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Re-imagine & Renovate: Graphic Ruffled Edge Blanket Becomes 'Beary-Beary' Cute

Tuesday, 10 January 2012 9:00

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The baby blanket is, in my mind, the perfect gift for new parents. It's thoughtful, practical and, with the right mix of fabric, cuter than a pile of kittens. Our version gives you plenty of real estate for one cute fabric on the front, another on the back plus a third accent fabric as a dense ruffle all around. Our original project design was done up in Pillow & Maxfield's Pretty Bird collection for Michael Miller Fabrics, which gave the blanket a sophisticated splash of color and a chic artistic flair. When we selected this project as one of our R&R opportunities, we decided to dial up the cute factor with three fabrics from David Walker's Get Together collection for Free Spirit Fabrics. What's R&R you ask? "Re-imagine & Renovate," we answer. We took a classic project and re-made it in a new fabric to create an entirely different look and feel. We chose David Walker's bears and birds in blues and greens, and absolutely love how his designs look like little paper cut-outs dancing across the fabric. This is a blanket with a story to tell, "Once upon a time there was a bear, who jumped up high into the air, higher than the pair of marshmallow trees..."


Re-imagine & Renovate: Vintage Style Apron Becomes a Floral Fantasy

Monday, 09 January 2012 9:00

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This apron shot to the top of our Most Popular list the very day it posted, and although there have been many contenders since it was originally designed and unveiled back in April of 2010, it remains one of our Top Five Projects Ever. Of course, it HAD to be one of our R&R options: "Re-imagine & Renovate." If you've been following us over the last week, you know our New Year's resolution is to show you how one project can turn out an unlimited number of ways, depending on the choices you make with fabrics, trims and notions. Kick off your own R&R with a shopping trip for some fresh fabric, then use it to put a new spin on a favorite pattern. Our original apron had a very vintage feel thanks to its Simply Sweet fabric by Barbara Jones for Henry Glass & Company. We kept the sweet and added a little spice with a trio of Lecien Fabrics covered in bold roses, polka dots and tiny buds. It would make a dashing Valentine's Day apron!


Re-imagine & Renovate: Trendy Two-Handed Potholder Becomes Kitchen Kitsch With Happy Hens

Thursday, 05 January 2012 9:00

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Last January, we came up with a number of projects designed to give you great ways to use up your fabric remnants. This "Scrap It" series produced many favorites, which are linked to, pinned on Pinterest and featured on handmade blogs around the country and the world. At the top of the list was our clever two-handed potholder in a splashy combination of fabrics from the Pretty Bird collection by Pillow & Maxfield for Michael Miller Fabrics. To "Re-imagine & Renovate" the project, we decided to search for a more traditional 'kitcheny' motif and a narrower palette. The black, red, white and yellow of monaluna's Metro Market collection with its friendly fowl design was just the ticket.  Wouldn't this make a great housewarming gift? Or, include a few wooden utensils and a spatula, and you have the perfect wedding shower present. Experimenting with fabric is the idea behind R&R. Give it a try; you'll be thrilled with all the different ways you can put a new spin on a fave design. (By the way... that's me in the photo above, holding one of my happy hens who approved this new fabric combo.)


Re-imagine & Renovate: Structured Fabric Baskets Become Boho Nesting Duo

Wednesday, 04 January 2012 9:00

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Today's "Re-imagine & Renovate" project was originally requested by our S4H fans. You wanted a cool set of fabric baskets and we responded with what has become one of our most popular Storage Solutions projects ever! Our first set was done in the classically striking Black & White collection from Michael Miller Fabrics - perfect for a sewing room, kitchen or office. Now, cue the Tasmanian Devil special effect... whoosh and voila′: when done in two Free Spirit Fabric collections with a bohemian flair, our nesting baskets are a kaleidoscope of rich color and design. Try them out in a bedroom, a bath or fill them with luscious treats for Valentine's Day. One project a thousand ways, that's what R&R is all about.


Re-imagine & Renovate: Subtle Organic Box Pleat Pillows Become Bold, Modern Accents

Tuesday, 03 January 2012 9:00

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It's Day Two of our 2012 quest to "Re-imagine & Renovate" some of our most popular projects. One project can turn out an unlimited number of ways, depending on the choices you make with fabrics, trims and notions. Sometimes it's fun to not worry about learning a whole new project; instead, take a fave design and twist it into a brand new look. Today we're featuring our super simple box-pleat pillow pair, which we originally did in softly serene tones of organic fabric in 2010. Now, graphic fabric from Robert Kaufman in vibrant hues moves them from a whisper to a shout-out of color and vibe.


Re-imagine & Renovate: Ruffled Market Tote Becomes High Art Handbag

Monday, 02 January 2012 9:00

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Welcome to 2012! After the whirlwind of the holidays, we thought it was time for a little R&R. Not the traditional "Rest & Relaxation" but even better: "Re-imagine & Renovate." We reached back into the S4H archives and found eight popular projects, then we re-did each of them with brand new fabrics, trims and notions. It's our way to show you how easy it is to put a new spin on a fave design. We kick off the series with our original Mother's Day Market Tote from 2011, which we turned into a sleek and stylish bag that makes a dramatic fashion statement.


Bound Wool Eyeglass Case: Soft & Pretty Protection

Thursday, 29 December 2011 9:00

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Cut-bind-stitch. Three steps and you have a wonderful accessory for yourself, a gift for a friend, or a dandy little craft fair/boutique item to sell. I'm a big fan of the eyeglass case because it's the best way I've found to keep track of my eyeglasses or sunglasses. Plus, it protects them when I need to toss a pair of into my bag. We added a cute dangling fob made of leather and beads. This tutorial is also a great way to practice your bias binding technique. We use packaged binding, and have lots of photos to show you how to go smoothly around the curved bottom and make pretty mitered corners.

Java Cup Jackets with Ruffles are Fun & Frilly

Tuesday, 27 December 2011 9:00

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There are lots of patterns out there for reusable hot cup jackets, but none with our signature touch: the girly-girl ruffle! Skip that boring ol' cardboard sleeve and wake up your morning cup of coffee or tea with a fun and frilly custom jacket. Our instructions are for one jacket, but we ended up making three as we perfected the instructions. They are super fast and easy, and you can really get an assembly line going: cut-cut-cut, ruffle-ruffle-ruffle, stitch-stitch-stitch. These would be awesome for a craft fair or as an Etsy item.

Love That Fabric: Retro Hip Kokka

Friday, 23 December 2011 9:00

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I've long been attracted to the fabric collections from Japanese manufacturer Kokka, and have learned not to wait when I see a Kokka print I love. Several times I've had my eye on something, come back the next day to buy, only to learn it had sold out while I was thinking about it.

The other day, while exploring Fabric.com for linen to whip up few holiday gifts, I came across some of the very prints I had missed out on from Kokka and knew I had to stash it. This fabric is what I'd describe as retro hip. With large prints and repeats, many of which are cotton-linen and cotton canvas, they are ideal for simple pillow covers, aprons, totes, bags and more. The prints themselves are so unique and eye-catching, they quickly become conversation starters. Take a look at some of the cool prints I found.

Quick & Cool Holiday Gift: Two-Tone Gift Bags in 3 Sizes

Thursday, 22 December 2011 9:38


Our elegant gift bags come in three useful sizes and are a great way to use up larger fabric scraps. The fabric we selected for our bag trio is from Joel Dewberry's Heirloom collection for Free Spirit Fabrics, which we originally featured in our recent Thanksgiving Series. The exterior and lining of each bag are both made up of two fabrics, which gives them a beautiful finish inside and out. We added glittery rick rack for a dash of holiday sparkle. You could substitute other trims, such as piping, pom poms or or even wide ribbon to give your bags a different seasonal appeal or to coordinate with the colors of a special event, such as a wedding or graduation. Make one or make them all; they're a trio of terrific totes to carry your treats and treasures! 


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