Tag Archives: DIY

DIY Coasters!


https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ :: DIY Coasters

There are several nerdy obsessions I have. (You’ve probably all noticed the Doctor Who thing by now…) But I also LOVE anything Harry Potter and I have a passion for all things Walking Dead. So, after the last HodgePodge Crochet gift exchange–when my crossbow toting Walking Dead mug was gifted to me by the same dear friend who sent me all of that handspun Exploding TARDIS yarn--I knew I wanted to turn things up a notch by creating something nerdy to rest it on.

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ :: DIY Coasters https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ :: DIY Coasters

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What goes better with a Team Daryl Walking Dead mug than Harry Potter?!? It works in my head… Off to Pinterest I went in search of how to make this a reality! I found an amazing How To over on brightnest. Using a few cheap supplies and some DIY magic, she came up with three gorgeous ways to make coasters that reflect your personal style.

Still, I wanted something a little more…geektastic…so I decided to build on her idea and make my inner nerd happy!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ :: DIY CoastersI started with the cork. For my  project I used cork tiles. You can find these pretty much anywhere. They come in a pack of 4 and are perfect for cutting and are also flat (which is important if you’re making a coaster) but you can also use the rolled cork too if that’s what you have lying around. Just unroll it a day before you plan to use it and place it flat under something heavy (like a stack of books) so you can work with it a little easier.

You will also need a ruler, a pencil, a sharp scissor or X-Acto knife, an acrylic sealer like Mod Podge, a paintbrush, cardboard, hot glue sticks and a glue gun or e6000, a printer, and images of whatever it is you want to turn into a coaster! Optional extras are things like acrylic paint (to age your coasters), yarn (to decorate the edges), and rubber sealer (to protect the cork from drying out and to provide some grip so your coasters don’t go sliding around on you.)

The first thing I did was to cut coaster sized squares of both cardboard and cork. The beauty of this project is that you don’t have to do it with traditional square or circle shapes and you don’t have to stick with the standard coaster size. Make them smaller for impromptu tea parties or larger for oversized mugs. Make them oval or hexagonal or go with a rhombus if you’re feeling particularly geeky.

Since I wanted to put several Harry Potter chapter titles on my coasters, I went with a standard 4″ x 4″ square.

I sandwiched together my cardboard and cork and glued them together with my hot glue gun. Cardboard LOVES hot glue so this part of the project went super quick. Once I’d gotten all four of my coasters glued together, I printed out the chapter headings I wanted as coasters, cut my images to fit, and then took my time painting some Mod Podge on the cardboard, arranging the image on top, and painting on more Mod Podge to secure. GO SLOW so you don’t get any air bubbles and keep smoothing until your image is how you want it.

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ :: DIY Coasters

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ :: DIY Coasters

I know people are going to ask me where I got my images from and the answer is from the book! I own all of the Harry Potter books as digital copies so it’s pretty simple to take the digital image and create a printable graphic to use in a project like this one. In order to create a printable of your favorite chapters–in Harry Potter or any book that you love–all you have to do is follow these simple steps:

If you’re on a PC, pull up the page you want to copy and hit the Prtsc button on your keyboard. (Nothing will happen so don’t panic.) Then open your favorite graphics program and paste the image into it. Crop until you are happy, save the image, open a word doc and insert the image. Adjust the image so it is the correct size and print!

If you’re on a Mac, pull up the page you want to copy and hit Command+Shift+4. This brings up a selection box so you can specify an area to take a screenshot of, then save it as a file to the desktop. Open your word alternative (like OpenOffice) and insert your image. Adjust the image so it is the correct size and print!

If you own a physical copy of the book you can always scan your pages into your computer and use that as well. Save your image and follow the steps above to adjust and print!

Once you finish sealing them with several coats of Mod Podge and they’re dry, you’re pretty much done. I wanted to age mine so I broke out the acrylic paints and got to work. I thinned some brown and yellow with water and used a paper towel to gently rub them in. Because the coasters were sealed, I got some lovely results!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ :: DIY Coasters

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.comOnce they were dry, I covered them one more time with Mod Podge and then sprayed the cork backing with some aerosol rubber. This step is optional but I find that it helps protect the cork from drying out and also gives your coasters a little grip so they don’t move around too much on you.

After a few coats, you’re ready to use your new coasters!

You can opt to wrap them in a little fun fur (because who among us isn’t a little nerdy for yarn)…..

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ :: DIY Coasters

and all that’s left is to pull up your favorite pattern on your computer, grab some yarn and a hook, top your coaster with your favorite mug and hot beverage, and enjoy!

 and all that's left is to top with your favorite mug and hot beverage!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com/ :: DIY Coasters

 

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DIY Glow In The Dark Yarn


PLEASE UPDATE YOUR BOOKMARKS!!!

This awesome blog post can be found over at the HodgePodge Crochet website!! 

http://hodgepodgecrochet.net/2014/09/diy-glow-in-the-dark-yarn/

hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Glow in the Dark Yarn

 

DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee


https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

Okay…I admit I’ve always wanted my very own TARDIS… Who wouldn’t?!? As long as it comes with a Time Lord, I’m set. 🙂

Since I am highly doubtful that my TARDIS dream will ever be a reality (anyone out there who knows David Tennant or Matt Smith and is willing to pull some strings would earn my eternal gratitude!), a girl has to settle for Plan B. My Plan B is to put the TARDIS on everything I possibly can.

Today, that thing is a t-shirt!

I had a ball painting the TARDIS on my DIY Handbag, but in order to get acrylic paint to behave better (I admit, I’ve never thought about washing a handbag before…) you need to add some acrylic medium when painting on clothing so that your fabric stays soft and lasts through more washes. Note: You don’t technically NEED to add it–acrylic paint won’t wash out–but it helps keep the color vibrant and also helps your fabric still feel like fabric and not get too stiff. 

So, instead of painting, I decided to bleach.

Bleaching can be a lot of fun (and is certainly less expensive) but whenever you tackle a project that involves color, the first thing you need to think about is…well, the color!

When you paint, you can either paint on the darker contrast or opt to paint lighter tones and cause the fabric under to contrast.

When you bleach, whatever the bleach touches will automatically lighten. So technically, whatever is covered by the stencil will be what contrasts.

I’ll show you an example of what I mean:

TARDIS stencil on fabric with paint (Notice how the black paint instantly creates contrast, causing the fabric to pop):

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Doctor Who and the TARDIS

TARDIS stencil with bleach (Notice how the bleach lightens the fabric, creating contrast with the original color of the t-shirt, causing it to pop):

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

Whatever way you choose to do it, I promise you’ll have a ton of fun getting it done.

So what do you need to create your own bleach tee masterpiece? You probably already have everything on-hand!

  • The first thing you will need is a t-shirt. It doesn’t have to be the most fancy thing on the planet or even brand new. (Got an old oil-stained or paint-stained one you’ve been hanging on to? This project is perfect for it!!)
  • Freezer paper. You will need this to create your stencil and it’s absolutely critical to getting a good bleached tee.
  • A printer.
  • A sharp X-acto knife. Scissors won’t work unless you are doing something with relatively straight edges and no inside cut-work.
  • An iron.
  • Bleach.
  • A glass measuring cup.
  • A spray bottle.
  • A rag you don’t mind getting bleached.
  • Rubber gloves.
  • Cardboard and aluminum foil or plastic garbage bags and a large flat surface.
  • Water.
  • White vinegar.
  • Washing machine and dryer.
  • A nice day to work outdoors.

The process:https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

The first thing you need to do is decide what to put onto your shirt. The internet is full of interesting graphics that would work well when bleaching a tee. Just pull up Google and type in silhouette followed by whatever it is you are interested in finding an image of and you won’t be disappointed.

If you’d rather tackle the TARDIS above, you can grab a copy of my template right here: HodgePodge Crochet DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee.

Once you have your image, the next thing you need to do is print it and then layer it under your freezer paper and trace over it. You will be cutting out everything that is white and leaving everything that is black. TAKE YOUR TIME!! Spending extra time now to make it right will pay off later!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

I recommend writing on whatever part of the stencil will need to be removed to make the whole process simpler.

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

Now that your template is all trimmed, it’s time to iron it onto your tee. MAKE SURE you are ironing shiny side down. The shiny side is the side that will adhere to your shirt and you don’t want that stuck to your iron!

Use a hot iron with no steam and once you have the paper good and stuck down, leave your shirt to cool off for at least 30 minutes. It’s not mandatory but I find that I get a better resist when I let the fibers cool off from the heat of the iron.

While you are waiting, mix up your bleach solution. I do NOT recommend using straight bleach for this project. It’s way too harsh for the fabric and will more than likely eat through the t-shirt before you have a chance to peel back your stencil. Instead, measure out a 50/50 ratio of bleach to water and add it to a spray bottle. Make sure that you label the bottle so there aren’t any accidents later!! 

When you are ready, prepare your cardboard by covering it in aluminum foil. (You can opt to line your shirt with garbage bags instead.) Once it’s covered, slide it inside your shirt. This will be used as a barricade so that the bleach only stays on the front of the shirt. Feel free to skip this part if you plan to bleach the back as well as the front.

Now is a good time to take your work outdoors. Bleach is not fun to breathe in and can be dangerous if inhaled. Working outside provides great ventilation as well as great lighting! If you are particularly sensitive, wear a respirator as well.

All that’s left is to put on your gloves, grab your rag, and start spraying your bleach mixture!

BUT WAIT!! DON’T GO CRAZY!!!

Lightly spray your design, blot up the excess asap, and then force yourself to wait!! You won’t see anything happen at first but give it a few minutes for the bleach to work its magic. You will notice the fabric you’ve sprayed to begin lighten. The result is more dramatic with darker colored tees.

Quick tip: Don’t let your bleach pool anywhere and try to keep your paper as dry as possible. Also, BLOT!! Don’t wipe. Wiping might push bleach under your stencil and ruin your design. 

Keep layering on bleach as you go, waiting between sprays and blotting up excess bleach, until you get the desired effect.

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

Once you are happy with your design, leave the shirt to sit for a few minutes (it should be barely damp, not soaking) and then carefully pull off the stencil. Make sure your hands are clean (no bleach!) otherwise you may end up bleaching an area that you didn’t want bleached!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

Now that you’re all done with the bleaching, it’s time to deactivate it and stop the process!! The first thing to do is immediately throw that shirt into some water (running water is awesome!!) and rinse and rinse and rinse!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

Make sure you really rinse well because the next step involves vinegar and you don’t want to mix bleach with vinegar!! That’s bad..

Once your shirt is totally rinsed–several times with lots of fresh water–it’s time to deactivate whatever bleach might be left with some straight white vinegar.

Throw your shirt into a bowl and then pour some vinegar over it and squish it through. Then leave it to sit outside for 1-3 hours to do its work.

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

After it’s done soaking, ring it out and rinse it one last time with some fresh water and then launder as usual!

The result is pretty spectacular!!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

FAQ’s!!

The following are some of the questions I’ve gotten since posting this tutorial that I thought would be best shared right here! 

Q. Do I need to prewash the shirts?

A. I recommend prewashing to remove sizing because if your shirt shrinks weird on you, your design will shrink weird and all that work is gone. Also, sometimes sizing will resist bleach and you won’t end up with the result you expect.

Q. Can I put different color shirts into the vinegar bath together or do I need a separate bowl for each?

A. You can put all shirts together in the same bowl as long as you are 100% positive you’ve rinsed all of them REALLY WELL before putting them into the vinegar. (Mixing straight bleach and vinegar will produce toxic fumes so it is **really important** to rinse your shirts well before dunking them into vinegar.) Vinegar won’t cause colors to run.

Q. I’ll be working in full sunlight, any special precautions I need to take?

A. Working out in the daylight (on a hot day) is best for making these shirts because it encourages faster dry times between mists of bleach. It’s also encouraged to do these outdoors because bleach fumes aren’t good for you. If working inside, make sure you have adequate cross ventilation!!

Q. My bleach is lemon scented, will that affect the process?

A. The scent of the bleach will not affect the end result.

Q. Anything else I need to know?

A. Yes!

  1. It is TEMPTING to dump as much bleach onto your shirts as fast as possible, but you must resist the urge!! Putting on too much bleach too fast will soak your shirt. The result will be bleeding under your template (especially if you have a lot of thin areas on your stencil) and might ruin your design.
  2. After some experimenting, I’ve learned that bleach will not work on most synthetic fabrics. What you end up getting is this almost ghost print (if anything at all) which could be cool if that’s the look you’re going for. For an awesome bleach shirt you will need natural fabrics. The good news is that even the cheap t-shirts at WalMart (where I got all of mine) are a natural fiber blend and they will work just fine. 100% cotton will also work well, HOWEVER, bleach really weakens cotton so adjust your bleach ratio so there is more water than bleach and use sparingly. If you get big, wet drips of bleach on 100% cotton, they will quickly develop into holes in the material.
  3. If you use cardboard and skip the step of covering it with aluminum, be warned! Cardboard will soak up your bleach and become a nightmare (especially if you are heavy handed with the spraying). For the best results with your stencil, make sure your cardboard is either wrapped in plastic or covered in aluminum foil.
  4. Don’t wear anything you would cry to get bleach on when tackling these shirts!!
  5. Different color shirts WILL bleach differently. I’ve had unexpected results with quite a few shirts I’ve done. What I’ve found is that purple shirts bleach to green OR pink tones. Green shirts lighten to yellow or lime.
  6. The darker the shirt, the better the result with the least amount of bleach. Black and brown have been my two most successful bleached result.
  7. The lighter the shirt, the more bleach you will need to lighten the fabric around your stencil.
  8. Only mix small batches of bleach at a time and empty the leftovers (don’t store it). If you store leftover bleach it could weaken your spray bottle and end up a giant mess on you.
  9. ANY cheap spray bottle will work for this project. If you don’t have a spray bottle you can use a kitchen sponge dipped into your bleach ratio and squeezed out so that it’s damp but not dripping. GENTLY dab onto your shirt and go slow. Make sure  you are wearing really good gloves if you decide to go with the sponge and when you are finished, rinse the gloves with water, dip into vinegar, and rinse again before removing them.
  10. When you are all done with your final shirt rinse and ready to wash, throw them into your machine without any other clothing to reduce the risk of accidents!!

If you make a tee, I’d love to see it!! The following is a HodgePodge Pic Gallery filled with contributions from some amazingly crafty Podgers! 

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

If you try one of your own, head on over to facebook and share it with me! I’d love to see your creations!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com DIY Bleached TARDIS Tee

One Doctor Who TARDIS Handbag and Some Delish Wool Roving


https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Doctor Who TARDIS handbag DIY

Amazing Doctor Who crochet hooks by The Lemonade Shop!

I’m super excited to share with you guys my FINISHED Doctor Who TARDIS handbag!!

I can’t even begin to tell you how terrified I was to start this project. The idea of sewing in straight lines freaks me out–mostly because I know if it’s not straight I’ll want to pull it all out and redo it. I don’t think I have to tell you guys that it’s way simpler to pull back your crochet work to get it perfect BUT, I was determined to get over my fears and conquer the beast that is my sewing machine! https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Doctor Who TARDIS handbag DIY

Things started out okay….and then my thread broke. No big deal, right? Just rethread it and keep going! And then it happened again. I thought it was a bad omen. Thread breaking twice in the span of two seconds is never a good thing.

But, I mentioned I was determined!! So off to find a new sewing machine needle. (I’d been told once a long time ago that the right needle makes all the difference.) I found one specifically made for drapery fabric in my mini sewing hoard and figured out how to change the needle–it’s easier than I thought–and 5 minutes later I was off and sewing with gusto!

Before I knew it, I’d finished! I even added a magnetic snap closure to finish it off.

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Doctor Who TARDIS handbag DIY

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Doctor Who TARDIS handbag DIY

I am so happy I committed to finish this one and now my daughter tells me she needs a My Little Pony handbag. She’s ten and apparently she needs a handbag to carry all of her ponies around when she goes off on important shopping trips to buy more ponies. 😉

If you guys want to know how I made this bag, make sure to check out THIS BLOG POST which has the entire process and the amazing youtube tutorial I used!

https://hodgepodgecrochet.wordpress.com Doctor Who TARDIS handbag DIY

I know, Doctor… I NEVER win and am making that same face right along with you!

Now that I’ve overcome my sewing machine fears, I think I’m ready to tackle another! Recently I blogged about Mandie’s Krafty Kreations huge facebook giveaway! Guess who won?!?!

ME!

I was thrilled today when I got a box in the mail filled with the most gorgeous 100% merino roving.

Get ready for raw yarn yummies!

https://www.facebook.com/mandies.krafty.kreations

I have no clue how to use it or what will happen when I try my hand at spinning but I think I’ve always had a little bit of beginner’s luck in my pocket. Perhaps I can pull some out and sprinkle it over this!

If you’ve got some tips or just want to give me a shout, make sure you drop a comment!! I love hearing from you guys! (Comments are moderated–to keep out vulgarity and discourage trolls–so it might take a little bit before they appear.) I’d love to hear your thoughts and ideas on how to make this gorgeous roving into something that I can crochet!