T-Shirt Tote Bag
-Old t-shirt (the bigger the better unless you have itty bitties doing this project!)
-Good pair of scissors
(that's it, crazy!)
1. Lay your t-shirt on the floor or a flat surface (actually make sure it's laid out evenly unlike me!)
2. Cut off the sleeves of your shirt in a half U-shape (you're creating the handles of the bag with this step). You can draw this out if you prefer but I just went ahead and cut away!
3. Next, cut the neckline into a complete U-shape (you are creating the bag opening here).
4. Next, cut "fringe" strips at the bottom of the shirt (exactly like you were making a fleece tie blanket!). You are cutting through both the front and back layers here. Note: I should have cut off the hem strip on the bottom of the shirt because I, personally, do not like that extra chunk of fabric. I ended up having to cut this off each piece afterwards!
5. Tie the front and back fringes together in a knot and continue all the way across the bottom of the shirt.
6. And just like that, you have a new tote bag! ...But let me show you the cool thing about this bag...
If you're into the hippie vibe and dig those fringes, you can totally rock it that way! BUT, if fringe just ain't your thing then go ahead and flip the whole bag inside out! Those fringes will be hidden on the inside and no one will know! Check it...
Note: you can even add some embellishments like these cute bows made out of scrap fabric!
Fairy Lantern PB Jar
I've done this fairy lantern craft before with glass jars and people loved it! They couldn't wait to take it home, show it off, and replicate it with kids/grandkids/friends. I left that night feeling really great about the program and that I helped people create something they fell in love with.
Time for some self-shaming. David, my boyfriend, and I eat a tonnnnn of peanut butter. Like, a tonnnnn, probably way more than we should to be honest. We've actually recently cut down on it but, boy oh boy, do we love us some PB.
On that note, I was getting anxiety over using up so many plastic containers. There had to be something I could use them for! With no plan in mind, I started soaking them, washing them, and de-labeling them meticulously one at a time with no purpose at the end of the tunnel.
Then, the fairy lanterns came into mind. I had done it before with glass and thought, well, why not give it a try... I have plenty more to use if it doesn't work! I gotta say it turned out pretty darn cute. I think it's decently disguised but if I were doing it for myself, or for a gift, I think I would choose to add a lot more moss and other items to disguise it even more. Anywho, the instructions are as follows, happy crafting!
Note: I did not cover the entire lip of the jar so that it can still be twisted shut if desired.
4. Next, I did the same thing with the lid of the jar. I knew I wanted to paint it and glue items to it so I thought covering it with tissue paper would create a nice textured layer for this purpose.
Note: I did not cover the inside of the lid and afterwards, I wish I had. I can, of course, do this at any time but I wanted to point this out. I feel if you do not cover the inside, you can see the red of the lid on the outside. It isn't super noticeable, but I notice it.
7. Here is where I painted my lid to camouflage it. I knew I would be adding moss later, but I didn't want any of the white tissue paper coming through! I sponged on a layer of green, then brown, then black with the foam brush, just enough to cover most of the white.
Note: I wanted to point out that I noticed the expiration date and other numbers was printed on the plastic and was totally showing through the tissue paper! Eww! I covered this up with yet another leaf and some more moss.
Turn that beauty on and look at her glow!
Were using the PB Jar method at work for a mother-daughter craft program. This makes it even better that we are using plastic jars instead of glass in case we have any little ones attend! We are also including in the description that these are actually Peanut Butter jars and that if you have a peanut allergy we do not recommend attending just in case any residue is leftover.
Let me know if you have any questions!
Altered Book Journal Page
Let me start by saying anything... and I mean anything can be used for an altered book journal! This is what makes this project so much fun and so versatile. Every book is different, every page is different, and every material is different. The purpose of an "altered book" is making an old book into a new piece of art. There are many types of altered books, but for this project, we are beginning an altered book "journal". A journal can be used as a "smash book" for travel or random memories or can be used for a literal journal to write in. There are many possibilities.
I did this journal page spread for one of my classes. This was a little tricky as I had to come up with something that we could all do together in our own books but something that could get everyone started and get those creative gears moving! The page above is what I came up with. It is something very simple and uses minimal supplies. We could've gone crazy and used paints, textures, inks, stamps, stickers, etc. but I kept it simple for an easy clean up and to also show that you don't need anything fancy for this type of project!
1. First off, let's talk about picking our book. If you can find something with "sewn" pages, that's the way to go! The modern glued pages are terrible for an altered book project! They are too flimsy and as you cut away more pages it loses its stability and could fall apart! These photos show what a sewn spine looks like verses a glued spine.
3. Once you are done cutting out pages throughout the book, you are ready to start gluing. As mentioned above, glue the pages to the left and right of the cut together, hiding that cut line. I use Mod Podge for this, putting it on in an even, thin layer. You can always come back and add more if the corners aren't glued down after it dries.
6. All I did to finish this page spread up was glue! First, I arranged everything on the pages to figure out where I wanted it all to go. Once I was good with it all I glued everything down with a thin layer of Elmer's Glue, you could use Mod Podge instead. I also used the hot glue gun to glue the ribbon and the flowers down. But that was it!
This was a pretty simple page. But you could really get crazy and do pages like the examples below! Happy Journaling!
American Flag Tapestry
I created this quick craft project to tie into a book discussion at work. But this so easy, anyone can do it and it's very quick as long as you are making a smaller size. I also think this would be awesome in an extra large size as well!
1. Gather your supplies all in one space so you are ready to go!
a. If you are using fabric, I would cut your strips at this time as well
2. Use blue pieces to represent the blue star part of the flag (I saw some online that used white beads throughout to represent the stars!) and alternate your red and white for the stripes.
3. Tie your strips on using the Larkshead Knot technique below. This is a great way to add your elements because you get two components out of one.
a. You can also tie them however you wish. Try tying little pieces together of different types/textures to give your flag more variety.
4. Create a piece for hanging. I did this by wrapping 3 pieces of twine around the one end, braiding it, and tying it off on the other side.
5. That's it! Feel free to add whatever types of elements you have lying around! Perfect decoration for the most rustic folks you know!
Do you have a bunch of scrap fabric that you don't know what to do with? This is the perfect craft to use 'em up!
1. Cut 8 3"x3" pieces out of your fabric (or various fabrics)
2. Fold each piece in half and then in half again...
3. While holding the fold of each piece, cut the corner into a rough looking heart shape (I went ahead and did all 8 pieces so they were ready for me and I felt like that really sped the process along!)
8. As you let go of the corners, you'll see how all of the pieces are now together, but... it needs a little help becoming a flower. Begin "fluffing" up your pieces and spreading them outward. Oooo look at that flower grow! And just like that, your flower is formed and ready for whatever you wish to use it for!
(Side note: the fabric I used are actually pieces of my Papaw's flannel shirts - he passed a couple of years ago. I plan to use my flowers for wedding decorations/bouquets whenever that happens... cough, cough! ...That way he'll be with us on our special day.)
Do you remember that awesome spooky spell book I did back in October? Well, it started a whirlwind for Christmas gifts that I got completely lost in!
Ahhh, the wonderful world of altered books!
This is the main reason I haven't really posted too much because I was so enveloped in this realm, I didn't have time for anything else. Nothing!
If you don't know what I'm talking about, do a general search on Pinterest for "altered books" or "altered book journal" and behold. It is endless. You will get lost in a rabbit hole that you might never get out of!
Altered books can be created for any type of person, for any reason. The possibilities are endless and it is so incredibly creative. It is a very messy hobby but the results are beautiful. I also found it stress-relieving. I would go into my art room for hours and come out feeling calm and inspired.
Anywho, here is one of the books I created. This one was for my mom who decorates in the vintage/americana type decor. You need to download the file in order to watch it as it is too large for the online restrictions.
Enjoy, and Happy Holidays!
Cookie Sheet Memo Board
This is a really fun little craft to do with someone of any age. It's a great way to repurpose old icky cookie sheets as well. This would make a great addition to just about any room of your home or a great gift as you can mold it to fit anyone's personal style.
Here I go with forgetting to take pictures of every... little... thing yet again, ug! But this one is pretty simple and should be easy to follow regardless.
1. If desired, paint your cookie sheet. It seems best to use a spray paint as it will adhere well. I, however, used acrylic paint on an old non-stick cookie sheet. You know what that means right? The paint did not stick great. But, I ended up liking the look and making it "distressed". I also went over the entire paint job with a layer of Mod Podge. If you go this route, and don't use Mod Podge, the paint will scratch right off once dry so make sure you put a layer of some sort over the paint!
Spooky Spell Book
Can you believe it's September already? I love fall, definitely my favorite, but... seriously... where did summer go? In preparation for the coming comforting season what better craft to make than a Spooky Spell Book for your holiday decorating or gift giving!
2. Once you like where they are, go ahead and glue them down. I used Elmer's glue for this but you can also use a glue gun of course... it would be much faster too!
3. Next we want to create our creepy title. I went simple and just went with "SPELLS" but you can switch it up and maybe do "HEXES", "CURSES", etc. I created my letters by just using the hot glue gun and "writing" the letters out. However, you could get wood letters and put them on the cover just like you did with the first pieces. Up to you. If you go with the glue technique, do NOT, use Elmer's glue..... awful! It will take forever to dry and will barely be raised - stick with the hot glue and work relatively fast.
6. Next, you can add your creepy crawlies! Ooo! It took me a while to figure out what I wanted to do. I could not decide if I wanted to paint over them or not! Decisions, decisions. I decided the paint over option and was very happy I did. Glue your guys on with hot glue and they will stick great! Then just paint right over them as well.
8. After the glue is dry, you can then paint over the exterior of the pages. I painted mine a neon green, super fun! But I think purple, red, and orange would also look awesome. I also took my brush from the black paint and lightly brushed over the green to give it a distressed look.
Hey there, I'm Becca, or Rebecca, but not Becky, never Becky, unless you're my family from down south! I'm a simply modern librarian by day and an artist by night. My pursuit is for a simple, happy, healthy, and more fulfilling life! I hope I inspire you to get crafty!