Wednesday, December 30, 2009

monkey business


i want to write more but there is a bit too much waltzing about the noggin so for now i will simply brag up and down about how nifty my mister is. this year i got two sock monkeys. two amazing fantabulous handstitched sock monkeys. sigh. each simian will get its very own post soon. happy almost 2010!

Monday, December 28, 2009

the (holiday) week in review: dec 21-27

let's see...there was cleaning. a LOT of cleaning and baking, just a little baking. there were handmade decorations and handmade gifts and packages wrapped up in brown paper and string. there was scarf wearing and hat wearing and rain and ice and mustaches. there was shop working and home working. there was tea, a LOT of tea and cocoa, just a little cocoa. all in all a very pleasant holiday week!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Merry!

Thank you for the fabulous year. Hope your holiday and 2010 are a srumdillyumptious blast!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

fabric chain fun

a few months ago i picked up an awesome vintage charm pack from Home Ec Shop. Resolving to make sure i actually use fabric i buy even if it is "too pretty" to use, i decided to whip up this happy fabric chain garland to add a little holiday oomph to the tiny casa. you can whip one up in a cinch.

i cut each wee square in half and then half of them in half again. alternating between two thin and one thick scrap.
the thicker links were stitched on the machine...the thinner links utilized my never-ending box o' glue dots...see? easy peasy!have fun!

last minute holiday craftiness

i had plans folks. mad plans of crafting a christmas frenzy. but then, i got a distress call that i couldn't ignore so my plans got shoved under the fridge (our tv cabinet) and off i dashed to help the loverly ladies of ReForm School (and do some holiday shopping as well...how could i not, have you ever been in ReForm School? such loveliness!)but today, amidst (amongst?) important phone calls, last minute errands and such i will make like an elf and bake, wrap, clean, pack and craft away as best i can with a wee break to help a wee one make an extra special gift for her brother (and it is AWESOME, but i can't post pics for he might see.)so far, other than the special gift, i have played with macarons (starbucks, whowouldathunkit? thank YOU m'dear!), finished a few phonecalls, washed three loads of laundry, made a fabric chain garland, two almost finished scrapy happy floral pins, a handful of headbands, and the grand reveal of a clean kitchen table (though the table is actually in the living room but you get the picture...)may you all enjoy the bestest of holiday cheer from now until the new year and then may your new year be the most productive and healthy ever! stay tuned for one or two more crafty posts if i can swing it. we'll be off for a family visit tomorrow until monday, i adore you!

Monday, December 21, 2009

the week in review: dec 14-20

busy busy busy...no baking got done, a little cleaning did and i spent a couple of days helping out the lovely ladies at Reform School...this week is Christmas and I have WAY too much to finish and TOO LITTLE time to do it all in. cross yer fingers for me! mr. a-go-go is sick with a cold, i'm feeling sympathy sick (i hope it's not real sick) and he casa needs a cleaning, mucho cookie dough nees to be made, presents need to be wrapped, sweaters need to be cut up and oh so much more! Today is super duper busy, tomorrow will be spent at Reform School and Wednesday is the last minute waltz to get it all done and packed into the car to head up to be with family for the holidays...happy monday everyone! i'm not even sure i will have time to find a bench!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

the two lucky ladies are....

icedteaforme & digital misfit!

take a looksie at the following pic and let me know which band you would like...first contact gets first dibs! and note that the green is a biggie for those of you with pouffee hair and or really gifted noggins...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

holiday countdown: a quick(ish) gift that is (almost) too pretty to share and a giveaway!

My new motto is have sweaters will make something...I may have mentioned this before but I am not a knitter. I knit as well as I use chop sticks and let's just say you might not wanna sit with me when I am attempting to slurp up pho (i once threw a pair of chopsticks clear across an eatery, on purpose. I was frustrated). So, to assuage my lack of yarn art capabilities I have been looking to wool sweaters to see what I can come up with. Earlier this week I was in Anthropologie and saw these gorgeous crocheted headbands (I can't find them on the website, sorry) complete with flowers and I thought, hey...I can hack this and so I did.

What you need:
*wool sweaters that have been felted
*needle & thread (or machine)
*tape measure or ruler if you need specifics
*scissors

You can use one sweater or many depending on whether or not you want a monochromatic look or something a wee bit more colorful. Me? I went with color. Either way, you are gonna end up with four parts. Mix and match, you choose. Firstly, you will need a long strip at least 20" long and 4" wide. This will be your band. Sweaters stretch so make sure you cut it a wee bit smaller than you need. This is where the tape measure comes in handy.Now, you will need two smallish squarish pieces, these will be the bulk of your flower. Cut them into flower shapes, one smaller than the other. Set aside.
For the center of the flower you will need a thin strip of sweater at least six inches long and one inch wide. Pop it onto your machine and do a long running along the length of one long end. Hold one end of thread and tug a little to get your strip to curl up and ruffle a bit. It will look a little like a rosebud. Shape it to your liking and with a needle and thread tack it in shape and then stitch to the remaining to flower pieces that have been stacked with the smaller piece on top. You can wait to do this part and do it all at once as you stitch the flower to the band. Your choice.Fold your band in half, right (preferred) side facing in. Stitch the ends closed either by hand using a wip stitch or by machine using a zig-zag. Turn it right side out and decided where you want your flower to be in relation to the seam. I placed my flowers about 8" away. Depending on how you wear the band your flower may be worn up above one ear or down below the other. Versatile! Handstitch your flower to your band, put on some happy lipstick and dazzle your do with your headband and have a great day! Oh...or you can make up a bunch and give them as gifts this holiday season. I'm kinda having a hard time deciding. You probably wouldn't wear one if I gave it to you anyway, would you? Would you? Leave a comment telling me how you would wear your happy headband and I'll pick two delightful persons to receive one of their own. Thanks for stopping by!I'll pick the winners on Saturday and mail yer goodies out to ya on Monday...stay tuned!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

wreath happy

i entered my wreaths in a contest at Dollar Store Crafts. Will you vote for me! I'm numbers 19 & 20...but vote for yer favorites, okay?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Saturday, December 12, 2009

delightful dillydilly

did you know i made a book of happy pics available on lulu for you to enjoy? it's not very big but it's as full as i could make it of bright and happy colors. it's a dilly it is and if you hop on over now you could get twenty-five percent off! (code HOHOHO) here's a sneak of some of the happy:

Thursday, December 10, 2009

holiday countdown: stitch a wee tree

my mother passed away ten years ago this month (this weekend marks the anniversary) and she loved christmas more than rolos and she really liked them rolos. cleaning out her home was heartbreaking and trying and simply difficult for many reasons. too many to write about now. somehow, during all that cleaning and the going through of her things, her holiday goodies; handmade, vintage and thrifted all vanished somewhat. the ornaments have flown the coop, and her santas probably fled to the local Goodwill. i do have the felt christmas tree skirt she stitched up in 1959 for her first christmas as a married woman and my brother has her wind up toy sleigh but here is and was much more that we no longer have and while it breaks my heart when i think about it i have decide to recreate and channel her crafty powers to capture christmas once again for me, myself & i (and mr. a-go-go).

family traditions tend to hold tight in our hearts, so even if i no longer have the handmade items from my childhood i can recreate them with a twist and tickle. here is my take on the crazy felt christmas tree adorned with sequined ornaments and tucked into its very own wooden frame (sis, do you have this?). this project will hopefully use what you may already have on hand and if you don't it gives you an excellent excuse to go thrifting.

you will need:
*large embroidery hoop
*fat quarter of a happy print
*felted sweater
*small piece of felt
*needle & thread
*sewing machine
*scissors
*buttons and/or beads

i seem to be a magnet for embroidery hoops of all sizes and luckily enough i had an excellent vintage hoop about the size of a 77 LP just itching to be all holidazed-up. so the first thing you need to do is get yerself a fat quarter of yer favorite print. a small print works best. iron it out as best as you can and lay it out on your workspace.

cut out a rectangle of felted sweater, you will want it to fit in your hoop space but not fill it. fold it in half and pin in place.draw a half tree shape (or a triangle if you wanna make it super simple) outward from the fold and cut along your drawn line.remove pins an open. ta-da! you have your tree! trim it a bit for your desired shape.
place hoop over your fabric and center your tree on top of fabric within the hoop.pin into place (use a lot of pins, the felty goodness moves a lot when you stitch it) and stitch onto your fabric with your machine. you can do this by hand if you're already too comfy on yer sofa.fit your happy tree/fabric combo into your hoop. pull taught and admire. gather your buttons and play around until you find a color combo you like. get comfy and stitch them on. you can stitch them on with one long thread that zig-zags all over the back. no one should be looking at the back and i won't tell. trim excess fabric around hoop or glue it in place out of sight. you can also glue the fabric to the hoop if you like.cut out a stem from a piece of felt and tack that on as well. finish your tea and find a happy place to hang, that's it! yer done! now go pick up some more hoops and make yourself an entire forest! oh and you can always paint the hoop as well. happy crafting and happy december!

holiday countdown: upcycled christmas tree on Craftzine.com

i have always wanted to make a Christmas tree from an umbrella and now I finally have. twirl on over to Craftzine.com to see how I did it and to make your own! happy december!