Thursday, April 19, 2012

Challenge # 2 Complete!


So the reason I decided to do these keychains is because I saw them here (http://etsyrussianteam.blogspot.com/2011/06/moustache-keychain.html) which I linked to from Pinterest. The only problem with this tutorial is that I couldn't get my sewing machine to cooperate with me and the fabric. It was just too small to sew and it kept shifting and messing up. So I thought about it and decided I could do it by hand.
Materials: Scissors, Pen, Adhesive, Fabric, Embroidery Floss, Thread, Template, Sewing Needle, Embroidery Needle
I started out by cutting out a mustache template using my Cricut and the Bump in the Night cartridge. I used a heavy cardstock so that I could trace it without too much problem. I then traced the mustache onto the WRONG side of the fabric two times because we will sandwich them together to create the keychain. You will also need to cut a small rectangular piece which will be used to attach the mustache to your keyring.
template and mustaches traced onto fabric
pieces after cutting them out
If you’re going to embroider an initial on it, now is the time to do so.  I put a B on the one I was making because it is for Becky.
embroidery
Then you are going to assemble the keychain. I used a bit of glue to hold the ‘staches together so that I didn’t have to pin it or clip it. The glue I used this time was Aleene's Tacky Glue. The first two I made, I used Fabric-Tac. It’s goopy and hard to work with and smells funky, so I went with tacky glue this time. Just put the glue in the middle and stay away from the edges. If you glue the edges, it will make it a little harder to sew through.
adhesive, just in the middle!
Once the glue dries, then you are going to sew the border. I used a contrasting thread, but you could use the same color as the material you are working with. I put quite a long length of thread on the needle, double thickness, so that I didn’t have to re-thread in the middle (I have trouble figuring out how to continue when that happens :/) and knotted the end. Start with your needle in between the two mustaches to hide the knot. I always start at the top, but you can start wherever.  I used a backstitch to create the border. You could probably use a blanket stitch instead, but I am not so great at that one yet… I digress! With the needle in between the two sides, pick where you want to start and get to sewing. I start at the top so that I can attach the loop right away. After I get a few stitches down, that’s when I add the loop. I fold it in half and sandwich it in between the mustaches. It’s kinda difficult to get in to stay while you are sewing it in place, so I would use a clip or pin if you need to.  Then just keep sewing until you are done going around the edge.  Once you are done, you are going to need to tie off the thread. This is a little bit tricksy but not too hard. When you are ready, make a stitch that only goes through one side of the keychain. Then do the loop for a knot (I use a surgeon’s knot which means that you just make a regular knot and then loop the thread through once more so it’s basically 2 knots in one… sorry if that doesn’t make sense…).
stitching
Before tightening the loops, stick your needle into the loop to guide it into place, as close to the material as possible. I then let the needle go through the loop and poke it through to come out the other side of the keychain. You can then cut it off as close as you can to the keychain. This will make it so you don’t have any visible thread ends. Then you just attach it to your keyring!
COMPLETE!!!
I hope this made sense. It’s my first tutorial….

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Challenge # 2

It's been a while... I've been busy babysitting and working and waiting for someone to issue me a new challenge. After a slight misunderstanding on my part and a discussion, Artie decided that my next challenge should be the mustache keychain. I am going to work on it tomorrow (technically today since it's after midnight...). I will be taking pictures while I do it and will be uploading the tutorial tomorrow.

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter weekend...

Happy Easter! I hope everyone had a great weekend :) I sure did! My boyfriend was in town and we got to do a lot together. Yesterday we went to the movies and then dinner with his parents and then we went to a park to walk around for a little bit before going to the Easter Vigil at my church. I'm so glad he got to experience that with me because it's my most favorite mass of the whole entire year. Then today we went to the Reds game with his friend Tanner and my friend Sammie. Shout out to Momma Tree for the tickets - thank you sooooo much! It was a beautiful day and a great game with awesome peeps :) The only bad parts were the sunburn and the fact that my Ky had to go back to school :( but I shall see him soon enough! I'm heading to Athens on Thursday to spend a few days with him and see where he gets edumacated.

On another note, I haven't gotten my challenge yet, so in the meantime I shall talk about a recent project. Most recent would have to be the mustache keychains I made for some friends at work. I saw them on Pintrest, but the tutorial there was kinda complicated and I couldn't get my machine to stitch them, so I made them by hand. I cut a mustache out using my Cricut and the Bump in the Night cartridge. I traced it onto the wrong side of the fabric (I used a heavy, one sided, pleathery fabric. Not sure what it's called. I got it in the remnants bin at Joann's...) and then cut them out. I also cut out a small rectangle to use for the tab where it would attach to the keyring. I embroidered their initial on one of the mustaches and then glued the two mustaches together, but just in the middle with wrong sides together! I just wanted them to be stuck together for the sewing portion without having to pin them. After the glue dried, I used a contrasting thread and started sewing them together. I folded the rectangle in half and created the tab for the keyring to attach to. I stuck that in just as I was about to sew it so I knew it was in place correctly. Then I finished sewing it up and hid the knot/end between the two halves. I will be doing an actual tutorial sometime in the future because I still have one I need to make and I will take pictures and give more detail when I do that, but if you have questions before that happens, feel free to comment and ask :)

Until next time....
Nikki

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

First Challenge

Well that took forever :/ I'm kinda mad at myself for putting it off as long as I did, but it's finally finished. So the challenge was to use my Gypsy Wanderings Cartridge and birthday theme paper to create a fairy tale inspired birthday invitation. I originally had an idea in my mind and had it all planned out, but, as per usual, when I started the project everything changed.


Anyway, I ended up making a cute little invitation with just the word 'party' on it but the 't' in 'party' had a crown above it. I used pink paper to make a shadow of the word to put behind it and teal paper with lighter colored stars on it for the actual word. I used my Gypsy along with my Cricut to cut the words out which allowed me to copy the word 'party' and maneuver it so just cut the crown was cut out because I didn't want the word and the crown to be all one color. And what fun is a princess crown if it's not gold?!? Once I had them all placed where I wanted them using my Gypsy, I put paper on my mat, loaded it in the Cricut and cut them all out. This is one of the best things about using the Gypsy with your Cricut. You can place multiple images to be cut out and see exactly where they will be on the mat when you go to cut them out. This allows you to put multiple pieces of paper on your mat and not waste whole sheets of paper (see image below). After I cut out the word, I assembled my card. I used kraft cardstock as my base and a scrap of paper that had cakes and party hats on it for my background. I cut the paper to fit the card almost exactly and then tore it diagonally so that some of the kraft was showing. Then I attached the paper to the base with my Elmer's Adhesive Runner. (I love this stuff!) Then it was time to attach the words to the card. I put the shadow base down where I wanted it to go, but before I attached the actual word, I cut the crown off. This allowed me to use the yellowish one without having to layer it over the teal. I adhered that to the pink base and then adhered my yellow crown where I cut the other one off of. And that is that. My card is complete. All in all, it took me about 20 minutes to complete. Most of that time was spent fiddling with the image on my Gypsy and then cutting it out. The assembly was actually pretty quick and easy.
My Gypsy and my Cricut mat with the multiple pieces of paper for the different cuts


All the pieces I used to assemble the invitation


Completed Invitation!
That's all for this post. I hope that makes sense. If it doesn't, feel free to comment with questions. I will write again when I receive my new challenge *hint hint Artie...*

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Allow me to introduce myself...

So, my name is Nikki. I have been crafting for about 10 years now. I started out just making cards and have added other crafty things throughout the years. I wanted to start this blog because I'm sort of in a rut creativity wise so I thought it would help me get motivated and make some cool stuff. The idea behind this blog was that I would challenge myself with an item or technique or product and then utilize that to make something pretty awesome. I have enlisted the help of my friend Art (he actually volunteered so that I couldn't plan ahead...) and he will be issuing the challenges to me and then I will get to crafting. Since I do so many crafty things, there will be lots of variety as far as products created and since I have sooooo much crafty stuff, there's a lot for him to choose from as well so it won't get boring (hopefully).

So enough rambling... let's get to work. The first challenge is an Artie's Choice because he's the bestest friend ever and is helping me with this. He decided that I should make a birthday invitation using my Gypsy Wanderings Cricut Cartridge and birthday themed paper. Oh, and it has to be fairytale themed... When he first told me this, I sort of panicked. It's more than I anticipated for my first challenge, but I'm going to do it anyway because if I can do this for my very first one, all the rest will be super easy, right? I sure hope so anyway...