Saturday, October 31, 2009

Much Obliged

This card uses the Stampin' Sisters in Christ challenge this week and the Card Positioning system sketch. I used Laurie Wilson's Texas on my Mind set from Clear Dollar Stamps.

Last weekend my friend showed me this totally cool technique for dry embossing that she saw on Splitcoaststampers. I don't know who discovered this, but it is amazing to me. Then again, using an embossing folder & seeing the results is amazing. You use a balsa wood frame as the bottom part of a sandwich instead of whichever plate goes under your CB folder normally. Then, you put your paper in your CB folder & center it over the open part of the frame (mine was an oval frame). Put the rest of your sandwich together & roll through your machine. I had to add an extra layer of thin cardboard as a shim to get it to make a good deep impression. The result is the embossed part is on the edges leaving a blank area in the middle. Isn't that cool?

One of Laurie Wilson's projects was recently featured in Crafts & Things magazine. I've absolutely fallen in love with the magazine & try to pick up a copy when it comes out. I'm a "multi-media" crafter. Not that I do cool multi-media art, but I like a LOT of different crafts, so this magazine is great fun. They even have recipes! In this project, Laurie used a light shade of distress ink to just bring out some snowflakes. I decided to do the same with the stars on the white paper on this card. My ink was a tad darker. It was really just the leftovers from using Memento Rich Cocoa on another project. I was too lazy to go to garage where my bag is with my distress inks in it. That's another story. LOL! I thought it added a nice rustic look.

The challenge at Stampin' Sisters in Christ was to make a card showing thankfulness as we give thanks to the Lord and give thanks to those who have been kind to us. 2 weeks ago we had a garage sale on Friday & Saturday. My next door neighbor, Janie, came out & visited with me most of the day. We've only been here a few months, so it was very kind of her to do that. I got to know her a bit more. She's about my mom's age, so it's fun to talk to someone who is in a different place in life. Saturday her "kids" (adults with a son) had their garage sale. That night Janie invited us to dinner, but I was severely sunburned & aching and Bethany was sick. She brought us plates of brisket, potato salad & Mexican rice. I've wanted to make her a treat, but she is diabetic so I need to get some Splenda to bake for her. For now, I wanted to give her a card to thank her for being such a good neighbor. The Texas part, well, that's where we live!

Much obliged for y'all mosying up to my lil' ol' blog, partner.

Happy Birthday to my Mom!

Today is my mom's 53rd anniversary of her 20th birthday. LOL! We'll be heading over to my parents' house this afternoon. I have been "sew" busy that I just made a card last night. I used the sketch challenge from Midnight Madness and used a Happy Hopper stamp. My soon to be 11 year old dd loves House Mouse and companion stamps, so when we found them on clearance several months ago we added to our collection. Mom is a chocolate lover and she passed that gene to me. I thought this image was perfect for her. I have a chocolate sheet cake cooling downstairs (I HAD to sample the frosting). It's gluten free so I can have some & doesn't look as pretty as Mom's always does but I hope it will taste good. I made a full of gluten pumpkin cake just in case!

Thanks for hopping by today!

P.S. If you know where we hid Mom's birthday gift, would you let me know?

Friday, October 30, 2009

Chef Mama makes Kitchen Accessories!

Now this is the perfect job for Chef Mama: making pot holders and a toaster cover! I showed you a sneak peek earlier. Here is a look at 2 oven mitts finished & one of the pot holders. My machine decided to work, albeit temperamentally, today. My friend's Kenmore is sitting downstairs, just in case. The needle broke so I decided to call it quits for tonight.

My mom's birthday is tomorrow & my SIL's birthday was today. I haven't made cards for either of them, so think I'll work on that now!

Floral Purse and Wicked Sewing Machine

I've had two orders for items waiting to be made while I was trying to get ready for the craft show last weekend. This first purse is another hobo style bag. This fabric is from JoAnn's. I quilted it with the lining. I need to add the handles once I get some more D rings later today.

You can see some of the quilting in this bag. On the others I've quilted just the outside fabric & the lining was separate. This has a zipper pouch and 2 slip pockets. They hang separately because of the quilted lining.

This is the 2nd bag for this customer. This is actually the inside. I worked on all my red items at once to avoid changing thread so much. This one won't be quilted. This shows the zipper pocket and the slip pockets.

The outside of this bag is denim. I asked the customer if I could add a blue jean pocket with a bit of red bandana fabric sticking out. She suggested adding a band of bandana & I think that turned out really cute! I haven't sewn this piece together so it still has the raw edges in this picture.

Another friend of mine just redecorated her kitchen with red gingham checks and wanted some hot pads and such to match. This is one side of an oven mitt and is unfinished. It's solid red on the back, but that part will be inside when I sew this together. I found some batting that is supposed to be heatproof. I made one piece with just that batting and tried quilting on the lines rather than diagonally. I did NOT like that look at all on this mitt. Also, I just wanted to be SURE the mitt was heat safe, so I bought some cotton batting to add an extra layer. I think it looks so cute so far!

Now that wicked sewing machine. I have family in Massachusetts where the word "Wicked" can also mean wonderful, great, really cool. I'm in Texas. Here wicked means wicked. I returned my mom's machine to her and have been using my own. First, it was incredibly SLOW. I took off part of the cover & found some tangled up thread inside so I worked to remove that. Then last night it just froze, for lack of a better description. I can barely turn the wheel manually. It reminds me of the time our automatic steering went out & I had to use all my might to turn the steering wheel. A friend is going to let me borrow her machine & I'm going to see if I can borrow my mom's when I go over there this weekend. Kind of hard to be a seamstress with no sewing machine! NO, I am not going to hand sew all of these! LOL!

BTW, if you haven't already seen the new releases from Clear Dollar Stamps (available 11/1) and Gina K. Designs, they have some really wonderful stamps coming out. I just need to sew if I want to buy any stamps again!

Hope you've enjoyed your visit. I'm hoping to get inky this weekend and play in some challenges. I'll post those when I'm done.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

My first Craft Booth

Today I had my first ever craft booth. It wasn't my first booth at a craft type fair because I've had many Pampered Chef booths in the past 8 1/2 years. However, it was my first time to sell homemade items. My friend's neighborhood was having a Harvest Festival. They invite vendors to set up tables and have a moon bounce & more for the kids. It was a rather slow event for sales. Okay, it was REALLY slow for sales. I spent more putting gas in the van than I earned today. Most of that was selling Pampered Chef items at a deep discount. Still, it was a good "dry run" at being a craft fair salesperson. Plus, it was a beautiful day & I got to spend time with my friend whom I'd not seen for a long time.

Here is what my table looked like to start. I added a few items as I finished them during the 3 hours we were there.

If you would like to see closer up what I was selling you can go to my Splitcoast Stampers Gallery HERE.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Little Pink Miss Muffet

The Weekend Color Challenge for Clear Dollar Stamps this weekend was to use PINK in honor of breast cancer awareness month. I had started coloring Miss Muffet with shades of pink, so I decided I'd use her as my central image. Isn't she the cutest? She was created by Shawne for Clear Dollar Stamps. I just finished her & can't take a picture because the camera battery is being charged. I scanned it, so it's not the best image. I'll try to take a real picture tomorrow.

Thanks for coming by!

ETA: I put a real picture of Miss Muffet here! Also, the layout uses the Card Positioning System layout for week 138.

Fall Swap Cards at Last!

I joined the fall swap between the "PSF's" and the "TDS" on SCS. Confused? These are different groups on Splitcoast Stampers. The PSF's are "Pretend Stamping Friends" and TDS are my dear Traveling Dork Sisters. I thought I'd have time to finish these with time to spare. I started them in September. EARLY September! Then life happened & here I am finishing them up. You'll notice they all (or almost all) have different buttons on them. I had the cutest set of Jesse James Dress It Up buttons & decided to use those. I ended up with some with greens & purple buttons that just did NOT match, so I used the cute leaves I had on 2 of the cards.

For the Layout, I used the Midnight Madness Sketch Challenge this week HERE.

I loved how my dork sister Karen Lynn added texture to the wedge pieces on her card HERE. I decided my wedges would replicate the tail feathers.

Stamps: Clear Dollar Stamps Eat More Ham
Inks: Memento Rich Cocoa & Black, Distress Walnut Stain and Orange Marmalade
Accessories: Dress it up buttons, stickles, copics & prismacolor markers, nesties, cb folders
Paper: Textured brown, golden brown, white, red, orange, yellow

Thanks for looking!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Loribelle Backpack

This is my 2nd backpack to make. This one is the "Traci" model. It's the same style as the other one I made. It's a little backpack for walking & you just have a few things to tote around.

Now, no product is without a story, it seems. Traci was my first customer, but communicating on e-mail between 2 states wasn't as easy as we thought. I tend to be wordy (I know that comes as a shock), and the more I tried to describe something, the more confusing I made it! At last we did something really smart: We both went to! She chose the fabric she liked for her main fabric (the green & burgundy stripe), and I was able to pick it up at my JoAnn store! Then she found the brown piece & decided it would make a nice contrast, and it does.

I was so happy to be making this little bag. Since I'd just finished the "Grace" bag (hee-hee, I love using the names of people to name each bag!), I knew how to put this together without having to read the directions very much. I zipped along, put in the zipper, then the pocket, sewed the straps and other parts needing brown thread. I got through one of the harder parts: sewing on the bottom of the bag. It's hard because I'm attaching straight sides to a curved piece, and there are so many layers at that point that the machine is a bit reluctant to keep going. Nonetheless, I did it! I was on a roll! I came to the part which required my husband: that grommet! I just don't have the muscle to pound on it enough to secure it onto the bag. I made the hole & had him put in the grommet. I wasn't sure the fabric around the grommet was fully caught, so I then sewed completely around the grommet with a tight zigzag stitch.

I was admiring my work and ready to put on the next piece when something suddenly didn't seem right. The zipper seemed upside down. Hmmm, what was that? The grommet was going through the bottom of the pocket. How strange! Uh-oh. The bottom piece that was a tough part to sew, well, I had sewn it to the TOP of the bag, which naturally meant the only place for the grommet was the BOTTOM of the bag. This grommet is for the drawstring at the top of the bag. Are you picturing this? I just put these parts on upside down. I had just made a hole all the way through the pocket and the bag! It's okay to laugh. Really.

Amazingly, I was able to pull off the grommet, then I took off the bottom piece and the pocket, cut & quilted a new pocket and patched the little hole. It is covered by pockets, and unless Traci tells someone to look at her "beauty mark" (a love mark left by a dork to a dork), it will never be seen by human eyes. On the plus side, I ended up putting matching pockets inside the bag to cover the hole, so it all turned out fine. Phil didn't even complain about having to pound another grommet! LOL!

Without further adieu, I introduce to you The Traci.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Where is Lori?

I realize that I have hundreds, perhaps thousands, of loyal blog readers who have been crying out for days, "WHERE IS LORI?" WHAT? I don't? Well, maybe 2 or 3 who just might be curious? I'll settle for that!

I've been up to my eyeballs in fabric, needles, thread, and patterns! Add to that the daily workings of a homeschool family, friends joining us (which we love!), trips to see grandparents (our parents, the kids' grandparents), and trying to prepare for a much needed garage sale on Friday. Oh, wait, I'm also the "Nut Mom" for our Girl Scout troop. Pretty fitting, huh?

Needless to say, I have not made any cards in the past 7 days or more. I have not cleaned my house (though I did tackle a good chunk of kitchen late one night). I HAVE washed clothes & dishes, but they sit on the couch, amidst the aforementioned fabric (I prewash fabric before creating anything so it doesn't shrink later). Now, it is 11:47 PM & I have yet to write a lesson plan for my science class tomorrow. Okay, I haven't even THOUGHT of a lesson plan. That's next. Right after I look up lesson plans on Ellis Island for another class.

Hopefully in the next few days I can make some cards. I have some swap cards due on the 20th & I've only stamped & colored, no cutting yet! YIKES! CALGON TAKE ME AWAY!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Backpack, Backpack

If you've had a pre-school age child in your care in the past 10 years, you very likely are now singing that lovely "song" (I use the term loosely) from Dora the Explorer. This is NOT Dora's backpack! It is actually Grace's backpack. I hope she doesn't mind me sharing it with all of you, at least in pictures. NOTE: I "enhanced" the pictures, which means they are lightened. The colors are much richer than they show in these pictures. Just wanted you to be able to see the details more clearly.

On the front of the bag, you can see the drawstrings hanging down. These would be easy enough to tuck into the bag. As you can see, there is a large pocket on the front, with 2 smaller pockets, one on each side of the backpack.

This is the look with the flap open. I've attached a large standard snap rather than a magnetic snap. You may have noticed that most purses these days have a magnetic snap in them. I am not opposed to using one if the customer would like this, but I have heard of such snaps ruining debit and credit cards with the magnetic strip on them. I could have used a smaller cording and one cord stopper, but I wanted the cord to match. I found this in the trim section for curtains & such. Then, I could only find white or clear cord stops, but I found these lovely gold ones online! What a perfect match! Grace will still be able to just pull on one cord to open the bag or close it. The other one just holds the cord in place.

The inside of the bag. Nothing fancy, but a good space for putting things in!

The back view. There is a loop at the top for grabbing this backpack and hanging it. The straps are adjustable using rings at the bottom. I did find that the "D" rings I put on are far too large for these straps to hold tightly. I will be looking for some smaller rings that I can slide on without undoing the entire bottom of the bag. I've told Grace this backpack comes with a lot of stories! LOL! If you look at the center, you can see there is a zipper on the back. This makes for easy access without having to open the flap & drawstring on the top. At least I THINK that's what it's for! ha, ha!

If you're interested in having a Loribelle's Bag made, be sure to send me an e-mail or leave a comment with your e-mail if you prefer.

Have a great day!

Monday, October 5, 2009

Cards, Cards, Cards

No time for details. I'm making blintzes, getting a child to bed, and have yet to prepare a lesson plan for one class for tomorrow. YIKES! Thought I'd post here in case you missed them on SCS & couldn't sleep without checking them out. HA! HA! HA!!!!! The purse ones went out with my first 3 purse orders that I finished! Woo-hoo! Off to do whatever comes next!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

More than a Purse!

Yes, I do know how to sew more than purses! LOL! Here is one picture of the costume I finished for Natalie to wear to a party. We'll add a hat for Halloween so she can be look even more like a piece of candy corn! You can't see in the picture, but her shoes have CANDY CORN on them. Well, pictures of candy corn! So cute! We bought a Simplicity pattern (for 99 cents---I refuse to pay more than $1.99 for a pattern on sale because I'm cheap!) for a candy corn outfit. We didn't like the witch part of it, so we changed some colors. I didn't want to buy stretch knit b/c of the price AND it's the same as t-shirts. So, I used coupons at Mike's & got 3 different size shirts so they'd flare out as they got towards the bottom. I cut the yellow one (adult XL) into different sections so I could really gather it up. I did have to use the pattern for the arm thingies. Do you call those gloves? They were called gauntlets on the pattern, but that's also what they call the middle of the toaster cover pattern, I think! Hmmm. Anyway, the outfit could be done easily with no pattern. I cut a slit in the sleeve hems & put in elastic. How did Natalie get so big?

You HAVE to go see what Bethany made to wear HERE on my other blog.

I've finished another purse & will show you that one probably tomorrow.

I'm trying to make cards for World Card Making Day. I ran out of adhesive! ACK! I did run to Wal-Mart & grabbed some. I just couldn't see using Scor-tape on each piece. Hopefully I'll finish THOSE by tomorrow!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Little Red Hat Tote Bag

I had a little bit of the Red Hat fabric leftover from making aprons and decided to make a patchwork tote. I had planned to use a pattern to make one, but was inspired lately to just make one from scratch. The only planning that went into this was the size of the squares. From there on it was flying by the seat of my pants! I think it's a cute tote bag. It's about 11" wide & 12 1/2" tall.

I'll be putting this on my Etsy site unless someone contacts me first about buying it.

Now I'm hoping to stamp a bit tonight & tomorrow!

Customized Make-Up bag

Just finished my first customized Make-up bag. I love how it turned out. When I was making it, I was working on the inside with the pockets, etc., and it wasn't exactly "pretty" with just the teal fabric. Then I turned it right side out & WOW! I love this fabric & love how this turned out! Hope the customer loves it!