Friday, December 19, 2014

DIY Festive Holiday Fascinator

For this gorgeous DIY, I'm going to show you how I made this fun little holiday fascinator. I was inspired by some Pinterest browsing, coming across several gorgeous New Year's hats, and I decided to try and get creative on my own! (Although one of these days I'm hoping to create my own variation of these gorgeous crowns

Here's what you'll need:
A roll of tulle or netting (the one I found in our basement is about 7" wide)
Hot glue gun
Gold ribbon
White thread and a sewing needle
A very stiff doily (I actually had one left over from my bowl-making days - it's handmade and stiffened with loads and loads of glue and woodglue. Give it a try!)
Bobby pin or clip

Get all of your supplies ready and plug in your hot glue gun! 

Cut an 18 to 24" length of netting.

With your needle and thread, sew a running stitch about a 1/2 inch in along the long edge of the netting. Pull the thread tight to cinch, and tie off.

Hot glue the netting to the center of the doily, pressing firmly to seal. 

Snip desired length of ribbon and tie a pretty bow.

Hot glue to the center of the netting, pressing firmly.

Now, you have several options for fastening the fascinator to your head. I decided to use the snap barrette, gluing each end to the doily and bending the doily to accommodate the curved barrette. I'm not sure how long it will last, but it seemed like the most practical choice. If you come up with something better, don't hesitate to share it with me! Have fun creating this fun fascinator!

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

DIY Chunky Crochet Blanket

My first tutorial in a few months and it's a cozy chunky blanket! I love it. 

So I was cleaning out my yarn stash (and I mean CLEANING OUT, as in filling up a few trash bags of old gross yarn that I will never ever use and tossing it), and I came across an unfinished blanket made from a few skeins of chunky yarn. I had started making this weird back-and-forth blanket and it didn't look very nice. Then I came across a few more odds and ends of chunky yarn, and decided to make a thick 'n quick little lap blanket (mostly to use up these skeins and get them out of my way). 

If you, too, are looking to get rid of some old yarn, try this super easy pattern! No, really, it couldn't be easier. You can make this with any size yarn or hook, but I used super thick yarn and a P hook for this project.

First begin a granny square by working JUST the first round. (Chain 4, join to the first chain to make a round, chain 3, work 2 double crochets in the ring, *chain 3, work 3 double crochets in the ring, repeat from the * twice, end with a chain 3 and join with a slip stitch in the top of the first chain 3). If you don't already know how to make a granny square, check out this easy tutorial. They use chain-2 spaces between the 3 double crochet clusters, but you can do whatever you want. :)

Next, work the join round. Obviously the first square doesn't need to be joined to anything (you will just work the following directions without joining the square to anything and replacing all slip stitches with chains), but all of the subsequent squares do. Slip stitch into the next double crochet, chain 1 and single crochet in the same stitch, chain 3, single crochet into the next chain-3 space, chain 1 (as shown in photo above).

Insert hook into corresponding chain-3 corner on another square, like so.

Yarn over and draw through like you would for a normal slip stitch.

Chain 1.

Single crochet in same chain-3 space of current square. This finishes your join!

Continue in this manner across the edge of the squares, joining chain-3 spaces together.

When you reach the next corner, chain 1 (these next photos will show you how to join to three other squares, which is the most complicated step - and it's really not that difficult)

Insert hook into first chain-3 corner of corresponding square and draw through slip stitch.

Insert hook into chain-3 corner of the white square and draw through slip stitch.

Chain 1 and single crochet in chain-3 corner of current square. You just joined three squares together!

Continue in this way, joining 2 and 3 sides as needed, until you run out of scrap yarn. That's it! Weave in all your ends using a big yarn needle and feel free to work a little border around the edge if you have some extra yarn. Love. It. 

If you do try this tutorial, show me pictures! This is my easy Christmas season project between other deadlines, so I'll be working on it over the next week or so. Crochet with me and gift a cozy blanket this season!

Monday, December 15, 2014

A Fresh Take - Inspiring Workspace

After a very long drive and a long weekend of wedding stuff, I am all settled and unpacked in my beautiful childhood home. Well, mostly. I'm really loving my workspace so far, though. Would you like to see some photos? I'm hoping to stay inspired and creating! 

I'm using a portable table for my desk/worktable (craft show, anyone!?) It's still a little cluttered, but I've found a home for most of my tools.

Succulents and watercolors make me happy.

I turned my bed into a sort of couch/daybed where I can create or sleep at will. ;) Note the bowl of white lights on my shelf - I went to Goodwill to  try and find a mini lamp and ended up buying a sweater instead. Such is life.

White lights bowl, watercolor in vintage frame, teapot, bridesmaid bouquet, and a jar full of encouraging notes and memories from my friends in AR :)

The most important part of my trade! 

I recreated my wall of encouragement and inspiration and it looks even better now! I love my space so far. It's functional and bright and open, and sure to keep me inspired. 

On another note, I've been trying to figure out whether I actually have a name for what I do. I crochet, but I also knit, and sew, and cook, and draw, and paint, and craft. I think I'm going to just call myself a maker. A maker of things. I'll let you know if I think of something better.