Printing Tips

Check out my printing tips if you're having problems printing to the right size

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Bat decoration


Sorry for the image quality. This is something I put on my wall last year at Halloween time. I used repositionable glue on back of the printable. The template has the colored version I used, and a blank version so you can use any kind of paper you'd like to use with the pattern pieces. Finished size is about 2 feet across.
You can download it HERE in PDF format.
I also have a Jolly Roger done the same way with 4 sheets of paper, but I need to figure out where it is.

The bat in my design is something I drew a few years ago for a font I made. I still use the outline for a lot of projects.

Using spray type repositionable adhesive is a marvelous way to quickly decorate walls that won't be damaged by it temporarily. My daughter used to love to use the backs of sheets of paper I had printed on to color big bright flowers, cut them out then I'd hit them with some spray and she'd put them up on her bedroom walls.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Halloween Treat Boxes

I'd like to point out to all of my readers that Rachel at One Pretty Thing has been putting together some wonderful collections of links for Halloween, projects, printables and inspiration.
Halloween Treat Boxes!

These are different in a couple ways from my usual printables. The first is that they have an interlocked tab method for the top and bottom. I had my daughter fold one closed following my instructions to check to see that they made sense. The second is that at the bottom you'll notice something I haven't put on a box before. Permission to copy. What that means is that instead of using up all your black ink to make a bunch of them, you can take it down to your local copy shop and make copies on any color cardstock you like. The instructions are in color so they won't copy correctly, but the designs themselves are black and white. So you can print off a copy at home, take it to your local copy shop, and make copies to assemble and fill with treats for party guests or trick or treaters. Non-commercial uses means you aren't going to sell them, but generally, I'm okay with sales for pin money. Using them filled with treats at a local bazaar, that sort of thing. I don't want people taking my designs and selling them on the web or mass producing them. As usual, click on the image for the full sized version.


 

Friday, September 25, 2009

It all runs on gumbo

When I was in my early 20s, down the street from my apt was this tiny hole in the wall neighborhood bar. The first time I walked in there out of curiosity, my yards of black lace clothing and teased and sprayed blue-black hair got a couple looks. My age got a bunch more. The average age of the customers was 45. The bartender, Jim, played the saxophone whenever he could get from behind the bar and during the day worked on his small farm outside town. The guitarist who was the regular musician there played a mix of songs everyone knows, and obscure bits of absolute funniest. He learned Punk Rock Girl for me, and it warms your heart to hear that played and sung blue grass style.
Anyway, to get to the point, on holidays, they would have potlucks, and one older lady ALWAYS brought a big old pot of gumbo.
Gumbo, thick and spicy and loaded with different kinds of shellfish and fish. Gumbo that seemed that to have been handed down from her great grandmother, all the flavors were so well combined.
I might have a dinner party with friends to give them turkey and all the trimmings, but I'd eat very little so I could have a spot of that gumbo on a pile of rice because I'm way too wimpy for the amount of heat it had, but I couldn't resist the flavor.
So.. I could be a little biased about New Orleans cooking. It always seemed magical to me. Something to aspire to. A little southern, a little French, a lot of seasoning and a little jazz. That's what it tastes like to me.
All that to say, I picked up a copy of Tom Fitzmorris's New Orleans Food yesterday.
First the quick thing, what I don't like about it is that it's paperback binding, so it won't lay open.
What I do like about it? The author lived in New Orleans all his life except for after Katrina. He's a food writer who really loves his subject.
All those foods you've read about, that you've dreamed about, are in this comprehensive book.
If I were going to do a Julie/Julia thing, this is the book.
Gumbos, bisques, jambalaya, dirty rice, red beans and rice, beignets are all in here. Along with things like deviled eggs with a New Orleans twist, a simple cream cheese recipe, desserts make me feel like I committed the sin of gluttony just reading the recipes and all sorts of main dishes. Over 200 recipes, and so far all of them sound wonderful.
Yes, a lot of the recipes are a bit time consuming and you need some basic kitchen skills like how to make a roux to make them, but many of the recipes are pretty simple too. Also, if you are an experienced cook, there are short cuts you take for quick home cooking, like using good boxed stocks and a food processor to do a lot of the chopping.
If you like seafood, this is also a good cookbook for that, there are a lot of shrimp, scallops, clams, oyster and fish recipes. It's a vital part of cuisine from that part of the country.
Just makes me hungry reading it.
A lot of the reviewers on Amazon from NOLA say that the gumbos are just like Mom or Grandma used to make. What better recommendation is there? If this is a style of cooking you've always want to learn, this is the book that covers all the basics.
Part of the proceeds from sales of the book go to Habitat for Humanity.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Pumpkin Boxes


This one, I did 3 versions of. One is just the outline for children to color in and add their own faces to, one is the one pictured, and one is colored in, but no face, so you could cut one out with a craft knife and put an led electric candle in it if you wanted to. If you do that, I suggest backing the inside with yellow tissue paper. As usual, click on the small images for the full sized versions.
I have a couple more Halloween boxes up at my main printable page which is here.
 
 
 
I also posted a couple things up at Deviant Art, but it's it's really not my normal style and I'm rather shy about them. SKerri13 at DeviantArt

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Gravestone Treat Boxes


2 boxes with a line to write someone's name on. I was thinking they would look as place markers at a dinner table, if you glue the bottom tab to keep it secure, you could fill it with candy corn or caramel popcorn, and maybe slip a fake flower in it. I also included the blank template for kids to decorate how they please.
Click on the images for the full sized version. The finished box is 4 inches high, 3 inches wide, and 1 inch deep.
 



 

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Fast Food- Pizza Quesadillas


If you're like me, sometimes you need a lunch plan that's nearly as quick and convenient as fast food for your kids, preferably something they can make themselves. This is one that E and I made last night. My husband found the mini pepperoni and was laughing about it, but I spotted it and thought "Mini pizzas all in scale!" which is a great idea, but what we wound up doing was pizza quesadillas which  wound up being a hit with the teens and with my husband. The nice thing about the mini pepperoni was that at no point did anyone pull out one with a bite and splatter pizza sauce all over themselves. (Or am I the only one who does that?) Chopping regular slices into quarters would work just as well.
This barely even qualifies as a recipe, it's too easy, too fast. It's convenience food made with convenience ingredients, but it's tastier than frozen pizza and just as fast.
You'll need whatever ingredients your kids like for pizza. This one was mozzarella cheese, pepperoni, and pizza sauce. I get squeeze bottles of pizza sauce, and when they are empty, refill them with a spaghetti sauce everyone in my family likes. You'll also need a package of small flour tortillas.
Put the tortillas in a skillet over a low flame, and spread them with pizza sauce. Add cheese on one half, and the pepperoni and other toppings on that half. Fold in half, and repeat until the pan is full. Turn the heat up to medium and cook them for a couple minutes per side.

You can also microwave them, but my family likes the toasty and slightly crispy flavor you get from doing it on the stove top, and it really takes no time at all.
 
If I was going to do it for bento lunches, I'd do them flat and top them with a second tortilla then use cute cookie cutters to cut them into fun shapes.
Serve with a bit of pizza sauce on the side for dipping.

I don't much like pizza, but I did like these. The sauce I used wasn't sweet, and I used a decent quality cheese. E said it was fantastic. But take that with a grain of salt, she thinks those awful cardboard/ketchup 60¢ frozen pizzas are good when I let her get them.
It also makes a good meal for kids who are just learning how to cook. They can make it and serve it with salads.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Crocheted Nunchaku Pattern

I crocheted some nunchaku, and kept some notes about how I did it. The pattern may take some adjusting for smaller and bigger people, so first, some sizing notes.
Cord connecting nunchaku is more traditional than chain is, and the length should be just long enough that when you lay it across your hand, the nunchaku fall to either side. The length of the sticks on the nunchaku should be long enough that when you hold one stick at the top, the stick protects your forearm. They should be about 1 inch in diameter, and 12 inches long is standard, but I made these for me and I'm short enough that a bit over 11 inches was the right length.
Crocheted Nunchaku Pattern-

Size E or F hook, if you work very tightly, use an F, if you don't work so tightly, use an E.
1 ball black worsted weight yarn, I used Peaches and Creme
small amount worsted weight tan yarn- I used Peaches and Creme

Make a chain with the tan yarn that's long enough to lay across the palm of the person you are making the nunchaku for. I made mine actually  too long. So instead of chaining 26 like I did, chain 16, and slip stitch back up the chain to make the cord. Break off yarn leaving ends long enough to stitch in.
With black-
Magic ring or chain 2, leave a tail about 4 inches long
Round 1: 6 sc in ring or first chain, slip stitch to join
Round 2: ch 1 (doesn't count as first stitch), 2 sc in each st around, slip stitch to join (12 sts)
Using tail of yarn, stitch the center of the ring to the end of the cord tightly and reinforce, because kids can be rough. You can let the tail hang on the opposite side of the side you stitched the cord to since that will be the inside of the nunchaku and not show.
Round 3-50: Ch 1 (does not count as first stitch), sc in each st around, slip stitch to join.
Now it's time to stuff it, and you've got a few options. You can use a long knitting needle and small bits of stuffing and stuff it that way, but you have to use really small bits and be careful so it doesn't get lumpy. That's what I tried the first time and the shape held up pretty good but there were some lumps, so what I wound up doing was using a piece of plastic canvas that was 11x2 inches, stitched up the long side, and slid into the nunchaku. You could also use milk jug plastic taped into the right shape, or fun foam.
Stuff your nunchaku however you choose, in my case, after I got the plastic canvas stitched, it was as easy as sliding it in.
Round 51- ch 1 (does not count as first stitch) dec 6 times over the 12 stitches, sl st to join, break off, weave the end through the 6 sts, pull tight, knot off and weave the rest of the tail end in.
To work dec- insert hook in first stitch of decrease, yarn over, pull through stitch, insert hook in next stitch, yarn over, and pull through stitch, yarn over, and pull through all the loops on hook.
Repeat for other side of the cord, and stitch the tail ends of the cord into the top of the stick they are on and tie securely. You don't have to weave them in, they will be on the inside of one side of the nunchaku.


These are NOT properly weighted, they are toys. But you can damage knick knacks and such with them. I am so very not responsible for anyone but me behaving irresponsibly.


If you don't crochet, it would be easy to design a knit pair with those dimensions, another option would be to use duct tape and fun foam to make a pair by cutting a sheet of foam in half length wise and taping the cord to one side at the top, rolling the foam into a cylinder, then covering it with tape and repeating on the other side of the cord with the other half sheet of foam.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers

Sacred and Herbal Healing Beers:The Secrets of Ancient Fermentation by Stephen Harrod Buhner is a book I picked up because it was cited in Wild Fermentation by Sandor Ellix Katz. Usually I review such things within a couple weeks of getting them, I just realized I hadn't told anyone what I thought of this yet.
It's 450 pages of editorializing, basic instructions for primitive brewing, and information about the religious and healing use of the herbs and plants used in brewing the meads, ales and beers in the book. Some of the herbs used in some of the recipes can be dangerous, but hopefully anyone messing around herbs knows to check a couple sources for possible side effects. I have a couple herbals I use a lot for just that. The author does have a lot of respect for non-Western cultures and belief systems.
I don't recommend this book for anyone who needs step by step instructions to feel confident about making home brews or anyone who thinks that home brews need expensive equipment. The brews are basic and easy with simple fermentation processes. But for people who want that and history of beer-like drinks used in sacred practices around the world, it's fantastic.
Since I'm a lot more interested in simple beers and wines, it's a book I like a lot. Plus knowing the basic processes of fermentation can help you come up with your own recipes for wines and meads. I think I want to try an Alaskan honey mead using flowers native to Alaska, local honey, and local berries next summer and the recipes in this book are easy enough to adapt I feel fairly confident I can.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Tea soap balls and a new box

 
My mother was always the type to have gorgeous hand towels and guest soaps when we had company. I remember more than one time a guest came out of the bathroom with dripping hands and a distressed look because they didn't want to mess up Mom's pretty arrangement of folded embroidered towels in a basket and felt equally bad about using mom's pretty guest soaps. Her favorites were always brightly colored soap balls. They looked almost like toys instead of soap because they were so bright and shiny. I think she would have loved these slightly grubby soap balls that look like cookies that E made.
With adult help, kids as young as 4 can make these. At 14, E made them by herself which means they are a good project for tween spa type parties if you've got tweens who might enjoy making their own soaps and such.
The color, scent and inclusions all come from a bag of herbal tea. You can get everything you need at the grocery store.
You will need:
For each person doing it:
An herbal tea bag, we used a Stash brand raspberry herbal tea
a bar of unscented soap- we used Ivory for this example, but we've also used bars of Dr. Bronner's in the past
a cup
water
chopsticks or spoons to stir 
To share:
A cheese grater
measuring spoons
a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or waxed paper
Boil some water, microwave is fine. For one bar, zap 1/4 cup of water. Drop tea bag in the water. 
While you let the tea steep, grate the soap.
Rip open the tea bag and mix the tea leaves into the grated soap. Stir in 3 Tbs of the hot tea. The soap will get mushy.
It should  be cool enough to handle almost immediately. Roll into balls. E made ours about walnut sized, and got 7 balls out of one bar of soap. If you make them golf ball sized, you'll get 3 or 4. She wanted little soaps we could bring to the gym in a side dish container. 
Spread them on the cookie sheet and let them dry for 12-24 hours. Every so often, go in and roll them so they don't get a wet spot just on the bottom. 
They look sort of like cookies or seasoned rice balls don't they? You could make some deliberately to look like cookies or maybe little onigiri soaps?
Hints and Tips:
If you are doing this with little kids, you'll want to handle the hot water and grate the soap, but they can absolutely pick the tea and roll the balls.
You don't have to use unscented soap, lavender or tea tree soaps like Dr. Bronner's make are excellent for acne, and with 3 Tbs. of uncooked quick cooking oatmeal (which you can find in the bulk section of your supermarket really inexpensively) you've got a very nice complexion soap.
If you are doing this with more than one teen, have them grate the soap first so the tea doesn't get cold while they are waiting for their turn with the cheese grater. 
 
This is the box I put them in. You could easily fit a small crocheted/knit washcloth in it and nest a couple soaps on top. Click on the images for the full sized versions.


 

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Grandma's Recipe Box- Printable

Recently I found my grandmother's recipe box, and I'm slowly working through scanning the recipes and transcribing them for my kids. I posted her cranberry bread recipe.
The art on her 40 year old recipe box is a pretty Pennsylvania Dutch design that I decided I wanted to put on a recipe card set for everyone. The company that made it is Syndicate Mfg. Co in Pennsylvania. Her recipe box saw a lot of active use in her kitchen for many years, it's rusted, beat up, and yellowed.
 
You can download the 300 dpi PDF file here 

Reduce your waste with these fantastic upclycing ideas.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Grandma's Recipe Box- Cranberry Bread



While I was looking for something else in our spare room which is actually used for storage, I found my Grandma's recipe box. Over the next however long it takes, I'm going to try and get the whole thing scanned and transcribed for my kids. Some recipes I'll post here.
Cranberry Bread
Recipe from: Holly Bradley Serves: 1 loaf

1 c. sugar
2 c. Flour
1 1/2 tsp. bk pwd
1/2 tsp soda
1 tsp salt

Sift these together. Grate rind of one orange, juice of one orange- add enough water to make 3/4 cup liquid
2 tbsp shortening or oil
Add this to first mixture.

1 cup cranberries cut in half.
1 c. chopped nut meats
1 egg beaten
Add to other mixture- Bake in loaf pan 350° -60 to 70 min.

Updated recipe-
There are 3 mixes you have to make than mix together to make this bread, it's a quick bread so it doesn't need time to rise.
Start with one loaf pan, and butter it. If you want to make it just like my grandma did, butter then sugar the pan. She always sugared her pans instead using flour for anything sweet.
Pre-heat oven to 350°F
Orange
water
2 Tbsp. shortening or oil
Grate the peel from one orange into a glass measuring cup, cut the orange in half and squeeze juice into the cup. Add enough hot water to make 3/4 cup liquid. Stir in oil or shortening.

In a large bowl, sift together
1 c. sugar
2 c. flour
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder (can reduce to 1 tsp without a problem, get a non-aluminum baking powder, Bob's Red Mill is a good one)
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt (can reduce to a half tsp. Seriously. I would.)

in another bowl (it's worth it, I swear)
1 egg beaten*
1 c. fresh cranberries- cut in half
1 c. coarsely chopped walnuts*

Mix the orange juice mixture into the dry mixture and stir until it's a nice lumpy thick batter. Stir in the nuts and egg and mix to incorporate the egg well.

Pour mixture into greased loaf pan.
Bake at 350°F for 55-65 minutes, or until pick inserted in the middle comes out clean.

Serve with cream cheese or homemade creme fraiche. Okay.. serve with homemade creme fraiche. Seriously. Because wow! If you want to make it a little fancier, put a splash of Grand Marnier into the creme fraiche and serve the slices of bread warm with a little puddle of creme fraiche. (Last suggestion is all mine)

Homemade Creme Fraiche- Night before
EASIEST thing in the world. In a clean jar, mix 1 cup heavy cream with 2 Tbsp. buttermilk. Just put the ingredients in, cap it, give it a good shake. Let it set out at room temp. for 24 hours. When you come back it will be a nice thick gorgeous cream. Put it in the fridge. To that you can add vanilla or Grand Marnier, amaretto, whatever flavors will compliment what you are serving it with, and you can use creme fraiche where ever you would use cream cheese. But.. creme fraiche is better. And check out supermarket prices on it, they want like 5.00 for a few ounces!

* her recipe calls for it to be added last, which just adds one more dish to wash since it's hard to beat an egg with nuts and cranberries in the way
the original calls for chopped nut meats, but generally in her recipes, that means walnuts unless it specifically calls for filberts, pecans or almonds. But pecans would be wonderful!
The chop you are going for is still a little bit chunky so you have bits of walnuts in the bread, not the fine grind I use for my yeast bread recipes. Although.. I think I will try it with pecan butter instead of chopped walnuts.

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Pipe Cleaner Master

Locally, we have an artist named Kenneth S. William who is the Pipe Cleaner Master. So his site says, and so I have to agree. We first saw him in a news story, and we were stunned by the sheer number of things surrounding him that he made, and how fast his fingers were twisting colored pipe cleaners into bright pretty sculpture.
Today we had the pleasure of seeing him work in person, unfortunately, I didn't bring my camera to really get good pictures, but as we looked at his amazing creations and talked to him about them, he was twisting a Garfield.
And wow.. the creations. There was Martin Luther King Jr., Wakko, Yakko and Dot, there were Marvel and DC (but unfortunately no Nightwing, what's up with THAT?), flowers, football helmuts, all amazingly detailed in pipe cleaners. They piled high, fuzzy wonderful creations.
Mike and I knew were going to buy at least, and Mike had his eye on Spiderman and Venom, both of which had removable masks, so you could see Eddie Brock and Peter Parker under the masks, but we were on a budget, so we could only afford one. Mike wanted to get one for me, and wow.. umm.. between Gonzo and Wonder Woman? I finally decided on Wonder Woman.

Isn't that detail great? The stars, the red red lips and blue eyes and red button earrings. All his work shows that attention to detail.
You can contact him and see more of his work here.
That's my daughter posing with Wonder Woman.

PDFs in Open Office and Snowflake Tags

Most of my printables are at 100 dpi, which makes them nice and web friendly, but when I want to do something with more detail and still have it be web friendly, I create pdf files. It does make bigger files though since the images are so much more detailed so I don't do it often.
You can use all sorts of options to create pdfs for free or low cost. You can use Primo PDF which works a lot like a printer. You install it, then when you have your document or image all set up the way you want, you "print" it and choose Primo PDF as your printer. It's a fast easy option, but it does have some limitations.
I like Open Office, it's completely free and very easy to use. It's what my husband has been using for all his word processing for years.

To create something like my circle tags, first I draw the tags and save them in .bmp format so they will look exactly how I want them to. My circle tags are meant to be cut out with a 2 inch circle punch, so I create my graphics at 300 dpi in 2.10 inch circles so there is a little room for not centering it perfectly.
Time for a little math. The default width for an open office document is about 7 inches. My tags are 2.1 inches. 7/2.1= 3.33(and some change, close enough) which means I have room for 3 columns of tags. If you were making 1x1 inch squares to use for Scrabble pendants and other things you can use inchies for, you'd want at least .25 inch border on all sides, so 7/1.5= 4.66 so 4 columns.
Open OpenOffice Writer which is the word processing program, and go to format/columns

Select 3 columns, and just let it go with the equal widths.

Go to Insert/Picture/From File and insert your image. Click under the image and insert the next one. Continue doing that until that column is full and in the case of my tags,I had just enough room at the bottom to put some text in.
Hit the return key once or twice to get to the top of next column, and fill that one in too.

That's the bottom of my document. The gray lines will NOT be in the finished pdf. They are just guidelines so you can see where the columns are. You can save your template, but it's so quick to set up columns I don't.
When your happy with your layout,save your file so you can adjust it later if you want then go to File/Export as PDF.

Choose lossless compression to keep your graphics very clear.

Pick the name and where you want to save you pdf, and you're done. Do your test print off the pdf, and you can upload or email or sell the pdf as you please.
Open Office is free for any application. If you want to use it for business you don't have to buy a license, and it's ad-free.
You can download the snowflake tags I used as an example HERE and matching printable paper HERE
I hope you find this tutorial helpful.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Spoonflower



Spoonflower does custom printing of fabric designed by crafters, and recently they had a free swatch day to raise money for Heifer International, with a limit of 2 swatches. The first one was easy. It's one I planned to order enough of to make an apron as soon as I can work it into my budget, the other, I let my daughter pick from my collection of patterns I've drawn for different things, and she chose a rainbow I drew a few months ago.
The original art can be seen here and here. The rainbow swatch greyed out a bit, but I rather like the effect, and E likes it just fine. My pattern choice, I'm thrilled with how it printed.
Because of the way Spoonflower protects artists designs, you can't order fabric with my designs from Spoonflower, but I can have it printed and sell it on Etsy if I'd like to. If there is enough interest, I may do that, I was thinking of making an apron kit up which will be the fabric, plus a patch pocket with a large motif on it.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Links

First, if you haven't already heard of it elsewhere, Yasmine Surovec from the brilliant A Print a Day blog has a new magazine especially for crafters called Parasol Craft. It's only 2.50 USD, and full of gorgeous things, interviews with artists and pictures of the beautiful things they create, it also comes with some things for scrapbooking, a darling doll project, instructions for creating and using Illustrator brushes with vector files to practice with, and some really lovely embroidery designs. 111 pages of goodness.

Rachel at Instructables has great step by step instructions for making your own panties and bra. Since you make the pattern by using one you have that you kind of like the fit of, you can adjust the fit to be perfect, and unlike some bra projects I've seen on the net, it WILL work for something more than a B cup. Oh how we envy you ladies with the high and perkys! (perkies?)(Umm.. *blushes and waves to the guy in Canada and the guy in Japan* you can ignore that whole last paragraph!)
If you can draft patterns, The Canton of Gleann nam FeĆ²rag Dhuibhe has instructions for making all sorts of garb.
I reposted my pirate eye patch pattern here

This bat mask is a costume all in itself with a gorgeous little black dress. For this? I'd start wearing contact lenses again.
If you are more the Winter Queen type, check out this necklace.

Pirate Eye Patches

Repost from the other blog. This was a project I posted in 2005 when my daughter was 10 and completely into pirates.

You will need a couple colors of felt, whatever your two colors are.
Embroidery floss to match or contrast.
and some elastic to hold the whole thing in place (I used a pretty stretch lace, but just a 1/4 inch black elastic will work as well)
and needles. I use fairly large ones, but that could just be in comparision to the size 12 beading needles I'm so used to using.
Total cost? Under a 3 dollars to make a few.
Skill set needed:
blanket stitch
back stitch
french knot

all one picture, you can right click and save
cut out two of the main patch piece out of the color felt you chose for the eyepatch, and then one skull or whatever sort of shape you want out of the other color. Don't feel like you have to use my skull. That would be silly. Do what you want, esp. if you are an embroidery person or a beader person who might want to do something more detailed. Like a tattoo design. Wouldn't that be neat? Esp. that sort of outline style embroidery that is so minimalistic but colorful? Except if you are going to embroider, you might want to do that *before* you cut the patch pieces out, and if you're going to bead it, I'd strongly suggest gluing or ironing on a small circle of interfacing on the back of the patch piece. Hmm.. maybe an article for Halloween? I could do beaded ones?
If you're using glitter felt, make sure the back piece you cut out is cut out so the non-glitter part will face your eye. I don't know that the glitter will flake off, but you don't want to risk your eyes.
Decorate the front piece, with the pretty little skull or whatever, the skull is blanket stitched on, with tiny circles cut out of the black felt for eyes, and a backstitched mouth and "french" knots for the nose. I used a contrasting color to stitch on and kind of outline the skull. You could glue it on, I like the more finished and folky look of the embroidery.
Cut off a piece of elastic that fits your head comfortably. Emily and I have big heads. It takes a decent sized piece of elastic. You want it to *fit*, not too snug. These are actually fairly comfortable if you can ignore the whole "I can't see out one eye" thing. Stitch the ends together securely.
Sandwich it at an angle between the two eyepatch pieces, and stitch it all together using a blanket stitch.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Heart coloring page


Because I was in the mood to draw it. I hope you like it.
I think I might put this on a box at some point.

4 Leaf Clover coloring page


Yesterday while I was going to the local Asian market (it's about a mile away) I found a 4 leaf clover while I was walking. A few minutes later, a very happy, very tall man was walking in the opposite direction down the sidewalk in that bounding walk that very tall men with very long legs have. He smiled at me, and said "Hi Baby!" but you know, not in a sleazy way, because really, who says hi baby to middle aged women with canes in a sleazy way? Anyway.. I gave him the clover and he was very happy and said thank you, that he could always use some luck and that he was going to meeting, so I smiled and said "Have a lovely day!" and kept walking.
I thought to myself it was wonderful to make someone so happy and that made me happy.
I got my mochi flour and coconut milk, then started towards home. My ipod played songs I loved, some old delta blues, some 80s hair metal, some synthpop, it was a fun walk on a very cloudy day. It hurt, but I was happy.
Closer to March, I'll do some shamrock designs using the same technique.
Feel free to use this coloring page for crafts if you'd like, embroidery, wood burning, whatever or on cards to give people a bit of luck! Click on the image for the full sized version.

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