Sunday, November 4, 2012
Here's a sweet mini version of the sweater pillow. This time, instead of whip stitching the ends, I sewed the piece with a machine and blind stitched one edge. Pretty darn cute for an old sweater I got at a church rummage sale.
Saturday, October 27, 2012
After seeing sweater pillows by Martha Stewart and on etsy.com for $50, I decided to make my own. My version is the one on top. Here's a quick demo of what I did.
First, measure the pillow you want to cover. I recommend using an extra large sweater.
Thursday, October 25, 2012
Fall is here. Crisp weather means breaking out the warmer clothing. Why not do the same for your furniture?
I had a men's XL merino wool sweater just waiting to be donated when I decided the burgundy color would work well with my family room and the green pillow needed some updating. One thing led to another and soon I was cutting off the sleeves to the sweater and blanket stitching the arm holes. I used a spare sleeve across the neck area of the sweater to create a false fold.
A fast and easy update.
Saturday, October 20, 2012
My dog pictures inspired by Target are featured at the KNOCK OFF DECOR web site. Check it out! This site has lots of great ideas to help you recreate your favorite store finds at a fraction of the original cost.
Wednesday, October 17, 2012
Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Cooler weather means time to make soup. One of my favorites is clam chowder. The version I make is dairy-based and features potatoes, carrots, celery, onions, spices and a small can of clams. I only buy clams harvested in the United States. This helps local fisheries and reduces my carbon footprint.
New England Clam Chowder
Makes 4 large servings
Drain a 6-ounce can of clams and save the juice. Add water or milk to make juice equal to a cup of liquid. Cook 3 strips of bacon in a frying pan until crisp. Remove the bacon. Use bacon drippings to cook one chopped medium onion, 3 cups of diced potatoes, one grated carrot, one rib of celery finely chopped along with a teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce, 1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme, 1/4 teaspoon black pepper, and clam juice mixture. Cook until potatoes are soft - about 15 minutes. Mix 3 cups of milk and 2 tablespoons of flour together and add the slurry into the potato pan. Cook until the mixture thickens. Add clams and reduce heat. Cook soup about another minute. Serve warm with bacon on top of the soup portions.
Monday, October 15, 2012
Maybe the more appropriate title to this post is, "How to make an ordinary object into a frog for flowers."
Flower frogs are segmented containers that hold individual or small numbers of flower stems to create a more pleasing arrangement. Rather than spending big bucks on a manufactured version, I make my own to accompany the plants I cut from my garden.
With autumn in full swing, most of the flowers in my yard have faded. Some Master Gardener friends were kind enough to give me some dried hydrangea's - my favorite.
I used a square vase/candle holder to make my frog. All I had to do was place tape in a plaid pattern on the top of the vase and insert the flowers. Voila! Flower frog.
Friday, October 12, 2012
The post is a little late this evening. And I still have some work to do on the baby's hat, but I thought it was complete enough to post.
This is a sweet little baby's hat made from acrylic. When complete it will have two brown ears, an orange nose and and mouth that resembles a bear.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
Tuesday, October 9, 2012
She looks so sweet and innocent. Don't let those big, brown eyes fool you. Lily is a vole hunter. She's so fast that she can catch those wiley creatures. Today, she dug one out of the ground and was tossing it into the air. I thought she was playing with a pine cone - one of her favorite past times. I was mistaken.
Puppy has such a soft mouth that she can play with a grape tomato and never break its skin. Apparently, things that squeak activate her jaws.
Friday, October 5, 2012
Saw some framed artwork of dog silhouettes on burlap at Target and decided to make some of my dogs.
First, I found photos of my dogs and traced around their images. Next, I cut out the images and traced around the dogs pictures onto a spare piece of oatmeal-colored drop cloth I had left over from my loveseat transformation. Then I filled in the images with a permanent marker and black Behr paint and primer paint from Home Depot, then I framed them. Not too shabby though.
Best of all, these are images of my pets. And I saved almost $30 by doing it myself.
Thursday, October 4, 2012
Tuesday, October 2, 2012
This necklace features an amber-like bead with a pearl and green glass bead held together with copper on a black silk cord.
Monday, October 1, 2012
I am posting photos of Lily eating a green chili pepper. And she was running from me, trying to keep her delicious snack from my hands, the little stinker. The peppers were drying on the counter and puppy decided to take one.
Thursday, September 27, 2012
My fingertips were pretty raw for a couple of days. I was fixing some wood on my garage using plastic wood - a strong wood putty that cleans up with mineral spirits. I should have used a putty knife. Instead, I used my fingers and they have begun healing. That's means I can start making jewelry again.
I decided to work with copper and pearl beads. Copper is an easy metal to manipulate and I had bits of old copper wire lying around. This time I made the clasp from a copper staple I found holding a cardboard box together (second photo). Worked out pretty well if I do say so myself.
I call this piece the Jodi bracelet.
Tuesday, September 25, 2012
Monday, September 24, 2012
These frames starting their lives black and glossy. Since I just painted my family room, the frames no longer looked hip and cool. (does anyone ever say that anymore?)
I decided to paint them. First, a coat of white paint, then gold. Not exactly what I wanted. So, I painted them a medium brown into the wet gold paint. They needed a bit of glitz so on went more gold paint and that's how the sycamore-like frames came into fruition. They remind me of the peeling, mottled bark of a sycamore tree.
Friday, September 21, 2012
First, dig out the root. The plant grows very large so I recommend cutting the leaves down before digging. The second photo show the actual root.
Next, grate the root very fine. I use a meat grinder on a fine grind and I do this outside. Why outside? The oils from the horseradish are very strong and will burn your eyes or clear out your lungs. Best to grind the root in a well ventilated area.
Place the ground root in a quart size Mason jar and cover the pieces with vinegar. Add some salt - 1/8 to a 1/4 teaspoon and cap with a screw top lid. Place the mixture in the refrigerator.
After a few months of absorbing the vinegar, the horseradish is ready to use.
Thursday, September 20, 2012
Tuesday, September 18, 2012
No photo with this post. Just a quick update on Lily. Seems she likes to play with aluminum pop cans. Empty cans don't stand a chance with puppy. Joy upon joys to chomp and run with an empty pop can in her mouth. Couldn't even bribe her to come inside. If we could all find contentment and happiness in little things.
Monday, September 17, 2012
I had planned on writing about a new ring design, but puppy had other plans.
While I was prepping the outside wood trim on the house for painting, Lily was playing in the backyard. I was a few feet from her, going up and down the ladder. She was romping through the grass and happily running along the fence line chasing squirrels and grasshoppers.
Suddenly, I noticed she was lying in the grass with a green branch that had a few white flowers and something long and green. Lily had taken a portion of one of my chili pepper plants. The chili's hadn't turned red yet, so I left them on a little little longer before harvesting them. Puppy does like vegetables, but never showed any interest in the hot peppers.
Take a look. She ate three hot peppers. One almost completely and just a portion of the other two. She seems to favor the part with the seeds - the hottest section!
This resulted in me calling the vet right away. Apparently, red chili (and green chili) peppers are not toxic to dogs. I just have to watch for lethargy, diarrhea and vomiting. Rather than lethargic, Lily seems energized by the peppers and a little more interested in water. Can't wait until she passes this - burns in, burns out.
I made certain she stayed inside while I completed my painting although, she did sneak out once. And where did she go? Straight to the chili peppers and grabbed another off the plant - happy as a clam. I bribed her with a doggy treat back into the house while I harvested the peppers (there were enough to fill an apple bag). Now, I just have to get them to turn red. Any ideas?
Friday, September 14, 2012
Part of the reason I make jewelry is because I misplace jewelry. Actually, I lost the Mackenzie ring somewhere at Staples or Meijer today. So I created the HEIDI ring as a replacement. It's made from hammered copper wire and a single seed pearl.
Thursday, September 13, 2012
While putting on lipstick this morning, I was reminded of things my grandma taught me. Why would lipstick remind me of her? Because she could put on makeup without a mirror. Lipstick especially. Just purse your lips around the tube and voila! Perfect every time.
She also taught me how to make cakes and pies. For some reason, not every grandchild was given this knowledge. She showed me baking skills when I was just six.
And my grandma taught me to check your plants around the outside of your house every day. This way, you'll discover if bugs have invaded, if they need more water, more sun, or if unwanted plants took hold.
Probably the best piece of advice grandma gave me was to save my money. And that every penny, nickel and dime adds up. Don't be afraid to pick up change from the sidewalk or ask a store/company for an adjustment on your bill. Maybe it's just $3.00, but that's $3.00 that could buy a chicken, or potatoes. And it's your $3.00.
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
Monday, September 10, 2012
Friday, September 7, 2012
Thursday, September 6, 2012
Wednesday, September 5, 2012
Tuesday, September 4, 2012
The story centers around a ten year old boy from a wealthy family. The one thing he is denied is a dog. His mother thinks a dog is too messy and his father barely has time to see his wife and child because he is jetting around the world for his job. The story begins to get interesting when the father decides to rent a dog for the weekend as a birthday present for his son. Little does the boy know the dog is on loan and is heart broken when he learns his forever pet can't stay with him.
A fast read with a good plot, I highly recommend this book for animal lovers
Monday, September 3, 2012
So reminiscent of many cultures, I decided to call these earrings PILAR since the name is recognizable in many languages. Lightweight and made of copper and a few glass beads, these earrings shine in the sunlight and dance in the moonlight. Perfect for a hot night.