Tuesday, September 16, 2014

~ Velvet Pumpkins for Fall Decorating

The Decorated House - Fall Decorating - How to Make Beautiful Plush Velvet Pumpkins

It's beginning to feel like Fall in many parts of the country, and it sure seems to bring out
that desire to fluff the nest and make a few pretty things to decorate our homes with.
One of those absolutely lovely things is plush velvet pumpkins. Of course
 you can purchase some pretty ones if you are short on time,
but you can also make one, or a few, with some simple instructions. 
Click this link for full directions on how to make beautiful plush pumpkins
 to add to your home this year.

See Y'all Soon~
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~ How to Make Velvet Pumpkins Plush & Pretty - DIY - Tutorial

You can find so many tutorials for making these pretty velvet pumpkins, it didn't seem necessary to write another one in great detail with step by step pictures. I'll leave a link at the end of the post to a search on pinterest for diy pumpkins and as you will see there are dozens. And they are mostly the same. I have a bit different way of making them and I'm going to share that with you along with some finished pictures of course!
It's tough finding velvet anymore! I guess there just isn't much demand. The type of fabric the companies use who make these commercially, and sell of big bucks, is silk velvet. You can order it online, but since I wanted the pumpkins now, there was no time to order. One of the fabric stores had a nice stretch velvet in cream, off-white which was mainly what I wanted anyway, and that is what I used.

Close up of Stem and Ruching Details.

Inside my pumpkin is one of those cheap dollar pumpkins. Those things are pretty ugly. They are easy to spot because they have  bulky seam running across them. Unless you decorate them in some way to cover it, they always look odd. However, used as the inside center  of my new velvet pumpkin they work great!

Here is my method of a less floppy pumpkin. But it is equally as plush!

1.  Start with a cheap faux pumpkin, and cut a circle from your fabric to cover the whole thing, plus some extra for the bulk that you are going to add. Remember you can always cut it smaller, but you can't make it bigger once it is cut.

2.  Some of the more expensive velvet pumpkins have plastic (doll making) pellets inside.  This is not my choice if there are kids or dogs around who might get them.

The best alternative that I found is to use beans instead. I used dried lentils and dried black beans. Both were equally good for this purpose. You can find large, cheap bags at costco and bjs.

3.  Put your faux pumpkin in a plastic bag. I used gallon zip lock,  then cut off the top and taped the edges up around the pumpkin to a more round shape so that the bag laid more flatly against the pumpkin.

4.  Now fill up the inside the plastic bag, around the pumpkin, with the beans. Move them around so that you have a layer of beans all around the pumpkin.

Then tie up the plastic bag with a baggie tie.

5. Take the circle of fabric, and sew a simple basting stick about 1/4 inch from the edge all the way around. Use a double thread so you when you pull, it will be less likely to break.

6. Gather the thread around the edge, making a sack or bag for the pumpkin. Leave it open enough so that the pumpkin will fit inside.

7.  Put the bean-bag-pumpkin inside the center, and continue pulling the gathering thread until it is closed and then sew it from side to side to close it tight. Now you will have a lovely ruching at the top which you can adjust after you tie off the thread.

8.  Now you can play with the beans and pinch the velvet and beans to make ribs.

9.  Hot glue, or regular glue, a real pumpkin stem on the velvet pumpkin. Be sure that has been thoroughly dried. (Do not store these in a plastic bag unless they are very, very dry, or they will mildew.)

So now you can see that by doing your pumpkins this way they have a little different look. I like to make pretty ribs, and have them stay that way.

The stem is real, but I dry brushed some lime green on it instead of leaving it all brown.

You'll notice that my pumpkin is not floppy. It holds it shape exactly. If you want a floppy version, most of the tutorials I found make them so.  Some used polyester batting inside and nothing that holds the shape like the faux pumpkin and the beans. Those can be nice as well, it just  wasn't the look I was after.

Click on the picture below and you can find dozens of tutorials for making velvet pumpkins.
How to Make Velvet Pumpkins - Plush and Pretty

See Y'All Soon~

Thursday, September 11, 2014

~ Magnolia Leaves & Burlap Flowers - Fall Decor ~ Natural Elements

The Decorated House ~ Fall Decorating Burlap Flowers and Nature
 Magnolia Leaf Wreath 
and Burlap Ribbon Rosette w/Lace

Magnolias leaves, one of Mother Nature's best inventions are such a perfect natural element in Fall decorating with their beautiful shiny green leaves accented with rich velvet copper on the underside. This is my inspiration for Fall decor this year.  No wonder people have been decorating with them for so many years. And now it's Fall...well kind of. It's still quite warm, but you can fell the change in the gentle breeze during a morning walk. From now through the holidays the magnolias have wonderful seed pods in addition to the pretty leaves, and that makes them so perfect for decorating.

The Decorated House ~ Fall Decorating - Burlap Flowers and Nature

So while we were out walking the last few mornings  we also collected some natural elements to add to our home for Fall. I can remember when we were first starting out Sweet Hubby used to go out on bike rides and bring me back bags of weeds, flowers and pods to use for arrangements. This year I decided it would actually be fun to do much the same thing, and to  mix it up with a few things that I already have or a few things to buy, like this darling burlap ribbon with white dots!

This is another take on the fabric flower rosette that you all like so much.  You can find the directions of how to make it HERE. This time I used a burlap ribbon. So there is no need for you to cut fabric into strips, the ribbon is ready to go. It's the same technique, roll the middle bud, then fold the ribbon away from you and roll it around the bud, fold backwards and roll...and just keep going until it is the size you want. Add a drop of hot glue or stitch it to keep the rose in shape. 

I'm loving the copper and lime green this year. Perfect Fall colors for me. And then Halloween just around the corner. The last days of each year go so quickly don't they?!

See Y'All Soon~

Sunday, September 7, 2014

~ Magnolia Leaf Candle - Fall Decorating ~ 1 Little Project at a Time

The Decorated House : Fall Decorating - Magnolia Leaf and Burlap Wrapped Candle with Fabric Rose
 Magnolia Leaf  and Burlap Ribbon Wrapped Fall Candle
with Flower Rosette and Rhinestone Button

Even with the temperatures are still in the 90's around here, the pull of Fall decorating is gently tugging at me. I've been playing too much of the "if only" and "as soon as I get ______ done" games ..... if only all these work projects around the house were done, then I could get out the Fall goodies and decide what to do this year. So instead of playing that silly game, it's time to just do one little project at a time. Too much work and no decorating makes some girls grumpier than than they need to be. So let's play and make something very pretty and very, very simple. 

This is very similar to the candle HERE that I made before for Christmas time. For this one, we will use the beautiful copper side of the leaves turned out. The pretty shiny green side peeks out at you as you look at the candle from different directions.

All you need to do is put a rubber band around the candle and tuck the leaves inside it spaced the way you like. Then tie a ribbon or two to cover the rubber band. Add a pretty embellishment lie the flower and you are all done!

It is that rich and beautiful copper color that is really singing my tune right now. This color is so very pretty and just speaks fluent Fall. Now to figure more ways to work it into the Fall decor.

The ribbon here is a burlap with white dots. This will be used in other pretties for Fall and/or Halloween this year. This ribbon can easily be found at the craft store.
(** Please remember burlap usually has  formaldehyde on it. So keep it out of the reach of children and pets!! I wear plastic gloves in case I go into the kitchen after making something with it.)


The front is embellished with one of the lovely fabric flower rosettes that I posted about HERE with instructions and pictures to make your own. There are so many pretty projects that you can use these for. It is finished with a wonderful vintage rhinestone button, but you could use something new that looks old as well.

You could make a couple of these in a short time. I made some flower rosettes out of the same  white dotted burlap ribbon and they turned out really fun, so I'll be using them along with this candle. If I get just one little project done at a time, maybe I'll have some fall decorating soon!

See Y'All Soon~

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

~ Fall to Christmas Handmade Decorations - DIY Magnolia Leaf Candle

How to Create a Magnolia Wrapped Candle by The Decorated House : Fall - Christmas Decorationss

Very soon the season of  hurry and scurry will be upon us. When it gets a little too wild this time of year it might actually be relaxing to make something pretty for Fall or Christmas - Winter time yourself, with your own two little hands. All you need is a candle, some leaves 
and a lovely ribbon. This lovely and simple candle will be warm and pretty in your home for 
months to come. You can change the ribbon with the holiday and still
keep the beautiful color of the leaves. If you used preserved leaves
it will last for a very long time.

Here is how to create this very simple, but really pretty decoration.
* Start with a larger, chunky size candle, although you could so something similar with two matching  smaller candles, or just one if you wished.

* Find leaves in Nature that are strong, pretty, and clean. Of course you an purchased preserved leaves as well.  I chose magnolia leaves for the beautiful colors.

*  Put a rubber band around the candle.

*  Arrange your leaves inside the rubber band so it will hold them in place as you want them.
You can see with the magnolia leaves you have two colors, so you can alternate them for the look above.

*  Tie a pretty ribbon around the rubber band to hide it. Then if you want you can add a charm, another decoration for Fall, Winter or Christmas. Something simple, you don't need much of anything.

You can use your candle as part of arrangements on a mantel, table or anywhere you might think of!

See Y'All Soon~

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Thursday, August 28, 2014

~ How to Print on Fabric Using an Inkjet Printer - Image Transfer - DIY - Tutorial

The Decorated House: ~ How to Print on Fabric - DIY - Tutorial - Inkjet Printer Image Transfer

There are many ways to create an image transfer on fabric. This is one of my favorites!
And it has become one of my reader's favorite tutorials as well.

Forget the spay glue adhesive and freezer paper. This is much better.
It is very easy to do and requires no messy chemicals to transfer your image to fabric. 
This tutorial will show you how to use your inkjet printer at home.
(I have read that others used their laser printers for fabric,
but I have not tried it, so I cannot say how it works from my
own experience.)

** All art in this tutorial is the original, copyrighted
art of Donna, The Decorated House. **
The Decorated House: ~ How to Print on Fabric - DIY - Tutorial - Inkjet Printer Image Transfer
The secret to making this technique so simple is the use of large shipping labels. 
They  come in 8.5 x 11 inches sheets.
You can easily find them at any office supply store 
and some other stores as well. 
They are cheaper per sheet if you purchase a box of 100, 
but you can find smaller boxes too.

Choose your fabric. This should be something like a cotton or cotton blend. 
The fabric here is a medium weight unbleached cotton. 
The first picture above is a white linen. 

1.  Cut a piece of fabric about 3 inches larger than the
8.5 x 11 label leaving a 1 to 1.5  inch area around the entire piece.

(The piece I used for that picture has not been ironed yet,
but be sure to iron your fabric if it has any wrinkles at all.)

As you can see here, there is a place on the back, in the center, for you
to take the backing off the sticky label. 

2. Take the backing off the label
and center it, sticky side down,
 on the BACK of the fabric.

3. Press firmly along the edge of the label. 
You want to make sure that you get the best bond 
between the fabric and the label as possible. 
A spoon works fine if you don't have anything else to use. 

 4. Next cut the fabric around the label.
Cut as close to the label as you can.
Cut slightly into the label.
This will give you an even better seal. 

It will be less likely that you will have loose threads from
 the fabric going into your printer  if you
cut into the label slightly. 

(Tip: If you can sharpen your scissors before doing this step this is 
a very good idea.)

The Decorated House: ~ How to Print on Fabric - DIY - Tutorial - Inkjet Printer Image Transfer 

5. Load the label/fabric into your printer 
so that the fabric side will be printed on!
Each printer is different, so
if you can't remember, test on plain paper first.

Guide the fabric in as it begins to print.
This will help keep it  from catching, and will load
more smoothly.

6.  To "heat set" the ink, you
can iron your fabric after it is printed.
Lay a plain piece of fabric on top 
and just iron it after you 
remove the label from the back.

The above picture is what it will look like
after you print your fabric.
That fabric unbleached cotton and
printed on an Epson printer, 8.5 x 11 inches.

The Decorated House: ~ How to Print on Fabric - DIY - Tutorial - Inkjet Printer Image Transfer

Both of the smaller art fabrics are 8.5 x 11 inches using one full label sheet. 
 They are both on unbleached cotton of slightly different weights and colors. 

The larger one, in the center, is using TWO labels.
 It is printed on white cotton linen.
It is 19 x 13 inches, 
and was printed on a large format Epson printer. 

7.  For Larger than 8.5 x 11 inches,
How to make a larger size if you have a large format printer:
You can print up to whatever size your printer will allow
by using more than one label. 
Cut out your fabric again slightly larger than the size 
you will  be printing. 

Lay the labels on the back of the fabric, covering the size you
want your final fabric piece.
Then cut around the label and fabric, 
making sure to keep it straight.
The Decorated House: ~ How to Print on Fabric - DIY - Tutorial - Inkjet Printer Image Transfer

*Disclaimer: About Printers:  Although I have used my large format printer which is a little bit more expensive printer to do this, there is a chance that if you use your printer with certain fabrics it may cause harm if any threads come off inside of it. If your printer can print on fabric transfer paper, then it should print using this method. Just be sure to trim off any loose ends/threads before inserting the fabric into the printer.

You can use your fabric piece now for
 pillows, bags, art and dozens of things 
that you can think up to create! 
Have fun!

See Y'All Soon~
 Click on any of the pictures below to shop art from The Decorated House