Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Pineapple Doily Rug v2.0

I finally did my taxes AND finished the second rug that I started with the muslin today!! I tried this rug with the same pattern that the original canvas doily rug was made out of, but ofcourse it wasn't that simple. The muslin is a much lighter weight material and I was able to do a much more detailed pattern this time around (and I kept track of it).

I had to work the circle to a larger circumference so that I could fit the pineapples around it. There are 9 pineapples total with a cluster stitch border. The rug measures just over 6.5 feet through the middle. I am so happy with the end result!    :)

I haven't listed it on Etsy yet, I'd like to keep it for a little bit and pull it out to look at it every week...

Monday, March 21, 2011

Sugaring Paste - trial and error

The weather is starting to get nice and the winter fuzz must go. Everyone has been talking to me about waxing instead of shaving... I hate shaving but I also don't think I can get into waxing, so I was researching some alternatives when I came across sugaring paste! I am so stoked on this, my first attempt at making the paste was an epic fail, I over cooked it and it was a huge mess to clean up (but the sugar paste is water soluble so soaking in hot water was easy enough).
It is so inexpensive to make the paste, all you need is 2 cups of sugar, 1/4 cup each of lemon juice and water. Cook this over very low heat in a thick saucepan.
The key is bringing it to a boil very slowly. You need to be attentive and stir often so the sugar won't burn. Once it boils the color will change from yellow to amber.
 I tested the paste every minute or so on a white plate, till it was the right color, then turn off the heat and wait about 10 minutes to transfer to a heat resistant container.
Once it is in the jar let it cool til its closer to room temperature so you don't burn yourself. The technique is a little bit tricky to master but I just looked up some videos to get the idea. You have to play with a chunk of the paste til you get it pliable and a bit warmed up. I thought it was really easy and not painful at all. It didn't get all of the hairs but I think it was more about the technique, so I will get better at it. No pictures of the process because my hands were all sticky! But it is super easy to clean up with just warm water.

I think it was a success and I cant wait to put my razor away this summer!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Doily Rug Part 2 - Squared

I just finished one of the rugs that I started out of the muslin fabric. It is much lighter weight than the canvas and works up differently. I cant even remember how many times I tore this rug out while working on the pattern, it lays so differently than the canvas and kept ruffling out till I simplified the pattern. I really should have kept track of what I was doing, because I came out with this square shape and I kinda love it.It measures just over 4.5' diagonally across, and just under 4' across the middle.

I am debating on whether or not to add another round and refine the shape a bit more. I also tried something new with this rug... I used my fingers to crochet it instead of the big blue hook. It was kind of a fun process and I liked how much looser the stitches were, but then I got tired of doing that, so the last row with all of the long stitches was done with the hook.

Composting on my roof

We have this great space on the roof and I think I will grow some plants up there this spring (the apartment is a little overcrowded with our plants) but I really want to figure out a way to compost on the roof. I have been reading all sorts of trashy forums trying to figure out the best way. Maggie and I have been juicing a lot recently and there is so much good waste from the juicer, I hate just throwing it out.

I don't know that much about composting but several people were comparing the green matter to the brown matter and finding a balance between these two. I wonder if I could use old magazines or newspaper for the brown part... I think I will have plenty of green. I think I need to do a bit more research...

Also I have to find some sort of long stick that I can use to turn it in the 32 gallon trash can, like a witch with a potion brewing (a potion to make the plants grow faster)

Several people also talked about how you cant get enough circulation when using a plastic bin... but I think I just need to drill a ton of holes in it

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Doily Rugs

So I was very pleased with the way the large doily rug came out and I have been playing with some new materials and ideas.

The original one was done with 3 9'x12' canvas drop clothes torn into strips and then worked into a doily pattern that I created as I went. I tried using a pattern but the scale really didn't lay right with the canvas. The canvas was an experiment to see if I could even do it... but what I really wanted to do was make one with rope (cotton or manila) but I couldn't justify the cost of rope without knowing it would work... and now, I just cant afford the rope. (but if you know anywhere I could get my hands on massive amounts of 3/4" rope please do let me know)

I have been trying to make an effort to work with the materials that I have access to, and I just cleaned out our storage space and found so much bedding left behind by old roommates that needed a good use, so....

 I love love love this light blue/gray one... its made of an old jersey sheet, that was so frustrating to rip into strips but the result is so wonderful, it feels amazing under your feet.
I figured out that I can get about a 2.5' rug from a full size sheet, so I thought these were just perfect for a small bedroom, bathroom or kitchen. And so much quicker to make than the big rugs.

Just listed on Etsy yesterday blue rug  & colorful rug w/ border

I also got a great deal on a bolt of muslin that has been good to me. I am working on a few rugs with this material now. It is much easier to rip into strips than the canvas was... and much lighter. I think it feels better under the feet, but I am still figuring out how to work with it. more to come with that...

Friday, March 18, 2011

Getting Started...

Ok, so here we go, my first blog ever! Get ready to be entertained... or to just to read this because you are my friend and you want to support me :)

Here are some things you can look forward to reading about:
bright ideas that I plan on figuring out
bright ideas that I will probably never figure out
my current projects
things I started forever ago and want the motivation to finish
things that I think are incredible 
foods that I love ( i know this doesn't fit the crafty theme but I have been really into baking and want to share good recipes)
Doilies, in every way shape or form I can imagine them

I think that is enough of a list to start with. 

I hope that this is fun, wish me luck!