Monday, March 28, 2011

Still working on Easter decorations

Although I am still working feverishly on my own Easter Swags for the windows in my nurses' station at work, I don't have any new pictures because I split the cutting out of my figures with my friend, Bethany.  She is going to help me because I need so many figures to make a swag for each window.

Because I don't have anything new on my swag, I thought I would post this tutorial from  She has many wonderful tutorials on her site, so please visit and let her know that I sent you.



TUTORIAL: PEEPS Bunny Bunting and Door Hangers

Ready for Easter?
If you've got a Sunday morning brunch up your sleeve.....
Don't forget the PEEPS!
Nothing says Easter like a bunch of colorful bunnies.
And since buntings are festive any time of the year, I took a spin on the traditional flag look and mimicked a childhood favorite in our family.....Marshmallow Peeps.
Pick your favorite Peeps color (or make up your own!) and find a similar FELT color at your local craft store. Then, keep it super simple with Bunny Door Hangers:
or really give-in to your sweet tooth.....
And let's get bunting!

Skill Level: Any
* 1/2 yard or less of felt (doesn't need to be anything fancy)
* brown fabric paint
* pencil (or other round object)
* ribbon/fabric for bunting
* sewing machine

First, cut out your pattern. I've created one here for you. If you don't have a printer, just put a piece of paper up to your computer screen and trace the image right on top!

You can copy the Bunny Bunting Pattern TWO ways:
1. Click on the image below to enlarge. Then "save as" to you computer. Open it in a Word doc and insert the picture so you can adjust the size for your needs.

2. Grab the PDF pic by clicking HERE.

Okay, with your bunny pattern printed and cut out (I usually print on paper and then trace/cut an additional pattern out of cardstock or from a file folder. MUCH easier to trace around a stiffer bunny over and over again).

Fold your felt in half (because each bunny is a double-layer). You can make them single layered if you want the cheap/easy way. But it's less polished looking and a bit see-through. So I recommend double-layers.
Then trace and cut out as many bunnies as you'd like. The pink bunting has 18 bunnies. The small yellow bunting has 9:
Time to decorate their faces. You'll only be decorating the front bunnies (the back bunnies are left plain). You'll need a pencil eraser or something round. And brown fabric paint. I prefer Tulip brand, Matte, Chocolate. Its cheap, $1.50 at most craft stores.
Dip your pencil eraser in the paint, and dab it right onto each bunny. The beauty of Peeps is that they're far from perfect. If you look at a box, each face is slightly different. So don't worry about being precise or even symmetrical! If you want them to look like the real Peeps, space their eyes very far apart. It will feel strange. But their eyes are far apart and their nose if very high-up, close to the eyes. Look at the photos above of the real peeps for reference.

Make sure you place a piece of paper under your bunny because paint may seep through to the back.
Starting to see a resemblance......?
Let your bunnies dry for a hour or longer. If you're antsy, you can speed up the process by drying them with a blow dryer, but be careful that they don't fly all over the place!

While you're waiting for the faces to dry, prep your bunting ribbon. You can use fabric, ribbon, rope, colorful twine (THIS stuff is totally cute). My favorite method for making "ribbon" is to cut strips of fabric (I used double-layered white muslin in this case), sew the strips together to make a very long strip, and then I serge the edges. Perfect for wrapping gifts and in this case, for making a bunting. Each finished "ribbon" is about 100 inches long but that was much longer than needed.
Time to sew on your bunnies.
If you want the quick and easy way, grab a bunny back and a bunny front and sew that double-layered bunny to your ribbon and keep on going till you're bunnied out.

But if you want the slightly longer method that I did (it only took a bit longer)...
I sewed each bunny back on to the ribbon while the faces were drying. Just lay one down and sew across the ears:
Then grab the next bunny back and repeat:
Sewing the backs on first makes the bunting a bit stronger, the bunnies are likely to be straighter, and it's more polished looking. After sewing the back bunnies on by their ears, you sew the front bunnies on top, sewing an outline around each one.

(Okay, I was just bored and couldn't wait to get started while those blasted faces were drying! Either method you use, your bunnies will look great.)
Here's where I laid the front bunnies on top of the back bunnies and sewed all the way around each one. Repeat this step till all your bunnies are on!
and, you're done!
Enjoy your party!

Try your buntings in vibrant colors also. Makes me want to throw confetti and eat cupcakes:
Or make Bunny Door Hangers! Perfect gift for a teacher or friend:
Just add a metal Eyelet to the ear and a cute homemade ribbon (if you're not sure how to do Eyelets, they are super easy. Check out the Split Pea Shamrocks Tutorial for all the info):
And hang them up!
Happy Easter!
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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Progress so far!

I am actively working on this Easter swag.  I measured the windows at work and I will be making these things forever if I make enough to swag each window.  Oh, well.  It will look pretty when I am done.

Here's pics of my current activity on this project:

Notice that I still have not gotten to the Easter Eggs themselves.  I really like the way these are going to turn out.  I think each window will have 2 baby chicks, 2 rabbits, and an Easter Egg.  So, I need to be cutting more out if I plan to cover 20 windows!!!
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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

I've started working on my Easter swag

Since I need to get started on my Easter swag because time is short and I need quite a length of final swag, I decided to get right on it.

Here are some of the sketches I made for the individual figures of the swag.  As I said before, I want to have bunnies, chicks, and easter eggs all sewn together in pastel colors. 

With that in mind, I went to JoAnn's and brought back some pastel and bright felt squares to use to make my figures. 

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Monday, March 21, 2011

Easter is coming and I'm getting ready!

Self made image of Eastern CottontailImage via WikipediaSince I almost missed St. Paddy's day, I decided to be better prepared for Easter.  I really liked the idea of that shamrock swag, so I think I will go with it again.  I went to JoAnn's today and bought more felt in pastel and spring colors. 

My plan is to cut out rabbits, baby chicks, and Easter eggs and then sew them together like I did with the shamrocks.  I'm still working on the design, because my rabbits need to look like rabbits, but not have ears standing upright;  my baby chicks need to be in a position that doesn't require little stick feet to be hanging. 

Another problem I see, is that the shamrocks were kind of limp once I hung them and so I need to figure out how to stabilize the rabbit/chick/egg cutouts to make them more stationary once hung up.

I also measured the windows to the nurse's station and will have to make quite a bit more of these little darlings if I want to swag each separate window.  I may be through in time for Easter, or maybe I'll just have to stop when the holiday gets here.  Either way, my unit at work will be decorated.  That's the plan.  I'll post pics once I start cutting.

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Well, I finally did finish my Shamrock swag and I took it to work to be hung on my unit.  I can't wait to see how it looks when I go in later today.  I also wore my shamrock pin for my "green" and gave one to my sister, the staffing coordinator at work and my Director of Nurses (who was wearing a navy panysuit with no green anywhere!).

Here's what the finished swag looked like:

So, may the 'Luck of the Irish' visit you and yours now and forever more!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Crafting for St. Patrick's Day

As usual, I'm a day late and a dollar short!  Well, I did finally get started on those St. Patrick's Day crafts that I posted the tutorials on.  I had to work quickly, since tomorrow is the day.  However, I had lots of fun making the pins and will continue to explore this concept for other holidays. 

As you can see from the pictures, I am still working on the Shamrock swag.  I hope to sew the shamrocks all together tonight, but if not then I will have to do it EARLY in the morning so I can take it to my work and hang it in the window on my unit.  I love it when my unit is festive and happy, so if this is what it takes, then I'm in for it!

Below you can see my progress.  Let me know what you think.

 Here's the shamrock pins ready to wear on my lapel tomorrow.  I know I will have my GREEN on, will you?

These are the shamrocks for the swag all ready to be sewn together and hung up to announce the holiday!
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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Another St. Patrick's Day Craft for you!

Here's another fun craft you can whip up quickly for St. Patrick's Day.  I am having so much fun.  I try to keep my work area cheerful and timely, so this is an easy craft to do just that.  Try it out and let me know how you like it, won't you?

I found this at Kirstikoo Handmade Gifts and thought I needed to put it here, too.  Please visit her site and let her know how yours turns out, won't you.

St. Patrick's Day Garland Tutorial

Excerpt from:  Kirstikoo Handmade Gifts
Here's the tutorial for the Shamrock Felt Garland, complete with the template and all :) This seriously was the easiest sewing project ever- hardest/most time consuming part was the cutting. And it only cost me $1.25 for supplies. Doesn't get better than that!!
Here's what you need:
Shamrock Template (Email me if you want it!) kirstikoo{at} gmail {dot} com
8X10 Felt Sheets (1 in each color): Green, Light Green, Dark Green, and White
White Thread (or green!)
Ribbon Scraps (about 4 inches each)
2 Buttons
Embossing Thread or other thick thread for buttons

Here's what you do:
Print and cut out the shamrock template. I folded the felt sheet in half lengthwise to cut 2 at a time and got 6 shamrocks out of each color. You might get a callus from cutting, but this is the most time consuming part.
Figure out the order you like and put them in piles...
Sew along the middle of each shamrock, placing the next one at the edge of the one before it. Backstitch and the beginning of the first one and end of the very last one.
Continue chain-stitching all your shamrocks.
Once you are done, get out your embellishments-- cut ribbon into two 4 inch pieces.
Fold the ribbon and make a sandwich with the end felt piece in between the ribbon and button
and sew button onto the felt & ribbon, leaving a tail to knot-
then make a square knot in the back.
And you are done!!

I had a hard time taking down my Valentine's decorations, but I do love me some green!
I especially love this pot of {chocolate} gold. The best part? My kids don't know it's candy!