Last minute gift to sew

That’s it, we have almost run out of time, but you know that there is just enough time to sew up some last minute gifts!

Rice pack gift

A holiday just wouldn’t be a holiday without making some rice packs. See others I have made here, here, and here.

Rice pack gift

Almost everyone I know can use these handy items, and they are super easy to make. They are good for hot (if you microwave them) or cold (if you put them in the freezer). We go through a lot of these. I have no idea where they end up, but Falafel loves to heat them up and take them to bed with her, as well as in the car on a frosty day!

What are you making last minute?

Paper napkin fairy

I found this gem of a craft on Pinterest (can you tell what I have been doing with my time?) and just had to give it a try. I mean what’s not to like about a paper napkin fairy??!

Paper napkin fairy

One of the best things about this project is that I had all the components on hand, already, and you only need 4 things to make this: Wire, Glue/water solution, paper napkins, thread/string. PERFECT.

Of course, mine looks very little like theirs. One major difference is I used brown compostable napkins. The downside to that is they almost dissolved when I put the watered-down glue on. Whoops! Next time I need to use actual bad-for-the-environment paper napkins. I am sure there are plenty of those out there, waiting to be made into fairies. Just think how sweet this would be in all different colors!

Paper napkin fairy

The other major difference is, the original ones are ballerinas. I added wings, which was easy to do. After the fairy was all made and dressed, I just took the same thread that I used to make her waistband, and wound it around the back to secure the wings. You can see it looks almost like a harness, or a criss-cross top.

Paper napkin fairy

Lastly, I made her little crown out of a wire beaded garland I had (from this post). I love how this came out.

Paper napkin fairy

My girls think she needs a face, but I like her as is. She is completely posable, and I left the thread in the back so she can be strung up. I think this would make a lovely gift or even a gift topper.

I do plan to make lots more of these. It was super fun to create, and now that I did one, I can refine my methods down to what works.

How is YOUR holiday creating coming along?

 

More Sharpie Mugs

Remember the Sharpie Mugs class I taught? Well, this week I made MORE shaprie mugs to gift this holiday season!

I went over to my beloved Sharpie Mugs Pinterest board, and got some ideas for designs.

Soot Sprites (for you Miyazaki fans out there).

You know I love a good feather.

 I love this guy. He looks a little stressed, though, don’t ya think?

And a Geeky Mathy one for my friend Amy (I hope she isn’t reading this). It says “I 8 sum pie…and it was delicious). heh.

If you want to buy the sharpie pens I used, (and support this blog by using my affiliate link) click over here

What are you making for the holidays this year??

Salt Dough gifts

Falafel and I made up a few batches of salt dough (we use a GF recipe), sat down, and created up a storm. I had a few ideas I wanted to try out this year.  Salt dough is the perfect thing to experiment with, since it only has three (relatively inexpensive) ingredients, and one is water. The first that I made is:

Salt dough mini dishes

Salt dough mini dishes

I LOVE how these came out. Although I will say that I probably should have baked them a bit longer. I left them in the oven for three hours instead of 2, but the centers are still a tiny bit soft. They probably could have gone for another hour.

Salt dough mini dishes

I used the pinch pot method, and then flattened them out a bit. They each measure about 2-3″ in diameter.

  Salt dough mini dishes

After I baked and cooled them, I used acrylic paints to decorate them. Then sealed each with Polycrylic.

Salt dough mini dishes

I found some design ideas on Pinterest. And then set to work.

Salt dough mini dishes

I adore them. I hope they actually hold up! They look like they would be perfect for holding small jewlery or coins.

The next one I made is:

Salt dough heart wall hanging

This one was simple. I took a butter knife, and cut out a rustic-looking heart. It is a larger one (about 8-10 inches). I punched two holes using a pencil top. Then baked, cooled, painted it, and sealed it.

Salt dough heart wall hanging

To make the hanger, I wound wire around a pencil, then pulled it off and attached the ends, by twisting, to each hole.

The last one I did is:

Salt dough Feather ornaments

Again, I took my trusty butter knife and cut out rough shapes of feathers. I textured the tops with the same knife. Punched holes using the top of a pencil.

Salt dough Feather ornaments

Baked, cooled, painted, and then sealed.

Salt dough Feather ornaments

Add a thin ribbon, or ornament hook, and you have got yourself a great little gift, or gift topper.

Woot Woot! Salt dough to the rescue once again. It just wouldn’t feel like Christmas without whipping up a batch or two of these.

I solemnly swear I have been up to… lots of good

I am so sorry I have been missing, for a few days, from here. I solemnly swear (for you Harry Potter fans) I have been up to my ears in crafting for the holidays. Like non-stop.

I cannot wait to share everything with you, but I have to actually stop creating, and photograph, for that to happen, and therein lies the trouble. I am a whirlwind of activity everyday preparing and sewing and crafting. It feels good.

So, hang in there. I promise to have a brand new post up this week (I hope) with some of the spectacular makes I have made.

If you are stuck for a gift, hop on over to my Etsy shop where you can purchase a rope bowl! Perfect for just about everone.

rope bowl

Holiday Letter FREE Template

This is the first year we are sending out a Holiday Letter with our card! I have always wanted to create one, and honestly it took a few days. I thought it would be much easier, than it was, to sum up our year. I have this blog, afterall! You would think I am used to summing us up, right?!

Holiday Letter FREE template

I knew that I didn’t want it to be straight text and boring. So I designed this template and inserted text using PicMonkey. Once I had the bones of the letter complete, it actually went much faster.

I love the way it came out…so I made a free template for you!

To save it, right click the image below, and save it. Open it in a program you want to edit it in, and insert text wherever you want. Print out and mail to everyone on your list.

Holiday Letter FREE template

Here’s an example:

Holiday Letter FREE template

Obviously, you can use different wording. Ha!

Have you ever written a holiday letter?

Please let me know if you use it. I would love to see what you make!

Ginseng Dress made with Cali Fabrics

Ginseng Dress sewn by Falafel and the Bee for Cali Fabrics

Today I am Guest Posting over at the Cali & co blog, sharing the amazing new Holiday dress I made for The Bee.

Ginseng Dress sewn by Falafel and the Bee for Cali Fabrics

I used the Ginseng Dress Pattern by Sew Chic Pattern Company (which she generously supplied for this post). I had seen one that Laura made on her FB page, and fell instantly in love. This dress has a classic vinatge-50’s housewife-cocktail party vibe to it, which fits my (almost) 17 year old daughter’s personality and style. That pattern paired with fabric from Cali Fabrics make my heart swoon.

Ginseng Dress made by Falafel and the Bee using Cali Fabrics

On to the details.

Firstly, all the Sew Chic patterns are paper patterns (opposed to PDF patterns you print yourself), so they mail them right to you. It comes with a handy booklet of instructions, and all the pattern pieces. The sizes go from 2 up to 18, and there are two different views you can sew. I chose “view A” with a collar. It has a side zipper, which gives it such a neat look.

Ginseng Dress made by Falafel and the Bee using Cali Fabrics

I picked out this amazingly buttery beautiful Gold on Gold Damask Stretch Twill for the main fabric, because it has nice drape, and enough structure to make the skirt portion of the dress flare. When hemming circle skirts, I find if the fabric has a little stretch it makes it much easier to get a neat and even hem. I asked Ron over at Cali Fabrics to help me chose the accent fabric, and he picked this Champagne Midweight Bridal Satin. It matches perfectly.

Ginseng Dress sewn by Falafel and the Bee with Cali Fabrics

My sewing machine was being tempermental, and not gathering the fabric as it was required, so the only change I made to this was folding the sash, accordian style. I do like the effect, though. Now that I have sewn it up once, I may make myself one! This pattern is so flattering and classic, especially in this fabric.

Ginseng Dress sewn by Falafel and the Bee with Cali Fabrics

If you would like to see more photos, click on over and check out my post on the Cali & Co blog.

 *Disclaimer: Although I was provided the pattern and the fabric for free, as always my opinions are mine mine mine. I enjoy showing you the brilliant products I discover.

Sharpie Mugs

Recently, I taught a Sharpie Mugs class at our library. I brought the Bee along so she could particpate, as well as help me. We had a blast! It was such a fun activity for adults and teens alike.

gift inspiration: Sharpie Mugs

AND they would make great gifts!

gift inspiration: Sharpie Mugs

This one was mine. I took my inspiration from Pinterest, and married two ideas: this one and this one.

gift inspiration: Sharpie Mugs

Really that was the most time consuming part about this project; finding ideas. For the class, I pulled all sorts of interesting design books (the 20 Ways to Draw books- like this one, this one, and this one– are fabulous), and even Henna books, so that people could clarify their vision and get inspiration. I’d say everyone researched ideas for a good 30 minutes. Then I encouraged them all to draw it out on a plain ol piece of paper before attempting to do it on the mugs.

gift inspiration: Sharpie Mugs

I did this one too. Inspired by this pin.

gift inspiration: Sharpie Mugs

This was done by my Bee. She impressed me with her original design. This was one side.

gift inspiration: Sharpie Mugs

And this was the other. It is so happy. I love it.

gift inspiration: Sharpie Mugs

Any mistakes that were made, we just dabbed a little hand sanitizer on a cotton swab and it worked like a charm. There is conflicting info out there about how to set the paint, though. The library sent instructions to bake them, but when I got home and did that, the fumes were so toxic, I had to stop it halfway through (even with all the windows open, and a fan running). I went onto the Sharpie website, and there is no mention of heat setting the oil based paint. So, if we did it again, I would skip that part and see how they held up after washing.

Have you made these? What method did you use?


 This post contains affilaite links, and by using them to purchase items, you support this blog (and my sewing/creating habit). THANK YOU.

Transform a journal into a locking diary

Our tween has one request for her upcoming birthday: a locking diary. So this week my husband and I perused the stores looking for one. We found a few, but nothing we fell in love with. We then decided to look in the “adult” section of the store where the prettier journals are, and found a beautiful one, only it didn’t have a lock. Jim turned to me and said “you could totally make this into a locking diary“. And you know what? I did! Smart Man. And what’s more, I came up with a tutorial for how to transform a journal into a locking diary, so you can make one, too.

transform a journal into a locking diary

This is a super quick project (the longest part is waiting for the glue to dry- literally).

First, gather a few supplies:

transform a journal into a locking diary tutorial

  • strong glue (I used E6000 and went outside to use it with gloves on)
  • journal
  • lock and key (I wish we would have seen this one first!)
  • d-ring hangers (we used these)
  • *optional* small buttons or gems (these look fun) to cover the holes

transform a journal into a locking diary tutorial

Line up the d-ring so that the ring is hanging off the edge of the book (the hinge should allow the ring to swing down against the pages). Glue in place. Because some of the glue was coming through the hole, I also stuck the button on at the same time. Allow it to dry.

transform a journal into a locking diary tutorial

Flip it over and repeat, making sure to line it up with the one on the front.

transform a journal into a locking diary tutorial

When it is completely dry, you are done! Seriously, the most simple project ever.

transform a journal into a locking diary tutorial

It is now ready for someone to write down all the secrets of their heart.

transform a journal into a locking diary tutorial

Put the lock on, and don’t forget where you put the key! If your lock comes with an extra key, you may want to hold on to it, just in case your child loses things, like mine does.

transform a journal into a locking diary tutorial

I am considering making a necklace for our girl to wear hers on.

Who will YOU make one for?

*This post contains affiliate links. if you click on my link and purchase the product, I can earn a few pennies toward my ever-growing crafting habit. No pressure, though.