Year End Wrap Up

I wanted everyone to know that I did knit the toadstool baby rattle from the Purl Bee. It wasn’t finished for Christmas, luckily the baby can’t read a calendar. I still might(probably not) put some appliqu├ęd felt spots on. toadstool rattle I really love it, the detailing with the increasing and decreasing on the stem and the ribbing on the gills is wonderful. I do wish it was a bit smaller, but Little Man is still able to get a good grip on it and give it a good shake, but I think he likes his CrinkleBot better.

I also made a set of hanging towels for my Mother. When she saw my red and turquoise ones she asked for a set in red with yellow instead of turquoise. I had the striping down better the second time around. I am still drinking juice too, 2 down with 4 to go so I can have my very own set of custom ornaments.Marma's kitchen towels

I have a few new projects in the works…days for girls 1 Part of my New Years Goals (not exactly resolutions) and the start of a brand new idea that just hit me as I was thinking about the New Year and getting a new calendar.calendar book 1 I have been working on my goals for weeks and am sure that 2011 will be very exciting for my family, I can hardly wait.

Have a wonderful New Year (and a super crafty weekend)!


Holiday Photo Ornaments

I have been giving my Mom a new ornament every year with a holiday picture of the kids, but with three kids it’s getting hard to fit them all on one tiny little store bought ornament. I can’t believe it never occurred to me that making the ornaments would be even better, duh, I’ll blame it on the crazy holiday season.

When I came across the Juice top photo ornaments on The Crafting Chicks I made a mental note to make them for next year. After taking this years holiday photos on the 23rd. I decided that I needed to make those ornaments for my Mom this year. I went to the craft store on Christmas Eve and I drank 6 quarts of juice and I have to say it was worth it!kids ornaments 2010 frontI love them sooooooo much, I have to drink some more juice so I can make my own set. We do drink a lot of juice here, but not the kind with the metal lids.kids ornaments 2010 back

The little notes on the back are genius, they are going to be so much fun to read in about 10 years! I’m going to have to make something like this every year. BTW, I’ve already decided I’m using their block ornament for next year!


Happy Holidays!!!

Here it is, the long anticipated holiday picture.  I am excited that I was able to get everyone to look in my general direction and appear fairly happy.  Happy holidays 2010 Have a super crafty weekend!


Crinkly Robot Baby Toy

I thought I had all of my shopping done, turns out that I completely forgot to get anything for the baby. Since he is only eight months old I’m not too worried about having a ton of presents for him, but I do want him to get some super special things.crinklebot I made this super cute crinkly robot toy (from Prudent Baby) in an evening, I did do some fairly fancy embroidery (fancy for me) otherwise it would have only taken about an hour to cut out and sew up on the machine.

I have also started knitting him this awesome toadstool rattle from the Purl Bee, hopefully there is still time to finish it up. I have one more top secret project in the works for my Mom and I still need to take a fabulous Christmas picture of all three children together and today is the last day of school until the New Year. I’m going to be pretty busy for the rest of the week! Have you finished your Holiday crafting?


Greeting Card Ornaments

I know that I’m not the only one who saves every card that has ever been sent to me. Cards are expensive and really pretty, but hidden away in a box no one has the chance to enjoy them. Go get you box of cards, I’ll wait.

You’ll need:

a greeting card, something round (I used a glass, a fancy circle cutter would be awesome), glue, a small diameter hole punch, crochet thread, and a small crochet hook.greeting card ornaments 1

Decide what part of the picture on the card you want to use. I decided to use the tree and the Merry Christmas text. You can also use the words from the inside or other paper for the back. This particular card was from the place we bought our gutters and the inside text wasn’t ornament worthy. I used a glass for my template, but anything you can trace around will work, and don’t feel obligated to used something round, ovals and other shapes would be great too.greeting card ornaments 2Cut out your shapes and glue them together, wrong sides in. It isn’t essential, but it keeps the two pieces from sliding around while you’re working with them. This is also a great time to neaten you edges if they don’t match up.greeting card ornaments 3Use a small sized hole punch to evenly punch holes around the edge. I just eyeballed it and tried to make it fairly even.greeting card ornaments 4Start crocheting! I did three single crochet stitches (sc) into each hole in the first round, slip stitch into first stitch. The second round I sc into every stitch, slip stitch to join the begining of the round, and for the third round I chained 5, *skipped one stitch, double crochet in the next stitch, chain two*, repeat from * all the way around and slip stitch to forth chain. Then I chained about 25 and slip stitched into the first stitch again to make the hanging loop. If you have any questions about this pattern just ask, I’m still working on my pattern writing skills. I added a ribbon bow to finish it.greeting card ornaments 5Here’s mine with the ones my Mom made, she makes scallops around the edge of hers. This would be a great way to try out some new edging stitches.

I love how easy and inexpensive this project is! I really need to dig into my stash of cards. These are easy to mail and they also make great package decorations.


Felt Peppermint Ornament

I found this great tutorial on Pink Suede Shoes for a felt peppermint ornament and fell in love! So simple, but so fun. I thought it would be a great little something to give all the teachers, assistants, bus drivers, etc. for the holidays.

100_3862The one on the bottom right was made using the full sized pattern. I wanted to stretch my glitter felt a little farther, so for the others I reduced the pattern to 65%. I also saved my cut out triangle pieces and made reverse peppermints (twice as many ornaments!!!). I used rick rack for the hangers and finished all the edges with a zigzag. Hand sewing would have be great, but I’m getting a little pressed for time. When stitching the edges I stitched until there was a few inches to go, shoved some stuffing in the opening and kept sewing.

I found this tutorial via Chickabug and there was also a link to the most fabulous two color felt pinecones. I was so excited about them, I was even undeterred when I had to give my name, email, and address and opt out of four different newsletters to get the free template because those pinecones were going to be so awesome. I don’t know where I went wrong, I think the directions were a bit vague or maybe I missed something. It’s from the Family Circle magazine, maybe the actual magazine has better instructions (anyone have a copy? let me know). 100_3870 Mine is sad, and it looks better in the pictures than real life and this is also after I fixed it (as in stopped following the directions and used some glue). Way too much cutting and time invested for such a piece of crap. I would not recommend it and I have to say I am not likely to try one of their free patterns again. However, the tip about ironing freezer paper to you felt to make it easier to trace you pattern on was genius, it’s so hard to trace a nice line on felt, I’ll definitely use that one again.

I have some more felt ornaments to work on this weekend, I’ll share those next week. Have a super crafty weekend!


Zentangle Part 2

Good news, after getting some more supplies I went back and fixed my original not pictured one from yesterday.  zentangle 1 The key was some white gel pens, I just blacked out the parts I didn’t like and went back in with the white pens, I love the negative effect too!  I need more practice, there are parts that I really love and others, not so much.  I may need to fill an entire sketch book with these, sooooooo relaxing.

If you want to see some patterns and their names check out TanglePatterns (I like how the patterns scroll across the top) and here is another great resource Zentangle Patterns, I’m sure there are more great sites like these, leave a link for you favorite, I’m hoping to move to more complex patterns next.



Zentangles are everywhere these days, I’m surprised that this is the first time that I made one myself.  If you do an image search on Google the results are inspiring and varied. 

I decided to uses several different pens to get different thicknesses for a little more interest.  Zentangle one was a partial failure and will not be shown, it seems I was trying to hard to make it arty.  I would also like to note that if you are trying to hard the process is not as fun as when you just relax and doodle.  zentangle 2 Once I got it figured out it was fun and relaxing.  I think I could easily fill a whole book of these, and I just might.  I would like to make one and incorporate words next.  I definitely need some new, special pens for this and maybe a new sketchbook too! 

Have you tried making zentangles? what did you think of the process? and do you have any tips for a newbie like me?


Friday Favorites

Wow, it’s been a crazy week!  It’s been three months since I started working part time and the first full week of the month is always super hectic for me.  Add the baby is getting his top two front teeth and being overbooked with activities for the holiday season and our schedule is all messed up.  I hope to get back to my regular posting schedule next week, I have so many exciting things to share.  Here are some of my current etsy favorites, head on over to etsy for some crowd free shopping, the time to get things by Christmas is getting short.

Friday Favorites 12-10-10Crochet covered patchwork rock – StitchHappens7

Cherry blossom wedding dress – Bellinabridal

3 Vintage skeleton keys – timepassages

Family tree chart – FreshRetroGallery

She bang letterpress poster – YeeHaa

Zodiac constellation oxidized brass tag – Takit2themoon

Merry forkin Christmas ornament – SpoonerZ

We are family porcelain cats – endlesswhimsy

Natural Turquoise wire wrapped ring – Hardcandygems

Nebula pendant – sarahndippity

Tarot mirror, the Empress – TheFrameandMirror

Zodiac embroidery kit – MiniatureRhino

Have a super crafty weekend!!!


He is REALLY Annoyed

Here’s the action shot from yesterdays finished hatwyndham hat 3

Yeah, he is really annoyed.

  wyndham hat 2 You should have seen the arm flapping and heard the whining, but after a few minutes he forgets it’s on and he’s fine.  It is sooooo cute and he’ll be toasty warm even if he is annoyed.


How to Annoy a Baby

Babies in hats are soooooo cute, but once your baby gets coordinated enough to grab things it is really difficult to keep a hat on that baby. Wyndham hat pull I live in Nebraska and it gets cold here, the baby must wear a hat (and hopefully look cute too).

I’ve had the b 14-28 hat pattern in my favorites on ravelry for a while and decided that this weekend was the perfect time to get it done. wyndham hat 1 I made the 6-9 month size using Red Heart in Fall (I absolutely love the colors in this, I have now made two hats with one skein) and Coffee. The pattern was a little confusing for the shaping of the hood part, but after re-reading it a few times I got it. It seemed like the first 8-12 rows took forever, but after the decreases it went a lot quicker. I ended up redoing the ribbing around the face hole, I had followed the pattern and done 2 X 2 ribbing and folded and stitched, but I didn’t like it. Instead I purled a row, knitted a row, purled a row and did a crochet bind off. I also divided the stitches at the top of the hat in half and did a crochet bind off there too.

I worked on this hat all day Sunday and, sadly, I finished way to late to get an action shot of the baby, but hopefully I’ll have one to post soon. I did try it on him before finishing the face hole and adding the pompoms and it was super cute. You should have seen the look on his face when he tried to pull it off and it didn’t budge, sooo funny. How do you like to annoy babies you know?


Yarn Balls Wreath – The Big Ball Party

After seeing this yarn ball and ornament wreath tutorial on Life Through the Lens, my friend Lisa (oobbles) decided that we should get together and make them. This Tuesday was the day, we were also joined by our good friend Kashoan (kraftykash) and we spent the day giggling our way through yarn balls, ornaments, and hot glue. yarn blall wreath supplies We had the whole table covered in supplies and beverages. We all chose different colors, I thought it was great that we all made such colorful choices. yarn ball wreath I love how my wreath turned out, you know I love turquoise and red! It is a lot more sparkly in person, I can’t wait to get this up on my front door. You can see Kashoan’s here and Lisa's is here.


Hexagon Pillow

My Mom is redecorating her living room, she is using shades of turquoise, brown, and tan.  I wanted to make her something fun that included all of the new colors she was using and I had been dying to try making some of these crochet hexagons.

I have no experience with granny squares, in fact I have never been all that interested in making them at all.  I think that the idea of sewing together hundreds of little squares to make an afghan is really unappealing.  Lucy’s tutorial is awesome, it includes instructions on how to crochet them together as you make them!  I had no idea that you could do that, I’m sure you guys knew all about it, but I was shocked.hexagon pillow Anyway, I started making hexagons last Wednesday and I just finished last night, I think that the sparkly yarn really makes this special (the darker turquoise has a hint silver, it’s hard to see in this photo).  I just kind of winged that pattern and I ended up having to fudge my way through two half hexagons.  There is a proper way to do it, but I couldn’t find any instructions online and I was ready to finish this pillow.

I think that my Mom will like it, now I kind of want to give these Christmas stockings a try and maybe some regular granny squares too.  What is your favorite granny square pattern?


Kokeshi Doll Tree Toppers

I have been finishing up some of my paper mache projects from last week.  My hat models have receive their second coat of paper mache and now are awaiting finishing and I added some paper mache clay details to some of the other pieces.paper mache kokeshi toppers 1I lightly sanded them to remove some of the larger bumps, primed them with gesso, and then started painting.  paper mache kokeshi toppers 2 I really love the metallic sequin black paint from Folk Art that I used to paint their hair, it is super shiny. paper mache kokeshi toppers 3Some kimonos and fancy painted flowers finish them off.  The lighting in here is terrible (sorry), but I promise, they are super adorable.  Now I need to decide which one I like the best and have a “professional” photo shoot to really show them off.

Have a Happy Thanksgiving!


Paper Mache Play

I really love paper mache! In elementary school I hated it, but I’m going to assume it is because they didn’t explain the process well and they wanted us to make super bulky newspaper bases and what I ended up with was a damp, lumpy mess that did not look like a unicorn.paper mache kokeshi 1 Today I covered some balloons on Pringles cans to make more craft show displays (these are child head sized) and I also covered some thread cones with Styrofoam ball heads and some wooden peg dolls.  I really like the texture that paper mache gives to a finished piece and how well it integrates the separate parts together.  I think that they now look like giant game pieces and now I want to make some of those, these are going to be something else.paper mache kokeshi 3 I used the paper mache recipe from The Big Ass Book of Crafts from Mark Montano, it’s a basic flour paste with a bit of white glue added in.  I did one layer last night and it has dried rock hard, I will add at least one more layer to the displays and then some paper clay to smooth it out and add some details to my other pieces.  There is a recipe for paper mache mush in the book that would be great for that, but I have some paper clay on hand that I have had forever and I want to use that up.

I would also like to note that I have been doing some cleaning and you’ll notice that my normally cluttered dining room table is clean, we could eat dinner at the table if we wanted, I know, it’s crazy!  Now to work on the rest of the house, I finally figured out the psychology of why my house was cluttered (no, I don’t want to share) and I expect to make a lot of progress in the next month.

I should be busy working on these projects all weekend, what will you be working on?  Have a super crafty weekend, everyone!


Back When I Thought I was Crafty…

…I mentioned that I had a PDF of the shrink plastic clasp and then I never spoke of it again (the clasp for my S.Y.T.Y.C. entry). tattoo flash clasps Remember now?  I have made the basic line drawing into a PDF that you can color and customize yourself and here are some helpful tips:

I used a sharpie marker to trace my design onto my shrink plastic.

I made several practice banners on paper with my words (Craft or Die) to get the spacing just right and then traced them onto the plastic.

I colored in the design using colored pencils.  Remember, when it shrinks the colors will get darker.  Also remember to color in the white areas with white pencil or they will be transparent.

I cut out the inner area using a super sharp exacto knife.

Once my plastic was shrunk and cooled I color the edges with a sharpie or paint pen, I think it just looks nicer.

Finally I sealed the back with a nice thick coats of diamond glaze.

If you have any other questions just ask, good luck and let me know how they work for you (remember I love to share, but my PDFs are for personal use only).


New Halloween Dress

I am in love with the Sienna dress pattern from Lilblueboo, but sadly it only goes up to a size 6. I wanted one in my size, yeah I know, it’s not really age appropriate and it surely won’t be that flattering, but it will be comfy and a lot of fun. sienna dress - adult sized I figured out how to do it, here it is, hot off the sewing machine! (I hope to have modeled shots soon, the baby is only six months old and unable to work the camera ;D) My first attempt is lying in a heap on the floor (I may go back and work it over some more), but my second try turned out pretty good. I really like the tie dyed ruffle at the bottom, now I need some black leather boots and I’ll be all set. I bet Little Miss will be excited that we have the same kind of dresses.

Have a super crafty weekend.


I thought I would add my slightly blurry mirror shot so you guys could see how it fits. sienna dress - adult sized 1 It’s soooo comfy and yes, I know that I am not 12, I don't care! and I will always wear it with sparkly legwarmers when it’s cold (trust me, they're sparkly) ;)


Giant Spoon and Fork Progress

My Craftfail giant spoon and fork project has been on hold for quite a while.  I decided to give Bondo a try.  I bought a gallon can of it, but after reading the warnings and instructions on the can I was a little nervous about using it (and that is what was holding up this project).  I hate it when my “craft supplies” are made of chemicals that are known to cause cancer and that I get a contact high from the smell.  This was definitely an outside project.giant spoons and forks 1 My Mother had also had some giant wooden silverware luck and found me three more pairs of spoons and forks.  It now looks like I will have a collection of giant spoons and fork ~ awesome!!!giant spoons and forks 2 I mixed a small batch of Bondo with the hardener and started filling in the monkeys.  I have to say this stuff is great and it sets up really fast.  If you use plastic for the mixing bowl and spatula the Bondo pops right off, but it adheres great to the wood.  I built up several layers of Bondo to completely hid the monkeys.

I have a major amount of sanding to do and I need a palm sized sander, my Dremel is taking forever on these large pieces.  Once the sanding is finished I will need to prime and paint them all.  It doesn’t look like the great weather we’ve been having is going to last much longer (and really, it is November, we’ve been really lucky with the mild weather) and this whole project is dependant on good weather, I may have to put this back on hold until next spring.

I am excited to finish this project, but I want the results to be fabulous and that means no rushing!


Holiday Crafts Show Season

I don’t usually do craft shows.  The preparations involved are just too much for me and with young children who go everywhere with me it just isn’t something that works for me right now.  I do one show, in the town I grew up in.  It gives me a chance to see old friends and hang out with my Mom all day.  It’s called Frost Frolic and it is always the first Saturday of November, so last Saturday.Frost Frolic 2010 I have different things that I sell at a craft show that I don’t stock in my online store.  I have hats (I’m still using the display stands I made last year) and scarves and my Mom has some potholders and some paper trees made from greeting card.  Every year it seems like something different is popular, this year it was scarves.  I sold all that I had, even the one I was knitting on during the show!

It was a fun weekend and with only a $20 fee to sell I came out really well.  It’s so different than having an online store, I like to be out meeting new people, but it can be disappointing when something that you really think is going to sell well doesn’t get any attention.  Does anyone else do local shows and how do you like it?


Baby Cocoon and Hat Gift Set

I just finished up this adorable little cocoon and hat set for a family member.  I used several different Yarn Bee yarns and I really like how the stripes turned out.  lacey's set I used the butterfly baby wrap pattern (ravelry link) again and it looks totally different than the one I made for Little Man.  The dark licorice colored yarn was held double and the turquoise yarn was one strand.  I think the little hat turned out cute, but manly and that was exactly what I was going for.  Knitting for babies is so quick and so cute!


Sugar Skull Masks

For those of you that don’t know, Halloween is my wedding anniversary.  wedding pix When we got married, five years ago, we were dressed as skeletons(loved my hot pink veil).  This year, at the last minute I realized that I had skeleton costumes in everyone’s sizes.  The kids still wanted to be “characters” my brilliant idea was to make them “character” sugar skull masks.sugar skull family Little Sir got a clone trooper sugar skull and Little Miss was a Hello Kitty sugar skull.  I made more traditional ones for Robert and I and Little Man went bare (maybe I’ll make one and we can display all five).  This was a great, easy way to personalize plain costumes and avoid applying messy make-up.  They are made with glitter felt and puffy fabric paint, I whipped them up Saturday night.sugar skull family masks It will also be a wonderful memory of the five of us on our five year anniversary.


Terrorific Tuesday - Week 4

TT Week 4 2010

Vanessa shows us how to make a Cute Felt Pumpkin in just a few minutes!

Get creative with Eileen Hull with her Pop Up Bat card. Super festive!

Glory makes a beautiful Autumn Wreath to hang on your door or wall.

Erika shares with us her cute Halloween bandana that her dog Sebastian loves wearing!

Cheryl Ball wows us with an adorable Jack-o-lantern Pin perfect for the season!

Sew a sweet Pumpkin Placement with Phyllis Dobbs!

Crafty Chica gets her glow on with this Sci Fi Senorita Head that is totally spooky!

Crafterella offers up some downloadable custom labels that are super spooky and fun!

Make a spooky Undead Terrorarium with Silvia Chenault.

Whip up some cute and quirky Moss Monsters with Missy at Marvelously Messy!

Kate Pullen offers up a fun Pumpkin Favor Box perfect to hand out at Halloween parties!

Get into the fall spirit with this Pretty Fabric Flower from Ann Butler.

Pattiewack crafts up some Mummy Barbies perfect for a haunting Halloween display!

Alexa a.k.a. Swelldesigner makes a bold Orange and black Mary Jane candy wreath, perfect for hanging or eating!


Spooky Bottle Labels

I love spooky bottles, I save interesting jars and bottle all year long.  A friend of mine (thanks Lisa) has been saving her iron supplement bottles, they are brown glass and very creepy looking.  I’ve been wanting to make some new labels for these all year (you can download last years spice labels here).  I drew up four different labels, if you would like to use mine you can download them here (my labels are for personal use only).bottle labels, color I printed my labels out on regular paper and then tinted them with watercolor.  I just wanted to add a little bit of interest.  I used dull colors.  bottle labels, walnut ink I also added a wash of walnut ink to age the paper a bit.  Use whatever aging technique you like.  I thought about sanding the label a bit or even staining the edges more with a stamp pad.  While they were drying I soaked my bottle in warm water to remove the original label.  I added some black paint to the lid to tone down the shiny gold color too.bottle labels, finished I used matte Mod Podge to apply the label to the bottle and embellished the top of the bottle with torn muslin, string, hem tape, and seam binding.  I also melted some bronze and silver crayons in a candle flame to hold some seam tape in place across the top of the bottle.

I’d love to see what you guys come up with, leave me a link to your projects using my labels.


Mushroom Canisters In Progress

In July I scored this awesome vintage mushroom canister set for $10.  The set was a little beat up, but still really cute.  We had a set of mushroom canisters when I was a kid and they really bring back happy memories. mushroom canisters before I love orange, but I really wanted to use these in my kitchen and they just had to be painted red.mushroom canisters during I carefully masked them with tape, I just wanted to paint the orange caps red.  They have been sitting around waiting to be painted for months.  I guess I was a little nervous that I would ruin them, but yesterday was the day!mushroom canisters red paint 1 I used Krylon high gloss paint and did two coats.  Orange to red is a pretty easy transition and the few spots where the coverage could have been better still blend with the red.mushroom canisters red paint 2 The paint did leach under the tape, but I think a sharp razor blade can scrape it right off.

I’m going to use acrylic paint to touch up the white areas where the original glaze is completely gone and maybe add some touches of turquoise.  Then I’ll finish it all with a coat of sealer. Luckily the original glaze is multi-colored and I think the touch up should blend well.  BTW, I’m not using these for flour and sugar, they are for decoration and kitchen clutter storage.  I wouldn’t use them for unwrapped food storage after all that painting and sealing.

I think they’re going to turn out really fun, now I just need to get back to that giant spoon and fork!  Have a super crafty weekend!!!


New Halloween Dress (Sienna Dress)

I found these fun orange shirts on one of my last Goodwill shopping trips and decided to whip up a new Halloween dress for Little Miss.  I used the Sienna pattern from Lilblueboo again (see the other dresses I’ve made from this pattern here and here and here).sienna dress halloween 2 I made the size 5 this time, so she could wear this next year too.  I may need to add some length or maybe a new skirt to the top next year, but right now the length is perfect and it goes with the legwarmers I made.

I really wish this pattern came in my size!