Saturday, September 27, 2008

Fabric Knobs {A Tutorial}

Particularly in the light chill of early autumn, that desirable sense of warmth and home seems to emanate from the cozier, comforting niceties - patchwork quilts, patterned table cloths, skeins of yarns - in short, the ever-inviting texture of textile. So why not take this coziness a step further by trading in traditional hardware for something a little softer. After making a set of fabric covered drawer pulls for the "thirties dresser" (see previous post) I compiled a little self-illustrated how-to. Happy crafting!
Some notes on supplies: Pictured above are all the materials you'll need to make these. I used 1.5" inch, unfinished wooden knobs, purchased for about 50 cents each at the local hardware store. For knobs of this size you'll need approximately a 5" square piece of lightweight cotton fabric for each knob. {Cue industrious creativity! There are as many possibilities for knobs as there are fabrics - I used a re-purposed hand-me-down skirt making this project extra thrifty.} As far as glue, I recommend using Aleene's Tacky Glue, thinned out as needed with standard Elmer's white school glue. And finally, the clear spray is optional, but I find it makes for a more durable, cleanable surface, not to mention a nice glossy finish.

The Thirties Dresser: Part Two

Remember the circa 1937 dresser uncovered at a yard sale? (If not, you can see Part One here). It's finished at last! It's been painted a warm white and given a clear glossy finish. It now sits in the living room of our little antiquated California college flat, cozily lit by the glow of a modern floor lamp. It's a convenient spot to hold dvds, paperwork and craft supplies, and has a clean, succinct look without it's vanity mirror (which is being safely stored away).

I had very much wanted to replace the dull black knobs it came with (which seemed to be recent additions anyway, certainly not as old as the dresser). I considered the ubiquitous brushed nickel options and the eclectic, lovely selection at Anthropologie, but none seemed just right (aesthetically or fiscally). Finally I turned to creating some myself, purchasing a few plain wooden knobs to experiment with. To a disastrous end, I tried covering them in paper, and soon turned to using fabric instead. The results were much more agreeable and to my surpise, I'm quite content with them for the time being. It was a simple little project, remarkably affordable and especially well-suited to the cottage look. For the DIY-inclined, I couldn't resist making an illustrated tutorial on "How to Make Fabric Covered Knobs". I'll be posting that later on this weekend, so stay tuned and enjoy your early autumn Saturday!

Notes on materials: Paint is "Fragrant Jasmine" by Behr in satin finish, topcoated with semi-gloss water-based polyurethane.