Monday, January 31, 2011


When I posted last week about an unfinished amigurumi lemur, I had every intention of finishing the little guy before the end of the month. As it turned out, I finished him the same day he was posted and I couldn't resist making a few more little critters to keep him company. So this week will be Amigurumi Week.

The pattern for this little guy can be found in Tamie Snow's "Tiny Yarn Animals" book. It is one of my favorite patterns in the book because the face just has so much personality. He's easy to make, as are most of the patterns in the book, and for experienced crocheters, he can be completed in an afternoon. Provided you don't set him down and forget about him!!

Happy Crafting All!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Tiny Teddy

This tiny little teddy bear is a needle-felted creation that has been waiting several months to get finished. He needs his little feet finished, pads added to his paws and to be put together. Needle-felting is a bit more detail oriented, especially when working on this scale. You can see the quarter next to his little head for scale.

Ultimately, this little guy look a lot like his brother when he's done. When seen side by side, they are quite similar. I'm hoping that when he is done this little teddy will have a personality all his own. But first I have to finish him!

Happy Crafting All!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Almost a Lemur....

This little guy is all in pieces, and missing a few! The pattern for this crochet lemur comes from the book Tiny Yarn Animals: Amigurumi Friends to Make and Enjoy by Tamie Snow. The pattern is actually pretty easy to follow and there is no real reason why this poor little critter hasn't been finished.

All he needs is his tail, his ears and to be put all together. This is another project that should be easily and quickly finished. Of course with those large pleading eyes, it will be hard to resist finishing him at last.

Happy Crafting All!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Swedish Weave

On New Year's Day, 2010, my husband and I wandered into an antique shop that just happened to be open. We noticed a wealth of beautiful fabrics being organized and found out they were getting ready to add a fabric shop in one corner. As I talked with this charming 90 year old woman about all my crafting endeavors, she asked if I had ever tried Swedish Weave. At the time I had never hear of it but the idea of a new craft got me excited.

I did my research and found a couple of pattern books. All you need is monk's cloth, yarn and lots of time. The end result is a beautiful blanket that will astound people when they hear you made it yourself. The intricacy of the designs can vary, and I chose one that seemed simple enough. I'm nearly half way done with my first project and am determined to finish it up sooner, rather than later!

Happy Crafting All!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Wall Hanging...

I love doing needlework on road trips. It's a compact hobby that can produce some beautiful results. A couple years ago I started a wall hanging to commemorate my relationship with my husband. It consisted of squares depicting important memories from the time we were dating through our wedding.

I've had the needlework and piecing done for more than a year now but have never found the motivation to back, quilt and hang the quilt. Until now. With my attention being turned to my UFOs, this one is at the top of my list of things to actually finish. It realistically should not take long to complete. In fact, I bet I can have it done by the end of the week.

Happy Crafting All!

Monday, January 24, 2011

UFOs abound...

As crafters, we all have them. Those projects that we start and never finish. UFOs - UnFinished Objects. I have lots of them and this week I'm going to put a spotlight on them. Some can be finished quickly, others will take more time. But the whole point is to show that they can be finished.

So this week, I'll be showing you four projects that need to be finished, projects that can be finished with just a little focus. (All providing my internet will stop giving me trouble.) Why not pull out some of your UFOs and start working on them.

Happy Crafting All!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Wedding Jewelry

The last thing I did for the wedding was the bridal party jewelry. The bride herself had jewelry, but wanted something appropriate for her attendants. The bridesmaids wore strapless, royal purple dresses and the bride wanted to keep the jewelry simple and elegant.

I found lovely snowflake pendants accented with Swarovski crystals and paired them with a simple silver chain broken up by white glass pearls. The look was understated and classic. Plus, each of her attendants had a beautiful piece of jewelry that would always remind them of the special role they played in her special day.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Flower Girls Baskets

With two flower girls, there needed to be two baskets. The baskets also needed larger than baskets that I was finding in stores. The bride wanted snow dropped down the aisle rather than traditional flower petals as to keep with the snowflake theme.

I ended up finding a great pattern online for a fabric basket. The pattern that I found was geared more towards being an Easter basket, but using a snowflake print material instantly made it wedding appropriate. The basket retains its shape because of the heavy duty, double-sided fusible interfacing.

Once the base of each basket was completed, I strung large plastic pearls on to 18 gauge wire to construct the handle. The handle was sewn into place and the basket was finished with an accent bow in the wedding color and large, irridescent crystal button.

Seeing my adorable nieces walk down the aisle, tossing a delicate layer of snowflakes had an amazing effect.

Happy Crafting All!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Ring-Bearer Pillow

There is no more important accessory to a wedding than the ring-bearer pillow. It is the showcase for the rings the bride and groom will exchange as a symbol to their ever-lasting love. The pillow should fit the theme of the wedding adding continuity to the ceremony decor, but it should not over power or overshadow the rings.

Keeping with the snowflake theme, I used silver-lined seed beads to stitch a snowflake design onto white sateen. I decided to make the sateen in to a pillow cover and made a simple pillow insert. Now the pillow cover can be easily added to a scrapbook or shadow box. The pillow was finished with a thin white ribbon to secure the rings to the pillow for the walk down the aisle.

Happy Crafting All!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Guest Book...

The guestbook at a wedding is so important to the couple once the day is over. There is just not always enough time to spend with all of the guests that attend the ceremony and reception. Having everyone sign in is a great way to remember everyone that attended and know who to send thank you cards to.

My step-son and his bride decided on a snowflake theme for their wedding. So all of the accessories had to match that theme. When I was deciding on what to do with the guestbook, I knew I wanted to do something special. Most guestbooks are five pages of signatures and fifty blank pages. I wanted to give the couple a book they would be happy to look through again and again.

For the outside, I created a book cover out of white sateen and used white embroidery thread to stitch a snowflake. It was a long process but so worth it when it was finished. The completed cover fit snuggly over the book and looked amazing.

Each page was hand made and embellished with either snowflakes, ribbon in the wedding colors or a picture of the couple. By making each page a little different, the entire book is unique and filled with visual memories of the day that will last forever.

The guestbook must also have a matching pen. I bought a plain silver guestbook pen on a clear plastic base. There was not much that needed to be done to this. Because of the small size, too much embellishing would have easily been overkill. To decorate the base, I cut the tabs off of silver snowflake brads that I found in the scrapbook section of Michaels. Using double-sided adhesive foam, it was easy to fix the embellishments to the base.

This is how the guestbook was presented to guests the day of the wedding.

Happy Crafting All!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

For The Bridesmaids...

Yesterday I showed you the bridal bouquet from an important wedding last November. Today, I'm sharing the bridesmaids bouquets.

These arrangements were made in line with the bridal bouquet, each featuring a beaded lily centerpiece surrounded by ribbon flowers. The ribbon flowers coordinate with the the wedding colors and the bridesmaid dresses.

As you can see, the Matron of Honor's bouquet was just slightly different indicating her place in the bridal party. Her arrangement featured more the dark purple than the others.

The effect was amazing and the best compliment I received was when the photographer's assistant stated he didn't even realize they weren't real flowers.

All told, the flowers were a little tedious to make, only because I don't like doing the same thing over and over. But the end result was well worth the tedium.

Happy Crafting All!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Bridal Bouquet

When my step-son got in engaged, I was eager to lend a crafty hand to help the young couple out. Weddings are expensive, especially if you want something you unique and hand crafted to made the day special. He and his intended happily accepted my offer and I was asked to make several important items. I'm going to spend this week showcasing the items I made for them.

First up is the bridal bouquet. This is always a key accessory for the bride. Many times it's the only splash of color to be seen against the white of the bride's dress.
The only instructions I received from the bride was that she lilies and a cascading bouquet. So I decided to take the opportunity to try beaded and ribbon flowers. For the centerpiece of the arrangement, I made 3 beaded lilies using 3mm plastic pearls and gold seed beads for the stamens.

The remainder of the flowers were all made out of ribbon that followed the chosen wedding colors. The puffy silver faux-carnations were some of my favorites. They added a little sparkle while filling out the bouquet. To achieve the cascading look, ribbons in the same colors and textures as those in the bouquet, flowed down from the arrangement in varying lengths.

This was a great thing for me to make. It challenged me and offered the chance to try something new. I loved every tedious moment of it.

Happy Crafting All!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Day 4 and the progress is getting noticeable!

There is a great sense of accomplishment that comes with seeing hard work paying off. Each and everyday, a little more of my room becomes more usable. It's thrilling to see an end in sight to what seemed like and overwhelming task.

Naturally, going through all that lovely fabric has made me antsy to get sewing, and with my sewing table now cleared, I have room to work. But I must stay focused. I will just keep my mental notes of the four or five quilts that I decided that I have to make, and keep my unfinished projects within grabbing distance and push through to the end of cleaning.

Today's goal is to get through my beads and fiber crafts. Now, I have tons of beads and for the most part, they are fairly well organized. So I will get to just refine the organization and make things more accessible. As for my fiber crafts, that's going to take more work.

I'll need to gather and organize all my yarns and threads. I have stashes of different weights and textures for various projects and patterns. I'm anxious to see what inspiration comes out of today's work!

Happy Crafting!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Day 3 and I've lost a little steam...

Unfortunately, today I'm playing catch up. Housework and helping my son-in-law prevented me from accomplishing all of my Tuesday goals. I got the filing finished and caught up on housework, but didn't get all of my material organized. I'm kinda disappointed in myself to be honest, and know that I need to really pick up the pace if I'm going to get that room cleaned out and get back to work.

So my goals for this frigid Wednesday are: get the material completely organized, clean off my sewing table and organize my craft books and magazines. This should be completely do-able, as long as I don't procrastinate. And I don't get caught up in the books and can push through.

Tuesday may not have been as productive as I would have liked, but today is a new day and will be as productive as I make it. All I have to do is keep myself motivated!

Happy Crafting All!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Day 2 of cleaning...

My goal for Monday was simple: move my lightbox to a better location. I'm happy to say that goal was accomplished! And since it took less time than I thought it would, I got started on filing a year and half worth of paperwork. Ugh, I hate filing. But once the papers are organized and put away, I know my office will be much more functional.

Tuesday's goal is to finish the filing and get my material organized. Today's goal will take considerably more work on my part. I have tons of material stored in a six-foot long, nine drawer dresser. The idea I have is to get some semblance of order to it. Clothing material in one drawer, fat quarters in another, scraps in another, and so on. Since I know I have a some fabrics for specific projects, they will be grouped accordingly. Once I have all my beautiful fabrics organized I will have fewer problems trying to decide what quilt projects I want to work on.

This year I want to make lots of throw quilts! That's a long term goal I've set for myself and one I think is attainable. Hopefully by next week, I will have everything ready to go and I can start on my first quilt of the year!

Happy Crafting!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Happy New Year

For me, a new year is a fresh start. It's a new month, new calendar and new possibilities. So many things can and will happen in the next 12 months, and it's all up to me. I've decided to start this year out with a rededication to myself and my crafting. A lot of 2010 was spent working on items for my step-son's wedding, and I lost track of the crafts that I did for fun and to sell.

Rededicating myself is a positive thing and it requires a positive working environment. Unfortunately, the disorganized, chaotic disaster that is my office will not lend itself to the creative process. Therefore, the next week or two will be devoted to reorganizing, cleaning and inventorying my supplies. Throughout the process, I'm sure I'll be getting inspired to do all kinds of crafting - projects that will distract me from my end goal of a functioning office in which to create.

Today's goal is to get my lightbox set up in a better location within my office. My lightbox is super important to me. I take pictures of everything I make to share the end product with friends and family that can't be here to see for themselves. It's also important to my jewelry making as the right pictures will help me make more sales.

Wish me luck, Happy New Year, and happy crafting!