easy sew whimsical tree table runner

 

whimsical tree table runnerMake a fabric scrap big tree table runner for your fall table.  Vibrant fabric scraps , burlap, and wool felt combine to create this colorful autumn-inspired table runner. The runner is whimsical and freestyle so if you make a mistake no one will know.  Use your die-cut machine to cut the leaf shapes or freehand draw and cut out from fused fabrics. You can find printable images online if you are not comfortable with freehand drawing.  You could even ask your child do draw them for you.  Then it will be a joint piece of art for your home or to give as a gift.

Materials for whimsical tree table runner:

  • Natural burlap, one yard
  • Blue/yellow print fabric, scrap
  • Wool felt: yellow, blue, brown
  • Prima Dynasty Flower Centers (536138), five

Tools to make whimsical tree table runner:

  • Sizzix Big Shot Die-Cutting System and Bigz Leaves Die
  • Sewing machine and thread
  • Adhesives: Stick by Fairfield Processing, Beacon Adhesives Fabri-Tac Glue

BASIC SUPPLIES

  • scissors, ruler, pencil, rotary cutter and self-healing mat, iron and pressing surface, straight pins

Directions for making whimsical tree table runner:

  1. Use rotary cutter and mat to cut 50”x14” burlap strip. Use sewing machine to sew zigzag stitch 1/4” from edge to prevent burlap from fraying.
  2. Follow manufacturer’s instructions to fuse wool felt and fabric scraps to fusible webbing with iron and pressing surface.
  3. Access pattern by selecting the info button near the main image, then select the pattern icon. Download and print pattern onto cardstock. Cut out pattern. Trace tree on paper side of fused brown felt five times; cut out.
  4. Use die-cutting machine and Leaves die to die cut four large, medium, and small leaves each from blue, yellow, and print fused fabrics for total of 35 leaves. Remove paper backing and position leaves randomly in place on tree branches. Pin in place. Use iron to fuse leaves on trees, removing straight pins after adhering.
  5. Use sewing machine and straight stitch to sew around edges of leaves and trees.Adhere flower centers onto tree trunks using fabric glue. Let dry.

 whimsical table runner

Make a scrappy felt owl pillow

owl pillowDIY felt owl pillow

Luscious wool felt and ruffled print fabrics make this owl a colorful and adorable accent this autumn or to display throughout the year.

MATERIALS for felt owl pillow:

  • National Nonwovens WoolFelt: Buttercream, 1 yd.; Hallow’s Eve, 1/4 yd.; Copper Canyon, Black, scraps
  • Cotton fabric, in coordinating prints, scraps
  • Fairfield Home Elegance Pillow Insert, 14” x 14”
  • Acrylic crystal rhinestones, 9mm, two

Tools for felt owl pillow:

  • Sewing machine and matching thread
  • Rotary cutter and self-healing cutting mat
  • Adhesives: Beacon AdhesivesFabri-Tac Permanent Adhesive,
  • Fairfield Processing Stick fusible webbing

BASIC SUPPLIES to make a felt owl pillow:

  • straight pins, scissors, iron and pressing surface, sewing needle

Directions for felt owl pillow:

  1. Use rotary cutter and mat to cut two 15” squares from Buttercream felt for pillow front and back.
  2. Follow manufacturer’s instructions to apply fusible webbing to Hallow’s Eve, Black, and Copper Canyon felt.
  3.  Cut body, two wings, and two eyes from Hallow’s Eve fused-felt. Cut two pupils, two ears, and beak from Black fused-felt. Cut two eye circles from Copper fused-felt.
  4. Using photo as guide, fuse pieces in place using iron and pressing surface on Buttercream square. Set aside beak for attachment in later step. Machine-sew pieces in place using straight stitch and contrasting thread.
  5. Cut six 2”x12” print fabric strips. Machine-sew knife pleat down center of strips creating ruffles. Adhere ruffles on center of owl for feathers. Adhere rhinestones on eyes using fabric glue. Machine-sew beak onto top ruffle.
  6. Using 1/2” seam allowance, machine-sew pillow front and back together with right sides out, leaving bottom side open. Insert pillow form into open side; hand-sew bottom closed using 1/2” seam allowance and running stitch. Knot and clip thread ends.

 

A Calavera Sugar Skull Wreath

sugar-skull-wreath-calavera-tutorial
A Calavera Sugar Skull Wreath, is easy and fun wreath to make for the month of October and through Nov. 2nd.  I decided to make a posada style sugar skull wreaths few for our house this year.  It is an opportunity to teach my children about different celebrations and holidays celebrated from other cultures in our community, have a little fun making art and decorating our house.  The calavera [plural:calaveras is a representation of a human skull. The term is most often applied to decorative or edible skulls made from either sugar or clay which are used in the Mexican celebration of the Day of the Dead (Día de Muertos) and the Roman Catholic holiday All Souls’ Day. Calavera can also refer to any artistic representations of skulls.   The most widely known calaveras are created with cane sugar and are decorated with items such as colored foil, icing, beads, and feathers.

The content below may have been sponsored, contain affiliate links or free items for use. Know that this will not sway the opinion no matter what. (Even though they may want to!) This costs you nothing and helps pay for this blog's overhead. Click Diclosures to learn more.Crafting in the same style -Day of the Dead folk arts called a Posada style, which means  blank skulls that you can decorate. I ordered my skulls from Oriental Trading Company –  Bag of Skulls.

Supplies for A Calavera Sugar Skull Wreath:

  1. Cut Olyfun into strips and wrap around wreath form. Sector the ends with glue.  I use Fabri-Tac because it does not melt the foam like hot glue. olyfun halloween wreath
  2. Form a loop at the end of the Olyfun to make a hanger for the wreath. tickles glitter glue on olyfun wreath
  3. You can add Stickles glitter glue to the wreath if you want.  If you do give it ample time to dry. plastic skulls for halloween crafts
  4. Decorate the Skulls with Sharpie Markers.  I freeform the designs with very basic swirls, dots and hearts.sharpie marker sugar skull idea
  5. Fill in the designs with the markers.  Embellish the design with Stickles glitter glue.diy sugar skull decorations
  6. Enhance the design with stick on crystals in various spots.
  7. Poke small holes in the wreath with scissors for the base of the flowers.  Add hot glue to the base of the flower and press into the holes. Hold in place for a few seconds.sugar skull wreath tutorial
  8. Add a generous dollop of hot glue to the base of the skull and adhere to the bottom center of the wreath.  Hold in place for a few seconds.

Faux Wicker Clay Technique for Polymer Clay

Faux Wicker

Faux wicker clay technique is one of my favorite ways to use polymer clay.  You can give it as many looks as real wicker.  I also happen to love the look of sunflowers.  They lend themselves fall decorating.  Personally I like flowers any time of the year and you will find a lot of my projects are flowers or have flowers in or on them.  So get our your clay and have fun making flowers to decorate your faux wicker project.

Materials for faux wicker technique:

  • Polyform Premo! Sculpey Clay: Burnt Umber, Cadmium Yellow Hue
  • cornstarch
  • aluminum foil
  • paintbrush
  • recycled paper towel tube
  • scissors
  • paper towels

Tools for faux wicker technique:

  • Polyform Sculpey Basic Shapes Mini Metal Cutters
  • Polyform Sculpey Tools: Clay Extruder, 5 in 1 Tool Kit, Clay Conditioning Machine
  • DecoArt Americana Acrylic Paints: Honey Brown, Spicy Mustard, Bright Orange, Cadmium Red, Light Cinnamon
  • Parchment-lined baking sheet and oven
  • Polyform Sculpey Bake & Bond

Directions for faux wicker technique:

1. Condition Burnt Umber clay and run through clay conditioning machine several times. Roll clay into tube and load into clay extruder. Extrude entire load of clay. Fold strand in half; twist clay around itself to 1/8″ width. Continue twisting until clay looks like rope.

2. Wrap aluminum foil around recycled paper tube; dust lightly with cornstarch. Wrap rope strand around foil tube four times, pressing pieces together lightly. Apply tiny dots of Bake & Bond; press together. Use chisel tip on tool to blend ends into rope. Follow manufacturer’s instructions to bake on parchment-lined baking sheet in oven for 10 minutes. Let cool.faux-wicker-4

3. While faux wicker pieces are baking and cooling, condition Cadmium Yellow Hue clay. On last pass through clay conditioning machine, set thickness to third thickest on machine. Place clay flat on work surface. Use leaf shape cutter to cut eight petals for each napkin ring. See Photo 1. Cut out center circle for each napkin ring. faux-wicker-clay-technique-niki-meiners-2

4. Pinch petal ends into points to shape. Squeeze ring of Bake & Bond on circle; press eight petals evenly faux-wicker-4spaced around circle. See Photo 2 and Photo 3. faux-wicker-clay-technique-niki-meiners-3

5. Cut Burnt Umber circle for flower center. Use detail tool to add random seed dots and create texture. Press flower center on center of each flower and spot glue with Bake & Bond if needed.faux-wicker-4

6. Apply Bake & Bond on top of cooled faux wicker napkin ring. Press flower on to napkin ring and return to oven and bake for 15-20 minutes. Let cool. faux-wicker-clay-technique-niki-meiners-4

7. On covered work surface, lightly paint wicker Honey Brown and wipe off excess paint. Lightly paint petals Spicy Mustard and wipe off excess paint.  Dry brush Bright Orange on center of petals and Cadmium Red on area close to flower center. Use tip of chisel tool dipped in Light Cinnamon to add tiny dots on petals. Paint flower center Light Cinnamon and wipe off excess with paper towel. Let dry and remove napkin ring from paper tube.

faux-wicker-clay-technique-niki-meiners

Tip

1. The softer the clay, the easier it is to extrude, so run clay several times through clay conditioning machine before beginning.
Faux wicker and sunflowr polymer clay tutorial

 

DIY Oktoberfest Party Decorations

My husbands family is German and we love to celebrate with an Oktoberfest Party.  We invited a few friends over to enjoy the good food, great drinks and have some wonderful conversations.  The party was a hit with decorations provided by Oriental Trading Company.   The food and the recipes were all mine.  Well almost mine,  I managed to get the Raspberry Beer Punch out of my husbands Great-Aunt Catherine a few years into our marriage.  You can find beer punch recipe here.  I also served his dad’s potato salad and you can get that recipe here.  The Beer Cheese Recipe is really all mine.

oktoberfest-octoberfest-party-geman-niki-meiners

We had a hot dog and sausage toppings bar with almost anything you could think to put on a bun with meat. I made curry wurst too.  Gary picked out a bunch of seasonal Oktoberfest beers.

geman-beer-girl-oktoberfest-party-niki-meiners

Our German Beer Girl was a hit.  Especially since she served shots of Apple Schnapps.  We decided to name her Hilde.

oktoberfest-diy-drink-bottle-decorations-365-days-of-crafts

Supplies for DIY Oktoberfest Party Decorations:

To make the DIY Oktoberfest Party Decorations:

  1. Trim off the edges of the pretzels as shown
  2. Cut a piece of ribbon to go around the throat of the bottle.
  3. Glue got the ribbon into place.
  4. Add a Glue Dot to the top and the bottom of the pretzel on the back side.
  5. Adhere to the front of the bottle covering the spot where the ribbon connects.

I chose to use Glue Dots because the hold firmly in place yet are easy to remove when you need it to come off.  The glue dots are easily removed from the glass bottle.  The bottles were used during the party for the lemonade served to the kids.  I wanted them to feel like the party was for them too. There were also fun little Duckies in Lederhosen hanging around the table.  I can almost guarantee that the duckies were in a bathtub floating around when they went home.

If you would like to see more of the party you can visit the Oriental Trading Company blog. If you are looking for another authentic dish to serve try the German Style Potato Salad or Beer Cheese Dip and for party decoration ideas try the Oktoberfest Party and for fun Party Favors

leather & button pillow

leather rosette throw pillow

The content below may have been sponsored, contain affiliate links or free items for use. Know that this will not sway the opinion no matter what. (Even though they may want to!) This costs you nothing and helps pay for this blog's overhead. Click Diclosures to learn more.Leather & button pillow – Fringed leather circles create a bright earth tone palette of colored flowers on this plain muslin fabric. Embellish with assorted odds and ends buttons for a multi-layered, textural accent. Use any color combination

Materials for button pillow:

  • Muslin fabric, 1/2 yard
  • Eco-Craft Eco-Friendly Fiberfill
  • Leather scraps from a furniture store or Tandy Leather Factory Odd Lot Sides Assorted Colors Leather (9830-70)
  • Assorted tan buttons, 16

Tools

  • Sewing machine and thread
  • Sizzix Big Shot Die-Cutting System and Bigz 3-D Fringed Flower Die
  • Beacon Adhesives Quick Grip Glue

Basic Supplies for button pillow:

  • scissors, ruler, pencil, straight pins, sewing needle

Directions for button pillow:

Cut muslin fabric into two 14-1/2”x14-1/2” squares. Pin squares, with right sides together, along three sides, leaving one side open for stuffing.

Use 1/4” seam allowance to sew squares together using sewing machine, stopping 1/4” away from corner. If your sewing machine has a needle down function, use it to pivot pillow cover 90˚. If your sewing machine does not have a needle down function, carefully pivot pillow cover without pulling too much thread from bobbin or needle.

Trim off excess bulk in corners. Turn right side out and stuff with fiberfill. Hand sew opening closed or use sewing machine to finish open edge.

Position leather on die cut machine. Die cut 16 flowers from various colors of leather in small, medium, and large shapes following manufacturer’s instructions. Randomly mix and match small, medium, and large flower shapes in different colors together. Apply glue between flower layers; press together to adhere. Let dry.

Use needle and thread to attach button onto center of each flower.

Use pencil and ruler to mark placement of flowers on pillow front. Use needle and thread to attach flowers onto pillow front by sewing bottom layers onto pillow. Knot and clip thread ends.

leather rosette

Rosemary and Parmesan Crusted Potato Bites

Rosemary and Parmesan Crusted potato bites

A simple tasty and budget friendly side dish that looks and tastes gourmet. My kids love to dip them in ketchup and the adults like them in bruschetta.  If you really want to kick them up another notch you can serve sour cream and chives too.   If you have leftovers they are great the next morning with breakfast.

Ingredients for Rosemary & Parmesan Crusted Potato Bites.

  • 2 pounds petite potatoes, halved
  • 2 ½ tablespoons rosemary infused olive oil
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 Shredded Regiano Cheese
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

Instructions for Rosemary & Parmesan Crusted Potato Bites:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
  2. Coat the bottom of a 9×9-baking dish with the olive oil, and then evenly distribute the salt, pepper, garlic and thyme over the olive oil. Sprinkle on the cheeses over the seasoned oil.
  3. Place the potato halves, cut side down, on top of the cheese mixture and bake for 45-50 minutes or until the potatoes are tender when pierced. Precise baking time will depend on the thickness of your potatoes. (you can spay oil over the potatoes to keep skin crisp)

I like to serve the potatoes with sour cream my husband likes them with sour cream and chives.  The kids like to dip them in ketchup. Gasp, I know ketchup.  They are kids, what can I say but it goes on almost everything.  Occasionally they get fancy and add salsa.    You can accessories them with what ever your family likes.

potato recipe bloggersPlease join us and discover new recipes for potatoes this weeks secret ingredient.  There are over 40 blogger participating in the potato round up.  The cake in the image has me totally intrigued. I think I will try it. If you try my recipe I would love to know what you think.

An InLinkz Link-up


Fall burlap centerpiece

easy burlap centerpiece

A fall burlap centerpiece that you can make quickly, with ease and not break the budget.  This DIY project is made with pine cones from the yard, recycled cans, burlap and scraps from your stash. Burlap is one of my go to materials for fall. I think burlap feels like the perfect material to use for autumnal decorating and it is neutral in color so it goes with almost anything.  Plus it adds a nice texture and a warm feeling.  I like to pair it with jute cording and cream colored embellishments.

 

Supplies for Fall burlap centerpiece:

  • Burlap
  • Tin cans – cleaned and dried
  • Cotton lace
  • Jute cording
  • Acrylic paint and paint brush
  • Pine cones
  • Hot glue gun and glue sticks
  • Covered work surface
  • Scissors

 

burlap centerpiece materials

 

 Instructions for Fall burlap centerpiece:

  1. Wash and dry tin cans.  Select 2-3 different size cans.  Apply orange paint to the exterior of the can.  You can leave it thin and wispy or apply another coat.  Allow paint to dry.

how to cut burlap

2.  To cut burlap start on the finished edge.  Measure the amount needed by holding it up to the can and deciding the amount of coverage desired.  Snip a cut mark into the burlap.  Follow along a thread of the burlap and this will help to keep your lines straight.

how to fringe burlap

3.  Once you have cut along the edge of the burlap, then you can remove a few strands of the burlap to create a fringed edge.

3.  Use the hot glue gun to adhere the burlap to a can. Then use the burlap ribbon to wrap around the other two cans. Adhere the burlap ribbon with hot glue.

4.  Cut the cotton lace to size and adhere with the hot glue.

5.  Cut jute cording with enough extra to allow for a knot.  Wrap around the can and tie in a knot. You can trim the excess.

6.  Trim a couple of the pine cone leaves off with scissors or remove with your fingers.  This will help the pinecone to adhere to a flat surface better.

7.  Apply a small dollop of hot glue onto the knot and place the pinecone onto the dollop.  Hold in place for a few seconds.  BE CAREFUL not to touch the hot glue.  It hurts!

8. Add plants of your choice to the tin cans.  Fake succulents were used in the burlap centerpiece.

 

If you would like more Fall decorating ideas try these links:

Recycled jar harvest terrariums

harvest terrariums fall tererrium

Simple Fall Tablescapesmake a fall vase DIY

Monogram door hangerCountry Chic Monogram Wreath Monogram Door Hanger. Twine or sisal wrapped around a wreath, letter or frame is a great idea for your next DIY craft. Holiday door decoration inspiration.

If you would like some stunning vignettes check out this link at 100 Directions

gummy worm brownie dirt cups with realistic earthworms

gummy worm dirtGummy worm brownie dirt cups with realistic earthworms are on my menu this Halloween season.  Most kids would love to creep out adults with these realistic gummy earthworms. Not me!  I like to gross out my kids and these gummy worms look so realistic.  I ordered the realistic gummy earthworms from Oriental Trading and they sent the product samples in exchange for my honest review. And let’s be honest…THEY ARE AWESOME!!!  They smelled and tasted like root beer.  My kids loved the flavor.   My version is different from the normal recipe you will see online.  I am probably in the minority but I despise chocolate Oreos.  The only thing they are good for is scraping the center filling from.  My kids would completely disagree.  They love them and when we were picking food to serve for their class party we agreed to a new version that I would create.  This is my version of the traditional dirt cups.

Ingredients for gummy worm brownie dirt cups with realistic earthworms:

  • realistic gummy earthworms
  • chocolate brownie mix and ingredients listed on box
  • chocolate pudding and ingredients listed on box
  • chocolate sprinkles
  • clear plastic cups

Instructions for gummy worm brownie dirt cups with realistic gummy worms:

  1. Make brownies and pudding according to directions.
  2. Let the brownies cool and then crumble. Add to bottom of cup.gummy worm brownies in a cup
  3. Spoon in pudding on top of brownies.gummy worm pudding
  4. Repeat step 2 and 3 until cup is full.gummy worm sprinkles
  5. Add chocolate sprinkles to a jar.gummy worm sprinkles blended
  6. Chop the sprinkles with a submersion blender. gummy worms earthworms
  7. Remove the gummy worms from their packaging.gummy worms dusted with chocolate
  8. Drop half of the gummy worms into the jar and shake to coat. I cut the worms in half and inserted them into the top of the cups. Make sure you have at least one worm going down the side. gummy worm dessert
  9. Add the left over chocolate sprinkles and some brownie crumbs to the top of the cups.

If you would like to pin this recipe use the image below.  You can also follow my FUN FOOD board on Pinterest.

Gummy Earthworm brownie dirt cups made from easy to find ingredients and taste great

My kids like this time of year.  These are the things I have made in years past. Check them out your tummy will thank you.

Candy Corn Cookies

Spider Cupcakes

You can also follow my FUN FOOD board on Pinterest.

Halloween door decorations – monster mouth

olyfun halloween front door decorationsHalloween door decorations – Make a monster mouth for your front door.  I chose to use Oly*Fun from Fairfield Processing because it is available in Walmart, Hobby Lobby, Joan Fabric and Hancock Fabric.  Plus it is in cheap and weather friendly.  It is great for decorating outside and it can be reused year after year.  Our neighborhood does not have trick or treating so we do not get very elaborate on or decorations.  I wanted to make something with little effort and big impact.  Thus the front door decoration.  Our door is a double door and we just painted it black  instead of the green I planned.  The green door would have been the perfect monster or Frankenstein.

I work with Fairfield and Adtech and they send me product to create with and I would not use them if I did not love them.  I chose the Cool Tool because it will not melt the Olyfun, it is safe for the kids and it will hold up to the weather.   This project took about 20 minutes total.  It might have taken less if I was not doing it with two cranky kids.

Olyfun halloween door decorations cheap

Supplies for Halloween door decorations:

Instructions for Halloween door decorations:Front door halloween door decorations monster mouth

  1. Cut the red Oly*Fun to the size of your front door.
  2. Cut enough white triangles to go along the top of the mouth and the bottom of the mouth.  I let the kids cut them.  This assured that they were uneven and unique.
  3. Adhere the teeth to the mouth with a low temp glue gun.
  4. Cut two eye shapes out of white.  front door decorations sharpie
  5. Use a red Sharpie  to add veins to the eyes.  to finish off the eyeballs.cheap outdoor halloween decorations
  6. Add either black or blue Oly*Fun to the bottom of the eyes.
  7. Adhere to your front door and enjoy.

Click on the link below to see other quick and easy Halloween crafts.