Radvent day 13: Making (and a quick and dirty tutorial!)

I keep scraps of fabric in a bag for Alice to cut, stitch or tape together, draw on with markers, whatever. My trash is her treasure when it comes to art supplies, and even I can find value in some scraps when I’m making a project that only needs a small amount of fabric. Enter covered buttons–they’re the perfect easy afternoon project, require few materials, and have so many creative applications. Replace the buttons on your cardigan! Use them as drawer pulls! Napkin rings! And today, pen toppers. When I was in school I loved having a fancy decoration on my nice pens. A bouquet of special fabric button-topped markers or pens would be a fantastic stocking stuffer or gift to a crafty coworker. Lemme show you how to do it.

Materials needed:

1. Fabric-covered button kit, size 24 (I get all of mine from ButtonBiz.com, the best best best)
2. Scraps of fabric in your favorite patterns and colors (lightweight fabrics like cotton lawn or chiffon work best)
3. Thin black elastic cord
4. Scissors
5. Pencil or pen.

Step 1. Using the instructions included in your button-making kit, cover your button with your favorite fabric. Secure the back of your button with the shank button back–that’s the one with the loop.
Step 2. Thread the elastic cord through the shank of the button and knot the ends, using the pencil as a size guide.
Step 3. Top your favorite pens and pencils with your own signature writing accessory!

Pretty easy. Pretty pretty.

“Take an object. Do something to it. Do something else to it.”

-Jasper Johns on Creativity

What do you make? Maybe it’s not a physical thing, but what do you manifest? What do you create? I’m a firm believer that everybody needs a creative toolkit. If you don’t know where to begin, find an empty box–bonus if it’s one with compartments–and begin collecting items that you personally like to use to create things. Mine always contains felt and embroidery thread, scalloped shears and sewing needles, and buttons. It used to have paper, glue, glitter, and seam binding. It could just be a whole bunch of nice pens or colored pencils. It could be as sparse as necessary for you. Get it out once in a while and see what comes of it. Whatever you make, on whatever scale, with however much effort, remember that working creatively makes you smarter. It’s mental exercise. What do you make?

xx
meg

Comment View All


9 − = zero

New at Hello Holiday: Dear Creatures Fall!

Dear Creatures is by far a favorite brand for our customers. I’m excited about every new piece we have from this LA-based husband/wife designer duo. Bianca and Rob describe their line as “visual optimism,” and I love how they blend their expert understanding of decades past with the sensibilities and whimsy of the modern woman.

OOTD: Dress of my Witchy Dreams

This dress fulfills everything I could ever ask of a garment destined to be a workhorse in my closet for years to come. Tiny gold round buttons at the cuffs and on the back, irregular pleating, and my favorite silhouette. I feel beautiful in this breezy black dress and I think it’s one of the…

OOTD: Extra Sprinkles

Right down the street from our downtown office is Pettit's Pastry, a 60-year-old downtown institution that still makes the best glazed old-fashioned donuts in the city. The original signs outside on the corner of 16th and Cass match the kitchy decor inside, where vintage bakery cases are packed with fresh and delicious donuts and pastries of all types. Seasonally decorated cookies and cakes, donuts with every filling and topping, and flaky krispies and pies fill the air with the aroma of sweetness, fryer grease, and childhood memories.

Alice’s Fall: Pumpkin Patch

As a single parent, I put a lot of effort into building new traditions with Alice and trying to find ways to create happy memories that she will be able to look back on in the future when times are harder. When so many old traditions I loved are a thing of the past, I work hard to make new magical moments of peace and joy that bind Alice and I together as a family unit of our own. It's hard for me to look forward into a future of Just Us, but making things normal for her is sort of the goal. Last week we went to the pumpkin patch, one of those Omaha Things You Do where you are likely to see five or six people you know as you walk around enjoying all of the kid-friendly attractions on a crisp autumn evening after work. I forgot to take photos with the actual pumpkins, which is actually a good sign...we were having so much fun, it was more about the experience than the documenting of it.

OOTD: Reminder that Red and Leopard are Neutrals

Every day at the office, Sarah and Hugo (and Alice, if she's here) and I go for a little walk around the new neighborhood where we're working downtown. There's a donut shop around the corner (my favorite one in Omaha, luckily), and a pizza shop down the street (my least favorite one in Omaha, sadly), and we're still checking out everything in walking distance. We're in North Downtown Omaha (where CAMP used to be!) where there is as much new construction and somewhat-hesitant investment being poured into the neighborhood as there is dilapidated sprawl and homelessness. Because of poor city planning, Omaha's thriving and affluent Old Market district downtown is completely cut off from North Omaha by "the Dodge Street wall" though they are just blocks apart. In the past five years though there has been a huge surge of new construction, and dozens of businesses have migrated into old spaces in North Downtown. I'm hoping the investment in this community enriches the neighborhood by keeping it accessible to its lower-income population and attracting more young professionals.
View All