Pinwheel Wreath {June 2014}

image

This wreath was actually just an update to a previous wreath I had made. Sometimes you can simply add to a wreath and achieve a whole new look! This update took me about 15 minutes to do.

You could easily add pinwheels to one of those raffia style wreaths just as quick as I updated this wreath if you don’t have a simple wreath you want to add too.

Supplies:
Felt (I used 4 colors out of my stash. I did double layer pinwheels. If you do single layer ones you could do it with 2 colors.)
Scissors
Quilting pins
Wreath (one to update or a raffia wreath)
Ribbon (for hanging)
Lighter or Fray Check

image

Cut two squares of the same size for each pinwheel.

Starting at each corner, cut towards the center of the square stopping between an inch and a half inch from the middle of the square. Cut each corner.

I cut the first square and then stack the squares and cut the second square. I find it easier.

image

Lay your squares onto the wreath in the place you want it to be when completed.

Fold up one flap and pin in the center.

Go to the next cut and repeat folding and pinning. You will do this at each cut.

Place an extra pin (or two) in the last flap. You can cover them with a button (by hot glue) if you wish but I didn’t. The pin heads are small and not very noticeable.

image

I cut two different sizes and clustered them together.

image

Cut a length of ribbon (3-5 feet). Double it and slide it under the wreath bringing the loop to the front. Through the hole slide the loose ends of the ribbon. Pull tight. You can secure the ribbon with pins at the back of the wreath if you want so it doesn’t slip around.

image

Knot about 8-10 inches above wreath. Hang over hook and tie bow underneath the hook so it will hang securely. (My bow is not very pretty. I haven’t mastered bow tying!)

image

Stand back and enjoy!  A lovely but simple wreath!

~Hope

Advertisements

{Tutorial} Freezing Fresh Fruit

I worked up the 8 quarts of strawberries from the auction and froze some of them. Fresh fruit is not hard to freeze but there are a few tricks.

image

You will need your fruit (hulled fresh strawberries), wax paper, cookie sheet, a timer, your freezer, and freezer bags.

image

Put a sheet of wax paper down on your cookie sheet and lay your fruit on top. Spread it out. What your doing here is setting up to flash freeze your fruit. This is really important otherwise you’ll have a large lump rather than being able to use a few out at a time. Set a five minute timer and stick it in the freezer.

Depending on the size of your fruit you might need an additional 5 minutes.

image

They will start looking a little icy and will be harder when you squeeze them then fresh fruit. Package for your freezer.

You will now be able to pull just one or a dozen individual strawberries out when you want to use them.

You should flash freeze fruits with soft outer edges when freezing to eliminate the huge lump problem. Examples would be strawberries, blueberries, sliced bananas, etc. Uncut grapes are fresh fruit that can be thrown in the bag and frozen without flash freezing.

~Hope

Container Planting Tips

There is a Mennonite community fairly close to my home (within 30 miles) so I am able to get some beautiful produce and plants for very reasonable prices! They also hold an auction where they sell produce and plants. It’s fun just to go to the auction but it’s a great place to get deals. My mom and I always go together because when you purchase from the auction you are getting larger quantities. We got strawberries last week and after splitting them we still each had 8 quarts!

I got a great deal on some daisies and a couple of hanging plants as well this last week. I needed to transplant the daisies so I grabbed some boxes I had from past plantings and a large tub that we had.

image

The boxes had a hole in the center, while this is great for drainage it’s also a place where dirt can seep through. An easy fix is to place 2-4 coffee filters over the hole. They are still light enough water can run through if necessary but they will hold the dirt in.

A great filler so you don’t have to use as much dirt is pine cones. I broke them up since my boxes were shallow but I added at least a dozen. They also aid in keeping the soil loose which gives better oxygen to the roots.

Plant!

image

image

I also used a large tub (10 or 15 gallon). To fill that with dirt would make it heavy but would also be expensive!

image

I layered in pine cones (I know that picture is from the small box but same concept) and then I layered in newspapers. I repeated this until I was less than a foot from the top. Eventually you will experience some settling but by that point your flowers should be prospering and expanding so you won’t notice it!

image

I then add a layer of hay to the top. I water in the hay so that I can water at any time of day with worrying about the roots burning. My daughter (6) took all the pictures for this post. I think they are pretty awesome!

image

What are you planting?

~Hope

{Tutorial} Superhero Cupcake Picks

image

Brother turned 3 last week! My babies are all growing up so fast!  Tomorrow is Hubby’s birthday too…29! Brother was actually due on Hubby’s birthday but came 10 days early after my water broke spontaneously.

Back to the reason your here…these:

image

How cute are these? I was really happy with them and people raved over them! There are extremely easy to make and cheap!

image

● word art from Meaningful Mama printed on cardstock (normally it prints 2 to a page but I printed all six on one page by selecting the multiple page option in the print options)
● scissors (to cut the word art out)
● hot glue gun and glue sticks
● lollipop sticks (from in the cake decorating/party section at box stores)

image

You are going to place a word art upside down and place a large glob (great word huh!) on the back. Make sure it’s centered and at the bottom of the word (so your word is right side up when your finished). Press the stick into the glue. If you want, you can put a little more glue over the stick but it’s not really necessary.

image

Aren’t they adorable?

I also found the cutest little figurine for the sheet cake I made.

image

I made a web pattern on the top and placed Spiderman near the center.

All in all it turned out really cute from cake to cupcakes!

~Hope

Handprint Quilt Part Two: Binding the Quilt

Yesterday you saw the quilt all ready for binding and today we will finish it! There are many different binding methods but this is a simple way to bind quilts without using a bias tape binding or hand stitching so you can catch both edges.

image

This method of binding uses the backing of the quilt essentially wrapped around the front of the quilt to bind all the layers. It’s a fairly simple method and is relatively quick.

You need excess around your quilt of at least 4 inches (you’ll have a 1 inch binding; if you want a larger binding increase your excess).

You will be working on one edge at a time, rolling two edges first (from opposing ends of the quilt) then we’ll miter the corners.

image

Fold the raw edge in to meet the edge of the top of the quilt. (Bottom left photo)

Fold over again meeting the edge of the top of the quilt. (Top right photo)

Roll over the edge of the quilt enclosing the raw edges of the top. (Bottom right photo)

Pin like crazy!

Time to miter those corners…it’s not that hard I promise!

image

I mark the point where the quilt top ends in my previously rolled binding (the side I already rolled up). You will be folding a triangle down without passing this point.

Now you are going to roll the side like you did for the previous sides that you already rolled. Pin and sew!

image

Here is a picture of the girls gifting the quilt to their teacher!  It was such a fun project even if it did take me weeks to finish!

Sorry if my explanation wasn’t clear. I hope the photos help where my words fail. Ask questions if you have any!

~Hope

Handprint Quilt Part One: Embroidery Work

For Sister’s teacher, I made a keepsake quilt with each students handprint and their name embroidered over the top of the print. It turned out beautifully and I wish that I could share a full image with you all but I can’t for privacy reasons. But I can show you snippets and give you the tips and tricks of doing your own quilt.

I also plan to save Sister’s handprints and names so that I can make her a quilt at the end of her high school career. Each year around the middle to end of the year I’ll collect her print and name to save for her own quilt later on. I’ll do the same for the other kids as well. I’m pretty excited about that!

image

Each hand was traced onto printer paper cut into an 8″x8″ square. I actually cut the squares out so that parents would know that it needed to fit inside that square. None of the kids have huge prints but some did spread their hands out fairly wide so I am glad that I designated the size. I then taped the page directly onto the muslin that was stretched in my hoop. (I did cut away the excess paper prior to stitching.) Embroider the entire print and then carefully begin tearing the paper away. I found that it was easier to pull away large sections first then to actually hold the stitch line between my fingers while pulling away the remaining paper. When using 3 strands of embroidery floss you will see more stretching (bubbling) of the stitches, with 6 less. Just a tip you might want to take into consideration. 🙂

image

Here is the corner label I did. Straight lines are much easier to pull paper away from, of course.

I did give the kids a strip of paper for their name that was 2 inches by 8 inches. Some filled the whole space, some wrote large letters, and 2 wrote their names at less than a half inch tall…I had to use tweezers to get the paper away from some letters, especially e’s or any letter with a center.

image

Here is a photo prior to the edge work but after it was pieced and tacked. I love how it turned out.

Come back tomorrow to find out how I did the binding!

~Hope

Balloon Birthday Wreath

Two years ago, I made a balloon wreath. It was really cute and took me HOURS to make. Since I wrote a tutorial the first time around I won’t rewrite the whole thing.

You need a wire wreath form, balloons and a movie or two. The wreath form I used was a 4 wire 12″ wreath form. You can use a 2 wire form as well. I don’t suggest any bigger than a 12″ form though. It will take you FOREVER!! Believe me! It’s two years later and I still remember how many hours I sat tying balloons!

Follow this link to find the original tutorial!

image

I think it still looks pretty cute hanging up on the front door for Brother’s 3rd Birthday!

~Hope