Pages Menu
TwitterFacebook
Categories Menu

Posted by on Jul 3, 2014 | 0 comments

Artist Profile: April’s Baby Creations

Artist Profile: April’s Baby Creations

April Scripps never ceases to amaze me. She makes her own yogurt, ferments vegetables, makes kombucha, and bone stock, and brews a few batches of beer annually, all of which she does regularly in her home. Today, we feature April’s creations for babies – handsewn, appliqued bibs, crocheted teethers, hair clips, pacifier holders, and rattles. April buys the wooden beads wholesale and drills holes in the center in her studio. She finishes the wood with beeswax. She made up the patterns through trial and error, coming up with aesthetically pleasing designs that babies find perfect for grasping and for soothing sore gums. Some combine teething rings as well as grasping beads to help babies three months and older with their motor skills. Anyone with a baby knows how much they love ribbons and tags, and April’s toys include several just for that reason. As you may expect, April’s youngest, baby Aivleen, has her own collection of handmade teethers and toys. She helps April test the products for their durability...

Read More

Posted by on Jan 17, 2014 | 1 comment

Swants: Turning Sweaters into Pants

Swants: Turning Sweaters into Pants

Wonderfully weird, swants (upcycled sweater-pants) are an invention by knitwear designer Stephen West. They’re getting a lot of press lately, thanks in part to a wacky dance video of his crew of swants-wearing models in Amsterdam. You can see it for yourself at the end of his tutorial on how to make swants. The Del Ray Yarn Bombers decided we had to get in on the fun and make some  Swants for ourselves. We met at UpCycle Creative Reuse Center (CRC) where owners Kelley and Susan, had already assembled a few gently worn, thrift store sweaters. The uglier the better. For this project, the bigger the sweater the better too, unless you’re making swants for a child. The way it works is that you turn the sweater upside down and put your legs through the arms. If the sweater is big enough, the arms will reach to your ankles. Kelley picked a couple of sweaters small enough to turn into swants for her son and daughter. We all agreed...

Read More

Posted by on Apr 12, 2013 | 0 comments

Making Felt Animal Masks

Making Felt Animal Masks

For my daughter Nadja’s animal-themed 5th birthday party, we’ve hired a professional storyteller who will be doing stories like Crictor, the boa constrictor and Three Billy Goats Gruff using puppets. For party favors, I made 10 felt animal masks — count ’em, 10. The kids will get to choose one to take home. The process was pretty easy once we decided on the animals. We started out looking online for images of different animal masks and then sketched out the designs for a puppy, a walrus, an owl, a penguin, a chicken, and a rabbit. I bought all of the felt for the main section of each mask and for the details, like ears and noses, as well as other supplies at Del Ray Variety Store. The other supplies you need are: Scissors Xacto knife Craft glue Thread Elastic Straight pins Sewing needles or a sewing machine Next, I made one template for the main section of the masks and then cut two pieces of felt for each individual mask, so they would...

Read More

Posted by on Dec 26, 2012 | 2 comments

DIY Pets: Making an Upcycled Dog Sweater

DIY Pets: Making an Upcycled Dog Sweater

Our winters are mostly mild, but I wanted our dog Star to look as cute and fashionable as possible. I decided I’d sew an upcycled sweater as soon as I came across the perfect used wool “human” sweater. So, one day, I stopped in Labels Exchange consignment stop and they had the perfect Woolrich sweater behind the counter with a small hole in it. The pattern I followed came from this blog, and I followed the instructions closely except that I added to Star’s design with some needle felting (which would also cover up the hole). Nadja helped me measure Star from her collar to tail, from under her collar to about midway down her belly, from her collar to her front leg… …around her chest, and around her front leg. Over the course of an hour or so, I cut out the pieces, and sewed up the sweater. I’m new to sewing but this, my third project, was easy as pie even to me. Basically, the pattern called...

Read More

Posted by on Aug 28, 2012 | 0 comments

Learning the Basics of Sewing

Learning the Basics of Sewing

Since seventh grade sewing class, I’ve had an irrational fear of sewing (all that precise measuring, cutting, ironing, thread everywhere), but the good news is that I was able to overcome it in one day with the help of a patient and willing teacher — fellow DIY Del Ray blogger, Katie. What made me determined to complete a project was the need for pajama shorts to wear during the hot summer nights (even with A/C on). I knew, just knew, I could make a better, longer-lasting pair than those I’d probably buy from a store where they’re made in a sweatshop overseas. Katie confirmed this, saying: “They will cost you just a couple bucks to make — think of the savings. Once you find the right pattern and size, you’ll be making them lickety split. So easy.” Beginner Sewing Project: Pajama Shorts If you’re new to sewing, these steps may help you add sewing to your DIY repertoire too. 1. Pick out pattern. I first searched for vintage patterns on Etsy,...

Read More