Xmas Gifties

Sketchbook Covers

Things were hectic leading up to Xmas then we got a couple of big dumps of snow. Being snowed in helped me finish off some of my Xmas gifties!

I finished one of the sketchbook covers - the one on the left. I should have the other sketchbook cover done this week. Then I can make the final sketchbook cover, which is for me! I've realized my digi-camera us pretty crappy so the photos aren't perfect but hopefully good enough.

More Wine Bags

I have had a ton of interest in the wine bags so I created two more and found homes for them right away. I'll be working on more over the next month or so and attempting to vary them - maybe do a 'date in a bag' idea since my friend makes gourmet wine crackers and she'd love a wine bag with additional compartments.

Xmas Ornaments for Mom

I created some Xmas ornaments for my Mom. She's quite the contrast from Paul and I - we don't even put up a Xmas tree let alone set up decorations and lights. She has boxes and boxes and boxes of Xmas stuff. It's craziness! Anyways I thought she would appreciate some ornaments with family photos in them. I used a more muted colour palette since she wanted to move away from intense greens and reds.


Wine bags are done!

My 4 wine bags are done - 3 already have homes! I'll have to make a couple more before Xmas... I have so much to make in the next 10 days that it'll be a craft frenzy this weekend! Thankfully work will slow down soon. Next up are the sketchbook covers and some goodie bags.


More wine bags...

I now have 3 more wine bags in progress... I created one with an upside down candy cane on it (oops!) so needed to rework it. I cut the felt in half then created a bottom for the bag by overlapping the pieces and added some handles. It's not too shabby considering I had to rethink the design. I'll probably finish these bags up then work on my goody bags... All is time permitting at this point since I'm all of a sudden getting tons of work. At least these contracts will pay for more supplies!

Other Projects On The Go

I made a quick pillow cover out of some brown wool I had this weekend. I added a baby blue house then sewed in "Home Sweet Home". On the back I've added a pretty blue button I bought at Walmart. The cover is not perfect... I made a minor mistake. Hopefully no one can tell what it is!


Xmas Gifties

After a bit of a break I've booked today for sewing. I'm starting on my Xmas gifties - today I'm making felt wine bags after seeing one at a local craft sale. I found something similar on Eco-Handbags.ca that I modified. I'll make a couple today then change the dimensions to make goodie bags. My Mom and I usually make goodies for gifts - shortbread, truffles, etc. This way I can make re-usable bags that are somewhat funky... And just as cheap as a store-bought bag.

Recent Thrift Store Finds

I picked this silverware box up yesterday at the Salvation Army for $12. It's quite the find with the Art Deco handles. Paul and I can hopefully refinish it soon. I'm not sure what we'll use it for but it'll be quite the swanky box once it's been redone. Exciting!

The box has 2 compartments - I'd love to remove the cardboard/fabric inlay and just have the wood. I can always put down some sort of fabric. We'll see what happens! :-)


Wool Remnant Project #1 - DONE

I've finished up my Blackberry covers! I was able to make them from left-over green and purple wool with touches of grey felt. Thanks to my fancy dancy Singer I was able to make some improvements on these pieces... Slowly but surely I'm becoming better at this crafty thang. :-)

Next I'm going to make felt applique book covers for some sketchbooks I bought. One for me then I'm making a couple for Xmas gifties. The sketchbooks are a great size for putting in your purse and taking them around with you... And they were 50% off at Opus Framing and Art Supplies in North Vancouver. Each will cost under $10 for all of the supplies.


Projects Using My Wool Remnants

I have some scraps left of the green and purple wool I used for the pillow covers - I'm going to use these remnants, depending on size, for other projects. Today I'm creating 2 Blackberry covers. Here's the first one I just put together...

Next I'll sew my other Blackberry cover and maybe whip up some mini purses.

Recent Thrift Store Finds

I bought this cast iron candle stand at the Salvation Army in North Vancouver this week for $6. I love it! I carried it in my backpack from North Vancouver to Gibsons on the bus then onto the ferry - it was a little awkward but worth it!


My First Pillow Set - Done!

Pillow covers #2 and #3 are done! I'm pretty sure the 3 pillows cost approximately $20-25 in supplies: 3 pillow fillers for $3, under $20 for the wool and felt and $3 for thread. It took me a bit since I'm a newbie when it comes to sewing but it was worth it... The more I create, the easier it'll be!

Below shows the final home for the pillows.


My First Pillow Set - Cover #1

I took a leap of faith and sewed my first pillow cover this weekend using some wool I bought at Dressew (super fabulous fabric store in downtown Vancouver). I bought a half metre of green and a half metre of purple - both were $14.99/metre. The grey is felt since they didn't have a charcoal grey in wool - it was $9.99/metre.

I set up shop in the kitchen since we have a big window with lots of light. My old Singer is working well. I also bought a fold-away measuring board at the Happy Cat Haven garage sale yesterday for $3 - it was super helpful for measuring and cutting my fabric accurately... I need all the help I can get! :-)

I already had the necessary embroidery floss. Yesterday I picked up thread then I was able to get started. I want to create 3 pillow covers - two at 14" x 14" and one at 18" x 18". The pillow fillers I bought at the Happy Cat Haven garage sale for $1 each - all were brand new. Below is the first pillow cover...


My Mother/Daughter Craft Date

This week I had a mother/daughter craft date - the plan was to create a snazzy fall wreath as part of my Mom's birthday present. Her birthday is next month but she wanted the fall wreath up ASAP since she has a Xmas wreath she'll be putting up in December.

This started with a purchase from the Salvation Army - 2 grapevine wreaths (one large and one small) purchased for $2. Then I bought 2 rolls of ribbon at 40% off from Michael's, approximately $15. We ended up only needing 1 roll, which was even better! My Mom picked up flowers and leaves to add to the wreath - I think she spent $10 but we only used half of what she bought. Our total cost was $14: $1.50 for the large wreath, $7.50 for the roll of ribbon and about $5 for the flowers and leaves.

We were able to have the wreath up within an hour or two! Thanks to my Dad - it is now secured on their front door. Nothing says love like the gift of making fall wreaths together... ;-P


Update on my Blackberry covers...

I put together the 2 covers I created last week. Needless to say, I'm learning a bunch about sewing - cutting accurately, pinning material... Too bad I didn't take sewing in high school! Since the covers only cost $1 in materials and hours of my free labour, I can always make more covers until I feel they're ready for public consumption... For example the inside compartment on the grey cover is not very straight! Oops...

Recent Thrift Store Finds

This Saturday's thrift store finds include a plain basket to store all of my felt in. I'll need to glue it in a couple of places in the future once I buy a good glue gun. I borrowed my Mom's, which took at least 30 minutes to warm up then shot out the tiniest glob of glue. This I found at the Salvation Army for $2.50.

I also ended up at the Happy Cat Haven garage sale - it may be the last of the season! This time around I only spent $2 and it was on this old metal stool. I won't bother painting the stool since it looks pretty funky as is. I replaced the rubber feet at a cost of $3. The vinyl feet were tattered and one was missing so I picked up rubber feet from Gibsons Building Supplies (GBS). The stool was good to go within 5 minutes of getting it home.


Cork Board #2 is done

Last weekend I found another cork board frame for $3.50 at the Salvation Army. It has flowers carved along the top - it's a bit girly for me but boy was it super easy to build a cork board this time around! I did minimal work on this one - I did a light stain then was able to cut the cork so I could easily slide it in-between the frame and back board. My cork boards proved to be super cheap - frame #1 was $1, frame #2 was $3.50 and the 1' x 4' piece of cork was $10.

Here's the cork board in my studio by my desk, which is home to my 1950's Singer Sewing Machine that I bought at a garage sale in September for $10 (this included an hour lesson where I was shown how to make a quick and dirty pillow cover) and my fish lamp (a souvenir from Gold Pines Camp in Northern Ontario - a friend's fishing camp). The lamp is super cheesy I know but it makes me laugh... And it's definitely a lamp you won't see anywhere else like an Ikea lamp!


More and more felt!

This weekend I bought a load of felt! Saturday I went to the Happy Cat Haven garage sale and spent $5 on: a bag full of felt, 2 tubberware containers with various compartments (now I can take my projects on the ferry without losing bits and pieces!) and a bag full of buttons, zippers, etc. Then I picked up a frame for my second corkboard! That was $3.50 at the Salvation Army. Sunday I managed to get some more felt sheets at the Loonie Store in Capilano Mall - 3 sheets for a dollar instead of the usual 2 sheets. Now I just have to find time to work on these projects!
I have 2 blackberry covers ready. I'll be sewing around the edges then adding the finishing stitches this week.


My first felt project

Well I've been busy - I've actually had to work lately so my creativity is a little slow right now. I've started my felt prototype. I'm making Blackberry covers for all my friends who are unlucky enough to have one. ;-)
I came across this step by step felt cover for an iPod that I want to modify:
DIY iPod MP3 case - http://www.hipgirlie.com/2007/11/06/diy-ipod-mp3-case/
I've started on the cover and am now going to put all the pieces together.

After an hour or two of putting my felt prototype together - it's done! And not too shabby for a first attempt.


My trusty can of black spray paint - part 2

My magazine rack is ready and set up in my studio! It's so nice to have organization systems in place.

I also painted a box this weekend that I built in art school way back in the day. I originally stained it but of course there have been some mishaps over the past decade - water stains, gashes, etc. I used my left-over latex paint to revive it and it now stores my battery operated clocks that I want to design new faces for.

My next project will involve felt applique pieces. I have a few sets of pillow covers I want to design and create for the brand new pillow fillers I picked up at the Happy Cat Haven for $1 each. But first I'm going to work on smaller felt applique projects for family and friends with birthdays and Xmas fast approaching. Today I'm getting tips from my super crafty friend Thelma on different types of stitches for felt applique then I can get to work! I picked up my supplies last week - tons of thread and felt pieces then buttons, needles, a craft stick, etc. I spent $30-35 on everything you see below.

I've seen some fabulous felt applique pieces on Etsy. For example, Urban Paisley has some funky ornaments at http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=16722. You can also check out her blog at http://urbanpaisley.blogspot.com.


My trusty can of black spray paint

For $6 at GBS, I've been able to breath new life into a few finds from Happy Cat Haven. Happy Cat Haven is a private, non-profit shelter for needy animals on the Sunshine Coast. Throughout the summer, Happy Cat Haven hosts a garage sale every Saturday out of their storage locker. You can definitely find some great treasures! I bought the below for $11.50 - $10 for the 3 metal stands and $1.50 for the corner stand. The metal stands were white and rusty and the corner stand was a pasty blue. Now they look fabulous and have found a home on our deck!

My latest purchase at Happy Cat Haven was this vintage magazine stand that had a bit of rust. It was $1 and will be super useful in the studio! Here's the before photo - I'll post the after photo tomorrow.

Just getting started!

Well here I am starting on my blog... I'm in the process of setting up the studio. It's a cute little house with enough room to store all of my projects - finished, in process, etc. With my love for thrift shop trips and garage saling with Paul, the studio will definitely become my home away from home.

My first project was to transform a $1 thrift shop frame that was a hideous mauve into my own idea/cork board. I bought a 1' x 4' piece of cork for $10 from Gibsons Building Supplies (GBS) and used some left-over latex paint. I have the finished cork board in my studio sitting on the window pane with some brand new white thumbtacks. It marks the beginning of many fun creative ideas...

Next is building cork board #2 with the remaining 1' x 2' piece!