Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Roses & Ruffles Lamp Shade - from boring to burlap

So last week I was looking at this boring lamp shade and wondering what to do with it.  It'd only been this way for atleast 15 years and I had never decided how I wanted to decorate it.  At one point I thought about covering it with buttons but obviously that never happened so there it sat.
Later that day my friend posted on facebook that she would be sharing instructions to add pleated ruffles to a lamp shade.  That got the wheels turning and I googled "ruffled lamp shades" and found several blogs with various ideas on how to add ruffles to lamp shades.
Since I had a yard of burlap and some spare time yesterday I decided to get to work and try it out.
First I cut four 3" strips.
I set my sewing machine to the longest straight stitch I could.
Then I sewed down the middle of my fabric strips.
If you don't have a 1 1/2" marked on your sewing machine, line up your ruler and put a length of masking tape to mark your sewing guide.
For the top row to help make the ruffle even I marked the middles and fourths with pins and then I pulled the thread to ruffle it and used a glue gun to glue the pinned spots to the right places on the shade and then I glued in between a few times to tack it down.
Then I did the bottom ruffle.  It didn't fit all the way around so I cut another strip in half and used that part to finish it.  Last, I did the middle ruffle using an additional quarter of a strip to fill in the extra space.   (I should have sewed the strips together to make them longer before I ruffled them and used the pins to mark the middles and fourths to make sure they were ruffled somewhat evenly.)
Here is the lamp with just ruffles.  This is all I’d planned to do but then since I still had some fabric and I love making roses I decided to add some roses to my lamp shade.  I cut the remaining fabric into 3” strips and then cut the strips in half so they were about 30” long each.  As I made each rose I just hot glued it directly onto the lamp shade.  ( I didn’t sew the roses – just held them in place as I formed then and then glued them down)  I would recommend spacing 5 evenly around the top layer and then adding 5 to the next layer in between and then do the bottom row.  If you use a tapered lamp shade like mine the roses in the top row will be closer together than the roses on the bottom row.
Close up of one of the roses.
The finished lamp.
Close up of the finished lamp shade.
I love it more and more every time I pass by it.  Too bad this is the only lamp shade in the house.  I might have to go door to door to find another lamp shade in town that needs a lift…
If I ever do this again…
1.  I will follow my mother’s advice and use elastic to ruffle the fabric.  (Cut a length of fabric 2 – 3 xs the desired length.  Cut a piece of elastic the circumference of the lamp shade.  Mark both pieces in half and fourths.  Carefully zig zag over the elastic matching up your markings to help the fabric ruffle evenly).  Unfortunately I didn’t have any elastic on hand and as far as I know the closest fabric store is 90 miles away in Billings.
2.  Use heavy duty thread.  My thread broke several times during the ruffling process and I ended up hand threading a needle and weaving the thread through the fabric manually.  It was a nightmare believe me.  Especially when half the strip of fabric was already glued to the shade and I was trying to ruffle the other half by hand.  Yikes!
3.  Use a drum shaped lamp shade.  Those seem to be the “in” shape of a shade right now and it would make things easier to be consistent with your ruffling and rosette spacing.
If you end up making one of these please let me know and I hope that I’ve provided enough tips to help yours turn out better and take less time than mine did.
Happy crafting!
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Monday, March 28, 2011

Charmed I'm Sure

Around 20 years ago I got a charm bracelet and started collecting charms.  I'm pretty sure that my bracelet and first couple of charms were from Mervyns.  Many are from places I've traveled to.  My latest addition is Lady Liberty which I purchased when I visited the Statue of Liberty a couple weeks ago.  I attached her right next to The Empire State Building which I picked up 10 or so years ago on my first trip to the big apple.  Some of my very favorite charms are from James Avery.  Purchased those over the few years my family lived in Oklahoma.  Would love to get more of those but they are a bit pricey.  I was surprised to see that they still carry several of my favorite charms that I have.  I had a bunch of charms that weren't on my bracelet so I spent some time yesterday attaching them.  I now have 25 charms on my bracelet and still have a few more to add to it.  I only have two empty links and it's getting pretty heavy so I'm not sure if I should start down the other side or not.  I've collected a lot of different things over the years but my charm bracelet is def. one of my very favorites.  So many memories and kids love to look at it.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Man Cave - Enter at Your Own Risk

So this is the item I was talking about yesterday that I designed.  Not an original idea but I'm loving this font.  We carved it first and then I painted it.  Painted a bunch more boards today and then we'll carve them tomorrow.  I think it'll be easier that way.  It's fun to design different sayings for the different cabinet doors.  I love it!  What do you think?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

"create" vinyl sign

Yet another project I did a couple months ago that I never included on the blog.  This sign matches the "simplify" sign that was previously posted.  One day I will get around to actually making new projects.  I did clear off the kitchen counter/island today and dug out the cutting matt and rotary cutter today.  I got a couple pieces of flannel cut and then my husband came home for lunch and then I ended up spending the afternoon at work with him so the fabric is still sitting on the counter and hopefully I'll get to it tomorrow.  Our laptops had been on the kitchen counter but I moved them into the office/craft room which is technically the formal front room but who needs one of those really.  Actually the room that's supposed to be the formal dining room has the formal front room furniture in it and even though I'm in that room now it's pretty much never used except when my mother in law has her visiting teachers meet her here so there you go.
I am pretty excited about a sign that we made today at work today.  My husband has been working for the last month in a wood shop and they have all these amazing machines that they can do so much with and they are actually going to make some things that I suggest so I think that's very cool.  I'll probably go over there tomorrow and work on some things and hopefully I'll have something to share tomorrow night.  I'm also going to be doing some office work for them including bookkeeping, website maintenance, running the facebook fan page, etc... so I'm looking forward to all of that.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Custom Order - Scripture Tote

This was a custom order I did in January for a scripture tote bag.  It'd been so long since I'd made one it took me a bit to remember how to do it.  I used a scrap of jean material and some leftover Hawaiian print from a quilt my mom made for me.  My favorite part though is the lime green ribbon that ties at the top.  I've been enamored with lime green all year.  Can't get enough of it.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Happy Belated Birthday Kyra!

Since I "moved" to WY just a few days after my nieces b'day I had every intention of giving her a present.  I was pretty sure that I'd placed it in a drawer so that it would be easy to find.  When she was helping us unload the truck I even told her that I had a present for her.  Well, now it's been a few weeks and I still hadn't found it so I went to plan b.  The last two times I saw her she was wearing a silk flower hairclip that I gave her for Christmas 2009 so of course that won me over and I decided to give her another hair accessory.  This rosette was mostly sewn so all I had to do was add the clip and finish it off.  I couldn't find my premade origami boxes but I did know where my stack of 12 x 12 paper is so I made the box.  The "tag" is actually an old business card.  I added a brad to it and just ran my marker around the edge and wrote on it with my sharpie.  Walked over and delivered it lastnight and she loved it so now I won't have that weighing me down any longer. haha.  It actually felt great to make a present.  I really love doing that and with my craft supplies still half packed I haven't been working on anything lately and I really miss it.  Hopefully I'll be organized enough again soon to start crafting again and get back in the swing of things.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

While the cat's away...

the mice will play...  So, the last couple of months I've had a lot of fun playing with my friend's cricut.  We borrowed a couple of cartridges from another friend and this is what I made one day to the delight of Jocie - my favorite kindergartner that I recently babysat.  I wouldn't normally apply vinyl lettering to doors and walls in other people's houses but I'm pretty sure my friend would be ok with it and luckily she was.  Of course now I can't remember what the names of the cartridges were.  The font was one cartridge and the butterflies were on another.  The butterfly cartridge had so many amazing things on it.  I would've liked to have made more with it.  You could get more elaborate with them but I just did two layers and think they turned out great.