It’s April, and spring break is here! Since we are unable to travel or go out this spring, I am planning to celebrate spring in our own way. Hopefully, this will help us (and you) get in the Easter mood. Every year, we go out to a local egg hunt, but this year, I am planning to do one in our home.
Spring color palette is one of my favorite schemes, especially when it comes to illustrating and designing, and it always makes me feel good to create something with pastel colors and listening to Disney Jazz or Bossa Nova. For this project, I created little bunnies, eggs, and a carrot. During this challenging and unprecedented time, we need things to make us happy and positive – so, I decided to share my illustrations! Feel free to download and use them (for personal use) as wall decor, garland, and many more. And follow me on my Instagram account @byasamihasegawa for more tips.
Have fun using the plain eggs or decorate the eggs with your loved ones! My daughter loves to play with patterns and she was excited that her artwork will be featured in my blog. Enjoy!
Hello! With the “shelter-in-place” order, our family has been cooped up for more than two weeks. It feels like it’s been more than a month, and it surely does not feel like a vacation. While I am able to enjoy crafting and spending time with the kids, I have been working with them to keep on schedule and to get our tasks done. With my husband swamped with zoom meetings and my daughter joining zoom classrooms and other afterschool programs, it surely has been difficult to stay on track. So, I decided to make a schedule worksheet for the family.
Simply download the schedule printable and cut each activity and illustrations to fill in your schedule! Draw the hands on the clock, and let your kids learn telling time. I usually laminate all the worksheets so that I can reuse them. (These are only for personal use only.) And follow me on my Instagram account @byasamihasegawa for more tips and more.
My heart goes out to those, who are affected and impacted by the COVID-19 virus. Every family has its own challenges, and I truly hope that every family is able to overcome these unprecedented times. And please stay safe and well.
When the COVID-19 was becoming a problem in Japan, my parents told me that they were scarce on face masks, sanitizers, and yes – toilet paper. Knowing that it is uncommon to wear masks here in the United States, I didn’t really see it as a problem. Then I thought, why not make a few masks out of fabric and send it to my family and friends in Japan? That was in February.
Now fast forward to March, before the COVID-19 became a pandemic, I decided to make one for each of our family and friends. I still remember when the clerk at JoAnn’s Fabric asked me what I was making, and with hesitation, I told her I was making face masks. And just as I imagined, she gave me an odd face. And now that it is recommended to wear a face mask to protect others and ourselves, I thought it was time for me to share a face mask tutorial.
The best way to protect others and ourselves is to stay home, but of course, not all of us can stay home. There are many ways to make masks, even with household items such as paper towels, staples, and rubber bands, but the great thing about fabric face masks is that they are washable and reusable.
After working with this face mask pattern, I felt that this would be the easiest and comfortable face mask to make. In this tutorial, we will need a printed pattern, fabric, and elastic bands, and pencils, scissors, and a sewing machine. (but you can sew by hand too!) For the elastic band, my daughters insisted that the elastic would get uncomfortable, so I found a upcycle solution – grab an old leggings or stockings and use it as an elastic band. It may not look the best, aesthetic wise, but my daughters actually agreed that they were much more comfy. Please feel free to download the pattern, and I hope this tutorial and face mask pattern will be useful in these uncertain times.
Important reminders: Never touch the front of the mask. Remove mask by the elastic band. Always wash your hands after removing the mask. Wash or discard the mask after each use.
Materials Used Fabric Elastic bands (or old leggings or stocking)
Every day, I remind my daughter to do something – it could be homework or practice the piano or if she has her lunch and water bottle. And she usually responds, “Oh~!” or “Oops!” or “Of course I have it!” with a big (I mean a big) grin on her face. But sometimes, I feel terrible for being like an iPhone notification. She probably sees a red badge with a number next to my head or perhaps like a nagging software update notification.
Then one day, she asked me if I could make her a TO-DO list. “I want it to be cute! And laminated. And I need a marker. And now, you don’t have to remind me!” she says with a big grin. So, I decided to make a TO-DO list that anyone can use, including me. (I myself tend to forget things and usually use the note app on my iPhone. )
This Olive Branch TO-DO list has three boxes in each row. Feel free to download the TO-DO list and use them however you like. Hopefully, this will make it easier to keep track of your everyday tasks. Keep organizing and carry on!
Ever wish you could fly on a hot air balloon and travel to Paris? Well, the reality is that an airplane is probably the safest and fastest way to get somewhere. The incredible thing is that we can always imagine and creatively update our surroundings.
My daughters love things that fly – balloons, bubbles, birds, butterflies… and they learned about a hot air balloon when watching Kiki’s Delivery Service. They are in love with the movie so much and asked me to make a red ribbon headband, which I may do a tutorial someday. With this hot air balloon printable, you can put it on your wall or even make a garland, if you feel festive. I also made a cake topper by gluing (or taping) the hot air balloons onto a dowel and it can certainly be a really easy craft to do with the kids.
Download the printable and cut each hot air balloon illustrations along the dotted blue line! I laminate most of my printable, so they are sturdy enough and can be used again, over and over. (These are only for personal use only.) And follow me on my Instagram account @byasamihasegawa for more tips and more.
Hello! I hope you are having a great week. Wood is one of my favorite mediums, but it is also by far the most challenging DIY project that I tend to avoid. I am terribly clumsy and accident-prone, so I make sure to be extra careful. In my previous post, I hand-painted on an old wooden chair – that was an experiment! This time, I decided to use some of my precious wood craft supplies that I bought from Japan. (If you have an opportunity to go to Japan, you will need to visit this store! The store is so adorable and ridiculously affordable. )
When working with wood, I sand the surface lightly and apply primer with a brush. I usually let it sit for at least three hours. Some primers will ask you to wait for 24 hours; however, I apply a thin layer for it to dry quickly. This method works for me, mainly because I don’t take on big projects. If you plan to do a big home project, I really suggest waiting for 24 hours. For these projects, I freehanded and let my creativity flow, but I sometimes sketch a draft with a pencil (very very lightly) when hand-painting intricate designs. I personally don’t like erasing the pencil marks after painting, and pencil marks can eventually show through. If you aren’t confident, use a transfer paper and trace your design!
Paint pens and sharpie oil pens are also great if you prefer a firm brush tip. I personally use brushes to give it a soft and uneven look. I would definitely use a paint pen for calligraphy on wood. And follow me on my Instagram account @byasamihasegawa for more tips and more. Happy crafting!
Materials Used Wooden Blocks Sand Paper Primer Acrylic Paint Painter’s Tape
Alphabet blocks are a great way to introduce letters and develop motor skills for babies and toddlers. My daughter used to stack the blocks when she was a baby, but now that she is a toddler – she loves shouting out the letters.
When my daughter was born, wooden alphabet blocks set was on top of my daughter’s toys list. While I found many bold color/font alphabet blocks, it was hard to find something aesthetically pleasing without being too expensive. I remember taking my daughter to Book Culture and Bank Street Books on the Upper West Side, and just drooling over the beautiful toys. When I found the Uncle Goose Nursery Rhyme Wooden Blocks, I fell in love and bought them right away. I must say the toys can be a bit expensive, but both book stores have the best selection of books and toys.
Although I dream of having the entire Uncle Goose Wooden Blocks Sets, I decided to make them myself this time. It was a half-day project and I had my daughter help me out painting the blocks. I suggest to always sand the blocks and paint them with a primer first, it will be much easier when you paint the letters and illustrations. I found the unfinished wooden blocks on Amazon, but I believe you can find them at Etsy or Michaels too.
Happy August and craft away!
Materials Used Wooden Blocks Sand Paper Primer Acrylic Paint Painter’s Tape
As most girls do, my daughter loves unicorns. She reminds me everyday that a unicorn is special and magical – so unicorns are always magically flying around in my head. I had this project in mind for awhile and wanted to create just the right tote bag for her. I’ve seen unicorn tote bags in the past, but I wanted a subtle unicorn pattern that wasn’t too flamboyant. The unicorns are hand painted with acrylic paint and metallic paint. I waited 24 hours for it to dry, and first turned the tote bag inside out and then ironed the fabric on low setting.
To add some fun, I made a unicorn keychain made with perler beads. Playing around with perler beads on the pegboards are really fun, but this time I used this app, Perler, to create my unicorn. It lets me create a better pattern and I loved the outcome of the project. If you plan to create something with perler beads, it is definitely worth a try!
Unicorn Tote Bag –
Plain Tote Bag
The other day, I was cleaning out my closet and found some beautiful beads that I bought from La droguerie and a flea market in Paris several years ago. This adorable shop carries beads, buttons, ribbons and everything that a crafter would want. The beads are very well crafted and they are very hard to come by here.
During the Paris trip, I remember just wandering the streets and taking pictures of apartment doors and graffiti with a very confused husband. The beads remind me of the elegant color palettes and brings back great memories of my trip to Paris. It was definitely one of the best trips I ever had – which I hope to do with my daughter some day.
After reminiscing and sharing my Paris trip memories with my daughter, we decided to spend some time making jewelry together. She insisted on making a hair comb and bracelet, so we used beads, hair combs, copper wires, elastic cords and some E6000 glue to reinforce and strengthen the knots. My daughter enjoyed choosing the beads and is very excited to wear it to preschool tomorrow!
I hope everyone had a wonderful 4th of July! We spent our weekend relaxing at home with friends and I was finally able to work on a project I had in mind for awhile – wooden chair makeover.
We found this ikea chair at a garage sale a while ago. It was a plain white wooden chair that wasn’t in perfect condition, but the scratches and dings definitely gave it character. Although I had no plans to do a chair makeover when I bought the chair, I have been in the painting mood ever since my mom visited us from Japan.
My mom is an expert at tole painting, a folk art and decorative painting, and she taught me how to paint on various surfaces using unique brush techniques. She gave me and my daughter a painting lecture, which was a whole lot of fun. While I always and love to paint by freehand, it was interesting to learn that tole painting uses patterns and unique techniques. I will definitely be incorporating some tole painting techniques in my future work.
Crafting and painting is always a wonderful way to bond. I would love to hear how you bond with your family and friends!