Sunday, February 22, 2015

Easter Bunny White Pom Pom Yarn Wreath

Easter Bunny Pom Pom Yarn Wreath

An absolutely adorable Bunny Pom Pom Wreath to decorate for Easter.

I started with a 14" stryofoam wreath form that I wrapped with  yarn. I always wrap my styrofoam forms (even with white) just because it gives it a more finished look.

The face of the rabbit was created from a combination of different features that I thought would look perfect for a bunny. Once I had the image like I wanted I printed it on cotton fabric with my laser printer. The face was then attached to a larger piece of felt/fabric that was attached to the wreath form.
The ear are also made with matching colors felt. I also personally made all of the pom poms that are attached around the wreath.

Overall I am pleased with the look. It is definitely one of my favorite.






 

How To Make A Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath - DIY Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath

How To Make A Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath

Patriotic Red, White and Blue Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath

So I am going to attempt to give a quick tutorial on how I make my Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath.  This is per a special request from someone that happened upon my page!  I use this basic process for making all of my Spiral Wreaths that can be found on this blog.  The only thing that changes would be the sizes and extras that are added to the completed wreath.  But basically....the process is the same for each.

Here goes...and once again forgive me for being too wordy...I'm  Cajun and that's what we do.

Supplies Used:
10" Red Deco Mesh
10" White Deco Mesh
10" Blue Deco Mesh
10" Box Wire Wreath Form
Chenille Stems
Wired Ribbon (Optional)

The first thing I always do is get my wreath form ready for action.  I don't buy the pre-wired forms because they are a little more expensive.  Why pay more when I can just make it myself with a plain form (which can be purchased at any Craft Store) and chenille stems.
The form is made up of 4 rings.  For this tutorial I will refer to the two outer rings as a group an the two inner rings as a group.
Use the chenille stems and wrap around the perimeter of the 2 Outer Rings weaving in and out.  It usually takes one for each "section" of the wreath form.  I do the same thing for the 2 Inner Rings of the form.
This step is not required, however, I do this because when adding my spirals they tend to slide around the form.  By doing this step, it gives them something to hold on to and they stay exactly where I want them to be.
This is what it should look like when you are done with this step.

 Ok...your form is ready and now it's time to cut your mesh.  I'm sure there are quicker ways to do this but this is my method from the beginning and it works for me.  It is just cutting...so do what feels comfortable to you.
I am using 10" wide deco mesh.  You can use the large mesh but I find the spirals are tighter and look better with this size mesh.  It's a personal preference.
For this size wreath form (10" in diameter) I am going to make a total of 15 "bunches" of spirals with 3 spirals per "bunch."
Not sure what else to call them but you will see what I am talking about shortly.
Since I am using 3 different colors (red, white and blue) I will have one of each color represented in each "bunch." So that would be a total of 15 pieces cut of each color of mesh that I am using.
 Roll out your deco mesh and cut them in 10" lengths.
You will be cutting across the mesh so it will still keep its natural curl to a certain extent.
I forgot to take a picture of my pile of mesh pieces but I had a total of 45 pieces of mesh cut.
15 Red
15 White
15 Blue
This is the tricky part and takes a little getting used to.  I like to sit on the floor because it makes it easier for me to make the spiral bunches.
Take one cut piece of your first color and simply roll it up going with the natural curl of the mesh.  Don't do it too tight because they will look weird in the end.   I usually roll each of my 10" cut pieces 5 or 6 times.
Not to tight but not too loose.  You will get the hang of it the more you do.   If it doesn't look right...just unroll and try again.  Mesh is very forgiving.  Thank goodness for that!
Now, I mentioned I have one of each color per bunch.  So I will do this with each color.  This is the part that sitting on the floor help.  I roll my red mesh, pinch it in the center and place it under my knee.  I roll my white, pinch the center and place it on top of the red under my knee.  I roll the blue mesh then grab the other two colors and pinch all three together.  It takes getting used to but really not hard at all.
The order of the colors really doesn't matter...just as long as you have three rolls in each "bunch" like pictured above layered and in different directions.
I also used wired ribbon for this wreath, but that is optional.  I just take once piece of 12" wired ribbon and lay on top of my "bunch."

Now you are going to take a chenille stem and place it behind the group of spirals.

You want to twist the ends up and around the the back of the bunch and bring the two ends of the chenille stems together and twist tightly a few times to secure the bunch together.


Continue to do this with all of your cut pieces.  3 spirals to each bunch and ribbon if you want.  Like I mentioned, for this size wreath I am going to make a total of 15 bunches.

Now that I have all 15 made it is time to start adding them to the wreath form.  I always like to start on outer two rings.  Add all the bunches around the perimeter then work on the center.  This way, I can fill in any gaps or spaces that I may have left.
With you wreath frame facing down, take the first bunch of spirals and pull the two ends of the chenille stems through the second ring from the outside of the form.  Put one above the ring and one below the ring.

This is where you will see how great the first steps works.  It keeps the bunch in place while you twist the chenille stems together to attach them to the form.  Once it is attached I just trim the chenille stems a bit and tuck into the form so they aren't just sticking out.

Continue working around the wreath form adding your bunches.  Since I made a total of 15 bunches, I am going to evenly space 10 around the outside and then put the remaining 5 on the inside.
This is what the front will look like with two attached
 It doesn't look all the great to start but the more you add you will see it start to fill in all the gaps.  
Complete the outside ring and the do the same process for the inside ring.  It is a little harder to get to but just move the mesh around to get them in there.  Like I said before, the mesh is very forgiving.
This is the outside with all bunches added.
As you add each bunch just remember to keep looking at it from the front to make sure your gaps are filled in completely.
So that is the basic process of making a Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath.
 By all means you can do more bunches or fewer bunches depending on your personal preference on how full you want the wreath to look.
The same process works no matter what size wreath form you use.  You would just need more bunches for larger wreath forms.
You can also use as many or as few colors as you would like for this type of wreath as long as you have them in bunches of 3.
And here is the completed wreath that I just made.
 Here are a few other Spiral Deco Mesh Wreaths I have previously made.

Mardi Gras Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath

Winter Purple and Silver Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath

Christmas Red and Green Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath

St. Patrick's Day Spiral Deco Mesh Wreath



Hopefully that wasn't too confusing.  Feel free to ask me questions if there is something that wasn't quite clear enough.

Go out and start making your own Spiral Deco Mesh Wreaths!
Also feel free to share your photos of completed wreaths you have made.

Brad

April 13, 2016
I received a photo and an enormous and beautiful wreath that was created by someone that found this little tutorial.  Thanks for sharing Genevieve!!!



Another user submitted photo of her completed spiral wreath.
Thanks Heather Z.
Feel free to send me your photos and I will post them here.  If I start receiving more I will create a separate page.
Email pics to neworleanscraftsbydesign@gmail.com



More beautiful wreaths submitted!!


I have started another page that I am adding your wreath photos to:

Your Wreath Photos!!


 

Monday, February 16, 2015

Patriotic Red White and Blue Deco Mesh Sunburst Wreath

Patriotic Red, White and Blue 
Deco Mesh Sunburst Wreath

Celebrate the Red White and Blue with this Beautiful and Full Deco Mesh Sunburst Wreath.

The base of the wreath is a 10" wire wreath form. I used red deco mesh, blue deco mesh and a red, white and blue plaid patter deco mesh to make the individual pom poms that were attached to the wreath.

I added tons of ribbon to each pom pom. There is a red and white ribbon, blue and white ribbon and a silver sheer glitter ribbon.

The completed wreath is full and measures about 24" wide and 8" deep.


Patriotic Deco Mesh Sunburst Wreath




 

He Is Risen Matthew 28:6 Framed Burlap Print

He Is Risen Matthew 28:6 11x14 Framed Lavender Burlap Print

I love being able to work with different fonts and play around with my Silhouette Design Studio. I created this beautiful Lavender Burlap Print with various different fonts and added decorative scrolling across the top and bottom of the print.

The design is printed directly onto a gorgeous lavender burlap. The burlap itself is cut to about 8.5x11 inches and has a felt backing for stability. The print is framed in an 11x14 black frame with and 8x10 mat. (The actual burlap that is seen is about 8x10)


He Is Risen Matthew 28:6 Framed Burlap Print



Mothers Day World's Most Awesome Mom Framed Pink Fabric Print

World's Most Awesome Mom
11x14 Framed Pink Fabric Print

Get a unique and beautiful gift for you mom for this Mother's Day. A beautiful pink fabric print that says exactly who she is...World's Most Awesome Mom!

This image was printed directly on 100% Pink Cotton Fabric with a Laser Jet Printer. The color are crisp and vibrant. The print itself is cut to about 8.5"x11" (size of a sheet of paper) and has a felt backing for stability.

The print is framed in an 11x14 Black Frame with an 8x10 mat. 


World's Most Awesome Mom Pink Fabric Print




 

The Meaning of Mother Framed Burlap Print

The Meaning of Mother 
11x14 Framed Burlap Print

I came across this saying and loved it and and decided to add my own unique touch to it and print it on burlap. A great unique gift for Mother's Day!

The image is printed directly onto tan burlap that is cut to about 8.5"x11" and has a felt backing.

The print is framed in an 11x14 Black Frame with an 8x10 mat.


The Meaning of Mother Framed Burlap Print



Mother's Day Framed White Fabric Print

Mother's Day 11x14 Framed White Fabric Print

I am pretty certain that all of these words describe my mom....and I am sure there are more tut this is a good start. My mom is truly amazing.

This image was printed directly on 100% White Cotton Fabric with a Laser Jet Printer. The colors are crisp and vibrant. The print itself is cut to about 8.5"x11" (size of a sheet of paper) and has a felt backing for stability.

The print is framed in an 11x14 Black Frame with an 8x10 mat.


Mother's Day Framed White Fabric Print


 

Saturday, February 7, 2015

Etsy Team Games and Facebook Like Trains

Are they worth the time and effort?

I have been selling on Etsy for almost 2 years now.  I don't have a booming business but I definitely stay pretty steady most of the time.  Most of my spare time is spent promoting my shop and items on Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest, Twitter and pretty much any other place I can find to promote.  In my opinion, aside from having a great product with great product photos and the right tags...constant promotion is what it takes.

When I first opened my shop I did a little research and decided that I had to start joining all of these Etsy Teams in order for my shop to be successful.  At least that is what I was thinking after I read several blog posts and articles.  So, I joined several of the teams and started joining in on the conversations and playing the promotion games that some require you to do as a member.

It quickly became a chore to sit through and start liking all of these items and shops and having to constantly create treasuries.  It definitely increased my likes for the items that I chose from my shop but did little else in the way of getting the actual buyers to see my items.

What I eventually realized is that all the people on the teams were sellers as well....not the buyers!  So why am I spending all this time promoting my items to people who will more than likely not be making a purchase from my shop?  Sure, their followers will see the items they liked in the page feed....if they happen to be looking around the time my item was "liked."  I don't know about other people,but I never really spent much time browsing through my feed to see these items.  So if I wasn't doing it...chances are others weren't doing it...so the little game that was very time consuming and supposed to bring business to my shop didn't do anything except give me extra likes...not sales!

I eventually stopped playing the games and was removed from several of the teams for not participating.  I removed myself from a few of the teams just because I didn't have the time to focus on my shop.  I still belong to a few teams but not for product promotion.   The teams I belong to now or for tips and strategies and things of that nature.   No more Etsy Team Promo Games for the guy.

I also started joining a few Etsy Promo type groups on Facebook...since I do have a Facebook Business Page.  From time to time I would post my newly listed items in the group feed and would get a few views every now and then.  

I eventually started to see Facebook Like Trains for Facebook Pages, Instagram and Etsy Shops.  "Like my page and I will do the same."  

That is all fine and dandy but just Liking my Facebook Page is not going to do anything other than give me another Like.  For this to actually work you need to also interact with my page and continue to follow and share and comment or whatever.  Otherwise it's just a Like.  If you tell me that you will do that then sure lets trade likes and help promote each other that way...but it never works out that way. 

 I guess I am just crazy but it really does amaze me that people would rather spend their time playing games on Etsy or Facebook that are usually geared toward other sellers than working to get their items out in front of actual buyers.   And no...I don't have all the answers but I do know that this is not the answer.

Once I realized it and stopped wasting my time I noticed that my Shop Items were actually getting quite a few generic likes.  People that found my shop by whatever means and liked an item.  Maybe they bought it maybe the didn't...but it was a genuine like.  Same thing with Facebook.  I post my items and share them and sometimes it increases my following sometimes it doesn't.

In my opinion, one Like or Favorite from a random search beats 100 likes from playing a game with other sellers.

That is just my opinion!

St Patrick's Day Leprechaun Pom Pom Yarn Wreath with Handmade Felt Hat

St Patrick's Day Leprechaun Pom Pom 
Yarn Wreath

My latest handmade yarn wreath to celebrate St Patrick's Day.

When I started out I wasn't sure how this would turn out but I am quite pleased with the overall look of this wreath.

I started with a 14" styrofoam wreath form that I wrapped with orange and green yarn. I made 10 large orange pom poms that I attached to the wreath to give the affect of a beard. I also added a little yarn to the top to give the illusion of hair.

The hat is made with green felt that I attached to a stiffer white felt for stability. I also added a black felt strip and gold glitter buckle for more dimension to the hat. At the last minute I decided to add the felt shamrock to the hat just for a break in color.