Contributing Post - DIY Cardigan Guards

Hi Friends! I'm doing my first contributing post over at The Lovely Cupboard today.

Drop by to check out the DIY Cardigan Guards (aka sweater chains) I made!!

Date Night Coupon Book with Tutorial

Wednesday night is 'Date Night' in our house. Jake and I try to get out and hit new restaurants, stroll around the park, take advantage of our favorite happy hour or just stay in with delivery and a dvd.

We usually manage to come up with at least an idea or two but now and then we have a conversation that goes something like this;

Me: "What do you want to do?"
Hubby: "I don't know. What do you want to do?"
Me: "I don't know. I asked you first."

To help us get inspired on those nights we're feeling stuck, I created this simple coupon book! We've filled it with ideas for date nights and can take turns selecting coupons then hitting the town (or the couch).

I started by cutting 2 pieces of micro suede approximately 2.5" x 5.5". Then I cut out about 25 old book pages slightly smaller than the cover pieces. I decided to use book pages because they are sturdy but still thin enough that I could sew through a stack of them.

I ran the pages through my sewing machine after I had removed all the thread (top thread and bobbin) so that I'd get holes in the paper. This perforated the pages so they could easily be pulled out and cashed in on date night. I used a binder clip to hold the pieces together so they didn't slip around in the machine.

I stamped a label onto a piece of card stock and glued it to one of the suede covers. I sewed around the edged with a zig-zag stitch a couple of times.

I clipped together the book pages and both sides of the cover. I stitched through all the layers using a heavy duty needle. Once everything was together, I cut a piece of book scrap and glued it on the spine of the book to hide the stitching.

I had fun decorating my date night idea pages but since Mr. Lime isn't particularly crafty, he has blank stickers to fill out.

Guess where we're going for date night when it's my turn to pick a coupon?!

This was one of the projects I created for the Master Crafter campaign over on Craftster! Pop by if you still haven't checked it out.

The Kitty Cat House - Finally Ours

This post has been a long time coming but I'm SO happy to finally share it with all of you!

The past few months have been a roller coaster of highs, lows, moments of quiet anticipation and periods of hair-on-fire PANIC. But I'm happy to report that we signed the final papers (from Mexico) to close on our new home last week.

We dubbed it the "Kitty Cat House" because the peaks in the roof and the front windows reminded us of a kitties face. We knew right away it was the perfect home for our family but we had to overcome a few hurdles (credit clean-up, competing offers, IRS delays, miscalculations) before we put pen to paper. Fortunately, the house gods smiled upon us and we made it through!

Welcome to our new home :).

And here is the location of my future craft room! I can't wait to get moved in. 

As noted above, the final signing had to happen from Mexico as we weren't able to wrap everything up before we got on the plane. I would not recommend this method of closing but we were able to work it out and then celebrate with a margarita (or 7) :)! 

Thanks for all of the kind words you shared in my Holding On and Letting Go a couple weeks back. Your thoughts and support helped carry us through the last legs of our home buying adventure. 

I'm anxious to get caught up with all of you now that I'm back from vacation! Hope you had a great week. 

The Girls

Gosh, I'm sorry to keep boring you with MORE felt badges but I just can't stop making them! They are such a fun and flexible craft.

These girls were made for the Felt Badge swap over on Craftster. My partner mentioned that she liked "odd Ripley's type themes" so I ran with it! I did a Google search for "Sideshow Posters" and found inspiration in a painting that I'm kicking myself for not being able to locate now!! I'll keep looking.

I used wool-blend felt and 1 strand of DNC embroidery floss to put her together. She is roughly 2" tall. Jake couldn't wait to get her out of the house. He thought she was a bit creepy but I liked her and was sad to have to send her away. Hopefully she's happy in her new home.

In other news, I'm excited to share that I'm going to be the monthly craft contributor on The Lovely Cupboard! Heather has gathered some impressive gals for her team and I'm so honored (and intimidated) to be part of the group. I'll be doing my first post there later in June. In the meantime, check out the sweet introductory post she did for the team today.

Holding On and Letting Go

I saw a nice quote the other day, "Life is a balance of holding on and letting go." Some quick internet research tells me that Keith Urban was the original author.

Jake and I are currently in the midst of some stressful times (more to share on this soon) and this quote is serving as a great reminder to hold on to the things that matter and just let the other stuff go. These Artist's Trading Cards (ATCs) were inspired by the saying.

I used all kinds of goodies from my bin-o-crafty-junk for these including; book pages, buttons, water color paints, fabric and paper scraps. I used an old Rainier Beer can and my newly acquired metal stamps to make the words. I added some decorative stitching with my sewing machine.

Things I'm holding on to right now...

- My perfectly wonderful husband
- Our silly dogs
- My always loving and supportive parents
- Our group of friends that make us laugh, no matter what
- The community of online pals I've made in recent years
- The fact that we are healthy, happy and have everything we need

Things I'm letting go of...

- The 5 lbs I wanted to lose (but didn't) before our upcoming trip
- The fact that my new blog template isn't close to being finished
- The stress of getting the house spotless for in-laws
- Anything that's out of my ability to control!

What are you holding on to and letting go of this week?

PS - sincere apologies for the weirdness you will likely see around here while I customize my new layout and update all of my old posts :)