Wednesday 26 February 2014

I'm Still Designing, and I Couldn't Be Happier

Just popping in quickly today to share some great news: I will be staying on as a member of The Memory Nest International Challenge Team.
I could not be happier to be part of this group of exceptionally talented ladies.

So from now until December I will be participating in two fantastic scrapbooking challenges per month over at The Memory Nest.

Fresh color challenges, never-seen-before sketches.....there is a lot of fun on the way and I can not wait.

Friday 21 February 2014

With My Leftover Granny Blanket Yarn....

The leftover yarn from my Garden Patch Granny Afghan has been sitting in this basket in the living room collecting dust for over six months.
I tried making a ripple blanket ...but that did not work out (why I can not figure out the ripple pattern is beyond me, I will have to try again some other time) so I have been searching around for the perfect project for this yarn, something to make for my house since I love the colors and they work so well with my decor.

Finally I was able to call off the search after I received this stunning book for Christmas and saw this gorgeous pillow. This was it, the perfect project, a Sunburst Motif Cushion.
I know I said after I finished my Garden Patch Granny Afghan that I was going to take a break from projects involving squares that need joining, since joining all the squares for the blanket nearly killed me, but making a pillow doesn't seem so bad. Yes I can do it, there will not be that many squares to join, and it will look lovely when it is all finished. Plus, I have always wanted to make a crochet cushion.

I have been working on this slowly over the last week, often derailed by fatigue and the need to work on my tired craft, but it is coming along.

I will need 16 squares in total for the front of the pillow, and have these five completed so far.
The center colors are just what I think looks good together from in the basket, and I am doing the outer round in Beige. I will be joining all the squares together in Beige as well. Not sure what I am going to do for the back of the cushion - more small squares, or one large square, I have not decided quite yet.

I am excited to see how this pillow looks on my sofa...especially how it mixes with the ones that are already there.

It feels really good to have a larger project on the go, something to really sink my hook into and get really excited/obsessed about. Something to bring me through the rest of winter.

Wednesday 19 February 2014

Cotton Potholder with a Granny Square in the Corner

Another quick little crochet project to share with you today.

I found the pattern for this adorable potholder here and thought it would be a cute addition to my kitchen.
I love the granny square in the corner.

Of course, now I am faced with my usual dilemma when it comes to crochet items in the kitchen...I can not bring myself to use it. It is so pretty that I just can not risk spilling pasta sauce on it. Or maybe I should use it for the reason that it is pretty, and sometimes a little pretty in the kitchen can make the endless task of cooking and preparing meals a bit more enjoyable. Something to think about?

Monday 17 February 2014

This is My Happily Ever After

I've made a few layouts lately about my hubby and I - from when were first dating, and from our tenth wedding anniversary - so when it came time for me to create a layout for the current love themed challenge at The Memory Nest, I knew I wanted to scrap a photo of the other people in my life whom I love more than anything - my girls.

Here is the current challenge...lovely colors, and a twist to use one of the phrases as a title.
And here is my layout:
A simple layout with several patterned papers and a photo which I converted to black and white so that it would really pop against the background.

I made a slight change to one of the phrases to make it a better title for my page. These girls are my happily ever after.....
When I look back at the layouts that I have completed for the challenges at The Memory Nest, I can really see my scrapbooking style loud and clear - photo focused, lots of patterned paper, lots of layers, simple and clean design....just the way I like it.

And when I add these layouts, along with all the others, to my album I love the story they tell, the story of my happily ever after.

Friday 14 February 2014

My Tired Craft

Some nights I am just too tired to scrapbook and when I look at my crocheting my eyes blur over. But, I still want to make something...because a day without making is not good. Making things feeds my soul and at the end of a long day, I need that.

So I make covered hangers.
Looks like I am tired quite often because I have made quite a few.  

Back when I started this blog (nearly two years ago) I posted about these hangers and it has been my most popular post ever.  Surprised the heck out of me, because I really thought this was an obscure, old-fashioned craft that no one would pay attention to, much less be enthusiastic about. Not the case at all.

It is really fun and quick to cover these hangers and I can finish one in about 20 minutes so long as I am not too distracted by the TV.

And it is amazing to me, that no matter how much time passes between working on my hangers, that my fingers know exactly what to do....kind of like riding a bike.

So on those nights when fatigue washes over me, I cover a hanger and then head off to bed...

What crafts do you work on when you are tired but still feel the need to create?

Thursday 13 February 2014

A Granny Square Scarf for My Sweet Girl

My sweet girl Bridget has her birthday on New Year’s Eve.  For her birthday that just passed (I am a little late sharing this project with you) I made her this granny square scarf.
When you are making things for your children, do you work on the project after they are in bed or do you work on it when they are around, hoping they won’t notice or ask too many questions about what you are doing?

For this project I did a bit of both. I made all the squares while Bridget was awake..and she never asked what they were for, just commented that she loved the purple I was using. 
But when it came time to put the scarf together, I saved my work for when my inquisitive little girl was tucked in bed, because I knew she would pester me with questions about who the scarf was for, and I was not sure I would be successful at deflecting her inquires. 

When she opened up her present on the morning of her birthday, her first comment was “So this was what all those squares were for”. And later, after she had tore through her other presents, and we had enjoyed a pancake breakfast, she came to me quietly and said “Thank you so much for making me a scarf Mom. It is so special to me because you made it.” 
Melting my heart, my sweet little girl.

Monday 10 February 2014

Three Things

Three things that are making me smile today:

Finally deciding on a project to do to use up the leftover yarn from my Garden Patch Granny Afghan. It is not a huge project, but is bigger than the little critters I have been working on lately. I am really excited about it...more details to come.
A few thrift store finds. Look at this huge green glass! Bridget says it looks like a giant's wine glass - which would not be such a bad thing at all, now would it?
And this eggplant sugar bowl. I need another sugar bowl like a hole in the head, but for only $1.50 this was too cute to pass up. Plus, it reminds me of the Fraggles.
And finally, candles. Nothing makes me feel cozier than lighting a candle on a cold winter night.
What is making you smile today?

Friday 7 February 2014

Fitting It In

Some weeks I feel like all I am doing is going to work, coming home to the endless piles of laundry and housework and then getting up the next day to do it all over again.

But in all of that I am getting some crafting done. A little bit here and there, squeezed in among all my chores and obligations, there are crafty and creative moments in my day.
Thank goodness for this space and being able to document what I have done. It helps to look back and see that indeed I have finished a few projects.

Monday 3 February 2014

Love: You Are the Only One for Me

Scrapbooking has been such a positive thing in my life. Through my love of and addiction to this craft I have recorded and documented so many moments and memories that I am quite certain would have been lost had it not been for my layouts and albums. And this has truly remained my main focus when it comes to scrapbooking - to record memories, to tell the stories behind the pictures through my journalling, and to document my life and the life of my family with a little pretty paper thrown in for good measure.

This past week, while working on my layout for the latest challenge at The Memory Nest, I had the chance to not only record a memory, but relive countless others while I was doing so. Let me explain. This is the sketch for the latest Make it Monday Challenge
and as soon as I saw it I remembered taking photos with my now-husband in the photo booth at the mall while we were still dating. They have been stashed away in a shoe box for years, which has always bothered me, and when I saw this sketch I knew this was the time to dig them out and use them for a layout.  So last Tuesday night, after the girls were in bed, Steve and I sat on the basement floor and sifted through the shoe boxes we had each kept full of movie tickets, concert tickets, notes, letters, and photos from our dating days. We laughed at some of the movies we had gone to see, we teared up as we read the notes and letters we had written each other, and we remembered all the fun we had on road trips, at concerts, at parties. It was an incredibly fun trip down memory lane, reliving all the great times we had when we were young and falling in love.

In the end, we found the photo strips that I remembered, and I put this layout together to preserve these photos.
My layout is similar to the sketch, but I had to layer up some patterned paper in keeping with my current obsession.

Look at us - we were so young, just kids.
So now, after 12 years in a shoe box in the basement, these photos will be preserved in my album. I am going to put this page in my 2013 album beside the layout I did of us on our tenth wedding anniversary - as a 'then and now' reminder of where we began and how far we have come.