Friday, January 31, 2014

One Yard Wonder Retro Bag by Design Team Member Staci Wendland

Hello! My name is Staci, and I’m happy to be visiting the Craft Warehouse blog today as a guest designer! When the book Fabric-by-Fabric One Yard Wonders by Rebeccca Yaker and Patricia Hoskins showed up on my doorstep, I almost didn’t know what to do. How was I going to choose one project to make out of 101? Crafty Staci 1
I love simple projects that can be made with a reasonable amount of time and materials and this book really delivered. What ultimately helped me choose which pattern to try was this beautiful Modern Roses by Stephanie Ryan fabric from Moda that Craft Warehouse sent. Crafty Staci 2
Since the book is categorized by fabric type, I was able to focus on the section appropriate for what I was using. I just kept coming back to the same pattern: The Retro Bag on page 50. There is a packet of pattern pieces in the front of the book. As you might imagine, 101 patterns involves a lot of pieces. Some pieces are printed on the inside of others. I’d recommend tracing the inner piece onto another piece of paper rather than cutting it out to prevent warping the larger piece. Crafty Staci 2.5
Another bit of advice before you begin: don’t be tempted to skip the interfacing. The bag will need it for body and stability. In fact, I even added a couple of extra layers behind the magnetic clasp to keep it from damaging the cotton. The pieces that are completely straight squares or rectangles are simply indicated to cut as such in the book, rather than an actual printed piece. Fortunately, Craft Warehouse also provided me with a Olfa rotary cutter. If you sew at all and haven’t bought a rotary cutter, make it the next thing on your list. You won’t believe how much easier it will be to cut fabric. In fact, I had forgotten how awesome and terrifying a brand-new rotary cutter blade can be. Be sure to use the safety features! Crafty Staci 3
One of the design elements I love about the Retro Bag is the pleating at the top and bottom. When you’re cutting out a pattern with pleats, simply make a clip within the seam allowance at each mark. That will save you time by not having to draw each line onto your fabric, and it’s easy to match up the clips to make your pleats. Crafty Staci 4
To hold those pleats in place, I also received a great product that I didn’t even know existed. In fact, I’ve used binder clips for this purpose, but wished there was something better. These Clover Wonder Clips held the pleats perfectly, and were easy to remove as I sewed. Crafty Staci 5
This pattern uses 1/2” seam allowances throughout the bag. In order to make sure my seams were consistent, I used a little trick I learned on Pinterest. Crafty Staci 6
Sliding a rubber band onto my machine at the 1/2” mark to use as a guide worked beautifully and all my pieces fit together the way they should. Crafty Staci 7
I made a point to follow the instructions on this pattern to give an accurate representation of the process. However, I deviated on this point, only because it’s a technique I use very often. When you’re sewing the pocket for the inside, you’re instructed to stitch the sides and bottom, turn right side out, then fold the top to the inside 1/2”. I recommend instead turning that 1/2” under and pressing it before you do any of the sewing. Just make sure your folds are even at the top before sewing the side and bottom seams.Crafty Staci 8
A quick and easy way to center that pocket is to fold your bag in half and make a light crease with your thumbnail, then do the same with the pocket. Line up the folds and measure down the distance from the top of the bag and you’re done! Crafty Staci 9
The final tool Craft Warehouse sent in my box of goodies was a Seam-Fix seam ripper. I have to be honest here…I was REALLY hoping I wasn’t going to need that particular item. As it turned out, I didn’t have to remove any mistakes, but it came in very handy for cutting the small holes needed to apply the magnetic closure for the bag. Crafty Staci 10
The pattern called for a 3” ring for the strap, which would be cute, but I was unable to find one. The 2” d-ring I used instead was perfect. Crafty Staci 11
I love how the Retro Bag turned out. It’s a great size and shape, and I found the strap to be perfect for cross-body wear with no adjustments. The pattern was easy to follow and I would even recommend it for someone fairly new to sewing. Crafty Staci 12

And, true to its name, it was a One Yard Wonder. Since I had two yards of fabric, I was able to make two bags!

 Crafty Staci 13

Thank you so much to Craft Warehouse for letting me play with some of their amazing products and welcoming me here today!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Craft Warehouse Design Team Member Staci Wendland

When I received Staci Wendland's application for our design team I was literally jumping up and down that she applied! Craft Warehouse is always looking for talented seamstresses to inspire our customers! Even better - she is local, which almost brought me to tears of joy! I can't wait for you to see what Staci has to share with you in her tutorial tomorrow, but before we get ahead of ourselves, read on and get to know a little bit about Staci...

 How long have you been crafting?

I have been crafting as long as I can remember, so at this point we're talking over 40 years!  Once I was married I thought I had outgrown it, so I got rid of almost all of my craft and sewing supplies.  A couple of years went by and I found myself really missing that creative outlet.  I let it back in and now it's taken over my life!

 What inspires you to be creative?

Inspiration can come from anywhere.  I've found it in the usual places, like nature, my family, the craft store or Pinterest.  But sometimes it comes from the not-so-ordinary, like a hardware store or something I was about to throw out.  One thing I've discovered over the years though - I can't chase it.  When it happens, it happens.

 What Craft Warehouse products do you love to use?

I'm about to sound like a commercial, but I've loved Craft Warehouse since they first opened their store in Gresham!  I have a craft room full of things I've found there.  There is no department I haven't made a purchase from, but I'd say if I had to visit only one it would be fabrics.  They're constantly changing and it's fun to see what's new.

How can you encourage others reading this column?

Start simple.  Find something you feel you can do and start with that.  Invite a friend to join you.  Don't be lured in by a complicated craft if you're just starting out because that can lead to frustration.  As much as I love Pinterest, sometimes it does new crafters a disservice by downplaying the complexity of some of the most popular pins.  You can get there, but aim for some small successes first.  It's such a satisfying experience to know you made something with your own hands that you can use and enjoy.

Make sure to join Staci again tomorrow as she shares a lovely handmade item just by using one yard of fabric! In the meantime, you can get even more inspiration from her blog, etsy shop, and Pinterest page! You can also follow her on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram!

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Arm Knitting Scarves

Arm Knitting is a hot new trend that is easy and fun! You do not need any needles and it is perfect for any age whether you have knitted before or not! Here are two of our new favorite designs!

Starbella and Starry Night Yarns are made by Premier. The Starbella ( red and orange) by itself is one skein. Cast on six stitches. Work all the Starbella. Starbella and Starry Night red and gold infinity scarf (1 strand each) are cast on seven and work all Starbella. You will have extra Starry Night left. Tie ends together to create an Infinity Scarf.

Magnum is made by Cascade Yarns and Passion Chunky is made by James Brett. It is the cream wool with little bit of variegated blue scarf. Measure off approximately 30 yards ( twice) of each Magnum and Passion Chunky, working 2 strands of each cast on  five stitches. Work all yarn.

Follow the video below to learn how to Arm Knit!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Arm Knitting Scarves

Arm Knitting is a hot new trend that is easy and fun! You do not need any needles and it is perfect for any age whether you have knitted before or not! Here are two of our new favorite designs!

The Starbella ( red and orange) by itself is only one skein. Cast on six stitches. Work all the Starbella yarn and tie ends together to make an Infinity Scarf.

Frilly Yarn is by Schachenmayr and City Life is by Premier. 1 skein of each, with City Life using two strands and Frilly only one. Cast on seven stitches and work all the Frilly. You will have lots of City Life left over. Tie ends together to make an Infinity Scarf.

Watch the video below to learn how to Arm Knit!

Monday, January 27, 2014

Scarf Turned Into A Buttoned Cowl by Staci Wendland

I recently discovered my yarn impediment skipped a generation.  I bravely gave my daughter a knitting book and a skein of yarn for Christmas.  I fully expected it to go into a storage box, never to be seen again.  But then something magical happened.  She dug out the knitting needles and, barely glancing at the book, started on a scarf.  I keep expecting it to disappear, but she kept at it.  She started carrying it out of the house with her and telling me stories of teaching a friend to knit too.  They visited craft stores and a local yarn shop together.  She finished that scarf and has barely left the house without wearing it since. 

Now, I’m still using the loom.  It works for me and I enjoy using it once in a while.  Around the same time I bought her yarn, I grabbed a skein of my own.  It’s a bulky so it goes quickly, and is so pretty.

I went with an oatmeal color.  I made a short, flat scarf using a basic design.  Really, anything you like would work.  I just kept going until I ran out of yarn, which ended up about 32” long and 5” wide.  I dug four 3/4” buttons out of my stash, but if I were going to buy some specifically for this I might go a little larger.

I overlapped the scarf the way I planned to wear it and marked the four spots where the buttons would go with pins. 

I carefully transferred my marker pins to the bottom layer, then straightened them out a bit so they were lined up properly.

I used embroidery floss to stitch a button at each mark.  The mistake I made was not sliding something under the button as I stitched so there would be some room underneath for buttoning the other layer on.  I worked the thread ends inside the scarf.

To button it, I just overlapped it again and pushed the buttons through the top side in the appropriate places.  For the sake of the scarf I will probably leave it buttoned and slip it over my head when I wear it.  I’m not sure how it would hold up to stretching over the buttons repeatedly.  

As I was writing this, my daughter walked into the room with a ball of yarn I donated to her newly formed stash and asked “What did you want me to make for you?”  I have a knitter!

- Staci Wendland

Friday, January 24, 2014

Project Life Flea Market Mini Kit by Design Team Member Charissa Miller

Hi everyone!  Charissa here today to share a spread in my Project Life album!  I got to work with the Maggie Holmes Flea Market Mini Kit, which is simply gorgeous and perfect since I have two little girls that love lace, flowers, and all things pretty.  I challenged myself to use my journaling cards from the kit in a variety of different ways across the pages to make the spread interesting and fun.

I used a Design A and a Design B page protector on this spread, which gave me lots of options for photo orientation and decoration.  I like to play with a variety of photo sizes and shapes (square and rectangular) in my spreads to give them lots of interest.  I do try to balance my colors across the two sides of the spread, so it is easy to look at and take it all in. 

I very much enjoy adding extra embellishments to my Project Life spreads, but I don't always want to add much bulk, because then the pages don't lay nicely in my album.  I came up with a new idea while working on this spread!  I could punch out small circles from some of the cards in the core kit to create embellishments.  Here I overlapped a circle cut from a text card using a 1/2" punch onto some washi tape and added a Becky Higgins Project Life sticker to complete the embellishment cluster.  This adds some fun and interest to the card while adding almost no bulk!

Silhouette Cameo (a digital cutting machine available at Craft Warehouse stores) cuts are fun and I realized there was absolutely no reason why I couldn't take a Project Life card and run it through my Cameo.  I came across the Hearts and Stripes card from Loni Stevens in the Silhouette store I knew it would make a great addition to my spread.  I cut the 3x4 design onto a 4x6 card so that I could be 100% positive that the entire cut would fit and I wouldn't accidentally waste a card.

I like adding little titles all over my spread - a lot of time each story will have its own title - and the little Becky Higgins' Project Life grey alpha stickers are the perfect size for titles on the journaling cards.  She also has arrows, day banners, and asterisks - all which are great for adding that last little touch of embellishment.

I like using labels on my Project Life spreads as well and it dawned on me that cutting a journaling card into thirds would create a great label to put along the edge of a photo.  I used the grey Becky Higgins Project Life alphabet stickers again to create a title and used the gorgeous pink Slick Writer pen for my journaling.

Finally, journaling cards make perfect pieces for layering on another card or behind a photo.  Here, I started with the navy polka dot 4x6 card from the Flea Market core kit and then built on it with 3 additional 3x4 cards before adding my photo.  The lined card as the top layer gave me space to add my journaling.

Hope these ideas inspire you to find ways to stretch your core kit cards in new ways!  It is easy to forget that they are another form of paper and can be used for much more than just writing or basic embellishment!  

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Craft Warehouse Project Life Design Team Charissa Miller

Meet Charissa Miller! Her love for Becky Higgins Project Life inspired us to invite her to be on our design team! This is what she says about this way of memory keeping, "I love Project Life because it gets me to record and document those everyday moments - those little things that don't always make it to my 12x12 'traditional' pages.  I love being able to look through my book and see how things have changed, how my kids have grown, where we have been.  Each spread is an incremental step in our lives.  Project Life also pushes me to journal and actually write down the stories of my life.  On my traditional layouts, I don't always journal for a variety of reasons - space, artistic/design feelings, etc.  Project Life gives me little pockets and that encourages me to use a few of them to really write - longer stories, more details.  Also, I love Project Life because my kids cherish my Project Life albums more than any of my other projects.  I don't think my 3 year old can always 'understand' my 12x12 layouts, but she gets absolutely giddy flipping through my Project Life albums, because she finds photo after photo of herself, her sister, her papa.  She can recall the events and activities photographed, she can even find her art work.  The accessibility of Project Life for my whole family makes me just love the whole concept and practice of Project Life even more."

 How long have you been crafting?

I grew up in a crafty household.  My mother always had craft projects for us growing up and my great-grandmother was an amazing crafter - making fabric crafts, paper crafts, and everything in between.  I started scrapbooking in 1999, but it was really only here and there because I was in graduate school at the time.  I really started scrapbooking on a regular basis after my first daughter was born in 2009 and now with two little girls my scrapbooking and crafting is a daily event during nap time.

What inspires you to be creative?

My children are my biggest source of inspiration - I had a never ending supply of funny and fun photos that always give me ideas for pages and projects.  I also love browsing online galleries, blogs, and Pinterest for inspiration.  Often my best and most fun inspiration comes from non-paper crafts or even non-crafty items, such as books, quotes, etc.

What Craft Warehouse products do you love to use?

Well, of course, I simply must say patterned paper - My Mind's Eye, Echo Park, Authentique and so many others found at Craft Warehouse are absolute musts.  Also who doesn't love We R Memory Keeper tools - they make crafting so much easier and more efficient.  And I cannot even count how many bare wooden pieces I have altered and covered.  They are my favorite go to for off the page projects.

How can you encourage others reading this column?

Project Life is such a fantastic way of memory keeping that really can make it easier to get all of those memories documented and preserved, but it also can come with a lot of stress.  Keeping up on a weekly schedule, having enough photos to fill a spread, keeping memorabilia, etc, can take Project Life from a fun, memory keeping project into a huge stressor.  Keep it stress free!  It doesn't matter if you miss a week or only can do one side of a spread for a week.  Or want to only do Project Life on a monthly basis or on a completely random basis.  Project Life is about your memories and should be whatever you want it to be.  Don't let it bring you extra stress!  This is true of all crafts - do not let them be a stress, enjoy them - it is for you to enjoy and cherish.

Make sure to join us tomorrow for Charissa's fun layout using the Flea Market Mini Kit available at your local Craft Warehouse store! In the meantime, visit Charissa on her blog and Facebook page!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Folded Heart Valentines by Holly Gagnon

I passed notes in school as a kid.  These notes may not of included a "Check One" box inside of them too. I don't seem to remember my unique folding techniques from back then but I do remember how to make Folded Heart Envelopes.

So takin' ya back old school, I'm sharing my nostalgic Folded Heart Valentine's on my blog today using Pebbles Inc. Yours Truly Collection, which can be found at your local Craft Warehouse!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Blogging tips