...family, friends, home and other tidbits of a blessed life

Friday, July 31, 2009

Creative Fiber Fabrications

Ooops, realized I didn't have a post ready for today. So I thought I'd share an older project but just for you - a link to written instructions! No close up pictures, don't have the original project anymore (and this one I had really wanted to keep :( !!)

So here is the link to the instructions: Bernina apron.

Be creative and enjoy life!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Creative Paper Concepts - August Calendar

It's 'bout time for a quick project. The August calendar shouldn't take more than 15 minutes to put together. Well that is after you've selected your supplies that is. Supplies: a few stamps, black ink, August calendar, one brad,1 14/" square punch, a few papers and you'll be done in a jiffy.
The background paper is Basic Grey and cut 4 3/4" square. Punch out 3 smaller squares. Stamp them or not. Stamp a partial clock in the upper corner.

This month's saying is:
"I bet deep down you still wish your mom would still take you school shopping every August for the new school year. " by Bridget Willard.

Attach all pieces as shown... insert into your calendar.

Be Creative!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

...and the winner is

Random number generator picked post #3.........
Thank everyone for the nice comments. Check back frequently, never know when a surprise give away will be announced.
Renee, I have your email and will be contacting you today.

Be Creative

Monday, July 27, 2009

Creatively the Second Time Around - china you wear

Oh what fun. You break a piece of china. If it was a prized piece, first you cry. Then you pick up the pieces and instead of throwing them away, package them carefully and send them off. And when the package comes back to you, you have a piece you can wear. A memory encased in silver. Yours, your mother's, your grandmother's china preserved to be enjoyed daily if you wish.
There are two companies represented here. One is Broken China Jewelry and the other is Vintage Revival. Click on their names to be transported to the fine world of jewelry made of your prized possessions. Or you can just browse until you find something you want to purchase. Only one piece you see is an heirloom.

The heart is made from a broken piece of my wedding china. It's by Lenox, called Snow Lily. The heart can be worn as a pin or a pendant, making it quite versatile. This piece is made by Vintage Revival.
This piece is by Broken China Jewelry and was purchased at a show somewhere along my travels in 1995. Our favorite Max had just passed away and I saw this lone little kitty with one of my favorite flowers - so it made it's way into my suitcase. :)
Last trip to Santa Fe, I went into one of my favorite stores along the square and saw a very familiar site! Jewelry by Vintage Revival. This one didn't come from there, I had purchased it previously at a trade show. I loved the rarity of a scenic southwest plate mixed with the silver frames and knew it would be something I would wear often.
Another piece by Broken China Jewelry. Now how could I possibly pass up a piece with my initial on it?

Be Creative!

Friday, July 24, 2009

Creative Fiber Fabrications - elegant machine applique

It's Friday so it must be Creative Fiber Fabrications! And today I'll share another one of my favorite techniques with you. I can remember the first time I saw this book, it was on a file cabinet in the offices of a wholesale supplier. I loved it at first site. Devoured it from cover to cover. Not until someone said to me that I couldn't read that and I heard my boss say oh yes she can did I realize it was in French. The book was translated and it became a best seller on this side of the pond.

Elegant Machine Applique is all about taking little pieces of fabric, fusing them to a backing fabric, zigzaging them in place and then adding the icing to the cake! Interesting bits of cording, ribbons, and yarns are added over the "seams" to create stunning pieces of art. Supplies are minimal: fabric bits, fusible web, some yarn, ribbon and cording odds and ends and a great monofilament thread. I am partial to YLI monofilament. It's fine and I have experienced no sewing complications in all the years I taught with this thread. It's heavenly, so don't let anyone fool you. Monofilaments are not all created equal and you have to find the perfect marriage between your machine and the thread.
After all your little squares are fused to a backing fabric, then gather the tidbits in your stash and begin the embellishing process.
This piece has a few decorative stitches and threads mixed into the yarns and cording.
I used this technique in the upper portion of this art quilt.
Once I had embellished the squares to my heart's content, I added beads. This piece is titled "Winter". You can almost feel the wind whipping through your hair as you see the ribbon buildings, the stray threads and the mini glass leaves fall..
The buildings are made of silk ribbons, ribbons, fabric piecces and whatever fit in the "theme".
Try this technique on a pillow, it's quick and easy and uses up all those little pieces we can't bear to throw away.
The little fabric squares are comprised of kimono fabrics, ribbons, silks, linens, brocades and a bit of velvet.

Now for a give away! I have a copy of the booklet "Elegant Machine Applique" for one lucky person. Just leave a comment by Monday morning July 27, 12:01am. Good Luck and

Be Creative!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Creative Paper Concepts - Sewn heritage page

The page layout I'm sharing today first appeared in Creative Machine Embroidery magazine, Paper and Embroidery edition in 2004. Five years ago, wow. It was the time when the sewing machine industry thought they could invade the scrapbooking industry and make every scrapbooker want a machine. We did have fun! This heritage layout of my grandparents appeared in the first edition of Paper and Embroidery.

Tips for sewing on paper: 1) you can't make a mistake. If you do, then you have an embellishment opportunity. Just be creative, you can overcome a few poked holes in paper. 2) Keep it simple. Too many holes perforate the paper and it begins to disintegrate in your hands. 3) use a sharp needle so that the stitches form properly. 4) match your thread and needle. Don't use a large needle and a tiny thread. Or the other way around. These combinations are recipes for disaster. After that, it's all fair game. I suggest a practice piece of the same paper on which you plan your finished project. Not all papers are the same weight or feed through the machine the same way.

Basically, draw a grid on the paper with a pencil. Adhere a few 1" squares of fabric (shown) or paper to selected grids. Enlarge picture to see specifics. Sew on the gridded lines, couching decorative cords or ribbons in place with either monofilament or decorative threads. Adhere photos, antique lace, and label. Sew buttons in place. I use my machine for this - no big knots on the back side. Tape all thread tails on the back of the page.
This piece of lace was embroidered on an embroidery machine. I believe the motif is by Sue Box.. Feel free to correct me if my memory has lapsed.
The little girl embellishment is from Vintage Workshop "Garden Time". Printed it on paper and cut around the motif. Used pop dots to adhere to page.
Chenille yarns should be sewn down against the grain to keep the yarn fluffy after it's sewn.

I scanned a postcard of the town in which my grandparents lived, resized it in picture software and then adhered it to the page.

Enjoy and Be Creative!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Creatively the Second Time Around - a new use for a silver fork

Forks, especially silver ones, can be found at flea markets, antique stores, and garage sales. Most people have decided that cleaning silver is not for them. I hate to admit it, but I love to polish silver. I'm sick! Usually take a cool day in the fall and play some old movies, and sit and polish for a good part of the day. With some clever bending of the fork tines, you can turn a stray silver fork into an easel.
You'll need to warm up the fork, I used my stove, as I am not allowed to use a torch! Grab some pliers.
Bend the fork pretty similar to this. Two tines back and two to the front. Curve the tips up. The back of the fork becomes the part that is seen, so you will want those tines to be pretty much bent the same.
Look for forks that have some interesting detail on the back side. Did you know that in Europe, it's pretty common to see a table set with the fork tines pointed downward because the most ornate details are usually on the underside of antique silver?
I have a couple of these so I can quickly display a 4x6 snapshot in a jiffy. No need to continually buy new frames or even change pictures out of frames.

Be Creative!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

good things come in small packages

When life gives you trials, they are best met with excessive calories, decadent flavors and lots of sugar! There are now cup-cakeries in Lubbock! One on 34th street and one in Kingsgate south, just down the way from the Gourmet Pantry. Mmm. We just had to try the one closest to the office last Wednesday. Cake by Distinctive Details. Click here to go to their blog, read their menus, and find out the important details like when they are open!
Doesn't this showcase just look scrumptious? Too bad the smell can't be pasted into a blog.
And their packaging is divine! Yes there used to be two cupcakes in the box, but I "tasted" the Red Velvet cupcake at work.
And saved the Lime Margarita for the next day...it was "to die for"!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Creative Fiber Fabrications- restyled blouse

I've got a really fun project to share with you today. A linen blouse enhanced with ribbons. I found the blouse at a discounter and then I was surprised with a bag of ribbons bits that were to be discarded. Oh what to do? The what to do with the ribbons has turned into one of my favorite pieces in my wardrobe. The final addition were some beautiful ribbon embroideries stitched on a trusty Bernina! The bonus for you today is that there are full instructions on line, just click here for the .pdf file.
I had created the blouse for myself and then the editor of Designs embroidery magazine caught a glimpse of it and decided she needed to share it with her readers. So it appeared there first and they have since made it a free download.
I used the pin stitch on my sewing machine and a large needle, size 100 or 120. Don't use a wing needle because it can damage your ribbon. As always steam the ribbon to shrink. Then pin the ribbons in place and sew around them.
Once the ribbons have been attached, it's time to embroider the designs. I picked colors for the designs from the colors in the ribbons.
The blouse also has a new hem along the bottom. It's been stitched with a satin scallop stitch and made more secure by catching a thin cord into the stitching.
When the sleeves were shortened, two decorative elements remained - the cuffs. I took one and added a piece of ribbon. Then stitched over the ribbon with an embroidery motif that creates tassels. Isn't that superb?
Can you believe they were going to throw these ribbons away?
Added a bit of ribbon around the collar.
Here's another close up of an embroidered motif.

Be Creative! Oh and stay tuned next week for a give away!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Creative Paper Concepts -July QK Club

It's Wednesday, so that means another issue of Creative Paper Concepts. This time I'll show you the project for next Saturday's QuicKutz Club. Another Page insert into our 8" binder. This one will fit behind the opening of last month's page. Plan your picture accordingly. The front will actually accommodate several sizes of pictures so you aren't locked into one size. It also features two dies/silhouette designs. The top right flower is the CC Nesting Flowers and although I used a silhouette digital design for the lower large flower, you could use this 4x4 shape or this 2x2 shape in its stead. Add a few extra blooms at your own discretion and you will be set.
Can you guess which die is our club die this month? We are using it on the back of the page. The beauty is in the simplicity of the page. the lower portion is actually a pocket into which you can insert your pictures or items of choice.
6 flowers with center brads of your choice
1yd 1/4" ribbon
1- Lace doily as pictures
1- solid DP
1- print DP
Paper Trimmer
Chestnut Roan Ink pad
Cheetah Adhesive runner
Pop/Glue dots

See you there. Be Creative!

Monday, July 13, 2009

gotta check out the new spellbinders!!

Scrapbookers, cardmakers, etc.. go to the Spellbinders Blog and check out their daily offering. You surely won't want to miss this. They have done this several times already and since CHA (Craft and Hobby Association show) is coming up, they are previewing their new dies. Yes, these work great in most die cutting machines, but check yours to make sure.

So here's the procedure, you go to the blog each day, click on the link to the featured designer, check out her page and then you click to enter the contest - following the rules. This is a progressive contest so the winner of day one gets one set of dies, the winner of day two gets the die sets for day one and two, the winner for the last day of the contest gets each set of dies previewed! Isn't this grand??? Can't miss this one for sure.
These are the dies for day one and two... and they are already on day 4 or 5.. be there or miss out.

Creatively the Second Time Around - reworked wooden tray

It's Monday, so it must be some old made new again, something used differently than intended so it's Creatively the Second Time Around! Today I'm sharing with you, a tray that has been stained, stamped and decoupaged until it's become a family favorite. Supplies are pretty minimal, ephemera that you love (old postcards, postage and pictures of coins were used in this sample), StazOn ink, some stain, and a decoupage medium such as Mod Podge. Sand your old tray, stain the tray following instructions on your can of stain and then let it dry.
Layout your ephemera as you desire. Take a picture so you can remember what you decided on.
Gather some stamps that fit in with your emphemera. I chose to use anything French because my postcards are from France as are the postage and coins. Stamp the images (partial and whole) with solvent ink such as StazOn. Cover the piece pretty thoroughly to add more interest.
Don't forget the handles...
I took a screen shot of GoogleEarth Paris and made it into a tag.
Added some old postage and some copies of coins (the real things were too thick).
...and don't forget to stamp on the outside of the tray also.
Decoupage the ephemera in place. Seal with a spray seal coat. If you want a glass liner, then go to your nearest craft store with a framing department, they'll be glad to cut you one.

Enjoy and Be Creative!


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