"You may have to go buy just a little something, button, zipper, etc. to complete a project, but extra points it you can pull it of without buying anything.
"And you don't have to stop with one, see how much of your stash you can put to good use! You can make something completely from start to finish, or see how many of those half finished projects you can complete and show off! Then at the end of the month, you'll have so much extra room in your craft room/closet/bins."
This sounded like a great challenge to participate in - not only am I saving money by not buying new craft supplies, but I'm using what is on hand and creating space. Below are some things I have made so far this month.
*~.:.~*~.:.~*~.:.~*~.:.~*~.:.~*~.:.~*~.:.~*~.:.~*I had a couple of maps that I didn't need - one from Brazil and another from Spain. The one from Brazil is written in Portuguese and was purchased there about a decade ago. The other map is from a National Geographic magazine. What I like about the latter map is that there are short explanations about the significance of some of the cities or towns on the map.
With the Brazilian map, I made folded flowers that I glued onto 5 inch by 7 inch greeting cards.
Flower made from a Brazilian map and green copy paper
Open flower where a message can be written
The matching envelopes have a floral image from the map to tie the greeting card and evelope together.
Greeting cards and envelopes made from the Brazilian map
With the map of Spain, I made two type of miniature cards (they are 3 inches x 3 inches). The cards themselves are made from sheets of 12 inch x 12 inch scrapbooking paper. For some of the cards that had an interesting fact, I left the cards plain.
Miniature greeting and thank you cards
With the cards that didn't have a fact, I placed a hand-stamped "thank you" flower in the center. It is affixed to the card with a 3D double-sided foam piece.
I had quite a few vintage children's books on hands that the girls were done reading. They had cleaned their bookshelves about a month ago and removed all the books they no longer wanted. Before donating them to the local thrift shop, I pulled any vintage books that could be used in crafting.
After removing the pages that had pictures, I traced an envelope template onto each page. I cut each one out by hand; and then folded and glued it. I pressed the envelopes under a couple of heavy books to flatten them.
Variety of handmade envelopes from vintage children's books
With some of the books, the pages are a bit small for standard-size envelopes, so I made gift bags with the pages. Again, I use pages with pictures for the bags. After removing the pages from the books, I pair pages together and then trim them so the edges match. The edges are cut with pinking shears. The edges are sewn on the sewing machine.
Gift bags made from vintage children's books
I have a lot of scrapbooking paper and notebooks that are taking up shelf space. An idea to use both of these were to make letterettes. I received a set of letterettes from someone on Swap-Bot awhile back. I thought it was such a clever idea. She used a heavier decorative paper (almost like a cardstock) for the exterior. Since I didn't have patterned cardstock on hand, I used a lighter-weight decorative paper.
The patterned paper is 12 inches by 12 inches. I cut the paper into two pieces - one that was 5 inches wide and the other was 7 inches wide. The length is 12 inches.
The inside of each letterette has 5 sheets of notebook paper that were cut into smaller sizes:
- Smaller letterette: 4 7/10" x 7 3/4"
- Larger letterette: 6 7/10" x 5 7/10"
Letterettes - with one open to show where it is sewed
Once cut, they pages were folded in half and placed in the folded patterned paper. I sewed on the sewing machine along the folded line in the notebook paper, making sure to reverse sew along each of the edges so the stitching wouldn't come out. After trimming the thread, the letterettes are ready to use.
After writing a letter on the notebook pages, simply seal the letterette with a glue stick or decorative tape, put two labels on the outside - for the return and sending addresses - and it's ready to be mailed.
I had a gift box that had a nice pattern on it, but I am now using fabric bags to wrap gifts. So, instead of recycling it I used my tag punch and paper punch with a tiny hole to create tags. Using a thicker embroidery floss, I cut and attached hangers so they can be used for gifts or for price tags for products.
Tags made from a decorative box
I had a few pages from the vintage children's books leftover as well as some notebook paper. So, I made some made stationery gluing a sheet of notebook paper on top of a page from the children's book. I had debated about painting over the image that’s under the notebook paper, but I thought that it was nice to be able to see the design of that page of the children’s book as well as the image on the backside of the stationery.
Stationery with notebook paper and a page from a children's book
My next focus: using the fabric and felt that I have on hand. I have quite a few patterns that I've wanted to try that use these materials. So, during the next couple of weeks I'll start using sewing or embroidering using felt and fabric. I'll do another post at the end of the month with what I've made.