How to make Christmas cards, scrapbook pages and other goodies without special photo editing software

I know it’s not even November yet, but before you know it, it will be time to send out Christmas cards. If I don’t start on things now, they will probably go out late! Besides, you don’t have to make just Christmas cards with this tutorial, you can make any card or invite or layered graphic.

My computer has Photoshop on it, but it’s on the fritz, so I have been using my husband’s computer – he doesn’t have Photoshop on his computer and I have been procrastinating on installing it. I’ve been doing all my icons and graphic layering using POWERPOINT! Microsoft does make a flyer making software, but I don’t have that on my computer, either.

Some things are actually easier to use PowerPoint than Publisher or Photoshop or any other fancy photo editing software. I’ve including the following step-by-step tutorial on how to do your own Christmas cards (or birthday, or Easter, or scrap booking or electronic invitations) using PowerPoint. I made my wedding monograms some years back with this technique.

Printing pictures as Holiday cards can be more economical and can offer you more creativity and variety. You don’t have to follow a template! You can even make your own postcards this way by gluing cardstock to the back of one of your pictures.

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Home Projects to Try!

I’ve been spending too much time on the internet for no good reason. Unless boredom and not being very motivated is a good reason.

Anyways.

We are edging closer and closer to owning our new home and I am excited about the crafting and decorating projects! I found some great tutorials for a few things on my to-do list.

 

How to Paint Upholstered Furniture

I have a chair that I need to try this on. I’ve scoured the interwebs and these are the 2 tutorials that I thought would work the best and were the best cost-wise

Click the picture to take you to detailed instructions!

Here is another great blog that tried a slightly different technique:

A painted print!

How to Paint a Table to Look Like New

I am trading my brother tables just so I can personalize it by painting and reupholstering. This tutorial was very straight-forward and easy to follow.

These two projects are definitely on my list of things to do, regardless of our place of living. I have lots of other things on my list if we get the house.

I can wait to start on gardening projects, too!

Homemade Christmas Gifts: Yarn Wreath

Do a Google Image search for “Yarn Wreath” and lots of pretty things will come up; Christmas wreaths, colorful spring wreaths, and everything in between. My friend Nichole is a big fan of yarn wreaths and got me interested. I decided to try my hand and create a yarn wreath with felt flowers for my aunt’s new home for Christmas.

Yarn Wreath with Felt Flowers How-To:

Yarn wreath using felt wrap rosettes and scrabble tiles

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Lots and Lots of Felt Flowers!

Felt flowers are everywhere; these cute flora can be used for brooches, hair bands, home decor and more! Not only are there a ton of different things to use felt flowers for, there are a ton of different felt flowers as well.

Here is a compilation of some of my favorite felt flowers and tutorials. Stay tuned for Christmas Gift Ideas using these rad rosettes!

Click "more" to view many more felt flowers and how to make them!

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Sunday Afternoon Dress

The other day I found this cute blue and turquoise fabric on clearance and I knew I wanted to make a dress out of it. I have this vintage dress that I love and it seemed simple to replicate – it’s really just a square with some sleeves and a collar.

I’m not a sewing expert, but I know that sometimes a little bit of direction makes sewing a little easier. I tried to include everything, so hopefully this will help! I used a thin, non-stretch cotton material for this dress. You could use an old sheet, cotton fabric, or a non-stretch synthetic material as well. The thinner the better because you need it to drape. Too thick and it will look unflattering.

You can include an elastic casing or just cinch it with a belt like I did! No zippers or button-holes required. I imagine this dress would be easy to make into maternity wear as well.

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How to add ruffles and a bib to a shirt

Yesterday I posted a brief tutorial on how to make a fitted shirt from an over-sized one. This tutorial will demonstrate how refashion the shirt by making a ruffle bib front. You can make ruffles and a bib from any material; scraps from a large shirt, or scraps from a second shirt.

Supplies and Equipment:

  • Shirt or shirt scraps
  • sewing machine
  • Matching threads
  • Fabric scissors

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How to make a top from a large men’s t-shirt

I’ve been seeing a lot of cute refashion tutorials and ideas online and refashioning a t-shirt has been on my to-do list. Most of the tutorials involve some sort of ruffle or bow – which I quite like. Emma Pillsbury from Glee? LOVE her style. I figure if I can alter a cheap t-shirt it would save me money, fit me well, and I would like the style; which can sometimes be hard to find.

If you can’t find two cheap shirts to refashion, you can buy one large one and use the extra fabric to decorate. Men’s shirts at hellmart Wal-mart are $4; XXL and XXXL’s are just $5.

I bought a men’s shirt that was 4-5 sizes larger than my regular size, and planned to size it and use the extra fabric to fashion bows, ruffles, or a bib. Before I could decorate the shirt though, I had to make sure it fit me well enough that I could wear it in public. Here’s how I did it, and instructions for you to do the same.

How to make a shirt from an over-sized men’s t-shirt:

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DIY sewing machine pin cushion

I’m one of those people who have straight pins everywhere. It’s a bad habit, I know, but it’s limited to the craft room. Enter at your own risk! When I am sewing something I remove the pins and they pile up next to my machine then get pushed onto the floor.

While I was on Pinterest the other day(a fun site compiled of things you want and will never have, crafts and DIY projects, food porn, and art) and I saw a project for a sewing machine pin cushion. Genius! I don’t know where it came from, but it was easy enough for me not to need instructions.

Here is how you make a pincushion for your sewing machine. This tutorial also can be used to make pillows!

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Vintage dress re-fashion

I went through a brief stage of buying a few vintage dresses online. I still browse but I don’t really need another dress so I am refraining. I bought a lot of vintage dresses for less than $10 each – all in my size!

One dress in particular needed a little work. I thought it was cute if it was accessorized properly, but Marc really didn’t like it.

Dress in original condition

Here is the dress. It seems like all the vintage dresses I have bought have been sheer. Did people have slips in every color? Disregard the fact that you can clearly see my bra.

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How to Make a Hair Flower or Brooch Clip

Here I use two small flowers

I wear a lot of hair flowers. I also see a lot of them on sale for outrageous amounts; that’s why I make my own. You can too! Never buy a hair flower again – make your own hair flowers that can double as a brooch! It’s easy, inexpensive, and has endless varieties.

Supplies:

Silk or fabric flowers (a flat flower works best, such as daisies or orchids)
Alligator Brooch Clips
Hot glue gun
Fabric or felt scraps
Pliers or metal cutters (to trim flowers)

Find flowers that are fairly flat and the size you want

Directions:

Remove flower from stems and cut as close to flower as possible – you want the flower to have as flat of a back as possible. You may have to glue some flower layers back together.

Depending on how flat the flower is, you may or may not need to use a pad under the clip. If needed, glue a piece of fabric or felt the same size or slightly bigger than the clip where you will glue the clip onto.

If you use fabric, the cloth may fray with use. Felt is a better option if you have any.

Glue the clip to the back of flower

Or you can glue the clip straight to the flower

And after it dries – congrats! You have your own hair flower/brooch! Wear in your hair, pin to your sweater or bag!

Add feathers under the petals, use vintage flowers, add or remove different petal layers from different flowers, or put a cab into the center of the flower for more variety.

How to wear hair flowers:

I like to wear the flowers either with my hair half up and the flower to the side (as pictured above), behind the ear when my hair is down (like my avatar photo), or to the side of my “poof” as shown below. If you are wearing a low pony tail, you can also clip the flower on the side of the ponytail (wearing a low side ponytail looks cute this way). If you want more ideas for flower and how to wear them, you can just do a search on Etsy, and see how other people are making and wearing them.

Fabric flower with feathers, worn to the side of a "poof" (and not a very good poof on that day)