Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Cork trivet. and a question

Here's my last catchup craft: another nice cork trivet. I have a goodly supply of corks (some that I have generated, many that came from a supportive restaurant) and I'm always looking for a new craft to use these babies. [You should have seen the castle we built for my daughter's 3rd grade project! sorry, no pix]
Ah well, this trivet is not nearly as exciting as that castle was, but I came across a spare vent clamp and I had sold my other two cork trivets so here was a quick and easy creation.

So I made this little cutie and it was the first thing I uploaded in my slew of items onto my etsy site. That process always takes a little while to write out the product description, tag it etc. Well, I had no sooner finished with this item and started to upload the next item when I got a little ding from my Paypal app indicating a sale. Yes, indeed, my little trivet had sold within the first 15 minutes! Woohoo!

Now here's my next little dilemma: I've been making several trivets out of these natural corks, and I even have a couple of future projects in mind. But what do I make with those artificial corks? I have a bunch of those, too. But they just don't have the same vibe, ya know? So..... something funky and kitschy? But what?


Friday, March 23, 2012

Floral Coasters

Moving got started and its just as fun as I remember. not! So no new creating but I remembered I did have a have a little bit of a backlog so I'll just get caught up on that, shall I?

I finished this project up last weekend too, and it was a quickie. I had bought some cork coasters recently on one of my many supply expeditions to Michael's thinking that I'd Mod Podge something to them at some point. So when that old floral art calendar turned up I knew just what to do.

I thought that the circle of art looked a little unfinished when I held it up to the coaster so I got out my trusty gold marker and rimmed a gold edging all the way around on all 4. That served to really finish each individual circle and helped to tie them all together as a set as well. For a brief moment I stressed because the edging was uneven but then I decided I liked that look. It was more organic, much like the subject matter of the art itself.

So now, after this successful Mod Podge project, I'm kind of eyeing all of the furniture in the house and wondering to myself: "Hmmm, wouldn't that look better if it had some art on it?" or "That really is crying out for a butterfly" or even "This could be completely papered in a vintage map". Stay tuned!

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Domino Pendents with Dangling Bits

Over the weekend I completed some more domino pendents. I has rediscovered an old floral art calendar that I just couldn't bear to throw away when the year was over. Some of those calendars have very high quality reproductions so I alway keep them. Same for those little postcard books too. I also thought that I would add some more embellishments in the form of some extra dangling beads. Here are a some of my favorites.

This time I used Diamond Glaze on top of the adhered image and I think I like that product just a little bit better than the dimensional Mod Podge that I used in the last go round. It seemed to dry clearer and more glass-like.

I will be moving this coming weekend and the next so I'll be taking a break from crafting. :(
But after that I'll be in my grand new place and happy to get going on several planned projects. :)

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

LizzieLuvs2Recycle Logo

Ooooo. I'm so excited. I've been steadily selling larger and smaller items from my LizzieLuvs2Recycle shop and I figured it was time to continue to evolve--time for some "branding" if you will. And, this past week I purchased a wee bit of advertising space on an online craft magazine and that prompted me to get my creative juices flowing with regards to a real logo that I can use on all of my correspondence and paperwork and hopefully integrate into the shop website somehow. Thus far I have been including a handwritten note on one of my art note cards thanking people for their purchase and I just felt that I needed to step up the professionalism.

The first step in generating some cool paper goods and packaging was designing an appropriate logo to use. Working with a very helpful and knowledgeable expert with Photoshop, the two of us were able to design a logo and an ad for my shop at ( this morning in record time.

Here's what we came up with for the logo. Isn't it grand? Its just what I was envisioning, too.

And then we took that logo and did a little addition and manipulation to come up with the ad that I will be submitting to Tru(4)ia Magazine. (I'm not quite sure where the ads are going to appear there, but I'll keep you posted on that.)

They wanted copy that was 3.5" x 2 " which just happens to be the size of a business card, so I think I might just have have some of those made up too.

Serendipity all the way around, no?

Saturday, March 17, 2012

I'm still enjoying t-shirt yarn knitting and wanted to branch out from my semi-circular pattern so after a little pattern research I adapted a pattern more typically used for scrap yarn to make afghans. Once again I used my largest needles (#17) and just started knitting. I really liked how it turned out, I'll likely make another one when I have enough yarn scraps gathered again.

My daughter, Fiona, makes a lovely foot model, doesn't she? She had just the perfect shade of nail polish on her toes, too. Like the other mats that I have been making, the body of the mat is basically garter stitch so it is surprisingly soft and cushy to stand on. Here's a close up:

I have to say, T-shirt yarn is really nice to work with--its soft and has some stretch/give to it. If you haven't tried it, I highly recommend you make some yarn (or buy some on etsy) and give it a go!

On a completely different creative note, I've been dabbling in a little photography as well. Here's my favorite picture of one of my window plants. I shot a bunch of pictures of this bunch and the lighting on this one was the best.

That's all for today. I have some more domino pendents in the works so I hope to get those finished, photographed and posted soon.

Thursday, March 08, 2012

Catching up

So I finally got all of my t shirt tutorial up and posted and was all ready to post about some fun stuff when, zowie my computer went out. Yikes! I felt so lost--couldn't post on my blog, upload new items for sale in my etsy shop, pay bills, check work email--eeek! Luckily, I realized what was happening (power supply cord went bad) so with my computer's last gasp of charge I ordered a new one online. And it just came--hooray!

So what have I been up to??

Well, I've been knitting t-shirt yarn like there's no tomorrow:

Here's a blue one...

And here's one in a warm colorway for my new kitchen.

Recently, a friend asked if I could donate an energy pop top necklace for a silent auction she is helping to organize. Here's what I came up with on that front:

(Can you tell my son loves the green flavor?)

I finally got really really disgusted with my stained ironing board cover so I made a new one. It only took me half an hour or so and I used fabric I already had. So now I'm thinking "what the heck took me so long to do this???"

I also added some additional padding which it sorely needed. Here's a close up of the fabric: very 60's--I love this sort of motif.

And last, but most certainly not least, I've been teaching a couple of lovely ladies how to sew on Sundays. Here are Fiona and Lauren who have both just completed pockets for shorts or apron, respectively.

Stay tuned for the completion of shorts and apron!

Monday, March 05, 2012

T-shirt tutorial continued even further

Now just keep on cutting around and around that sleeve and then the next sleeve and then the neck in the same fashion. Cut through the seams--they'll be a bit bumpy but whatthehell. You'll end up with 3 shorter strips that you will need to attach to the first ball of yarn you made. Here's how to do it without making a hard lump:

Fold the tip of each end over by an inch or so and snip a vertical slit in the center that is about half an inch long. Unfold both tips and and lay them on top of each, holding the larger ball's strip on the left and bottom and the shorter strip on the right and top.

Butt them head to head as shown and then overlap them right side to right side, shorter strip on the right and top. Poke the tip of the right and top strip through the slit of the strip underneath. Once it is inserted by a couple of inches, loop it back on itself and insert a further back portion through its own slit.

Carefully pull the entire length of the sleeve strip through its slit.

Fiddle with the two ends as necessary, pulling both straight so they are not folded over on themselves but are nested together and extended in both directions.

Pull tight--the junction should practically disappear.

The neck section will yield some more irregular yarn and bumpier shoulder seams but I think that adds interesting texture. After removing the neckband, just cut around and around the neck opening until you run into the sleeves. When you're done, there shouldn't be much t-shirt left!

Now that's recycling!

T-shirt yarn tutorial continued

If you've been on the edge of your seat since I started to post about T-shirt yarn and couldn't finish I'm here to put you out of your misery! :)

When I left off the other day I had cut up the main body of the shirt and was preparing to work on the sleeves and neck-line. A word of warning: cutting into the sleeves and around the neck opening means you will be incorporating under arm and shoulder seams and thus will make a slightly lumpier or uneven yarn. I'm OK with that, but you may not be. Read on and decide for yourself!

And here's the whole cut up pile of one continuous spiral strip. I used to just wind it up as is, but with a little magic, you can turn it into proper yarn. Just pick up a yard's length at a time and streeeeeetttccch it out. Both edges will curl under and Voila!

And the best part is that, once stretched, it stays that way. So do that, a yard at a time and then winding into a ball until you have it all done.

Now its time to attack the sleeves.

Cut off the hem. You will note that there is less fabric in the underarm area than in the shoulder. You can compensate a little and get more spiral by cutting your strip slightly narrower there and wider at the shoulder. You won't really notice any difference in your yarn quality.

Start at the underarm seam as shown and cut a wedge to start your strip.

Now just keep cutting around and around. Sorry, the rotary cutter is not an option here (I was going to make a very bad pun, as in: the rotary cutter just won't cut it, but I held myself back, aren't you glad?)

When you get to the seam, just cut right through it. It will be OK, I promise.