Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Bed Sheet to Shower Curtain

I am not one who loves a lot of color. I grew up in a house where all of the walls in the whole house remained white until I was in high school - when I got up the nerve to paint one of my walls a light blue. ha.

Last month, a friend visited and commented on how she doesn't think there could be a more boring bathroom. Since then, we have moved to a new apartment where we have not one but two bathrooms! I knew I needed to get a shower curtain and a little decor for in there. I ventured out and chose an unexpected color combination of a burnt red-orange and an antique purple-gray.

I searched far and wide for a shower curtain that would compliment the colors I chose, and I settled on the idea of having an elegant white shower curtain with some sort of texture or white design in it.

But, $30 for something that is plain white? No way! I decided to make my own. With a few supplies I was able to make a fabric shower curtain that matched my colors perfectly. I used this post as a starting point for the construction, but took a different direction and did my own thing.

First, I matched my towels to paint swatches that I can carry with me anywhere - which was helpful when going to the fabric store. Next, I bought a coordinating print in each towel color from a fabric store (for my design I needed less than a 1/4 yard of each of the two colors) and a plain white flat sheet ($9 for a full size at Wal-Mart).

Next, I got the bed sheet ready. I wanted the top cuff of the bed sheet to be at the top of the shower curtain (if you look store bought shower curtains, they almost all have a cuff at the top). With the cuff at the top, the shower curtain is too wide, so I cut off enough inches to make it 70" W plus an additional 1" seam allowance.

I then hemmed the side, by folding over 1/2" of an inch and ironing. Then, I folding it over another 1/2" of an inch. Finally, I sewed down the side of the curtain using coordinating thread. The reason I had such a big seam allowance is because I wanted my sides to match each other (and that's how the other side was finished).

Then, I decided how much fabric I wanted going across the middle of the shower curtain. I chose to have one purple and one orange strip (each with a finished width of 1.5" - totaling 3").

Knowing this, I calculated how much fabric was extra in the length of the curtain. My desired length was 72", 3" of that is purple/orange fabric. So that leaves 69" of white fabric.

I measured 9" down from the top cuff (because that is where I wanted my orange/purple fabrics to be), and I cut across the width of the sheet. Now, you have 2 pieces of white fabric, one connected to the top cuff and one bottom piece. I cut out my excess white fabric from the bottom piece on the unfinished side (so I didn't have to do any more hems).

Before I connected the whole shower curtain together, I sewed buttonholes at the top for my shower rings (so I didn't have a lot of extra fabric to wrestle with). I made 12 buttonholes, each 6" apart and about 5/8" of an inch high. I got these measurements based on my shower curtain liner (I wanted the two to line up).

Next, I sewed on my orange and purple fabrics. I had cut 2 orange strips, each 2" wide by 40", and 2 purple strips, each 2" wide by 40". I connected my strips, and sewed them on to the top cuff of the shower curtain. I then attached the bottom part of the shower curtain to the orange/purple strips. I made sure my edges on the colored strips were hemmed to match the rest of the shower curtain.

And, now I have a perfectly matching shower curtain - for only about $15 and totally personalized for what I wanted!

I hope this inspires you to make something unique! I think it could be fun to use a vintage sheet. Or, you could even simplify this to be one sheet with no extra fabric added to it by just hemming the side and bottom of the sheet and adding some buttonholes. The possibilities are endless!

Let me know what you made!

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Saturday, August 13, 2011

Hobby Horse

This afternoon, I had so much fun making a hobby horse for my niece's 2nd birthday.

I read about it last month here and followed most of the tutorial. I was excited that it cost less than $8 to make! I got the fabric and yarn at thrift stores (totaling $2.50). I bought the rest of the supplies (ribon, wooden dowel, D-rings) for about $5. I already had the purple polka-dot and white fabrics.

I covered the wooden dowel in the corduroy fabric and used a tight rubberband and hot glue to attach the head to the stick. The funnest part is just getting to make something for someone you love.

I hope this little 2 year-old has fun galloping around with a new friend!

Update: check out the outfit that goes with the horse here!

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Thursday, August 11, 2011

TUTORIAL: S'Mores Cupcakes

Anytime I am around a campfire, I can't resist one of these...
 But, living on the 2nd floor of my apartment building, I don't get much bonfire action. I decided to try and make a delicous cupcake version over the weekend. I was inspired by Bakerella's recent post about her cookies and cream cupcakes. yum. I am usually one to spend more time in the decorations than the flavor, so I was excited to try something a little bit different.

First, I made a box of Betty Crocker's Triple Chocolate Fudge cupcakes. I followed the directions on the box (I love homemade food - but sometimes a box mix is really good too).

Next, I got my cupcake liners ready. I used these really cute dark brown liners with small white dots that I bought last weekend. Love them!

I filled each cupcake liner about 1/2 way full with the cupcake batter. Then, I added some crushed graham crackers on top. You know how a large graham cracker is split into 4 rectangles? I used 3/4 of one rectangle, and saved the other 1/4 for the very end (as a garnish).

(on the right side - just showing about how much graham cracker I saved for the very end)
After that, I put enough cupcake batter on top of the graham cracker to mostly cover it.

When they came out of the oven, they looked like this...

The more you cover the graham crackers with cupcake batter, the less they will come to the surface.
Either way is delicious!

Next, I melted milk chocolate frosting, and I dipped the top of the cupcake. You can read my tutorial by clicking here:

I took one graham cracker rectangle and coarsley squished about 1/2 of it on top of the melted frosting (before it cooled). (I am still saving that little 1/4 piece for the very end.)

Next, I made this Marshmallow Frosting Recipe. There is enough here for 24 cupcakes - possibly 48!

Cream 2 cups of butter.

Add 2 cups of sugar, a 1/2 C at a time until creamy (I added an additional 1/2 C).

It will look like this when all of the powdered sugar is mixed in. Then mix in 1/2 t vanilla.

Next, add 16 oz. of marshmallow cream and mix.

...and mix...

It will look like this when it is all ready.

Now, add a dollop of the marshmallow frosting on top.

Garnish with that 1/4 piece of graham cracker you saved from earlier and a small piece of a chocolate bar.

And, enjoy! Mmmm....

Happy Baking!

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Ladybird Ln
Tip Junkie handmade projects

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Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A Quilt

Recently, a co-worker of mine was diagnosed with cancer. It was one of those times (I seem to have more and more as I get older) where I had no idea what to say. Instead of saying something, I decided to make something. I took up a little collection, and we raised enough money for some gas money and a lap quilt made by me.

I chose browns, greens, and blues because these are colors she has in her home.

I chose a pinwheel design. I really liked how diamonds formed in the corners of the blocks. I chose a large loop design for the quilitng. I have done smaller loops before, but I really liked the elegance when I completed it on a large scale.

It ended up being a 60" square, that hopefully will bring her comfort. Oh, and there is some delicious dark brown minky on the back.

Say a prayer today for her, as she has many months of treatment ahead of her.

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Thursday, August 4, 2011

TUTORIAL: Easy Headband

I have bangs that swoop towards my ear, and a lot of days I want to keep them from falling into my face. I have a couple of stretchy bands that go around my head, but some days I need something that looks a little bit nicer. There are a lot of great tutorials out there for how to make a headband, but I thought I would share with you how I like to do it :).

Measure around your head (where you would wear the headband). Then subtract 2" from this measurement. Cut a rectangle of fabric that length by 3.5". For example: My head is 22" around. I subtract 2", so I cut a rectangle of fabric 20" x 3.5".

Next, sew wrong sides together with a 1/4" seam allowance (if you would like a larger seam allowance, just add that to the width of your fabric before you cut).

It will look like this:

Turn it inside out.

And press with the seam in the middle of one side.

Next, turn in one end (so the raw edges are on the inside) and press.

Place your piece of elastic inside the two layers, in the middle.

Fold down the extra fabric on the top.

Fold up the extra fabric on the bottom.

Have you ever seen one of these tools? You can use 1, 2, or 3 of the layers under the back of your presser foot in order to help with sewing through really thick (or lots of layers) or fabric. I used 2 of the pieces. You could use a couple of small pieces of cardboard to help up the back of your presser foot if you don't have this tool.

Sew across ALL the layers (making sure to backstitch at the beginning and end).

Now attach the elastic on the other side. Fold the fabric in the same order.

Sew across the top of all of the layers again.

And, you're done! Try it on (don't judge my fuzzy hair - I was helping my brother-in-law move for a couple hours this afternoon - the moment when a good headband is needed!).

Now, make some more in every color of the rainbow...it looks like I still need to make one in purple.

Have fun!

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