January 24, 2011

Made it: A Valentine's Day Card

Valentine's day is just around the corner so it is nice to get those handmade gifts going and what better then a handmade card to attach to the outside your package.  A handmade card can be like a little gift itself.  It is really easy to make a card for your loved ones.  You just need some paper and a little bit of ribbon!  Of course you can dress it up by adding more like I usually do.  I am going to show you a card that I made using some scrapbook paper, stamps, ribbon and embellishments.

Some pretty paper!

Ribbon & buttons!

I cut a piece of 8.5" by 11" pink card-stock paper in half so I have a piece that is 8.5" by 5.5".  Then I fold that in half to make a plain card.  Then I cut pieces of the scrapbook paper to fit on the outside and glued them down.

Valentine's paper on the front of the pink card-stock paper.

Then I placed a ribbon on top of the front of the card where the two scrapbook paper pieces meet (covering the line).  You could stop here for the outside of the card for something really simple.  I didn't.  I added two brads, put a string through the holes and strung a charm.  I tied the string securely in a bow.  Completing the outside of the card.

Charm attached to the card.

For the inside of the card I cut down a piece of 8.5" by 11" cream colored printer paper so it measures 8" by 5".  I folded that in half.  Now you could write on the inside of the card however you wish.  I instead I stamped and embossed it.  I took my Happy Valentine's Day stamp placed it in an embossing ink pad (which is clear) and stamped it on the inside paper.  I then covered it with embossing powder (when the ink was still wet).  I dumped the excess back into the container.  I took my heat gun on low heat and heated the embossing powder on the stamped paper to emboss Happy Valentines Day on the card.

Embossing a card.

Finally, I glued the embossed cream paper inside the decorated card.  And voila!  You have a beautiful Valentine's Day card.

A Valentine's Day card.

*Sorry for the not so pretty pictures, I took them last night when it was dark so I had to use my flash.

January 21, 2011

Host a Craft Party!

I want to get some crafty people together so I am going to be hosting an afternoon of crafting a Crafternoon!  There is just something special about getting together with like minded individuals.  There are also a few things to consider when you are going to host a craft party and I am going to share some with you.

First off what are your intentions for the event?  Are you planning on creating a Crafternoon of your own to meet new people or get closer with your current crafting friends?  Do you want to have a formal event where everyone learns a new craft at a class or are you going to be having a few drinks over a craft free for all?

I attended a casual craft night last year at a friends house.  It was nice to get caught up on a craft project I didn't have the time to just sit down an work on.  After attending that event I thought it would be fun to do something more formal, but relaxed as well.  So, I got a small group of friends together at a local pottery place for a ladies craft night they had available and we had dinner in the studio while painting some pottery and designing fused glass art.

The sushi platter I was glazing on craft night

Get creative!  You could craft for a cause (knit hats for the homeless).  Have everyone work on the same project (create coasters, sew handbags or try a stamp-a-thon).   You could even get a local craft person/artist to do a formal demonstration then your guest can give what the saw a try.  I am just going to start out with everyone just doing their own thing, maybe if I find the time and if others are up for it, I want to have everyone do a fun project together.

Next is location.  Where are you going to host your craft party?  I am just going to host my first craft party at home and see how that goes.  Hopefully there will be enough room for everyone to work.  Think of all places in your community that have place to craft, then find out if they are free.  The local library or museum may have a community room to use, it just depends on what you are going to be creating.  If the weather is nice, you could get together at a park.  What about a coffee house or even a classroom at a school.  You could go somewhere more formal like a craft store.

You'll have to decide if everyone will bring their own supplies, bring a certain supply to share if everyone is doing the same project or you can get the supplies and everyone can chip in to cover the cost of the project.

The finished sushi platter!

Of course there will have to be snacks and refreshments.  Your crafty friends can bring something to share or you could even create your own confections as part of your craft party.  I am going to have a few things and if someone wants to bring something to share that is great, especially if it involves chocolate!

When do you want to get together?  At night, during the day, how about the weekend.  Do you want to get together once a week, bi weekly?  How about once a month?  I decided on Sunday afternoons when the kids are napping.  I am going to have a,. crafty get together once a month.  I was thinking the first Sunday of the month unless there is a holiday then it will be the week after.  It is a good idea to have your craft party around the same time so people are more likely to remember.

Don't forget to let everyone know!  Send out invites, via email, snail mail or social network.  Do you want your event open to the public?  Post fliers, send out postcards, promote it through social media.  Right now I just want to host a small Crafternoon among friends.

Last but not least, probably the most important thing for a craft party is to get crafting!

Remember to:
  • Pick a project
  • Pick a place to host and give directions
  • Decide on the time and day
  • Have the all necessary craft supplies
  • Don't forget the snacks
  • Let everyone know about the fun
  • Craft on!
I hope this gets you crafty juices flowing and you decide to have a craft party!  If you do let me know about it and if you have any other craft party suggestions.

January 17, 2011

Made it: A Velcro and Tag Baby Blanket

So I didn't consider myself a sewer until I made the baby blanket from Merriment Designs.  The tutorial is really easy to follow so if you don't think you can sew it is worth a try.  All you really have to do is sew a straight line.  This blanket is a very clever design because it includes Velcro tabs where a toy can be attached.  It was a quick project to finish so I made one for my little guy and a friend's little guy.  I think I am going to have to make one for my future niece.  I have a little time before I have to start working on it since she isn't due until May.

Working on the blanket.

The finished blanket.

Another finished blanket.

January 15, 2011

Gallery Opening

Friday night I got to attend a gallery opening for the Milkweed Project and Other Flawless Fiber at the Eclipse Gallery in Algoma Wisconsin.  I saw some very beautiful works of art.

So, I had not been to a gallery since college, which is very sad.  Going to a gallery is a great opportunity to look at art up close and personal.  Going has got my creative juices flowing I think I am going to dive into more art photography (which I did a lot of in college) and maybe even some creative fiber works of art (which I have never tried).  Do I see a cohesive body of work in the making?  I sure hope so.  I say if you have the opportunity to visit a gallery go, it may just be fun and inspiring.
The Milkweed Project

Artwork of Alison Gates

Artwork of Mindy Sue Wittock

Artwork of Vicki Brower

January 13, 2011

What a Package For Me?

Don't you just love getting packages?  I do.  For Christmas my parents got me a 3 month fiber subscription to Woolgatherings and on Monday I got my first package!  This particular package was a little different to open, a little more exciting because I didn't know what the colorway of the fiber was going to be.  It was wrapped in tissue paper and tied with ribbon.  Simple but so wonderful.  I undid the ribbon torn into the paper and saw my soft and colorful fiber!  Just look at the beautiful picture below.  I had to spin it right away and I am almost finished (when I do I can share that with you too).  Have you received a package recently that you were really excited to get?  Let me know about it.