SMP Craft
31 Jul

Author of the Month: Deanna Csomo McCool of 50 Ribbon Rosettes & Bows to Make

Deanna McCool with daughtersThis month we sit down for a Q&A with expert ribbon crafter and sewer Deanna Csomo McCool, author of 50 Ribbon Rosettes & Bows to Make: For Perfectly Wrapped Gifts, Gorgeous Hair Clips, Beautiful Corsages, and Decorative Fun! Deanna has practiced arts and crafts since she could tie her shoes. The mother of two daughters, she began sewing bows so that her daughters would feel like princesses. Find her blogging at Sew McCool and check out her fun and fabulous designs available on her Etsy page.

1. What’s your craft? I’m a ribbon crafter and a sewist/quilter. My love of fiber arts began by sewing quilts and knitting more than 13 years ago. When my older of two daughters was entering kindergarten, I started doing ribbon work because I wanted to make her some special bows that she could wear to school. My girls wear school uniforms…which are quite plain…so I wanted to dress up my girls with some hair accessories! I made bows almost exclusively for about 6 years. I really love it! And when I’m sewing other items, I enjoy incorporating ribbons and trims into my designs.

2. What project would you consider an all-time best? My favorite types of bows to make are layered boutique bows—I can get lost in my work while deciding on colors, textures, and bow centers…and then it’s so fun to put them all together into an attractive design. The large layered bows are featured as the final project in “50 Ribbon Rosettes and Bows to Make,” and you can see one on the girl on the left, on the cover. While these layered bows aren’t always to every adult’s taste, I’ve found that all girls love how pretty they are, and enjoy wearing them. They’re like mini works of art.

yellowvert

3. What project would you consider an all-time worst? In my early days of bowmaking, I had a lot of flops. One in particular was a Halloween bow—in orange and black, of course—that I thought was going to be the next best thing in the bow world. I mean, seriously, I expected to take the ribbon world by storm. I was selling bows on eBay at the time, so in addition to the bow being really scary looking (and not in the good “Halloween scary-looking” kind of way), the photograph was horrible. I hadn’t yet developed good photography skills. I don’t have the photo anymore, but suffice it to say….it was bad.

4. What tool or material could you not live without? I have a wood-burning tool that I bought for—shocker—wood burning projects, back in the early 1990s. I no longer make wood-burning designs, but this particular wood-burner is perfect for sealing the edges of ribbon so it doesn’t fray. I’m often surprised that this tool keeps on working after all these years!

5. What’s your hidden talent? I’m a decent portrait artist. I became a little obsessed with portraiture when I was in middle school, and the interest never went away. In college I minored in studio art and focused on figure and portrait drawing. I haven’t drawn portraits very much since college, but when I do bring out the pencils, the skill comes back to me. One of my professors required us to draw 50 heads, hands, and feet before the end of the semester…so I had a lot of practice during that class alone!

 

Capture1Capture2Capture39781250052117_FC50 Ribbon Rosettes & Bows to Make is a delightful collection of more than 50 decorative ribbon projects—some classic, some whimsical, some elegant—that will prove irresistible for anyone with an interest in craft. With many sizes, colors and designs to choose from, you can craft a rosette or a bow as a charming addition to an outfit, a gift box, or even a bouquet of flowers. Each design features written instructions accompanied by clear step-by-step illustrations, and absolutely no experience is necessary!

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Walmart

Check out our August and September titles:

3D_50-Ribbon-Rosettes-100x1453D_SewingMachineEmbroider-100x1453D_Wild-Things-to-Sew-100x145

20 Jul

Goodreads Giveaway: Sew!

If you couldn’t get enough of the adorable coat hangers from this past Freebie Friday, we’ve got some great news! This week’s Goodreads giveaway is Sew!.

Cath Kidston’s Sew! is a treasure trove of simple projects all made using popular printed fabrics. With over 40 colorful patterns, there is a project for sprucing up any area of your home or for making useful purses and totes. All the techniques are clearly explained and tips are given for variations—allowing you to customize the basic designs as you wish! Check out Cath’s blog for more fun inspiration!

Some of the projects include:

– child’s apron complete with handy pocket

– bird mobile for a nursery

– practical zippered knitting needle case

– amusing airplane blanket

 

ACT FAST: This Goodreads giveaway only runs through Wednesday, 7/23.

Goodreads Book Giveaway

Sew! by Cath Kidston

Sew!

by Cath Kidston

Giveaway ends July 24, 2014.

See the giveaway details
at Goodreads.

Enter to win

 

Can’t wait? Order today!

9780312652944_FC

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Powell’s Books
Walmart

 

Check out our July and August titles:

3D_LoomKnitting-100x1403D_50-Ribbon-Rosettes-100x1453D_SewingMachineEmbroider-100x145

18 Jul

Freebie Friday: Cute and Padded Coat Hangers

Wire hangers. Ugh. We’ve all used them only to find they easily get tangled up together and often leave odd shapes in the shoulders of our favorite sweaters. Today’s Freebie Friday will help you make some extremely adorable and padded coat hangers that can help solve all those problems—plus they will perk up any bedroom!

Capture

what you will need…

  • 20 x 65cm floral fabric
  • wooden coat hanger
  • padding (old tights or top cut into 10cm strips works well)
  • 60cm bias binding
  • matching sewing thread
  • sewing kit
  • and perhaps the book that inspired it…

9780312652944_FC

 

Sew! is a treasure trove of simple projects all made using Cath Kidston’s popular printed fabrics. Reflecting her love of vintage-style patterns, the fabrics feature fresh colors in delightful and unexpected combinations. There are 43 fun and useful projects, all shown in stunning, close-up photographs complete with full-size pattern and on an enclosed sheet for each project, step-by-step instructions and templates.

 

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Powell’s Books
Walmart

 

Check out our July and August titles:

3D_LoomKnitting-100x1403D_50-Ribbon-Rosettes-100x1453D_SewingMachineEmbroider-100x145

Tagged with: , , ,
8 Jul

Guest Post: Cross-Stitch Wedding Gift

*Today we have a guest post from one of our colleagues here at St. Martin’s Press. Welcome Lizzie and thank you for sharing your project!*

The internet is chock full of great DIY tricks and adventures to make your wedding a one-of-a-kind-dream-come-true occasion on any budget. Whether you want literary themed place cards, Mason jar tablescapes, or the perfect homemade favor for your guests, there’s a tutorial for you. And while all of that is fine and dandy, as the perpetual bridesmaid on a budget, what about me? See, I am the Maid of Honor in my dearest friend’s wedding. And while I love being part of this special day, like many of you out there, I am on a budget. So what do you do? What can you make that is personal, sweet, and doesn’t scream “too cheap to use the registry”? In my case, I turned to cross stitch.

Over the past few months, I have been teaching myself to cross stitch using a mixture of websites, fellow SMP crafters, and trial and error. But for this bridal shower gift, I turned to an expert and consulted 100 Cross Stitch Patterns: To Mix and Match. I decided to make the happy couple a sampler for their wedding. It’d be a cute throwback keepsake that would suit the couple’s sweetly modern style.

First, I tweaked the colors to better represent the youthful energy the bride and groom exude. Hot pink replaced mauve and red and for the groom, I added a nice cool blue for the lettering. He’s a cool dude after all. Then, since this was for a bridal shower, I decided to use cursive lettering instead of the traditional block print from the pattern. I wanted their initials to be the focus of the picture and not an afterthought, which meant tweaking the design to eliminate two of the trees to make room for the larger stitches.

Capture

Original pattern from the book

photo 3

My take on the colors and pattern

Helpful hint: invest in some graph paper and draw out the pattern yourself so you can center the lettering. The “M” stitch was much larger than the “E”, so I was eternally grateful I had the foresight to mark out the stitch on paper before jumping right in.

After a week of stitching on the subway, pricking my fingers, and having to go back and rip out misplaced threads, I finally had something I was proud of: my first pictorial cross stitch! And amid all the Vitamix blenders and silver platters, I never felt for one moment that my gift was less important or meant less.

10497431_10203100752817301_52462830891724905_o

Happy bride with her handmade gift!

9780312600143_FC

An ideal introduction to the art and craft of cross stitch, this great collection contains over 100 mix-and-match patterns, organized by type: borders, flowers, alphabets and other simple motifs. These can be endlessly combined to create exactly the effect you want, simply by flipping through the pages. Whether you want to create homewares, embellish clothes, or produce works of art, all the patterns easily mix and match.

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
IndieBound
Powell’s Books

Check out our July and August titles:

3D_LoomKnitting-100x1403D_50-Ribbon-Rosettes-100x1453D_SewingMachineEmbroider-100x145

Tagged with: , ,
2 Jul

Author of the Month: Leonie Morgan of 100 Colorful Ripple Stitches to Crochet

Leonie Morgan HeadshotThis month we sit down for a Q&A with crochet and knitting expert Leonie Morgan, author of 100 Colorful Ripple Stitches to Crochet. Inspired at an early age by her mother’s granny blanket, Leonie taught herself how to knit and crochet from various books and hand-me-down knowledge.

Find her blogging at WoolnHook and check out her beautiful and inspiring Pinterest page. She lives in Wales with a wool-tolerant partner and three wool-loving cats.

1. What’s your craft? I crochet and knit – all the time.

2. What project would you consider an all-time best? My Book Blanket is my all-time-best. I used all the squares designed for my first book and joined them together. It’s really warm, cosy and full of color.

Book Blanket

3. What project would you consider an all-time worst? One of the first crochet things I made was a cropped cardigan. I missed some of the stitches out and didn’t block. I knew it wasn’t going to turn out grand but carried on regardless and wore it around the house feeling smug. As the day wore on, the arms got longer, and longer, and longer. It went in the unravel pile that evening.

Crochet Disaster

4. What tool or material could you not live without? Wool. If there was a wool drought I’d have to unravel sweaters.

5. What’s your hidden talent? Super hearing.

9781250049490_FC (1)100 Colorful Ripple Stitches to Crochet is a wonderfully illustrated and easy-to-use guide to making and using ripple stitches in delightful and inspiring ways. With 75 original stitch designs to choose from there is plenty here to appeal to every crocheter—blankets, accessories, and more! Each design has a clear written pattern, an easy-to-follow chart, and a color variation to try out. The designs range from simple to more advanced patterns and also include ripple stitches worked in the round for unusual and eye-catching projects. It even includes five great projects as inspiration for how some of the designs could go together!

Capture3Capture4

Amazon
Barnes & Noble
Books-a-Million
Indiebound
Powell’s Books
Walmart

Check out our July and August titles:

3D_LoomKnitting-100x1403D_50-Ribbon-Rosettes-100x1453D_SewingMachineEmbroider-100x145

CAUGHT CRAFTING: SMPCraft’s Spotlight on NYC Crafting

SMPCRAFT #CAUGHTCRAFTING Thursday morning, Astoria, Queens. Accessorizing with a lovely temporary floral tattoo she learned to make from DIY Temporary Tattoos: Draw It, Print It, Ink It by Pepper Baldwin!

PROJECT OF THE MONTH: JUNE DIY Father’s Day Gifts to MAKE NOW

PROJECT OF THE MONTH: JUNE DIY Father’s Day Gifts to MAKE NOW

Father's Day is less than three weeks away -- Sunday, June 19th in the U.S. -- just enough time to start prepping for what would make dear old pops feel loved....What dad, what MAN, wouldn't want to get a bright red tool box full of homemade BBQ, bacon, and chili flavored chocolate? Or a handmade Paracord hammock? Does he play golf?--hand dipped tees? Does he like to hike? Enjoy nature and the great outdoors? How about homemade beef jerky? Or does he enjoy watching sports--Remote Control Cookie? What about beer? One of the coolest new items coming out of Japan is a Frozen Beer Slushy Maker by Kirin Ichiban that perfectly pairs with the DIY black and tan soap! Scroll and click for more homemade DIY Father's Day gift ideas sure to make pappy happy! Hashtag #SMPCRAFT #DIYFATHERSDAY!

My Recent Pins

Follow Me on Pinterest 
My Pinterest Badge by: Jafaloo. For Support visit: My Pinterest Badge