How to make a fabric frame

How to sew a fabric frame

How to sew a fabric frame

I want to display all of my embroidery projects in my hallway, so I have been scouring second-hand shops for nice frames. So far I haven’t found any gems, but my embroidery projects are piling up. So I decided to make a fabric frame.

I got this polar bear embroidery project from a friend for my birthday last year. He also gave me some of his old coats to use for scraps. So I decided to cut up one of his coats for the fabric frame, because I liked the symbolism of it.

How to sew a fabric frameWhat you need:

  • Something to frame
  • 4 Strips of fabric
  • Scissors
  • Sewing machine or a needle if you do it by hand
  • Thread
  • Piece of cardboard the same size as whatever you want to frame
  • Small piece of ribbon


How to sew a fabric frame

So first I measured how big the frame had to be and then I cut out 4 strips of fabric. First I hemmed the side that was going to be along the framed item, so the inner part of the frame.

Make a fabric frame

Then I ironed the corners of the strips where I wanted to attach them to each other. After sewing them together I cut off the corners, so the frame would not get too bulky in the four corners.

How to make a fabric frame

How to sew a fabric frameHow to make a fabric frame

Then I folded the strips over the length to form the frame and ironed in the folds. Then I cut out a piece of cardboard the same size as I wanted the polar bear in the frame to be, and I made sure it fit properly. When it did I closed the bottom corners on the back of the frame. I did not make it super fancy, because it is the back of the frame and no one will ever see it.

How to sew a fabric frame

How to make a fabric frame

Because my embroidery fabric is white and somewhat see-through I also cut a square of white paper to put over the cardboard to make sure you don’t see the cardboard. Then I put the polar bear embroidery in the frame and closed up the two top corners.

How to sew a fabric frameI cut the small piece of black ribbon I had in half (I cut it out of an old t-shirt, you are supposed to use them to hang the shirt on a hanger, but I always cut them out and save them). I made two little loops and stitched them to the back. And voila, the fabric frame is ready to be hung on the wall.

Off course you could use the frame for other things then embroidery. It can be cute for photos or paintings. You can use different fabrics for each side, so it is a good project for using up some scraps. You can add some lace or embroidery to the frame. The options are endless. Let me know what you made in the comments 🙂

Making wall hanging storage

It’s december again, and in the Netherlands that means Sinterklaas is arriving in our cold little country. Sinterklaas is a cousin of Santa, and he comes bearing gifts. The Sint doesn’t fly over from the south pole in a reindeer sled, but he comes over on a boat from Spain. And together we celebrate his birthday on the fifth of december every year. Just like christmas we celebrate by buying each other gifts, but you have to add a poem to every gift. A little poem to express love for the person receiving it and, more importantly, to make fun of them.

We also do something similar to secret santa, but you have to make your secret santa something, as well as buy them a gift and write them a poem. My family usually goes all out for Sinterklaas. So we do the secret santa, buy everyone gifts, write everyone poems and then get together for an evening unwrapping gifts and reading every poem out loud. And since I have 3 brothers, and every year we bring girlfriends and/or boyfriends you can imagine this is a long, fun, and busy night.

This year I got my mom for secret santa. She is very much into weaving and has a massive loom in her living room (called a normalopatent if you were interested). She has so many accessories to go with it though and no room to put them and it drives my dad insane 🙂 So I decided to turn an old curtain into a wall hanging storage unit.

I took the curtain and cut it to a size I liked. Then I found an old pair of pants that belonged to my mom, an old jumper and shirt of mine, and some scrap fabric I still had lying around.

First I folded over the curtain at the bottom part en sewed it into 2 different pockets. Then I cut out 2 different styles of pocket from the old pants and sewed them on. I cut out 2 more squares from the jumper and the shirt. I made sure I used the bottom bit of the jumper and shirt so I would have edges that were already finished. Then I sewed them onto the curtain as well, and voila: wall hanging storage 🙂


Both my mom and the dog loved the wall hanging storage

Both my mom and the dog loved the wall hanging storage

Wall hanging storage

My sister made me a beautifully painted paper mache balloon (with a poem about using it to visit my brother who lives in the caribbean). Unfortunately all the photos of it are on my mom’s camera. I did get 2 pictures of my family’s creations:

Headless Hank

My dad made my brother a miniature version  of himself of a plastic bottle he forgot to recycle, and with a marzipan head.

Plastic cup snowman




And my eldest brother made a snowman wearing warm footwear (her present) for my foster sister as she is always cold.


Sewing a Jip & Janneke pillow

Jip en Janneke are 2 characters in a series of famous Dutch children’s books by Annie M.G. Schmidt. In the Netherlands everyone grew up with these stories, and I think they have been translated into many languages. I have loved the drawings in the books by Miep Westendorp for so long.

One of my brothers is dating an American girl and she is using the books to learn Dutch. So a couple of months ago I made her a pillow with their picture on it. I loved the pillow so much I decided to make some for myself too!

Sewing a Jip & Janneke pillowJip & Janneke pillow

Jip & Janneke on fabric

I measured and cut 4 squares out of an old white curtain. Then I got some Jip & Janneke images I liked and enlarged them and copied them onto pattern paper. Then used a textile marker to copy them on to the fabric. After that I sewed the squares together and stuffed them with stuffing. And now they live on my couch. And i can mix and match whichever of the 4 images I want to see that day 🙂

Jip & Janneke pillowsJip & Janneke pillows

Recycling 2 t-shirts into 3 cowls for riding my motorbike

I have been taking motor lessons, and I love it. But it is cold and rainy out here, so I needed a new scarf. It can’t be a long scarf to wrap around my neck, because there cannot be anything flapping around loosely when I drive around on a bike. So I took 2 old t-shirts that do not fit me anymore, and turned them into 3 cowls.

Making t-shirts into scarvesTurning t-shirt into cowl

The old shirts. I love pink, but unfortunately these are too small to wear. Please excuse my terrible looking crafts table 🙂

Recycling t-shirt into cowl

This was actually a very simple project that took me less than an hour. I cut off the tops of the t-shirts so I had a straight cowl. I put them around my neck and sort of measured out how tight I wanted them to be, and then cut them on the side, and sewed the edges back together. I hemmed the tops.

For both shirts I had the left-over bits and so i sewed them together, so I have 3 cowls now. One is pink (my favorite), one is green, and one is green and pink. I am very happy with them, and I am sure my motor instructor will be happy I won’t be riding around with a scarf flapping about.

Recycle a t-shirt into a cowlT-shirt turned into cowl

I’m not sure why I didn’t take a photo with the green one, but you get the idea right? 🙂

Sewing a new groceries bag

I’ve had this beautiful black Bershka bag with a boombox printed on it for years, and it is starting to fall apart. The handles have tears in them and the holes in the bottom are big enough for me to lose my keys. So it was time to make a new one. I found this really cute fabric with little sheep on them, so I drew up a pattern and started sewing.

My old Bershka bag

So this is my beloved old bag. I still use it for doing grocery shopping sometimes, and it looks even worse now. 🙂

Cute sheep fabric for sewing a bag

I found this really cute fabric with little sheep on it at a crafts fair a couple of months ago.


Materials for sewing a bag

So I just measured my old bag and then drew up a very simple pattern for the new one.

Sewing a grocery bag

I cut the pattern from the pattern paper, folded over the fabric and pinned the pattern on. I cut it out, leaving a few extra centimeters for the hems. Then I just sewed the sides together, and hemmed the top. I cut 2 strips of fabric for the shoulder straps and sewed those on.

Handmade grocery bag tutorial

And voila, the result.

Funny story. Pretty much one of the first days I used my new bag I dropped it in front of my front door, while it had half a liter of cream in it. Of course the cups with the cream broke and my bag and everything in it (and soon my coat, skirt and tights too) was covered in cream. I tried to save my agenda, phone, keys and book as well as I could, and threw everything washable into the washing machine immediately. I had to wash the bag 4 times at a high temperature before I finally got the smell out. Clumsy me! 🙂