Something Different

Because I never have enough things I’m doing, right? Recently, we had an outbreak of monsters and bad dreams around here. So I made some “emergency” dream catchers for the littles out of supplies I had laying around. I cut the ends off a circluar box and covered it in electrical tape, then used some leftover yarn to weave it.

Turns out, dream catchers are super addicting to make. So I’ve started making proper ones with metal rings and suede string. I like to make felt feathers, though, because real feathers get too messy and they get messed up easily.

Look for these to be hitting the shop soon!


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Krispie Turkeys

I was requested to make Frankensteins for a preschool Halloween Party back in October:

An army of Frankenstein's monsters for an army of preschoolers to eat tomorrow. #halloween #diy

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My tiny helper assisted in making the green Rice Krispie treats, and then was disappointed he wasn’t going to get any. So I made a promise that we would make turkeys at Thanksgiving.

I went to the dollar store to find some decorations, though we had eyes and Rice Krispies left from the last ones. I was afraid I wouldn’t be able to find candy corn, so I was fully prepared to make feathers out of M&Ms. But at the register was the basket of Halloween candy marked down to 4 for $1. Perfect time to get some.

I added a dash of Nesquik into the marshmallows after they were melted so our turkeys would be brown, and we “glued” everything on with chocolate. We ran out of eyes about halfway through, so we used M&Ms instead. My helper even picked matching M&M eyes without me having to suggest it.

Quick DIY Spider Costume

Halloween is five days away. If you still need a costume for yourself or a little one, here is my formula for a quick, DIY spider costume. Unfortunately, I didn’t take process pictures, but this seriously went so quickly that I didn’t think about it beforehand.

Materials:

  • Correctly sized T-shirt
  • Long-sleeved shirt that is two-three sizes larger
  • Socks the length of your arms
  • Thread
  • Stuffing
  • Felt (optional)
  • Serger (optional)

Instructions

  1. Serge (or hand-stitch) hems of t-shirt and long-sleeved shirt, making sure the inner shirt is against the right side of the outer shirt. I did right sides together, so the inside of the costume is the outside of the t-shirt. It was unintentional, but it works well if you have shirts with tags to sandwich the tags.
  2. Flip the shirts so the long-sleeved one is on the inside, and whip-stitch the two together at shoulder and under-arm to hold in place.
  3. Stuff between the shirts to create a puffy middle. Hand-stitch the collars of the shirts together, stretching the smaller collar to match the size of the larger collar.
  4. Stuff the socks so they match the length of your arms, or the length you want them to reach. I used a Soffe big boys’ small long-sleeved shirt and Hanes womens’ size 5-9 crew socks and the lengths matched perfectly. If you are making an adult size, you may either need knee-length socks or cut one sock off at the toes and sew it to another sock to get the right length.
  5. Hand-stitch the socks to the sides of the outer shirt, spacing them evenly down the sides.
  6. Take a length of thread, doubled, to connect the arms and tie a knot at the bottom. String through or sew to a small square of felt, or you can sew it to the under side of the bottom sock-arm. Thread it through the first sock, and repeat the process (leaving some space between arms, however much you feel lets it hang appropriately) with the second sock-arm and the underarm seam of the long-sleeve shirt (placing the felt inside the arm if you are using that method). Do this at the middle and end of each side (more places if you are doing a bigger size).
  7. That’s all there is to it. Add some black pants, perhaps a black hat (I’m making one with red felt eyes) and you are a spider.

I Rainbowed Bread

Sunday I decided to make bread. I made this decision around 1pm, went to the store, then came home and laid down until around 6pm. Which left me finishing the bread about 10:30pm. Because I’m good at planning like that. Oh well.

Anyway, I used this white sandwich bread recipe from Julia Child which created two loaves of bread. I only rainbowed the one because getting this:

Rainbow-ing some bread. Fingers crossed. #latenightbaking

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took about thirty minutes and was only one loaf. Next time I will split the whole thing into seven and dye it before splitting for the two loaves.

Another thing I learned doing this is that, while the glass storage container is roughly the same size as the bread tin and is oven safe, it doesn’t exactly let go of the bread very easily. Even with cooking spray. So I’ll probably be better off just getting a second bread tin like I contemplated at the grocery store.

Overall, the rainbowing process was really simple. After the first rise, I added food coloring to the dough by making a little dimple in the ball and dropping the food coloring in before kneading it with my fingers. It does get a little messy, so I would lay down a cutting board or maybe even parchment paper, and possibly consider gloves. The food coloring will wash off, but it will take a few washings. I’m just saying, if you make this bread in the middle of the day and are planning to go places afterward, probably best to protect your hands.

Mother’s Day Gifts

Remember the birthday necklaces I made in January and posted last week? Well, I decided to make Mother’s Day gifts for my grandmothers that would go along with them. This time, I made bracelets.

I used the same amethyst chips, some silver wire, and some silver chain. I made five beaded links and connected them together with chains. I once again used a magnetic clasp, because it is one of my new favorite materials to use in jewelry.

I also made some Zentangle cards to send with them. I drew the patterns with a Sharpie pen, and then colored them with Prismacolor markers.

Sewing a Stroller

Bebe, the soft doll the boys have, came in a stroller. It matched his pajamas and was perfectly sized for a small child to push around the house/neighborhood. What it wasn’t perfectly sized for was a four-year-old plopping his rear in it and pulling himself around the house. So it has needed some surgery for a couple years.

I had some green cotton left over from fixing up the balance bike, and I had some random remnant bin finds. I salvaged the hardware from the original seat and used what was left of the seat pieces as a pattern for the new one.

I made the main portions of the seat from the green material, then made bias binding for the edges. Actually, I first tried to reuse the original edging, but somehow it wasn’t long enough despite the fact that I used the original seat as the pattern. Go figure.

I also changed how the top attached to the stroller. It originally had a couple elastic pieces that went around the handle. I chose to do button straps instead. That way the whole thing is easily removable in case it needs to be washed. And there’s no chance of the elastic breaking down as the old ones did.

More Kitchen Experimentation

Last week I wrote about making a body butter lotion. I really like “sciencey” DIY projects like that. It’s always so cool to be able to make things like that myself. So when I came across a string of Lush substitute DIY posts on Pinterest, I knew I had to try them.

The first project I tried was the bath bomb recipe found here. Super simple, just four ingredients (I left out the colors). I don’t really get to take baths often, but I do like using those shower melt things to help with congestion. I tried one once that was just baking soda and peppermint oil, but it didn’t really have enough smell to it and washed away too quickly. But these new ones work great. Lasted a lot longer than the plain baking soda cake in the shower stream, too.

Another simple one I found was the sugar lip scrub. I didn’t bother pricing it out, but it uses so little of each of the ingredients there’s no way it’s not a better deal than the $10 it costs at Lush. Plus, it really is just things you probably have around the house. One tip for using that recipe, though: I had to add almost twice as much sugar to get the right consistency.