Sunday, November 27, 2011

Another Christmas Ornie

I have been having some fun doing just a little crafting during my long Thanksgiving weekend from school.  I have a rather large collection of juice can lids waiting to be turned into something wonderful.  I started this collection because these are the perfect size to do a little tin punching with the kids at school.  They love designing their own ornaments from these juice can lids!
I started with these items:
The tea lights are $2.50 a box from Walmart.  The berry string is actually two strands taken from a pick and then twisted together.  That amazing hunk of rusty wire is something my husband had laying around his tool bench.  (He always seems to have such items just when I mention a shopping trip...)

I spray painted the juice can lids back in the summer with this:
I punched two holes on each side of the lid so that I could poke the two wire ends through and then bend them over.  I thought this would make it easier to level the ornie when hanging than if I just had one hole on each side, but I think you could make it work either way probably.
I used two 8" pieces of wire which I twisted together, leaving two ends about an inch and a half long on each end.
I poked the wire ends through the holes in the lid and bent them over using my little needle nose pliers.
Then I wrapped the berry around the wires.  I came up with this idea when I realized my tea light would probably slide off the lid pretty easily, but it was just the touch this ornie needed. :)

To do the tea lights I first painted a thick coat of this on each one:
When I bought it I didn't realize it was pretty sparkly, but I have found many uses for it just the same.  I use it as a base coat and then grubby up the project by painting a coat of Mod Podge over it and then sprinkling cinnamon and cloves over it while it's wet.  I had a picture of the sparkly look, but I accidentally deleted it.  I don't have anything currently in that stage, so sorry!

This is what it looks like after the second coat of Mod Podge:

Here is the finished ornie:

I don't have my tree up yet, but I can't wait to make a few of these to put on it!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Christmas in the Kitchen

Christmas Decorating in the Kitchen

Here is a quick winter bouquet that fits right in with kitchen decor.
The ingredients:
Twist the berry pick into the evergreen pick until you are happy with how it looks.  Tuck that arrangement into the upside down grater and fuss with it until the bottoms of the picks don't fall out the opening of the grater.  Then hang the spring with the candle in it onto the front of the grater.  And done!
You could hang a tea towel from the handle and it would finish it off nicely! A quick gift - for yourself or a friend. :)

Here's another kitchen themed idea:

I used brown craft wrapping paper that I cut to fit in my printer to make the label for this little rolling pin.  I gave the rolling pin away, but I think I need to make one of these for me, too!  For the homespun background fabric I just measured it wide enough so that a little wood could peek out on both sides and made it long enough so I could sew a seam and turn it.  Then I slipped it over the rolling pin.  I used my xyron sticker maker machine thingy to make a sticker out of the label, and I stuck it right to the fabric.  I was thinking that I could also have made the label paper long enough to wrap around the rolling pin. (Then it could have been removed after Christmas...)

The label I created:
The upper image is the one I used for the small rolling pin I covered.  
The lower image might work better for a larger rolling pin.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

My Incredible Swap Treasure from Margie

I participated in Amy's Christmas at the Cabin Swap and my partner was Margie from Hungry Hook Primitives.  Holy guacamole!  What a lovely assortment of prims I just opened!

Here is a shot of the whole kaboodle:
I know!  AMAZING!!

Here are some close-ups of the items:
I have never owned any hooked rug items before, so you can't even imagine how excited I was to open this grouping of mug mats!  
(And the first person who actually puts a mug full of anything on one of these is going to suffer serious punishment!)

Love these labels - the pictures don't do them justice.  

Love this little guy!  I've already auditioned him in several spots.

I just bought some orange clove tarts at Walmart to try out.  
Guess what I'm going to do as soon as I finish this post?

These mini pillow tucks are so cute!  
I have a couple of ideas for where they will spend the holidays, too!

Margie really spoiled me.  When I opened this package I instantly started worrying that I didn't send Margie enough treasure in return!  (How could there ever be enough to balance this amazing-ness?!)

I sent Margie's package priority mail on November 18th from our little post office, and it then spent from the 19th until the 22nd sitting in Rochester, NY.  It then moved to West Virginia.  The post office might need a map because Pennsylvania is just below New York.  ;)
However, I should not be stressed because the delivery confirmation still says the expected arrival date is November 21st.  Apparently there is going to be time warp involved...  Grrr...

Monday, November 21, 2011

Joy Ornie Make-do

Here's a little more JOY for you. :)
Here's the pattern I made.

I just drew a star that filled a regular sheet of copy paper, and tried to make one of the "legs" longer so it would fit in the spring better.
I traced the pattern and then wrote JOY in the middle-ish.  Stitched the J and the Y. Then layered right sides out and sewed on the line, leaving an opening for stuffing the star.  After I stuffed it, I sewed it shut the rest of the way.  Then I grunged it, sewed the O (bell) on, and wound the berry vine around it.  Ta-da!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Joy ornies

I said I would post a little tutorial for my joy ornies this weekend, and it looks like I am coming in just under the wire.  (My husband doesn't call me "Last minute Lissa" for nothin', ya know!)
Anyhow, here's the basics.  They are actually fairly quick and easy.
I made a little clothesline for drying them
after I sprayed them with staining stuff.
1.  Start by visiting Jennie Baer over at  I contacted Jennie to make sure she wouldn't mind if I directed folks to her free patterns.  She has moved away from creating patterns to photography - and you should see her work!  GORGEOUS!  I love the way she captures the eyes on her subjects.  (I'm an eye person - it's where I always notice first in a photo.)
Click on the "freebies" tab and then on Ornie Patterns.  I used the star ornie outline for my Joy ornies.  (She has lots of other really nice prim patterns, so look around!)

2.  Cut two pieces of fabric for each ornie (front and back).  I love ticking fabric and I used natural ticking for these ornies.  My fabric pieces were about 6" X 8.5", but they could have been a little bit smaller and still worked.

3.  Cut the star out, on the line.  Then trace the star onto your fabric using a disappearing ink pen.  I used a Sewline air erasable marker.

4.  Use the disappearing marker to write "JOY" on the star.

5.  Layer a piece of batting under the top piece of fabric and stitch the J and the Y using your choice of thread.  Be sure to leave enough room for your O!

6.  Now layer the back layer of fabric (right sides out, not together) and stitch all the way around the star with thread that matches your fabric.  Stitch right on the line you traced.
7.  Cut out the star using pinking shears, being careful not to cut through your stitched line.

8.  Prim your ornie by coffe / tea / vanilla staining and or grunging on both sides.

9.  Sew a bell or button onto the spot where the O should be, going through all layers, but being careful not to take big stitches or it will make a mess on the back of the ornie.

10.  Wind berry vine around and end up at the top, making a loop for hanging out of the end of the berry vine.  You can make your own berry vine by taking a berry pick or a berry swag apart.  Just take two strands at a time and twist them together, end-to-end..  Because it's wire inside, they stay twisted pretty well.

I have a JOY make-do to share tomorrow.  Get your bed-springs ready!
I hope the coming week brings the blessings in your life into a sharper focus.  May those blessings be abundant, and even more special when shared.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Small Christmas Hang Tags

I have been working on some small hang tags for a little Christmas tree I purchased at Stonewall Craftique recently.  When I make these tags, I go online and search for free vintage Christmas cards on Google images.  Then I insert them into a word document and resize them and arrange them on the paper.  
I am experimenting with how to share these here.  I am not sure if this will actually work or not and would love it if you would let me know if this works for you.  These tags all fit on one 8.5 x 11 sheet of paper with .5 margins all the way around.  Then the images can be cut apart and stuck onto the small hang tags.  (I bought mine at Staples and the size is roughly 1 1/4 X 2 3/4 inches.)
Prior to putting the images on, I coffee and vanilla stained my hang tags and then baked them at 200 to dry them.  I do about 5-8 minutes on a side and flip them so each side gets 2 turns.

I will post a picture of my little tree later.  Right now, I am going to step away from the camera and give it a little time to think about it's refusal to cooperate.  I'm supposed to be getting ready to go with my husband to do our Thanksgiving dinner shopping anyway.  Do you think the camera knows...?

And before I forget:
She has a really fun idea for getting 5 extra chances to win!  Everyone is a winner with this idea! 

Have a great day!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Ornies from OLM's Swap!

I joined in Olde Lady Morgan's ornie swap, and my ornies arrived on Monday!  I couldn't wait to get into that box because I had seen some posts about the ornies arriving for other people.  I LOVE all of the ornies I received!  There's such a great variety. :)
Here's a picture of the collection:

Here's the individual line up:
Created by Tammy from A Primitive Place

Created by Rachel from Somewhere In The Middle

Created by Sheila from Country Impressions

Create by Allison Knight from Sew Many Girls
Created by Marie from Olde Lady Morgan
Marie also included a bag of treats - Thanks!!
Created by Trace from Granny Trace Scraps and Squares

These are the ornies I created for the swap.  

I'll be back with a tutorial/pattern for some JOY ornies this weekend - after parent conferences are done.  I also have some other ideas to share after my swap partner gets her treasures.  (I don't want to spoil any surprises!)
Have a great rest of your week!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Another Lovely Giveaway and some pictures/tutorials are coming - really!

Willa over at The Old Cupboard Door is hosting a lovely giveaway right now for this amazing make-do:

I have been busy working on report cards, getting ready for parent conferences, and sneaking in a little time to work on my swap items for Amy's Christmas at the Cabin Swap.  The deadlines for all of those things and more are looming - I like to think of it as a perfect storm. :o
I will be back to post some pictures and basic tutorials of some things I've been working on, but probably not until next weekend.
I hope everyone has a week full of blessings and things to be thankful for as we head toward Thanksgiving week.  (And can I get a YIKES! at the thought of it being Thanksgiving time already?!)
Blessings to you,

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Home for the Holiday Giveaway!

Go check out this surprise giveaway that Amy is hosting over at Bumble Bee Lane!
It's a great way to get in the holiday mood!

Friday, November 4, 2011

A surprise in the mail from Parker's Paradise :)

Thank you, Linda!
When I saw the pillow on the left I thought,
"I be thankful for Linda!"  
These two beautiful pillow tucks came in my mail a day or two ago.  Linda from Parker's Paradise strikes again!  It was such a lovely, lovely surprise!  I have them on the little cupboard in my kitchen for now, but I know I am going to have fun trying them out in different locations this weekend. :)

Last night, my elementary school hosted its first ever Autumn Pumpkin Walk.  It was an amazing event!  I didn't get good pictures, so here's one not so good one just so you have an inkling of what it looked like.
This was about 20 minutes before the Pumpkin Walk started.
The outdoor lights got turned off, and that path was FULL of
families enjoying the pumpkins together.
It does not even come close to the reality of how incredible the pumpkins looked lining the access road behind our school and winding up onto the side lawn.   There were about 400 pumpkins which our students carved in school, mostly on Halloween.  This is my favorite school event ever so far!  The families that came to the pumpkin walk paid 50 cents a person to walk the trail of pumpkins and got a free hay ride, too.  There were refreshments - cider, hot chocolate, donuts, and popcorn - which is where I worked most of the evening.  I had so much fun doing that!   Everyone was so joyful and happy.  It was a much needed nearly perfect moment in time.
My husband drove over to see it, and his word about it was "It was just so wholesome."
The money is being used for field trips for our students, so the cause was terrific, too.  There were people who did the walk and took the hay ride and came back to the entrance and donated more money because it was so wonderful.  I am already looking forward to next year's Autumn Pumpkin Walk.

I will admit that I am so glad it is Friday!  I am ready for a weekend to rest up.  And do report cards.  And get ready for parent conferences.  And maybe some laundry.  And some housework.  But none of that will be while I am also trying to teach!!  Whew! This school year is a whirlwind so far!
Oh, and I am hoping that I get to sneak to Caledonia, New York tomorrow for a Peddler's Market full of antiques and prims... :)
Have a nice weekend!