Saturday, November 28, 2015

Santa Bow Wreath/Wall Hanging DIY

Most of you might already know that I am a designer for Bowdabra.  The Bowdabra is a fun and handy tool to make bows of all sizes and styles.  I'm so excited this time of year about using the Bowdabra to make lots of holiday crafts and décor.  My latest project is one of the cutest things I've ever made, a Santa Bow Wreath or Wall Hanging. 

Materials needed:
1 1/5 yards of 5 1/2" wide ribbon
1/2 yard Faux fur trim
18"x12" Sheet of stiff black felt
Glue/Hot glue gun
Boot pattern
Glitter stick-on foam sheet
Bowdabra, wire, and wand

To begin, I found a boot pattern online that I saved to Word and increased the size to line up with the width of my ribbon. I traced two patterns on cardboard (opposite facings), and added it between two pieces of stiff felt for each boot for added stability. 
Next, I folded 24" of  bowdabra wire and placed it in the Bowdabra and then inserted an 18" piece of ribbon for "Santa's legs."

I took the remaining yard of ribbon, folded the ends together with loops on both sides and inserted it into the Bowdabra.

While all of the ribbon is still in the Bowdabra, I glued on faux fur trim to the ends of the "legs" .  .  .

and then glued on the boots.
After scrunching down the ribbon, I took the two loose wire ends and pushed them through the wire loop, pulling tightly, lifting out and tying the wire in a knot to the back of the bow. 

The excess bow wire, looped and tied, will be used as a hanger.

 Next, I glued strips of cardboard in a V shape to the back to prevent the legs from moving. 

And finally, I cut out a 3" square of glitter foam sheet with a one inch square opening, adding a piece of black felt over the opening and gluing on top of the bow for the buckle.

This is just too cute!

Take a little time to enjoy


Happy Holiday Crafting!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Bowdabra Swag Lantern Topper

Hi everyone!  I'm back from a lovely vacation cruising the Hawaiian islands and getting ready for lots of holiday projects! Today I'm over at BowdabraBlog where I'm sharing how to create a gorgeous Swag Lantern Topper.  The best part about using a Bowdabra for making this lantern swag topper is that everything is contained together in one unit, secured with Bowdabra wire!  How easy is that!  So hurry on over and enjoy the full tutorial!

Take a little time to enjoy


Happy Holiday Crafting!

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Create A Recycled Newspaper Woven Stars Tree

In my quest to make more recycled crafts for the holidays, I was inspired by these on Pinterest when I put this tree together.  It's made of recycled newspaper tubes woven into stars made in graduated sizes and glued together.

The tree is really easy to do once you make lots of newspaper tubes and master weaving the tubes into a star. But first, let's briefly go over making newspaper  tubes.

1.  Fold a newspaper section in half and fold again so you have four sections.
2.  Cut out the four folded sections and open length-wise.
3.  Take a thin skewer stick and place on the corner edge of paper at an angle, as pictured.
4.  Place the end tip of the paper over the skewer and start rolling the paper with fingers pressed down on the table first.  Once you've started rolling the paper, lift up the tube so your left fingers are controlling the roll while your right hand is rolling the stick and tightening the tube.
5.  Just before finishing the roll, add glue to the corner end tip and continue rolling until reaching the end to seal. 

You will need to make lots of tubes for the eleven stars that make up this tree.

The largest star (base) is 9 1/2 inches wide and took about 9 tubes to make.
Here are the measurements (tip to tip) for the eleven stars that I made:
1 star -  9 1/2"
2        -  9"
3        -  8 1/2"
4        -  8"
5        -  7 1/2"
6        -  7"
7        -  6 1/2"
8        -  6"
9        -  5 1/2"
 2 small stars for the top - 3"  
Sorry, I didn't count all the tubes used to make each star.  I got too involved in weaving each one!  

To begin, take a tube and make about an inch fold on one end.  Next, with a ruler, measure the tube the size of star you want to make.  So, for the first star, measure 9 1/2" with a ruler and fold the tube into 9 1/2 inch lengths.  I forgot to take pictures of measuring at first because I had to figure it out and wasn't comfortable with making the stars.  The tutorial on Pinterest was in pictures and it took me a couple of times making one to get the hang of it.  In this picture, I'm measuring 7 inch folds for a seven inch star.

Make three  "V" folds, measuring the same length, as pictured.
*Your tube may not be long enough for folding this way so you'll need to add more tubes by putting a little glue on one end and inserting it into the other tube to make it continuous.
Next, open the folds and shape the folded portions into a star.  The one inch bended tip is glued to the last end of the tube at the fold and clamped until dry. 

 To start weaving the star, turn the star upright where the end was glued and clamped.  Take the tube around the point and down, parallel to the star tube (1) to the next star point (2) and around (3)  and over to the next point(4) and around and over to the next point (5).  I hope this isn't too confusing.

Continue following the original pattern with the tubes running parallel so you would see rows of two, then three, then four, etc., beside each other.

*Add additional tubes by putting a little glue on one end and inserting tube into new tube end.

Continue wrapping until reaching the center, making sure all points look about the same.  You should see a weaving pattern on each star point or leg. To finish off the end tube, wrap it to the back, adding glue and .  .  .

tuck the end under an inside tube.  You can cut off the excess tube after tucking and gluing it under one or more of the tubes on the underside.
Finished back of tube:

Front of finished star:

All of the finished stars:
Spray painted with satin white multi-purpose paint and sprayed with a gloss sealant.

Sprinkle on white glitter while paint is still wet.

Once dry, start hot gluing stars on top of each other.

Hot glue the two small 3 inch stars together .  .  .

and glue the bottom on top of the center of the stars.

For a snowy effect, mix glitter, decorative filler and mod podge together and add the mixture to the tips of the stars and let dry.


I love how the tree turned out! 
It's so adorable and can be used as a snowy centerpiece, not just for the holidays, but for the entire winter season!

What a fun recycled/upcycled craft!

Take a little time to enjoy


Happy Holiday Crafting!


Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Reindeer Moss Topiary DIY

This handcrafted topiary is unlike any other.  It's made of reindeer moss which is not a moss at all, but lichen.  And what is lichen, you say?  It's a combination of fungus and algae plants that's a winter food for deer (caribou).   I've always admired regular topiaries but thought they were too expensive and making one really wasn't that appealing to me - until I saw a bag of preserved reindeer moss in a nice rich fuchsia color.  Yes, fuchsia - how cool is that? 

So, I easily put my topiary together, using a 10 inch flora craft foam ball for the top,  a  small branch that I found in the woods,  a half of a Styrofoam ball for the base that was from a previous project,  wine color acrylic paint to color the balls so the white wouldn't show through, tacky glue and a urn that I purchased on clearance a few years ago.

To begin, after inserting the stick branch into the ball base, I painted the Styrofoam balls.

Next, I glued the moss on both balls using quick grab tacky glue.  I found this better than using hot glue which made the moss hard and my fingers HOT! Ouch!

Once finished gluing on the moss, I had fun deciding where my topiary would go. It looks perfect in the foyer, by the front door .  .  .

or by the fireplace, near the tv .  .  .

or in that hard to decorate corner  .  .  .

I have so many of .  .  .

or maybe in the living room, where there's always an open space  .  .  .

Oh, and I did add a bow!

Now that's so much better!

No matter where I put it, I know that it makes for a timeless decorative accent piece, for now, the holidays, or whenever, year after year.

And if you're considering this topiary for the holidays,  just add LED battery lights to the reindeer moss and you're all set!

With it's lovely fuchsia color, this topiary is sure to be a show stopper in any décor!

Take a little time to enjoy


Happy Crafting!