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1  REUSING/RECYCLING/RECRAFTING / What the heck can I do with THIS? / SO MANY PLASTIC BAGS!!! on: August 09, 2013 04:09:18 PM
So, I'm participating in the Annual Destash-Along and recently discovered a huge box of plastic bags.  Unused ones I probably stored away when I had an Etsy and made totes with them.

Now, I need to know what to do with everything.  I have plenty of totes and I don't know who I can give them to.  I considered making a few homeless plarn mats (http://crochet-with-cris.blogspot.com/2012/01/charitable-crochet-sleeping-mats-for.html) but I can't seem to find anywhere local or outside my area accepting donations.  I am moving cross-country in about 2 months and I really need to get these things gone!

Ideas?  I have about 1,000 of them to use up!
2  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / My Handmade Wedding (long and img heavy!) on: September 21, 2012 06:02:55 PM
It's finally over!

Don't get me wrong, I absolutely loved our wedding and am loving the married life, but WOW was it a big undertaking.  And I had a relatively simple one with less than 50 guests.  

We DIY-ed a huge chunk of it -- the food, the cake, some of the attendants' clothes -- partly out of money concerns, partly because I had really specific ideas on what I wanted and I wasn't willing to outsource it to someone who couldn't see into my head ;-)

I've got some pictures now, but a lot of the detail shots haven't come back.  I'll update when they do.  Enjoy!

Our cake and the "topper".  Mr. Awesome_Pants made the cake the night before, with help from his sister-in-law and a groomsman.  Three layers -- 10", 8", and 6" -- all frosted in white buttercream and decorated with sugared strawberries and blueberries.  The bottom tiers were white cake and the top was chocolate, just for me Smiley  Don't ask for a recipe -- it was from a box, but nobody knew hahaha.  Also, we cut the cake with a medieval replica dagger Cheesy

The little castle was made by a good friend of mine who is an artistic genius.  The frame is sanded wood and all the details are made of painted polymer clay.  She said it took her ages to get it just right, and I absolutely loved it.

All of my lovely ladies lined up before the ceremony.  I made them ribbon rose bouquets in purple and white to complement the emerald dresses.  I was originally going to make coffee filter roses since one girl is severely allergic to real flowers, but those didn't turn out, so I started rolling ribbons.  Those bouquets were one of my favorite details, and they were so cheap and easy to make.  I spent about $15 on styrofoam cones from Michael's, $2 on corsage pins, $5 on floral wire, $7 on wire cutters, and another $5-$7 on ribbon from Wal-Mart.  I made them all slightly different in the way the flowers were arranged.  To cover up the styrofoam I used lace from my mother's wedding dress Smiley

Three of the dresses were also handmade.  The two girls on the far left bought dresses from shops, I made the one in the middle, the redhead's dress was ordered from a designer on Yardsellr, and my grandmother made the last dress for my sister/maid of honor.  That dress turned out spectacular, but the one I made was sorta "ehn."  I finished it at about 12:30 the day of for a 4:30 ceremony, and had to improvise on the back.  I had an elastic band to give the bodice more definition and a gathered back, but all my stitches popped as I was trying to sew on the lace shoulder straps...so I had to change it up and make a big lace bow in the back.   Shocked

I also made the dress for my older flowergirl.  I found an old 80s-ish one at a yardsale; the bodice was covered in lace and the sleeves were kinda puffy, but I loved the fluffy tulle skirt with petals inside.  So, a few days before the wedding I took my seam ripper to it and separated the bodice and the skirt, gave it a waistband of emerald satin, and crafted a matching tube top.  With their little baskets and purple rose hair circlets, my flowergirls were ADORABLE!

Here you get a bit better picture of one of the ribbon rose bouquets, plus my bouquet, which was semi-handmade.  I LOOOOVE lilies and had to have them for my bridal bouquet, so I ordered one off of 1-800-Flowers.  It was delivered on Friday, and with some flower grow powder and a plastic bag, I got them to open by Monday afternoon.  I wrapped the stems with a rubberband and then covered it with silver ribbon, then tied on some more lace from my mother's wedding dress.

Our groomsmen wore replica Hand of the King pins from the Game of Thrones HBO series.  DH and I both read the series and loved it, so we had to be geeks and do non-traditional bouts.  It also went with our medieval theme.  DH himself wore a metal crown pin I bought at Michael's with a purple rose attached, and my ringbearer and usher/little bro wore the same crowns.

Overall, it turned out fantastic and I loved it.  More pics to come soon!  Cheesy
3  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Completed Projects / A brain slug (made of my own free will) -- PATTERN LINK ADDED on: February 12, 2011 03:34:55 PM
All my Christmas gifts were made this year, and I'm finally getting around to posting pics.  One item I'm particularly proud of is the amigurumi I made for my 9-year-old brother, a brain slug from Futurama.  

I made a tie by attaching an extra-long length of yarn to the bottom, since it was way too heavy to attach to a headband, and he wouldn't have worn that kind of "girly" stuff, anyway.  I was worried he wouldn't like it, but he wore it most of the day and wouldn't even take it off for dinner  Cheesy

And he tried to make the dog wear it, too.  Roll Eyes

4  CROCHET / Crochet: Discussion and Questions / Plarn mats on: February 12, 2011 02:04:21 PM
I am working on making outdoor sleep mats/rugs for our three dogs to use this coming summer on the porch when they're outdoors.  Problem is, the roof over our porch leaks like nobody's business and I want the pups to have a dry place to lie down if they happen to be stuck outside when it rains (which happens often during the summer when we're all at work/school).  I had the idea to make a big plarn mat to put under the cloth rug to help, since I can put them away from the actual leak spot but not away from the puddles that accumulate.

I've never worked with plarn before, so I don't know if it is actually waterproof or if it would slip around and be useless.  Anyone have any ideas?
5  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / A very late Christmas gift on: January 21, 2011 07:24:53 AM
So, about two years ago I started on an afghan for my fiance.  It was going to be a bed-sized gray and black thing, and about twenty rows in I abandoned it and restarted completely.  At last, the finished project is done.  Finished it this morning.  It's now a lapghan, and the man loves it.  He and the cat are cuddled with it as I type Smiley  I'm pretty proud of it myself; unfortunately my terrible pictures don't do the colors justice.

I used Red Heart because it's durable and washable.  It's a gigantic granny square since I'm too impatient to make a ton of little ones and then sew them together. 

I got the pattern for the solid square out of a library book, but this http://crochet-mania.blogspot.com/2008/01/solid-granny-square.html is pretty much the same.  There are also good videos on Youtube is you search "solid grany square."

Happy hooking!
6  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing in General: Discussion and Questions / Project ideas for silk brocade on: October 03, 2010 12:53:44 AM
I was just in the Givers & Needers swap, and my wonderful giver Spotnik sent me about 2 yards, probably more, of gorgeous green brocade.  I think it's silk (haven't tested it yet), a really lovely emerald with a dragon motif.

I have no idea what to do with it.  I thought that an eye mask would make a nice little project, but I can't very well make 8 dozen eye masks.  This fabric is so pretty, I want to do something nice with it.

What do you all do with brocade? 
7  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / SUPER bright face scrubbies! w/ PATTERN on: September 27, 2010 03:58:52 PM
I bought some of this great cotton yarn (Creme de la Creme, "popsicle bright") and I love it.  I've been making a zillion of these little scrubbies in different sizes and I want to keep them all for myself.  I love crocheted cotton scrubbies in general and the color makes me happy.

One of the best things about these babies is how super simple and quick they are to make.

Begin with an adjustable ring, sc 6 into ring.  Join with a sl st to form a circle and pull the loop tight.

Ch 3, 2dc in each st around.  Sl st closed.

Ch 2, 2hdc in each st around.  Sl st closed.

Ch 2, 2 hdc in next 22 sts.  1 hdc in next two sts.  Sl st closed.  Tie off. 

Voila!  You now have a super awesome face scrubby.
8  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Selling Crafts on Etsy.com / Using social media to promote your Etsy on: September 27, 2010 03:25:33 PM
I'm relatively new to Etsy (opened in mid-August) and have yet to make my first sale.  My budget for advertising is essentially $0, so I'm having to rely on all the free advertising from social media -- I have a Facebook fan page and a twitter, and I want to set up a blog soon.

I've used social media extensively to promote my writing, so I have that down pat and I'm doing well from it, but I'm finding out Etsy is a whole other can of worms.

What works best for you seasoned pros?  Do you use social media?  If so, how, and what kinds?

Thanks in advance for the advice!  Smiley
9  CROCHET / Crochet: Discussion and Questions / Did battle with rag yarn -- not sure if I won... on: September 17, 2010 12:23:08 PM
Last night I finally sat down and ripped up old granny floral cotton I had (the kind used to make sheets) into strips so I could start crocheting a rag rug.  I made the strips about 1/2" wide or so because the largest hook I have on hand is an I.  The crocheting went well, even though I had to take frequent breaks toward the end of my roll because my hands were starting to ache, a lot like when you hand write too much.

This morning I woke up and BOTH arms ached like I'd pitched a season of baseball with them.  Some extra-strength Tylenol helped a bit, but my right arm (the one I hold the hook with) is still especially sore at the elbow and shoulder.  Great timing, since I need to finish some crocheted bridal gifts for a shower tomorrow morning.  Undecided

Any advice?  Anyone had this happen with rag/t-shirt yarn?
10  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Teeny Tiny Butterflies -- with free pattern link! [img heavy] on: September 15, 2010 08:05:00 PM
These butterflies are the cutest things, and they are so quick to make  Grin

They're crocheted with embroidery floss and a D hook.  I found the pattern on this blog, and you can make other sizes, too: http://littlebirdiesecrets.blogspot.com/2010/06/how-to-crochet-butterfly.html

So far I've only put them on bobby pins, but I'm thinking snap clips or other hair accessories would work better.  Smiley
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