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1  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Dish- and Hand Towels Housewarming Gift on: July 22, 2016 03:22:18 PM
My SIL and her family moved into a new house a couple months ago. I've been trying to pry color or theme information out of my MIL who lives near them without much luck. The ManFlesh got to visit them and told me that "there is literally no decoration at all" yet, so I guess no one was holding out on me, after all! So I took the opportunity to use some fun fabrics and trims from my stash in whatever colors struck my fancy and I did it while he was still visiting, hoping that I can get them mailed off before they can be "wrong"!  Tongue and  Wink

Three kitchen towels:

The one hint I was given was that my SIL likes green, which I was already told was her favorite color, so I used it in all the trim selections.

And one bathroom hand towel. My SIL is a dentist and she gets a big kick out of my foreign toothpaste collection, so hopefully she get a giggle out of this.

I will be making one off these for myself with slightly different trims! Well, that's the case for most of these, actually.

The backs of all the towels are white linen.

2  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / DIY Kitchen Remodel on: July 07, 2016 07:57:24 PM

I recently completely what I am calling a "thorough surface remodel" of our kitchen. We didn't replace much, but did alter some things and refinished just about every  surface except the floor. There are a few more things to do, but I need to focus on some other projects while the weather is good!

There are essentially two sides to the kitchen: the side with all the kitchen stuff and the side with the wood stove and a hallway that leads to the laundry- and bathroom.

After on the kitchen side:

I refinished the cabinets inside and out, added a crown moulding to the uppers, raised the uppers, replaced the glass with zinc-plated steel, replaced the knobs and pulls. We did get a new sink and faucet, so reconfigured and refinished the counter for that. It was also way out of level, so had a handyman level it out and build the new part of the sink. I did the refinishing. I added a tile backsplash and replaced all the switches and outlets. I replaced the lighting and painted all the walls. I painted and replaced handles on the refrigerator.

After on the "fire side":

I repainted the walls, replaced the "cap" over the brick veneer, repaired and painted/glazed the brick, painted the stove and added the picture rail at the top of the wall.

Before, the whole deal:

We had added the island last autumn and it made living w/o the rest of the counter for over 3 weeks tolerable! It took about 5 months all told and we're pleased with the results. We like the look a lot more and the function is much improved, too. Whew!

I posted about the island on craftster here: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=442769.0
And I have roughly a squillion blog posts from just about every week of this process if you'd like to see photos of the process or details.
3  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / "Just Right" Clothespin Apron on: June 29, 2016 01:28:19 PM

YAHOO! After we bought our house in Montana, but hadn't yet moved here I was already *pinning ideas for a clothespin holder, because I was so stoked to have a clothesline again! That  was allllllmost 4 years ago and I just finally finished it... a CLOTHES PIN APRON!

I had this "flour" sack in my stash... I got it at the by-the-pound thrift store probably over a decade ago. I just loved it, but never had the right project for it until now. And luckily, I had this green gingham print on hand and enough to make 10' or so of double-fold bias tape.

There was this little pocket sewn onto it and I went ahead and cut the back of the apron using that part. I suppose my phone might go in there and then the little things you find while hanging laundry and don't have a place for, like buttons that have fallen off, broken clothes pins, stuff that's been left in pockets, etc.

And right after I took these photos I loaded it up and hung a load of whites on the line! It worked great and I am glad I decided to go with the apron over hanging bag for my needs.

*As I  mentioned I got the idea from pinterest, but the link on the pin was dead. Luckily the image has measurements enough for me to have made a pattern. But here is a link to the pin with the measurements on it. https://www.pinterest.com/pin/168885054749634378/
4  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Leather Covered Stone Paper Weights for Father's Day on: June 18, 2016 09:28:27 PM

The ManFlesh has gotten a two-book publishing contract with Angry Robot Books! He likes to print out a draft of his manuscripts to edit them with the classic red pen. When the weather is nice he likes to do this on our deck, as we live in the woods and it is quiet and lovely to be outside editing al fresco. He's been using a scavenge brick and/or his phone as a paper weight, so the Beastie Grrrlz (our dogs, Betty and Delia) decided he could use some paperweights for Father's Day.

Five is his favorite number, so 5 holes in the one. I wanted to punch a representation of his favorite constellation in the other, but man there are a lot of stars in a constellation! Not enough room on this guy.


The stones are from the creek that runs through our part of the forest and for which our road and the nearby National Forest hiking trail is named.

The leather was a gift from a friend who designed and built furniture for a big-ish furniture maker in Connecticut and in two shades of his favorite color: purple!

5  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Crow Patch Pouch! on: June 17, 2016 02:07:23 PM
When I found this crow patch at an antique mall a few months ago, I knew I had to use it to make something for my dear friend, Pam. She LOVES crows! I decided on this little pouch.

First, I attached the patch to a backer fabric and when I sewed it on, I noticed my sewing machine's tension was off, but I really dug the way the black bobbin thread looked so I left it. Happy accident as far as I am concerned.

When I noticed that the selvage of the vintage-style floral print was cute little scottie dogs, I had to use it somewhere, so I sewed it onto the lining as a cute surprise on the inside. Pam also LOVES dogs!

6  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Bag & Bottle Drying Rack on: May 21, 2016 12:46:27 PM

Yup. I am one of those the washes and reuses my plastic storage bags. We're remodeling/redecorating the kitchen and lost the thing I used to use to dry my bags on. So I made this one with a wooden plaque & finishing materials I had on hand, dowels, and magnets. The short dowel at the bottom is a handle for removing the bag holder from the magnetic surface it's attached to so I can store it.

It'll also help get those last few drops of water and water vapor out of bottle before putting them in the cupboard with their tops.

I didn't already have the correct size of bit to make the depressions on the back for the size of magnet I could get locally, so they're a little bigger than I'd like, but work just fine.

It'll also work just sitting on the counter.

7  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects / Green Man with Magic Cap Catcher! on: May 21, 2016 12:33:45 PM

I went ahead and made another bottle opening with magnetic cap catcher! This one is for outside: it'll live mostly on the deck, but will be movable so we can it by the cornhole pitch, too.

I bought the opener and the big ol' magnet, but had the wood scrap and log oil finish on hand.

8  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Mother's Day / Bookmarks For Long-distance Moms on: April 30, 2016 03:37:29 PM
A few years ago The ManFlesh and I moved from Oregon to Montana which was great for us, but not so great for our moms.   Embarrassed 

We're feeling bookish these days so I decided to make them bookmarks to include with a bookstore gift card for Mothers Day.

I was inspired by these state charms that came across my Etsy feed. I found the airplane in the same shop.

I have wanted to learn the basics for bead/jewelry work for years and think this project may have sent me over the edge to finding a class locally. I know these could be more polished, but I just get overwhelmed staring at all the findings and such.
9  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / The ManFlesh's First Literary Dollar and Change on: April 28, 2016 06:01:28 PM
The ManFlesh has gotten a 2-book deal from a publisher for his fiction! YAHOO! Since his publisher, Angry Robot, is based in the UK, his contract was in British Pounds rather than American Dollars, so for funsies we decided to frame his first pound rather than his first dollar earned from writing! The day the check was cut, the exchange rate was $1.44 to the pound.

Copper is important in the second book, so I did a walnut/copper finish on the thrift store frame. Here's the announcement from the publisher if you're interested! http://angryrobotbooks.com/2016/04/new-signing-eric-fischl/
10  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / "Magic" Bottle Cap Catcher! on: April 28, 2016 12:28:23 PM
I am remodeling our kitchen. We had this bottle opener installed on the cabinets already, but I added the secret magnetic cap catcher just a few days ago. It's installed from the backside of the cabinet and invisible from the front, but I added the thin wooden plaque to keep the new paint/glaze treamtent on the cabinets from getting scratched up.

There's a short video of it working as well as some more details about how I did it and materials on my blog.

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