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1  Re: HP Craftalong ~ Summer Semester June 1-August 31, 2015 ~ Join Anytime! in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: Today at 01:02:39 PM
A new Bertie Bott's Every Flavor Bean Mini-Challenge has been posted!  



What's this week's bean!?!?  Take the Portkey to the Bertie Bott's Bean Bag to find out!


Please note that you are welcome to do any, all or none of these challenges as they come up throughout the semester.  They are not intended to cause stress, but are instead intended to get your crafty Muses singing.  None of the HPC staff will complete ALL the classes and challenges posted this semester.  So relax, and craft what you love. 

Also remember that you have until 11:59 Central Standard Time today to finish posting the "old" bean.
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2  Re: HP Craftalong ~ Summer Semester June 1-August 31, 2015 ~ Join Anytime! in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: July 24, 2015 10:48:02 AM
Challenge: Quidditch - Half Time
House: Gryffindor
Project Name & Link: Coffee Jelly (Coffee Jello)

Brief Description: This recipe is the perfect refreshing summer treat!  Jello made with coffee, unflavored gelatin, and a touch of sugar.  Even though I'm more of a tea fan(atic) than a coffee lover, I liked it plain and didn't find it overly bitter.  But since lots of reviewers kept going on about liking it better with sweetened condensed milk, whipped cream or ice cream, I decided to try it that way too.  Since I'm lactose I went with a tiny scoop of vanilla cashew milk 'ice cream'.  (And for those of you who are also lactose intolerant, who might not have tried it yet, give the cashew milk ice cream a go.  It's FANTASTIC! Much creamier than almond milk or soy milk ice creams.)  Husband who is a coffee lover, liked his plain.  I made half-sized servings for dessert, because I didn't want to be wired all night, but you could also try with decaffeinated coffee.
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3  Re: HP Craftalong ~ Summer Semester June 1-August 31, 2015 ~ Join Anytime! in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: July 23, 2015 12:20:03 PM
Class: Apparition
House: Gryffindor!
Project Name & Link: Burrow Inspired Rag Rug

Slytherin Scavenger Hunt: #4 Snape Says
Brief Description:  I followed a complex pattern to create this rag rug for noodle-bug in the One Awesome Harry Potter Thing Swap.  
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Challenge: Bertie Botts Bean - Grape Jelly
House: Gryffindor!
Project Name: Rosewood & Calendula Soap

Brief Description: I'm working on a box of goodies for a friend's birthday, and whipped up a mini batch of melt & pour goats milk soap for her.  It is scented with rosewood oil, and I've added calendula petals to it.  Melt & pour soap making is a craft that I learned in childhood.
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Class: Dark Mark
House: Gryffindor!
Project Name: Heart of a Lion Zip Pouch

Brief Description: I'm working on a box of goodies for a friend's birthday, and whipped up a heart shaped zip pouch for her.  She loves lions and the color pink, and I love her, so the gift is certainly full of love!  The pattern comes from a tutorial over on Dog Under My Desk.
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Challenge: Quidditch - Try Outs
House: Gryffindor!
Project Name & Link: Sassy Stitcher Charm Bracelet

Brief Description: I think I'm pretty good at several craft mediums, but I suppose my go-to craft is making charm bracelets.  Therefore I submit for Quidditch Try Outs a new bracelet design.  The Sassy Stitcher charm bracelet is inspired by all the totally badass stitchers that I've been privileged to work with over the years.
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Challenge: Quidditch - Catch the Snitch
House: Gryffindor!
Project Name & Link: Time Turner Rear View Mirror Charm

Brief Description: Small and golden!  I was talking to AugustBell recently, and she mentioned wanting to have a custom charm made for her rear-view mirror.  She wanted a time turner!  How could I say no?  I liked the one that I made for her so much, that I decided to make a few more. 5 to be precise.  Smiley
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Challenge: Quidditch - Pre Match Pep Talk
House: Gryffindor!
Project Name & Link: Winged Key Rear View Mirror Charm

Brief Description: And while I was at it making time turner mirror charms, I decided to make some winged key mirror charms too!  This one is going into that box of birthday goodies to lift the spirits of my friend while she drives, a task she's not fond of.  
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Challenge: Quidditch - Time Out
House: Gryffindor!
Project Name & Link: Mixed Tape Pencil Pouch

Brief Description: Something just for me, huh?  Later this summer I'm taking a few trips to 2 different family reunions.  One on my husband's side of the family over in Illinois, and one on my side of the family, up in New Hampshire.  I decided to try taking along a smash book to chronicle my adventures (and have a small, portable craft to work on).  I'm bad at scrap booking, but I'm hoping that the "just shove it all in" mentality and the portability of the smash book will actually get me to do it.  It's easy to feel like you need a million accessories and supplies, but I like to travel light.  So I made myself a "pencil case" to hold some pencils, pens, washi tape, small scissors, and a few bits of ephemera to add in.  It is 7.5" x 9.5".  Big enough to hold stuff, but not too big to weigh down my purse or carry on bag.  More details in the project post.
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4  Mixed Tape Zippered Pouch in Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General by Mistress Jennie on: July 23, 2015 12:18:14 PM
Later this summer I'm taking a few trips to 2 different family reunions.  One on my husband's side of the family over in Illinois, and one on my side of the family, up in New Hampshire.  I decided to try taking along a smash book to chronicle my adventures (and have a small, portable craft to work on).  I'm bad at scrap booking, but I'm hoping that the "just shove it all in" mentality and the portability of the smash book will actually get me to do it.  It's easy to feel like you need a million accessories and supplies, but I like to travel light.  So I made myself a "pencil case" to hold some pencils, pens, washi tape, small scissors, and a few bits of ephemera to add in.  It is 7.5" x 9.5".  Big enough to hold stuff, but not too big to weigh down my purse or carry on bag.



I used a variety of scrap fabrics from my stash to create the tape, which was appliqud to the front by using wonder-under. To create the applique pattern I simply printed out several copies of this clipart image, cut them up, and used them as templates. The screws and the holes in the cassette case were done with various sizes of buttons.  It's a little hard to see in the photos but there are actually tiny little 1/4" buttons in each corner, to represent the screws that hold the cassette case together.  And just for fun, here it is filled with goodies.


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5  Burow-inspired Crochet Rag Rug from Tee Shirt Yarn (spaghetti/fettucini yarn) in Crochet: Completed Projects by Mistress Jennie on: July 23, 2015 08:20:57 AM
I recently organized Round 2 of the One Awesome Harry Potter Thing Swap, and was lucky enough to partner with the fantastic noodle-bug.  While we were chatting about our HP Love, it became apparent that we both desperately want to live in the Burrow, the home of the Weasley family.  The Weasleys are kind, loving, welcoming, and poor.  Mrs. Weasley makes handmade gifts at the holidays, and sends Harry wonderful knitted sweaters, and homemade pies.  I decided that I wanted to give noodle-bug a little bit of the Weasleys loving if threadbare home, and decided to go with a houseware item for the swap.  I settled on a beautiful crocheted rug pattern by ATERGcrochet on Etsy.  



The rug called for tee shirt/zpaghetti/fettucini yarn, which I thought would fun to work with, and work up quickly.  Both of those things turned out to be true.  What didnt work out so well though was finding the yarn easily.  While it seemed to be available at just about every craft store a year or two ago, it has since disappeared entirely from store shelves.  I did some looking around online and found very few sources in the US, but one seller on Etsy called Ganxxet had a decent selection and fair prices.  (The seller was also very helpful and great to work with.  I'd order from her again in a heartbeat.)  Sadly I still couldnt afford to order all the yarn Id need for the rug, so I ended up making some of it.  I made the navy and black yarn from tube jersey that was on sale at Joanns for 50% off.  (Following one of any number of tutorials online for making tee shirt yarn from actual tee shirts. The only difference was that I used a rotary cutter & cutting mat, rather than scissors.)  I bought 2.5 yards of black, and 1 yard of navy, for about $15.  It took most of the morning to slice it up with a rotary cutter, stretch it out, and roll it into balls.  But I was listening to an audio book, so it was a good time.  



The pink & white print yarns came from Ganxxet, and the white is actually a print that includes doodles of wings, lightning bolts, Union jacks, and words.  Here's a close up shot of the print:



After nearly completing it, I decided that while I liked the rug, I wasn't in love with it.  It needed more colors to really feel scrappy.  So I added atouch more color by making more yarn out of a teal and a violet tee shirt that I had laying around, that had been destined for Goodwill.  I really love how much brighter the rug is with the addition of the teal and violet.  You can see how it looked before from this process pic. The overall color scheme was softer before, and now it's definitely brighter.



Here's a detail shot, which shows the magenta & teal stitches:


The entire rug is supposed to be 34 rounds, and measure 4 across, but I didnt get quite that far.  By the time I was on round 17, it was clear that I was nearly out of all my yarns.  It was also becoming *quite* heavy, and I had to ship it to the UK.  So I completed the 18th round, then did 2 more rounds of single crochet to finish the edges.  When I was done it measured 38 across and weighed 5 pounds!  Here it is in its new home, noodle-bugs bay window in her flat in London.



I will say that while I am normally all for recycling/upcycling, I did prefer working with the ready made yarn, and the yarn that I made out of tube jersey, far more than I liked working with the batch I made from actual shirts.  I hated trying to hide the tee shirt seams.  Im really pleased with how it came out, but I would like to try the pattern again some day, completing all 34 rounds.  It's very thick and squishy under your feet, and has a solid weight to it that feels comforting.  
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6  Re: HP Craftalong ~ Summer Semester June 1-August 31, 2015 ~ Join Anytime! in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: July 20, 2015 12:41:50 PM
Multi-project post...  I'm a bit wiped out after finishing these 4 baby quilts in 10 days!  There's more info on each of them on the actual project post that they are linked to.

Class: Divination
House: Gryffindor
Project Name & Link: Fox & the Houndstooth Quilt

Brief Description: This Divination project will be very important in the future.  When our friends Jena & Stephan have their son in a few months, it sill keep him safely cuddled! 
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Class: Flying
House: Gryffindor
Project Name & Link: Bumble Bee Baby Quilt

Brief Description: A quilt inspired by the humble little bumble bee!  This one is for our friend's Chris & Sarah who are expecting their first daughter in September.
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Class: Herbology
House: Gryffindor
Project Name & Link: Isabelle's Lavender & Teal Floral Baby Quilt

Brief Description: This next baby quilt is both soothing, and has lavender flowers on it!  (I'm so all over this prompt!)  It was just sent away to our friends David & Amanda, who welcomed their second daughter, Isabelle, into the world last month.
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Class: HoM
House: Gryffindor
Project Name & Link: Elephant Romp Baby Quilt

Brief Description: Last baby quilt of the day!  This submission is inspired by a quote from the Dr. Seuss classic, Horton Hatches the Egg: I meant what I said and I said what I meant. An elephant's faithful one-hundred percent!  Hopefully this blanket will be a faithful companion to little Caroline, who was also born at the end of June.
Project Picture:
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7  The Summer of Baby Quilts in Quilting: Completed Projects by Mistress Jennie on: July 20, 2015 12:41:05 PM
Does it seem like some things just happen in waves?  Back in 2009, I had a ton of quilts to make.  I made 5 wedding quilts & a baby quilt that summer.  This summer I suddenly had 4 more baby quilts to make.  Why do these things come in waves? 

This year, since I have a few trips I have to take for family functions, and a hopping Etsy shop to keep running, I don't really have time to drop everything and quilt for a month again.  So I simplified my plans a bit, and managed to put together 4 baby quilts in the last 10 days! 



In order to keep it simple I did strip quilts.  Each one used 1/4 yard of 5 different fabrics for the top, 1/2 yard of coordinating fabric for the binding and 1 1/4 yards of backing, for a total of 3 yards per quilt.  I cut each of the fabrics in the top into a 3.5" strip and a 5.5" strip, and alternated the narrow & fat strips.  They were each quilted with free motion quilting, with cotton machine quilting thread and used cotton & bamboo blend batting.

Sweet As Honey was the first one I completed.  I picked up the fabrics in a bundle from Niche Fabric Studio on Etsy.  She sells kits for rag quilts, but was happy to work with me to build similar kits that would work for my traditional quilting instead.  The fabrics include Bee Sweet Morning and Honey House.  It was quilted in a bright coral, to compliment the bees in the Sweet Morning print, and was backed in the Honey House print.  This one is going to a former student of mine, and his wife, who are expecting their first girl in September.







Isabelle's Garden was the second one I finished, and again came as a bundle from Niche.  The fabrics include Serenade Daylight, Stitchery in Aqua, some Kona solids in violet and aqua, and Heartbeats in Cool for the binding.  It was quilted in a off white, to match the background of the Serenade Daylight print, and was backed in the violet solid with a strip of the Heartbeats thrown in because I didn't have quite enough fabric for the entire back.  This one was just sent off to my best friend and his wife, who just had their second daughter at the end of June.



Fox & the Houndstooth was the third quilt I finished, and the only one made for a boy this summer.  The fabrics include Foxes in grey, Bowties in black, and Eyeglasses in Tan, from Robert Kauffman's Fox & the Houndstooth line.  It was quilted in light grey, to match the background of the Foxes print, and was backed in the Eyeglasses print.  To be honest, this bundle did not come as present, and was the only bundle I didn't see before ordering.  I enjoyed the shops other bundles so much, that I asked for one built around the Fox print, and trusted the shop to pick good coordinates.  I received an awful safety orange (which did NOT match the orange of the foxes), some mustache print (I'm SOOO over the mustache craze), and the red & white chevrons (another trend I'm pretty over).  I ended up moving the orange over to the Elephant quilt you'll see next, ditching the mustaches entirely, and buying the Bowties & Eyeglasses coordinates to redesign the quilt.  I was going to ditch the chevrons too, but found I didn't mind them as much once I added in the bowties & glasses, which has a cute tan & white houndstooth background.  While it was my least favorite bundle, it might be my favorite finished quilt.



Elephant Romp was the final quilt to be done, and was finished yesterday morning.  The fabrics include Elephant Romp, Kitchenette and Floralism in Fresh Grass, along with some Kona solids.  It was quilted in a bright magenta, to compliment the elephant print, and was backed in the lime green print.


Whew!  That was a busy week.  Now that I've got the sewing machine out, I think I'm going to put together a few zippered pouches and maybe a pencil case, before putting it back to bed for a while.  Cheesy
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8  Re: HP Craftalong ~ Summer Semester June 1-August 31, 2015 ~ Join Anytime! in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: July 20, 2015 08:58:29 AM


Check out the Events over at the Quidditch Pitch
"Now I want a nice, clean game.  From everyone."
     
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9  Re: One Awesome Harry Potter Thing (OAHPT) - Round 2 Gallery in The Swap Gallery by Mistress Jennie on: July 14, 2015 10:19:23 AM
What a great way to start the gallery!  

And now, let's continue it....  I received the most beautiful package from noodle-bug this morning.  She sent me an owl to let me know that I've been accepted into the Hogwarts faculty Astronomy Club!  And membership comes with a welcome package.  Cheesy  

First, an absolutely stunning cowl.  It is knitted from a silk & angora, and is so light and soft!


Second she included a beautiful hand-bound notebook to record my astronomical observations.


But wait!  When you look closer you find that each of these two lovely objects is actually a star map in disguise!  That's right, noodle-bug knitted beads into the cowl, and stamped tiny golden stars onto the notebook, to create maps of the stars that are found in the Equatorial band.  The cowl even changes texture at the top and bottom to represent the Tropic of Cancer and the Tropic of Capricorn.  Here's a detail shot of the tiny golden beads in the cowl:


And here's a detail shot of the stamping on the notebook:


I should mention, that without asking, noodle-bug managed to perfectly match my winter hat too!  Also, she was kind enough to include some Jelly Babies, candy, and bits & bobs of broken jewlery to play with, but I got side tracked with photos, and forgot to snap some of them....  Bad Jennie!


Noodle-bug, do you have any idea how much I love you?  So very, very much, that even though it is currently 99 degrees (with 70% humidity) here in Tennessee, I pulled out my winter coat just to get an action shot for you!


Thank you so much dear noodle-bug!  I will treasure both of my new goodies.  Cheesy
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10  Re: HP Craftalong ~ Summer Semester June 1-August 31, 2015 ~ Join Anytime! in Craftalongs by Mistress Jennie on: July 14, 2015 03:43:16 AM


The Dark Mark has been spotted over the Quidditch pitch!  Members of the Order of the Phoenix & Dumbledore's Army are rushing that way to help stop the Death Eaters, and they need all the wands they can get.  

Will you help remove the Dark Mark?
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