4″ foot for my sewing machine. If you don’t know about this foot, it has a little guide on the side of the foot to help keep the fabric aligned, kind of like a serger. I recently found the coolest tape measure no quilter should be without. It is the Yardage Tape Measure by Dritz Quilting. It measures 288″. Not only does it show inches, but also yardage starting at 1/16 yard. It is perfect for knowing just how much backing you will need (I am working on getting this in my shop).

6) What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about starting her own handmade or crafts retail business?

If it is something you really want to do and are serious about making it happen, find a way to do it. Research your market. I didn’t come into this lightly. Not only had I deliberated for months on if I should start a business, but I also looked at others in the same market. How they started, where they are located, what they are selling and for how much, what their website looks like, etc.

And most important, get the support you want, talk about your plans and think it through. I never would have done this if it wasn’t for others telling me how I should be selling my quilts and patterns. I am lucky to have the support of my husband, whether he actually wants to or not, he still supports me. :) It might mean that we will have to live off Ramen noodles and potatoes, but without that support, I would not be able to carry out my dream.

Sale!

Thank you Sarah for teaching us all a little bit more about the craft retail biz! Because Sarah is so generous, she’s offering readers 20% off anything in her store through April 30, 2011. Head over to Fabric Seeds and pick use the coupon code craftbud20. And check out her blog for updates!

Giveaway

Just a reminder that the Bias Tape Giveaway ends at midnight tonight (10 winners will be announced in tomorrow’s Fresh Picks). Hurry over!

“My Peeps” Shirt with Free Printables

The herald of spring and Easter has arrived in stores, the marshmallow peep! Now that it’s arrived I thought I would make a shirt for my son featuring the peeps. I used a stencil to paint the image on a separate piece of fabric because I liked how it looked and as a bonus, after Easter I have the option to remove it from the shirt and save it for next year! But you could always paint it directly onto a shirt.

The materials I used: one Garanimals shirt from Wal-Mart ($3.50 for a new shirt, awesome!), paint brush and Tulip soft matte paint in glacier white and sunshine yellow, a 5″ x 3.5″ piece of knit fabric, thread and sewing machine, cutting board and x-acto knife, my free peeps printables/stencils PDF.

In the PDF I included 4 pages to give you a few different options and you can choose your favorite peep, the chick or the bunny. The pages include what you see below in the color versions and in a black version that’s easier to use for a stencil.

 

To make the shirt just print out the page including the image you want from my PDF. Cut out the letters/image with an x-acto knife. Then line up the stencil on the fabric and paint in the letters and images. I just freehanded the inside of the “e” and “a” and the lines inside of the chicks. You could also cut the eyes, the lines in the chicks, and the insides of the letters out of tape and paint over them then peel off the tape with tweezers while the paint is still wet. After the first coat of paint I let everthing dry then removed the stencil and did a second coat to clean up the edges and fill in the colors more uniformly.

Next, position the fabric on the shirt, pin it down and stitch it. I used yellow thread to contrast with the gray knit fabric. And I used a knit fabric so I could leave the raw edges and not have to worry about any fraying or hemming.

And that’s it! A fast and cute shirt ready to go.

Fresh Picks for Saturday, 4.9.11

Lots going on at Craft Buds yesterday, including this Bias Tape Giveaway and the launch of Mary’s pattern shop! So I’ve held off on posting the fresh picks until today. Here are some fresh ideas to get you thinking crafty this weekend.

Fabric Doilies Mobile

Sweet Dreams: Erin at Lemon Tree Creations guest blogged her darling doilies mobile tutorial at Tatertots and Jello.

Lemon Cupcakes

L’il Squirt: Caitlin shares the recipe for her delicious-looking lemon cupcakes at Blackberry Jam!

Worry Cat

M-reow: What’s a worry cat? Read Amy’s story about why she made this little cutie for her son at Made During Quiet Time.

Dying Fabric in Strips

Dye Trying: Learn how to dye fabric in sections from Nicci at Dye ‘n Stitch. Hint: You’ll want a ketchup bottle!

Giveaways Roundup If you haven’t stopped by, make sure you check out the Craft Buds Giveaway Roundup, with 12 current giveaways to enter! It’s updated each week, and you are always welcome to link up your craft supplies or handmade giveaways.

Another Craft Buds Giveaway! Custom Bias Tape

I’m currently participating in the One Month to Win It contest and the results for Round 1 are in and I made it to Round 2! See the previous post for my ABCs and 123s Wall Hanging entry for week 1. We started with 12 contestants and each week 3 are voted off. To celebrate making it through the first round and to welcome any new visitors from the contest, we are giving away ten, yes TEN, packs of custom bias tape. I love custom bias tape but it can be a bit of a hassle so I made it for you with a little help from my Bias Tape Maker! The bias tape is made with Happy Dots in Apricot fabric from Amy Butler’s Midwest Modern Line and each pack is three yards.

To win just leave a comment below (one comment per person please). We’ll leave the contest open until midnight EST on Thursday, April 14 then randomly draw the names of ten winners and contact you by e-mail on Friday. To enter you must be a follower of Craft Buds. Please make sure your e-mail is included in your profile or list it in your comment as example(at)gmail(dot)com to avoid spammers. If we don’t have a way to contact you we’ll have to pick a new winner. Good luck! (Open to U.S. and Canada)

Extra details: The tape is 1/2″ single fold but if you want 1/4″ double fold just iron it in half.  It is homemade so it’s not as perfect as store bought!

*4/15/2011, 12:00 AM EST, Comments are now closed! Look for the winners to be announced in tomorrow’s Fresh Picks!*

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