Make This: Fabric Storage Bins

by Christie Sommers 

I have way too many “things” in little piles all over my workspace. It was time to do a little organizing so I made some storage bins and bowls in various sizes to store loose buttons, bobbins and more. They have really brightened up the place so I’d like to share them with you:)

You will need:

-a pencil compass
-scrap paper
-fabric (one outer and one liner)
-fusible interfacing (you want something very rigid, I recommend Pellon Decor Bond Fusible)
-an iron/ironing board
-a sewing machine

You will need to draft up a little pattern for this one. I made a bin that was 6.5″ in diameter and 4.5″ high. To figure out how long to cut your rectangular pieces you will need to break out the calculator… or your brain. To find the circumference of your base, multiply the diameter by 3.14. The circumference will be the length of your rectangular sides.
In my case: 6.5″ diameter x 3.14= 20.14 ….
Use this calculation to make your bin in any size.


You can just use my dimensions and make the same sized bin.

(3) rectangles: 21″ long by 5″ high (1) liner, (1) outer, (1) interfacing
(3) circles with 3.25″ radius (1) liner, (1) outer, (1) interfacing

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You will iron on the interfacing to the backside of the outer fabric.
Take the shiny adhesive side of the interfacing and line it up to the back of your outer fabric.
Iron on holding firmly for 6 seconds to establish a good bond.
Do the same for the circular outer fabric.


Now you will sew the side wall (rectangular piece) to the base (circular) for both the liner and the outer fabric.

Pin as shown.

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Straight stitch the liner wall to the liner base


Do the same for the outer wall and base making sure to place the fabric “right” sides together, right side being the printed side that you want to see on the outside when the bin is done.


Line up your two ends of the rectangular piece and stitch up the side wall. Trim


You should have two pieces now (liner and outer) that look like this….


Cut into the seam allowance around the base so that the basket sits evenly when assembled. Take care to not cut into your stitching.


Turn the liner inside out and fit (right sides together) into the outer piece.


Line up your seams and pin all the way around

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Sew all the way around leaving a small section about 1.5″ unsewn. You will turn the whole bin right side out through this hole.

When you turn it right side out, use your iron to get all of your seams looking nice and clean.
I liked how it looked with a little of the liner as a trim at the top.

Top stitch all the way around and be sure to carefully seal the opening with your top stitch.

Toss in some sewing notions, or whatever bits you need to wrangle and enjoy!

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Christie Sommers is the designer and maker behind West Oak Design. She handcrafts small batch and one of a kind goods for home, women, and kids in her Wyndmoor, Pa
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Meet New ASCB Vendor Daniel Knoll and His Company, My Audio Tree


My Audio Tree Logo
80% of the worlds forests are already gone. Audio Tree is trying to change that by planting a tree for every product sold. “Play One! Plant One!”

My Audio Tree PortraitAudio Tree founder Daniel Knoll creates handmade wood products for smartphones and tablets, most notably the signature Iphone acoustic amplifier/docking station. He has over 15 years of woodworking and sound engineering experience which led to the development of Audio Tree LLC.

My Audio Tree Product1These speakers have been tested in a professional recording studio and proven to double the sound of your phone’s speaker using “passive amplification” meaning there are no electronics involved. Some have been designed to allow you to charge your phone by running your own charger through the speaker.

My Audio Tree Product Dtl

Hand selecting exotic woods, and tone-woods, carefully monitoring the moisture content and density are just some of the examples of the attention to detail that is put into every piece.  Daniel uses age-old woodworking techniques along with modern day trade secrets. He has even had to have custom made tools in order to create some of his designs.

My Audio Tree Product2For the first time Audio Tree will be at the Art Star Craft Bazaar early next month! Stop by the booth (#13)  to see these pieces in person and find out more about Audio Tree and “Play One! Plant One!” You can also visit if you just can’t wait to see more!


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Meet New Art Star Craft Bazaar Vendor Jon Wye

While I write this blog post from my cozy workshop in Washington, DC I sip from a disappointing cup of coffee. Do not use a Keurig coffee maker for anything but coffee. They sell all these fancy coffee packs to use with the machine but they are merely apparatuses to separate you from your money. How the hell am I supposed to get my day started with coffee that a robot would barely analyze as palatable. But I am cheap so I will suffer through the liquefied cardboard.

My name is Jon Wye and since 2004 I’ve been making a bunch of cool shiz, but mostly known for belts. Many years ago I developed a process for embedding images in leather, which is then turned into belts, guitar straps, camera straps, dog collars, wallets, etc. I also design some t-shirts. The great majority of our production is split between Jeff and myself. The artwork for our goods comes from about 22 artists from all over the world.

Jeff and I are able to do a lot with so few people because we have continually invested in new processes and equipment over the years, a strategy I had to adopt during the economic downturn, when employing someone new was too risky. Now we have some of the coolest leather working machines out there and I drool over my wishlist of upcoming machines.

Let’s follow Trolley and take a look at the operation…

Photo 1
Ubiquitous branding shot.

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The first belt buckle I ever made. Hand carved out of wax and cast in plaster. Pewter pellets were dropped into the negative and heated with a blowtorch.

Photo 3Jeff inspecting the belts after our specially formulated spray coating is added to protect the images in the leather.

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Inspecting the straps after they are done curing. This one will be a guitar strap.

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Hand setting some snaps for a belt order.

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Every online order gets a personal note.

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Our branded MADE IN THE USA, WASHINGTON DC stamp applied with a 1950’s roller embosser.

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This is our roller embosser.

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27 ton clicker press used to punch out of the various shapes for things like guitar straps.

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Left: punch press/stamper for making all the holes in the belts perfect every time.
Right: Leather splitter for thinning down leather. The whole thing is basically one big blade.

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One of our industrial sewing machines.  I like using the Adlers.

Photo 13Left: A Juki automatic sewing machine, which helps us put on the tags on all our tees.
Right: A pneumatic stamping machine for stamping the inside neck of our tees so we can be tag-less. I hate tags in t-shirts.

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A wide view of our work bench where we prototype and assemble belts for online orders.

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And this is Scarlett, my girlfriend’s blind dog, who often joins me in the shop. She is not just a little blind, she is totally blind. We have to tie her to the shop couch or she’ll wander around and get scared and poop somewhere. This has happened many times.

Thanks to Jon Wye for giving us a glimpse of his process and studio! Visit him at booth #88 at our upcoming Art Star Craft Bazaar on May 9th + 10th at Penn’s Landing Great Plaza! Visit his website and buy his cool shiz HERE.

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Meet New Art Star Craft Bazaar Vendor Marcella Kriebel

photos and text by Marcella Kriebel 

Marcella 1
I am a watercolor artist and illustrator from Portland, OR, living in Washington DC for the last 5 years. I’m excited to be a part of the Art Star Craft Bazaar for the first time this year. Because my work covers food themes and cooking, I can be found at select Farmers’ Markets as well as Art and Craft fairs in the Mid-Atlantic and on the West Coast.

Marcella 2

I’ve always really enjoyed cooking and traveling. I’ve made a point to cook with people during my trips throughout Latin America, and it is through these experiences that I created my cookbook, Mi Comida Latina. The book is entirely hand lettered and includes my watercolor illustrations on every page. The style reflects my sketchbook journal that I keep  during experiences abroad- small step by step drawings and lots of color throughout.

Marcella 3

I published the book thanks to a successful Kickstarter campaign in November 2012. This self-published edition of the book is sold out, but I’m excited to share that the Art Star Craft Bazaar will be my first Craft Fair showcasing the published edition of the new book. This new edition will be a bigger and better version with an additional 40 pages!

Marcella 4

After the Kickstarter edition of the book came out, I got a number of commissions for food-related artwork and custom illustrated recipes (a service I still offer) and my food-related collection began to flourish.

marcella 5

I like to work in a series and have explored various fruit and vegetable “families”, complete with Latin names. I have designs which celebrate the different types of cheeses, figs, olives and other delicacies.

Marcella 6

My Art Every Day project from 2014 expanded my collection immensely and I’ll be offering many of these designs as prints for the first time at the bazaar. Hope to see you all at my booth, #118, Mother’s Day weekend!

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Make This: Striped Screen Printed Clipboards

Photos + Tutorial by Bonnie Kaye Whitfield

Sometimes things just needs a little sprucing up. This time of year, when many of us try to focus on spring cleaning and organizing, I find that I need a bit of motivation. Here’s a speedy screen printing method to jazz up old clipboards, but could also be used on other flat office supplies, such as binders, folders, box lids, etc.


You will need:

screen printing frame
screen printing ink
spatula or plastic spoon
packaging or blue tape
a friend to hold down your screen / or a hinge clamp board


Gather your materials. I had a few old clipboards lying around my studio that definitely needed a facelift, but you can always purchase plain ones at Staples or Target. The screen printing frame that I am using is from Blick. It’s pretty amazing what you can do without fancy screen printing equipment. With screen printing, you are masking, or blocking, parts of the open screen to create a stencil. Whatever is “open” will print, whatever is “blocked” – in our case with tape – won’t print. I find that you can create fun geometric designs by simply using tape. If you’re looking for something more complex, try cutting a stencil out of contact paper. Same idea.


When you screen print, the screen needs to be directly flush and in contact with whatever you are printing on, with the frame facing upwards. Place your clipboard underneath your screen, as you’ll be printing, to get a sense of size. Your screen should be larger than your clipboard, and needs at least a 2” border buffer, as printing too closely to the edge of the screen is tricky and just doesn’t print well.


Flip your screen over. You’ll now block parts of the screen using tape. Begin with the sides and bottom of the screen so that you get closer to the actual size of the clipboard. Then have fun with creating open stripes or geometric patterns with your tape. Just keep in mind that you’ll eventually have to flip your screen over again, so remember that your print will come out in reverse of what you are taping.


Before printing, flip your screen over to get a better sense as to what will print. I’m going to print off the edges of my clipboard, which is why the open area is larger than my clipboard, but feel free to keep the printing contained within the printing surface. It’s definitely less messy that way.


To print, you’ll need the frame to be held in place, either by a handy friend or in my case, a hinge-clamp board. Gather your ink + squeegee.


Position the clipboard directly under the screen where you want to print. Using a spatula or spoon, spread ink to the top of your screen in a line.


Before printing, you need to “flood” your screen. Using your squeegee, which should be a little wider than your design, in your dominant hand and holding the frame up in your other hand, pull the ink towards you at a 45 degree angle. This is filling the open screen with ink prior to printing. (Since I was taking a picture, I just rested my frame on my tape roll.)


Once the screen is full of ink, place the screen down directly on the clipboard. With the screen firmly in place, pull the squeegee down again at a 45 degree angle. Don’t be afraid of really applying some pressure here. In fact, you may want to do 2 or 3 pulls, as wood will absorb some of the ink.

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Gently pull up the frame and you should have a new, fancy updated clipboard. If you are printing on various size clipboards, as I did, be sure to print in order from large to small. And with printing, the time is in the setup not the printing, so why not line up a pile of flat items to print on while you’re at it!


Bonnie Kaye Whitfield designs and screen prints home textiles + paper goods under the name, Bonnie Kaye Studio. Products are created to inspire memories at home and around the table. A donation is made with every purchase to help feed hungry Americans.

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Meet Bobby + Sara of Just A Jar Design Press!


Just A Jar Design Press is a letterpress & design studio run by Bobby & Sara Rosenstock. We have a large studio in the historic river town of Marietta, Ohio. We do a range of different things as a business, but for this post we will focus on our woodcut & letterpress prints.


We create fine art prints as well as gig posters that have all been commissioned for the actual events. Just about all of our prints are limited edition which means they are signed and numbered, & when they all sell we don’t print any more.


The process begins with a pencil drawing to scale, which is then traced on to tracing paper so I can flip the image to reverse (woodblocks need to be carved in reverse). I make a plan for colors, typically written out in the margins of the drawing. Each color is carved on it’s own block typically, (I do some reductive printing but won’t get into that here). Using carbon paper I transfer the drawing onto pieces of birch plywood. I then carve the blocks for each color.

The woodblocks are all manually printed on my Vandercook SP20 press, from the 1960s. I do a separate run for each color. If the print includes text, I will set some of my lead & wood type onto the press, & print that as a separate run.


Typesetting is a craft of it’s own. I feel overwhelmed by the options when designing on the computer, but when I’m setting type, I’m limited by the size and typefaces in my collection. I also find that when I can touch it with my hands I can understand it better. Some of our wood type is over 150 years old, & I want that history to be represented in the work.


It’s a pretty slow and meticulous process, depending on the detail, a print can take anywhere from 40 to 100 hours to complete. Planning is a big part of the process, but I also think its important for some parts of the print to be spontaneous & of the moment. I enjoy the controlled rawness of the medium, and I want the labor of the process to come through in the image.

We are really excited to be returning to Philly in May for the Art Star Craft Bazaar. We do lots of art fairs each year but our very first one was Art Star in 2009. We haven’t been back since our daughter was born in 2012, so are thrilled to be participating this year. Come stop by our tent and say hello. If you want to see more of what we do you can find us here:


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Upcoming Exhibition: Same Same by Keith + Rita Greiman

artstar_greiman_blog promo

We are pleased to present an exhibition with Philadelphia based husband + wife artists, Keith and Rita Greiman.  The duo will be exhibiting their own individual works as well as collaborative pieces.  The exhibition will be on view from April 18th – June 21st, 2015.  There will be an opening reception with the artists on Saturday, April 18th from 6-8pm.   The reception is free and open to the public and will include light refreshments.

Keith and Rita Greiman will present an all new body of playful and vibrant works, drawing inspiration from the humor and absurdity of life’s everyday objects and events.  The show will include Keith’s acrylic on wood paintings and 3D wood figures, which feature a cast of quirky and animated characters that are brightly colored and evoke a childlike quality.  Set against flatly painted patterned backgrounds, the floating figures and objects populating the pieces appear anything but innocent though.  Rita’s mixed media dioramas mirror the childlike, yet twisted quality of Keith’s work, containing glitter coated army men, food, and animals.  In addition to their individual pieces, they will be exhibiting new works together which combine their shared vision and include patterns, floating objects and characters, real and supernatural.  The couple will also be painting a large mural together on one of the exhibition walls. This will be their first time showing at Art Star.

Keith Warren Greiman lives and works in Philadelphia, PA. His bright and animated images of real and supernatural beings depict life, captured in experience, being ascendant, melancholic and at all times wild. Keith’s work has been shown in various galleries and publications from all over and everywhere. Some clients include LA Times, Village Voice, Newsweek, the Fader, Ace Hotels, Fantagraphics, the Utne Reader, and Willamete Week. His work has been recognized by American Illustration, The Society of Illustrators and Graphis.

Originally from Irvine, California, Rita Greiman currently resides in Philadelphia where she has been for thirteen years.  Through the years, Rita has done various works as a seamstress, illustrator, upholsterer, and designer.  She studied in the School of Visual Arts at Pennsylvania State University as well as the College of Communications. She has worked in several media and currently combines painting, sculpture, and found objects to create playful dioramas that are often centered around animals, glitter army men, and food.

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Meet Art Star Craft Bazaar Vendor Jamie Langhoff of Seeing in Fabric!

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What, at first, appear to be paintings, are actually sewn fabric art.

Self-taught artist, Jamie Langhoff, creates vibrant urban scenes with just fabric, thread, scissors, and a 1968 Singer sewing machine. Finished artwork is mounted onto ready-to-hang canvas panels.

Each scene features many dozens of tiny hand-cut fabric pieces. Creating these scenes requires a slow and careful building of many pieces of fabrics, and many layers. All of the fabrics she uses in her artwork are recycled–scrap, remnants and re-purposed clothing. Many of the fabrics Jamie uses are donated to her by her lovely fans.

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Threadwork and stitching techniques are central to the realism and painterly aspects of Seeing in Fabric. Eschewing the dazzling digital age of newer sewing machines, Jamie enjoys the reliability and rustic sturdiness of her vintage 1968 Singer.

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By using a color palette of thread in over 200 different colors, but just 2 basic stitch types–straight stitch and zigzag–Jamie creates a multitude of “shading”, “brushstroke” and “drawing” effects. Her stitching technique involves a free-flowing and rapid style, requiring an extreme amount of concentration and skill, but also trust and confidence in her sewing machine.

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As a self-taught artist, Jamie constantly pushes herself to experiment with her techniques. Through her artwork she shows the world how to “see in fabric” in order to see the vibrant and strange beauty in our modern urban world.

Pic 5Jamie will be be traveling from Washington, DC to join us at our 12th Annual Spring Art Star Craft Bazaar at Penn’s Landing Great Plaza on May 9th + 10th.  Make sure to stop by her booth #101 to see these incredible pieces in person.  These photos are so beautiful but the pieces are even better in person.  Visit her Etsy Page for more!

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Naturally Dyed Egg Tutorial

Tutorial and Photos by Christie Sommers of West Oak Design

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Here’s a fun little tutorial that you should be able to do for under $5… unless you use what you already have! Just about any vegetable, fruit or herb that will stain your clothes, will stain an egg.  For this tutorial I used red cabbage and blueberries for the blue, and turmeric powder for the yellow.  My original intention was to make a nice set of color gradient ombre dyed eggs but it didn’t exactly work out that way. I was able to somewhat achieve that effect with the blue ones, but the turmeric eggs seemed to stay about the same shade.  If you’re looking for perfect, evenly dyed eggs, this may not be for you. I personally love the earthy mottled effect you get from using natural dyes.Here are a few suggestions you can try:

RED/PINK: beets,hibiscus tea, frozen or canned cherries, pomegranate, paprika
YELLOW/GOLD: yellow onion skins, chamomile, turmeric, chili powder
BLUE/PURPLE: red cabbage, blueberries (fresh, canned, or frozen), grape juice
GREEN: spinach, dill

*NOTE last year I used curry powder for the turmeric…. my eggs tasted like curry. If you’re into that.. go for it!

Pic 1
For the blue eggs I used:
- 1/2 dozen hard boiled white eggs (to hard boil: cover eggs completely in cool water, bring to a boil, remove from heat and let sit covered for 7 minutes, then place in cold water to stop cooking process, drain and set aside in the fridge until your dye is ready)
- 1/2 head of red cabbage cut into 1″ chunks
*I had some blueberries in the freezer from last summer that were looking freezer burnt so I tossed them in too.
- a large stock pot
-mesh sieve or cheesecloth
-4 cups water (distilled is recommended but I used tap water because that’s what I had and it worked out for me)
*a lot of the resources I checked recommend using vinegar but when I used it last year, all of my eggshells became soft and weird… so I left it out this time and the shells stayed in tact.Start by adding the water & cabbage (& blueberries if you have ‘em) into your pot and bring to a boil.
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Reduce the heat to low and let simmer for at least 30-45 minutes. You will notice the liquid becoming opaque and the cabbage will start to look drained of its color.
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At this point you can strain the solids by pouring through cheesecloth or a fine mesh strainer.You can reduce the liquid at this point making it more concentrated, OR proceed to the next step.

Place the dye liquid into the fridge and let it cool.For an ombre effect:
Place all eggs into the cooled dye liquid and place back in the fridge
Every 15-30 minutes, remove one egg from the liquid.Otherwise, add all eggs to the dye liquid and let sit refrigerated until they reach the desired depth of color.

*This method can be used for any of the vegetables, fruits, or herbs listed. If you would like to try this with the turmeric powder, Use 3 tablespoons turmeric to 2 cups of water and boil until the turmeric dissolves (this is the ratio that worked for me).

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Your naturally dyed eggs will have an soft matte color. You can brush a light coat of vegetable oil on them for a nice shine that will really make the color pop.Hope you give this easy & inexpensive technique a try!————————————————————————————————————————————————
Christie Sommers is the designer and maker behind West Oak Design. She handcrafts small batch and one of a kind goods for home, women, and kids in her Wyndmoor, Pa
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Art Star Pop Up Market at Spruce Street Harbor Park

Promo 3We are excited to announce that our Art Star Pop Up Market will be back at Spruce Street Harbor Park this Summer Season! The Market will take place every Saturday from May 23rd – September 26th from 11-4pm and will feature the work of up to 20 curated art + craft vendors.  Each participating vendor will be set up al fresco style under a tree lined walkway within the popular park.  Shoppers can expect a variety of handmade goods at an affordable price range and the vendor line-up will change each day.

The Spruce Harbor Park is located along the Delaware River between Lombard and Walnut Streets.  The park features a pop up restaurant and bar, a boardwalk, games, live music, family friendly activities and the most popular attraction – HAMMOCKS!  Apparently, the SSHP hammocks were THE PLACE to take a selfie in Philadelphia last summer!

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Bonnie Kaye Studio staged a picnic at last year’s market and displayed all her goods on butchers paper.

We are now accepting submissions for the first few weeks of our  Art Star Pop Up Market.  Each vendor will receive an 10′ wide x 5′ deep space.  Vendors are required to bring everything else needed for set up and display.  You may bring a tent (though it is not required) but must leave 5′ of  your tent open for customers to walk through.  For this show, we are going for relaxed, beach vibes, so you are welcome to go all out with your display or you could simply just bring a blanket and lay out your goods on the ground! We are charging vendors $35 per space / per day.

We are now accepting applications for the following dates: May 23rd, May 30th, June 6th. (Look out for another Call for Vendors for all the later dates)

How To Apply:
Email us at with “SSHP Submission” in the subject of the email
Attach 3-5 digital images of samples of the items you wish to sell
Include a link to your website or etsy page
List the date(s) you would like to participate on

You will notified of your acceptance by Friday, May 1st.


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