@Home This Weekend: Stenciled Rugs

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blog This weekend, enhance your outdoor living space with a custom stenciled rug. Does your deck or patio need some style? TheMistressT purchased a couple of inexpensive indoor/outdoor carpets, and then made them extra special by creating a stencil and applying a mix of UV safe craft paint and textile medium to create this great arrow motif. (Dog not included.)


Spotlight on: The Crafted Mandala

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The Mandala (Sanskrit-‘circle’) is an ancient spiritual and ritual symbol in Hinduism and Buddhism, representing the Universe.

In various spiritual traditions, mandalas may have been used for focusing attention of practitioners, as a spiritual guidance tool, for establishing a sacred space, or as an aid to meditation and trance induction.

In common use, mandala has become a generic term for any diagram, chart or geometric pattern that represents the cosmos metaphysically or symbolically; a microcosm of the universe.

No matter your beliefs, in crafting this ancient circle we can use any medium so that the mandala really becomes personal and a thing of beauty.

First technique we will explore, crochet of a mandala around an embroidery hoop, by alwaysinmyroom.

Bright colors and pattern make this so beautiful and cheery. Looking at it is kind of hypnotizing. And yes, these babies are all mine! 😀

The next exploration in mandalas also uses an embroidery hoop for the design. This one is actual embroidery around the hoop, by dingo66jolene.

Though this was her first attempt at embroidery around a hoop, I would say she was very successful. The mandala or dreamcatcher as she calls it, is subtle in color and has a nice detail around the edges.

Mandalas do not have to be made of thread. They can also be made on paper with ink or even paint.
This ATC mandala by Victoria Kamalova, is detailed, compact, dazzeling and very mod looking.

Now for something really different. A tie dyed mandala on fabric, by HippieKinder.

She did a great job on the dying, and giving the center a real focal point with the choice of colors.

Mandalas can also be made from seed beads, and hung on the wall.

These are made by askaboutrpickles and have a wide variety of colors used.

This last one will show that mandalas can be used to create a much larger project. How about a pop tab purse with mandalas? Yes!

And alexandraf was kind enough to give us a tutorial how to make our very own. She rocks!

The circle form of the mandala offers many options to creating, and give you something beautiful for yourself or to share with a friend. I plan on adding to my wall of mandalas with other hoops art.

Thank you for checking our the Craftster spotlight. If you have ideas for future spotlights, let me know. :)

July 8, 2015 Featured Projects

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Every two weeks we pick our favorite 15 projects that Craftster readers have voted for with the “This Rocks!” button. Here are our latest picks which were lovingly and painstakingly chosen (so many amazing projects to choose from!), this time kittykill. We hope you enjoy them!

American Flag Jello Jigglers by patty_o_furniture

The Little Mermaid – Princess Ariel Doll Plush by xMangoRose

Fiber Mokume Gane – bracelet by Harlan

Painted Garden Stake by Jenxx

Disney Princesses Eraser Stamps by eruei

Bone jewelry: goat skulls I carved from bone material! by grygon

My own Modern Cowl! by alwaysinmyroom

The Wandry Room by Knickertwist

More tangled birds by Victoria Kamalova

Haunted Mansion Wallpaper by Ludi

The Circus is in Town! by pottermouth

Military uniform to backpack. by cmarion3

Matryoshka quilt! by grammardog

My Stop Smoking Coach Turned Out to be a Bit of a Weasel by Patraw

Miniature Harry Potter Room by bunny1kenobi

Tute Tuesday: Quick Summer Dress

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64909_19Jun15_IMG_20150619_144442527_HDR Trying to find the perfect dress that fits can be a nightmare. Don’t even get me started about finding a style I like. I could spend hours and hours shopping, trying to find the right one, or I can just follow EdelC’s tutorial for a Quick Summer Dress. Combining two dresses into one is a brilliant way to get exactly what I want. This tutorial is so easy to follow that even a novice seamstress, like myself, can create beautiful dresses in a snap.

Summer time is fun time, so show off your flirty side with other great creations from our Clothing Board.

Marvelous Matryoshkas

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blog5 As a child, did you play with Russian nesting (Matryoshkas)? What started out as one large wooden doll opened to reveal a slightly smaller doll, which also contained a doll, and on and on until you got to the tiniest of little dolls at the end. What fun! Craftsters have found many varied ways to use the Matryoshka theme in their art.

isabelchun painted these brightly colored dolls and cut around their aprons to make unique bookmarks.

There are five little dolls on this precious baby quilt designed and made by grammardog. blog1
Gardenofdaisies shows off her machine embroidery skills in this backpack that any little girl would love. blog2
AMIFRIENDS made a cute little set of pink and black stuffed dolls. blog3
Here’s a great idea if you have any actual nesting dolls: maximumRABBIT repurposed hers, making it a unique pincushion. blog4

Want to see more? Click on the Craftster tag “matryoshka doll” and you’ll find all sorts of different projects: gloves, ornaments, actual painted dolls, and even a Matryoshka costume!

Meatless Monday: Creamy Pasta with Peas

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219968_26Jun15_Veg1 Peas get a bad rap. They get hidden under napkins and fed to the dog. Won’t someone give peas a chance? MissingWillow has taken the pea to the next level with her yummy recipe for Creamy Pasta with Peas. Butter, cream and pasta take the hated pea and turn it into a delicious dish. You can use this recipe as a base and add other veggies, or if you are meat eater, add chicken or fish into the mix. It is a perfect quick recipe for weeknight dinners.

Looking for other ways to spice up your veggies? Check out our Cooking Board for great recipes.

@Home This Weekend: Patriotic Planter

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blog This weekend is the perfect time to show off some patriotic door decor. purl3agony painted scraps of wood and topped them with artificial flowers to create this cheery flag. Happy 4th of July!

Summertime Sweetness: Fruit Salsa & Cinnamon Chips

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2679803161_556cff423c There is more to a BBQ than just the grill. The sides are equally important and if done right, will be the talk of your guests for years to come. HSG has the best side for your get together. Her Fruit Salsa and Cinnamon Chips is so easy and uses the best of summer fruits. Your party goers will think that you spent hours whipping this delicious dish together, but really, you only spent a few minutes and took the rest of the time to lounge by the pool, working on your tannage.

Check out our Cooking Board for sweet and savory sides for your next BBQ.

Fire Up the Grill: Jerk Steak

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Jerk-Steak-13> You love to BBQ just about any time of the year, but summer, that is the best time and this holiday weekend is THE time for grilling up your favorite foods. Sure, you can just throw the steak on the grill, but you want some zing, some heat, some pizzazz, a new flavor. TheFanatic created the perfect recipe to had extra flavor to your steak and kick your BBQ up a notch. This Jerk Steak is not only perfect for steak, but other meats and veggies you plan to cook. You can pick what level of heat you and your guest can handle.

Planning a BBQ this weekend? Check out our Cooking Board for great recipes, tips and ideas to take the average BBQ to a SUPERB-BQ.

Tute Tuesday: July 4th Light Up the Sky Hat

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301311_06Jul12_final_hat_copy 4th of July is just around the corner and if you want to be the hit at the annual BBQ then you will want to make this very fancy 4th of July Light up the Sky Hat by EZEL Wire. This hat may seem a bit complicated but it is definitely a conversation piece and as an added bonus, you will have lights to find your way in the dark. It’s practical and fun! If you can’t find EL wire where you are at, you can also use plastic tubing and LED lights or just bendable glow sticks. No matter what type of wiring you choose, your hat will shine bright like a diamond in the July 4th sky.

There are so many great summertime craft ideas on our Pinterest Boards. Check them out and make some sunny projects today.

Hooray for the Red, White, and Blue

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blog4 Hey, hey, let’s party like it’s the Fourth of July! Get out the red, white, and blue, and let’s celebrate the birthday of the good ole USA.Show off your true colors! ohsosuite tore up scraps of colored paper to make this artsy American flag collage.
Mmm, flag cake. This cake by RCKFELLA would definitely be the star of the show at any July 4th event. blog1
magicfan crocheted this patriotic striped afghan, and then added the appliqued stars to complete the look. blog5
How cute are these little flag dresses, by sistervigilante6? You know any little girl would love to get in on the fun of the Fourth wearing these. blog3
It’s not fair for kids to have all the fun! Heads will definitely turn as you enter the room wearing a red, white, and blue spangled shirt like this one by JaneSays13. blog2

Here’s hoping you have a wonderful holiday weekend. Happy Fourth, happy fireworks, happy summer fun. Enjoy!

Meatless Monday: TVP Chik’n Nuggets

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4338868202_0a565ebd5e It is a well known fact that kids love chicken nuggets. They are a quick and tasty bitesize treat for the little ones. The major problem is that they tend to be overprocessed. Want to fool your kids into getting some extra veggies and know exactly what is going into your nugget, then whip up a batch of queenbigear’s TVP Chik’n Nuggets. These little gems are easy to make and you can feel good about what you are feeding the future generation.

Our Cooking Board has a lot of great kid friendly recipes that are yummy for adults too!

@Home This Weekend: Colorful Garden Chairs

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blog1 This weekend, grab some old aluminum chairs and brighten them up with spray paint. steiconi found these great garden chairs at an old resort. She sanded them and painted them in a rainbow of colors. Now the garden will be bright even if nothing is in bloom!

Craftster Quickies: How to Make Palette Coasters

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Palette Coasters In this episode of Craftster Quickies, kittykill teaches you how to create adorable palette coasters. Great for home decor and gifts, too! Whip up a set and tuck them into a housewarming gift basket.

June 25, 2015 Featured Projects

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Every two weeks we pick our favorite 15 projects that Craftster readers have voted for with the “This Rocks!” button. Here are our latest picks which were lovingly and painstakingly chosen (so many amazing projects to choose from!), this time by rackycoo. We hope you enjoy them!

Sexy Ranch-hands Pin Up Dress by ZidishaLuxe

quick and dirty, make a new dress out of two small (thrift shop) ones-Tute by edelC

A T-shirt and a cap by Victoria Kamalova

Skin Cultist Mask by RKEM

Circus bear by moriarT

A little smooth green snake by petskin

A tale so gripping, the words leap right off the page and grab you! by Patraw

Re-loved Book, A pagan year by P_E_S_T

Ellie Travel Cases by gozer

Fans, Feathers and the Ocean Scarf! by alwaysinmyroom

Sun Print Throw Pillows by SpunK

Slow and Steady Gets it Done by waggonswest

Celtic Myths Shawl…with intarsia cableing..and it’s all for me! by bushbaby

Clockwork Astronomy-pic heavy by bookstorebabe

Easy tutorial on how to transform a 1970s maxi into a vintage-style mini dress by knittingal