Category: General

My new thread holder/tote

This makes a great tote for going to quilting classes or retreats. It has 80 spools of thread at 500yd each.  I can sew one up for you for only $90, thread included. Lots of fabric to choose from.

 

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Fast easy Easter Project

Egg Heads, Recycling Project

Easter is here and while most parents were coloring eggs we are going to be making egg heads.  I’m always looking for new fun things for the kids to do.  This was a fun and easy craft project that involved all 5 of my kids.  No age limit on this one folks.  I even had our 4-H group do it for their recycling project.

Things you’ll need: eggs, egg carton, dirt, seeds, and a permanent marker.

Take a knife and tap the top of the egg open and pour out the egg yolk. Do this at breakfast so the egg can be eaten. Let the kids draw a face on the egg with the marker. Cut the egg carton up so that you have 12 little cup holders for your eggs. You can ether use a bag of dirt or you can buy dirt disks at your local Farm and Home, Lowe’s or Menard’s. The kids love to watch the dirt disks expand. They are made of recycled paper and compost so it fits in to the whole recycling theme. Put the egg in its holder, add dirt and water, and sprinkle a few seeds on top. In a few days your egg head will start to grow some hair. It’s basically a home made Chia Pet.

After about two weeks you’ll need to transplant your egg head into a pot or a garden. Simply tap and crack the bottom of your egg. Make a hole big enough for the whole egg to fit in. Egg shells are great for your garden. They not only provide nutrients for the plants but also aerate the dirt.

Don’t stop there – egg cartons make great trays for starter plants for your garden. If you use the cardboard/paper cartons you can plant the whole cup into your garden.

How to embroider on really thick fuzzy Christmas Stockings

This is a little easier than you think it would be. The problem is the fabric is so thick that the embroidery foot on the machine doesn’t jump high enough to move to the next spot without snagging. What you need to do is make the fuzzy part temporarily thinner.

Start by putting a tear-away sticky-back stabilizer on the back of the part to be embroidered. On the front use a thick/heavy wash away stabilizer. Using a regular sewing machine run a basting stitch (1/4″ stitch length) up and down the area that will be embroidered. This will tie the two stabilizers together, sandwiching the whole thing into something that will be thin enough to work in the embroidery machine.

Next, hoop up the stocking, pick a design, and start the machine to stitch it out. After the machine finishes all you need to do is remove the base stitches and pull the tear-away stabilizer off. The fabric that was sandwiched together will fluff back up, leaving a very nice design.

Stocking with basting stitches and stabilizer still in place. The machine embroidery has already been finished.

The stabilizer and basting stitches are gone. As you can see, the fuzzy part of the stocking is all fluffed up again.

No Mess Toilet Paper Pumpkins

Toilet Paper Pumpkins

This is a quick and easy craft for even very small kids. All you need is orange fabric, bating, a stick and a roll of toilet paper.

Cut the bating and fabric to about 20 by 20 inch square. Put your paper roll in the center.

Now just start tucking in the fabric in to the top hole.

Finish it off with a 3 inch stick from your yard.

NO GLUE, NO GLITTER, NO MESS, AND IT’S DONE.

 

My new 3-tiered water fountain

About 2 weeks ago my 10yr old son found a 3 tiered water fountain.  It was on the side of the road with a “free” sign. Wow it looked awful, almost all of the paint was gone and so was the pump. So Me, Dad and all 5 kids headed to The Home Depot. We don’t paint much but knew it was going to have to be water proof. We chose basement sealer and the guy at the paint counter also tinted it a light blue. From there we went to find a small pump. Yup they have bunch of them too, They start at $10 and go as high as $100. Time to check out. $30 and 2 hours later this fountain looks awesome.

 


 

 

 

 

 

New store available!

Over time, Ebay has continually increased their commission fees. Also, whereas we used to sell via auctions with a specific time limit, we’ve gradually moved to Buy it Now postings.

We’re happy to announce that you can now purchase directly from our Store here at Alaine’s Crafts! No more sifting through Ebay listings to try and find what you need. Just go to our Store, add items to your shopping cart, and finish by paying through Paypal. If you need to make other payment arrangements, email us at alaine@alainescrafts.com.

Fast and easy way to hem your pants

I ‘m 5 feet tall so finding pants that are short enough is really hard. For starters they’re not labeled right. If only the tag said what they meant. But there is no short and lumpy section of the store! So its time to learn how to fix this yourself. Put the pants on and put a pin in where you want the hem to be. Now you need to decide how wide you want your hem and double it. Today we’ll be doing a 1/2″ hem, so you need an extra inch of fabric past the pin. Now cut the extra fabric off. One of the most important tools I have in my sewing room is wonder tape, it can be found at JoAnn’s. This is a wash-away double-sided sticky tape and needs to be placed along the bottom edge of the topside of the cuff.

Now you need to turn your hem under twice and stick the tape down so you have a 1/2″ seam.

Now you’ll need thread to match not the fabric but the top stitching of the pants. One of the biggest problems people have now is sewing over top of the bulky seam without breaking a needle. Well go get your hammer – that’s right get your hammer – and smack the two side seems a few times.

This will flatten the seam and also make it a lot easier for the needle to stitch right over the top of it.

You want to stitch as close to the top side of this seam as possible and you’re done. With no broken needles and no pinning. Plus, I always feel better after I’ve used my hammer on something.

Boy Scout Patches

Made some patches for Boy Scout Troop 25. They pick up all the used Christmas trees and place them in ponds for the fish. Let me know if you need a special patch made up for your troop, group or team.

Candy Scarecrows

Every year for Halloween I make candy scarecrows for all of my kids to hand out at school.

They turn out super cute and are very easy to make.

Things you’ll need are:

2 Tootsie Rolls, 2 Smarties, 1 mini KitKat, 1″ Wooden Ball, 2″ Straw Hat, 5″by 5″ piece of fabric, and 1 mini pumpkin.

You need to use ether glue dot “3D Zots” by therm-o-web or a hot glue gun will also work. Start with the KitKat and glue the Smarties vertically to the bottom of the KitKat. Glue the Tootsie Rolls horizontally to the top of the KitKat. Next take the fabric and fold 2 of the corners in as shown below.

Place his body on the bottom middle and fold over the top for the jacket. You will need to place a little glue in the arm pits to hold the jacket on. Now for his head, place some glue on the wooden ball and add the hat. Glue this to the top of the jacket and make his face with a marker. As a finishing touch I’ve glued a pumpkin to his hands. Oh yeah – Super Cute!

I picked up all of the candy at our local HyVee, and the rest I got at Hobby Lobby.

Floating pond baskets for plants

About a month ago I bought a plant for my pond. What I didn’t know was that it was a shallow water plant that needed to be on a shelf with 6in depth. The pond that I have now has strait sides. So off to Hobby Lobby I went. I just need a way to keep it from sinking to the bottom of the pond. After about an hour I had a great little basket that let the plant float around the pond with out letting the dirt wash away. And of course I posted these in my  E-bay Store. Mine sell for less and I think mine look more natural than the black one that are being sold.