Tutorial: Button Bracelet

Craft Tutorial: How to make a simple button braceletI love buttons. They come in so many colors, shapes and sizes. Of course, like every good sewing enthusiast, I have a jar filled with a collection of my button treasures. Every time I see a button bracelet on Pinterest or Etsy I think, "I should make something like that." But alas, my button jar has sat on a shelf, untouched, until now.

I'll warn you right now, this project is addictive! Once you spill those brightly colored buttons across the table, you will see so many irresistible color combinations that you may not be able to stop yourself. The good news is that these bracelets make quick and inexpensive gifts, and the kids may even want to join you in your button sorting and stringing fun!

Materials


  • buttons, buttons, buttons
  • cotton braiding cord or 20 lb hemp cord
  • scissors
  • measuring tape

Directions

Go ahead. Dump out all those beautiful buttons!

You'll be using 4-hole buttons for the length of the bracelet and a large 2-hole button for the closure.
Measure around your wrist.

Choose your buttons and lay them in a line that is the length of your wrist plus an inch.

Cut a length of cord that's about 5 times longer that your wrist.
Fold the cord in half.

Tie a knot in the folded end to form a loop that your large 2-hole closure button can pass through.

Set the closure button aside.
Add your first button by stringing the two lengths of cord up through the bottom of a 4-hole button.

Slide the button down to the loop and knot.
Next, secure the button by making an "X" with the cord as you string it down through the remaining two holes.
Add the next button by stringing the cord up through the bottom being careful not to twist the cord ends.

Slide the button down the cord until it touches the first button. They should be able to lay flat, side by side.
Secure the second button by making an "X" with the cord as you string it down through the remaining two holes.
Continue adding buttons until your bracelet is the desired length.
Finally, add the large closure button by stringing the cord up through the bottom of the button.
Again, slide the button down until it touches the previous button and they can lay flat, side by side.

Finish off by tying a knot and trimming the cord.

You can use similarly sized and colored buttons.

Craft Tutorial: How to make a simple button bracelet

Or mix it up by using complimentary colors and different sized buttons. Before long you'll have a new bracelet to coordinate with every item in your wardrobe!

Craft Tutorial: How to make a simple button bracelet




Recipe: Layered Coconut Cupcakes

Yummy Spring Recipe: How to make layered coconut cupcakesFor years, it has been a tradition to make Four Layer Coconut Cake for my husband's birthday. This year, since our nest is empty and it's just the two of us, I tried a new twist on the recipe and made filled cupcakes, instead.

My hope is that some of the cupcakes will make their way to the office or neighbor's house because it would probably take us a year to eat an entire cake.

Ingredients


  • white cake mix
  • 2 cups flake coconut, unsweetened
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1 1/3 c sour cream
  • 2/3 c Cool Whip


Directions

Bake 24 cupcakes according to the cake mix instructions. Remove the cupcakes from the pan and let them cool completely.

For the filling, combine coconut, sugar, and sour cream.

Cut each cupcake in half. Spread a spoonful of filling in the center.
Replace the top of the cup cake.

To make the frosting, add a generous 2/3 c of Cool Whip to the remaining filling and stir. Frost the top of each cupcake.

Refrigerate for at least 6 hours (although I prefer to refrigerate them overnight). Enjoy!




Crafty Saturday Show and Sell #68

Shop for one of a kind items from the best Etsy, Storenvy, Zazzle, ArtFire, Zibbet and other indie sellers.Last Saturday I was working on a watercolor painting and my husband, who knows that most of my projects become tutorials on my blog or are sold as custom orders in one of my shops, asked me an interesting question.

"What are you going to do with it?"

He seemed kind of surprised when I said that I didn't know. I spend a lot of my time creating with a specific goal in mind, so sometimes it's nice to make something just for fun so I don't get burned out. Do you feel the same way?

And speaking of fun, these two treasures from last week's link-up brought a smile to my face.

Aqua Fish Bracelet by Bungalow42
Fairy Basket by JJLadells
I hope you have a fun filled weekend!


For more great items, don't miss my Crafty Saturday Show and Sell board on Pinterest.



Tutorial: Disney Map Keepsake Box

Craft Tutorial: How to make a keepsake box with Disneyland maps or other travel maps, brochures and repurposed paperDisneyland has held a special place in my heart ever since my daughter and I made it our annual tradition to go there, just the two of us. We spend two and a half days, taking in as many attractions as we can. Our personal record is 38 attractions in one wonderfully exhausting day.

We love them all! Big Thunder Mountain, The Matterhorn Bobsleds, Pirates of the Caribbean, The Storybook Land Canal Boats. When I sit down to look at the park map it brings back every happy memory, like the first time we did the Sleeping Beauty Castle Walk Through and my daughter tried to open one of the magical doors and it rattled and growled at her. Hilarious!

To preserve some of our magical memories (park tickets, pins, etc.) I made a special Disneyland map box. If you have your own happy place, this project could easily be modified to use maps, brochures or magazine pictures featuring your favorite locale.

Materials




Directions


I used a 4-inch square box and 3 park maps. I could have used fewer maps, but I wanted to feature specific images on my box.
Fortunately, the folds in the maps were spaced four inches apart. That made it easier to arrange the pieces on my box.

Paper mache boxes tend to vary slightly in size, so I'm not going to give specific measurements. You'll need to measure each section of the box that you'll be covering with paper.
Using a paper trimmer, cut out six pieces for the lid. Four rectangles to wrap around the sides and two squares for the top and inside.
For the base of the box cut two squares for the inside and bottom, four large rectangles to wrap around the outer sides and four smaller rectangles to line the inner sides.
Now it's time to get out the Mod Podge.

Pro Tip: I like to cover my work area with parchment paper for easy clean up. It catches any drips, and can be easily removed from your sticky work in progress.

Paint an even layer of Mod Podge on one side of the box.
Position one of the outer side papers and smooth out any bubbles.
Apply an even coat of Mod Podge along the bottom and inside edge and fold over the side paper. Press out any bubbles.

Repeat for the remaining three sides.
Next, adhere the outer bottom panel of the box.
Now it's time to adhere the inner side panels.
And finally, the bottom inside square.
Now for the lid. Again, start with the sides. Fold them over, just like before.

Since the sides of the lid are so narrow, it was easier to wrap one piece of paper around both the inside and outside instead of using two separate pieces.
Next, adhere a square to the inside of the lid.
Then adhere a square to the top of the lid.
Once your box is completely covered with paper, you'll want to seal it with a couple coats of Mod Podge. This gives it a beautiful, shiny finish.

Brush a thin layer of Mod Podge over the entire surface of the box and lid. Let it dry 15-20 minutes between coats.
Let the box dry for at least 24 hours before you put the lid on. If you can still smell the Mod Podge, it's too soon to close the box.
Once it's completely dry, your keepsake box is ready to be filled with your treasures and mementos.

Craft Tutorial: How to make a keepsake box with Disneyland maps or other travel maps, brochures and repurposed paper




Knitting Tutorial: Cabling Without a Cable Needle

Video Tutorial: How to knit cables without a cable needleRight now I'm working on a new baby afghan pattern that features a panel of narrow knit cables. I think it looks lovely, but as I was working, it became a hassle to cross stitches with a cable needle. Luckily, my friend, Tammy, from Eclectic Technique, showed me how to knit cables without a cable needle.

This technique is not for the faint of heart because for a split second, you will have a couple stitches just dangling freely. Scary! With practice, however, you'll be surprised how quickly you can knit a panel of cables like the ones in my afghan.

I know that sometimes, with knitting, it can be easier to understand a technique by watching it than reading about it, so here's a short video to get you started.


Or if you prefer step by step written directions...

I knit a small cabled swatch to demonstrate how to knit cables without a cable needle.
Each of my cables are 4 sts wide, so I'm crossing 2 sts over or behind 2 sts, but once you get the hang of it, you can use this technique with larger cables, as well.
Let's start with a front crossing/left leaning cable.

Front Crossing/Left Leaning Cable


Slip 2 sts from your left needle to the right.
Knit 2 stitches.
Insert your left needle into the first 2 slipped stitches at the front.
Deep breath! slide the right needle out of 4 stitches, leaving 2 hanging stitches.
Move the right needle back and insert it into the 2 hanging stitches.
Knit 2 stitches.
Voila!

Now let's pass a cable the other direction.

Back Crossing/Right Leaning Cable


Bring your working yarn under the right needle and towards the front.
Slip 2 stitches from the left needle to the right.
Move your working yarn under the right needle and to the back.
Slip 2 more stitches from the left needle to the right.
Insert the left needle into the first 2 slipped stitches at the back.
Deep breath! Slide the right needle out of 4 stitches, leaving 2 hanging stitches.
Move the right needle to the front and insert it into the 2 hanging stitches.
Slip 2 stitches from the right needle to the left needle.
Knit 4 stitches.
A lovely right leaning cable.
I highly recommend practicing this technique on a swatch because any mistakes in a cabled pattern will be very noticeable. Also, it's easiest to practice with a yarn that doesn't separate easily, like wool. That way, picking up those hanging stitches is not quite as scary.

Video Tutorial: How to knit cables without a cable needle

Also, the Hugs and Kisses Baby Afghan Pattern is now available in my pattern shop. Happy knitting!