Jan 2, 2012

"Anytime" Felt Garland

I'm excited to share that for Christmas my husband bought me the sewing machine I had asked for.  Holy Smokes!  It was it daunting to open that sucker up and see the HUGE instruction manual which reminded me of how much I don't know how to sew...however, thanks to some excellent instructions and easy to understand pictures, I was able to figure out how to wind the bobbin, thread the machine, and get an easy stitch or two down.  I'm excited to venture into some cool new projects - a sewing realm I've never been a part of - this new year!  Can that be a New Year's resolution????

So far I've only completed one craft project with my sewing machine - a super easy one - but very fun all the same.  I'm calling this project "anytime" garland because you can keep it out all year long:

It's simply a colorful little pick-me-up for any room's decor.  Right now, it's gracing the frames above our TV in the living room.  I can't help but smile a little when I see it.

Now that I've made the garland, which was super simple to put together, I'm sure I'll be tempted to make seasonal versions too, like hearts for Valentine's Day, Shamrocks for St. Patrick's Day, etc.  Thankfully we have a respite from holidays, so I can bench that idea for a little while. :)

For those of you interested, here's how I made it...

Sheets of Felt from the craft store
Some round objects to trace (in order to make circles)
Sewing Machine

1. Cut out felt shapes with scissors.  I made different sized circles by tracing around a few lids and glasses, and then I used scrap pieces of felt strips to make little star/asterisk looking shapes.

2. Lay your strips out in the order you want to connect them...this helps you piece it together easily.

3.  Rev up the sewing machine and set it to a simple stitch.  Then just feed your shapes through the machine, attempting to get them as close together as possible.  (Note: I reinforced the stitch at the beginning and end of the garland strand with the handy reverse sew button.)

The circles were very easy to feed through, but the star shapes were a little more difficult since they had multiple pieces.  For those guys, I had to pay a little more attention, go slower, and hold them together until the machine grabbed onto them.  Worth it though...for some reason I just think asterisks are so cute (crazy, I know!).

(you can't see me holding the star together here because I had to stop the machine and take a pic...)

Soon enough you'll have a cute little trail of shapes...

I sewed a total of about 3 yards of garland, but you can do as short or as long as you like.

Nice and simple...probably the perfect first sewing project of the New Year!  You can do some really fun things with this same concept.  Cut out some letters from felt (or even heavy construction paper) and sew them together to make a homemade "happy birthday" garland.

There is a cool tutorial for how to craft the letters for a cool letter garland {here} at Twinkle and Twine blog.

pic from twinkleandtwine

Here is the photo that inspired my "anytime" felt garland:

pic from handmade

Hope your felt garland adds a touch of fun and whimsy to your home, office, or party!  -Kristen


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