Category Archives: Tutorials

Mini Fabric Bolts: Tutorial

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Comic book backs make great mini bolts of fabric for at home storage!  I love to organize, but when it came to my fabric, I couldn’t think of a solution that worked for me.  I tried all sorts of shelving, stacking,nothing worked.  When ever I got fabric out to use I had to mess everything up and I couldn’t see half my stash.  I apparently have a ton of fat quarters.  As I mentioned I ordered 200 (2 packs) of comic book boards and got started right away on making my mini bolts.  From what I hear this is a great solution for anywhere between 1/2 a yard to 5 yards.  Anything smaller or bigger won’t quite work.

With 45″ wide fabric it was easy.  Fold fabric in half with salvage edges together (just like it came off the bolt from the store).  Then fold it in half again the same way.  This will make your fabric the right size for wrapping around the board.

Then just start wrapping until all your fabric is on the board.  You can fold one corner up to hide all the raw edges.

Pin the ends so the don’t come undone and place it on your shelf.

If your fabric is wider than 45″ then I suggest folding the fabric first in half like before; but then into thirds to about the size of the board.

Then wrap your fabric onto the board.  Easy as that.

My bookshelves are from IKEA and I can fit my fabrics quite nicely.  However, I have jam packed them in there so it’s a little hard to get things in and out, because I put so many on each shelf.  To the left side I have my heavier weight fabrics and my fat quarters.  I also have stored my patterns, scraps and notions.

To fold a fat quarter: fold in half

and in half again the same direction

fold each end toward the center

fold in half to hid all raw edges

Nice and neat and all by color.

Now if only I can figure out how to organize my sheets, clothing and large scraps.  Those I guess will have to remain messy a bit.  One shelf of mess compared to all shelves of mess is much better.  Enjoy your newly organized fabric and love how clean it all looks.

Snowman Coasters

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One of my Mom’s newest snowmen are these coasters.  The darker one with 4 snowmen is actually a candle coaster.  The smaller ones are mug coasters.  A simple project and great for on the road or relaxing in the evening.  The coaster pattern came from Rivertown Warehouse and can be found HERE.  They also have a bunch of other great felt projects, go check them out.

Supplies:

Felt in white, red and orange

Blue DMC thread

Step 1: Cut out two of the large circles in white

Step 2: cut two of the smaller circle in red

Step 3: cut one orange oval

Step 4: Blanket stitch the cheeks and nose onto one of the two white circles

Step 5: Straight stitch on the mouth and star stitch in the eyes

Step 6: Place the second white circle onto the back of your face and blanket stitch around the edge

Ta Da, you’re done. *to print the pattern pieces, click on the photo and print the page.

Snowman Wreath : tutorial

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I’ve been seeing a ton of wreaths out in blog land and on pintrest.  My Mom has had this for years, and I haven’t seen it on the internet, so I’ve created a tutorial for you on how to make your own.  Complete with pattern pieces.

Supplies:

wreath

foam core board

foam

buttons

ribbion

mittens

newspaper or grocery sacks (something to stuff the mittens with)

glue

Step 1:

Cut the foam core board in a circle.  Larger than the center of your wreath, but smaller than the outside.  We used floral wire to attach the foam board to the wreath, but you could also use yarn, or even glue it on.

Step 2:

Cut out your pattern pieces onto your choice of color foam.  As you can see we used black for the hat and eyes and orange for the nose.  We drew a few lines on the carrot nose to make it look more like a carrot and added some ribbon across the hat.

Step 3:

Glue all your pieces onto the foam board to make the snowman face.  Using buttons as the mouth.

Step 4:

Stuff your mittens with anything you’d like.  Batting, grocery sacks, or newspaper.  Adhere them to the wreath; with either wire/yarn or glue.

Step 5:

Tie a bow out of ribbon and attatch it to the wreath as well.

 

You’re all done!

*click on the patter pieces below and print.  It should be the right size.  If you have issues with it or any questions about the tutorial; leave me a comment or email me.  mycreativepear{at}gmail{dot}com

Gumdrops : tutorial

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We made some yummy gumdrops for C1’s birthday party.  We don’t have a lot of flavor options on hand, so they are all lemon flavor.  Maybe peppermint would have been better.  THIS is the recipe I followed (thank you Pintrest); but in my tutorial I made a few changes that I thought helpful in the process.

Recipe from the bakerella website with  my notes and changes in blue.

Gumdrops

4 Tbsp gelatin (that’s about 6 envelopes) it only took us 5 packs to get the 1/4 cup (which is the same as 4 Tbsp.)
1 cup cold water
1 1/2 cups boiling water
4 cups sugar
1/4 tsp flavored extract like lemon or peppermint we used lemon
1-2 drops food coloring I used 3 colors
extra sugar for coating

……………………………………………

  • In a large pot, soften gelatin in cold water for five minutes.
  • Stir in boiling water until gelatin dissolves.
  • Stir in sugar.
  • Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and boil for 25 minutes. to softball stage on your candy thermometer.  Stir constantly.
  • Pour mixture into 4 – 3X5 pans. be sure to grease your pans before pouring in the mixture, it will make it easier to get them out.
  • Add 1/4 tsp extract and 1-2 drops food color to each pan. I added the flavor before separating into the pans and colored each pan.
  • Stir until thoroughly combined.
  • Cover pan and chill overnight in the fridge.
  • Cut gelatin mixture into 3/4 inch cubes using a knife dipped in hot water.
  • The gelatin may pull, but continue cutting.
  • Separate cubes and roll in sugar until coated on all sides. When handling the gumdrops to coat with sugar, rub a small amount of Crisco or butter on your fingers.  This is sticky stuff people; a little fat on your fingers will help.
  • Place gumdrops on wax paper and leave at room temperature for two days to crystallize.

Store in an airtight container.
Makes about 8 dozen 3/4 inch gumdrops.

Cookie Mix

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I love buying the bags of cookie mix, where all I have to do is add eggs and oil and I have cookies.  However, this is not cost effective and we home make everything else, why not our cookies.  So, we decided to put together our own cookie mixes.  I don’t know why I didn’t think of this before, but when I made one for my Mom to go along with her Christmas present of a cookie scooper, I thought I needed to make some for our house too.

We made 5 chocolate chip cookie mixes and 5 sugar cookie mixes. I wrote on each of the gallon sized bags what you need to add to the mix to complete the cookie dough, as well as the oven temperature and how long to bake it for.  Now when we want cookies, it isn’t as big of a process as it was before.  However, I fear now we’ll be making cookies more often.  Not so good for my waist line.

The Chocolate Chip Recipe that we used is from the Toll House Chocolate Chip bag (bought at Costco.  Apparently the 5lb. bag of chocolate chips makes 5.5 batches of cookies. One recipe takes 2 cups of chips and there is only one cup of chips left.)

The Sugar Cookie Recipe that we used is:

Sugar Cookies (the Best Ever)

1cup butter

2cups sugar

2 tsp. vanilla

3 eggs

5cups flour

4 tbsp milk

1tsp salt

1tsp baking soda

Roll out 1/2 inch thick and bake at 350* for 8-10 minutes

 

Pumpkin table runner

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This is what I posted on Getyourcraptogether.blogspot.com.  Go check her out, she’s got lots of great craft ideas and organizing ideas too.

 

Today I’ll be sharing with you a Pumpkin table runner; inspired by a quilt I saw at the Payson Quilt show. Now that I’ve made this, I can think of a few variations that would also look fantastic.

Supplies:

10 10×10 squares (5 for the background and 5 for the pumpkin base)

green scraps for the leaf

brown scraps for the stem

scraps for the pumpkin strips

10×46 fabric for backing

(optional: iron on interfacing dual sided)

Version 1: use the iron on interfacing to adhere the pumpkins together and to the 10×10 square

Version 2: top-stitch your pumpkins down leaving a 1/2 inch edge to fray after washing

Version 3: do jack-o-lanterns and only use the iron-on interfacing for the face and then fray the pumpkin itself.

 

Depending on which version you’d like to make; the first step will be to adhere the iron-on interfacing to the pieces you don’t want to fray (such as the leaf, stem, pumpkin sections or the jack-o-lantern faces or the pumpkin shape itself). Cut out enough pieces for 5 pumpkins worth; as pictured above.

Step 2 would be to iron down (or not if you want it to fray); stitch down the basic pumpkin shape first to 1 of your 10×10 pieces. We’ll be stitching down each layer at a time to make sure it’s stitched all the way around. Iron and stitch each piece to each pumpkin designing it how you’d like it to look. There is no perfect way to do this, that’s the great thing about it. Do this for 5 of your 10×10 fabrics.

Once you have your pumpkin, stem, leaf and pumpkin strips or jack-o-lantern face ironed on and top stitched down you are ready to sew your squares together.

Then you’ll sew your front to your back with right sides together; leaving a gap for turning. Turn and press. Lastly top stitch around so as to close your turning point and display.

Homemade Body Wash Tutorial

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I saw this on a friends blog, and I had to give it a try.  I did a little research and some testing to get the recipe just right.  Somewhere along my path, I took a liking to Dove soap.  I don’t like bar soap because the idea of the same thing touching my body as anybody else is gross to me.  Then I waste soap trying to get the soap clean.  I’ve been buying Dove body wash at Costco and it hasn’t been a bad deal; but by making my own, I can get it for half the cost and I like it WAY better.

Step 1:

Grate 2 bars of soap.  I used a cheese grater, but I hear you can also use a food processor.

Step 2.

Heat the soap on the stove with 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups of water per bar of soap.  So, for our two bars of soap, use 2 1/2 cups of water.   Heat the two until all the soap is dissolved.  For me this didn’t take very long since I grated the soap pretty well.

*I tried 1 cup per bar and it works great, but it’s pretty thick.  I did 1 1/4 cup per bar and it’s a good consistency and you get more soap for your buck.  I think that 1 1/2 cups of water per bar of soap would give you the same consistency of the store bought stuff.

Step 3:

Put in glass bowl to cool before putting it into a plastic bottle.

Step 4:

Put into a plastic bottle and use daily.

Here’s why I love this soap better than the store bought dove body wash.  (I’ve been using my 1 cup water per bar of soap).  I do like bar soap because it makes my skin feel smoother, but as I said, I don’t like using the bar.  I like the homemade stuff because I get that smoother clean feeling as if I was using a bar of soap, but I get it in the form of a liquid.  I also like that I only have to use a small amount 1/2 to 1/3 of what I was using before.  The lather lasts from head to toe and rinses out of my loofa quicker.  The cost is cheaper: I can buy 3 bottles of body wash from Costco for $12.99; or I can buy 14 bars of soap for $14.99 and make 7-8 bottles with it.  And because I don’t have to be using as much per use, it lasts longer.

From now on, I’m going to be making my own soap.  Not only to save money, but because it’s my favorite soap now.  I love homemade.