DIY Pressed Flower iPhone Case

Thank you Etsy for this wonderful post. See full article here. All text and images courtesy of Etsy. 

DIY Pressed Flower iPhone Case

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Photo by Clare McGibbon

cfrenchie

It’s no secret I love flowers – in my apartment, on my desk, or as a pattern on my dress. Pressing fresh flowers is a great way to preserve their natural beauty, and by decorating your phone case with them, you can showcase their vivid colors and add a little touch of nature to an otherwise ordinary gadget.

You can make your own pressed flowers with a flower press or by placing them inside a large book, like an encyclopedia or phone book. If you are pressing your own flowers, keep in mind that the drying time takes a little while – usually a minimum of seven days. You can also find pressed flowers right here on Etsy. For this project, I used carnation petals, baby’s breath, tulip petals, statice, wax flowers, hydrangeas and alstroemeria petals.

You will need:
Pressed dried flowers
Flat, solid white iPhone case
Clear craft glue
A flat and level work surface
Tape
Scissors
Parchment paper
Ruler
Thin-tip permanent marker
Timer
2 clear plastic cups
2 wooden craft sticks
50/50 clear-casting epoxy resin (I used Easy Cast)
Acetone (or a nail polish remover with acetone)
Q-tips
Glitter (Optional)

Step 1: Arrange the Flowers

To get started, place the pressed flowers on your case and play around with different flower arrangements. If you want to add a lot of flowers to your case, make sure that they don’t pile up higher than 1/16th of an inch (approximately 1.5 mm) or you won’t be able to properly coat the case in resin. Keep in mind that your pressed flowers will become slightly translucent once they are coated in resin, so placing lighter colored flowers under darker ones works best. Once you have found an arrangement you like, take a snapshot of it for future reference.

Remove the flowers from the case and set them aside. Dab a small amount of glue on the largest flower and carefully glue it to the case. Follow suit with the rest of your flowers until your arrangement is complete.

Step 2: Prepare the Resin

Make sure you are in a well-ventilated area. Cut a 2 ft long (approximately 60 cm) piece of parchment paper with your scissors and tape it down to your flat work surface. Take your resin and read the directions carefully. (Note: If the directions for your resin differ from the steps below, make sure to follow the directions for your resin or you’ll end up with a sticky mess, and that’s no good for placing a flowery phone call!)

Put your ruler inside a plastic cup and mark the cup twice using a thin permanent marker. Your first mark will be at 3/8 of an inch, and your second will be at 3/4 of an inch.

Set your timer to 2 minutes and have a craft stick ready for stirring. Slowly pour resin into the cup up to the 3 /8 inch line. Keep in mind that an accurate pour is crucial, so don’t be too generous with your pour. Next, slowly pour the hardener to the 3/4 inch line, making sure to not go over it.

Start the timer and stir the contents of the cup with your craft stick for 2 minutes, making sure to scrape the sides of the cup from time to time. Don’t worry if you see lots of bubbles forming in the cup – they’ll disappear later. When the timer goes off, place the second plastic cup on your work surface and have your second unused craft stick ready for stirring. Optional: If you would like to add glitter to your case, sprinkle some into the mix now.

Next, set your timer to 1 minute and pour the contents of the first cup into the second cup. Continue stirring until the timer goes off. Let the resin rest for 5 minutes.

Step 3: Add Resin to the Case

Slowly pour a small amount of your newly mixed resin onto the center of your case. It’s always better to err on the side of caution and add too little resin than too much.

Spread the resin close to the edge of your case using your craft stick. Make sure the resin does not go over the edge. Add more resin to the case until the entire back and all the flowers are covered. Lightly blow on any bubbles that show up on the surface to help them disappear.

Set the case down on the parchment paper and keep an eye on it as it dries (about one to two hours). If any resin spills over the edges, dip Q-tips in acetone and wipe clean.

Once your first coat of resin has dried, examine your case to make sure all the flowers have been properly coated. If needed, add a second coat of resin.

Voila! You now have an embellished floral phone case to brighten up any conversation.

Process photos by Lobese, all others by Clare McGibbon.

Clare McGibbon is a Brooklyn-based designer and maker. When she’s not working on Etsy’s international support team, she’s dreaming up new DIYs or making jewelry for her shop, AWAYSAWAY. Keep up with her latest creations on InstagramFacebook andPinterest.

How to Make a Floral Crown

Never too old to explore meadows barefoot and fill your hair with daisies. 

Following picture and text courtesy of Etsy. See full article here

How to Make a Floral Crown

August 27, 2012

Etsy.com handmade and vintage goods

Photo by Amanda Thomsen

Brittany Watson Jepsen

HouseThatLarsBuilt

Brittany Watson Jepsen is an American designer and crafter living in Copenhagen, Denmark. Her motto is “a creative mess is better than tidy idleness.” Find her on her blog, The House That Lars Built, and her Etsy shop, where she designs and sells kitchen accessories and all things floral.

Floral crowns are sure having their moment of glory these days. The trend pops into fashion every now and again, but some of the most inspiring versions are those from the Pre-Raphaelites.

I spotted Spring by Lawrence Alma-Tadema (look closely!) last year while at the Getty Museum in Los Angeles, and ever since I’ve been wanting to make my own version. I finally sat down and experimented with some lovely flowers and wish I had an excuse to wear it around town. Thankfully, a wedding is the perfect excuse to don a floral crown. The beauty of working with real flowers is that you don’t need any materials other than the flowers.

So, let’s go!

Materials:
Flowers of your choice and clippers. The pliable flowers are best to work with for the base of the crown. Try bending the stem first to make sure it doesn’t crack. If it does, consider trying something else. For this floral crown, I used black dahlias, tidsel (the greenery for the base), astilbe (the pink), craspedia (the yellow balls), and virburnum berries (the turquoise and purple).

Step 1:
Cut and line up the first round of flowers for the base of your crown. Ideally, the stems should be 5-9″ long each. You can cut them down but it’s harder to work with shorter stems. I suggest using greenery first and then adding the colors into it.

Step 2:
Lay one stem perpendicular on top of another.

Step 3:
Bend the stem under.

Step 4:
Bring the stem up to the top and then press it down so it lies next to the first.

Step 5:
While holding the two stems in place with your left hand, place another stem on top and bend it under.

Step 6:
Bring the stem up again and then place it parallel with the others.

Step 7:
Repeat the process until it’s the size of the circumference of the head. I added some different greenery into the middle to create more of a focal point when it’s worn.

Step 8:
When you get to the end, wrap the last stem tightly around the others to secure them in place, making sure that it doesn’t break.

Step 9:
To finish off the circle, weave the last stems into the beginning of the crown by tucking them in.

Step 10:
Now you can start adding in other flowers. I added longer pieces first so that the shorter flowers can be seen at the end.

Step 11:
Place your show-stopper flowers evenly around the crown. I used black dahlias as my main piece.

Finishing Touches:
Continue adding in your flowers evenly around the crown. I added in berries at the end for some exclamation marks.

There are several different versions to a floral crown. You can switch off flowers for the base of the crown instead of adding the flowers in at the end, or you can keep it simple and just use one variety.

After completing one, you’ll want to turn every flower you see into a crown.
Good luck!

Photography by Brittany Watson Jepsen and Amanda Thomsen.

DIY: Design and Sew Your Own Leggings

Came across this “how-to” article a few moments ago. Etsy is one of my favorite sites! I can spend hours perusing the merchandise and blogs. This looks like a really fun project! Enjoy!

The following is all courtesy of Etsy.com and can be found here

Story by hodgepodgefarm

Published on Feb 28, 2012 in Make

Photo by Richard A. Smith

Cal Patch is a renaissance crafter, with know-how spanning the fields of crochet, pattern-making, sewingembroidery, dyeing, printing, spinning, and beyond. She is the author ofDesign-It-Yourself Clothing, writes a blog, and can can be found teaching classes around New York state (and beyond). For this week’s How-Tuesday, Cal will teach us how to make a custom pair of leggings. From taking measurements, to making the pattern, to sewing it all up, Cal will be with us each step of the way!

I adore leggings. I live in leggings. I always wish I had more leggings: colored ones, printed ones, stripey ones, long cozy woolly ones in winter, and shorter lightweight cotton ones in summer. I wear  them under dresses or tunics, I wear them to the gym, I lounge and sleep in them. As a clothing designer, I’m glad I can make my own, because when I look around I don’t see nearly enough options out there in fun colors, prints, and natural fibers. Today I’m going to show you that you can make your own leggings, too!

You’ll need to measure yourself, draft a pattern, get some stretchy knit fabric, and stitch it up. This isn’t a difficult project, but I’m assuming you’re at least a competent beginner sewer. Let’s get started!


Supplies You’ll Need:

For the pattern:

  • Paper to make the pattern. Get a pad or roll; bigger is better. (I like an 18 x 24” pad of drawing paper.)
  • Pencil and eraser
  • Scissors (for cutting paper)
  • Tape measure
  • Ruler (clear 18” x 2” sewing ruler is best)
  • Clear tape

For the leggings:

  • About 1 ½ yards of nice stretchy knit fabric, like cotton/Lycra jersey.
  • About 1 ½ yards of cheaper stretchy knit fabric, like cotton/Lycra jersey (for the muslin).
  • All-purpose thread to match.
  • Pins
  • Scissors (for fabric)
  • Sewing machine

You’ll need the following measurements:

  • Length
  • Half Waist (Waist divided by 2)*
  • Thigh Circumference*
  • Knee Circumference*
  • Ankle Circumference*
  • Front Rise Height
  • Back Rise Height
  • Distance from Thigh to Knee
  • Distance from Knee to Ankle

Okay, now let me explain how to go about measuring each one, as I’ve no doubt you might have a question or two! I’ll explain them as though you’re making the leggings for yourself, but you can make them to fit anyone, even kids. All of these measurements can be taken while holding the tape fairly snugly; you might want to wear something close-fitting (like a pair of leggings) as you measure. Actually, if you have a pair of leggings that fit well, putting them on will help you in determining some of these measurements that you may never have thought about before, such as where you’d like the waist to sit.

Length: This is really a design decision, but it will also relate to your body.  Hold the tape measure at your side, where you’d like the waist of the leggings to sit (anywhere from waist to hip), and drop it down to your ankle. A full-length mirror should help you see the measurement of your desired length. If in doubt, I recommend going an inch or two longer. You can always shorten!

Half Waist (divided by 2)*: Measure around your waist, at the point where you want the top of the leggings to sit (and where you measured your length from). If this is more like your hip, that’s fine! Just measure yourself there. Then divide this number by 2, for your half waist.

Thigh Circumference*: Measure around the full circumference of one thigh, at its highest point (just below the crotch).

Knee Circumference*: Measure around one knee.

Ankle Circumference*: Measure around one ankle, exactly where you want the leggings to end.

Front Rise Height: This might sound odd, but here’s the best way to get this measurement: Take your ruler and hold it between your legs, as high up as is comfortable.  Be sure the ruler is parallel to the floor. Now measure up from the ruler, in a straight line, to where you want the waistline of the leggings to rest. (Note: The rise seam will be curved, but for now you just want the height, which is a straight line, so don’t measure all the way from where the inseams intersect.)

Back Rise Height: Same as Front Rise, but in the back.

Distance from Thigh to Knee: Along your side, measure from the point where you took your thigh circumference down to where you took your knee circumference.

Distance from Knee to Ankle: Same, but from knee to ankle.

Now that you have all of your body measurements, we just need to do a tiny bit of math before we begin drafting the pattern. First though, we need to talk about an important concept in patternmaking: ease. Ease is the difference in size between you and your clothes. In a woven fabric, the garment needs to be bigger than you in order for it to fit and be comfortable, because wovens generally don’t stretch. This is called positive ease. When working with knits, the garment might be bigger than you, or exactly the same, or even smaller, depending on the style. The latter is possible because knits stretch and mold to fit the body, and is called negative ease. Leggings are generally meant to cling snugly to the body, so you will want to incorporate a bit of negative ease. If you prefer a looser fit, you can skip this step.

You also need to decide on the type of knit to use. Different kinds of knits have vastly different amounts of stretch. 100% cotton sweatshirt fleece has very little stretch, while 90% cotton/10% Lycra jersey has lots of it. Lycra or Spandex (same thing, just different brands) give a fabric the ability to stretch and will also give it recovery, or the ability to return to its original shape after stretching. So if you’re not a fan of baggy knees, you might want to choose a knit with 5-10% of an elastic fiber added to it. My favorite fabrics to use for leggings are cotton/Lycra jersey or rib knits, and wool jersey or rib (with or without Lycra; wool has better recovery on its own than cotton does).

Assuming you’ll be using one of these types of knit, you can deduct 10% from each of the measurements with a * after them for negative ease. These are your four horizontal circumferences. If you are using a knit with less stretch, you might want to deduct only 5% or none at all. You will now use these adjusted numbers in place of the original measurements.

Next we need to figure out the depth of the rise seam. Take your Thigh Circumference (after deducting ease), and subtract from it your half-waist (also minus ease). Let’s call this D (for Depth). Multiply D by 1/3; this is your Front Rise Depth. Multiply D by 2/3; this is your Back Rise Depth. Write these down, you’ll need them in a little while.

So we’re ready to draft our pattern! It’ll be just one pattern piece (there’s no need for a side seam), from which you’ll cut two pieces (one for each leg) to make a pair of leggings.

This is what your pattern piece will look like after you follow the steps below.

Patternmaking Directions

1. To begin, you need to cut (or tape together) a piece of paper that measures at least 4” longer than your Length measurement, and at least 2” wider than your Thigh. Draw a vertical line down the center of the paper (or fold if it’s easier); all of your drafting will originate from this line. Imagine that this line will run down the side of your leg, where a side seam would be; this will be the center of the pattern, and I’ll refer to it as the Center Line (CL).

2. On CL, make a small mark about 2” down from the top edge of the paper. Then measure down the full Length measurement, and make another mark. At this mark, draw a line, perpendicular to CL, that measures your Ankle Circumference. Half of the measurement should extend from either side of CL.

3. From the Ankle, use your Knee to Ankle Height measurement to determine where to draw your Knee Circumference, also centered over CL. Draw the Knee line, perpendicular to CL.

4. Repeat this step, using your Thigh to Knee Height, to Draw the Thigh line. Connect the dots from Thigh to Knee to Ankle on each side. You will probably have a slight angle at the knee point; smooth it into a gentle curve.

5. Now let’s work on the rise seams. On the Thigh line, measure in from the right side your Front Rise Depth, and make a mark. From this mark, draw a line upward, measuring your Front Rise Height, perpendicular to the Thigh line. From the left side, measure in your Back Rise Depth, and mark. From here, draw a perpendicular line upward, measuring your Back Rise Height. Connect the Front and Back Rise points, starting out perpendicular from the top of the Front Rise line, and gently curving up to meet the Back Rise line. This is the Waist line. Next, slope the Back Rise by holding your ruler along the Waist line, at the top of the Back Rise, and drawing a perpendicular line which intersects the Thigh line. Draw curves to fill in the lower corners of the Front and Back Rise lines.

6. All that’s left is to add seam allowance. I use ½” seam allowance on all seams except for the bottom hems, where I add a full inch for hem allowance. Draw the seam allowance around all sides of the patterns, and cut it out. CL becomes your grainline, and you can label the pattern and write the cutting instructions of Cut 2.

Now you can make a muslin, or fit sample. Try to find a cheap fabric that has similar stretch to the real fabric you plan to use. All you really need to sew are the inseams and rise seams to test the fit and make corrections. Don’t bother finishing the waistband or hems since you may want to adjust them; just remember that you will lose a little height at the waist and length at the hem when you do finish these edges in the final garment. If you see anything you want to change or adjust, pin or mark with chalk on the muslin. If you need to add fabric, such as if you want to raise the waistline, just pin on a scrap to extend the edge to where you want it. Then be sure to correct your pattern accordingly. Every body is unique, so are likely to need a few tweaks to get the fit just right. If you only make slight adjustments, you can probably jump straight to your final fabric, but if you change the pattern drastically, I’d suggest making a second muslin.


How to Sew Your Leggings

When sewing knits, you need to use a stitch that will stretch as much as your knit does, or the seam will break. Test a few options on a swatch of the same fabric, until you find a stitch that works well. I recommend using either a stretch straight stitch, or a small (I like 1.5 x 1.5mm) zigzag stitch on your sewing machine (or a serger, if you happen to have one). Fold each piece upon itself, right sides together, along the inseams, pin and sew. You’ll now have two individual leg pieces.

The edges of most knits won’t unravel, so you don’t really need to finish the seam allowances, but you might want to trim them to ¼” and either zigzag over the edges, or sew a second stretchy seam right next to the first, in case any stitches do break. Turn one leg right side out and place it inside the other, matching up the front and back rise seams and pinning together. Sew the rise as one continuous curved seam front front to back. Finish as you did the inseams, if necessary.

Finishing the Waistband

There are several ways you can finish the waistband. I usually use ½” elastic, cut to waist size, and seamed into a loop. Lay the elastic loop on the wrong side of the leggings waist, right at the top edge, pin and zigzag the edges together. Then turn the elastic down, so the waistline seam allowance covers it, and stitch again along the lower edge with a stretch straight stitch or a wide 3-step zig zag.

Another way is to make a folded waistband casing (with or without elastic inside) made from a separate piece of fabric. Cut the piece to your waist measurement (minus ease, plus 1” for seam allowance), by twice the desired casing width (plus 1” for seam allowance). With right sides together, sew the short seam. Sew the elastic into a loop if you’re using it, and fold the casing over it, wrong sides together. Pin the raw edges of the folded casing to the right side of the waist, and stitch around. Zigzag the three seam allowances together to finish.

To hem, turn the bottom edges under by ½”, then turn them again by another ½”, and pin. Sew with a stretch seam along the fold that is ½” from the edge.

Thank you to Cal Patch for sharing this project with us. Be sure to check out her Etsy shop and blogIf you make your own leggings, share a photo with us in the Etsy Labs Flickr group.