Sunday, December 18, 2011

TUTORIAL: Fabric covered Christmas trees with Kelli from Small Town Stitcher sewing blog

Today's guest poster is Kelli from Small Town Stitcher blog!
If you are a quilter, a mom, or even a crafter, you will LOVE her blog!
Kelli has posted a few times before on Seamingly Smitten and showed off her AMAZING sewing skills!


Kelli made this shirt from a skirt. CLICK HERE for tutorial

Her Anthropology inspired Grommet Skirt...CLICK HERE for the tutorial


Kelli is also a quilter. I LOVE this one for Christmas time!  CLICK HERE to read about it!

Take it away, Kelli!

Hi everyone!  I'm so excited to be here with you today.  My name is Kelli and I blog over at Small Town Stitcher.  I met Jenny a year or so ago through a link up party we'd both entered.  I loved her project and commented and we struck up a conversation and then a friendship. I am always amazed at what she creates to wear and to dress her kiddos in.  We make a good pair, because Jenny is so good at creating patterns, and I'm so good at following them!  ;)  I've tried many of her patterns and they're all great.

When she asked me to be a part of her Sew Crafty Christmas event I thought I'd show y'all a craft I do with my children every year at Christmas.  It's easy and there are about a million different tutorials for versions of this on the web.  But, I'm going to show you this most basic version and you can take it from there.  My kids are 5 and 7 and we've been doing this together for a few years.  Emma, my 7-year-old can pretty much do it on her own now, but Oren, my 5-year-old still needed guidance. So it is definitely a craft you and your kids can grow into and make a tradition.

We're going to make some fabric-covered Christmas trees!
 

You'll need styrofoam cones (of any size, we like to mix it up), fabric cut into small squares and rectangles (I just hack away...bigger shapes fill the tree faster, little ones give you more control), decoupage glue (we use Mod-Podge mixed with some water) and a paint brush.  I'd also recommend some newspaper so you don't glue the trees to your table, but that's up to you.  ;)

And here we go:

1.  Lay out all of your supplies and start gluing.  I usually put a little glue on the tree, stick the piece of fabric down and then dab a little glue right over the fabric.  Then you can just overlap pieces until the tree is covered!



This little tree is in progress.  See how you just glue down the pieces on top of each other?   That way you make sure to cover everywhere.
2.  Now for that pesky top...there are two ways to conquer this.  You can start here so that the folded-over edges will be covered, but it can be tricky for little fingers to keep the edges smooth, or you can end with the top piece.  I've done both.  For these trees, I glued down the top for them.  The key is to make snips along the fabric that overhangs the top flat area.  Then these snipped pieces can be folded over and arranged to lay flatter.

Here I started with the top and glued it down well before going down the sides.

3.  What I love about this craft is that it doesn't require perfection.  This is a craft you are making with your kids and (from a distance at least!) they'll look just as good if they're perfectly flat or a little bumpy.  Now, if you're a perfectionist, you can certainly make these yourself and they'll look great.  In our little "forest" there are some I've made with the kids and some I've made alone.  I choose to let the happy memories of time spent together haze out all of those bumpy-edged trees from years past.  :)












4.  But fabric is not your only medium to work with.  We've also made yarn-covered trees



and tissue-paper trees.



And really, the sky is the limit here.  I've seen these trees made with ruffled fabric, scrunched up balls of tissue paper, sequins, etc.  You could use newspaper or sheet music for a vintage look.  You could use pins with jeweled heads or beads to be ornaments on your trees.  I mean, what I'm showing you is just the first step...where you go from here can be all you!

Thanks again to Jenny for letting me come over and hang out today!  I wish each of you the very Merriest Christmas and a happy heart this holiday season.  Now get to gluing you up some Christmas trees and start your own Christmas forest filled with memories of time spent together!!



P.S.  I've got a giveaway going on the blog this week, so stop by and enter to win a fun prize!
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