Saturday, June 30, 2012

What's in a Name

We now live on a property where we can pick flowers.

We can pull weeds too, as our raised garden beds can attest, but I've been finding what I like to call organic lace growing along the road and driveway.

Delicate prettiness.  You'd never know it was considered a "noxious weed."


Most everything requires a cool rinse-off when it's brought inside.  Teeny tiny ants can have their outdoor neighborhoods, but I'd prefer it if they didn't set up shop in our house.


Tomato, to-mah-to.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Just Because

I've been making little display cards for friends and former students this week, mailing them early before the heat becomes oppressive.  I have paper, clips, buttons, paper punches, vintage texts, ink and adhesive, not to mention several summer hours a day to spend in the crafty nook, listening to music.

Kings of Leon and David Gray have been in heavy rotation for me since school got out, providing energy, rhythm, and a new non-work pace.

Coffee in the morning.  Decaf in the afternoon.  Visits to other blogs, pinning like mad, though I did overload followers' Pinterest home pages with Dr. Who yesterday.  It was fantastic.  Whovians understand.

Today I used these:


... to make this:


Fly.  Friends.  Love (it's a chair!).  Relaxing.  Shopping... just part of life's journey.

The recipient knows who she is.  :)




Who else likes to make and send little "just because" items to friends?

Thursday, June 28, 2012


Avoiding the heat has kept me crafting in the nook and dancing to good music this week.

(Don't think I didn't notice your foot tapping.)

How are you keeping cool?

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Twinkle Lights

Glitter, crystal and glass are my favorite shiny things next to jewelry, but oh, how I do love me some *~twinkle lights~*:

Twinkle Lights 1

I found the garlands at Nell Hill's last week- a little on the pricier end but perfectly matched to trace along a twiggy branch that gives me some display dimension.

Thanks to my full time teaching job and my family schedule, I'm one of those crafters who needs to work several months ahead to have handmade goodies ready for holidays and gift-giving.  It's June, which means *~Hello Halloween~*!

Happy Place 9

My Bunnies by the Bay aren't very ghoulish, but they're a special collection that stays up year 'round.  Perched above branches and twinkle lights, they probably have the best view of all.

Happy Place 10

A few years ago I participated in a Halloween ornie swap and won several other spooky items from blog giveaways- all wonderful inspiration to get me in the mood for pumpkin patches, autumn leaves and trick or treaters.

Happy Place 11

Who says you can't create a bouquet display out of rulers and leaves in an old copper coffee pot?

Happy Place 12


Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Happy Place

My crafty nook took another evolutionary step forward this past week when I was gifted with the perfect chair, discovered at Buckeye Antique Mall in Abilene, Kansas.

Happy Place 2

Green perfection, with a wonderful little side table just the right size for magazines, a plate of sweets, and a mug of coffee.  Thank you Shannon!


I don't think you've seen my crafty nook lately- come sneak a peek:

Happy Place 1

I'll need to find the perfect ottoman/footstool, since looking through my favorite Somerset publications requires full-on comfort and relaxation.

Happy Place 7

Hole punches keep little pretties company above paper, trim, fabric, odds and ends...

Happy Place 8

Happy Place 6


Who doesn't enjoy a little Papaya?

Happy Place 4

Correspondence at my desk includes cards, crafty inspiration and Facebook...

I've been given furniture, craft supplies, books, magazines, and other essentials from like-minded friends and family, such wonderful contributions to my happy place~

Thank you~


Come back tomorrow and see how in late June, I'm getting ready for Halloween!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Eye Candy

Dear Daughter's godmother is visiting from Alaska, so my how-to for the altered Bingo card will be delayed.

We've been visiting home decor and antique malls and ~goodness~, there are some pretty things that have been catching my eye:

A wonderful map table/chest, the perfect height for standing-while-crafting...

map table

A mahogany console that I'd love to add to our bedroom decor...

Mahogany console

"OMG" heart wall art by ReDeux...

ReDeux heart

...and the prettiest little wagon for treats of some sort (picnic?), complete with removable trays and a carved storage interior...

pretty wagon

pretty wagon trays

The vendors' displays were so much fun to just stand back and take in... eye-candy.

Antique Mall Display

LOVE the petticoats hung from the ceiling with pastel honeycomb tissue bells!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Appreciation and Creativity

Do you know what's more fun than writing thank-you notes?

Writing them on cards you've ~created~:


I received a fun gift from a special friend the last week of school, and have been looking forward to making a thank-you card for her.  Sure, it's non-traditional, but it'll serve a dual purpose, letting her know how much I appreciate her thoughtfulness while also supplying a touch of patriotic fancy for the summer months!

I was able to use my recently found Bingo cards, sheet music, stamping ink, cardstock, buttons, glitter, ribbon and lace in the assembly... tomorrow I'll show you how it all came together~


Instructions for making pinwheel/medallions can be found in my autumn bunting tutorial, posted here.


Sunday, June 10, 2012

Halloween Pinwheel Ornies


Sheet music, scrapbook paper, glittered sunburst punches, silver glitter, tulle, and leftover Halloween stickers covered my crafty table today, so I had to move these over to the windowsill to photograph the pinwheel ornies I assembled:


Have you started some holiday crafting?


I don't mind repeating myself- I need to track down some more black and white toile-ish print paper to make more bat ornies:

Halloween bat Ornie

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Help Me Improve Upon ~Joy~

You think I'd be busy making all sorts of bunting in red, white and blue this month, but no, it would be the fall and winter holidays that have my attention, a full month ahead of my usual Halloween/Thanksgiving/Christmas-in-July crafty schedule.

Christmas brings me joy.




But I have a question for you.

What's missing?


I love layering papers and decorative elements onto my bunting and ornaments, and believe-you-me I have no problem going all-out-gaudy (though there's nothing wrong with simplicity), but these three panels seem to be missing ~something~.

Help me out here folks- I'm thinking that the space above each letter, below the red grosgrain ribbon is in need of a finishing touch.

But what could it be?

1) Turn up your air conditioner.
2) Close your eyes.
3) Listen to this:

4) Dry your eyes (I had to!) and comment below letting me know your suggestions.



Friday, June 8, 2012

Itty Bitty Dorothy Bunting

Finishing the last book in Gregory Maguire's Wicked Years series had me thinking about Dorothy, her signature pinafore and dress in particular.  Knowing how much I love sparkly footwear, it's a bit strange that glitter didn't come into play as I cut, glued and tied paper, ribbon, and buttons together to make a small swag of bunting. Never fear, I didn't omit red:



The bunting is 43 inches long with 8 inches of ribbon on either end for tying, and is made of scrapbook paper, cardstock, ribbon, and buttons.  Whether you're a fan of Dorothy's adventures in Oz or you're looking for a sweet patriotic touch for your summer picnics and decor, this garland is one you'll enjoy using again and again.

~ 1 available
~ $7 (plus shipping; let me know if you'd prefer priority or standard rate)
~ email me at: michaelek1(at)yahoo(dot)com or find me on Facebook to purchase. Please use "Dorothy Bunting" in your subject/message line.


Catching up on my blog reading, I've noticed that crafty souls not only sell their items from Etsy shops, Ebay and other dedicated shopping sites, but from their blogs as well.  Can anyone shed some light on the pros and cons (other than the listing fees and audience size) of selling solely from a blog, or do you know of anyone who lists on his or her blog AND on Etsy?  Thanks!


The family and I just might have to visit The Oz Museum again~

(You were expecting Judy Garland, weren't you?)

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Boys Will Be Boys

... and buy robots and soccer balls with their birthday money!

This is the first year we have a large yard of our own where The First Grader can kick a ball ~hard~ and chase after it.

The kicking and chasing won't happen until the robots are built first though.  Apparently you have to do these things ~in order~.


Wednesday, June 6, 2012

I Wasn't Looking for Paper

I have a thing for paper.

Scrapbook paper. Cards. Origami paper.

Notebook and composition paper.  Construction paper.  Photographs.  Cupcake liners.

Books.  Magazines.  Notepads.  Wrapping paper.  Tissue paper.

I find my papers in the usual places, and use most of them in the expected ways: wrapping presents, scribbling down notes, baking, reading, and crafting.  It's terribly fun to find new-to-me papers when they're the last thing I'm looking for, which is what happened yesterday after I went for a drive to Parkville.

As I searched for side and occasional tables at the Parkville Antique Mall, I came across fun paper items from multiple vendors:



Is it obvious that both the kindergarten teacher and the papercrafter in me were appeased with the fabulous finds?

The Folks in the Valley is a colorfully illustrated Pennsylvania Dutch ABC book, and I couldn't resist the Little Golden Book, We Like Kindergarten.

I love the illustrations because the children look like c-h-i-l-d-r-e-n, not short adults. (Are you sensing a pet peeve of mine?)


Those round cheeks, those faces focused on the exploration and formation of their clay.  I have Play Dough and clay as a center in my classroom year 'round.

But it's this "expanding wallet" of elementary school games that intrigued me the most:



I opened it up and found cards, cards, and more cards with typed names, explanations and directions for games for students in grades 1-6 to play at school.  Copyright?  1936!  Printed in 1948.




There's even a game called "Old Mother Witch" that just may find part of itself keeping my latest adopted ancestor company when I create this year's Halloween fancies:


What treasures have you found lately?