Friday, October 9, 2015

Handmade Christmas Softies - Christmas Shouldn't Cost the Earth

Christmas Softies - what a great idea!  There are so many great ideas, patterns and tutorials out there for making your own Christmas cuddly toys.

In past years I've made a few furry and other Christmas creatures for my girls. Here are some pictures of what we have.

A Santa Jem - this is a covered plastic bucket - so is great for putting presents in!

Two small Santa's Elf Jems - these are covered sections of drainpipe - and over the years I've made A LOT of these in various colours to sell and for kids presents. 

They are cuddly and can be filled with all sorts of things (tutorial here)

I also made a small Santa one year. (He's about 30 cm  (1') tall)
And together with a shoe box full of wrapped boxes and a cuddly reindeer we bought - he gets played with a lot each Christmas.

Finally this year I've added a couple of super simple no-sew sock snowmen from an old pair of the girls school socks. stuffed with fabric scraps.

Here are some more Softies that have been linked up to my Christmas parties over the years.

There are plenty more ideas for making Christmas Softies and lots of other Christmas Crafts on our group 

Please do come and take a look - and feel free to request to join as a contributor to this board. The more the merrier!

To see what other topics I've covered in my Christmas Shouldn't Cost the Earth series - go here. And do keep coming back as I'm adding more ideas, projects and tutorials every week!

I'll be linking this post to many of the fabulous linky parties whose pretty buttons can be found on the bottom of this page and direst links on my linky party page.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Another Reusable Upcycled Denim Christmas Card

Last week I made some upcycled denim Christmas Cards that are designed to be reused again and again making them more eco and budget friendly than the usual single-use Christmas cards we send each year!

I'm really pleased with how they turned out - so I've decided to keep on making them.
This week I made a snow globe card.

The card is covered with some grey denim from an old pair of jeans. The snowman is fabric scrap appliqué and the snow globe is some clear vinyl I cut from bed sheet packaging!  The snow in the globe is simply some sequins - mostly white and silver, but one stray red one got in there too!! You just shake the card to make it snow over the snowman!

The card has the design on the front, a clear vinyl pocket on the inside to insert your greeting in (and replace with another greeting to resend) and a printed explanation on the back as to the card being resuable and resendable!

What do you think? Would you send reusable cards like this?
They are easy to make - go here for the tutorial.

If you didn't see them, these are the two other cards I made last week.

To see what other eco and budget friendly things that I've made for Christmas so far - see my Christmas Shouldn't Cost the Earth page. There are ideas for Christmas Crafts, stocking fillers and more being added every week.

I shall be linking this post to many of the fabulous linky parties whose pretty buttons can be found on the bottom of this page and direct links on my linky party page.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Tea Bag Wallet Tutorial

I've been wanting to make myself one of these for a while - just because I think they're cute and a neat idea, and I think they'd make a great stocking filler gift!

It wasn't until I'd finished making both of these that I realised I'd made them so the closure is on the left side instead of the right. 

When I showed them to my younger daughter she said, "They're Japanese!!" (Japanese books open from the left!)

So here's how to make your own, 'Japanese' Tea Bag Wallet.

You will need two different fabrics, some elastic (I used a hair tie) and a button. I also used a left over scrap of appliqué fabric for the "T"
Cut 2 rectangles of your main fabric  26 x 22 cm (10.25 x 8.75")
2 rectangles of  inner fabric 26 x 7 cm (10.25 x 2.75")

First take your smaller rectangles - these will be your pockets.
On one of the longer edges for each piece, double turn the edge and stitch to completely hide the raw edges.

Now place these pieces face up on the top and bottom edges of one of your main fabric pieces. The double hems you just stitched should be facing the middle. Pin, then stitch around the 3 outer edges on each

Now to stitch the pockets.
Measure 3 pockets each 8 cm (3.25") wide. Mark with pins then stitch lines to form the pockets.

Take your elastic and fold in half. Place it on the top left side at the edge of the pocket. The folded elastic loop should be around 3.5 cm (1.5") long. Stitch securely in place.

Now take your other outer fabric piece. Fold it in half lengthways and place the pocketed piece below it like this. Now you can see where your middle panel will be on your outer fabric. This is where you want to stitch your button and if you want, your appliqué.

Now it's time to put your wallet together. Lay your two main pieces face up next to each other.

Place one piece face down on top of the other.

Pin then stitch around all four edges, leaving a gap in one side to turn the wallet right sides out.

After stitching. trim the corners before turning right sides out.

Iron the edges flat and the opening neatly closed.

Then top stitch all the way around all four edges.

To close your wallet, fold the bottom half up.

Then fold the right side in.

Then the left side over.

 Finally, loop the elastic over the button to secure.

There you have your very own Tea Bag Wallet!

Fill with six of your favourite Tea Bags!

I made another wallet with travel fabric and appliquéd a tea cup on the outside.

I plan on taking this one on holiday with us, with my favourite Earl Grey Tea Bags inside!

What kind of Tea Bags would you fill yours with?

If you liked this tutorial, I have over 100 Free Sewing tutorials for all levels of sewing ability and for all kinds of different things.

Take a look at My Free Tutorials Page.

I'll be linking this post to many of the fabulous linky parties whose pretty buttons can be found on the bottom of this page and direst links on my linky party page.