Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Mini Knitting Themed Wreath Ornament

I was inspired to make this little wreath ornament by seeing a larger wreath on an idea sheet made up with balls of yarn.

I found a small plastic ring I had used for baby doll carriers about 2" and wound yard around it with a few dabs of glue.

Then I took small beads and glued and wound embroidery floss around them to look like little balls of yarn.

Purchased small wooden beads went well with the cut toothpicks.  The bead hole was a little small so I needed to use a pencil sharpener to shave off a bit.

I added bells to make it more festive.

After making a few of these, I tried to just make a mini ball of yarn with the toothpick knitting needles which was cute too.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Money Trees

As kids get older, they seem to either want to shop for themselves or be saving for bigger ticket items.  Instead of going the gift card route, I sought out creative ways to gift cash.  I found some money trees and loved the idea!  Who hasn't been seeking a money tree their whole life.

I made some as part of the group gifts for the preschool teachers and also some for the big kids in my life.

First I painted the pots and used floral foam inside the pots.  Polka dots were made with a pencil eraser.

For the round one, I started off with a wooden skewer and a floral foam sphere.  Using folded 5's I took floral wire and wrapped it around the center.  Before inserting it into the foam, I opened up the folded money to make it look more flower-like.  Because I wasn't filling the whole sphere with money, I took some netted ribbon and also folded this and attached with wire.  I took some red berries and attached them too.

For the stick tree, folded money is attached to the wooden skewer with floral wire.  I purchased a bouquet of sparkly stars for the top.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Teacher Gifts

Teacher gifts this year included class gifts for the preschool teachers.  I collected money and had enough for a nice Vera Bradley purse and money tree for one teacher and another money tree along with handmade luggage tag and a key fab for the other teacher.

For my other daughter's elementary school teacher, we purchased some supplies off her list and I made her a new lanyard with ID holder and a key fab.

Of course chocolate was included with all the gifts!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Weighted Blanket

My four year old tends to like to sit squished up against us.  It's not exactly just sitting with someone; she likes to sit pushing up against a person and often weaves her legs in mine.  I wondered if a weighted blanket would benefit her at all.

As I was considering pattern for a weighted blanket, I found a pattern called the Road Trip Quilt and tutorial which I modified for size.

I used 4" strips and cut them at 2.5",  4", 7".

A four inch border was added to increase the size a bit.  

After seeing what other people do for DIY weighted blankets, I decided to add a thin batting to both the top and the bottom layers.  This helps soften the blanket and not feel all the plastic beads as much.

Many people noted challenges filling the blanket up.  I wonder if many people making these kinds of blankets are not sewers.  I felt pretty confident about sewing up the channels and adding the plastic pellets.  There was only one or two times that I even needed to move the pellets aside.

First I sewed channels down along my pattern.  This ended up being spaced 3.5" apart.  I then added a scant 1/4 cup of plastic pellets to each column and then pinned the channel closed to help keep the pellets in place for sewing.  I marked and sewed each section closed at 5".  For the final section seam, I sewed it once regularly and once with a zig zag seam.

I liked this tutorial for making a weighted sensory blanket.

The weight ended up being 3 pounds for this smaller lap blanket.  I could have put more pellets into each section, but I think it's ok this way too.

Here is the back.  I had some extra flannel backed satin from the Genie Halloween costume.  It's easier to see the sections here.