Thursday, February 26, 2009

Cross stitched reindeer sweater cuff

Reproduction of the 1929 book - The Sew-It Book - Things to make with needle & thread and odds & ends.
17 projects including a child's apron, smock, sun bonnet, rag doll and Kimono-type jacket .

Techniques include sewing, embroidery, doll dress pattern making and tie-dying. 47-page hardback book with an embossed cover.

A keepsake treasure with darling graphics that will charm sewers and quilters, young and old!

So true. The patterns are great in this book, especially the cross stitch, of which I love to do (just check out my other cross stitch work by clicking on the link)

Reindeer are my favorite image right now, I am using it all over the place in my art, craft projects and decorating.

There is a very cool reindeer in the book so I whipped one out using a scrap of cross stitch fabric and a veeeerrrry old all metal hoop that was in a box of old supplies a friend had given me. It worked great!
And this is what I made with my cross stitched deer- a cuff!

The cuff is a recycled wool felted sweater. I attached the cross stitch with 4 heart shaped studs. The cuff closure is Velcro. A note here, you only have to use the hook side of the Velcro because the sweater is just like the loop side and sticks great. This reduces a bit of bulk. In the back ground you can see one of the designs from Subversive cross stitch.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Mardi Gras Crafty Blogger Links

About Family Crafts
Are you up for a crafty challenge? Design your own simple Mardi Gras mask.

Aileen's Musings
Aileen crafts a whimsical birthday banner from rock salt, watercolors and fun embellishments! Let yourself be inspired and create your very own banner!

Crafty Princess Diaries
Tammy and her DH show off their donation to a local Humane Society event. The piece is call "I Heart Animals Necklace" and combines her metal clay skills and his chain making skills.

Cross Stitch at
"Let the Good Times Roll" with Connie's free Mardi Gras Cross Stitch patterns.

Layers Upon Layers
Layers Upon Layers continues to explore lot of different snow-themed art works.

Naughty Secretary Club
It’s Stencil 101 at the Naughty Secretary Club. Learn how to make your own Headphone Hotties Skirt and enter to win free fabric paint!

Craftside-A behind-the-scenes peek at a crafty world
A sneak peek into Angela Cartwright and Sarah Fishburns' new book: In This Garden, as well as Robert Vetica's: Good to Great Hair, a watercolor Maneki Neko (Lucky Cat) greeting card and two fun uses for vintage garter clips.

Swelldesigner a.k.a. Alexa Westerfield
Swelldesigner shares a fast and fun sticker project and breaks out her old sticker collection in the process!

The Impatient Crafter
Madge shares another fab free jewelry project from her new co-authored book Bead and Wire Jewelry Exposed. Leave a comment for a chance to win a free book while you're there!

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Felt/Nonfelt Bag design Inspired by Boutique Knits by Laura Irwin

This is such a great book with every page including a great detail, I want to make it all!

With Boutique Knits, you can make your very own knockout accessories. If you love showing your personal style with the “it” handbag, funky scarf, or the hat that makes heads turn, then this book is for you.

Author Laura Irwin designs knitted accessories for the trendsetting indie designer fashion boutique Seaplane in Portland, Oregon, and is particularly known for her felted hats and stylish bags. In Boutique Knits, Laura presents designs for knitted accessories that stand out from the crowd.

Boutique Knits includes:

Patterns that cover a variety of knitting techniques in varying degrees, including felting, intarsia, Fair Isle, lacework, and cables
Advice on incorporating non-knitting tools and techniques to transform your knitting to achieve that one-of-a-kind boutique feel: pliers, hammers, a sewing machine, use of millinery techniques, and handsewing techniques.
Unique adornment inspiration, such as buckles and bolts borrowed from leatherwork close an intricately cabled belt, a chain handle finishes a felted bag with circle pockets, leather lacing dresses up a knitted bag, and grommets finish a half-felted handbag.
Inspiration from vintage lace, beads, ribbon, and fabric-covered buttons!
Knitting and felting techniques to create effects like ruffles, shibori-style pleats, and clever shaping.
And more!
This collection of modern, stylish patterns will inspire beginning and intermediate knitters with its uncommon techniques and materials. Transform your knitting with Boutique Knits!

This just floored me when I saw it:

It combines felted and non felted knit sections!!!

Well, I don't have time right now to knit this baby up, but I do have time to perform some Sweater Surgery! And now to share it with you.

Here is my "before" wool sweater. Not felted yet.
The first step was to cut off a part of the sweater that was not going to be felted. This was a first for me to not felt a whole sweater as I have only done projects that were either all felted or all non felted.

After one washing of the top part you can see how much it shrank. But I wanted it a bit more sturdy so back for another wash and dry.

And here are the two parts, the felted one even smaller and thicker.Now I took the non felted parts at the side seams.
I then cut the felted section to make the body of the bag.

I then sewed the non felted sections to the felted body section of the bag.
I then sewed up the bag along the bottom edge. To gather the ends I used a matching ribbon on a large needle and went in and out along the ribbed ends.
And here you have it:

I should also mention, since I was designing as I went I wasn't sure what kind of strap I was going to use before hand. What I ended up liking was a fat matching ribbon. I simply opened up the seam and sewed it back up with the end of the ribbon between the two sweater pieces.

So whether you grab a copy of the beautiful Boutique Knits and knit yourself a great felted/non felted bag or do it Sweater Surgery style try working with the combo-I highly recommend it.

Monday, February 16, 2009

For the love of Crafty Blogger Links

Layers Upon Layers
Cyndi explores making small quilts from rusted fabric.

Naughty Secretary Club
This week Jen is wishing Abraham Lincoln a sparkly birthday with 10 tips on creating wearable glitter portraits from Hot Pink Pistol.

Craftside-A behind-the-scenes peek at a crafty world
Craftside is sharing the love with free knitted and crocheted flower patterns from Margaret Hubert's new book, Rejuvenated Jewels from the new book by the same name by Amy Hanna, a Valentine heart envelope how-to and an ATC from a box of Goldfish.

The Impatient Crafter
Madge's new book Beyond the Bead has hit the shelves! Check out this sneak peek free project and leave a comment to win a free copy and a special prize!

About Family Crafts
Find out how you can get your creative ideas, tips, reviews, and photos published!

Aileen's Musings
Aileen gives a magnetic twist to her paper towel background technique!

Alexa Westerfield a.k.a. Swelldesigner
Make sand heart Valentines or mix it up with a variation on the idea. Swelldesigner shows you how!

Cathie Filian
Baby slings are all the rage and can cost a fortune in retail stores. Cathie Filian has a simple pattern that only requires 2.5 yards of fabric.

Crafty Princess Diaries
The Crafty Princess has caught up on a little Etsy work, which means more star charms and a few finished piece.

Cross Stitch at
Do you ever find yourself in a stitching slump? Vote in the poll and read (and discuss in) the comments on Connie's blog

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Four letter words rock!!!, ohh Rock is a 4 letter word!!!

I had this old pair of plain black gloves that were crying for a creative touch, oohhhh that was a bad pun.
Click away now if you just can't stand it. But for those of you who can stand my bad puns, hang on....oh there was another one!

I decided to write words across the front of the fingers gangster style, since one of my friend's nick names for me is the O.G. (Old Gangstah) since I am just soooo bad a**.

In keeping with the gangstah look I scored some Old English font iron on letters from Wrights.
And then I needed to figure out what my four letter words were going to be.

Get this, I typed into Google "good four letter words" and the first two sights were packed full!
All I can say is boy it really is all out there to find!

The traditional pair of words is love and hate, I have also seen knit and purl but I wanted to do something original.

I came up with a lot of really fun word combos but what I landed on is:
Knot Nice
This is a photo of how I figured out the letter placement by marking it with a few pins. Sorry about the quality, do you know how hard it is to photograph the front of your own hand while making a fist???

So here you have it:
I followed the iron on directions and it went great! My last note is to triple check how the letters lay out in the right order on the correct hand so it can be read the right way!

Monday, February 9, 2009

I "Heart" Crafty Blogger links!

Our new Crafty Blogger! Who-hoo!

Naughty Secretary Club
Just say no to boring baby shower games, gather up your crafty friends and have a onesie making party instead.

Now onto the rest of our FAB group!

The Crochet Dude
Read Drew's review of the new book by Susan Wasinger called "Eco Craft" - and find out why he's saving all his milk jugs from now on!

Craftside-A behind-the-scenes peek at a crafty world
This week at Craftside my heart is melting with a wicked cool free motion and melted Kunin felt valentine, a way to spiff up a plain envelope with a design from Paper Puppet Palooza and some tips for eating right to fight off Seasonal Affective Disorder.

The Impatient Crafter
Madge is back from CHA and sharing the 411 before she heads off to Tucson!

About Family Crafts
Whether you are an avid crafter or just want to be a crafter, a well stocked craft cupboard is a must.

Aileen's Musings
This week Aileen offers another quickly background technique using a newsletter flier that she received in the mail.

Alexa Westerfield a.k.a. Swelldesigner
Swelldesigner shows you how to make your own really "trashy" Valentine's!

Cathie Filian
Cathie Filian has a yummy recipe for browine muffin bites. One batch will have your friends and family beggin for more.

Crafty Princess Diaries
The Crafty Princess is toasty warm with her new crocheted scarf and fingerless gloves, which are super easy to whip up.

Cross Stitch at
Learn new stitches as you complete one of two Patterns for Pherenice (traditionally know as the first woman to see an Olympics).

Layers Upon Layers
Cyndi is looking at snow-themed art this month. Got any you want to share?

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Crafty Bloggers and more crafty peeps from CHA 2009

WOW! CHA was fun!

CHA was great this year. I got to see lots of old friends and meet new people that I had either read their books or articles about them and their creative pursuits, such as Faythe Levine of Handmade Nation.

Then there were the Crafty Bloggers like Drew Emborsky, the author of The Crochet Dude's Designs for Guys that I got to catch up with (and get him to "strike a pose")
Then there was the lovely Vickie Howell who gave me a copy of her new Knit Aid book.

Then back on the new people I got to meet list, Jenny Hart of Sublime Stitching! We had a great conversation about indi crafting which was a hot topic at CHA.

Then some silliness occurred. This is a tutu I sewed for the Wrights booth out of black plastic garbage bags. Here Cathi Milligan of is striking a pose with me and the tutu.
And just in case you doubt me, here I am posing in it before it was shipped out! I had to test drive it!

Then our friend Maria got in on the act and we did a pose with our "gang sign".

Another Crafty Blogger, Margot Potter has a new book out, Beyond the Bead, oh so pretty!

And Cathi Milligan was also premiering her new book Mod Knots!
This was such a treat, I got to meet Mary Engelbreit! I have been a fan of her since before I was a professional craft designer.
Whew, what a great time. To see more pop on over here for pictures from my make and take and signing and lots more authors events.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Post Super Bowl Crafty Links

OK, this is just plain funny. A Buddha with a Red Skins football helmet on. These are the lengths crafty sports fans go to. It just cracks me up every time I look at it!

About Family Crafts
You can make your own cards, party invitations, favors bags, place cards, napkin rings, gift tags, and much more using these free templates.

Layers Upon Layers
Wrapping up a month of focus on art education, Cyndi posts links to all the tutorials available on her own blog!

Cross Stitch at
Check out a new free pattern from Connie based on a vintage Valentine postcard.

Aileen's Musings
Aileen's posted an easy peasy funky bottle cap pin/pendant tutorial you won't want to miss!

Crafty Princess Diaries
What do you do with all that left over yarn from your yarn crafting? How about making some young animals safe and secure?

Cathie Filian
It is time to paper and protect! Check out Cathie Filian's ideas for homemade lip balm, sugar and salt scrubs and easy melt and pour soaps.

Craftside-A behind-the-scenes peek at a crafty world
This week at Craftside there is a cool perspective drawing how-to and tons of photos from CHA of the Quayside authors, their designs oh, and Paris Hilton!

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