DIY Upcycled Puppet

How to Make a Puppet from Old Clothing

How much is that puppy in the window?  Free!  Because I made it from recycling old clothing I had laying around the house!  Isn't he just the cutest little puppy puppet?  I think he is pretty adorable with his necktie ears and button eyes.  You can put one of these adorable little guys together in under an hour with my FREE printable pattern included in the tutorial.  Happy Upcycling! 

Read More
DIY Upcycled Pillowcase Grocery Bags // With Video

I came up with the idea to make these pillow case grocery bags while I was perusing Pinterest, so I have to give credit to the blog that I got the inspiration from, GrowMama.  I love a good upcycle project, and these bags are not only upcylced, but they are also great for the environment because they save on disposable bags!  My daughter's favorite book right now is The Lorax by Dr. Suess, so we have been talking a lot about helping to save the environment and I think the best way we can teach our kids about being good to our planet is leading by example.  Every time we go to the grocery store we talk about why we use reusable bags.  It's such a good way to begin to teach her about being conscientious about the environment.  

Read More
DIY Upcycled Produce Bags from a Shower Curtain

How to Make a Set of Produce Bags from an Old Shower Curtain Liner

Alright friends, it's time for the first upcycle project to kick off Upcycle March, where Audrey from Oh So Lovely and I bring you DIY upcycle projects all month long.

For my first project, I got super creative on you and took an old shower curtain and turned it into something super useful, and something that is fantastic for the environment, reusable produce bags.  So, double whammo, I'm greening it up all over the place on Life is Made today.  I made two different types of produce bags.  The smaller ones I made just using the shower curtain and a drawstring.  They are perfect for lighter items like herbs and greens.  Then I made a couple of larger bags reinforced with fabric to carry heavy items like oranges and apples.  The shower curtain is made from plastic, so I thought reinforcing it for the heavier items would help keep it from stretching and breaking.  

Read More
DIY Felt Play Food - Pizza

How to Make Your Own Felt Pizza with Patterns

Alright guys, I'm at it again with the felt foods!  This felt play pizza was so fun to make and Ruby just loves playing with it.  She asked me (in a Brooklyn accent of course) if I wanted a slice of pizza today about 30 times.  How could I resist a delicious slice from a 2 year old doing a Brooklyn pizza guy bit?  I couldn't.  And I pretended to bite into that felt pizza slice over and over again exclaiming "Yummy, yummy in my tummy, tummy!"  

I've done all the leg work for you and the patterns are really easy to follow.  There isn't a lot of sewing either because I used Heat n' Bond to attach all of the toppings.  You could knock this pizza out in under an hour.  For reals.  Do it.

Read More
Honey Valentine's Day Gift with Free Printables

I freaking love Valentine's Day.  When I was in elementary school I would always ask my mother to take her turn as room mother on Valentine's Day.  I'm not exactly sure what about the holiday makes me so happy but I think it is a mixture of sentiment and creativity.  I LOVED making my valentines when I was a kid.  I would sit with a pair of scissors and red and pink paper for hours constructing the perfect frilly little heart valentines for all my friends.  I still love making valentines. It's just such a sweet and unique day of the year when you can get all mushy with the people in your life and nobody thinks your on your period or some such nonsense.  Anyway, I made these honey bears to give to some of my friends this year because I'm still on my new years resolution of not eating refined sugar so I feel like I have to get all preachy and make sure no one is having any fun.  Raw honey: sweet, sensible, comes in a an adorable container.  Good, right?  Well, they are perfect for adults anyway, so if you're looking for something to make your kid's teachers, I think this would make perfect Valentine's Day gift.  

Read More
DIY Felt Play Food- Cupcake

Yeah, I'll admit I was pretty proud of myself when I finished making these adorable felt cupcakes, but the true validation came when I gave them to my daughter and she promptly exclaimed "Cake!" and shoved one in her mouth and then gave me the most disgusted look when she realized it wasn't a real cupcake.  Make these cupcakes for your kids to play with, to use as pin cushions or just because they are so dang cute and you want to decorate your house with them.  I've done all the leg work for you by creating super easy patterns for you to print out and use.  The part that took the longest was coming up with the patterns and figuring out how to make the toppings, but since you don't have to do that, you could construct a couple cupcakes in under 2 hours tops.  Promise!  So go forth and make felt cupcakes!

Read More
DIY Felt Play Food- Fried Eggs

When Santa brought my daughter a play kitchen for Christmas, I think I was way more excited about it than she was.  She immediately got to work baking cookies and making Mama's favorite, coffee and I immediately got to work organizing all the dishes, utensils and pots and pans perfectly into the cabinets and onto the shelves. Just like Mama's kitchen!  (Yes, I border on OCD.)  I also started dreaming of the all the cool foods I could make out of felt for her to use in the kitchen.  This was my first attempt making play food, so I kept it pretty simple.  These fried eggs are so super easy to make and took me about and hour and a half to complete.  Stay tuned because I will have more tutorials coming with free printable patterns.  Next up: Cupcakes!

Read More
How to Make an Apron from a Vintage Table Cloth

I love a vintage linen table cloth.  Every time I see one at a flea market I feel like I have to adopt it, bring it home with me no matter how stained and full of holes it is and breath new life into it.  You just can't replicate the delicate colors, gorgeous prints and interesting patterning in modern cloth.  If the cloth does have stains or holes, you can usually work around it to make something new.  You can check out the vintage table cloth pillows I made here.  My sister-in-law saw the vintage table cloth apron that I made for the Woodstock Library Benefit Auction (you can check it out here) and requested one for herself for Christmas.  So I made one for her.  Shhhh....don't tell her!  Follow my instructions below and make an apron for yourself or for a Christmas gift!

Read More
DIY Iron Transfer Canvas Tote Bags

Hey guys, it's TOTE-ally time to get your gift giving butt in gear and start whipping up the homemade gifts for the holidays!  I put about 10 of these iron transfer canvas bags together in under 4 hours.  I guarantee that you cannot drive to the mall and buy enough gifts to cross 10 people off your list in less than 4 hours and under $12 per gift.  I double dog dare you to try.  Get your gift giving butt onto Amazon right now and order some Avery Iron-Transfer Paper and some Canvas Bags.  They are going to show up at your door by Saturday or Monday.  Next, get on that computer of yours and make or find a cool design and print it out on your nifty iron-transfer paper.  Now iron that sh** on.   By the middle of next week (7 DAYS OUT FROM XMAS!!) you got yourself one-of-a-kind homemade gifts for every tote-lovin' person on your list.  You're welcome. 

Read More
Puppy Dog Ear DIY

I made these puppy dog ears for my daughters second birthday party which was themed Vintage Kitty and Puppy.  All of the children who attended the party loved wearing their ears and pretending to be puppy dogs and they made a great party favor.  Here are the directions with an easy to pin strip for you to make your own ears.

Read More
Kitty Cat Ear DIY

I made these kitty ears for my daughters second birthday party which was themed Vintage Kitty and Puppy.  All of the children who attended the party loved wearing their ears and pretending to be kitty cats and they made a great party favor.  Here are the directions with an easy to pin strip for you to make your own ears.

Read More
Animal Applique Jumper for Kids Tutorial

For me, there is nothing more adorable than a cute little girl in a classic jumper.  Add a fox or a squirrel to that jumper and toss in some sweater tights, a peter pan collar and mary janes and you've got yourself a major cuteness overload.  I got the idea to make these jumpers for Ruby because she is really into animals right now and I knew that nothing would get her more excited than to have a fox pouncing across her body or a squirrel eating a nut on her belly.  The pattern for this jumper is pretty easy to create, just make sure you've got the measurements correct before you get started.  I measured Ruby about a month before I made the jumpers, and now they are a bit too small in the chest.  Probably better to add a half inch to all of your measurements to ensure they will fit your child for a whole season.

Read More
Lion Costume for Children Tutorial

There have been reports in Dumbo of a wild lion cub on the loose.  The lion cub has been cute-erizing the residents of the neighborhood causing many to take its picture and post it to Instagram.  Luckily, I shot a couple of photos of the lion cub before it took off down the sidewalk headed towards the Manhattan Bridge.   

Read More
Embroidered Owl

During one of my frequent flea market shopping trips, I came across this amazing solid brass frame.  I immediately envisioned an embroidery framed in it because I thought the soft stitching would perfectly offset the ornate metal.  I'm still trying to fill our upstate cabin with art so I thought I would choose an animal that we commonly see in the woods around our house and use the artwork to decorate our bedroom.  I used this copyright free illustration of an owl that I scanned from this FANTASTIC book.  Then I tinkered around with the contrast in photoshop and ended up with this final version which you can download and use for your project.  Next, I printed the owl out on iron transfer paper, cut it out and ironed it onto canvas.  Last, I wanted the owl to have a whimsical feel so I used many different stitches to make up the body of the owl.  

Read More
Dry Flowers for a Gift

I always hate throwing out a beautiful bouquet of flowers when they've passed their prime.  I used to dry them and put them in vases, but it feels a little hoarder-ish to have a bunch of dust collecting dried flowers around your house.  Here is a great way to up-cycle your next bouquet of flowers into a stylish gift box topper.  First, tie a few of the flowers together.  Then hang them from a curtain rod and allow them to dry in the window for about 7 days.  When they are dry, tie them to the top of a gift with some ribbon and accept many compliments on your creative gift wrapping technique.  

Read More
How to Make a Tissue Flower

Making a tissue flower is such an easy and cheap way to decorate the top of a gift.  Just take a stack of tissue paper and cut a flower shape out of it in two sizes.  Then put the smaller flower stack on top of the bigger one.  Cut two slits in the center.  String some twine through the slits and tie it on the backside of the flower.  Now, take each piece of tissue paper and crumble until it begins to look like a flower.  Use the extra twine to attach the flower to the top of the box.  Pretty cool huh?! 

Read More
How to Make a Gift Bow

Ever wonder how to make a gift bow?  It's actually pretty easy.  I found a picture tutorial on Pinterest and I just followed the directions.  I wanted to link to it in my post but when I clicked on the post, it didn't lead me to a website.  So, I decided to make my own tutorial for you to follow.  I used some magazine paper and Scotch tape to make my bow.  Be sure to choose the thicker pages of a magazine, the ones that have the colorful adds one them.  I tried using both regular magazine paper and the thicker paper and it was MUCH easier with the thicker paper.  Of course, you can use any paper you like-- If you love picking our printed papers from the craft store as much as I do, you could get some fun printed card stock for your bow.  Have fun with it and experiment. Making a bow start to finish only took me about 10 minutes.   

Read More