Monday, December 5, 2011

Apologies, my friends.

Not too long ago I got a new job.  This was a good thing, but it has thrown off every one of my daily routines, and I have neglected my poor little blog terribly.  But no more!

What I need to get things back on track is organization.

I am ashamed to admit that, what with work and multiple Christmas gift projects all happening at once, what little organization there was in my craft area has become completely defunct.  I have faith that I can fix it, though. 

My apartment is tiny, so I need to get creative.  It’s time to go up the walls, maybe even onto the ceiling, like with these repurposed ladders:

towelsa-590jd051110[1]  towelsa-590jd051110[1]

I really like this wall organizer made from found objects, and I LOVE this idea for yarn storage.  It’s magazine holders placed on their sides on a shelf!  So simple, so smart!

   yarn shelves

My life is going to be so neat and tidy!  That’ll be a nice change for me…

Monday, November 14, 2011

D.I.Y. Holiday Time!

Oh, how I love the Holidays!  First Thanksgiving, then Christmas, and then the start of a brand new year!  But before I can enjoy it all I’m going to need to get all of my ducks in a row.

And I’m going to start with my D.I.Y. gift list!

I always start out the Holidays with the ambitious goal of making all of my loved ones’ gifts by hand.  It doesn’t always work out, but I love the challenge!  Of course, I’m not going to share my actual list with you here, that would ruin the surprise for a few too many people.  But I did find some great ideas to show you.  Just click on the picture for a link to instructions for each project!

You could make and give something useful and practical like a scarf, or a bag made out of neckties:

mla104262_0109_knit_scarf_xl  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA          

Or how about something fairly useless, but fun?  Like amigurumi baby monsters!  Or any amigurumi, really.  (Amigurumi are tiny crocheted figures, there are many unique patterns out there, and each one has the sole purpose of being adorable):

babymonsters DSC_0003

But if you’re looking for something that is sure to be a hit every time, you can’t go wrong with something edible:

Brownies2_300  8100

And as always, you should enjoy making it as much as your recipient will enjoy receiving it.  Happy Holidays everyone!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The cold air has arrived… finally!

And you know what that means…

Sweater weather!!

I have always loved the winter down south.  It gets just the right kind of cold; which is to say it gets cold enough to appreciate staying inside with a cozy fire and a hot drink, but it almost never gets cold enough for snow.  I’ve spent exactly one winter up north, and they can keep the dang snow. 

But the best part about winter is the wardrobe.  Check out this one I was able to pull together:

sweater weather!

Nothing beats long sleeves and boots!  I am so glad winter is here, but my sympathies to our neighbors in the north.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Use your D.I.Y. powers for Good: The Pink Slipper Project

This past Saturday I went to a stitch along at the Sew, Sew Darling studio here in New Orleans.  It was a lovely night full of wine, Crunch N’ Munch, and slippers.  Lot’s and lot’s of slippers!

All of these slippers will eventually find their way to women’s shelters across the country, courtesy of The Pink Slipper Project.

The Pink Slipper Project was founded to “warm the hearts and toes of women and children living in shelters.”  They take handmade slipper donations and distribute them to as many shelters as they can nationwide.  It’s a small act of kindness, but it can go a long way for someone who has fallen on hard times.  If you want to participate you can download any of the free sewing, knitting, or crochet slipper patterns from The Pink Slipper Project’s website.  All of the patterns are really simple, so even if your crafting skills are still at the beginner level you can participate. 

You could sew a simple one seam pair like these:

Or knit a quick garter stitch pair like these:

I am currently working on such a knitted pair.  They’re Kelly green, because, and this is important, just because it’s called The Pink Slipper Project that doesn’t mean the slippers themselves have to be pink.  And it’s a good thing, too, because I personally can’t stand that color.  But I’m all for the charity.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Pumpkin Hat!

It has been a little while since my last post, and for that I apologize.  Life’s been a little hectic over here for one reason or another, but now let me catch you up!

Last week I attended my first ever sewing circle!

It was great!  A nicer group of ladies could not have been found, and I will definitely be attending more of these events in the future.  Since this is October, Halloween was the theme of this meet up, and I made a pumpkin hat!

pumpkin hat

It’s so dang cute, I wish it had been my idea.  But I must give credit were credit is due, and that is with Delia Creates and her post on Project Run and Play.  If you want to make your own hat you can find the instructions here; all you need is a hot glue gun and some felt and your good to go!  And you have options:

witch hat   sunflower hat

This was a really quick, easy project, and now I have the ultimate daytime Halloween accessory!  Time for some trick-or-treating…

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Remembering “Make Mine Music”

Remember back in the day, say fifteen years ago or so, when the Disney Channel’s line up consisted of more than amorphous preteens singing and going to school in completely unrealistic settings?  Back when they would show old Disney films from the 50’s and 60’s, and all those wonderful old animated features?  I miss that.

I especially miss Make Mine Music.

It should come as no surprise that my taste in music, like my taste in pretty much everything else, is rather old fashioned.  I couldn’t tell you who today’s most popular recording artist are, but I’ll school you all day on jazz, swing, bluegrass, or folk.  And when I look back and think about where this musical love started, I would have to say Disney’s Make Mine Music was a big part of it.  It is a series of animated shorts, done in that classic hand drawn, distinctly Disney style, set to music by The Andrew Sisters and Benny Goodman and His Orchestra, as well as many other popular artist of their day.

This one was my favorite…
The Andrew Sisters sing about love…and hats.

…but they were all wonderful!
Benny Goodman and his Orchestra!

The Kings Men sing a blue grass ballad

I’m glad I could find these on YouTube, because that means they aren’t entirely lost to this next generation.   The kids need culture, lest they all end up reality TV “stars.”

Monday, October 3, 2011

Always on the lookout for Tchotchkes

“Tchotchke” is my new favorite word.

For those who don’t know, it is a yiddish word meaning knickknack or bobble, and it is pronounced “choch-key.”

And there isn’t any place in the world better for finding tchotchkes than Etsy!  Here’s some favorites that I found…

debraglanz  purple owl
beaded flower   flying pig coin bank
vintage car figurine   kissing figurines

I could go on like this for hours!

No, they don’t have any kind of purpose other than looking cute, but I want them all in my home.  I want to fill every nook, cranny, and available shelf space with kitschy, decorative items and turn my house into a tchotchke wonderland!  I doubt that will ever happen, but a person can dream, can’t she?

Monday, September 26, 2011

Hey guys, it’s Banned Books Week!

Yes, it’s that time of year again.

Time to support your Freedom to Read!!

Find an event in your neck of the woods or participate in the virtual read out between September 24th and October 10th at the Banned Books Week website.  If you’re curious as to what a “virtual read out” might be just check out this awesome sock puppet video, then make your own!  I’m going to get started…

Sock puppets and books! Wonderful!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Knitting to the Extreme!

To continue a theme we go from the tiniest of knits to a number of life size replicas made from yarn!

Using giant needles like these…

extreme knitter

… you can create a pink motorcycle!

pink knit motorcycle

Or an entire locker room made of yarn!

crochet locker room-nathan vincent

It looks tough and manly, but it’s really soft and cuddly.  And, technically, it’s crocheted, just like this piano!

crochet piano

I bet it sounds lovely, too.


Knitted bus!  I would ride that bus.

Forget the scarves and hats, I want to make something epic!  Like an airplane, or a full scale replica of the London Bridge…

Monday, September 12, 2011

Introducing Althea Crome and her Amazing Micro Knits!

By now most of you have probably seen the stop motion movie Coraline.  Even if you haven’t I’m sure you know what I’m talking about.  What I never realized, though, is those sweaters and gloves that Coraline wears in the movie were all actually knit by hand on teeny tiny needles!

tiny intarsia!

The genius behind these micro stitches is a lady named Althea Crome.  Her work is truly awesome!

althea crome 1   althea crome 2  
althea crome 5   althea crome 6
And, what’s more, if you wish to try your hand at her craft she sells some of her patterns and needles on her website!  I plan on sticking to full scale knits, though.  Such tiny projects would get lost in my house so easily.

Monday, September 5, 2011

The Dress, She is Done!

Unfortunately, due to some overly inclement weather here in the South, it looks like my birthday celebrations may have to be postponed.  But that’s ok.

I have made the perfect birthday dress!

And it’s not a bad likeness of the original, if I do say so myself.  Check it out:

birthday evening dress              birthday dress2

When I put this dress together with all of the accessories and decorations that I have waiting it is going to look amazing!

I’ll post pictures of the final product as soon as possible, I promise!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Put your face on: Eleganza continued

While in the process of putting my dress together I have been thinking about how to accessorize.  The first hurdle I face is the makeup.

Doing makeup is not one of those skill sets I can lay claim to.

But that’s ok, of course, because I can always rely on the YouTube to teach me how!

such a lovely face, such a long process

This tutorial is great, but that seems like an awful lot of work that I don’t have time for.  And that, too, is ok, because the wonderful thing about the D.I.Y. community is if you can’t do it you can surely find someone else who can.  I’ve already given the task to my friend, Linda, and I’m sure she’ll make me look fabulous!  I’ll show you the proof as soon as it’s done!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Project: Birthday Eleganza

And so my quest to create the ultimate birthday dress begins.

I have chosen for my inspiration this advertisement from the Sears catalogue circa 1933:

birthday dress2

Lovely!  I’ve already chosen the fabric…


… green silk, darlings!  I’ve created the paper pattern…


… or most of it, anyway.  And I’ve even started working on the muslin (to get out all the kinks)…


… so far so good!  I may know what I’m doing, only time will tell.  I’ll keep you posted as the journey progresses!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Yarn Bomb!

Ever heard of the yarn bomb?

If the answer is no then let me be the first to introduce you to the art of knitted graffiti:

yarn bomb1  yarn bomb2
yarn bomb3  yarn bomb4

This awesome trend was started by a lady named Magda Sayeg and her group Knitta Please.  I do wish I had been the one to come up with that name.

I never thought I would feel so inspired to vandalize public property.
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