Category Archives: Crafts

Fighting the dreariness of winter with color

The dreariness of this winter has really sapped my energy. I desperately need some sunshine to recharge! Unfortunately, it doesn’t look like I will get any for a while.

Despite the weeks upon weeks of cold, dark, dreary, rainy weather, at least I can work on colorful projects! I’ve spent most of my time working on beading projects and I’ve created some really neat pieces.

This daisy bracelet is beautiful! It is my own design. I absolutely love it and I had so much fun making it! I am working on a tutorial and will post it when I finish.

This bracelet turned out gorgeous! This was created from a pattern I purchased on Etsy. I really love the colors of this one:

I love this pattern in general and ended up making it in multiple colors.

These earrings were also made with superduos and I think they turned out really cute!

I wanted to create some pretty, colorful, dainty bracelets that would be great for stacking and at a lower price point. I made the beaded bracelets below using the ladder stitch and Miyuki Delica seed beads. The Miyuki Delicas are tiny and come in beautiful colors.

Though most of the past few weeks have been spent on beading, I did manage to get in some crochet time. I made two cute, retro, nylon, crocheted bags. I still need to block the front flaps, sew on the button and add a liner. I will post pictures of them when I am finished.  

I have ordered the supplies for several new crochet projects and I can’t wait to get started on them.

Side note: I have been told that people tend to follow blogs that are heavy on pictures. I am terrible at taking pictures. I always have been. Even though mobile phones today have amazing cameras and photo editing capabilities, I still don’t seem to ever get around to taking pictures and when I do, they turn out horrible. If I didn’t feel the need to include pictures, I would write and post everyday!

Upcycling tshirts

I always feel the urge to purge during the month of January. This year we desperately need to purge our closets! We probably only wear 10% of what’s in there and there is nowhere to put anything new. I don’t know why we continue to hold on to hold on to clothes from decades ago!

I haven’t seen Marie Kondo on Netflix, and I really don’t know much about the KonMari method of decluttering; but I can tell you that all this clutter is NOT bringing me joy!

Since I love to make things, I am planning to do some serious upcycling this year! I have been scouring Pinterest for some good ways to upcycle some of our bazillion tshirts and I have found really creative things to do with them!

Tshirt Quilts.
I have always wanted to make a tshirt quilt with my kids shirts from sports, clubs, etc. I can pretty much guarantee that is not going to happen in the near future, but I do intend to go ahead and start organizing the ones I want to keep specifically for this project. Here are some tutorials for making one. What a cool way to memorialize their childhood!


Throw Pillows
This is the perfect gift idea for the members of the family who have a favorite sports team or concert shirt they can’t wear in public anymore but can’t bear to part with.

https://fiskarscraft.typepad.com/my_weblog/2012/02/t-shirt-rag-quilt-pillow-difficulty-rating-beginner-recently-ive-become-a-fan-of-using-t-shirts-for-various-fa.html

Rag Rugs.
I have always loved the look of rag rugs. There are lots of rug tutorials online. Some require sewing braids togther and some are crocheted. These would make a great project for kids! They will be recycling, making an art project, getting something new for their rooms and learning a craft all in one, free project! What a brilliant thing to do with left over, worn out play clothes! Here is a tutorial that I like.

http://www.rubberbootsandelfshoes.com/2014/08/a-braided-rug-for-cosy-corner.html?m=1

Cat Basket.
We live with two cats who would really appreciate this project! I think all cats love getting in boxes, bags, containers and hiding. I was recently making a crocheted basket and I could not keep the cats out of it! Here is a cat basket I really like. The blog is in Finnish but can easily be translated.

http://www.eilentein.com/2012/05/pesa.html

Dog toy.
I never would have thought of this had I not seen it on Pinterest; but what a brilliant idea! Dogs love to chew and play. Recycling an old, faded, torn up tshirt into a dog toy is perfect. My son recently joined the Army and our dog misses him. Using one of his old shirts seems like a great way for him to feel close to his best friend.

Yarn.
This is something I will definitely be doing right away! There are so many neat projects that can be made with tshirt yarn. It is the perfect medium for crocheting things that need to be sturdy like rugs, baskets, bags, etc. and it works up very quickly. I can’t wait to get started crocheting!

I hope you like these ideas. If you make anything with your old clothes I would love to see pictures!

Beth

Superduos

Last year I saw a really cute bracelet on Pinterest. I really wanted to make one like it. It had been made with superduo beads but I didn’t have any and had not worked with them before. My local Hobby Lobby had a very limited selection but I bought a couple of colors and put them aside for when I got a chance to play with them.

I finally got around to making that bracelet today and I love it! I loved making it and I think it is really cute. I went online and ordered several more colors. 🙂

I can’t wait for the new beads to come in! I think these will be perfect for Spring Craft Fairs. What do you think?

Crafting with A.D.D.

When I was in my early twenties I was diagnosed with ADD. I was prescribed Ritalin and it was like the clouds in my head cleared up and the sun shown through! Everything was so clear! I’d never known anything like it. I could do anything, learn anything, remember Everything! I was brilliant!!

A couple of years later, I got pregnant and went off the Ritalin. I was pregnant and then nursing; then trying to get pregnant, pregnant, and then nursing… and I never went back to the medication.

At the time, I wanted to be able to manage myself. I sometimes think I should have gone back on the Ritalin. I’m pretty sure if I had, I’d be running in the same circles with JK Rowling. My book series would have sold billions, the movie would be in post production and I’d currently be in negotiations for a theme park.

Or maybe I’d be hanging with Mark Zuckerberg and Jeff Bezos because the company I started and our software would have net me billions.

Alas, I did not. Hindsight, as they say, is 20/20. Instead I worked, raised my children, and spent an inordinate amount of time learning how to do everything that was ever invented. Because I just love everything.  🙂  And I can’t focus on or choose just one thing!

I want to fill my life with color and beauty! And I want to make it myself!

So here is an example of what happens in my free time.

I’m sitting in my recliner crocheting, beading or cross stitching. Netflix is on and I’m browsing through Pinterest. I pin several beautiful beading patterns; a gorgeously swirled soap; a beautifully smocked and embroidered infant dress and a whimsical hand painted Christmas sign for inspiration.

I see some adorable felt Christmas ornaments. I pin them and click on the Pin which takes me to Etsy. Oohhh. She has some adorable patterns! They are so colorful! I think I need these in my life. I put several in my cart, ‘favorite’ her shop, check out with Paypal and download the patterns. I open a browser window and go to Amazon (Hi Jeff, we could have been peers!). I search for wool felt, find some nice color selections, add them to my cart and check out. I’m guaranteed to have my felt in two days! I love you, Amazon Prime! (Could have been my idea!!)

I return to Pinterest.

See gorgeously decorated Sugar Cookies. Pins Sugar Cookies; thinks, ‘Oh! Maybe I’ll be a cookie decorator!’ Begins search for the best sugar cookie recipe on the internet. Finds multiple recipes declared ‘The Best’ and compares ingredients, amounts, directions and comments to find the similarities and differences. Do the same for Royal Icing. Watch several videos on outlining and flooding Cookies with icing. Print out several recipes; determine what ingredients do not currently reside in the kitchen; make grocery list; schedule grocery trip and cookie making time on planner. Return to Pinterest to look at ‘more like this’ and pin more gorgeous cookies for inspiration.

I hear a knock at the door. FEDEX! Yay!! I quickly open the box to find the gorgeous light pink skeins of t-shirt yarn I recently ordered from Australia to knit the amazingly beautiful baby bassinet I saw on several of the Russian and Japanese blogs/sites I follow. Because there are absolutely beautiful patterns coming out of Russia and Japan!

Yes, I know I don’t have any babies. Or grandbabies. Or prospects of either…. (which is good at the moment! Haha) But this bassinet is so beautiful. And beautiful things make me happy. And I just want to spend my life making beautiful things. Full of color. And texture. And happiness. And just the thought brings tears to my eyes.

I put the yarn aside and return to the computer. Satisfied with my Sugar Cookie Decorating Progress, I start closing browser windows and return to my Pinterest feed.

Oh look at that awesome laser cutter advertisement! Clicks on ad, watches informational video, decides I must have it! After digging further, sees ‘Starts at $5,999.99’. Quickly closes browser window and returns to Pinterest.

Wow! Look at that amazing, whimsical and quirky wood relief carving! Pins Quirky Relief Carving. And there’s a tutorial! Quickly reads through tutorial scanning for required supplies and tools. Dremel, check! Flex shaft attachment, check! Sanding bit, check! Chisel…hmmm…think hubby has one! Makes note to ask hubby about chisel and mallet. Safety gear, check! Acrylic paint and varnish, check! Oooohhh! Can’t wait to make this! I open a new browser window and start sourcing basswood…

 

 

 

Surely I’m not the only one!!

Love to All!

–Beth