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Peter Pan Collar Blouse

CraftsAmanda Russell
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With their crisp coolness I cant resist a mans poplin shirt. Here’s a beauty I transformed into a desirable Peter Pan collar blouse, perfect for long hot summer days. Using embroidery scissors and a stitch ripper I unpicked two shirts ready for remodeling, a striped one for the body and white for the collar. I traced the pattern for the shirt and collar from a favourite old blouse I’d had for several years.

You will need:

  • 2 old cotton shirts I for the body of the shirt another for collar

  • thread

  • pins

  • dress making and embroidery scissors

  • measuring tape

  • pencil

  • ruler

  • greaseproof paper for pattern making

  • stitch ripper

Steps:

1.         Cut three bias strips 3cm wide, 60cm long. Open out one of the sleeves, at the widest section make a 45 degree fold.

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2.         Use a pencil to mark 3cm intervals along the fold line, pencil to draw a straight line joining the marks. To make bias strips, cut along the fold line, then along the drawn lines.

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3.         To make long bias strips join strips together.

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4.         Right sides together place 2 strips at 90 degrees to each other, sew to join

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5.         Trim seam and press open.

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6.         The back of the blouse is made from the front button opening of the old shirt. Pin the paper blouse pattern in position with a button at the top of the opening and allow for seam allowances.

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7.         Cut the out front and back section, then sew together at the shoulder.

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8.         Cut four collar pieces from the second shirt and 2 from bondable fabric stiffener. Iron fabric stiffener on the reverse side of two collar pieces. Pin and sew two collar pieces together, repeat with the remaining pieces. Trim the seam and cut notches on the curved seems, turn right sides out and press.

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9.         Pin and tack the collar pieces in place on the neckline. Take a long strip of bias binding, pin and tack along the neck line over the collar edge, sew in place. Trim along sewing line, cutting notches along the curve.

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10.   Fold the bias binding to tuck in the raw edge, fold again and pin and tack, before sewing down.

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11.   Pin and sew bias binding around the armholes.

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12.   Sew the side seems together, neatening edges with zigzag stitch. Finish the arm holes by turning the bias binding to cover raw edge, pin, tack and sew in place. Hem the bottom edge of the shirt, folding up by 2cm and press, then to neaten fold raw edge in on itself. 

Here is another piece you might like, go take a look: Star Light Canvas

Learn to create your own decoupaged hand plates

CraftsAmanda Russell

Who’d of thought charity shop find vintage plates could so easily be transformed into such elegant wall art. A really simple project, you will need an inkjet printer to make the transfer images. I found these gorgeous copyright free eighteenth century wood engraving designs for teaching hand language.

decoupagedhandplates.jpg

You will need

Charity shop plates

Inkjet Water slide decal pack clear

Sponge

Acrylic spray

Copy right free images

Scissors

Instructions –   Select the images you want to use. Print them out in a variety of sizes, cut out using scissors then try them for size on the plates.  2. Follow the manufacturer instructions print the images onto decal paper, then spray with acrylic varnish. Apply a couple of coats covering the printing completely to seal, so it doesn’t break up in the water.  3. When the images are completely dry, cut out with scissors keeping close to the edge of the design. To help the images slide onto the plates sponge on a thin layer of water. Put the paper backed image into a bowl of warm water, leave for about 30 secs. Lift the edge of the image off one corner of the paper. Hold the image over the plate, gently curl the backing paper away and slide the image onto the plate. Use the sponge to pat out any bubbles or wrinkles in the image.  4. Leave til dry then mount in place on the wall using Command strips   Credits   Inkjet Water Slide Decal Pack clear: Specialist crafts LTD  Command Strip http: command.3m.co.uk  If you like this post check out my post on  how to turn and old ladder into a contemporary Christmas tree

Instructions –

Select the images you want to use. Print them out in a variety of sizes, cut out using scissors then try them for size on the plates.

2. Follow the manufacturer instructions print the images onto decal paper, then spray with acrylic varnish. Apply a couple of coats covering the printing completely to seal, so it doesn’t break up in the water.

3. When the images are completely dry, cut out with scissors keeping close to the edge of the design. To help the images slide onto the plates sponge on a thin layer of water. Put the paper backed image into a bowl of warm water, leave for about 30 secs. Lift the edge of the image off one corner of the paper. Hold the image over the plate, gently curl the backing paper away and slide the image onto the plate. Use the sponge to pat out any bubbles or wrinkles in the image.

4. Leave til dry then mount in place on the wall using Command strips

Credits

Inkjet Water Slide Decal Pack clear: Specialist crafts LTD

Command Strip http: command.3m.co.uk

If you like this post check out my post on how to turn and old ladder into a contemporary Christmas tree

Create your own handmade Christmas decorations

CraftsAmanda Russell

This nifty little project making Christmas decorations, is one for people who have pets using old pet food containers. We are talking about those lightweight aluminium ones with a lip round them.

You will need:  Clean pet food containers  Patterned paper  Ribbon  Wooden picnic spoons  PVA glue  Paintbrush  Acrylic paint  Thin card  Clear sticky tape  Double sided tape  Acrylic paint  Felt tip pens pencil  Scissors   

You will need:

Clean pet food containers

Patterned paper

Ribbon

Wooden picnic spoons

PVA glue

Paintbrush

Acrylic paint

Thin card

Clear sticky tape

Double sided tape

Acrylic paint

Felt tip pens pencil

Scissors

 

Instructions:  First cover the inside of the container with the paper face down. Draw around the edge with a pencil. Take a pencil and extend the sideline of the square.  2. Cut out the paper cross shape. Fold the side arms in to crease the paper. Paint the reverse of the paper with a layer of PVA glue, put the paper into the tray, press the two shorter sides onto the tray, then press out the long sides onto the sides. Along the top edge of the tray cut deep nicks in the paper and wrap the paper over the edge to stick in place.  3. To cover the outside of the tray, take a contrast printed paper. Paper face down draw around the base of the tray, cut out square shape. Measure around the outside of the tray, add 1cm for overlap. Cut a strip of paper the measured length and 3cm wide. Paint with PVA glue then wrap around the tray cutting long nicks in the paper to ease around the curved corners, press the loose strips into place on the base, then glue the square of paper over to cover. Poor glitter onto a plate, paint the front edge of the tray with PVA and dip in glitter.  4. To make the portraits, if you like use scissors to trim the top of the spoon into a hairstyle, then paint the spoons with a base coat of white acrylic paint. While they are drying make the shoulders for the portraits. Cut a strip of thin card slightly narrower than the opening of the tray and about 2cm high, fold in half along the length then glue on printed paper.  5. Use acrylic paint to mix a variety of skin tone colours, paint the spoons. Leave to dry then use felt pens to draw on details. Use sticky tape to attach the portrait onto the shoulders. To keep the portrait in position cut a narrow support strut from thin card about 4cm long, fold in both ends by 1cm, then tape one to the reverse of a portrait. Stick the shoulders to the bottom edge of the tray with double sided tape and tape the end of the support strut to the back of the tray. With the point of the scissors make a hole through the top edge of the tray. Cut a length of ribbon and pass one end through the hole and tape in place.  If you like this check out my post on  making a star light canvas

Instructions:

First cover the inside of the container with the paper face down. Draw around the edge with a pencil. Take a pencil and extend the sideline of the square.

2. Cut out the paper cross shape. Fold the side arms in to crease the paper. Paint the reverse of the paper with a layer of PVA glue, put the paper into the tray, press the two shorter sides onto the tray, then press out the long sides onto the sides. Along the top edge of the tray cut deep nicks in the paper and wrap the paper over the edge to stick in place.

3. To cover the outside of the tray, take a contrast printed paper. Paper face down draw around the base of the tray, cut out square shape. Measure around the outside of the tray, add 1cm for overlap. Cut a strip of paper the measured length and 3cm wide. Paint with PVA glue then wrap around the tray cutting long nicks in the paper to ease around the curved corners, press the loose strips into place on the base, then glue the square of paper over to cover. Poor glitter onto a plate, paint the front edge of the tray with PVA and dip in glitter.

4. To make the portraits, if you like use scissors to trim the top of the spoon into a hairstyle, then paint the spoons with a base coat of white acrylic paint. While they are drying make the shoulders for the portraits. Cut a strip of thin card slightly narrower than the opening of the tray and about 2cm high, fold in half along the length then glue on printed paper.

5. Use acrylic paint to mix a variety of skin tone colours, paint the spoons. Leave to dry then use felt pens to draw on details. Use sticky tape to attach the portrait onto the shoulders. To keep the portrait in position cut a narrow support strut from thin card about 4cm long, fold in both ends by 1cm, then tape one to the reverse of a portrait. Stick the shoulders to the bottom edge of the tray with double sided tape and tape the end of the support strut to the back of the tray. With the point of the scissors make a hole through the top edge of the tray. Cut a length of ribbon and pass one end through the hole and tape in place.

If you like this check out my post on making a star light canvas

Turn a wine box into a great shelf

CraftsAmanda Russell

Turn an old wooden wine box into a shelf by painting, wallpapering and adding screw holders at the side to attach it to the wall. I chose a lovely blue paint and wallpaper from Mini moderns, one roll will go along way and that means that you can cover files, books and other shelves too.

You will need –

  • Wooden Wine box
  • Minimoderns Emulsion paint lido £5.00
  • Paint brush
  • Minimoderns wallpaper Darjeeling £50
  • PVA glue
  • Scissors
  • Picture frame brackets Homebase
  • Screw Driver
  • Electric drill black and decker
  • Masonary screws
  1. Paint the exterior of the box with emulsion paint.
  2. Mix pva with a little water to the consistency of double cream and paint the inside of the box to seal.
  3. When dry measure and cut wall paper to size. Paint the reverse of the paper pieces and insides of the box with let down pva.
  4. Press the paper in place rubbing down any stubborn bubbles.
  5. When dry screw picture frame brackets to the side, then screw to the wall.

Tip

  • Wood can be very absorbent and suck up paint, to get an even coat first paint the box with emulsion which has been let down with a little water.

If you like this blog post make sure you read my list on creating your own Designer Work Station 

Unique Space Saving Ladder Plant Stand

CraftsAmanda Russell

Have you noticed the great plant invasion in every interior recently? They can take over all your surfaces so here's a project for a handy ladder plant stand that makes a gorgeous tired indoor garden. Use it to grow plants on as well as herbs for the kitchen. With bags of handy storage you can't help but make space for it in your life.

You will need:

  • Saw
  • Screws
  • Black and Decker drill and jig saw
  • Paintbrush
  • Dulux Matt Emulsion paint
  • Spirit level
  • Scrap wood selection for shelves and battens
  1. I used all my scrap wood for this project, a couple of old boards for the shelves and stripwood in a variety of dimensions for the supports. It was a very mixed bag of scraps so to start with I painted the ladder and all the wood with emulsion for a uniform colour.
  2. To make the ladder lean against the wall you need to adjust the back legs. Put up the ladder, then lean the back legs against a wall so they are perpendicular to the floor. Hold in position, this will raise the front legs off the floor. Measure the distance between the floor and the front legs. Measure and cut this amount off the back legs, now the ladder will hold its position against the wall.
  3. Next add battens on the back legs for shelf supports. Place the spirit level on the bottom step, then use a pencil to mark the position on the back legs. Measure the distance between the back legs, cut a batten from strip wood and screw in place. Repeat for the remaining steps.
  4. Measure for shelves then cut  wood to length. Screw each shelf in place on the step and batten. Touch up the ladder shelves with emulsion.

Cheats:

Emulsion paint is quick and easy to use, surfaces need minimal preparation, it gives great cover and the brushes are easy to wash clean.

If you liked this post check out my blog post on how to make a retro tiled coffee table 

Designer Work Station

CraftsAmanda Russell

I'm always designing and making at Soulfood Studio and I wanted a worktable I could stand at for designing and cutting out projects. I love this faux bois budget station, it gives me everything I wanted, loads of style, a big worktable packed with extra storage. It was super easy to make combining readily accessible Billy bookcases and a flush door, the project is pulled together using an easy bang on trend faux bois paint finish.

You will need:

  • 4x Billy bookcase
  • Flush door
  • Emulsion paint
  • Varnish
  • Universal primer
  • Roller and tray
  • Masking tape
  • Kitchen roll
  • Paint brush
  • Paint kettle
  • Bucket
  • Measuring jug
  • Spoon for mixing
  • Graining Rocker and Combination comb available online
  1. Follow the instructions that come with the Billy bookcases to assemble the four worktable supports. To make the bookcases boxier, we cut the lower skirting section off at the base with a saw, making the bottom shelf flush with the floor.
  2. Paint the bookcases, shelves and door with primer suitable for melamine, and then use a roller to apply two coats of the white emulsion.
  3. Paint lining paper with white emulsion so you can practice the faux bois graining technique. For the graining glaze mix together 1lt orange emulsion with 1lt acrylic scumble glaze. Paint a generous coat of glaze onto the lining paper. Take the graining rocker and pull through the glaze using a rocking motion to create the wood grain design. When you are happy with your paper practices start graining the furniture surfaces.
  4. To get varied woody effects, try using different rocking speeds and for simple graining use the combination comb dragged through the glaze. For best results be generous when applying the glaze and work quickly. To work the glaze while it stays open paint and grain in small sections, brush the glaze on in stripes the width of the graining rocker. After each pass clean off graining tools with kitchen roll. Don’t forget to paint the edges of the shelves and table top, glaze and run the comb over it.
  5. When all the furniture surfaces are faux bois grained, leave to dry thoroughly for a couple of days, to protect the surfaces apply varnish before assembling the furniture. To make the structure more secure use a very strong wood adhesive product, cutting out the need for nails and screws,

If you like this post check out my post on Styling with plants