Sep 18, 2014

The Double Knit Cowl

It's actually done! I've had several problems, mostly when starting, but I'm  finally finished with the cowl!

Double Knit Cowl
Double Knit Cowl

Now I have more color work experience and have completed two double knit projects! I still have several knitting projects in my queue, two more from my DIY books and a few Christmas presents. Have you any handmade holiday presents in the works?

Sep 16, 2014

Painting a Telephone II

All the colors are down, I need to add the  highlights/shadows and the phone cord! I'm excited to finish and hang it!

Phone painting

Sep 11, 2014

Utilitarian Apron Tutorial

For my Herland Craft Book Club project I made a simple utilitarian apron. In the book Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman three male travelers find their way to an isolated all female society where everything about the women and their land is practical, even their clothes. This apron is very simple, practical, and has pockets! The only frivolous part of this apron is the floral fabric I used to make it.

Utilitarian Apron

Finally! Here is the apron tutorial I've been promising!

Utilitarian Apron Tutorial

This apron is composed entirely from rectangles, various sized rectangles that are easy to cut and sew together. Here are the basic steps to make your own!

Before you begin:
This tutorial makes a 40" x 30" wraparound apron that should fit most adults. If you are making an apron for a small or large person you may want to adjust the pattern accordingly.
I suggest using medium weight cotton fabric such as quilter's fabric; bottom weight fabric can be a bit too heavy and doesn't drape well.
My seam allowances were 1/2".

Materials Needed:
1 1/2 yards of 40" wide fabric (or enough fabric to make desired sized apron)
Sewing machine

1. Prepare your fabric! Wash, dry, and press!
2. Cut the following pieces (adjust sizes if needed)
          a. Body - 42" x 34"
          b. Straps - two 6" x 26"
          c. Pockets - two 9" x 12"
3. Hem all sides of the body fabric. I suggest 1/2" for the sides & bottom and 1 1/2" for the top.
4. Fold each of your straps fabric pieces lengthwise (3" x 26") with right sides together and stitch along the top and open length.
5. Turn the straps right side out, press, and top stitch around the entire piece making sure to tuck the open edge inside. 
6. Attach the straps to the top of the body 3 1/2" from the center on each side. I did a box shaped top stitch where the straps met the body and reinforced it.
7. Take the other side of each strap and attach them to the opposite corners. (See drawing above, xx to xx and oo to oo.)
8. Hem all sides of the pockets. I suggest 1/2" for the sides & bottom and 1" for the top.
9. Place pockets on the body 9" from the side and 9" from the bottom then top stitch around the pocket leaving the top open and reinforcing all corners.
10. Hurrah! You are finished! Put on your apron! Enjoy!

Sep 9, 2014


Earlier this summer I shared a photo from the latest photo challenge I was doing; we took pictures of specific colors and I decided to make small collections of items that were the color of the week. I finished this photo challenge last week and I am sharing a few of the highlights today! You can check out my color photos in my monochrome set on Flickr.


black. orange. rainbow. silver.

I am excited about our next photo challenge! Each week we are taking a different photo of the same object or place. I bought a cute good luck kitty eraser that I'm going to photograph, you'll probably see photos soon on Flickr and here once we're done!

Sep 4, 2014

Apron Pocket

I said I would have an apron tutorial for you this week, but I'm not quite done. Instead I am sharing a work in progress picture, a pocket!

Apron Pocket

Next week I'll show you the finished Herland inspired apron and the tutorial! Are you working on any Craft Book Club projects?

Sep 2, 2014

Painting a Telephone

I am painting a vintage payphone on canvas! Here is my progress so far:


To start I sketched out the phone in pencil (probably not a good idea because the pencil smears and is visible under the paint) and so far I've painted the background white and the bulk of the phone red. Tonight I'll be painting some more!

Aug 28, 2014

Mostly Squash

My gardening for the year is coming to an end. The zucchini plants have died (they succumbed to the squash bugs due to my neglect), the pumpkin vines are dying back and I am eager to eat their fruit. My Pink Ping Pong Tomatoes are still producing (I thought they were the Tangerine Tomatoes, but they never turned orange and stayed quite small) and I have another Orangeglo Melon, this one is so tiny right now!


I'm planting a cover crop to give my garden beds extra nutrients next year!

Aug 26, 2014

Raspberry Jam and a Butterfly

Our current Craft Book Club book is Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman. I'm making an apron with pockets inspired by the Herland attire and will have a tutorial for you next week. Pygmalion by Bernard Shaw is our next book!

Today I am sharing some Craft Book Club projects from my mother Wendy. She made some Raspberry Jam after reading Anna Karenina. In the book there is a little bit of bickering about whether or not to add water to the raspberries when making the jam; this raspberry jam was made without adding water.

raspberry jam
raspberry jam
raspberry jam

Her Herland craft is a cute butterfly plant stake! It is made with wire and nail polish! I think I'll need to make something similar to decorate my potted plants. The character Ellador tells how a butterfly made her decide to become a forester.

If you make any Craft Book Club projects I would love to see and share your photos!

Aug 21, 2014

The Letter E

I'm crossing another project off my list of making things from my DIY books! This knit letter E softie is from  The Secret Lives of Letters by Dani Church. I'll probably knit enough letters to make a word by the end of the year, but so far I have this:


Aug 19, 2014

Zoo Birthday

The surprise felt things my friends and I made last week were animal ear headbands for my sister's zoo birthday party! Here is a picture of a few of them, I forgot to take a picture before the party.


We hot glued ears around headbands similarly to the mouseketeer costume I made earlier this year. Hot glue was much easier to use and you could add a cup shape to the ears that stay after the glue cools! Here is my sister wearing her zebra ears, this butterfly thought they were wonderful.


Our day at the zoo started with breakfast; we made and ate some cute "animal foods" (zebra striped mini donuts, some mini frittatas with canadian bacon ears and olive eyes, etc...) while sitting next to the red panda!


Here are picures of two cute cuddly wild animals we saw to brighten your day, a sleepy fox and a smiling firefox/red panda: