window.dataLayer = window.dataLayer || []; function gtag(){dataLayer.push(arguments);} gtag('js', new Date()); gtag('config', 'UA-54570621-1'); Keeping it Real: February 2014

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Hair clips again - part 3

And last but not least, after the sheep and the purple flower, came...the blue cupcake:

Why blue? I don't really know. I wanted a strong color to contract with the dark brown on the base and I guess I was tired of pink. The star buttons were added as an afterthought.

It came out slightly bigger than I expected, but it is still cute. Here it is, side by side with the crochet flower hair clip from yesterday's post.

See you around,

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Hair clips again - part 2

Remember yesterday's post? The sheep hair clip?

For the following hair clip in need of up-cycling I decided to forget felt and go back to crochet. Since the original clip was purple, I made a purple flower.

I used this pattern as a guide, just crocheting the first layer of the flower, added a white border and passed a thread in a lighter shade of purple through the center of the flower in a heart-ish shape (unintentional, it just came out that way and I kind of liked it).

Fast ans easy. The only downside? I found it hard to crochet such a small flower, so maybe next time I will try it with a ticker thread and a bigger hook.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Hair clips again - part 1

My daughter keeps losing her hair clips. Others are damaged. On a weekly basis there is usually a small group of clips that need to be up-cycled.

First came the sheep.

After sewing and gluing everything in place, I realized that the back was kind of ugly, so I decided to sew a circle (or a slightly cropped circle) to the back.

And here it is, a new hair clip without too much trouble. One down, a few more to go...

See you,

Craft-O-Manic Monday Link Up Party #8

Skip To My Lou

Monday, February 24, 2014

Owie the Owl pendant

Sometimes I wonder what I would be crafting about if I didn't have a daughter.

I probably could find a lot of boy crafts, but the truth is that most of the time, when I want a quick project that I can complete in a night (to avoid adding to my already large pile of works in progress), I usually turn to girls stuff.

This is how Owie came to be.

A couple of weeks ago, after an event organized by the company I work for, I took home a large circular pin. My daughter was instantly interested, but I had to remove the real pin in the back before I gave it to her.

After removing the pin, I passed a piece of yarn through the holes and told her she had a new necklace. She twitched her nose. The pendant was ugly. It was. Corporate but ugly. Now exactly jewelry material. Here it is, seen from the back:

So on Friday night I browsed a little around the Web for inspiration and then took out my felt scraps. And Owie the Pink Owl was born. Against my usual tendency of sewing everything, this time I just used fabric glue. The only thing that is actually sewn on is the bow.

Little girl was happy and Owie was actually lucky enough to be chosen to accompany us to church on Sunday morning...

See you around,

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

More pony tail holders

Remember the Valentine's day pony tail holders?

They were so easy I decided to make more, so I went through my buttons box and come up with these:

I actually started out like this...

...and I was halfway through sewing them when my daughter complained that she wanted pink pony tail holders, not white ones. Since this was meant to be an early-sunday-morning-before-church project, I decided not to waste a lot of time arguing with her and complied. So it came to this:

Still, because all I needed to do was to sew the buttons onto the holders...

...the little girl was still able to wear them to church. 'Cause if you're making one, you can easily make two, right?

See you around,

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

On craft rooms and other ramblings

Some people have beautiful craft rooms. I travel a lot though blogland and Pinterest and I love to see other people's craft rooms. Not out of morbid curiosity but, because deep down, I envy them. Not necessarily the craft rooms themselves. What I mostly envy is the time those people must have available for crafting. And how perfect their projects come to be.

True, for some people crafting is actually their job and maybe that is what I envy the most. If I could, I would be home crafting my days away and, ideally, I would make money in the process (because, realistically, you do need money to live).

I know that I do have good ideas once it a while, but I'm also aware that the end results are usually far from perfect. And not just because I'm always pressed for time.

So here is the naked truth: I like to take shortcuts and I sometimes I choose to believe that if you don't see it, it doesn't matter. This often results in wonky projects, especially when sewing, which my kids love anyway but are obviously not good enough to gift, let alone sell, to anyone.

So, I do not have a craft room (and probably never will). I settle for a quarter of our guest room closet and, in my husband's opinion, I already store there way to much stuff that I will never use. And another confession: I have the bad habit of using things and forgetting to put them back in their rightful places.

The result: one very messy craft closet.

Last week I had to take a day off from work (due to the bad weather the kid's school was closed and my husband was out of town so I had no choice) and I decided to tackle (with the help of four little hands that sometimes create more mess than anything else) the craft closet.

Three bags went strait to the trash bin at the end of our street and I tried to create some order out of everything else. The end result?

A little better, but not by much.

Perfection is elusive but maybe if I keep on trying, I will improve. Some day.

See you around,


Monday, February 17, 2014

Mr. Elephant and Miss Snake - funny pencil toppers

This weekend I was looking back on my first month of blogging and I realized that I had only shared girl projects. Since I do have a son and a daughter, boy projects are desperately needed.

So, on Saturday afternoon, while the kids were out with their bikes (finally a weekend without rain in this little corner of the world!) I took out my felt scraps and made...pencil toppers.

Why, you may ask? Because my son, now in first grade, has developed the nasty habit of chewing on his pencils and I though that if he had some pencil toppers he liked, maybe he would stop (maybe...).

Inspiration came from The Cuter Book, although I made changes to the original patterns (especially since they involved stuffing the animals and I needed to leave an opening for the pencils instead).

First came the elephant, my son's favorite animal. I cut all the pieces I needed from gray felt, but I retrospect I thing I could have cut the ears together with the face instead of having them as separate pieces).

Then I just needed to sew everything together, measuring the correct opening for the pencil. Here it is, sill missing the eyes:

I glued on the eyes and Mr. Elephant came to be:

Originally, I was only going to make Mr. Elephant, but when my son came back home for a glass of milk and went through the book, he declared he also wanted a worm (what is it with boys and worms?). I tried to explain it was a snake, not a worm, but after a while I realized it was pointless. Whatever it was, he wanted one of those.

Again, I had to wing a pattern out of the idea in the book, but Miss Snake looks bright and happy anyway.

And here they are,ready for school:


Sunday, February 16, 2014

Crochet Hearts Hairclips

Originally I intended to share these cute hair clips before Valentine's Day but...I'm keeping it real, remember? And in real life, unfortunately, not everything runs the way you plan and not all projects get completed in time. And this one, although fairly easy, should have been ready days ago. But it just was not meant to be.

However, since hair clips and hearts can really be worn any day of the year, I'm going to share them with you anyway.

crochet hearts hair clips, DIY, how to, Valentine's Day

Saturday, February 15, 2014

T-shirt recovery

While making these beauties, of which I will tell you about in a while (meaning, as soon as I finish them), I realized that it was the perfect pattern for a project I had pending for a long time.

This is one of my daughter’s favorite T –shirts (sorry about the wrinkles, they are proof that the T-shirt has been locked away for quite some time).

Unfortunately, it has holes in one pocket and I been looking for something to cover the holes up, because the rest of the shirt is still in perfect condition (minus the wrinkles).

The solution? These flowers:

They are fairly easy to make once you decipher the pattern (original pattern here), I made a pair in less than ten minutes.

Then I all I had to do was to sew the flowers on both pockets and I was done.

One unfinished project down, several more to go.

See you,

See it on craft-o-maniac monday link-up party

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Valentine’s day projects – part 3

Truth be told, I part 3 was not in my plans. My time is limited and, by the middle of the week, my inspiration has had better days. But I had (insistent) requests for a hearts necklace and last night I found myself complying.

So I went and cut a few more little felt hearts. Initially I thought I would just sew them to a ribbon, but when I was looking for said ribbon I came across some red beads I don’t even recall buying and I decided to use them as well.

I marked the center of the ribbon and put a bead there, thinking that because the beads were heavier than the felt hearts, a bead in the center would make the necklace settle better (in case you want to make something similar, after some trial and error I found that the best way to make the ribbon go through the holes in the beads was to use an extra thin crochet needle).

I tied a knot on each side of the bead to keeping in place.

The hearts are sewn on pairs, one on each side of the ribbon. I always tend to sew things, but in hindsight, glue would have probably been easier (and faster).

Then I added more hearts and beads until it was long enough. Because I was tired and ready to go to bed, I just tied the ends with a knot and cut the excess ribbon, although probably a pretty little bow would look better. Oh well, maybe next time. ..


Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Valentine’s day projects part 2 – hair clips

Remember yesterday’s project?

I cut some extra felt hearts, this time including red along with the two shades of pink, and dug around my craft supplies for simple hair clips (sorry about the dark pictures, it was already night when we finished and lighting was not the best).

Then all I had to do was to sew the hearts to each other (in a way that no thread is showing at the front) and glue the groups of hearts to the hair clips.

And there you have it: nice and easy Valentine’s hair clips (which the girl already used to school today, since she cannot resist when she has something new…)

Have a lovely Valentine’s day,

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Valentine’s day projects part 1 – pony tail holders

Valentine’s day is not a day we celebrate a lot in our house. Not even when my husband and I were dating. We did give each other the occasional gift, but the date usually goes by without a lot of fuss.

Since the kids started school, however, they are used to making a special project in class for Valentine’s day. Since my youngest is in her first year at school, I tried to explain her what it was all about and we decided to come up with something fun and that she could use (we have too much clutter around the house as it is, so useful was in order for the day). Hair accessories seemed just the right choice.

So I bought a bag of cheap ponytail holders (I forgot to take a picture, but it came with an assortment of holders in several colors). I chose the smallest size they had because (1) she does not have a lot of hair anyway and (2) if you make a pair, they can double as pigtail holders.

I’m lazy so I used my Sizzix Big Shot to cut some small hart shapes out of pink felt, but you can easily cut use scissors to do the job.

I chose 4 plain ponytail holders in pink and round buttons matching the colors of the hearts.

Then all I had to do was to sew the hearts to the buttons and attach the buttons to the ponytail holders…

And voilĂ : cute Valentine’s day ponytail holders

You can make them in any color, using matching or contrasting thread and buttons.

And because they are small, you can even use them as a ring.

While we were on a roll, we also made some hair clips, which I will tell you all about tomorrow.

See you around,

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