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1  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Canning party - grape jelly, fig jam and pickles on: September 21, 2010 08:40:58 PM
Hi everyone! A few months ago I started hosting crafting parties at my house..so far i've had a jewelry making night, a scrapbooking night and most recently a canning and preserving night!

it was kind of a sad turnout as only one of my aunts showed up..but I had some things I planned on canning so we just got to work! My in-law's have a vineyard so I was able to get some chardonnay grape juice from them as well as some figs from the 5 fig trees they have but DONT USE! (don't even get me started on the other goodies that grow on their land that they don't use!) The pickles are just standard pickling cucumbers from a veggie/fruit stand. I got tired of canning, but I froze some merlot and cabernet juice too for some more jellies when i get the motivation back up Smiley

Here are the fruits (and veggies  Tongue  ) of our labor!

Left to right: Chardonnay jelly, Dill relish (the red is bell pepper), Dill spears, dill slices, fig jam

I am happy to report that just over a week later we tried the pickles (this is the first time i've ever made pickles!) and they taste almost exactly like store bought! (except better because of all the love put into them lol) it made me so happy! Can't wait to can some more Smiley
2  QUILTING / Quilting: Completed Projects / Brown, Blue and orange baby quilt on: September 21, 2010 08:29:22 PM
I doubted I would ever have the patience for a quilt but looky here! I'm a dabbler, my crafting style is to try everything at least once...and I really like quilting! Well I at least like the simple designs such as this..its much more my style anyways. It is loosely based off of the amy butler design Lotus quilt pattern here : http://amybutlerdesign.com/pdfs/LotusQuilt.pdf  but you really don't need a pattern for this which is why it worked so nicely for me!

So here it is:

The back is plain brown and the whole thing measures somewhat smaller than 3X4 ft. I quilted a rectangle inside of each rectangle fabric block about 1/4" in from the seams. I am amazed at how people make bigger quilts than this, this was very hard to squeeze through my sewing machine when I was trying to quilt the center!

well anyways, thanks for checking it out Smiley
3  COOKING / Dessert / Billiards birthday cupcakes on: July 11, 2010 12:18:08 PM
My Father-in-Law turned 50 last summer and this is the "cake" I made for him. I don't have any better pics than this. The frosting is regular store-bought frosting colored with food coloring. The white circles (now I was REALLY proud of this) are large marshmallows sliced in an egg slicer and covered in powder sugar so they aren't sticky. Then the numbers are store-bought frosting in the tubes you can write with. It sucks because no one ate them..I guess maybe they thought they were too pretty to eat Smiley but then they got stale Sad

4  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Stuffed Guitar with pluck-able strings! on: January 17, 2010 04:15:53 PM
I made my nephew Jordan a stuffed guitar for his 4th bday... He kinda overlooked it while at the bday party due to all the motorized gifts he received, but a few hours after I left I got the cutest call. My sister-in-law said Jordan saw the guitar and said "oh no, I forgot to thank Lela for this!" (He calls me Lela since he couldn't say Aunt Mela when he was younger). So he got on the phone and said "thank you, Lela. Can I talk to Uncle Sam?" LOL. I have to give Sam some credit, as he did sew the major pieces together for me.

The strings are elastic thread so he can really pluck them Smiley The horizontal lines and box at the bottom (sorry I don't know guitar anatomy  Wink  ) are drawn on with fabric pen.

Well without further ado, here it is!

5  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / My wedding DIY's 4/3/10 on: November 23, 2009 08:14:17 PM
The wedding is over! it was everything I wanted and more, thanks to craftster of course! So inspirational! So here is a running thread of my wedding and the crafts that were done for it... i'll add it a little at a time bc I still have to wait for professional photos Smiley Oh and the post is mostly written as if the wedding hasn't happened yet, i'll change that too !
Our colors are poppy orange, blush pink and lime green.

1. Save the Dates

I made this save the date from our engagement shots which my cousin shot for FREE woohoo
...what do you guys think?
we decided against putting "for the wedding of" and "formal invitation to follow" as we wanted to minimize text and we thought our guests would still get the point.
Since this version we had to crop a little off the bottom (and move the wedding website up) and we also centered the text in the pink box. We are going to order these in postcards off of usps.com for only .80 each!
2. invitations- we bought a kit at Target and we are going to embellish it with colored ink text to match our colors and wrap around labels
Here's the pics!:
And with our wrap around labels:
Back of the envelope:
3. flower girl tissue pomanders- just need two!
4. Orange table runners (nevermind...gonna buy these most likely)
5. Orange/pink/green christmas tree skirt for our "wedding guest book" I am thinking of printing out some of our engagement photos on printable fabric and putting those pics on the skirt and then having our guests sign the skirt with fabric pens. We get keepsake ornaments for every major event in our lives as well as vacations and other memories.. so I think a christmas tree skirt would be a perfect guest book. (having one of my awesome bridesmaids make this instead)
6. wristlets for my bridesmaids.

7. Favors- Tea caddy with our monogram written on it (and baked to set) with ceramic markers, our favorite types of tea and a sticker with our monogram on it.
Here's a mock up!

I'm thinking of printing a little slip of paper to explain why we chose tea and why we specifically chose the teas included. Most likely we'll include Chai tea (my fav) chamomile (his fav) and maybe earl grey (one we can agree on  Smiley  ) maybe we'll print it on the back of that little strip that holds it all together. the total cost for the favors come out to roughly $1.80 each. including ALL materials to make them.

8. Table numbers- each table was named after a year and had corresponding pics of us in that year.
6  Halloween / Halloween Decor and Parties / silhouette family portrait and creepy eyes on: November 10, 2009 09:34:18 PM
I made these for part of my halloween decoration..

This has been in the works for a while. Ever since my fiance Sam found a giant old still life painting of flowers two years ago by our apt's dumpster and brought it home to me. It was kind of creepy on its own but I thought this would be even better. The frame is huge and gaudy, gold and fake marbley green. Its perfect! haha but there's a slit in the canvas that I'm not sure what to do with...I was thinking maybe dripping red paint to look like blood?

 The eyes were a spur of the moment thing I free-handed and cut out of black contact paper and stuck over my fireplace. Creepy right? and do you see that red candle on the mantle? when it was lit, it cast an upturned arc of light on the wall that looked suspiciously like a mouth.

Thanks for looking!
C&C welcome Smiley
7  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Abstract painting turned tote bag on: May 19, 2009 02:22:13 PM
So I had this large abstract painting I made about 5 years ago. I have never been too fond of it and it took up a lot of room, so I cut the canvas off and used it to make it into a tote! I LOVE how it turned out.



It was a very quick job...no lining or anything like that...just a straight up tote
Whatcha think??
8  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Discussion and Questions / Help me recreate this star centerpiece! on: May 19, 2009 12:01:31 AM
I am planning my college graduation party with the theme blue/gold/black and stars. I am not putting this in the party planning section because I don't need help planning the party...although any ideas would gladly be taken into consideration  Wink

what I DO need help with is recreating this centerpiece that I would probably end up using in my house or giving to my friends to use in her house since she's a star FREAK... so yeah, hopefully I picked the right place!

so here is the centerpiece:

They cost $13 a pop on the website, which means oh... around $100 for how many we would want to buy (7 ish?). YIKES! I am spending less than that per wedding centerpiece for my own wedding!  Cheesy LOL
what I'm thinking right now is using a wooden circle thing and dowel for the stand part (I don't know how to explain it but many people have done this to organize ribbon..does anyone know what I'm talking about??), and a wooden star cut out from michaels, then spray painting it with metallic black (or blue) spray paint after I glue them all together. My fiance can drill the holes for them to fit into eachother, and I have about a month to make them so thats no problem. I will only do this though if I can cut the price atleast in half. I figure the spray paint will be about $20 (conservatively) and so I have $30 left over for the wooden stars, dowels and round stands.

Oh about the candle...I'm not really NEEDing it to be a candle holder but that would of course be super nice...

any ideas?!
9  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Baby Showers And Gifts For New Babies / baby girl shower with decorated onesies activity! on: May 12, 2009 11:58:54 AM
So my SIL found out she was having a baby girl and we settled on a polka-dot theme. Its not ALL throughout the party but you may notice that we went with a lot of circular elements...polka dot confetti, spaghetti and meatballs for lunch, round candy for the candy bar etc....
so lets get started!
The layout:

snack table:

the main course table with diaper-cakeness (not made by me, but a gift for the mommy to be). my aunt brought the salad and really went with the circular food theme..sliced olives, round sliced radishes, carrots etc etc it was great!

candy bar! lots of round/polka dot elements here! and the babies name is here too, Jaycie. My SIL and I made the name out of block letters from michaels and decoupaged scrapbooking paper on top..we found inspiration here on craftster but I don't know where from.. lol

aren't our favors CUTE? we put them on a cup cake stand. They are little baby booties made out of styrofoam cups

we also gave away two flower arrangements as prizes to the winners of the two games we played. Here is one happy recipient! we did the citrus fruit to coordinate with the theme

Now for my favorite part and the part that got RAVE reviews! Onesie decorating!

Jamie (SIL) and I were up late into the night cutting out freezer paper stencils and fabric pieces for appliques. We pre-ironed some stitch witchery type stuff (iron on adhesive) to the back of the fabric before we cut out the appliques so it was super easy to have people just peel, stick and iron (had an ironing station set up). We will go over the appliques with our machines later. We also had fabric markers for people to use. I have to say people went CRAZY over freezer paper stencilling. they were so amazed!

Here are our results, this is about half of the onesies:

close ups:
the one on the left says "ask mom" on the back

and then mommy-to-be made a shirt for her 3 yr old son to where to the hospital

she put the tee on her tummy like that cuz we were talking about her son, Jordan (if you havent caught on by now they're all J's! Jaycie, Jamie, Jordan, and dad Jason) and how when we were ooh-ing and ah-ing over cute baby clothes he kept holding it up to her belly and saying "yep this fits baby Jaycie" lol

All in all it was a blast! if I had to change anything I think... I would have skipped games altogether and just did onesies. It took a long time and ppl really liked it.

10  GLASS CRAFTS / Glass Crafts: Completed Projects / Mosaic OVER a picture?! ::gasp:: (picture-hefty) on: November 13, 2008 12:29:13 AM
Hi everyone! I don't do glass crafts..well..ever really but my aunt had a huge mosaic party and being the undiscriminating craftster that I am, I had to partake! All the ladies there were quite a bit older than I and they oohed and ahhed over the expensive beads and glass that my aunt bought to share/sell to them. They each must have spent about oh.. $40 to $50 on their mosaic mirrors by the end but I am very frugal minded (read: cheap) so I searched the glass craft board until I found a mosaic that I could afford. Then I found Meaco's wonderfully inspiring post about a mirror she made for her boys: https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=239977.msg2640053#msg2640053 
She mosaic'd with clear class over decoupaged scrap book paper. GENIUS!
So inspiration struck: my mom wanted a picture tray (idky since she just puts stuff on top of the pics...) and I wanted a unique way to display a picture of my fiance and I.

So I went to the thrift store and I found


its some kind of calendar thing that stands up like a photo would 50 cents woohoo

and This:

a tray thing 1.50 wooooo

So I decoupaged the pics on to each of them first and then I mosaic'd clear glass over them and grouted with black grout. Here's how it went:

and this is the glueing process. Cover the whole piece of glass with glue ( I just used mod podge) and smoosh it down on the picture you want to "frame" with the glass. You only really get one good smoosh cuz there is no going back and you don't want any bubbles and sometimes you can work the bubbles out but not all the time. I think in biology i remember you were supposed to drop the slide cover onto the slide at a 45 degree angle to minimize bubble-age...and pretty much thats what I did. Don't put too much glue though because I did on some of them and thats why some pics are very blurry. took 2 DAYS to dry, i was so worried. but they finally did dry and they bled..Ok I just printed them on regular paper though so maybe photo paper would be better, idk.

after grout:

this close up shows the blurryness:

and this one shows bubbles:

finished with paint:

and I did the family names all around the outside:

OK next mosaic:

Most of the glass and some is glued already:


close up of some more bubble-age:

So all in all, both of my projects cost me about $4 in materials (tray, frame thing and the clear glass which was from thrift store cheap-o frames) and then I had to pay my aunt $8 in materials. so what, $6 each? not bad, not bad.

Please, C&C welcome..I definitely want to do this again and if you have any suggestions please tell me!
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