Wednesday, December 24, 2014


I love nice place settings, serving pieces and linens. The custom place mats I have thought of making many times hasn't made it to my sewing machine as of yet but with this idea they may get done in this lifetime-"may" is the operative word here. 

Anyway, these place mats of woven ribbon can be very elegant or casual or any style you want according to the ribbons you choose. If you have wired ribbon, take out the wire before weaving and sewing. I happily ended up with a literal truckload of these wonderful ribbons of every style-wired and not wired-I love it. 

These are just a few of the many rolls my daughter, Donna, found for me at an auction. She called me from the auction and said "Mom, there is a guy here with boxes of ribbon to get rid of, do you want them if the price is right?" AND  glory be-the price was right. My husband and I went over the next day in our pick up truck. I have never seen so much ribbon all in one place at one time. It filled the bed of the truck and the back seat. I never counted but there were boxes and boxes of 1000's of rolls. I have given a lot away, sold a lot, and donated a lot and still have more ribbon than I'll ever be able to use in this lifetime and I'm trying to come up with a way to slip it into heaven along with all my other "stuff" if I don't get it used. Maybe Jesus won't notice.

You will need:
ribbons [cut into 12 1/2" lengths and 18 1/2" lengths]
lightweight fusible interfacing-use fusible side up
12" by 18" matching fabric for place mat back
cording or other trim for edge
surface to pin and weave on-cardboard, foam core board, I prefer my cut and press board
straight pins

To make:
pin one end of each 12 1/2" lengths on pinning surface-side by side
weave 18 1/2" lengths through-keep together tightly
press ribbon to fusible interfacing
sew lengths together with decorative stitching
Place place mat top and back right sides together, sew all around with cording between leaving a 6" space for turning. Turn right side out, press, sew turning space closed

Here is one placemat before sewing with two of the ribbons that are 2" wide. Any width ribbon can be used, Wider ribbons just take fewer strips and less time to do. It is rather formal

Another one using a different print finished with cording

 This one is more casual using ribbons about 1" wide

This is a great craft for kids. 

To make them stain resistant, spray them with a protective spray. 

Here is my video tutorial for making the woven place mats. 

Happy crafting
Carolyn Wainscott

check out my designs in My Crafty Store @

Tuesday, December 16, 2014


One of my tutorials on the internet site,, showed how to make a country look garland using homespun fabrics. Homespun frays easily and is a favorite in making ragged quilts. It is warm and comfortable as flannel and comes in all those nice homey looking plaids.

The great thing about the homespun garland-it can be left up all year round if you wish. It can be used on wreaths, trees, or what have you.

The garland is easy as pie to make [well maybe sometimes pie isn't so easy but, trust me, this garland is easy to do]. 

Lay out the homespun and cut into strips the width you might want. I chose 4" and you can see from photo how it shrunk so take that into consideration if you want a wider look after the whole process is over.

For long strips, sew cut strips together end to end, fringe and gather. I chose to gather over a length of yarn which gives more stability if needed. My video shows setting two fabrics together as it is gathered but a single layer can also be done.

The process can stop here if you want but my strips were dampened and thrown into dryer-it's up to you. 

Here is the video if you have time to take a quick look:

Happy crafting
Carolyn Wainscott
check out my patterns in my store:

Saturday, December 13, 2014


These custom photo ornaments with stained glass look have been one of the favorite gifts I have ever made and given away and they are fun to make.

One of these days my white Christmas tree may be covered with one of these of each member of my family-that's on my bucket list anyway. 

I use an outdated photo editing program called Live Pix that I have had since mid 90's with one of my first computers. It is a simple one and no longer available. I don't know what I will do when this computer is no longer usable because I don't think Live Pix will be compatible with a more recent one. I am using a Toshiba with Windows 7. 

You can use any editing software you choose. It is just when I get used to something, I don't want to change. I have tried Photoshop and gave up and went back to my simple little Live Pix. 

You will need:
clear glass ornaments
ink jet transparencies
ink jet printer [make sure you have lots of ink, these take lots if you are making very many]

 The clear glass ornaments are purchased when they go on sale, usually at Hobby Lobby. My preference is the 4" ones but have used smaller ones. 

To get them ready:
clean them with alcohol, let dry thoroughly [I usually do this the day before, turn upside down to be sure all alcohol drains]

Edit and print photos-use printer settings for transparencies, extra color can be added if desired

You can get 4 prints per sheet 

Cut photos to fit ornaments [make a template and try in ornament before you start cutting on your prints]

Roll photo into tube-print inside

Slip into ornament

Adjust with tweezers if needed

Put top back on and you have a future heirloom. 

 Here is my video tutorial to show you how easy it is to create your own works of art. 

Happy crafting
Carolyn Wainscott

Check out my crafting, quilting, sewing patterns @