Today we are sharing a special tutorial from our friends at Chasing Windmills. A Valentine you and your children can make by hand. Valentine's Day can easily become another holiday full of small, inexpensive trinkets and sweets that are quickly eaten or tossed aside, but we're here to show you that it needn't be that way! The act of making something with your hands is a gift in itself.
Sarah, owner of one of our very favorite small shops, Chasing Windmills, shares how to make adorable hand warmers with wool scraps and needle felted designs. These are incredibly customizable. You can sew the actual handwarmer into many different shapes, for instance circles like these, hearts, mushrooms, mittens, whatever you can dream up! And you can needle felt any sort of design on them to personalize. Children delight in these sweet little warmers, they are so simple, yet effective to warm up hands and pockets on cold days.
Gather Your Supplies:
- Scrap fabric (Find beautiful merino wool scraps from Chasing Windmills here)
- Embroidery thread or thin yarn
- Lavender (optional)
- Needle felting supplies - wool roving, felting needles, felting mat, optional cookie cutters
- Sewing needle
- Something to make template (optional)
Create Hand Warmer Design:
1. Cut out two layers of scrap fabric into desired shape. I used a small glass yogurt jar to trace onto watercolor paper to make a template, but if you are feeling brave you can certainly cut them free hand. My circles are about 2.5" in diameter.
2. On top of one of your layers, needle felt your design. If you are new to needle felting, it can be helpful to use a cookie cutter to help you shape the roving. First place a small amount of wool roving within the cookie cutter.
3. Begin poking (lots and lots of times) around the edge near cookie cutter walls and begin to work your way inward to the middle of the design.
4. Add any secondary wool roving colors. Continue poking until roving is well compacted. Remove cookie cutter and refine your design with continued pokes, adding any small details you desire. Then carefully lift your fabric scrap from felting pad.
Sew It Together:
5. Layer your two scrap pieces. Knot one end of thread/yarn (I used about 36 inches) and begin blanket stitching around edge. When you are about 3/4 of the way around your shape, pause.
6. Fill with rice and a touch of dried lavender.
7. Continue stitching until you reach your beginning stitch. Tie thread off securely with a knot and sew end of thread inside of hand warmer. Trim remaining thread.
To Use: Microwave for 15-30 seconds, and spread all the warmth and love!
Creating these sweet sensory rich hand warmers is a sure fire way to spread love and care, perfect for the rest of the cold days to come. Every time they warm them up, they will be reminded of how much you care for them.