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Showing posts with the label crafting/sewing

Knockouts!

Do you remember a 1940s cartoon in which a slick wolf sitting in a nightclub starts howling and making big eyes at a sultry femme fatale voice singing stage right? No, then check this youtube link and come back, please.

Back, good. We can proceed.

That wolf was me when I laid first glance at the decoupage rocks in the sunlight. Whoaaaaa!

These are my first experiments decoupaging rocks. Yup, they are. (Imagine my big smile!) A decoupage rock is one of my planned entries for the county fair in a few weeks. Maybe one of these if I don't get a chance to play with more possibilities.

Easy-peasy: Paint one side of rocks white. Dry. Paint other side of rocks white. Dry. Tear pictures to fit rocks to your pleasure. Glue pictures to rocks with decoupage medium.  Dry.

At first I wanted to use pretty paper napkins for my pictures. I got excited about shopping at the party supply store. Then I recalled the last time I was there. The aisles were messy and little kids talked loudly while t…

Dishing About Me

1. On Sunday, I came away from the antique fair in Moss Landing with eight yards of the above fabric. It was $3/yard, a bargain I could not resist, especially when it's such a cool print. I have no idea what I'm going to do with all that material. Any suggestions?

2. In case some of you are wondering, the huge pile of fabric strips (scroll to xiii) that I cut several weeks ago are still sitting on the bed in L Studio. Molly the Cat seems to enjoy sleeping on top of them.

3.  Carol of Comfort Spring nominated me for The Sunshine Blogger Award. Thank you very much, Carol!

As part of receiving the award, I'm to answer Carol's 11 questions.  Here's the first one: How did you begin blogging?
I wanted to hear my voice again -- the storyteller, not the writer of educational and reference materials -- so I decided to publish a blog about my hometown, Hollister, California. It became more like a travel blog, which was something else I wanted to try. Since I wanted to writ…

Hobbies

A few weeks ago Saturday Night Live featured a video about two women talking about their hobbies. Oh my gosh,  I recognized myself.

When I was a young single thing living la dolce vita in San Francisco, a guy I met for coffee asked, "What are your hobbies?"

"Hobbies?"

"Interests. What do you like to do?"

Totally stumped, I was. I liked to read and write, but I didn't consider those activities as hobbies. They were simply a part of what I did.  Without trying, in the last three years, I've embraced hobbies. Sewing, drawing, painting, gardening, and crafting are what have showed up at my door, thus far.

That guy at the cafe 40 years ago? I never saw him again.

SO, MOLLY DID

The other day I didn't feel like folding the pieces of fabric I laid out on the bed in L Studio. It wasn't going to bother me if Molly the Cat felt like lying on top of the fabric. I told her so, too, before I sat down to contemplate how much of the various materials I w…

Rags, Bottles, and Books

Once upon a time there were people who collected other people's trash and resold the items. Some of these early recycling entrepreneurs were said to go down the street calling out something like "I'm here for any rags, bottles, and bones."

Rags, bottles, and bones. For me, it would be books rather than bones. But, I'm not looking to purchase any rags, bottles, or books. Not at all. I mention the phrase because the past week, I've been repurposing fabric scraps, wine bottles, and old books.

RAGS
The elephant scene (above) is my first try at fabric art. I machine stitched everything but the the red flowery thing, which is the top of a tree, onto a purple napkin. The zipper is the second, if not the first, one I've ever sewn.

I have several more purple napkins and a whole bunch of scraps so I might experiment with more fabric art. We shall see.

BOTTLES
Last year I decided to make a garden border with wine bottles that I collected mostly from our 2016 annivers…

Glue Time!

I now own a mini glue gun! And a whole lot of glue sticks. Whoooo-hoooo!

I've never had a glue gun before. In fact, I have never used one.  Heee-heee.

This morning, The Husband and I went to the new hardware store in the town next door to buy a solution for buffing up brass things. The store had nothing on hand. Being a small shop in a small town, I expected not to find anything appropriate.

I also didn't expect to purchase a mini glue gun. It was $5.49. Cheap, I thought. Please don't tell me otherwise.

The Husband asked me, "What are you going to use it for?"

Chissa? Who knows?  Maybe I'll glue cows to the ground. Just kidding.

Vedremo. We shall see.  


I'm connecting with Our World Tuesday. Here's the link. Thank you, OWT administrators.  Ciao.

An Armful of Bags

Where oh where did my fabric go? Where oh where did it go?

I've been looking for the pieces of rayon fabric for my tunic, the cotton remnants for L Studio's curtains, and the blue hue bunch of fat quarters and scrap. Well, I've been talking about looking. That's not true. I did look through the boxes and containers of fabric in the NW corner of L Studio on Monday. Since then, I've been letting my brain consider where these missing materials might be.

Regardless of the misplaced fabric, I have been busy on the sewing machine. In my search, I found worn-out tee-shirts of ours and skirts I bought at a thrift shop that I put aside years ago to repurpose into something useful. So, there you go. Up in that photo, Husband is modeling our four new tee-shirt shopping bags and in the photo below, another new shopping bag made from a skirt.

Hot cha-cha.




Buttons & Tobacco Tins

There ought to be a song about that combination—buttons and tobacco tins, la la la lah.

Remember the song "Buttons and Bows"? I think Dick Dale on Lawrence Welk sang that song, while dressed in cowboy clothes or dapper 1890s suit. Or, was that Larry Hooper? The Lennon Sisters in prairie dresses and bonnets?

Yup, I watched Lawrence Welk when I was a kid, developing what I thought was sarcasm and wit. Watching it with The Daddy was a treat. I never tired listening to his assessment on the tenor Joe Feeney after he trilled "Danny Boy" or another break-your-heart song, holding the last note to kingdom come and back. When Feeney was done, The Daddy remarked, "He earned his two-bits." I never knew if The Daddy liked Feeney's singing. Should I meet up with The Daddy in the after life, that's one question I shall ask of him.

The tobacco tins in the photo belonged to The Daddy, which meant Older & Only Bro and I bought The Daddy a new pipe for The D…

Cutie Coffee Cozies for Us

Closed eyes no more. Time to be responsible, my aching knees.  ~ Su-sieee! Mac
That was my pronouncement to myself this morning. Neither The Husband nor Molly the Cat heard, so you, dear readers, are my witnesses. I am going to do my best to go through, organize, and throw out the piles of papers and boxes of stuff that are in this house, as well as "do" instead of "thinking about doing" something fun and creative for no reason at all. Yes!

In that second regard, I am happy to say I made something yesterday evening. Actually two somethings—those coffee cup cozies you see in the above photo. Sewing them was easy-peasy. Unlike the first time, a bunch of years ago, when figuring how to do it completely stumped me. I was sweating bullets while stitching it on the machine. Sweating bullets, what an image!

We've been getting coffee to go lately so cardboard coffee sleeves have been collecting in our car. We don't remember until we get back into the car that we p…

A VHS-Tape Planter

The VHS tapes have been staring at me in the living room for more than a month. It could even be two months. I think that was the last time the Husband and I opened a bunch of boxes from storage to determine what to use, keep, throw, donate, recycle, maybe repurpose, or maybe sell. I think these VHS tapes are ones that I thought we might be able to sell online one day.

This morning I finally did something with 12 of the VHS tapes. I bound them together with duct tape to make two walls for a bottomless planter. That's it in the photo. Pretty cool, huh?

The planter would've been made of all VHS tapes, but I didn't have enough tapes. Fortunately, I kept the doors of a small cabinet, which fell apart last year, for the other two walls.

I figure the pretty flowers will take the focus away from the funky taping. Maybe later I'll pretty up the planter with color or simply put something beside the taped VHS-tape side.

It feels good to make something!

Today I'm hooking up …

A Carleen Original

I love handcrafted gifts. This Christmas I received one of the most amazing, beautiful handcrafted gifts ever—a quilt by Sister-in-Law Carleen. Isn't it gorgeous?! The pattern is trés cool.

The photograph doesn't do justice to the the bright and contrasting colors of yellow, green, purple, turquoise, and bits of bright blue. Carleen used a tropical theme because, she said, I was a tropical gal. I totally like that.

Needless to say, but I shall anyway, this Carleen original warms my heart big time and many times over!


I'm sharing this post with Warm Heart Wednesday, a new weekly meme hosted by the amazing Jenny Matlock. Yes, yes, I know it's Saturday. :-)


Tools for Fun

Gosh, it's been one busy week. I apologize to the blog hops and memes that I hooked up with this week. I'm very late about visiting other bloggers, as well as responding here on The View from the Top of the Ladder. That's my plan tomorrow. 

Among the things the Husband and I did today was a stop at the art supplies store so I could spend my birthday money. I purchased a lot of cool stuff for the Husband and me to have fun with—suede boards, colored pencils, colored pens, drawing pad, Mod Podge, fabric glue, air-dry clay, and oven-bake clay.  Whooo-hooo! It's great being 62-years-old.

Cool Stuff!

It's not my birthday.

It feels like it though.  

Today, the Husband and I drove over to Freedom to buy food for Molly the Cat. Our task was done quicker than we estimated, so we headed down the road to Watsonville to visit the art store and bookshop before lunch.

I'd only planned to buy a couple of new colored pencils at Wild Rose's Artists' Supplies and Custom Framing, but you know how it goes. I checked out the shop's art paper. Marbled paper. Oooooh. Wavy, corrugated paper. Gotta have that. Small rectangle-shaped suede paper. 25 cents, sold! My plan is to make masks. Yup.

At Crossroads Books, I bought a mystery called Shaking in Her Flip-Flops. Can't go wrong with a title like that.  Another neat thing about the book is that it's written by Joyce Oroz, an author who lives in nearby Aromas. The Husband and I also decided to purchase a copy of The 2016 Farmer's Almanac. That's always fun reading.

To top off getting all this cool stuff, we found …

Bragging

Three days later, I'm ready to brag about my county fair ribbons. For some of them, I don't know if I would've won if there had been a lot more competition. Don't get me wrong, I'm happy for all of them—four blue and one red ribbon in flower arrangements, one blue and one yellow ribbon in photography, and a white ribbon in wearable art. Whooo-hooo!

My most unbelievable win was the blue ribbon for my dry floral arrangement in the Country Road Treasure class. You had to use objects found along the road as containers or accessories. I found a broken piece of PVC pipe with jagged edges along the road while the Husband and I were walking home. It was perfect. When friend Kathy saw my arrangement, she described it as modern minimalism. I was told that the arrangement received a lot of comments. Good or bad, I didn't ask. 

You saw my Eiffel Tower martini glass arrangement already. If you haven't, click here.  These were my other flower arrangement entries.


The …

Le Voiçi -- L'Eiffel Tower

On Monday I told you about my dry floral arrangement for the county fair. The photo shows my final result.

How did I do?

I won a blue ribbon for it.  Yup, yup, yup. You still can't see them, but there are tiny fake pearls, with red and green glass beads,  in the Eiffel Tower martini glass. They cover black stones that keep up the dry flowers.

Tomorrow, I'll tell you more about the fair. I'm pooped.


Finding Order in Chaos

Yesterday afternoon, procrastinating me started thinking about my flower arrangement entries for the fair, which are due on Wednesday afternoon.

I opened one of the kitchen cupboards and staring boldly at me, obviously begging to be in the fair, was an Eiffel Tower martini glass.  "I'm for the A Touch of Glass dry floral arrangement," it proclaimed. 

"Okay," I said. "Let's go." We went to the office where I set the Eiffel Tower martini glass on the drawing board, into which the poor Husband keeps bumping as he goes in and out of the office.

Before I knew it, the dried green moss called out from its basket on the floor, "Hey! Hey!"

Bammm! A handful of moss planted itself in the glass, draping itself whatever way it wanted.

The tiny blue straw flowers I bought the other day made a noise, "Me! Me! Me!"

Bammmm! The tiny flowers stood proudly in the moss.

"Yoooo-hoooo!" The fake pearls waved from its box. "Eiffel …

Summer Domestic Diva Challenge -- Two Down!

Hurrah! I completed item#1 on my list of seven things to do before the summer ends.

The Husband has his second tunic. It sports a couple of boo-boos. One pocket is lower than the other. And, there's a triangle of fabric missing in the interfacing. I cut it out as I was sewing because the fabric was overlapping in the oddest way.  I should've had more faith in what I was doing. We'll see how the tunic holds up with each washing.


The blue print on the pockets and on the sides looks weird. What can I say other than it brings out the happiness of the shirt.

The Husband is so cool.



Time Flies. . .

When you have much to do. Yup. Time flies. Fly, fly, time.

Within the next six hours, I plan to do this:

Finish the Husband's tunic. All I need to do is attach the sleeves and sides, then hem it up.

Make an appetizer.  The Husband and I are going to a party tonight. Fun. Maybe I'll make cheesy olive balls. They're easy to make, but that means going to the store for olives and cheddar cheese.

Put together a photo collage.  It's for a luncheon fundraiser tomorrow. I could probably do that after the party, if I print the photos beforehand. Yeah, that's the ticket.

Get this post done.  I threw this in so I can feel like I'll have accomplished something once its published.  Always look for the positive, I say.

Thank goodness, I finished reading my novel last night, otherwise I'd forget about doing these things I plan to do. Enchanted  August by Brenda Bowen.  Just like the title, the story was enchanting.

I could go for either a cup of coffee or a lovely cocktail.…

Working Out the Laziness

I'm feeling lazy. It may be because I haven't pedaled Tilda-Hilda in a week. Soon, though, we'll be out again. Perhaps tomorrow. Definitely tomorrow, even if it's around the block.

Since I've been feeling lazy, I decided to start working on one of my seven things to do before the summer ends. The other day, I opened my fabric stash and came up with a color combination for the Husband's second tunic.

I'm patchworking a bit of blue with the brown kalidescope print. Although the two prints felt right together, they looked weird at first. Now, that I've finished sewing the patchworks together, I don't think the colors or the prints clash. Hopefully, I'll have time today to sew the tunic.

'This may be a very cool tunic or an ugly one," I said to the Husband.

"I don't care," he replied. "I'll wear it anyway."

The Husband is a sweetheart.

I'm linking up with Our World Tuesday. To join in or check out other part…

Seven Things to Do Before Summer Ends

It's time for me to make a list of all domestic diva things I want to accomplish this summer. Otherwise, I will just vaguely think about doing them, which in my world means "I'll do it tomorrow." As we all know, tomorrow really never comes.

I shall ring Tilda-Hilda's ding-a-ling bell and...and...and...proclaim my list of things I shall complete before the first day of Autumn.


1. Sew the Husband another tunic.

2. Sew myself a tunic.

3. Sew the Christmas vest for the Husband, which I said I would do....uhm, two Christmases ago.


4. Make lemon extract.

5. Make limoncello.

6. Make candied ginger.

7. Bake energy bars. So, Tilda-Hilda and I can pedal farther and further down roads.

I can do these seven things. I can!

How I Spent My "Gone Reading" Day

I need to put up my "Gone Reading" sign more often. I got some good reading done yesterday. It did take awhile before I actually ran to the bedroom and escaped into another time and place but when I did I read for two hours before it was time to make dinner. In the evening, I went back to the mystery I was reading until I turned the last page of the book, which I will tell you about another day.

To feel okay about going reading, I decided to cross a few things off my To-Do list. I finally put the photos I had scanned back in the Mama's albums. Some of them even went back on the correct pages. Hopefully, the Mama won't notice. I filed away some documents and put papers to shred in a neat pile on the floor.

I even researched what kind of milkweed grows in our area and where to purchase the milkweed seeds. Milkweed is what monarch butterflies munch on as they pass through from here to there. When I was a kid, monarch butterflies were a common thing to see around here…