Felt Rose Baby Mobile

baby mobile 4

baby mobile 1

baby mobile 2

baby mobile 3

So I found these BEAUTIFUL felt rose baby mobiles on Etsy. Unfortunately they were a little out of my price range. The thought occurred to me that I could probably make one myself so I hit the internet to find a tutorial. Here’s the thing, search as I may, I could not find a tutorial for these beauties, so here I am doing my first full tutorial from scratch… kinda.

I actually pulled together a bunch of little tutorials to piece together the final product. I will share these with you as well, of course, but I thought it would be easier to provide one full guide. I made one for my baby girl’s room first, but did not think to document the process. A friend of my husband’s requested that I make her one, so it provided me the perfect opportunity to create this tutorial. So here goes:

Supplies you will need:

Felt for roses (color of your choice (I used about 25 sheets of this))
Felt for petals (optional)
Illusion Cord/Fishing wire (Mine was 0.30 mm)
Needle
Scissors
Hot Glue Gun
Craft Wire (optional)
Glue Sticks (LOTS of these)
Spiral Pattern (Optional)
Metal rings (You can get wood or metal, I choose metal with a 3.5″ radius)
Beads and Crystals (you do not need both, but you do need at least one or the other as these are what keep the roses in place)

supplies

OK, let’s get started shall we?

First you need to decide how “big” your mobile will be, or rather how many flowers you will be adding and what size flowers you want. For my daughter’s mobile I ended up using about 18 large flowers and 23 little flowers. I changed things up a little with the second mobile and used a few more large flowers, but this is really up to you and your aesthetic preferences. You will need to cut scalloped spirals from your felt for each flower you will be making. You can freehand these, but luckily I found this perfect pattern on artsandcraftstv.com. I printed about 20 of these for the large flowers and for the little flowers I just copied the spiral to a word document and shrunk it down so two could fit to a page and printed about 10 pages.

Roughly cut down the patterns so that you can pin them to your felt. I found that I could fit one large pattern and one smaller pattern to a single sheet of felt. Pin the pieces to the felt (one pin each should do) then simply cut the spiral. You do not need to be overly careful with this process but you do need to make sure you are cutting the felt with the pattern, sometimes it can slip away from you.

spirals

spiral

spiral1

spiral2

I’m sure there is a cricut machine out there somewhere that could have made that part of the process a LOT easier, and maybe one day I’ll invest, but for now this will work. Now you are going to start to glue your flowers. Take a cut spiral by the tip, so when you’re holding it up it spirals in on itself at the end. Put a little bit of hot glue on the tip and a little inwards on the bottom and roll the felt in on itself. Continue to add glue along the bottom as you roll your flower. When you get to the end the little twirl at the bottom should create the base of the flower. I found this handy-dandy video on youtube that illustrates the process a little better. This is what you should end up with:

rose

rose base

Now just repeat the process with ALL your spirals and you should end up with a whole bunch of roses – haha – pun.

roses

If you want to add leaves to your roses you’ll want to cut and glue those on now. For my daughter’s mobile I chose to put leaves on the big flowers only. I alternated between 1, 2 and 3 leaves per flower. With this second mobile I opted out of the leaves, just for a different feel. Once you have completed your roses to your liking you can start putting together the mobile.

First you’ll want to take your metal ring and make a criss-cross shape with your wire. I tried the craft wire on my first mobile but I just used illusion wire on my second and that seemed to work just as well, so this is up to your preference. I will say after I completed both I like the final look with the illusion wire better so that you don’t end up with a giant gray X in the center of your mobile but I’m still happy with my first mobile. Make sure it’s secure and centered evenly. Set this aside for now.

metal ring

Next, you’ll want to thread your needle with the illusion wire/fish wire. You’ll want your wire to be pretty long, I don’t have an exact measurement but you’ll need enough length to add all your roses with space in between plus have enough room leftover to secure the string to your metal loop. Be sure you make the knot at the end big enough that it will secure the first crystal or bead that you string. I started with a tear drop shaped swarovski crystal (to me the crystals looked like little water dew drops) and then threaded a pearl bead. At this point you’ll want to decide how you want your flowers stringed on. For my first mobile I chose to start with a large flower with small flowers in the middle and another large flower on the end. I had 9 wires attached to the loop, the middle wire had 2 large flowers (one on either end) and 5 little flowers in the middle. The other 8 all had 2 large flowers and between 1 and 4 little flowers in the middle of each string. With the second mobile I wanted to change it up a little and I did a few of the strings with all large flowers. Again this part is completely up to what you think looks best. Once you’ve decided you can start by threading your first rose. The felt is really easy to thread but you may have to poke around a bit to get around the globs of hot glue.

first rose

This is where the beads come into play as they are responsible for keeping your flowers in place. Without beads or crystals your flowers are just going to slide down and pile up on top of one another. Take a bead/crystal and thread it through your needle. Slide it down to the position you want your next flower to be, now thread it again and pull the wire tight, so that the wire is essentially looped around the bead. This will secure the bead in place so you can slide your next flower down to that point. I used pearl beads as the anchors for my flowers but also added some small swarovski crystals here and there between the flowers to create the illusion of water droplets. Continue this pattern until you have completed one string of roses, however many you may want that to be. Remember to leave some leftover wire at the top, so that you can secure your string of flowers to your metal loop, and cut the needle from the wire and set aside.

string of roses

Repeat the process until you have as many string of flowers as you want and then you can start attaching the strings to your ring. Beginning with the center of the chandelier, tie your first string of flowers around the criss-cross at the length desired. I found it easiest to attach these while the ring was hanging. I secured mine to dangle off the side of the table with my nook! Now just start attaching the rest of the strings around the loop at varying points and lengths.

stringing roses

Once you have placed all your strings in place so that they are symmetrically placed (remember this is a mobile and you want it fairly evenly weighted around the circumference) you need to tie the illusion wire to hang the mobile from. You can tie it just in two places, but this makes the weighting a little precarious so I highly recommend tying the illusion wire on 4 evenly placed points. There are two ways that you can do this. I tried both and neither one seemed to work better or worse than the other so again, this is up to your preference. You can cut 4 strings, tie them to the loop and then tie them off together at the top. This is what I did with my first mobile. On the second mobile I cut 2 long threads of illusion wire. I took the first wire and tied it tightly to one end and then tied the other end straight across from the first knot. It is up to you how long you want string to be depending on the length you want the mobile to hang from your ceiling. Now take the second string, tie the first end halfway between the first two knots you created with the first thread. Wrap it once across the middle of the first thread then tie the other end across from the first. You’ll want to make sure that all 4 threads end up the same length to ensure that the mobile hangs evenly.

The last touch to your mobile is decorating the wire ring. I tried two different approaches. For Edythe’s mobile I purchased two different colors of ribbon and 2 colors of tulle. I cut a bunch of pieces in all 4 of them about 2.5-3 inches each. Then I just filled in the ring by alternately tying the ribbons and tulle in simple knots going in different directions. I was really happy with the shabby chic effect it created. On the second mobile, I wanted a more vintage glam look so I wanted to put lace around the ring. First, because metal doesn’t hold hot glue well, I wrapped the entire length of the ring in ivory ribbon. Once I had securely fastened the ribbon I simply hot glued the lace around the outside of the ring. This option was faster, but I loved both looks, so it just depends on the look you are going for.

metal ring ribbon

metal ring lace

And just like that, Viola! You have your very own Felt Rose Baby Mobile!

baby mobile 5

baby mobile 6

baby mobile 7

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Dresser Makeover

I got this little dresser from my Great Grandmother’s house where it has been sitting down in the basement for years, just collecting odds and ends. My mother actually brought it to my attention when we were discussing furniture for the nursery. I decided it would be the perfect addition for my little Ede’s room, all it needed was a little TLC.

Dresser1

So my parents hauled it home from Idaho, I hit Pinterest and got down to work. I actually found a BUNCH of tutorials on antiquing/distressing furniture/wood and combined a bunch of different techniques I found throughout those. This is the tutorial I referred to most often: http://www.morgankervinblog.com/2011/03/day-with-amy-distressing-furniture.html?m=1 but like I said, there really are a TON out there so if you find one better suited to your needs give it a try!

A lot of the tutorials I found recommended using Vaseline in between paint coats to make it easier to sand off your top coat of paint. I had my husband purchase a bottle on his way home from work but once I got into crafting mode I completely forgot to add it, so unfortunately, I cannot attest to the ease it is supposed to add to the process. For the first part of the dresser I pretty much followed the above tutorial step-by-step including using the same supplies. However I found that I did NOT like the look the steel wool added, so I decided to forgo that step and mostly stuck to the sanding block.

First I removed all the drawers and painted the entire base of the dresser dark brown. I was so excited that I forgot to take a picture of this step. Next I painted over the brown with white. It ended up taking 3 coats of white to cover the brown to the point that I was happy. Then I got out my sanding block and got down to work, and I mean like manual labor, I was sweating by the time I was done. Just be prepared.

dresser after 3 white coats.

dresser after 3 white coats.

White paint distressed. The base of the dresser is pretty much complete at this point.

White paint distressed. The base of the dresser is pretty much complete at this point.

Now I did essentially the same process with the drawers. You’ll notice I left the center of the drawers unpainted which I will explain later.

Luckily I remembered to snap a pick of the brown paint on the drawers!

Luckily I remembered to snap a pick of the brown paint on the drawers!

dresser6

So far I had followed the tutorial I had referred to almost verbatim. If you were just looking to repaint and distress your piece of furniture you would want to paint the entirety of the drawers, just like you did with the base, sand them down to get the distressed look, seal everything with furniture wax and you are done. If however, you are interested in a more unique look you may want to consider Modge-Podging the front of the dresser as i did. This is why I did not paint the center of the drawers as I new I would be covering them later anyways.

For this next part I used original Modge Podge, a paint brush and a selection of scrapbook paper I liked. Now, as I am sure most of you know, you can find a wide variety of scrapbook paper in any craft store. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find quite what I was looking for so I turned to Etsy and found these beautiful digital patterns that I could download and have to print as often as needed or wanted! Not only did this turn out to be the cheaper option, but it also widened the selection and really made it possible for me to pick and choose the absolute best patterns for the look I wanted! Also, now I have the digital patterns to use for future projects! Yeepee!

Ok, now I REALLY recommend removing your drawer handles before you Modge Podge your paper onto your dresser. Be sure to carefully mark the spot where the handles will be returned, and try not to get Modge Podge in the hole. My dresser had been previously painted, with what I can only assume was paint mixed with super glue, and I could not for the life of me get those darn handles off. So the next step involved a lot of careful measuring and getting a little creative with a milk bottle cap to fit the paper AROUND the handles. This was very time consuming. Also, a little heads up, the paper patterns I purchased were not intended to be extended over lengthy surfaces so they didn’t match up exactly, if this is something that will bother you, I recommend finding sheets of paper or fabric that fit your entire surface in one go.

dresser7

Now I took a medium grit sandpaper block to the edges of the drawers and here and there in the middle to give the paper a weathered-antique look. I put a layer of Modge-Podge on top of the paper to help seal and protect the drawers down the road and had my husband (pregnant lady couldn’t mess with the fumes) seal the base of the dresser with some regular furniture wax. I could have been done here, but I figured I’ve come this far and this dresser is for my baby girl so, what the hell, I decided to line the bottom of the drawers. I wish I could have just purchased precut drawer liners, but it was really hard to find unscented drawer liners and I didn’t want the chemicals to interact with anything that I may put in the dresser as that stuff would later interact with my newborn babies sensitive skin. So off to Michael’s I went and I was able to find pink poster boards for like $0.50 a piece. I bought 3 of em’, measured the inside of my drawers, cut them down to size and (surprise-surprise) Modge-Podged the poster board to the bottom of the drawers. Now normally I swear by Modge-Podge, but I think the poster board was a little too thick for the Modge-Podge to handle and it ended up bubbling up quite a bit. So if you go with this step you might want to try a thinner form of paper. Also I found a few blogs online that recommended using contact paper – just another idea.

dresser10

see the bubble :(

see the bubble 😦

And after all that work, here is the finished product! I have to say I LOVE the way it turned out and I think it makes quite a nice little addition to my Baby’s room!

dresser9.2

dresser9

Well I hope you enjoyed my first “little tutorial.” Also please excuse the poor photo quality of most of these pics and the fact that I do not have a pic of the supplies I used as this is really the first time I started taking pictures of a project with a tutorial in mind. I will do better next time, promise!