Beginner’s Guide to Felting Wool Sweaters for Crafting

By far, one of my favorite things to up-cycle for crafting purposes are wool sweaters!  It’s nearly addicting.  And you can find them for only a few dollars at your local thrift store.

TIPS FOR FINDING YOUR SWEATER & FELTING THE WOOL

You want 100% wool sweaters.  Unless you have some you can pick from your drawer, you will want to head to your local thrift store.  The thrift store is a treasure trove of cheap crafting goodness!  Check out the men’s section first — and go for the biggest sweaters you can find.  Because when the felting process is complete, your sweater will be a smaller version of your original.  So, start big.

Machine wash your sweater in hot water with detergent on the cycle with the most agitation.  Then, toss it in the dryer on the hottest temperature setting.  When you’re done, you will have some dreamy felted wool to work with.  The beauty of the felting process is that the fibers are now so tight, that you can cut the wool and not worry about any fraying.  This makes it a breeze for crafting, because it requires minimal sewing.

how to felt wool sweaters  l 4onemore.com

4 EASY FELTED WOOL PROJECTS

I want to share 4 easy DIY projects that can be made with only one or two sweaters.  Below is a diagram showing what part of the sweater each project came from.

felted wool sweater projects l 4onemore.com

PILLOWS

felted wool pillow l 4onemore.com

Felted wool pillows are easy to make.  Just cut, sew the whole thing except for a little spot for stuffing.  Stuff the pillow and finish sewing shut.  The side seams on this pillow were already the side seams of the sweater, so I cheated on the sewing!  The ribbing and cables on your sweater add interest and texture.  You can even use some leftover scraps to make coordinating felt flowers.  I glued mine on with E6000 glue.  Or you can tack them on with needle and thread.

argyle felted wool sweater pillow l 4onemore.com sweater pillow l 4onemore.com

COFFEE COZIES

These super easy coffee cozies require no sewing (unless you want to tack on some decorative buttons).  Just cut a section from the sleeve of your sweater.  Remember, the felting process makes your wool free from fraying — yay!  So, just slip on the arm piece to fit your coffee cup however you like, and you’re done!

coffee cozies l 4onemore.com

STARS

These stars are fun to make, and look nice by the half-dozen… nestled together in a wooden bowl, or tucked in a basket.

felted wool star l 4onemore.com

Just cut a star template out of cardboard, cut 2 star pieces from your sweater (you can use the upper arm of the sweater for this… cut the arm open at the seam, and you will be amazed how much wool is available).  No need to sew right sides together on any of these felt projects.  Just sew all the way around your star, leaving a little spot for stuffing.  Stuff, sew shut, then add your raffia and jingle bell.  Sweet!

CANDLE COZIES

These cozies are made like the coffee cozies.  Just use a section of the sweater arm.  No sewing required.  Slip it on a glass votive candle holder, fold up the cuff, and that’s it.

candle cozies l 4onemore.com

So, there you have it… 4 easy DIY crafts from 1 wool sweater.  Get to it!  Which one will you try?  Have any other great felted wool ideas?  I’d love to hear them.  And check out my Pinterest Board for more felted wool DIY’s.

Build-a-Library Baby Shower Invitations on etsy

Build-a-Library Baby Showers continue to be a fun theme.  Food, games, and decor all take their cue from favorite children’s books.  And the best part is that vintage books can be found cheaply at almost any thrift store.

But setting the right feel for your shower begins when you send the invitation.  That’s why my custom library card invites are a smart purchase.

CUSTOM library card invitations by 4onemore.etsy.com

I have crafted thousands of unique invitations for my etsy shop, 4onemore.  Each book page is hand cut with just the right amount of text and illustration.

CUSTOM library card invitations by 4onemore.etsy.comCUSTOM library card invitations by 4onemore.etsy.comCUSTOM library card invitations by 4onemore.etsy.com

Have a shower color scheme?  I may be able to match the card stock color to your choice.  I use real library pockets, then attach the book pages to the front.

Will the shower be featuring Dr. Seuss, Richard Scarry, or Little Golden Books?  My book stash is constantly growing and changing, so chances are I can match to your theme.
CUSTOM library card invitations by 4onemore.etsy.com

Now the fun begins, and I print out your invitation onto authentic library cards.

CUSTOM library card invitations by 4onemore.etsy.com CUSTOM library card invitations by 4onemore.etsy.com

What is usually included on the invite?  You can definitely word it any way you’d like, but here are the main points.
CUSTOM library card invitations by 4onemore.etsy.com

The reverse side is a great place to include extra details.  Some people carry the theme over to the gifts, and ask guests to bring books for baby’s library.  There are several creative ways to do this.

In lieu of a card, please bring a copy of your favorite childhood book to help build a library for baby.

One small request that won’t be too hard,  Please bring a book instead of a card, Whether Cat in the Hat or Winnie the Pooh, You can sign the book with a note from you.

If you’re looking for cute library card invitations for baby showers, birthdays, or book club parties, give me a shout on 4onemore.etsy.com

CUSTOM library card invitations by 4onemore.etsy.com

For a more grown up look, these library card notecards are just the thing!

CUSTOM library card notecards by 4onemore.etsy.com

It’s always fun to coordinate your thank you notes with your party theme.

CUSTOM library card thank you notes by 4onemore.etsy.com

Need some cute tags?  I’ve got them too.

CUSTOM book page tags by 4onemore.etsy.com

These mini composition notebooks make cute favors.  Customized to your book theme.

CUSTOM mini notebook favors by 4onemore.etsy.com

I haven’t seen invitations just like this anywhere.  I hope you’ll give 4onemore a chance to create great pieces to carry out your theme.

Check out my Pinterest board for more Build-a-Library Shower ideas.

Have you been to a book-themed shower?  What other items helped to set the mood?

thrifted frame LEGO storage solution

{This post originally appeared on 4onemore.weebly.com and continues to be very popular on Pinterest!}

If you have boys, you probably have Lego.  And Lego comes into the house by the hundreds, it seems, so good storage is a must.  We have 4 boys under 10, so you can imagine the amount of Lego we have accumulated through the years.

minifigs

I spent some time looking for great storage solutions, and came across this idea quite a bit:  Framed Minifigure Storage & Display.  Here’s a Pinterest experiment that was a success, not a fail!

 thrifted frame LEGO storage l 4onemore.com

Honestly, the mini figures are so fun to look at, why not display them prominently in your boys’ room, instead of hiding them away?  I’m still looking for great ideas for the thousand other bricks we own, but the mini figure problem is solved for now.

I found the best source for this idea here.  I modified it a bit by using thrifted frames and keeping the glass in them.  Ours aren’t perfect, but my boys think they are!

Check your local thrift store for some great frame options in large sizes!  It will only set you back a few dollars.  We bought the bricks (2 x 2) at a Lego store.  For 100 bricks in the 2×2 size (that gave each boy 25 bricks for his display), we spent about $10.  So, project total cost with thrifted frames was no more than $20 for all 4 displays.

thrifted frame LEGO storage l 4onemore.com

Each boy picked the paint color for his frame.  We just inserted scrapbook paper, card stock, or nothing (!) into the frame for the background.  Then, I spaced out the 2 x 2 blocks and glued them on the glass with E6000 glue, (affiliate link) which is pretty much amazing stuff.

thrifted frame LEGO storage l 4onemore.com

thrifted frame LEGO storage l 4onemore.com

 

thrifted frame LEGO storage l 4onemore.com

Where previously we had some vintage world maps framed on the wall (because I LOVE that kind of stuff!), my boys were ready for something that looked like their tastes.  And now it’s fun to put the minifigs away at night 🙂

thrifted frame LEGO storage l 4onemore.com

thrifted frame LEGO storage l 4onemore.com

thrifted frame LEGO storage l 4onemore.com

Have you found any great ideas for Lego storage?

the waiting room

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There’s a sweet little room in our house that has a sweet little bed layered with vintage quilts made by generations gone by.  This room is different from any room in our house.  True, I have four sons, and so Star Wars and hues of blue are more common around here than florals and pinks.  But this room is also empty.  Still waiting for our sweet girl to arrive.

IMG_6759

Due to “unprecedented delays” on the Ethiopian adoption front, our six month timeline from referral to travel has now turned into eight months and counting.  This is what adoptive parents mean when they talk about the emotional roller coaster.  I thought it would be the finances that caused anxiety, but I can see how “hurry up and wait” is the hardest thing in the world.  But God has the perfect timing already worked out, and we are resting in that.

{the nitty gritty:  Our case has completed the U.S. Embassy’s process for Ethiopian adoptions.  We are now waiting for the Ethiopian courts to set our court dates.  First is the finder court, which we do not have to be present for.  Then, shortly after that, we will schedule our travel to be present to legally adopt our girl.  Finally, we return one more time after documents have been processed to pick her up — “gotcha day!” — and bring her home.  We’re almost there!}