With all our rain and dark skies it's been impossible to get really good photos, so I'm just going to post what I have even though I don't feel they do justice to my gifts from LadyBugsAndBumblebees. You should have heard me when I saw this gorgeous crocheted bag in one of my favorite colors. Love the stitch pattern, the cute variety of buttons that trim the sides, and the braided handle that includes an apple ribbon (since we're both teachers, this was so appropriate!).
Then to make it even better, LBBB lined it with purple fabric and included one of her tags to identify the maker.
I've been checking out resin & washer jewelry with the thought that I might try making some, but LBBB beat me to it and sent this cute little monsters necklace. Can't tell you how often I've heard teachers talking about what the "little monsters" in their classrooms just did! LOL
A close-up of the pendant so you can see the details better.
Then LBBB made me a mug rug and four coasters with toile fabric on the front, an absorbent crocheted backing, button embellishments on the corners, and what must be a thousand seed beads along the edges! I can't imagine how long it must have taken to attach all those beads but I love the finished effect!
She also included this very pretty dish towel and a package of washi tape type stickers for my paper crafting. I love birds, so the dish towel was right on target, too.
And finally, a journal and two note pads since I'm the queen of list-making. Paisley is one of the designs I really like so she nailed it on these also.
Thanks, LBBB, you've been a great partner once again and I look forward to the next time we swap . . . cause I still have more ideas for gifts for you and the girls!
Barbie doll caftan I cut out in 1999 and finally made myself finish. Luckily the 5 year-old great-niece won't care how outdated it is.
Then a toilet paper tube project I started 3 years ago. I mainly did it to try papercrafting techniques, so that's why it's so over-the-top in comparison to my usual style. There are 3 envelopes for mementos (2 removeable), 3 fold-out pages, 6 tiny pull tags, and 6 journaling pull tags. I used dry embossing, heat embossing, stamping, over-stamping, layering, die-cutting, envelope-making, decorative punches, and tons of ribbons, lace, tulle, paint, inks, rhinestones, brads, eyelets, mulberry paper, and other embellishments. You can't really tell from the photos, but many of the papers are glittered. This is what the front looks like with everything in place.
The front and back of each tube/page.
Then the fronts and backs of all the tags.
The fold-out pages.
And a view with all the pages spread out but with tags removed.
I had never made a doll house until it was a request in the Geezer Swap. I used a free online pattern as a loose basis for my idea. Since a little girl would be carrying it around, I wanted to make it lightweight yet as durable as possible. I used heavy weight template plastic to create the structure since it can stand up to a lot of abuse yet can be cut with scissors. A heavy weight sewing machine needle and slow speed also allowed it to be machine-stitched when necessary. I rounded the corners and padded the pieces with quilt batting to protect the fabric from any tears caused by the plastic. It needed a handle that would be sturdy yet would be disquised so I covered a piece of nylon strap webbing with some of the roof fabric. The original pattern used buttons and ponytail elastic as closures. Since elastic can sometimes quickly lose its stretch, I substituted side and roof flaps plus Velcro to keep it kid-friendly but make it last. I thought a chimney would be appropriate, so I added one that would extend slightly above the roof line.
The package I sent Mama24boyz has been received so I can post photos now. First, Snow White's hidden cottage doll house for Daysie.
Then a flannel rag quilt I designed for Mama. I was trying to work entirely from stash during Lent, so I couldn't run to JoAnn's to buy more fabric. That meant several changes had to be made to my original design, but I'm satisfied with the final result. No, dh normally doesn't look that grumpy and there is another half to Zalphinian, but I was more focused on the quilt than its holders. Good thing I never tried to be a photographer.
I've also been finishing some Barbie doll clothes I cut out about 16 years ago.
I made a portable doll house for a recent swap. I thought about making a fairy dwelling, but when I found small figurines of Snow White and some of the dwarfs I knew I had to make their hidden forest home instead.
It's taken me more than a week to accomplish, but I finally have photos of all the goodies UTM sent me. She wanted action shots which I hate to do, so I had to get a little sneaky. First up, a cute mobile that I've hung in my craft room. It's on the lamp that overhangs my work table, so I can admire and enjoy it constantly. It's hard to see all the bead variety, but they have such wonderful texture, shapes, and colors that I'm always seeing new elements. Love it!
UTM is a master of jewelry-making and crocheting, but now we can add knitting to her list. She made a hat and infinity scarf for me that will see a lot of use next winter. It's already 80 degrees here and only April, so they'll be put safely away for now. The scarf is just the right length to do a double loop and the hat has just a little bit of slouch to it, so it's really comfy. And they're blue, my favorite color!
Then UTM knew that I liked all her wine cork projects, so she made me a set of cork stitch markers. I've been making doll clothes for my great-great nieces, but my regular markers have been too fat to work well. These markers are on such thin wires that they're perfect for crocheting doll clothes! And the stamped designs are great as well. I think the bird and dragonfly are my favorites.
Then the two items that had me doing my happy dance: a button bracelet from my Pinterest boards and a Tree of Life pendant that I've been craving. Oh My Gosh!!!! I've already worn both several times. I thought the bracelet might be a little heavy to wear when I saw something similar on Pinterest. Instead, it's as light as can be and feels great. The pendant was perfect for wearing on Easter as we celebrated the Resurrection and served as an affirmation of life when I attended a funeral for an old friend earlier this week. I know I'll be wearing it often for much happier reasons.
I don't know how to say 'Thank You' in enough ways for all the wonderful gifts you crafted for me, UTM, so I'll just say what my French grandmother would have said, "Merci tres beaucoup!" (Thanks very much).
Received my package from Calixita while I was out-of-town for a few days. Wonderful surprises to come home to. First the wrapped goodies. I've never had either of these candies, but loved both of them, especially the chocolate nibs.
A necklace she made for me. The black pendant is meant to resemble a stack of books as seen in the note of explanation she included. The message on the glass stone says "A well read woman is a dangerous creature." Absolutely love that!
A cookbook of my favorite types of recipes, breads and soups. Just need cheesecake recipes, then it would be beyond perfect!
A wonderful collection of tags she designed.
My favorites that may become part of an art journal rather than be used on gifts.
And the bookmark that I may have to fight off Zalphinian in order to keep it. Since her birthday was in January, a nicer mother might let her have it. Going to have to think long and hard on that idea since I really, really like it.
Thank you, Calixita! It's a wonderful birthday gift!
Finally finished a baby sweater I started about two decades ago. No problem! Now it will fit the original intended recipients' child. Bad, bad Aunt Kathy!
I've cleared a lot of yarn remnants out by making pet blankets for our local animal shelter. Here's a sample.
And I've been making doll clothes for Barbies and 18" dolls - all for the great-great nieces' Christmas gifts this coming Christmas. I recently bought the patterns and the fabric for the sherpa vests; everything else is coming from stash.
Got rid of most of my pesky little balls and partial skeins of acrylic yarn by making some pet blankets for our local animal shelter. The two small ones measure approximately 18" x 24". The large is about 24" x 48". These are sized to fit the cages at the shelter. Each uses 3 strands of yarn crocheted together with an I hook and a single crochet stitch. To create some texture, even rows are worked in just the front loop of the previous row. I just knotted the strands together as each played out, crocheted over the yarn ends as I went, and only had the beginning and ending strands to weave in when I finished. Fast, easy, no-brainer that cleared a lot of stash and made nice, thick cushions for the animals.
Then I've been using my fun foam and felt stashes to make alphabet and shapes cut outs for teachers in our family. This is just one of the sets I've made.
I'm waiting for some other things to be received so I can post those photos.