Monday, April 27, 2015

crafting confession april - hand carved stamps

hand carved stamps septemberhouse

I am here with another installment in my "Crafting Confession" series. This month I gave stamp-making a try and I had a ton of fun with this one! The good news is that this is a project that is both practical and easy to do. 

moo carve stamps by septemberhouse

I decided to make some stamps I could use on envelopes for packages or just letters. Since I was a little unsure about how difficult the carving would be I tried to stick with pretty simple designs. Making sure your image is reversed before carving is so important - especially if you have text incorporated into your design. Once I transferred my image onto the block it was time to carve away all the portions of the image that I did not want to print.

hand carved prints septemberhouse

The my final designs were carved using a basic carving set and Moo Carve blocks. I highly recommend using Moo Carve if you are a beginner like me. I actually tried another type of block that was a clear plastic. I thought that would make transferring my design and positioning my stamp easier. Plus, the label said that it 'carved like butter' I have to disagree with THAT. It turned out to be pretty stubborn and I found Moo Carve really does cut like butter. This makes the carving part of the project fun and easy but it also makes your block pretty delicate and I actually ended up accidentally nicking mine in a few places with just a fingernail. Still, I would definitely use it again.

I hope you had a chance to try a brand new technique or project this month. Thanks for checking out this month's 'confession'!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

a bit of DIY fun

mosaic cuff darby smart

It's time for a bit of DIY fun - this one brought to you with a little help from some friends over at Darby Smart
DIY embroidered cuff materials

These cuff bracelets were made with some surprising materials (like small mosaic tiles) as well as some near and dear friends (like embroidery floss - of course). To make these I used: one blank vegan leather cuff, some small mosaic tiles, super gel adhesive, a lightweight awl by Clover, a micron pen, a needle and some embroidery floss.

embroidered cuff DIY tutorial

The first step was to just play around and come up with an arrangement for my tiles and embroidery. This was lots of fun because there are so many possibilities. I encourage you to try many different options before deciding on a final design. 

The tiles look pretty great on their own but I wanted to incorporate some stitching as well which I am sure comes as no surprise. You can add embroidery stitches however and wherever you like. They look great as an outline for the tiles, stitched over the top of the tiles, or as an independent accent. 

The tiles have a small ridge on one side and are flat on the other so I took that opportunity to incorporate some texture into my cuffs and used the tiles ridge side up. Either side will work though.

embroidered cuff DIY tutorial

After deciding on an arrangement I glued down my tiles using super gel adhesive. It provides a very strong bond but has a strong smell and dries quickly so I recommend working quickly and in a ventilated area if possible.

embroidered cuff DIY tutorial

I decided I wanted to mark my holes for the embroidery which takes a little extra time but I think it is worth it to insure a precise final look. A ruler can be used to space out your holes perfectly.

embroidered cuff DIY tutorial

Next I pierced through the cuff with an awl as a way to 'pre-drill' my holes. A needle just won't do the trick on it's own and the embroidery goes so smoothly once those holes are in place. You won't regret taking that extra step, I promise!

embroidered cuff DIY tutorial

My last step was to thread my needle with some embroidery floss and "connect the dots". The pre punched holes made this part a breeze. With that step complete I was all done. 

embroidered cuff DIY tutorial darby smart
Thanks to Darby Smart for being a part of this project! 

Thursday, April 9, 2015

craft confession March - sewing

sunglasses cases sewing project septemberhouse

I am finally documenting my craft confession from March and even though it's a little tardy, I am still so glad to be able to share it with you today. For March I took on a sewing project. I know I said I would be trying things I have not done before and I HAVE sewed so there is another confession right there. BUT this is a project that has been sitting there on one of my Pinterest boards for quite some time but I never had the guts to try to make it.

sunglasses cases sewing project septemberhouse

I figured my intimidation made it the perfect project to take on so I gave it a go. The pattern and tutorial for this sunglasses case were so generously provided by Thread Riding Hood She gives directions for three variations too. A big huge Thank You to her for that.

sunglasses cases sewing project septemberhouse

This project called for plastic canvas as a support which I have never used in a sewing project before but it is actually pretty ingenious! The result is a very sturdy and cute case to keep your sunnies secure and protected. I had some of vintage lawn chair fabric leftover from the totebag I made a while back so I thought it would be a fun design for Summertime. My stitching isn't perfect and there were a couple of steps in the process that my sewing machine did NOT like but overall it turned out to be a much friendlier project than I anticipated.

I am so glad I took the time to do this. Without the Crafting Confession prompt I probably would have just let this project sit on Pinterest for years. More experienced sewists would find this project to be oh sew :) easy peasy so if you have a fabric stash to bust through or are looking for a quick gift this might be just the thing for you.