Inspiration from Erik Homeade

Monday, August 31, 2009

Wanted to share this fab patriotic table d├ęcor from Erik Homeade's blog! HE used Aleene's® Original Tacky Glue® to complete this project that will make a patriotic centerpiece for your Labor Day barbeque or festivities Love that it uses fresh flowers and strawberries mixed in. He gives step by step instructions to make it happen, so hop on over and learn a new skill - floral arranging - today! Looks super easy and super fun, esp. for a great summer send off party!

A peek inside our crafty world!

Thursday, August 27, 2009
Being the crafty folks that we are here at iLoveToCreate,we have a lot of craft supplies. Don't believe us? Check out our ribbon stash!

OK, ok...we realize that it's all a mess. Currently our resident crafty queen Pattie Donham is working up a plan to keep our craft space neat and clean, so I'm sure that she's going to be tackling this ribbon stash in the near future.

You didn't think that was all the ribbon, did you? We are just getting started! Each of these big cardboard bins are filled with ribbon goodness!

Here's a little detail of some of the orange and pink bins. I swear, a crafter would go nuts if they saw this stuff!

So you may wonder why we have all this ribbon...we have to have ribbon for all of the projects that come out of our doors! Our hardworking designers turn out the designs left and right for both web, print as as sales samples, so it is used on a daily basis! Check out the ribbon projects on our web site below! Just go to our project page and type in ribbon in the search field.

And the reason we have so much ribbon? Well, let's just say we make a LOT of craft store runs because we are without the right shade, width, or texture of ribbon. It's all in a days work!

Hooptastical Earring Holder

If you have as many pairs of earrings as I do, jewelry storage is an important issue. I personally wrangle my jewelry in several different ways. You might remember our 3 day post we did on jewelry displays that included: How Ya Hanging Jewelry Displays, Flickr Favorites, Journey Through a Jewelry Box and Make Your Own Jewelry Display. Today for I Love to Create I have a lacey addition to the collection.

Liquid Fusion GluePiece of Lace
Tulip Fabric Spray Paint
Wooden Embroidery Hoop
Crafty Chica Little Chica Paint PackSponge Brush
Aleene’s Fabric Stiffener & Draping Liquid

Lace to Dye For
You want to choose a lace that small holes throughout the design that you can hook your earrings into. My mother was kind enough to donate some old curtains she had to this project. A quick trip to the thrift store and you will be lace endowed in no time. Take your lace outside and lay on newspaper. Spary lace with Tulip Fabric Paint making sure to coat evenly. I was particulally smitten on these neon shades.

Hoop Hop Hooray
Cheap wooden embroidery hoops come in all shapes and sizes. Choose based on how many earrings you have to display. I painted my wooden hoop with black Crafty Chica paint and sponge brush.

Stretch It, Stretch It Good
Once your dyed lace and painted hoop have dried it’s time for the two to join forces. Stretch your lace across your embroidery hoop and tighten. Using your scissors trim the excess fabric. I added some Liquid Fusion glue to make sure the fabric didn’t slip in the hoop. I then coated the lace with a coat of Aleene’s Fabric Stiffener & Draping Liquid to make the lace extra sturdy.

Beam With Pride
Once everything has dried all that is left to do is hang your new snazzy jewelry holder on the wall and hook your earrings into place. I mean really screen in a picture frame is so last year, it’s all about the neon lace.

Naughty Secretary Club

Top 10 Must Recycle (and Repurpose) Items for Crafters!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Top 10 Must Recycle (and Repurpose) Items for Crafters
Us crafters love to make somethin' out of nuthin' but even during these eco-conscious times, there's a fine line between waste not and pack rat. Here's my list of favorite household items to reuse and repurpose using a few staple craft supplies and a bit of creativity!

1. Shipping Boxes: Cut-up boxes are great for use inside of t-shirts when decorating with fabric paints or markers. They also make great canvases for kids' artwork!

2. Consumable Containers: Glue vintage wallpaper over food and body product containers to create decorative holders for your craft bits. Knitters, try drilling a hole in the lid, feed yarn through and close to keep a yarn ball from tangling!

3. Magazines: Cut out your favorite images for endless decoupage, inspiration board and greeting card projects.

4. Ribbons: Save those gift ribbons to tie around plushie creature's necks, glue onto decorative vases or bind dried flowers with.

5. Curtains: Recycled curtains are a great resource for plentiful yardage of neutral or patterned fabrics. Turn that fabric into journal covers, table runners or little girls' dresses.

6. Window Screen: Staple onto over-sized frames to make an earring display, cut-up and adhere to a collage to add texture, or paint over to add a pattern to fabric or paper.

7. Broken Dishes: File edges of a pretty piece of glass or ceramic and drill a hole for a unique pendant, glue pieces onto a plain frame for decoration, or use multiple broken dishes to create a mosaic design for a tea-table top.

8. Wrappers & Packages: Colorful food wrappers make great base materials! Fold and weave them into a wallet, stick onto contact paper and sew into a tote bag, or glue onto cardstock for unique gift cards.

9. Plastic Grocery Bags: Make "plarn" and knit or crochet a recycled tote, fold and sew into "quilted" place mats, or tie onto a wire circle to create an eco-smart wreath.

10. Old Wool Sweaters: Unravel sweaters and custom dye yarn; repurpose yarn into new, knitted or crocheted treats; or felt, cut and sew sweaters into throw pillows, pet beds and more!


Vickie Howell is a mother, designer, author and crafty spokesperson.  For more info on projects and how-to goodness, go to:

Free Mixed Media Jewelry Project!

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Mixed Media Melange Necklace for I Love to Create by Margot Potter

This felt, ribbon, glass and crystal necklace is an easy project for a teen to recreate in their own personal style and has a true Haute Couture appeal. All of the high fashion houses are showing these fabric mixed media style bib necklaces this season, so I thought I’d try my hand at one that would have teen appeal. You can switch this up to suit the materials you have at hand, try washers and nuts, small metal parts, sequins, bugle beads,’s endless. (You may need to glue and then sew on items to further secure them, I prefer a low sew approach!)

It’s easy to make fabulous projects when you use I Love to Create products!

Margot Potter The Impatient Crafter™ for I Love to Create
Teen Craft Project
Mixed Media Melange
Felt, Crystal and Fabric Necklace


Black craft felt
Black ½” thick grosgrain ribbon
Large cabochon style beads
4mm Tulip Glam-It-Up!™ Crystals
5mm Tulip Glam-It-Up!™ Crystals
Black thread
Aleene’s Fast Grab Tacky Glue
Aleene’s Stop Fraying

Aleene’s Stiffen Quick spray

Glam-It-Up!™ crystal applicator
Sewing needle
Dress maker’s pencil

1. Mark and cut a symmetrical bib out of craft felt. Size to fit your wearer, I made mine in a shield shape. My felt shape is 6.5"x3.5".

2. Decide where to place your embellishments on the front of the felt.

3. Working around the crystals, use Aleene’s Fast Grab Tacky Glue to adhere the non-crystal embellishments. Allow to dry overnight.

4. While glue is drying, use crystal wand to heat and adhere Glam-It-Up™ crystals.

5. Cut two ribbon lengths that are long enough to be tied in a bow when worn. Mine are each approximately 2’.

6. Attach ribbon to top of felt on both sides using a needle and thread. I threaded the needle in between the ribbon and felt to conceal the knots. After you tie each ribbon off, use some Aleene’s Fast Grab Tacky glue to secure the top of the sewn felt to the front of the ribbon. Allow to dry.

7. Dab a bit of Aleene’s Stop Fraying on the ends of the ribbon and allow to dry.

8. Trace and cut a second felt piece to back the first and add some structure to the design. Glue to the back of the first piece using Aleene’s Fast Grab Tacky glue. Allow to dry.

9. Finish by generously spraying felt backing with Stiffen Quick and allow to dry. This will give your design structure when worn.

(Designer Tip: Felt is thick and porous, so you may need to check the glue on your embellishments several times to be sure there’s enough to secure them. Let them dry overnight so they have time to form a strong bond.)

Darling Doily Dishes

Thursday, August 20, 2009

While reading through Crochet Adorned by Linda Permann (don’t forget to enter to win a free copy!) a lacey bowl project caught my eye. The book has full instructions on how to crochet your own doily and a recipe for a sugar starch to make your flaccid doily hard as a rock. Always one to take the easy way out I thought to myself: now why couldn’t I take pre-existing doilies and some Aleene’s® Fabric Stiffener & Draping Liquid and do the same thing? Better yet I could toss in some Tulip Fabric Paint and make white doilies any color that I wanted. This week for I Love to Create that is exactly what I did.

I actually made two bowls. The first one using a vintage yellow doily with pink trim.

Aleene’s Fabric Stiffener & Draping Liquid
Foil or Plastic Wrap
Rubber Gloves

First I found the perfect bowl to use as my mold, which just so happened to be one of my salad bowls. Not wanting to get glue all over something I eat from I wrapped the bowl in foil. Plastic wrap would have worked as well. Next following the instructions on the bottle I put on my rubber gloves and completely saturated the doily in Aleene’s Fabric Stiffener & Draping Liquid. I then draped the doily over my bowl and allowed to dry overnight.

The next day I gently peeled my crocheted dish away from foil wrapped salad bowl. I was surprised by how stiff the bowl was. It was strong enough to hold all of my rings, and that is a lot of rings.

For the second bowl I snagged a white doily from a pillow, dyed it green and gave my vintage water gun collection a new home.

Aleene’s Fabric Stiffener & Draping Liquid
Rubber Gloves
Tulip Soft Fabric Paint

First using a seam ripper I removed the doily from the pillow. Doilies are readily available at thrift stores and most craft stores carry them as well. Unlike the other bowl where I just saturated the doilie in Aleene’s Fabric Stiffner & Draping Liquid I also added a squirt of Tulip Soft Fabric Paint in to match the color of the walls in my game room. They have so many colors to choose from you could make your bowl match any room.

I then coated my doily until the fabric was saturated and the color was even. I used a large bowl as my mold and draped my doily over the bottom and allowed to dry overnight.

Doilies come in all shapes and sizes so you can make any size bowl you want. With the help of a little fabric paint you can also make them any color you want. Think of the possibilities: clocks, lamps and more oh my!


P.S. Be sure to check out the Naughty Secretary Club blog for more crafty goodness.

Cute as a Button Frame!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

I'm a quirky gal. It's who I am; it's what I do. So, it will probably be no surprise that I'm also a big fan of coordinating my frames with my photos. The challenge being however, that I can't always find a frame to fit my photographic whim or if I can, they're often not in my price range.

This was the conundrum of displaying a shot taken of my daughter Clover (when she was weeks old) and Jennifer Perkins' daughter Talullah (at 4 1/2 months), wearing matching outfits made by Jen's mom. Because the outfits themselves are adorably kitschy and the photo would likely live in Clover's room, I wanted something that would both coordinate and exude the playfulness of our wee, little lasses. Thankfully, with a plain frame and a few mainstay craft supplies, the task at hand was an easy one! Here's how I did it and how you can make your own version to match your mood...or your photograph!

Flat Front Frame
Assorted Buttons
Craft Paint
Sponge Brushes


  • Choose an aspect of your photo that you'd like to match colors with. It could be the blue of an ocean, the golden tones in a subject's blond hair or, like in my picture, the orange & lavender from two little cutie pies' outfits.
  • Go through your button stash and choose coordinating shades. I dig the eclectic look of varying shapes and styles, but you could also go more uniform by using just one shape or color of button. Set buttons aside.
  • Remove the back and glass from frame. Paint frame with desired color. Depending on the surface of your frame, you'll likely need to either use a primer, lightly sand or, just use several coats of craft paint. Let dry.
  • Paint on Glossy Gloss Varnish to five the frame front a more finished look. Let dry.

  • Decide what pattern you'd like your buttons to be in on your frame. Use Liquid Fusion to glue buttons down. Let dry overnight.
That's all there is to it. A cute-as-a-button, customized frame to match your sweetest of memories!


Like this post? See more I Love to Create projects here!

Vickie Howell's a designer, writer and crafty spokesperson.  Learn more about her books, videos and other projects at:!

I Love to Create Moulin Rouge Mini Top Hat Headband by Margot Potter

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Avalon Potter Models a Jaunty New Headband!

Moulin Rouge Mini Top Hat Headband
Teen Craft Project
Margot Potter for I Love to Create

Mini top hats have been big with the DIY and the club crowds for a while now and they’re filtering up to the mainstream this season. I thought for this week’s project for I Love to Create I’d whip one up for my daughter to wear to school. We just watched Moulin Rouge again and this has such a Satine vibe. It sounded so easy...and took some effort but I worked it out!

If you want to opt out of making the hat, just buy a doll or teddy bear sized top hat and embellish it. Would that I’d figured that out before diving into this head first...but there’s a lot to be said for Doing It Yourself! At least that’s what I’m telling myself so I feel better. I found a lot of great tutorials online for a variety of versions of this project and then I worked it out in typical Madge style. What’s crafting for if not making glorious mistakes and getting sticky, fuzzy fingers?! (Oh and if you’re more of a cowgirl than a circus performer, Jen Perkins made an adorable mini straw hat headband last year you should definitely check out.)

Black plastic skinny headband (I got five for a dollar in a value pack at our local drug store!)
Craft felt (Wool is sturdier and more durable than acrylic, but I used acrylic here.)
Pink tulle netting (I got this at JoAnn Fabrics.)
Black marabou feathers (I got these at JoAnn Fabrics.)
Acrylic fiber stuffing
Black thread
Hot glue sticks
Aleene’s Fast Grab Tacky Glue
Aleene’s Stiffen Quick Spray

Tulip Glam-It-Up Crystals in clear AB

Hand Sewing Needle
Hot glue gun
2” diameter template (I used a large plastic pill jar)
2.5” template (I used a ribbon spool)
Dressmakers pencil or white pigment ink pen
Quick Kutz QuickStik Quicker Poker Picker Upper Tool
Tulip Mini Iron

1. Measure and mark 5.5”x2.5” strip of felt and cut.

2. Use a 2” diameter template to trace and cut a circle of felt. This is the top of the hat

3. Repeat with a 2.5” template. This makes your brim.This is the tube of the hat. (If needed, Iron felt pieces flat with mini iron.)

4. Cut two 1/4" notches in the center of the 2.5” felt circle with scissors. (They need to be just big enough to accommodate your headband.)

5. Run a bead of hot glue along shorter edge of felt rectangle. Press on opposite short edge to create a tube.

6. Run a bead of hot glue along top edge of tube and carefully adhere 2” circle to edge. You can support this by reaching one hand inside to keep tube stiff while attaching the circle, just be careful not to burn your fingers on the glue.

7. Stuff tube with fluffy enough fluff to give it structure.

8. Run a bead of hot glue along bottom edge of tube and adhere to center of 2.5” circle.

9. Allow glue to set. If you have to go in and rework any funky spots this is a good time to do that!

10. Thread headband into slot you cut on large circle.

11. Use a needle and thread to secure the mini hat on head band, I’ve done it so it’s slightly off center for a “mad hatter” effect.

12. Your brim will pucker a little, that’s okay. Saturate it with Stiffen Quick and use your fingers to create an evenly spaced wave pattern in the puckers and to flip up the sides. Allow to dry.

13. Wrap a strip of pink netting around the entire brim of your hat and knot one strand around the other, tucking in the extra netting so it looks like a flower. Cut off any excess uneven netting. The netting will hide the back seam and any futzy spots along the top and bottom of the tube from the hot glue. (This is a typical The Impatient Crafter™ solution to not having to be perfect.)

14. Slide two marabou feathers into the side of the flowers and use Fast Grab to tack them and the netting at the knot into place.

15. Use Aleene's Fast Grab Glue to attach crystals to netting. Because the netting is made of plastic, I didn't think it wise to use heat, so I opted for glue. I used a Quicker Poker Picker upper to make it easier to adhere them.

16. Allow everything to dry before wearing...our hat was still wet here...we like to live on the edge like that.

Avalon Potter Looking Adorable in her new Moulin Rouge Tiny Top Hat Headband!