Thursday, March 31, 2011

Bunny bibs, vintage art and paperdolls

Tomorrow is April Fool's Day. Are you prepared?

Here is a little joke to play on co-workers. This idea is from my mom-in-law, who can have the greatest sense of humor!

Faux Chocolate Candy:

Take clean cotton balls.
Dip in melted chocolate chips with a 2-tine fork, or with a skewer.
(you can easily melt chips in microwave, stirring well, but don't over heat!) 
Place on wire rack over wax paper to set.
Place on plate and chill well.
Offer to friends and co-workers. Keep a straight face.
caution: make sure the person receiving has a good sense of humor!
original one of a kind bottlecap by inkspired
you can find more of my art at:

Indoors or out, no one relaxes in March,
that month of wind and taxes,
the wind will presently disappear,
the taxes last us all the year.
~Ogden Nash

Here is a little Joan Walsh Anglund paper doll to get your mind off taxes!

She is all ready for those darling Easter Baskets!
Print this out on both sturdy cardstock (for the doll) and glossy paper (for the outfits). Spend some time with your daughter. Help her cut out the dresses. Show her how to make outfits for the new paperdoll using tracing paper and plain typing paper, magazine clippings and colored pencils.  Decorate a big envelope with her to store the doll and all her outfits and accessories.  Make a simple little cardstock stand so she can stand.

Why not make a little Easter scene with the doll, accessories, some colored eggs in stands placed all amongst paper grass?

Here is another Joan Walsh Anglund paper doll for you to have fun with:
Wouldn't these hats look cute with little silk flowers glued to them?
You can print this out and include it in a Spring card!
Simply mail in a larger envelope, so nothing gets bent.
Or, roll up gently and place in a mailing cylinder.

“Springtime is the land awakening.
The March winds are the morning yawn.”

- Lewis Grizzard


c. early 1900's


“Spring has returned. 
The Earth is like a child that knows poems.” 
~Rainer Maria Rilke

This is a photo of a vintage, handsewn bunny bib.
Let's make our own!

Simple bunny bib:
~ Blow up this photo as large as you want, or just free-hand draw a bib shape on butcher paper.
~ With a pencil and butcher paper, practice drawing on the bunny face and ear details.
~ You can also use tracing paper over the image to get it as close as you wish to the original. I encourage you to personalize it however with your own drawings!
~ Still unsure of your talents? There are tons of iron-on designs out there. I find books regularly on sale at Michael's or other craft stores. Look at your favorite fabric store and you should find iron-on books there too!
~ Transfer design onto bib fabric. A transfer pencil (found at craft/hobby stores)  works great for this.

...choose fabric that is soft, washable and absorbs well. Flannel is a great backing choice.

tip: Why not use a dollar store white towel? Or a colored towel?!?

Okay, now you decide if you want to machine embroider on the details, hand embroider the details, or use fabric paint to do the face.

For Single Layer Bib:
if embroidering:
...don't cut out bib yet. Play with the stitches on your sewing machine for satin stitch binding and other decorative stitches available on your machine. This is a great time to play with some designs that you have never used! When ready to finish, stitch a tight satin stitch all around the outside. Then cut out, being careful to not cut into satin stitches.
..........alternate: use seam binding to finish edges.

if hand stitching:
...don't cut bib out yet. Leave enough fabric around bunny bib to fit inside an embroidery hoop. When finished embroidering the face details, you can remove from hoop. Cut out bib and use a simple binding stitch (sometimes called a buttonhole stitch) to finish all raw edges.

if hand painting face:
...using a hoop or desired painting surface, follow lines with paint. Remember this is a bib, so don't use too much dimensional paint. Baby's face will need wiping, and this is not so pleasant with paint sticking up or a stiff fabric!
...finish with any of the suggestions used above.

tip: Did you know you can purchase a paint add-in that will allow any acrylic paint to be turned into a washable paint? Check out your paint or fabric painting section. It's great stuff! Comes in bottles that look just like a paint bottle.

For double layer bib:
Simply add a layer to all the types of finishing mentioned above. Face details go only onto the front fabric of the bib. When stitching the edges for a final time, be sure your second layer is being caught up in the stitch. If you pin the layers together this will stop them from shifting too much. After stitching all around the edges, check to make sure your layers are sewn together smoothly.

...advanced: right sides together, sew along edge, leaving small openings for ties at neck. Turn inside out. Hand stitch in ties, closing all raw edges. Press.

How to fasten:
1.  I like the seam binding or sturdy ribbon method used for the ties. You can add these while you are finishing up the edges. Make sure they are washable.
I understand there is some concern that these ties could be a hazard to baby.

Hellloooo!!! ...Common sense - don't leave a bib tied around baby's neck if you are not actively feeding him/her!  Baby doesn't need to sleep in a bib. Baby doesn't need to play in a playpen with a bib. Baby doesn't need a bib in the car seat either!

2.  You can use sewn on velcro dots. Be sure however that these are not going to touch and irritate a baby's sensitive skin by rubbing on it.

3.  Make a button hole and sewn on button. Caution: could be a choking hazard if baby likes to remove things and chew things off (button).

I hope you enjoy your bunny bib. These would be great in a baby's first Easter Basket. You can fold one up and pop into a padded envelope to easily mail it. And of course - perfect baby shower gift anytime!

additional fun:
Wouldn't these look cute embroidered onto washcloths? Make a set of 2,3 or 4 and give with the bib, or just by themselves!

“The day the Lord created hope
was probably the same day he created Spring.” 
 ~Bern Williams

Have a bunny-rrific, paperdoll playing, smiley kind of day!

for sale by ellie58, etsy


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Ducky Days with Daffodil Highlights

I wish for you today a Ducky Day, with daffodil highlights, followed by a bunny slipper chaser!

A silly duck paper doll for you!
Thanks OrigamiBears for sharing your fantastic collection!
“It was one of those March days
When the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold:
When it is summer in the light,
And winter in the shade.”

-            Charles Dickens

Recycled Bottlecap, with repurposed junk mail, by inkspired

“No matter how long the winter, spring is sure to follow.”

mywallstickers, etsy

Don't you just love that yellow chair! The combination of daffodil yellow and bright blue is just terrific. What project can you make with these colors?

How about a recycled, washed bottle with 3 daffodils,
and tied with a bright blue ribbon?

Here's a little vintage for you:

"The year's at the spring
And day's at the morn;
Morning's at seven;
The hillside's dew-pearled;
The lark's on the wing;
The snail's on the thorn;
God's in His heaven -
All's right with the world!"
~Robert Browning

Check out my treasury on etsy called
"Ducky Daze"

I had so much fun browsing other shops
to find handmade, vintage and more ducks on etsy.
Here is one of them:

This lil' ducky is for sale ($6) from KathyCeramicRose, etsy.

Peddler's Pack rubber stamp card sample,
colored with pencils

“Yesterday the twig was brown and bare;
To-day the glint of green is there;
Tomorrow will be leaflets spare;
I know no thing so wondrous fair,
No miracle so strangely rare.
I wonder what will next be there!”

~L.H. Bailey

I had a super fun time with my sis-in-law, Pam, over the weekend. We experimented with Mod Podge (it comes now in glitter Mod Podge!) and glass plates, some glass bowls and clay pots, and napkins.
Yep, fancy printed paper napkins, like you have at a birthday party!
I tried to take pictures through all the phases, so I will posting that shortly as my first tutorial!
Excited, I am.

Do have a giggle today - it's so good for you!
Now to finish off with a pair of bunny slippers:
for sale by MakingsByMary, etsy



Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Bunnies Hop Hop Hop

Here's a Bunny-rrific kind of day!
Peter Rabbit Barbie celebrating Peter's 100th birthday.

illustration by Beatrix Potter

"Winston Churchill is always expecting rabbits to come out of an empty hat."
- Evelyn Waugh, writer

Here is a wonderful little paper doll bunny I found at OrigamiBears:

see more at OrigamiBears. See side bar.

Bunny slippers remind me of who I am.
You can’t get a swelled head if you wear bunny slippers.
You can’t lose your sense of perspective and start acting like a star or a rich lady
if you keep on wearing bunny slippers.
Besides, bunny slippers give me confidence because they’re so jaunty.
They make a statement; they say
‘Nothing the world does to me can ever get me so far down that I can’t be silly and frivolous.’
If I died and found myself in Hell, I could endure the place
If I had bunny slippers.”

Dean Koontz, horror writer

for sale by cul8rg8er on etsy

Here is another fabulous design from Sandra Lounsbury Foose. It is designed to be made from felt, with a little embroidery on the front.

This joke is so old, I have no idea who originated it!

What do you call ten rabbits marching backwards?

vintage Nestle Quik mug for sale by Vintage4U, etsy

A receding hareline!
(har har har!)


Here is a sweet Spring coloring page for you, thanks to Dover:

Dover Publications

Here are 2 goofy bunnies, made from recycled bottlecaps and rubber stamps:
(I'm sorry, but I have misplaced the rubberstamp company that designed these).

Well, time to wrap up.
I think we should all go out and purchase some bunny slippers now,
especially for our loved ones!

Monday, March 28, 2011

Recycled Fabric Wreath, Daffodils, Spring Quotes and fav movies

What a beautiful morning!

We're having light rain that might turn into snow a bit later. No mention from the weather folk of accumulation. Yesterday I had 3 daffodils checking to see if it was time to bud out or not. In the past few years I think I have had daffodils poking out above a layer of snow every spring!

"Come and let us seek together
Springtime lore of daffodils,
Giving to the golden weather
Greeting on the sun-warm hills."

-   Lucy Maud Montgomery, Spring Song
Dover publications has a pretty coloring book of the letters of the alphabet.
Here is one that's perfect for today!

 "Listen, can you hear it? 
Spring's sweet cantata. 
The strains of grass pushing through the snow. 
The song of buds swelling on the vine. 
 The tender timpani of a baby robin's heart. 

-   Diane Frolov and Andrew Schneider, Northern Exposure

This adorable little sprite is for sale from http://www.stitchandpurl.etsy/

Here is a torn fabric strip wreath from HollandFabricHouse, etsy:

I have seen many of this type of wreath, so I don't think I'm stealing any one's original idea.

things you will need:  >wire hanger
  >pliers to bend ends of hanger
 > a pile of leftover scrap fabric, chosen for theme and/or color
  >1 length of ribbon for center bow
  >optional - loop of ribbon for hanger

How to's:
Tear your fabric into 1" x 6" strips. Don't worry if some are 5" long - that is good.
I like the way the torn fabric looks, but you can certainly cut them with scissors or rotary cutter. You can also cut them with pinking shears for another look. All work great!
For a more elegant than shabby chic look, you can cut each strip into a ribbon point on the end, or make sure it has a clean straight across cut at the end.
Now go tear some more. This project needs plenty of fabric to make it look "fluffy"!

Take your wire hanger, and unbend the 'hook' top. Use your pliers, no need to kill your hands.
Now, open up the hanger to as straight as possible. Form a large loop or circle with it. Twist ends together to form a large wire circle. Too big? Use some wire cutters to cut the wire down to size desired, and twist the ends together. Clip off any sharp wire ends.

Wrap twisted ends with bow ribbon, to hide the wires and to protect your wall or you from any sharp leftover ends. Knot towards the back. Make a large loop from 6" cut of ribbon. Tie in place, or hot glue or Tacky glue the ends so it makes a nice hanging loop, around the twisted wire/ribbon wrapped section.

Now take that pile of fabric strips, get a cup of hot tea, and pop in your favorite movie.

Some of my favorites are:
Goldie Hawn's Protocol, Bird on a Wire, Seems Like Old Times or Overboard
Steve Martin's Bowfinger (Eddie Murphy+), or Roxanne (Daryl Hannah, Shelley Duval+)
The Princess Bride (Carey Elwey, Robin Wright)
The Crew  (Richard Dryfuss, Burt Reynolds +)-does have bad language - :0(
Crocodile Dundee (Paul Hogan)
Once Upon a Crime (John Candy, James Belushi, Cybill Shepherd, George Hamilton+)
Twins and Kindergarten Cop with Arnold Schwarzeneggerany John Wayne movie!

Tie a fabric strip around the wire wreath. You don't have to knot, just pull securely without ripping the fabric. Slide to one end, where your wrapped ribbon is.
Repeat. Repeat. Repeat!
Tie as many strips on as you possibly can.  Fluff out wreath.
  >optional - to fill in any holes or boring spots, take a 6" length of coordinating colored 1/8" or 1/4" ribbon. Tie  in between the fabric strips, randomly around the entire wreath. You may have to knot these, or drop a dot of glue on the knot as ribbon can be slipperey and want to come undone.

Tie a biggish bow in contrasting, complimentary colored ribbon. This is the same ribbon we used to make the loop hanger. Decide if you like your bow at the top, bottom, or even off to one side.
Take a super thin wire (or twistie tie) and attach bow to wreath. You can hot glue parts to make the bow stay where you want it.

Hang it up!
Here are directions to make one in a heart shape, and gearing it to children learning how to tie:

This next one, with a tutorial as well, is from:
"The day the Lord created hope
was probably the same day
He created Spring."
---Bern Williams

c. 1910
That's all for today!
fine art print by YesandAmen, etsy

I trust you have had fun searching through your fabric scraps.
I always do!


Saturday, March 26, 2011

Spring vintage clip, mazes and a Sandra L. Foose bunny project

What a beautiful day!
"We live in a wonderful world that is full of beauty, charm and adventure. There is no end to the adventures that we can have if only we seek them with our eyes open."
~ Jawaharlal Nehru
This is an illustration from "The Turned-Into's"
vintage book, 1930's

Here is the little poem that goes with it:

Let's have some rainy day activities, and do some exploring!

Sandra Lounsbury Foose is my all time most favorite designer and craft book author. I have every one of her books, and use them frequently. Although a book may be geared for a fabric toy, for example, her designs are so well done that I have adapted many to fit my craft of the moment. Perhaps into a paper card. Or I use the pattern and make a bulletin board decoration instead.
She even has a few books dedicated just for paper - Super Simple Paper is one of them.  Another is Super Simple Greeting Cards.
Here are some Amazon listings that can get you started on your road to a fantastic new scrap-saving adventure:

Here are a couple of titles that are Scrap Savers:

Here is a darling bunny basket to make. Very simple, very cute!

I have made this little basket, and changed the ears to fit what I wanted. Using this pattern, I have made them into little kittens, and little bears. I also have made little children ones, each with their own hair style.
Mrs. Foose has another design that are snowmen, with fun black top hats.

What to do with them?
  - jelly bean holders
  - perfect for one special Easter Egg
  - fill with winter mints (snowman)
  - A special place to keep your erasers
  - a barrette holder for little girls

You think of more, and let me know!

"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today.
It is already tomorrow in Australia."
~ Charles M. Schulz, creator of 'Peanuts'

"I think that no matter how old or infirm I may become,
 I will always plant a large garden in the spring.
Who can resist the feelings of hope and joy
that one gets from participating in nature's rebirth?"
-   Edward Giobbi
one of my daisy necklaces for sale on etsy


Well, I'm off to meet a friend for brunch, and then we're going to do some errands.
One of my errands is to go pick up a bottle of Modge Podge. Yesterday with my sister I picked up some darling napkins and clear glass items to decoupage on.
I am hopeful that I will be able to take pictures and present my first tutorial with photos soon!
It truly is a beautiful project!

I have to time it, as I hope to teach this at our Village Baptist Church's Women's Retreat, coming up April 30. I need to know if we can do it in the time allowed.
If you're in the area of 128th and Colorado Blvd, Denver, you are welcome to join me April 30!