Mar 172012
 

Don’t these colors just make you drool?

May Arts issued a challenge to crafters to use these springtime ribbons in a project.  The colors are so yummy and juicy, how could I resist?

After approving my idea, May Arts sent me two yards of each of the above ribbons.

scrapbook-layout-candy-color-ribbon-left

I decided to make scrapbook embellishments and did a layout with several photos from my granddaughter’s first year. (Click on any of the pics to see a bigger version.)

To make the border strips, I covered a 12″ x 6″ piece of scrap cardstock with adhesive, then applied the ribbons in diagonal stripes.  One edge was cut with the Scallops On The Edge Die.  The rest of the strips were cut with a rotary cutter.

You’ll have to use steel rule dies, a rotary cutter or sharp scissors to cut out this beribboned cardstock.  A regular paper trimmer or wafer thin dies won’t be able to handle it.

scrapbook-layout-candy-color-ribbon-flower-close-up

The flowers were made similarly by covering 5″ x 5.5″ cardstock with ribbon and then die cutting with the Tattered Florals Die.  I also cut leaves with the Tattered Leaves die and the banner with the Styled Labels Die.

The paper flowers might be by Prima, I’m not sure, but I know all the papers are from either My Mind’s Eye’s Everyday Tango paper pack or Die Cuts with a View’s Nana’s Kids paper stack.

scrapbook-layout-candy-color-ribbon-right

Happy Creating!

 

 

 

 

Mar 132012
 

Well, here it is, Wednesday again. ‘Tis the time for us to share what we’ve got going on on our desks, hence the name What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday.

Sorry that I haven’t shared anything since last week.  It’s not that I haven’t been busy, but that I’m currently in the middle of several projects.  I seem to have high hopes and keep underestimating the amount of time it’s going to take to do these things, ya know?

Anyhow, this is today’s desk.  (Click on the pic for a closer look.)

2012-03-14-woyww-faux-opals

Last week I was working on faux dichroic, this week it’s faux opals.  I’m following directions from an old issue of Polymer Cafe, but I’m not thrilled with the results.  Some tweaking is definitely in order.

It’s a good thing I checked on my blog today, as I found ALL of my plug ins had just disappeared!  Where’d they go?  Why’d they go?  I haven’t a clue.  I’m just thankful I’m a fanatic about backups.

Let me know if you find anything weird or “off” on the site this week, something might have been missed in the restoration.

As I mentioned last week, I’m also working on a new Etsy shop for my art jewelry.  It should be ready real soon… I hope.  lol

Thanks so much to all of you who stop by every week and leave such kind comments.  Me-thinks I need to have a comment giveaway soon.  🙂

Have a great week and happy creating!

Mar 072012
 

Happy Wednesday!  Todays workdesk shows me in the middle of stringing several faux dichroic wire wrapped pendants.

2012-03-07-woyww-faux-dichroic-art-jewelry

I have big plans for totally renovating my Etsy shop this week, and these pendants will be some of the first new items added.  I’ll be sure to post close up photos soon.

In the top left corner you can just see a bit of this week’s chocolate (Trader Joe’s) peeking out.   Next to that is my trusty Sansa Clip Zip MP3 player.  I’m currently listening to “Going Postal” by Terry Pratchett.  Hysterical.

To the far right is my craft and sewing project to do list.  It is by no means exhaustive, and I’m always looking for the next new thing to add to it.  🙂

Sorry the pic is a bit blurry, the hands don’t want to be steady and I didn’t feel like getting out the tripod.  I WILL use a tripod for the close up photos, though.

Many thanks to all who stopped by the past couple of weeks; I know your time is valuable.  The list has grown so much, but  I’ll visit as many of you as I can.

Happy Creating!

Wondering why I’m posting a photo of my workdesk?  Today is that wonderful celebration of all things creative, crafty, messy (or neat), What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday.

 

Mar 032012
 

When my 12″x12″ scrapbook paper pad collection started to get out of control, I decided it was time to do some organizing.

how-to-organize-scrapbook-paper-before

Having them on this towel holder is messy looking, but at least it makes good use of vertical space.

However, I had no idea what I had up there, and couldn’t tell which papers I wanted unless I pulled half of them down. (The pizza box is where I store completed scrapbook layouts before they go into an album.)

how-to-organize-scrapbook-paper-loose pages

The first step was to put all the loose papers into these folders, which are sorted by color or theme.  (Such as Winter/Christmas, Birthday/Celebration, Hearts & Flowers.)

how-to-organize-scrapbook-paper-label-on-backer

Next, I used my P-Touch to make a label for each paper pad.  All but the last 1/2-inch of the label was stuck to some scrap white cardstock.  The remaining sticky 1/2-inch was stuck to the backing cardboard of its paper pad.

how-to-organize-scrapbook-paper-label

When closed, each paper pad has its own little hanging label.

how-to-organize-scrapbook-paper-close-up-labels

And here is a close up of one section of paper pads.  No more guessing which is which.

how-to-organize-scrapbook-paper-after

Here is the whole thing, much neater and easier to search through.  And look!  Now there’s room for me to buy more paper.  🙂

 

Mar 022012
 

Here’s yet another garment made out of the raspberry knit. In case you’re wondering, NO, it is not yet warm enough around here to wear a short skirt and sleeveless top. This photo was taken last fall.

raspberry-knit-draped-top-mccalls-6078

I’ve been meaning to review this pattern for some time now, but every time I thought to write the review, I came up with another piece of fabric from which to make another top.

This is the latest.  It’s an ITY knit from Fabric.com.  I love the diagonal stripes.

draped-top-mccalls-6078-002

A friend had a bag of fabric, and I managed to scrounge this pretty red sparkle knit.

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Then there’s this navy blue.  I think I bought 15 yards for $1/yd when my local fabric store was going out of business.

draped-top-mccalls-6078-004

These tops are all  made with knits, and all are the same size.  You might notice that the drape and stretch of each fabric really makes a big difference in how they hang (and fit.)

The raspberry fabric (top photo) was SO stretchy that I couldn’t comfortably wear it – unless I planned to not ever bend over that day.  Ooops.

So I made it into view C, with the loops gathering up a bit of the excess.

Here’s my review of the pattern.

Pattern Description: MISSES’ TOPS: Top A has front and back stitched pleats, front drape, lapped back and extended shoulder seams; top B has stitched front pleats and drape; top C has front drape and contrast loops.

Pattern Sizing: Xsm, Sm, Med – I made the small. On less stretchy fabrics I added 1/4-inch to each side seam.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes! Depending on how stiff or drapable your fabric is you will get slightly different looks. I only made view B/C. The very open back of view A makes me cold just to look at it.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Super duper easy.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I love that I can make one of these tops in about an hour with less than a yard of fabric.

Fabric Used: I made this pattern four times, twice in cotton jersey, once in a glittery slub knit and once in an ITY.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: One of my cotton jersey fabrics was VERY stretchy, and ended up a bit too revealing for comfort, so I added the loops (view C) to gather up some of the excess fabric. My other cotton jersey was more stiff, and it turned out being a little snug. For the ITY I added 1/4-inch to each side seam so it would not be tight across my middle.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I’ve already made it four times, but I wouldn’t hesitate to make it again if the right fabric comes along.

Conclusion: This top is a great wardrobe staple. It can be worn on it’s own in nicer weather or can be layered under a jacket or sweater for cooler days.

Mar 012012
 

Finally!

It’s only two months late, but I have managed to complete a project inspired by each of Tim Holtz’s 2011 12 Tags of Christmas.  Done is good!

(Click on any photo to see a larger image.)

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On day 11 he gave us a video showing how to use Shrink Plastic in the Melting Pot with UTEE Ultra Thick Embossing Enamel.

12-tags-of-christmass-2011-day-11-charm-bracelet-005

While it was highly entertaining to watch his video, it was even more fun to make my own pieces. I thought they would make wonderful little charms for a bracelet.

12-tags-of-christmass-2011-day-11-charm-bracelet-004

I used a whole bunch of different dies to cut the plastic, and also hand cut some purposely wonky hearts with scraps.

To make your own charms you’ll need to use a Crop-A-Dile or other hole punch to make a 1/4 -inch hole in each piece before shrinking.  This is so you can hang your charms with jump rings.  While the plastic is still a bit warm, use a an awl to poke the hole out.  This is easiest if you poke into something squishy, like an old mousepad.

12-tags-of-christmass-2011-day-11-charm-bracelet-002

It was hard to know from the start just which sizes were going to work out well for charms on a bracelet. That’s fine, because now I have a whole box of pieces that were either too large or too small that will be used on future projects.

12-tags-of-christmass-2011-day-11-charm-bracelet-001

I’d thought the birdcage and bird from the Caged Bird die would be cool, but the birdcage was a little too big.  I did use the bird though, he was just right.

12-tags-of-christmass-2011-day-11-charm-bracelet-007

The dress form from the Sewing Room Die was too big, but the thread spool was just perfect.

I also used the Tattered Florals Die, the Tattered Leaves die, as well as some older Sizzis dies.

All the pieces were colored on the back with alcohol inks, some got Snow Cap mixative on the back to create contrast.

This was a fun project, and I’m so happy to have completed a project with techniques from each of Tim’s 12 Tags. Now that he’s doing just one per month, it should be easy to keep up!

Happy creating. 🙂

Feb 282012
 

Happy Wednesday, all!

Those who have been following my blog for any amount of time know I’ve been determined to catch up with Tim’s 12 Tags series.  I only have one more to do from last Christmas’ tags, but as it’s the last day of the month, today I MUST complete the February tag.

2012-02-29-woyww-12-tags-february

Here is my workdesk, all set up and ready to get that project done.  Yes, on the very last day, but on time regardless.  😉

Actually, I pulled out all my supplies on Monday night right before I went to bed, thinking I’d be inspired and raring to go on Tuesday.  Nope, didn’t happen.

I did, however, go shopping; always a good thing to do when motivation is lacking.  ****grin****   Nothing too exciting, just some adhesive, beads and bits to finish some jewelry for my Etsy shop and some Rock Candy Distress Crackle Paint on clearance.  (Are you kidding me?!  I love that stuff, how can they possibly be discontinuing it?)

Anyhow, that’s what my desk looks like this Wednesday.  Hopefully it will be a lot messier as the day goes on and I get some things accomplished.  🙂

If you’re wondering why in the world I’m posting a photo of my desk, well, you must not know about What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday.  Get yourself over to Julia’s quick and check it out!

Happy creating!

******* Update 10:50 p.m. **********

Phew, what a day!  First thing today I worked on this card, then had to do major amounts of errands out and about in the snow.  When I got back I expected all this glitter to be dry, but it wasn’t.

Finally now, I’m ready to head to bed, and dry or not this card is getting posted.  I’ll be happy to welcome in March when I wake up.

12-tags-february-birthday-card

This card will be for my granddaughter’s next birthday, when she’ll be four.  Hence, the four candles on the inside, and the utter abandonment of restraint in the use of glitter.  *****grin*****

I loved using this honeycomb paper, and am already considering other projects where it would work.  All you need is a symmetrical shape without important interior details.  Fun stuff!

If you want to know where the inspiration for this card came from, check out Tim Holtz’s 12 Tags of 2012.

Snow or not, spring is only 20 days away.  Woot!

Feb 282012
 

Sorry I haven’t written much in the past week, it’s been a kinda weird time around here. My nephew has cancer, he’s home on hospice, the end is very near, and he’s only 37.  It’s just so hard to believe.

In amidst the sadness there have been several happy little things.  Like the UPS truck pulling into my driveway in the afternoon.  I knew my entire Amazon order had come, so didn’t know what this delivery was about.

Good news?  Bad news?  Uh-oh.

may-arts-ribbon-prize

It was this, my prize from May Arts ribbon for being a runner up in the February challenge.

Whoo-hoo, 32 yards of white silk ribbon, just waiting to be dyed, inked or otherwise colored into whatever shade I need.  Awesomeness!

Then there was this.

wedding-gown-for-fabric

Why did this make me happy?

Well, you see, I decided to join the 1912 Sewing Project, a group dedicated to sewing the patterns from the 1912 year of La Mode Illustree, in conjunction with the anniversary of the Titanic.

This is the first pattern I received.

1912-project-princess-slip-pattern

Isn’t that pretty?  I was happy to get it, and excited to get started, but bummed to discover I needed nearly six yards of fabric.  This is for something I don’t need and probably won’t wear.  It’s just a challenge, and something interesting to try.  I can’t really afford to be buying that much material for this kind of thing, ya know?

So anyhow, back to this.

wedding-gown-for-fabric-2

A couple of weeks ago a lady at church asked me if I’d like an old wedding gown for the fabric.  She said it was stained and torn in places, but I could possibly use the fabric for linings and such.  Me, turn down fabric?  Nuh-uh.

I then proceeded to completely forget about it until my husband plunked two largish boxes in my sewing room last Sunday.

In fact, I had so completely forgotten about it that that very day I’d written “check fabric stash for fabric and lace for 1912 slip” on my beginning of the week list.

wedding-gown-for-fabric-1

I hadn’t even gotten started on that list and there it was, yards and yards of fabric, and lace, all perfect for the project.

I felt so incredibly blessed.

But the biggest happy thing so far this week, is the littlest of all.  Or, perhaps, the other way ’round.

gold-heart-earrings

These earrings, which hubby got me for our first anniversary (nearly 24 years ago), have been missing for several months.  I was heartbroken, had given them up for good, and was just thankful that among all the new jewelry I’m constantly buying and/or making he’d likely never notice their absence.

Yesterday I pulled out a bracelet I hadn’t worn in a long time, and there they were, clinging to it.  You should have seen my smile.

It could have lit up a room.  🙂

It’s definitely the little things in life that can make us the most happy.

Wishing you all a happy and creative week.

 

 

Feb 212012
 

Good morning, everyone!  To you desk travelers of What’s on Your Workdesk Wednesday,  I hope you all have had at least a little chance to be creative this week.

2012-02-22-woyww-organizer-notepad-desk

My desk shows me just finishing up a cute little holder for a notepad and pen, with a pocket for storing receipts or whatever. (Click on any of the photos to see a larger image.)

You might not be able to see it, but there is a brand new 1/8″ hole on the edge of my cutting mat.  Why? I was using my Crop-A-Dile to punch a hole for the eyelet and managed to catch my cutting mat with the lower section of the tool.  I couldn’t have done that if I’d tried!  At least it’s on the very edge of the mat.  ===sigh===

organizer-notepad-front

Here’s the front of the completed organizer. I used papers from K and Company’s Que Sera Sera Collection.  Aren’t they yummy?

The stickers are K & Company Susan Winget Meadow Stitched Adornments.  I picked them up on sale at Joann’s today. Luscious!

organizer-notepad-beads

A close up of the beads. (All of which I had on hand, yay!)

Are you wondering where I got the pink elastic that matches perfectly?

This morning, when it lived at JoAnn’s, it was white. I used alcohol inks to permanently dye it.

To dye little things (beads, pearls, ribbons, buttons) just drop them into a baggie with some Alcohol Blending Solution.  Then drop by drop, add your choice of alcohol inks.  Terra CottaRaisin and Wild Plum made this color.    Perfection!

organizer-notepad-inside

The inside is simple, but quite useful, just a notepad (which can be replaced when used up) a pen and a pocket.

This notepad is a hybrid of two projects from Club Scrap: the  On-the-Go Organizer and the Assignment Notebook.  (I love watching Tricia Morris, she is a fantastic teacher.  Make sure you watch the corner wrapping video as well, it makes a big difference.)

Since the Club Scrap directions are for kits they send out, the videos often don’t give dimensions.  Here are the dimension I used for my project.  It perfectly fits one of those little notepads.

front paper (the yellow print in mine) – 4.5″ x 10.5″
back, spine and left front paper (pink in mine) – 10″ x 10.5″
inside paper (will not cover entire left side) – 8.25″ x 10″
cardboard for front and back covers (cut 2) – 5.5″ x 8.5″
cardboard for spine 0.75″ x 8.5″
notebook pocket – 8″ h x 7.375″ (3/8″) w
left pocket – 6.25″ w x 8.25″ h (In the video, Tricia has you score 2″ up for a 2″ deep pocket, which I thought was skimpy, so my measurements allow for a 3″ deep pocket.)
pencil holder 4″ h x 2.5″ w

Happy Creating and Happy WOYWW!

P. S.  Some of you wanted to see the finished sewing room canvas wall art.

 

Feb 212012
 

Much of the past holiday weekend was dedicated to making this.

(Click on any of the photos to see a larger image.)

altered-thread-catcher-thanks

“What is it?” you may ask.  Well, let me ‘splain.

In the interest of being efficient while sewing, I made the observation that I always hold my scissors or snips in my right hand and thus thread tails and fabric trimmings end up in my left hand.  The usual practice is to then reach across my body to drop them into the serger’s thread catcher, way to my right.  This, of course, is silly and wasteful of time, energy and effort. (And who has extra time and energy these days?  Not me.)

I decided to find a container for trimmings that would live to the left of my sewing machine.  This Costco-sized cottage cheese bucket has been doing the job perfectly for some time now.

altered-thread-catcher-before

But it’s not very attractive, is it?  It was crying out to be altered.

Most of you know I’ve been working through Tim Holtz’s 12 Tags of Christmas.  I’m up to day 11, but I’ll skip that for now, as the plans for day 11 require supplies I’m still waiting for.

To cover this container I loosely followed Tim’s directions for the day 12 tag.  His whole thing on day 12 was about using his Tissue Wrap.  I don’t have any and can’t find it locally, so I made my own.

altered-thread-catcher-stamped-inked-tissue

To make your own, use a waterproof ink such as Jet Black Archival Ink and stamp a piece of tissue paper all over with a large stamp such as Hero Art’s Music Background cling stamp, then rub Antique Linen distress ink (or color of your choice) over everything.

altered-thread-catcher-stamped-tissue

I stamped another piece of tissue all over with Hero Art’s Play Print definition stamp.

With that done, I started adding layers to my container.  (Sorry there are only photos of the first two steps.  I was having so much fun I forgot to take pics!)

Here are the layers: (Make sure to let each layer dry thoroughly before going on to the next step.)

altered-thread-catcher-dictionary-paper

  • Torn dictionary pages glued on with Matte Multi Medium. (Burnished smooth with an old gift card.)

altered-thread-catcher-picket-fence-distress-stain

altered-thread-catcher-rim

altered-thread-catcher-inside-rim

  • Apply an uninked piece of Symphony Tissue Tape to inside edge of container, covering ragged edges of colored tape.

Here’s a closer look at the background.

altered-thread-catcher-background-close-up

To decorate the background I added:

altered-thread-catcher-purple-flower

Tim Holtz Trimmings spritzed with Vintage Photo Distress Ink Reinker mixed with Perfect Pearls Heirloom Gold and water in a Mini Mister.  Once dry the flower tops were dabbed with Pearl Paint Dabber.

altered-thread-catcher-blue-flower-close-up
Letters cut with the Vintage Market Sizzlits Decorative Strip Die out of paper from the Crowded Attic Paper Stash.  I really liked Tim’s idea for cutting out cardstock backed foil tape, but didn’t think metallic letters would look right on this project.  I did LOVE his tip for cutting the same letters out of a darker color and placing them offset behind your title to really make it pop.

The letters read, “Give Thanks In Everything,” which is from I Thessalonians 5:18 and had been a theme of mine lately.  The interesting thing about this being on a round container is that you can start at any word and not lose the meaning.  (Try it!) Note that you will  sound like Yoda if you start with “Thanks.”  (“Thanks in everything give, hmmmmm……”)

altered-thread-catcher-purple-flower-close-up

Tissue flowers made according to Tim’s directions on Tim’s directions for the day 12 tag.  All these flowers are the same, the only difference is how I cut the ends, pointy, rounded or really rounded.  Once they were fluffed out, I spritzed them with distress reinkers mixed with Perfect pearls in mini misters.  I used Broken China Distress Reinker with Blue Patina Perfect PearlsWorn Lipstick Distress Reinker with Perfect Pearls Heirloom Gold, and Dusty Concord Distress Reinker  with Perfect Pearls Heirloom Gold. The beaded centers were made by adding a glob of Matte Multi Medium and sprinkling on seed beads.  The matte medium is great because no shininess shows through the gaps once it’s dry.

altered-thread-catcher-blue-flower
Leaves cut with a very old Sizzix die, a yellow one called “Leaf Stem.”  These were cut from the Seasonal Paper Stash Pad, the edges inked with Peeled Paint Distress Ink, dabbed with Peeled Paint Distress Stain and brushed lightly with the green from the Perfect Pearls Aged Patina Set.

altered-thread-catcher-give
Butterflies punched with the Martha Stewart Classic Butterfly Punch out of the Seasonal Paper Stash Pad.  You know those little 2 inch squares in the paper stash?  You can get two butterflies out of each square. 🙂  I had a little too much fun late one night decorating the butterflies with all sorts of Stickles, including Worn Lipstick Distress Stickles, Broken China Distress SticklesButtercup Liquid Pearlsfrosted lace stickles and white enamel accents.

altered-thread-catcher-at-sewing-machine

Here it is, right where it belongs.  I’m going to enjoy looking at this much more than that ol’ cottage cheese container!

By the way, that cute little boy in red is going to be 22 tomorrow.  I can hardly believe it.

Happy Creating, ya’ll!