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1  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Triskele Mini TM Patch on: October 12, 2019 06:28:15 PM
In the most recent TM patch swap, my partner and I decided to swap some mini patches in addition to a regular-sized patch. The smaller patches can be used to fill in gaps that can form when joining patches that differ in size. This patch is just over an inch, I think. I traced the design with my new (and new favorite crafting supply) transfer pen.



I stitched it while I was a passenger in a car, and it came out pretty well (there's one stitch I wish I had taken out and re-stitched... but it's not quite as obvious in real life as it appears in the photo)..
2  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Purple Coneflower Mini TM Patch on: October 12, 2019 06:22:55 PM
In the last round of the TM patch swap, my partner and I decided to swap one regular-sized patch and 2 mini patches (1 to 1.5 inches big...or small). They can be used to fill in the gaps when joining patches that don't quite fit perfectly together.

One of my favorite flowers is the purple coneflower, so I knew I wanted to stitch one. I didn't have the exact right shade of purple, so I used three colors of floss (two purples and a pink) to stitch the petals. I originally started with shorter stitches, but it didn't look right, so I started over and used long straight stitches (I guess it's a satin stitch, but it's more loosely stitched than I usually do satin stitch). For the flower center, I originally started with orange thread and was doing long & short stitches, with the plan to fill in with brown later, but it was just too orange. So, I used as strand of the orange and a strand of the brown, and did a modified long & short stitch. I really love how it came out!



I used a transfer marker to trace a photo of a coneflower and ironed it on to the fabric. I'd never used a transfer marker before, and I really liked being able to trace something and transfer the image. It opens up a world of stitchy possibilities!
3  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Four Leaf Clover Mini TM Patch on: October 12, 2019 06:12:48 PM
In the latest round of the TM patch swap, Powerhouseofthecell and I decided to swap one regular-sized patch and 2 mini patches, which could be used for fillers. The planned size was 1-1.5" but this one is a little bit bigger (closer to 2").

I had some fabric that was covered with patterned four leaf clovers, so I used the pattern as my stitching guide. I put a small bead in the center, then used lazy daisy stitches, French knots, backstitch, and running stitch to go over the design on the fabric.




It's hard to tell in the photo, but I used 3 or 4 different shades of green floss.
4  SEWING IN GENERAL / Machine Embroidery: Completed Projects / Weeping Willow Machine Stitched TM Patch on: October 12, 2019 06:06:25 PM
I made this for Powerhouseofthecell in the recent TM patch swap. My original plan was to do free-motion embroidery, but I couldn't really control it the way I wanted. So, I decided to just do regular machine stitching.




I stitched the shadow using black and grey threads, the grass with three colors of green, the trunk with brown, the clouds with white, and the willow leaves with 2 shades of green plus yellow. It was very soothing to stitch, but it took longer than I expected. The grass took the longest, but it was fun to stitch the wavy lines back and forth.  I really enjoyed the process and I'll probably try the technique again, maybe even on a larger scale.
5  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Beaded Bracelet on: October 12, 2019 05:53:56 PM
Several years ago, one of my crafty friends showed me how to make a beaded bracelet that was so pretty that I almost wanted to start wearing bracelets. It's pretty easy to make, but looks complicated, and by changing up the beads, you can get a variety of looks. The original one that I made was blue and was made using Swarovski crystals. I have no idea what I did with it...

This summer, as I was on an organizing rampage, I came across a bag of supplies to make more of the bracelets. So, when my friend reached out to see if anyone was available for a craft day, I asked if she'd show me again how to make them. Here is the result:




It's a little hard to tell in the photo, but I used some dark beads with a bronze-ish tint (in the right light), some coordinating Delicas, and some glass faceted beads (in the color "smoke"). Here's a closeup:



It's made by creating the base layer with the Delicas and then adding in the center beads, finishing up with the side beads. The only drawback to this pattern is that the length is set with the base layer, and it's a bit of a guessing game because it can shrink up a little when the other beads are added. Or, it usually does. This one didn't seem to to that, so it's too big for me, which is okay, because I don't wear bracelets. Smiley

I'm hoping to start accumulating a bunch of handmade items so I can have a little "pop-up" shop at school before Christmas (2020) so I can A) raise some money for our family emergency fund at school and B) start working through my craft stash... I'm hoping these bracelets will be a hit!
6  QUILTING / Quilting: Completed Projects / Intentional Disarray (or Wabi Sabi) Quilt on: October 05, 2019 06:37:45 PM
For the Geezer Swap, I was partnered with imera, who wanted something to keep her warm. Since I can't knit socks, and I knew a shawl would take me too long, So, I decided to make a quilt because I can sew a lot faster than I can crochet.



I hit the fabric store and started selecting fabrics, and then realized I was picking out fabrics to fit my favorite color scheme. So, I put the fabric back and started looking for something that matched imera's favorites. I spotted this fabric with little pigeons on it and started grabbing fabrics to match. I also found some fabric that had some ships that look like Viking ships to pay homage to imera's home country.




I did a version of a Jelly Roll Race by cutting 70 WOF strips, and joined them end to end. I didn't really think about how long the resulting fabric strip was (I knew it was at least 2800") until my uncle converted it to feet... over 230 feet long! So, it took me a while to sew that first seam (over 115 feet).

Here's the completed quilt top- before I quilted it:




I used a navy blue sheet for the backing. I took it to my sister's to get some help with the basting (I used a spray baste) because I thought an extra pair of hands would help, plus she has a nice outdoor space to work in at her apartment complex.

Spray basting a quilt along the bank of the river:




My quilting is very wonky because A) My machine is not really big enough to quilt on, and B) the little metal arm to help me make even rows of stitching kept wiggling loose from my walking foot and falling out. I cut black strips for the binding and used a tutorial I found online for how to attach it by machine (I had to touch it up with some hand sewing in a few spots). I ended up with a quilt that would fit on a twin-sized bed.

Because of the nature of a jelly roll race quilt, the arrangement of the fabric strips is pretty random, and when you add in my very crooked quilting lines, it's a rather disarrayed final product. I was originally going to translate "Intentional Disarray" into Japanese (everything sounds cooler and trendier if it has a Japanese name), but the existing term "wabi sabi" seemed to fit nicely!
7  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Beads: Completed Projects / Straw & Fabric Beads on: October 05, 2019 06:09:32 PM
Over the summer, I spent a day with my mom helping her to make some fabric beads so she could make some bracelets for her friends for Christmas. Here's the finished beads!




Here's how we made them (we used bits from a variety of tutorials online):

First we cut the straws into half inch pieces (these straws are from McDonald's):



Then we cut a bunch of strips of fabric and trimmed them to size:






Next we coated them with glue (we used Fabric Fusion, and spread it across the fabric with small cardboard pieces) and wrapped them around the straw pieces:




Then we let them dry...




Here they are after drying:




We decided they needed a bit of shine, so we coated them with Ultra Glossy Mod Podge. I'll post pics once my mom turns them into bracelets!
8  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Little Fat Quarter Drawstring Bags on: October 05, 2019 05:21:31 PM
A video for these cute little bags came across my YouTube feed, and I just had to give them a try. I got together with a friend for a crafty afternoon, and we were able to knock these out in no time!



The pink & black one was mine (I gifted it to my mom), and my friend had this great "air mail stripe" fabric that I just loved.

The video that we used is HERE.
9  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Science Fabric Microwave Bowl Cozy Set on: July 22, 2019 04:15:14 PM
Note: I just tried to post this, but got an error message, then another one that said I had already posted it. But, it doesn't appear on the board. If it shows up twice, one can be deleted!

I made these for my partner in the Asheville Swap (Perfectly Bohemian) because she had commented how much she loved some of the earlier ones I had made, and how she wished she had more. She's a science geek, too, so I thought science-themed fabrics would work. I used a bright green fabric for the reverse side.




I've only made these in the cereal bowl size, so I think I might try making a larger size. I can definitely use them!
10  COOKING / Recipes and Cooking Tips / Small Batch Canning-Lavender Lemonade Concentrate/Caramelized Meyer Lemon Syrup on: July 22, 2019 04:07:13 PM
Back when Meyer lemons were in season, my canning buddy and I decided to do a small batch of canning to kick-start the canning season (but we haven't done any canning since!). We've never made a concentrate before, and we've never used Meyer lemons before, but we ended up with 3 half pints of each (plus a smidgen of overage). They came out such a lovely color, and now that it's summer, that lemonade concentrate will be put to good use!



I can't remember where the recipes were from, but I can find out if anyone is interested (my friend keeps the canning journal because she's way more organized than I am Smiley ).
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