Sunday, April 10, 2016

The Tiny Tink Basket: a tutorial

I know you guys are going to want to make a million of these! They're so fast and fun and useful. I'm already planning several for friends. these three are currently living in my sewing space and holding all sorts of things like pincushions, clover clips and rolls of thread.

Start by gathering your supplies: coordinating exterior and interior fabric, embellishments and some thicker fusible interfacing.

Cut four 5.5"x7" pieces of fabric, two from your exterior fabric and two from your interior fabric. Now cut two 5"x6.5" pieces of fusible interfacing. (These are horizontally laid out.) Now iron your interfacing onto the backs of your exterior fabric pieces. At this point you can choose your front piece of exterior fabric and stitch on your embellishment choice.

Once you have that done, place the right sides of your interior fabric pieces together and stitch along the sides and the bottom, leaving an opening at the bottom, about 2.5" long. See my purple guidelines in the top left photo. Take the exterior fabric pieces and place right side together. Machine stitch along the sides and bottom using your interfacing as a guide. Now cut out 1.5" squares from the corners, lining up your ruler with your stitches and measuring from there. See the lower right picture.

Now machine stitch the corners together on both pieces so you have flat bottoms. Put the interior fabric inside your exterior, right sides facing and machine stitch along the top to join your pieces together.

Flip the basket out through your bottom opening in the interior fabric. Once you've got it turned the right way out, you can close up your lining opening and machine stitch it closed. Now position your interior lining just a bit over the top edge and top stitch to finish your basket. You now have a cute little fabric basket! Go ahead, make a whole lot more, you know you want to!

Okay guys, I hope this is helpful for you and if you're on Instagram, use the hashtag #tinytinkbasket so I can see your creations. Happy crafting!


Monday, March 14, 2016

Sending some Elephant Love

Susi over at TinyToffeeDesigns makes the most adorable tiny paper pieced patterns ever. I was super excited when she asked me to be a part of her blog hop BUT also, really perplexed. You know I'm not a paper piecer, right Susi? And then I looked at the pattern and thought, she gave me the hardest one?! But oh boy, was I wrong because there are no hard ones! This little pattern was so easy to whip up. And if I can do it, anyone can.

I started with the little elephant, making one slight change, which was adding the 'ground' he's standing on. Then I extended my image size by adding extra fabric to match the sky I already started with. Susi designs these for 1" hexies but they're so versatile. Once I had a picture that was large enough to fit a 4" embroidery hoop, I ironed the whole thing onto a piece of adhesive stabilizer (Pellon 987, or whatever weight works for you). The hearts were created using Pellon 805 Wonder-Under, a dual sided interfacing that basically turns any fussy cut fabric into ironable 'stickers'. After the hearts were placed and adhered, I started adding the details like a tail and the air.

Once I was all finished, I tightened that little elephant into the hoop, trimmed the excess fabric and hot glued the edges to the inside of the back of the hoop. That's it! This was such a cute tiny pattern to work with so check out TinyToffeeDesigns etsy shop to get yours. And if you have any questions, just let me know!

Happy crafting!

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

The Paperie Blog Hop: The true love pincushion

I'm so excited to be a part of the Paperie fabric blog hop along with so many other talented makers (To see the list, just visit the NanaCompany blog). Paperie is the first line of fabric from Amy Sinibaldi of NanaCompany and it's adorable! Perfect for just about anything, but I like to keep my projects short and simple, because that's about all I ever have time for! So, if you're making some of the other larger projects with your fabric bits and need something small to use up the leftovers, this is perfect.

To make the linen embellished pincushion you'll just need a few supplies. Linen, iron-in stabilizer, your favorite Paperie print, some matching floss and a little ribbon or lace for embellishment.

Now here are your cuts to get you started:
4" square piece of the iron-in stabilizer
3 3/8" x 3 1/8" hearts (or your choice print) fabric
5" square piece of linen (for the back)
1 1/4" x 3 1/8" strip of linen (x2)
1 1/4" x 5" strip of linen (x2)

To get started, just center your middle fabric and machine stitch each side linen strip down to the stabilizer. After you give it a quick press, attach the top and bottom linen strips. At this point, you're ready to hand embellish your pincushion top.

Once you're happy with your handy work (I did a simple running stitch around the center), you can put the right side of your front and back together, add your ribbon loop facing inside, pin and machine stitch closed following along your stabilizer as a guide. Don't forget to leave an opening on the top or side to allow for turning right side out and stuffing.

Now that you've trimmed the excess, turned your pincushion right side out and given it a quick press with a hot iron, it's time to stuff it and hand sew the opening closed. I prefer to fill my small pincushions with crushes walnut shells which you can find online or at your local pet shop (as reptile bedding). There, you're done!

It's a very easy make, using equally adorable fabric. I hope you guys enjoy making this as much I did. Look for Amy's line Paperie from Art Gallery Fabrics. You won't be disappointed!

Cheers and happy making!

The Paperie Blog Hop: Embellished tags for giving or keeping

So, I promised a project for crafters, and a project for sewists. They're both equally cute and useful and each are great ways to bust some scraps and use up every last precious bit of Paperie.

Paperie is the first line of fabric from Art Gallery Fabrics designed by Amy Sinibaldi of NanaCompany and i'm sure it won't be her last. So let's make some gift tags.

If you follow me on Instagram, I gave you guys the heads up to buy some gift tag packs from Targets dollar spot but if you didn't get a chance to, any old chipboard tags will do.

Here's what you'll need to get started:
Chipboard tags
Ribbon or lace
Wood buttons or scrapbook embellishments
Fabric scraps at least larger than your tags
Mod Podge
Foam paintbrush
Hot glue gun

Cover about three quarters of your tag with a thin layer of mod podge. Lay a scrap down on the tag and press down flat so no bubbles form, making sure to press firmly near the edges.

Now cut some ribbon or lace bits to length and hot glue them to your tags to hide the raw top edge of the fabric. Once you've finished all your tags, you can start to trim the excess from your edges using a ruler and an exacto knife, rotary tool or scissors.

Now you can start to hot glue on some wood buttons or stars or hearts for the finishing touch. That's it! Just add some twine or ribbon to tie them onto packages and gifts and don't forget to make a million because you'll be sad to see them go!

I hope you guys enjoy this little project and head over to Instagram (I'm tinkerellen) for a fun giveaway (all the supplies to make your own AND some already made tags!) from me and a chance to win a charm pack of Paperie from Amy!

Thanks guys, happy making!

Friday, January 15, 2016

DIY Magnetic Pinbowl

Want to make a quick and easy magnetic pinbowl? Of course you do. I needed something very compact for my sewing space and this two dollar dipping bowl from Target was tiny (budget-friendly) and perfect.

To make your own, you'll need a bowl or small plate, preferably something not too deep since you don't want to be reaching your fingers into a bowl full of sharp objects that you can't see. You'll need some extra strong magnets. I found these small silver ones at Home Depot. Also, some E6000 for extra strong staying power.

Now, here's the hard part: Glue the magnets to the bottom of your dish. That's it. Seriously. Once you have the supplies, you'll need about two minutes to complete your bowl. Happy crafting!


Monday, January 11, 2016

Gluten-free chocolate chip granola

Here's a quick and easy gluten-free granola recipe, in case you don't have a gazillion dollars to buy those little pouches of ready made stuff every week.

4 cups gluten free quick cook oats (I use Bob's Red Mill brand)
1/2 cup melted coconut oil
1/4 cup flax seeds
1 cup shredded coconut
2-3 tablespoons maple syrup
3/4-1 cup chocolate chips

Mix all the ingredients (except the maple syrup) together. Make sure all your ingredients are wet, moist but not sopping. If you need more liquid add the maple syrup. Put a piece of parchment paper on your cookie sheet. Spread the granola mixture onto the cookie sheet, spreading out as much as you can. Bake at 350ยบ for 20-25 minutes or until oats and coconut flakes are brown. Let cool for five minutes then mix your granola a little to spread the melted chocolate around. Let it cool fully before placing in a storage container. I'm honestly not sure how long this mixture is good for because it never lasts more than a week around here!

Enjoy from #sonotabaker!


Saturday, May 23, 2015

A scrappy necklace tutorial

What do you do with all those teeny precious scraps? Well, keep them of course! And make lots of teeny adorable things, like these easy wood and fabric pendant necklaces... They're perfect with summer tees and denim. I wore mine yesterday with a teeshirt and my painting jeans for a quick run to pick up more basement floor paint. Covered in paint and I still felt pulled together! Ha! SO here we go:

Some supplies you'll need: Little wooden shapes. I found mine in the scrapbooking section of a local craft store. You can find them online or in your craft stores or Tjmaxx/Marshalls stores. Small jump rings and coordinating chain. Scraps of your favorite fabrics. Needle nose pliers. Scissors (not pictured). Mod podge and a sponge brush (not pictured). Seam ripper. Pen or disappearing ink pen.

Step one: Using your seam ripper or a sharp pointed object, poke two holes into the wood piece.

Step two: Trace your wood shape onto your fabric scrap and cut out. Make sure to cut a bit inside your traced line.

Step three: Spread a drop of mod podge onto your wood piece and place the cut scrap on top. Press down with your fingers to ensure the scrap is evenly attached.
Step four: Spread a drop of mod podge over the top of the fabric to seal it.

Step five: After dry, poke back through your holes to create holes in the fabric. Now attach your jump rings, first through the hole in the wood/fabric and then onto your necklace. Close the jump ring and attach the second one.

That's it, you're done! Now go make a million of these, they're so addicting and the perfect way to show off your textile love. Happy crafting!

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

The cozy blankie tutorial's been a while! This is my official first blog post for 2015. Let's make it a good one, shall we?

Who wants to learn how to make the easiest softest cutest blankie? You do? Great. You're going to need a few things.

Half yard cut of 'the soft' fabric...Seriously. I don't know what it's called but it's the same material all those really cozy throw blankets from TJMaxx and HomeGoods are made out of.
FQ of coordinating cotton fabric
Pins or clover clips
Intermediate or above knowledge of sewing

Okay. Cut your cuddly fabric to approximately 18x24". Cut your cotton fabric to approximately 16.5x22.5". Lay your inner piece on top of the cuddly piece (centered), wrong sides facing each other. Now start folding your cuddly fabric over the edge of the inside fabric, pinning as you go. Just like you would a binding. If you need help on instructions for a 'faux binding' try a quick search on Pinterest. There are lots of great tutorials out there. 

Now it's time to sew. Can you manage a straight line? Then you can make one of these. 

Just stitch all the way around with a top stitch, making sure your cuddly fabric doesn't come unfolded. You won't see it if you have to unpick and restitch but it's a pain! (PS: I like to add a little tab of ribbon as an accent, just tuck it under your 'binding' before sewing.) Once you've managed to make your way around all the edges, you are done! Congrats. Now wasn't that easy? See? I wouldn't lie to you. Happy making!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

A Baby Take-Along Blankie

Since his sister has her own blankie (3, actually), I decided Levi needed his own to perhaps save myself from future battles of blankieism. This little blanket was simple and easy, and all the contrast and bright colors seem to keep an inquisitive baby's attention.

I started with some random placed 4" squares and just stitched them together for a patchwork look. Most of the fabrics are organic cotton which is nice and soft. I wanted the blanket to have a thinner feel for little fingers to grab, so I opted for one layer of flannel in between as a batting. A little X quilting through the blocks and I was ready to attach the back. I didn't want to do a binding on this particular blanket, so I quilted the top to the flannel and then sewed to the back piece (simple cream flannel), fronts facing each other. Then after I left a section unstitched, I turned the blanket inside out (or right side out!) and gave it a quick iron. Now it was time for my top stitch to finish the edges and close up that gap! 

Its simple, sweet and the perfect size (18" square) for a carseat blankie or a security blankie without being too overwhelming. 

Let me know if you have any questions and happy crafting!
xo - Cheri

Friday, October 10, 2014

The Hexie Card Making Tutorial: a hexagon paper project

Lets be honest here, I've begun a little love affair with the hexagon. It's been culminating in my sewing adventures BUT it spilled over into my paper crafting when I purchased my Friskars hexagon paper punch. You can find yours in a local craft store which most likely has sales or coupons to keep the initial cost down. I will tell you this, it makes paper piecing pretty simple if you're a sewist (seamstress?).

Here's what you'll need:
Paper punch
Coordinating scrapbook papers
Blank cards
Colored or black fine point markers
Glue stick

Now the first step is to just start punching away. There, that was easy.

Next step is to lay out a plan for your hexes on each card. Once you've done that, use the glue stick to adhere each piece to the card, making sure to get the edges fairly well.

Now that you have your patterns, you can start to embellish your designs using your fine point markers. I like to sketch a word or greeting in pencil before tracing in marker, then going back and erasing the pencil lines after.

As you can see, you can be as simple or as creative as you want. There, you're done. Now that was't so difficult. These make great gifts for fellow sewing or hexagon enthusiasts, and great greetings to use with swap packages or just to say hello. And who doesn't love a little surprise snail mail?

Happy crafting!
- Cheri
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