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DIY Freezer Paper Stenciled T-Shirt + Butterfly Template Printable

I thought I’d write a final update on the freezer paper stenciled butterfly t-shirt from a couple weeks ago. Those of you who follow this blog know that the original project ended in a craft fail, followed by an update that showed how I remade the shirt into a cute tank top for my daughter. However, that still didn’t leave me with a gift for my sister, which was the whole reason I started that project in the first place!

In the previous post, I shared how I was given a pack of Elmer’s Painters to review. According to the package, these acrylic paint markers can be used on any surface, even fabric. The only stipulation is to “heat set fabric before laundering, wash & dry on delicate cycle.” That got me thinking… and eventually I decided I would give it another try, using the markers instead of my usual screen printing ink.

I bought another of the same purple shirt and updated the design I had originally created with the new colors (Elmer’s Coral and Lilac). Be sure to wash and tumble dry the fabric you choose to stencil to take into account any shrinkage that may occur.

As before, I printed out my butterflies on craft freezer paper and cut them out carefully with my xacto knife. One cool thing about getting a do-over is that I remembered to put the inner pieces of the large butterfly back on before ironing it down in place.

This photo shows the process I used – instead of rubbing the markers across the fabric, I laid the color on by dotting the tip down onto the fabric, starting with the stencil edges and then filling in the center. I wanted the crispest edge possible. This process would be more time consuming on a larger image, but these butterflies were small and hardly took any time at all.

I waited until the ink was dry and later that same day I peeled off the stencil. Don’t wait too long or you’ll have problems pulling up the paper and may damage your work.

Ta-da!

So much better than before!

The directions aren’t specific about how long to heat set the stenciled image. Heat setting just means to give it a good press with a dry iron to help fuse the paint to the fabric. I pressed the shirt inside out with the image directly on my ironing board, before spending a minute or so ironing it directly. It put off a bit of acrid smoke, but not too bad. If you were unsure you could put a layer of old t-shirt over your image and then press it, in case you are worried about residue coming off on your iron or board.

Because this was a gift, I don’t know yet how well the image will wear. I’ll try and update that info here, if I ever find out.

What do you think? Want to make this t-shirt or one like it?

Here is a free Butterfly template printable pdf for you to download and print for your own project (or click on the butterfly graphic above). These butterflies could dress up anything from a onesie to a day bag – just enlarge it as needed. Enjoy!

P.S. There is still time to enter the giveaway for a set of Elmer’s Paint Markers AND a $25 Walmart gift card if you leave a comment on the previous post before midnight tonight, April 4th!

 


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Light Up Valentines + Free Printable PDF

Chloe worked on her Valentine cards right after breakfast this morning. I had designed these cards a few weeks back, knowing I had a stash of tiny finger flashlights for her to give away. These super bright LED Finger Flashlights are about 20¢ each when you buy a set on Amazon. Keeping their size in mind, I made a similar-sized flashlight with a heart and then included the phrase “You Light Up My Life Valentine.” Interestingly, this is the first time I felt like typefaces failed me. None of them looked quite right, so I ended up handwriting it and then scanning it in. Much better!

Here’s what the cards look like freshly printed:

This is what the packages of finger flashlights look like:

If you decide to add a finger light onto a card, use an x-acto knife to cut a small tab near the middle of the printed flashlight, like shown. Then slide the elastic loop onto the tab. Like this:

Continue Reading →


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Stitched Fabric Heart Cards

The other day at Ikea I finally convinced my husband to let me purchase a batch of Ribba frames. I’ve been wanting to build a display wall of photographs in our hallway, but David isn’t really a family-photo-display-wall kind of guy. However, this time he was into it and I jumped at the chance. I’ve been spending time today looking through my Flickr account, trying to decide on the photos I’d like to use. That is when I came across these fabric heart cards I made from two years ago. Wow. You mean I actually had time back then (with only one child) to do fun projects like this?

Anyway, you can see they are very simple. I had a batch of blank white patterned cards, cut out a silhouette from the center, backed it with another piece of white card stock and sewed up the edges to secure it. The stitching also added a nice little frame on the heart and tree versions. On the flowered version I cut out some fabric flowers, pasted them on and stitched a line down the center. Not sure what happened to these, but I’m thinking I might have given them as part of a gift. It sure what fun to see them again!

 


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Dress-Up Storage Organization

Screen Shot 2012-05-14 at 9.50.17 AM

Following up on the previous post, I realized I never shared the awesome dress up storage rack that Grandma Sandy built for Chloe (although I did mention it on Facebook – I need to figure out how to link to those status updates here, instead of my long unused twitter feed). Anyway, it is fabulous, and a really nice way to store and organize all the costumes, play clothes and accessories that Chloe has been given. It is just the right size, and a fraction of the cost of buying one pre-manufactured. I have some beautiful metal dragonfly hooks that I’ll attach to each side, and eventually get some vinyl lettering to personalize the front. I would say Chloe uses it almost every day. Here is the link to the easy-to-use plans we found on ana-white.com. We chose to do the shelf-on-top option, which I highly recommend.

Screen Shot 2012-05-14 at 9.45.57 AM


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Beaded Baby Teether Necklace

Have I mentioned that Leo LOVES hair? Grabbing it, pulling it, playing with it, burying his face in it and even eating it. Sometimes after holding him I feel crunchy places in my hair where he has been sucking. He also sometimes rubs and pulls his own hair to soothe himself. Perhaps I’m raising the next Vidal Sassoon? All I know is that what once was cute when he was less strong is now becoming a bit painful at times. Just ask his poor sister. She basically cannot come within reach of him or she gets grabbed or scratched. Oh yes, he’s also a scratcher. Naturally, he doesn’t mean to, but those little fingernails… well… ouch. I’m just hoping that scab on my nose doesn’t scar.

I made the teething necklace above as an attempt to divert his attention. I’ve seen several fun and funky looking ones, and they are easy enough to make. Basically, you

1. Sew a tube of fabric big enough to insert wooden craft balls.
2. Tie a knot in the fabric between each ball
3. Sew the ends closed and add a ribbon to tie it (or twill tape, in this case).

Leo, however, is only minimally interested. It isn’t hair, after all. And so it doesn’t get  a ton of wear. I tend to prefer smaller jewelry anyway (which I don’t wear now, so as not to have it yanked off and swallowed). Ah, well. Gentle admonishments will have to suffice for now…


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Happy Valentine’s Day!

Hi! I hope you are having a wonderful Valentine’s Day! I am happy to report that we got our valentine cards out in time this year (well… all but one. Sorry Great Grandma Vera, yours got stuck in the pile of extra envelopes and I didn’t see it until last night). We kept it simple and used foam and sparkle stickers on white card stock. I learned that Chloe finds 3-dimensional stickers on sheets to be easier to peel than stickers that are pre-punched out. I did a lot of pre-peeling just to keep things moving. Also, we worked on cards over several sittings, the length of each determined by Chloe’s attention span and interest.

This morning, David surprised me with a lovely card and a box of truffle-filled dark chocolate hearts. For him, I designed a card cover, and inside I included this pop-up pixelated heart in red. I think he really liked it. To surprise the kids, I picked up some helium foil valentine balloons from the dollar store while Chloe was in preschool.

One extra special something I got for Chloe is a hand-carved stamp with her name. She already recognizes and says the letters, but hasn’t learned to write it yet, though she tries. If only I had waited one more day before mailing her cards this would have come in handy! The artist kindly agreed to customize it with a little heart, which I love. Now I’m thinking Leo will need one too. 🙂

Want a stamp of your own? Lauren of Doodlebug Design  is offering a 10% discount to Paperseed readers. Just use code Doodlebug10 at checkout.

Happy Valentine’s Day!


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Rubber Duck Party! **Part 1**

We threw Chloe her 3rd birthday party this past week. It was tons of fun – both for me to plan and for her and her friends to enjoy. Chloe’s bathroom is awash in rubber ducks and that seemed to naturally segue into a perfect party theme for a soon-to-be three-year-old.

I’ll go more into party details in the next post (including some pdf printables), but meanwhile, here are some wonderful photos of the big event taken by my talented friend Greta:

Marshmallow pops

Party water bottles

3 tiers of rubber duck cupcakes

Peanut butter cup “mini-cupcakes”

The treats table

 

 

More of her photos can be seen here.


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DIY Baby Mustache Pacifier + Printable Template PDF

Doesn’t it seem like the majority of the really cute “make for baby” projects are geared toward girls? I was reviewing the baby craft tutorial list and saw only a few for little boys. That got me thinking. What would be a fun and easy project to make for the baby?

How about mustache pacifiers!

These are hilarious. I’ve included the above printable pdf to download with several different styles. Handlebar mustache, anyone? Or perhaps a curling fu manchu? There are both Soothies and Avent pacifiers in our house, so that is what I used for sizing. You can cut the shapes straight from the printed sheet or use the template to cut the mustaches out of felt, as I did. Double stick tape worked well, although, if your child is older, you may want to do a better job of securing it, perhaps with hot glue or super glue.

Score one more for the boys club!

Common sense precaution: These are just a novelty. You probably shouldn’t leave your child unattended while using a mustache pacifier.

Copyright Note: Downloads are for personal, non-commercial use only. In addition, please do not redistribute or modify any of the templates. If you’d like to link to the pdf, please link to this post directly. Thanks!


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Lavender

Our lavender is in full bloom, making all the bees and butterflies around here crazy happy. It is such a beautiful color. And the smell… gorgeous.

At the end of summer I’ll dry the stems and place the scented buds in my drawers or hanging in fine mesh bags in the closet. I didn’t get around to it last year, so I want to be extra good about it this year. There are about a million things that can be made out of lavender, too – from salt or sugar scrubs, sachets, wands, to even ice cream. So many choices, so little time.

And here’s a whole long list of lavender recipes and projects from Martha Stewart.


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Handmade camera accessories

I love to see the creative things people sew for cameras. At one time I was all proud of myself for sewing this camera strap cover, but that was peanuts compared to the beautiful patchwork versions from House on Hill Road. The blue one in colorway thirty-six is my favorite.

And check out these SLR camera covers by Pixbag. Talk about stylish.

Then there are Lens Pets by Mandee Franee – perfect for anyone taking photos of children. I’d smile if I saw these, too. What do you think? Over the top or just really fantastic?

(Thanks to greenclogs for the facebook shout out about the straps, and to my husband for sending the camera cover link).


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Baby Boy Quilt

Check out baby boy’s beautiful new quilt, handmade by my mother-in-law. She took Chloe and I to the fabric store the last time we were in Colorado and helped me choose complementary patterns in the colors I liked. They are all Robert Kaufmann fabrics except for the floral. I love how it turned out, and can’t wait to see our baby boy snuggled up in it. Alternate photos here and here.

The cradle is one I found for a steal on craigslist several months ago. It is basically a DaVinci Futura Cradle, although mine says Million Dollar Baby. I had  a craigslist-purchased co-sleeper with Chloe, but it never fit next to our bed properly because the side of our bed frame left a gap. I ended up selling it back the same way I bought it. I know the cradle won’t last as long, but it’s narrower profile is easy to move from room to room, and it rocks. The only problem was fitted sheets for the cradle pad were hard to find. I did spot these Jill Mcdonald swaddling blankets the last time I went out looking. I know. Swaddling blankets are also short lived, but I love the modern simplicity of these and hope they’ll make for cute newborn photos.


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Turkey surprise for the kids

We will be spending our Thanksgiving with good friends again this year, and thankfully, we’re only responsible for bringing rolls and making the gravy. The hostess was considering seating the four toddlers at their own table, and while they are too young yet for popcorn, I thought this idea was a clever way to add some whimsy to a kids table. Instructions can be found here.


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Wonderland Skirt

This darling skirt came in the mail from Australia for Chloe last week. It was handmade by my craft swap partner, Doreen. I adore the Wonderland fabric she chose, and that she thoughtfully left a small opening in the back, so I could fit the elastic waist perfectly on Chloe. Good thing Chloe and I wear vastly different sizes, or I might find myself stealing this little gem right out of her closet.

Some of Doreen’s other projects can be seen on her brand new blog Phil and Jack.


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Updated Tutorial & Printables List

I updated my Downloads + Tutorials page (see link under the header bar) with all the project tutorials and printable pdfs I’ve included on this blog. Hopefully they’ll be easier to find and use all in one place. Here are some:

1. DIY iPhone 4 Bumper Idea_2b.jpg, 2. Paper-Wrapped Jewelry Organizer, 3. bird magnets1.jpg, 4. Free Printable Valentine Flower card, 5. Chocolate Gift Jar Oreos.jpg, 6. Baby bib, 7. Halloween “Cauldron Bubbles” Treat, 8. IMG_7332.JPG, 9. “Dad” Father’s Day Card, 10. Cute Baby Hair Clips, 11. Holiday Gift tags, 12. Printable Holiday Gift Wrap, 13. Printable Holiday Cheer game board, 14. Felt photo album cover, 15. Vinyl Record Bowl, 16. Modern Happy Holidays Card


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DIY Paper-Covered Jewelry Organizer

Over the years I’ve collected, or been given, various pieces of jewelry. I stopped wearing most of it when Chloe was born (except for my wedding ring), and now that she is a little older I’ve begun to phase in a few pieces every now and again. Often I forget what I own until I go digging around in the box. The earrings and bracelets are organized somewhat decently, but the lengths of necklaces and pendants are all jumbled together. It is not a pretty sight.

Months ago I chose some paper and hardware to make two necklace hangers, although the hooks would also work nicely for rings and bracelets, too. Here is the one I made last week. It is sized to fit a narrow space on the wall of my closet. That’s the nice thing about making something yourself – it can be whatever you want it to be, plus it would make a sweet gift. The wood came from Home Depot (recycled from another project), the paper from Craft Warehouse and the hardware from Target.

Materials
12 x 12 sheet of heavy scrapbook paper
4 x 10″ piece of wood
7/8″ nickel-plated cup hooks
2 sawtooth hangers

Tools
Xacto Knife
Cutting Mat
Bone Folder
Glue or Double stick tape


Step 1: Fold the paper around the board, basically like you’re gift-wrapping a present. For best results, run the tip of a bone folder along the edges to make the smoothest and straightest folds possible.


Step 2: Seal the sides down with adhesive. I used double stick tape.


Step 3:
Make a tiny mark where you want the cup hooks to go. Drill pilot holes at each mark so the cup hooks will go in smoothly, and then screw them in. Finish by lightly pounding in the sawtooth hangers on the back side, one at each of the upper corners. Enjoy!


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Bird silhouette magnets + template pdf

I’ve been meaning to make a little handmade something to put in the mail for someone who likes birds. I finally sat down and came up with this – felt bird magnets! After choosing some simple silhouettes, I cut them out of stiffened eazy felt. Then I cut the same shapes slightly smaller out of a re-used piece of adhesive magnet to apply to the back. I hope she likes them!

Would you like to make a set of your own? If so, you can click the image above or download the bird silhouette template pdf here.


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Giveaway Winner!

Thanks to everyone who left a comment on the Valentine Idea: Day 8 – Hair Accessories + Giveaway! post. There were twice as many comments as I expected!

And the winner is… Kerry! Kerry please be sure to email me your address to paperseed [at] gmail [dot] com, so I can send out your hair clips. They may even arrive just in time for Nora’s birthday, although it looks like she’s got about as much hair as my little one! They’ll be perfect for next Valentine’s day, though. Congratulations! 🙂


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Showing off my sparklies

This winter I’ve been a very lucky girl in the necklace department. I was perusing Etsy for Christmas gift ideas when the Ice and Snow necklace popped up. I hemmed and hawed about buying it for myself, since I was supposed to be looking for gifts to give, not to keep. A while later I found it again, but the price had gone up. I hadn’t realized that it had been on sale! A quick convo to a very understanding Erin brought the price back down, and that pretty much sealed the deal for me. I love the balanced trio of coin pearl, white topaz briolette and the handstamped silver snowflake charm.

The center Skipping Lilies pendant was given to me by my soon-to-be sister-in-law, Aundrea. I am looking for a chain to wear with it, although it would look equally good on a simple leather or silk cord. The style is based on a stained-glass technique and seals tiny dried botanicals within its casing. I know it will get a lot of wear, plus the solder is lead-free which makes it safer around baby.

The third necklace was handmade for me by my sister-in-law, Liza. You can see some of her other lovely jewelry creations here. This particular necklace is moonstone with pearl and iridescent grey beads. It is quite elegant and unlike anything else I own. I always feel good wearing it, which is the point of nice jewelry, don’t you think?


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Make Your Own Last-Minute Father's Day Card

As usual, I put off making David a Father’s Day card until the very last minute. Being his very first Father’s Day as a father, I didn’t want to just let it go, either, so I whipped up this card with a few minutes to spare. As you can probably see from the photo, I took a blank card and cut the word “Dad” out with an exacto knife. Then I glued some colored paper behind it to make it pop. Normally, pink wouldn’t have been my first choice, but being a last minute project didn’t make for many options. I figured David was man enough to handle it anyhow. Want to make your own? You can download and print this pdf template (originally sized for a 5×7 card).

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