Mason jar floating candles

Mason-Jar-CandlesIt’s true, I pin lots of cute “ideas for later” on my Pinterest page that I never quite find the time to do. Usually it comes down to lack of money or lack of time or lack of equipment (or all three).

So when I saw some sweet easy-peasy jar candles and realized that I already had all of the items needed to make these in my closet, I jumped at the chance to get creative!

All it took to make these Mason Jar Floating Candles were three glass jars from my stash ( two of them are actually old mayonnaise jars!), a bit of raffia that I had leftover from Christmases past and a few unscented floating candles from Pier 1 that I’d bought on sale and been saving from since I don’t know when. Wrap, tie, snip, fill, splash, done!

These look oh-so-pretty lighted and sitting out on my porch at night.

Magnet-mania

Bird-MagnetsA few weeks ago I decided to go on a little magnet-making spree! I took my trusty paper punch to some favorite illustrations by the wonderfully creative artist Gennine Zlatkis, and used Mod Podge to adhere these circles to the 1-inch round clear glass pieces that I’d found on sale at Hobby Lobby several months ago.

After carefully smoothing out the paper against the glass backs and letting that dry, I then added a couple of extra coats of the glue to act as a sealer. Later, I used a few drops of E-6000 multi-purpose adhesive to permanently affix an inexpensive magnet round to each piece.

I ended up making a matching set of 12 for my refrigerator, and I must say that they add a lovely artsy touch to my kitchen.

Of course, you could use any kind of paper to make your own magnets, even wrapping paper or images cut from magazines and catalogs. I think scrapbook paper would be ideal!

Little flower

FlowerHere is the very beginning of my next stitching project. This pretty little flower is from “Heart in Bloom” which is at the back of the book “A Stitcher’s Journey” by Blackbird Designs.

I’m stitching this as part of the wedding gift for my niece and her fiancé, but I’m not too worried about blowing the surprise here, because I seriously doubt that either of them reads my needlework blog. But should they stumble across it, then surprise – and happy upcoming wedding!

I haven’t decided yet how I will be personalizing the piece yet, that’s something I will be thinking about while I stitch it.

Seeing stars

Star2Here’s my very first self-folded German paper star! I learned the technique from watching the video tutorial that I mentioned yesterday. I seriously doubt that I’ll ever give my big sister a run for her money in either output or speed in crafting these, but it was fun to learn how to make these little gems.

I also started my new cross stitch project yesterday. I only managed a few stitches in one of the flowers, but it felt really good to be putting floss to fabric again.

German folded paper stars

Folded-StarOver the years, my eldest sister has gifted many of her friends and family with her handcrafted white, red and green German folded paper stars for their Christmas trees, so I was delighted when I learned that she has also decided to make golden stars to add to the table decorations at her daughter’s upcoming August wedding. The gold stars are designed to complement my niece’s choice of wedding colors.

Although I’ve done other paper folding projects, I’ve never made any stars like these; however, the excellent video tutorials on the Grateful Prayer Thankful Heart blog show how to make two-tone ones, so I may yet give it a try just for fun.

Making magnets

Magnet makingI don’t know why, but for me there’s something very relaxing about slapping glue onto things with a brush, so the fact that I got to spend a couple of hours this afternoon with my paper punches and a bottle of Mod Podge was pretty delightful.

I’d been collecting snippets of artwork from various places for several months now and finally managed to assemble all of these bits and pieces in one place and get to work making magnets. As well as creating several pretty birdie ones for my own fridge, I made a few for my niece using artwork from one of her favorite TV shows, and I hope she will smile when she sees them.

Later in the day, I measured and cut a piece of linen from my stash for a new cross stitch project that’s been on my list for quite some time. I’ve been buying the floss for this in stages as it went on sale and when Michael’s or Jo-Ann Fabrics had it available, so now that the fabric is finally ready, I can start anytime. I look forward to stitching again, but now that the day is darkening to dusk, I believe I’ll wait until tomorrow to begin. I don’t like starting projects at night, something about mornings and new beginnings just feels better.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Heart-BookmarkI went looking for a cute and simple project for Valentine’s Day and found a tutorial for these heart-shaped origami page markers at the HowAboutOrange blog. How sweet!

These hearts are a quick and easy fold and slip neatly over a page corner to mark your place in any book. Mine is holding my spot in “The Private Patient,” a crime novel by my favorite UK mystery author P.D. James.

You only need half of a square sheet of paper for these, and I’d recommend using a 5-1/2” x 2-3/4” size piece or smaller. I started with a larger sheet and my first heart came out very pretty, but huge! I think larger hearts might make lovely Valentine’s place cards on a table, though. You could just write your loved ones’ names across the hearts and set them in the middle of your place settings.

One more note: although there are not a lot of folds to these, which allows you to use just about any type of  paper, for the neatest results I’d suggest using the thinnest paper you can find. I actually printed my little red and pink dot pattern onto some lightweight writing paper from an old pad that used to belong to my mother. This makes my little heart bookmark a sweet reminder of her as well.

Stitch diary pages

Stitch-Diary-PageI was recently noodling around with my stitch diary and started wondering if I could make my scribbled notes more organized. I did a search of the web for inspiration and found several highly embellished examples of stitch journals, but nothing seemed to be exactly what I wanted, so I decided to create my own simplified page.

Since I wanted to reuse an old three-ring mini-binder, I designed my entry pages for a 5.5” x 8.5” overall size. I printed them out two-up on some leftover stationery stock, which I then sliced down the middle and hole-punched. Voila! Going to try these out for a bit and see if I prefer this neater method better than my little spiral notebook.