Thursday, January 22, 2015

Hoop Art Wall Hanging

I was looking for a craft idea that would help teach simple sewing skills.  Several of my mom friends (and their girls) have expressed an interest in leaning how to hand sew.  

I thought this pretty little framed fabric art piece would be the perfect project. 

It's made using simple embroidery stitches.  Not too difficult but with cute results.  A perfect way to practice stitching and knots.

The "frame" is an embroidery hoop.  I found some colorful options, but in the end decided to use the traditional bamboo version.  

I gathered up an assortment of fabric scraps, decorative buttons and embroidery floss to match.  

The green strip of fabric was sewn to the bottom with a fairly large Running Stitch using a dark green thread (because I wanted the stitches to stand out).  I pulled at the top cut edge of the fabric to "fray" so it resembled blades of grass.  

Once the grass was sewn in place.  I positioned the hoop and cinched it down.  Then I marked where each of the flowers would be, using a fabric marking pen.  

The Large flower is made from a fabric YoYo with a blue button center.  The Orange flower is shaped button (tied with a blue bow).  The Pink flower is stitched using the Lazy Daisy embroidery stitch with French Knots for the center. 

The flower stems are stitched with a Running Stitch using green embroidery thread and a tiny felt leaf is sewn on with lighter green thread.  

Lucky for me - my mum has a collection of nearly every color of embroidery floss ever made.  So fun choosing just the right shades from this box (1 of three) of candy colored threads. 

Once the stitching was done, I cut the background fabric just slightly larger than the outside of the hoop.  

From the backside, I folded the fabric over and glued it in place around the inside of the hoop.  

Using a low temp glue gun is the best choice.  That way you can use your fingers to press the fabric into the (not too hot) glue before it hardens. 

To cover up the messy bits and stitches on the backside of the fabric, I cut a white felt circle and glued that around the edges of the hoop for a tidy back. 

I stitched a blue button to the center of the YoYo, and tied a strand of embroidery floss into a bow through the orange flower button.  Each of the flowers were glued in place atop their embroidered stems.  

The final touch was a polka dotted bow glued to the top of the embroidery hoop screw attachment.  

Now this sweet little Hoop Art Piece is ready for hanging.  

But first I think we will make a few more in different sizes.  I can imagine stacked button flowers.  Rolled felt flowers.  Maybe a kite flying in the wind?  So many ideas swirling around in my head....I better gather up a few friends and have a sewing craft party. 

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Back to Bento

January always brings new optimism that I CAN accomplish all things. 

One thing in the list for this year is to get back to making Bento Lunches for {not so little} Little K. 

Inspired by my Bento Buddy Sheri at Happy Little Bento to get back to it. 

Unfortunately I didn't have much to work with today, but I'll be sure to put my favorite Bento foods on the shopping list this week.

Sticky rice (leftover from yesterday's lunch) with a Turkey and cheese flower decoration on top.  Cucumber sticks and blanched carrots & cauliflower fill the veggie tin.  I also included a fruit squeeze, peanut butter crackers and a fruit bar. 

Everything was packed into this sweet oilcloth lunch bag (and then promptly crammed into a very full back pack). 

You can find the Lunch Bag tutorial here.

Considering the rough ride these bentos now have to endure being carried from class to class until 1PM lunch time, I don't think I'll be able to send any delicate creations like I used to. 

(This is one of my most popular bentos - viewed nearly 8,000 times)

But there is no reason I can't include a little something Pretty in her lunches. 

I've forgotten how much fun it is. 

Happy Bentoing.