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11  Yet Another Lavender Bunny in Amigurumi: Completed Projects by veritate on: December 29, 2010 11:42:55 AM
I decided to only give hand-made Christmas gifts this year. Mostly because these past two years have been a big challenge financially and we just don't have the money to spend on gifts.

My neice will turn 2 years old in February and this is a great time for her - everything is magical about Christmas!  So I wanted to make her a friend. One that she would (hopefully) cherish.

I am a beginner crocheter and I needed to do something simple - something tried and tested. I had bookmarked Rheatheylia's Lavender Bunny Pattern years ago and decided this was my year to try it. I was not disappointed. And once she found the bunny inside the box, she immediately giggled and gave him a huge bear hug. She slept with him that afternoon and that night. I think we have a winner!

You can read more about him, the yarn I used and my process to make him at my Ravelry entry.  Thanks for looking!

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12  Quilled Paper Snowflakes - with progress pics/tutorial in Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General by veritate on: December 19, 2010 03:56:55 PM
So, Christmas is here and my husband and I are flat broke. Two years of unemployment will do that to you. But we still wanted to give nice things to our friends and family. So I decided to try to make something for them, using materials I already had on-hand. I realized I have a TON of wrapping paper - I buy it every year after Christmas on clearance.

I googled "Paper Ornaments" and found a lot of great ideas, but the quilled ornaments really caught my eye.  And so it was settled - quilled ornaments it was. I used a silver holographic wrapping paper, which makes them nice and shiny, but you really could use ANY paper.  Here is a shot of three of the ornaments:

Sometimes I used a pattern,  but mostly I just played around with shapes to find patterns I liked. I wanted all my snowflakes to have six points. Because that's how a snowflake is formed. And I'm a geek like that.

There are some great videos on You Tube that show how to quill paper and make the different shapes.  This video was particularly helpful:


Here are some progress pics for one of my snowflakes:

Step one: make strips (no photo).  HOT TIP: At first, I was using a rotary cutter and ruler. Very tedious. Very slow... Then I realized my paper shredder made the PERFECT size of strip (")... so I started cutting 14" x 8" chunks of wrapping paper and running it through the shredder. It made things go MUCH faster! And an added benefit was that the strips came out micro-serrated. The holographic paper edges became a bit sparklier than when I was using a straight blade to cut them.

Step two: make the coils. I used a quilling board to make the coils all the same size. This snowflake has six large, loose coils. Six open hearts. One smaller, loose coil (centre of the snowflake). I don't remember the length of strips I used - no longer than 6".

Step three: pinch the tops of the six loose coils to form teardrops. Here you see four teardrops and two non-pinched coils:

Step four: glue the teardrops to the open hearts. This will make stylized arrows. Make sure they're straight. You'll see my fine-tipped glue bottle here. Not necessary but SO nice for this (you could use a toothpick or pin if you wanted). I used regular Aileen's Tacky glue:

Step five: glue the arrows to the centre coil. I used the lines on my cutting mat to make sure the spokes are sticking straight out from one another. The wax paper keeps it all from sticking to my cutting mat, if any glue should happen to ooze out.

All six spokes glued:

Variations: Like I said; I didn't really use patterns in most cases. I just played with the shapes before I glued them.  Here are two possibilities using the same shapes (a scroll between two teardrops). I decided to go with the one on the right:

This is a collection of snowflakes on my desk. This still isn't all the designs I came up with. The late afternoon winter sun casts a beautiful blue onto the paper. We're only two days away from the solstice and the sun will set at 4:30 today here in Alberta.

This is my favourite pattern. It's more intricate than the six-spoked snowflakes and more difficult to make (I had to pin it to a corkboard to keep it all in place while it dried).  It's not my design - this particular one belongs to a lady named Reese Dixon. She has a brilliant tutorial on quilling and how to make this particular design on her blog here: http://www.reesedixon.com/2008/12/quilled-snowflake-ornament.html

I made four ornaments for each couple we were exchanging gifts with. I used nylon filament and silver beads to create ties for each ornament.

I hope they like them.  C/C welcome!
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13  Without Exaggeration, The Best Peanut Butter Cookies in the World in Dessert by veritate on: June 07, 2009 03:29:32 PM
In the last office I used to work at, there was a lady named Carol.

Carol made cookies.

Not just any cookies. Carol made The Best Peanut Butter Cookies in the World.  I swore she put just a little bit of crack in them. They were melt-in-your-mouth delicious and you couldn't eat just one.

Before I left for another job, she gave me the recipe. And now, dear Craftsters, I share the recipe with you, as requested in my Etched Cookie Jar for Housewarming Gift thread.

1 cups Golden Flavour Crisco
1 cup creamy peanut butter
1 cups firmly-packed brown sugar
1 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp baking soda
tsp salt

Beat Crisco, peanut butter & sugar until light and fluffy.
Add eggs & vanilla and beat until combined.
Sift flour,  baking soda & salt and add to creamed mixture gradually until well-combined.
Shape into 1" balls and placed onto ungreased cookie sheets. Flatten lightly with a fork.
Bake at 350F for 10 minutes.

The recipe yields a crazy six-dozen cookies! As you can see, there is a decadent amount of shortening and sugar in these.  But it's worth every calorie. Enjoy!

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14  Etched Glass Cookie Jar for House Warming Gift in Glass Crafts: Completed Projects by veritate on: June 06, 2009 02:51:25 AM
Hello everyone, this is my first ever post on Craftster!

My very bestest friend recently moved into a cute new house with her guy and invited me to her house warming BBQ.  I didn't know what to get them as a gift. But then, being inspired by all y'all and the amazing things Craftsters post to this community, I decided to make her a gift, rather than buying her something she probably already has or won't use.  I really like to bake, so I thought I'd make her cookies.  But somehow that didn't seem like it would be enough - or rather, not permanent enough.

So I turned to you, dear creative people, for inspiration and came across styrofoamkitty's Frosted Glass Tutorial, and decided I'd make her a cookie jar to contain the yummy baked goods.

And here are the process pics:

Materials used - biscotti jar, etching cream, paint brushes, masking tape, scrapbook stickers, rubber gloves.

All taped up, letters in place, ready to go.  The stickers spell "Homemade" in all different fonts, with letters all askew.

Etching cream smeared onto the jar, over the letters.

All rinsed-off. The whole process took about an hour, including making room on the crafting table. I can't BELIEVE how easy this was.

Finished product, including cookies!  I included a copy of the recipe on a pretty card, tied with ribbon to the jar.

Thanks for letting me share!

EDITED TO ADD: As requested, I have posted the recipe! Without Exaggeration, The Best Peanut Butter Cookies in the World
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