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21  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Re: Black / White Shorts with skulls (can I really wear them out?) picture heavy! on: September 19, 2008 05:52:14 PM
Super cute! You could (and totally should) wear them when the weather is really hot. Decorum sort of goes out the window when the mercury hits 30 (Celsius - I'm Canadian!)
22  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 30 ENTRIES / Bicycle Cozy (Top Tube Protection) on: September 01, 2008 06:53:49 PM
Bike Polo is pretty big in my city, and the gang here threw a tournament this summer called the NSPI (North Side Polo Invitational). We had teams from different cities, and it was really super fun.

Bike Polo is played by some pretty hard core bike fanatics (messengers, hipsters, roadies, etc) and a lot of them play on fixed geared bikes.

Now, of COURSE you have to get your fixie tricked out with the coolest accessories... Hence the birth of the Top Tube Protector. Basically, this is a cozy for your bike to protect it from scratches when you lean it against posts, or when you lock it up with your bike chain.

This is my version of the Top Tube Protector. I made three super girly ones as prizes at this year's NSPI, wanting to give them to an all-girl team. The girls who received them liked them (I think) and I'm really pleased with how they turned out.

I made them reversible because the fabrics I used were just so cute. The bright yellow is an oilcloth, and would work well in rainy weather; the checkered pattern has a nice gold touch to it that really stands out on a bike. I also embroidered NSPI on them, to make them more legit!

Usually Top Tube Protectors are fastened with velcro, but I used a reversible zipper, which I think is a stroke of genius! The protectors are finished with bias tape. There's some batting in there too, for added gushy-ness.

Photos:
















23  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / My First House on: August 27, 2008 02:42:49 PM
My boyfriend and I bought our first house together in March 2007. We've spent the last year and a half fixing it up... It's gone through a lot of stages, and so has our relationship!!! I've posted some of the work as it was completed on other threads... But here is the whole thing all together... To note: when we first bought the house, it had been used by 5 college students, so you can imagine the disrepair. They had tried to do a cover up job, but it was pretty lackluster. The walls were covered in the worst paint job ever, the carpets were beyond salvageable, the kitchen was a nightmare and the addition was sinking! Oy!

The Master Bedroom was the first room we tackled. We enlarged the closet door, and added an organizer. We painted the walls, and generally just cleaned it up a little.



I ripped out the carpeting in the second bedroom in a fit... Check out my post here http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=203993.msg2175533#msg2175533

The last bedroom is now the computer room. We also put down new carpeting in the whole top floor. We redid the bathroom too. ripped up the linoleum and put in ceramic tiles. (using the tile cutter was one of the more frustrating jobs - mixing the grout was one of the most satisfying!).



Downstairs we updated the house with a uniform coat of paint, cleaned up the dinning room, and totally redid the addition and the kitchen.






See the kitchen reno here: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=261627.msg2932000#msg2932000

And the addition (as we call it, the Florida Room!). This room was hella slanted, covered in ugly carpet tiles, and the walls were splattered with paint (Pollock this kid was not!).





My boyfriend used bottle jacks to host up the room (1/4 inch every day for 8 days) and poured concrete footings and made the whole thing super secure and insulated. It was by far the warmest room in the house last winter!

Then I pulled up the carpet tiles, painted the whole thing, we replaced the baseboards, and added the most beautiful pine floor ever. Our friend was opening a pub, and he had this great wide-plank flooring left over. Once we put it down, we loved it so much we couldn't stain it or cover it with anything, so we just rubbed in three coats of tung oil, and it turned out great. Water resistant but still so natural.

And last but not least, the exterior: We paved the driveway, filled out the bald spots in the yard, cleaned out the garden and painted the railings.





Phew. This weekend we're going to my parents' cottage for the first time this summer! We are going to sit on the dock and do ABSOLUTELY nothing for what seems like the first time in our entire lives!!! hahaha.
24  COOKING / Dessert / Re: peanut butter & nutella brownies! on: August 17, 2008 12:23:46 PM
Peanut butter and Nutella... Oh man, that is so good!!

I actually snuck down to the kitchen last night and chowed down on a spoonful of EACH of those things last night Embarrassed

So bad, but SOOOOOO good.
25  COOKING / Dessert / Mom's Birthday Cake on: August 17, 2008 12:21:00 PM
My mom's birthday was last week, and we went out for dinner, but had dessert back at her place. I wanted to bake her a cake, and found a great recipe for a nice fluffy cake with whipped cream and blueberries.

Now, my mother and I have VERY different diets, so I succumbed and whipped up some actual, honest to goodness, straight from the cow, whipping cream. BUT, I also used Earth Balance Shortening (I was kinda weirded out when I saw it in the supermarket) so there is no bad trans fats in the cake at least.

I liked the cake a lot, but my family - who are very stubborn people who refuse to try new things or open their minds even slightly - couldn't get over that Earth Balance taste. (I personally prefer the taste to Crisco... but that's just me).



The cake turned out nice and moist. It wasn't crumbly (but maybe that's because I also put eggs in it, like a "traditional" cake). The flavour was a little bland (even as I was making it, I thought it was weird that the recipe didn't call for Vanilla Extract. I should have listened to my instincts and added a tsp anyway!). But with the blueberries, it was great!



Yum yum. Love those blueberries!



So as you can see, there's a layer of jam, a layer of blueberries, and then I added the whipped cream and the second cake.

Diggin' in!

26  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / Kitchen Renovation on: August 06, 2008 04:56:21 AM
My boyfriend and I bought our house about a year and a half ago, and when we bought it, it was used as a student house. The dining room was used as a bedroom, and there were 5 university students who lived there before we moved in.

The kitchen was in dire need of some TLC. The before pictures show how the wall cabinets were hung way too low, the appliances were almond colour, and there was some major rotting going on under the sink.

BEFORE:









So I took one week off work, and yes, it's true, I demo'ed the old kitchen and installed the new one in only SIX days!!! Though putting in the doors and handles happened a little later because I had to order them in... Sigh.

First off I took out the terrible old cabinets.



There was no drywall behind the upper cabinets, so I had to repatch it, and I had to lay some plywood down on the floor to make it flush with the tiles. Oh, I did ALL of this work myself, because the boyfriend didn't have the week off. It was SO much fun, and I felt very proud of myself! (Bob Villa with a p*ssy, as one of my friends said!!!)



But then I had to finish the drywall, taping and all. It was fun. I knew that only a small portion of the taping would be visible after the new cabinets were installed, so I really only tried to make those areas beautiful. The rest was pretty sloppy, but it's okay, because it got all covered up.



Compound drying... It was tough having to wait 24 hours between the coats. I really wanted to get painting!!!

And here is the final install. Minus doors, obviously.



So for a couple of weeks, we had to live with our new kitchen without the doors. I couldn't WAIT for them to see how it all looked. Sigh.



And here are the after photos:









Thanks for looking!
27  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / Re: Shiny New Craftroom in Red and Turquoise!!! (Image Heavy) on: July 23, 2008 08:00:51 AM
Words fail me! It is PERFECT! I especially love that you have your computer right next to your sewing machine! I'm always dragging my laptop into my sewing room to watch this or that tutorial (crouched in child's pose on the floor, no less) and it totally wrecks the flow of the project... But in your room... You obviously know your work patterns. It looks beautiful.
28  KNITTING / Projects from the Stitch 'N B**ch Books by Debbie Stoller / Re: Queen of hearts bikini, sans hearts on: May 28, 2008 04:04:51 PM
I did the same thing when I knit mine... I thought I'd skip over the heart, and ended up skipping over that ever so important part of the pattern where they tell you to knit/purl something like 26 rows.... You should have a fat base of rows at the bottom before you start the middle decreases.

Is this clear? Let me know if I explained it right.

Don't despair - It's so cute and super worth the effort!!
29  CANADA / Ontario / Re: Stitch 'n' Bitch in Ottawa? on: May 19, 2008 06:44:57 AM
When I joined the Yahoo group it was called Stitch 'n' Bitch Ottawa Chapter. The most regular meet ups are at Bridgehead on the first and third friday of every month. They do a lot of mass orders from Knitpicks, too, and the digest is helpful for advice, notices of special events, etc.

http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ottawaknitting/?yguid=45055788

30  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Thank You for Being a Friend on: May 11, 2008 06:32:41 AM
Why is it that so many people may age loved and watched "the Golden Girls" when they were young. It's strange that a show about golden aged single women living together in a retirement complex in Miami would appeal to so many kids. (how did that premise even fly off the pitch table???) But I guess the pastel colour palette and the inherent safety of a sheltered retirement home appealed to our young sensibilities...

Anyway, this is a quote from one of the episodes, and I think my mom will really dig it for mother's day.

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