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71  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / My first EVER embroidery work on: July 18, 2008 09:21:51 AM
Note to self: hand-sewing on leather REALLY blows. Owwwiee.

It's an satin-stitched version of a tattoo (a "tramp stamp") my sister has. Hers is all black but I decided to add some blues (her favorite color) to make it really pop. I've stitched it onto this leather suede that will later become a wallet. It took me pretty much all day to finish. So probably about 6-8 hours of stitching. I'm still debating on whether or not I should "outline" it in black to "hide" the unevenness of the stitches but dunno yet. My fingers are already crying out from what I've done today.

More details are in this blog.
72  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Bedsheet into Grocery Totes (also... PRODUCE BAGS!) -- lots of pics on: July 16, 2008 05:42:55 PM
Hello again.  Grin

Just thought I'd pop in with photos of my sewing from today. I'm participating in a "green" swap on another message forum and decided to send my swapee re-usable grocery totes along with a few other things. Being as our "budget" is only $15, I had to think creatively. Luckily, our base has an Airman's Attic (like Goodwill but everything's free) and I went rummaging for suitable material. I lucked upon a king-sized bedsheet among some other things for later projects. Following the FABULOUS tutorial by queenofdiy I managed to create four bags from one king-sized bedsheet. I could possibly manage a fifth if I didn't mind the white piping to show.

I didn't bother with the pocket and instead just folded them into themselves.

My husband commented, "doesn't look like it'll hold much" when I was showing off my handiwork so I stuffed some groceries in. I managed to fit a box of cereal, pancake mix, rice, some potato chips, oatmeal cookie mix, a bottle of wine, a "bear" of honey, and a large jar of peanut butter in there all at once and still have room for a few more bags of gravy mix if I so chose. Here's an "action shot":

They're so cute all folded up together.  Cheesy

But here's my favorite part... the produce bags! I figured what's the point of having the re-usable grocery totes if those darned plastic produce bags found their way home along with them? I searched for some tutorials on the net that included tulle in their instructions but figured that would be too flimsy and could tear too easily. I instead pulled some fabric from my stash that was originally meant to be curtains. It has holes in it like tulle but is a stronger fabric and woven more closely together like linen. Combined with some DARLING ribbon, a drawstring and pull, and a square cut from a page protector, I made a pair of produce bags.

I'll admit they could be better made... I should've measured and pinned more. The little plastic "patch" is crooked and next time I'll do up the seams more neatly.

My favorite part is the ribbon. I was originally going to find coordinating ribbon like red for apples, green for veggies, yellow for bananas, etc etc. Instead I came across this lovely wire-edged ribbon (pretty flimsy wire though so still perfect for my usage here) with pictures of various fruits on them. They were too darling to pass up. I added it to the seam to add a bit more stability and color.

I'm planning on a few more for myself of course and I picked up loads of this fabric at the store yesterday for about $15 actually...  Cheesy.

Can't wait to see how they turn out.  Tongue
73  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / Pressed Flower Girls Framed Gift on: July 13, 2008 07:08:19 AM
I got the idea from a TV show on HGTV and made up these little girls to give to my cousins who were the flower girls in my wedding.

I think they turned out adorable, all the mats cost less than $5 (frames and scrapbook paper), and the girls loved them.

74  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Baby Afghan on: July 13, 2008 07:00:37 AM
I decided to make a baby afghan for my BIL/SIL when they had their first baby a few years back. I started out with the pink yarn but ran out halfway through, hence the bi-color finish. I used this tutorial and added some flowers that are sewed on VERY securely so tiny baby hands wouldn't rip them off.  Tongue

75  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Ani L'Dodi Anniversary Piece & Patriotic Angel -- Cross-stitch (pic heavy) on: July 13, 2008 06:48:38 AM
Just some cross-stitch projects I finished earlier this year.  Tongue

First up, the Ani L'Dodi Anniversary piece I did for my in-laws. This was the first piece I have done with any sort of religious symbolism. The symbols in the middle portion is the Hebrew phrase "ani l'dodi, v'dodi li". Translated to English around the border, "I am my beloved's and my beloved is mine." The inside border edging is a simple backstitch vine motif. Here's the list of what everything else symbolizes:

Star of David - Israel and/or the Jewish faith
Peacocks - beauty of the eternity to come in Heaven
Grapes and Vines - land of Israel (one of the 7 Spices of Israel)
Olive branches - peace and goodwill
Pomegranates - hope of eternal life and/or fertility (one of the 7 Spices of Israel)

Their last names are in the original piece, just blurred out here for PERSEC.  Wink  And no, oddly enough, my inlaws are NOT jewish.  Roll Eyes

Some close-ups:

And the BEAUTIFULLY framed finish!!

I joked with my husband that if it didn't have their names on it I'd have been seriously tempted to keep it!!  Grin  MIL cried for a solid half hour after they received it in the mail. She even called me still in tears AND started crying harder when I told her I made it myself.


And next, a Dimensions kit - Patriotic Angel. There's supposed to be the phrase "we hold these truths..." in the background but my cats ran off with the gold thread before I could do it. I wasn't really liking how it looked anyway so I'm happy with the way it turned out.

Before framing:

And with the wonderful framing job:


76  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Coin Folder into Photo Scrapbook on: July 13, 2008 06:30:56 AM
Just a small gift scrapbook I put together as a birthday gift for my friend a few years ago. The photos are from a trip we took to visit a friend of mine in Canada (now her fiance!) and also some photos from when I visited her for Thanksgiving later that year. She requested that I blur out the photos of her and her friend that tagged along but my blur tool in PSP was being a pain so I just went with strategically placed buttons. Those aren't there originally.

I used a tri-fold coin folder I found at Walgreens in the $1.00 pile. I covered the entire thing with patterned paper and created larger pieces as focal points. I punched certain photographs with a hole punch to fit into the holes for quarters as well as using them on a (LUSH) newspaper ads for colorful embellishments to put all over the pages. Added some journaling and embellishments and voila! A scrapbook for my friend. She loved it.

So anyway, here's the photos (Note - I actually have nothing against Canada/Canadians, we just jokingly bitch about how horrible this trip/vacation was):

Thumbnails are clickable  Grin

77  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Flat Stanley's Paper Bag Travel Scrapbook (Photo Heavy) on: July 11, 2008 08:25:02 AM
Hiya all! A few months ago my cousin sent me her Flat Stanley project since I'm the only one in the family that lives so far away from home (Italy). I made her a fabulous (if I do say so myself) travel scrapbook as a keepsake of "her" time spent with me.  Wink

For those not in the know, Flat Stanley is a children's book about a little boy who accidentally gets squished flat by a billboard. He then sets off an on travel adventure by mailing himself to California IIRC. A lot of classrooms are doing these as projects, making photocopies of Flat Stanley (or in this case a photocopy of Flat Stanley colored to look like themselves -- Flat Caitlin in my case) and mailing them off to friends and family all over the US and the world. It's then our turn to take some photos, write a journal/letter or even send back small souvenirs from their travels such as state quarters, stamps, you name it! It's such a fun, fun project and I'm excited to have been a part of it.

Luckily, Flat Caitlin arrived a few weeks before my husband and I went on a "Grand Tour" of our most coveted travel destinations in Europe.  Tongue  Unfortunately, by the time we got back, school was almost over so I had to rush and put this together so the post could get it back in time. So if you think it looks like crap, that's why and has no bearing on my actual scrapbooking "skillz".  Grin

Without further ado, here's the pics and descriptions (attempting clickable thumbnails)!

Cover made with pre-cut letters and fabric flowers held on with small-button brads. I colored a plain set of letters to look like flags of the countries we visited. E - EU
U - Italy
R - England
O - world/globe look
P - Ireland
E - France

You can click on the thumbnails to see the journaling quite clearly so I won't waste space repeating it here. It's written to sound okay when read outloud to a class of 1st graders so pardon the "obvious" questions and bad grammar.  Cheesy  I also supplement photos with postcards a lot in my scrapbooking, which is kind've obvious with this project. Some postcards are double-sided and "hinged" to hide journaling or MORE POSTCARDS!!  Cheesy

First Stop - ENGLAND!


All the pockets held paper "tags" with even MORE photos. The first pocket held Flat Caitlin. Pardon the flash on the photo paper, those bright circles aren't in the original photos in the scrapbook.


Next Stop: IRELAND!


And finally, FRANCE!


Thanks for looking!  Kiss
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