Sunday, July 24, 2011

Weekend Review July 25th

Well, I must say that it's about time we had a little SUN around here! I had an excellent weekend, sitting in the sun, soaking up the rays and KNITTING!

With not only a baby girl grandbaby on the way, but also a baby boy great nephew (just call me Granty) I have had a great time buying and buying and buying, project after project after project to do! So, isn't it natural that I would set aside all of the new stuff and knit a little hat using some sock wool leftovers? lol

Basic Umbilical Cord Hat
To make my hat, I combined two lovely patterns that I found at Raverly.com. The first was for an umbilical cord hat  and the second was for an icord flower.

Tying the icord through the flower. 
I LOVED how this little hat turned out and I will definitely be adding some icord flowers to future projects. My Sister-in-law made a similar hat without the flower for her future grandbaby boy...she ran away with it before I got a picture (or spilt anything on it) and so I'll have to share some of her great knitting on a future blog! 

The finished hat

Birds eye view
And now...it's off to the back yard to finish of the weekend (and maybe another project) while basking in the sun!! 

Happy Crafting!
Heather


Friday, July 22, 2011

Quin's Felting Project

As soon as Quin heard that Alix was moving out, she started planning a housewarming gift! I'd like to think that it is because she has such a generous spirit and not just because she was excited to get rid of her older sister!

Regardless, Quin started felting about two years ago when my sister introduced her to it and she periodically brings out her supplies and surprises us with some REALLY cute creations!

The deep set frame holds the felted creation perfectly!
This time around, Quin decided to do a 'Home Sweet Home' framed piece of felted artwork, and as soon as she had finished the first bird, it was decided that 'Home TWEET Home' was even better!

The original BLUE egg!
After Quin was finished all of her felted friends, we gathered some twigs from the garden and sewed them into place on aida cloth using fishing line. The whole design was a little warped before we adhered it to an adhesive mat, which eventually held it perfectly! I went to work doing the cross stitch and in no time we were all done!

Close up! 
Just as Quin was finishing off her blue egg, which of course matched the birds, Alix announced that she was going to find out whether she was having a boy or a girl, so Quin went to work and made a second pink egg!

We found out that the baby will be a girl, so a quick switch had this little housewarming gift finished and PERFECT!!



Quin also made this Easter scene. I LOVE her handiwork and I have my fingers crossed that she will soon be making more little felted friends that I can show off in our house!

She has several other animals done and displayed in her room, including a monkey and dogs that look like our family pets!



All of the felted creatures are between 1.5 and 3 inches tall, with the finished framed piece measuring about 7"x7". The detail that each felted piece has is really good, especially for a 13 year old....or 12 year old when she did the Easter felting!

Happy Crafting!

Quin & Mom

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Weekend Review July 16

My weekend is over before it's begun as I am on my way to Toronto for our next appearance on The Shopping Channel!  You can see some great deals on Provo Craft products at 9am, 12pm, 3pm and 7pm EST. In the mean time... I must say it has been a pretty spectacular weekend anyways!

My Grandbaby girl!! 
We started off Friday by heading to my daughter's ultrasound appointment with her, where we found out that we will be Grandparents to a baby girl!! The little gal is due on December 13th and we can hardly wait to start spoiling her! I am dreaming in pink and very VERY excited!! Doesn't she look gorgeous already??!! Ultrasound imaging has come a very long ways since I had my babies!

A Happy Housewarming

Next stop was Alix and Chris's house for their 'official' housewarming party! It is GREAT that they are all settled in the new place :) I decided that in leu of a card, I would make them a little house... of course my Cricut got put to work!

Bits and Pieces ready to assemble
The Winter Woodland Cartridge makes gorgeous little 3D houses and it was easy to just use different themed papers and colors to leave the 'winter' theme behind. I used a 12x24" mat to upscale the size of the house and used a 6" setting for the height. (The length wouldn't have fit onto a 12x12 mat). I had to piece together the striped papers for the main house front but if you have any 3Birds Larger than Life 12 x24 paper it would be PERFECT!

Welcome Home!! 
My sticker stash got broken into so that I could personalize this humble little house...

Using up some of my sticker stash!
A miniature Chris and Alix are holding hands inside of the house and I placed some sweet little sayings inside each of the windows. 

The side view
Piggy Bank Top
Our gift was a little bit of cash to go towards all those inevitable new home costs, so I turned the house into a piggy bank by cutting a slot in the top of the roof and adding a bottom to the structure. 

A very sophisticated piggy bank bottom!
To create the bottom, I cut a slit into the 'grass' where a simple fold of paper creates a latch by tucking in and under. It might not be very sophisticated but it works!! 



And now.... it's off to The Shopping Channel!! Try to tune in if you are looking for an AMAZING deal on the Yudu Cardshop!! 

Monday, July 11, 2011

Weekend Review July 9

I thought that I might trying to do a weekend review every Monday(ish!) as my weekends are always packed full of something interesting!

The magical key of freedom! 
Do you ever find that your creativity in paper crafting is very fluid and oozes into many other areas of your life? I seem to feel like I should and CAN dabble in whatever creative process seems interesting to me at any given time!

For instance.... my daughter Alix recently purchased her own home (WOW!) and so I have an entirely new creative palette just waiting for me! lol She is pretty happy to have help and input as she renovates and puts her own name on the new digs :)

And so, this weekend, instead of cutting and gluing and inking and playing with my normal toys, I helped tile! It was a pretty easy process for Alix, seeing how she went to work all day! Brian (my husband) was the official tile cutter, I was placing them on the wall (occasionally backwards) and Chris, my daughter's significant other (more on him another Monday!) was the  supervisor (making me pry off the backwards tile) and the master grouter and adhesive guy.

The 'tile plan'
We chose super affordable, best sale in the world travertine a few weeks ago when Alix decided to reno the kitchen and then added some gorgeous glass to the design. 

Getting started is always the hard part! 
Chris and I did a lot of debating on how we would lay everything out, and finally settled on running a bit of the glass tile underneath the window.
All of the tile was up in about 4 hours
Chris was very flexible! 
 We used a really dark grout to add some 'pop' to the look and we LOVE how it all turned out! We had some great critiques from the local hardware shop employees who thought that the grout we chose was too dark. REALLY? I think not! It looks gooooood! 

I LOVE the dark grout! 
AND... that was my weekend!! What did you do?!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Yudu Cardshop Custom Screens & Tea Towels

My first round of tea towels with Yudu Cardshop
A couple of months ago, I saw some incredible designer tea towels in a little gift shop in Florida. I instantly LOVED them, but not quite enough to part with $17.00 USD each!! And so... having so many excellent play toys work tools at my disposal, I decided to customize some of my own!

This one was done using images from the screens that come enclosed with
 The Shopping Channel and HSN bundles
Yudu Cardshop

Gathering all of the materials for the tea towels was almost as much fun as finishing off the projects as I was able to pull out all of my tiny bits of materials and ribbon. The floral materials that I used, were leftovers from a quilt that I made for Quin, and the ribbons chunks included pieces that have been in my stash for years as well as antique lace that my Aunt sent to me from Italy!

It didn't take me long to go from using the pre-made screens that came with the Cardshop system, to wanting to customize the tea towels with a name (or should I say MY name!!). I decided that rather than burning a new screen on my full sized Yudu silkscreening system (which was a good option) that I would instead make a screen with vinyl! It turned out SO good! After I showed my tea towels to a couple friends, and had them drooling over their beauty, I went to work to make a few more towels as gifts. Here's your almost step by step guide to making your own beautiful tea towels!!

Make a visual plan for each tea towel. These ones are for my daughter. 
Step 1.  Begin gathering all of your supplies! I found really nice and reasonably priced tea towels at Walmart. I liked the solid colors best but you could do the project on a subtly patterned towel as well. You'll also need some plain cotton fabric to silk screen onto (prewashed) as well as a nice printed fabric. Several scraps of coordinating ribbon will finish everything off! It is really fun to pick trims and ribbons that match the personalities of the people that you are making the tea towels for. I used 'Travel' ribbon for my wandering sister, 'hugs and kisses' ribbon for a good friend, and 'love, trust, family' ribbon for my daughter!

Planning the towels for my baby sister! 
All finished... good thing her name is on them or
I'd be tempted to keep them!
Step 2.  Time to make your screen. This is SO easy!! Pick a font from your Cricut collection, type your name and then cut in in the 'Mirror Image' mode. Once the vinyl is in place and stuck on to the BACK of the Yudu Cardshop screen, it will read correctly again. No Cricut?! Maybe you can borrow one, or buy one (it really is time!) , or if you want to take a million hours longer you could even hand cut a name in vinyl... but really, you'll want to use a Cricut! Here's a quick video on how to make your screen....

video

Step 3. This is the fun part!! It's time to 'pull' your design! Here are my tips to ensure your success:
      - Be sure to secure your screen in the top lid area before you begin screening. This ensures registration accuracy if you need to pull ink onto the design a second time.
     - Screening fabric requires more ink than screening onto paper. For fabric designs, you need to 'flood' the screen with ink before pulling the ink across the surface of your design. 'Flooding' is when you put the bead of ink onto the screen and use the squeegee to pull it across the surface of your design BEFORE your screen is on top of the fabric. THEN, when you place the screen on top of your fabric and run the squeegee across again, more ink gets pushed through the screen. Clear as mud? Here's another video that will make things easier!

video

Step 4: Iron your finished screened fabric to heat set the ink and make it permanent.

Another set finished! They are SO FAST to do!! 

Step 5: Get out your sewing machine and sew all of your ribbon and fabric into place on your tea towel. I liked working from the bottom of the towel up, using a small zig zag stitch for some of the trim and a straight stitch for the fabric and flatter ribbons. Be sure to iron ALL of your trim before stitching things together, it makes it much easier and much faster to finish everything off.

So pretty and so fun to create! 

Step 6: Be prepared to make more!! Once you show these to people they are going to want to be on your gift list. These would also be the PERFECT project for a craft sale! Oh... and Yes... being prepared does mean that you will have to go out and buy more ribbon and fabric!! lol