Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Candy cane rubber band bracelet tutorial

It’s almost after Thanksgiving and I want to say how thankful I am for all the readers of Make it easy crafts.  It’s been a great year for crafting. So since the official holiday season will soon be underway, I am offering two easy craft projects today.  Thanks to you all for comments and suggestions.  This is a great project to do with your kids.  Mom or Dad can cut and bend the wire and the kids can weave the bracelet.  Since you only use the rubber bands you can purchase in packets and two pencils it couldn’t be any easier!  If you choose you can eliminate the wire curl attachment and just use the c-clamps that come with the rubber bands. 

You will need:

Pack of red and white mini rubber bands

Two pencils (I used a pencil and pen because there was only one pencil at hand!)

3 inches of 16 gauge wire

Wire cutters

Sanding block or sand paper

Needle nosed pliers

Safety glasses when cutting the wire


1.     Place two pencils side by side and slide a red rubber band in a figure eight. (See photo)  Next slide on a white rubber band, and then a red one.  You just need to slide these on without a figure eight. (See photos)

2.     Lift the bottom rubber band and pull over the top of the pencil (pen in my case) Repeat on the opposite side. (See photo)

3.     Add a white rubber band and repeat step #2.  Continue adding rubber bands and pulling over the top alternating red and white.  You will start to see a chain forming in between the pencils.  As it grows, pull on it slightly to keep it even.

4.     Keep adding bands and make the chain longer and if you want to use the c-clamps you can just make it as long as you want and do that or make the chain a length to fit adjusting the size for a one inch wire curl.

5.     Using the wire cutters cut a 3-inch piece of 16-gauge wire.  Rub the cut ends of the wire on a sanding block to smooth. Insert the wire into the loose end of the chain loops.  Curl the wire end around the rubber band loop.

6.     Remove the other end of the chain from your pencils and insert the uncurled end of the wire in both loose ends. (Sorry for the blurry photo but you get the gist)  Curl it around as you did the other side and adjust if necessary.


Recycled wine cork angel ornament

Each year I like to get a head start on projects for Christmas.  The best time to start is right after Thanksgiving. Why dive into the crowds on Friday when you can just stay home and craft?  Make this recycled wine cork angel ornament quick and easy. When Christmas rolls around you can just sit back and enjoy the season. 

You will need:

Two recycled wine corks

Colored wire, 22-gauge and 18-gauge (I used red, but you can use any color you choose)

Wire cutters


Round shape colored paper clips

Tacky craft glue

Two wiggle eyes

Two small jingle bells

Bowdabra bow maker with ruler

18 inches Bowdabra bow wire

18 inches 2 1/2" wide sheer ribbon

Glue gun and glue sticks

1.     Make a mark on the bottom center of a wine cork.  Use the awl with a twisting motion to drill a hole about ½” into the cork. 

2.     Cut a 2-inch piece of 22-gauge wire with wire cutters add a dab of glue on the end and insert into the hole.  (Neck)

3.     Mark the center top of another wine cork and using the awl drill ½” into the cork.  Taking the first wine cork with the wire neck, add a dab of glue onto the wire and insert into the second wine cork hole.  (Head and neck attached to body)

4.     Use the awl to drill a hole on each side of the body cork about half way down, drilling about ½” deep.  Cut two 3-inch pieces of 18” gauge wire, add a dab of glue on the ends and insert each piece into the holes you made on the sides of the wine cork. Curl the ends.  (Arms made)

5.     Using the awl to drill two holes in the bottom of the body wine cork at the same depth as before.  Cut two 4-inch pieces of 18-gauge wire.  Thread a jingle bell onto the wire fold in half leaving the jingle bell centered.  Add a dab of glue onto the wire ends and carefully insert into one of the holes you made.  (Leg made)  Bend the leg as desired.  Repeat for the other leg. 

6.     Add two dots of tacky glue on the front of the head and attach two wiggle eyes.

7.     Drill a hole into the top center of the head. Pull apart a round colored paper clip slightly; add a dab of glue and inset into the hole. You can hang your robot from this paper clip.  He will dangle and jingle.

Make the wings:

1.     Cut an 18 inch piece of bow wire fold in half and insert long ways in the mini Bowdabra.  You will have a loop on one side and two pieces of wire on the other.

2.     Cut an 18” piece of white, sheer 2 ½” wide wired glitter ribbon.  Insert leaving a tail to the edge of the ruler mark.  Fold and make a loop the same on the opposite side.

3.     Continue by making a matching loop on the other side and end leaving a small tail on the other side. Scrunch down with the bowdabra wand.

4.     Insert the two end pieces of bow wire through the loop and pull tightly.  Remove the bow from the Bowdabra and tie in a knot on the back.

5.     Cut the end pieces short.  Fluff up and arrange the bow.  Use a glue gun and glue sticks to attach the bow to the back of the wine cork angel.

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Fun fall recycled coffee sleeve

Don’t toss that coffee sleeve you get at your local convenience store when you pick up a quick cup of Joe.  Dress it up for fall and use it again and again. This is quick and easy upcycle that looks as good as it works keeping you from burning your fingers on a hot cup.  And don’t you feel good about being greener?

You will need:

Paper corrugated coffee cup sleeve

Paper coffee cup, rinsed and dried

Beige embossed felt

Sparkle felt fall leaves

Tacky craft glue




Two clothespins (for holding the sleeve while the glue dries)

1.      Before taking apart the sleeve make a line with a marker on the inside where the two ends meet.  (This will help with reassembly)  Make a note which side is on top.

2.      Carefully take apart the sleeve and lay on top of a piece of beige embossed felt.  Use the pencil to trace around the sleeve on the un-embossed side of the felt making sure that the embossed side will fit correctly on the outside of the sleeve. Add a ¼” extra felt on the end that will be glued to the top of the sleeve.

3.      Cut out the felt piece.  Add a generous amount of glue on the outside of the sleeve and attach the felt piece, leaving the extra ¼” unglued.  Let dry.

4.      Use some tacky glue to attach the leaf felt shapes evenly around the sleeve. Leave a equal space where the seam will be. You will place the last leave directly over the seam after you have re-attached the sleeve. Let dry completely.

5.      Use the inside guide line to reattach the sleeve with some tacky glue.  Glue down the ¼” extra felt to cover the seam. Attach the last felt leaf over the seam. Use two clothespins to hold the sleeve until it is completely dry.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Duct tape pine cone ornament tutorial

You may have seen pinecone ornaments before but you probably haven’t seen them upgraded to for the 21st century.  Instead of ribbon to make the pinecone petals I’ve used colored duct tape. In addition you can buy smooth Styrofoam so that the pins stay in much tighter.  Finish the pinecone with a Bowdabra ribbon bow and some holly berries and hang on your tree.  It’s sure to become a favorite heirloom ornament for years to come!

You will need:

·      Duct tape (I used camo color but you can use any color you desire)

·      Plastic cutting mat or other work surface

·      Ruler

·      Pencil

·      Scissors

·      Small sequin straight pins

·      Small smooth styrofoam egg (You can substitute a regular styrofoam egg if desired)

·      Thimble for pushing in pins or you can use the flat part of your ruler

For the Bowdabra bow you will need:

·      Bowdabra mini bowmaker with hair bow tool

·      Bowdabra bow wire

·      36 inches of 7/8” wide Christmas wired ribbon

·      Two sprigs of holly berries

·      Glue gun and glue sticks

1.     Use a plastic cutting mat to measure and cut 1” squares from your duct tape.  Fold diagonally to make a triangle shape.  Make a bunch because you will need to cover your styrofoam egg with them.  Leave one square unfolded for the bottom of the egg.

2.     Attach the unfolded square on the pointed end of the Styrofoam egg and secure with sequin pins on each corner.  Begin placing triangles working up towards the wider end with pointed side down. Secure with a pin at each end.  You may want to use a thimble to push the pins in or you can just use the flat part of your ruler.  Continue working up the egg overlapping the triangle petals. Try and cover the pin heads as you work upward. (See photo)

3.     When you reach the top of the egg cover with duct tape triangles as needed.

4.     Make the bow.  Cut an 18” length of Bowdabra bow wire fold in half and place in the bowmaker.  You will have a loop at one end.

5.     Cut a 36” length of 7/8” wide wired ribbon. Place one end in the bowmaker to the 2 inch line. (This will be the tail)

6.     Make a loop on the opposite side to the 2 inch line and make a corresponding loop on the opposite side.

7.     Cut two small sprigs of holly berries and insert into the bowmaker on each side.

8.     Continue folding loops on each side till you have a two-inch tail left.  Scrunch down with the wand. 

9.     Thread the loose ends of the bow wire through the loop and pull tight.  Tie the wire into a knot. And fluff up the bow loops and arrange the berries.

10. Pull the two loose ends of the bow wire to the top of the bow and tie a knot. (You will use the bow wire for hanging your ornament.   Attach the bow to the egg with a hot glue gun. Add a couple of pins for extra security.