Category: DIY

DIY: How To Make Simple Fall Jewelry and Hair Accessories

diy_fall_jewelry_accessoriesWe love Fall around here. The cooling down from a super hot summer, the change of colors of the trees, and the somewhat slower pace of life.

For the first time, we decided to tackle the fall theme and make some useful and practical fall crafts: fall themed jewelry and fall themed hair accessories, we decided to get inspiration from the zegarki wooden watches that plantwear sells.

Basic Fall Beaded Necklace with a Central Focus Piece

Lets start with the fiery orange necklace that my daughter Sarah created. Isn’t that center metallic piece with the orange leaves just stunning?




Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.

Necklace Supplies:

First, we went to Hobby Lobby and looked for two things:

  1. What was on sale – all our components, except for the toggle clasps which we call ‘findings’, was 50% off.
  2. What made us think of fall.

Sarah immediately found the metallic pieces and then the swirled orange beads. She then added the second set of slightly transparent beads to add texture to the final necklace.

I looked around a bit and found the beading wire for half off. The findings (the toggle clasps and crimp beads) were full price – but since the toggle clasps were the most expensive item, we got it using Hobby Lobby’s 40% off coupon! We used gold colored wire and findings.

The complete list then is:

  • Fall themed centerpiece
  • Fall themed beads
  • Beading wire (28 gauge)
  • Findings (toggle clasps and crimp beads)
  • Pliers or jewelry tools

Click here to find jewelry wire and tools on Amazon.
Click here to browse findings on Amazon.

How To – Steps To Create The Necklace

1 – Clear The Workspace

diy_fall_jewelry_accessories_2I love to start with a clean workspace. Since we don’t have room in our house for a separate place, I keep my craft items in bead boxes and stackable baskets. We then clear the end of the table, lay down a clean cloth, then lay out our supplies.

2 – Lay Out the Beads

Decide were you want the pieces of the necklace to go. Do not start beading on the wire until you have laid things out. You may want to experiment with different patterns, how many beads you use, etc… My oldest daughter Sarah created this necklace. She started by laying down the centerpiece. She then decided to do two of the smaller, slightly transparent beads and then one of the swirl painted larger beads. When she was finished, she added a couple of additional smaller beads onto the end.

Please note that the supplies in the photo above above made two necklaces.

3 – Measure Out the Wire

Now that you have the beads laid out, you also will know how long the necklace will be. Start your wire about two to three inches before the beginning of one side of the beads, then measure it out to the other side of the laid out beads, then add two to three more inches.

4 – Add Finding One (Toggle Clasp) to the End of the Wire

Since this Wiki article does such a good job in explaining how to start with the wire, the first half of the clasp, and the crimp beads. I will refer you to it vs. trying to explain it all here.

5 – Thread the Beads onto the Wire

Make sure your wire doesn’t have any kinks or bends in it, otherwise, the necklace will have kinks and bends. Now, start feeding the beads on from one end to the other. This is why you laid everything out beforehand, as you are starting at one end, then going to the other. This is the only way to make sure you get the centerpiece in the center of the necklace.

When you get to threading (putting on) the centerpiece, you will notice when you pick up the necklace, that it is sideways on the wire. You can do two techniques here.

  1. Make a simple twist of the wire (two times) until the centerpiece is facing forward.
  2. Use a finding called a jump ring. Thread the jump ring onto the wire instead of the centerpiece, then thread the jump ring through the loop on the top of the centerpiece. You may have to use the pliers to open up the jump ring, then squeeze it closed again.

6 – Add the Second Finding (Toggle Clasp)

This was the hardest part for us so I will refer to this video: Click here for a free, quick video from Annie’s that shows how to do the beads and finish with the second finding.

Annie’s has a series of jewelry making videos that go in-depth into many different techniques and types of jewelry to make.



Cute and Simple Fall Hair Accessory / Hair Clip

Hair Accessory Supplies

In case you did not read the above section, we look for two things first when looking for looking for supplies for our project:

  1. What was on sale – the fall holiday decor was 40% off at Hobby Lobby (oh Hobby Lobby, how I hope you have an affiliate program soon!)
  2. What made us think of the season or theme we are currently working on – in this case, FALL!

We wanted a cute hair accessory that girls (and maybe even women) would want to wear. We went through all of the fall craft supplies and jumped when we saw these felt sunflowers. They were perfect!

We already have a small glue gun, glue sticks and felt.

The supply list then is:

  • Hair clips (we already had these, I had purchased them for a good price at Walmart)
  • Mini glue gun and glue sticks (again, already have, purchased at Walmart)
  • Fall felt Sunflowers
  • Orange felt (had on hand)

Click here to find glue guns and glue sticks on Amazon.

How To – Steps To Create The Hair Accessories

1 – Clear the Workspace

As with the jewelry making, we clear a large space on our table to start our work. Hopefully someday we will have a dedicated table / craft station!

Since this project uses hot glue, we do not put a cloth under the work, but instead use a sheet of cardboard. We put the glue gun on an old plate.

2 – Set Out the Components of the Project

We make a neat pile of the sunflowers, another pile of the hair clips, plug in the glue gun and have a backup glue stick ready. We then cut out the backing felt in a round or oval shape from a simple piece of felt.

3 – Construct the Hair Clips

dyi_fall_jewelry_accessories_3I will be honest, this is pretty simple.

  1. Add hot glue to the back of the sunflower (please be doing this with an adult).
  2. Open the hair clip and place the sunflower on top of the clip (or, you can leave the sunflower on its back, then open the clip upside down and hold it down on top of the sunflower).
  3. Place the felt under the top part of the clip so the glue attaches to it too (see picture above).
  4. Press (this is the hard part, to not get hot glue on you) and don’t close the clip until the glue is dry (otherwise it will adhere to the bottom of the hair clip).

We have learned the hard way that the felt is a MUST have. Hot glue does not hold permanently on surfaces like metal and plastic. But it will adhere for life (or close to it) on fabric, especially felt.

That is it! Let it dry for a few minutes and then you can put it in your hair.

BTW, if you aren’t sure you want to dive in and make either of these at this time, you could always purchase the finished product from our Etsy shop!


diy_fall_jewelry_accessories_fb

Encouraging Children To Be Productive: How I Teach My Children To Sew At A Young Age

Encourage Your Children To Sew - Here is How!
Encourage Your Children To Sew – Here is How!


The photo above is my 4 year old daughter holding her first sewing / embroidery project. This post is about how I got her and her sisters started sewing, now my 8 year old has an Etsy shop, and her soon to be 7 year old sister is now joining her in sewing for it.

I had already started sewing with my oldest daughter (age 7 at that time) and I wanted to engage my just turned 6 year old and my almost 4 year old. They were ready to try, as they had both spent the past year watching sister sew and had been using sewing / lacing cards similar to these:
Stephen Joseph Lacing Cards-Garden
Melissa & Doug Lace and Trace Pets
Lacing Shapes

Tali loves her pillows that SHE made.
My 6 year old loves her pillows that SHE made.

You can also make your own lacing cards:

  1. Get a medium thickness piece of cardboard.
  2. Glue a large, fun picture on the cardboard (we used kitties from an old kitty calendar).
  3. Cut out around the picture.
  4. Using a hole punch, punch holes about 1 inch apart around the edge of the picture / cardboard. Be careful not to do the holes too close to the edge of the cardboard or they will rip with a little tugging.
  5. Attach a piece of yarn to one of the holes. Make sure it is long enough to go around the card a little more than one time.
  6. Put a piece of tape around the end of the yarn at least 3 times.
  7. Cut the tape into a point.
  8. Show the child how to sew!

Children’s Beginning Embroidery

I came across some really basic embroidery kits in a catalog and realized that would be the best way to get them started and give them their first taste of real sewing. This is the kit we used: Stamped Embroidery Kit Beginner Samplers 6″X8″ 3/Pkg-Huggable Animals

Here is a very similar kit on Amazon that looks super cute – I just added it to our wish list: Jack Dempsey Stamped Embroidery Kit Beginner Samplers, 6 by 8-Inch 3-Pack-Outside Fun.

These kits come with a large needle (that isn’t too sharp), the embroidery thread, the design all laid out on the cloth, a hoop, and instructions. The designs are simple and something they really like.

I would sit with them and show them how to make the first stitches, then hold their hands for awhile while they tried it. They usually weren’t ready to go it on their own the first time, but after a couple of sewing sessions, they were ready to try their first solo stitch.

When they were done with the project, we ended up cutting out a piece of felt to match, turned them wrong side together, sewed the edges, turned them right side, stuffed them, and turned the embroidery project into little pillows. The pillows are still one of their favorite things!

Basic Things Children Can Sew By Hand

Once the children learned how to stitch with their embroidery kit, we moved on to a couple of sewing projects. We got the following book from the library, but I would recommend purchasing it because it comes with patterns: Sewing School: 21 Sewing Projects Kids Will Love to Make .

Some things we made include:

  • Garden apron
  • Pin cushion
  • Stuffies
  • Cell phone holder
  • Pillows
My oldest with her best creation yet.
My oldest with her best creation yet.

Once my oldest daughter had learned to sew through a handful of the projects in this book, we then started her making little velvet pillows and opened an Etsy shop. We have just sold a couple of them, but it has encouraged her to keep wanting to sew, keep her productive, and show one of many ways she can earn money in the coming years. We are now adding larger, throw pillows and fun, drawstring bags to her shop over the next couple of months! Like or favorite her shop so you can be informed when she adds the products.

The Evolution of Mom

How I Get My Children To Start Cooking With Me: Train Them While They Are Young

Your children want to cook with you!

Yes, that is one of my own children, by age 4, in the kitchen with me helping me cook. Before you think it is a crime that I have a four year old near a burner, let me assure you that mom is, except for this quick photo snap, right there next to her, literally holding her hand as we stir and boil.

So, how do I get them so comfortable in the kitchen, so young? Well, by the time they are two, they are usually curious about what mom is doing in the kitchen, so I let them start watching on a stool or chair, and teach them some basic kitchen rules:

1) They must not touch anything!

2) Mom points to hazards and says: sharp! or hot!

3) If they don’t obey, they have to leave. If they obey, they might get a taste test, especially if we are making baked goods:-)

Once the children have demonstrated obedience, I usually give them the chance to help stir foods not on a stove / not hot. I hold their hand at first, until I see their confidence, then give them a chance to try it own their own. I always remind them to hold the bowl / container they are stirring with one hand while stirring with the other.

By the time they are 3 or so, I find they are ready and wanting to put in ingredients and may also be curious about watching mom at the stove. As for the ingredients, I usually help them pour / scoop until I see their confidence, then let them try on their own. One of my weaknesses is tolerating spills. I am still working on that so I don’t discourage them.

As for having them at the stove, the rules are clear:

1) No touch anything! Unless I let them stir with me (both of us holding the spoon / spatula).

2) If I have to walk away from the stove for any reason, the little one has to leave the stove with me. I never leave them there w/o me until I feel they are an age that is safe (about 7 or 8).

I have had a few phases where I haven’t felt “up to” having them in the kitchen with me. They will stop trying to help after a while and lose interest in the process, so I have to remember to come and ask for their help again and get them interested again (cookies almost always work).

If you have been wanting to get your children in your kitchen with you, but still feel a little daunted or unsure after reading these tips, contact me or order my eBook – Teach Your Children To Cook – The Simple, Healthy, Cheap Way!  The book starts off with some rules and tips, then has a lesson on pouring, measuring and stirring. Finally, it contains 14 recipes, starting very simple and gradually growing in complexity to do in the kitchen with your children.

eBook_Teach_Children_To_Cook

 

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