A Great Day Planned

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blog 011So, it’s six o’clock on a Saturday morning. I’m waiting for my coffee to get done and I’m planning a GREAT day!! I am GOING to complete my craft room. It’s got to happen, because I just can’t stand this:

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anymore!! Plus I have blankets for three precious babes to get done, and I can’t possibly work when I have no room to do so.

Okay, who am I kidding? I know I have family reading this blog and they might call me out if I try to make people think I’m some great housekeeper or something. The last picture is how my craft room always looks, which is why I decided to change it. I have GREAT organizational skills. I do. They just usually lie latent somewhere under a pile of fabric.

I didn’t take a before picture of my craft room, because, well…I would be horrified to have all that public. ūüôā But, what I CAN tell you is that the whole wall of shelving I put up a couple of years ago held a LOT of stuff. Seriously. See picture number 2 and picture number 3. All of that is from one wall of shelves.

I’ve been contemplating how I could make this little room work better for me. Then I realized that my husband has been hoarding our old kitchen/bathroom cupboards out in the garage. So, I gave it my best shot, and explained my plan. And wouldn’t you know, the man braved the cold and dug out the cupboards from the garage! Here’s the beginning:

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We took the hodge podge assortment of cupboards I had available to me and hung them on the wall. Some were hung the normal way, and then some we hung horizontally. No matter what combination we came up with, we always had an uneven top. So I have an idea for that, too. (You’ll have to wait and see.)

Please notice the pretty laminate flooring my dear husband finished up for me as well as the nice trim!! ¬†He did that the day the kids and I went to the movies. It’s better that way, trust me.

When I was trying to figure out how to make better use of my craft room, I realized that one of the issues I have is that I have craft ADHD. While some people quilt, or sew or crochet or craft, I do everything  and seldom finish anything. The table that I used in my sewing room might one day have sewing stuff the next day have glue or on some days both!

So, I got another idea. I know my husband wishes I would get ideas that didn’t involve him, but this idea is really a good one, I think.

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While digging through the garage, we found a corner cupboard that was in good shape, so we brought that into the house and installed it in the opposite side of the room. Under that corner cupboard, I have asked my husband to put in a triangle piece of plywood to serve as my table. He doesn’t think it will look good, but I have another idea. ūüėČ But that will probably be next weekend. Anyway, that will serve as my sewing table.

I haven’t decided how I will do the craft table, but it will be on the other side of the room. Hopefully, by organizing this way, I will be able to keep major mess to a minimum. ¬†Quit laughing.

Today’s agenda:

  1. Sand cupboards
  2. Spray paint inside of cupboards to seal them up.
  3. Paint outside of cupboards
  4. Paint trim.
  5. Pass out from physical labor.

My hope for you is that you are able to shed the stress from the week, too!! What’s on YOUR agenda today?

You might want to check out these link parties! GREAT ideas on them!

Little House in the Suburbs

Frugal by choice

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Gift Bag — Easy Peasy!!

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wpid-2013-01-23_12-54-42_989.jpgI needed a pretty gift bag this morning for a little gift I wanted to give my friend this morning, but I didn’t have one in my stash. What I DID have were a couple of pieces¬†of 81/2 x 11 inch felt and a really cool button!! Well…I have a LOT of cool buttons, thanks to my daughter and to the many garage sales I go to.

I folded the felt in half, matching the short sides and then sewed 1/2 inch seams on each side. I trimmed about 1/2 inch off the top of the red felt bag. I suppose you could probably do that before you sew the edges, but why make anything easy? ūüôā

Then I made a gusset on each side, like you do when making bags. I made mine pretty squatty.

I put the brown felt bag inside the red felt bag and turned down the top edge. I added the cute button, and – WHALLAH a bag is born. Just perfect for my little gift. All done in about 10 minutes. SCORE!!

My friend will love it, I’m sure of it.

Do you have a little craft that you’d like to share? Send a link in the comment!! We would love to see what you’re up to!

I linked up to the following link parties! Check them out!!

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Reduce, Re-Use Recycle (yarn scraps, old jewelry and buttons

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I love Pinterest! Who doesn’t? Well, probably people who don’t like Pinterest are people who actually have clean houses and organized lives. The rest of us love Pinterest. Last weekend, I stumbled on a cute little project to make a¬†Cozy Cup Warmer. You can download complete instructions there. I thought she did a good job explaining how to do her project. I used her pattern, but added just a little bit longer strap to go above the coffee cup handle. Here’s my first attempt:

I liked this project because it used up the last scrap of yarn I had lying in my bucket and I like how the strap goes across the cozy a bit. It looks kind of cool on the cup. It really does keep the coffee in my mug warmer longer, which is always nice, and it’s a fun way to use up scraps of yarn.

What I love about crafting is that you just don’t have to be stuck with the exact same thing as the pattern says. It really doesn’t hurt to ask, “What if I did…” Sometimes things don’t work out, but when they do, it’s TONS of fun!

For example, I LOVE going to garage sales and finding treasures like old jewelry and buttons. Last summer, I found a bunch of ‘old lady’ jewelry including those beaded earrings on clips? You know what I’m talking about, right? Using them on projects like this one is just plain fun. I got¬†¬†kind of excited about the possibilities! I had some yarn (which I really do not like using because it takes more skill than what I have) and came up with this variation.

While I don’t think I’ll ever use that yarn again, I do like how it turned out.

I really want to encourage you to use patterns that you find on the Internet, but make them your own – especially when you are crafting with repurposed items! It’s not like there is a lot invested, and when you can come up with something new, it is a fantastic feeling. I also think it does something great to the brain as well…

Happy Crafting!

I linked up:

Reduce, Re-Use, Recycle! (Rag Quilt)

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I have been enjoying looking through Pinterest and finding out what other people are doing. I saw a rag rug posted there that got the creative wheels turning. Here’s the thing. I really¬†don’t like cutting little squares in order to sew everything back together again. But¬†then I saw a post from¬†Do it Yourself Divas¬†and knew I had to try that one. Well, I knew I had to try something like that one.

Rag Quilt

Of course, I changed it up a bit. Here’s what I did:

  • I did not use batting.
  • I cut the strips all different sizes, but made sure to cut double layers so that I would have two of each size.
  • I pinned the two sizes together right after cutting, so I would have to waste time searching for the matching strip. (I mean, seriously. How much time to I waste with every project just looking for what I laid down?)
  • I made blocks of strips so that the strips weren’t all going the same way. (I liked the change up)
  • I made sure to clean out my washing machine after washing this quilt. There are so many loose threads that could mes up the machine if I didn’t.

Most of the fabric in this quilt was leftover from different projects, so it was good to use up the scraps. I did purchase a couple of the fabrics, so I would be able to add some color. I love how it turned out, and I think it made a nice gift.

Sweet!!

I really want to encourage you to just dive in and try it if this kind of craft appeals to you! Don’t worry about perfection. Have fun. Enjoy. De-stress.

It’s a wonderful thing!

Reduce, Re-Use and Recycle (or crafting)

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I’ve been seeing a lot of Sock Monkeys on Pinterest so it seems like they’re all the rage. My co-worker paid attention when I asked people for closet cast offs. She gifted me with a bag full of items worthy of my craft stash! In the bag was a pair of brightly colored “toe” socks, which just begged to be made into a sock animal. I’m not quite sure what it is, yet!

Basically, I just altered the sock monkey pattern a tad. Craft Passion¬†has a great tutorial!! So many times I think we get caught up in following a pattern or someone else’s idea to a T, and we forget that half the fun of creating is, well….creating! That’s such a stress reliever for me. Use patterns as a springboard to your own creations! Anyway, here is my Sock Thingie. I have laughed and had a great time creating this guy!!

I have a confession to make. I went through my daughter’s pile of stuff to go to Goodwill and pulled out a couple of sweaters. They’ll make some GREAT stuff!

Reduce, Re-use, Recycle (Well, Sort of…)

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I was at a charity auction a week or so ago, and I saw a purse made out of a rag rug. I LOVED it!! (I had already bid on enough, so I had to leave it alone, though.) I bought a rag rug and decided to put my own spin on one. I am very glad I did. I used an old pair of jeans and an old belt that  I never use.

So, even though the rug was purchased, it’s technically made out of rags and the jeans and belt are used…so, it’s kind of like saving the¬†environment.

I like the messenger bags that are so popular right now, but I don’t like the usual width of them. So I made this one more vertical. The books don’t go in sideways like in a messenger bag – you just plop them right in. I’m going to use this for carrying my stuff for work (files, notebook computer, datebook, etc.) unless I decide to sell it on Etsy. ¬†I can’t decide.

What do you think?

I linked to the following parties:

Reduce, Re-use, Recycle: Laundry Soap

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I know I’ve already written a post about homemade laundry soap. I’ve been using basically the same recipe for several years, but I’ve got to tell you, I found a BETTER recipe. No kidding! And for the life of me I can’t find the original post, which concerns me a bit, because I like to give credit to where credit is due. (The following recipe, though, is tweaked…I added vinegar and essential oil to the recipe.)

The other recipes I used always involved grating soap. Now, I haven’t minded that too much, but this recipe doesn’t involve grating of any kind. AND it’s cheap.

So, here is the recipe:

1 cup Borax

4 cups boiling water

Stir until Borax is dissolved.

Add 2 TBLS Dawn dish soap (the original blue kind)

1/4 to 1/2 cup of vinegar

Pour this all in a gallon jug (I used an empty vinegar jug) and then fill with cold water. I added a couple of teaspoons of lavender essential oil and then shook it all up.

I use about 1/4 cup to 1/2 cup of solution to each load of clothes. ¬†I’ve noticed that it really brightens the whites. I’ve also put this in a spray bottle to use as a pre-treat. (And I love the fragrance!)

Super cheap. Super easy. I’m sold!