Monday, December 22, 2014

Petite Penguin Ornament - FREE Pattern & Tutorial


Let's face it, everyone loves little furry animals. And penguins rate right up there with the cutest creatures!  I bet you might even know someone who collects penguins, do you? Here's a last minute ornament to make, perfect for tying onto a gift or putting on your tree.  When it's finished, this petite penguin ornament stands just 3 1/2" tall.

First up, you'll need to download the free pattern HERE.  Print it making sure the "fit to page" is not checked.  

Supplies needed:
  • White fleece or felt
  • Black fleece or felt
  • Gold cord
  • Black embroidery thread
  • White embroidery thread
  • Fiber fill
  • Scissors

  1. On the front of the penguin:  Lay top of head onto white body and stitch around the inside of this piece.  Sew on French knots for the eyes.
  2. Sew on the stomach piece but stitching a running stitch all around this piece.
  3. On the back of the penguin:  Stitch lower edge of round head in place. Stitch two feet together with a blanket stitch.  Find the center of the penguin and pin the feet in place.
  4. Tack the feet in place on the wrong side of the fabric.

5.     Sew beak using 4 strands of golden orange embroidery floss.
6.     Sew around penguin using a blanket stitch.  Use black thread for the top of the head and white thread for the body.  At the top of the penguin's head, do the following: 


.

Cut 2" of gold cording and tie a knot toward the bottom of the cord.  As you are stitching closed the penguin's head opening, sew the thread in between the stitching.

When you have about 1 1/2" to sew, stuff the body with fiber fill.  Continue sewing until the whole body is stitched together.  Pin the flippers in place.

7.  Sew the flippers in place with black thread.

You adorable petite penguin ornament is finished! Enjoy! Have a great Christmas!  
xoxo Grandma

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

What To Do With a Bad Book - a Craft Tutorial


I'm a total book worm at heart. So when I come across a bad book (you know, bad story lines, too many cuss words, or whatever your reasoning for not liking a book), I usually just throw it away.  Well, I found a good use for those books with less than stellar reviews.  I make them into fun Christmas decorations instead.  

So, start this project with one bad book. Its time to put this book to better use!  Take the book and divide it into about 100 pages by slicing with an matte knife right down the spine of the book.

Gather together these supplies:


FYI:  I found the glass candle stick holder at my local dollar store.
You'll also need:

  • tacky glue
  • scrap of golden yellow paper
  • 1 rounded toothpick


STEP 1:  fold pages from spine corner (top) to the bottom corner of the page.  I use a plastic bone folder to crease the pages.  Unfold.



STEP 2:  Fold the page from spine corner to the fold you just created.  Crease.  Add glue to the underneath side of that fold and press flat toward the fold line.


STEP 3:  Add glue to the top of the last fold and press toward the spine.  Make sure the original fold is not altered.


STEP 4:  Watch a good movie or listen to Christmas music as you fold the rest of the pages using these same steps because this will take a while.

STEP 5:  Fan out the pages so they form a paper tree.  Glue the first and last page together.


STEP 6:  Turn the candle stick holder upside down.  Add epoxy glue and spread the bottom of the pages over the center of the candle stick holder.


To add more height you can stack two candle stick holders into each other, just make sure you glue the holders together with epoxy glue.  

  • To add a star on top of your book tree, download this free start pattern HERE.  
  • Using this pattern, cut the star out of golden or yellow paper.  
  • Add tacky glue to the star.  
  • Lay onto the center of the star a rounded toothpick and press the other star on top of the toothpick and the star.
  • Trim stars to match one another if needed.



I hope you enjoy your "bad book" now! It's probably much better this way (at least it's a lot cuter). Happy folding!  xoxo Grandma

Monday, December 15, 2014

Dollar Store Purchases - Doll Zebra Coat from a Scarf


The dollar store purchase transformation for today is how to make a doll jacket from from a fleece scarf.  (If you're just joining me, we're having fun for the past couple of weeks turning cheap finds from dollar items into cute doll clothes (you can find links to my other tutorials at the bottom of this post).


For today's project, you'll need the following supplies:
  • Simplicity pattern #3551. (This pattern is extremely easy sewing and makes a darling jacket.)
  • $1.00 fleece scarf from your local dollar store
  • 2 buttons (mine were recycled from an old jacket)
  • Thread

I simply cut out the pattern using every scrap of scarf available.  Sewed it together (following the directions) and in about 30 minutes I had one zebra coat perfectly sized for a doll.




  • Little Miss Santa Outfit from Santa hats go HERE 
  • Sweater Dress from thermal socks go HERE 
  • Leggings from knee hights go HERE
  • Elf Outfit from Christmas Stocking go HERE 
  • Doll sleeping bag from a chair cushion & tea towel go HERE 
  • Shorts from shirt sleeves go HERE 
  • Skirt & scarf from a scarf go HERE 
  • Party dress using a sequin headband go HERE 
  • Night Gown from a baby fleece blanket go HERE 
  • Zebra Jacket from a fleece scarf go HERE 


  • xoxo Grandma

    Friday, December 12, 2014

    $1.00 Doll Night Gown - FREE PATTERN & TUTORIAL


    I've saved my favorite dollar store purchase transformation for today.  To make this project you'll need a fleece baby blanket from your local dollar store.  I transformed this purchase into a doll night gown. This post features a free pattern which I created to fit an American Girl doll. 

    (If you're just joining me, we had fun last week and this week turning cheap finds from dollar items into cute doll clothes (you can find links to my other tutorials at the bottom of this post).

    (When you print this pattern, don't forget it needs to be printed at full size. First download the free pattern HERE.) If you download this pattern, would you be kind and leave me a comment below and let me know how you found my blog?  Thank you in advance.


    Supplies needed:
    • Thread
    • 30" of contrasting ribbon - 1/8 - 1/4" wide
    • Small safety pin
    • 18" of single fold bias seam tape
    • One dollar store fleece baby blanket

    Side note:  The fabric used to make this baby blanket has to be the cheapest fleece I've ever used!  But do not be fooled, it  worked great for making a doll night gown which is the important thing, right?

    Cut out the fabric using the pattern pieces as directed on the patterns.  When sewing, use 1/4" seams unless otherwise stated.

    Follow the pictorial steps below and in 30 - 40 minutes you should have a doll night gown:



    Sew the sleeve seams together.



    Slit the buttonhole open.  
    From the right side of the project, do the following:




    Sew both side seams together using an overlocking stitch.
    Sew the sleeves into the armholes with an overlocking stitch.




    Turn night gown right side out and thread the ribbon through the casing. 
    Sew through all layers of fabric and the ribbon at the back center casing.  
    (This will prevent the ribbon from being accidentally pulled out of the night gown while playing.)

    As a child, night gowns were my personal favorite sleep wear.  In the chilly mornings, I loved to sit on the heater and have the warm air shoot up my body billowing my night gown out. Awww, the memories!  My sister and I use to laugh at how fat we looked.  (We stopped laughing and joking about our weight years ago!)



    Thanks for joining me...don't forget if you download the pattern a comment is required!



  • Little Miss Santa Outfit from Santa hats go HERE 
  • Sweater Dress from thermal socks go HERE 
  • Leggings from knee hights go HERE
  • Elf Outfit from Christmas Stocking go HERE 
  • Doll sleeping bag from a chair cushion & tea towel go HERE 
  • Shorts from shirt sleeves go HERE 
  • Skirt & scarf from a scarf go HERE 
  • Party dress using a sequin headband go HERE 
  • Night Gown from a baby fleece blanket go HERE 
  • Zebra Jacket from a fleece scarf go HERE 


  • xoxo Grandma  

    Wednesday, December 10, 2014

    Dollar Store Purchases - Doll Party Dress from a Sequin Headband


    Party time around here today.  The dollar store purchase transformation for today is how to make a doll party dress from from a sequin headband.  (If you're just joining me, we're having fun last week and this week turning cheap finds from dollar items into cute doll clothes (you can find links to my other tutorials at the bottom of this post).

    I found this headband at JoAnn's Fabric and Craft Store. They had a lot of colors to choose from but I chose silver because I knew that I had some pretty shimmery purple fabric and I thought it would make a fancy looking skirt once added to this headband.  I was hoping this project would be easy (which it was) and quick (if I hadn't of hand sewed the skirt to the sequined headband, it would have been quicker).


    1.  Put the headband around your doll's upper chest area.  From the back, pin the headband so that it'll stay on your doll.


    2.  I hand sewed the back of this headband together while working around the sequins.  Once sewn, cut off the excess headband.


    3.  You'll need 30 inches of ribbon to use for the straps on this dress cut into four 10 1/2 inch pieces.   Pin the ribbon onto the headband where you'd like the dress straps to be.  


    4.  Hand sew the ribbon onto both sides of the headband.  I sewed the ribbon onto the back side of the elastic and then onto the front side, thus giving it more strength for child style playing.  On the side of the ribbon that you are not sewing onto the headband, it's advisable to add "no fray" onto the edge of the ribbon. 


    5.  Cut fabric into a rectangle 12 1/2" x 30" (I wish I had of made mine not as long...I'll suggest a better length as 12 1/2" x 20".)  You might as well learn from my experience making this!  Right?  
    6.  Iron fabric before you sew it together.
    7.  Sew fabric length together using 3/8" seam.  I sewed two layers together because my fabric was really sheer and I didn't want my doll to be immodest! 


    8.  Fold the fabric in half width wise with the seams in the middle.


    9.   At the top of the fabric (the side not folded) add a gathering stitch. 
    10. Gather the skirt so it fits to the sequin headband which is the bodice of this dress.
    11. Pin like crazy to keep these two pieces together.


    12. Stretch the headband slightly as you sew the skirt to the bodice from the wrong side.  I found that it was best to hand sew this step.  That way my sewing machine's needle didn't keep hitting those sequins.
    13. Turn the skirt right side out and put it onto your doll.  The skirt is now a bubble skirt.  The best part about this skirt is you do not need to hem it.




    Don't miss these other dollar store purchases into things for your doll posts: 


      
  • Day 1 go HERE (Little Miss Santa Outfit).  
  • Day 2 go HERE (Sweater Dress)
  • Day 3 go HERE (Leggings) 
  • Day 4 go HERE (Elf Outfit)
  • Day 5 go HERE (Doll sleeping bag from a chair cushion & tea towel
  • Day 6 go HERE (Shorts from shirt sleeves)
  • Day 7 go HERE (Skirt & scarf from a scarf)
  • Day 8 go HERE (Party dress using a sequin headband)
  • Day 9 go HERE (Night Gown from a baby fleece blanket)
  • Day 10 go HERE (Jacket from a fleece scarf)

  • xoxo Grandma  -  Linked to: Nap-time Creations

    Tuesday, December 9, 2014

    Dollar Store Purchase - Winter Doll Skirt from a Scarf


    The dollar store purchase transformation for today is how to make a doll skirt and scarf from an adult scarf.  (If you're just joining me, we are having some fun over the next few weeks turning cheap finds from dollar stores into cute doll clothes (you can find links to my other tutorials at the bottom of this post).

    I folded the scarf in half and then measured 18" length from the scarf.  Cut off this piece. Save the leftover piece for the doll scarf.


    Fold the scarf in half width wise and then gather the fabric along the edge of the length. Next, pin the scarf onto one of those elastic headbands that can be purchased at the dollar store or by the yard.  You'll only need a piece as wide as your doll's waist.




    Because my sewing machine still isn't working, I hand stitched the fabric to the elastic, stretching a little as I sewed so my stitches wouldn't pop apart when it was tried onto the doll. If your machine is in good working order, then this part should be a breeze! 



    Stitch the waistband at the top of the waist and the bottom of the waistband.


    Fold the skirt in half and pin.


    If possible, serge the pinned area together.  Your skirt is finished.



    How to make a doll scarf:

    Now, let me show you how easy it is to turn the leftover fabric into a doll sized scarf:

    Step 1:  Using sharp scissors, trim off the finished edge from the edge that's 8 1/2".


    STEP 2:  Take a needle and pull out 1/2 - 3/4" of the threads.  This is called fraying the edge.  Repeat this step on the other end of the fabric.  That's it, you are finished!


    This is a fluffy, fun skirt and scarf for your doll, right? 

    Don't miss these other dollar store purchases into things for your doll posts:

    • Little Miss Santa Outfit from 2 Christmas hats go HERE
    • Sweater Dress from thermal socks go HERE 
    • Leggings from knee high socks go HERE 
    • Elf Outfit from a Christmas stocking go HERE
    • Doll sleeping bag from a chair cushion & tea towel go HERE 
    • Shorts from shirt sleeves go HERE 
    • Skirt & scarf from a scarf go HERE 
    • Party dress using a sequin headband go HERE
    • Night Gown from a baby fleece blanket go HERE 
    • Jacket from a fleece scarf go HERE 
    xoxo Grandma  

    Linked to:  Nap-time Creations