Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Sea glass shelf/ coat rack for my bathroom

Sea Glass Shelf
Originally uploaded by mornindew2822
I wish I could find the "before" photo of this little coat rack. I bought it in the clearance section after Christmas for $.75- it was white with 4 large plastic snowmen on it (one over each hook). I pried them off, filled and sanded the holes they left behind and then added a little mosaic of sea glass, sand dollars and starfish. It now lives in my (very green) bathroom helping to make the green a bit more bearable until I can get around to toning it down some!

Took me a Sunday afternoon football game to go from before to after. :)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Joining the Challenge

cuff in progress
Originally uploaded by magscrafts
I have been reading Tara's posts lately, reading about her "use what you have" challenge. I admit that I have had little twinges of guilt, because first, I have been crafting, but stuff totally unrelated to business, and two, I have been spending way too much on supplies. I think my knitting and other leisurely crafts has been a help to my sanity, but it is time to buckle down and get back to business related work!

Anyway, I am taking on Tara's challenge, and I am adding for myself that not only will I use what I have on hand, but I will work on finishing some stuff that I had already started. I also want to make a little headway every day. So today I walked up to my sewing table, and dug around a little bit looking at what was in the heap, and found some pieced patchwork made by Karen of Chickadee Friends Studio. I had intended to make a quilted, beaded cuff, but had fizzled when Christmas approached. This morning I quilted the piece of fabric, fused it to a lovely green batik fabric backing, and finished off the edge. I hunted the button box for a great vintage button, made the buttonhole to fit. Now I need to sew on the buttons and add the beads, but all of the machine sewing is done!

Thanks for the inspiration, Tara!

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Sea Inspired Jewelry

Sea Inspired Jewelry
Originally uploaded by mornindew2822
Another of my "use what you've got" challenges. I made these without spending one red cent- it amazes me the stuff I collect and then don't use! Can you imagine every single ingredient that went into making these has been sitting in my supply boxes for close to two years now while I was totally uninspired to anything with it!

Necklace and earrings set made using various greenish-blue turquoise beads with lots of matrix (the more mottled the better, I love it!) , bronze freshwater pearls, Hill Tribe fine silver beads (starfish, nautilus and scallop shells) and sand dollar toggle style clasp.

Up for sale in my Etsy shop this weekend.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Tiny Sea Glass "Mosaic" Pendants

This is some of the pieces I've been working on this week. I have a self-imposed "use what you've got" challenge going on and all the stuff I'm making this week is done without spending a single penny for anything new.

I've taken bits of beachcombed pottery where the pattern was too worn for it to be used on it's own for a jewelry piece and decorated them with teeny, tiny bits of beautiful sea glass in rich, vibrant colors. The end result is, I think, mini mosaic art pieces you can wear!

My favorite is I Feel Teal. The shade on the (perfectly round) sea glass ball is so rich and soothing while the pottery shards are a cool robin's egg and almost Tiffany blue.

These can all be found in my Etsy shop.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Finally back to being crafty!

I can't believe it's taken me this long to recouperate from the holidays but indeed, this is the first week I've been able to get back to work and start making things again. At first there was the chaos of kids home on vacation, then it was cleaning up and putting away all the decorations, then it was sheer exhaustion from all the previous weeks' hullabaloo.

The nagging reminder gentle nudge of a waning bank account forced me back into action this week and I've managed to start producing again. So far I've added two new colors of my sea glass wine charms
Blue Set

Green Set

and a sea glass bottle stopper (custom order).

I am trying to decide if I have time to produce enough stuff to do a small local craft fair in a little over a month's time... hemming and hawing over this one...

Also have a sea glass window on my agenda due mid March to the customer and likely a fundraiser coming up in April. Spring is looking to be busy!

Monday, January 11, 2010

I'm Knitting and I Can't Stop!

headband picture
Originally uploaded by magscrafts
Many moons ago, when I was a teenager in the 1980's, I taught myself how to knit from a book so that I could knit myself a pair of legwarmers. Unfortunately, knitting was the one craft where my usual teach myself from a book methods pretty much failed me. I managed to finish those legwarmers but all my stitches were twisty and it took me forever (that one pair of legwarmers took me a year- I'm very tall, but not THAT tall!)

Fast forward nearly 30 years, and I met my good friend Ruth, who is a knitter extraordinaire and offered to help me. So I went to her with yarn and needles and she tried to straighten out my bad habits. I practiced and practiced, but still somehow felt like I was so slow I would never finish anything. My stitches looked way better though.

Then a dear friend passed away at Thanksgiving time. I had lived at their house the summer after college graduation, and called she and her husband my "parents for a month". At her celebration, people commented about her knitting, and I had sort of forgotten that she was an amazing knitter. Back when I lived there, I was so amazed at the items she could crank out, with almost a zenlike peace involved in the process. As I remembered her, I regretted that I was too busy planning my wedding and hanging out with my fiance to sit down and get her to help me with my knitting that summer, but I felt a renewed resolve to become a knitter.

So I picked up my practice piece that I had been working on with Ruth, watched some online videos of knitters to help me remember what I was doing, and I was on my way.
Here is that practice piece knitted into a scarf! Then I knitted these cotton dishcloths:

Next, on New Year's Eve, I started the scarf below. I have 5 skeins total of this yarn, which I bought at a yard sale. I am not sure what it is even made of, the label is in Turkish. Anyway, to be sure I could get a hat and mitts out of the yarn on hand, I left the scarf after one skein and made a hat.

I switched gears over this weekend, and knitted the headband I am wearing in the photo above. It was supposed to be lacier, I modified the pattern because I was not used to the thin yarn or the small needles.

My current project is a pair of fingerless mitts. I am nearly done the first of the pair and I just started them today! Knitting is a nice craft to carry with me to work on while I wait for my son at school or church or whatever. I think this crazy knitting break will let me get back to my jewelry and sewing with a fresh positive attitude.