Monday, December 7, 2009

1000 Ideas for Creative Reuses

As an extra special holiday treat I found out that two of my projects are in the new book 1000 Ideas for Creative Reuses.

One of my NY times fused plastic zippy pouches and my ipod case.

Best of all I am in some great company with anagram, bread and bagder, combustion glass works, and reiter 8.

Monday, November 30, 2009


A few months ago our good friends came for a visit with their 10 1/2 month old, Hunter. He had just started crawling and getting into everything. Before their visit I found myself awake at night with fears of the baby death trap that was my craft corner- and so I spent a solid two weeks moving everything up and out and creating a safe but completely unorganized craft space.
I have been living with the consequences for the past two months. The short of it has been that whenever I want to get something that used to be right at my hand I had to climb on a chair, curse like a sailor and rummage around until I came up with something close to what I was looking for- needless to say nothing ever really went back to where it had come from. I was left with a giant tangle of crafting materials and glue and who knows what else falling off the top of our bookshelves. As you may have guessed this put a serious damper on my crafting.
So this weekend I took the plunge. I took everything down- I organize, prioritized and even sterilized my craft zone. My guy is now thinking he should have bought stock in clear plastic bins. But it did the trick and it is lovely. I even managed to sit down and sew a bag last night!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Babies, babies everywhere

On Thursday two new little ones came into my life. My dear friends in California had the lovely Amelia and my sister-in-law had James.
I am very behind on my welcome to the world baby things. I still haven't finished Miss Chloe's quilt and she is now 2 months old, but i think that you have at least the first 6 months on quilts because babies just spit up a lot in those first few months so it is better to wait (that is what I am telling myself so hold your tongue if you think they need one at birth!)
I did want to make James a little something quick. He has a very excited first time grandma that has filled the house with quilts and clothing so it was a bit of a challenge to think of something but she pointed out that she doesn't know how to make sweaters and so the baby surprise jacket came to the rescue. I sewed up those two seams 3 time; once because I had one selves going on way from the other, once because it looked bad and once because it turns out I am a perfectionist.
I found some buttons in my stash so this is ready to go when I meet James, with a little luck that will be tomorrow.
Here is the finished product:

Friday, November 20, 2009

All Hail Elizabeth Zimmerman

This is by far one of the strangest things I have ever knit, yes stranger than even the hyperbolic baby pants of the hammock. The baby surprise jacket by Elizabeth Zimmerman looks like a bad experiment in knitting and then presto it folds into the cutest jacket. And just in time too because my nephew James was born yesterday!
I am on my way to get buttons this afternoon to finish it up

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Home Stretch

I have 8 hours and 40 minutes left at my very crappy job, I will then take a lovely week off to sew and have dental work done and then go to my new and improved job. In the mean time I have been determined to make a sweater in my last 3 weeks here. I have a lot of down time in between patients and have found knitting to be an ideal past time. This here is the Whisper Cardigan from interweave knits. I have had to make some changes because apparently I have overly long arms- I had to add about 40 rows so that it hit me below the elbow and I am adding a few inches to the back too- but I am two inches away from being done. And At least I can say I got something other then a paycheck out of my crappy job.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Thanks to the Great Molly

Many years ago my mother gave me this very cool William Sonoma Daisy cake pan. It has these lovely cut outs that are suppose to leave the impressions of a daisy in your cake.

It comes with a yummy recipe for a lemon cake and recommends that you grease the pan well...unfortunately I have never managed to make it work without completely. Although the cake is always yummy it is extremely hard to get it out of the pan no matter how much shortening and flour you use, it is also a real pain to clean afterwords.

I recently decided to give it one more try, I even bought a new tub of shortening and spent a sold 30 minutes getting it into ever crease, only to have the same problem. I was very discouraged and really ready to chuck the whole idea when my friend Molly recommended that I try making bread in it instead of cake. Her reasoning was that the bread would rise and basically just use the pan as a base.
So I pulled out my favorite biscuit recipe with the feeling that they have enough butter that sticking should be a big issue (mind you I still sprayed it with baking spay) and it worked! even though I am never quite sure what I think about the craft/baking blog merge in general I am so excited that this pan has found new life I had to share it. I am going to try a whole loaf next.

My Flock

It should really be no surprise to anyone that I have a love of sheep somewhere along the way I seemed to start collecting my own flock at various sheep and wools and fairs. Here they are

Monday, October 19, 2009

Sheep and Wool

here is my bounty from sheep and wool this year:

Now I know what you all are thinking does that girl really need more yarn? The answer is clearly no followed by a big old yes!
My guy and I spent a lovely weekend upstate with friends and sheep and wool. I am feeling proud I didn't bring a border collie home.
Yes that is a swift you see in the middle. I have one, of course, but it is not New York apartment size friendly and I fear concussion every time I take it out. This one is compact and cute and folds up quite nicely.
I also bought some of my favorite wool in the world (left/center) from mostly merino in Vermont. It has a lovely loft and is simply a joy to knit with.
The big mass of wool on the right side is from a lovely woman in Maine that does sea dyeing and will become my new hubby's sweater. He is very excited because until now I have refused to make him a sweater because of the sweater curse.
Never heard of the sweater curse before? Well this is told to all young girls learning to knit, and hopefully now young boys too. The curse said in hushed tones is simple: never make a sweater for a man unless you are married to him, otherwise you will break up with him before it is finished and never meet another man with the same measurements again. This has been repeated to me so often that I have to take it as true. And so one month after the wedding I had a very excited guy heading to sheep and wool with me knowing that a sweater could finally be made.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

My Hip Groom

Well the pictures came last night just in time for our one month-iversary. Here is my very hip groom decked out in a custom made shirt that is green cotton with orange embroidery that our fabulous friend scott got us as a wedding gift. He wore the jacket through the ceremony and then sported the shirt the rest of the evening.
The flower is made by Emily Grace whose shop you can see on etsy here. It is actually meant to be a hair clip but it matched his shirt so well that we added it to the outfit. It is handmade of fused plastic and sewn to a wire frame. To put it simply it rocks. I love her work, she has moved from upcycling things to pieces of art.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Boogie Shoes in Action

I am still waiting on the official photo's but thought you might all like to see my boogie shoes in action

Monday, October 5, 2009

Subway Knitting

A little knitting moment for you all.
Last week I was riding the train home and working on a sweater in the round. I was exhausted and had a bit of a headache so I guess I closed my eyes but I was awake. At some point I went to change the song on my ipod and the guy sitting next to me freaked out. Apparently I had my eyes closed for 7 stops but had kept knitting. He was convinced I was knitting in my sleep until I opened my eyes to change my ipod.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Crafty Shower

My lovely friends Callie and Mary put together a Craft shower for me. We finished up all the favors for the wedding- what a fabulous day. Thanks everyone!

Katy battled the earth magnets for the Brooklyn Bridge magnets.

And she discovered new talents too.

Molly is my new stamping queen, she stamped 100+ notebooks in record speed.

And Michelle and Mary cut out the magnet images with precision.

wedding bells

Well things have been a bit busy around here with a wedding coming up and all but I thought I would share a little wedding craft with you all. We needed a double ring box for the ceremony and I really didn't want to figure out where in the heck you get one of those so I made one.
My guy had a cuff link box so I took out the innards and added some foam and fabric and ta da a double ring box.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Good Stuff

Hello All-
We had our wedding shower this weekend, which was a lot of fun and we made out like bandits. I decided to create a special registry on Etsy. Truth is it was a lot of work because I had to contact each seller and get them to agree to hold the item, most folks were very nice about this some were not.
I thought I would share a some of these great things with you.
I have always loved mobiles as a child I would spend hours under the Caulder exhibits so this one is super special to me it comes fro
and my lovely future sister in law got it for us. It is made of a special glass so that when the light shines though it it changes color from yellow to pale pink.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

My Boogie Shoes Are Done!

Everyone sing "I'm gonna put on my boggie shoes..."

The are done and they are fabulous! No really FABULOUS they are comfy and they just make me wan to dance. Plus they have a disco ball effect when the light hits them they leave lovely little sparkles around the room.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Boogie Shoes

Anyone who may doubt my craft-o-holic nature here is the proof.

I decided that I needed to add a little craftiness to our wedding so I am now gluing rhinestones to a pair of shoes making them my most expensive shoes ever and truly my boogie shoes.
They are a pair of ballet flats from skechers. I have finished one and it took about 1,500 rhinestones, but boy it was fun! I still have to paint the edge and strap so it blends but this should give you an idea.

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Father Knows Best

I just spoke with my dad and he pretty much summed up my frustration with the optical illusion of our invitations. He said and I quote "it is not that perfection is not the goal it is that perfection is an illusion."
I am pretty sure those are words to live by.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Perfection Is Not the Goal

So as many of you know I am getting married this fall and my lovely sister designed us the most beautiful cards which I mailed this morning thank you very much.
Because we are getting married at the same place my parents recently had there 50th wedding anniversary party I was able to reuse some of the stuff my sister designed for them- i.e. the map and directions. And as I began to print and cut them I remembered how much I hated them last time because the type face causes an optical illusion when you are cutting them so no matter what you do it always looks a little off. My guy was running other errands yesterday morning while I struggled to cut these darn thing to the high standards I was raised with. And let me stop right here and say that I think that there must be some priority mix up in my life that I don't own a guillotine cutter.
When I was at the point of tears I stopped took a deep breath and said my new mantra: perfection is not the goal here. I even made a large sign that read this and hung it over the cutting table. After that things went much better.

Monday, July 6, 2009

The Next Quilt

So I know I have been a very bad blogger lately, in my defense it is mostly due to the fact that our home camera seems to have disappeared into the vortex that surrounds my guy and I am stuck begging and borrowing his work camera which also requires finding the special card reader thing to convert the files and means I have to take pics on the weekend when there is light. oh and we are also getting married which seems to be taking over a large portion of my life.
Anyway here is the next quilt for my good friends Emily and Mary Ellen. They are due at the beginning of September so I am feeling quit smug to have it so far along already. Emily's favorite color is blue and Mary Ellen loves purple so this felt like a good compromise. The top is half finished and now it is sitting on top of my sewing machine mocking me whenever I walk by. I am co-hosting the shower in two weeks and I think I am done racing through quilts- I want to enjoy this one so I think I am going to give it to them in August.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Very Cool Lamps

So our camera is MIA which has led to some bad blogging practices. Instead I thought I might show you all some cool etsy wears. I think these lamps are the bomb and we may just need one for our living room.
They are made by a lady here in NY and you can visit her etsy shop at

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

I Really am Alive and Mostly Well

I will be the first to admit that the last month or so has just been crappy. My mother was in the hospital way to long and then once she was released and healthy, on queue I got really sick. My guy knew I was really sick because I didn't make a thing for the week I was stuck at home. Instead I watch a lot of bad tv confirming in my mind that we really can get rid of it.
I am doing much better now; I no longer have a fever and I can actually talk. Best yet I am plotting and have started many fun projects. I may have to go into some quilt over drive because everyone I know, or close to everyone I know is pregnant. I feel I am in the middle of a baby boom and my sewing machine and i are doing the best we can to keep up.
My worry knitting is almost completed which is a good thing because like Madame Defarge I noted all that happened in that knitting over the last month and to be quite honest I will be happy to put the needles down.
I promise to take many pictures just as soon as I find the camera in the wreckage of our apartment

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Worry Knitting

So my mom has had a pretty hard week, and without getting into the gory details she has been in the hospital post surgery and is doing much better. But things were a bit scary there for awhile. I realized a bit late in the game that I needed worry knitting. I had some crochet with me but I am not a crocheter by nature. I am a knitter and when I get anxious I need my hands to fly. So I found myself at my all time, hands down, favorite yarn store, downtown yarns petting loveliness.
And here is what I found, hand dyed merino superwash. My hands have been swift and I already feel better, and so does my mom.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Another Satisfied Costumer

My guy got back from delivering the precious cargo, oh yeah and having a nice trip visiting friends...
He brought with him the camera filled with photo's of Mr. Hunter loving his quilt.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

A Thimble is a Girl's Best Friend

I haven't been writing about how much I have been working on Hunter's quilt because I can't hand stitch and type at the same time.
I am happy to report that Hunter's quilt is done and has been safely transported to England by my guy (I threatened him plenty before entrusting all that work to him. I made him put it in his carry on and gave him my father's traditional warning of "you're in charge, don't screw up").
I have been working on it so much that now that it is gone I am not sure what to do with myself. Truth be told I kinda miss it.
Once I managed to finish the last square the rest went pretty well. I was hoping that the backing fabric could be simply rolled over the edge to finish it but life is never that simple. The backing came up sort and of course I started hand quilting it, yes hand quilting it, before I realize it was on a bit of an angle.
I haven't figured out how to do a binding edge properly yet (despite the placemat project) but I am pretty good of finding my way out of the trouble I find my way into; I had enough of the center green fabric to add an edging to the backing fabric and that allowed me to do the roll over binding I was hoping to do.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Crafts with Love

I had a wonderful crafting moment this week when I remember the pure joy of crafting for someone that not only will appreciate my gift but also my ability to share goodness, compassion and love through making things.
I am still getting used to my new work environment, and even though I still don't think my officemates would eat my cookies I have found a few kindred souls that make the day better.
There is one fellow in particular that always brightens my day; even when she is having a really hard day she always has a wonderfully kind smile for me and I can always count on her for a good morning, something I have learned not to take for granted. She has been having a pretty rough month at work, you can hear it in her voice and see it in her eyes and well it just makes me want to love on her. Actually it makes me want to scope her up and take her very far away and surround her with good folk.
Last week I showed her some of my bags and pouches and she was so enthusiastic about the prints that I knew I had to make her one. I went home and set to work. I had to do a little mental brain tease to remember how to line a pouch after all those NY times zippy pouches but Tim Gunn (the sewing machine) and I finally got it right.
I gave it to her today with some Guatemalan worry dolls and it was warmly received.
The thing is, I have been so caught up in trying to complete my Crafting Resolution list and finding my way in a new job that I forgot the pure joy of making things and how important making things is to me as a way of connecting with people. I guess what I am saying is, Pastor Callie Janoff, I finially really get the Church of Crafts being and mission.
It is a really good thing to remember.