Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Cutting Felt with your Silhouette: Lampshade flower decoration & Giftbox cover

This one is for all you who love beautiful things...and two-for-ones. :)

Don't you just love two-for-ones?  Things with two purposes--killing two birds with one stone, so to speak? We're all generally so busy, it seems that if we can accomplish two things at once, we are feeling pretty good. Well, for my giftwrap for my mom's Mothers' Day gift this year, I decided to combine a cute giftwrap idea I saw on pinterest with another adorable gift idea I saw at Hobby Lobby a few month's back.  I have always really loved more elaborate and beautiful gift-wrapping. My mom specifically bought a bunch of nice ribbon and bows to help make my Christmas gifts more "magical" because she knew how much I loved it. :)  Isn't she great?  Now, I thought I could show her some extra love and appreciation by making her a beautifully wrapped gift for Mother's Day.  Bonus:  the box-topper I made also serves as a lampshade decoration.  Enter: cheering. :)

Box topper also serves as a lampshade decoration!  

To start, you'll need the following:

* Felt or fabric (felt sheets are .25 cents a piece at Hobby Lobby)
* Silhouette Heat-Transfer Fabric Interfacing (I used the Clean-Cut type and was easily able to hand-stich through it, though "Sewable" is recommended if you plan on using your sewing machine.  We have both types.)
* Silhouette Fabric Blade, if you don't already have one--see our website for why it is important to have a separate blade for cutting fabric, then decide if you need one.
* Thread
* Button and other embelishments
* Two magnets
* Hot glue gun and glue

First, I decided on the size and shape of the flower that I wanted to make.  I just recently downloaded a "shape" off silhouette's online store that was really a variety of different shaped flower petals.  I made my flower mostly out of that.  (It should still be available here if you are interested.)  Then I ironed on the Silhouette Fabric Interfacing, according to the directions on the package.  After ironing it on, trim your fabric and interfacing down to the same size.

I inserted my Silhouette Fabric Blade, and set the blade at a 10, and marked "Double Cut" when I sent in through the Silhouette.  I did this because I was using felt instead of regular print fabric.  I read up on whether or not it was okay to cut felt with your silhouette, and decided that it was worth the risk.  It worked for me with these settings.  This would be adorable with regular print fabric, however.  I want to try it with that next.

Note:   Position your fabric in the center of the cutting mat, as it can bunch if it has to run under the white running wheels (the things that help "load" your cutting mat).  Position your shape to cut on silhouette studio based on where your fabric will be placed on your cutting mat.  Just keep that all in mind. :)

After cutting your flower out, iron the pieces, interfacing side down, onto an extra scrap portion of fabric.  This gives your interfacing something to adhere to, thickens your flower a little bit--adding stability--and saves you from having to sew or glue all of the petals together.  The ironing only calls for 2seconds on each piece.  Piece-o-cake if you ask me. :)

Once I cut out my original flower, I decided I wanted a little more dimension to my flower, so I repeated the first few steps with a few more petals from another flower I had in my library.  I ironed them onto some extra felt as well, to add a bit more height, thus the three middle petals I actually did hand-stitch on.  However, before stitching them on I stitched on a little embellishment that I had on hand, which I bought in a pack at Hobby Lobby for about a dollar.  Then I decided to do a little hand-stitching around each of the flower petals (small back petals with a blue thread and bigger petals with a dark cream colored thread).  I guess this defeated the idea of not having to sew them all together, but we create as we go, right?! So it goes. :)

Final step, glue on a magnet to the back of your flower.  It will stay put on your lampshade as you put the second magnet behind where you have the flower positioned on your lampshade (i.e. second magnet you put inside the lampshade).  So cute, right? 

Now, to use your flower as a gift topper.  I used a paper bag for wrapping paper, and a cute paper doily I saved from underneath my drink at Johnny Rockets (they'd have thrown it away as soon as we left) earlier last week.  Be resourceful. :)  

I folded the doily a little to make it fit on the box-top, then glued it down.  Just use a little tape underneath your flower to keep it adhered (you want her to be able to take it off easily to use as her lampshade decoration, so don't use glue!)  Don't forget to put the second magnet in with the rest of your gift so she can actually put up her flower later. :)

Finish it off with a lovely "matching" doily card, made from Cricut's Creative Cards cartridge (which we have on sale right now!) and you have yourself a Mothers' Day gift that is likely a step-up from what your mom is used to getting. :)  She'll love it.

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