Category Archives: tutorial

What is it with me and creativity?

February 12th 2018

How did I get into this creativity path anyway?

Creativity always saved the day during all my school years. I remember winning an art contest in the third grade, I am the only witness to that. I was always encouraged by teachers to write,even through my Masters Degree.

During my teaching and librarian years creativity fueled my plans, displays, story telling and making those jobs fun. Fast forward to my 40s where the creative itch got too big to ignore.

I started a blog to document my creative projects and encourage myself to create and be accountable by posting about it regularly. (Enter Instagram, blogging stopped…until now)

Then this quote by Erma Bombeck “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left, and could say, ‘I used everything you gave me’. became a spiritual conviction for me that I really wasn’t using my God given talents to the extent that I could.

My problem is I like to create in many mediums, personalizing things with details is my favorite, but I also love to paper craft, sew, quilt, paint so choosing ONE THING for a business “Creating Passion to Profit” has been very challenging and am still trying to find the right path for me.

I did make some quilt patterns of which this Sea Horse is my best seller! I am still learning a lot about myself regarding how I am wired, my tendencies and triggers and I am making progress.

DIY ornaments: Photo Card Keepsake

December 2nd 2016

Do you have tons of lovely holiday photo cards of loved ones, family and friends and don’t quite know what to do with them? Well, I have the solution!  I think preserving them and using them as gift tags and ornaments for those families is a great way to recycle jar lids and those pictures. A great DIY ornaments project.  I’ve had this idea for a while and I’m so glad to finally be able to share it. I do hope you’ll find this tutorial helpful so you can make your own.  Please read all the way through before you start.

photo jar lids gift tags

First, collect all your holiday photo cards.

photo cards

Start collecting jar lids of all different sizes from mayonnaise, pasta sauce, pickles, salsa jars, whatever! Ask people to collect for you too like family, neighbors or church members. Invite them to make some DIY ornaments with you!

jar lids

Here is a visual of what you’ll need to make them but don’t be limited by it, please. A list follows below.


  • A circle template, I like to use this circle ruler for best visibility
  • Embellishments: jewels, stickers, paper, felt, fabric, pom-poms, buttons, jingle bells, charms glitter, etc…
  • Ribbons for hanging (13 inches for Ragu lids) you’ll have to measure ; )
  • Cord, pom-pom trim or rick rack for front edge
  • Mod Podge
  • Hot glue gun
  • Scissors

You may find that when you see mine and start making them, you’ll come up with all sorts of variations.  Let’s start!  You’ll have to compare photos and lids to make sure the size matches.

photo jar lid 1

 Use the circle template around the picture and the lid. It should be the same or slightly smaller than the lid opening. I did not need to trim any of my pictures when using this template.

photo jar lid 3

photo jar lid 2

Trace the circle around the picture and cut it out.

photo jar lid 4

Apply Mod Podge to the inside of the lid and insert the picture. Press down firmly until the picture stays down, it may lift if not glued down all the way.

photo jar lid 5

I also used a small brush to apply Mod Podge on the inner parts of the lid of your DIY ornament.

photo jar lid inside

Then I put a scoop of fine glitter and rotated the lid to get it all around.

photo jar lid glitter

Tap out excess. I used a dry brush to remove excess glitter from the photo.

photo jar lid dry brush

After the glitter dried, I applied Modge Podge to the picture, but in the end, it’s much better WITHOUT!! The picture is well protected in the lid and really, we won’t be playing toss the ornament or anything like that! photo jar modge picture Essentially, this is how the picture part goes.  The back of the lid can be decorated in many ways.

This one is the simplest done with card stock and paper.  Paint some Mod Podge on the lid and smooth over the card stock until it sticks down well. Once it’s adhered securely, you may paint over it with Mod Podge to seal the paper.

photo jar lid simple paper

This one is done with felt which is a great medium, especially if your lid is a little warped or not flat enough. Use the circle template to trace and cut out a circle from the felt.

photo jar lid felt

Then, simply apply hot glue to the lid and press down the felt. Then Secure the sides that are “unstuck” with more hot glue then embellish as desired.

photo jar lid felt jazz photo jar lid felt gems

Another option is to paint the lid. I used a sealer just to prep the area.

photo jar lid sealer

Then 2-3 coats of paint should do. Just enough so you can’t read the lid!

photo jar lid paint

Re-positioning embellishments with paint is not recommended because it will peal off.

photo jar lid santa

I put the year of the photo, since we parents tend to forget.

Next, we’ll take care of the hanging ribbon and edges:  Make sure you mark the center of your lids on the top and bottom this will come in handy for positioning back decor and ribbon so they hang right side up!

jar lid centers To attach the hanging ribbon, start on the bottom center, and got glue an inch at a time and press until you get to the top center and STOP!!

photo jar lid attach ribbon

Then you get the other end of the ribbon and start at the bottom and repeat until you get to the top.

photo jar lid hanging ribbon

Glue the ribbon together (just a dab) where they meet to make a loop.

photo jar lid felt gems

Then we have this exposed edge that doesn’t go with anything! photo jar lid fix edge Cover it with some pretty trim. Start at the front center point and work your way around hot gluing on the metal edge, one inch at a time until you are back at the starting point.

You can use pom-pom trim,

DIY ornaments jar lids

Some cord trim and cover the ends with a cute detail,

DIY ornaments jar lids

or some Rick Rack (my favorite)

DIY oraments jar lids

These hand crafted keepsake DIY ornaments are perfect to use as gift tags

DIY ornaments Jar lids

and to hang them on the tree!

DIY ornaments jar lids

Backs of DIY ornaments (above)

Photo side (below)

DIY ornaments jar lids

I hope you were inspired to personalize the holidays with some DIY ornaments and photo card keepsakes. happy Holidays!

When Calls the Heart Ornament Craft

November 25th 2015

If you haven’t seen the show When Calls the Heart, you will be wondering “What in the world is she talking about?!”

jack and elizabeth

When Calls the Heart is a show that airs on Hallmark Channel starring Erin Krakow and Daniel Lissing. It appeals to those who love old fashioned romance and values, strong women and an appetite for adventure, it’s a great family show too! It’s got a cast you may be familiar with, more details about the show right here. Season 1 available on DVD and Netflix , Season 2 just released on DVD.

Before it became a hit on TV, it was a book series by Jannette Oak, “a Canadian author and pioneer of inspirational fiction. Her books are often set in a pioneer era and centered on female protagonists. She is a committed Evangelical Christian. ” Quote from Wikipedia.

It’s starting it’s third season this year with a holiday special airing on December 26. The perfect little “pick-me-up” for a day that is usually a downer.

This craft was inspired by Cara who is in the FB group for When Calls the Heart Fans. With her permission, I decided to make my own version and write a tutorial for other #HEARTIES fans to have a go at making their own. NOTE: Supplies listed available at Michaels  and Joann Craft stores or maybe in your craft closet.

This is what you need, please read the list AND look at the picture.


JACK: Red and Navy felt for blazer and pants, two black felt scraps 1/2″ x 1″ for shoulders, 8-10″ hanging ribbon, gold sequins for buttons, golden beads for shoulders, 12″ leather cord, *yellow floss if stitching by hand.

ELIZABETH: Ivory and light blue felt, satin light blue ribbon, about 9 inches of lace, 8-10″ hanging ribbon, flowers or bows to embellish and some pearl beads, *ivory floss if stitching by hand.

Also: sewing machine and/or needle and coordinating thread/floss, hot glue gun or fabric type glue, some poly-fil, tracing paper.


First, start with a heart shape. Draw a line to show the separation between top and bottom of outfits. I did Elizabeth’s a little higher waisted to add skirt detail. PDF availalble here. Cut out heart image from PDF print out. Heart should measure 5 inches at tallest part on top to bottom point. Align on fold of fabric making sure the bottom edge of felt (blue arrow) is 1/4 inch from “Jack” or “Elizabeth” line. (for overlap)

heart margin

Repeat for bottom aligning on the fold and to the edge of felt at the top (black arrow). Repeat for Elizabeth heart.

heart margin bottom

For Elizabeth sew on two strips of lace and fold inwards at dip in heart as shown below.

stitch lace

Next see diagram below. To join “top and skirt” step 1. Overlay ribbon at top of blue felt, you may want to pin at edges.  Before sewing, lengthen the stitch and loosen the tension, this will ensure that your ribbon DOES NOT PUCKER and REMAINS SMOOTH. Sew on pearl beads by hand, step 2. Make sure you leave 3/4″ between last pearl and felt edge. **TIP: When you are done sewing on pearls or any embellishment, dab the thread knot with Elmer’s glue. This will make it less likely for the thread to pull through the felt accidentally. Pin the hanging ribbon in place between layers of felt about an inch in before proceeding. Step 3, sew around the heart (start at green arrow) leaving about 1 1/2″ – 2″ opening for filling (stop at red arrow)

Elizabeth assembly

Stuff gently for texture not bulging at the seams, and stitch the opening closed. Hot glue details as desired. I did a bow at neck and flowers at waist.


For Jacks heart:

stitchline top and bottom

Insert leather strap diagonally between red and blue felt. .Sew across, I used yellow thread. Step 1 in diagram below.

  Jack tutorial

Once top and bottom are joined, add sequins with thread, step 2, (Remember to add a dab of glue to knots to secure). Pin black rectangles (3b) and hanging ribbon (3c) in place then follow step 3a, start sewing around the heart, stopping at red arrow (3d). Stitch golden beads by starting under flap of black rectangles to hide knots,  sew 3 golden beads on each, trim felt if necessary. Stuff gently with poly-fil, for texture not bursting at the seams. Hot glue the leather strap across waist, trim excess.

I must warn you that once you start making these and think of the other characters, you may go nuts making WCTH crafts like I did.

GENERAL CRAFTING TIPS:  Waist items may be sewn on while you sew around the heart. Vest and suit details and beads should be sewn on before the heart is sewn around. Hot glued details should be done after heart is stuffed and closed.

Hope Valley women

 Henry Gowan…

Gowan heartie craft


A fan on the FB group requested Rosemary and Lee.

Rosemary and Lee hearties

So for fun as we wait for the “Christmas in Hope Valley Special Event,” I want to have a giveaway!

Three people will get a chance to win either a Jack and Elizabeth pair of hearties (2 available – you can choose your Elizabeth from the group of female character hearts) or a pair of Rosemary and Lee hearties (1 available). Just leave a comment telling me why you love this show and which crafty hearties you’d like to win. I will do a drawing on December 6 so I can mail them out in time for you to hang them on your tree for Christmas.

Good luck Hearties!


heartie names

And the winners are:

heartie craft winners
 An email was sent to the winners. Thanks for your comments!

Scrappy Christmas Trees

October 10th 2015

Some scraps are just to pretty to toss, some might argue, “what can you do with such a small scrap?” Well today, I am going to show you how to make a scrappy Christmas tree.

Scrappy Christmas tree sachet

You can make it into a sachet, a pillow to hang on a door knob or an ornament. So gather your scraps, here we go!

As I sew, I like to tuck my tiniest scraps, greater than an inch, into labeled baggies so I know what line it is. The larger scraps are cut into certain sizes, but that’s for another day.

scrappy christmas tree 1 (2)

Here I have my designer scraps and some left over neutral strips.
Arrange your scraps smallest to largest like a wedding cake. 🙂

scrappy Christmas tree 4

Center the smaller piece with the larger piece, eyeball it.

scrappy Christmas tree 5

Sew the pieces together using 1/4 inch seam.

scrappy Christmas tree 5a

Cut your “cakes” into triangles, no special rulers needed! Center your cake on the cutting mat so there is a line down the center of the block.

scrappy Christmas tree 6 (2)

Cut from the center line diagonally to the corner of the last piece.

scrappy Christmas tree 7 (2)

Align your trees along a neutral strip, leaving at least 1 inch above and below ends of the triangle.

scrappy Christmas tree 8 (2)

Press, repeat on the other side. Scrappy Christmas tree 9a (2)

To trim your blocks, cut down the widest point where top and bottom strips align. A minimum of 1/4 inch is ideal but not necessary.

scrappy Christmas tree 11 (2)

See below how this “fat” tree has no extra 1/4 inch. (It will be okay!)

scrappy Christmas tree 10

Once sides are trimmed, trim the bottom of the tree.

scrappy Christmas tree 11a

Aren’t they festive?

scrappy Christmas tree 11b

Make trunk units. Trunk unit is a 1 1/2 inch square. Add neutral scrap to either side guess-timating the size of your block.

scrappy Christmas tree 12 (2)

I did it slightly bigger and trimmed.

scrappy Christmas tree 12a

After trimming, add stabilizer, either Shape Flex, interfacing or whatever else may be at hand. Sometimes it’s just a neutral piece of fabric (I like an extra layer between when I am using the Balsam Fir)

scrappy Christmas tree 13 (2)

Follow instructions suggested by package instructions for whatever stabilizer you are using. Trim as desired. When trimming I leave about 1/2 inch from the top of the tree so when it’s stuffed, the shape is not lost.

scrappy Christmas tree 14a

Cut a pretty backing piece and a neutral piece (or more stabilizer) about 1/4 inch larger than the front. In case you are worried about the tree on the right being imperfect, don’t. 🙂

scrappy Christmas tree 14

If you want to add any embellishments, do it before stitching the layers together. I added beads in the same color as the fabric for a little subtle bling-y effect.

scrappy Christmas tree 13a (2)

scrappy Christmas tree 13b

To assemble your tree, pin a ribbon in the center of the tree for hanging later.

scrappy Christmas tree 15

With right sides together, pin everything in place, aligning the bottom.

scrappy Christmas tree 16

Leaving a 2 inch opening, start sewing (back stitch to secure) with 1/4 inch seam (from front fabric not backing) all the way to the other side, DON”T STOP AT CORNER AND TURN YOUR SQUARE. I used the method for making corners suggested by Sew Mama Sew in this video. Sew all the way to the the end of fabric.

scrappy Christmas tree 18

Remove from machine and trim off the excess. Fold the sewn seam at stitching and start your next stitch there, back stitching a little to secure.

scrappy Christmas tree 17 (2)

scrappy Christmas tree 18 (2)

When all sides are done and you back stitched at the opening, turn and press. Push out corners with something with a point. I used a wooden skewer.

scrappy Christmas tree 20

You can fill with Balsam Fir, available here (or other scenty substance) or poly-fil.

scrappy Christmas tree 21

When using the Balsam Fir, I finish off the last bit of filling with some poly-fil for a clean finish.

scrappy Christmas tree 22

Hand stitch the bottom closed.

scrappy christmas tree

If you rather not stuff, use batting instead of stabilizer between front and  back. Quilt the top decoratively if you are turning it out or quilt as a sandwich if you will or finish it off with binding like a quilt.

Mickey Mouse Tote

March 6th 2015

I really enjoy making things for people.  I find the process so satisfying, especially as I see the finished product come together like this bucket tote. (Bucket because of the wide bottom)

mickey tote back

I have my “standard” go to bag pattern that I can whip up in no time (2 hours at least)


But this person wanted me to “reproduce” something she already had in Mickey Mouse fabrics. No problem.

First up, we had to choose fabrics and came up with these fat quarters and roses for the lining. She loves roses. Her name is Rosie and she loves all things vintage and Victorian.

Mickey fabrics

She wanted to wear it cross body style so I replicated the 3 inch strap in patchwork. I wanted to add some cool hardware rings for the strap but 3 inches is too wide. Next time, I’ll find the hardware first and adjust the strap width.

Mickey strap

I arranged the fabric in strips, with a wider bottom (center), and sewed them together to make the outside. I layered it with batting and backing and quilted it as I would a quilt.

mickey fabric

After sewing it closed, WST, at 1/8 inch. I turned it inside out and created a french seam by sewing RST 1/4 inch seam(red) I covered the raw edges with binding (black) so it’s neat and tidy.

french seam

I added the snaps then attached my label and strap with the binding.

mickey tote 3

Now she is ready for a trip to Walt Disney World.

Mickey mouse tote

She has my card in case anyone asks where she got it. LOL

scrappy mickey

Then I started playing with the scraps. I think I’m making a little bag for her daughter now.