Wednesday, August 20, 2014

A Craft A Week: Week 29 - Dictionary Dream Catcher

I may have found a new passion: Dream Catchers!
Since my last dream catcher I've had this idea of making another, only square like a book and hang paper flowers made from a book page on it.  Last week at work there was an old dictionary on the FREE table and it had several pages loose from the binding.
I immediately knew this was going to be the book I used for my book-paper-flowers because I wouldn't have to destroy a book myself (something I just can't seem to do).  I took it home and started to punch out circles from the paper... that were already out of course.
I got the idea to punch out the circles to make my flowers from this tutorial:

The tutorial makes a larger flower then I made, I guess I was just lazy or didn't remember or had two kids bugging me while I was trying to play.
I used the pencil to roll up the edges on the circles.  I pierced the flowers up through the middle with a needle and floss and sewed on a button in the middle.  Now set them aside and go gather feathers from your backyard chickens.
As for the dream catcher part, I took an old picture frame and wrapped it in black yarn.  I then took some black embroidery floss and made the loops for the web.  I used this image I found online to help me.
But because my frame is square it definitely didn't look like that.
I glued a flower to the spot where I tied the end, and I glued a flower to a weird spot that looked funky.

After the frame was made I added strands of lace and ribbon by stitching them on to the bottom of the frame.
The next step of course was to add the flowers and feathers to the lace and ribbons.
Now hang it up and enjoy the glory of your work.  YAY!
Thanks for checking in with me, take care!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

A Craft A Week: Week 28 - Cork Board

I've been saving wine corks since I was... 26?  I always thought they looked pretty in a hurricane vase on a counter or bar.  Well, I never had a bar and I have kids so a glass vase on a counter was not a good idea.  I stopped saving them at one point but kept my collection "just in case".
Another item I have held on to for almost 3 years now is a frame that was used in my wedding to showcase the seating chart.  Shown here:
Put them together and what do we have?  A cork board!
I've been thinking of this idea since the wedding, wondering what I would do with the frame.  Then Pinterest came in to my life... for the second time, the first time we didn't have as much in common... and I found this Pin: Soak Corks Before Cutting
Now the challenge was "where would I put it?"  Of course I still had to make it.  Months went by and we were rearranging our guest bedroom into my office.  At last I had the perfect place for my bulletin board.  Last night I was reorganizing my craft closet to fit everything that I had hidden under the guest bed in to the closet.  I found my bag of corks.  Today I jumped in to the task of making my long awaited bulletin board.
STEP ONE: Heat up the corks and cut.  I threw a bunch in a pot of water (they float of course) and turned on the heat.
After ten minutes I poured out the hot corks and started cutting.

An immediate slice to the finger and a blister on the thumb and I realized I wasn't going about this right.  I reheated up some water and placed the corks in to soak.  This time I left the corks in the hot water, only pulling out one at a time to cut.  Much easier.  Definitely keep the corks hot and moist.  They are so much easier to cut this way.  It was interesting to me which wines had the better corks.  I noticed that my favorite cork to cut was also my favorite winery: Beringer.

STEP TWO: Make your design.  Reed and I started placing our cork halves on the board to see how it would look.  Row after row, from left to right.

Once they were all placed, we noticed we had an uneven edge (see right side).  Hmmm. Not pretty.  Pinterest, any ideas?  YES!
STEP THREE: Hot glue the corks down to your frame.  I also glued the matting down too around the edges.
STEP FOUR: Hang your work and enjoy the project that has been years in the making (at least in my case).
The End.
What do you think?

Thursday, August 7, 2014

A Craft A Week: Week 27 - Framed Key Holder

I was perusing Pinterest about six weeks back and came across a pin of framed keys.  It made me think of how clever that would be to do in my kitchen where my husband and I throw down our keys on the counter and they always seem to be in the way.  It would be a pretty simple project, I just needed to find the right frame.

Here is the pin from Pinterest of my inspiration:
If you follow the Pin, it will take you to The Purple Carrot at and give you a tutorial: DIY Frame Key Holder (from February 2012).

About two weeks ago I dropped the older boys off at camp and went to Walmart with Reed to buy a few things.  I was walking past some frames and I saw the one shown in my photos.  I purchased it and brought it home.

That's when I finally read the tutorial.  Drill holes?  Um... no.  I had ideas of twisting up some of my heavy duty bead wire to make some decorative hooks, but I just envisioned them getting tugged and pulled on and soon stretched out.  Soon after that, I was walking around Michaels so Chase could buy some craft supplies and I saw the Command brand small clear wire hooks:

I basically had everything I would need at this point.
That night I gathered my supplies:
  • The frame (minus the glass and back)
  • Command picture hanging strips (for the frame)
  • The Command hooks (for the keys)
  • and a glass of wine.
STEP ONE: Attach the Command picture hanging strips to the back of your frame.
STEP TWO: Attach the frame to your wall.
STEP THREE: Attach each of the Command hooks on the wall inside the frame.
STEP FOUR: Stand back, admire your work, and guzzle your delicious $3.99 wine.  Mmmmmm.  Delicious.

So that's it.  Pretty simple.  I guess you could thrift for an old frame and then bedazzle it all up, but I really liked this Walmart frame and I was in the mood for a simple project.

Hubby liked it right away and we've used it religiously ever since.  Now I just need to figure out the pile of mail that always seems to accumulate in this spot.

If you ever try it, send me your photos!  I'd love to see how creative you went with it.


Thursday, July 31, 2014

A Craft A Week: Week 26 - Dream Catcher

Last week Wednesday I was walking around my backyard with Reed and I found a feather from our friend "Blue Bird".  Then another, and another!  It made me think of the SurpriseRide Blake recently received to make a dream catcher.  I started to look for some interesting twigs that I'd be able to bend into a circle.  Walking in and around the chicken coop I found a few nice feathers from our girls.  I brought my findings inside to soak and be cleaned.
Later that night we all sat down to experiment.   I pulled all the twigs from soaking in the water and started binding them together with some aqua twine I had in my craft stash.
Blake started in on making his tribal drum and dream catcher.  Chase already has a dream catcher in his room that he got from our sweet older neighbor as a THANK YOU to Chase for always helping him take down his trash cans on trash pick up day.  He decided to make a different craft instead.  Reed was playing with all the extra pieces that I wasn't using.
Friday night I attached one of my Grandma's (my dad's mom) doilies.

I also planned out how I was going to attach the feathers from "Blue Bird" and our Chickens.  I dug out my bead bin as well and incorporated some of my Grandpa's (my dad's dad) beads to the design too.
I strung the feathers using knots and a glue gun, slid on some beads, added knots and more beads.  This is what it looked like at the end of the night:
It needs more.
The following Monday I went to three thrift stores and JoAnn Fabrics and found some pretty ribbons and lace:
Hubby had a good suggestion to add something aqua in the doily.  I like the idea, but I haven't found anything yet.  My dream catcher is hanging in our Master Bedroom and my dreams are sweet :)
I have ideas to make one for Reed's room using yarn and beads and bright colors, I had an idea to make one with shells and one with spoons and then a really different one for a library that I don't want to share A) because it could be unbelievably awesome or B) it could be a horror show.
Leave me comments!  I love hearing from you!
Love, Jenni

Sunday, July 20, 2014

A Craft A Week: Week 25 - Candy Sushi

Last weekend we had a very important celebration.  Our local family and friends came together to celebrate our son Blake's victory of being cancer free for a whole year!  He is very shy about it, some people have made him feel exploited, and he didn't want us to make it a big deal so we tried making it look more like a summer BBQ.
Look at him!  He looks amazing!  I love you Blake!

So the food for the party was Asian Cuisine.  Hubby made amazing food as usual and I pigged out as usual. 

My contribution and Craft for the Week was the dessert.  I made candy sushi!  Here is a picture of my inspiration:
Step ONE: Go to the store to buy Rice Krispies cereal, marshmallows, butter, Swedish Fish, and Fruit by the Foot.  I was not able to find green Fruit Rollups or anything similar so I just selected the best one and went home.

Step TWO: Make Rice Krispie Treats:

Step THREE: Roll out half the treat mixture to form tube's for the Sushi Rolls.  The rest of the treat mixture will become the Nigiri Sushi: a Swedish Fish atop an oblong, compacted mound of Rice Krispie Treats.
Step FOUR: Once your Taste-Tester gives the sign the mixture is not poisoned, beg for assistance from anyone that is capable.  I begged my Mother-In-Law and Sister-In-Law to help me.  We cut the tubes in to little sections, wrapped the Fruit by the Foot around each one, and stuffed part of a Swedish Fish inside.  This was very sticky.  Then create the Nigiri.  This part was easier.  Clump some treat mixture big enough for a whole Swedish Fish to lay on top and then wrap a little section of Fruit by the Foot around it.

During the making process:
Plated for our party and already half gone.  Blake loved them!