Tuesday, May 22, 2012

How to Make Headbands and Bracelets

Headbands and bracelets are a lot of fun to make.  I've been busy making a bunch of different kinds.  They are very simple and you don't need a lot of supplies.

What you will need:

scraps of fabric

sewing needle

elastic band 1" width 
or a thinner kind.

For the bracelets, 1" will be good.  For the bracelets you need to cut a three to four inch width of fabric and the length should be about 15-18" long.  It needs to be longer so you will get a ruffled or puffy effect when the bracelet is pulled tighter.

Get your cut fabric and fold it over on the wrong side.  Sew up the length of the fabric, then turn it to the right side.  This can sometimes take a little bit to pull it through.  But it will work even if it is about 1" width.

Then you will need to cut your elastic to fit your wrist.  Make it just a little loose so it will be easy to get on and off.  You won't want it too tight  on your wrist.

Next, get a safety pin and attach to the elastic.  Start to pull it through.  At the other end, pin the elastic to your fabric.  That way, the elastic won't get lost inside the tube and it will be easier to sew the elastic together afterwards.

Once the elastic is through, pin it and then start sewing the two elastic ends together.  After that, fold the fabric over so you won't see the rough edges.  Pin in place and do the same to the other end.  Then sew the two ends of the fabric together.

Once that is done, all you have to do is pull the fabric the way you want your bracelet to look.  The longer your tube is, the more puffiness or ruffle effect you will get.

Now are the fun headbands.  Here is a fun way to make headbands from your old t shirts.  Or any shirt that is stretchy.  It also could come from pants or a skirt.

These are four of the headbands I made from some old shirts or skirts that didn't fit my girls anymore and they didn't sell on eBay.

What you will need to do is to start by cutting up your outfit.

Even up the shirt and cut about a three inch width along the bottom of the shirt.  Cut lengthwise.  Then cut about the same width again.  You can probably get two out of a kids shirt.

Then you will need to take each piece and cut at the seam.  Then you can either measure your head or take the fabric and stretch it around your head.  After you get a rough idea of how long it should be, cut it slightly smaller.  Remember that it stretches and will fit.  You don't want it too loose.

Make a few headbands and then you will get a good ballpark of how long you need to cut it.

This purple one at the top with the beading on it, I had to cut it a few times.  The first time it was too big and I had to cut it smaller and sew it up again.  This one I didn't need to sew lengthwise as it rolls up.  You could sew them lengthwise though if you want to.  I did it to some of them, like that navy blue flowered one.  That one was from a skirt that wasn't going to fit my girls for a few years and I wanted to cut it up.

The purple one, I sewed up the connected beading afterwards.  It was a little tricky but looks good.  What I did was roll the edge of the headband and I sewed the beading along the edge.  Then repeated for the other side.

You could save your smaller pieces of the tubing that you didn't use for parts of headbands.  A lot of headbands have a different color for the part where they add the elastic so the headband will be stretchy.  In some headbands you can actually see the elastic, but if you don't want it to show, you could pull it through a slightly longer piece of tubing and then sew the whole thing to your headband.

You could use different colors.

Also for your headbands, you could use two different fabrics for the tube so that you have a reversible headband.  Or you could do patchwork.  Or you could use jelly roll fabric and have a striped effect.  You could add lace edging, beading and other stuff.

Here's my quilted bag that I finally finished.  The quilted jelly roll fabrics had been sewn together about three or four years ago.  Quite a while ago, I was thinking this would be a small blanket.

Then last week, I decided I wanted to turn it into a bag.  The flannel yellow fabric that I got at a yard sale a few weeks ago, ended up being the liner and the handles.

Very easy to make.  Just sew up your jelly roll fabric to the size you want, fold it and cut your liner to fit the bag you want to make.  Then you need to sew the liner to the top of the fabric, sew up the sides of the liner. Then for the bottom, you need to fold the seams so that they won't be sticking up at the bottom of the bag.  After it is done, push the liner into the bag and then sew up the handles and attach.

For the handles, I cut about a 3 inch width and then chose my length.  After, I folded the fabric over and pinned it where I wanted to sew up my seam.  I tend to hand sew my things.  I have yet to figure out my sewing machine.  One of these days, I will tackle that.

But sometimes sewing by hand can be pretty quick.

I might make some more things from jelly roll fabric sometime.  I originally got the fabric at Walmart, but you can find it at all craft stores and also eBay has a lot of them.  Sometimes, I like to actually see it in the store so you can see all the colors that you are getting.

And you can see all those tubes of fabric I have sewn up.  They will all be bracelets as soon as I can get to them.  I've got about twenty tubes that need to be done.

My next sewing projects in the works.  Haven't sewn them yet.  I cut up some more women's tank tops for the headbands and then when I was cutting them yesterday, I decided to leave the bra section intact.  I am thinking of trying to sew the bottom of the shelf bras and then see if they will fit me.  I'm not sure if it will be worth it, but will give it a try.

My thoughts were, yes, the whole tank top is too small for me, but what about just the bra section?  And maybe after it is sewn up at the bottom, I can add some sort of ruffle to make it cute.  It would be a way of getting some extra bras without having to shop around for new expensive ones.  But then, they also have to fit well too.

And my other project I have just added to my list is making a skirt.  I got three evening dresses at a yard sale a few weekends ago and listed them at $5 a piece.  Nobody bid on them.  I've re listed the red one I got as it is my least favorite.  The one I haven't cut yet is an evening dress that is some sort of tan.  The whole top is all a beautiful lace and the bottom is tulle.

The third one, I just cut up today.  It was a gorgeous evening gown that was of a gold metallic fabric.  I looked at the bottom that is kind of pleated and flared.  Well, it is a size 3/4 or 5/6 that would never in this life fit me.  Maybe when I was in high school but not now.

I decided to cut about one to two inches above where the flare is.  I'm thinking it could be a skirt that might possibly fit me.  This is a good thing to try on dresses or skirts that you get at a yard sale.  They are always larger the lower you go.

I am going to fold and sew the top of the skirt over and then add elastic to the waist and measure it to fit me.  Then it can be a pretty little skirt that falls a little above the knees.  Might be nice over leggings too.

Then out of the remaining fabric, I cut enough to make a headband for me, and then both of my girls wanted the other fabric for making things for their webkinz or littlest pet shop characters.

My girls fast growing littlest pet shop collection and my youngest daughter, Julia's webkinz cat named Ginger.
Julia is the one who will confiscate my fabrics to make skirts and dresses for her toys.

Jennifer Jo Fay

May 21, 2012

Check out my Authentic Life Blog page on Face book.  It will have updates to new posts here, STORY LINE STARTERS that I will write and it will have a picture to go with the brief story.  And I will share other stories and later on links to other sites that I think are neat.

And can hardly wait until I can post on Face book walls again.  This time under my face book page so I won't get in trouble.

It's a page that I am going to keep maintained and will be kind of like a supplement to the blog.  If I get inspired by pictures, I will post and share.  Maybe some cool sayings too.  Those are fun.

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