Effie the Elephant

Here’s a little felt elephant I made recently. She’s made out of plain ole craft felt and is about four inches tall. Her name is Effie. Effie Bass Miller was my great-grandmother.

Felt Elephant JanMadeIt 1

She has a yellow tail and yellow feet.

The tail is crocheted cotton perle thread, probably size 5. I chained about 12–15 stitches and then turned around and single crocheted back down the chain.  I added a little tassel at the end.

She’s assembled with three strands of embroidery floss.

Felt Elephant JanMadeIt 2

Her trunk was too short so I used the half-circle scrap from between her legs to add some length and give her a little personality.

Felt Elephant JanMadeIt 3

That’s why the end of her trunk is orange on one side and pink on the other.

Felt Elephant JanMadeIt 4

I picked blue for her ears and used blue thread to attach little button eyes.

The trickiest part of the whole assembly was the ears (I made two sets that were too small), getting them in the right spot (they were first too far back, and then too low), and making sure they were lined up on each side of her head.

I might add and embroider a little blanket across her back. If I do, I’ll give you an update.

She makes me smile.



Bias Tape Birds–Vintage Applique

I’m enamored with this pair of birds.

I found them on a pillowcase I bought at an estate sale a few years ago.

Vintage Applique Bias Tape Birds on JanMadeIt 02

It’s just snips of ordinary half-inch bias tape appliqued to the cotton.

Vintage Applique Bias Tape Birds on JanMadeIt 03

A few strategic embroidery stitches complete the illustration.

I had to make a pair of birds for myself.

Jans Appliqued BiasTape Birds on JanMadeIt02

I dug into my box of scrap trim (that sounds like I only have one! Ha!) and found a few pieces of bias tape to use. I couldn’t find a scrap of blue, so instead of a bluebird and a red bird, I made a pair of cardinals. The male on the right, and the less colorful female on the left.

Of course, I can’t leave well enough alone and decided to fold the bias tape in half.

Jans Appliqued BiasTape Birds on JanMadeIt 03

First I tacked down the green for the branch but was not happy the little stitches are still visible. So I found matching embroidery floss and used an embroidered back stitch to stitch down the birds.

Since my birds are much smaller than the originals I wasn’t able to put as many details on their heads, but I think it works.

Jans Appliqued BiasTape Birds on JanMadeIt 01

I can’t decide what to do with them now so they are still living in this little embroidery hoop.  I didn’t trim the green bias tape in case they need a longer branch when I find a permanent home for them.

Vintage Applique Bias Tape Birds on JanMadeIt 01

I just love finding old linens, don’t you?

Any suggestions on what I should do with them now?


Which Witch is in the Wreath?

I make a lot of stuff, but I didn’t make these little witches. A friend made them and gave them to me a few years ago.

Halloween Wreath Witches JanMadeIt 01

Aren’t they adorable?

Halloween Wreath Witches JanMadeIt 02

They’ve been wrapped in paper, resting in a shoe box for several years but I was determined to show them off. My personal challenge to make a new wreath every season this year is the perfect way to do that.

After I removed the summer sun from my the styrofoam wreath I’m using this year, I realized I would only be able to use one of the witches.

I wrapped the wreath with this pink, rust, gold, mesh fabric I found in the red tag section at JoAnn Fabrics.

Then, my mom dug through her stash and started cutting out leaves.

Halloween Wreath Witches JanMadeIt 08

I pinned the leaves to the wreath and perched the smaller witch in the center.

Halloween Wreath Witches JanMadeIt 06 The first wreath I made was for Valentine’s Day.

The first wreath I made this year was for Valentine’s Day.

Valentine's Wreath on JanMadeIt

Next came lots of green sparkly tulle for St. Patrick’s Day.

St. Patriock's Day Wreath on JanMadeIt

Then crocheted flowers made up this Springtime wreath.

Spring Wreath on JanMadeIt.wordpress.com

In June when I went patriotic for Flag Day and the Fourth of July with a Stars and Stripes Wreath. which I updated here.

Patriotic Wreath on JanMadeIt

Patriotic Wreath on JanMadeIt

I had an idea about the “dog days of summer” for my next wreath, but couldn’t make my idea look right, so I went with a simple summer sun.

Summer Sun Wreath on Jan Made It

I updated that wreath for the eclipse on August 21.

SummerEclipse on JanMadeIt

And now it’s fall.

Halloween Wreath Witches JanMadeIt 04

My little witch will stay in place until Halloween, and then I’ll take her down and do something a little more harvesty.

I had in mind to make a wreath each month, but I haven’t kept up that pace. I think I’ll end up with nine or ten maybe. We’ll see what I come up with over the next few months.

Do you hang wreaths on your door or around the house throughout the year? I don’t usually, but this year I’ve had fun coming up with something new as the seasons change. And I really like not having to store something, or give it away, when the season is over.


Bracelets of Suede Cords, Buttons and Beads

Here are a couple of maybe a dozen things I’ve made over the past few weeks

Bracelet Suede Cord Turq 07

First, in my stash I found some beads that match this turquoise suede cord. But I had trouble finding a button to work. A pearl button was too foo foo for the suede. But a white plastic button was too plain to match the silver, white and blue beads.


I had to abandon my stash and look for a button in the store! Fortunately I found a pair of  transparent buttons with silver swirly curly cues on top. It turned out to be the perfect match.

The bracelet is easy to make with simple overhand knots.

First use a cord that will loosely wrap around your wrist twice with four or five inches to spare. Fold the cord in half and slide the button to the halfway point.

Bracelet Suede Cord Turq 05

Tie one overhand knot at the base of the button. keep it loose until you can scooch it up close to the button, then gently pull each cord evenly to tighten it.  Next I threaded one bead on both cords (the silver and white) and then the next four buttons went on one of the cords and the final silver and white again went on both cords.

Bracelet Suede Cord Turq 01

Then I wrapped it around my wrist and tied another overhand knot (keeping it loose until I was sure it was in the right place) and moved down an inch or so to leave a gap before tying the last knot. The gap is so the button can be used as a fastener.


I didn’t go looking for it per se, but while I was on the button aisle, I found some Organics* Elements buttons made of coconut. There were two square buttons with four holes, one gold and one sage green. The gold button matched a hank of gold suede cord from my stash. And coincidentally I had some wood beads that exactly matched. I haven’t found the right cord for the green button yet.

Bracelet Suede Cord Gold 10

I tied the button on the cord with an “x” stitch through the four holes and tied an overhand knot at the base of the button. Then I threaded two wood buttons on one of the cords.

Bracelet Suede Cord Gold 06

I used the other cord to make a couple of half-hitch knots to anchor the beads and then did the same with two more beads.

And because I didn’t want a just a beaded bracelet, I made a series of half-hitch knots, keeping them tight next to each other. Doing a series of half-hitch knots will automatically create a spiral in your cord.

It’s just like when you row on only one side of the boat.  You end up going in circles.

Bracelet Suede Cord Gold 05

Then I threaded on two more sets of beads.

I was a little short of where I wanted it to end, so I made another half-hitch spiral section to make it long enough to go around my wrist.

I anchored it all with an overhand knot; skipped about an inch, and tied another knot, leaving room for the button.

Bracelet Suede Cord Gold 08

I tied the knots really tight and cut the ends about an inch away from the knot. I want to see how they hold before I trim it too short. And while I could add glue to the knot, G-S Hypo Cement is recommended for this, I haven’t glued it yet.

I’ve worn both bracelets for several days. The knots are tight. So far, I haven’t felt the need to undo them and make them into something else.


I love bracelets. I’ve got more to show you over the next few posts.


P.S. *If you go to the button website you’ll see it says Organic Elements,  but the button card specifically says organics (plural) elements. Organics is trademarked. The card has graphics I haven’t seen before which makes me think they might be changing their branding. I couldn’t find my specific buttons online anywhere.


Previous Older Entries Next Newer Entries

%d bloggers like this: