Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Woven Ribbon Wrap

Here's our idea of thinking outside the box: interweaving ribbons to dress up a gift. The weaving begins with a single ribbon stretched across the top of the package, its loose ends fixed to the bottom with double-sided tape. Continue adding a few more ribbons, parallel to the first. Alternate colors, widths, and textures as you wish, but try to keep your design fairly simple so that it does not become too busy. Next, interweave another set of ribbons perpendicular to the first. Follow the rhythm of over-under-over for one, then under-over-under for its neighbor, and so on.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Three-Dimensional Doily Ornament

Tools and Materials

  • Templates A and B
  • Disappearing-ink marker
  • Laminated linen or other sturdy, nonfraying fabric
  • Ruler
  • Fabric shears
  • Scallop shears
  • Neutral-colored thread
  • Needle
  • Pins
  • Twine

Step 1

Download templates A and B. Print onto card stock; cut out.

Step 2

Using template A, trace 3 circles with a disappearing-ink marker onto laminated linen or other sturdy, nonfraying fabric.

Step 3

Cut out 2 circles with fabric shears. Cut out remaining circle with scallop shears (or use straight-edged ones).

Step 4

Lay template B atop 1 smooth-edged circle. With disappearing-ink marker, mark dots on fabric where lines on template fall. Using a ruler and disappearing ink marker, connect opposite dots to re-create lines on template.

Step 5

Lay lined circle atop remaining smooth-edged circle; hand- or machine-stitch along lines with neutral-colored thread (we used blue to illustrate).

Step 6

At each sewn wedge, fold in edge of top layer; secure each fold with a pin inserted through both layers.

Step 7

Lay sewn circles atop scallop-edged circle. Along edge at midpoint of each wedge, tack middle layer to bottom layer. Tie off; trim thread. Remove pins; unfold top layer.

Step 8

With disappearing-ink marker, mark a dot at each wedge's midpoint along edge. Slip a threaded needle under and up around 1 dot (through top layer only). Repeat at next 5 dots in order (do not cut thread).

Step 9

Gently pull ends of thread, gathering top layer into center. Knot thread; trim. With twine, sew a loop to bottom layer, and knot to hang.

Looped Ribbon Ornament How-To
1. Cut a 6-foot-8 1/4-inch length of 1/2-inch-wide white paper ribbon.

2. Starting at 1 end of ribbon and using measurement lines on a cutting mat as guides, make folds at 4-inch intervals, creasing with a bone folder. (There should be 20 folds in all, with 1/4 inch of ribbon extending beyond final fold.)

3. Bend top end of ribbon to meet first fold, forming a loop. To secure loop, place a 1/4-inch-long piece of heavy-duty, doublesided tape where top end and fold meet. Press with fingers to seal.

4. Bend ribbon to form another loop. Place tape between loop to secure. Press to seal.

5. Repeat to create loops down length of ribbon (use tweezers to press if needed).

6. Apply tape to 1/4-inch tab, and attach to base of first loop. Press to seal.

7. Insert a length of linen thread through a loop, and knot to hang.

Plant-Care Gift Cards

The next time you give the gift of an amaryllis or paperwhite bulb, top the package with a silk version of the flower: You'll give the recipient a cheery glimpse of what's to come.

1. Wrap bulb in tissue paper, and place inside a gift bag.

2. Fold down top edge of bag to close. Wrap bag lengthwise with satin ribbon, and knot loosely at the top.

3. Trim the stem of a silk flower to 3/4 inch, and then slide it through the knot. Use a hot-glue gun to affix the stem, and the ribbon covering it, to the back of the bag.

4. Write care instructions on a blank card, and slip behind ribbon.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

snow globes

Looks like there's snow in your forecast. Catherine Woram, author of Crafting with Kids: Creative Fun for Children Aged 3-10 shows how to make your own snow globe in four easy steps.


  • Empty, clean jam jar
  • Pitcher (for pouring)
  • Distilled water (enough to fill the jam jar)
  • Measuring spoons (or teaspoon)
  • 2 teaspoons glycerin (purchased at craft supply stores)
  • 1/2 teaspoon liquid dish detergent
  • 5-6 teaspoons glitter (white and silver for snow effect)
  • Waterproof holiday decoration of choice, to put inside jar snowman shown here)
  • Strong waterproof glue
step 1Fill jars. Use a pitcher to pour the distilled water into the jam jar. Fill it as full as possible. Add glycerin and then dish detergent in that order.
step 2Add glitter. Spoon the glitter into the water. White or silver glitter looks most similar to snow, although other bright colors can look very festive.
step 3Attach decoration. Use a blob of strong waterproof glue to securely stick the decoration to the inside of the lid of the jam jar. It is advisable for an adult to do this if the child is young. Let the glue dry thoroughly according to the manufacturer's instructions.
step 4Secure lid. Carefully place the lid on top of the jam jar and screw tightly in place. The jam jar should be watertight (allowing space for the decorative item, of course), but you may wish to seal it around the edges with a layer of craft silicone sealant, which is available from good craft stores.

Make sure all objects you glue onto the lid are waterproof.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

seasons greetings & free gifts

Just want to wish you all a great time over the holidays. Eat, drink and be merry! For those who want to boost the number of gifts under their tree, download the following DIY gift template below. Enjoy!

download (pdf 450k)

Friday, June 12, 2009

Family Photo Wreath

Take your pictures out of the frame and create a clever holiday decoration.

What you'll need: A 12- or 14-inch Styrofoam wreath form, colored card stock, 3-inch circle template, pencil, scissors, glue stick, decorative-edge scissors, 4-x-6-inch black-and-white photos, craft glue, ribbon, jingle bells, 2 T-pins

Make it: Use circle template to cut circles from card stock; cut faces from black-and-white photos into slightly smaller circles. Use a glue stick to attach the photo cutouts to card stock, then trim the card stock with decorative-edge scissors. Glue the photos to the surface of the Styrofoam wreath form with edges overlapping. Thread ribbon through jingle bells and tie bows. Glue the bells in between the photos as desired. Attach a loop of ribbon to the back of the wreath with T-pins and hang.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Pretty Packaging

A pom-pom here, some funky fringe there -- it's almost more fun to wrap these gifts than to open them!

Holly Wrap
What you'll need: Brown kraft paper, scissors, pinking shears, hole punch, green paper, craft glue, red pom-poms.

Make it: Cut a strip of kraft paper lengthwise and fold it in thirds. Trim edges with pinking shears and punch random holes along the strip. Repeat. Unfold and tape strips around the package in both directions as you would with ribbon. Cut two holly leaves from a folded piece of green paper and glue to the top of the package. Glue on three red pom-poms.

Artwork Sticker
What you'll need: 8-1/2-x-11-inch full-sheet labels, markers, crayons, scissors.

Make it: Cut labels to the appropriate size for the package and have kids decorate. Cut strips of label paper as ribbon and have kids decorate those as well.

Paper Flower
What you'll need: Wrapping paper, pinking shears, tape, 2 drinking glasses of different sizes, pencil, double-stick tape, circular labels, rubber stamp, ink pad.

Make it: Cut strips of wrapping paper with pinking shears and tape in both directions around the package. Cut two circles from wrapping paper, one about an inch smaller than the other. Using the smaller drinking glass, trace a circle in the middle of the backside of the small circle; use the larger drinking glass on the bigger circle. Cut slits 1 inch apart around the circles to the penciled line. Fold the corners of the paper between the slits back toward each other and tape to form petals. Layer the two flowers on the package, securing with double-stick tape. Stamp design or words on circular label and place in the middle of the flower.

Fringe Pom-Pom
What you'll need: Ribbon, double-stick tape, 2 colors of crepe-paper fringe, button.

Make it: Tape ribbon around package. Place double-stick tape in a circle in center of package. Spiral crepe-paper fringe to form a pom-pom, pressing it onto the tape. Add a second color of fringe around the center pom-pom in the same way. Tape a button in the middle of the pom-pom.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Ribbon Bow Ornaments

Bows are always in style at the holidays, and this year they have an added cachet: these festive accents are the darlings of couture, showing up in fresh and inspiring forms on every item of clothing imaginable. Combine their classic and current appeal by outfitting your abode in all sorts of bows.

Petal Bow-Ornament
The petal bow is similar to the medallion bow. For the petal bow, make 2 1/4-inch accordion folds in ribbon (ours is 5/8 inch wide and 45 inches long); end with the raw edges facing down. Pass needle and thread through bottom, about 1/4 inch from edge. Hold together, and pull taut; knot. Spread petals; tie silver twine around thread to hang.

Figure-Eight Ornament
This is made with 15-inch-long, 3/8-inch-wide satin ribbon. Follow instructions on page 102 to make three figure-eight bows, but start with the cut edge at back of bow instead of at front, and make two layers instead of three. Cross and glue two of the bows. Glue a loop of silver twine at the front center. Glue a third bow across the middle, as shown, concealing twine.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Town House Gift Boxes

The German town of Nuremberg has been famous for its "lebkuchen" since the late 1300s; the soft, cakey cookies are traditionally made with several spices, candied citrus peel, hazelnuts, and almonds. Packaged in quaint town house boxes, the cookies seem all the more authentic. The house templates create a sleeve that slips over a box filled with cookies.

Tools and Materials
Heavyweight matte printing paper
Self-healing mat
Craft knife
Bone folder
4-inch length of red ribbon for each box
Glue stick
Parchment paper
Scallop scissors
Desired number of 3-inch square boxes (gingerbread) or other cookies
Tape (optional)

Cookie Box How-To
1. Print templates at 105 percent onto heavyweight paper. On the mat, use craft knife to cut out templates, including areas around score marks.

2. On side template, crease along marks, and with the bone folder, score folds. Trim excess.

3. Crease and score front and back of house as above. Trim excess.

4. Cut slit at center of roof where marked. Knot ribbon into a loop, and pass through slit in roof, from underside.

5. Glue templates together. Adjust shape to form a cube. Let dry 30 minutes.

6. Snip two 13-by-3-inch pieces of parchment, using scallop scissors on short ends. Place strips of parchment inside box crosswise to each other to form liner. Fill with cookies, and close lid. Slip house over box. If you plan to carry or hang box, attach sleeve to box with tape.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Lace Clutch

We printed clip art onto heat-transfer paper and ironed the designs onto fabric for this sewing project.

Lace Clutch Clip Art
1. Print clutch design on iron-on heat-transfer paper.

2. Iron the design onto ivory cotton canvas, following the manufacturer's instructions. (Be sure to position the transfer so the long edge is parallel to the grain of the fabric.)

3. With scissors, cut out design, leaving a 1/4-inch border at left, right, and scalloped sides. At the bottom, leave a 1/2-inch border.

4. Cut left and right sides with scalloping shears, leaving 1/8 inch as border.

5. Flip canvas over and fold bottom up 3 1/2 inches. Top-stitch both sides closed.

7. Stitch a 20-inch length of ribbon to the center of the bottom portion of the clutch, 2 inches from the bottom.

6. With a screw punch, punch a hole at the top center, 1 1/2 inches down from the point of the center scallop. If you do not have a screw punch, make a 1/2-inch vertical slit with scissors.

7. Fold top half down 3 1/2 inches. Pull ribbon through hole or slit, and tie in a bow to close.

Get the Blue Clutch Clip Art
Get the Gray Clutch Clip Art
Get the Yellow Clutch Clip Art

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Monogram Labels Template

To fashion these monogrammed labels, print on adhesive or regular paper and cut out with a 3-inch circle punch.

Letter A
Letter B
Letter C
Letter D
Letter E
Letter F
Letter G
Letter H
Letter I
Letter J
Letter K
Letter L
Letter M
Letter N
Letter O
Letter P
Letter Q
Letter R
Letter S
Letter T
Letter U
Letter V
Letter W
Letter X
Letter Y
Letter Z

A simple gift from your heart.

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