Sunday, January 31, 2010

I am addicted

I love these pouches.

I love the mini-ness and the contrasting bias trim.

I made this one last night using fabrics left over from an apron I made for Bella yesterday.

This morning, she thought the pouch was for her:( I told her that if it doesn't sell, she can have it or maybe I'll just make her something similar. I spent $82 yesterday at a 20% off sale at my favorite local fabric store. I bought tons of Heather Bailey's new Nicey Jane line and a fat quarter set of her Pop Garden fabrics. I need for this pouch to sell to fund yesterday's fun. I have lots of pretty spring skirts planned for the girls and we have the cutest tops at Carters right now to match. And it was so nice to buy new fabric yesterday since I really haven't purchased any in a few months.

We've had a weekend with the perfect combination of productivity and relaxation. Crafty Papa finished painting the garage and we went and bought a huge piece of carpet to make it more cozy in there. I made the above pouch, an apron for Bella, and sorted through a bunch of my sewing things to clean up shop a bit. I also made cinnamon rolls, cleaned up the mountain of stuff on the floor of my closet, and am baking a Thanksgiving turkey before heading in to work this afternoon. In midst of all of these projects, we watched a movie with the girls, went to an estate sale and looked for treasures, and blew bubbles in the front yard. I like having a day off of work on the weekend:)

Friday, January 29, 2010

First new shop addition

in about a month and a half!

The pattern I tested this week involved bias tape. A lot of bias tape. I must have had bias tape on the brain because I dreamed about this little clutch with bias tape last night. I thought dreams were supposed to be more exciting than that?

I think it's really cute for a night with the girls when you don't want to take your big mama purse or a good addition to your big mama purse when you need something to hold the smaller bits and pieces that get lost in your big bag.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Raspberry Truffles

In keeping with my Valentine's Day Bunco theme, I decided to serve truffles. My friend, Lena made some super delicious peanut butter truffles at Christmas time and I hit her up for her secret recipe. A Betty Crocker Bon Bon kit in a box! They're so good, no one would ever know they're from a box.

Since the boxed stuff was so good, I decided to make a batch of raspberry truffles from scratch. I threw together some cream, chocolate, and seedless raspberry preserves and put the mixture in the freezer to firm up. Then I rolled it into balls, dipped them in chocolate, let my girls sprinkle crushed almonds, and then swirled chocolate on the top.

I think they look really good and taste kinda good. Go figure, the boxed stuff is better.

For Your Records

I did make something yesterday. Something really, really cute and quick and easy.

I tested a pattern that should be released next week so I can't share pictures yet. But please let the record reflect that I did make something.

Today's creation...raspberry truffles. Mmmmmmm.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Fabric Banner: Part Two

Below are steps for making bias tape and attaching pendants. Depending on your level of laziness, you could just buy bias tape (usually near the zippers in Walmart or a craft store). But, I'm cheaper than I am lazy and I already had black fabric so I made my own tape.

Step 1
Cut two 44" strips of fabric 2 1/2-3" wide. Fold in half lengthwise and iron. Open up strip to show crease.

Step 2
Fold one side in toward crease and iron along length. Then fold in the other side toward the crease and iron.

Step 3
Fold strip in half lengthwise and iron.

Step 4
Open up folded strip and place last pendant inside leaving a few inches of bias tape to hang the finished banner.

Step 5
Refold the strip over the top of the pendant and begin sewing close to the edge of the bias tape.

Step 6
Before reaching the end of the pendant, open up the bias tape and place the next pendant.

Step 7
Fold bias tape over top of pendant again and continue sewing until all pendants are added.

Step 8

Add personal touches like pom pom fringe, rhinestones, etc. and hang.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Lazy Woman's Fabric Banner: Part One

I'm still working on sprucing up my house for Valentine's Day Bunco next week. Today's project is a "Love" fabric banner and I thought I'd share directions here for doing it the lazy woman's way. Once you read the tutorial, you'll see how easy it is to make and you'll think I was silly for even documenting the process. But some of my readers are scrapbookers, not seamstresses and I'm hoping this will be a good tutorial for them that requires just the most basic sewing skills.

Fabric for letters and fabric for pendants
Bias tape (or make your own)
Pendant template
Heat n Bond

Step 1

Cut strips of your letter fabric the appropriate width for your Cricut. Iron heat n bond on the back of the fabric and then apply to cutting mat. Cut letters using Cricut. I had a blade depth of 6, speed 2, and pressure 5. Also, I've found that it doesn't cut well close to the edge so I come in and down a little on my fabric and then start cutting. Of course, if you don't have a Cricut, you can cut your letters by hand but I'm too lazy for that.

Step 2

Gently peel fabric off mat. There may be a few threads still attached at the corners or turns so have scissors nearby to snip anything that's still hanging on. Your fabric edges may look rough but don't worry, it's really not noticeable once the letters are ironed on.

Step 3

Trace and cut out pendants (or other shape).

Step 4

Line up your backgrounds and layout letters just slightly below center to account for the bias tape at the top. Don't measure, you're supposed to be lazy about this.

Step 5

Iron in place. Come back tomorrow to see how to make the bias tape and sew it all together.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Take THAT Rain!

I decided that for the grand finale of our crazy weather week, I would actually leave the house for something other than school drop off/pickup and work. I've taken laziness to a new level this week and I thought that maybe mingling with the general public would help remind me that it's ok to be away from the couch during poor weather.

My plan sort of worked. I have been productive today, however I was productive from the couch. Tatey and I made a felt heart wreath using instructions from The Idea Room blog (really fabulous ideas here, definitely worth bookmarking). I'm hosting Bunco at my house next month and I'm doing a Valentine's Day theme with chocolate covered strawberries, champagne, truffles, etc. I don't own any Valentine's Day decorations and I'd really like for my house to look cute and festive so I decided to make the most of this crappy weather and make my own decorations.

This project is really so easy, a three year old monkey could do it. Here's proof...

And our end product. I now realize my felt flowers aren't packed as tightly as The Idea Room's but that's ok. Great evidence of how cheap and lazy I can be. Better like this?

Or better like this?

I'm also going to make a fabric banner or two for Valentine's Day and use the same idea as the wreath on some styrofoam balls to hang from the cieling. Any other great craft ideas for the holiday?

Ooooo, my cornbread and honey butter from last night turned out great. A really simple and cheap compliment to homemade chili. I have no idea how that tiny wedge went missing. Ok, maybe I do.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

New Project

Life has mostly been put on hold this week due to the crazy storms here. That's just how we roll in California. Anything below 65 degrees requires a scarf. Rain means you stay inside and eat anything you can find in your pantry because going to the grocery store is impossible. Cleaning house is off limits too because you have to sit near a window and keep an eye on the wind and the river forming in the street. Riding out a storm here is quite a big commitment.

Yesterday, I finally decided to get off my arse and make something. I've been hanging on to a bag of scraps from the Urban Chicks Sweet and Swell lines with plans to make a quilt. I kept putting off making the quilt because I wasn't sure whether I was going to keep it for myself or give it away as a gift. I decided to just dive in and decide what to do with it when it's finished.

I didn't have a lot of scraps so I added in some cream kona cotton squares. Yes, I do see that the cream is probably too white in comparison to the birdie print but I'm cheap and I think it will look fine once the batting added.

The pieced squares are big enough to make a baby quilt but I'd really like for this to be a larger quilt that an adult can use so I'm going to add some big borders. I'm thinking an 8 inch border made with a pattern from either the Swell or Sweet line that isn't already in the quilt and then a really big 12-15 inch white border around that. Thoughts? Too much border? I'm not really a quilter so I don't know what the rules are.

While I was taking pictures of my quilt top, my little cutie was posing next to it. She's so silly and fun and she really makes me happy.Align CenterI don't know if I can bring myself to be creative today. It's pouring and I have to go grocery shopping. And yesterday's productivity was punished with pink eye (I've never had it before and I'm not finding it to be enjoyable). I am planning to make corn bread and honey butter for the first time though and that should count for something.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

I got nothin'

I'm not making anything today besides dinner and I don't think it's going to be exciting enough to share. I spent the morning at a friend's house talking about weight, my exceptionally round booty, the downside to living in a college town (lots of young hot girls to compare your not-as-young and not-as-hot self to), and looking at old pictures of us from college. Her 2 1/2 year old kept mocking me by throwing his hands up and saying, "That's hilarious!" and "I know!". I think I'm going to start doing that when involved in a seriously uninteresting conversation.

I would much rather spend the morning with a friend than cleaning house. And that's why my house looks like this.

Technically though, this does showcase "creation". Not only did the girls create a big fat mess, they also made fun little magazine collages. I'm definitely not one of those moms that keeps a super clean and tidy house but I'm also not really comfortable with magazine page confetti in my front room. But, the girls LOVE cutting things out and seem to be really into the project so I'll let them have their mess for another day. Coincidentally, I'm feeling extra tired and lazy today so it's the perfect time to ignore the mess.
Matea is absolutely crazy with the scissors. In general, she's much more reckless and daring than Bella and would probably use scissors blind folded if I let her. I can't watch her at all because it makes my heart beat fast. I am certain she will cut herself so I just try to focus on the fact that she has good insurance.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Made by not me

My new favorite piece of jewelry.

I've been wanting one of these necklaces forever and finally decided to use my allowance this month to buy one (yeah, we both get allowance).

It's even better than I expected. Heavier and more substantial than I thought it would be. Absolutely worth $40.

It's made by a local mom named Rachel who was super nice to work with. She has an etsy shop, MoonlightDoodles, with lots of other beautiful necklaces. Maybe you can pick up some extra chores around the house and get some allowance to get your own necklace:)

I know I always look mad in pictures I post here. But I think that's how I really look. I'm just not a big smiler.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Make a Wish

Several years ago, when Bella was still teeny tiny, Crafty Papa and I started the "birthday fairy" tradition. It's sort of like Christmas Eve for birthdays. After the girls go to bed, we decorate the house with balloons, streamers, and a birthday sign and pile up the birthday girl's presents.

I was busy at 10:00 last night hanging tissue paper flowers from the ceiling, running pink streamers across the living room, and admiring the new "Happy Birthday" banner I made.

And it was totally worth working harder than I like to that late at night because I got to see this expression this morning...

I made pink sprinkled cake pops for Bella's kindergarten class. It was the first time any of them had experienced the deliciousness that is cake balls.

I think we made our 6 year old's day:)

Friday, January 8, 2010

Happy Birthday...I got you an actual paper card!

A handmade birthday card for a friend who turns 5 next week.

An actual paper card.

Not a text, email, or Facebook message. Something you can actually hold.

Mail just for you with your name on it.

Proof that your birthday wasn't an after thought. I had to think about it at least a few days in advance in order to have it arrive in your mailbox on time.

Yeah, I'm a big believer in birthday cards. Sure, Facebook is great for people you don't know that well or really only know in the cyber world. But for good friends, and definitely family, in my opinion, a card (or phone call) is important.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Switching Gears

You may have noticed I haven't been particularly crafty, productive, motivated, or inspired lately. I think I've realized that working 20 hours a week (and sometimes more) on top of my full-time mom gig just doesn't leave enough time and energy for this mama to sew for my shop any more. I may list something from time to time, but I'm taking the pressure off myself and am going to enjoy creating things for my family instead of for others.

But, the title of this blog is "Crafty Mama Creations", not, "Watch Crafty Mama Sit on Her Ass". So, I'm going to share something I've created every weekday (that's my goal anyway). It may be something sewn, cooked, scrapbooked, baked, or beaded.

Or, it may be something that barely fits in the guidelines of "created". Like making ice cream cones today. In January. Because it's like 80 degrees here. Wipe those tears, Shanna.

Monday, January 4, 2010

What we've been up to...

Sleeping in the living room next to buckets (if you catch my drift). All four of us:(

It has not been a good Christmas vacation.

Many days in our pj's, not able to stand upright.

Lots of time spent wishing our house had two bathrooms instead of one.

But I think we're finally on the mend and I really hope to sew something this week.