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7.31.2012

Guest Post: Kibbles n Knits

Nancy is one of my first sponsors and the artist behind the cute little etsy site called Kibbles n Knits. Not only is she a fiber artist and blogger, she also designs jewelry! You can visit her shop on the left column of the page and also enter a giveaway on her blog!
I am in love with the pistachio earrings above! Everything on Nancy's site is so cute - she even has kits to turn your own vintage fabrics into custom jewelry for the special people in your life. What a unique gift to keep the memories of a special quilt or outfit alive forever.
Today Nancy is sharing a tutorial inspired by the fabric trims at her local craft shop. There are always so many colors and textures to choose from and I'm glad she thought of a use for them!

Materials:


trim from fabric store
fabric glue (make sure it dries clear and is washable)
2 large jump rings
1 small jump ring
1 clasp
scissors


1)  Pick out your trims from the fabric store.  1/2 yard will be more than enough (even if you make a mistake or decide to experiment).
2)  Gather your materials.

3)  Feed one end of the trim through the large jump ring.  Fold end over the ring and back onto itself.  You need at least 1/2 inch of trim to secure the end.

4)  Line up any pattern on the trim so the finished product looks clean and even.
5)  Glue the end of the trim to itself.  
6)  Press and hold for 30 seconds.

7)  Open the small jump ring.  Feed the clasp and large jump ring onto the small jump ring.  Close the small jump ring.  NOTE:  Never just pry open a jump ring like you are cracking open a fortune cookie.  Instead, gently twist the ends away from one another (one goes away from you, one goes toward you).  Set clasp and rings to the side.

8)  Wrap trim around your wrist.  Cut the trim with enough room to fold back over the jump ring and match up any pattern in the trim.
9)  Feed end of trim through the jump ring, fold it back on itself and glue.  (You are repeating steps 3 - 6.)
10) Let glue dry for 15 minutes.
11)  Cut loose ends of the trim close to the glue.  At this point, you may need to add more glue to the very edge to prevent the trim from fraying.

Let your bracelet dry completely before wearing it.  The glue used in this bracelet can be washed.  However, to keep your bracelet looking gorgeous, take it off before you swim, bathe, or shower.

7.30.2012

Anthropologie Behind the Scenes

Before I was involved with Anthro behind the scenes, I enjoyed their customer-centered artistry as much as everyone else. I thought their window displays and decorated corners appeared like magic for us to enjoy as we oohed and aahed. Now I know that everything we see on the sales floor takes hard work, long hours and a visual team to put together. Not to mention the messy hands or blisters!
Anthro's dedicated teams arrive at work at 6am to start the busy day of designing and putting together the visual aspects both outside and inside the store. While the display team is working in the art room, the merchandising team is moving and adding new products to the floor on a daily basis. The store literally changes every single day!
Although the summer is drawing to an end I have enjoyed learning about Anthro's ingenious marketing strategies at the point-of-purchase. I have loved this internship and learning about the company's dedication to the Anthro experience that made me fall in love with the store in the first place.

7.26.2012

Chandelier

I have a few things on my bucket list to include somewhere in our future house. Stenciled stairs, a purple wall, a killer mantelpiece, and an antique pantry door. 
Then I have a bucket list for my future backyard art studio. A pottery wheel, a gold ceiling, a photography backdrop and lots of windows. Chandeliers and mobiles are going to be in both. 
I've been keeping a collection of hanging wonders that I like best so that when the time finally comes... I will be ready.
Wedding Chicks








7.25.2012

Making a Fringe Tassel from Scratch

I have been searching for a good tassel in all of the material stores nearby. This is what I found: nada. Sure, there are 1 inch long, plastic coated, pink sparkly fringed tassels... but I'm not making a cowboy outfit for a toddler pageant. With this picture from Confetti System as my inspiration I decided to try my own fringed tassel talents. Luckily, it was easier than I thought! 
At first I wanted to make a tassel necklace, but as the fringe grew I decided I wanted to make something else. There are only 4 materials needed: string, scissors, rulers, embroidery floss. The string needs to be 100% cotton so that it can be dyed later on. (Go to the dollar store!)
The first thing to do is wrap the string four times around the ruler.

Next is to connect the miniature tassel to the row. This is easy enough by knotting the embroidery to the top on one side of the ruler. Then take the tassel off of the ruler and knot the floss to the other side of miniature tassel. Thats it!
Repeat over and over to add more and more miniature tassels onto the floss to build the fringe.

If you have never dyed cotton before, don't worry. After you boil the fringe in a cup of vinegar and water, just follow the instructions on the RIT dye. It only needed to soak for about half an hour to achieve the color I wanted!
I quickly sewed the fringe onto a stick to get the ombre effect. Let it dry for a day and that's it. Beautiful! On Thursday I'll post the next tutorial to see what I do with these gorgeous things!

7.22.2012

Crabbing

One of our favorite activities from this summer has been the sport of 'crabbing'. I even think it is among our top memories of all time! We had such a good time traveling to the Texas City Dike and trying our skills at catching some crabs. If you ever get the chance... it is worth it!
Our two year old niece came along with the gang to drink purple soda and watch the crabs scuttle across the rocks. I think it must have been our lucky day because we caught over twenty crabs in a few hours! 
The method is easy enough - tie some chicken necks to a piece of fishing line and a weight and just bob it in the water until you notice a crab grab on. Then gently lift it up and catch that sucker in the net. The crabs are so determined to get the piece of meat that they won't let go!
Spencer also took his first dip in the ocean when he got a little too ambitious and fell in. Glad I was there to snap a picture of the moment! After our first crabbing adventure we travelled down to Galveston to enjoy the rest of the day at the beach, building sandcastles and boogie boarding.

7.20.2012

Inspired by Amanda Happe

I have been intrigued by Amanda Happe's work since I first spotted her piece on pinterest. (Isn't it a great place to find beautiful things?) I love her use of negative space to catch the viewers attention and her bright colors. Although she uses words like 'gratitude' and 'selflessness' and 'courage', I thought it would be fun to make a personal version with my family's name on it. You can visit the rest of her work on Amanda Happe's site.

To make this project you only needed three materials: a flat piece of wood, 2" vinyl letters and acrylic paint. Once you decide how you want to arrange your letters, lightly draw a design on the wood and use a ruler to mark where to stick the letters down.
With the letters stuck firmly to the wooden surface, begin painting in the design that you drew. Remember that the stickers will create a negative space when they are removed.
 After the paint dries, simply remove the letters and erase the pencil markings. You can always add a thin layer of varnish or lacquer to seal the wood for years to come.
Depending on the colors of your living room, you can paint the wood to match your decor! I used a 12x12 piece of board since we are currently traveling, but if you use a larger piece of wood and larger letters it will be a beautiful addition to your home!
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