Saturday, January 31, 2009

February/March Issue

A look at some of the love inside:

Thursday, January 29, 2009

In which a girl loves a booth.

Dear Sassafras Lass,

I liked your booth so much.

Will you come help me decorate my kids' room?

Hey thanks!


P.S. And also the rest of my house.

That little monkey went up and down with his umbrella.

A brave pink deer.


The best way to get home next to clicking your heels.

Bungle Jungle

Yup, that sign idea is getting lifted. Name plaques at the heads of wee little beds, maybe?

Happy giraffe.

Great product images on their blog. Thanks for all the inspiration, Sassafras folks!


Just got back from sunny California! It was so lovely and warm. CHA is now a blur of super cute new products, sore feet, saying the word "cute" approximately a million times, and hanging out with really really great people. I miss it. I'm happy to be home, but I still miss it. Anyway, I need to go to bed, but I wanted to quickly post a few pics from the show.

New felties from Sassafras Lass. Shut up, I know.

GORGEOUS silk ribbon from Beaux Regards.

Vintage is back. Iron on patterns to stitch.

The cutest li'l alphabet I've EVER seen. Thank you, Eric from Cosmo Cricket. He hand drew all those letters, whadda man.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Black Apple Valentines

Last year, Emily Martin posted these oh-so-lovely Valentines on her blog, Inside a Black Apple (one of my personal favorite places to visit), and they're all ready for downloading and printing. What a lovely gift! Here is a link to them, and here's a link to her Etsy shop, where you can buy prints of her paintings, paper dolls, and other sweet things.

Of to CHA! I'll post pics when I get back.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A Fair and a Convention

Here's some random inspiration/a fun way to while away an hour. The New York International Gift Fair is going on this Sunday through Thursday. If you go to their online catalog gallery, you can browse through some very chic and lovely catalogs. Boutique-y stuff. I'm a sucker for that.


This got me looking up more stuff by Shinzi Katoh and I found this super cute water bottle.

These have got to be some of my most favorite bags to imagine how awesome it would be to win one. Cuz DANG they're expensive. Inspiring picture though, no? I love it.

You should check out this catalog for no other reason than to see the representations of the, shall we say, upper 1% of our population. Beautiful; movie stars. But I don't care if your monthly clothing budget does exceed my mortgage, nobody goes for a picnic in a fancy white blouse and brings along pomegranates. Nobody.

Oh and you know what else is next Sunday through Wednesday? THE CRAFT AND HOBBY ASSOCIATION CONVENTION! This is my first time going and I'm super excited. Guess who will be there: Paris Hilton, Jane Seymour, Vanna White... I was thinking we could get together and discuss what it's like to be outrageously thin and beautiful, talk about the trappings of fame, etc., etc.

But possible brushes with celebrities aside, I'm going to see what I can snag for a blog giveaway, our first ever. Stay tuned for that next week (probably Friday).

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Birthday crafting for grandma

My sweet grandma M. turns 92 tomorrow. What do you get someone at that point in their lives? Not The Dark Knight. I figured she would probably enjoy pictures of her grandkids and to get a bit of regular mail. So I sent her this package:

And inside is one of those cute 2-up albums from Target that they sell in pairs. I got it for a steal when they went on sale after the holidays and embellished it with paper, stamps, and velvet flowers/leaves (supplies at the end of this post). Oh, and gold Glimmer Mist! I sprayed it on the stamped piece to give it a little sparkle.

The first page. I did a bit of calculating, and if you divide the album pages up into 12 months you can fit about 12 pictures/month. Some of the spots will be for paper cut to 4 x 6" and written/stamped on. I added some favorite pictures from this month and will be sending her more each month (or week if I can be on the ball).

Album: Target
Red paper: Basic Grey
Green paper: Anna Griffin
Green scalloped velvet ribbon: I think Making Memories? I got it in a Studio Calico kit
Red velvet flowers: Maya Road
Gold velvet leaves: 7 Gypsies
Stamps: Stampin' Up! (Big Deal Alphabet)
Ink: Close To My Heart (Desert Sand)
Glimmer Mist: Tattered Angels (Gold)
Pearl (self-adhesive): Making Memories

Kraft cardstock: Unknown
Brown scalloped cardstock: Bazzill
Red paper: Basic Grey
Green sparkly chipboard flourish: K & Company
Red velvet flower: Maya Road
Green velvet leaf: 7 Gypsies
Die: Stampin' Up! (Top Note)
Embossing plate: Stampin' Up! (Backgrounds 1 Texturz)

Paper: Scenic Route
Number stamps, script alphabet stamp: Ma Vinci's Reliquary
Flourish stamp, Ruby Red marker: Stampin' Up!
Red ink: Tsukineko (Pearlescent Poppy)

Monday, January 19, 2009

Continuing Education

My friend Susan (shop currently closed due to pregnancy and stuff) was over for book club and told me about this upholstery class she signed up for. I thought it sounded really fun, and although sometimes the fun things you want don't pan out, this one did.

So now my next eight Tuesday nights will be spent in the abandoned, leaky basement of a local middle school, learning the craft of upholstery. (Negative? No, charming.) We had our first class last week and oh.... I loved it. The teacher is a tailor by trade and he LOOKS like you think a tailor would look -- older, thin, neatly groomed, a short beard. He is completely amazing at what he does and we are going to learn so much.

I wanted to share some pictures I took. Probably a little nerdy of me to be snapping pictures of our surroundings, but at least I tried to be subtle by waiting till the end. Who am I kidding, I am totally geeky. Anyway, there were these awesome old industrial sewing machines there, in good working order:

I almost sewed on this Pfaff, but we ran out of time. I did learn how to change the bobbin, though. At the bottom middle you can sort of see a lever -- interesting tidbit: to lift the presser foot and pull out the fabric, you're supposed to push against the lever with your right knee instead of lifting the one on the back of the machine like normal. Note the band-aid denoting the 1/2" seam allowance mark.

And I thought this poster was pretty neat, in all its retro, taped-on-the-wall, textbook-y glory. That'd be a cool one to frame, with all those chair and couch drawings.

We're all going to make ottomans. I put dibs on the gold velvet fabric that was just laying around, how lucky can you get.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Are you crafty?

Of course you are, or at least it's a pretty good bet if you read this blog. You could get published by us, you know. And we would love to do just that. Just take a picture of the things you make (original designs only) and send them to us -- details are below. Here is a list of what we're currently looking for:

Summer Break Mini Albums – Whether you went on a trip or just chilled out at home, make a little book about the good times.

Altered Clothing
– anything from decorated Onesies to screen printed or stamped t-shirts to items you’ve made by recycling clothes (reclaimed sweaters, sock animals, etc.)

Toys for Kids
– cuddly plushies, cute things crafted from wood, or anything else made by hand for kids of all ages to play with

Altered Canvases
– paintings, mixed media pieces – anything made with a canvas

On the Wall
– things you’d display on your walls: frames, artwork, shadowboxes, decorations etc.

For the Nursery
– sweet things made for baby’s room (and for baby)

Deadline: March 5
Email a picture to: creations at scrapbooktrendsmag dot com
Subject line: Aug-Sep, [name of the section(s)]
Include in the email: Your contact info (name, address, phone number, email address, blog/etsy), what materials you used to make the project, and anything interesting about it that might not be noticeable in the picture.
Other info: You can send more than one thing, but it's better to put them in separate emails. You get your project back, along with two copies of the issue and some product (currently it's mainly scrapbooking supplies, but we're working on expanding that to include general craft supplies, too). If we choose your project, you'll get an email from us a week or two after the deadline.

Friday, January 16, 2009

The Weather Outside

When the weather outside turns to frightful, there's not much else to do but think of things to keep you happy about being inside. A great cup of hot chocolate and a stack of fun projects to complete is one of the best things yet.

Here are some great ideas for a blustery winter day or two (or thirty):

We love these Wintery Wooden Trees from Fancy Pants Designs. Isn't their Arctic Chill line great?

Studio Calico has some great ideas for Valentines Day on their blog. Love those mailboxes. And isn't that layout totally cover-worthy? It's adorable.

Close To My Heart is declaring the month of January "National Papercrafting Month." You can get your juices flowing and celebrate by coming up with a great entry for their papercrafting contest that is going on right now through Feb 15th.

Jamie Johnson has a fun idea in the QuicKutz Idea Gallery using the QuicKutz Bag Purse Die for a little Valentine gift bag. You could mass produce this for your kid's friend valentines without taking too much time and embellish more for extra special friends.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Budget clutches

Everyone at Studio 5 was really nice, I loved doing this feature. For all their talk about New Year's resolutions during the segments leading into this one, though, they had to have a giant plate of delicious-looking cookies in the waiting room as I was leaving. I resisted... but only because my hands were full.

Here are some individual shots of the wallets.

This was made with Cosmo Cricket fabric -- I wish I had credited them on air, but it being my first time on TV I forgot a few things. Like that the idea was Heather Brown's (thanks, Heather!). Other supplies are by Maya Road (flower), 7 Gypsies (leaves), Stampin' Up! (letter stamps), VersaCraft (fabric ink).

You know how sometimes you buy a thing just because it's super cute but you don't really know what you'll use it for? I had some vague notions of using this farm animal Japanese fabric on a patchwork quilt one day, but this project ended up being just right for it. I'm happy I used it instead of holding on to it forever.

Not sure on the manufacturer, but I got it from -- same for the brown fabric. Letter stamps are Hero Arts.

I thought of this phrase the night I was prepping the wallets, but I am not the first person to think of it, as I found out when I googled it, wondering if I was being too geeky. I found it in this article, along with the term "frugalista."

This fabric is Heather Bailey -- the big letter stamps are Stampin' Up!, little ones are Hero Arts.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Thrift is the New Black

Go Tammy!

I am loving the little ditty she came up with, "thrift is the new black." I think it's powerful enough to become my new mantra.

Many thanks to Heather Brown for her "Spend it Like You Have it" wallet that Tammy recreated on the show. You can download a free pdf from the Dec/Jan issue of Simply Handmade showing Heather's wallet and the instructions here.

Wolf and Little Red Fabric

How great is this week's Spoonflower winner - Wolf and Little Red by Gumball Grenade? You can buy it at Spoonflower's Etsy shop until 1/11. I am lovingly picturing the adorable little girl's room that would result from mixing this fabric in with lots of fun reds. A great red toile or damask paired with this fabric would make some gorgeous bedding.

And it would win me over even more if it was on this bed. Ah.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Save Handmade Toys petition

Some of you may have seen emails about this going around lately. It's a petition to modify the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act passed in August 2008, meant to prevent unsafe toys from being imported into the US. Apparently it's worded such that toys handmade by individuals in the US/Canada/Europe will be illegal, unless they undergo independent 3rd party testing. So the petition is to add an exclusion for those small manufacturers of handmade children's toys. You can sign the petition here if you're interested. And you can read more about it at the Handmade Toy Alliance site, they explain it better than I have. :)