Monday, January 30, 2012

Knit up some Love

Felted Heart Knitting Needles are a sweet gift for a mom, sister, aunt or teacher - really anyone that LOVES knitting.

Take a small amount of roving and needle-felt into a heart shape (1)  Make slits at the bottom of the heart for the needle and take the clipped ends of two knitting needles (2)  gluing the needle ends into the pouch you created at the bottom of each heart and (3)  your needles are ready for gifting (4)

Felting the Hearts -

1. Create a loose heart shape with roving - about twice the final size you want, as it will reduce in size as the fibers firm up with friction.  (It is not necessary to used a felting pad but I found it useful)
2.  I needle-felted around the entire heart in order to keep it full, not flat, in shape.
3.  Needle-felt another heart from approximately the same amount of roving.  They don't have to be exact - it's the imperfections that make them sweeter.

This step is not necessary but I like to put the hearts in a laundry bag and run them in a short, hot wash cycle in my washing machine.  They come out denser and plumper.

I took bamboo needles in the needle size I use most and clipped the ends.  With small, sharp scissors I snipped the pointed ends of the heart and added fabric glue.  I held it in place to secure and now they're ready to give to someone special.

These are so cute ... I might just have to gift them to myself!

Happy almost Valentine's Day.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Wrap it up Thursday - Love in a Cup

The images from today's post are from Think Garnish.  At this site you can view their blog, shop and see how other people use their products.  I love the rippled craft cup , as a sweet little gift.  It seems to make everything - even your morning coffee special.  It helps to add those sweet spoons - a simple little teacher gift for Valentine's Day.

These containers were for Christmas but can you imagine if you show up with doughnut holes in these cute containers with the additions of a simple heart on top.  You would be a hit at the office.  Some gourmet (or maybe not so gourmet) take out food packaged simply like this  (on the right) makes a great housewarming gift.

Some may see an empty cup but I see a world of crafting and gifting possibilities.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

A Valentine Treat Box

Here is a quick little repackage of red hot lips into some boxes I had from Helana's previous etsy business.  I threw the red hot lips inside a coffee filter into the box.  Coffee filters are one of my favourites.  With a little chalkboard paint you can customize your little treat for each recipient.

Now I just have to stop myself from eating the example!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Wrap it up Thursday - Wrapping Love Hearts

When the girls were smaller we sometimes went to great lengths to come up with a special valentine for their classmates.  In Grade 1, Helana and I made pink lollipops for all the kids.  In Grade 3, Ali and I made felt fortune cookies (sort of like Martha's) with a fortune and a chocolate kiss.  Both were a lot of work but still fun.

Now that they are older the kids don't do the old fashioned exchange but I think it is still nice to have a handful of treats for some special friends and teachers.  I've been trying to come up with ideas that are based on repackaging ... and I mean - simple repackaging.

I think this is cute, fast and easy.  I picked up these little love hearts at a local candy store and came up with two quick ways to make them a little more special.

The first is simply kraft paper and washi tape. 

 You could even right a little sentiment on the tape before wrapping ... if you desired.  Bakers twine kind of finishes off that candy feel but I also wrapped some with bright pink yarn.

The other is wrapped in tissue and glitter.

I used clear contact paper, sprinkled glitter down the center and then attached the contact sheet to a few layers of white tissue.  Done.

I hope the girls think these are cute and then, that could be something we do together over a hot chocolate one day after school.

 Of course if we do that, our hot chocolate is going to have to look like this
... and so it goes.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Vacation Memories

Life at the Beach ...

I always have great plans when I start my holiday in the Keys.  The girls and I are going to make amazing, intricate iced cookies, those really cool popsicles with interesting fruit in them and glue gun shells onto boxes.   That is BEFORE I get here.  THEN I get here and it all goes out the window.  These are instagrams of my holiday ... they really capture that laid-back, island vibe I feel down there.

The house really reminds me of my mom. It kind of feels like a big hug from her when I get here and I feel very close to her when I come down.  She had a great style and it was her favourite place to be.  The type set tray with shells was a great antique find in Key West.  I think it might make a great watercolour.  The driftwood lamp you can see in the main room is from France via Toronto and it is the one great piece in the room that sets the tone for beach life.  I love how I feel in this space.  So comfortable and so at peace.  I literally exhale every morning when I come in and see the ocean beyond.

The best part though, I must say, is life on the beach and the ocean.  Dolphins, manatees and very happy girls.  See their heart in the sand? We are all free to do as we wish and enjoy a good book, a paddle or a walk on the shore.  No agenda.

Okay so I didn't do a tutorial, teacher gift or wrapping down there.  Can you blame me?

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Wrap it up Thursday - Starting Fresh

 You've probably seen all the magazines at the grocery check out on organization, the commercials for detox and the flyers for gyms.  It's a new year and everyone wants to start fresh.  

I think it would be neat to start the new year with a signature wrap.  Gather all the supplies you need and you have a go-to look no matter what you are wrapping up.

I found this yellow combination from etsy shops and bakery supplies.  Inspire Lovely on etsy is about to open again after a new baby.  Look at the lovely choices of bakery twine.  The yellow fringe is from Bake it Pretty.  They also have novelty cupcake toppers that you can customize for other crafting you might like to do. Parcel and Paper on etsy has packaging supplies including this sweet lace doilie.  And ... finish it up with a cute yellow tag from LCBpaper on etsy.

I can only imagine that a special package, put together with these pieces, would be greatly appreciated.  I love the idea of a little signature butterfly and this blue reminds me of a fresh new year.  The Gilded Bee (butterflies,  ribbons, twine and pom pom fringe) also on etsy has an inspiring range of ribbons, millinery, toppings, twines ... you name it.  Inspire Lovely has great glassine bags (I can never find these) and cute little clothespins. 

Okay, I have to confess.  I love this idea, I dream of this idea but I hate to get rid of what I have and I find that I want to customize each gift I give- but hey a girl can aspire to a fresh new year ... Now I'm off to buy detox tea.
(I'm not kidding!)

Monday, January 9, 2012

All you need is LOV3

I have been lazy with my blogging and tutorials ... it is hard to get motivated when you are in relaxation mode... but I am ready to get back at it.

I just got back from a lovely holiday down south with my family.  We spent quality time together for two weeks.  Life on the beach that included paddle boarding, swimming and lots of nothing.  Although I have many, many pictures...two teenage girls love to take pictures, this one sticks out.  They have made friends with two girls (sisters as well) from just down the beach and have been able to meet up once or twice a year now for 7 or 8 years.  This year everyone is so much older and the girls were able to just go off on their own after a new year's pot luck and  "play" on the beach.  All dressed up and looking swish they had a wonderful time hanging out and poured into the house just before the ball dropped giggling and whispering with sandy feet. I only had to stay up until their friends left ... an hour later! to lock up. Wow... I have teenagers - how did that happen?

They got some sparklers (this had me a little worried but I left them on their own) and made some sky letters.  They took this picture themselves with a timer and when I saw it the next morning I "loved" this one.  Helana messed up the E(much to her younger sister Ali's dismay) but I think it is perfectly, imperfect.
Like my new book that I received as a gift (okay I ordered it myself - thanks

I try not to have strict resolutions in the New Year.  But a friend of ours always has a word or theme that he wants to focus on in the upcoming year.  I think my word is going to be love.  Love for my family, my home and for myself. 

This kind of love ... not perfect but nonetheless perfectly imperfect.
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