Spoonflower Handmade Holiday Blog Hop


Spoonflower asked me to take part in their Handmade Holiday Blog Hop by creating a holiday project to share. Inspired by vintage holiday mail bags made of felt I created a cut and sew mail bag that you can use to either store all those holiday cards as they arrive, or to hold your own holiday mail writing tools (cards, stamps, envelopes etc) You can find my design here, and Spoonflower is offering 10% off with the code PaperCrane and is valid until December 31 for one order of fabric, wallpaper and gift wrap. It can not be applied with any other promotional offers.
My project is designed to print up on a fat quarter of lightweight cotton twill. When your fat quarter arrives it will look like what you see above. While there are instructions printed on the fabric itself, I wanted to walk you through the process here so you can see just how easy it is.
The first thing you will do is cut out all three pieces. Front, back, and pocket. I like to leave some of the pink around the front and pocket so you can sew right on the edge of the illustration. There is no need to leave any extra around the backing piece since its slightly larger then the design.
Take pocket and iron the top of pocket down at the green line (green will be on inside of pocket) Then top stitch across top as shown. Now use a piece of ribbon, or cord and make a loop to hang your snowman mail bag. Stitch this in place at top of hat. I like to stitch this in the pink area so the stitching will be hidden once sewn. Then line your pocket up on front of bag using sides as a guide. Pin pocket in place and you’ll notice a small line in center of pocket along the area you topstitched. Sew a few stitches to tack the bag in place, this way when you put in your cards and envelopes the pocket does not hang open.
With right sides facing once another lay the front of the bag on top of the red backing. I like to use a pencil to trace any of the illustration edges that are not easy to see through the fabric. Mostly around the face. Pin in place and sew around entire thing on edge of illustration leaving a 3 inch opening in bottom for turning. I like to pay special attention to curves and do a little extra stitching so that when I trim and turn they lay flat. Trim around entire bag with pinking shears and turn right side out.
Tuck in raw edges of fabric from turning, iron in place, and then top stitch along entire curved edge of pocket sewing the opening shut. Now you are ready to hang your holiday mail bag.

Gourd Guy Jars DIY


Its that time of the year when the Summer is ending, and Halloween seems just around the corner. I start seeing the fall items appear in stores and immediately want to start making Halloween decorations. For the past two years I have made “gourd guys” with the faux pumpkins and gourds you can find at any craft stores. First I turned them into ornaments and a topper for my Halloween tree. Then last year year I used them to create a wreath. This year I still had the urge to paint their little faces but wanted to create something new.

You’ll need:
-faux gourds and pumpkins, these come in all kinds of sizes and you just want to pick something that matches up with the size of your jars
-floral picks with red berries for noses, these are found in the floral section of most craft shops and come in all sorts of sizes. Round balls or some times longer oval shaped berries.
-acrylic paint and brushes
-glue, I used a hot glue gun
-glass jars and corks that fit into them
-sharp x-acto knife for cutting into bottom of pumpkins
Follow my tutorial for painting the pumpkins faces found here.
Trace the top of the cork onto bottom of your pumpkin or gourd, and use x-acto blade to carefully cut away a space for the cork.
Use hot glue and hold cork in place while it dries. Thats it! Its very easy!
You can make tiny jars, or bigger jars which I think would make fun gifts filled with candy. You can fill your jars with sweets, colored water for potions, or even something like bobby pins, q-tips, etc and display them in the bathroom to bring some Halloween decor to other rooms in your home. If you choose to make some and post it on social media please consider using the hashtag #gourdguys so I can find it.


Time For Tea



My 40th birthday is later this month and so I decided to have a Agatha & Desdemona inspired tea party. A great excuse for breaking out a bit of the Halloween goodies early, like my floating witch hats and black cat ceramics.
Maybe you’d like to have a witch tea party of your own? You can download the invitations here for your personal use: Invitations