Thrift store goodness for my upcoming workshop

I've been scoring at the thrift store these days. Thankfully! I was paranoid about not finding appropriate wool sweaters for my workshop on June 15. But the night before my trek to Toronto I scored four wool sweaters!

I wasn't sure this one was wool but loved the pattern and colours.

I also found these items that only required a bit of TLC...

I'm painting these bright colours for a kids room. Maybe white and robyn's egg blue!

Love this metal and wood piece. It's made in Denmark so it must be teak! I'll sand and oil the wood then it'll be perfect!

And there I was the night before my trip to Toronto working, laundry, packing and yes felting wool sweaters. Yup a typical night indeed...

And it looks like this guy is wool. Looking forward to making a monster with this one - the squares for the front, the stripes for legs and arms... Yay!

I've got buttons, jewelry and now felted sweaters... Might even bring my trusty sewing machine to the workshop. Hope to see you there!


And there's more good news...

Well back at the end of March I applied for a grant to help fund three upcycling workshops. Big moment for me and I wasn't sure if it was going to happen. Today I got some good news - yes I got a grant!! My very first grant. Yay!

The grant is through Neighbourhood Small Grants. Neighbourhood Small Grants help connect and engage residents in their community by encouraging them to come up with their own ideas for how their neighbourhood can be strengthened. Vancouver Foundation then funds those ideas.

I'll start working on some dates for the upcycling workshops when I get back from Cuba. I'll be partnering with the North Vancouver City Library for the workshops. So pumped!! Stay tuned!

I can't believe all the crafty goodness coming my way these days. Life is pretty darn fabulous my friends. Hope everyone is rockin' 2013!

Craftiness in Toronto

Here are some crafty pics from my adventure to Toronto this past weekend. I ended up in the Junction for my final 2 days in Toronto. Great area for kewl coffee shops, crafty stores, etc.

Here's the CN Tower from my first night in town - so Toronto I know!

I checked out a few nifty stores on Dundas Street West... Electric Revival, a vintage lighting store, was pretty darn amazing.

Loved this hanging lamp with bronze wings!

Not sure what this was about... Random weird art...

Great sign outside of ARTiculations. They have art supplies, a gallery and tons of workshops.

Here I am with my crafty friend Andrea. We met at my Culture Days upcycling workshop from last September.

We found ourselves in this great shop called Wise Daughters Craft Market. Found so many nifty, crafty pieces! And they also host workshops! Cute owls made from upcycled sweaters...

Sock monkeys...

Felt purses...

Felt robots...

And crafty cards...

Love finding crafty inspiration! Definitely loved the pieces made using felt and upcycled wool. Need to work on more pieces for my workshop on June 15th. I'm feeling pumped about making stuff these days!


Culture Days National Congress 2013

I'm back from Toronto! I had a great 4 days away - 2 days at the conference and 2 days catching up with old friends. The Culture Days National Congress was first and it was great!

We flew in first thing on Thursday, May 23. I checked into the hotel then it was time for the reception. So much fun! And so many great people!

Here's my North Shore Culture Days team. They are the best!

Here's my new buddy Dean Vargas. He was interviewing everyone for the Culture Days website.

Here he is in action...

And here I am with David Moss the Project Director for Culture Days.

They set up this neat area for making items out of paperclips then everyone put them on display.

The following day was the conference. There were a few discussion panels, speeches and lots of time for networking. It was such a fun, informative and actually quite exciting day.

Yup here I am on the list of participants. Yay! And one of my workshop photos was used in the info brochure.

Here's the discussion panel on success stories - really got me revved up for September!

I'll post more info as we get closer to Culture Days. I have a couple of workshops in mind and some potential partners. First though I'm off to Cuba for a couple of weeks. My blog may be a teeny tiny bit quiet the next while.


Workshop project #2: A basic brooch

Next project was a quick and dirty brooch using the same materials. I'm going to try a few brooch designs - simple to a bit more complicated. My first attempt is super simple and took maybe a half hour to make.

Here are the materials other than the wool sweater pieces...

A selection of buttons...

A flower pattern on the left and a butterfly pattern on the right...

And then the bar pins for the back.

I chose the turquoise flower button then used a piece of turquoise sweater for the back. I cut out the flower pattern from a grey sweater.

I sewed the bar pin to the back piece and then the turquoise button to the front piece.

Then buttonhole stitched the front and back together. And it was done!

Next I'll be making another stuffie, more brooches, more barrettes, a bracelet... And more!


Workshop project #1: A cutie pie cat stuffie

I'm prepping projects for the Get Crafty Upcycling Workshop at the Capilano Branch of the North Vancouver District Library next month. I'm presenting a bunch of projects using old wool sweaters, remnant buttons and junky jewelry. I've got ideas for all levels and all ages. My first prep project is making a stuffie cat.

Meet Felix... He's made from a few felted wool sweaters, a couple of buttons and then eco fill.

Here's the initial drawing I doodled as a pattern.

I folded the drawing then cut it out. This way both sides were exactly the same.

I cut out a face then placed the buttons and nose.

Here's the initial stitching.

I pinned the front and back together then started to stitch the sides up.

I realized halfway through the stitching that I forgot the whiskers. So I took apart a bit of the stitching, added the whiskers then stitched him back up.

Here he is. All done!

Next I want to make a monster stuffie. Fun!


Get Crafty Upcycling Workshop

Well looks like I have another workshop coming up! Hope you'll join me! It's June 15th from 1pm to 3pm at the Capilano Branch of the North Vancouver District Library. I'm pumped!

Love how serendipitous life is right now... So many kewl things seem to just pop up. The talk through the Craft Council of BC last month and then the upcoming Culture Days National Congress on May 23 and 24 in Toronto and now another upcycling workshop. Super yay!

I was mulling over materials and ideas... And a title. I'm calling it 'Get Crafty Upcycling Workshop'. Materials will include old wool sweaters, remnant buttons and junky jewelry. And what will we make?! Tons of stuff!

I need to work on some projects this weekend prior to Toronto and Cuba. So gosh darn it I'm making a creature out of an old wool sweater and buttons. Then a brooch, barrettes, bracelet and more! I need a range of projects for all ages and all levels. I figure those will get me started!

And thankfully I've started finding nifty things to repurpose! Found some swanky necklaces to relove. On the left is the necklace from the Eastside Flea Market for $5 and on the right is a necklace from the Lions Gate Thrift Store for $2.

The beads are super cute and perfect for some barrettes or the center of a brooch. Who knows!

I'll post my workshop projects as I finish them up. Happy crafting!


My Mom's Day frame update is done

I finished up my Mom's Day frame update tonight. It was an easy peasy update and the frame was well worth $6.99. I hope Mom likes the frame and photo!



I love the soft white finish. I added a coat of white craft paint then rubbed the frame with a sponge to remove the white from the details. Then I varathaned the frame. I was able to 'hide' the imperfections in the frame or atleast make them less obvious.

I had one hiccup. I added the photo then realized I needed a cushion between the photo and the back of the frame so the photo sat flush in the frame.

Luckily I save things that I think I can reuse. I found this sponge type object from some pushpins a friend gave me.

I placed the object in and it fit perfectly. I sealed up the back and it's good to go!

Next I'll grab a voucher for a pedicure and a card. Mom's Day is going to be great!