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“Spectrum” Favorite Color Shirts DIY

This project is part of our March Abacus “Spectrum” theme. We spent the last week in KS hanging out with grandparents and my sister and her family from Canada, she has 3 kids ages 6,3, and 1. I wanted to do a simple but fun project that all the kids could do together and that could be a little keepsake from the week as well. We came up with these freezer paper “Favorite Color” shirts inspired by paint swatches.

Supplies Needed:

Freezer paper – looks like this:
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Brush-able fabric paint (just not the puffy paint kind)
An Iron
Paint brushes
Water
Blank Shirts (or tote bags, hoodies, etc..)
An Exacto Knife
A scrap of cardboard slightly smaller than the shirt

1. Cut a simple stencil out of the freezer paper. You will need one for each shirt you are making. I traced my iphone case 3 times. Use the exacto to cut out the shapes.

2. Put a piece of cardboard inside the shirt to keep the paint from soaking through to the backside.

3. Iron the freezer paper stencil to the shirt (plastic side down so it adheres)
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4. Have kiddos pick out favorite colors. This is a great time to learn about color mixing too.
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5. Squeeze a small amount of paint onto a paper plate and paint in the rectangles. I folded the excess shirt under to keep stray paint off it (but we are also talking about 3 year olds here…). 
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6. Paint each rectangle a different color. I went in at the end and made sure they had each filled the whole shape. (don’t mind the shirtless-ness, just trying to keep the paint off their other clothes 🙂

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7. Let the paint fully dry. If you are impatient like we were, break out a hair dryer to speed things along.

8. Once the paint is fully dry, peel off the stencil! All done!

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9. Wait 24 hours before washing and then just wash as normal. Probably isn’t a bad idea to heat set the paint with a clothes iron too.

Note: I thought it would be cute to write their name/age + “favorite colors” at the bottom in small letters, but we didn’t.

This obviously does not have to be a kid only project. I kind of want one for myself too…

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Sewn Valentines DIY Tutorial

My Valentines for this year are still in the works, but I thought you might enjoy seeing these sewn Valentines I’ve made the last couple of years (see that old tank of a sewing machine? It is no more, sigh…). Basically I cut out cardstock hearts, traced them onto various papers (scrapbooking paper would work great), fabric, and even leather (basically use whatever you have on hand. Have fun making different combinations. I then sewed the two layers together – sometimes with either fun trim or a ruffled ribbon sandwiched in between using various stitches.
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Adventure: Capes and Crowns

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Capes & Crowns
 
When Lucy was a baby, one of her outfits had a tiny
hidden talk bubble on it that said
“This is the begining of something beautiful.” 
This adventure is about speaking mantras into childrens’ lives.
 
Items Needed:
Free fabric samples (perhaps thrown out from a furniture or
design businesses) or other scrap fabric/felt
Plastic jewels
Scissors
Hot Glue Gun
Sharpies
Instructions:
For the September theme of “brave” you’ll be making capes and crowns for kids. Keep a couple for your family or children you know, then donate the rest to a play area of a woman’s shelter or a waiting room at a doctor’s office or somewhere you know they’ll be put to great use and play.
First, cut the fabric samples into the shapes of capes and crowns while using the hot glue gun to add bling in different patterns. Add ribbons or elastic strips that make them wearable. These can be as simple or as elaborate as you would like. Have sewing skills? If so, reinforce the designs with stiches for extra durability. There are some great templates online you can use as a pattern for the crowns.
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When you’ve made some working items take the sharpie. Here’s the important part:
Hide messages into the capes and crowns. What do you want spoken over your kids? Your friends’ kids or nieces and nephews? The children at the place of donation? We suggest mantras like You are Strong. You can do this. You are loved. Great wisdom and strength is found in you.
And so on.
They may never read the message but these sentiments, like small prayers, will play over them as they dawn these dress up items; these capes and crowns that encourage feats of bravery in their stories.
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