Posts categorized "craft tutorials"

ribbons galore custom order: luggage tags | key rings

Recently I received a request to make 25 luggage tags, in the same style as the ribbon key rings I make and sell over at Ribbons Galore. They were for a tour group which I assume are travelling to Japan (my assumption based purely on the ribbon chosen for these tags).


I love making custom orders, the more in the order the merrier, cause I set myself up a little production line, completing one task at a time.


First task with these tags was to cut the cotton webbing and the ribbon into pieces and have them stacked next to my sewing machine. Then the ribbon is stitched to the webbing.


A little tip: when I'm stitching a polyester ribbon to cotton webbing (or cotton fabric for that matter), I always iron the ribbon with a warm iron (not hot). There is usually a little shrinkage with polyester ribbons, and by ironing them now (before you sew), you avoid the ribbon puckering once sewn to it's cotton base.


Each piece of webbing/ribbon is then folded in half so I can sew the two raw edges together. I add this step into the process so both ends of the webbing stay in place once the metal end is clamped. You see, the metal clamp has "teeth" on one side only. When the metal end is clamped only one side of the webbing is held with these teeth. By stitching the two ends together, you are making a more secure key ring or tag. And I speak from experience, one of the first key rings I made did not last very long, one side of the webbing pulled out of the metal end. Since sewing the two ends together, the key rings have stayed in place!


Next step, and this is an optional one, but I really like to be sure that my key rings will stay in tact. I like to glue the webbing ends to the metal end. I use a strong glue.



Then leave them to dry a little.


Time for clamping, this is the part where you close the metal end around the webbing ends. I always clamp these as tight as possible.


Once that is done, the split rings are added and you're finished.


I had a 24 hour turnaround for these, they had to be packed up and on the plane to Hong Kong (well at least in the hands of Australia Post) one day after receiving the order. I made it, and they were on their way in time.


Would love to see what they all looked like on the luggage as a group.

Thanks for visiting.



PS: the ribbon used is the gorgeous miss ling on grey ribbon, available from Ribbons Galore. Webbing and key fob hardware available also from Ribbons Galore.



Easter is just around the corner, well about a month away, so thought I'd list some of my favourite Easter ideas I've made over the last few years.

I've also been adding lots of Easter ideas to my Easter board at Pinterest, if you'd like to see more gorgeous ideas.

Follow Me on Pinterest

Anyway, here's some old favourites.....

Pom pom chicks: (with tutorial) 


Bubble corduroy easter bags (with tutorial):


Little felt easter bags (with tutorial):



eggIE softie: (with pattern and tutorial)


Colourful bunnies:


Soft bunny:


Easter bunny packaging:


Decorating easter eggs:


I'd like to thank the EveryEtsy blog for featuring my pom pom chicks above in their 101 Handmade Easter Craft ideas post. As the name suggests there's 101 crafty ideas for Easter project, well worth taking a look at all the lovely ideas listed.


Thanks for visiting. Happy crafting.



Christmas 2011

One last Christmas project for this year. I've made a new large Christmas wreath.



This large wreath has ribbon knotted around the large metal ring. 


With large jingle bells hung down in the middle of the wreath.


Another Ribbons Galore newsletter is now available to read with lots of new ribbons added to the store recently:


To my blog readers and Ribbons Galore customers, I wish you a merry Christmas and a safe, happy and healthy 2012.


Fiona x

christmas mini wreaths decorations intructions

I've received a few questions about the Christmas wreaths I made in my last post. Here's a few instructions, hope they help.

Edited in 2014... If you would like to make some of these weaths, I have kits available. They have the supplies to make 3 wreaths (3 rings, jingle bells, ribbon, bows and baker's twine). All you will need is the hot glue gun or other adhesive to attach the bows. The kits are available at Ribbons Galore.

Here's the instructions:

Start with knotting the ribbon around the ring like below. Halve the length of ribbon and place under the ring, bring the left side over the ring, the right side over the left ribbon and under the ring and through.

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 1 (created by Fiona Carter)

Tie each knot firmly. Then keep knotting around the ring as above. If you know macrame knots this one is the half square knot which gives the twisted effect, BUT you must keep the knots exactly the same all the way round.

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 2 (created by Fiona Carter)

Continue until you meet up with the starting point....

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 3 (created by Fiona Carter)

Thread one of the ribbon ends through the bell....

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 4 (created by Fiona Carter)

This is the step you can choose which way the bell hangs, down under the wreath....

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 5 (created by Fiona Carter)

...or in the middle of the wreath....

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 6 (created by Fiona Carter)

Loop the string or bakers twine around the ring, this is the hanging part of the wreath...

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 7 (created by Fiona Carter)

Tie a double knot to hold the bell in place....

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 8 (created by Fiona Carter)

Trim the excess lengths of ribbon from the knot....

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 9 (created by Fiona Carter)

Add the bows front and back. I used a hot glue gun to attach the bows. Adding the bows is not only decorative, but it helps hide the knotted ends of the wreath and holds this all in place...

Ribbons Galore mini Christmas wreath tutorial step 10 (created by Fiona Carter)

Hope you enjoy making these :) Ribbons and bows are from Ribbons Galore (

Thanks for visiting.


Fiona x

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Edited in 2013... If you would like to make some of these weaths, I have kits available. They have the supplies to make 3 wreaths (3 rings, jingle bells, ribbon, bows and baker's twine). All you will need is the hot glue gun or other adhesive to attach the bows.  The kits are available at Ribbons Galore. 

christmas ideas [day 2] : handmade cards

I love making my own cards. I love my girls making their own cards. Christmas time is no exception. In this post I'm sharing some cards which were a free added bonus to one of my Christmas online classes in the past. They are still some of my favourite cards.




If you would like to make these I have a PDF template file with the little pieces used for making the stocking, tree and candy cane. Download Fiona's christmas card shapes templates. (This file is an A4 sized document, so make sure you check your printer settings to ensure the template pieces are the right size and in proportion.)

Here are a few photos to give you an idea of how to construct the Christmas shapes on your cards.

I like to combine paper with fabric or felt, so I cut the base shapes from paper:Stocking-1

Then add felt pieces:

I like to add a little stitching. You could also use the sewing machine if you'd like:


All finished:


You could use any shapes for your cards, try looking for some clip art pieces that you like and use a mix of paper and felt to create your own cards.

Mel and I will be back on Friday with some more Christmas craft ideas... this time I think a little stitching will be on display. Hope you can join us then.

Thanks for visiting.


Fiona x 

christmas ideas [day 1] : advent calendars

From now until Christmas Mel and I will be sharing some inspirational crafty Christmas projects and ideas. We'll be posting every Tuesday and Friday until Christmas.

In preparation for the silly season, I created a Christmas-y blog banner, just to get me in the festive mood.

Mel and I thought we'd start our festive ideas with a post about Advent Calendars. I wanted to find out a little about the history of the Advent Calendar. I knew it was a way of counting down the days to Christmas, but I wanted more.... Wikipedia to the rescue, this was one place that appeared in my search. A brief history can be found HERE.

Since having children I (and my girls) have a tradition of choosing a chocolate filled calendar from the supermarket. My girls love opening their calendars every morning through December. Its the only time of the year they are allowed to eat chocolate before breakfast!

And since having children I always had grand plans of making a calendar for each of them, something that would become a "long term" tradition. Last year I finally made two calendars. . I did share photos of these last year, but I didn't go into detail of how they were made, so here's a little more information (not a tutorial, but a few tips to making them).

Emily's Advent Calendar

I didn't measure any pieces of fabric for Emily's calendar. The larger background pieces (front and back) are the size of fat quarters. I did machine quilt fabric I used in this project, but you can leave this step out, or just use a light batting to give the calendar a little substance.

I created 4 large strips of fabric to go across the calendar background fabric. These were embellished with ribbons and rick rack. I sewed them to the front base piece only. I then sewed lines from top to bottom to create the smaller pockets. Six pockets were created across each of the four rows. The flowers and buttons were then added to the calendar.


Now is the time to consider how you would like to hang the calendar. I made some fabric tabs and sewed them to the top of the calendar, leaving the tabs facing inwards before finishing off the project.

The back of the calendar is sewn in place at the end... with the right side (pockets side) of the calendar and the right side of the back fabric together, sew around the edge, leaving a small hole to turn the calendar right side out. Stitch the hole closed.

And your calendar is ready to be filled with little treats. Now I didn't add number to this calendar, we used a little decorative peg last year to show the number, and moved it along to each pocket.

Phoebe's Stockings Advent Calendar

Phoebe and I made 24 quilted, fully lined stockings for her calendar. Phoebe did alot of the quilting herself. Now this seems alot of work, but set up a little production line to make the stockings and it's not such a huge task.

The stocking pattern I used was from Martha Stewart. Any stocking pattern can be used, just ad adjust the size to what you require. Martha Stewart's stocking template can be found HERE. Her original project was made using felt which was very cute. There are good instructions there for making the stockings.

Here's a few tips for making fabric stockings.... Cut out 48 stocking pieces (if making unlined stockings or using felt), cut out 96 stocking pieces if making lined stockings.

Fix 48 of these to a fusible webbing and quilt (only the outside stocking pieces were quilted, not the lining pieces). Below is a photo of the pieces once quilted, we quilted the whole wadding piece, not each individual stocking:

Cut out the stockings (from the wadding) and embellish with ribbon and rick rack across the top. I only sewed ribbon to the front piece of the stock not the back:


Sew the stockings together. I sewed a front (quilted) piece to a front lining, then back piece to back lining. Then right sides together and sewed around the whole edge, leaving a small hole in the lining (near the heel of the stocking) to turn the stocking to the right side. Stitch the hole closed and stuff the lining back inside the stocking. I hope that makes sense, if not ask any questions. Unfortunately I don't have any photos of that step.

Once finished, we pegged them up on string.

Now all I have to do is fill them all with goodies and we're ready to another year of our Christmas tradition.

I have found many more calendars on the web. Some favourite handmade advent calendars from other crafters are below. Please click on the links to visit their blogs and instructions to creating their calendars.

Cathe Holden's Simple Spool Advent Calendars:


Roxy Creations advent calendar:

Miss Gioia's Frankincense Advent uses buttons for the numbers:

Full Circle handmade advent:


Pink Chalk Studio's quilted advent:

And lastly, one great place for creative inspiration is Flickr, one group to look through is the Creative Advent Calendars group. So many ideas all in one place!

If you have a favourite advent calender idea, please share a link in the comments, I'd love to take a peek.

Thanks for visiting, see you on Friday for our next installment of our Crafty Christmas ideas.


Fiona x

Maya Road design team blog posts

During May, I've written two posts over on the Maya Road design team blog.

In the most recent post I've created a Sheet Calendar magnetic set, and given a simple step by step tutorial for making these yourself.


And this is the finished set...


Here's the calendar all set up on our little magnetic board. 


My other post showed a lampshade I've made for Emily using some Maya Road trinket flowers and scalloped rick rack.





Some instructions are on the Maya Road DT blog. Supplies/materials for the lampshade:

Thanks for visiting, have a great week.


Fiona x

Day 8 of the Egg-ceptional Egg-xtravaganza

Well here we are, our last day, day 8, of our Egg-ceptional Egg-xtravaganz.

I'm sharing some photos of a fabric Easter basket I've made for Phoebe. [I have a basket for Emily half sewn and will share photos of that one when I'm finished.]

The idea for the fabric basket came from Liesl's disdressed blog, where she made a very cute Easter fabric basket with bunny ears.

I've made a similar box style basket. The handles of my basket are semi-circles of fabric. I have quilted both fabrics (the outside and lining) to give the fabric extra body.

The finished basket measures about 20cm square, which gives a very generous space for the Easter bunny to fill with eggs on Easter morning.



I finished the top edge of the basket with rick rack.


I loved this cute fabric for the lining of the basket. It is a Japanese fabric by Sevenberry. The brown fabric for the outside is a Michael Miller fabric called Espresso Pod Ditz.


One of my blog readers, Julie, asked about the girls bunnies. We still have Bubbles and Butterscotch, they are nearly six years old, which I believe is "getting on" in bunny years. I admit to being a bit slack when it comes to taking photos of our little darlings lately (that's the bunnies, not the girls). So this afternoon in the fading light, I quickly took some photos of beautiful Bubbles.


Bubbles is still very cuddly and loves a snuggle.


Butterscotch was reluctant to leave the hutch this afternoon.... I will have to try one the weekend to take a better photo of her.


I'd like to thank everyone for visiting my blog during our Easter Egg-ceptional Egg-xtravaganza. Mel and I have chatted abouthow much we've enjoyed sharing our Easter ideas. We're hoping to bring you some more crafty ideas sometime soon.

Have a happy Easter.


Fiona x

Day 6 of the Egg-ceptional Egg-xtravaganza

Hello and welcome to day 6 of our Egg-ceptional Egg-xtravaganza. Today Mel and I have made some EggIE softies.

Meet Egg-wina, Egg-ward and Egg-berta, the EggIE softies for Easter. If you go over and visit Mel's blog, you'll have the opportunity to meet Egg-na.


I designed this EggIE pattern recently and I'm very happy to share the pattern and step by step instructions below.

Download Fiona's EggIE SOFTIE (A4) or Download Fiona's EggIE SOFTIE (letter) (for the US letter paper size)

EggIE softie tutorial (a pictorial step by step)

Step 1: Download pattern.


Step 2: Fold fabric and pin pattern to both layers. Cut out the pattern.


You will now have two pieces of fabric. We'll think of each as one side of EggIE.


Step 3: Take one piece of the fabric and fold along the "side" line as marked on the pattern. Sew the "side" seams above and below this fold line. Repeat for other piece of fabric.


You now have the two sides of EggIE.


Step 4: Place one side inside the other, right sides together. You will be sewing the front seam only. Leave the back seam open at this stage.


Turn EggIE right side out, so you can work on the eyes, etc.


Step 5: Cut two eye pieces. I used felt.


Position the eyes on EggIE and pin in place.


Sew eyes in position. I used a blanket stitch around the eye pieces.


This is the stage you can sew some ribbon around the EggIE. [All Easter eggs need a bow or decoration, including EggIE]. It is easier to sew the ribbon around the Eggie before we close the back.


Sew on some extra decorations if you would like.


Step 6: Turn EggIE wrong side out and matching the back seam, sew along the back seam, leaving a small gap for turning and filling.


Turn EggIE right side out and stuff. When you have finished stuffing, hand sew the opening closed.


You should now have a finished EggIE happily sitting with you.


The fabrics I have used to make my EggIEs are from the Charm Bracelet fabric collection by Windham Fabrics. The colours and patterns in this collection are perfect for Easter fabric projects. Ribbons are from Ribbons Galore. I have made the felted flower and circle pieces using the Clover felting gadget. I have also made my own buttons, covering self-cover buttons with fabric.


I'd love to see any EggIE relatives that may be created. Leave a link to your EggIE image in the comments field so I (and all readers) can pay him or her a visit.

Thanks for dropping by again. We've received some lovely comments and emails, so thank you for those as well.

I have been asked a few times about the Clover pom-pom makers I used in the previous post. I think Spotlight has had them, Mel has mentioned Big W has also sold them. I haven't had a chance to find them online yet, but I will do that later today.

We'll see you on Friday Monday for the next day of our Easter crafting ideas.

Edited: We've both had some sicknesses in our families this week, and our next post has been postponed 'til Monday. See you then.


Fiona x 


Day 5 of the Egg-ceptional Egg-xtravaganza

We are half way through our Egg-ceptional Egg-xtravaganza. In this post Mel and I are sharing a couple of kids Easter crafting ideas. Mel has made some gorgeous little Easter eggs made from dough, which the kids would love making.

My little project is making fluffy chicks from pom-poms. There are a few readers of my blog who will know of my love affair with little fluffy chicks at Easter. This year I've decided to make my own. Kids love pom poms, they are fun to make, and even more appealing if you can create little creatures from them. 

Fiona Carter's pompom Easter chicks tutorial

Here's a little step by step to making a pom pom fluffy chick.

Step 1: Make two pom poms, one slightly larger than the other. I've used the Clover Pom Pom Maker gadgets. They make whipping up pom pomsvery quick and easy. When you tie around the centre of the pom poms, do not cut the wool ties off.

Fiona Carter pompom Easter chicks tutorial step 1 

Step 2: Separate the wool ties, matching one tie from one pom pom with a wool tie from the other pom pom. Repeat with the other ties.

Fiona Carter pompom Easter chicks tutorial step 2 

Step 3: Tie the pom poms together, pulling the wool ties tight so the pom poms sit very closely to each other.

Fiona Carter pompom Easter chicks tutorial step 3 

Tie a few knots to hold the pom poms together. Snip these wool ties off close to the pom poms. You now have the body of the chick made.

Fiona Carter pompom Easter chicks tutorial step 4 

Step 4: Add a beak and eyes to the face of the chick. You can also add little wings if you would like to the body of the chick. I've used felt for these little pieces, cardboard could also be used. A little craft glue will hold these bits in place.

Fiona Carter's pompom Easter chicks tutorial 

And there you have them... your very own little (or big) fluffy chicks.

Fiona Carter's pompom Easter chicks tutorial 

Thanks for dropping by to see our Easter craft ideas. Mel and I will be back on Wednesday for our next Egg-ceptional Egg-xtravaganza post.

Hope you're having a great day.


Fiona x