03 March 2011

I Need More... Catalog Copies [Nordstrom Bow T-shirt]

Late last summer, I lifted an idea from a t-shirt in a summer Nordstrom catalog.  I couldn't help myself.  The t-shirt was delicious and it just screamed "You can do that!"


Freezer paper
Sharpie pen
Mark-B-Gone pen
Embroidery hoop, thread, and needle
Fusible interfacing, lightweight

How To:

1. Pin and trim a piece of freezer paper to the front neckline of a t-shirt.  With a pencil, gently trace the neckline of the shirt below the ribbing.  Still with your pencil, sketch a bow onto the freezer paper (or feel free to use my template) and trace the design with a black Sharpie.  

2. Re-pin the freezer paper behind the t-shirt and, with a Mark-B-Gone pen, trace the bow design onto the front of the shirt.  Discard the freezer paper.  (For the record:  It would seem easier to use tracing paper to transfer the design to the shirt.  However, the knit fabric doesn't play well with tracing paper.  Try it if you must, but be forewarned.)

3. Place the embroidery hoop over a section of the design.  With two threads, stitch the design onto the t-shirt.  Move the hoop as needed.  Be careful not to stretch the t-shirt as you sew.

4. Spray the design with water to make the Mark-B-Gone ink disappear.  Do this before you walk away from the project.  Mark-B-Gone turns somewhat permanent after a while.  (I learned my lesson the hard way on this one.)

5. Turn shirt inside out and iron a piece of fusible interfacing just large enough to cover the stitching.  This will help from knots coming undone or fraying.

I Need More... Holiday Handouts [Happy Valentine's Day 2010]

I know that when you're a kid all you want is the store-bought Halloween costume or cartoon Valentine cards.  I did.  But now that I'm all grown up, I appreciate all the hard work my mother did back in the day to make my holidays one-of-a-kind and memorable.  So I am continuing the lovingly cruel cycle with no apologies!  Below are Amelia's Valentine's Day cards which, for the record, beat the pants off every other card in her Valentine mailbox from school.  [Mother smiles slyly.]  Idea originally came from here.


White butcher paper
Photoshop or other photo-manipulating software
Colored cardstock
Hole punch
Cello bags & ribbon
Goodies for inside the cello bag or a lollipop

How to:

1. Create a blank backdrop for your photo.  Here's how I did it:  I pushed a storage tub flush against the refrigerator (to be used as a bench), unrolled several yards of white butcher paper from the local teacher supply store over the tub (held in place by fridge magnets), and have your subject gently sit on your "bench".

2. As the photographer I would suggest standing on a chair to get higher than your subject.  Then as they reach for the camera with their fist, you get a good angle.  And flood the room with light!

3. Using Photoshop or the like, crop or adjust your photo as desired.  I cropped to 4x4-inches.  Layer text onto photo.  I used colors for the text pulled from the colors in the photo.  Save as a jpg.

4. Print your photos.  I sent mine to Walgreens (because they always seem to have a special on prints).  Call the photo center and give them the final dimensions of the photo that you want.  Many of their machines will stretch your image to fit their 4x6-inch photo size, for example, if you do not instruct them otherwise.  My photos came back to me as 3.75x3.75-inches, so pretty close to the original size.

5. Trim off excess photo and mount on cardstock.  Punch holes near the subject's hand (where you will attach the sweet treat).

6. Attach your treat with twine or ribbon.

7. Sit back and enjoy your accomplishment!  And quietly snicker at those who bought their Valentines.  Hee hee.