I love to eat, and I love to sample the elaborate spreads my Halloween hostesses lavish on me and their other party guests. One problem I have, as I toss a few meatballs and other goodies on my plate, is juggling my plate, glass, napkin and then the silverware that is always placed at the beginning of the line.
It’s at those times that I wish I were a spider with eight legs so I could manage, but alas no, I’d probably get squished by a shoe! Anyboo, here is one way to solve that issue for your guests: silverware caddies! This is an easy, cheap craft project you can do in one afternoon mostly with items you already have on hand. Follow these simple steps and see how much fun you’ll have making these silverware holders that’ll perk up your buffet table, not to mention help your guests weave their way through your goodies.
- Pattern of the item you want to make
- Trims – feathers, sequins, beaded trim, pom pons, yarn, ribbon
- Color-coordinated cord (optional)
- Sewing machine or needle and thread
- Fabric or felt glue
- Hot glue (optional)
Lay the piece of felt on the wrong side of the fabric you want for the outside of your caddy. Leave a two inches of material at the top, one inch on the side and just a tad at the bottom.
Time To Consider Ease of Project and Time
There are few things to consider before you get started. If you’re unsure of this craft project, use simple shapes like a cone, square or pocket style for your first caddies. They’ll be really fast and be very simple to work with, especially if you have to make a lot of them! If you feel more confident, you might choose a witch’s hat or a jack-o-lantern. I’ll discuss how easy it is to add to your collection later on in this article.
If it’s hard to find a large chunk of time to make these caddies in one day – no problem. Cut out your shapes one day. Another day, concentrate on decorating your caddies and pinning them together. Then sew them together another time, and before you know it – you‘re done. By working on them a little along, it will allow you to better enjoy your craft time, and you’ll turn out a quality product – stress free! Speaking of stress free – for the sake of this article, I’m going to use felt, even though you can use fabric for the sake of simplicity.
Step one – Pattern and Felt
Choose what kind of caddy you want to make or copy a pattern you already have. I have a file of Halloween patterns I’ve used over the years and stacks of my own designs. When choosing a pattern, it’s a good idea to keep the design simple for your first caddies. You can do harder type of design during the off season that will be more intricate and time-consuming.
Lay pattern on your felt and double it so that you cut both sides at once as you cut out your design. It may be tempting to stack six or eight pieces of felt layers together before you pin on your pattern so you can cut more than one caddy at once but don’t do it! The felt will get jagged edges when you apply enough pressure to cut through multiple layers felt and will look really bad. It may sound faster, but it’s the best way to ruin your material and not get a sharp design.
Step Two – Decorate
It’s a great time to decorate the front side of the caddy. If you’ve chosen something like a witchy boot or a black cat, it’s much easier to attach the trims now while you have access to the back before they’re stitched together. Trust me!
***Note of caution*** Be careful not to place any trim on the front or back that can’t fit under the pressure foot of a sewing machine. Else, it will cause an unsightly bump under the seam. Glue will mess up any type of needle you use so try to keep all glue and glued on items away from your seams.
Step Three – Stitch It Together
Since we’re using felt, you don’t have to stitch your caddy together with the right sides together. Assemble your caddy as if it had already been stitched together with the wrong sides together. In just seconds . . . you’re done!
So many Possibilities – So Little Time!
You might not think of it, but thread can also be used for a decoration on your caddy. If you picked a Jack-O-Lantern, for instance, you can stitch the orange felt or fabric together with orange thread or if you’re going for the folk art look, use the zig-zag stitch in a different color so it‘ll show. If you don’t have a sewing machine, you can use a darning needle and stitch them together with yarn or use regular sewing thread.
There are some different considerations if you decide to make your caddies out of regular fabric. The felt is very sturdy on its own, so you don’t have to use anything to stiffen them. But with fabric, you’ll have to use some buckram or other Pellon-type stiffener for backing.
Another thing to think about when you cut out your shapes is that you’ll be temped to fold fabric into six or eight layers so you can cut out more than one caddy at once–don’t do it! The fabric will slip when you apply enough pressure to cut through multiple layers of the material, no matter how careful you try not to. It may look faster, but in reality it’s the best way to ruin your material and not get a sharp-cut design.
After you cut your pieces of material, it’s time to decorate them, just like the felt pieces, while you have access to the back. Attach all trims and then lay the pieces of material wrong sides together and stitch them together. Now turn the caddy right side out and stitch along the edge. You’re done!
Here are the four caddy’s I made in ten minutes along with two I paid $5.00 each for (the boots). I much prefer my cost of using the scraps I had on hand vs having to buy enough of these just for my family.