Thursday, April 28, 2011

I got a new toy today, don't be Jealous!

I got a new toy today. I was shopping at JoAnn Fabrics and all their sewing notions were half off! So I could not resist picking up a few necessities and of course a few "wants" too!
One of my wants has been a new one of these. And if JoAnn Fabrics says it is a sewing notion,
I won't argue.

Now don't be jealous I bought a new ironing board! I know, an ironing board is not the stuff of every woman's dreams, but if you sew a lot, it is a wonderful tool. My new one also has an iron holder at the end, very handy, as I am notorious at bumping my board and sending the iron flying. And you don't want to "catch" a hot iron!! (Don't ask how I know this).
The ironing board will be a nice addition to my two other trusty sewing companions, my sewing machine and serger. I have had my Husqvarna (Viking) machine for over 25 years and still sews perfectly. And to think Husqvarna also makes chain saws? And yes, we have many of their saws around our ranch.
My little Husky Lock makes beautiful finished seams.

I am planning several new sewing projects so a new board will make the sewing go much smoother.

I made these curtains for my bedroom in March. I love toile prints and am happy with my new curtains.
But my old chair is looking shabby with its mis-matched hand me down stripes from two other rooms.
So the machine and ironing board will get put to good use making a new matched set.
I also have my red case I found at the antique faire that will become my beading case. It needs a new inside lid to hold my beading tools that I am planning to make. I have not decided if I will use the vintage fabric I found or raid my fabric stash or buy new.
I have several other sewing plans in the "planning in my head" stage. A new pincushion, a new purse, a new tote, new living room curtains? The list goes on. If only the time would go on and on too!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Decoration Inspiration

My friend Jenny loves to decorate and paint her home! We joke if you stand still long enough, she will paint you! But she has beautiful taste and has been on a painting spree lately. You can see her work on her blog.

I don't know if it is because Jenny has inspired me, or it is spring cleaning time or a big family reunion at my house in June, I have several decorating projects on my mind. The biggest would be my gallery wall in my long hallway. It is similar to the one below, but not nearly as neat and organized as I have added to it over the years.

I love this look, with all different frames, as I have now. But I have been wanting to update my gallery and make most of the frames black. I love this cohesive look, but I know I will also would like to add in a bit of metal or color.
 I saw this photo of the frames hanging from picture rails and like this idea also, as you would be able to rearrange you photos at will. Decisions, decisions!

When looking for photo galleries I saw this mirror at Pottery Barn and remembered I have an old mirror in my attic that used to be on a dresser I now use in my craft room.
(The black dresser in my blog header photo).
It is now just has an old and discolored oak finish and could use a bit of color.
Another project to add to the list.

I also saw this lamp in the May/June issue of Country Living. I have many old jars and bottles I could turn into a lamp. In Country Living they filled the bottle with dictionary pages. This would be fun to change out with the seasons. I love the shells and sand for summer, Snow glitter and Styrofoam balls at Christmas?
The possibilities are endless!

I also saw this table at Funky Junk Interiors and Donna has a wonderful tutorial on how to paint old signs. I love how she turned the "sign" into a table! And you can see it again in the May 2011 edition of Romantic Homes! I will be checking out the newsstands!

Lots of projects to look forward too. I need to "paint" my entire house desperately but until I have my long unplanned break from work coming up in September, it will be little projects to tide me over.
That is unless I can bribe Jenny with Starbucks, and she will paint for me. After all, she will eventually run out of rooms to paint!!!!

Monday, April 18, 2011

Antique Fair Finds

Yesterday my hubby and I went to the Petaluma Antique Fair. It is held twice a year in nearby Petaluma and this was one of the first times my schedule and the fair coincided. We arrived just after 8:00am and it was already bustling. It was several blocks long with a few off shoots to the side. I did not go with a plan to buy anything specific, more to browse and see what caught my eye.

I am always on the lookout for milk glass, specially the "Hobnail" style.
But any vintage item I see to craft with, alter or use for storage is on my list.
My favorite store to shop at in Petaluma is Summer Cottage  a vintage/antique collective. I almost always find a new treasure. I found this rack last summer and it holds my
Close to My Heart stamp sets perfectly.

Yesterday I did not find a lot that spoke to my heart and said take me home,
but did find this case and some odds and ends to play with.

I am thinking I will take the old red travel case and turn it into a travel case for beading. I will remove the mirror in the lid and will make a holder for my beading tools, then keep my basic bead supplies like findings and wire in the bottom section. When I plan a project, I can just pick assorted bead cases to match my project, put them in the case then I can grab it and go.

The milk glass I bought for craft room storage, and well because it is milk glass!
The little paper cup has a pig on it so I could not pass it up. The other bits are buttons, vintage millinery flowers and fabric. All to add to my craft supplies.

My hubby bought me the vintage silver canoe charm to add to my overflowing charm bracelet. It is from Idaho and I spent almost every summer vacation while growing up, with a fishing visit to Lake Pend'orille in N. Idaho. I had never gotten a charm for my bracelet on those trips, so I have one now.

When I redo my new (to me) red case into a bead case I will post my how to's and finished project.
Thanks for looking!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Chocolate Bunny Basket

The other day I posted this photo as inspiration for a basket I wanted to make to use my old, battered, white paper mache bunny. I loved the greenery and the old basket with the hints of old green paint. The inspiration basket is from Martha Stewart, where everything is always so beautiful. The paper mache bunny will last so much longer at my house. A real chocolate bunny would last about 5 minutes.

This is my version below. My basket started out as a bright green Easter basket. It was St Patty's day bright. I gave it a dip in a bleach/water mixture to take off some of the color. After it was dry, I gave the basket a chocolate brown wash with acrylic paint and rubbed most of it off. Then I went over the basket with some green paint and rubbed most of that off too. I still wanted to see the basket underneath.

I lined the basket with floral foam and covered that with moss. I found this pretty green fern to fill around the rim, and added several spring flowers. Bright mossy green ribbons and some colorful eggs fill up the basket.

My bunny got a new coat of chocolate paint and a blue bow. I was originally thinking of covering the bunny with brown glitter, but I liked the chocolate paint, so decided I can always add the glitter later if I
change my mind.
My basket is a different look from my inspiration basket. I could not find a beautiful basket with a tall enough handle to fit my bunny, or one that I could afford. And I strayed from the all green color tones and added more color with my flowers and eggs. But I love color so it fits my style more and will make a great centerpiece for my Easter table.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Paper posies

I love to play with paper and anytime I can take a few flat punched paper flowers and make them into a beautiful rose, all the better. I made the roses on these two cards and I will show you how in the next few steps.

To start you will need a flower punch like this Family Treasures one I have had for years. Or you can use a die. Any way you can cut three flowers with even petals will do. My punch is about 1.5" and makes about a one inch rose.

Punch three flowers and score or fold each petal into six sections.
With the flower #1, make a small slit on one fold line. Flower # 2, cut out one "wedge" and save this piece. Flower #3 cut out two wedges and save this piece. Five pieces in all.
Take piece #1 and overlap and glue two wedges to make a five petal flower. Take the stylus  (any small round item will work) and curl each petal between your thumb and the stylus to curl the edge of the petal.
Take piece #2 and overlap and glue to make a 4 petal flower. Repeat the curling step. Take piece # 3 and repeat to make a 3 petal flower. Repeat the curling step. Take piece #4 and roll this with your stylus to make a cone shape and repeat this with #5. Sometimes it is a bit fussy to do this, but it will work.
If you would like to ink your edges, you can do this now.
Take piece #1, the 5 petal flower and turn it over on a soft surface. With the end of a pen or rounded tool, slightly depress the center to make the flower lay flatter on your card or scrapbook page.
Trim about 1/8 inch or so from the bottom of pieces 2 through 5.
To glue them together, I pour out a small puddle of Glossy Accents (or similar glue) on a scrap paper and start layering the flower. I dip the bottom of piece #2 in the Glossy Accents and set it in the center of piece #1. And so on, until you insert piece # 5 into the center.
And you have a beautiful rose! You can also use a bigger die or punch for a bigger rose or an 8 petal punch that will have an extra layer.
If you want to make some little accent posies, punch a tiny flower and insert a half of a floral stamen in each. I find it easier to punch the center hole first and then punch the flower around this hole. A tiny drop of glue in the center of the flower will hold the stamen in place. If you can't find the stamens in the craft store, check the cake supply store where they are used for fondant flowers.
Make several flowers and add them to card, tag or scrapbook page. I also added clear glass glitter on my rose colored card. For this card above, I used some floral stamens and punched leaves as accents.

Have fun!
Sorry for the drab color in the photos. Costco folding tables make a terrible photo backcround :)

Monday, April 11, 2011

A New Day..

"This is the beginning of a new day. You have been given this day to use as you will. You can waste it or use it for good. What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever;  in it's place is something that you have left behind . . . let it be something good." author unknown

I saw this Bunny basket at Martha Stewart Crafts the other day. I just love it. I am thinking of making something similar for my Easter table centerpiece. But I will use an old paper mache bunny I have as the focal. I could use a chocolate bunny, but at my house he would not last very long.
My paper mache bunny is currently painted white, but all chipped. I want to paint him a nice chocolate brown and cover him with brown glitter. If I left him just chocolate brown, I might find him
with a tooth mark or two. :)
I bought some pretty green ferns yesterday to add to the basket, some eggs and just need to get a beautiful green ribbon. Hopefully, he will be finished this week. I will post when it is done.

Happy Monday!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Crafty day cards

Last Saturday I had several friends over for a "crop" or crafty day. I really enjoyed playing
with all my scrapping and stamping goodies with kindred spirits!
We played from morning 'til night creating cards, scrap pages, mini books and more.
The current Stampin' Up mini catalog has some
fun sewing themed stamps, fabric and paper.

I designed this card and had the supplies ready for everyone to make a card for themselves. 

Since I have sewn longer than any other crafts I have done, sewing themed paper and stamps
are right up my alley. I made a few other cards with these supplies.

I also have this Hero Arts stamp I love and made two cards with it. The stamps is used as a back ground stamped on white paper. I then stamped it again on two pattern papers and I fussy cut the dresses and applied them to the original background. I made the flower on the second card by stamping my pattern pieces background stamp from SU onto vellum, then die cut the vellum with multi sized flower dies (Cuttlebug) and inked and distressed the flower layers before I stacked them into a flower with a brad.

This last card is for my sister's birthday. All the papers are from SU.
I love making these paper roses, and could not stop making them for this card.
I just need to now get it in the mail for her birthday on Tuesday. It will be late, but she expects that, 
because all my cards are usually late. The sentiment is there, just not the timing. And a late birthday card
just prolongs the celebration, right?

I can't wait until I can plan another crafty, scrappy day.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Spring is here.....

Spring is in the air after almost a month of rain here in wine country. The grass is green and the
daffodils, forsythia and flowering quince are all in bloom.

And now it is April and Easter is around the corner. I love to decorate for the holidays, Christmas, Halloween, Easter, 4th of July, Valentines Day. Each and everyone. 

I love my button collection and use it in all my crafts whenever I can. For Easter I made this
little button egg shadow box. And framed it in a bright spring green. 

To start I gathered up the buttons I wanted to use, vintage shell, pastel pink, green and blues. 
I cut a piece of glitter paper (glitter is a good thing!) the size of my frame. In this case 4x6 in. I cut a scrap paper into an egg shape as a template and placed it over the glitter paper. 
Ignore the mess behind the buttons, when I want to craft something new I can't be bothered
to clean up my desk. I want to get started crafting!

I sorted through the buttons to find similar sizes for each row. I started at the top. I used a clear glue, Glossy Accents by Ranger, to glue each button down within my mask.
After I reached the bottom I let the glue set up a bit and then removed the mask.
When completely dry I inserted my egg into the shadow box frame and was good to go.
A quick and simple decoration.
Eggs and Spring are signs of rebirth, renewal and fresh starts.
Reminding us to always look forward to something new!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Here we go!

Welcome to my crafty blog. I have created this blog to share my crafting with friends and family and anybody who wishes to see what I have been up to!

I am a papercrafter, sewer, stamper, beader and scrapper. I have also been a tole painter and even made miniature furniture. I always have one or two or twenty projects going at once. I also throw in some knitting and crocheting here and there. If I didn't have to be at my "real" job 40 hours a week I would be crafting my days away.

I also love antiques and vintage items and add those to my home decor and crafting. I will post fun finds and what I do with them.

                                                         A scrapbook page of my childhood

                                                     A mini book about my Axe Men

I just spent last Saturday scrapping and crafting with some of my artsy, crafty friends and will post some cards and scrapbook pages I created that day.

And now that Spring has arrived I hope to post some of my Spring crafty projects.

Hope to see you back soon! And if you have questions or see something you like, leave a reply! I would love to hear from you!