Summer Sun Wreath

Here’s my August wreath.

If you don’t have a stash of fabric to dig through to make one of these, I’m so sorry to hear that. But you can go to the fabric store and buy what you need. You’ll need about two yards and a fat quarter of fabric, straight pins, a needle and thread, and a Styrofoam wreath form.

Pick out a collection of yellows, I used solid colors, but blenders and calicoes will work too. Buy widths of 1/8, 1/4 and 1/2 yard, to come up with a total of 1–1 1/2 yards of yellow. Get the most of your favorite, with other shades just to make it interesting. Find a half-yard of a contrasting print for the center, and select a fat quarter that goes with all of it for the sunspot.

Summer Sun Wreath on Jan Made It

First the Stars and Stripes wreath had to come apart. My nieces were at the house for a few hours one day last week and Riley took it apart for me and started this one by wrapping my handy-dandy Styrofoam ring in a strip of yellow fabric.

Summer Sun Wreath on Jan Made It

Then I ripped different shades of yellow fabric into strips about four inches wide, give or take. Some strips are about 45 inches long, the width of the fabric, and others, from scraps, are shorter.

If you bought fabric, use the 1/8 yard as is; rip the quarter-yard in half; and rip the half-yard three times to make four strips. You can cut some of these strips in half if you want shorter strips for more variety.

I hand-basted a loooong running stitch down the middle of each strip and pulled each into a ruffle. I pinned one end of the ruffle to the wreath and randomly gathered it and shaped it as I pinned it to the wreath.

I folded some strips in half length-wise and then basted, gathered, and pinned them to the wreath; others I left open and pinned them down the middle with gathers on both sides.

Summer Sun Wreath on Jan Made It

Since it was sooooo yellow I finished it off with about a half-yard of orange and yellow calico.  I folded it with the raw edges into the center and then folded it in half and draped it loosely in the center of the wreath and pinned it into place.

Summer Sun Wreath on Jan Made It

I found a fat quarter of batik, red with yellow flowers to make a sunspot on my sun.

Summer Sun Wreath on Jan Made It

I made the sunspot by pulling the corners of the fat quarter—wrong sides under—and stuck it to the wreath with a pin through the center, catching the four corners underneath. I formed it into a little puff, held it in place by hiding a few pins inside the folds.

Summer Sun Wreath on Jan Made It

That’s about all there is.

I’m brainstorming for my next wreath subject.  Something for September before I roll into Halloween.  Don’t know what kind of wreath I’ll make either. So far I’ve done fabric a few times and crochet.  Maybe something with paper?

My only criteria is to make it on this same foam wreath form, and to be able to use the parts for something else once the season has passed.

Any suggestions?

Jan

 

 

To Do: A Pillow, But Not a Bracelet

I had a to do list today, and I didn’t get through it because I got distracted. Everything on my list was something I need to finish. I wasn’t going to start anything new.

But then I did.

Like this bracelet.

Turkish Flat Weave Bracelet Hemp

It was not even on my radar until I got an email from Creative Bug with a video tutorial on how to make one.  It’s crocheted and it’s called a Turkish Flat Weave. It’s not hard, but using hemp was not the best choice for my first attempt. The stiffness of the cord was kind of cranky. And like I found out with a previous project, it’s hard to see what’s what in the black yarn, or cord.

So I picked out some supplies for another one.

Materials for Turkish Flat Weave Bracelet

I went with the cream-colored number 8 pearl cotton thread and the bright beads.

Turkish Flat Weave Bracelet Cotton

The parts I got right are really nice.  But it’s twisted where I didn’t flip it the right way. If you watch the video you’ll know what I mean.  Once I get the hang of it I’ll unstring this and make it over.

By the way, if you can crochet, this is a very quick project. I started the second one at 10:30 and 45 minutes later I was working on the closure.

This pillow was on my to do list. This is not the pillow I set out to make but it’s what the fabric wanted to be. Anybody else have projects like that?

I made the pillow with a couple of decorator samples.

The floral with the owl is linen and the animal print is polyester. I have another piece that I think is drapery silk that will go on the back.

Applique Pillow Basted

If you look close you’ll see my navy blue basting stitches. I haven’t decided exactly how I’ll attach the applique. If I have thread that exactly matches the pink I may quilt it down first before I secure the edges.

It’s going to be a pillow cover for a 16 or 18 inch square pillow. Since I don’t have another sample in this same color family this is all there is. The back piece is smaller than the front, so I’m hoping to manipulate it enough to manage a concealed zipper on one of the edges.

I have nothing this yummy pink will go with so I’ll probably sell it. It’s going to be amazing if you can use this almost dusty pink.

I have other decorator samples and I’m sure some of them will want to become the pillow I planned to make first.

How’s your to do list coming? Hope your day is swell!

Jan

Springtime Crocheted Flowers

Awhile back I promised links to some of the crocheted flowers that made up my Springtime Garden Wreath. I can’t remember exactly which patterns I used to make this collection, but here are eight of the dozens of patterns I used to make this. There was the quick crocheted flower, a 5-petal flower, and a 7-petal flower, This is an excellent scrappy project for bits and pieces of leftover yarn.

SpringFlowers

Here’s the wreath as I was putting it together. The flowers are pinned on the foam base side-by-side. Here’s a double flower, and a floating flower I referenced even though I didn’t crochet any layered flowers. Some of them look like double flowers because I placed a small flower on top of a larger one. Here are some Teeny Tiny Flowers, I have used.

SpringFlowers 2

I used some of the long tails to stitch the flowers together with the same yarn.

SpringFlowers 5

Other times I used a contrasting yarn to make the attachment.

SpringFlowers 4

SpringFlowers 3

These “roses” were not made in the round, but rather in a strip that was wound up after I finished it.

SpringFlowers 1

Find one of the rose patterns here.  I think the variegated yarn makes it a lot more interesting than if I’d made them all out of solid colors.

SpringRoses 1

I needed some leaves to fill in the blanks, and they were easy to create after I followed a couple of patterns.

SpringLeaves

Here is one leaf I used, and here is another. It was fun to mix and match different greens in the leaves.

SpringRoses 2

And in case you’re wondering, it took several hours for me to weave in all the tails and get this tidy and ready to hang. I really need to do that as I go instead of waiting until I have to do them all at once.

Ugh!!! So tedious.

It’s Memorial Day weekend and I’d planned to have a patriotic wreath up by now, but, as usual, time slipped up on me.

It won’t be crocheted this time and if I have some of the heavy-weight fusible stabilizer handy I will get started tonight.

Thanks so much to all the crocheters out there who wrote the patterns I used to make this wreath.  I’m not a very good pattern-follower, but your instructions made it easy. After I figured out the techniques I was able to go off-script and make all these flowers without getting bored and abandoning the project.

Anybody else do that?

Have a great and safe holiday weekend.

Jan

Pretty Pillow Makeover at the Flea Market

Here’s what I did at the Flea Market over the weekend.

IMG_8771.JPGA couple of pretty Japanese-made blouses—complete with piped edges and frog closures—are now a couple of pretty pillows.

Pretty Pillow Makeover on JanMadeIt.wordpress.com

One was black, with a simple neckline.

Pretty Pillow Makeover on JanMadeIt.wordpress.com

The other was red, short sleeves, with a pretty stand-up collar.

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This collar was too pretty to cut away and relegate to the discard bin.

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The lady in the booth next to mine had them. She’d bought a few things at a garage sale and as she paid, the seller picked up these blouses and said “here, you can have these too,” so they didn’t cost her anything.

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I had my sewing machine set up and it wasn’t long before she brought the blouses over and asked, “Can you think of something to make out of these?”

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I shrugged and suggested “pillows?” I showed her the pillows I’ve made out of toddler shirts and her eyes lit up. Could I make some for her?

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In no time she took off through the flea market and found a couple of cotton throw pillows and gave them to me to use as pillow forms.

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First I used a hidden stitch to close the openings of the blouses so they wouldn’t gap when filled. I left part of the sleeves showing on the red blouse in order to keep the collar and the side closure.  It was the perfect size for the pillow we found for stuffing. I used one sleeve to fill the neck opening and the bottom was left open, like a pillow case. We didn’t want to mar the pretty fabric finish with stitching.

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After I stitched the front closed on the black one, we decided it would look better sideways.

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Because the fabric was so “slickery,” the pins slid right out, I decided the only way to be sure my seams didn’t stray was to baste it all the way around. So I did.

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I left the hem of the shirt open and had to remake the pillow we were using to fill it since this pillow was more narrow.

First I removed all the polyfill. Then, since manufactured pillows are usually basted together with very long stitches, it was easy to snip the seams with a small pair of scissors and take the pillow apart. I removed the piping around the edges and rebuilt the pillow. Instead of an 18″ square, I ended up with an 18″ x 12″ rectangle.

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i restuffed the pillow insert, stitched it closed and crammed it into the new pretty pillow. Then I stitched the hem of the shirt closed as well.

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And we ended up with two very pretty pillows. She said she has a day bed they’ll be perfect on.

What would you have done with them?  Made pillows, or cut them up for something else?

Jan

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