Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Craft Lightning: The Ultimate Zipper Pouch

Yay, it's time for another Craft Lightning post and the theme is Back to School!
This is the ultimate zipper pouch, a quick and easy back-to-school sewing project!

Pouches are always fun but when it comes time for back to school I especially feel the need for many pouches for all my little office-y doodads. What's awesome about these in particular is that one takes only 15 minutes to make and HELLO it's zippers!

For the record these barely squeaked in under the Craft Lightning time limit of 15 minutes. But I figured if you decide to make your pouches with eight zippers, instead of ten, you would definitely make it in that time frame.

So here's what you need to make a pouch for yourself...ZIPPERS and a sewing machine. I used ten zippers per pouch, the length is completely up to you but I would recommend a length greater than nine inches.

Gather together a handful of zippers and make the ultimate zipper pouch!
1. Start off by lining out your zippers in the order you'd like them.  I recommend having them go head to tail. Using a zig-zag stitch begin sewing together the zippers two at a time. 

2. As you can see in the second picture, to save time I didn't use pins and I went straight from one set of zippers onto the next set of two. From there I sewed the pairs into groups of four, and so on, until they were one piece. 

3. Here's the tricky part, you need to sew the first and last zippers together to create a kind of loop. Basically I unzipped one of the zippers and started sewing (see third image) as far as I could (see the forth image). 

4. Next up, flip it inside out, and unzip the zippers about 3 inches-this will keep you from accidentally sewing the zipper pull tab. Fold it flat and get ready to sew both ends closed to create the pouch. Note: you can pin if you want to, personally I had better luck sewing slowly, and yes you will be sewing directly over all those zippers so make sure you are using a heavy duty needle! 

5. Unzip one of the zippers and flip the pouch right size out. Go ahead, take a moment to marvel at what you just made! Seriously, it is pretty awesome. 

Having all those opening and closing options made me want to super glue all but one of them shut. It would become a trick pouch. Yes, I now that's silly but shh, just let me have this moment. 

Zipper pouches are a must for back-to-school, here's how to make the ultimate zipper pouch in 15 minutes or less!

For more back to school projects be sure to check out these 30 projects, crafts, and organization tips and for more Craft Lightning projects click the box below!

Friday, July 3, 2015

(this moment)

. . . . . . . . .
{this moment} ~ A Friday ritual. A single photo - no words - capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember. If you're inspired to do the same, head over leave a link to your 'moment' (over on SouleMama) in the comments for all to find and see.
. . . . . . . . . .

This week I thought I'd share a picture from Instagram.
If you're not following me now's the time to click the link above! 
A photo posted by Erin Sipes (@mvemother_erin) on

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

DIY Sticker Sheets

Things have been so crazy this summer I feel like I'm never going to get ahead! I've got a backlog of projects to share with you, hopefully before they're outdated. My laptop is slowly crashing so I'm taking a big leap and switching to a Mac; it should be here this week-wish me luck in getting used to it. Um, it is officially July which means we'll be starting up our homeschool in just a couple weeks...go ahead, ask me if I've graded all of last year's work. 

I know it's cliche but time is really flying by, the only bright side is that we're that much closer to vacation time! I'm loving everyone's pictures on social media and I absolutely can't wait to hit the beach. This will be the first time our youngest three have been to the ocean, not that I expect the 18 month old to remember it. Still, I'm trying to come up with ways to make it a special trip for our eight and ten year olds. 

They both love to draw and journal so I'm planning on bringing them each a blank book to fill with their creative endeavors. To get them started I made these summer fun sticker sheets using PSA Essentials Peel & Stick Stamps

Make your own sticker sheets, perfect for journaling!

To make a set of your own stickers all you need are 
  • a number of colored ink pads
  • a PSA Essentials Stamper
  • the Anchor's Away and Life's a Beach Peel & Stick Stamp sets
  • label paper sheets
  • Stamp Centering Block
Supplies you'll need to make your own set of sticker sheets.

I cut a sheet of label paper in half and let the kids pick their stamps and colors. If you don't have a lot of ink pads another idea would be to stamp them all in black and use markers to color them in. Things might have gotten messy. 

Making a mess and having fun creating our own sticker sheets with PSA Essentials.

We plan on simply cutting out our stickers but if you want you could always use a paper punch to give them each a unique shape. 

making sticker sheets with PSA Essentials Peel & Stick Stamps.

It's a simple enough project but it'll be a perfect addition to the pictures and memories that'll *hopefully* fill these pages! 

Make your own stickers for a vacation journal using PSA Essentials Peel & Stick Stamps.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Patriotic Tin Can Candleholders

Use PSA Essentials Peel & Stick Stamper to create these tin can candleholders, perfect for an outdoor get together!

In our house the first week of July is a time for celebrating America, shooting fireworks, hosting cook-outs, and having a birthday party! Our middle son is turning ten, woohoo for double digits!  This year he is suggesting a camp out and these tin can candleholders, along with citronella candles, will come in handy throughout the campsite. And yes, we'll be using them on the Fourth too! 

Supplies to create your own tin can candleholders.

Gather as many tin cans as you can for this project, the more the better! You'll also need plain white card stock and washi tape. I used my PSA Essentials Peel and Stick Stamper, various Peel and Stick Stamp kits, along with Royal Blue & Holiday Red inkpads.

Patriotic stamps in red, white, and blue using PSA Essentials Peel & Stick Stamper!

Start off by cutting your card stock to fit around your tin cans. There really is no one size on this and if the paper doesn't completely fit it's okay, we're going to take care of that in the next step. 

Once you have your pieces cut start stamping! Again there really isn't a right or wrong way; I enjoyed mixing up the stars and patriotic symbol stamps in classic red and blue on the white card stock.

Making patriotic tin can candle holders to set out in the yard during summer, outdoor gettogethers.

Use a bit of washi tape to hold your paper in place, if the paper doesn't quite meet just add a couple strips of tape and it'll be fine. 

Tin Can Candle holders in red, white, and blue for those patriotic summer holiday get togethers.

Trim your tin cans with washi tape for added color, not to mention it'll help the cardstock stay in place, and that's it!

Little fingers really wants to grab one of these before I take a picture! Patriotic Tin Can Candle Holders

So I had to share this, while I was trying to take a picture outside the littlest hands in the house was having a hard time not touching! 

Easy to make tin can candle holders for outdoor summer get togethers!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Pin It - Did It: Sponge Balls

Sponge balls are the snow balls of summer! A great activity to cool off and have fun with the kids.

I've seen these sponge balls all over the Pinterest and decided to give them a try. Yep, they were super easy to make, my eight year old daughter actually helped me, but it was hard to find sponges. 

When we went out I looked at Wal-Marts, Dollar Trees, automotive departments, grocery stores, and finally found sponges WITHOUT SCOURING PADS at the Dollar General store in our little one horse town. Go figure. 

This past weekend we put them to use and it was definitely fun and we will be making more! I'm going to keep this one short and let the pictures below do the talking. 

If you have any questions leave a comment. 
Sponge balls are super easy to make: cut your sponges into fourths lengthwise and secure with a rubber band.A great summertime kids' activity and craft!

Monday, June 22, 2015

DIY Fire Starters

These aren't the prettiest fire starters but they'll get your camp fire or bonfire blazing!

I'm looking forward to many family bonfires this summer and fall but getting the fire started isn't always easy. Here are three fire starters that are easy to make using supplies everyone has on hand.  

Firestarter One - Instructions are on the images but I didn't add one crucial step if you want them to burn longer. *When you stuff the dryer lint into the paper rolls add cotton balls that have been dipped in petroleum jelly.*

These are awesome DIY Camp Fire Starters - be sure to visit this post to find out a special hint at keeping them lit longer.

Firestarter Two - This is the classic firestarter. While we used leftover candles to secure everything in wax, I would recommend buying a brick of canning wax. I ended up needing more wax and it would have made it much easier than melting down new candles!

These are classic DIY Fire Starters for camp or bonfires.

Firestarter Three - This is a method I picked up from one of our Girl Scout leaders. I can't remember if she included the dryer lint but I know instead of twisting the ends she dipped them in candle wax.

These DIY Fire Starters make use of many recyclable materials! Find this and two more DIY firestarter methods on the original post!

These 3 DIY Fire Starters are sure to light your fire!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Flea Market Flip: Painted Brass Plates

I started out thinking I'd make this a Wordless Wednesday post because there isn't much to this project, but let's be real...I don't do wordless. You can always find these brass plates at flea markets, here's how to flip them into fun pieces of art!
Brass plates are a flea market, thrift store, yard sale, antique store stable. You can find them in all kinds of styles, sizes and prices. Luckily for me, we inherited a bunch of them and as much as I dislike brass, I love these things!

I've been wanting to liven them up for some time now and finally got to it this weekend. I spray painted them white and then pulled out the paint and yes, children's paint brushes. Seriously I could kick myself for not doing this sooner, they turned out exactly as I'd hoped. 

Painting supplies

I was going for a paint-by-numbers look and though I'm not sure that's what I created I'm happy with the results just the same. Especially the white that peeks out from around all the fruit, like on the plate below.

I'll call this one, Fruit Plate! Flip those flea market plates into works of art!

I'm still considering adding a bit more to the pub scenes, I'm worried they look a little too Easter eggy. What do you think? 

I'll call this one, Pastels in the Pub! Flip those flea market plates into works of art!

Be sure to stop back by in a couple weeks as this is just the first patch of plates. The kids are eager to paint their own and I want to try out a black background. Until then, the next time you're out thrifting grab a brass plate and make it awesome!

Give thrift store brass plates a facelift!

Disclosure Statement: In accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising” it is my duty to disclose that some of the links on this blog may be “affiliate links” and some of the products featured have been provided by various companies. Regardless, the opinions expresses are my own and I only recommend products or services I use myself and believe would be of interest to my readers.