muslin flowers

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I was excited when I heard that there would be a strip of Muslin fabric (it’s about 1-1 1/2″ wide) in November’s Scarlet Lime kit. I buy this kind of fabric in yards for both sewing and for use in my paper craft projects – so I’m already a fan. Today I’m going to give you some ideas for turning a strip of fabric into flowers. (Note: this would work with most any fabric – but the thin muslin is so easy to work with!)

First of all, you don’t have to sew – you can just use the power of hot glue.

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Use your fingers and hand fold a circle shaped flower. How much folding you do is totally up to you. Then drop a glop of hot glue onto a circle (or other shape ok I suppose) of patterned paper that is smaller than your finished flower. Press your flower into it.

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Huge tip: Use a pencil, stylus, or ANYTHING but your finger to press that glue into the fabric and make it stick. I still do suggest the hot glue though – it’s fast and does a great job. I had to let a flower done this way with regular liquid adhesive set overnight to work. I’m not that patient!!

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I pressed a button into the center of mine, but you could put another (smaller) layer of fabric, beads, paper, or even a sticker as your flower center. Just pick off the excess hot glue once it’s all set up.

For a decorative touch you could use pinking shears along the edge, or even a decorative blade (before making flower is easiest!) from your trimmer or rotary cutter.

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Now let’s talk about sewing one. The above flower (w/pinking shears) was created by using thread instead of hot glue to pull a flower together. I find it makes a more uniform and easily tweaked flower – but it does take a bit more time. Here’s 2 ways – by hand and by machine:

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If you have a machine – do a basting stitch (a BIG and very LOOSE stitch) through the fabric, then pull it tight. You can adjust how tight you make it before either stitching together or using hot glue (and a circle of paper) to glue it down.

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Note: most of my flowers are a piece of fabric around 12-16″ long, however if you make them longer you can easily make yourself a multi-layered flower by just circling around and around. The downside to this is they really become too bulky to put in a scrapbook, so that’s why you’re only seeing single-layer from me here.

Sitting in front of the TV? Fighting the flu and need something to keep your hands and mind occupied while sitting still? I like to get our some embroidery thread and a needle and pull flowers together.

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Just do a straight stitch in and out (regular thread would be ok to0- but I pull hard and break it sometimes… so I go with the thick stuff now). The thing I like about this method is you can do it anywhere, and you can gauge your progress easily because of the slow & steady pace.

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To close these flowers I tie the two ends of thread together in a knot and pull nice and tight. Then I tuck the ends (of fabric) under when placing it on a project. of course gluing these onto a circle of paper makes them a) more sturdy and b) easier to manage so I still suggest that.

Had enough? No way! I’ve got 2 more ideas to show you…

001 (2)

I cut six 1 x 2″ strips of muslin. Then I folded in 1/2 and pinched the open end a bit and sewed 2 stitches (regular thread) to keep it puckered/pinched.

002 (2)

I repeated this for each petal, then I sewed them together, just putting 2 stitches of the left side of one into the right side of the next one (and on all the way around)

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It’s ok if the stitching looks crazy. You’ll never see it again.

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When I was done It looked like this – then I spritzed and spritzed some more until I liked the color I got. Oh yes, did I forget to mention? Using Shimmer sprays, inks, even paints or stamps on this stuff = fantastic. It’s totally easy to do and adds customization to your fab flowers.

Still, layered flowers rock and it bummed me out that all the bunching & stitching meant  they were too lumpy (like 1″ thick!) for my pages. But what if you just cut & glued petals onto a circle base? Say, like this-

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3 layers of petals – I just cut a ton out (no worries if they’re imperfect!) and hot glued onto a circle of paper. Then when I liked how many layers I had I went spritz crazy. See how it’s all beaded up? That’s OK! It’ll soak in and dry really quick, and wherever it was all beaded up will just have more color. If you want it to be even all over just keep spraying until it’s all very, very wet.

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Having fun yet? I sure am – and I’m ready to do more, more, more!

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8 responses »

  1. MUSLIN IS THE BEST. I REMEMBER WHEN I WAS LITTLE MY MOM MAKING CURTAINS FROM MUSLIN ALL THE TIME OH MY. BUT THE FLOWERS ARE SO MUCH BETTER. GREAT INFORMATION. HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM PRESCOTT, ARIZONA

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