Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Guestbook Tree Tags

My friend Stephanie is getting married on Saturday, and as a bridesmaid she asked me to take care of some things for the ceremony and reception. One thing she asked from me was to create her guestbook.

It's not going to be just any ol' guestbook. She asked me to make her a tree. So I'm designing a tree that will hold tags on which each guest will write well-wishes and sign, then hang on the tree. After the wedding, Stephanie will have the guestbook tree to decorate her first home that she and her husband move into. Such a fun idea!

I used ivory paper with and stamped starfish all over it using an ink color named Dune.

The tags are 2" x 4" with a starfish punch out at the top.

I stamped one of the two wedding colors on the other side, either magenta seashells or "surf" colored waves.

I tied raffia loops at the top and found coordinating colored pens for the guests to sign with.

But how am I supposed to get anything done when I have this adorable baby babbling and cooing next to me the whole time?

It's a wonder I actually finished making all of the tags and found a container to keep them in.

Here's the final outcome. I'm excited to see the tree filled with these cute tags.

Watch for more posts about this wedding. It's bound to be beautiful and fun!

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Monday, June 25, 2012

Collage Girl

My craft room is currently overrun with stuff for projects I'm working on. 

The main project: decorations for my friend Stephanie's wedding. 
(There will be a fun post about that in the coming weeks. I'm also altering my own bridesmaid dress. There will probably be a post about that as well.) 

However, even when I can't see much of my table top, I try to prominently display my favorite item that always stimulates my creativity.

It's something I made thanks to my friend Lyssa, who is also super crafty. Often, she hosts a Crafternoon at her house and invites friends over to make a few crafts. My favorite one to date is this collage girl that I made. 

I love the shapes and color scheme and the papers' textures and prints. 

Lyssa has some fun mirror paint as well as some powdered copper paint. I'm absolutely in love with them!

Tutorial on this one to come! 
Keep your eyes open for it. 

Friday, June 22, 2012

Extra Personalized Quilt Square

When my grandfather passed away, my grandmother had a hard time going through all of his belongings. The two of them had been best friends and madly in love with each other for longer than my age doubled. Bob and I went to his funeral, and afterward we helped go through and get rid of some of his things, mainly his clothes. My sister-in-law had a wonderful idea involving a few of those shirts.

My grandpa was known for his shirts. He owned numerous colorful button-downs that had too much character. In light of that, I kept a few that made a nice color scheme--browns, greens, and cream colors. My sister-in-law is a quilter, and she's pretty amazing at it. I gave her the shirts, she cut them into equal amounts, and gave me and each of my siblings some of the clippings to make some quilt squares that would then be made into a quilt for my grandma. We were each supposed to make four squares and then make one personalized square... At least, that's what I understood. 

In putting all of the pieces together, something went wrong (I think I actually was the one who screwed things up with my squares) and the personalized squares ended up not being used. But my sister-in-law is awesome, and she thought mine was just too nicely done to get rid of. Maybe she thought that of everyone's. Regardless, she framed mine and gave it back to me. 

I had forgotten how great of a job I'd done it. It looks really nice in a frame! So I hung it up in the corner where I sit to feed Graham sometimes. It's my little corner of zen--very simple and free of clutter (although it hasn't always been like that), with my favorite lamp and a rug that is like heaven for my toes.

(Oh, and my other sister-in-law who crochets and made the owl hat for my son also made that cute green and white chevron blanket for Graham as well.) 

I am planning on recovering the cushions for my glider rocking chair in the future, so keep your eyes open for that post!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Roll-up Crochet Hook Case

I made this for one of my sisters-in-law for Christmas a while back. She's a crochet maniac and is darn good at it too. But she had so many crochet hooks and other crocheting tools and no way to keep them organized. She told me that she just kept them all in a large ziploc bag. Classy, right? 

Then she saw the Roll-up Pencil Case that I'd made for myself. I was so excited to see what other possibilities a roll-up case could be used for. So she sent me all of the sizes of crochet hooks and supplies she needed it to store. And here's what I came up with.

I got the applique inspiration from the print on one of the ribbons I used on it. I put two buttons on the ribbon closure so that she could pick whichever one would keep it wrapped best--more tightly or more loosely. 

She's really talented too, by the way. I was so excited to see what she would make for Graham when he was born. This owl hat is possibly my favorite thing she made for him.

Yes, this is my adorable son at 2 weeks old.

She had an Etsy store for a while, but business slowed down for her a bit so she stopped, plus she has three kids and a fourth on the way. However, she does still take requests. If you're interested in having her crochet something, let me know and I'll get you in touch with her.

And a special thanks to my friend Julienne for our lovely newborn photos! She and her husband are incredibly talented with a camera. Check out their blog and their Facebook page.

Monday, June 18, 2012

Roll-up Pencil Case

I hate things that are designed poorly. Even simple things like the hooks on the back of bathroom-stall doors. You know, the ones that you attempt to hang you coat on but it always slips off and falls onto the gross, germ-ridden public bathroom floor? Yeah, I get kind of irritated over stuff like that.

One thing I really don't like are pencil cases. I hate them. I remember buying a hard plastic one a while ago, and within two months it broke. I hate the zip-up fabric ones because the zipper won't open far enough for me to dig around and find the pen I need, so I always end up dumping everything out, and then I have to deal with all of my pens and pencils in my way. Plus, if I'm ever sitting at a drafting table, I can't lay out all of my pens or pencils.

I'm only a little anal and irritable...  ;)

With that in mind, I decided to make my own, and here's what I came up with.

I was searching through my fabric, and picked a color scheme. I originally decided on the brown and green, and then as I was looking through my ribbon and found this spool with cute and colorful trees printed on it. I went with it and made the applique on the outside of the case match the ribbon print.

It only took a couple of hours from start to finish. It's 22 inches long by 9 inches wide. It holds 20 pens/pencils, plus 6 little containers of pencil led. There is batting between the inside and outside layers for padding and to protect the led from breaking if dropped. (Isn't it annoying to sharpen a pencil only for the led to keep breaking off? That's what happens when you drop a pencil on the floor. Total pet peeve of mine!)

I've had it for two years now, and I still love it. 

But there are a couple of changes I would make to it:

1. Use button closures instead of tying bows with those ribbons every time I need to roll it up.

2. The smaller led-holding pockets don't work so well and the little containers that hold the various sizes and colors of led tend to slip out. Some elastic to hold them in place would probably do the trick.

With that in mind, I'm planning on making another pencil case soon. The new one I'll sell and I'll have one craft kit for it available for sale too.