Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Easy DIY Beach Bag

Since the beginning of the year I have been sewing a bit more. I even learned how to sew in a zipper properly thanks to my friend Melissa over at the Polka Dot Chair. She and I got together last week and made the cutest polka dot purses. I'll blog the details soon. So since Spring Break is fast approaching, and Summer will hopefully find it's way to us, I thought I would make a fun and easy beach bag.
Supplies you will need:
3/4 yard of material of your choice
Sewing machine
Tape measure

So the first thing I did was choose my material. I feel in love with this kelly green eyelet material that I got on sale at Joann Fabric and Craft Store. I thought it would be perfect because the material was light weight, and since there are holes in the fabric it would be easy to shake the sand out of it! They also happened to have the perfect color cording to match. It was a win, win.
I folded the top of the fabric first, making a 1 inch hem along the top of the bag.
Once both of the top sides were finished, I folded the material in half, and began sewing up the sides. I wanted the bag to have rounded corners, so I rounded the corners as I was sewing along.
Once you round the corners of the bottom of the bag, be sure you turn the bag inside out, and cut little triangles in it like this....
This will help the rounded corners lay better, and you won't have the excess fabric. This also works for just regular straight corners. You should always cut the excess fabric. 
So now all three sides are sewn up, and the top is open. You will then need to add the handles. This is were I used the matching green cording that I had found. You could also sew straps out of the fabric you are using.
I found the middle and then spaced the handles about 5 inches out.

I pinched the cording in the fabric and sewed it in. I wanted to make sure that it was extra secure, so I also hand stitched it too, just to make sure that the cord did not slip out.
This bag is super easy to make, and I am looking forward to using it all Spring and Summer long. Kelly green is fast becoming one of my new favorite colors. It's so bright and cheery.
I was able to fit 4 large beach towels in the bag, plus some sunscreen, so it's a pretty large bag. I love how light weight it feels because of the fabric.

Hopefully you have something fun planned for your Spring Break, or Summer vacay. Try making one of these beach bags, I think you will find it super easy to make. Thanks for stopping by, until next time.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Easter Bunny Banner

It is finally starting to feel a little like Spring around here. We have had a few nice sunny days, and although the forecast is calling for cold again soon, I appreciate the warmth while it is here. So I felt inspired to create a little bunny banner.
Supplies that I used for this project are as follows:
Silhouette machine, or any cutting machine you may have. I actually think this design is pretty easy that you could even trace it and hand cut it. :)
Crepe paper. I found this color at Target
Scrapbook paper. I used paper from one of my favorite designers Maggie Holmes.
Card stock. I used a pale aqua.
Colored twine. I used some brown and white, and some white and silver
Clips. I found mine at Michaels Craft Store
Yarn for pom poms.
The first thing that I did was cut out the bunny shape. I found the design online at the Silhouette Store.
This particular design was originally meant to be a card, but it worked out well since I needed multiple bunnies.
Next I cut the bunnies out. Then I made their bushy tails. I made their tails by using my pom pom maker which can be found at Michaels. I used twine instead of yarn, and used the smaller pom pom maker. It worked out really well. You don't need to wrap as much, and once you are finished you will trim the tail pretty short.
I then cut out the circle with a large punch. The circle measures about 3.5 inches and the bunnies I made 3 inches in length. After the circles were punched out I then put the double sided tape on the back. Once the back has the tape then you can start pleating the crepe paper. You just fold and pleat. 
 Mine always comes out uneven, so I just grab my scissors and trim it so that it is even.
Once it gets trimmed I added the bunny and the bunny tail. I glued the tail and used double sided tape for the bunny. You can decorate the bunny more if you would like. You could add glitter in the ears, but I kind of liked the simplicity of it.

Volia' here is the garland finished with the pom poms that I added. It is a very simple and sweet garland. I have it hanging along a mirror in our foyer! I love to decorate this piece in my foyer for each season. Now I need to pull out some more Easter decorations, maybe Mother Nature will catch my hint :)  Hope you feel inspired by this project. And if you make it, I'd love to see your finished project. You can tag me on IG. My IG name is @GretchenBlack.
Until next time.