Creating Unique Scatter Cushions For Your Home

Scatter cushions, like curtains not only serve a decorative purpose but also a functional one too, however, they aren’t quite as essential as curtains or blinds. Cushions often help make uncomfortable chairs more comfortable and they can give additional support where needed. There’s also the decorative side to having them.

Generally, scatter cushions are fairly cheap to buy. If you want something a bit special however you will have to pay more. It’s wrong to think they are only scatter cushions, no one will notice if they’re a bit inferior. “My Settee cost the earth, so I will buy some cheap scatters from Dunelms!”. Believe me, we will notice! The fact you have bought inexpensive scatter cushions to dress your expensive settee will only make the settee look cheap. It doesn’t make the cheap cushions look expensive at all.

When visiting family or friends and asked to take a seat, I always notice the scatters and move them to the back of the settee for support to my back. They play an important role in your home in adding comfort and colour. At one time it was conventional to have two scatters on the settee and one on each of the two chairs, same fabric and size. There were certainly none in the bedroom, but that has all changed.

Scatter cushions can no be different designs, shapes and sizes. They bring cheer to all of your living areas. So break with convention and buy some bright and either buy or create some bright and colourful scatters.

Recently I’ve begun making scatters myself and I’ve found upholstery fabric so far is one of the best materials for the job. The fabric is obviously more durable and you can get some really nice designs. I’ve had varying success buying cheap upholstery fabric off of Ebay, it’s not always the right colour, not the quality and the service isn’t always that good.

There are a few other places online that sell upholstery fabric online. I’m looking for clearance or discount upholstery fabric mainly as the current lines are quite a lot more expensive so that narrows my search down a bit. A good site I’ve found fairly recently and where I’ve started to buy my fabrics from is Selby Soft Furnishings. The quality is superior to what I’ve had off Ebay and the prices are more than reasonable. I definitely recommend them. You can use curtain fabric though if you prefer.

scatter cushion from selby soft furnishings

Oh and there’s a guide for making scatter cushions on there too. It’s a pretty basic design admittedly but it’s a nice guide if you’re just starting out. You can view the guide here.

My scatter cushions will be a little bit more complicated than that. Mine will include a zip and piping. I haven’t found a good guide for that yet, but if I do I will put it on here.

The Art Of Making Jewellery

The world over, people have delighted in making and wearing various jewels. Jewellery has never lost its popularity. Every conceivable material has been fashioned into a piece of jewellery. Jewels are the finishing touch to our attire, we feel we need to wear something that tells the world “I’m married”, “I’m engaged”, “I’m wealthy and successful”. Jewels adorn our bodies and we adore them.

There are plenty of jewellery making kits on the Internet to get you started on this very interesting and creative hobby. From these jewellery making kits you can design you very own adornments, just as good and attractive all for a fraction of what they would cost on the high street. Good luck!

Jewellery making is an art of making decorative pieces that can be worn or attached to garments. jewelry-makingJewels include durable accessories such as rings, necklaces, badges, bracelets and earrings. The craft is prehistoric. Long ago animal teeth, seeds, sea shells were used to make decorative accoutrements. The craftsmanship started more than 5000 years ago in Egypt, North America and China. Jewels made of metal and gems were worn as symbol of status, a show of wealth or an identification of religious affiliation. Industrialization brought about the growth of jewellery making in the early 18th century through the introduction of expensive and precious metals such as diamonds, gold and platinum.

One must come up with appropriate designs before making jewels. Designs can be obtained from vintage collections, inventing new ones or modifying the current ones. The material to be used in the craft is another consideration. Jewels can be made from coins, gems, and some precious metal alloys. Bronze and copper has commonly been used in early times. Modern time’s ornaments are made from gold, platinum, titanium, silver, and palladium. Accessories and badges used on garments are made from stainless steel.

There are various methods that can be used to make ornaments. First, there is beading which is commonly found in necklaces, earrings, belts and rings. This method is popular particularly in North and South America, Africa and Asia. Beads come in different sizes and shapes. jewelry-making-toolsThe beads can be made of glass, porcelain, metal, wood, and seeds. Beading is particularly a time consuming process. Secondly, some jewels are made from carvings. Soap stone and bone carving is mainly used in making of pendants and bracelets. Nowadays the soap stone are becoming scarce. In fact one has to import some from Africa or Asia. Thirdly, metal smithing is another jewel making method. Craftsmen work on some precious metals to produce forms that can be used to make ornaments. Smiths have to heat the metals to make them mouldable. In addition, the precious metals are expensive and difficult to mine.

Advanced technology has been applied in mining and metal forging making it the most popular jewel production method. Beading, smithing, and carving require expertise. Jewellery making remains a hobby and an occupation to many.

Scented Pleasures Of Perfume Making

perfume-bottleExtracting deliciously fragrant odours from plants and flowers and adding them to the skin is perfume. People have used fruits and flowers, to create loved smells for centuries. These smells are preserved with oils. Recipes for perfumes are as important as gold coins; guarded as closely.

The simple process for making scent or perfume is the same whichever recipe is used. The simplest scents mixed are alcohol, essentially scent oils and sterilised water. The oil must be blended slowly into the alcohol, a drop at a time. Mix slowly and long enough for the oils to be completely blended together. Let the mixture of essential oils and alcohol stand untouched for two days. Now add the sterilised water and again, add it slowly until totally blended.

The perfume now needs to mature for at least three weeks in a cool dark place. Once the perfume has been allowed to mature three weeks you can begin the filtering process. Filter the perfume through a porous filter to remove any sediment. Store the perfume in a colour glass bottle with a topper.

There are plenty of perfume making kits available and they are quite inexpensive, especially when you consider how much a bottle of perfume can cost.


Perfume making is a billion dollar industry. The ownership of aromatic smells has sent travellers around the world in search of exotic plants with aromatic fragrances. The making of perfume is the capturing of these odours in oils and alcoholic liquids; vodka is favourite and distilled water. These additives act as preservatives. The use of dark containers is popular for the longevity of perfumes.

Quick Tips for Making Perfume

1. Cut your favourite flowers and remove the petals from the stem. Place the blooms in oil, tighten the lid and let it sit for a few weeks. The oil will absorb the scent of the flowers. Use odourless oils so the blossoms will be the only fragrance.

2. Strain any petals or other residue from the oil then dispense it into the container. The use of essential oils from health food outlets will add punch to your perfume. These products can also be ordered online.

3. Use bottles designed for perfume or use bottles with tight lids. Clean jars with under coated lids. These get especially tight and hold the odour of the perfume inside, making it last.

4. Use scented oils from a bottle; pour a 40- 60 measurement of oils, vodka, and let sit for two days. Now add a bit of water and let sit for another day. Strain and you are in business with a fun and potent fragrance.


Some people use water mixed with a touch of alcohol, others use oil. Either method works fine. The most important thing in perfume making is patience and choosing fragrances, you really like. Making perfume is great for people with allergies. Boil or soak materials chosen for perfume. The method chosen depends upon the amount of time you are willing to invest.


Some people are allergic to citrus and various oils. The use of fragrance depends upon the level of tolerance of the user. Nevertheless, perfume making products made naturally are healthier for the body.

Patchwork Throws In Focus

original_patchwork-quiltFor patchwork quilt and throws, gather together all your patchwork fabric pieces. Try to have them of the same weight if possible. Thick and thin fabrics will not work well together and can give you problems when the quilt needs washing. If using a cotton fabric, it would be an idea to wash the cotton fabric first. Not all cotton fabrics are pre-shrunk.

The best fabric for your first attempt would be a man made fabric, polyester is a very good fabric. It keeps its freshness and doesn’t shrink in the wash. If you intend to have the quilt dry cleaned, the above will not apply.

Patchwork throws are throws with an upper layer of fabric, which is comprised of numerous small pieces of material. These pieces are sewn together in an interconnecting design. Throws like these are popular with people the world over, and textile museums have lots of historical examples of patchwork designs. In the old days, patchwork throws were hand pieced, usually by teams of women, and many throw makers still hand sew to this day. Nonetheless, most modern throws are made using sewing machines.

To make patchwork throws, you have to gather scraps of material. You can get these from old clothes, other sewing projects, or use material supplied from friends and relatives. Based on your preferences, you could include various shapes and sizes, or keep all the pieces the same size. To avoid any problems with the shape/symmetry of the throw, consider how you will form the pieces into a coherent design.

Ideally, you should have a minimum of six patterns. Search craft books and the web for patterns that fit your tastes. Alternatively, invent your own by visualizing how your throw will look.

To make a simple pillow quilt, cut five inch squares that are serged up three sides. Then, lightly stuff these and lay the side of one square over the side of another, before sewing down that edge. Keep adding more squares until a strip is formed. Lie the strip on your bed to gauge how many you require, depending on your bed’s size. Afterwards, create additional strips and sew these together. Remember to blow your machine out periodically, otherwise the machine could become clogged up with lint.

To make a handmade garden flower throw, cut hexagon shapes out for different coloured flowers, then string these on a thread in small stacks. This will keep the bits for every block together. You can add embroidered flower designs, once the layers are basted. It is best to use quilting stitch stencils and mark the design on the middle hexagon. You can complete the throw by hand sewing a quarter inch outline stitch round each of the partial and full hexagons. It is only necessary to use a machine for sewing when you attach the binding.

Creating Fabric Flowers For Your Home

fabricflowersFabric flowers are fun to make and will give you hours of pleasure producing them. Man made fabric polyester is the best choice of fabric to use in this flower making hobby. It’s easy to work with and will retain its colour.

Nursery bought artificial flowers are very realistic, you feel you have to touch them just to make sure they are not real. Once you have made your own bouquet of flowers, put them pride of place in the centre of your dining table. They are much more cheerful than candles. A small bouquet on a small table in your entrance hall will add a welcoming presence during the cold and dark winter months.

Don’t forget, children can help too and whilst the designs will not be realistic looking, you can make some interesting and vibrant designs with a variety of different fabrics. You can even use a button for the centre!

The art of making flowers from various materials began hundreds of years ago. It is believed that the Chinese were the first to master the craft, creating detailed replicas out of silk. The art spread to Europe, probably sometime in the twelfth century. For the first time, the making of fake flowers was done to make money. The popularity of fabric flowers boomed in the Victorian period, when a lavish style of decorating was the mainstay. Today, artificial flowers can be made of silk, plastic, and paper; often they are a combination of multiple materials.

To create fabric flowers, it is a good idea to begin with a pattern. Over time you will get good enough to design your own, but for beginners, start with a design created by someone else. Felt is an easy fabric to work with; it holds its shape and doesn’t fray. It is much easier to work with than other fabrics, such as silk. A basic pattern can be created from paper or even interfacing; interfacing is durable and will last longer than paper. The pattern can then be pinned to the felt, traced, and cut out.

Easy flowers can be made from rick rack, this does require a bit more finger dexterity to put together and a sewing machine for part of the process. You can also make them from old clothing, such as sweaters. These can be easily made and require just a bit of hand sewing. If you have leftover quilting materials, you can create some eye-catching flowers with different patterns and colors, using beads or parts from old costume jewellery to create the flower’s middle.

The only potential difficulties are manual dexterity and a lack of basic sewing skills. However, there are so many possible designs and patterns that it is fairly easy to find something that you can put together in a short amount of time. Once you have mastered the basics, you can move on to more elaborate designs, created with different fabrics. Handmade flowers are durable and can be made to match any color scheme, such as for a wedding or home décor. Creating flowers can give you a feeling of accomplishment and pride. Don’t forget to show them to your friends!

The Crafty Way To Fashion A Rug – Rag Rugs

pegrugLong before recycling was “invented” the cold winter evenings were often spent cutting up clean garments no longer in use. They would be cut up into strips of different colours, these made ready to form a pattern. A great deal of thought went into rag rug. Mum or dad would set to and create a bright oblong rug, the back of this rug was Jute or Hessian (sack cloth). Most people’s homes had rag rugs and it was a bit of a competition to see who had the best one, so it was a serious matter! The rug was placed was placed in front of the fire and always made the hearth look more inviting. It was the fire mostly that attracted visitors, but the rugs still got a mention.

We still like to add a bit of individuality to our homes and what better way than to create your own version of the timeless classic, the rag rug (or peg rug as it’s also known). There are lots of kits available or you could be even more inventive and design your very own rag rug instead.

Rug making has been around for centuries. More than a craft, sometimes a necessity or an opportunity to generate income by selling them. Rag rugs were especially popular in the mid– twentieth century as a decoration. As early as the 18th century they were composed as a fundamental part of recycling. Materials were torn into strips, woven or crocheted, then attached to old sacking.

There is no single method to rag rug making, one may weave, crochet, braid or hand knot the material. Sizes can be a large as a hearth rug, or as small as a doll house. Those who prefer making a rag rug of their own can do so fairly simply.

To create a feathery bedside rug, use a nonslip rug mat for the base. The small holes make this a time consuming process. Generally these are 30 inches by 42 inches. It will require short strips of fabric 5 inches by 1 inch wide. Beginning at one end, stuff the fabric strips into one hole then under the next line and into another hole. After you weave through the two holes, tie a knot. You may have to skip a hole here and there to keep the finish even.

Construct a braided rag rug with king sized sheets. Cut or tear 1 inch strips lengthwise, snip off loose threads. Sew one end of 3 strips together at a time. When all are ready, use a sturdy piece of cardboard with 2 inch slices, one–half inch apart to hold each of the strips. Anchor that end to a sturdy item. Braid snugly, not too tight. When making the rug, coil the braided strips on a base, another old sheet or whatever fits, 23 inches by 17 inches square. Pin where necessary to hold it in place. Sew the braids with a zigzag stitch until all are joined. Trim off the edge of material. Use one last braid around the outside as a finish.

Handmade rag rugs are time consuming, and work. The reward of accomplishment and the art of producing something by yourself is well worth the effort and time.

Here’s a fantastic video from the US, which shows you how to make these rag rugs the traditional and right way!

A Look at Making Pressed Flowers

Pressed flowers are blossoms that have been dried and preserved. A nice memento to keep are pressed flowers, given to you on a special occasion, they can be kept for years and their colours kept fresh from pressing them.

For your first attempts at pressing flowers, I would advise you to practice on a the flat flowers such as pansies or violets. These are often given as gifts on mother’s day by children. This is a nice place to start. Make sure the flowers are dry and trap them between two pieces of white paper, making more than one set. Now place them separately in the centre of a large, heaving book and leave them for a few weeks. After three weeks, carefully remove them, tweezers are often better than fingers for this procedure, but be careful you don’t damage the flowers.

Making them into a picture behind a glass panel will keep them fresh and you could design your own special memento. Perhaps with a cut-out picture of the special day when the flowers were given to you.


The history of making pressed flowers dates back to the Victorian era of the late 19th to early 20th century. The hobby has seen a revival during the past decade, and pressed flowers are now incorporated into a variety of arts and crafts projects. Pressed flower petals can be added to watercolour painting, decoupage projects or creative calligraphy just to name a few examples.


Quick Tips For Making Pressed Flowers

When first drying out a fresh flower, hang it upside down in a cool, dark, dry place. Depending on the size of the flower, most take two to three days to completely dry out. During this time, try to keep the drying flower away from direct light as much as possible. Once this step is finished, the petals can be carefully pressed between the pages of a book, and heavier hardback books work well for flattening the dried flower sufficiently.

Common Problems When Making Pressed Flowers

Breakage of dried petals is a frequent issue with making pressed flowers, so they need to be handled carefully. One of the best ways to preserve dried pressed flowers is to mount them to paper with craft glue that’s formulated not to damage the individual petals. Good types of paper to use include Ingres or Japanese bookmaking paper.

With care and some practice, making pressed flowers is a fun, creative and enjoyable crafting hobby. No two pressed blooms are exactly alike, which can add some flair to other craft projects.

Patchwork Is Not Just For Quilts – Patchwork Wall Art

patchwork_wall_artFor wall art, the choice of fabrics and patchwork pieces is immense. Once your wall art is in place, it will only need regular dusting. You can go to town with the fabric pieces you use for your wall art. Faux fur, velvet, silk, cotton, leather, faux leather and suede to name a few. You can even add buttons and other accessories to your wall too.

If you down the road of using old garments, you will be able to look at your wall art and remember wearing that particular dress, or you husband in that shirt. No one else will know, well perhaps hubby might.

Bring out the inner artist in yourself, for all to see and praise!

Patchwork wall art, or pictures are fascinating, creative displays of bits of materials in likenesses and abstracts. Patchwork has been a part of lives all over the world since the time of Egyptian tombs. During the Middle Ages layers of quilted fabric netted the soldiers warmth. The Chinese created patchwork quilting 5000 years ago, and the Japanese also used quilting inside armour. Patchwork is simply the method of sewing together small pieces of material to generate a larger piece of material which is then sewn to backing.

Patchwork pictures are designed with layers of cloth, the base layers may be cotton or sheets cut to the size of the finished picture. Abstract art in patchwork pictures is developed by placing the edges of the materials slightly over each other. Fastened with pins to the base, it is sewn with extremely small zigzag stitches. Difficult to change if a mistake is made, one should be patient and go back to see the finished product before a final sewing.

If one is preparing a figurative picture, a background colour is chosen and that material is sewn to the base. Drawing on the artists imagination, he or she cut fabric in the shapes and sizes required. These are pinned, added to or removed, and sometimes changed all together, then pinned again. As with abstract pictures, before the final zigzag attachment, the artist will set the art piece aside to make sure it is a final production.

A technique of drawing with thread, hair or creating letters of a text is a difficult approach. Using a zigzag stitch in different width sizes is the element which finishes that procedure. One of the difficulties arising from patchwork pictures is small bits may not hold the pins, large pictures may require a lot of pins. Some fall out, some are hard to remove. When using extremely small pieces of cloth, a tiny touch of glue may work best.

Using remnants of new fabric or bits of former clothing are ways to apply artistic pictorials. Use coordinating thread to outline certain aspects of the item or person. Try it with your own ideas and see how artistic you can be.

Welcome To My Blog

Thanks for visiting my new blog site.

My name is Mandy Webster and I’m a crafting addict! 🙂

I hope to add some guides and ideas for fellow crafters out there and I hope that my site is of use to you.