Orchard Supply Hardware Preview

Before I take Wednesday to fill you in on the amazing sponsors, giveaways and projects coming up to celebrate my 5 year anniversary writing this blog, I’d like to tell you a bit about an event I attended recently at Orchard Supply Hardware.  While they did give me lots of stuff because I attended, I was not required to write this post in exchange and all opinions here are my own.  The stuff was pretty awesome though.

I’ve spent lots of time in hardware stores.  I live in a house that was built in the 70’s that we’re constantly working on bringing into the 21st century.  We spent a year working on a DIY wedding.  To top it all off, my son is now a happy employee of a local store.  I think he had the job when he told the interviewer he had practically been raised in their store and could tell them where anything is.  So, I am no stranger to both the big and little box stores to be found in our area.  However, Orchard Supply Hardware is new to me, so when they invited me to a preview day at their newest store, I was happy to go.

Orchard Supply Hardware garden

The store is located in what’s known as the Hollywood District in Portland.  It was previously the site of a bowling alley.  The first thing I noticed walking in the door was the amazing wood beam ceilings, which apparently were found when they started tearing out the old drop ceilings.  That’s like pulling up your vinyl flooring and finding hardwood.

Orchard Supply Hardware - wood ceilings

I think hardware stores big and small have something to offer, but I really liked the smaller feel to this place.  They didn’t have shelves of lumber and roofing for contractors, but seemed to be focused more on the individual homeowner.  I could spend all day just in the knobs and pulls aisle.

Orchard Hardware knobs and pulls

They did a great job of adding some personality, like this fun lid display over the paint department.

Orchard Hardware paint department

The store wasn’t open yet for my visit, so there were still finishing touches being added, like this amazing hand painted wall by the front entrance.  The artists were painting it freehand, just referring to the pictures you see taped up.  Amazing.

Orchard Hardware wall painting

Any store that names a section What-cha-ma-call-its has my attention.

Orchard Hardware what-cha-ma-call-its

I think most crafters will find themselves in a hardware store at some point.  It’s often for an item that might not ordinarily be considered a craft tool.  I’ve purchased paint, glues, chain, pipe, wire, wood and things I don’t remember the name of or their actual purpose, all in the name of crafts.  But it was nice to see things here that were a little off the beaten hardware path, like this wall of tape, an aisle of decorative bottles and mason jars galore.

Orchard Hardware tape

Toward the end of our tour, we were introduced to this gentleman.  Sorry for the blur, but I really wanted you to see his amazing mustache and bicycle tattoo.  

Orchard Hardware bicycle repair

He’s a bicycle repair expert and showed us everything we’d need to make this quirky beer bottle lamp.  Those two things are not related, but I got the impression he’s one of those guys that probably knows his way around lots of projects.  He even drilled holes in the bottles and inserted the rubber grommet, letting us choose the bottle we liked to take home and make with all the supplies included!  I love the old fashioned bulb.

Orchard Hardware - beer bottle lamp

In addition to the lamp kits, we were sent away with a bag filled with an apron, level, cookies and this herb garden kit, which I’m anxious to try not to kill.

Orchard Hardware herb garden

It was really fun to get a tour of a store that hadn’t even opened to the public yet, especially one that hits as many of my gardening, crafting, outdoor living, home improvement and cooking interests as Orchard did.  The store is open now, so if you find yourself in the area, check them out.  I’m already planning my next visit!

Friday Favorites–Decorating for Halloween

We have two October birthdays in our house, so if I’m going to decorate for Halloween I try to hold off until those have passed.  My husband’s was yesterday (Happy birthday honey!), so I think it’s time.  Since my kids are grown and we don’t get trick-or-treaters I don’t often do much, but I’m feeling it this year.  I think it might be nostalgia, since my oldest is completely out of the nest.  That’s okay, because there is no shortage of good ideas out there – I had a hard time narrowing it to ten this week!

Crafty Staci's Friday Favorites - Decorating for Halloween

I noticed after I was done collecting this week’s favorites that almost all of them involve repurposing.  One of the most impressive transformations is this pink and purple Little Tikes playhouse that became a spooky haunted mansion, thanks to the talents of Saki.Girl on Halloween Forums.

Little Tikes Playhouse Makeover by Saki.Girl on Halloween Forum

Thanks to so many charities using “flocking” as a fundraiser, you can buy pink flamingos lots of places year round.  Pick up a few and make these Painted Skeleton Flamingos with Craftbits.

Painted Skeleton Flamingo by Craftbits

I think these Rock Jack-O-Lanterns from No Time for Flashcards might be my kind of pumpkin carving.

I think these Halloween Spiders from Crafts ‘N Coffee are adorable, and not even a little scary.

Halloween Spiders by Crafts 'N Coffee

These DIY Halloween Lanterns from The Australian Baby Blog would be a fun craft to make with the kids.  All the glow, without all the fire hazard.

DIY Halloween Lanterns by The Australian Baby Blog

These Coffee Filter Spiderwebs from The Artful Parent remind me a little of snowflakes – until you add the spiders.

Spider Webs from Coffee Filters by The Artful Parent

I might need to start saving up shopping bags to make this skeleton from Curious Tangles on Instructables.

Halloween Skeleton Made of Plastic Shopping Bags by Curious Tangles on Instructables

I love a craft that can transition from Halloween to Thanksgiving, like these Reclaimed Wood Pumpkins from The Summery Umbrella.

Reclaimed Wood Pumpkins by The Summery Umbrella

These Toilet Paper Roll Bats from Practically Functional are easy, just the right amount of spooky, and use something everyone has around.

Toilet Paper Roll Bats by Practically Functional

These Barbie Zombies from Crafts by Amanda are at the top of my want-to-make list.  It probably helps that we’re big Walking Dead fans.

Barbie Zombies by Crafts by Amanda

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet

Are you all tired of hearing about wedding stuff yet?  I hope not, because we just got the photos from the photographer last week, along with her okay to share them here, so I have lots more to tell you about!

I have one more bathroom-related project I’d like to share with you before I reveal the whole thing next week.  I know it’s weird to be so focused on the restroom, but it was just adorable, and this project was the biggest focal point.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 1

We found the tub and watering can at Ikea last spring, so this wasn’t an expensive project at all.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 3

It was important to my husband to have a unique handle for the faucet, so we visited a local antique hardware store and found the one on the left for about $5.  He also needed a piece of 1/2” copper pipe and a drain, found at Home Depot.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 2

Replacing the faucet handle with the older one was as simple as unscrewing the nut, removing the one it came with, putting on the antique and screwing the nut back on.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 4

He pushed the copper pipe into the spout on the watering can just hard enough to make a small indent in the bottom.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 5

After that, he drilled a hole at the point of the dent…

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 6

…large enough for the pipe to fit through.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 7

He put a piece of wood under the tub and pounded lightly on the bottom in the center to create a recessed area for the drain.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 8

He drilled a hole in the bottom that was slightly bigger than the diameter of the pipe.  After the hole was drilled, he hit it a few more times with the hammer to flatten the rough edges.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 9

He removed the rubber gasket and nut from the bottom of the drain.  He pushed the drain into the drilled hole, adding some sealant to the underside.  Then he threaded the gasket and nut back on, tightening it with a wrench.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 10

With the drain securely in place, installing it involved some plumbing skills I won’t get into here.

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 11

It turned out even cuter than I pictured when my husband suggested it.  And it worked!

Galvanized Tub Sink and Watering Can Faucet - Crafty Staci 12

Next Wednesday – the big bathroom reveal!

Yogurt Tub and Denim Drawstring Bag

When I was asked by Earth 911 if I had any good recycled crafts they could share for Earth Day, I didn’t think I’d have any problem digging one up.  I was surprised to find most of my projects that fit the bill were seasonal, and not appropriate for spring.  I really wanted something that was mostly repurposed, didn’t take a lot of materials and was a little unusual.    I think this bag fits.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 0

To make this, you’ll need a clean yogurt tub (about 24 oz size), a piece of denim (a leg cut off to make shorts will work) and two shoe laces.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 1

Ok, so I know that’s technically not just yogurt, but have you tried this stuff?  Yum.

Measure around the top edge of your tub.  Add 1/2” to determine the width to cut your denim.  Measure the height of the tub, multiply by 1 1/2 and add 3” to determine the height.  Mine came out to 14 1/8 by 9”.

You can leave a decorative seam if your sewing machine can handle sewing over it doubled.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 2

Fold the denim with the short sides together.  Subtracting the 1/4” seam you’ll sew in the next step, find and mark the center on both sides.  Unfold.  Measure 2 1/4” down from the top edge at the mark.  Draw a 1/4” line from 2 1/4 to 2 1/2”.  Stitch a 1/4” buttonhole at the line and carefully cut it open.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 3

Fold the denim right sides touching and short ends together.  Stitch a 1/4” seam down the side.  Press the seam open.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 4

Stitch over the edge at the top and bottom with a zigzag stitch or serger to reduce fraying.  Fold the upper edge toward the wrong side 1 1/2” and press.  Stitch 1/2” from the edge and 1/2” from the fold.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 5

Using scissors or a razor knife, cut the lip off the tub.  Slip the fabric tube over the tub, wrong side of the fabric toward the tub and the top edge of the fabric and tub even with each other.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 6

Using a long stitch and a large needle, stitch 1/4” from the edge through the plastic and denim.  Add a pleat to the denim if you need to make it fit.  If you have any doubt at all about whether your sewing machine can survive this, punch holes in the plastic with an awl and sew by hand.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 7

Pull the denim up over the tub, turning right side out.  Feed a shoelace into one of the buttonholes, all the way around through the casing, and back out through the same hole.  Repeat on the opposite side with the other shoelace.  Tie the laces together near the buttonhole and again at the ends.  Pull both sides to draw closed.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 8

I thought I was done at this point, but when I turned around the lid was laying there.  I cut a small flower from it, which I stitched on with a button on top.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 9

I keep imagining taking this to the beach with my sunglasses, bottle of water and sunscreen in it.

Yogurt Tub and Jeans Drawstring Bag - Crafty Staci 10

If this wasn’t Oregon.  In April.  Maybe a snack instead?

Too-Short Shirt Refashion

I had two long-sleeved t-shirts in my closet that I hated because they were both too short.  I have a long torso, and like my shirts long besides, so it’s a constant problem for me.  The thing is, I kept forgetting that I hated these shirts so I’d pull one of them out, put it on, remember the problem, and decide to just wear it anyway.  I thought I’d grab them from the clean laundry and not stick them back in the closet.  As you can imagine, I’d forget (again!) and hang them right back up. 

I broke the cycle!  I have hooks on the back of my sewing room door where the future project clothes hang, and I finally managed to move them there.  Sometimes things live there for a long time, but I just kept looking at those two shirts thinking they might work if they were combined into one.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 1

The first decision I had to make was which shirt to keep as the main color.  I went with the green because it was in a little better condition than the blue. 

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 2

I very lazily held the shirt up to myself and estimated how much longer I’d like it to be.  I highly recommend actually trying it on for this step.  Fortunately, I guessed too long which is much easier to fix than too short. 

I cut off the amount of length I wanted to add to the green shirt from the blue shirt, plus one inch, which was 6 1/2” total.  Since the sleeves weren’t too short, I just wanted to add a little of the blue, so I cut 2” from the bottom of each sleeve.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 3

Since the fabric didn’t unravel when I cut it, I didn’t finish any of the edges.  I marked 1” from the edge on the blue so I would know where to overlap the green to.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 4

I overlapped and generously pinned all the way around the bottom and both sleeves.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 5

I used a narrow zigzag stitch to sew them together so it would still stretch.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 6

You might be thinking this looks a little weird.  Well, it did.  I tried it on and it was twice as long as it should be, so I folded the blue in half and stitched again. 

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 7

I could have stopped there, but that blue t-shirt carcass was laying on my table just begging to not get thrown in the trash.  Starting from the bottom of the shirt, I cut off four 1” strips.  I then cut off the side seams, so I was left with eight strips.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 8

I lined up a strip about 1/8” away from the top edge of the neckline and sewed a zigzag stitch down the middle, overlapping the strip back on top of itself about 1/2” as I went.  When each strip ran out, I just started the next one where it left off.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 9

I was a little concerned this was going to make the neck too heavy and it would hang too low, but I tried it on and it fit just like before.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 10

You know I still have blue shirt pieces left, right?  At this point, I cut everything up that I had left into equal width pieces…

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 11

…and sewed them together by overlapping them slightly and zigzagging.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 12

I wrapped the remaining strip I had around one section, tied it and tucked the tail under the knot.  Infinity scarf!

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 13

I have to admit, I was a little hesitant about mixing these two colors, but I’m happy with the result.  Two shirts I couldn’t stand wearing turned into one I love with a bonus infinity scarf?  Today was a win.

Long Sleeved Shirt Refashion - Crafty Staci 14

Leather Cell Phone Wristlet

The Protect Your Tech Challenge is over, so now I can share my project with you.  Every time I think I’m done using the leather I cut off to refashion this coat, I find something new to do with it.  Believe it or not, I still have a little bit left, so I can’t guarantee you’ve seen the last of it.

Red Leather Jacket Projects - Crafty Staci

When I was asked to create a holder for a cell phone or tablet using recycled materials, it was important to me that as many of the materials were reused from something else as possible.  The only thing I ended up using that was brand new was the thread.  Seriously, I draw the line at trying to reuse thread…just, no.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 1 - Crafty Staci

This is what I used:

  • leather – from refashioned coat
  • hook and loop – from a duffle bag
  • D ring – from a bag
  • clip-on wrist strap – from an old point and shoot camera bag
  • lining fabric – scraps left from my Pan Protector and Hot Pad project
  • webbing – from a belt

Recycled Leather Phone Case 2

To create my pattern, I drew a rectangle that measured 3/4” larger than my phone on all sides.  My phone is pretty thin (Samsung Galaxy SIII) so be sure to take the thickness of your phone into account when drawing your pattern.  I used something with a rounded edge to round the two bottom corners.  If I could remember what that was, I’d tell you, but it was probably a jar or something similar.

After you’ve drawn your pattern, cut two pieces from the leather (or whatever fabric you’re using) for the outside and two from the lining fabric.  You’ll also need a 1 1/4 by 2” piece of leather for the side loop.  Cut the 5/8 to 3/4” wide hook and loop 1 1/2” long.  The webbing I used was 1 3/4” wide and had a finished end, so I cut it 3 3/4” long.  If you’ll have to finish the end, cut it 1/2” longer, fold it under 1/4” twice and stitch.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 3

Sew the loop piece of the hook and loop to the front leather piece, centered side to side and 2 1/4” from the top edge.  Sew the hook piece to the webbing, 1/4” from the finished end.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 4

Fold the 2” sides of the small piece of leather under 1/4” and stitch.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 5

Slip into the D-ring and fold, wrong sides together.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 6

Use binder clips to clip the two remaining pieces of leather right sides together.  Slip the D-ring loop into one side with the ring inside, 1” from the top.  Stitch 1/4” from the edge, leaving top open.  Do the same with the lining, without the D-ring loop, and leave a 4” opening at the bottom.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 7

Turn the lining right side out.  Stuff it into the leather piece.  Clip the top edges of both together.  Slip the webbing between the layers , opposite the front hook and loop (the loop part) with the hook and loop on the webbing facing the lining.  In the photo you’ll see my webbing sticking up above the edge, which is only because I started out with it too long.  Yours should be even with the edge.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 8

Stitch around, 1/4” from the edge.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 9

Turn right side out through the opening in the bottom of the lining.  Stitch the opening closed by hand or machine.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 10

Push the lining to the inside.  Roll the seam with your fingers until it is completely turned.  Stitch around close to the upper edge.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 11

For the flower embellishment, cut your favorite shape from the leather.  I also cut a smaller starburst shape for the center to add a little more texture.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 12

Stitch onto the webbing through the button.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 13

Clip the wrist strap onto the D-ring and it’s finished.  If you don’t have a wrist strap, some narrow webbing stitched together and a carabiner of some kind will do the trick.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 15

My phone fits in the case perfectly without my phone cover, however I’d make it larger if you want your cover to stay on.

Recycled Leather Phone Case 14

I’d like to thank everyone who took the time to vote for my project in the challenge.  I appreciate the support!



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Fire Starter Hostess Gift

I’m starting to feel that anxiety of a busy week coming up.  I don’t mind the chaos.  In fact, I sometimes like a little crazy.  The part that makes me tense is the thought that I’ll forget something important.  When there’s so much to do, something is bound to slip through the cracks (FYI – as I was typing this I wrote “crafts” instead of “cracks” – psychoanalyze that!).

One of the things I want to make sure to remember is a hostess gift for Thanksgiving.  My husband is still away and my sister invited me and my kids to spend the holiday with her family.  Hosting Thanksgiving is no small task, so I want to thank her properly.  Before you think I’m giving away the surprise here, this isn’t the gift I decided on, but I love it and wanted to share it with you anyway.

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 1

Everywhere we have lived has had either a fireplace or a woodstove.  I love being able to have a fire in the winter.  What I do not enjoy is wading up balls of newspaper to start it.  I decided instead to make something I could just grab out of a basket and throw in under some kindling.

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 2

To make the fire starters, I used cardboard rolls.  Mine are toilet paper rolls, but you could also cut down a paper towel roll or the center from the wrapping paper.  Speaking of gift wrap, you’ll need some of that too.   You’ll also need some cotton string and something flammable to stuff inside, like shredded paper.  I’ve even seen these made with dryer lint.

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 3

I used shredded paper for mine.  I also wadded up pieces of the instructions that come wrapped around interfacing and stuffed that in the ends of the tube so the shred wouldn’t fall out while I was working with it.

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 4

Cut the gift wrap into pieces about 6” by 10”.  Starting from the larger side, roll it around the stuffed tube.  Secure with a small piece of tape.

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 5

Squish the ends just above the tube and tie with a 6” piece of string at each end.

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 6

To use, simply stick a couple under some small pieces of dry wood…

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 7

…and light the ends.

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 8

I normally use a butane lighter to start a fire, but I thought something prettier would make this a better gift.  The Burlap Bag had shared a match jar project that was exactly what I was looking for.  The only changes I made were to not cut a hole in the top and use the lid insert under the sandpaper.  I actually had a partial box of strike anywhere matches that I’m pretty sure has been around our house through most of our marriage.

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 9

After I made the first batch of these using Christmas wrap, I happened to find some wood grain print paper at Target.  Now they’re perfect!

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 10

Throw in a few dried pinecones and you have a gift that’s both functional and pretty – if your hostess can bring herself to actually burn it.  The wood grain starters will probably still be sitting on my hearth in April.

Fire Starter Hostess Gift 11


Friday Favorites–Recycling and Repurposing

I’m never quite sure what to say about Earth Day.  It feels similar to what we all tell our children when they ask why there’s no Kids’ Day.  Say it with me – every day is Kids’ Day.  Isn’t every day Earth Day?  Do you only recycle on April 22nd?  Probably not, and I found a bunch of creative people who do it year-round too.

I just bought some shrinkable plastic sheets to play with.  I wish I would have found these DIY Shrinky Dinks from Curbly first.


If someone comes up with some creative way this thing will water itself (I’m sure it’s out there) I’ll be all over this Vertical Vegetable Garden from Instructables user pippa5, because I’m pretty sure I have this shoe organizer somewhere.


I’m sure if you’ve even dipped your foot into Pinterest, you’ve experienced the frustration of trying to track down the original source of a pin.  I saw this photo and loved it, but finding where it came from took a LONG time.  Turns out, it’s an entry in a photo contest on Dave’s Garden.  The photo, taken by Elfishone, is lovely and the idea is a brilliant way to reuse an old purse.


Who hasn’t found themselves with old, empty DVD cases and wondered how they could be repurposed?  This DVD Coloring Case from Handmade by Stacy Vaughn is the perfect answer.


I’m not sure how difficult it would be to find the hardware for this Book Page Bracelet from Happy Hour Projects, but I think it’s definitely worth looking.

Mod Podge book page bracelet

Start collecting those pop tops, because you’ll need a lot of them to make this Pop Top Lamp Shade from Make.


This Buckle Up Key Holder from Uncommon Goods is a ready-made item, but with a little ingenuity and access to an old seatbelt, I’m sure you crafters out there could make one. 


Something about this Corner Door Shelf from Craftaholics Anonymous feels like Alice in Wonderland.


This braided belt from Instructables user hammer9876 uses ties from yoga pants, but the possibilities for reusing other string-shaped items are endless.


I’m going to start stashing away colorful magazine pages so I can make these gift bows from How About Orange.  As if I need another excuse.


Friday Favorites–Flowers

The winter after my daughter turned one, I bought an amaryllis bulb.  Surprisingly, I remembered to water it a few times, and it bloomed into a beautiful red flower.  It just so happened that Codi had a favorite book, which we had to read every day, that included a flower that looked just like it.  Every single time we reached that page, she’d point to the flower.  The weird thing is, she continued to point at the spot where the flower used to be every time we read the book, long after it was dead and gone.


In the wake of this same girl turning 18 and every day bringing up a new aspect of what college life will be like, I nostalgically bought another amaryllis last month.  It finally bloomed a couple of days ago, leading me to a realization.  I need one of these every year.  Having that bright flower in the window is the perfect antidote for the dreary, post holiday month of January.  Even without a little blonde girl pointing it out.

For all the beauty of an amaryllis, with none of the watering, check out this lovely pop-up card from CardNotions on Etsy.


The flower on this Back to School Headband from Brassy Apple is simple enough to make with some motivated little girls.


I like the way this Fabric Flower from I’m Feelin’ Crafty is cut in a spiral, making it curve perfectly.


I love a tutorial that has no words, like these Paper Dogwood Flowers from La Manufacture, and what a fabulous re-use of a shopping bag and tissue.


Do you have an old necktie lying around?  Make it into a cute flower with this tutorial from My Heart is Yours.


These Felt Camelias from How Joyful would be perfect on top of a gift or attached to a headband.


I just love the ruffley-ness of these Ruffled Fabric Flowers from Quiltish.

ruffle fabric flower

I’ve seen these rick-rack flowers around, but didn’t understand how they were made until right this very minute.  Thanks to The Crafting Chicks for excellent directions on their Rick Rack Rosettes.

Buttons always make cute flowers, and here’s a slightly different take from Artsy Crafty Babe.


As if I needed a reason to want a rainbow of duct tape, I’ve added these Duct Tape Flower Pens from Seven Sisters to my want list.


Here’s hoping you find something to brighten up your day today!

Friday Favorites–Gifts for Guys

Thanksgiving is over, and the Christmas season has officially begun.  If you’re not out shopping the Black Friday sales, you might be considering handmade gifts.  Actually, if you are out shopping, you might be standing in a LONG line contemplating the same thing, along with “What was I thinking?!?”

For the next few weeks, my Friday Favorites will be full of gift ideas and we’re going to start with the most difficult of all – guys.

I have a couple of bicyclists in my house who might appreciate this Cycling Cap from Dude Craft.


With all the holiday events coming up, maybe your guy could use this Bow Tie and Pocket Square from Craft.


My son has been working on this Paracord Belt from Instructables user Jake22 for months.  I should say he started it, made a mistake, then couldn’t decide whether to continue or fix it.  Still waiting on a decision.


I’m sure this Rubberband Gun from Sugar Bee Crafts was intended for a little boy, but I can totally picture my husband keeping one of these on his desk at work.

rubberband gun tutorial copy

This Pocket Knife Key Wallet from OnlyKnives just says “guy” all over it.

If the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, these Salted Chocolate “Twix” Bars from Crepes of Wrath are the expressway.


He might not know it yet, but your guy definitely needs a holiday tie, whipped up using this Father’s Day Tie tutorial from The Purl Bee.


If he’s less tie and more hoodie, try this Men’s Fleece Hoodie from Craftstylish instead.

I don’t know which would be more fun – to make this Bike Tube Wallet by Instructables user Captain Molo and give it to your guy, or give him a bike tube and the instructions to do it himself.


If you don’t want to make him something yourself, but still like the idea of handmade, check out this Shaving Kit from Etsy seller orangefuzz.  It includes beer shaving soap and comes in a cigar box.  It doesn’t get much more manly than that.