Friday, November 26, 2010

Thanksgiving goodies

No crazy Black Friday shopping trips for me today. I've only done that once and I was in middle school. I guess if there was something we really wanted to get and there was a super fantastic deal, I would bundle up and wait in line, but that has yet to happen. I'm excited to have another night off and maybe I will clean up my craft room since it looks like a tornado hit. Wool bits, embroidery floss, paper scraps.... it's a mess.

I wanted to share the candle mat I made for my mom and the salt dough bowl fillers I made for a centerpiece for the table. This is only my second time making salt dough creations, so please forgive the rustic look. I didn't seal them either, and I think a dipping in wax would make them look a bit nicer. I'm still playing around with the "antiquing" part of it, not sure how much I really like.

Here is the candle mat. Nothing fancy, just light tan pennies on an off-white backing. I couldn't decide on a color and I figured she could just swap out the candle for the season/holiday. This is my first 100% wool project and I loved working with the wool!

And here are the salt dough bowl fillers:

 I tried to make this one look like a penny:

Well that's it. I'd really appreciate your comments.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

I'm stitching a candle mat for my mom's birthday and baking some chocolate whoopie pies. Yep I know, not  a very traditional holiday dessert, but that's me. : )  I will dip the sides in some leaf sprinkles to make them more festive. I'm also putting the final touches on some salt dough bowl fillers (pumpkins, leaves, and sunflowers) to put somewhere tomorrow.

I hope everyone has a wonderful day with their families. Travel safe and stay warm!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Thoughts on a rainy Monday...

I can't believe Thanksgiving is just around the corner! We are having very strange weather here in Ohio. It is in the 60s! I'm trying not to complain, but it just doesn't feel like Thanksgiving when the sun is shining and it's warm outside. Knowing Ohio weather, we could have a white Thanksgiving yet! : )

My mom's birthday is this week as well. She was born on Thanksgiving and the story goes that someone snuck my grandmother a turkey dinner while she was in the hospital. She was not going to miss out on having her turkey! I'm working on a little candle wrap for her and possibly a mat to go with it.

I'm anxiously waiting for three new patterns that I purchased from Wooden Spool Designs. Have you been to the website? The cutest penny rugs I have ever seen! I can't wait. There is even one in the shape of a button that I will be purchasing soon. Just too cute.

What are you working on today? Anything crafty or just trying to get ready for the holiday?

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Words To Live By

While visiting Brenda Gervais' blog, With Thy Needle and Thread, I saw these words and thought I would pass them on. It's a new quote to me and I love it.

"Use the talents you possess - the woods would be silent if no birds sang there except those that sang best." Henry Van Dyke

Tuesday, November 16, 2010


I think about wool a lot. Probably too much. It's even stretched over to sheep. They are so cute. I even have a few sheep home decor items that I've picked up at various places. I don't like the cutesy sheep with the faces painted or stitched on, more prim looking without a face. I like my dolls the same way, like Amish style or the Willow Tree Angels. Anyway, back to wool.

Purists will say only 100% wool will do. I do like it, though of course it is more expensive. I've found wool blend felt to be a nice compromise. Definitely a huge improvement from the craft store felt. It's not an acrylic blend either; I believe it's rayon. Of course you don't get the wonderful mottling and textures with wool blend felt though that you get with 100% wool. How I do love a beautifully mottled piece of wool!

I'm playing around today. It's rainy and gray out, so what else is a girl to do. I took some of my wool blend felt and, well, felted it some more. It made it much thicker and gave it a slightly nubby texture. I'm going to stitch up a small candle mat and see what happens. I already like the texture. It's thicker and almost gives the appearance of 100% wool. Of course it shrinks quite a bit, but still a more economical alternative to 100% wool.

I do think that one day I will switch over to 100% wool, but I'm curious to see what my crafting friends think.

I know for rug hooking only 100% wool will do, but what is your preference? Does it matter to you what the material is made out of when purchasing an item?

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Just another Sunday....

I work strange hours. Between two hospitals and seven days a week, I am up at all hours of the day and night. It works for us for now, though I do wish I could give one hospital up. My point is that the crafting bug hits and it's not always convenient. Like last night. Oh, say around 9:30 p.m. at work. So I pull out a piece of paper and scribble my thoughts. I carry a book bag instead of a purse and it's a disaster. I throw my lunch bag in there on top of scraps of paper filled with ideas and sketches. It's not pretty. I have grand dreams of having a beautiful sketch book. For right now it's a pile in the bottom of my bag. No wonder I can't get anything done. I think that will be my goal for Monday - clean up that mess and see what comes of it.

This is a mini journal that I covered with 100% wool bits and a button, which the hubs then claimed as his own.

My Mondays are usually lazy days. Due to my weekend work schedule I don't get up until around 11a.m. I usually check out the DVR list and the ever-growing blog list, cup of coffee in hand of course, and see what I might have missed. My M-F schedule is more "normal" so I use Monday to be lazy and get myself back on track for the rest of the week. Sometimes it works. : ) 

Cardinals, snowflakes, a poinsettia garland for the mantle (thanks to Wee Folk Art), and tiny felt people (again, Wee Folk Art) for a little girl's birthday were all running through my mind last night.

Where do you keep your ideas? To you have a special journal or sketchbook?

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Saturday ramblings

It's going to be a quiet but productive day today...I hope. The morning is already gone and I haven't been very productive yet, but I'm stubborn so something will happen!

I was very happy to send out a package to a customer yesterday (I forgot about the holiday on Thursday, so embarrassed). I read a lot on the etsy forums how packaging is very important, and I do admit that I have received some gifts that I haven't wanted to open because the wrapping was done so nicely. I chose pink and white Cotton Candy Divine Twine and a flower and button tag from another etsy seller, Endless Inkabilities, to add to my packages after wrapping in white tissue paper. Here is a picture.

I am new to selling my stitcheries and I get nervous when sending out a package. Will they like it? Were my stitches okay? Did it arrive safely? Oh boy!

How important is packaging to you? How do you like to wrap your gift packages, either personal or business?

I guess I better do something productive now.   : )

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Salt Dough

My parents made name ornaments for us girls when we were little and they hung on the Christmas tree every year. I never thought much about it until a week or so ago when I ran across beautiful bowl fillers thanks to Kindra at At Home With K. She directed me to the creator of the beauties, Colleen at And Baby Makes Five! She has great tutorials on her blog and beautiful pictures to follow. Hop on over and take a look.

So the next day I mixed up my dough and had at it. I loaned some of my fall and winter cookie cutters to a friend so I had a limited supply, but I made a large mitten, a few snowflakes, a few mini pumpkins, and some leaves. I also got rid of a lot of my craft paint when I was cleaning and organizing this summer so I was limited on colors as well, but I had so much fun! As you may know, I had a sugar cookie business for a few years and I do miss it (but not the mess and the stress!), so it was thrilling to be able to dust off those cookie cutters and decorate, even if I couldn't eat the broken ones. : )  I will post pictures when I make more this weekend after I expand my palette by a few colors.

Amazingly I couldn't find anyone selling salt dough bowl fillers. Hmmm, I might have to add some to my etsy shop. Anyone interested? I just get a kick out of anything reminding me of decorated cookies!

Do you have memories of making salt dough ornaments as a child? I don't remember making them with my parents, but I do hope to continue the tradition of making J an ornament for the tree, even if he is already a teenager. Better late than never!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Oh Google.....

You confuse me so.

I couldn't figure out why my favorite blogs weren't showing up in my list. Turns out I have two Google accounts. Hmmm, not sure how I did that. It seems that I "followed" a ridiculous amount of blogs under the other account. Oh boy. So I just spent an amount of time I will keep to myself following all of the blogs with the correct account. Now I can't figure out why the picture in my Google Friend Connect is different than I have it set as. lol. Too much computer magic for me today. I think I better take a step away from the computer and give it a rest.

Oh, and by the way, I have a ton of new blogs in my list now (ha ha!) and I encourage you to visit them all. So many blogs, so little time!