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October 26, 2010

Clean or Dirty Magnetic Dishwasher Sign

My husband and I have crazy schedules - as I am sure many of you do!

He is a full time student, part time worker and full time daddy, I am a full time worker and full time mommy, and there are many days where we literally pass each other on the way in and out the door for ten seconds. 
So, we tend to share the chores, and currently, the setup for dishwashering is:
I rinse and load
He unloads
My half tends to take considerably longer, but I really don't care for the unloading part, so it works out:)
The problem is, sometimes it is hard to find a moment to tell him whether the dishes in the dishwasher are clean or dirty!
(I seem to recall a similar problem in my home when I was growing up).
So, I devised a plan, so that we always know whether the dishes in the dishwasher are clean or dirty!
This wooden drawer knob cost a dollar or two at home depot.  It is about 2+ inches in diameter.
 I painted it white, and painted the underside silver.  To see how I did this check out my post here!
 I asked Sean what his favorite and least favorite colors were.  He said he likes green, and doesn't like pink (at least when he wears them), which worked for me...because I like pink:)
 So his half is green, and my half is pink.
 I printed the words "clean" and "dirty" - and transferred and then painted the words on the knobs - (just like I did on this plaque)

 I added some sparkles for the clean side, and some splotches for the dirty side...
Finally, I sprayed it with a protective coating, glued a super strong magnet on the back, and stuck it on the dishwasher!
When the dishes are clean, the clean side is up. When the dishes are dirty, the dirty side is up.

It will probably move to the fridge, high up where my kiddies can't get it, but either way, it works great!




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October 23, 2010

Broom Parking Halloween Sign

The other day, I saw this great free printable and loved the saying!  I think it is so clever!  So, being the crafty lady that I am, I decided that I wanted to use the same saying, but do something a little more than just print it out on paper.

I got this wood plaque at the craft store for just over $3, and painted it orange. 
Now, this would be really easy to do with vinyl lettering...if you had that option;) But since I don't, I often use paint. 
I pick out a font I like on the computer, make it the right size, and print it out on regular printer paper. 

I cover the back of the paper with chalk or pencil lead rubbing, which acts as a transfer - but rubs off the wood when you are done. 

After lining the paper up on the wood, I carefully trace around the letters with a pen or stylist.  This leaves the chalk or pencil lead impression on the wood. 

Using the chalk/pencil lines as guides, I use my embossing tool (looks like a pen with a fine metal tip on the end), dip it in paint, and trace it along the lines.  It takes a little while, but still looks great when you are done. 
 As you can see, I traced it line by line, waiting for the line above to dry before starting the next. The witch hat graphic I found online, and traced and painted it using the same method.
After I was finished painting it, I roughed up the edges with sandpaper, and brushed some of the edges with distress ink - to make it look a little weathered. 
 I bought a couple of hooks at the hardware store, and screwed them in evenly on the bottom of the plaque. 

Finally, I added some hanging hardware, hot glued a plastic spider to the sign, and draped some spider webs along the corners. 
So easy and so funny!
 I got this great kid's broom and set it in the hooks, and even added a little plastic toad, sitting on the broomstick. 
 As I get around to it, I may embellish the broom a bit - but I just love the way it looks on the wall!


If you like this project, check out another of my painted Halloween Projects:




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October 18, 2010

Chicken Roll Holder Basket Cover



Are you looking for the perfect handmade gift?

Funky Chicken Roll Basket Covers!




Made from quilted fabric, these colorful, funky chickens are a delightful addition to any dinner table!
It has been a tradition in my husband's family to use one at Thanksgiving and Christmas dinner for years.



The elastic bottom fits around a basket or bowl, keeping the rolls inside warm and waiting....
for someone to snatch one from the holes underneath the wings!



Choose one with fun and funky color - or go with the more traditional (seen below).



No matter what, one of these chickens makes a GREAT gift, and will charm any dinner table!

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October 16, 2010

Felt Trick-or-Treat Bag - Doggie Treats!

This is another one of those projects that, when finished, I am absolutely in love with!  I feel like in this particular case, the pictures can't even do it justice.  It is so cute in person!
My youngest daughter LOVES dogs.  So, when we found this doggie Halloween costume a few weeks ago, we knew we had to get it for her.  She loves wearing it already - and she looks adorable.  

Since I didn't get to make her costume, and it doesn't really need any embellishment, I decided that I would make her a candy bag to match.
I made this one a "Doggie Treats" bag --- but you could make it into any kind of treat bag - whatever fits your costume!
A couple of years ago, I made a felt trick-or-treat bag for my older daughter, to match her Oregon Duck Fan outfit.  It was pretty amazing, but I made a couple of improvements from that one when making this one. 
I knew I wanted to make a bag with dog bones on it. My husband told me that it would be funny to call the bag "Doggie Treats" - because of course the bag has Halloween Treats in it
...just a tiny pun.

What I didn't anticipate, and another thing that I really love, is that my dog bones turned out looking like skeleton bones, which makes the pun that tiny bit funnier:)


HERE IS THE TUTORIAL:

I used felt - which I got from the roll at the fabric store.  It is made with recycled bottles, and is pretty thick and sturdy. 
For my bag, I decided to make the outside front and back black, and the inside and sides purple. 

I cut 2: 9"x9" squares of black felt, and 2: 9"x9" squares of purple felt.  The bag is made entirely with doubled up felt.

I also cut 2 long pieces of felt, 3.5" wide by 27" long (the same length as the three sides of the square added together).  These pieces become the bottom and sides of the bag. 

Generally you will want to embellish the front and back of your bag before you sew it together.  I mostly did that, but some pieces I left until after I had sewed part of it together, and I will show you why. 

For the front of the bag, I started by printing bold letters off on my computer, cutting them out, tracing them to felt (which had heat-n-bond ironed to one side), cutting them out, ironing them down to the front of the bag, and sewing through them to keep them secured. 
This is a little bit of a labor intensive part (not really bad, but a little time consuming), and I did it because I was able to use materials I have on hand.  Another option, is stenciling on letters using fabric paint - or cutting the letters out of the black felt, and letting the purple piece behind it serve as a backdrop.
Make sure your iron is on low heat!  Maybe even use a paper towel between the iron and the felt.  The felt can melt!
Now, as I said before, this will work for any treat bag. 
Since the bones look like skeleton bones - it could be a "Spider Treats" bag or a "Lion Treats" bag or a "Witch Treats" bag - any animal or scary character would apply:)

With white felt, I cut out a bunch of bones in different sizes so that I could arrange them however I wanted. 


Now, as I said before, normally I you would probably just embellish the front and back before sewing the bag together (making sure to leave 1/4" from the edge clear for a seam allowance).
I did do this for the back of the bag (see picture below) and only stitched along the straight part of the bone, as shown.  By leaving the ends un-sewn, it added a very cute 3-D aspect. 
The red lines show where I sewed
But on the front of the bag, I actually wanted the ends of my bones to hang off the edges, and not be sewn down - so I decided to sew the sides of the bag on before embellishing the front. 
If you also want a design on the side of the bag, now is the time to do it.  I did add bones to the ends of one long strip, so that the sides of the bag would be decorated too.


 To sew the bag together, take 2 square pieces of felt, wrong sides together (for me, this meant the front of my bag, with one of the purple inside pieces) and take the 2 long pieces of felt, wrong sides together.  Line up the edges, as shown, and them pin them wrong sides together.

Before it gets pinned

After it has been pinned, looking at it from the front

After it has been pinned, looking at it from the back
 Sew along the edge, using 1/4" seam allowance.  Note: the seams will be facing OUT. 
 Then, pin the bottom edge to the long strip, wrong sides together, and sew.
 Finally, pin the 3rd side, wrong sides together, and sew. 

Looking at it from the inside

Front and sides sewn together!
Now, with the sides sewn on, I embellished the front.  As you see, I wanted my bones hanging over the edges, and now that the sides are sewn on, I don't have to worry about sewing through them.
I laid out different sized bones in a fitting pattern, and sewed down the long edges only (about 1/8" from the edge).


For the handles: I sandwiched 2 pieces of ribbon between 2 pieces of felt (1" or 1.5" wide and 12" or 15" long - you decide how wide and long you want your handles) , and sewed down the 2 long edges, 1/4" from the edge. 

 Then, I put the ends of the strap in between the front pieces of felt, (both ends of the handle go on the same side of the bag), close to the sides. 
 Sew the handles down securely, between the 2 pieces of felt that make up the front of the bag. 
Now, sew the back of the bag onto the sides using the same method as the front.  With 2 felt squares, line up the edges, wrong sides together, pin, and sew.
Add the other handle to the back side of the bag, again using the same method. 
You are almost finished!
The only thing left to sew is the top.  As you can see in the picture below, the 2 pieces of fabric on each side are still open at the top.  Sew along each side, with about 1/8" seam allowance, to close the holes. 


Your bag is finished!!

Front and Side
Back


Kids often want to pick out their own costume, so making a trick-or-treat bag gives you the chance to add your own personal touch.  It is easy, fun, and SO ADORABLE!!

Happy Halloween!!

Check out my other versions too:

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