Printing Tips

Check out my printing tips if you're having problems printing to the right size
If you'd like to support this site and all the free things I post- please check out my Don't Eat the Paste Mandala collection coloring book for 9.99 at Amazon.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Coloring pages- Radar Love and a new knot

Two completely different coloring pages or embroidery patterns. One was inspired by the song Radar Love by Golden Earring (affiliate link), the other is inspired by Liberty. Because she really likes coloring pages and I wanted to do something she might enjoy. It's a woven set of triquetra knots. Click on the images for the full size 100 dpi versions.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Rainbow Birthday Set

Brand new template today! This one is for a card that can hold money, and a matching envelope. Instead of being long and narrow like most money cards are, this one folds like a billfold to make a smaller card.
Available with and without a Happy Birthday message, this set includes a 3x3x1 inch box, the card, and matching envelope. I'll also be posting the blank templates for sale in my Etsy shop.
Print them at 300 dpi. Click on the images for the full sized versions. The envelope matches both cards so I only made one envelope. Print the card and box on cardstock, and the envelope on paper.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Spiral Wire Ear Cuffs

I posted instructions for these spiral wire ear cuffs at Beadwork at BellaOnline.
My wire came from my copper stash, but I stopped and checked the price of copper wire in the same gauge at Rings and Things and found out they charged less than the hardware store I bought my wire at.  *adding copper wire to her next order from Rings and Things*
This is a good thing. My son has learning to work with copper. They carry 14, 16, and 18 gauge which are really nice sizes to work with. 

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Turquoise Donut Necklace

I love turquoise. It's the alternate birthstone for December which when my son was born. The greenish blue color of it goes with jeans, to the office and with some dressier clothes. It's down to earth. 
Auntie's Beads sent me these to use for a project. They have a wonderful selection of gemstone beads in all sorts of colors and shapes. The beads used for this project are 

I also have to admit right now, I have a weakness for grab bags. The wonderful surprises in them. This one had 2 donuts, a pink pendant, a cross, and a blue round pendant. The round pendant has a bail on it that I made from wire for part of another project.

Instructions assume basic wireworking skill like wrapped links and making simple bails.
You will also need chain,  10 inches fine chain and 20 inches of heavier chain, sterling was used in the example. 22 gauge wire, headpins and a clasp. I used a toggle.
Cut 1.5 inches off the heavier chain.
If you take a look at the example above, I attached the clasp in the front of the necklace making it a design element, as well as having it in a place it won't get tangled in my hair. The clasp is attached with wrapped links  to the long chain ends. One side on each end. Then the smaller piece of chain is attached to the jump ring that came with the toggle to the circle part of the toggle. I like the asymmetric look of having the polished smooth rondelles on one side and the nugget on the other.,plus it makes it easier to close the toggle. 
Then the fun part. Make a bail for the donut using the wire and attach it to the end of the 1.5 inch chain. Then cut the 10 inch fine chain into 4 equal length. Cut a piece of wire 2 inches long and turn a small spiral on one end. String on one rondelle, 2 of the chains, 1 rondelle, the other 2 chains, 1 rondelle and turn another small spiral on the other end. This can be modified if the center of your donut is larger. Just add more rondelles to the ends. Thread the 4 chains through the donut. Now, add beads on head pins to the ends of all the chains. Because of the size of the nuggets, they won't pull through. I used nuggets on 2 chains, and rondelles on the other 2. 
The holes on these are a nice size, they aren't drilled impossibly small like a lot of gemstone beads are. Which makes them great for stringing and other projects, but if you find the hole is a little big for the headpin, just put a seed beads or a 2mm round bead on the headpin first.
It's done. A nice necklace with a lot of visual and textural interest that's still very wearable.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Shamrock boxes

As promised, I colored in the shamrock to make a pretty little box. I hope you like it. It's at 300 ppi, click on the images for the full sized versions.

I changed up my layout just a bit. I created a shala shop tab. That tab has links to the fabrics that I have for sale in the Spoonflower market, my Kindle books on Amazon, and my Etsy shop. I put in a Zazzle bar in my side bar with some of the designs I've uploaded there. I also put a scan of my newest fabric for sale up there. It's a cute little rainbow alien design. 

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Mardi Gras printables

Well, I was planning to color in the shamrock after I finished another idea. But that other idea turned into this mask and took longer than expected.
The printable art and box are both 300 ppi, the coloring pages are 100 ppi. Click on the images for the full sized versions. I included a mask with feathers but no decoration if you wanted to decorate it yourself. I also did just the feathers because I thought it looked neat. 

Shamrock coloring page

I haven't colored this one yet to put it on boxes. But thought I'd go ahead and post the coloring page. I hope you like it! Click on the image for the full sized 100 ppi version. 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Jeweled Printable Boxes

Inspired by Celtic jewelry design. 100 ppi, click on the images for the full sized boxes.
Hope you enjoy them!

It's been an interesting month so far for me. I won a couple small prizes in drawings. A gc for a local restaurant and I won one of the drawings at ilovetocreate. Unfortunately not craft supplies, glitter or glue. Fortunately, there was chocolate. Chocolate is always good. You can enter daily here.
Lots of happy mail and The Turnip Girl got the coolest hat ever from a friend of mine.

It's hard to see it, but that's a Police Box hat.You can see better pictures on Rosemary's Ravelry page. The photo was taken at a local restaurant the whole family loves. Glacier BrewHouse. She was defending her spent grain bread with olive oil from Michael in that photo. They bake it from grain leftover from the brewing process for the delicious beers they make. 
Michael got a raise, and it's just generally been a good month. But then William took a spill on the ice and they thought his elbow might broken. Turns out after hours in the ER yesterday it's badly sprained and bruised. So I'm still counting it as a good thing. Because he could have been hurt worse and wasn't. 

Monday, February 14, 2011

Handmade copper buttons

First, the legal stuff. Most interpretations of  the statutes applicable to defacing coins in the U.S.A. are applied to mean if you deface currency for fraudulent purposes. Such as turning a 1.00 dollar bill into a 10.00.  Which is why there are so many penny pressing machines in your local tourist attractions. In other countries, the law varies. These buttons are not being made for fraud. They are nice, primitive buttons that can be used to a nice effect in sewn, knit and crochet projects. For more information, check out this site here.

At the time of this writing, copper pennies, that is, 1981 and earlier, are worth 3¢ each. Copper keeps rising in price. So I'm in the habit of checking all my pennies as they come in and separating out the copper ones. This is also a good idea if you're pressing pennies in penny machines. That way you'll have a piece that's nearly all copper!

To make these is so simple. Using a bench block or similar surface, a hammer, and a metal punch they work up very fast. If you want very shiny pennies, you can shine pennies with a bit of ketchup. Really truly! Or vinegar and some salt, or even toothpaste.
I like the rough way these look. I have my husband hammer them flat very quickly and he hits at odd angles and mars up the surface a bit. With more deliberation they come out rounder without the scars from the hammer, like the buttons on the apple cozies above. I polished the pennies before hammering them and I was fairly careful how I hammered them. So they turned out very smooth and a bit shinier.
So, you put the penny on the block, and hammer it flat. Then comes the fun part. Punching the holes.
Using this two-hole metal punch  from Rings and Things, put the flattened penny in throat for the smaller hole. The throat on the smaller side of the punch is deeper than the throat for the bigger hole. Then you screw down the punch and it punches out a little hole. This works very easily, you don't need much strength at all to twist down the punch. Pull the penny out and reposition it to punch the second hole. For mine, it worked perfectly to put the edge of the penny all the way to the back of the throat then punch a hole, then for the other side, just turn it around and put the opposite edge against the back of the throat of the punch.
Rings and Things also carries the bench blocks, more professional hammers than the one I used, and dapping blocks that could be used to make a more domed button. The also carry lots of copper shapes and sheet copper if you don't want use a penny.
The two-hole metal punches can also be used on pressed pennies to make pendants or keyrings of them.

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Comic book rings- tutorial

These are so much fun and so fast. A great project to do with kids or tweens.
You'll need:
Adjustable ring blanks- the ones I used are the white adjustable ring blanks from Rings and Things
Small wood shapes- I have a bag of "woodsies" from the craft store
3/4 inch circle punch 
paint or markers
Mod Podge
E-6000 glue
a comic book or fan magazine- something with pictures!

I buy extra copies of cheap promo comics and comics from the 25¢ bin at my local comic book shop specifically for crafting. Before you cut it up, make sure it's not valuable! 

I chose circles for my rings, and the bag of wooden shapes has a bunch of these smaller circle shapes.
Base paint the wood shape or color it with markers. 
Mix up some Mod Podge and glitter then paint the shape with that. I used a cheap foam brush.
Then you should let it dry completely. I didn't which is why there are specks of glitter on my images.
Find an image that will fit well in the 3/4 punch. The best way to do this is to take a piece of scrap paper and punch out a circle on it. Then use the punched paper with the circle cut out to frame images until you find one you like. Because of the diminutive size of the circle, you could do something that looks out-sized very easily. Like one eye of a cover model. Ads for dvds, cds and such often have very small pictures that work well in the punch. The images above were from an ad for Buffy coffee cups!
Punch out your image, then put Mod Podge on the wood shape and put the picture down on it. Cover the whole thing in Mod Podge, let dry.
After it's dry, glue the wood shape to the ring blank with a dollop of E-6000.
If you're working with younger children, you may want to use a chunkier glitter and you'll want to be the one who uses the E-6000. But they can do the rest and will enjoy picking just the right image for their rings. If you've managed to get on Disney's mailing list, you probably get regular snail mail ads for DVDs that have perfect sized images for Disney themed rings.
The rings are very adjustable, and the glue on pad is slightly textured to grab the glue better. 

Friday, February 11, 2011

Crochet Pattern- Bookmark Bracelets

When I was a teenager, I used to keep my place in paperbacks with rubber bands. When I was reading, I'd loop them around my wrist then slide them over the pages and around the spine of the book when I wasn't. These are a bit prettier than that, but they work the same way. The little crocheted motif goes into the loop to close it around your wrist while you're reading, then you can just slide it into your book when you're done. It's a good stashbuster thread project, easily adaptable to any really small motif. They are small and quick enough that they might make good sellers for craft shows and bazaars as well.

You will need:
A small amount of size 10 crochet cotton
size 6 steel hook (1.8 mm, I used Boye brand)
needle to weave in ends

ch= chain
sl st = slip stitch
sc= single crochet
dc= double crochet
tr cr= triple crochet 
American stitch terms used
I never ch 1 and count the first ch as a stitch, I don't like how it looks. So I ch 1 tightly, then work a sc, so that's how the pattern is written. If you prefer ch 1 count as first stitch, do it that way.
The diamond shaped one:
Ch 6, sl st in ring
Round 1: Ch 1, sc in ring 8 times, sl st into first sc to join
Round 2: Ch 1, sc in same stitch, ch 3, skip stitch, sc in next st, ch 5, skip stitch,sc in next stitch, ch 3, sk stitch, sc in next st, ch 3, dc in first sc of round 2 to join. (puts your hook right at the top of the loop)
Round 3: ch 1, 3 sc in loop, sc in next stitch, 5 sc in ch 3 loop, sc in next stitch, 7 sc in ch 5 loop, sc in next stitch, 5 sc in ch 3 loop, sc in next stitch, 3 sc in first loop, ch 80, sl st into the 21 ch from hook (loop formed), sl st back down the chain, sl st to first sc to join. Break off and weave in ends.

The round one:
Ch 2 or magic loop
Round 1: 6 sc in first ch or in magic loop- sl st to join.
Round 2: ch 8 (counts as first tr cr and ch 4),tr cr in next st,*ch 4, tr cr in next stitch,* repeat ** round, on last loop ch 2, dc in 4th ch of the ch 8.
Round 3:  ch 1, sc in loop 2 times, sk stitch, 5 sc in next loop, sk stitch, 5 sc in next loop, sk stitch, 5 sc in next loop,sk stitch, 5 sc in next loop,sk stitch, 5 sc in next loop,sk stitch, 2 sc in loop, ch 80, sl st into the 21 ch from hook (loop formed), sl st back down the chain, sl st to first sc to join. Break off and weave in ends.

I hope you enjoy this pattern as much as I did. I made a half dozen of them during the Super Bowl.  I think as a teenage bookworm I'd have really preferred these to the rubber bands. 

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Rabbit printables

I drew this rabbit and tree for the current Spoonflower contest, Year of the Rabbit. It's voting now if you want to go look at LOTS of rabbit themed fabrics and vote. I'd really appreciate the votes if you vote for mine!
The name of the design is Elephant Under a Pineapple. Because while I was working on it, I asked my son how it looked. He said it looked good, in a whimsical mood I asked "So you can tell it's an elephant under a pineapple?" Later, asking my husband the same question he said "Your elephant looks like a rabbit." And I said "What about the pineapple?" and he replied "I can totally tell that's a pineapple, but your elephant looks like a rabbit."

Click on the images for the full sized versions, the box and the printable art are both 300 ppi. The coloring page (which can also be used for embroidery) is 100 ppi.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Lacy favor boxes 1

I labeled it 1 because I might feel like doing more. These are in 300 ppi, and make up a 2 inch cube Click on the images to download the full sized versions. I did these in grey-scale so you can re-color them to suit your occasions. I had weddings in mind at the time. The colored versions are examples of what they look like colored. The plain colors are just re-colorized. The gradient examples are done using the image as a mask. The boxes with the blank on the top are a good place to add a seal or monogram if you're handy with a graphics program.
If you're planning a DIY wedding, check out OnePrettyWedding and Offbeat Bride for some great ideas.
One Pretty Wedding is a fairly new site by the incomparable and very organized Rachel of One Pretty Thing. If you love her regular round ups, you'll love OPW as well.

Friday, February 4, 2011

Printable Bird Boxes

These boxes are inspired by French porcelain antique boxes and use one of my favorite templates. The images on top are my photographs which I ran through Paint It (affiliate link) on the oil painting setting. The boxes are 300 ppi, and need to be printed at that setting for the best results, and take 2 sheets of card stock each. Click on the images for the full sized versions. Score, cut, pre-fold before assembling.