Some Recent Silhouette Projects

Since getting my Silhouette Cameo for Christmas, I have really enjoyed using it to kick up my crafts. There are so many possibilities! It can be overwhelming for a newbie, and I’ve read about people who keep their Silhouette in the box for months (or longer). Well, let me tell you — take out the machine, install the software on your computer, read the manual, and just play around with it! Will you mess up your first project or two? Maybe. Probably. But that’s OK. That’s how you learn. Isn’t that what we tell our kids? It’s totally OK to make mistakes! Don’t let the fear of failure keep you from having fun.

Here’s a picture of the first vinyl project I made. (Yes, I did go back and fix the missing apostrophe!) This was just using the Recollections brand vinyl from Michael’s. I wouldn’t say the vinyl is amazing, but the cup has held up for a few months now, and in a pinch I would buy it again.

First vinyl project

After realizing that cutting vinyl wasn’t actually terrifying, I decided to buy the Craft E Vinyl Assortment of glossy permanent vinyl from Amazon. It was easier and faster for me to purchase this instead of tracking down Oracal 651 from a vinyl retailer and I love this stuff! It weeds easily, adheres well, and if you have Amazon Prime in two days you’ll have it in your hot little hands. I used the Craft E Vinyl to create this sign for my dad to hang in his workshop.

Tool Rules sign

For St. Patrick’s Day, Laura needed to wear green to school (obviously!). I still had not ventured very far into the world of HTV (heat transfer vinyl), and all I had was a sheet of metallic gold Cricut vinyl I bought on sale at Joann’s. But it did the job and my little leprechaun made it through the day without being pinched! For this design, I simply found the shamrock wreath online, brought it into the Silhouette Design Studio, traced the image, added my text, and was ready to go. (When cutting vinyl to iron on to clothing, don’t forget to mirror it – I made that mistake!)

St. Patrick's Day shirt

Next is a travel mug I made for Drew’s birthday gift. After Christmas, Target had 2-packs of Contigo brand travel mugs on clearance, so I scooped up a package. My husband is a huge fan of G.I. Joe comics (and even has a Cobra Commander Halloween costume), so this was a no-brainer. I love how it looks, even thought it was incredibly simple!

Cobra (GI Joe) travel mug

After deciding that I was going to want to delve a little futher into making custom creations that used HTV, I placed an order for some better quality supplies. First order of business was to make myself this shirt. Yes, I do think I am very punny!

Calligraphers are always write!

And last I’ll share the Mother’s Day gift I made for my mom. Glass cutting boards were all the rage in the FB groups, so I picked one up at Dollar Tree and made this design from scratch. As you can imagine, it’s not that easy finding anything that says “Babci” on it, so I think she was happy with it. This was another project that required flipping the image before cuting it because you actually stick the vinyl on the underside of the cutting board (that way it is still functional).

Glass cutting board

There are so many other project ideas in my head! I’ve also used it quite a bit to cut complicated shapes out of paper (that’s how I did my son’s Confirmation invitations). And I also use it to cut out envelope templates. Again, it’s just faster and easier than doing it by hand. I look forward to sharing more ideas soon!

{Tutorial} Sew Easy Loopy Scarf

Loopy Scarf Tutorial

It’s been a couple years now since I made my first loopy scarf, but I still enjoy creating them and if you’re looking for a last-minute handmade gift, this is perfect! One scarf takes about an hour to complete from start to finish (maybe a little more for your first one). The best part is that you don’t need to know how to knit or crochet. Yes, it’s true — you really can make a funky handmade scarf without those skills, as long as you have a sewing machine. Grab a drink, put on a movie, and let’s get crafting! 

Here’s what you’ll need:

 
Loopy Scarf Tutorial

  • A sewing machine
  • One skein of Homespun yarn (or a similar bulky yarn)
  • Coordinating thread
  • Basic sewing notions

Set your sewing machine to a zig-zag stitch. Adjust so that the stitch is somewhat narrow.

Loopy Scarf Tutorial

Next, decide how wide you want the scarf. My prefernce is approximately six inches wide, mostly because that width makes the looping easy.  There are about three inches on the left and I use a rubber band to mark three inches to the right (for a total of six inches).

Loopy Scarf Tutorial

Loopy Scarf Tutorial

Now you’re ready to start looping! Holding the end of the yarn, make “loops” going from one side to to the other. Keep doing this this until you have about 1.5-2 inches “looped” and then carefully move up the yarn so that it’s under your needle. Slowly start sewing (let me stress the importance of going slow when working on this scarf), being sure to backstitch at the beginning. Try to get the yarn strands really close to each other, but don’t bunch them up into a pile.

Loopy Scarf Tutorial

Loopy Scarf Tutorial

Loopy Scarf Tutorial

When you finish sewing together the first few loops, make sure to leave your needle down to secure the yarn while you continue making loops. Repeat this process until the scarf is as long as you’d like!

Loopy Scarf Tutorial

Just in case the directions aren’t clear from the photos, here’s a short video that explains how to sew the scarf together.

Hopefully that will clear up any questions. As you sew, you’ll see that your scarf appears flat as it comes out the other end of your machine. Once you’re done, you’ll just fluff out the scarf and voila! You have no-knit, no-crochet scarf that sews up in no time. 

Loopy Scarf Tutorial

 

 This project was originally featured as a guest post on Sugar Bee Crafts.

Country Living Fair 2014

Country Living Fair 2014

Guys, last year I had to miss out on the debut of the Country Living Fair here in Rhinebeck at the Dutchess County Fairgrounds. We had events that entire weekend and there was no way I could eek out the time to attend. But this year? I wrote it in my planner as soon as I found out the dates and I was not going to miss it again!

The weather was absolutely perfect for a day of walking around and being absolutely inspired by all of the creative ideas I saw. The fairground was transformed! I had just been there for CamporALL with the Cub Scouts, but it didn’t look anywhere near as pretty as this. Check it out — buntings everywhere! And I swear they were misting the scent of lavender and cinnamon because everything smelled wonderful.

Country Living Fair 2014

Obviously the vendors want you to buy their wares, but I couldn’t help but steal a few ideas for finished products that were out of my budget. This “Pickles” sign was one of them. The sign, while super cool, was not coming home with me for over $100. And while I doubt I could do a perfect lettering job, it still provided some inspiration.

Country Living Fair 2014

I loved these chairs with the ragamuffin strips hanging down the sides — kind of like a prim tutu, isn’t it?
Country Living Fair 2014

Here was another project I thought I could replicate with a shabby frame, some ticking, an old BINGO card, and a cute vintage image:
Country Living Fair 2014

And who knew that if I could safely take down a hornet’s nest I could not only use it as a home dec accent, but I could also charge $35 for it? (But I have to admit — it does look cool.)
Country Living Fair 2014

Here are a few more “this and that” photos of pretty things:
Country Living Fair 2014

Country Living Fair 2014

Country Living Fair 2014

Country Living Fair 2014

Country Living Fair 2014

Country Living Fair 2014

I am already excited for next year! I’ll have one more Country Living Fair post this week all about “glamping.” I’d never heard that term before, but if you love the idea of cute caravan/camper decor… just wait! These ladies had more style in their tiny little campers than I do in my entire house, LOL.

Hello, My Friends

washi love

Well… hi! It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Not even sure where to begin, but the end of December was kind of crazy with some family health issues (everything is fine!) and the holidays. January has just been a cold, grouchy month. The snow and Arctic temperatures haven’t exactly been inspiring.

I just looked at my SD card and realized that I’ve barely taken any photos since Christmas! I need to remedy that, even if it’s just “day in the life” type of snapshots. 

Also, I’ve started working on some craft projects (including reorganizing my washi tape so I can actually see all of it at once). So I’ll start posting about those. I also wanted to start posting my monthly and weekly planner layouts, and sharing how I use my Erin Condren Life Planner. Decorating my organizer has become a relaxing hobby and there are so many creative people out there who provide inspiration! Fun and functional :-)

That’s about all for now. I just had to finally write something and then hit the “publish” button. As with anything in life, it seems the longer you go, the harder it is to get back into blogging. So there. That awkward “Hey… how ya been” is over and we can pick up where we left off.

So… what’s new with you?

Hello Kitty Hat

hello kitty hat

Since Christmastime, my three-year-old has been asking me to make her a Hello Kitty hat. And for whatever reason I’ve put it off. I’m not sure why, because hats are quick and easy to whip up. Last week I finally had the time to hook one up for her, and she could not have been happier!

For the hat itself, I used my favorite hat pattern, which at the moment happens to be the one I used to make Repeat Crafter Me’s owl hat. I find it a little small, and I always need to crochet more rows than the pattern calls for, but it is an excellent base pattern. Laura didn’t want earflaps, and I ended up adding a picot border just to make the hat a little bit longer.

For the nose, I followed the directions on Crochet in Color’s Hello Kitty Hat pattern. I also used her basic ear instructions, but I started with a magic circle, ch2, and then 7 hdc. I didn’t connect the end and beginning, I just made a ch1 and followed the rest of her instructions. When I used her method, I was left with a gap I couldn’t seem to tighten up. Using the magic circle helped with that.

For the eyes, I started with a magic circle (can you tell how much I love that nifty little trick?) and then a ch1, and 10 sc. Then I just sewed it all up.

hello kitty hat

I think the nose could go a little lower, but she’s so happy with it, I am not about to start taking it apart and redoing work needlessly. Too many other projects in the queue!

What are you working on at the moment?

Linking up with:
Whatever You Want Wednesday

Take a Look Tuesday

Experiments in Millinery

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I know, I know… I’ve already blown the write-every-day-for-a-month thing. Would it excuse me if I told you I was under the weather for two days and then had a totally crazy busy weekend? No? Ah well… I understand 😉 Well, let’s start again, shall we?

My littlest is spending a couple days with Grandma, which has given me time to get a ton done. Yesterday was cleaning/shopping. Today is crafting. Topping the list? A new welding beanie for my dad. Yes, my dad welds. I know, I am lucky to have my own personal welder :-)

DSC_0242

I have been trying for well over a year to figure out a welding cap pattern that fits him correctly. This really shouldn’t be hard! A while back he gave me an old hat that had been worn through, so I took it apart to see exactly how it was constructed and I made my own pattern from it.

DSC_0243

After a couple cups of coffee, and quite a bit of cursing, I think I got it. Now, let’s just hope it fits!

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Ta-da!

Flower Pillow “Ta-Da!”

flowerpillow1

Earlier this summer when Lulu made the transition from her crib to a “big girl” bed, I knew I wanted to make something pretty for it. When my mom was visiting back in June, I started on a blooming flower pillow, using the pattern from Attic24. Only instead of using dozens of colors, I decided to make one enormous white flower.

And enormous it is! It took me forever to finish this, not because the pattern was hard, but I guess I got a little bored with all the white. Nevertheless, I’m happy with the way it came out, and my little girl loves it! The backside is a light green and the side is a dark purple, so everything coordinates with her room.

flowerpillowcollage

Of course, now the boys want pillows, too (only not flower pillows…) Good thing I have a couple of extra cushions laying around. I guess I’ll be added their requests to my never-ending “to crochet” list, LOL!