Category Archives: crafts (recycled materials)

Versatile Pouch Made From Recycled Pant Leg

This clever little pink pouch was designed by an eleven year old (my daughter). She independently came up with the idea to recycle the bottom part of a pair of old pants to make a pouch/ bag.
This project is simple enough to do at a children’s party. Kids will love designing their own unique pouch.


This pouch could also be used to hold your Valentine card collection. Do you have a collection of special Valentine cards already started? They would fit nicely into a home-made pouch. My daughters each have a small collection of valentine cards that grows each year.


Add a strap if you would like to make this pouch into a purse.


I think a pant leg pouch/ bag would make a wonderful eco-friendly gift wrapper too: place gift inside.
I used the design of this pouch and took it a little further: See my post for instructions on how to make a jean sketch book pouch.

Special Valentine Message Magnets Made From Salvaged Materials

Send a Valentine message to someone special in your heart. This sweet gift will be a constant reminder of your love.
How-to:
A. Cut letters from magazines. You will find a great variety of fonts in all sorts of colors. Go searching for just the right ones. You may want to find all the letters in the same color or you might want the letters to be as varied as possible. Cut out the letters and make sure they fit on the tiles.

B. I used the tiles from a salvaged My First Rummikub game which was missing some of the pieces. Paste a letter on the front of each tile.

C. The magnets I used are promotional flat flexible magnets. (Promotional flat flexible magnets are often given out by businesses for promotional reasons, are usually business card size and are easy to cut.) This is a perfect use for those unsolicited magnets. Use scissors to cut a piece large enough to cover the back of the tile and glue it there.

See my other post for additional ideas and uses for tile magnets including using them as a teaching aid.

How To Make A Doll Pillowcase: A Simple Sewing Project

After my daughter made a quilt for her doll, she needed a matching pillowcase and this is the result. See doll quilt post.
How to make a doll pillowcase:


Picture 1 shows the fabric after is has been cut out and folded in half: right sides (the good sides) together. Also two of the long sides have been sewed-up (note: Use a ½ inch seam allowance; which means that the line of stitches that you sew should be ½ inch from the edge of the fabric.) One end of the pillowcase is left open. Fabric size needed: 10 ¾ inches x 6 inches.


Picture 2 shows the edge of the opening folded over ½ inch and ironed. If you could see the other side, it would look the same.


Picture 3 shows the edge of the opening folded over again, this time 1 ¾ inches and then ironed.


Picture 4 shows it after it was sewed by machine. You could hand sew it if you prefer.


Picture 5 shows the completed pillow case after it was turned right-side out, ironed and with the pillow inside. Easy smesy!
Size of finished doll pillowcase is approximately 8 ½ inches by 5 inches. A pillowcase should always be made a little larger than the pillow itself.

This is a pillow that came with the bed we bought for my daughter’s doll. It is easy to make if you don’t already have one.

How to make A doll pillow to go with the above pillowcase

Cut two pieces of lightweight fabric 8 ¼ inches x 5 inches.
With good sides together, sew almost all the way around. Leave a few inches of one side open (not sewed). Turn the pillow outside right (through the hole). Add stuffing into the pillow then hand-sew the hole closed.
Finished pillow size is approximately 4 x 7 ¼ inches.

MYO Outrageous Party Hats: Lampshade or Purely Outrageous

These party hats are so much fun!

Just leave one of these hats out and who can resist trying it on. Make sure you have a mirror nearby. You’ll see, the quietest person in the group will be wearing it by evenings end.

Great for New Year’s Eve parties!

Lampshade Party Hats

How to:
Pick up a second hand lampshade from a thrift store or yard sale. Next, embellish is with leftover notions, pompoms, whatever, even monopoly money. The tackier the better! I used an extra large second hand lampshade and hot glued on this icicle fringe that I had leftover from a child’s costume I made.

Purely Outrageous Party Hat

How to:

Find a hat to be the base. Don’t go out and buy a hat, just dig through your closet or ask a friend; whatever. Next, gather all sorts of junk. Cheesy stuff like plastic bugs… Anyone with kids could give you handfuls of “junk” to adorn your hat. Anything goes. My inspiration for this hat was from the popular children’s book “Go Dog Go”. At the end of the book, a dog is wearing a wild party hat. I like that hat!

Take pictures
Take pictures later on in the evening when everyone is having fun.

Make Your Own Stick Star Ornaments

How to:
Use a good pair of garden shears to cut some straight branches. From these branches, cut 5 stick pieces the same length and approximately the same diameter. Cut the first stick (whatever looks right) and use that stick to mark the length of the remaining sticks. I used sticks that were about 6 ¼ inches long and ¼ to nearly ½ inch wide. The exact size doesn’t matter as long as it appeals to your sense of proportion and all the sticks are the same length. Keep in mind; thinner sticks are easier to bend into place.

Tie two sticks together than tie another two sticks together near the end (see X and Y in photo).
Spread out the non-tied ends and overlay as in photo and tie top of star (see Z in photo).

Tie on the last stick. Play with the sticks a little; some go over, some under. Do whatever works for that star.

Party Craft
I prepared enough for my daughter’s whole class. I made bundles and tied them together with nice red yarn that was used to hang the star ornament after the star was constructed. The ball of wool yarn was used to tie all the sticks together.