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Oh the Holidays

Like everyone else, I'm sure, we've been busy little elves in preparing for the holidays with family - so much so that we've neglected our blogging duties. (For that, we are very sorry). We're not being slackers, honest. In fact, Tracy's been embroidering away and Nicki has been busy designing recipe cards and CD sleeves. You can check out all of her printables and tutorials here.

And for those of you making last minute CD mixes to give as gifts, why not wrap them in these stylish sleeves inspired by the 45 records of the 1950s/60s (just download, print, trim, fold, & glue). We hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday season!


-Nicki & Tracy

Classic CD Sleeve 2


Fabulously FREE Friday: Blank Calendar Download

Here's a 13 month 2010/2011 CD calendar that you can download & print out for FREE! Just trim and decorate to your heart's desire (great for rubber stamping). It's designed to fit into an empty CD case for a desktop calendar, but you can do whatever you want with it!

Blank CD Calendar


We Heart Indie Spotting!

Spotted once again! This time for our hand embroidered & beaded star ornaments. Pretty cool.  (there's still time to buy them and get them on the tree!)

I spent the weekend in Chicago visiting family while Tracy stayed home with a cold. So apologies for the tardiness of our Fabulously Free Friday offering:

Make your own dolls from worn out socks:

Make Your Own Sock Creature


New at Defabricate: Hand-Embroidered Star Ornaments

One thing I love about the winter holidays is the idea of shared joy that brings metaphorical light into the darkness. It's not surprise, then, that stars are my favorite holiday symbol. I stitched up this set of 3 star ornaments with felt, beads, and embroidery thread from our sewing stash. The seed beads reflect available light to provide a bit of sparkle.

These star ornaments are ready to light up your holiday tree, mantel, or rearview mirror...or to be tucked into a loved one's stocking. Spread some light!

You can buy them here.


Ginkgo Love

A couple of weeks ago we went to an art opening at Guilford College. The campus has GIGANTIC Ginkgo trees and the ground was littered with leaves. The opening was fabulous, & on the way back to the car I scooped up a few leaves. I brought them home and they've been sitting on my desk ever since. I had no idea what I wanted to do with them. I just liked them. So I thought I'd await inspiration & hope that they didn't dry out too fast (or that the cats wouldn't eat them).

A few days ago I decided to pull out my Gocco printer & make some holiday cards - of course, every time I do that my imagination seems to take a hiatus, none of the designs I was coming up with were working. So, instead of sitting there staring at the printer -willing it to print something ultra cool, I decided to print some Ginkgo leaves. I liked the print so much I decided to make some notecards. I've no idea if anyone else will like them, but I think they're cool.

See more of the prints here.


Fabulously FREE Friday: Japanese Bound Book Instructions

Make Your own Stab bound Books

In one of my many incarnations I teach basic bookbinding, here are some simple instructions to make your own stab bound (also known as Japanese bound) books - great for journals or gifts.


Vintage Wallpaper Desktop Calendars

We love vintage designs & couldn't help ourselves when it came to these old wallpaper patterns. This 13 month calendar displays a different wallpaper design for each month (some flocked, some playful, all fabulous!). 

Just in time for this holiday season & you can buy them here

We're featured @ Indie Spotting!

Or, at least, our felted fishing lures are, check it out: Indie Spotting: Home and Garden and then go see our other felted fishing lures at the Defabricate Store!


Happy Thanksgiving

Things are strangely calm here at the defabricate house, as we prepare to travel (& welcome travelers) for the Thanksgiving weekend. I thought I would take advantage of this down time to wish you all the safest and most lovely of Thanksgivings. Here's hoping that you are able to enjoy family, friends, food, and as little stress as possible over this holiday weekend.

And... if anyone is in the Greensboro area, come visit us at the Really Really Free Market from 3:30 to 5:00 Friday afternoon at The Hive (

Be kind & smile often!

-Nicki & Tracy

P.S. While you have family together, why not jot down those family recipes on these FREE printable recipe cards (from HP)


Glass Magnets or Refrigerator Art?

New glass magnet sets are up at the Defabricate store. Our focus was on COLOR! Because we like it & we think the world (& your refrigerator) needs more of it.

These were so fun to make, that I think we're going to try fabric patterns next! (and then, maybe, design and architecture... we'll see).

And hey, don't forget to check out our Fabulously Free Friday here at the Defabricate Blog. Each Friday we'll post FREE, downloadable instructions on how to make your own stuff out of other stuff!

Thanks for visiting!
-Nicki & Tracy


Felted Fishing Lures are Here!

When my grandfather passed away (many years ago) he left his tackle box full of great old fishing lures to my dad. For a long time they sat in that tackle box in the garage, until my mom rediscovered them & fell in love with these oddly shaped little objects with amazing color and shiny bits. They have since been framed. Now every time I go home I get to see those beautiful utilitarian pieces of art hanging on the wall. So, naturally, when I was thinking about a new felting project, I chose fishing lures. Granted, these lures won't help you catch fish, but they're great for the tree, your favorite fisherman/person/woman, or lovers of all things odd and wonderful... and with names like 'Lola the Showgirl' and 'Polyphemus' how can you resist!?

And for those who missed out on the Birdly ornaments, we have a few more available (but they go fast). Find it all at the Defabricate store.


FREE FRIDAY: Basura Coin Purse

photo by Itsourearth @ Etsy

I'm sure everyone has noticed by now the "Basura" fad hitting stores (not just 10,000 villages, but Target, Kohls, etc).  Basura, Spanish for garbage, is the result of making utilitarian objects out of the packaging we throw away (especially food containers like juice boxes, chip bags, candy wrappers, etc). In an effort to be even more green, I've created a few instruction downloads to help you reuse, recycle, & reclaim these materials - making them, once again, useful (& keeping them out of the landfill a bit longer).

So, here are instructions to make one of these easy, inexpensive, green, and oh-so-cool gifts: a basura coin purse (also called juice pouch coin purses).  Who knew trash could be trendy?

If you don't feel like making these yourself, you can always check the Web site, plenty of our fellow Etsians are selling these fabulous objects.

Juice Pouch Coin Purse Instructions


Holy Schnikies!

I can't believe it, in one day the felted birdly ornaments and the Red-eyed Tree frog sold out.  I'm working on getting more up, but you guys are insatiable! (Keep it up!)

For those of you asking about Birdly sets:  We're working on a set of 6 for $25 - what do you think?

In the mean time, check out Tracy's altered road sign patches (my favorite is the 'Breathe' patch).

Thanks all,



Felted Birdly Ornaments!

These cute little birdlies are a wonder to clean up after - hardly any mess at all, and they're oh so quiet. Perfect for the Christmas tree or to just hang in your window.  Made of 100% wool roving - these little guys are my first attempt at needle felting & they certainly won't be my last. (I'm working on felted fishing lures right now!)

Check 'em out at the Defabricate Store - just in time for the holidays!


Cereal Post

Here's a funky way to keep in touch AND show your greener side. We reclaimed these Cereal (& other foodstuff) boxes and cut them down to size to make the perfect postcard. Each set of 5 has a variety of box images and varies in size from 3 1/2"- 4 1/4" by 5"- 6". Find 'em at the Defabricate Store.

Coming Soon: Box Top Bookmarks!

Inspired by Coraline!

Inspiration comes from the strangest places & strikes at the oddest moments.  The other day I was watching Coraline (sans the 3D glasses) and noticed this AMAZING button-eyed frog popping out of a flower. I had to stop the movie, sketch the frog, and figure out HOW to make him.  THIS is the result, our very own Red-Eyed Tree Frog, for sale now over at the Defabricate Store:

P.S. if we sell out, I'll make more!

The next sewing adventure for me: plush fishing lures! Stay tuned.



The Haberdashery

Today we went to the park. Nell, Perry, Larry (brother to Perry), and Wallace (his friends call him Dilbert because he never takes his tie off) posed for me on the jungle gym. (Perry thought it would be funny to pose as if the chipmunk in the background were attacking him).

Perry (called Peggy by some of the meaner kids, because he has a peg leg), wanted me to tell you that he was a pirate on Halloween. (He decided to be a pirate the night before, so I had to stay up sewing him an eye patch, which he still refuses to take off).

Nell, whose mother is a Zebra (and whose father, we're fairly certain, was a tiger) aspires to be a ballet dancer (do not call her a ballerina, because that's what little kids wearing tutus call ballet dancers, and she's not a little kid). I surprised Nell with a set of leg warmers, so she could dress up as a 'ballet dancer' for Halloween.

Wallace did not dress up for Halloween because he didn't think he could find any costume that would securely hold his slide rule. He gets a little pensive when he's separated from it, as you can see from the photo (we made him put it down for the picture, but he wouldn't let it out of his sight).

Larry, like his brother Perry, is a ham. He WAS going to be a pirate for Halloween, until Perry said that that was what he was going to be. Instead he went as a 'pirate chaser' and chased Perry (which isn't all that hard, since Perry has a peg leg. Mainly he just ended up tickling Perry, which Perry didn't like because "pirates aren't ticklish" to which Larry taunted, "then why are you laughing?").

Each creature has a (mostly) agreeable personality and is definitely one of a kind. They are all (mostly) hand sewn using recycled/reclaimed materials. They don't eat much and, really,  just enjoy hanging out. If you want to adopt one, head over to the defabricate store at Etsy.
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