Archive for the ‘crafting’ Category

Thankful Thursday!

January 24, 2013

I’ve really let my “Maedeup Monday’s” slid so I decided to start a “Thankful Thursday” with little things that I am thankful for.  For my first “Thankful Thursday!”, I am thankful and still get a thrill out of seeing one of my first booklets (This one from 2002) still in the polymer clay section of my JoAnn’s store. 

There is an interesting story that goes with that book.  I was participating in my first Designer Showcase at the Society of Craft Designer’s Convention.  Debra Nettles, then of Leisure Arts made an appointment with me to discuss my polymer clay work.  At the time, I had a line of “Babies of the Month” and she was interested in doing a booklet on them.  I would have had to give up all rights to the line and didn’t want to do that so the appointment ended with some disappointment on both sides.

Fast forward a few months and I got an email from Debra.  She told me that Leisure Arts wanted me to do a booklet of polymer clay miniature animals and the rest is history.  I went on to do five booklets with them.  Who would have thought that little meeting that I thought went so wrong turned out to go so right.

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2013 CHA (Craft and Hobby Association) Tradeshow

January 17, 2013
 Last weekend Rocketman and I jetted off the Anaheim, CA for the CHA Tradeshow.  I had not attended the show since 2010 because of our moves to South Korea.  I was really excited to go and see all things crafts.  I was not disappointed.
 
I got to meet Mark Montano and received an autographed copy of his latest book.  He was my favorite designer on the television show “While You Were Out.”  I also have all of his “Big Ass” books and they are full of wonderful projects. 
 Of course, our first stop when in California was In-N-Out Burger.  Oooooh, they are so delicious. It had been three years since we had been able to eat there.
 We also made a stop at Bubba Gump’s.  They had this cool lighted glass so Rocketman ordered one to bring home to Noah.  The food was delicious.  We do have one here in Minnesota but it’s at the Mall of America and we rarely go to that mall. 
 
 We stayed at the Arabella which was walking distance to the Anaheim Convention Center where the show was.  I was puzzled by this sticker in our room.  Wow, things had changed since we were there last. 
 I was able to winner a lottery spot in a Ranger’s class.  It was called “Definitely Dylusional”
 It was taught by Dylan Reaveley.  She was a lot of fun and the class went at lightening speed.
 Oh, how I wish I had NOT wore my business clothes.  Luckily my pants were black so you didn’t really see all my over spritting that landed on my clothing.
 I’ve never textured before and it was really fun to do.
 Finished!
 Holly walked the show with me and came by our hotel room with a gift from her local Korean market………..KIMCHI!!!!
At the show, we visited the 3M booth.  I love these tape dispensers. 
 Lots of tape.
 Cool Post-It Note dispensers. 
 Blogger is not playing nice so my photos are out of order.  Here is the autograph I got from Mark.
 Picked up some new clay.
 The designer’s section of CHA set up a meet and greet for designers and manufacturers.  I got to meet Katie Hacker and she gave me some cool stuff.
 I use Beacon Adhesives a lot and they are fantastic.
I also saw a demo of the Vintaj Sizzix BIGkick machine and I am hooked.  I want one badly.  You take a disc of metal and run it through the machine with a texture die and this is what you get.  Then add some color and you are done.  I’m hoping Rocketman lets me order one soon along with the cool dies.
 
I also took a lot of classes and learned so much that my head was spinning.  We left on Monday and it really has taken me until today to recover.  Along with Holly, who was my first producer on “The Carol Duvall Show”, we ran into so many people from the show.  It really was bittersweet to see them.  We had become such a family during the run of the show.
 
I will also say that I was surprised at the size of the show.  It was much smaller than shows I had attended previously.  The show usually was the last weekend of January and I’m not sure if that had anything to do with it but we didn’t run into the packed aisles as we had in years past.  I’m still glad I went and I had a couple of appointments for potential business opportunities so we will see where that leads.
 

Tie-Dying With Noah

January 9, 2013
We had the grandkids for New Year’s Eve so Noah and I got our crafty on.  I had some leftovers from tie dying the baby onesie.  It was also Noah’s first time doing this particular craft.  I bought a bunch of t-shirts in different sizes and off we went.  We made two matching sets so the brothers could wear the same t-shirt.
 
We had enough supplies to made a couple of t-shirts for Noah’s folks too.
Here we are with little Ez a little bored with it all.
He’s such a cutie!!

Ghosts of Christmas Past – Mine

December 29, 2012

For Christmas, we went to Illinois to stay with my folks.  It had been a few years since we had done this and when I stepped into their home, I found myself thrown back in time.  I had forgotten all the crafts I had made for them over the years and it was wonderful to see my crafting Christmas past.  I wish I had kept some of these for myself when I created them long ago but at the time when you make 100 of something, you are really sick of looking at it. It was at the time in my crafting career when I was doing lots of craft shows.

 Santa stuck in a chimney.

 

 

 A Lucia commemorating my mother’s Swedish heritage.

For breakfast one morning we went to the Stockholm Inn.  It was Christmas Eve and packed.  We came in the back way and we could tell it was going to be a long wait.  I asked the hostess how long the wait would be and was told 40 minutes to an hour.  We decided that would be too long (I’m so impatient when it comes to things like this) and we made our way through the restaurant to the back entrance.

Right by the back door was a long counter with only a few taken seats.  Even though we could sit across from each other, we could sit next to each other .  I suggested eating there and we all agreed.  The waitress, Carmen, was a hoot and put on quite a show for us as the chairs quickly filled.  We had to wait a long time (30 minutes) for our food but it was worth the wait.

A gentleman sitting down from us sat down and asked Carmen if she had any Wheaties or Cheerios.  She said, “Honey, if you came in for that kind of food, you better just get up and head out to the nearest grocery store and make it yourself.  We don’t serve that kind of food here.”  She was hilarious. 

Rocketman isn’t the type of guy to split a meal but it’s a favorite thing I do with my mom.  We both get plenty of food without leftovers.  We went with a bacon and cheese omelet and it was delicious.  My Dad got their famous Swedish pancakes and Rocketman went for a ham and cheese omelet.  We even were serenaded for a time and sang a round of “Jingle Bells.” 

Snowman Polymer Clay Ornament Project!

December 16, 2012

Last Friday, the day of the horrific killings at Sandy Hook Elementary School I went to Noah, our grandson’s 1st grade class to teach them how to make this polymer clay ornament.  I thank God that I had errands to run before the class and that I did not know what had occurred until I returned home later that day.  I don’t know how I would have gotten through the class without tears and sobs.  The children killed were the same age as my grandson and his classmates. 

 Snowman Face Ornament
by Becky Meverden copyright 2012
 
Materials:
Polymer clay: white, orange and black
Toothpick
Plastic straw
Blush and cotton swab
Red ribbon
 
When working with children and especially white polymer clay, make sure their hands are clean.  The white clay picks up everything and will get quite dirty.  Luckily, I brought papertowels and waterless handcleaner.
 
Instructions:
1.  Flatten a 1″ white ball of clay into a circle.
2.  For eyes, roll two 1/8″ black balls and press onto face.
3.  For squint lines, use toothpick to indent two lines next to each eye.
4.  For nose, roll a 3/8″ orange ball into a oval.  Press onto face just under the eyes.
5.  Use toothpick to indent the mouth.  I start in the center of the nose and go out each side from there to insure that the mouth is even on both sides.
6.  Blush cheeks.
7.  Use straw to make hole for hanging.
8.  Bake in a 265 degree preheated oven for 30 minutes. Let cool.
9.  String with ribbon.
 


Here are Noah’s classmates creations.  They all wanted to do the blush themselves and as you can see, a few really went crazy with it.  When I asked why they put it all over the face, they told me that it was because the snowman had been to the tanning salon and had a sunburn.  I had to giggle over that one.

Even Noah’s teacher made one and the kids really enjoyed themselves.  I love how unique and different each one is.

I can’t tell you how many hugs I got that day from the kids.  A couple of girls even told me that they wished I was their grandmother.

This is Noah’s.  He was over the moon to have me there.  As soon as I walked in, he ran over with a huge smile on his face and gave me a huge hug.  I treasure these days because I know how fast time goes.  It doesn’t seem so long ago that I was coming in to teach a clay class with his mother and his uncle.  I was also fortunate to have my sister live close so I continued the tradition with her children too. 

Cookie Cutter Ornament Project!

December 8, 2012
Cookie Cutter Ornament Project
by Becky Meverden  Copyright 2012 
Materials:
Christmas tree cookie cutter
Fabric scrap
Rick rack
Buttons (I switched out the rhinestones at the last minute
Adhesive
Thin lined marker
Scissors
Cording or string

1. Place a line of glue around the back perimeter of the cookie cutter and place onto fabric.  Let dry.
2.  Cut excess fabric around entire cookie cutter.  Don’t worry if fabric pulls away from the cutter, you can reapply the glue when you are finished.

 3.  Place a line of glue around the entire side of the cookie cutter.  Follow with the rick rack, starting at the bottom of the cutter.  Cut off excess.

 4.  Glue buttons on each side.
5.  Press the top fabric out to allow a hole for the cording. 
6.  String with cording.

Riveting Metal Class

December 2, 2012

I thoroughly enjoyed my second metal class.  We learned how to rivet and I am hooked!  I had so much fun and learned a lot.  My friend Denise let me know about beaducation where I placed an order for more supples.  Even Rocketman was impressed with what I had made.

I also stopped by a local gift shop that features local crafters, The Farmer’s Daughter.  It was started by the mother of one of my daughter’s high school friends.  I hadn’t stopped by in years and I’m so glad I did.  I picked up a few ornaments, my guilty pleasure.

Metal Stamping Class

November 26, 2012

Last week I took a metal stamping class at my local bead store.  I was intrigued by the craft and wanted to learn more.  The class was full with ten of us.  There was a little mix up with my registration.  I had signed up online for two classes and they had only given me credit for the second class.  It was easily corrected.

We started with this brass square and we were told to practice hammering letters into it.  It takes practice to do it well.  She also told us not to stamp in the center.

Next we got to choose blanks from the store’s stock.  For the amount of people in the class plus how quickly you could stamp and complete a blank, there was little stock to choose from.  I left the class happy with what I made but feeling let down by what I learned which was very little.  I’m also a big fan of handouts which include the teacher’s name and email or phone number.  The teacher offered little information during the class and I left knowing just slightly more about metal stamping than when I arrived.

I also realized when I got home that she never told us why we needed to keep the center of our first brass practice piece blank. 

Last Saturday, we took advantage of Donatelli’s “Spin & Win.” From now until December 24th, if you buy a $100 gift card, you get to spin the wheel and get a prize.  We eat there every Saturday so Rocketman thought it was a great idea to buy a gift card.

                                        Here is Rocketman getting ready to spin the wheel.

                                        We won a free t-shirt and we took one in Noah’s size.

        Last week they also had my beloved Prime Rib Sandwich as a special.  I was in heaven!!!

Funky Onesie!

November 18, 2012

This was so much fun to make and so very easy!  I hadn’t done any tie-dying since I was a teenager and the process back then always involved buckets filled with Rit dyes.  It was quite difficult to do multi colors and it was extremely messy.  Leave it to I Love to Create to come up with a kit that included everything you needed to tie-dye.  The only thing I had to supply was the onesies.  Here’s how I did it.

First, you need a Tulip Tie-Dye Kit.  There a lots of choices and I went with the Neon. You will also need a button (not the three you see above), a flower cookie cutter or flower shape of your choice, scissors and thread.  For this project you need two onesies.

The instructions enclosed in the kit are excellent and I had no trouble following them.  For the main onesie, I went with the swirl method and this is what the onesie looked like after I put the rubber bands on.  Remember to prewash your item before you tie-dye to get the best results.

Lay down some plastic to protect the surface you are working on.  The tie-dye kit has premeasured dye in bottles and all you need to do is add water.  I chose to use the pink, orange and yellow.  Next I squirted sections across from each other in the same color.  Turn over and repeat. I let it set for 7 to 8 hours to allow the colors to set.

This is what it looked like after I removed the rubber bands.
For the second onesie which will be used to make the flower, I used the crumble method.

                                         I squirted dye all over.  I used only one color.

When die is set, put both onesies in the wash and run through a cycle.  I did it with some dark colored towels.  Don’t add light colored laundry to the load.  It might stain.  Afterwards, I cut the side seams of the crumple onesie.


I pressed the flower cookie cutter into the fabric and it left a nice indentation.  Cut out.  You can also find a flower shape, trace it onto the onesie and cut out. 

 Center the flower on the onesie, place the button on the center of the flower and stitch in place.

Finished!  I absolutely love it and can’t wait to do it again.
 
I Love To Create provided the tie-dye kit used in this project.

Renaissance Festival in Minnesota

September 23, 2012

Every year there is a Renaissance Festival and 31 years we have lived in Minnesota, we had only been twice.  The last time was when our daughter was a wee toddler (She is now 27) so it was long overdue and the best reason to go was the grandkids.  We decided to go all together and make a day of it.  The first thing we saw as we entered the festival was this walking tree.  I loved watching Noah’s reaction to the oddities.

                                               He immediately took part in a production.

                                       He listened intentively and did all that was asked of him.

Of course, there was a lot of spoiling going on.  This balloon turtle was part of the spoils he went home with courtesy of grandma.

Rocketman took advantage of the HUGE and delicious turkey legs.  I had a few bites and it was unbelievably delicious.

            Even Ezra had a fun time.  It was really chilly, in the low 50’s, but that didn’t stop the fun.

                       I saw sooo many signs that made me laugh like this one “Wenches at Work.”

 And it’s not every day that a little boy gets gold coin.  Noah ran with the coin to his mama saying “Mom!  It’s real gold!.”

                                        And it’s not every day you see a magical fairy eating lunch.

Noah started getting really tired and we knew it was time to go.  We had gotten there first thing in the morning and by the time we left, it was packed with people.

I called these ladies, “The Bag Ladies.”  See even in America you can find ajummas!

We were surprised at how many of our fellow attendings that came dressed for the times.  It was very different from when we were there in the 80’s.  Back then, only the performers and staffers dressed in costume.  It really felt like stepping back in time.

They had wonderful craftsmen including a glass blower.  I could have watched him all day.  I didn’t have a lot of time in the shops but I wouldn’t have missed a minute of spending the day with my our daughter and her family.