Archive for January, 2009

Spoon Ring

January 29th, 2009

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This is a project I’ve been wanting to do for a while.  I’ve seen a number of rings made from silverware out and around on the internets, but I wasn’t sure about bending the spoon without special tools.  Luckily, I didn’t need to rely on any special mental powers.  This cheap spoon I found at Goodwill bent easily enough with a pair of pliers.  I tried to keep the spoon wrapped in a towel to prevent marks from the pliers, but it didn’t work perfectly.  I don’t mind a few scuffs and scratches though, I’m really happy with the outcome.

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By the time I had gotten the handle shaped into the curve I wanted, the head of the spoon had already been bent back and forth enough that it wasn’t hard to snap it off (this stuff was really soft!).  I used my dremel to grind down the shap edge and buff and shine up the ring.

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Here you can see the ring resting on what is left over from the spoon.  See how tarnished it was? uck! I just loved the design on the handle though.  I’m so happy it cleaned up all shiny pretty.

A Couple of Useful Tiny Projects

January 9th, 2009

I spent a nice quiet evening with some needles and felt and made a couple of useful little things, and I just thought I would share them.  The first one is an adorable little bottlecap pincushion.  There are tutorials all over the net for making these, but I’d never made one before.  I like the bottlecap pincushion as a place to keep needles separate from my pins.  Needles always get lost in my big cushion, so a little one like this is perfect.  I’m thinking abou making one with a magnet on the bottom so I can attach it to the magnet board I keep by my sewing machines.

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Then I made a cozy for the remote for my new camera.  Hopefully it will help me not to lose it!  I added a little loop to the top, and I think I’ll add a keyring to hang the cozy from my camera strap.  That should do it!

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I’m not as comfortable with hand sewing or embroidery as I would like to be, but little projects like these can help you build your skills in a way that isn’t as intimidating or stressful as a large project would be.  I think we all know about the satisfaction of completing a project; the feeling of accomplishment you get even with a simple or small item, so don’t forget to fit a few tiny projects into your time!

Cute Paper Beads from Security envelopes

January 3rd, 2009

Closeup on some of the beads I made. Cute, right?

I saw some cute little paper beads while browsing Craftster the other day and thought they were so cute and clever! http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=285330.0 I was instantly transported back to my childhood on one of those long summer days when you just have to whine, “I’m bored!” My dear packrat Grandma pulled out some old craft magazines (like 60′s or 70′s old) so I could find a project to do.  I found an article in one magazine on making paper beads and spent the rest of the afternoon with a stack of junk paper, a bottle of Elmer’s glue and a plastic handled paintbrush (to wrap the paper around). I can still remember peeling the glue “skin” off my fingers and stringing the beads onto a piece of yard to make the most beautiful necklace I thought I would ever see.

Hit with that blast of nostalgia, and an evening with nothing to do, I decided to once again try my hand at making some paper beads.  I loved the idea of using the insides of the security envelopes so I dug through the recycling and found a few.  I used my rotary cutter to slice long strips of the envelopes, then tore the long strips into shorter lengths (the torn ends seal better than cut ones).  I opted for glossy mod-podge instead of the classic Elmer’s and thought I’d be mature and apply the glue with a paintbrush instead of dipping and wiping with my fingers.  I wrapped the paper strips around a thin DPN and slid them off carefully to dry.

I don’t know how I had forgotten all about paper beads for so long, but now I might just have to make a few more. I started thinking about cute scrapbooking paper I’ve seen and how they might look.  I don’t really do much beading, though, so these are just sitting in a little box on my desk for now.  I think I might just string a bunch of them together and toss them on my keyring with some pretty glass beads.

(p.s. I ended up giving up on the paintbrush about 5 minutes in.  By the end of the night I was peeling off my extra layer of mod-podge skin with a little grin.  What can say?  Sometimes your hands are the best tool, even when it means getting a little messy.)