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1  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / Re: Wedding UNtraditions? on: March 16, 2006 11:38:26 AM
Ha! And I was just about to suggest scavenger hunt! Hey congrats! I too am planning a wedding--my sweetie proposed Christmas Eve.

I'm late to this whole website because I'm planning my wedding (this Saturday!) but I wanted to pipe up and say that we're having a something like a photo scavenger hunt and the folded paper fortune tellers.  The photo thing is just a sheet of paper on every table to go with the disposable camera.   It gives suggestions for picture ideas, because most of the time you end up taking a picture of everybody at the table and maybe a couple of the bride & groom, and then you just set it down and forget about it.  So it has ideas like "take a picture of the B&G holding hands", take a picture of the best dancer", etc.  It's just something to get people inspired to take cool pictures.

The folded fortune teller is one of these

And somebody else mentioned trivia cards on the table, I really wanted Ask It cards, but I ended up not getting them.
2  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / Re: books for ideas on: August 25, 2005 06:59:09 AM
I love this book, The Perfect Wedding Details.  I checked it out from the library and have already renewed the checkout once, and I don't want to give it back!  It has very pretty details that you can make yourself.  Love it.  Some ideas would be neat decorations for your house, too. 

The author's other book, The Perfect Wedding Reception, is neat to look at, but is full of completely outrageous ideas that most normal people wouldn't be able to afford.  For one wedding she hires an artist to build/weld a huge tent framework and has the tent custom-sewn.  And she uses silk napkins. 

I don't remember if somebody already mentioned it, but the Bridal Bargains books are wonderful for general 'getting your money's worth' ideas.  I don't know if it really matters, but get the most up-to-date version (7?).
3  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / Re: SOBER girls' night out / bridal shower ideas. on: August 09, 2005 07:12:42 AM
I'm with ya.   I'm not the sort to do the traditional "bar hopping while wearing a veil of condoms" thing.  Here are the ideas that I've gathered.  The main idea is to hire a professional to perform services or teach you things.       
  • A spa party where you go to the salon (or cosmetology school) or have a manicurist come to your house.
  • Hire a masseuse to go around and give everybody short chair massages or to teach you how to give a basic massage.
  • A pro to give dance lessons so you all twirl around on the dance floor like Ginger Rogers.
  • One of the crafting places around here does craft classes, so you could make some wedding decorations or anything else that sounds fun.
  • Rent a karaoke machine to belt out those tunes you love.
  • Take a cooking class to expand your food horizons.

The slumber party would be a lot of fun, we did that for my best friend's bachelorette party.  We played board games until everybody finally arrived.  That was a lot of fun because we were totally silly.  You could watch cheesy '80s movies like Grease, Goonies, and Top Gun, while eating Doritos and drinking soda.  Then go out in the middle of the night to a place like Denny's or Perkins. 
4  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / Re: In leiu of mother's corsages on: August 05, 2005 07:04:46 AM
You could make (or have made) a ribbon corsage.  So all ribbon, no flowers.  I guess I'm imagining something like a bow for a gift, of really nice ribbon.  But less like gift-wrapping and more like an elegant ribbon thingy.  It could be made to look like a flower (ribbon rose) or have little fake blossoms.

5  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / Re: Hawaiian themed wedding.. need ideas on: July 29, 2005 02:11:55 PM
I'm probably too late to help also, but maybe somebody else will find this useful.  I highly recommend using sand for decorations.  It's very cheap and perfect for a beach/tropical theme.  In Wisconsin, a 50lb. bag of nice sandbox sand from Menards (home/hardware store) is only $2-3.  It's probably around the same price at Home Depot.  For my best friend's wedding reception (Jamaica destination wedding) we bought low wooden trays, seashells, and tealight candles from the dollar store.   Just fill the tray with sand, nestle in some seashells and candles, and have the staff light them when it's time.  Plus it was a low decoration that the guests could see over.

I like the individual pineapple upside-down cakes, so cute!  I love innovative ideas like that.

Whole pineapples stuck with appetizers on sticks would be a great way to have a useful and pretty centerpiece.  Or maybe it's rather '60s tacky, but it seems interesting to me.  But you might want to let people know they could eat the strawberries, grapes, cheese, or whatever that's stuck on it. 
6  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / Re: Wedding Decorations on: July 26, 2005 07:34:41 AM
It looks good!  I like the goldfish in the bottoms of the table arrangements.  And the idea of buying sheer curtains is awesome, sometimes you'll find things like that on super sale that you just can't pass up. 
7  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Re: someone need a pin cushion? on: March 11, 2005 08:38:51 AM
Not to distract everybody from littleone's nice pin cushion but I thought I would mention the pin cushion I'm going to make. I grew up with a green wool one like this and so of course I think it's great.  The features I love about this design is that it's flat so it'll sit nicely on a sewing table.  Plus if you pack it tight enough, it's got enough weight to hold things down.

According to Mom, this was designed by my grandma as a 4-H project many years ago:
1. Remove the top lid and label from an empty tuna can or pineapple can (cleaned and dried, of course!).   
2. Trace around the can on brown paper and add a little extra for your seam allowance (3/8" usually). 
3. Next, measure out a rectangle that wraps around the body of the can and add a seam allowance here also.   
4. Transfer your shapes to fabric, cutting out two circles and one rectangle.  If you want to embellish it with ribbon, rick-rack, appliques, etc. do it now.
5. Put the right sides together of one of the circles and the rectangle and sew together to make a fabric cylinder with no bottom piece.  I don't know enough about sewing yet to say if you should sew the short edges of the rectangle together first or the circle onto the long end of the rectangle.  Save me the frustration and let me know if you already know the answer.  Smiley  If I remember right, you'll want to snip into the remaining seam allowance to allow the fabric to curve (or whatever the snipping does).
6. The original design calls for packing the can tight with sawdust but you could probably use rice or small dry beans.  I suppose you could probably use sand, but make sure your fabric is super tightly woven so it doesn't leak out or put a second layer of fabric under the top circle that would help keep it in. 
7. Turn the cylinder right side out.  Slide the sleeve over the open end of the filled can and hand-sew the bottom circle on.  In my mind the bottom circle would probably need to be a tad bit smaller than the actual can so the sewn edge fits under the can so it sits straight.  I'm not sure on this detail but you can easily cut it down, if need be.

I haven't made this yet but I'll post a pic when I get it finished.  I was disappointed when I noticed that the classic tomato-style pin cushion is under $2 at the fabric store but I think I'll appreciate making my own.  I recommend using a heavy-duty fabric just because it'll last longer. 
8  Wisconsin / Wisconsin: Southeast / Re: Madison StitchNBitch Success! on: July 09, 2004 03:04:51 PM
I would recommend posting this in The Isthmus in the community calendar area.
9  UNITED STATES / Wisconsin / Re: Wisconsin Thrift stores.... on: July 01, 2004 08:38:05 AM
The auction I went to was very casual.  It was just a house in a Madison northside neighborhood where an old couple had died.  There was tons of stuff on tables in their front and back yard.  Most of the stuff is grouped into bags or trays (soda pop cardboard flats) or whatever else they could put things into, like crates.   They also auctioned off the house, that was neat because a girl in her mid-20s won it for a good price.  She was so happy that she was crying.  Awww! 

There's usually a bit of time before they start selling stuff so you can preview everything and know what you might want.  To participate, you go up to the booth to get a bidding number.  You'll fill out a form and they copy it along with your photo ID and they give you a bidding number on a piece of paper.  In essence you're creating a 'tab' where they'll total up everything you buy to give you one final payment amount when you want to pay up and leave.  I think most places will take only cash or check, so be prepared.  It usually doesn't cost anything to get a number, so don't be afraid to get one.  It's like Ebay but only live and quicker. 

Then you go join the crowd wherever the auctioneers are at doing their thing with the fast mumbly-talk.  Or you can wander around and look at the rest of the stuff if you're not interested in what they're selling at the time.  The one we were at had tools and hardware stuff in the front yard and the household goods in the back yard.  If the auctioneer is selling something you want, you just put your hand up, say "yeah" or do something else to get the auctioneer's attention.  I know it seems like their auction-patter is difficult to understand but if you watch for a bit, you'll pick it all up. 

I saw a lot of things go for under $5, and that's usually not just one item but a group of things.  And when some items don't seem to get any interest and nobody wants them for even 50 cents, they'll add more items to the pile and try again.  A cool thing they sometimes do is called "choice", they'll group a bunch of different stuff - sometimes it's all similar items, sometimes it's not - and offer the highest bidder a choice of whichever group they want.  That's how I got two bags of plastic storage containers for $2 each, I was the highest bidder and got to pick as many bags for that price.  My other choices were a bag of things like a snowmobile suit and other clothing, and a bag of towels.   The towels would have been nice too but I didn't want to be greedy.  After I was done picking the items I wanted, they opened the bidding back up to everybody else at $2 to pick whatever they wanted.  If nobody wanted anything else at that price, they can start the bidding over with a lower price. 

One tip - at the auction we were at you didn't have to carry the number with you the whole time so if you win you just tell them your number at the end of each bidding and somebody marks it down.  This was nice because the boy could look at tools while I bought my Tupperware and we could both use the same number to pay just one bill at the end. 

A bit of advice - even though an auction is quick paced, if there's a lot of stuff it might take a while to get around to what you want to buy.  So be prepared for a long day of standing.  But we had a ton of fun looking through the random old crap, talking to the other atendees, and listening to the auctioneers with their humorous descriptions.   Usually they'll sell food and beverages but you can probably bring your own stuff in a little portable cooler.  I'm going to buy a little softsided cooler bag before we go next time.   I don't know what they'd think if you brought some of those portable folding chairs that everybody has nowadays, might be worth a shot. 

Wow, this is a long description but I think I got everything.  Does anybody have any questions?  I totally recommend just going to watch sometime.
10  UNITED STATES / Wisconsin / Re: Wisconsin Thrift stores.... on: June 30, 2004 07:56:38 AM
My new favorite place to shop for used items is auctions.  Seemed to be much cheaper than what you'd find at a rummage sale.  I got two garbage bags of Tupperware & Rubbermaid for $4, quite a steal.  Also the boy bought a box of random junk for $5 because he wanted the baseball glove in it, and I ended up with a set of bedsheets and an extra flat sheet.  I'm going to craft them into sleep sacks for our camping kit. 

Here are a couple websites that list a bunch of auction companies in Wisconsin. 
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