Saturday, May 22, 2010

Roosters

Kind of a random topic, I know. I've had several rooster themes pop up over the last few weeks, so I thought I'd put them together into one post. Here we go!

A little rooster I made for the Mexican Kitsch Swap. . . .

...a little wooden trinket box from the craft store, plus some paint, glitter (of course,) polymer clay, fabric, paper and a plastic toy rooster. (My kids will never miss it!)

This is one of a series of boxes I made for my lovely swap partner, who teaches high school Spanish. She wanted some art for her classroom, so I designed this to be handled, touched, opened and closed.

Inspiration can come from the oddest, most unexpected places. My inspiration for El Gallo? My zumba class! Yes, I'm still going, and I love, love, LOVE it. (Dropped 2 sizes so far! Yay!) Anyway, we dance to this song (and it's one of my favorite routines). . . . and it inspired the rooster box. . . .

Another rooster. . . .

The best. sauce. on. earth.

I recently tried sriracha sauce on banh mi, and fell in love. I now put this on just about everything. It's that good. Try it. Please.

And some maybe-roosters. . . .

OK, so it's really just a gratuitous photo of our sweet chickens. But we do think there may be a rooster or two or three. I'm not sure how to tell yet, as they're still young. (I also haven't done any research on this, either.) There are a few chickens with longer tails, bigger combs, and have more color -- and act bossier than the others. I guess we'll see soon enough. . . .

So if you've made it to the end of this random post, thanks for dropping by! Have a wonderful weekend!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Sugar

We made a simple cherry pie the other day. . . it was amazing! We cheated and used 2 cans of cherry pie filling (gasp!) but made the pie crust from scratch. It's not as hard to make as you may think. . . .

I've always used the Joy of Cooking recipe for Basic Pie Crust, omitting the butter. If you don't have this cookbook, this recipe is pretty close to what I use. The secret to melt-in-your-mouth pie crust? Ice water. Seriously. And handling the dough as little as possible. Try it, and you'll be amazed at the difference these two tiny little details make!

For extra yummy-ness, just before baking the pie, brush the crust with milk, and sprinkle with sugar, or cinnamon sugar. The crust will crisp up just that much more, and it's sooooo good.

And more sugar. . . .

A little messenger bag! It's been quite a while since I've made one of these, hasn't it? This one is made from 100% reclaimed fabrics.

A skirt, a shirt and a curtain panel all came together to make this bag. I also completed two eco totes last week, but I'm waiting to list them in my shop. I'd like to have 5 - 10 bags finished, and list them all together. So hopefully, I'll have some more to show you very soon!

Saturday, May 15, 2010

More sweet shirts

The Baby Onesie Swap is one of my favorite swaps on Craftster. (OK, OK. It IS my favorite swap.) I like how practical it is (my little one gets really cool, unique shirts.) I also like how satisfying it is to try new techniques, and make really neat shirts for someone else, with relatively little effort. Yes, some fabulous shirts are more involved than others, but really, the ones I make are pretty simple. I've included links to tutorials for these techniques, so I hope you'll jump in and try some embellishing! Don't have a little one? Embellish some shirts of your own, a tote, a pillow! The possibilities are endless.

Here, I used my ol' standby, the freezer paper stencil, with some tube beads sewn on (very, very well) for the sprinkles. . . .

A ruffled flower. (I winged this one, but here's a tutorial that's similar to how I did it.)

A sweet banana! I used a rough applique technique, and a tiny dab of paint for the face. . . .

I used my flower tutorial to make this poppy, and embroidered the stem and leaf with a simple backstitch. I attached the flower with Aleene's Fabric Fusion (a permanent fabric adhesive) and sewed each bead on (twice!) so this flower isn't going anywhere. . . .

A sweet little birdy, done in reverse applique. . . .

For some close-up photos, please visit my facebook page. :)

I also whipped up this little magnet for my partner. . . .


To make this magnet, I stacked concentric circles of fabric on a felt base, then sewed across the circles, creating petals. I glued a magnet on the back, and that's it! You could also attach a pin base, or a barrette -- so sweet and easy.

I hope you'll try some of these techniques, and have some fun with them! :) As for me, I'll be working on some bags for my neglected shop. I actually completed two totes last week, and am currently working on a third. That just might be a record!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Short and sweet. . . like my littlest Monkey

A short post, just to let you all know that we're still here! All's well -- kids growing, chickens growing, veggies growing. Oh, and I received some fun mail last week. . . . embellished shirts!

Laurasaurus sent our littlest Monkey a sweet bundle of shirts for a Craftster swap. . . .

This one is my favorite -- a family portrait in cacti! Check out Owen in his boots! So cute....

Watching the water sprinkler in the garden is THE BEST. Right?

"I'd rather be climbing." So true.

What a neat batch of shirts! Thanks, Laurasaurus! :) Next, I'll post the shirts I sent to her, maybe tomorrow or over the weekend?

Now, it's time for a trip to the library, and later today, some sewing (yay!) and probably some weeding in the garden (meh.) I'm feeling much better these days, so I hope to update here a little more than once or twice a month. Maybe once or twice a week? See you soon. . . .