Driftwood Yarn Bombing

We spent the weekend on Vashon Island celebrating my wonderful Mom and Dad (whose birthday happened to fall on Mother's day this year :)).

It was a beautiful weekend so we didn't waste the opportunity to do a bit of beachcombing. My Dad has always been a collector of found objects - beach glass, crooked pieces of drift wood, shiny pebbles - and I know this trait has rubbed off on me because I can't leave the island without a bag full of craggy sea worn twigs!

This is one of the many branches of driftwood I picked up on our walk. It looked like it needed a little sweater so I yarn bombed it!

I used neutral toned yarns that I associate with coastal colors. The yarns are all different weights but I used size 8 needles for all of them.

I knit each small gauge flat and then sewed it around the branch, using a mattress stitch to attach the two ends together. They are nice and snug so they shouldn't move or slip.

I think it kind of looks like an octopus. Can you see it?

This might be the most impractical thing I've ever made. Jake asked me why I was "making leg warmers for a tree" but once the idea was in my head, I couldn't shake it!!

As silly as it is, I kind of like it. I plan to take it to the office as a reminder of two of my favorite hobbies - knitting and beachcombing!!

Happy Mother's day to all of the Moms out there! I hope you had really special days.

And to my Mom and the birthday boy (aka my Dad), I love you both a ton and appreciate everything you've taught me (like how to spot good pieces of driftwood in a pile of logs)!!

Felt Basket Tutorial

I'm hooked on these little felt baskets. I'm stockpiling them for future gift giving! I snapped some in progress photos of my latest version so that I could share a simple tutorial! 

I've been making these so they fit a 4 oz jam jar. I like using the jars since you can plant succulents in them or make a small bouquet. You certainly don't have to use a jar though. The basket is cute and sturdy on its own!

Step 1: Gather your supplies

- Wool felt (about a 9" x 9" square) 
- Embroidery floss
- Embroidery needle
- Pencil and paper
- Ruler
- Scissors
- Optional embellishments (felt, buttons, beads, whatever!) 

Step 2: Make your pattern

Use your pencil, paper and ruler to draw a simple cross pattern. Each side of the basket is 2 3/4" wide and 2 1/4" tall. The middle square that will become the bottom of the basket is 2 3/4" x 2 3/4". 

Cut out the pattern. 

I like the look of rounded edges on the sides so I used a 1/4 teaspoon to draw rounded corners on the pattern too. You can skip this if you prefer straight edges. 

Step 3: Cut out your felt

Once your pattern is cut out and ready to go, pin it to your felt and trim away! 

Step 4: Embellish

Now is the time to decorate! I chose to add felt details, a button and some beads but you could really do anything - stitch an embroidered pattern, stencil a pattern with fabric paint, sew on a fabric design or just leave it blank. 

Avoid decorating the middle since that will eventually become the bottom of the basket. 

Step 5: Sew up the sides

To make the basket you'll need to stitch together each side panel. I used an "x" pattern but you could also do this with a simple whip stitch or basket stitch. 

Pinch two of the sides together, lining up both the sides and the top edges. Start stitching from the top and work your way down to the bottom corner. 

Once you make it to the bottom, push the needle to the inside edge, push out the corner a bit and tie a knot to secure the stitching. 

Voila! One side done. Now just repeat that 3 more times. 

Step 6: Fill your basket with something cute (or just leave it as-is, that's cute too!) 

I put a 4oz jam jar inside. The measurements used for this fit one perfectly. 

I put a little water in the jar and added some bright purple flowers! 

I'm keeping this one for myself since the colors happen to match the mint green in my kitchen! 

With a good sturdy felt, you could make these in any sizes! The original inspiration for this is a big 'ol basket!! I'm very tempted to make a teeny tiny (and totally impractical) version too. 

Thanks for checking it out! Let me know if you have questions. 

Succulent Sleeping Bag

I had a lot of leftover wool felt after the journal cover I made recently. I decided to put it to good use to make a sleeping bag for one of my succulents :). You know, cause they like to be warm!

I used this felt storage bin for inspiration but mine is much much smaller. I also added some simple embroidery stitches for extra pizazz!

It fits a small 4oz glass jar, which seems to work well for little house plants like this. It could also store jewelry or spare change or keys or whatever!

Here's a picture with my hand for scale.

I think I'd like to try to make some larger sized versions of this in the near future. I have plenty of felt for it!

Thanks for checking out my silly succulent sleeping bag :). 

Felt Journal Cover

I recently organized a Journal Cover swap over on Craftster. We all made replaceable covers to fit standard composition notebooks and this is what I came up with for my partner!

I used 100% wool felt for the cover and the circles that I decorated it with. I added a few circles to the back and the inside folds too. I decorated the circles with buttons and beads and simple embroidery stitches.

Once I got in the round groove, it was hard to stop!

It was a fun swap and all of the covers sent were great. I'm hoping to organize another round soon. You can never have too many journals, or journal covers!

Dapper Doggies Giveaway Winners!!

Opie is very happy to announce the two winners of the doggie bow tie giveaway!

Congratulations to Shannon and Lisa T!! Can you contact me at limeriot@gmail.com so we can chat about your pets measurements and favorite colors?

Dapper Doggie Bow Tie + Giveaway

What is cuter than a sweet doxie boy? A sweet doxie boy in a bow tie, obviously!! 

I made a whole collection of these for our doggie family this weekend. With all of the requests I've received from friends and neighbors for their own puppy bow ties, I don't think production will slow down on these collars for a while! 

Fortunately, they are really fun to make! So fun, in fact, that I'm giving a couple away to my readers! Entry details are at the bottom of this post. 

I used this tutorial from Dream Catcher Baby as the inspiration for my puppy bow ties but I made a couple of minor adjustments:
  • I ran out of fusible fleece so I used cotton batting for a couple of the ties and it worked just as well.
  • Instead of interface for the band, I used cotton webbing. It made the band a little sturdier and better for dog use.
  • I changed the measurements for the neck band so they fit our dogs. I measured their neck and added 3" to that length. I kept the width of the band and all other measurements the same as the tutorial advises.

A few of these were dropped off at the local humane society. Won't a pup look even more adoptable with a cute little tie on?? I hope so!

I would like to thank my (somewhat) cooperative model, Opie, who worked tirelessly (for about 74 seconds) on the set of this photo shoot in exchange for a hefty salary (a few turkey treats). 

Since I'm having so much fun with these bow tie collars, I am giving away 2 custom ties to my reader's furry friends!! You pick the color and measurements just right for your pet and I'll make them their very own formal attire ;). Don't have your own pet? You could still win for a friend or donate your tie to a local animal shelter! 

To enter, just leave a comment below about your fur baby! If you follow me, leave 2 comments and double your chances! 

I will randomly pick 2 winners next Sunday, February 15th. [THIS GIVEAWAY IS NOW CLOSED]

This giveaway is open to anyone! If you are a no-reply blogger, please be sure to leave a way for me to reach you in your comment. 

Good luck!! 

Practicing Hand Lettering - Universe Themed ATCs

Three weeks into the new year and so far I've stayed committed to my goal of learning hand lettering skills! I'm practicing almost every day in my sketchbook and have completed a few projects. I have a long way to go but I'm seeing little improvements.

These are some ATCs I worked on this past weekend, inspired by how magical the universe is.

I made these on cold pressed watercolor paper but I realize now that hot press is much better for hand lettering since it has less texture. I picked some up and am hoping to make some more lettered ATC this weekend!

I also made this ATC as a reminder to keep trying, even when I feel like I suck :).

As much fun as I'm having working on lettering, I need to dedicate some time to working on my other crafty goal of learning to sew clothing soon! I have a couple of classes queued up on Creative Bug to help get me started.

Go Sit on a Cactus

Happy New Year, now go sit on a cactus!! Just kidding, I'm not feeling that snarky about 2015 but I will be prepared should anyone need a harmless poke in the hiney this year thanks to my 'GO sit on a cactus' kit.

This is a matchbox covered in craft paper and decorated with text and wee bits of craft paint. The drawer is covered in origami paper that reminded me a bit of succulents.

Inside the kit is a whole assortment of cacti! All of which are suitable for leaving on the chair of your enemy...or just someone you want to prank for fun :).

I drew these with a 01 Micron pen and then painted them in with watercolors.

Here's a shot of a cacti trap in action!!

This is a silly project but I have a real goal for myself this year to improve my line drawing and my hand lettering so this was a fun place to start!

2014 was a great year in many ways but it wasn't a prolific year for me creatively. My mojo waned, I racked up more WIPs than completed projects and I lost some artistic confidence. I'm determined to turn that around this year by taking more classes, getting back into the swapping game and dedicating time (without apology!!) to stretching creatively.

I hope the year ahead is filled with beautiful things and very few cactus pricks to your hiney!! xoxo