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Monday, January 30, 2012

My New Camera Strap

My sister Martha emailed this link to a tutorial on how to make a strap cover for my new awesome camera.  So, I sewed strips of the Balinese fabric my sister Gayle sent me and made this:

Had to resort to taking this pic with my point and shoot camera..ugh.

The extra padding around my neck feels really good.  I can now pretend that I am one of those hip photographers.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Saturday In the Garden

Ah...such a fabulous and stunning Saturday in January... except for the fact we need rain...lots of rain.

Spent several hours sprucing up the front flower beds...weeding...digging...and planting the remaining bulbs.

What a delight to be working in the dirt next to the lovely scent of this daphne plant
Hundreds of blooms ready to burst.

And check out this camelia bloom....have two bushes.totally covered with this delight.

Sure do love living in California.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

In Protest

I am protesting the two bills before Congress, "Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and Protect IP Act (PIPA)....they must be squashed!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Vintage Red/Black Plaid Picnic Bag Re-purposed Into A Camera Bag

The other day I was talking to my sister about getting a camera bag for the new camera I just received for  Christmas (best present and surprise ever).  Thank you very much dear sister for saving me from spending almost $200 on one of these ....

Inspiration popped in and I came up with the idea of transforming this red plaid vintage picnic bag (which I picked up at an estate sale for a couple of bucks) into a camera bag:

I love the red plaid...from the fifties and so easy to spot.

I previously used this as a "lunch pail".

I took the felted yellow sweater I picked up at the Goodwill, some 1/2" foam, and some grey and yellow polka dot flannel (oh how I love polka dots):

Didn't use a pattern...just outlined the bag on craft paper and cut out the pieces.  When sewing "free form" like this, I go bigger than I think I need ...you can always trim ..trust me, it is too hard to  put  pieces back together.

Used almost the entire sweater...including the sleeves and the ribbing.  Love to use things up, don't you?
And whaalaa...I now place the loveliest of all cameras in this soft-warm-fuzzy-cozy bag for transporting or for those times my fabulous camera is not strapped around my neck or is in the clutches of my hands.

There is room for an extra lens (maybe someday) and other accessories. 
 Just need to make a shoulder strap for it..still working on that.
I  store the charger and cord in this cute little "vintage-like" bag which I found at Daiso.

Now, if you were a camera, wouldn't you want to "live" in a bag like this?


Monday, January 16, 2012

Found The Garage Floor

Anyone who has been to my house over the past years would find a closed garage door.  Our houses don't have basements in this part of California (oh how I wish I did!) so our garages  become over sized storage rooms aka places to put our junk.  My garage has been the king of all junk rooms. All that clutter and stuff   embarrassed me ... I hated for anybody see this and would always try to keep my garage door closed.

I did tons of purging, tossing and tedious organizing, had a quick garage sale, and made many trips to the Goodwill (because most of the stuff is mine)...
Car Headed to the Goodwill

And tadaa...check out the hefty piece of concrete real estate DZ and I exposed on Saturday:

Found the Concrete
There is more to do...but lo and behold...right now there is enough space to dance a jig ...or to  park a car (a small one)...imagine that...parking a car in your garage!  Such a novel idea indeed.

Friday, January 13, 2012

A Baby Quilt in the Making

I really wasn't planning on it, but this is what I put together this morning:
Baby Quilt Top

Baby Quilt in the Making

My sister gave me these fabrics (along with the fabrics for Sweet A's quilt).
I love random piecing (as opposed to doing 9 patch squares).  It was uncanny how it all came together and how I used up almost all the fabric!    I found the fabric for the back in my stash...soooo...I haven't spent a penny.  I now need to get some batting.

I just love using things I already have.

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Graduation Caps For Little Ones


Aren't these the most a.d.o.r.a.b.l.e. kids on the planet?

I lead the singing  in the nursery at my church.  The kids who are three by January "graduate" into Primary (similar to Sunday School) so I made little graduation hats for each of them.  The hats were so quick and easy to make..let me show you how:

Materials Needed:

1. 7x7 white cardstock (or any color you choose which matches the bowl in no.2) 
2. paper bowl (soup bowl size)
3. brad
4. 10"piece of ribbon or yarn

I didn't have gold yarn so I raided my craft closet for the golden ribbon. Tie a knot about an inch from one end and cut the ribbon to make it look like fringe.

Trim off the rim of the paper bowl.

Staple the non fringed end of ribbon to the center of the 7 x 7 square of cardstock.

Take a pair of scissors and poke a small hole through both the middle of the card stock (be sure to avoid poking through the ribbon tassle) and the bowl.

Place the square of card stock on top of what used to be the bottom of the bowl. Push the brad through both the bowl and cardstock.  I just glued the two pieces together and didn't use the brad, thinking the glue was enough, but several hats came apart so make sure you use the brad.  The brad keeps the two pieces together.  

Whalaaa...you have yourself one cute little "graduation" cap for your nursery or preschool child.

The hats can come off the wee one's little head so if you are worried that your wee one will have a meltdown you could attach some string and tie it around his/her chin.  We just had the kids hold their hat if it fell off.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Sweet A's First Quilt Top

Sweet Adeline decided to put together her very first quilt top while she was visiting over the holidays.

Here it is all finished...and getting ready to do the hand quilting
Her inspiration came from this comforter from Anthropologie.

She pulled some fabric from my collection and augmented it with  fabric purchased at Joanne's.

She sure has a keen eye for color and design.

Had so much fun helping her and to seeing it come together.

My older sister sent some additional fabrics in the mail which arrived after A left to go back to DC ...so I whipped up two pillowcases using  all of it. Wouldn't you love to lay your weary head upon your pillow covered with these?

Front side

Back side

Monday, January 9, 2012

Packed Away

Christmas is all packed away...except for a few stragglers here and there.

Christmas boxes in the garage attic.

Such a long process.. several days to put it all up and another several days to put it all away.

Each year I think I will go simpler...and not decorate as much.  I just can't help myself.  DZ claims I have enough stuff to decorate a couple of houses.  So glad Mrs. Shoe took several boxes and filled  her home with Christmas cheer.

Feel bad for those poor decorations that don't make it out of their designated box... year after year.
Should be retired...but can't deal with that right now.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Fresh Fruit Crostata

For the very first time in my life
And with the help of my two wonderful daughters
I made these two fresh apple and berry crostatas

The crust on apple crostata got a bit too brown.. had it too close to the lower element ....
so when I baked the berry crostata, I raised the rack a notch...much better

I used the Barefoot Contessa recipe 
Which calls for an awful lot of butter in the crust 
So I would not eat these on a regular basis
Unless of course, you wish to add some inches to your waist.

Monday, January 2, 2012

For the First Time

I did something for the very first time on Saturday, the last day of the year.

There was a long line of cars filled to the brim with bags since it was the last day to drop off donations and castoffs to the Goodwill for a 2011 tax write-off

Believe it or not,  I was not among them.

No siree...not this time.

I entered the store and embarked upon a mission to find something INSIDE.

After forty-five minutes among the clothing racks I finally emerged with a bulging sack in hand.

I purchased three wool sweaters... .

In all the years I've gone to estate sales, flea markets, antique stores, and garage sales...I've never bought clothes...it is just something I don't do...until now.

You won't find these sweaters on my back for I "felted" them...which means I shrunk them on purpose.  I threw them into the washing machine, then into the dryer and pulled out this:

It used to be a mens XL...it was big..now it is about a third the original size and would fit a child..that is.if you were going to wear it..but I plan to re-purpose all three sweaters

And transform them into something completely different.

Will post when complete.