Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Jackalope Pillow-Upcycled, Recycled wool felted sweater surgery style

To end the year I have probably one of my favorite Sweater Surgery projects yet to share with you!
It uses the combination of two of my favorite images into another of my favorite images.
The Jackalope!
I love it so much I used it twice!

Here is the template I used.
I cut a jackalope out of each color of the wool felted sweater taking care to flip the template over for the opposite pointing jackalope. Also paying attention to which color the background was the each was going to be needle felted on.
This is what it looked like on the back after I needle felted the 2 pieces together. I sewed up the sides and I have a cute new slip cover for my old little pillow.

Happy New Year Ya'll!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Crafty Blogger links-the last of '08

Here they are, that last links of '08!

About Family Crafts
Here are 50, simple winter related activities for you to try - everything from simple arts and crafts projects to tasty snacks.

Aileen's Musings
Aileens shares her tasty pretzel perfect recipe and offers you a treat for New Years-free shipping!

Crafty Princess Diaries
The Crafty Princess is excited about the fact that crochet is becoming more and more popular these days, catching up to knitting finally!

Cross Stitch at
Stitch Connie's Cross Stitch Tile Patterns individually, repeat motifs to create a border or bookmark, or collect several charts and create your own sampler.

Layers Upon Layers
Cyndi shares the steps to creating a simple quilt using a vacation photo!

The Impatient Crafter
Join Madge for her final free holiday craft project, an idea you can store away for next year!

Craftside- A behind-the-scenes peek at a crafty world
This week at Craftside there is a fun list about Quilt Enthusiasts, a sneak peek into the soon to be released Altered Art Circus by Lisa Kettell and multiple tutorials on how to attach lace.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Giant Christmas Tree With an Airstream

OK peeps-did you catch my post over at Craftside of the giant spider web I did for Halloween?
Well I just couldn't take it down, I love it so much! But, well, it's Christmas so what's a girl to do?
Why turn it into a giant Christmas tree!

These are more shots of it at night-which is just spectacular! We have been bundling up and sipping hot chocolate and hangin' out under it a lot!
It was so easy! I simply put a pole in the middle to hoist it up into a point in the center. Then all that was left ot do was decorate with lights, sparkly garland and ornaments.
That bright light is the full moon!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Shopping Cart Christmas Tree and Crafty Blogger Links

A while back I posted a photo of a Christmas tree made from shopping carts that I photographed during the day. Well I had an opportunity to photograph it at night and I thought it was even more spectacular!

But it gets even better:
This is a full tree in their court yard!

The Impatient Crafter
Madge shares another simply stunning ornament idea you can whip up in a flash!

The Crochet Dude
Drew continues his tradition of themed gift wrapping by having a Blue Christmas this year.

Craftside- A behind-the-scenes peek at a crafty world
The 15 days of Holiday Goodness Giveaways continues at Craftside. Just answer questions and you are entered to win free books! And while you're there check out a tiny embroidered necklace, a decoupage reindeer necklace, a fun centerpiece, a floral barrette tutorial, a winter memory photo ornament project and a couple of invitation ideas!

Layers Upon Layers
There are lots of projects that can be done in time for the holidays, even at this late date!

Cross Stitch at
Use the free back stitch motifs for quick ornaments or stitch several together for a larger project.

Crafty Princess Diaries
Holiday Guerrilla Marketing Tip for Crafty Princesses - Don't forget that so important and handy business card this holiday season.

Aileen's Musings
Aileen shows you a few more quicky Christmas cards she made from old cards and things. Stop by and get some ideas for yourself!

About Family Crafts
Using these free printables, you can make your own cards, party invitations, favors bags, place cards, napkin rings, gift tags, and much more to help celebrate Christmas!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Interview with Rosemary Hill author of Elements of Style

I am thrilled to participate in the Blog tour of Rosemary Hill and her new book:
With a mix of convenient materials and an imaginative approach, this creative compendium will appeal to jewelry makers of all levels. Highlighting 25 modern wire, bead, and fiber jewelry designs, the projects include numerous knitting, crocheting, and felting techniques. Materials and tools are also outlined, encouraging the use of basic methods. From knitting copper wire and mixing it with contrasting beads to crocheting linen into fiber hoop earrings or an elegant scarf necklace, this collection will never fail to inspire. Felting techniques are also explored in detail for creating wire-caged beads, wide-cuff bracelets, and rope necklaces. Special sidebars and tip boxes throughout ensure success with every project.

We were invited to interview Rosemary and being me, most of my questions related to more of a "behind the scenes" nature. Such as my first question(which is always top on my list to know about other designers):

1. What does your workspace/design space look like?

Cluttered! But I love my work space. It has great light and comfy
chairs so people can hang out with me.

2. Do you save your mistakes/or designs you don't love right away-
or rip them out?

I think I am genetically unable to throw anything away! (see clutter
above). So yes, I try to recycle everything I can. I keep all of my
ideas and notes and drawings to look at later in case it jogs
something in my brain! I hate wasting things. In fact, I have a
project in my book: the "Mess-Up Necklace" that is made of recycled
wire swatches. Since I couldn't rip them out and re-knit or re-
crochet the wire, I balled them up and made a necklace out of them!
(Interviewer's note: I am so going to make this!!!!)

3. Do you design for only women or do you make decorations, or for

So far I've really only designed for women; it's what I feel most
comfortable with. According to my husband, I don't get the male
aesthetic! I like muted colors and a small clean scale, and it just
doesn't quite seem to translate. I am working on some decoration
patterns, though.

4. What's on your "next to try" list?

Weaving! I really really want to weave. A friend of mine wants to
loan me a loom, but I have no room for it!

5. Do you ever work with recycled materials?

Yes! I particularly love sea glass. I also often buy beaded jewelry
at sales and at thrift stores and take it apart to use the
components. I'm always on the look-out for good materials.

6. What music do you listen to when designing?

It really depends on my mood. I like almost everything except rap,
and I am hopelessly stuck in the 80s. I also love classical guitar. I
am always listening to something; music makes me happy!

7. How long does a design take you to create?

It's really hard to say. When I set out to design something, it's
always sort of there in the back of my mind while I'm doing other
things. So it might take weeks or hours, depending on how fast it
percolates through! If I am on deadline, I can whip out designs super
fast by going on a long bike ride (I know, weird, eh?). The knitting/
crocheting and writing them up is that part that takes all the time!

8. How do you organize your supplies?

Organize? I'm one of those people who keeps track of the stratum in
which each piece is buried, and who, upon cleaning and filing, can
never find a thing again!

9. What books/magazines do you read, specifically about style?

I read a huge variety of books, magazines and online sources dealing
with all sorts of design. My favorites are Wallpaper, The NY Times
Style Guide, Go Fug Yourself and Communication Arts. I like looking
at everything from the banal to the inspired!

10. How would you describe your personal style?

I love clean and classic and flowing lines. I'm not at all a frilly
person. I also tend not to follow fashion trends, although I am
influenced by them. I favor rich and muted colors like plum, greens
(particularly acid green), blacks and greys. My dream outfit is one
that is comfortable (I hate tight clothes!), is classic with a twist,
and could be worn in a casual or more dressy environment. And, I
admit, I love my Doc Martens!

11. How do you determine whether you are going to knit or crochet a

I go by how I think the material will behave and by the component

12. and the all important question (from Ravelry) what is your
favorite swear word?

I've given up swearing in the interest of my children's social
acceptability. :g:

13. Do you have a collection of anything? Different from knitting,
jewelry stuff.

Yes! I have a collection of vintage rhinestone jewelry. I love love
love the stuff! I actually used to wear it quite a bit in college,
and now I mostly take it out and gaze fondly upon it. ;) I went to
school in Rochester, NY and picked up some really great pieces there.

To read what other bloggers asked Rosemary about herself and her fabulous new book, check out these other blogs:

Dec. 15: Scout J,
Dec. 16: Heather Powers, Art Bead Scene,
Dec. 17: Stephannie Roy, And She Knits Too!,
Dec. 19: Cristi Brockway, Turtlegirl’s Bloggy Thing,

And on a final note, I am actually the proud owner of one of Rosemary's pieces! This was an exclusive design she did for Scout J (Dec 15th's Interviewer) I love my Martini sweater pin!
So if you are looking for a fun pin for your sweater or want to read and see more of Rosemary's talents be sure to pop on over to her neck of the cyber world here.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Reindeer Epoxy Sticker Necklace

Isn't this a cute and simple necklace?
This would be a great party craft, no mess and able to be instantly worn!
Want an easy project to whip up in a flash? I got one for ya! All you need is 2 sheets of epoxy stickers, a jump ring and a ball chain (or any other chain).All you need to so is stick 2 of the same size sticker together(making sure they are in the same vertical orientation if the image has a direction like the reindeer)

Poke a hole in the top edge of the sticker and link a jump ring through the hole.

Then simply link your chain through the jump ring and there you have it!
I did say easy and fast right?
And since reindeer come in herds, Pop on over to Craftside for another reindeer necklace, this time decoupaged!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

And the winner of "The best use of shopping carts to make a Christmas Tree goes to..."

This store! I am sorry I didn't get a photo of it at night but let me just say it was very cool! The giant silver ball ornaments hanging in each cart looked even better than they do here in this daylight shot! I am so amazed at this little bit of DIY-ness. This is a shining example of using what you have to make what you need!

Alexa Westerfield a.k.a. Swelldesigner
Alexa shares how to create a custom mat frame from journal pages...a perfectly sentimental gift everyone will love!

Cathie Filian
Got wine lovers on your holiday gift list? Cathie Filian has some easy DIY ideas for quick gifts worthy of Napa Valley.

Crafty Princess Diaries
Read the Fine Print When Crafting for Charity - Make what they want and give what they need.

Cross Stitch at
Try your hand at a traditional embroidery style with this free Candlewicking ornament.

Layers Upon Layers
It's not too late to make pretty fabric hearts for your tree...or for everyone on your gift list!

Craftside- A behind-the-scenes peek at a crafty world
The 15 days of Holiday Goodness Giveaways continues at Craftside. Just answer questions and you are entered to win free books! And while you're there check out a lace trim Christmas tree and New Year's Eve party hat, 4 of the cards from the new book-1000 Handmade Greetings, a holiday memory photo ring tutorial and a free crochet Santa pencil topper pattern.

The Impatient Crafter™
Commemorate this historical election year with an easy to make festive Obamornament!

About Family Crafts
With just a little bit of time and a few simple supplies, you can give everyone on your shopping list a home-made, personalized calendar.

Aileen's Musings
Aileen goes green for Christmas, and shows you what you can do with all those extra Christmas cards and gift tags we all have hanging around!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Altered game pieces from the book Mixed Mania

Those of you that know me, know about my love of using food adjectives in relation to crafts, so when I saw the tag line, "Recipes for Delicious Mixed-Media Creations" I knew I was going to love:

Mixed Mania: Recipes for Delicious Mixed Media Creations

Mixed-media artists Debbi Crane and Cheryl Prater share their enthusiasm, humor, materials, techniques, and projects to make mixed-media art accessible and appealing to the masses.

Featuring a wide range of mixed media projects, this outrageously fun craft primer takes a decidedly unstuffy approach to an immense range of art methods. Projects—including art quilts, painting, collage, bookbinding, assemblage, doll making, decoupage, and image transfers—are divided into three main sections: Artistic Appetizers, Creative Main Courses, and Sweet Treats and Special Occasions, with each addressing a different level of time invested and difficulty. Whimsically laid out like recipes, each project includes detailed ingredients (materials), instructions (what to mix and add), and tasting tips (how it should look).

I really like my "art" to have a function and this idea in the bottom left corner of this page is just great! It is customizing checkers with photos.

Well I don't play checkers but I do play poker and poker uses little round chips! Perfect.

(click on the image to enlarge)
Circle punches and old magazines made quick and fun work of customizing and altering these plain poker chips. It was fun to do both sides with images that either went together or were in contrast.
The side benefit to playing with these chips is that my guests started to want to keep them! Made betting even more of a challenge.
And if you thought I was kidding, this is what the table looked like while the decorating of the poker chips was underway.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Santa, well no, actually crafty bloggers got the goodies for ya!

The Impatient Crafter™
Madge shows you how to turn a tiny tin into a clever little diorama ornament! Another The Impatient Crafter™ Free Holiday Craft Project that's Kid Friendly and Mom Approved.

Swell Designer a.k.a. Alexa Westerfield
Alexa helps you get inspired this season with a compilation of crafty Christmas Ornament designs

Layers Upon Layers
Profiled artist David Smith shows off his amazing mixed media creations.

Cross Stitch at
Hot off the virtual presses - Get your copy of Connie's free 2009 Cross Stitch Calendar.

Craftside- A behind-the-scenes peek at a crafty world
The 15 days of Holiday Goodness Giveaways has just begun at Craftside. Just answer questions and you are entered to win free books. We also have a great turkey leftover recipe from Cooking with Beer, some great reviews in Altered Couture Magazine, a quick and easy Christmas Tree shaped ornament gift box pattern, a beaded star tutorial from Patti Medaris Culia soon to be released book and a machine gun needle felted scarf from a wool felted sweater.

Crafty Princess Diaries
A typical country mouse, aka the Crafty Princess, is in love as she views some of the pictures from the grand opening of a yarn studio in New York.

Aileen's Musings
Aileen shows you how to create an adorable wee cupcake fairy. It's another Christmas gift idea that's EZ and fun to create!

About Family Crafts
Sherri helps you find a reason to celebrate every day during the month of December!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Sweater Surgery Christmas Tree Skirt-Cut that Sweater up Baby!

Yes, you too can make this cute tree skirt from:
All you need to do is grab yourself a sweater with a pattern that goes all the way around the front and back. In this case this sweater isn't felted. Either way you are OK!

Cut out the top circle decorative element. Now, when I made this one I serged the edge and then folded it under and blanket stitched around with some red reclaimed yarn from the remaining sweater but you could either zig zag stitch and then blanket stitch or just fold under and stitch.
If you are using a felted sweater you could just leave it plane or embellish any way you want!

A fast and festive handmade holiday decoration!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Sweater Surgery at Felt Club on Threadbanger!

This was a video shot at Felt Club I am on just a little way into the video!
Click on Sweater Surgery in the topics on the right to get a whole bunch of recycled/upcycled sweater projects and over to Craftside for tons more Sweater Surgery projects and patterns!
Or grab yourself a copy of the book if you need even more!Link
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