Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Playing with Fire: A Flower Pin Tutorial

Wow! This is getting to be a habit. Blogging for 3 days in a row. Something must be up.

Actually, I'm feeling kind of puny tonight. I think it's probably my allergies. I'm allergic to Spring.

Speaking of Spring.

This is what it looked like at my house around the first of May.

 It is really startling to see all that green intermixed with snow.

We were all in just a little bit of shock. Most of us have put up our winter clothes for the season by now. But, never fear. We hillbillies are an adaptable bunch.

I think warmer weather has finally settled upon us now. And for Mother's Day, Josiah and I made some cute little flower pins for the ladies at church.

Before you get all worried that I"m subjecting my son to arts and crafts unnecessarily (I'm mean, flower pins?) let me reassure you that it was plenty manly.

There was fire involved!!

I am going to show you how we made them.

First of all, you need to choose some satiny fabric. Cotton fabric will not melt. It will just catch on fire. There are even some fabric that I have that is a little more "satiny" in texture, but won't melt. The best I've found is just the inexpensive satin fabric. You can get it for 2.99 a yard at Hobby Lobby. I'm always haunting the remnant bucket at the fabric store. You can do a lot with a remnant.

Then you will need to cut out at least 3 different sizes of circles. I used 3 different sizes of drinking glasses as my templates. I do have patterns I've made somewhere for these, but I can't be bothered with things like patterns when I'm in a hurry! I've got to make things more difficult for myself! I used 4 of each size in our flowers, plus a contrasting color for the middle.

Just a note. I have a pair of nice fabric scissors. However, I think my nice fabric scissors have run away from home. Maybe 'cause they are feeling neglected? I don't know. If you see them please send them back my way...and tell them I'm sorry. I had to use a busted up pair of "whatever" scissors. I felt like I was hacking and sawing. Though with this project it doesn't matter as much.  The fire will take care of all those little imperfections.

 This is just part of the process when crafting with an 11-year-old boy. Somebody thought it would be interesting to see what happens when matches float in candle wax. He then thought maybe I might not notice.

I do have a little tip. Anytime you sew or do any kind of craft you need to hang out little trash bag for easy access. My mama taught me this a long time ago. And I'm passing it along to you. Feel free to share my wisdom.

For this particular burning exercise I would suggest you use a tall pillar candle. Jar candles aren't as easy to use. It also might take a little practice to keep from burning your fingers.. You just need to simply run the edge of all your satin circles through the fire.It won't take long. Just keep the circle moving.

Now does this look like a man who is making delicate flower pins? I think not. He is experimenting with fire. With my close supervision, of course. He is 11, after all.  I did have to keep the crafting train a'moving. He was generally more interesting in the experimenting part of the whole thing. Naturally!

Here are several finished satin circles. You can see that the edges are nicely melted. You can also hold the middle of your circle directly over the flame and it will give the circle a little more character.

You can see what I mean in this picture. I don't melt all the middles of every flower circle...just enough to make the petals more realistic looking.

Ignore the nasty glue gun. Good Grief! I sure enjoy my glue gun. I'm surprised it hasn't run away from home (along with my good scissors). You can assemble the flower pins either with hot glue or by hand stitching them (needle and thread). A lot of my flower pins I use needle and thread because I just like the look. Here, however, I have chosen hot glue. It is quick and makes the pins sturdy.

Just start stacking and gluing, beginning with your larger circles and moving on up. I also stagger them just a bit (not directly centered on top of each other). I think that makes them more interesting looking.

Here is my finished flower. You can see I used a contrasting color for the middle and then glued down a button. I also glued a circle of felt on the back of the flower so I could attach a pin. Cuteness!

Here are the finished flowers. Some of them I added lace in between the satin layers to make them more feminine. All of our church ladies looked just fetching in their flowers.

So have I inspired you to play with fire?

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