Saturday, December 31, 2011

DIY Area Rug (on the cheap)

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Here is a super easy project that anyone can do that is pretty amazing if you find yourself needing an area rug, instead of spending $50 to $100 or perhaps more.  Head down to SCRAP (if you live in Portland) and dig through their rug samples to create your own rug.  The samples vary from day to day and you may not always find enough rug samples that are the same size, which is key, but if you are patient and keep checking, I guarantee everything will work out for you one fateful day. 

You first need to pick out however many squares of rug samples you will need.  For this particular project I needed six.  I actually could have done it with four, but six looks nice to me.  I made one of these rugs a few years ago and I still use it to this day in my living room.  For that particular rug I used 12 samples because the samples were smaller.

Now that you have your samples, take them home and lay them out how you want them.  You will then flip them over to the backside and duct tape them together like so:
After you tape them together, you will want to make a giant X through the whole backside with the tape to stabilize the pieces when you flip it over to the right side.  I actually didn't do that on this one because there were only six pieces and these rugs have a rubber backing so they are not going to slide around.

You then flip your rug over.  You may need some help if it's a big rug because you don't want the pieces to come undone.  And just like that you are finished:

Finished product in the light of day.
Now you can enjoy your one-of-a-kind rug that you created and it didn't cost you an arm and a leg.  This particular rug cost around $12, pretty sweet.

Happy New Year!!!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Candle Jars

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Okay.  So a few posts ago I put up the link to Stitch Therapy's candle jars.  I tried my hand at a couple and are giving them out as gifts for X-mas this year.
I really love projects that use old lace and I think I am going to try making some more textile oriented projects.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Crafty Ornament Making

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So I got the idea for this ornament from Crafty Chica, who posted a video about a week ago.  Here is the link:

I had a couple ladies over yesterday to make these fine ornaments.  I did SCRAPify them a bit, however.  We used reused images, cardboard tubes or mason jar sealing rings and reclaimed tinsel from Goodwill.
Here are the outcomes:
Mine are made with vintage card images and lots of jewels!

Donna made hers with things she had just received from her Grandmother who passed away.  She is going to give them to her mother.  What a great way to share a memory.
Jane ended up making shrinky dink ornaments for the kids that she is a nanny to.  Here are here delightful outcomes:
 Here are a few action shots and closeups.
Jane being silly.

Jane hard at work.

Donna's first ornament.

Donna's awesome ornament!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Free Box the Magazine: Free Box Gift

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 So I posted Keri's sugar dispenser candles on my Free Box the Magazine blog since she got the sugar shakers out of a free box. It's totally cool. Click on the link to see the photos ~

Free Box the Magazine: Free Box Gift: So my friend Keri found 20 sugar dispensers in a free box. She grabbed them all up and made candles out of them with recycled wax she got a...

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Holiday Party 2011

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This is the second year I have hosted a holiday party that corresponds with Peacock Lane's car free night.  I live just a few blocks from Peacock Lane and so it just makes sense to combine the two events together.  Plus I have two octaves worth of bells that I provide to all the partygoers when we make our way over to the lights just to add to the festivities.  Everyone loves it.  If you stop ringing your bell and just listen, it sounds so cool.  I imagine a lot of angels got their wings last night.

For those of you that don't know, Peacock Lane is located in Portland, Oregon and every house on the street is required to participate with decorating their house with x.mas lights.  Seriously, I think it's in the contract when you buy a house on that street.  Here is a link with more information if you want to check it out.
Oh, and you might notice that Peacock Lane has its own song, which I printed out, but have yet to figure out the melody.

So I spent half of the day cooking and cleaning and preparing for the party.  I made a raw pumpkin pie, which is so good!  A raw cheesecake, which is equally delicious and some raw cacao macadamia nut truffles, which were yummy as well.
I had put out a couple other things like watermelon radish sprinkled with pink Himalayan salt.  I went to People's Coop earlier that day where they had a sample of the watermelon radish and it was so good that I bought three and served two of them up.
Here is a photo of myself with the spread courtesy of Brandon Alleman whose help was invaluable for making the party a success.  One photo is with flash and the other with mood lighting.  I am still trying to figure out my new camera:

One of the guests of the party was my good friend and ex-roommate, Cory McMahon.  She brought me my x.mas gift, which I opened early upon coaxing.  It is a beautiful vintage beaded choker, which she repaired so that it could be worn again.  I love it.  I was just thinking earlier that evening that I needed a choker to make the outfit complete.

You may remember that last year Cory made me an amazing rosary style necklace, which I love.  It's great to have such crafty friends.

My friend Keri Piehl made me a super cool candle and I will share the photos of that in the next post.

~Happy Holidays~

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Chicago 2011

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So I went to Chicago last week to see Brandon's old turf.  He's from Aurora, Illinois, which is a suburb, but his sister, Angie, and some friends live in Chicago.  I had a full day to check out Chicago and then the rest of my time I spend with Brandon's family in Aurora, which was very relaxing.

Before I went I looked up some Chicago oddities.  There was one that I was hoping to come across:  the Puppet Bike.  It seemed like it was going to be hard because they are never in a set location.  But sure enough we were checking out Macy's holiday windows on State Street and there was the Puppet Bike.  I was so excited.  It was pretty awesome.  I mean how could you not love some very cute puppets dancing to some groovy tunes all via bicycle.  Naturally I had to support that and Angie got a great shot.  Here you go:
You can tell from my maniacal smile that I was extremely happy.  If you are interested in the Puppet Bike, here is the website:

Another thing I was curious to check out since I had heard about it a couple times in the Intro to Religion class taught at PSU was Our Lady of the Underpass.  If you don't know what Our Lady of the Underpass is, it was a salt stain underneath the freeway that someone saw Mary with the baby Jesus.  It turned out that freeway underpass was the freeway ramp to Angie's house, so we got to see that the first night I was there.
So the Lady has faded and I think there was some graffiti that destroyed it at one point, but the memory is still there.  Here is a photo I found off the internet during Her heyday:
I love that photo.

Here is the photo that Angie took of myself and Brandon:
Brandon just looks cold.

So a trip to Chicago just wouldn't be complete without seeing The Bean at Millennium Park.  It's just too cool.

So it was a pretty fun trip and I can't wait to do it again, maybe in warmer weather.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Latest in Decorated Light Switch Plates

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I am just sharing the latest decorated light switch plates.  I made them with special people in mind for holiday gifts.  I hope everyone's crafting is going well this holiday season!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


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Okay.  So I have a ton of old Mylar balloons in my attic because I was going to make a dress out of Mylar, but now I am not so sure.  Since I have invested in so much Mylar I just throw it into projects here and there, like the Mylar garland.
This summer I came up with an icon garbage collection.  So far I have only made one, which I have entitled Tilt, but I have been collecting all sorts of cool car smashed aluminum cans ever since I came up with the idea.

I was first struck with the idea after seeing this smashed Tilt beer can up against the curb just glimmering in the sun like a beacon calling to me.  It struck me that this would be perfect amongst a background of Mylar.  I then found some scrap wood out on someone's curb for free and it was on.

I kept this piece really simple, just focusing on the can.  I think I shall get more intricate in the future, but this was a good starting place for me.
Right now I am too focused on making holiday gifts to work more on this project, but I plan on making more in the new year.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Stitch Therapy: the hiyoku bird

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This is an amazing and inspiring blog.  I am definitely going to make a few of these projects.  The first one will be the jar votive candle.  I absolutely love it!

Check out the Stitch Therapy blog below for more details and beautiful projects and creations!

Stitch Therapy: the hiyoku bird: "The Hiyoku is a bird with one body and two heads. Both of its mouths nourish the same body. Himoku are fish with only one eye each, so th...

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Accordion Belt Buckle

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So my fellow busking band member of The Amazing Maelstrom had a birthday on 11/11/11, pretty sweet.  I knew just the perfect gift to make.
You see The Amazing Maelstrom consists of myself on musical saw and Evan Stuckless on the accordion.  It's a pretty winning combination, you could say just like peanut butter and jelly.  We usually busk for art walks.  First Thursday in the Pearl on a hot summer evening is our favorite.  It's really fun.
We have played a few paying gigs and a couple of weddings.  Those are fun, too.
So I knew that for Evan's birthday I would make him a very glittery accordion belt buckle.  I think it turned out pretty great, except the glitter was originally red, but when I sprayed the fixative it changed to pink.  I told Evan that I would make him another one with whatever color he preferred, but he totally loved it and here's the proof:

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Happy Halloween!

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So all of my Halloween festivities are over, and what fun!  On Friday night I went to SCRAP's annual masquerade ball benefit.  It was a blast.  As you may know I was dressing up as a necktie hobo, it actually turned out that I somewhat resembled Raggedy Ann, so that was pretty cool.  Here is the photo for you all to see:
Saturday night I went to my friends' creepy haunted crawlspace Halloween party.  Now, I can't describe the crawlspace, it is one of those things that just needs to be experience.  But Clandon rigged up some scary props that he could operate and scare people as they went through the crawlspace.  He then showed me the operation and I became one of the scarers, which was pretty fun, actually.  I have a very shrill and startling scream, which really lends itself to a haunted crawlspace.
So my costume for this party was a Mad Geneticist.  I made a few really gross looking specimen jars and decked myself accordingly.  I went to the Dollar Scholar and purchased a mustache and my friend Cory said I should wear a mustache more often.  I don't know.  I will let you be the judge.
Mad Geneticist with experiments next to Gaddafi?

Way too happy about crazy experiments

The stoic geneticist with experiment (actually that's one of Clandon's art pieces)
Here are a few pictures of just a few of the many amazing costumes there.
Cory, the Sexy Honeybucket Technician with Clandon, aka Beetlejuice, aka the bartender.

I can't remember Myriah's name ss something funny.   She was one of the hosts as well.  Looking sexy.

Drunk Latino or Gaddafi, I'm not sure he had decided either.

Waldo spots his arch nemesis Odlaw.  Oh, no!!!

Anyway, too much fun.  I had a great time and I wish everyone a Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Save the date for Incognito on October 28!

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Save the date for Incognito on October 28!

So as you may know I am a SCRAP volunteer and huge fan, of course I am going to Incognito, SCRAP's annual fundraiser. I mean who doesn't love to wear a mask?
So I decided to keep the mask simple and cover it with a necktie pattern. Take some old pants and put necktie patches on them and make a few of my fancy necktie fascinators/mini hats (just wear one) and go as a necktie hobo. That's the idea anyway and so far it's all coming together.
Here are a few photos.

I made this last night.  I was just thinking how waking up and remembering to try on your new creation because the glue has dried is better than Christmas :)

You can tell that I'm a high class hobo by my Christian Dior patch.
If you live in the Portland area you join in on the fun. If you click the link above it will lead you to all the wonderful details.
Hope to see you there ~

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Loteria and Mylar Garland

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Whew, work has been keeping me busy, but I still can find the time to do a little crafting, thank goodness.
So my friend moved to Spain a couple of weeks ago and I wanted to make her a farewell gift that could serve as decoration for her new home, but it needed to small and light since she had little room in her bag.
It just so happens that she loves Loteria cards, which I happen to have procured from SCRAP.  I also happen to have a ton of deflated Mylar balloons.  So I put two and two together and I came up with this garland strand for her.
I picked out some images that I knew she would like along with a couple that I thought were appropriate.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Necktie Fascinators revisited

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Okay.  So I finally did it.  I have been wanting to make a necktie fascinator on a larger scale and I finished my first one up today.  I used buckram for the first time (exciting), and I used two neckties in the fascinator instead of one and it really gives it a mini hat feel.
I wore it out today to check out the response, and I got quite a few compliments on it.  Hooray!
I have tons of neckties so this is going to be my go to project for quite a while.  I love it and I hope you do as well.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

see kate sew: DIY lined envelopes at Ucreate

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see kate sew: DIY lined envelopes at Ucreate: I'm a creative guest at Ucreate today! I'm showing you how to line envelopes with fabric and paper scraps! There's even a free template! ...

So one of my best friends moved from Portland to Boston, and, of course, we were both very sad to say good-bye. However, she suggested that we should be pen pals and that really cheered me up. I never get fun letters in the mail anymore and receiving one from a good friend is priceless.
I am a huge fan of making my own envelopes out of old calendars and paper scraps. However, when I saw this blog post, it has inspired me to try this out.
I do collect lot's of bizarrely shaped envelopes from SCRAP because I always need envelopes to put the bizarrely shaped cards in (that I find at SCRAP, of course). This just seems like it will make the cards extra fun and special.
Thanks, Kate, for the great post, as usual!

Saturday, August 13, 2011


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So I embellished another free box item that I found.  It's what I like to call scraplique.  (we're so witty in the reuse community *tee hee*)  Anyway, I found this tank I really liked, but there were signs something had been removed around the collar area.  There was hanging threads and glue marks in a few areas.  Well, I done this embellishment for coverup in the past some years ago and was excited to get the chance to do it again.  Here is a photo of what I've done.
I've never been a fan of these colorful paperclips as paperclips, but I have always been intrigued by them since I was little tike.  I was so happy when I finally found a use for them.
This is the scraplique I did a few years ago.  I simply wanted to cover up some bleach stains on this otherwise adorable sweatshirt that I found in a free box.  It's kind of weird that the two items are almost the same color.  Well, I guess the colors do show up nicely on it.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Embellishing on the Necktie Fascinators

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So it's been a while, but I have been maximizing my summer days by being outside.  I hope everyone's summer is going well.
I have been working on the necktie fascinator and have embellished them a bit more with some lace.  I think it gives it a bit more fullness and has a more vagabond look about it.  Here are a couple of photos for inspiration:

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Hott Sock 2011 Pedalpalooza Ride

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So one more sweet ride that I would like to share.  I went on the Hott Sock ride because I do love fun socks.
We rode to Sock Dreams where we played fun sock games and everyone stocked up on some cool socks.  If you have never experienced Sock Dreams, check out their website.  They have free shipping to anywhere in the U.S., I believe, and they have an unbelievable selection of socks.
So then we rode to Sock It To Me, another great Portland sock company.  They had a pretty sweet obstacle course, but the thing that made the ride for me was they had a craft table where you could make any kind of sock puppet with their unmatched socks.
I made Jacques le Sock.  Check it out.
This fellow, whose name I do not know, made an awesome unicorn sock puppet.
And my friend Dan, otherwise know as Captain Clash, made some sweet arm warmers with leftover socks.
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