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11  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General / Garden Doodles on: January 17, 2015 01:48:55 PM
In addition to being a fabulous crafter, alwaysinmyroom is also a magical gardener! Her beautiful garden was the inspiration for this box of doodley knick knacks that I recently sent her.

I repurposed one of my birchboxes and painted these flowers (inspired by a drawing I saw on Pinterest) to cover the top.



Inside, there are ATCs and other little artsy things.







I included a couple of pieces that contain wildflower seeds.



And a little cube with garden veggies painted on each side.





I painted these on small scraps of leather.



I made a teeny book from an old post card and put garden themed quotes inside.





Lastly, the Go Sit on a Cactus kit that I posted earlier Smiley.



There is still quite a lot of room left in the box so I might have to send some more garden doodles her way!
12  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Beginner - Can you help me assess difficulty level of a couple patterns? on: January 17, 2015 08:40:22 AM
I have a couple of crafty goals this year and one of them is to try making my own clothes. I've got a couple of trainings queued up on creativebug and will probably start with something like lounge pants but I'm also exploring other patterns and trying to assess if they would be appropriate for someone with JV skills Smiley.

These patterns seem relatively simple but I'd love an opinion from a craftster seamstress. Does anything about these look especially difficult? Button holes? Fabric types?? Lining? Getting a good fit?? I'm just not sure what to look for to determine difficulty level yet.

http://www.pinkchalkfabrics.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=39_76_84&products_id=12041

http://www.pinkchalkfabrics.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&products_id=12033

Thank you!!
13  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General / Go Sit on a Cactus Kit on: January 13, 2015 10:12:58 AM
I made this snarky little "go sit on a cactus" kit for alwaysinmyroom Smiley. She is now prepared to prank any unsuspecting evil doers with a prick (er, papercut) to the hiney!



It's a matchbox covered in craft paper and then doodled on with black pen and wee bits of craft paint. The drawer is covered in origami paper that reminded me of succulents.



Inside the kit is a whole assortment of cacti that I drew with micron pens and then painted in with water colors.





Here's a shot of a cacti trap in action!!



This is a silly project but I have a real goal to improve my drawing skills and learn hand lettering in 2015 so this was a fun place to start.



Now watch your hiney!! You never know when you might fall prey to a cactus trap Smiley.
14  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Journal Cover Swap? on: December 27, 2014 07:55:16 AM


I think being a crafter and a list-maker go hand-in-hand Cheesy. I can never have too many journals!!

Would there be any interest in doing a journal cover swap sometime in the new year? We could send a reusable cover and standard composition notebook (the ones you get at the drug store for $0.50). The cover could be sewn or embroidered or quilted or stenciled or...whatever!

This swap would be just for the cover and notebook (no extras).
15  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / Our Spiraling Home Project - From Deck to Addition on: December 18, 2014 07:12:43 PM
A little over a year ago, the hubby and I started a project to put a covered deck onto the back of our home. Like so many projects, it spiraled a bit out of control. What started as a deck turned into a full blown home addition. The process was stressful and exhausting at times but as we've FINALLY been able to enjoy the space, we know it was all worth it! We love our new deck Smiley.

Other than the decision making, I can't take any credit for this work. We had a great contractor that did all of the hard parts. If we had attempted to participate in any of the construction work, this project wouldn't have made it past the whole-in-the-ground phase Smiley.







Deciding the paint colors (particularly what to do with my favorite part of the room, the ceiling) was so hard!! We actually ended up painting it a different color to begin with and redoing the whole thing Smiley.



And here are some of the before and in-progress pictures! Gosh, I almost forgot what a mess this was!! Cheesy











16  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / This Year's Elf Workshop on: December 14, 2014 04:04:06 PM
Every December I host a holiday craft party with my girlfriends. We eat and drink and craft and laugh all day long and into the wee hours of the morning Smiley. It's a lot of work but we have so much fun!

This year we did 5 different crafts - most of which we'll give out as gifts to family and coworkers. Each person takes home ~5 of each project!

We made microwaveable rice warmers. Before the party, I sewed 5"x5" charm squares together. At the party, we turned them inside out, pushed out the corners, filled them rice and then zipped the open seam with the sewing machine.

I altered printable labels (that I can't seem to find a link to now Sad) and we cut them out during the party and attached them to the finished warmers with ribbon. 





We also did a sticky simple syrup project Smiley. We made cinnamon and orange infused syrups. I printed labels from this link before-hand and we cut them at the party and attached them to the bottles with black and white ribbon.



I just love bottle brush trees and saw a cute decoration/ornament idea on Alpha Stamps that I knew would be fun to do at the party! I had all the supplies on hand and we made a big mess cutting and glueing and glittering our own versions Smiley.



We assembled tub teas using the recipe I found, here. They smell so good and I actually used one in my bath this morning Smiley. I had all the ingredients and we mixed them together, filled the tea bags and cut out the labels. They were so easy that we were able to make a TON of them.



I forgot to get pictures of the last project we did Sad! I made a couple batches of peppermint bark the day before and we cut them and wrapped them up in parchment bags with cute labels.

I made a big batch of soup and a salad that we snacked on all day. Everyone brought really tasty appetizers and drinks that kept us full (and a little buzzed) from 1pm to 1am!! Cheesy

I'm only now finishing the last of the dishes but I can hardly wait to do it all again next year!



17  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Entrechat - Seamless Baby Sweater on: November 18, 2014 06:07:44 PM
Our neighbor is having a baby girl this winter which gave me the perfect excuse to knit an itty bitty sweater!

This is a simple (and seamless!!) pattern called Entrechat. I used Malabrigo worsted in the Polar Morn colorway. I stitched the newborn size because the tinier the better Smiley!!







I'm excited to see the little one in it in a just a few more months!!
18  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Kitchen Goodies! on: November 01, 2014 08:26:02 AM
I made this little set of kitchen goodies for Craftster chef extraordinaire, MareMare! I know she's a great cook because I've been lucky enough to enjoy her food before Smiley.

The set includes a meal planning journal, a pot holder and a dish drying mat. A bit of a random collection but hopefully useful, none the less!



I fell in LOVE with the linen kitchen-themed fabric! I have about half a yard left and am plotting how to use it Smiley



Happy cooking!!
19  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Grocery Bag Sloppy Journal on: September 30, 2014 09:38:04 AM
I've always been interested in trying book binding and finally took the leap with this project! I was inspired by this tutorial and my awesome IYP swap partner.



This required a whole stack of grocery bags which I've been hoarding under the sink for months! To reduce the folds and get the crinkled look, I soaked the cut pages in water, squeezed them into a ball and then hung them to dry outside. Once dry, I ironed them flat before folding them into the book signatures.

There are a lot of pages that are plain and can be used for writing or art journaling or scrapbooking or whatever! But I like the pages that have little tattoos that show where they came from Smiley.



Coptic stitch was new to me. I was a bit messy in my execution of it but I think it ended up fitting the sloppy look of the journal so let's just say I meant it to be that way Smiley.



I embellished the cover with cheese cloth, buttons and linen that I stamped with simple carved house stamps I made a while back.



I had so much making this and I'm filled with other sloppy book ideas!!
20  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Kiss. Love. Laugh. Craft. on: September 29, 2014 08:31:08 PM
I made this tote bag for my splendid partner in the most recent IYP swap, petskin. I always have an extra great time crafting with her since we have similar tastes. If I had more patience for cross-stitching, this is probably something I would have made for both of us! As it was, I only had the crafty fortitude to finish these 4 words Smiley.



I turned the completed piece into a project tote bag. I went a little crazy with the bright fabrics but figured it would be fun to carry in the darker fall and winter months when we all need a splash of color!



The pattern is from SatsumaStreet on Etsy. There are so many happy designs in her shop!!



This project (combined with my great swap partner Smiley) really helped me get my crafty mojo back after a challenging summer. Seeing these words was a good reminder of my four favorite things... kissing, loving, laughing and crafting! What more does anyone need??
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