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11  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Misc. Gift Idea Brain Blockage / Clue, Trivial Pursuit, and Monopoly themed gift/stocking ideas wanted on: October 03, 2010 11:50:32 AM
I've decided to start early on my Christmas shopping this year.  I'm determined!
I love coming up with themed gifts, but I'm having some brain blockage here.

The idea is for a classic board game themed stocking.  The items in the stocking should correspond to the game ... I will probably include a mix of gag gifts and things they'd actually want.  I'd also like to include some crafted items if possible.  I'm open to using different games, but I thought classic board games would be neat.

The giftees are three brothers who are all still living at home- 17, 19, and 23.  When they come over to visit, we almost always play games all evening, so this should be a hit (hopefully!).  

Here are my ideas, but I'd love to hear more (especially where I have nothing!):
edit: I've been adding to the list to incorporate ideas given below (thanks!)

Trivial pursuit themed stocking that includes:
Trivial Pursuit board game
Trivial Pursuit card game

Geography category-  maybe a Gps (depending on the money we decide to spend)?  Book of maps- either a nice set or National Geographic set and/or a compass (this one, perhaps? http://www.amazon.com/Brass-Compass-Luminous-Ring-Adjustable/dp/B001IABX3Y/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1286146291&sr=8-4 )
Entertainment category- itunes or FYE gift card
History category- interesting facts from history type of book
Literature category- a classic novel
Science & Nature category- Huh
Sports & Leisure category- Huh I know he's fairly athletic, so I can probably come up with something eventually.  Tongue

Wrap each item in paper that corresponds to the board game's color
Maybe some trivia books

Anything else?  Huh

Clue themed stocking that includes:
Clue board game
Clue card game

For the characters:
Mustard: jar of spicy mustard
Plum: a plum?
Scarlet: red marker? red lipgloss? The Scarlet Letter?
White: white marker? container of white out?
Green: green marker? Huh
Peacock: peacock feather? Huh
Knife: Swiss army or other nice knife
Candlestick: cheapo candlestick from goodwill/salvation army/garage sale
Revolver: play gun
Rope: rope
Lead Pipe: pipe
Wrench: wrench
Dining Room: plastic silverware Huh (seems kind of lame)
Lounge: "lounge" pillow
Hall: Huh
Kitchen: frying pan Huh (lives at home, doesn't really cook)
Ball Room: lots and lots of bouncy balls Tongue
Conservatory: grow your own plant kit?
Billiard Room: mini toy pool set
Library: classic novel
Study: pen set and planner

Monopoly themed stocking that includes:
Monopoly board game
Monopoly card game

Paper Money: $1, $5, $10, $20 bills, photoshopped image printed onto $50, $100, $500 bills, notebook made from money (already purchased: http://www.etsy.com/transaction/35284856 )

Battleship: Huh -we live near Battleship Cove in MA, so maybe a souvenir from there
Dog: maybe some dog treats (their older brother has a dog) and/or dog/dog bone shaped cookies
Car: paperweight http://www.etailgifts.com/car.asp  ?
Thimble: a small thimble and emergency sewing kit
Shoe: shoe laces? Huh
Iron: iron/vitamin supplements
Hat: baseball hat? Huh
Chance: lottery tickets, and/or magic 8 ball (love this idea, thanks!)
Community Chest: "treasure chest" with coins in it
Jail: toy handcuffs? Huh
Railroad: railroad map   Huh
Utilities: Energy efficient light bulb and/or rechargeable batteries , ooo, maybe this "credit card lightbulb" from thinkgeek: http://www.thinkgeek.com/gadgets/travel-outdoors/cbd4/
Houses: Huh
Hotels: book on hotels....  I had thought maybe hotel sized soaps...is that too weird? Tongue   ... (haha, letuescarpe, I see that you had the same idea) Huh
Maybe utilize names from some of the spaces: Huh

Obviously I have less ideas for Monopoly.   Tongue  I would like each stocking to contain a nice mix of practical and actually wanted items and a variety of gag gifts just to tie in the theme.  Nothing too expensive, which is why I put the question mark next to GPS.  Tongue   Any suggestions?  
12  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Shelving made from hardback books! on: October 18, 2008 10:20:40 AM
I have a lot of books.  Books I read and books I save for crafting purposes.  It's actually rather ridiculous.  So while I was working on renovating a bookcase of mine and waiting for paint to dry, I decided to work on another shelf to work off my impatient energy.

This is what I made:

Only two books were harmed in the making of this shelf, too.  And those two were only harmed because I was getting frustrated and impatient (hmm, theme here?).

To make it, I took some of my crafting books and attached L-brackets to spare wood boards that I had.  I painted the boards to match the shelf they'd be sitting on.  I did each board a bit differently as I experimented, but attaching the L-brackets so they were still visible was the sturdiest.  The first shelf hid the metal brackets inside the book covers, but it was a bit more wobbly so I had to attach a bunch more of them.  The rest I did like this:     This way, the books can slide in and out when they aren't supporting the shelf above it. 

I ran out of same-height books, so for the top shelf I attached the brackets right to the book on one side.  I was having difficulty with the book on the right's stability, so I screwed right into it as well (make sure you clamp the book shut before attempting to screw it shut).    Here's the top shelf close up:

Let me know what you think!   Grin
13  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Bookshelf renovation on: October 18, 2008 10:08:06 AM
I have a set of bedroom furniture that I hate- I don't like the wood's color, the sides are cheap and cracked, and it wasn't made real well.  But, it has put up with a lot, since it was my dad's furniture when he was a kid and it was my furniture since I was a kid.  Now that I'm finally redoing my bedroom, I plan to replace it.

I decided to keep the bookshelf, since I've always had a lot of books and I thought it would be nice to have a sentimental piece amongst the rest of my furniture.

Here's how it turned out: 

On the original piece, the trim and molding was so horrible, books became lost back there.  So the first thing I did was rip off all the trim around the top and sides.  It was very cathartic, which is part of why there's no before pictures.  Wink  That stuff was nailed, stapled, screwed, and glued in.  I probably should have just given up, but it was rather fun.  The top was just a cheap board that slid into a groove near the top.  It looked weird, so I ripped the nails holding it in out and removed it.  But then the top wasn't level with the board I bought to replace it (it was slightly lower in the back).  So, I flipped the shelf upside-down, and you can't tell any more.  Plus, it makes it sit more evenly on the carpet, previously it always tipped forward, now it leans back just a tad into the wall, which is enough to even it out. 

After sanding it, I tried to stain it, but it was blotchy due to me not sanding the finish off evenly.  The black stain also looked blue-black, so I gave up and primed it and painted it with a dark brown color.  I then painted some vines (from a Snow and Graham design that I like) on the back splash.  I plan to make a headboard for my bed with the same vine design.

This is the original shelf: 
(I forgot to take a before picture, so this is one from when I was moving, excuse the boxes and my cat)

14  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Scrabble Clock for a Christmas gift on: December 13, 2007 04:39:31 PM
I was unable to think of a great gift for the family that I nanny for, until I was in the play room and wished there was a clock down there.  I remembered seeing this Scrabble Clock here on Craftster (https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=155351.0), so I made my own. 

I also posted it in that thread, but I wanted to start a new topic for it since I'm excited about it, and that craft challenge is over. 

So, here's my take on the idea:

I took it a little further by adding pictures of their family, that I tinted and added paint effects to with Photoshop:

The new Scrabble boards (this close to Christmas, I wasn't waiting to find a used one, but only $8 at Toys R Us!) have a huge space on the left.  It took me awhile to decide what to do with it, and then forever to replicate the Scrabble banner with the family's name because I couldn't find a similar enough font (yes, I'm that picky).  But I like how it turned out:

Let me know what you think of it!  I think I want to make something similar for my sister sometime (after Christmas!), so constructive criticism will be appreciated!
15  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Tips for Participating in Craft Fairs / Necklace display tutorial on: March 17, 2007 08:00:21 AM
I'm not 100% sure where to put this, so please let me know if it should go somewhere else!  I just figured people will use this at a craft fair.  Smiley

While looking for cheap necklace displays to use for my next craft fair, it occurred to me that I should just try something with the random supplies that I already have....

First, I cut up a cardboard box (I used a Priority Mail box someone mailed to me).  The taller the box, the taller your display will be.  I cut a rectangular portion using the top flap and bottom flap. 

I then took some thick fabric (I used an old sweater) and duct taped it to the middle and top portion.  It really just needs to cover the middle portion, but I liked the look of it going onto the top a bit.  Don't cover the bottom flap.

I then found some fabric to cover the whole thing.   I used black velvet for one, pretty blue fabric for another.  Pin the fabric around the cardboard, good side in.  You may want to draw a line to show where to sew.  Slip the cardboard out of its new sleeve and sew the sleeve shut.  Flip the sleeve inside-out, showing the good side.

Slip the fabric sleeve over your cardboard that is partially covered with thick fabric.  It should be a tight fit.

Carefully sew up the ends.  I folded the fabric in a bit and sewed it as close to the "inside" of the display as the fabric would allow.  When you approach the middle of the sewing line, insert a piece of long ribbon on each flap.  This will be for the tie/bow.  Since my cardboard wasn't too thick, I also sewed the fabric TO the cardboard.  It prevents the fabric from pulling away when the display is tied and looks much nicer.

Bend the two flaps so the pieces of ribbon meet.  Tie it as tight or loose as you think looks best.  A loose tie is slightly less stable, but stands up taller.

Ta da!  You have a very cheap, but nice looking necklace display.

Since I'm too new to post pictures- here's a link: 
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