Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Hoopla Swap 3

Check out my Craft Critique review of the terrific book Scandinavian Stitches by Kasja Wikman. The article ran a few weeks ago and I did all the crafting in a flurry before Christmas.The book is full of terrific seasonal projects. I highly recommend it.

I also recently did another Hoopla swap on Craftster. For this one, we needed to exchange a tiny 2 to 3 inch hoop motif. Because if the small size and because my partner, pugwash, mentioned him in her sign up information, I stitched up a little Mario:

Mario Cross stitch

Mario Cross stitch

A few days later the hoop she stitched for me arrived. We were completely on the same wavelength because she did a piranha plant for me:
Piranha Plant Crosstitch
Piranha Plant Crosstitch

Swapping is really fun. Thanks, Pugwash!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Amy Sedaris

Have you seen Amy Sedaris' new craft book, Simple Times, Crafts for Poor People?

Judging by the wildly varied reviews on Amazon, Amy Sedaris is not for everyone. I am not offended by her tongue-in-cheek suggestions to refashion household items into useless silly crafts like rope dolls, marshmallow stars, and fake hot plates.

Here she shows how to make pom poms (she calls them pompons) using big scary scissors that don't cut well at all. I bet you have several pairs of bad scissors in your house you simply can't throw away:

I received this book twice for Christmas. I took some time to go through it and came upon this layout in the "Crafting for Jesus" chapter:

These are "Jesus Coins"
Cut a circle pattern out of cardboard. Use this pattern to cut felt pieces of the same size. Glue the felt pieces over the cardboard coin. This represents "sticking with Jesus." Any image you remember from the Bible can be recreated and placed on your coin.
These, hilariously, look quite similar to the felt disks I stitched up for my advent calendar. I made these in 2007, but only blogged about them this winter.

Felt Ornaments

See my glowing cross in the center? That's the one we hang Christmas Eve. Here is Amy's from the book:

Too funny. I love this video too. Especially when none of the 5 bottles of glue she has works:

Friday, January 14, 2011

The various things I made for Christmas

I am really behind sharing my projects! I made things for Christmas, but as usual, I didn't get to photograph them. My favorite items were the crochet edged pillowcases. I made 3 sets for 6 pillowcases in all. They looked great! How could I have neglected to photograph them?

I used THIS BOOK and the edges looked even better than those in the article...

Also for Christmas gifts, I made some reusable shopping bags from my fabric stash. I saw this pattern for a fabric produce bag online at Daisey Janie. That was an excellent pattern and I made 6 bags from it as gifts for an early holiday gathering we had a few weeks before Christmas. Alas.. I really craft in a rush for Christmas and I didn't photograph those either. The pattern conveniently uses a fat quarter and ends up quite narrow. Perfect for a produce bag, but I thought I could try modifying it to achieve a more useful size.

Fabric Bags

I used a full half yard and got this perfectly sized bag that measures 15 inches high by about 17 inches wide. I love that these bags roll up neatly when not in use. I also love the way the sales clerks respond when I pull these out to use them: "Nice bag!" "You made it?!" Sure! It was easy! You could do it too!

I've made a lot of reusable bags, but this is by far my favorite pattern. I made these two for me and another set of 4 for my mother-in-law. The fabric I used for hers was quite nice, but you'll just have to imagine it.

Fabric Bags

Take a look at this beautiful Queen Anne's Lace Scarf by fantasticmio on Craftster. When I saw that, I simply had to make one EXACTLY like it for my mom. I also got another colorway of the Bernat Mosaic yarn to make one for my Mother-in-law. They turned out terrific and that is a really nice yarn. This is the one by fantasticmio, but the one for my mom looked pretty much exactly the same:

My mom understands my crafty urges and she got me some cool yarns for Christmas. I've been playing around with them. First I made this Worm Scarf from a pattern by Julie Weisenberger using Lumpy Bumpy Yarn by Charlene.

Worm Scarf

I think there is a smudge on my camera... This yarn is really funky and squishy and I love the way this scarf turned out. I've been wearing it a lot since it is really wintery where I live.

Mom and I were really on the same wavelength in our yarn choices because she also got me this rainbow colorway of Mochi Plus yarn which is very much like the yarn I used for her scarf except Mochi Plus is wool and Bernat Mosaic is acrylic.


Since I already made two Queen Anne's Lace scarves, I decided to try playing with some of the motifs in my crochet books. This is my first try. It is maybe a little too lacy, I am not sure..

Once I started playing with crochet motifs, I pulled some stuff out of my stash to try this little clover pattern:


Here is the center:
Clover Crochet

And four motifs crocheted together:

Green and White Crochet

Pretty cute, but my daughter turned up her nose and declared, "I don't like it, Mom." I like crafting for the seasons and holidays, but this may be just a little bit overboard to make a scarf like this for St. Patrick's Day.

I did even
more crafting for some articles at Craft Critique. More on those later.