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21  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / keeping party food HOT! on: September 08, 2005 07:07:31 AM
I just posted an obnoxiously long thread in the party planning area of Craftster about a surprise 25th anniversary party I'm planning for my parents.  We're having an outdoor party under a pavilion, and I have a few concerns about the food.  Everyone on here is so awesome when it comes to ideas and I know someone here can help me!

We're planning to serve hot food like ziti, sausage and peppers and macaroni and cheese among other various foods.  However, this pavilion has limited electrical outlets that I'm sure will be used up by the gazillion crock pots full of meatballs and chili that people are bringing.  I need to keep large trays of ziti and mac and cheese hot.  Anyone know how I can do this?  I need help as quickly as possible.  The party is one week from Saturday and this is a big boo-boo that someone overlooked.

Thanks for any help you can give me!
22  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Party Planning / I so desperately need help with autumn decorations... on: September 08, 2005 07:02:03 AM
Okay, so here's the deal:

I've been working with a few members of my family to plan a surprise 25th wedding anniversary party for my parents.  Their anniversary was back in August, but they went on a nice vacation to celebrate, and the first time we could schedule a party was for September 17th...yes, one week from this Saturday!!!  The later date also helps because my parents hopefully won't suspect a party almost a month after their anniversary.

So, silly me, I thought the planning was going well, but we had a meeting last night and I realized that everyone has been slacking on their jobs.  We have no plans as of yet to decorate the tables and pavilion where the party is taking place.  This is an outdoor party, with the option to move into this weird little barn-style building if the weather refuses to cooperate.  I want to go with an autumn/fall theme and since no one else took the time to plan the decorations, I'm doing it.

I've only got about a week to buy supplies and plan this out, so I'm wondering if anyone has any suggestions.

I mostly need suggestions for table decorations (long, and I mean LONG picnic tables) like table cloths, centerpieces, etc.  I've got tons of those paper lanterns that we're planning to hang from the rafters in the pavilion.  I'm not opposed to things like pumpkins and potted mums, but I want to stay away from actual Halloween decorations (no bats or ghosts or anything like that).  Elegant but casual.

I also wanted to make up programs or something, but I'm really worried about time.

I can post pictures of the party location if you need a visual, but it's just your average picnic area.


23  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / finished Amy Butler swing bag on: September 07, 2005 01:18:35 PM
I finally got around to trying out the Amy Butler patterns I ordered ages ago and made my first bag last night.  It's completely reversible, but it seems like it's missing something.  What do you think?  Any suggestions?  I'm still learning (slowly but surely) about the bag making process, but it's really fun and I'm enjoying the time spent...

The bag in its entirety:


The inside:

Lining detail:

Exterior detail:

Any thoughts???
24  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / my first purse...a Jordy, of course! on: August 27, 2005 07:04:03 PM
Okay, I'm so proud...my first bag!!!  I followed the Jordy tutorial (using charcoal grey wool, 100% cotton lining and ribbon handles) and here's what I came up with:

The front:


The lining:

I couldn't get a good shot of the inside of the bag, so I just took a closeup of the material.  I haven't added a snap or velcro or anything like that, but I think I might have to.  

Any suggestions?  Comments?  Keep the little roses or ditch them?  I know I have to do some work to keep my seams and stitches a little neater, but overall I'm pleased.
25  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / fabric portraits on: August 25, 2005 04:48:39 PM
I know this part of Craftster is for completed projects, but I wasn't sure where else to put it.  I'm trying something new and I'm looking for a bit of input.  This isn't finished...I'm only about half done, but I thought I'd post it here to see what you guys think and maybe get some suggestions.

For my first victim...uhh...subject, I decided to do a portrait of my husband, Ben.  I love doing portraits but I'm sick of working with pencil and paint.  This seemed like a nice alternative:

Here's a recent shot of Ben, the hubby:

The work in progress:

And with a little more time put into it:

Once this is done, the rest of his face will be finished and a background will be added.  I'll iron it all down and do some sort of decorative stitch both by hand and by machine along the seams to smooth out the harsh breaks between fabric prints.  I was going for a look like Arcimboldo's portraits, but without all the fruit.

What do you guys think?  Any suggestions before I go any further?  This takes a LONG time to do and I'd hate to spend another month working on it if I'm making some obvious mistakes.

Any suggestions as to what I can do with it once it's finished?

Any input would be greatly appreciated!!!
26  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Discussion and Questions / Name tattoos...bad idea? on: August 17, 2005 08:10:07 AM
I've posted a few other topics about tattoos here on Craftster and I've gotten some great advice.  Figured I'd try my hand at this one:

What do you guys think about tattooing someone's name on your body?  I've always believed that it's safe if it's the name of someone who has passed away, or like your kid's name or something.  I guess, in my experience, everyone I know who has tattooed a husband/wife's name or boyfriend/girlfriend's name somewhere on their body regretted it because things didn't work out in their relationship and they were stuck with this tattoo on their body.

This whole topic came up last night.  I'm getting new tattoos on my feet on Saturday afternoon and my husband is getting his very first tattoo on the same day, right after I get mine.  He asked me last night if I was willing to make the "ultimate sacrifice" by getting his name tattooed on my body when we go for our appointments on Saturday.  When I told him I wasn't sure about the idea, he got mad!

I'm not against name tattoos.  I've got my grandmother's name across my upper back as it is, so the act of getting a name tattoo isn't the problem.  Am I being ridiculous?  I love him and I'm not totally opposed to the idea, but I'm looking for some advice to kind of steer me in the right direction before I take the plunge.

Do any of you fellow Craftsters have your significant others' names tattooed on you anywhere?  Do you regret it?  Any suggestions or advice would be greatly appreciated!

You guys are the best!!!
27  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Discussion and Questions / Will Amy Butler's purse patterns make me crazy? on: August 09, 2005 06:41:45 AM
I'm new to the world of making handbags and I really like the look of Amy Butler's bags.  Anyone try these patterns?  Am I getting in over my head for a first bag?  Any particular pattern I should try before others?  Can I possibly ask any more questions??? 

Thanks ahead of time for the help/advice!
28  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Discussion and Questions / removing peel-and-stick floor tiles on: July 25, 2005 07:26:58 AM
Hey, does anyone know of a relatively easy way to remove peel-and-stick tiles from a floor?  The previous owners (of what is now our new home), for whatever reason, installed these really awful tiles in the bathroom within a month or two of us buying the house.  I'm sure they thought the tiles made the bathroom look nice, but they're white and they look terrible within five minutes of washing the floor.  Besides, they're totally NOT my style.  I want an inexpensive fix so I'm going with more peel-and-stick tiles, I think, but I don't want to lay them over the current floor.  I've been told that removing the old tiles is really easy, but I don't know where to start.

Any other easy, inexpensive flooring suggestions?

Thanks ahead of time!  You guys are great!
29  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Discussion and Questions / bathroom window woes on: June 24, 2005 07:22:00 AM
I was hoping someone here could help me.  My husband and I just bought our first home and we're having a hard time figuring out what to do with our bathroom window.  I'm not sure who the genius was who decided to install a window IN THE SHOWER, but I'm now left to deal with hiding my naked body from the old man who lives next door. 

I'm not exaggerating when I say that the actual window is IN the shower, so hanging a curtain isn't really an option. 

I've considered using frosted contact paper but I'm not sure how long it will hold up with the steam and water from the shower. 

I read through the post about glass etching and there was no mention of etching a window in your house.  Has anyone tried this? 

Anyone have any other ideas that might help me?  I'm looking for a permanent fix here, so all ideas are welcome.

30  IMAGE REPRODUCTION TECHNIQUES / Stenciling: Discussion and Questions / stenciling text on walls??? on: May 30, 2005 01:54:29 PM
I've recently visited a few websites where you can buy either wallpaper borders or actual stickers with phrases on them.  Of course, they cost an arm and a leg and since I'm a new homeowner I can't really afford it.

Has anyone here stenciled text on walls?  Know of any good methods I could try?  Do you have pictures of examples of what you've done?  I'm concerned with keeping things straight and level.

Any and all help/suggestions would be great!

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