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1  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / I-spy fabric squares on: October 22, 2013 06:25:26 PM
I've been wanting to make an eye spy quilt for a while now.  I've not done a swap on craftster before but I'd be interested in joining if someone ran this swap.  I don't think one has been done in a while.
2  CLOTHING / Costumes: Completed Projects / Colonial Townsman on: January 19, 2012 05:43:22 AM


My oldest had to be a colonial townsperson for his part in the 5th grade special at his school.  Sooo, mom had to make a costume (because their solution for none crafty people was awful and well I sew).  I was determined that I would only use my stash for his costume, so I used some green flannel for the vest and pants.  I made the pattern by pinning newpaper to him and cutting the shape I wanted, LOL. 

I reused a shirt I had made for a previous costume this year by adding extra fabric and some lace to the sleeves and adding that bib type thing to the front of the shirt.  We had the hat, but it was a pirates hat, so I just took a piece of brown fabric and pinned it onto the hat to cover the skull and crossed bones.  Then double stick taped "buckles" to the shoes that I made out of thin cardboard and gold paint.  Oh and he's wearing a pair of my knee high socks and a white t-shirt underneath.

My son has had a heck of a year with costumes this year.  He's had 3 costumes for school and NONE of them were for Halloween.  If you want the whole saga, you can check out my blog. 

3  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Padded Toddler Wands on: January 18, 2012 05:14:01 PM


I made my niece a box full of dress up clothes for Christmas but decided she needed a few wands too.  Well giving a 2 year old pointy sticks isn't a good idea when she has a tendancy to whack on her older brother already.  What to do, what to do...  Padded wands!  (She'll probably just turn them around and whack him with the ball end, but I tried).

I had to buy dowels and wooden balls with holes drill halfway through them for the wands.  I had the felt, paint and ribbon already.  Actually the dowels and balls were the only things I had to buy, the rest was from my stash, YEAH!  Stashbuster gifts are awesome!  I also got rid of an unfinished project from my ufo pile for her gift also.  http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=402287.0 

I had soo much fun crafting for her.  I have 2 boys and just didn't get to make girly things that often when they were little.
4  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Completed Projects / Octopus in pastels on: January 18, 2012 05:05:03 PM
My brother had another baby in October. I wanted to make something for her but didn't know what they needed, so I just made one of the octopus from my own pattern. It turned out well.



I meant to give it to them when I saw them at Thanksgiving, but ended up giving it to them at Christmas. Oh well. They got it all the same.
5  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Hanging towels and potholders on: January 18, 2012 05:03:13 PM
We were sitting around after Thanksgiving talking when my mother asked me to make her some potholders, hanging kitchen towels, etc. for Christmas. Um, hello, its THANKSGIVING DAY, that's a little short notice. Yes I wanted to scream it, especially since I already had a gift I was making her mostly finished that took me MONTHS to do.

Well I was determined to make these for her, so I got to thinking what I had in my craft room that was unfinished or samples, etc. Well I made a bunch of washcloth sized swatches when I was trying out the Tunisian crochet. SCORE!

I put some borders around 2 of them, added a hanger and a button and you have a dish towel:



Then I took 4 of the wash clothes and made 2 potholders with them. I sewed 2 wash clothes, wrong sides together and added a loop hanger to make the potholders:



Then I had some odd shaped ones that wouldn't make good washclothes, potholders or dishtowels. Well mom has some cast iron skillets so I made some cast iron skillet handle potholders. You just slip the potholder onto the handle and you don't have to worry about burning yourself. I folded these in on themeselves and stitched up the back and across one end. I then took some cotton muslin and some heat resistant fabric and cut them to the same size as the sample. I folded it in half and sewed one end closed then stuffed it into the crocheted piece. I hand sewed the muslin to the crocheted part and came up with these:



I may have to make some of these for myself. I don't have a pattern since I was just clowning around with the samples, I'll have to come up with something.

These were made out of cotton yarn that I bought years ago on clearance. Best of all, I was able to give these to mom for her birthday before Christmas.
6  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Alien purse and faux fur/feather boas for dress up on: January 18, 2012 04:52:04 PM


A few years ago, I decided to make my dad an alien lunch box kit.  I was then thoroughly informed by my dad that he had a lunch box and liked it just fine, thank you very much.  Well I had alread started making the washcloth "napkins" and another long skinny piece that I can't even remember why I knitted it.  I got discouraged and put the washclothes and strap in my UFO pile (appropriately named now, LOL).  

Well Christmas was coming closer and I decided to make my neice a box of dress up stuff.  I remembered the washclothes and pulled them out and thought PURSE!!!

I took some matching yarn and whipped the 2 matching washcloths together and sewed the long skinny piece on as a handle.  I then took some scrap (matching) green fabric with white polka dots and lined the purse.  It turned out cute for a last minute idea and it got rid of an unfinished project.  

Oh and I found that pattern for the alien washcloth free online a few years ago when I made them, but the link doesn't work anymore.  I searched online for it, but I just don't think it exist anymore.

Oh and here are the faux fur/feather boas I knitted for her using fun fur type yarns (the white one was done on a knitting spool):

7  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Sam Houston Spirit Scarfs on: January 18, 2012 04:36:38 PM
My oldest niece is in her first year of college at Sam Houston State. Their colors are orange, blue and white so I decided to make her some spirit scarfs for her birthday. I found a spool of thin yarn at Goodwill of all places that was in those colors. So I used it by itself and with others to make a bunch of skinny scarves that can be used together or by themselves. I also used blue fun fur, some white fuzzy yarn, and some cheap acrylic yarn from my stash (odd bits that my mom had picked up at a garage sale and gave me).





I made a total of 6 in different lengths and patterns. Some were crocheted, one was done on a knitting spool and one was knitted. The result was fun, I think.
8  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Red Dragonscale Shawl on: January 18, 2012 04:18:04 PM
I started mom's Christmas gift back in February. I had been on youtube and saw someone do the crocodile crochet stitch. I thought it was pretty and really lent itself to a shawl. Well a few years ago, mom had asked me to make her a shawl. Better late than never.





I did change the stitch up a bit. I wanted the stitches to look more pointed and less rounded. So I added an additional chain stitch between the 2 sets of 5 double crochets. If you are familiar with the pattern then you probably know what I'm talking about. I just did the stitch until I thought it was long enough. My mom was into WOW and other fantasy stuff so I made her a "Red Dragon Scale" Shawl. The points really do make it look more like scales.

I got on Youtube to look for the crocodile stitch pattern that I saw so I could link it for you guys and found where someone actually put together a video for how to make a shawl using this technique. I haven't watched the whole thing (I only watched the first 5 minutes), but it looks similar to how I did mine:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0LiH9Wk3rHc

This isn't exactly how I made mine, but it looks pretty close.

Here she is opening it:

9  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / Icicle spirals from TP Rolls!!! on: January 11, 2012 07:54:00 PM
I saw this video on youtube:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wCHQmOJuhk8
and was inspired to make some icicle spiral ornaments from toilet paper rolls. However, I didn't like the thickness of the ornament she made and I wanted mine tapered. I was able to make 4 icicles out of 1 toilet paper roll. I didn't add the beads or bows that she did in her tutorial and I used paint. I think they turned out well.

Here are my first attempts:





As you can see, the shapes are irregular and they don't all curl well. Well when you are cutting open the toilet paper roll along the seam, there is an overlap area of about 1/4" to 1/2" that you need to cut off or that piece won't curl well (as you can see in the second from the left in both of the top 2 pictures). I also came up with a way to cut the icicles so they all look somewhat uniform in size. I also used a thin hole punch in the top of the ornament and strung metallic red cord in the holes to hang.

Here is what I came up with:





Hints:
1. Paint several layers. Don't try to coat the cardboard with one layer, it won't coat evenly. Paint a primer, gesso or base coat before painting your final color. Metallic or pearly topcoats look really good on these, but even those may take a few layers to get a good coat.
2. If using glitter, paint the glitter area a coordinating color first.
3. Try to use micro or ultra fine glitter. I don't think chunky glitter will look as good on these.
4. Reshape (curl) the icicles while the paint is not quite set. Basically when its dry to the touch but still really cool/cold, the icicle is more flexible during that time

I can do a tutorial if anyone is interested.
10  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Novel Wreath and other stuff made from recycled books! on: January 03, 2012 08:31:28 PM


I ran across this video on youtube and thought I'd give it a try:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8u3cpr8WcmM

I did several things differently though.

1. I wrapped my wreath form (which I got at the dollar store) in book pages. I figured I had plenty and if I didn't quite get the wreath covered in roses, then it wouldn't show.

2. The instructions tell you to make the roses using 3 book pages that are stacked together. I made different kinds of roses (I wanted smaller blossoms). I made some only using one page, some with 2 pages and some with 3 pages stacked.

3. I used regular scissors and fancy edge scissors for some of the cutting when I made the spiral cuts to give it different looks.

4. I used 2 different red ink pads and one silver ink pad to give some of the pages color before I cut the pages into spirals.

5. I used a very thin knitting needle (a skewer would work also) to start the wrapping process. It was just easier for me. I also put a little bit of glue on the paper when I began the spiral so that it stayed in place better. Just be sure you don't glue the paper to your knitting needle.

6. I used 2 different sized pearl beads also.

Here's a close-up:



I also made a small ornament doing the same technique. I just used smaller pieces of paper and I covered a styrofoam ball.



I was having so much fun with the book pages I decided to see what else I could make with them. But I also decided that ink was too expensive for this kind of project, so I decided to use watercolors instead. It went further and didn't cost nearly as much to paint the pages first and let them dry, then cut them or fold them into the shapes I wanted.

First I followed these directions: http://knittygrittythoughts.typepad.com/knitty_gritty_thoughts/2009/11/my-entry.html
but used book pages and hot glue to make this:



It really looks like an artichoke. I wanted to make one that was more of a pinecone shape so I had some plastic Easter eggs, used the watercolored paper and came up with this:



And for giggles here's an ornament I made using one of the watercolored pages beads and embroider floss:

I can't remember where I found the instructions for this one, but it was easy to make.

I was doing all this when I was supposed to be putting the finishing touches on my Christmas gifts I was making. Hey it was productive procrastination, LOL.
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