New Hair Clips for a New Hair Do

I finally got a hair cut, I had been waiting, trying to hold out until I could go to a salon, but I just couldn’t make it any longer, I caved and got a $10 hair cut.  I like it, it’s pretty short, but still cute and to make it even more fun I colored it a dark red.  Now I really need some cute hair accessories.  All of my stuff screams teenage girl (from the ‘90s), little butterflies, plastic bows, weird little claw clips, hair springs(?!?), and even a banana clip!  Luckily I found this great flower clip tutorial on Yards and Yards and I had everything on hand already.flower hair pins 1 I tried several different types of fabrics: knit, lining, satin, metallic, and tulle and got good results from them all.  I wish I could figure out a way to use cotton, but it’s the melted edge that I love so much.  I love how Anna made the backs for these flowers, I can’t wait to put them on everything!flower hair pins 3 The fabric with the metallic thread is my favorite (the rose colored one, bottom right and the yellow and white one, center left), I got it from my friend Kelly and there are a rainbow of colors.  I LOVE these, I MUST make more in more colors!
The only thing different about my flowers is my largest circle is only 2 1/2” across.  That’s as large as my circle template went and I didn’t want to search through the house to find some bigger circles to trace.  These were really quick and easy to make, about an hour and a half from “oooh, I want to make those” to “wow, these flowers look awesome in my hair”.  I’m thinking they would make great last minute gifts.
No action shots this morning, I've been up with the baby since 4:30 and trust me, I'm not looking too cute.  I'll post some photos on Facebook later today, after I take a little nap.


Cardboard Wall Organizer

I knew the moment I saw this organizer that I had to make one with my toilet boxes (I am still working on the first one, I still have one whole box left to use).  It went together really quickly, her template made it sooooooo easy to cut out the pockets, no math or measuring involved!
cardboard organizer back
cardboard organizer front

Wow, that was fast and easy and that’s about when I got lazy.  It seems sturdy, it’s double layer cardboard, I bet I don’t need to add a layer of paper mache, I’ll just paint it and it will be fine.
cardboard organizer painted
And it is fine, but now that I have it up I realize that I want more pockets, I’m going to need it to stand up to some serious paper/magazine storage.  I also need to reinforce it with some paper mache and that will also give me a better base to paint.  So I’m calling this one the test organizer, the actual organizer still needs to be made.  My command center has gotten totally out of hand and I’m going to need all the extra storage I can get. 
I love how the organizer fits perfectly between the door and the corner, yay for using wasted space!  You should see all the stuff that is now stored under that very cluttered table.  I’m definitely doing a before and after shot of this one.  I’ve lived with my original solution long enough and now that I know what I need and what isn’t working I can adjust it to be more functional.
How do you keep your command center organized?  Everything just seems to pile up here I feel like I am constantly de-cluttering.
BTW, I completely forgot that yesterday was Monday (duh), sorry I'm a day late :)


The New Menu Board

I know I already made a dry erase menu board, but I wasn’t 100% happy with it and since it is something I use all the time it was really starting to get on my nerves.  The biggest problem is that I had made the paper insert before actually buying my frame and when it came time to get a frame I couldn’t find one the right size and I had to get one that was bigger than my finished menu and it just bugged me.  This time I already had my frame, all I needed to do was to cut my paper to fit.menu board
I cut out squares for my days and rounded the corners, everything is just lightly tacked down with scrapbook adhesive tape.  I really like the glitter letters for the days of the week, everything is better with glitter!  The menu board has been a big hit here, it’s so nice to know what’s for dinner.  I hadn’t realized how much time I was devoting to last minute dinner planning and now we are eating out a lot less.  I always thought menu planning was kind of silly, but it makes my day soooo much easier.  You should definitely give it a try and when you make your menu board, buy your frame first.
Have a super crafty weekend!


A Very Bad Day

Disclaimer: This is going to be a whiney post that is light on the crafty stuff, so please feel free to skip it.

I was working on the project that I though was going to fix the styling problem of the Dana top, everything was going smoothly.  I was almost finished and even though I didn’t have the correct ribbon I had a substitute ribbon so I could see how awesome it was going to look.  And that is where it went wrong, I put the almost finished project on and realized that it had been a really bad idea.  It seems as if the image I have of what I think I look like and what I actually look like are very different.  I was really upset, I am still really upset.  When you add that with a sick (again) baby, less than four hours of sleep, uncooperative weather, kids out of school for spring break, and some other drama that I won’t be discussing here you end up with a whiney crafter.obi belt Here’s the offending project, let’s never speak of it again (I will hide it in the bottom of the scrap basket).  Now I’m going to go and curl up in the fetal position and cry (I’ll probably just eat some chocolate, watch a movie with the kids, and sulk for the rest of the day).


The Dana Top Pattern Review

I bought the Dana top pattern to make some fun summer tops in cotton and boy was I surprised!  The pattern and instructions are 113 pages long, but don’t be scared each size it printed individually, so a lot of those pages are pattern pieces.  The pattern includes basic instructions for the techniques used, a fabric yardage guide, lay out guide and very detailed step by step photographs.  There is also an index of what sizes are on what pages, so there’s no guess work to printing the pattern out.  This pattern is very well written and the finishing techniques used are impressive.  My finished garment looks professional inside and out!  I am very impressed with SisBoom patterns and I can’t wait to try more of their designs.  I had no problems following the instructions and everything fit together beautifully.  My favorite part is this ruffle.dana top detailUmmm, the only problem is that the design may not be right for my body type, but that has nothing to do with the pattern.  My husband comments were, “wow, that’s a bright fabric” and “it looks very retro, 60’s retro” and other unusual comments that made me suspicious that maybe the top wasn’t that flattering on me.  I had even put on a good bra to model the top, but I was wearing very busy pajama pants.  I think it may be a styling issue and so I will need to put together a few looks and see what I think before I make a final call.  dana top So today Boobzilla will be modeling the completed garment, (she is lopsided, not the top).  The top does fit me very well and it is comfortable and breezy.  I think I may need a belt of some sort.  Do you guys think the fabric is too loud?


I Have a Great Idea, but it’s a Secret

I made this stamp to try the idea.
gear eraser stampI drew up several samples in my sketchbook and in the end drew something different directly on the eraser.
I still need to test the idea, but I am fairly confident that it will work, and if not I still have the fun stamp.  I’ll let you know how it turns out in a week or two.  Also, I found the giant box of coin envelopes that I bought a few years ago.  If anyone would like me to mail them a few (four or five) stamped with this design send me an email with your name and address.  There is a email link in my blogger profile here or you can message me on the Facebook page.
Have a super crafty weekend!


Andy Warhol Inspired Art for $3.88

I have had this idea floating around in my head for a while, but buying canvases was a little out of my budget.  When I saw the toilet boxes I knew they would be perfect.  I started by cutting the cardboard into 16” squares, my boxes were double layered so 2 squares equaled four layers of cardboard.toilet box 1aAfter all of my squares were cut I glued each set of two together and weighted them down overnight.toilet box 1b The next day I used paper mache paste to add strips of newspaper onto the cardboard squares,  horizontally on one side and after that dried, vertically on the other side.  Once they were mostly dry I layered them between plastic wrap, so they wouldn’t stick and weighted them to get them nice and flat.toilet box 1c I painted gesso on the fronts and sides and then it was time to do some sketching.toilet box 1dI used a photo of a trooper helmet (Star Wars) and was inspired by the style of Andy Warhol.  I used two shades of turquoise and two shades of orange acrylic craft paint to fill in my design.toilet box 1ePicture hangers will be hot glued to the backs for hanging, they are really light weight.  The only supply I bought was the paint, for $.97 each, the grand total for this project was $3.88, plus my time.  I have been working on this project exclusively since Saturday.  These will be perfect Little Sir’s wall, I wanted something fun and colorful that would last for a few years.  I have to get his room painted next, we’ll be using a light aqua with one orange accent wall.  He wanted all orange, but I thought it might be a bit much.
Not too bad for a toilet box, I have one more project to try with the remaining box, cardboard may be my new favorite medium!


A Productive Weekend

I had a really productive weekend, but I don’t have any finished projects to share today.  I am on row 91 of my new knitting pattern.  There are 139 rows total, so I’m making good progress.  knitting border I love the detailed border, so simple and elegant (and difficult to photograph).  I can’t wait to see this one finished.toilet box 1 Here is what is left of one of my super thick toilet boxes (the bottom of the pile).  I know it looks silly stacked up like this, but I needed a lot of weigh.  Hoping to start on the fun painting part later today.

While it may not look that impressive, that was what I did this weekend.  Stay tuned for what’s going on with the toilet box, really, it’s going to be awesome!


Kids Pajama Pants for a Dollar

A few weeks ago I noticed that Little Miss and Little Sir were outgrowing most of their pajamas, I also found some pictures of them wearing the same pj’s from about two years ago (I buy big and they wear them until they’re too small).  New pj’s are pricey, covered in annoying characters, and usually polyester – uncomfortable!  I needed to make them so new ones and this is a great opportunity to simplify my laundry routine too: a random selection of pants paired with undershirts, no more matching up sets.

When my local Goodwill has $.99 day I  am always on the lookout for adult lounge pants, there is usually a good selection at my neighborhood store in size small and medium, I have been stocking up for a while.  (I wash everything I thrift the minute I get home, I want to make sure everything is nice and clean.)  pj pants 1 Once that is done, I’m ready to get started.  I cut the inside leg seam completely open and spread out one side.  I use a one piece pattern (this one is Simplicity 9853), super quick and easy.  I have traced the size I need onto interfacing, so that I can use the pattern for all sizes.  pj pants 2 I position my pattern on the fabric, I like to have the outside leg seam slightly closer to the front of the pants, not centered on the pattern piece.  I am also going keep the hemmed edge from the original pants, so I don’t cut the hem allowance from the pattern piece.  When you get ready to cut the second leg remember to flip your pattern piece over or you will have two right legs.

I stitched up the legs and then the crotch seam and all I had to do was make the casting for the elastic and I was finished.pj pants 3 I finished the waist differently than the pattern suggests, by making the casting down 1/2” from the top and a lot wider for wider elastic, I like a ruffled waist and I think that the wider elastic works better and is more comfortable.  I didn’t count the cost of elastic in the cost of the pants because I have a bag full in my stash, but even if you need to purchase elastic your pants will still be really inexpensive.

These go together really quick, especially once you get the hang of the pattern.  I need to get the other pairs cut and sewn, I wonder which pair they’ll like the best.  Have a super crafty weekend!!!


More Quiet Book Pages

I have been doing some more work on the quiet book I have been making for the kids.  I have finished up another page spread, this one is a barrel of monkeys and a match the color set of cars.  quiet book cars and monkeys I really like how the monkeys turned out, although it was really hard to sew around the edges on the sewing machine, if I made them again I would hand stitch them.  On the cars I used iron on Velcro and I have to say that was a mistake.  I have let the kids give these a trial run and already the Velcro is coming loose, I think I’m going to go back and try some tacky glue.  I should have sewed the Velcro on before stitching everything together and adding the dimensional paint.

I have started working on a fishing page.  The wave pockets are all sewn down and the fish are all ready to go.  quiet book fishing I added tiny magnets to the insides of them and will be using a magnet instead of a hook.  I have stalled on this page because I can’t figure out how to do the fishing pole string, I think I’m over thinking it.  I should probably just tie some string on a dowel and add a magnet to the other end and be done with it, but I want it to be cute, I think I need a bobber bead to make it more authentic.

Once I finish up the fishing page I only need one more page and I’ll be ready to sew it all together.  Now I just need to decide what I’ll be doing for the final one, hmmmmm, anyone have any ideas?.


Cleaning Challenge

As you know I am forever cleaning.  It seems that while I do manage to make some progress I am easily distracted and not especially motivated.  Now that spring is on its way I am in the mood to clean and organize and I have been on a roll, cleaning things that haven’t been cleaned, sorting, rearranging, and storing.

I have recently discovered that my lack of motivation is because I am a messy perfectionist, really.  Basically if I can’t do it perfectly then why bother doing it at all?  Now I have a new mantra: It doesn’t need to be perfect, it needs to be done!  Also: You can always go back later and make it perfect.  I has been going much better, I am accomplishing more than I have in a very long time and seeing how much better it is starting to look is even more incentive to do more.cleaning craft room progress 1This is an in progress shot, notice that the table is pretty clean, but there is a lot of stuff in the doorway and what you can’t see it the ironing board on the left is stacked pretty full, with only a tiny spot left to iron on.cleaning craft room progress 2Here is what I accomplished in an afternoon, notice that there is some stuff piled on the table now.  I have a weird way of cleaning, I sort everything in to piles and then put the piles away one at a time.  The stuff on the table is stuff that I want to work on in the near future.  There is a stack of pants that I have big plans for, a crate full of flannel waiting to be cut, a variety of plastic bags that need to be made into plarn, and a fish bowl full of misc. stuff that I couldn’t sort into a category.  I’m just happy to see the floor, even if it needs to be swept, and to be able to shut the doors again.

My challenge to you is take 30 minutes and “just get it done” really, it doesn’t have to be perfect, done will be enough for now.  Sort out your yarn, put all you current projects together in a tote, clean off a table or counter top, recycle all that junk mail, anything.  Once you’re done you’ll be surprised at how much better you feel. 

Once I get this all cleaned up it will be sooooo much easier to get stuff done, no more time wasted clearing a spot to work or hunting for supplies, Happy cleaning, let me know how it goes.


Friday Favorites

It’s that time, time for my favorites:
3-4-11 favoritesTiny Mushroom Charms – humblebeads
Lime green felt and zipper brooch – woollyfabulous
Fungus Set No. 14 – TheOakLeaves
Mail Book – badbooks
Omri, owl folk doll – cartbeforethehorse
Miniature Garden kit – GardenBarn
Sunday Picnic Blouse/dress Pattern – montessoribyhand
Siamese Dreams ACEO – LauraGarabedian
Luminous Stacking rings, set of 5 – KiraFerrer
Have a super crafty weekend!!!


I Like Melting Things in the Oven

When I saw this tutorial for a washer necklace on Dollar Store Crafts I knew I had to give it a try.  I love melting things in the oven, especially shrink plastic and I had a few spare plastic cups hanging around too.
I had a great time doodling with sharpie markers on my cups, the only problem I had was cutting out the center hole.  I tried several different tools:  exacto, scissors, super sharp and pointy scissors, a different exacto knife, fresh blades.  Maybe I was having an off day.  I still think they came out pretty good.solo washer pendants It’s so much fun to watch them melt and flatten out.
While I had the oven hot I also tried another idea that I have been thinking about.  I have a ton of old, scratched up, non-playable records, I made some record bowls and ended up with an abundance of records left over.  I was thinking purse handles and key chains.record purse handles This was an interesting experiment, I’m not sure that I could get a perfectly matched pair and I can’t decide if that is a bad thing.  I could punch holes along the bottom for crochet or knitting too.  I think that my hearts ended up a little deformed.  I think I’ll need to run some more experiments, try some different shapes and using them in a test project.  What do you guys think, are record purse handles a great idea or not?
I have been working on a new spool project too, but I’m having a little difficulty, it may end up as a craftfail, I’m going to work on it a bit more today and see how it goes.