Dr. Strange Costume Part 1: DIY Dr. Strange Costume Magic Circle Prop

DIY Dr Strange Costume Easy Magic Circle PropYou won’t even need to posses the Eye of Agamotto to make this cheap and easy DIY Dr. Strange costume magic circle prop. Continue reading

Spiderman Costume Tutorial Part 3: DIY Web Shooters and Gloves

Spiderman Costume Tutorial Web Shooters and Gloves What would Spiderman be without his web shooters? Not much of a spider. And so part 3 of the Spiderman costume tutorial is the much requested Spiderman web shooters. Continue reading

Spiderman Costume Part 2: How to Make a Spiderman Costume Mask

How to Make a Spiderman Costume Part 2Spiderman, Spiderman, does whatever a spider can…at least when he has his mask on. So here is how to make a Spiderman costume part 2, the all-important, identity-hiding mask. Continue reading

Spiderman Costume Part 1: DIY Spiderman Costume Top

DIY Spiderman Costume Part 1With great fabric comes great responsibility…and sometimes it also comes with an easy DIY Spiderman costume.
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Superman Costume Tutorial Part 3: Boots and Cape

Superman Costume Tutorial Part 3This is the final part of the Superman costume tutorial. This this for the boots and cape part of the costume. Continue reading

Star Lord Part 5 – DIY Star Lord Helmet

DIY Star Lord HelmetAnd so finally we come to the DIY Star Lord Helmet, the last part of the Star Lord cosplay. Continue reading

Star Lord Part 4 – Cheap and Easy Star Lord Sling Bag

Cheap and Easy Star Lord Sling BagYou can make a cheap and easy Star Lord sling bag from an old purse and little fake leather fairly quickly. Just pull out the hot glue gun, and put it all together. Continue reading

Star Lord Part 3 – Star Lord Costume Tutorial: Cheap and Easy DIY Quad Blasters

Star Lord Costume Tutorial - Quad BlastersOrdinary cardboard can easily become a perfect quad blaster. Part 3 of this Star Lord costume tutorial shows you how to make a cheap and easy one. Continue reading

Star Lord Part 2 – DIY Star Lord Costume: Holster Belt and Walkman

DIY Star Lord CostumeNeed an easy belt and Walkman for your DIY Star Lord costume? This tutorial shows you how to make them with a little cardboard and some distressed fabric. Continue reading

Star Lord Part 1 – How to Make a Star Lord Costume Jacket

How to Make a Star Lord Costume JacketThis is the 2nd part of how to make a Star Lord costume (though it’s the first actual part of Star Lord himself), to follow last week’s infinity orb tutorial. Continue reading

Infinity Orb – DIY Infinity Orb, Cheap and Easy Guardians of the Galaxy

DIY Infinity Orb cheap and easyThis cheap DIY infinity orb is very easy to make, and it actually opens so you can put your infinity stone inside. Continue reading

Superman Costume Part 1: DIY Superman Costume Cheap and Easy Shirt and S Emblem

DIY Superman CostumeThis is a tutorial for a fairly easy DIY Superman costume. This tutorial is for the first part of the costume, the shirt (I broke the usual bodysuit into two pieces) and the S emblem.  Continue reading

12 Things Every Crafter Can Identify With…

12 Things Every Crafter Can Identify With...The more a person crafts, the more they realize, there are some things that are just a part of crafting life. While crafting is for the most part a very pleasant experience, there are a few things that strike a chord with those who create. Here are a few things that almost every crafter can probably identify with… starting with the fact that those of us who have used glue guns, can attest that they will indeed burn off one’s finger prints…
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Chewbacca Bowcaster DIY (Star Wars Wookie Crossbow)

DIY Chewbacca Bowcaster (Star Wars Wookie Crossbow) This is a tutorial for the Chewbacca bowcaster from Star Wars. Had a request for this one, so put it together from some fairly common items that most people already have lying around their house. Continue reading

Harley Quinn Costume Suicide Squad DIY Hair, Tattoos, and Good Night Bat

Suicide Squad Harley Quinn Costume DIY Hair, Tattoos, and Good Night Bat So the final part of the requested Suicide Squad Harley Quinn costume is the pigtails, tattoos and good night bat. Continue reading

Super Easy DIY Easter Egg Garland

Super Easy DIY Easter Egg Garland This simple Easter Egg garland is super easy and quick to make, and very inexpensive. Continue reading

Harley Quinn Costume Jewelry – DIY Cheap and Easy Bracelets and Choker

DIY Cheap and Easy Harley Quinn Costume Jewelry - Suicide Squad Bracelets and Choker Part 3 of the Suicide Squad Harley Quinn costume is her Puddin choker and bracelets (both the spikey ones, and the Yes & Sir bracelets she wore below the spikey ones). Continue reading

Harley Quinn Costume Part 2 – Suicide Squad Version DIY Belt & Shorts

DIY Harley Quinn Costume Part 2 - Suicide Squad Version Belt & ShortsSo here is part 2 of the Suicide Squad Harley Quinn costume tutorial. This is the tutorial for the shorts and the belt. Continue reading

Harley Quinn costume Part 1 – How to Make a Harley Quinn Costume (Suicide Squad version)

How to Make a Harley Quinn costume Part 1 - (Suicide Squad version) I had a couple requests for a Harley Quinn costume from the Suicide Squad movie. Continue reading

How to Make Fossil Soaps (melt and pour)

How to Make Fossil Soaps (melt and pour)

It’s easy to make “fossil” soaps with safer melt and pour soap, and it makes a fun craft to do with kids (under adult supervision). Continue reading

Iron Man Costume – How Ours Was Made (explanation, not actual tutorial)

How Our Iron Man Costume Was Made (explanation, not actual tutorial) I’ve had quite a few people have asked about the family Iron Man costume, since it’s seen in the background of a lot of my tutorials, so this is a little video basically explaining how our Iron Man costume was made. Continue reading

Iron Man Repulsor – DIY Cheap and Easy

DIY Cheap and Easy Iron Man Repulsor Had a request for an Iron Man repulsor tutorial. This a fairly cheap and easy Iron Man repulsor which you can put together with some pretty basic supplies. Continue reading

Falcon Wings Part 2: The Pack DIY

DIY Falcon Wings Part 2: The Pack This is the second half of the Falcon Wings tutorial, this is for the pack part that the wings actually fold up into. Continue reading

Falcon Wings Part 1: How to Make Falcon Wings (Foldable)

How to Make Falcon Wings (Foldable) Had a couple requests for how to make Falcon wings and it’s taken me quite a while to figure out how I was going to do it, but I finally got ’em made. Continue reading

Luke Skywalker Costume (x-wing pilot) Part 3: DIY Helmet

DIY Luke Skywalker Costume (x-wing pilot): Helmet So had a request for the Luke Skywalker costume x-wing pilot helmet, so this finishes out that Star Wars costume tutorial. Continue reading

Luke Skywalker Costume (x-wing pilot) Part 2: Orange Flight Suit

DIY Luke Skywalker Costume (x-wing pilot): Orange Flight SuitTook the week off for Christmas, so didn’t work on a requested tutorial, so instead here’s a little more of the Luke Skywalker costume I made for my brother last Halloween. Continue reading

Anakin Skywalker Costume Part 2 & 3: DIY Glove and Scar

DIY Anakin Skywalker Costume: Glove and ScarHere are the other two tutorials for the rest of the Anakin Skywalker costume: the glove he wears over his prosthetic limb, and the scar he had over his eye in Revenge of the Sith. Continue reading

Gimli Costume Part 4 – How to Make Gimli’s Helmet (Pepakura tutorial)

How to Make Gimli's Helmet (Pepakura tutorial) This is a pepakura tutorial guest filmed and narrated (mostly) by my brother (he’s not used to doing this for film, so it got a little long). Continue reading

Aragorn / Arwen Costume Prop – How to Make the Evenstar Necklace

How to Make Aragorn / Arwen's Evenstar Necklace This is a tutorial for the Evenstar necklace that Arwen gives to Aragorn in the Lord of the Rings movies. Continue reading

Winter Soldier Costume Part 3: DIY Winter Soldier Mask

DIY Winter Soldier maskOk, so finally got the DIY Winter Soldier mask tutorial finished. Continue reading

Frodo Costume Tutorial – How to Make a Super Easy Hobbit Costume

How to Make a Super Easy Frodo Costume (or other similar Hobbit)This Frodo costume was made entirely from second hand clothing items (with the exception of the elvish cloak). As such, this costume can be made very inexpensively. Continue reading

Han Solo Costume Part 1: How to make a Han Solo Blaster DL 44 Look More Movie Authentic

How to make a Han Solo Blaster DL 44 Look More Movie AuthenticStar Wars is mainstream enough that it’s easy to find a plastic Han Solo blaster fairly inexpensively, so here’s how to make a Han Solo blaster look a little more movie authentic. Continue reading

Thranduil Costume Part 1 – DIY Cheap and Easy Thranduil Crown

DIY Cheap and Easy Thranduil Crown Had a request for a Thranduil costume tutorial, so this is the first part of the how-to, the Thranduil crown. Continue reading

Boba Fett Costume Part 2: DIY Boba Fett Jet Pack Tutorial

DIY Boba Fett Jet Pack Tutorial This is a DIY Boba Fett jet pack tutorial for a very simplified version of Boba Fett’s jet pack. Had a request for this one after I posted the Boba Fett blaster tutorial. Continue reading

Captain Kirk – How to Make a Captain Kirk Green Tunic

How to Make a Captain Kirk Green Tunic Had a request for the alternative Captain Kirk green tunic that appeared scattered throughout different episodes of Star Trek TOS. Continue reading

Barnabas Collins DIY Dark Shadows Inverness Cape Coat

DIY Barnabas Collins Dark Shadows Inverness Cape CoatHad a request for the inverness cape coat that Jonathan Frid wore as Barnabas Collins in the Dark Shadows TV series. Continue reading

Hawkgirl Helmet – How to Make a Hawkgirl Helmet

How to Make a Hawkgirl HelmetHad a request for a Hawkgirl helmet tutorial. The whole Hawkgirl helmet is made up of just craft foam and glue, so it’s very inexpensive to make and fairly simple in its construction. Continue reading

Boba Fett Costume Part 1: DIY Boba Fett Blaster Tutorial

DIY Boba Fett Blaster TutorialThe EE-3 Boba Fett blaster is unarguably one of the coolest guns in Star Wars (kinda the space-age equivalent of Steve McQueen’s Mare’s Leg rifle) Continue reading

Captain Kirk – How to Make Captain Kirk’s Formal Tunic from Star Trek TOS

Captain Kirk formal tunicHad a how-to request for the formal green tunic that Captain Kirk wears in Star Trek TOS when guests are invited to the Enterprise, or when court is in session. Continue reading

Black Widow Costume Part 2 – DIY Black Widow Costume belt, holster, bracelets, gloves

DIY Black Widow Costume Part 2: belt, holster, bracelets, gloves So here is part 2 of the DIY Black Widow costume tutorial, following last week’s Black Widow bodysuit tutorial. Continue reading

Black Widow Costume Part 1: How to Make a Black Widow Costume Bodysuit

How to Make a Black Widow Costume Part 1: Bodysuit Had a request for a how to make a Black Widow costume tutorial, so now I have officially done a tutorial for at least a piece of all the Avengers from the first movie. Continue reading

Phaser: Wrath of Khan – DIY Wrath of Khan Style Star Trek Phaser

DIY Wrath of Khan Style Star Trek Phaser I had a request for another Star Trek phaser tutorial, but this time it’s the one from the Wrath of Khan movie. Continue reading

Spock Costume – How to Make Spock’s Meditation / Funeral Robe

How to Make Spock's Meditation / Funeral Robe I had a request for a somewhat for a less common Star Trek costume this week, Spock’s meditation robe from Star Trek The Motion Picture. Continue reading

Darth Vader Costume Tutorial Part 6: Gloves and Shin Guards

Darth Vader Costume Tutorial Part 6: Gloves and Shin GuardsThis is the sixth part of my Darth Vader costume tutorial, showing how to make the Darth Vader gloves and shin guards. Continue reading

Darth Vader Costume Tutorial Part 5: Robe, Shirt, Pants

Darth Vader Costume Tutorial Part 5: Robe, Shirt, PantsThis is the fifth part of my Darth Vader costume tutorial, showing how to make the Darth Vader shirt, pants, and inner robe. Continue reading

Darth Vader Costume Tutorial Part 3: Shoulder Armor

Darth Vader Costume Tutorial Part 3: Shoulder ArmorThis is the third part of my Darth Vader costume tutorial, showing how to make the Darth Vader shoulder armor. Continue reading

Crafts for Kids – Thanksgiving Turkey Clothespins

Crafts for Kids - Thanksgiving Turkey Clothespins An autumn leaf and some colored paper can turn a plain clothespin into a Thanksgiving turkey, perfect for sealing up the Thanksgiving leftovers. Continue reading

Dr. McCoy Tunic – DIY “Bones” Medical Tunic

DIY Dr. McCoy Tunic This is the tutorial for the short-sleeved, satin medical tunic that McCoy usually wore on board the Enterprise in Star Trek TOS. Continue reading

How to Carve a Bruce Springsteen Pumpkin (or any intricate pumpkin)

How to Carve a Bruce Springsteen Pumpkin (or any intricate pumpkin) While Jack o’ lanterns are always nice, sometimes it’s fun to bring a little more character out of the pumpkin by doing an intricate pattern; in this example I’m using Bruce Springsteen. Continue reading

How to Make Halloween Spider Soaps

How to Make Halloween Spider Soaps Get your kitchen or bathroom ready for Halloween by making some Halloween spider soaps. Continue reading

How to Make a Witch’s Broom

How to Make a Witch's Broom It’s easy to learn how to make a witch’s broom with a little “broomcorn” and a twisty piece of wood. Continue reading

Elven Leaf Brooch – DIY Cheap and Easy

DIY Cheap and Easy Elven Leaf BroochA little clay and some paint give you a fairly convincing Lord of the Rings elven leaf brooch for a fraction of the cost of a replica. Continue reading

Winter Soldier Arm – How to Make a Winter Soldier Arm

How to Make a Winter Soldier ArmI had a couple requests for how to make a winter soldier arm, so here it is. Continue reading

Maleficent Costume Tutorial Part 1: DIY Horns, Staff, Ring

Maleficent Costume: DIY Horns, Staff, Ring This is a tutorial for making a fairly simple staff that lights up, horns, and ring for a Maleficent costume. Continue reading

Sauron Costume Tutorial part 3: Body Armor, gloves, chain mail

Sauron Costume Part 3An old knitted blanket, some craft foam, and duct tape will get you chain mail, armor, and movable gloves to finish your Sauron costume. Continue reading

How to Make a Pop Up Tissue Paper Valentine Heart Card

valentine heart cardA few layers of tissue paper glued together in a honeycomb pattern makes a charming pop-up Valentine heart card. Continue reading

Renaissance Fortune Teller Costume Tutorial

Renaissance Fortune Teller CostumeThis Renaissance fortune teller costume requires a little bit of sewing on the over skirts and sequins, but much of the rest of the costume base can be picked up for a few dollars in a 2nd hand shop. Continue reading

Odin’s Spear, Gungnir Cosplay Tutorial

Odin's Spear, Gungnir I had a request for a Gungnir, Odin’s Spear tutorial. This is the version from the Thor: The Dark World movie, so it can be used for either an Odin cosplay, or for Loki after having taking the throne. Continue reading

How to Make a Record Album Binder Cover

Record Album Binder Cover If you made the record wreath I posted a couple weeks ago, then you probably have some leftover album covers. Upcycle them into fun record album binder covers. Continue reading

Communicator – DIY Star Trek Communicator and Tricorder

Star Trek communicator and tricorderIf you have a box of tacks and an old transistor radio, you can make an inexpensive Star Trek communicator and Tricorder. Continue reading

How to Replace a Zipper Using a Regular Presser Foot

replace a zipperYou can easily replace a zipper on a coat or other garment using an ordinary presser foot on a sewing machine. Continue reading

St. Patrick’s Day Crafts: Shamrock Glasses

St. Patrick's Day CraftsTo make these St. Patrick’s Day crafts, all you need is a little paint and glitter for some appropriately shamrock-ed dinnerware. Continue reading

Loki Costume Tutorial: The Coat

Loki CostumeThis is the explaination for how to make Loki’s coat, cape, and tunic. Continue reading

Loki Costume Part 1 – How to Make Loki Costume Bracers

Loki costume bracers

Here is the second part of the Loki Costume tutorial. These are the gold bracers. Continue reading

Loki Staff – How to Make a Loki Costume Staff that Actually Glows

Loki staffHere is the first part of the Loki Costume tutorial. It’s a fairly simple and inexpensive way to make a Loki staff that actually lights up. Continue reading

Easy Paper Heart Valentine Decorations

valentine decorationsThese little Valentine decorations go together pretty quick and they’re easy enough Valentine crafts that kids can make them. Continue reading

How to Make a Shag Rag Rug from Old Shirts Easily

Shag Rag RugA shag rag rug is the perfect way to use up old shirts or other rag material you might have laying around the house. Continue reading

How to Make a Perfect Size Cover for Any Kindle, Ipad, or Tablet

Kindle CoverNeed a cover to protect your Kindle, Ipad, or tablet? Why settle for a store bought version when you can make one yourself to fit your own style.

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DIY Flare Jeans

DIY Flare Jeans You can buy flare jeans in the store, but when you make them yourself, you can add more of your personal style to your flares. Continue reading

How to Make a Christmas Wreath out of Pine Cones

How to Make a Christmas Wreath out of Pine Cones This tutorial shows how to make a Christmas wreath using pine cones. The pine cones are spray painted white to create a contrasting background for the red birds and ribbon. Continue reading

DIY Wedding Invitations with Lace

DIY wedding invitations with laceThese DIY wedding invitations are easy, inexpensive, and fairly quick to make, but the lace and ribbon give them an elegant touch. Continue reading

Duct Tape Mannequin Tutorial

duct tape mannequinA duct tape mannequin is an easy and inexpensive way to make a sewing mannequin. All it will cost you is a pair of pants, a shirt, and a couple rolls of duct tape. Continue reading

Harry Potter Costume Tutorial Part 2: Easy No-Sew Robe, Crest, & Glasses

Here is part 2 of the Harry Potter costume tutorial. This covers making the robe, the house crest, and a pair of glasses. Continue reading

Harry Potter Costume Part 1: Easy No-Sew Sweater, Shirt, & Tie

Easy No-Sew Harry Potter Costume Part 1: Sweater, Shirt, & TieThis is a quick and easy Harry Potter costume that requires almost no sewing, save for a small bit to attach the robe closure. It’s easy enough that kids can make it themselves.  Continue reading

Thor Costume Tutorial Part 3 – Hammer, Cape, Boots, & Belt

thor costumeHere is the third and final part of the Thor costume tutorial. I was starting to run out of time before the comic con, so I wasn’t able to film the actual production of these parts, but here’s the explain on how to complete the remaining Thor costume pieces. Continue reading

Thor Costume Tutorial Part 2: The Vest

thor costumeThis is part two of the Thor costume tutorial. This how-to is for making Thor’s vest. I’ve simplified it a bit just to make it a little easier to do.

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Wheat Weaving: Heart-shaped Wedding Favor

Wheat WeavingThis one was a request I got from someone wanting to make heart-shaped wheat weavings as favors for their wedding. The hearts are woven around a wire core which allows you to bend the finished weaving into any shape; in this case a heart.

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How to Make a Skirt from an Old Pair of Jeans

Jean SkirtYou can upcycle an old pair of jeans into a fun denim skirt by adding a little bit of material. It’s a good way to use up old jeans that have holes in the knees, but where the top is still good. Continue reading

Leaf Printed Easter Egg

easter eggThis is a quick way to put a “reverse” image design on an Easter egg.

Just dab a little paint over the leaf with the sponge and the leaf’s basic shape remains free of paint on the egg. Continue reading

How to Make Leprechaun Costume Shoes

Leprechaun Costume ShoesWith St. Patrick’s Day being next week and all, a leprechaun costume or two usually shows up this time of year. You can turn pretty much any pair of plain, black shoes into leprechaun shoes to go with a leprechaun costume just by using a little cardboard, gold paint and some masking tape. Continue reading

Multi-Layer Spinning Shamrock

This decoration was inspired by those garden spinners that seem to be so popular now. They’re usually metal, in several layers, and the layers separate and spin at the slightest breeze. This shamrock for St. Patrick’s day won’t be outdoors, so cardstock works fine instead of metal for this decoration. Continue reading

Rainbow Tissue Paper Card

This little card is made by placing colored paper or cardstock under a printed tissue paper overlay for a muted rainbow effect. Easy for kids. Using recycled paper keeps your cards eco-friendly.

Make a Moth-Repelling Lavender Sock Sachet

Scuffing my feet in and out of farm boots all the time means that I go through pairs of socks pretty fast. That leaves me with quite the pile of socks with holes in the heels. I’ve tried darning them, but it doesn’t really last that long, so what to do with all those un-wearable socks? Make sock sachets!

More specifically, sock sachets filled with lavender. It’s a “two birds with one stone,” solution. Moths don’t like the smell of lavender, so a sachet filled with lavender heads keeps moths away from clothes just as well as cedar or mothballs would (and the lavender smells a lot better too!). And making the sachets out of old socks is a great way to upcycle socks that are past their prime.

How to Make a Lacy Heart Valentine Magnet

Most Valentines go through the mail, are enjoyed for a few weeks, and are then thrown out, never to be seen again. So this year I decided to try something a little more practical, by giving out Valentine magnets instead of Valentine cards. They’re something practical (as far as I know, everybody uses magnets at some point or another) as well as being cute enough to keep year round.

These little magnets are also a good way to recycled excess seambinding pieces, small bits of cardstock and business card magnets. (In the office where I work, they often update the magnetic business cards. Rather than throw out the old ones, I take them home for crafts, so I’ve usually got plenty that need recycling.) The lace makes these look fancy, but really they only take a few minutes to make, and since they use hot glue, you don’t even have to wait long for the glue to dry!

2 Minute Valentine Card

Here’s a simple, kid-friendly Valentine card that’s good to do with younger kids. It’s quick and easy and turns a bunch of hearts into a flower for Valentine’s Day. Regular tacky glue and kid-friendly scissors will help keep the project nice and safe for tiny hands.

How to Make a Valentine Hearts Wreath from Scrapbooking Paper

This wreath uses 6 strips of scrapbooking cardstock to make hearts. I used tacky glue to fasten my hearts together which makes the sides pinch up and gives the hearts a pointed, abstract look. If you don’t like that look and want the heart edges to remain rounded, use some scrapbooking sticky dots instead to connect the hearts together.

How to Make a Hair Scrunchy

I have long hair so I often wear it in a scrunchy, and as I don’t really like going shopping, I usually make my own. Due to sewing all the time, I generally have plenty of leftover material lying around, and scrunchies are a great way to use up some of those extra pieces. They require very minimal sewing, using only a basting stitch. For each scrunchy you’ll need a piece of fabric 18 inches long and 3 inches wide, as well as a piece of thin elastic (no thicker than 1/4 inch).

Super Easy Embroidery Thread Twist Bracelets

These bracelets are a great kids’ craft. Just a little twisting of embroidery thread and a bracelet is made. It can be as plain or as colorful as desired simply by changing the colors of the thread being twisted.

Quick and Easy Gift Tags

Just a little bit of stamping and some glue and you’re good to go. These little gift tags are cute name holders when you’re in a pinch for time.

Open Door Santa Sleigh Card from Used Christmas Cards

This card is a good way to recycle used Christmas cards from a previous year. You’ll be needing one with a Santa and sleigh, and one with a door. The slight pop up part of this card is on the front, which leaves the interior blank for writing.

How to Make a Christmas Tree Garland out of Scrapbooking Paper

I have a tendency to use scrapbooking paper for pretty much anything but scrapbooking. In particular, I love making Christmas decorations out of it. The Christmas Tree I have in my bedroom is an old artificial one that someone was getting rid of, so I took it. It’s kind of scrappy (It makes Charlie’s Brown’s tree look good!) so it needs plenty of color to jazz it up. This scrapbooking paper garland fits the bill. It’s made using the same technique as a gum wrapper chain, so if you’ve ever made one of those, this garland should be a cinch. But if not it’s pretty easy to get the hang of.


How to Make a Christmas Riddle Card

For years I’ve been making up clue games for my siblings and relatives (that usually result in headaches for them as they try for hours to solve the riddles and get to the next clue), so I thought it’d be fun to extend a bit of that cipher-making into some Christmas cards. It’s just kind of a fun way to make your family and friends think for a moment when they open their Christmas cards. However, the riddle on this card is pretty straight forward and easy enough that there shouldn’t be any headaches involved for the recipients. Though if you do want to make it a bit more difficult for them, you can leave out the underscore completely so it takes just a bit longer to figure out what letter is missing.

Transforming a Room with Color

A little color can go a long way. It can turn a hum-ho room into a bright and happy place. Here I redo the window, bed, and dresser in this room, giving them a splash of color to make them pop. The Buddhist style motif was inspired Inara’s lavish shuttle decorations in Firefly. A little bold color goes a long way to making the room seem energized with life.

How to Tie a Perfect 6-loop Bow

A bow is a pretty basic need in crafting, but sometimes a perfect bow can be an elusive item, especially when it involves multiple loops. The trick is to use wire-edged ribbon, as it allows you to bend the loops into any shape. That and a little twisting, and you’ve got an easy, perfect bow. I use these on wreaths and centerpeices and sometimes even on wrapped gifts if I want to make them look extra fancy.

Wheat Weaving: Easy Harvest Braid

Autumn time is usually when I start getting heavily back into the wheat weaving, but thought I’d start with something simple. A harvest braid is very traditional wheat weaving. It’s also very easy, as the “hair braid” is the only plait you’ll be needing. The trick to making this braid look good is to ensure the straws all stay in the same order and remain flat as you’re weaving, otherwise it tends to look messy.

How to Make Flowered Gourds

flowered gourdsThese are something I make every year. They’re just cute little table decorations and look great in a bunch. They can work for any of the autumn holidays, Halloween, Thanksgiving, etc. Usually they’ll last all the way through Thanksgiving before they start to rot (so long as they’re not kept in a very warm spot). Although one year I gave one to my grandmother and it dried, so she kept it right through Christmas!

The nice thing about these is that everything on them is real, except the silk leaves. (I tried real leaves one year and they ended up a crumpled, powdery mess by the end). You can usually find them by the bag at Michael’s or Joann Fabrics. If not, you can cut the leaves off one of those holiday leaf garlands.

3 Flower Preservation Methods: Air drying, Silica Crystal, and Pressing

I use a lot of dried flowers in my crafts and basically the 3 easiest ways to preserve them are by air drying, silica crystals, or pressing. Air drying is by far the easiest. Just tie a string ’round the flowers and hang ’em to dry. Silica crystals are cool because they preserve the original shape and color for the most part. Plus the silica crystals can be reused again and again. (An alternative, but similar method to silica is to put the flowers in a pan of sand and bake them on low for about 20 minutes. It sucks the moisture right out of them). And of course pressing is an irreplaceable method to obtain preserved flowers suitable for note cards or other projects requiring flat blossoms.

Cookie Cutter Reversed Image Card

Was just kind of in a cardmaking mood, so here’s another card. This one uses a cookie cutter cut out, and a little piece of cardstock on the inside to make what’s cut out on the top, pop up on the inside.

Feeling Groovy Card

I was just having some fun with this card. I had some really small pieces of incense leftover that were way too small to be of any use to burn, so I figured, why not use ’em on a hippie-themed card. It also let me use up some leftover flowered cardstock that was too small to use for much of anything, but still too cool to throw out.

How to Dye Queen Anne’s Lace with Food Coloring

Well it’s Queen’s Anne’s Lace season (a.k.a wild carrot), so I’ve been dying some as usual. There really is something that’s almost magical about watching those pristine white flowers slowly take on the vibrant colors of the food coloring they’re immersed in. It’s a great country pastime, and it’s so easy anyone can do it. The shorter the stem, the quicker it takes up the dye. And once the flowers are dyed, they can be dried for brightly colored craft projects!

Wheat Weaving: Hunger Games Mockingjay Pin

Well, I’m betting I’m the first one to try this! A mockingjay pin made out of wheat. I just finished reading the first and second Hunger Games books, so I decided to weave the famous mockingjay pin out of wheat. (Hey, we all need to geek out once in a while, right). So I used a simple plait for the circle and used a straw marquetry technique for the bird, and then just joined the two with glue to make the pin. Straw marquetry refers to the practice of ironing wet straw flat and then gluing them onto a surface (in this case cardstock shaped like a mockingjay). It actually came out great on the first attempt, so I thought I’d post it for any fellow Hunger Games fans who wanted to try it. Hope you all have as much fun with it as I did!

How to Make a Cornhusk Doll

One of my favorite parts about summer is of course sweet corn (who doesn’t love that?) and the leftover husks (ok, a little less commonly sought after than the sweet corn, but still loads of fun). Most of our leftover husks go to the cows, as husks are like a cow’s version of desert, but I always save a out a few to make cornhusk dolls. They’re cute little folkart things that are fun to make, and the best part is, if anything gets messed up during the creation, there are plenty more husks where those came from.

Cornhusk dolls have their origins in Native American culture. The dolls were made as toys for children as well for more serious ceremonies. In later years, the pioneers also borrowed the tradition from the Native Americans and made dolls for their children out of cornhusks.

Traditionally cornhusk dolls have no faces. This is due to Continue reading

How to Make No-sew Curtains

Normally I’m a patient person, but when it comes to redecorating my room, I turn into a rather lazy seamstress. When it’s my own room, I pretty much want it “done yesterday” so I end up taking a lot of shortcuts. Some of those shortcuts crash and burn, but others end up fine. This set of curtains is one of the latter. I needed some curtains for my window, and lately I’ve really felt the need to add some orange to my room. So I got myself a piece of material that wouldn’t fray, a little glue and a pair of scissors and set about making a set of curtains that only took a few minutes. Since there’s no sewing, these curtains are easy enough that anyone can make them. (Sorry, the sound isn’t great in this. I was shooting this video at midnight so I couldn’t talk very loudly, as everyone was sleeping.)

How to Make a Lavender Bottle

The lavender is in full bloom, so it’s time to make some lavender bottles! I always make a few to hang off my bed’s headboard because the relaxing aroma of lavender is good for insomnia. It also helps with headaches. Lavender bottles are a pretty way to keep that lovely fragrence in the house all year long. And if they’re kept in a clothing drawer, they give all the clothes a nice, lavendery scent.

How to Make a Catnip Toy

There aren’t too many cats that don’t love the smell of catnip. It’s basically like a feline drug that makes even older cats seem like they’re crazy high. I usually have a lot of excess material lying around from old sewing projects, and usually extra peices of small quilt batting which are much too tiny to be used for anything else. Catnip sachets get two birds with one stone; they’re a quick and easy way to recycle my extra material and batting, and they make my cat love me even more (or maybe that’s just the catnip talking). I’ve also heard that catnip is good for insomnia. So if you don’t have a cat, make one for yourself to put under your pillow. (If you start meowing, you’ll know you’ve gone too far!)

How to Make a Hemp Fabric Shopping Bag Part 1

Hemp is one of the strongest most eco-friendly fabrics on the planet. The hemp used in this project came from www.hemptraders.com (Sorry, the sound in this one is rather poor after the intro)

How to Make a Two Layer Melt-and-Pour Soap Bar

Melt-and-Pour Soap is a fun and safe alternative to traditional lye for making handmade soaps. This video demonstrates how to use two colors to make a two layer bar of soap, with a clear glycerin layer on top.

How to Make a Pressed Leaf Bookmark

A piece of plastic and a little spray adhesive keep the pressed leaves in place on this bookmark. If you’ve never pressed leaves and want information on how to do so, follow this link: Pressing Leaves and Flowers

How to Make a Woven Hearts Valentine Card

This card is made out of two scrapbooking paper hearts that have been woven together. For a cutting template for this project, click the image below.

 

Sherbet Tie-Dye

I’m not sure what the technical name for this sort of tie-dye is, but I call it sherbet tie-dye due to the fact that it’s part white, part colored, kinda like sherbet ice-cream. This is one of the simplest tie-dye methods to use.

You will need:
White shirts
Colored dye
Rubber bands
Rubber gloves

Start by wetting down a white shirt (this project can also be done with a black shirt for a striking effect). Wring it out to remove excess water, and lay the shirt out flat on a table. Grabbing the very middle of the shirt, begin to twist it in a clockwise direction. Continue twisting until the entire shirt is tightly wound up into the spiral. Secure it with rubber bands.

Next drop the twisted shirt into a vat of dye, and quickly pull it out. (You may want to use gloves for this part to prevent your hands from getting all dye). Without squeezing the shirt and without removing the rubberbands, set the shirt aside to dry.

When the shirt has completely dried, remove the rubberbands and untwist the shirt. You should now have a colored spiral pattern on the white shirt. Wash the shirt on its own the first time to remove any excess dye. After that, the shirt can be washed normally with the rest of the colored clothes.

Rub-on Transfer Garden Wagon

Rub-on transfers can give new life to old wood. They look hand-painted, but are so much simpler.

I had one of those little wooden garden wagons lying around in storage. It was weathered and beat up, not much to look at, so I decided to try a little experiment. The materials required for this project are pretty simple:

Something to paint (in this case I used a wooden garden wagon, but the rub on transfers will work of most surfaces)
Spray paint of your chosen color
Rub-on transfers
Popsickle stick
Spray varnish.

To begin this project, spray your entire item with two coats of paint. You can also paint it with a brush, but the spray paint is much faster, espcially on wood. Let dry overnight.

To use the rub-on transfers (these can be found in almost any craft store, I got mine at Joann Fabrics), cut around the shape you want to rub. It’s ok if you have white around the image because most rub-on transfers don’t transfer the white part. Lay your transfer picture-side down on your item and use the popsickle still to rub the back of the transfer. Use a circular motion and rub the entire transfer. You’ll be able to see through the backside when the transfer leaves the backing paper. Carefully pull off the backing paper.

Continue this process using as many rub on transfers as you need to complete your project. When finished, coat the entire project with a layer of spray varnish. This will help prevent the transfers from getting scratched off. If you plan to you item an an outdoor decoration, the varnish is especially important.

Wall Paper Valentines

My aunt used to work for a design company and every year, when the new wallpaper samples would come in, she would give us the books containing the old samples from the previous year. I think more than anything we spent time making Valentines out of the wallpaper.

Wallpaper samples offer a great range of creative possibilities. The paper samples themselves are thick and flexible so they don’t rip easily, which is always nice. And the selection of wallpaper usually lends itself well to Valentine’s Day as floral patterns are often found in abundance. A simple heart made of wallpaper cut with decorative shears looks several times more elegant than the same heart made of construction paper.

A simple way to make an attractive Valentine heart is to cut two half heart pieces from different colored wallpapers, but with corresponding patterns. Then cut two slashes half way up each of them like this:

Weave the two pieces together to create a beautiful Valentine heart. (I was looking for a picture of the ones my siblings and I used to make, but can’t seem to find one. If I locate one I’ll post it) This is a great project for children.