Tag Archives: crafts

Seashell Rose Pendants

I bought a roundtrip ticket to Achorage, AK on Saturday and promptly texted/tweeted all of my friends and family to inform them that they would all be receiving homemade Christmas presents this year.

And then I got started making them.

I should probably have people in mind when making Christmas presents, but to be honest I’m just winging it and hoping the perfect recipient emerges.

I’ve already made a huge batch of homemade cranberry-orange marmalade from oranges in my backyard, so that will be nice for some people. And then I got started on these little guys.

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I think they’re pretty sweet little optical illusions. For now they are just miniature sculptures but I’m going to make them into necklace pendants and brooches.

And I’m going to tell you how to make them too!

I saw a tutorial on pinterest a while back that showed how to make cabochons using silicon molds and hot glue, of all things. The original blogger, Lilblueboo found all sorts of things,: bows, hearts, butterflies. However, when I went to Michaels, I only found an assortment of leaves?

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Ah well, I thought, I’ll find something that needs leaves someday. Months later, while looking through pinterest boards and my craft supplies I hit upon the something that needed leaves.

My parents recently bought 9 acres of land and are building a house (a straw bale house, because they are that crazy and awesome). It’s a pretty long and narrow piece of land that slopes down through mesquite trees and cacti (and bluebonnets in the spring) to a line of oak trees along a creek. They’re keeping it uncultivated for the most part which means we wild animals use it as their habitat. We keep an eye out for snakes, and keep our animal tracking skills up to date by identifying various paw/hoofprints and droppings left along the trail. My very favorite thing to do on our walks is to collect things. The best things I’ve found are bones. It might sound creepy but I really like animal bones. But that is a story for another post. This one is about snail shells. And flowers.

I started noticing these little white shells all over (well not all over) the place. I pocketed a few, once I realized they were vacated snail shells. I have seriously never seen so many empty shells so far inland. And most of them were a very pretty ivory color.

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So, to make this craft, I first cleaned the shells thoroughly with dish soap and boiling water. While they were soaking I warmed up my trusty hot glue gun and made my leaves. Like the original blog post said, it takes a little while to get the right method for filling the molds with hot glue, but the nice thing is that they cool quickly and you can trim the messy edges with scissors. I made a bunch and painted them green, I had to do several layers so the green was a really nice, bright shade.

When the shells were cleaned and dried. I painted them with just a thin layer of acrylic paint. I didn’t want the color to be too thick or bright, so you could still tell that the roses were shells. I went with several different colors so there was a variety in the bouquet.

Then I cast around to find something to put my little flowers on! A quick search of my craft supplies produced a bag of Rummikub tiles! After that is was as easy as finding some crazy glue (I wasn’t sure hot glueing something that was already made of hot glue would be the way to go) and arranging my little rosebuds! I’m going to add some teardrop bails to the back so they can be put on a chain. But I might put a pin on some so they can be a brooch too.

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And I made a special one for my friend Jenn that was a little more macabre…

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All in all, this was a pretty easy and fun craft to do for a library program or while watching tv. Especially if you already have some of the supplies on hand!

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Galentine’s Day!

So, for the past 3 years my roommate and I have hosted a Galentine’s Day Party. It’s a day (usually a Sunday afternoon) in February where we celebrate our best girlfriends. Everyone is invited to squeeze into our little apartment and eat and talk and best of all: craft! I encourage people to bring things they’ve been working on but I also provide easy crafts for those less craftily inclined. This year I thought I’d add a little something extra, as well as beef up my Valentine’s decorations.

I was inspired by this craft blog post http://misskristurner.com/2014/02/04/kiss-kiss-diy-lipstick-artwork/ But I wanted to include all my guests so I sent out a note to everyone telling them to bring their favorite lipstick/gloss with them for a special craft(reassuring them it would come to no harm). I found a perfect frame at Goodwill for $5.99 and decorated a piece of watercolor paper with the title, date, and appropriate quote. Then the kissing commenced!

"Ovaries before brovaries"

“Ovaries before brovaries”

My favorite lip color, L'Oreal Paris Infallible Lipcolour in Beyonce red

My favorite lip color, L’Oreal Paris Infallible Lipcolour in Beyonce red

Smooch!

Smooch!

 

Overall the party was a great success, I was a little worried we wouldn’t all fit and I always worry that different groups of people won’t get along, but it all worked out for the best! Can’t wait for next year’s party!

After the party, I drove an hour and a half to Bryan College Station because a beloved friend was attending a work conference there. Since Jessica lives in Florida and works ALL THE TIME, this was an excellent excuse to spend some time together. Leah, Britt, and Pete drove down from Fort Worth and almost the whole gang was back together. It was great, we laughed and caught up on all the frankly life changing things that have happened in the year+ since we’d seen each other (Peace Corps volunteering, house buying, going back to school, job promotions etc.) and talked about how old we’re getting. Though frankly, I can’t see it.

Jess, Pete, Britt, Sti!

Jess, Pete, Britt, Sti!

 

Okay, it’s dinner time so let me leave you with some kittens (er- they’re a year old now so I guess that makes them cats?)

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A few things

We’re going to pretend I haven’t abandoned this blog since April, shall we? Here’s are some of the craft/art projects I’ve worked on since then…I apologize if there are some repeats.

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Take a cup of kindness

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When I was in Edinburgh a few years ago, I bought and stitched this exact cross-stitch pattern. Did I remember to put it up this year? Nope.

Oh you know what this post is. It’s going to be full of New Year’s Resolutions! Like blogging more and running more and eating better. I’m definitely not above that, even if the over-saturation of these posts is starting to annoy me.

First off, a few fun things. Did you know I’m getting a cat? I am! Right now her name is Dasher, but it’ll probably- mostly likely- definitely be changed to Leonora (Leo for short, so she can be Bartlet’s Chief of Staff)

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Is she not adorable?

She totally is. She still has to gain 7.5 oz before she’s big enough to be fixed and get the rest of her shots and then she’ll be ready for adoption. In the meantime she is having a ball at her foster mom’s with her sisters. Here’s the latest photo of her and her sister Dancer (Dasher/Leo is on the right)

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She’s already a lot bigger! Which is, I guess, the nature of kittens and all young things, you know, to grow.

For Christmas my sister made me the most amazing cat bed for her. I cannot even express my excitement about this present. It can only be expressed through the amount of screaming I did.

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You can clearly see that this gift is all sorts of awesome. There are cat toys hanging from the ceiling AND popping up from the carpet. There’s carpet. And photos of me, me with my old cat Maniac, and Bartlet on the walls. AND she made it herself. I love handmade gifts. She could have sanded and painted a piece of wood and I would’ve been ecstatic, but this is just. so. awesome.

In other exciting news, my dear dear friends Peter and Brittney are leaving  this month for their Peace Corps adventure in Morocco. I was lucky to get to see them last weekend at a Going Away party in Fort Worth. I will miss them terribly, but am so proud of the work they will be doing and cannot wait to visit them next year when they’re settled.

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Okay, so moving on. A few of those requisite resolutions. And sorry to be cliche but one of them is about food.

  • Adhere to Meatless Mondays (this is both for the health reasons and as a sort of homage to my grandfather who abstained from meat on Mondays for most of his adult life for personal reasons)
  • Decorate my dresser drawers with pages from an old copy of Jane Eyre, possibly paint the handles gold and maybe the body of the dresser white?
  • Play some sort of group sport for fun.
  • Edit the novel I wrote for NaNoWriMo
  • Be better at staying in touch with beloved friends. Whether it’s email, text, letter, or even the dreaded phone call.

And that’s all I’ve got for the year. Like Becky, I don’t want to have resolutions so much as philosophies and as I’m pretty content with my own philosophies, I don’t see much reason to change or add to things that are already making me happy and my life grand.

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Happy Birthday Mom!

Yesterday was my mom’s birthday. As she is awesome and I am trying to save money, I decided to make her present this year.

I found a great craft tutorial on pinterest that involves one of my favorite crafts- shrinky dinks!

So I requested photos from my sisters and set to work!

Using Type 6 recyclable plastic and a sharpie I traced our silhouettes.

I just held the plastic to my laptop screen to trace. I also added a little frame and our initials.

Then I baked them on a tray of foil for a few minutes and they magically shrank!*

Smaller!

Then I attached them to a bracelet (I punched holes in the plastic before baking)

I put the corresponding letter next to the corresponding daughter.

They make a lovely clacking noise, just like we do in real life when we fight 🙂

In ascending age from left to right- Robin, Katie, Me.

 

I’m pretty proud of it, and mom seemed to like it! Unfortunately I forgot to take a picture of her showing it off…

I leave you instead with this picture of Bartlet ‘keeping calm’

*Not really magic, science. This is the tutorial I always use when making shrinky dinks. It’s great: http://www.curbly.com/users/Chrisjob/posts/2252-DIY-Shrinky-Dinks-#jump

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Merry Christmas!

Ah Christmas-time. This week I did all those traditional things that make you feel all twinkly and filled with cheer. You know, attended a party where Die Hard was playing in the background, attended a menorah lighting ceremony, ate waay too many cookies, wrapped presents poorly, drank wassail, went to the liquor store, stayed up late watching movies with old friends, and of course made a gingerbread Tardis. Here are a few photos of those happenings.

Menorah lighting!

My dad is super classy, picking his nose in my firetruck mittens.

Hipster pups

Nick doesn't dress warmly enough

The humble beginnings of a Type G Tardis

Tardis Blue icing

These York Peppermint Patty pieces were perfect!

Made some stars to be the Time Vortex

These were lighthouses originally, but I shortened them and made them Daleks

Daleks attack the Tardis while it is flight in the Time Vortex

The Doctor confronts the Daleks

Very proud (also, these are my 'Woodland Creature Eyes'

See, my mom does it too!

Tomorrow and Sunday will bring more fun traditions, food and lots of BBCAmerica on the television. But I don’t know what could top making my Gingerbread House and making the Tardis! Oh wait, my sister comes home tomorrow! 🙂 Hope your Christmas is as wonderful as mine!

Merry Christmas!

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Another crafterevening

This weekend it’s more of the same, mod podge and Wonder Woman and book pages! Why mess with success?

I can wear them!

 

Candleholder, yes it is about Batman..

Watching Leap Year. It’s so odd seeing actors who play some some of my favorite tv characters acting very unlike those characters. Sweet Dee not swearing? Ben Wyatt being super slick? Weird. Also, I was worried it wouldn’t pass the Bechdel test, but then Anna and an Irish woman talk about chicken. Before moving onto talking about men and marriage again…so whew! Still it’s a stinking cute movie.

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