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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

teapot surprises

Yep.  I'm a swapper.  I love to do those cool mail swaps where you have some kind of a challenge and then get a random partner to send to?  Well, if you've never done it, go to and sign up.  Its free and super fun.
The last swap I did was supposed to be for a cup of tea and a letter.  You get 2 partners to which you send 2 teas/packaged beverages and a letter.  as long as you follow those rules, your good. However, I LOVE getting fun mail and extra special things and I honestly believe that you get what you receive, so I try to make mine special.

What I did was, I drew a teapot freehand onto a piece of paper and then cut out each section that I want to applique   Like this:

Then, you pick your fabric and iron it on to stabilizer--the thicker the stabilizer, the better, especially when you have tiny swirls and corners to stitch around. 

Then, you trace each piece out onto the stabilizer side of the material and cut it all out.  For interest, use coordinating colors, but different fabrics for each piece.  

I then take a piece of felt and tightly zigzag all the way around the piece, making sure to leave an opening at the top so you can put things into your teapot. 

You end up with a little something like this.  You want to trim the felt edges of the teapot for a nice finished look.  I added a pocket in the front too, to put my letter in for my partner.

And here it is!  all packed up and ready to go!  It was very easy and the pot only took about an hour extra to put together.  A little effort and my partners have a super special surprise.

I also offer little things like this in my Etsy shop all pre-made for the swapper.  Not everyone is crafty, but everyone loves special just-because surprises.  That little something extra will make someone.s day.

Because I'm on the subject of surprises, Look what I GOT TODAY!!!!

Monday, September 10, 2012


Okay, I am supposed to be working at my "real" job, but I really wanted to post this quick.  First, "the story."

So, year ago my mom gave me a box filled with tons of crochet hooks that belonged to my grandmother and great grandmother.  I was thrilled, but both of them were doily makers and most of these hooks are teenie weenie!!!  With the hooks came a bag of cotton thread that you used them with.  basically, string.  not yarn, not something bulky and quick and warm.  String.  Thread even.  As an impatient artist, I lovingly put these hooks to the side along with the thread and convinced myself that I would NEVER have the patience for anything less than worsted weight and a size H hook.  The other day, I was looking for lace applique to make jewelry and realized, it looked just like the doilies my grandmas made, only not round...

So,  I went looking for patterns, but as I said before, I am super impatient.  So, the pattern thing never really does me any good because after the first couple of rows or whatever, I go all independent freelancer and do what the hell I want.  I managed to work out a little something.  Of course, it's freehand, so there is no exact numbers, which adds to the wonky appearance; however, the deed has been done.  I made me a choker with one of my grandma's teenie weenie hooks and some of her string.  TA DAAAAA!   I am currently blocking it which is why you see all the pins, but you get the drift of what I was experimenting for.

Now, will I do it again? IS terribly cool, though my hand was not loving the tiny hook.  I may need to fashion a more ergonomic grip on these hooks before trying again, but yeah.   I can do this.  Hi grandma (s)!  I did it!!!

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Thursday, July 19, 2012

vintage fabric love

I have been having such a blast with these vintage fabrics my mom gave me.  Each one has a story.  There is this blue polka dot that came from a dress that was made for my sisters to wear, but they both refused because it was SO OLD :)
A scrap of mom's out-dancing shirt and vest set, a square of hot pants, a charm from that pink prom dress my sister's shared...

I'm having to work at it, but I am managing to make coffee sleeves out of the scraps for gifting.  I just added 2 more beauties to my shop:

Take some time today and pick out a little "just because" gift for you or a friend.

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Swapbot section on uniqueeuphoria

As you know , I love, love, love me some swapbot.  I have been working on a section of my shop, just for swapbot users looking for fun little extras to send to their partners.  Not everyone is crafty and not everyone has time to be crafty.  I am really hoping I can offer a little something to the swapbot site.
Today I focused on making some treat envelopes.  Made from vintage fabric and felt, I sew these all by hand in the shape of a little mug.  You can then stuff this with little goodies like a letter and some tea, honey sticks, coffee, sweeteners, chocolates, hot chocolate packs, pencils, pens, chap stick, whatever you want to fill it with for your partner.  Lets say you are to send a friend a beverage and a nice long letter.  This would have plenty of room for your letter and beverage and possibly a stir stick/peppermint/bookmaker/etc.  See?  Just one more little something to make your letter than much more special.  So, here is the new additions to the swapbot section.  Along with the treat mugs, I also made coffee sleeves with vintage fabric and managed to list a couple of zipper pulls/purse charms.  any of these would be a welcome extra for your partner.

new earrings!

If you read my regular blog at all, you would know it has been HOT here in  Northern Wisconsin.  So hot, I have been hiding in my little craft room, greedily fondling all my supplies and completely ignoring the outside world.  it seems earrings keep me in one spot long enough to foster cankle growth, and since I managed to acquire a bunch of new bits lately, I've slammed out a good pile of earrings to hang out in my shop.  

Remember, free shipping to everywhere!

Tuesday, July 03, 2012 cranky...

Why do pearls and seashells go so well together?  every time I do these necklaces, I just love them.  Loooove....anyway, my newest on the block right now on tophatter.  My luck in selling stuff has been pretty lame today though, so it will probably be in my store before you know it.

New item and a couple of new friends

It has been debilitating hot.  I know, I know.  Wisconsin polar bear girl has no idea what summer hot is.  Well folks, my cankles know what hot is.  This is it :)

I jumped on the steampunk bandwagon this week and managed to score a pretty kick-ass octopus pendant.  I just listed the final product today in the store:

I'm happy enough with it for my first try.  I kind of got the look I wanted, but luckily, it was a 2 for 1 sale on big damn octopus pendants.  Muahahaha

I also want to mention some new friends of mine that I have recently met in Swapbot.  First, is Jenifer, who has an etsy shop located here:  Her style is very alternative with a little darkness and a light peppering of steampunkary.   She features handmade gauges and accessories, which I love.  There really is so little in the way of gauge and extreme ear wear.  Shes even been very sweet in answering some of my questions about the rules and supplies allowed to make jewelry like hers.  I am all about a crafter willing to share information :)  One of my favorites from Soloflair:

Oh killed my sister! great...I can see these as Christmas presents.  Perfect for my  silly family...

Okay, the next shop I want to show you is that of  Suzanne from House of Plush
Here its all about cute and kawaii.  Don't let the cuteness fool you.  It looks all hugs in smiles in plush-land, until I ran into this: 
Which made me laugh out loud.  One of my favorite items in her shop right now.  I really love vulgarity expressed in cross stitch...It just makes me giggle.   

She also features stuffies and plushies  for the little ones, personalized onsies, brilliant softie toy sets, cutie broaches and pins, and of course, her kick ass and unique embroidery.  Personally, my mom would love tea towels with brains on them.  They would totally go with her scull pincushion I got her for her birthday last year...Second only to the hedgehog with a retractable tape measure that you pull out of his butt.  Brilliant. 

Make sure to check these ladies out.  They are both very sweet and very talented.  Christmas will be here before you know it!!!  We need to support handmade.  Nowhere else can you find such an awesome variety  of original and quirky items.  If you don't usually shop handmade, I highly suggest it.  Check these girls out, check me out and discover some awesome. 

Sunday, July 01, 2012

In touch with my nerdy side

I have been working on a couple of special orders lately.  One happens to be for a Brony who really, really needs a My Little Pony.  I'm not the most familiar with these guys anymore.  I remember them from when I was little, but since then they have kind of gotten lost in the pile of mind-numbing cartoons my daughters love.  It turns out, there is an entire adult male following, who call themselves "Bronies."  I am seriously amused and so, had to take on the task of crocheting a 12-inch tall Rainbow Dash.  As you probably know, I just can't follow a pattern, so usually when I take on amirigumi, it's kind of fly-by-the-seat-of-my-pants and is subject to artistic interpretation.  I can't even tell you how excited I was when I finally got the 4th leg done. Whew.  Then I checked the picture and started swearing like a toothless pirate when I saw the be-hatch needed wings.  GAH!  We have a love-hate relationship right now.  Anyway, she is getting there and for the most part, turning out pretty accurate:

The wings are posing some problems.  This one needs another layer and maybe some tailoring to get it a little less...hand-y.  It is definitely the biggest crochet project I have ever taken on and has taken me the longest.  Take THAT attention deficit disorder!  

Then, another customer approached me to crochet him a Bomb-om for his desk.  It originally was supposed to be a coffee mug cozy, but at the last minute, he changed his order to a straight up amigurumi.  Either way, he is awesome. 

Yeah, you better run Mario. 

Monday, June 04, 2012

Paper wasp art natural pendant

I just wanted to share real quick a little something I discovered today.  I really wanted to make an original, never-been-seen-before kind of necklace and after digging through some supplies, I think I managed something  neat-o.  I found this huge wasp nest.  You know, the kind of hive thing that you see hanging from trees?  One of these:
 Photo from (thank you!)

Anyway, I took that little awesome thing (obviously abandoned as they usually are in the late fall/early winter) and had it sitting on a shelf for a while wondering what to do with it.  Today, I moved it and a little bit of the "paper" fell off.  I had one of those keepsake pendant kits and mounted a bit of the paper into the pendant.  From that, I got this little number: 

Super pretty right?  But that's not all!  While this screams earrings, I had this cool bead I have been just aching to use in a pendant situation.  So, with some general fanageling, I now have this final product: 

I love it!  It turned out so awesome.  I hung it from a simple gray leather thong to continue with the natural bohemian look.  I almost don't want to sell it...sigh, but alas, I am poor and mama needs a new bra ASAP. So, If you love this, and feel sorry for my unsupported bosoms, please visit my Etsy and make this little guy yours.  It wants to be on you.  

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Well, It took some time, but I have an awesome product going into my etsy today.  I made crochet stitch markers just a little more ergonomic and easy to use by utilizing the traditional lobster claw, only at a scale much bigger than what is usually used.  It seems even when I use the small lobster claws, I not only have trouble getting them placed on my work, but getting them off as well.  The bigger size should remedy that situation and should be a little easier for stiff and arthritic hands as well.   I had to special order the lobster claws, but I'm thinking they will be well worth the added expense.  So, here they are.  I am showing you how much larger these are than the traditional clasp so you can see the difference.  They will come in a set of 5, but because these claws are so much more expensive than the regular ones, I have had to price them accordingly.  I am hoping the ease of use and convenience will be worth the extra.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Swapbot section of my Etsy store is OPEN

The Swapbot section of my Etsy is open for business!  So far I have earrings:

And coffee sleeves 'n cup cozies:

Washcloths and scrubbies:

I'm working on some wood burned swap cards and postcards (these take a while and are some work)

and lots more little fun do dads to come.  Everything is free shipping.  Come in and take a peek?