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Fun tutorials, how-to projects, free downloads from jones design company

diy pom pom garland (two ways)

pom-pom-garland-by-jones-design-company

I made these pom pom garlands around Christmas and wasn’t going to do a how-to because I thought they were just for christmas season. And then I couldn’t bear to take them down with all of the other holiday decorations, so I just casually draped them on the kitchen chalkboard.

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And you know what? I decided pom pom garland is for all seasons. So here you go – a tutorial for how to make these year-round-put-them-anywhere-make-a-bunch-because-you’ll-love-them pom pom garlands.

Here’s what you’ll need:

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chunky yarn (about 3 rolls) / pom pom makers (2 sizes) / embroidery thread / upholstery needle / scissors

TO MAKE THE POM POMS

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wrap the yarn round and round the first side / then the second

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trim the center yarn / cut a piece of yarn

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tie yarn through center of pom maker / pull apart

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trim long pieces of yarn and fluff

TO MAKE SMALL POM POM GARLAND

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cut yarn to desired length

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thread needle and knot the end / stitch through center of pom and through yarn

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you can stitch a few times back and forth to make sure the pom is secure

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in between poms, run the needle through the center of the yarn, then stitch on the next pom

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Then hang anywhere and everywhere!

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TO MAKE THE LARGE POM POM GARLAND

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make large poms using this pom maker

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cut three long pieces of yarn (in desired finished length) / tie knot in top and tape to tabletop to hold

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loosely braid yarn / knot the end

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run the needle through the center of the pom

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stitch onto braided yarn (a few stitches to hold securely)

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in between poms, run the needle through the center of the braid. Then stitch on poms in desired spacing.

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enjoy!

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how to organize your iphone screen (and make it look pretty)

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My phone is basically an extension of my arm. I carry it with me everywhere and while I’m not so good at answering phone calls, I do love it for everything else: texting, checking the weather, setting an alarm, taking photos, reading email, posting to instagram, checking out at starbucks … you get the idea.

So, naturally, I want my phone to be organized, easy to use and pretty to look at. The best way to do that? Organize all those apps into folders and add a cute wallpaper.

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Here’s how I like to organize my iphone home screen:

Start by setting a custom image as the background. This cute arrow-on-kraft-paper design is part of our February Paper Works collection (each month we include a couple of wallpapers so you can trade them out each month!). Just save the image to your photo library, then open it up. To set it as your wallpaper, follow the steps below:

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Now comes the fun part of organizing all of your apps. Rather than having each one on its own, I like to organize them into folders. Here’s what that process looks like:

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I find that having apps grouped together in folders makes my home screen much less cluttered and easier for me to find what I’m looking for. Here’s how I have my apps grouped:

p h o t o / all camera, photo editing and instagram related apps

d a i l y / these are my regular-use apps like the clock, weather, facebook, jdc, pinterest and starbucks

u s e / the more utilitarian apps of the bunch like maps, the app store, settings, calculator and facetime

b i b l e / my go-to collection of bible/bible study/devotion apps

m u s i c / itunes, my music library, pandora, spotify, sonos and podcasts

m o n e y / my banks, paypal and coupon apps

p l a y / my kids think I’m weird for not having more games on my phone, but there are a few. They live in this folder (current faves: 2048 and tsum tsum).

n o t e s / just the note app. I use it all the time.

t r a v e l / things like yelp and hotels.com

e x t r a / for everything that doesn’t have an obvious category

s o c i a l / social media apps I don’t use regularly, but want to keep like whatsApp and Line

g a m e s / just a few kid games – they each have a kindle, so they have their own apps on their devices, but these are for entertainment in a pinch (Endless ABC and 7 Little Words for Kids are favorites).

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And that is how I organize my iphone home screen.

I’d love to know … do you have a different system that works for you? Do you have any favorite apps you’d like to share? Do tell …

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craft night: book page angel wings

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A few girlfriends came over this week for a Christmas craft night. A couple of us had seen book page angel wings and it seemed like a fun project to do together for the holidays.

There was nothing fancy or exceptional about my craft night … just a few treats (like trader joe’s dark chocolate covered peppermint marshmallows – yum!), hot cider and basic craft supplies.  One of my sweetest friends pre-cut all of the old book pages – mostly from a hymnal which we loved – and everyone brought a glue gun.

I don’t have accurate step-by-step photos because we really just made these up as we went, but I’ll run through the steps just in case you want to make wings for your home.

Start by cutting out a wing shape from cardboard. Some of us cut two separate wings, others cut one piece for both wings. We all just free-handed and made them different shapes and sizes (examples below).

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We used old hymnal pages cut to 5 x 5″ squares to make the cones, hot gluing them to hold. You have to make about 100 (depending on the size of your wings) so just keep rolling and rolling and rolling.

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Then comes the fun/tricky part of arranging and gluing the paper cones to the cardboard. It was fun to see how everyone did them differently; some wrapped their paper into small cones, others a little larger. My friend Krista put her paper all in one direction (left) while others went around the perimeter, filling in the middle by cutting the tips of the cones to make them fit.

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Aren’t those great?! The only thing we all wished we had done before was to cover the cardboard in flat book pages before gluing on the cones just to make sure none of it showed at the end.

Here’s my end product: fluffy angel wings that maybe don’t look all that much like angel wings, but I like them all the same.

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I looped a ribbon and hot glued to the back to hang.

Just for fun, I hung them above our bed. They look very pretty against the dark blue.

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Our girls night was refreshing, as always, and it was nice to start and finish a project in one sitting!

There are endless ways to recycle book pages into gorgeous pieces – wreaths (see two of mine here and here), ornaments, paper chains, taping the paper directly to your wall (my personal fave).

Have you made anything great with book pages? I’d love to hear your ideas …

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DIY Pom Pom Blanket

Here’s a tutorial that is months in the making!pom-blanket-tutorial

I made this blanket at the beginning of September, took photos of the process to share with you, posted the finished cutie on instagram and promised I’d show you how I did it. Then I uploaded the photos from my camera and they were terrible. Blurry and dark and not what I wanted to share. So I waited and waiting until I had a chance to make a new blanket and take new (and better!) photos of the steps and so here you go. The long-ago-promised Pom Pom Blanket tutorial.

The best part about this one is that you don’t have to have any crafty skills to do it. Just find a blanket you love, some coordinating yarn, a pom pom maker and you’re set.

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// SUPPLIES //

blanket – look for a throw that has plainly hemmed edges. My gray throw is this one from IKEA, the teal geometric is from Target. This plaid one would be cute, too.

yarn – I took the blanket in with me to the craft store and found the yarn that matched best. The teal was harder to match than the gray, but I ended up finding this nice Martha Stewart yarn and it was on sale (yay!). You’ll need lots of pom poms which means lots of yarn. I used almost two whole rolls (spools? skeins? I’m not sure what you call them) for one blanket.

pom pom maker – there are many methods for making pom poms, but this little tool makes it super easy and keeps them uniform in size and shape.

scissors, needle, thread

STEP ONE / make pom poms (about 30-40 for one blanket)

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Start by wrapping yarn round and round on one end of the pom maker. When full, move over to the second side and wrap. Close and trim the end of the yarn.

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Now cut down the center of the pom pom maker (make sure you keep both ends closed)

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Cut a small piece of yarn and wrap tightly (as tight as you can) around the center to hold pom pom together. Pull both sides of the pom maker apart and fluff the pom pom.

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Trim any uneven ends.

Keep going until you have a pretty stack of yarn pom poms (about 30-40 per blanket).

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STEP TWO / attach pom poms to edge of blanketpom-blanket-sew-on-poms

Start by spacing the pom poms out evenly and deciding how close you want them to be. Then, using a needle and coordinating thread, stitch through the center of the pom and sew onto hem of the blanket. Be generous with your stitches to make sure the pom pom is secure. Continue for the rest of the blanket and then on the second end.

For about $25 and a few hours of pom pom making, you end up with this cozy, funky, super cute throw blanket.

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Which might make the perfect little surprise for someone on your list this Christmas.

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This tutorial is included in my brand new Handmade Holiday Gift Guide (have you grabbed your copy yet?!) along with nine other simple projects you can make and give.

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You’ll get the full projects with printable tags/patterns/templates, helpful tips and inspiration.

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bow pillow (tutorial)

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A simple, understated pillow, with classic detailing and menswear-inspired fabric? Yes, please.

One of my favorite pillows I’ve made is an oversized bow pillow (which you can see in the background of this picture and in this post about pillows). The inspiration came from those silky bow blouses from the 80’s, but with a slightly more masculine feel with the gray plaid of the original pillow. It’s such an easy one to make that I thought maybe you would like one in your home, too. I’d love to show you how. Continue Reading →

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