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Friday, December 8, 2017

Lamp Making

Another of my projects I wanted to make for the new sunroom, is a lamp. I’ve had frames, the lampstand and all the makings for so long. I keep saying that, but somehow I managed to get distracted in a thousand ways and many of the things I planned were pushed further and further down the list. I would guess I’m not alone in that habit. Here is the latest with some basic instructions, because it really is an easy project to create.

A few basic supplies include: FabriTac or any kind of clear drying glue, a lamp frame, something to create the panels (fabric or fancy paper), scissors, and trims, cotton twill tape (optional). 

The other part is the lamp standard. You could find one at the thrift store, or perhaps some place like Michaels??? The lamp frames I found in a couple of places years ago, a fabric store in the home decor section and a craft store that focused on things like book, lamp and other specialty items in classes and/or supplies. I bet there are tons of sources online.

To begin I used a similar shape frame like this. I didn’t think to take a picture of mine before I started, but this is a reference picture.


I used a handmade rice paper to cover my frame. The first step is to use some paper towel and lay the panels on the paper and draw an outline of the shape. I would advise drawing the panel larger after you have traced it. You never want to trace it to the size it is, so add a good half inch all around what you traced. Trace out the panels that are different, some lamp shades have all the same, some have 2 or more different shapes.

Before applying the paper or fabric panels, consider how you want to cover the wire frame on the inside. I didn’t have cotton twill on hand, so after I was done applying the panels I glued on cotton lace. It serves to make it look properly finished on the inside.

If you use the cotton twill, you will wrap the frame entirely before you start attaching the panels. Be sure, whatever you use, that it’s cotton. You’ll fight with gluing the panels on if you use anything like satin ribbon or other.


Applying the panels is not difficult, you will be lining them up on the panels, gluing them in place and trim the edges. In the picture below you can see how the paper takes on the shape of the frame. If you use paper, make sure it’s a sturdy paper. Mind is a couple of layers of rice paper, with botanicals pressed in between the sheets. If you can find handmade papers, or make your own, it will make a really pretty, finished lamp.

In this lamp, I first covered the triangle shaped panels front and back first, the remaining panels I laid the paper onto the frame, pressed it into shape on the wire. I lifted it off in sections, applied the glue, then held it down until it began to adhere.

I wrapped the excess around the wire. Snip the paper where you need to, to fit into corners and so on. Trim the excess paper, be careful not to snip too close. Don’t try to force the paper to take on the actual shape of the frame. If I had used fabric, I think that would have laid flatter on the panels. The paper wanted to bow outward, so I let that happen, it wasn’t important to force it to go flat.


Once the panels are covered, it’s time to trim your lamp. Whatever you choose, you’ll want to pin it in place all around. Once you have it all trimmed, go around in sections gluing it on. Remember to trim the top edge.


My final couple of finishing tips are to add fringe around the base, I also glue trim above over the edge of the fringe. The I wrapped some left over fringe around the pull cord and trimmed it with some of the trim above.

The lamp standard itself was made for me years ago. When I worked in home care, one of the elderly men I worked for, lived in an apartment building that had a wood working shop in the basement. He loved to make things on his lathe and I was lucky enough to receive some beauties from him. This lamp is approx. 2 feet tall, and I have two shorter ones that match this. Thank you Stan.. ;o)  At the very end, I applied a coat of Mod Podge on both sides, it helps to tighten up the paper and the dust won’t settle on the paper, ensuring it stays clean.


The final touch was to plug it in and see just how pretty it looks. Now I can’t wait for the flooring to go in, in the sunroom, so I can start setting up the furniture. I hope this has inspired you to tackle this kind of project. You can find all kinds of old lamps at thrift stores. Just clean off what’s covering the frame, clean off any old glue, bumps and bruises and maybe just rub some steel wool or sand paper lightly over the frame to remove any potential burs that might stab you or your paper. You can find lamp wiring parts at hard ware stores if you find an old lamp standard but the wiring is old and not in good shape. Rewiring a lamp isn’t hard, YouTube is a great resource too.. Enjoy ;o)


Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Dotty–My Christmas Troll

In a recent post I mentioned wanting to do a Santa or Nutcracker themed doll for me this time. ;o) In between then and now, I saw a post on Ute Vasina’s blog, talking about doing a troll sew along. I thought, why not. I’m all done with all things Christmas that I put up for sale, so let’s do this thing.  Do you know Ute? If so or not, it’s not too late to get involved. She’s giving the body pattern for Oggie, free, and no instructions. It’s not a challenge exactly and not a time limit thing, just for fun. Check it out HERE….

A little about Dotty. She is my Christmas Troll and will take up residence is a special place over Christmas. She’ll be one of the “special” decorations for our new sunroom. She’s pretty stoked about that… Here she is with her matching tree.


At first I was going to have her lounging on the chaise


but once I got her shoes on, that pose was the one that I thought worked best. Before I put the book in her hand, she looked like she was so excited about “NEW SHOES”… ;o~


You know I love to make little books, I’ve mentioned before, well many times before actually.. This is a Christmas Wish Book and of course, she got near the center and let out a little squeal when she saw a little troll girl.  She spent quite some time going through her book and thinking of all the things she might like to have.



Her costume just came together organically. I didn’t really plan much other than the jacket. I initially planned to sew tiny buttons on some of the matching polka dots, but once it was on her, I had to make some adjustments to the size, and with only a small piece of this flannel, I couldn’t recut the piece, so I made a big pleat on either side starting at the front and carried on to bottom of the back. Stitched that down, then added buttons of multiple colours along the pleat and around the cuffs.


Her trousers are a stretch velvet and gathered just above the knees. Around her neck, that doesn’t show well, is a wine glass charm for a necklace. It’s a snowflake in the gold tone with a few beads on either side. Her leggings are a from a head hand, and finishing the look is her cherry red hair and bright green bow fastened with a red button. All decked out and ready for her Christmas debut… if she can ever get her nose out of the wish book. ;o)


Saturday, October 28, 2017

More Pillows

Now that my projects for the gallery show/sale are done, I’ve been working on the things I want for the new sunroom. I am piling up things, and hopefully very soon this will be over and we can put our feet up and take a breath after the busy year it’s been.

These are pillows I finished the other day. Just very simple, no fuss. In the center of the green pillow I used a heavy gold metallic button with an anchor on it, and a thick piping around the sides. In the center of the blue pillow, I used a heavy silver button, I always like silver and blue together. Around the sides, I used a lampshade fringe. Although it doesn’t show, the blue print is birds on branches, and there are small leaves.


The next two pillows are made with a print fabric, with writing, botanicals and a pretty white owl. They are also button tufted and both have lampshade fringe on the sides. One is a medium green tighter fringe, while the soft grey is more traditional lampshade fringe.


For one of these print pillows, I used black onyx (I think) and mother of pearl (in the center) button. In the very center of the button is a pretty little star shape. What I thought was quite a nice surprize, when I turned the pillow over after stitching the buttons on front and back, I noticed the one on the back landed right where his feet are. Totally unplanned, but fun.


The other pillow with the print fabric, has a wonderful shabby chic feel to it. I found two nice big buttons in my stash that have rhinestones in them, and in a flower pattern of sorts. This time, after drawing the thread through to the back and fastening the buttons on either side, I discovered that the button had landed exactly on his right eye. Unplanned  again, but a great happy accident.


The final pillow is a bolster. I found this fabric in a clearance section and took what was left. Not sure why I went with a Paris theme, but I suppose like a lot of things, the reason will show itself sometime. The colour are black, grey, soft blue, with lots of images and writing all over.  I’ve also made a table cloth to match this, but until I get the table painted, I’ll hold off showing it.


On the ends of the bolster, I used big dark grey buttons, just plain ones. I then took a piece of the trim I’ve sewn on the tablecloth and wrapped it around the button, and secured the tassels in place. Being a pillow like this, it will be getting moved around a lot I think, so this will prevent pulling and tugging which would for sure pull the tassels out of shape or right off. So more another day when I finish painting the table. I have to make it first. ;o) Back soon.


Monday, October 23, 2017

Making a List Santa - 2017

Four years ago I made this Santa over a weekend. If you could have seen my workroom, it was like a fan was blowing everything around. I have no idea why it got so bad, but the end result was this cute little Santa.  CLICK HERE The original design is by Sparkles N Spirit. CLICK HERE

This is my 2017 version. Love them both and hoping this one sells as quickly as the first one. His designer named him Making a List Santa, but I call him my Bubble Butt Santa. ;o)

The details are pretty straight forward, but a couple of things to point out. The suspenders are made from a wide ribbon that I cut in half, and if you look across the body, you can match up the wording.

His shoes are trimmed with chain, filigree buttons on top (just cut the shanks off the back), and some silver buttons on the lower legs. More silver buttons on the suspenders and wrists. The socks and leggings are a combination of stretch velvet and dollar store socks.

He’s primarily created with black red and white, with a little green for contrast on his shoes and glasses.



Saturday, October 7, 2017

Collectible Christmas Stockings

These are just the best stockings to make. They are Cheswick Company designs, the finished look is just so perfect. I fully line mine, and I love that touch of lining that I have at the top edge of each of them. It’s like a surprize element to the work. So here they are, three of them you’ve seen before if you’ve looked at my Stockings tab above. I labelled each one, so you can find the design you might want to make yourself. Click HERE for Cathy’s Etsy shop.



Fireside Glow


Holly Jolly


Let It Snow


Light of the World


Nordic Sock


Olde Glory


Silent Night



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