Hello Kitty Applique gift bag

Did you know that it is Hello Kitty's 50th anniversary? That little kitty has been around a long time! Today I am showing you how to make this cute little Hello Kitty applique. I made a gift bag with it, but the options are pretty limitless. This particular gift bag went to a girl who has renamed herself "Hello Kitty Star," so I thought it was fitting. I also love how the gift bag is part of the gift. Every little girl I know loves bags and purses, so this will get a lot of mileage out of it. Hello Kitty Star also had the most amazing party, which I hope to show you soon. I don't want to steal Vanessa's thunder, so I'll wait until she can post it first.
First I want to tell you a quick story. Generally speaking I don't mind my kids having "Character apparel" and toys but for some reason I don't really love the Disney princesses. Last year when my son went to preschool nearly every little girl in his class had a Princess backpack. When it was time for my little cutie to pick her backpack, I was really pleased that I steered her toward Hello Kitty instead. I thought she would have an easier time keeping track of her things if it wasn't the same as everyone else. Cut to the first day of school and the first three girls that got there all had a Hello Kitty backpack! Sometime I'll have to count exactly how many Hello Kitty backpacks there are, but I think it is a lot! Apparently the tide has turned on the princesses. Oh well, I still think it is adorable!

Pellon Fusible Peltex for the cat face - available in the interfacing section at craft stores. Use a coupon or wait for a sale and score a good deal!
Pink felt for the bow
Black Felt for the Eyes
White Thread - to sew on the peltex
Black Thread - for the whiskers
Jewel/rhinestone or additional felt for the nose
Tote bag/favor bags - I got mine from Dollar Tree
Template: Download PDF HERE
Download SVG Files HERE

I'm going to do this tutorial in two parts. First is making the bow.
Bow Instructions
Step 1: Cut One strip of felt 1" x 6" and one strip of felt 1/2" by 3".

Step 2. Hot Glue the ends of the 1" x6" together and overlap slightly. You could stitch this together as well.

Step 3. Fold the bow in half at the center. I liked how it looked if the glued seam was at the front. You can turn it whatever you think is best.

Step 4. Glue the end of the skinny piece of felt to the back of the bow.

Step 5. Wrap the felt around the bow and glue the end on the other side. Trim off the excess felt.

Now that the bow is complete, I'm mostly going to tell you what to do. I started taking pictures for a step by step, but it seemed overkill.

Constructing Hello Kitty
  1. Iron the Fusible Peltex head onto your bag according to the directions. I used it because it was fusible and I knew it would be easy to work with. I also had it left over from another project, so that is always a plus.
  2. Stitch around the outside of the head with white thread to secure the head onto your bag.
  3. Mark where you want your whiskers to go. I used a black colored pencil but I would recommend a sewing pen/marker that comes off.

    • To mark the whiskers I cut out a second Hello Kitty Template and left the whiskers on. I made a slit in the paper along the whiskers and traced the length of the whisker directly onto the peltex and bag.

  4. Using black thread, sew several lines back and forth along the whiskers you marked. I went over the line two times. Here is a close up view of the stitching.
  5. Glue on your eyes, nose, and hair bow. I used E-6000 to attach the rhinestone nose I used. I used hot glue for the rest. You could stitch on everything but the rhinestone, however the speed of the hot glue was just too tempting for me this time.

I also bought some party favor size bags from Dollar Tree for 2/$1. The bags are about 8" by 8" I knew my daughter would be really bummed if she didn't get a Hello Kitty bag too. I don't know what kind of material the smaller bags are but I did have some trouble with the whiskers. When I went to sewing just on the bag it pulled a bit because the fabric is relatively thin. You might want to size it down a little too, it took a lot of maneuvering to get the whiskers so close to the side seams on a small bag. You can see from the picture above that I did it fine, it just took some extra work to make it happen. Consider it fair warning!

Here's the cost breakdown:
Bags - $1 or 2/$1 from Dollar Tree
Rhinestones - $1 for an assorted bag from Dollar Tree, or on hand
Felt - on hand
Fusible Peltex - on hand or $1-$2 at Joann's with a coupon for a small amount.
Total: I only had to buy the bag for a $1, but it could be $3+ depending on what you have in your stash.

The birthday girl loved her bag, and I think they are really cute!
Here are the download links again...
PDF Template: Download PDF HERE
SVG Template: SVG Files HERE

I would love to see what you come up with using the template, so if you make something, send me a picture.

Personalized Classroom donations

I didn't send my son's teacher a back to school gift, which I have regretted ever since. I was just completely consumed dealing with the fact that my "baby boy" was starting big boy school. I found a good opportunity to make up for it when his teacher sent home a list of supplies she was needing donated.
Two of the items requested were hand sanitizer and pencils. I thought it would be fun to personalize those, so I engraved the pencils. I have never personally engraved pencils before and I love how they turned out. EDIT: I got a question about the pencils I thought I would answer here. I bought the pencils at the grocery store and engraved them with my laser engraving machine. If you are interested in ordering some, send me an email to cuteasafoxcreations@gmail.com and I can get you a price.

Next I wanted to add some personalization to the bottle of hand sanitizer.
I bought a jumbo sized hand sanitizer and printed out what I wanted the bottle say on regular copy paper. I took it down to Office Max and they copied it onto a transparency sheet. It's important to use a laser printer. Ink jet will come off inside the bottle.
To get the sheet in the bottle, you roll it up backwards and stuff it inside. You can use the squirt straw to move the transparency around to where you want it. This is the first time I have made an insert for hand sanitizer and I actually think that hand soap is a little easier to work with. I couldn't get the transparency all the way to the front of the bottle and there are a few bubbles you can see between the transparency and the front of the bottle. Not a big deal at all, but soap is easier to work with.
Hopefully she likes it and can just add other bottles of hand sanitizer to this one when she runs out.

If you are interested, the font I used on the sanitizer is called Hand of Sean, which is quickly becoming my favorite font. It looks like handwriting, but is still very legible. I found it for free at dafont.com. I love browsing through all their fonts. So many awesome choices!

Don't forget to register for the craft night coming up. Register HERE

Mario and Luigi Poster board Visors Tutorial

The moment that has been months in the making is finally here. I have made templates and a tutorial for making the Mario and Luigi poster board visors. Here's some background, I used a template and video from another website when I made the visors for my Mario party. Unfortunately that website decided to take down their instructions. I get multiple emails a month from people asking how to do it. Finally I have created my own template and instructions on how to make these visors.
  • Before we begin, download the Template by going HERE. The file is a PDF file that is 2 pages. Change your printer to landscape if it doesn't automatically adjust that for you.
  • Print and cut out all of the template pieces you need. (One of Template 1 and One of Template 2)

Step 1: Trace and cut out Template 1 on poster board or card stock. Cut out a patch and a letter for your visor.

Step 2: Fold the oval in half using a valley fold. Essentially bring the bottom of the oval up to meet the top and crease.

Step 3: Match up the crease you just made on your visor with the half way line on Template 2.

Step 4. Using a scoring tool, or your best approximation of one, score your visor along the curved line.

I took a picture of the score line so you can see it. You might need to go over it several times if you use poster board. Card stock would probably be fine with just scoring it one time.

Step 5: This is the only tricky part, but once you get one, the rest are easy! You want to crease the bill of your visor down along the curved score line. It helps to gently curve the whole visor. It makes the score line easier to follow.

Step 6: Attach your patch and letter with glue. I used a glue stick, but just about anything should be fine.

Step 7: You can punch some holes using the guide on the template and tie on some elastic thread. You can also eye ball it, or just staple on some 1/4" elastic too. I made all mine in slightly varying sizes to accommodate different sized heads.

Here were the hats I made last year for the party.

Here they are in action!

Here is the link to download the template again: Mario and Luigi Visors Template
If you have any questions let me know! If you make some, I'd love to see pictures. Feedback is really the best.

Piranha Plant Tutorial

I've been getting several requests recently for more information on the piranha plants that I made last year for my husbands Mario themed birthday party. Here they are again in case you don't remember what I am talking about.

I didn't take detailed pictures while I was making them because it was all pretty much a big experiment. So instead, I will tell you what I did and try to post a few new pictures.

I bought a cheap playground ball from Walmart for a $1 and cut out a wedge shape for the mouth. Then I got some cheap melamine red bowls from the Dollar Store and drilled a hole through them and screwed them into the dowel "stems." I think the dowel was somewhere between 1.5 and 2" in diameter.

This bowl in the front of this picture looks a lot like the one I used. The picture is from Target, so you can look there if you don't see any at Dollar Tree.

The bowl held the candies and gave the ball shape, since it gets all floppy once it is deflated. It was tricky getting the ball to stay attached to the rim of the bowl. I think I used a combo of double sided tape and hot glue. Some super glue or E6000 might do the trick too.
I decorated the ball with white felt for the spots and mouth. I bought the green buckets from Dollar Tree and filled them with pinto beans to weigh it down and keep the dowel in place.
For the leaves, I just cut them out of felt and sewed some lines to make them look a little more leafy. I glued gardening wire to the underside of the leaves so I could give them shape. I think I just hot glued the leaves on to the dowel as well. I had a the leaves get droopy a few times, so you might need to experiment with that a little.
Click on this picture and you can see the lines I stitched onto the leaves a little bit.

Someone had the idea to make the red "head" out of paper-mache. I actually thing that is a really great idea. I have never done paper-mache myself but I don't see why it wouldn't work. Just make sure you give yourself plenty of drying time.

This whole thing started out with a crazy idea and I just kept working at it until it worked. I would love to see anyone that decides to make their own. Feel free to ask me questions if something is confusing or you need more info. I would love to help!

Stainless Steel Waterbottles and a Craft Fail

My oldest started kindergarten on Monday and today my youngest started preschool! It's been pretty crazy around here getting ready for school and dealing with the emotions that come with your kids starting school. I'm so excited I have finally done something crafty.

Let's start out with a little craft fail/funny situation that happened. I saw these cute lotion bottles for Back to School over on Oops, I craft my pants. I thought they would be great for my daughter's preschool teachers. I found some Vanilla Berry lotion at Bath & Body Works which smells heavenly. Most of Bath & Body Works packaging is see through, but this one is an opaque cotton candy pink color. I put the cute little label on, and suddenly I realized that the lotion bottle looks a whole lot like a Pepto-Bismal bottle! That wouldn't be so bad if the label didn't say, We hope your school year goes smoothly. I get the giggles everytime I look at the bottle now, I don't see lotion anymore. Oh well, it's the thought that counts right? Plus, that lotion really is wonderfully scented.

I usually give the preschool teachers a birthday gift. I found out on Tuesday that the new preschool teacher had a summer birthday so they were going to celebrate on Thursday. Both teachers got the lotion, but I wanted to do something extra to celebrate the birthday girl.

Lotion, Body Wash, Stainless Steel personalized water bottle filled with Starburst, and a cute basket.

That brings me to the Stainless Steel bottles. My daughter needed a new cup and I found that purple one on sale and gave it a try. After I bought it, I realized I could probably engrave on the bottles with my laser engraver. I tried it and I LOVE it! I have since been hitting up every store I can find that has these on sale. I made one for his teacher with her name on it and then one for my son.

My son is absolutely Mario obsessed, so I couldn't resist adding Bowser to his. He has a Mario lunch box, so this will match perfectly. Here's a close up of his design.

I feel pretty rusty, I can't wait to get back into the crafty swing of things. I'll be emailing the winners for the AnyPic software giveaway sometime today and I'll publish a list of the winners. I also have a big announcement coming up for an event I'm putting together. Stay tuned!