February 3, 2012 § Leave a comment
A quickie, because
it is late and I am tired ( and it’s actually Saturday and I still need to take pics so it’s going to be even later on Saturday by the time this gets posted and as it turns out that was last week and I never did take the damn picture so here it finally is yeah, I typed that before I took the picture and then never did…seriously it’s been like a month now but I really did finally take the picture). A couple of weeks before Christmas, I came across this great post on Pinterest about making snowflakes (which is awfully fun anyhow) out of junk mail. I get about a bajillion catalogs every week, especially at this time of year, so I decided to use those. The kids absolutely loved it. In fact, a couple of times Becky asked if we could cut out snowflakes instead of watching TV. (!!! Yes, yes we can.) They’re both still pretty young and not that confident in their cutting skills, but here’s what we ended up with:
January 13, 2012 § Leave a comment
Look at my pretty fairy lights!
I came across this on Pinterest and decided it would be a great project to do with the kids. I was not wrong. They did all the painting, and I did the cutting and hole-poking. One tip: paint first, cut the egg cartons apart later, especially if you’re working with small children. These were super easy and now I want them all over my house.
October 28, 2011 § 1 Comment
I don’t like seafood, as a general rule. There are a couple of exceptions, namely fish & chips and New England clam chowder (really though, I think this applies to most food: if you deep fry it or drown it in cream sauce, what’s not to like?), but really, I just don’t like seafood. I really, really want to, though. So often I see an amazing looking picture or read a description that makes my mouth water…it seems a shame to just dismiss all that yumminess out of hand. So lately I’ve been on a quest to find ways of consuming seafood that don’t involve deep-frying or cream sauce.
When I first started this journey, a little over a year ago, I had the good fortune to be invited to a cajun dinner party, and I was determined to try a little of anything I wasn’t allergic to (bell peppers — give me contact sores. Good times.). Of course there was a lot of seafood, but much of it was in stews and so forth, so not particularly noticeable. The two things I did try that were definitely seafood-y were shrimp grilled with andouille sausage slices and a fun take on Oysters Rockefeller…since I didn’t want any spinach (cooked veggies make me nauseous…I got issues, man) my buddy Dan hooked me up with two bits of bacon, so I had a little bacon-oyster sammie. OMG. Both of these things were not just edible but melt-in-your-mouth delicious.
I’ve tried a couple of other things since then — lobster mac-n-cheese anyone? — and for the most part, have enjoyed them. I’m still a little nervous though, and I’d certainly never cooked fish. Until the other day, when I came across this recipe for Asian Marinated Salmon with Grilled Pinapple on Jolts & Jollies (via Food Buzz). Holy delicious. This one’s definitely a keeper. (See what I did there?)
The only change I made was I used bottled pineapple juice for the marinade and fresh pineapple planks for the grilled pineapple instead of canned rings, and I used an indoor stovetop grill instead of an outdoor grill because it was rainy as hell the day I made it.
October 21, 2011 § 1 Comment
Love, love, LOVE these skirts! The ease of a circle skirt without the bulk at the waistband/belly area (because really, who wants that?). So far I’ve made two, with two more cut out and ready to be sewn. This one is totally my favorite:
I also have one that’s a little longer, made of the same solid red that’s the waistband on this one. The two to make are a purple raw silk and another print, this one with a black waistband. And I’m sure there will be more when those two are done…these are so easy to make and look great on. The one big change I made is that I didn’t bother with the buttonhole. Not because I was being innovative, but because I couldn’t find my buttonhole foot for either of my sewing machines. I’m not fond of sewing buttonholes by hand, so I tried the all-but-buttonholed skirt on and found that it looked great just twisted over (where the inside edge meets the top, bring the bottom sash end up over the top and just keep wrapping). Since that made the skirt even easier, I plan to keep doing them that way.
September 23, 2011 § Leave a comment
I’ve had this done since Tuesday and almost forgot to post it! How cute is this adorable crocheted ring? This was my very first one, and it only took me about 30 minutes. I used your basic DMC embroidery floss and a size 3 steel hook, which seemed to be about right.
The instructions for this ring and two others are available on AllFreeCrochet.com — these are so pretty and easy I can definitely see myself making more! This is ring #1 in the instructions, BTW. The only “issue” is that you haev to remember to take them off when you wash your hands or they get all damp and squishy and feel yucky (once they dry they’re right as rain, so not a big deal if you forget!).
A note on choosing hook size…my very scientific method for this if I don’t have any idea what I’m going for is to — careful, technical term coming up here — guess. You can usually tell as soon as you start chaining if you need to go smaller or larger. Don’t be afraid to play around and switch it up until you find a good match for your yarn, especially on a project like this, where gauge is definitely not of the essence.
September 9, 2011 § Leave a comment
I’ve been meaning to make some of these for awhile now, and the ginormous tshirt I received at the annual company picnic was perfect:
This is a super easy no-sew project — you can find the tutorial I used here. My shirt was so big that I ended up doing four loops on the bottom, and I chose to leave my bows hanging out:
So much stuff fits in it, and it is much, much sturdier than I expected it to be. I see a lot more of these in my future!
September 2, 2011 § Leave a comment
Yikes! Missed a couple weeks, didn’t I? I’ve been crazy busy — tell you all about it later. But for now, meet this week’s FIotI:
I don’t actually have a link to a particular project on the internet that inspired me for this one, but I’ve been seeing custom-made chalkboard surfaces of all varieties all over Etsy and assorted wedding blogs* and of course Martha Stewart (who has this nifty recipe for making your own color — how cool is that?).
So. This isn’t your run-of-the-mill little chalkboard. No, this is a door, painted with chalkboard paint. I thought about doing the aforementioned MS color-mixing thing, but I didn’t have a particular color in mind and for the amount of paint I needed, it was cheaper to just buy the quart of black (incidentally, they do now have a tint-able one available, but the color choices are limited).
Why a door, you ask? Well, I was using two of them for desk surface in my studio, and when I rearranged a few weeks ago I decided one was enough and I could use the other wall space more efficiently. So I had an extra one hanging around. They’re super-cheap, though — these are the interior hollow-core doors and run $20-30 depending on the width you get.
The painting itself was really easy — I “primed” with some extra trim paint I had laying around and then threw on two coats of the chalkboard paint. I went over it with the white chalk as instructed on the packaging to give it a “dust base” and then turned the kids loose on it with the multi-color chalk. Right now I’ve just got it on the floor leaning against the wall, but as they grow I’ll probably hang it for them. And I have a bunch of the paint left over, so expect to see more chalkboard-y stuff here in the future.
* No, I’m not planning a wedding. DIY wedding blogs have some of the coolest crafts going, I swear. Don’t give them a miss just because you’re not planning on tying the knot.