Thursday, December 31, 2015

Essential Oil + Upcycled Tshirt Shoe Sachets


Living in the house with a bunch a boys can be stinky. I don't think there was any way to sugar coat that. I was desperate for something that would help control the shoe stank problems and your standard lavender sachets weren't going to cut it. My husband hates the smell of lavender. (What?)


I've been curious about essential oils for a while now, and admittingly I've not taken the plunge. But I'm lucky enough to have some great friends who live oily lifestyles. After a few emails and research we came up with the best essential oil recipes for deodorizing and disinfecting shoes. Check out my latest tutorial on BERNINA's We All Sew to learn how you can use newspaper, baking soda, essential oils and upcycled t-shirts to make sachets in minutes.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Upcycled Star Wars Crafts


The boys and I had a good time rounding up these Star Wars DIYs today, they're not only creative, easy and fun to make for the entire family- but they're all upcycled or repurposed crafts too!

diycandy

filthywizard
You'll never look at a milk jug the same way after you check out this Stormtrooper helmet tutorial

craftsbyamanda
Chewbacca Craft (from a paint stick!) from Star Wars Mania Book 
trashn2tees
Transform your H20 into C3PO Oil for your next party (Free Printable
filthywizard

hellowonderful
trashn2tees
Upcycle your stained t-shirts into Star Wars Ewok Appliques with TrashN2Tees 
craftsbyamanda
R2-D2 Pencil Can Craft perfect for the home or office
katescreativespace
Root through your recycling bin to find the dark side- Darth Vader Ship out of cardboard 

afnord

Friday, December 18, 2015

How To Make an Ewok Applique T-shirt

I can't figure out why Star Wars hasn't capitalized on the fact that everyone loves an Ewok- shouldn't there be more products available for us to cuddle, dance around fires, and go into battle with? Today I'm sharing an easy to make Ewok applique design that can be used to decorate your favorite tees, onesies, bags and so much more.


You'll Need: 
1/4 yard of Pellon Wonder Under
Tshirt Scraps in beige, brown, yellow, black
Scissors
Ewok Template Downloaded & Printed
Iron
Ball Point Needle & Thread

1. Resize your Ewok to fit desired canvas using this formula if needed. Printing the template I provided at actual size will yield an applique Ewok that measures 5.5'' x 5'' if you would like to make boys shirts like I have you will need to enlarge the template 211%.



2. Trace each element by slipping it underneath a sheet of Wonder Under. Use a pencil or black sharpie market to transfer trace each shape individually.

3. Cut out the approximate shape from Under Wonder be sure to leave 1-2'' of additional area around the edges. Having the additional underwonder will help you keep your cuts precise while working with knit material applique bits.

4. Fuse the Under Wonder to the wrong side of your fabric as directed.


5. Cut out the applique pieces along the lines.

6. Remove paper backing and begin laying out your design. Start with the hood piece first, add ears by sliding under 1/8'' overlapping the hood and bottom ear shape.


7. Build your applique and adjust layout to your preference.

8. Heat set applique pieces into place following directions provided.


9. Top stitch with a lengthened straight stitch (I like 3.0mm) using a ball point needle on your sewing machine. Carefully sew each element into place using a coordinating thread if you prefer.

 In the wise words of Master Yoda, do or do not- there is no try. With large and uncomplicated shapes this Ewok applique is great for beginning sewist & kids alike. They're also really easy to take care of too: How to Wash Appliqued Shirts. Have fun and be sure to check back all weekend long for more Star Wars DIY as we are celebrating the release of The Force Awakens!

Applique Patterns from TrashN2Tees: 






Thursday, December 17, 2015

How To Make Chocolate Yodas



You'll Need: 
Parchment Paper
Green Wilton Candy Chips
Candy Eyes
Piping Bag + tip

On the parchment paper pipe out a circle starting from the center out. Add ears. Add the eyes as quickly as possible before the chocolate begins to cool. Let set for 1 hour to completely set. Mix with your favorite snack.



Star Wars fans are already camped out & awaiting this weekends premier of The Force Awakens. Why not celebrate your favorite saga with a sweet treat bowl full of droid? Be sure to check back here on the TrashN2Tees blog for more creative and fun projects for all Star Wars fans in your family. 

Check out Kix for recipe to make the complete Star Wars Droid Mix






Thursday, December 10, 2015

T-shirt Quilt Free Project at JoAnns Fabric


Excited to share that I've partnered with Pellon & Joanns Fabric Store to offer a free project. Check your local store for a free tear away project sheet (located near Pellon Products or fabric sections) or download and print the instructions directly from their site.

Free T-shirt Quilt Project on Joann Fabric 




Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Books Make Great Gifts: Under $25


Beautifully photographed and designed books that will inspire you to decorate, cook, craft, and create in everyday ways. Get complete details and more over on The Crafted Life.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

#Tips2Sew: How To Clean A Self Healing Cutting Mat



There are a handful of tools I still have after 6+ years of sewing, every day. Recently I scribbled down a note that said "there's sustainability in legacy." This has been floating around my mind and as I work through what it means for the future of TrashN2Tees I realize how greatly it applies to our tools, our craft, and what we hope to leave behind.

The second most important advice I can pass along is to invest in quality tools. However, how often we forget that our tools need to be properly maintained. Our investment doesn't stop once you lay down the dollar.


CARING FOR YOUR CUTTING MAT 


How many of us soak our self healing cutting mats regularly? Keeping your mats moisturized will help it last longer. Using your bath tub, sink, or plastic tote mix together 1/4 cup of white vinegar to every gallon of cool water. Cool water is important, any amount of heat applied to your mat will cause damage. Soak your mat for 15-20 minutes doing your best to maintain a flatness in shape. Next you'll want to squirt in a dollop of Dawn dish detergent and use a soft cloth to wipe away and dirt. If you find there are clumps of fabric/fleece/lint that has become ingrained in the mat a soft bristled tooth brush will help you to loosen the debris. This build up prevents the mat from 'healing.'

HOW DO I CLEAN OUT LINT CAUGHT IN MY CUTTING MAT? 
After soaking your cutting mat, you may still find residual floater fluff left behind in the grooves of your cutting mat. This can be slightly annoying if you're OCD but it will also effect the longevitiy of your cutting tools and quality of surface. Here's a simple trick to remove the lint- use a larger rubber eraser, my brain automatically envisions the oversized BIG MISTAKE eraser, if you have that one... go for it! Rub the end of eraser in flat circular motions across the cutting mat.

PREVENT WARPING OF YOUR CUTTING MAT 

The number one reason for warped cutting mats (drumrollplease) improper storage. Okay so that's just my official observation. While not everyone has a permanent cutting table it's best to store your cutting mats flat under your bed, couch, or even hanging on the wall. Be sure that your mat isn't placed near a heating vent or in direct sunlight.

CAN YOU FIX A WARPED CUTTING MAT?

No, yes, I mean- maybe. While technically speaking no manufacturer can give you 100% certainty that warped cutting mats can be fixed. There are a slew of variables that come into play. It is possible to flatten a warped cutting mat by soaking it (as mentioned earlier) and laying it on a flat surface with an even weight on top to dry. Example: laying the mat with a box on top it. If you're up for a google search here are some other suggested remedies for fixing a warped cutting mat. 


I've been using the same large cutting mat since 2010 and it gets used almost daily. The table sized mats are really handy when paired with my rotary cuttter for cutting t-shirt yarn, garment patterns, or even for layouts using the grids to line up appliques and cut crafts with precision. In my book The Upcycled T-shirt I mentioned that the combo rotarty cutter/mat are without a game changer. Have you tried it yet?


Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Tshirt Crafts With Kids // Frenchtown Elementary School


Last week I had a chance to visit with students at a local elementary school. Through a trail of connections I had been introduced & invited to visit the art room of Tricia Hurley, resident art teacher & dream encourager extraordinaire. I suggested the middle of November would be a great time to come in and talk about my reuse/recycling brand, The Upcycled T-shirt Book, and give these kids some hands on activities that reinforce the ideas of creativity, innovation, and of course- changing the way we consume. We celebrated America Recycles Day too!
Read more about my visit in the local news featured on NJ.com.

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