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1  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Stylishly in Pain - Ice Pack Pouch Tutorial on: May 23, 2008 02:17:28 PM
Happy day to all of you crafty people!

After wincing a little too often, I finally saw my podiatrist who promptly diagnosed my foot pain as tendinitis. The remedy, a set of orthotics (ready in two weeks), anagelsic cream, and icing the area every night. "No prob," said I, but then I struggled to keep the durn ice pack on the right spot on my foot.

Craftiness to the rescue!

Today I whipped up this little gem:



It was fairly simple to make (hey, if I can make it...), and I took pictures along the way if you're interested in making one too. Here goes!

Materials:

A little bit of medium to thick-weight fabric, a fat quarter would be plenty. I'm using the Patricia print decor fabric from Ikea.

Hook & Loop Tape (Velcro or otherwise) - about four inches of each "side."

Thread, sewing machine, patience, napping kids, etc.

Step 1: Measure your ice pack. Mine was about 4 x 9 inches.



Step 2: Cut your fabric. I cut two pieces, one for the pouch (about 12 x 9), and one for the strap (about 11 x 4).



Step 3: Sew the hook half of the hook & loop tape to the right side of the strap. Place it near the end with room for a seam allowance and some extra to grip  the strap when it's done. Keep in mind that you will be folding this four inch piece in half.



Step 4: Fold the strap piece in half the long way with right sides facing. Leave one end open and clip the two end corners.



Step 5: Turn the strap right side out, working those corners to nice points if you can. Then top stitch around three sides.



Step 6: Hem one edge of the pouch piece. I folded once and then again for a study edge. This will be your pouch opening.



Step 7: Sew the loop half of the hook & loop tape to the right side of the pouch piece. Here you may wish to pin the strap to the pouch piece and experiment with how far you want the strap to be able to "reach" around the side of the pouch. (I also inserted the ice pack and pinned the pouch closed to get a better feel for dimensions -- be careful not to pin the ice pack!) Mark the farthest point with a pin, and pin your tape piece in place.



Step 8: Fold pouch piece in half the long way with right sides facing, pin strap piece sandwiched inside the pouch piece. MAKE SURE you have the strap piece facing the right direction so that your hook & loop tape pieces match when you're finished (this took some serious contemplating on my part -- it's been a long day!). Sew three sides together, leaving hemmed edge open, clip your corners, turn right side out, insert your ice pack, and TA-DA!



I'll leave my handy-dandy new pouch near the freezer rather than keep it on the ice pack all the time. Now that I've got such a stylish ice pack pouch, I will undoubtedly follow the doc's orders regularly. Wink



One last picture of the FO in use. DD #1 feels my pain.



Thank you so much for checking it out!
2  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General / Nifty boxes for my Biz cards on: March 20, 2008 11:59:01 AM
So after getting my nifty new business cards in the mail, I felt compelled (as we all do) to make a crafty storage box/display for them.

I found this awesome tutorial with a free pdf template,

http://www.evilmadscientist.com/article.php/washibox

and a-crafting I went!



I made one for me and one for my hubby's office (he's my number one promoter!)

His is a light blue with a blue/white/yellow stripe patterned paper:



Mine is green with a blue/pink/green floral patterned paper:





I followed the directions from the tutorial and they turned out amazingly well. I used a piece of paperboard that a scrapbook store gave me for free to keep my other paper from wrinkling, and you could also use an old paperboard box (cereal, crackers, cake, etc.). I used tissue paper for the background color and two sheets of each patterned paper from a paper stack. I'm sure you could also paint them or decoupage with any other paper or fabric as well.

I used matte Mod-Podge to glue everything together and I also sealed my box with a layer of it for extra durability.

This was a fun project to make! Thanks for looking.
3  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 25 ENTRIES / Bemidji, MN - First City on the Mississippi on: March 04, 2008 06:39:17 AM
There are so many awesome entries already - and what variety! Wow!

I hail from Bemidji, Minnesota. It is known for many things including its roots in the logging industry, home of the Concordia Language Villages, giant statues of Paul Bunyan and Babe the blue ox, Bemidji State University, and its location near two large American Indian reservations, Canada, and generally lake-filled wilderness. It is called "The First City on the Mississippi" for an interesting reason. The mighty Mississippi river has very humble beginnings in a little lake in a beautiful state park (Itasca). From there, the river actually flows north as the topography of the land is actually lower towards the north and it flows through the lovely Lake Bemidji. Just east of the lake is the most northern point on the Mississippi, making Bemidji the first city (latitudinally and along the river's path) on the Mississippi.

My entry is an original papercut representing the headwaters of the Mississippi, where you can walk across the river on slippery rocks, and then the general shape of the river as it flows all the way to the Gulf of Mexico.

Here is the entire papercut, which measures about 5 x 8.5 inches:



A close-up of the top half:



And a detailed close up of the headwaters:



The image is cut from a single piece of black cardstock using only an x-acto blade. I taped it to the window to photograph it. Smiley

I based the cut from the photo from this site:

http://www.mnhs.org/places/nationalregister/stateparks/Itas83.html

And here's a link to a page of great Bemidji and Mississippi River-related information:

http://www.visitbemidji.com/location/mississippi.html

Thanks so much for looking!
4  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / Jumpin' on the Scoodie Bandwagon! on: November 09, 2007 06:28:40 PM
Whew! It's getting crowded on this scoodie wagon. Prompted, like so many of you, by vegbee's delicious post and tute http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=198678.0, I made a couple of scoodies for my cutie pie and for myself as well.

Here is my DD in her scoodie:



It's a deep red corduroy on the outside and a flamingo pink fleece on the inside.



I made the scarf way too short, so it doesn't flip over her shoulder well. Thankfully, she prefers it tied in a knot.



For fun, I added a little tassel on the top and a fringe on the ends of the scarf.



For mine, I copied the hood on one of my winter coats. It's made from three pieces of fabric for a flatter top look. The outer fabric is a decor canvas, and the inside is a heather fleece.



At the ends of my scarf, I sewed on some pockets. The little flaps were a happy accident and are held in place with a button.



Here are the end of both scoodies:



They are so cozy! I wore mine out and about today and I found the pocket to be very handy for holding my keys and sun glasses.

Thanks again vegbee for the inspiration. Cheesy
5  COOKING / Dessert / Chocolate Candy Bar Cookies:: A post-Halloween Treat on: November 05, 2007 06:50:45 PM
That's right: candy in a cookie. Redundant? Nah, just delicious!



My three-year old daughter raked in way more candy than we would ever allow her to eat, so I wanted to do something to *use up* some of her chocolately treasures. The answer: chocolate candy bar cookies. This is certainly not my idea, but I thought I'd post photos of these beauties if only to inspire any of you to pull that monster bag of goodies out of the cabinet and make something with them.



As for a recipe, I just used Betty Crocker's recipe for Chocolate Chip cookies and substituted cut up piece of chocolate candy bars for the chips. They turned out really good, but I might skimp on the sugar in the cookie dough if I had to do it over again. One other tip: bake and cool on nonstick surfaces. I cooled the first batch on paper towels and the melted caramel from several of the bars stuck to the paper. Parchment paper worked like a charm for the subsequent batches.

I'd also like to say that I brought over a bundle of these to the neighbors as a gift... but I haven't-- I just keep eating them!  Wink
6  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Square-bottomed canvas bucket :: Now with TUTORIAL:: on: October 25, 2007 11:23:25 AM
Hooray for a little crafting time! Here's a little square-bottomed canvas bucket i made last night. The design uses a Jordy bag style to get the squared bottom. I kept the height short so it would have a chance of standing on its own (and it does!), and the two little handles on either side are sewn onto the outer fabric with a tight zig-zag stitch.



The FO is about 6.5 inches all around (height, width, length).



I purchased both the outer and lining fabric for close to nothing at a remnant/outlet store -- woo hoo! (The colors look a little washed out in the photos; It's a light lime/chartreuse and a real chocolatey brown.) I'm thinking about making a set of three, in different sizes using the same fabric.

Now, if only I knew what to put in it. Any ideas? Smiley

Heres the tutorial:

Step1: Cut fabric

Start with a rectangle, folded in half. Measure the cuts by determining how big you want your box to be. To make a six inch box, follow these measurements (Thanks to craftydeb!):

Start with a 12x18 rectangle - folded in to a 12x9 piece*

It breaks down like this:
For the width: 3 + 6 + 3 (the 3's being for the sides)
For the length: 6 + 3 + 3 + 6 (the 3's being for the bottom)

* Don't forget seam allowances.

And for the marvelous metric mavens (again, thanks craftydeb for doin' the math):

for the width - double the cm/in you want it to end up being when all is said and done....
For the length - triple it....
for the square cut out - cut it in half....

So if you want it to be 20cm square.. (just to make a nice round number for the example)
cut your fabric 40cm x 60cm
fold it in half to make a 40x30cm
cut out 10cm squares on the corner to get that "I" shape and then you are off and running!!  Again, if you want it to be an EXACT size make sure you add in a seam allowance..

FYI:  The bucket I made in this tutorial is a bit taller with a smaller base.


Cut squares out of the corners of the folded edge. For my six-inch box, I cut 3-inch (minus seam allowance) squares.


When you unfold the pieces, they look like big Is. (This is a good time to press your fabric if you haven't already.)


Step 2: Sew the outer fabric.

Fold the outer fabric piece wrong side out and sew down each of the long sides. Then, pinch the cut corners together and sew straight across (a la Jordy). Doing so gets you this:


Step 3: Sew the lining. Do the same thing you did to the outer fabric, but leave one corner open for turning!

Step 4: Make and attach the handles

For my handles, I cut two 6 x 3.5 inch strips of lining fabric.


Fold the edges, fold in half, and sew. Pink the edges.

Center the handle on the side of the outer fabric piece. (I put mine on the seam side because it was easier to center it) Using a tight zig-zag stitch, sew one side of the handle to the outer fabric.


Mark and pin the other side of the handle, and sew. This is a little tricky so be patient. Repeat on the other side.


Step 5: Sew outer piece to lining

With right sides together, lining inside of the outer piece, match edges, pin, and sew.


Turn right side out. Sew open corner of lining closed. Tuck lining into outer fabric, press the seam edge, and stitch around the top to finish.

Bucket Buddies!


If you make one, show it off!
7  MORE ART, LESS CRAFT / More Art, Less Craft: Completed Works / Art for Under Five Bucks! on: September 27, 2007 12:27:46 PM
In my continued inspiration from A Little Hut, and knowing that kategirl tried it with success, I gave this a try and I'm pleased with how it turned out.


Below you can see the half-inch depth between the top cut-out piece and the ribbon piece.


And here's a detail close-up:


Here's the cost break down:

Painted wooden frame with particle board spacer and mat board to fit 4 x 6 photo --> $2.50 from the dollar section of Target

2 Spools of painted ribbon in various colors --> $1.00 each

White cardstock, cut to fit --> already had, but it's dirt cheap

I basically followed the rules from Patricia's tutorial except instead of being green and reusing newsprint cut into strips, I used ribbons.

I like it, how 'bout you?

Links: A Little Hut http://alittlehut.blogspot.com/2007/05/recycling.html

kategirl's post
http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=191861.0
8  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General / Star Books! The TUTORIAL! (Wordy w/Loads of pics) on: September 20, 2007 09:03:20 PM
Ya-hoo! Thanks for all the compliments and requests for a tutorial. YOU ALL ROCK! This is my first tutorial, so advance apologies for the wordiness and any confusion!


Supplies Needed:
*paper (I typically use 8.5 x 11 resume paper its thicker than regular paper, comes in light colors, and yet is still quite fold-able)
* paperboard (a spent cereal box or poster board works well)
* decorative paper (mulberry paper or velveteen paper are my favorites, but almost anything works!)
* inch width ribbon
* glue stick
* scissors
* small bead (optional)

Step 1: Cut your squares

One sheet of 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper will give you 4 4 inch squares, with a little bookmark chunk leftover. You will need at least 5 of these squares, so youll need more than one sheet of paper. Youll also want to cut the squares as perfectly as you can. Origami squares are nice for their perfection, but are a little flimsy as book pages.


When I get supplies for my class, I buy a bunch of colored resume paper from Kinkos and then I have THEM chop it into perfect little squares using their big chopping machine. Lately, they have charged 75 cents per cut (thats through all of the sheets), so with three or four cuts, its a cost-effective way to get square squares.

Step 2: Fold your squares

Select either 5 or 6 squares for the pages of your book. They can all be the same color, or you can mix and match. (FYI: Using only 4 squares results in a funky looking book, but it doesnt look like a star, and using more than 6 squares results in very pointy books, that lose the star look as well.)

Fold the square in half, then open it, rotate 90 degrees and fold in half and open it again so that your folds look like a cross. Make your folds as perfectly as you can.


Flip the square over and make one diagonal fold from point to point.


Hold the square (now a triangle) with your thumbs in the center and your fingers just inside the two ends. Pressing up gently with your thumbs and down with your fingers, pop the fold to arrive at this shape. (Note: there are other ways to get this same fold. If you know a way that works better for you, use it.)


Repeat these folding steps for all of your squares.

Step 3: Glue your squares
Apply an even coat over the entire surface of the flat side of one of your squares. Try to avoid big goops, yet make sure you dont miss any little areas.

Stick the flat side of a second square onto the glued one making sure that they are both facing the SAME way. In other words, the closed points and open sides match. Doing otherwise gets you a cool-looking exploded style book, but not a star book. Glue the pieces together as perfectly as you can.


Continue gluing all the squares like this, but do NOT glue the remaining ends together you need to be able to close your book! (Of course, if you wanted to make ornaments rather than books, go ahead and glue these ends together, punch a hole in one point and then string it up.)


Set the pages aside while you work on the cover. (I like to set something heavy on the squished stack to help the glue set.)


Step 4: Create your cover

Cut out two squares of paperboard that are just slightly bigger than your folded pages. (Using 4 inch squares, they fold down to 2 1/8 inch pages, so I cut my paperboard at 2 inch square.)

Cut out your cover material to yield about a inch margin all around the paperboard. (3 inches works well.)

Glue the paperboard onto the back and center of your cover material.

Miter the corners of the cover material.

Glue the edges of the cover material and, folding them over the sides of the paperboard, stick them down.


Step 5: Add the ribbon

This is what holds your book closed and your star open. I usually use about 20 inches of inch width satin ribbon. Experiment with other materials if you like, but this is what works best for me.

Find the center of the ribbon (I pinch mine). Position the covers diagonally to each other with a little gap in between. Draw a line of glue across the insides of each cover, from point to point.

Stick the ribbon onto the cover pieces by centering it over the little gap and then pressing it into the glue.


Step 6: Add the pages

Think of the center of your covers as the hinge of the book. Glue the flat side of one end of your page stack and stick it to one of the cover sides make sure the hinge of your pages matches the hinge of the covers, and do your best to center it.


Glue the top side of the pages and stick the second cover onto this.

You can now tie the ends of the ribbon to keep your book closed.


Once the glue dries, your star book is complete! Ya-Hoo!

Step 7: Add a bead closure (Optional)

Thread a bead or two onto both ends of the ribbon and tie a knot at the end to secure it. The bead should have a small enough hole so that it acts as a cinch to hold the book open or closed.


Notes:
*This is a size I make mostly because it yields the most book pages from  a regular size sheet of paper. You can also try to make them smaller (but it can get tricky to fold) or larger (they dont hold their star shape as well).

* When Ive taught this to a larger group, it usually takes about a full-hour total, often over two days. With a smaller group, say about 4-5, I can teach it in about 30 minutes. It can depend on their age and their experience with folding. ☺

* If you plan to write on the pages, you may want to do this before assembling the pages as it can be a little tricky to do that when its all put together.


Happy Crafting!
9  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / My "In Box" -- a decoupaged delight! on: September 20, 2007 11:28:27 AM
As a writing teacher, I am forever collecting work from my students. To prevent writing from getting everywhere on my desk, I picked up a wooden paper try from IKEA, and went to town with it.

I made a 3-page Word document filled with the word "In" in as many different-looking fonts as I had access to. I made two copies of these pages, cut out all the little "In"s and then let the Mod Podge loose.

The result:



My students would sometimes ask where the "in box" was, and then when they saw it, they'd say, "oh, duh." Wink

What do you think?
10  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General / Star Books! [Image Heavy] on: September 20, 2007 11:10:24 AM
A long time ago, a crafty friend gave me one of these, and ever since I've been making my own. I give them away as little mementos or thank yous, sometimes with writing inside and sometimes blank. I even taught my creative writing students how to make them. They're easy, simple, yet something a bit out of the ordinary.

Here are two stacks of them:


Some with velveteen paper covers:


Some with mulberry paper and fabric paper:


One, opened to the middle page:


An opened 5-page book (here's where you can see why they're called "Star Books"):


An opened 6-page book:


A close-up of the ribbon/bead closure:


Variations include:

* skipping the cover, gluing the end pages and using them as ornaments (great when made out of holiday paper/wrap, or colored vellum

* planning not to write anything in them and using patterned paper throughout

* gluing in small photos to fit the triangular sides of the pages

* some of my students have made them look like little mortarboards and have used them as graduation announcements

* make a pocket for a teeny tiny pen on the outside and they make cute "thought books" or "autograph books"

* write a list of why you love someone throughout the pages and give it to that person


Thank you for looking! Smiley

Edited to add: Due to all the interest, I made a tutorial here http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=197384.0.
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