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11  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Father's Day / Ex Libris: Hand-carved Book Plate Stamp on: June 06, 2015 07:22:31 PM

My Beastie Grrrlz' papa, The ManFlesh, is a BIG reader.  BIG. Like, can read for 14 hours a day if he doesn't have any other obligations or tasks-at-hand. Between us we probably have a couple thousand books, but about 80% are his.  ALSO he loves the look of wood and lino cuts, so when I saw this post (http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=176460.0), I decided to give stamp carving a try for the VERY FIRST TIME.

I used a drawing of a weasel riding a bear that my friend, Bascom Hogue, made for me for embroidering a western shirt for The ManFlesh for Christmas. (http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=437308.0) I added a local, striking rock feature in the background, and a stylized log for the text below. When I went in search of something suitable to mount it to, I happened upon the uber discounted bin of wood-mounted stamps at the craft store and picked up a stamp with the right sized block for about $2! I just removed the label and the stamp, cleaned off the remaining adhesive, and attached my carving and an impression of it. The carving is approximately 3" wide and 4" high.

Now I just have to wait in agony for TWO WHOLE WEEKS for Father's Day!  
12  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Party Planning / Girls' Weekend Welcome Bags! on: May 30, 2015 12:54:56 PM
Two of my besties are coming from Oregon and California to visit me in Montana this weekend! ACK!  And to top it off, The ManFlesh is away so it's going to be just us girls!  YEY!

I put together these little welcome gift bags.

There's a woodsy theme since I live in right against the National Forest and in the woods myself. 

I made pink faux bois flannel sleep masks, because I want them to be able to sleep in on their vacation and the days are noticeably longer at our latitude than either of theirs.

And because my dogs can be noisy in the morning - especially when there are friends visiting, I supplied them with ear plugs, too. I worried they'd get kind of lost in the bag with the tissue and everything, so I decorated up an envelope to put them in.

Sealed with self-adhesive ribbon another one of my besties gave me.

The rest of it is store bought:

Two nail polishes, a glittery pencil, and the pink tissue stamped with a tree contains a vintage-style "souvenir" towel of Montana that I forgot to take a photo of before wrapping. But you can kind of see it thru the double layers of tissue anyway. Wink
13  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Ticking Stripe Duvet Set on: May 27, 2015 06:27:08 AM
DISCLAIMER: Between the lack of natural light on that side of the room because of the bookcase/room divider and my lack of photography skills, the photos are kind of crummy. I think it's nicer looking, more inviting, in person. I hope I am right. Undecided

Last November both out mothers came to visit for the long Thanksgiving weekend. We have one permanent guest room, so we got one of those tall inflatable mattresses, cleared out the studio mess, and set up an auxiliary guest room in there. This is probably the one room in the house we haven't done any updating in since we bought the house about 2.75 years ago, so pardon the fake paneling, etc.  Since we already had a third comforter and enough pillows, I went ahead and made a duvet set to help it look like a "real" bed.  I used a cotton ticking stripe in black/natural and a natural/black gingham check around the seams.

I can't remember my logic or inspiration (probably something I saw on Pinterest), but instead of standard pillow shams, I made lined "tubes" with ties on either end. I think the look suits the "utilitarian" quality of the ticking, though.

It is backed with a material from a natural tan sheet set. Instead of snaps or buttons, I used ties for the closure on the duvet as well. Some unbleached cotton twill tape I had in my stash. I am pretty sure I saw this style of closure on Pinterest, too.  Cool

Since the photo was taken I have set up a little side table with a milk crate topped with a vintage metal tray and added a lamp. Hopefully it will be comfortable enough for a girls' weekend coming up in a few days!

Once it was made, I noticed that a vintage-style souvenir tea towel I had looked really neat with it, so I made a cushion cover out of it for a little extra bit of the "real" bed look. Here's a post on that: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=439425.0
14  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Vintage-style Tea Towel Throw Pillow on: May 25, 2015 06:22:17 PM

I made this throw pillow for our auxiliary guest bed from a vintage-style tea towel I had in my stash.  In fact, all the materials were from stash! It's a little too big to fit the pillow form, but I wanted to use the whole design & already had the form in my stash.

The backing is unbleached cotton duck from another project that I had made a "muslin" with and then seam ripped to make this; and the buttons are from my recently acquired 4-generation button box. Threads from some other project as well.

Terrible, dark and blurry photo of the back, but at least you can see the placement of the buttons.
15  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects / Renovating Resin Wicker Patio Chairs on: May 18, 2015 02:18:10 PM

A few years ago when my resin wicker patio chairs' seats started failing I was distraught. Sure, they're not gorgeous, but they are decent-looking, comfortable, and most importantly they stack for storage. I looked for the material to reweave the seats, but only came up with the entirely wrong material. So I winged an upholstery fix that failed at the end of last year.  Sigh.  This winter I found an online source for resin wicker and a month or so ago, I ordered it up to give it a try.  Then I ordered more to finish my 6 chairs.  So far I have done 4 which is what I need for our first round of summer guests at the end of the month. I'll do the others after the visits are done.



The top of the backs of the chairs is also failing, but not in a dangerous way; just ugly and sometimes uncomfortable. I had enough fabric left from the upholstery effort to make slip covers for 4 chairs, plus the fronts of the other 2.

They just slide over the top, envelope style. and fasten with a tab and button underneath where the armrest attaches to the back.

16  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Bleach Stencil Tee Shirt on: May 17, 2015 01:20:39 PM
The ManFlesh's buddy, Juan, is easily our most-visiting friend. We host more overnight guests since we moved from Oregon to Montana and Juan (who is among the furthest away) has visited twice as much as anyone else!  Last time he was coming, I was asking the ManFlesh a question about it and accidentally said "Juantana."  Well, it's obvious that word stuck. 

We thought Juan deserved some kind of acknowledgment for being the most frequent visitor and that is a commemorative tee shirt.

I used the tried and true freezer paper stencil method with bleach. I'm pleased with the result and The ManFlesh tells me that Juan will love it. Here's hoping!

^that's the stencil ironed on and ready for the application of bleach. This is also the most accurate representation of the original color of the shirt
17  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Mother's Day / Embroidered Applique Hoodie for Mom on: May 04, 2015 07:54:01 AM
About 2.5 years ago, The ManFlesh and I moved from Oregon to Montana, leaving behind our families and friends.  Of course, our moms were probably hit the hardest; you know how moms are.   Kiss

I embroidered this for my mom, then appliqued it on a lightweight hoodie for her Mother's Day gift.

When The ManFlesh saw it, he asked if I would make one for his mom as well. Same pattern, different colors.

My mom is going to be traveling with friends over Mother's Day, so I mailed it to her early saying she could open it early, take it with her to open on Mother's Day, or open it when she gets home. She chose early and told me she "loves it, loves it, loves it" and that it made her so happy that she cried a little. Awwwwwwww.
18  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Leather Passport Case on: April 19, 2015 11:43:47 AM

My MIL-type had a birthday around the same time she got to retire. At the time I had recently broken my dominant hand, so I am just now finishing her birthday gift. She likes to travel and now will be able to do it a little more often.

He favorite color is red.

So she'll know what it is, I made a passport birthday card to go inside.  We'll get a gift card to go into the credit card slot and wrap it up for a retirement gift. 

Since she doesn't have a trip planned right now, we're not sure what kind if currency to put in the cash slot... so maybe it will be this Uruguayan $20 bill we brought back.  At the time I think the exchange rate was 17 Uruguay dollar to 1 Amercian dollar, so it's not especially generous! 

See the "... still" in the lower right corner? That's to acknowledge the lateness factor.   Tongue
19  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Old Tripod Becomes A New Lamp! on: April 08, 2015 11:07:17 AM

I have had this wooden telescope tripod for nearly 15 years and for most of those years I have intended to make it into a floor lamp. I FINALLY DID!

I refinished the wood, added these chains to stabilize it, added a lamp kit and new shade.

To attach the lamp hardware to the tripod I used a black rubber stopper. I drilled a hole in it to receive the lamp hardware and voile!

20  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Montana "Map" Appliqued Hoodie (4 pics) on: April 04, 2015 11:04:18 AM

There is someone nearby who makes and sells these and they're really well done and worth every penny, but cost more pennies than I care to spend on a sweatshirt.  So I made one for myself, on a lesser-quality sweatshirt (bought on clearance) just to try it out. If I want to make more for me or as gifts, I'll probably up the quality. I wouldn't try to sell them, though, I promise!

The cotton print that I made my Montana from is one I had in my stash!  And I already had the appropriate color thread, so this helps me in my quest to use stash first this year!

I wanted the edges to get a little frayed so I just straight stitched the applique onto the shirt, but it is backed with fusible interfacing, so hopefully it will only get a little frayed.

Annnnnnd and action shot... because Montana is a mountain state.  Shocked

I just want to add that I am glad that I don't live in a state with a really complicated border!
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