Thursday, April 24, 2014

Waste not, want not

Welcome guest author Lois Winston to Killer Hobbies today!  And be sure to check out her most recent Anastasia Pollack Crafting mystery,  Decoupage Can Be Deadly.
I’m a very opinionated person. For that reason I swore years ago when the blog craze took hold that I would never blog. Why voice an opinion on something that might turn off a part of my readership because they disagree with my views on something? My motto is, “All readers welcome!”

But that was before I sold my Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series in 2010. Once I signed that contract, I realized I needed to embrace some form of social networking if I wanted to get the word out about my books. Being adverse to Facebook, I opted for a blog. However, by then there were so many authors blogging. What could I blog about that wasn’t already being blogged about by countless other authors?

I struck on the idea of having my character blog instead of me. Thus was born the idea for Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers. Anastasia is the crafts editor at a women’s magazine. I fashioned the blog to be the online presence of that magazine. Each day one of the magazine’s “editors” blogs about her field of expertise. Anastasia offers craft projects and tips on Mondays.

Since this is Killer Hobbies, I thought today I’d have Anastasia share some of her tips for using fabric scraps. So I now turn the podium over to her:

Waste not, want not. That’s what my great-aunt Penelope Periwinkle used to say, and now that I’m counting every penny, I realize how right she was. But even before pauperdom walloped me upside the head, I always saved all the fabric scraps from my sewing projects. If you’ve ever had to buy an 1/8-yd. of fabric because you needed one 3” x 12” strip, you know how right I am. I keep all my scraps of fabric in a plastic storage bin, and it’s amazing how often I find myself rooting through that bin to find exactly what I need. However, sometimes the storage bin gets to over-flowing. When that happens, I have lots of project ideas stored away for using up some of that overflow. Here are a few I’ll share with you today.

  • Make sachet bags to drape over your clothes hangers or place in dresser drawers.
  • Create drawstring gift bags for odd-shaped or any-size presents. You’ll be giving the recipient two gifts in one because afterwards, the gift bag can be used to hold jewelry, lingerie, toiletries, or just about anything else. Decorate the bags with smaller scraps of fabric and scraps of ribbon and lace.
  • Make a crazy quilt fabric-covered picture frame. Embellish the frame with ribbon, lace, buttons, and beads.
  • Cut out small simple shapes, such as hearts. Sew two together and stuff for ornaments or gift package decorations. Glue them to pin backs or barrettes for soft-sculpture jewelry.
  • Glue or fuse fabric to heavy paper and use as appliqués for hand-made greeting cards and gift tags.
  • Cut fabrics of different textures, patterns, and colors into 3”, 4”, or 5” squares. Sew six squares of the same size together to form a cube, then stuff. These make wonderful, tactile soft blocks for babies and toddlers.
 For more tips and projects, stop by Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers every Monday.
Award-winning author Lois Winston writes mystery, romance, romantic suspense, chick lit, women’s fiction, and non-fiction under her own name and her Emma Carlyle pen name. Assault With a Deadly Glue Gun, the first book in her Anastasia Pollack Crafting Mystery series, received starred reviews from both Publishers Weekly and Booklist. Kirkus Reviews dubbed it, “North Jersey’s more mature answer to Stephanie Plum.” Other books in the series includes Death By Killer Mop Doll, Revenge of the Crafty Corpse, Decoupage Can Be Deadly and the ebook only mini-mysteries Crewel Intentions and Mosaic Mayhem. In addition, Lois is an award-winning craft and needlework designer who often draws much of her source material for both her characters and plots from her experiences in the crafts industry. Visit Lois/Emma at and Anastasia at the Killer Crafts &Crafty Killers blog Follow everyone on Twitter: and Pinterest:




Linda O. Johnston said...

Welcome to Killer Hobbies, Lois, and thanks for the crafting suggestions!

Tonette said...

I love these ideas...I was also a scrap hoarder, but I am determined to make something of them.I love the cube idea, and I have done a lot of paper decoupaging, so fabric, it will be!

Lois Winston said...

Happy crafting, Tonette! I hope you make a dent in your fabric horde.