Tuesday, December 31, 2013

let's table it

A couple months ago I found this folding sewing machine table at a local thrift store (one that supports animals in need, something near and dear to me). I mulled it over and decided it would improve the odds I'd sew more since my current setup is impractical (click here to see where I had been using the machine -- it's covered with navy fabric behind the pasta maker [for clay] and bench vice at the far right of the photo). 

To my joy, the table was still for sale when I returned a couple weeks ago, and this time, 50% off. It wasn't until I got it home that I realized it's a Pfaff table (which is why it's exactly like the one my Mom used with her Pfaff machine when I was growing up in the 60s and 70s). I have a Kenmore machine - an oldie from the 80s but it still works fine. Lucky for me my hubby is handy since my Kenmore didn't fit on the table. Hubby modified the table and I'm in business! Well, I will be once I rearrange the studio to accommodate this purchase. Woo-Hoo! I love to reorganize my craft room -- it gets me all stoked to create. This weekend can't come fast enough (grinning with eager anticipation). 

In the meantime, I want to wish you all a safe, healthy and freakin' fantastic 2014! 


Thursday, December 26, 2013

card again

The craft room didn't get much use this month due to holiday activities, so I stripped out the organizing portion of this week's post on my organizing blog (http://www.locationmatters.co/#!blogger-feed/c130bso the post could perform double duty. My apologies for the duplication if you happen to follow both blogs (and if you do, thank you!

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If you are like me, you enjoy receiving holiday cards from family and friends. It warms our hearts to know someone is thinking of us, and if they include a letter or note telling how they're doing and what's happening in their life, it’s icing on the cake. It's a simple way to stay somewhat connected.

Each year I find a new way to display the cards as they arrive, having not yet landed on the ideal location. What is consistent every year is saving the cards themselves. When the holidays are over and decorations come down, I cut the fronts off and place the backs in the recycle bin. The card fronts go in a folder for next year’s holiday. This year I used a round punch to capture images from the prior years' cards and then used the cut-outs for gift tags and embellishments on plain packaged gifts.

If you'd like more holiday card ideas, search Pinterest or Google “recycling holiday cards” and you’ll see countless ideas for other ways to repurpose greeting cards. If none of these float your boat, an alternative to recycling them is to donate them to a charity, such as St. Jude’s Ranch.


Sunday, December 8, 2013

experimenting with lava bright silk

So I'm at the Woodsmith Store with my hubby the other day and I spot this really beautiful stick of acrylic (Lava Bright Stick). Hubby tells me it's for making pens. I think it would make cool jewelry, ask if I can cut, sand and and drill it, and when told yes, purchase it. Last night I pulled out my baby table saw and dremel attachments and started experimenting. The saw blade cut through it just fine but man oh man did it make a mess and stink beyond words. The saw blade left marks so I used the baby belt sander, which also made a mess and stunk up the whole house. The belt sander left scratches so I proceeded to use a series of dremel attachments to end up with a smooth and polished product. You can see the mess in the photo below (guess you can't actually see all the plastic shavings all over, but they're there). 

Doing some research online today, I read that wet sanding is recommended when turning the acrylic for pens. Doesn't matter. At this point, the majority of the product is in the trash. The house wreaked so bad that, even though the temp was in the teens, I had to open windows and turn on fans (in case you're wondering, yes, I wore goggles and a face mask when I was sawing, sanding, etc.). Long story short, I'm hoping to salvage the pieces I worked on and make a few pair of earrings (the acrylic really is absolutely beautiful stuff) but after that, I don't ever plan to work with the stuff again. 

The shop area of the studio is back in order (smile). 

So after that little exercise, I yearned to work with something I'm familiar with and enjoy not only the process but the results. If you guessed metal & Friendly Plastic, you're right! Here's a sneak peak of the current WIP: 

So, tell me, what new thing did you try or learn about this weekend?