Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Hanukkah

This year Hanukkah falls on the same date as Thanksgiving. There are children's painted hand prints of turkeys that also appear as menorah. Greeting cards for Hanukkah with silly turkeys. And this event of colliding holidays won't happen again for a VERY long time (no, really! read why here). So I hope you can enjoy some of both holidays this year, with some wonderful foods and festivities!

I decided to make my own flame-free menorah. It is all wooden, hand painted (I even made the white embossed mantel it is on) it has just 8 branches (instead of what you may often see, the 9 branched type). Since I don't need to light any real candles I stuck to 8 for my handmade menorah. We have pets including cats, I didn't want them to get curious over candles thinking "Oh look what the people did! Candles lit up, lets just go check them out with our jumping on things and big fluffy tails" you see my reasoning now?
My husband fried up some latkes which, by the way, are heavenly potato goodness! And I spent several weeks making a paper wreath by hand. It's all taped together (on the back, not visible on the front) and I'm really pleased with the finished piece. It is now hanging above our TV for all to see and brighten up the winter season.
 I hope everyone has a warm and festive Hanukkah 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Holiday madness begins

Hello, how are you? It's been chilly, Autumn weather has settled in. The foliage is here and it's really lovely this week - the trees change from greens to reds, oranges and golds. We dressed up and decorated for Halloween this year. We greeted trick-or-treater's with candy, stickers and our little dog in a costume (he was a Bat). The next day I had to go to the grocery store and... they already had the winter holiday decorations up! The madness, the headache of it all! And the music - already Christmas music in many stores every time I go in *sigh, too early stores*.

My etsy shop is ready for the holiday season ~ I even updated my shop banner for it *so visit my shop HERE if you like*

Each holiday season I try to craft some hand made gifts. I really prefer to invest my time in those to give them buy too many store items to give. You recall I'm already making my mom some items for her kitchen ~ so guess what? A friend moved recently and asked if I could make her something nice for her new place! So of course I would help ~ I was delighted she asked me *and flattered*
I asked my friend to pick the fabric she liked best - a almost navy blue hue with ivory print. From there I bought the backing (the white fabric came pre-quilted, yippee!) and I used bias tape to finish the raw edges. Her set includes place mats, coasters and I made her cloth napkins to match too. I hope this hand made set helps her feel even more at home in a brand new place. 

The gift for my mom, still in progress. I decided to make this pattern by hand, so it may be skewed in spots. But I think the colors will match her kitchen and she can easily wash all these fabric items. It's been a challenge and a delight to make it! I enjoy making my own patterns at times to try them out. 

But all crafter's must keep in mind - don't forget to make yourself something now and then! I went to JoAnn fabrics a while back *and had amazing self control* and picked out this flannel fabric for a pattern I already had. The pattern is an older pajama one with tops & bottoms, it is Simplicity and has misses to women's sizes. Always read the sizing information on the pattern because it is NOT like traditional clothing sizes at all. You have to measure yourself typically to find what pattern size is correct and many patterns have illustrated instructions (on the paper inside) on how to do this. 

I adore the flannel print! Look at it, just look! It has an orange cat, white bunny and brown bear. It has different things in the background like a bicycle, little houses and toadstools ~ ahh, it simply called to me. Is it strange I love this sort of print? *laugh* I mean it's not going to be seen outside the house so I can pick whatever cutesy print I desire. I hope everyone can enjoy some quite time during the start to the holiday season. Don't over do it when you go shopping - bring a list! And if you like to gift handmade things start making them now and you won't feel rushed.