Wednesday, December 28, 2011

3 Girls = 3 Headband Holders

As many of you know I have been blessed with 3 sweet daughters. They all have their own personalities but one thing that is consistent among them all is their long hair and love of headbands. To go with this is a constant need for somewhere to put the headbands. I have considered what to make to store the headbands on for some time now. I have googled it, wandered through stores looking for things to re-purpose and even questioned the good people at Charming Charlie's to see if their displays were available for sale ... honestly this has been on my list for a while. Finally, I decided to combine a few different ideas of things that I have seen in the past and make holders for each of the girls for Christmas.  


Wood clock base ... I bought mine from Michaels. They are about 6 1/2 inches in diameter and were less than $5 a piece. They had a hole in the middle although my husband did have to drill a counter sink hole also.

Knob ... This will be for the top. If you have some at home from a previous project use it. It needs to be pretty wide though. Close to the width of the paper towel roll is great. You will need to take it with you to the hardware store to purchase the right width threaded rod. More on that below.  

Threaded metal rod, hollow aluminum rod, nut and washer ... We got ours from the local hardware store. I say "we" because my husband was a big help with this part. I tend to avoid any work that requires tools or supplies that are normally housed in the garage. The aluminum rod was big enough to fit the threaded rod inside. I'm not sure that this is completely necessary but this was the image that my husband had in his mind and since I needed his help I went with it. The threaded rod was the right fit for the knob and the nut and washer fit as well.

A full roll of paper towels ... I use cheap paper towels for cleaning so I took mine from the cleaning supplies. 

Fabric ... mine was about 19" x 17". Just make sure you have enough to go around the paper towel roll and tuck in at the top and bottom.

Batting ... I used some from a pack of crib batting that I have been using for misc. crafts for a while. You will need a piece that is approximately 18" x 11".

Hot glue gun for badly burning your index finger 3 days before Christmas, I mean for securing the fabric and batting.  No sewing necessary.

Spray paint ... if you have a plastic knob be sure to get paint that will adhere to plastic.

Tools ... hack saw or cut off wheel to cut the rods down to size and a drill with a counter sink bit.

First, I spray painted the clock bases and the knobs. It was a very windy day but I was running out of chances to get it done while the kids were at school so I had to deal with it. Yes, those are cans of food from my pantry holding the newspaper down and yes I took this picture with my phone because my daughter decided it would be a good day to fulfill her duties as historian of the Latin Club and actually take pictures so my camera was with her at school.

Next, I covered the paper towel rolls. Each were covered with batting first and then fabric. I ironed a crease in the edge of the fabric and used hot glue to hold it down. Be sure you have enough fabric on each side to cover the top and bottom of the roll and to tuck into the cardboard roll before you hot glue the edge down. No gluing necessary for the batting, it tends to grab onto itself anyway.  

Next I tucked in the edges. I folded the extra back, applied a little hot glue and then started folding and tucking. This was where I burned my finger. I added a little extra glue, folded and tucked only I completely missed the fabric and stuck my finger straight in the glue. If you're going to suggest that I buy a multi-temp gun let me save you the trouble. I have a multi-temp gun but I'm impatient and had it set on high.

After this my paper towel rolls were covered and ready to be assembled but my husband hadn't started on his part yet. This was not his fault though. It was me telling him not to do anything until I could take pictures.  :)

First he drilled a counter sink hole in each base. This was so the nut and washer wouldn't stick out and the base could sit flat.  

Next he cut down the threaded rod and the hollow aluminum rod. Measure for yourself please but ours turned out to be 11 1/2" for the threaded rod and 10 1/2" for the hollow aluminum rod. These measurements could be different for you depending on the thickness of your base and fabric. He then put the threaded rod through and attached the washer and nut making sure that the base sat flat once they were on.  

Next was final assembly. With the covered paper towel roll on we screwed the knobs down tight into the top of the paper towels so that the roll wouldn't shift around and I test fitted a few headbands.  

And that's it. They were ready to go under the tree and ready to take their respective places on each girl's dresser and be filled with even more headbands.  

And now a little celebration is in order. Today I reached 1,000 "likes" on my facebook page for my etsy shop, Applique Time. I am super excited to have reached this milestone and the timing was perfect since the goal I set was to reach 1,000 before the end of the year. Because of this and to say "thank you" to all of my wonderful customers and followers I have included this applique design as a free download here.  

I really do appreciate each of you and hope you enjoy the free design. If you're the kind that follows blogs please consider following me. I promise I won't post so often that you can't keep up.  :)

I wish everyone a prosperous and peaceful 2012!


Thursday, December 1, 2011

A "Newer" Wreath

Is it December already?  Did I really post only once in November?  Oops!  That wasn't what I had in mind. Nevertheless, December is upon us now and if you haven't already started decorating for Christmas well ... let's just say I'm not going to judge you.  Last year just decorating the tree seemed like a chore and we didn't get it finished until the 11th of December.  This year is different and somehow (maybe it's the fact that all of the kids are in school now) we seem to be on top of things.  So much so that when my middle daughter brought me the wreath to "fluff" yet again I decided I was going to do something new with it.  You see, this wreath, and all of its trimmings, has been in the family for 12 years now.  Each year my husband unpacks it from the buckets of decorations and lovingly calls to me to give it a little TLC before hanging it on the door.  Some years I even take everything off and completely "redo" it.  Well, not this year!  I took a few minutes (read hours) of my evening Saturday and perused Pinterest for new wreath ideas and decided to add our surname initial to it.  The problem was I didn't have a 12 inch "W" lying around so off to the craft store I went.  Here are the details of how this came together and a before picture ...

a wreath (like I said, this one has been around a while)
sheet of Styrofoam (I purchased mine at Joann's.  It was about an inch thick and probably 11x14)
30 gauge wire (or whatever you have around the house as long as it isn't too thick)
glitter (I bought an 8oz bottle and almost used 1/4 of it)
spray paint the same color as the glitter
clear drying school glue (I used almost 2 4oz bottles)
a paint brush (the wider the better)
a bowl to pour the glue into
ribbon or something to hang the wreath

I knew what I wanted my letter "W" to look like.  Being an applique person I am very familiar with lots of fonts especially the curlz font.  I really wanted something with a little whimsy but clear enough to be distinguishable from the road.  Using the marker I drew my "W" on my Styrofoam.  (Did you know Styrofoam is a brand?  Kinda like Q-tip.)  I wasn't worried about getting it perfect because it would be covered anyway.  If you're having trouble picturing your letter just head to your computer and look at a few fonts online.

Next I went outside and cut the letter out using a knife.  I found it easiest to score it first and then go back and cut through.  

I cut 4 long pieces of wire.  I wanted them long enough to wedge into the Styrofoam and have plenty of length to tie the finished letter to the wreath.  I just kinda cut the wire into the foam on each end.  Kinda like it was cutting into it but not through it.  Just wedged in there.  I guess I should have tried a little harder to get a pic of this because describing it isn't coming so easy.

After that I went outside to spray paint my "W" red.  I wanted to do this so in the event that I wasn't generous with my glitter the white wouldn't show through.  The wire did come in handy tying the letter to the volleyball net tie down.  If you look really close and are younger than 40 you might be able to see the wire "wedged" in there.  

This picture brought to you by the letter W.

After the paint dried next came the glitter.  I poured the glue into a small bowl to make it easier to use the paint brush.  I brushed some glue on then generously applied the glitter and just worked my way around a little glue and a lot of glitter at a time.  This took a while because I had to wait for sections to dry so I could turn it around to get to other spots like the sides and top.  I really had to resist the urge to move on while the glue was drying.  

I don't know if it was because I was liberal with the glitter or because of the spray paint but 1 coat of glitter was plenty.  The next morning I did apply a second layer of glue over the glitter.  I wanted the top coat to be glue not glitter and since I was using school glue that dried clear this was no problem.  (You may be able to see the wire here also as well as a complimentary viewing of the Arts section of the Washington Post.)  

After waiting most of the day for the glue to dry I was able to use the attached wire and secure my 12 inch "W" to my wreath that evening and hang it up on the front door.  I am very pleased with the appearance both up close and far away.  I have to admit, there was a time early on in the glittering that I was worried that it might look a little thrown together but once I got a nice layer of glitter on it and put it together I'm very happy with the outcome.    

How about you?  Do you have a great wreath makeover to share?