Sunday, May 17, 2015

Cardboard and Felt Garden - A Spring Upcycling Project

It was raining all morning today so I decided to bring us a sunny garden indoors with the help of a little felt, cardboard and this awesome backdrop made by my talented friend, Brynn.

(I made those insects last week and will post about them later this summer).

For the garden, I started by making carrots, beets and flowers out of felt.  I folded an orange piece of felt like this so I could cut duplicates out for my 2 carrots.



Then I folded a green piece of felt like so and drew the leaves on it.


I cut them out and was good to go.


I did the same thing for my 2 beets and 4 flowers.
I then cut out strips of cardboard that were long enough to go through the vegetables and greens, and the stems and flowers.





Next, it was time to sew.
I used a machine but you could hand sew these as well with a blanket stitch.
I started by sewing my bottom pairs together.  So the orange part of the carrots, the red part of the beets, and the stems for the flowers.
I left the top of each open.  (It is the bottom in this picture).  This way I could stuff it with scraps of felt and my strip of cardboard.



I then sewed my pairs of greens and flowers together leaving their bottom open (seen on the left here).


Then it was just a matter of sliding the two pieces together...



...and sewing shut, being careful not to sew over cardboard, which I assume would break the needle.



2 of the flowers just required the extra step of first sewing the circle onto the petals.


I then sewed them together with an opening on the bottom (seen on the left in this picture), and followed the same procedure to attach the stems.  I then sewed my pairs of leaves together and finally, I sewed the leaves onto the stems by hand because I didn't think my sewing machine could go through so many layers of felt.




Next it was time for the soil.  I got an old cardboard box and folded closed the side that we had opened when it came in the mail.  
I flipped the box over to the side that was taped shut and began to cut holes with scissors.  Unfortunately, my scissors were dull so I just had to keep poking at the box to make jagged slots for the vegetables and flowers.

I put all the vegetables and flowers in their slots and put the 3 insects I made last week on them.  (I will post a tutorial on those later this summer).








Check back every Monday for new posts, including more info on green products and DIY toys.
And if you like what you see here, check out my Amazon Author page for my picture books, (including 12 Indian language books for kids, The Booger Fairy and Nishi Goes to India), and The Chosen One, my YA novel.   If you have a minute I'd love some more reviews.
 You can also click here to see my blog posts on The Huffington Post. 
Follow me on Twitter @soups25

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Fun With Felt

The Berenstain Bears

Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood

Peg + Cat

Maisy and friends

Are You My Mother

Pigeon


Check back every Monday for new posts, including more info on green products and DIY toys.
And if you like what you see here, check out my Amazon Author page for my picture books, (including 12 Indian language books for kids, The Booger Fairy and Nishi Goes to India), and The Chosen One, my YA novel.  You can also click here to see my blog posts on The Huffington Post. 
Follow me on Twitter @soups25

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Ocean Birthday Party Favors - Whales and No-Sew Playmats



For my son's 3rd birthday party, which was an ocean themed party, I made whales out of felt and a felt play mat.




To make the whales, I simply cut out the shape of the whale in duplicate, and cut out a fin and a heart.

I then machine sewed the fin to one of the pieces of the whale's body and hand-sewed the heart on.



Next, I sewed the two body pieces together in the sewing machine, stuffing it with felt scraps before I closed it completely.

Finally, I used a Sharpie Stained fabric marker to draw an eye and mouth on each whale and the whale was done!



I also made a shark and starfish to use as decor.  You can see them on the right here:

To make the playmats, I bought felt by the yard.  I put a whale on it to figure out how big the mat should be in order for the kids to have room to play with the whale on it.

Once I decided on the size, I cut out as many mats as I needed for the favors.  (I had made some whales for my kids out of an old pair of jeans too.  You can see one in the picture below on the left.


Next, I took the fabric pens and drew a sea turtle, octopus, sea horse, jellyfish, angler fish, starfish and a merman and mermaid.


If you remember my post on my son wearing pink, you know I find the notion of pink only being for girls to be ridiculous so I made sure to give the merman pink hair and the mermaid blue hair.


I then cut the flap off an envelope that had come in the mail and wrote each child's name on it.  I gave one playmat per family and a whale per child.




So when all the playmats were done and the ink dry, I simply wrapped the whales in the playmat and tied it close with ribbon.



And the favors were all set for the party!



Check back every Monday for new posts, including more info on green products and DIY toys.
And if you like what you see here, check out my Amazon Author page for my picture books, (including 12 Indian language books for kids, The Booger Fairy and Nishi Goes to India), and The Chosen One, my YA novel.  You can also click here to see my blog posts on The Huffington Post. 
Follow me on Twitter @soups25