Archive | Back to School

Sequin Filled Bookmarks Shake Up Your Summer Reading

Aimee here with a great beginner sewing project for adults and children! These sequin filled bookmarks make a perfect little gift for all the book-lovers in your life.

sequin filled bookmarksHere’s what you need to make your own sequin filled bookmarks:

LL628_Pastel Dreams Quartet

This project uses two gorgeous new 28 Lilac Lane sequin products: the “Haunted House” Premium Sequin Tin, and the yet-to-be-officially-announced“Pastel Dreams” Sequin & Bead Quartet that is pictured above. (Yes, you are getting a sneak peek of a new product today!)

To begin, take your pattern (linked in the supply list) and using the dotted lines cut out your felt, clear vinyl and fabric pieces. To transfer the embroidery design to the felt I recommend using Fabri-Solvy. To use, print out the pattern following the directions on the package, tear off the backing and place your rectangle on top of the corresponding felt. Using three strands of embroidery floss; stitch through the felt and the Fabri-Solvy along the text with a back stitch.

Don’t want to embroider? You can easily adapt this project by printing the pattern onto cardstock. Cut out your bookmark along the dotted lines and continue the following directions. Most sewing machines will sew just fine through paper.

Now it’s time to put your sequin filled bookmark together. Lay your three pieces in this order: fabric (wrong side facing up), your felt embroidered piece (or your piece of printed card stock) and your piece of clear vinyl. Use a Wonder Clip or even a small clothespin to hold the layers together, and take it to your sewing machine.

Start your seam on the bottom long edge, making sure that you are leaving a hole to put the sequins and beads in. Stitch all along the three edges about 1/4 inch from the edge. (Tip: if you have a walking foot, this is a great project for using it.) Fill up your bookmark with the sequins and beads. I used roughly one tablespoon. Take it back to your machine and sew up the hole and all the way around the sides again. (This sewing could also been done by hand but it will be more time consuming, of course.)

sequin filled bookmarks

There you go! Your sweet sequin filled bookmark is all ready for your next great summer read. (These also make fun back to school teacher gifts, too, if you change up the sentiment on them!)

sequin filled bookmarks


Make A Pretty Button Basket for a Teacher Gift!

It’s that time of year to think about a teacher gift! Today’s project will show you how to take an inexpensive basket available at any craft or discount store, and turn it into a beautiful back-to-school teacher gift.

Teacher Gift Basket


The basket that I used was a simple wood woven one that started out as unfinished wood. It cost less than $3 at a local craft store! It was the perfect size to hold a 15 ounce potted plant from the local home center.

woven basket

Start your teacher gift basket project by using a paint brush to apply the wood tint or stain to the basket. Be sure to use the brush to push the stain down into the cracks in the weaving so the basket’s original color won’t show through! Wipe off any excess tint and leave to dry.

While the basket is drying, select from your Button Bonanza bag a grouping of buttons that are approximately the same size and that will fit around the front edge of the basket. (You only want to do the front edge of the basket so that the handle will still be able to be put down.)

Once the basket is dry, use a hot glue gun to adhere the buttons around the top edge of the front of the basket. (Make sure to leave clearance for the handle to go up and down!)

A beautiful bow is the final touch to make your basket special. Tie a bow using some ribbon and snip off the ends at an angle. Use the hot glue gun to adhere the bow to the front of the basket.

Your completed teacher gift basket can be used to deliver a wide variety of gifts to teacher: a small plant, an assortment of snacks or school supplies, or useful goodies like hand sanitizer and wet wipes.

Teacher Gift Basket with Plant

Change up the color scheme a bit (such as by trying red buttons with green ribbon) and this basket will make a great way to deliver a small gift for Christmas or another occasion!

What occasion will you make a button gift basket for?


Make a Flower Pot Pencil Holder for Teacher!

On Tuesday, we shared a tag that is perfect for giving a back-to-school gift to your new favorite teacher. Stumped for an idea for a gift to attach it to? We’ve got the perfect gift idea – an easy to make Back to School Flower Pot Pencil Holder that is a pretty as it is useful!

Back to School Flower Pot Pencil Holder for teacher gift or classroom decor. | Nancy Nally for ButtonsGaloreAndMore.com

Supplies Needed:

This flower pot pencil holder is made from a basic small clay flower pot, available at any home center or craft store, that is painted with chalkboard spray paint. To spray paint items like this, I use a scrap of 1×2 board left over from a project and turn the pot upside down onto the end of it. Then I can take the item outside, hold it extended arm’s length away from me, and rotate it while spraying. This gets me good coverage with minimum mess and clean up, and I can get all the edges. To let it dry, I just prop the stick up against something with the pot still on top of it.

Once the painting is complete (I recommend two light coats) and dry, the rest was super fast and simple! Just grab a hot glue gun and get to work gluing the buttons around the top rim of the pot. Cut the shanks off of the apple buttons, and insert one of them periodically. Make sure to use enough glue that they are attached securely!

Back to School Flower Pot Pencil Holder for teacher gift or classroom decor. | Nancy Nally for ButtonsGaloreAndMore.com

Finally, rub the bottom area with the side of a piece of chalk and then clean it off to “prime” it so that it can be written on. I chose to write the teacher’s name but you could also write instructions like “please return”. That’s one of the best things about using the chalkboard paint for this design – it’s not just classroom themed, it’s also useful!

The flower pot pencil holder will likely have a small drainage hole in the bottom of it. If you are concerned about things falling out through the hole when the pot is moved, cut a small circle of cardboard (such as from a recycled cereal box) and glue it into the bottom of the pot.

School will be here before you know it! Grab your 3D Apple Buttons and Primary Button Bonanza and start crafting your flower pot pencil holder for a beautiful classroom!


Hit the Books with a Back to School Tag!

With July 4th gone, that means for many of us the summer is officially half over. It’s already time to start thinking about back to school! Our cute back to school tag is perfect for teacher gifts, first day of school lunches, and decorating backpacks!

Back to School tag with button collage | Nancy Nally for ButtonsGaloreAndMore.Net

Making this tag is so quick and simple – the kids can help! Die cut the tag base and hole reinforcer out of patterned paper, and glue them together. Attach tab and alphabet stickers across the bottom of the tag. (Instead of “hello”, you could substitute a name, or the year if you’d like!)

To make the button collage on our back to school tag, use a die cut machine (I used my Cricut Explore) to cut an apple shape out of red cardstock that matches the “Red Hot” buttons. Spread a nice thick layer of the PPA Matte Adhesive all over the fruit of the apple. Begin to fill it in by carefully selecting various sizes of the buttons to fill as much of the space as possible. Push the buttons down into the glue to make them really secure!

Teacher Tag for Back to School | Nancy Nally for buttonsgaloreandmore.net

Once the glue is dry on your apple collage, glue it in place on your tag! For the finishing touch, slip a piece of ribbon through the tag’s hole and secure it with a staple.

To make this back to school tag double-sided, select a double-sided paper (like this one) for your tag base. Or cut a second tag from the die and glue them back-to-back.

Whose back to school are you going to make awesome with an apple button collage tag?

Supplies Needed:

  • Buttons Galore “Red Hot” Button Basics
  • Bella Blvd “Tiny Tots” Alphabet Paper
  • Bella Blvd “Simply Spring” Eggstravaganza (plaid paper)
  • Bella Blvd “Tiny Tots” Treasures & Text stickers
  • Momenta kraft alphabet
  • Red Cardstock
  • Sizzix Tim Holtz Alterations “Tag & Bookplates” die
  • Cricut Explore machine & apple cutting file
  • PPA Matte Adhesive

Back to School Photo Frame by Lorrie McCullers

Today we’re joined by designer Lorrie McCullers, who is sharing a back to school project that is both a countdown calendar and school picture frame! 

It’s back to school time! And what better way to keep track of time until the big day than with a countdown frame?

back to school frame I used three sets of buttons for this project: the School Value Pack, the Primary Grab Bag, and the Primary Tiny Round Buttons. I also used a pre-colored acrylic frame so there was no need to paint!

buttons galore buttons

Supplies needed:

Buttons Galore School Value Pack
Buttons Galore Primary Grab Bag
Buttons Galore Primary Tiny Round Buttons
Deflecto acrylic 5”x7” frame
Aleene’s Liquid Fusion glue
button shank remover
dry erase pen
computer and printer (optional)


  • Choose your larger buttons first. That way, you can fill in the empty spaces with smaller buttons.

  • Some of the buttons in the School Value Pack and the Primary Grab Bag have shanks on the back. To have your buttons lay flat to the frame, remove the shanks with a button shank remover.

  • Apply Aleene’s Liquid Fusion to the back of each button. Don’t apply too much or the glue will ooze out the sides of your buttons! Let dry for about 24 hours.

  • Print (or handwrite) a countdown for the first day of school, such as “____ days until school begins” or “School starts in ____ days!”

  • Keep track of the days with a dry erase marker. Acrylic frames are so great because you can just write on and wipe off!


After school starts, you can then use your project as a frame for that first day of school picture of your kiddo! Since the dry erase marker comes right off, you can use this frame year after year. This is a great project for kids to help with as well as a fun gift idea for a favorite teacher!

Lorrie McCullers is a paper crafts designer who blogs at Forty11 Designs. She is a Craft & Hobby Association Designer Member and currently designs for Etch All and Deflecto Crafts. To see more of her work, visit her blog


It’s Time for a Back to School Photo Frame!

Today we are joined by blogger/designer/instructor/author May Flaum, from www.craftwithmay.com, who is sharing a back to school project with us. – editor

When I have supplies not being used, I try to envision a purpose and make it useful. In this case I had a small 5×7 chalkboard that has been sitting around way too long. Since I don’t see myself using it as intended, I decided to convert it into a photo frame for this school picture.

May Flaum button frame

This is one of my favorite ways to use buttons, and it’s a super quick and easy project too! It will work on any flat wood frame, and I love how it turned out. The less you think about perfect button placement, and the more you just fill the space and enjoy – the better it will turn out!

I worked with the beautiful Vintage Vogue buttons and I really liked how quick and easy they made this project.

Buttons Galore Vintage Vogue buttons

Supplies Needed:


1. Paint frame with white paint if desired

2. Apply a liberal amount of liquid adhesive around the wood frame.

May Flaum button frame step 3 3. Start with large buttons, place at random in a few places. Then fill in spaces with medium and small buttons.

May Flaum button frame step 4 4. Add more adhesive as needed, place buttons until all spaces are full. If there are any awkward gaps, layer a button on top! Once satisfied, set aside and let it dry fully before adding a photo.

May Flaum button frame close up

To learn more about May Flaum, see more of her projects or take one of her online classes, visit www.craftwithmay.com


Button Up a Teacher Gift in a Flash

Earlier this week I shared this project on my blog for Craft Lightning.  It shows you how to button up a teacher gift in a flash which makes it perfect for Fifteen MINUTE Friday!  Score!!!

I used the buttons from the Laura Kelly BRIGHTS collection.  You can get them HERE!


Just think of all the things you could put in a jar that a teacher would love.  Here are my top ten ideas!

  1. Candy or Gum
  2. Desk Supplies
  3. Gift Cards
  4. Markers
  5. Lotions and Body Spray
  6. Sprinkles for Cookies
  7. Homemade Drink Mix
  8. Colored Pencils
  9. Sharpies
  10. BUTTONS!!!

Isn’t is adorable with all the other fun jars?


Teacher appreciation is coming up soon.  Are you ready?  I think you should recycle some jars and add a few buttons to create some handmade awesomeness for those who care for your kids all day every day!





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