Tuesday

Update: Thanksgiving Cookies!


So I finally got a chance to make these cute little cookies!

The original recipe is HERE, but I had to make a few changes.

I ended up making my own top pieces since my mom is allergic to peanuts and that ruled out the original toppers.

I made a caramel center from the recipe HERE, but I only boiled it to 230 degrees instead of the 244 listed. As a result it stayed more like a filling instead of a hard caramel, so it was perfect!

Grabbing from my stash of candy molds, I used the cherry cordial molds, coating the inside with dark chocolate. Let the chocolate harden completely before adding the caramel. I used a teaspoon to drop in the caramel and then covered is right away with more chocolate.

They turned out really well. A little note on these, when you're popping them out of the mold, DON'T SQUEEZE THE SIDES!!! Several of mine broke because I wasn't being careful!

Sadly I couldn't find any gluten-free cookies for the bottoms and I ran out of time to make them. So I used OREO Fudge Covered Cookies instead.

Here they are with both pieces together...


And now with a little finishing touch!


Too cute by half and even easier if you don't have to make your pieces from scratch!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Friday

Thanksgiving Cookies

I know we're all gearing up for Christmas... but there is one more major holiday between now and then that we can't forget!

Thanksgiving!

So to celebrate, I'm making cookies... these cookies! Here's the link from Woman's Day.


I love them! I will have to make some changes though, since my family has so many allergies to food.

Instead of using Peanut Butter Cups, I'll be making mine from scratch with dark chocolate and homemade caramel centers.

I'm so looking forward to trying them and I'll update when I'm done!

Sunday

Child's Harry Potter, Weasley Sweater!


First of all, I am IN LOVE with the way this turned out! It's an adorable little sweater and it only took about 8 hours total to make!

Great gift idea for Christmas! I've made several of these top-down raglans as gifts and they fit kids from 6 months all the way to 2 years if you make the arms long enough. Just roll 'em up while they're too long, then let them down as the child grows!

Anyway, on with the info on this sweater...

So, the first sweater that I posted as a Harry Potter Sweater HERE was crocheted. Way back when I didn't know how to knit yet!

This one is knitted. This pattern is fantastic! It is a top-down raglan sweater which means there are no seams to sew up and it's all knitted in the round, so no purling!!

HERE is the pattern that I followed, with a few changes.

Changes:
I only did 4 rows of ribbing for the neck, bottom, and cuffs. I didn't want a turtleneck, but I did want just a touch of ribbing and that worked out really well!

I did not add the additional 3 stitches indicated for the underarms, which gave me only 100 stitches when the sleeves were removed from the needles.

If you've never made a top-down raglan before, it can be a little confusing. Here are a few pictures of the process that will hopefully clear up some of your questions!


This is what the raglan sleeve looks like as you do the increases.



Here are the sleeves slipped onto holder string while the body is left on the needles to continue knitting.



This is the body finished with the sleeves waiting to be stitched. If you bind the sleeves off at the step where you normally place them on the holder, this makes a really cute girls cap-sleeve shirt!


No seams, finished sweater! Didn't the raglan increases turn out well!

After finishing the sweater I did a duplicate stitch for the initial. I found a great site HERE that has charts for all sorts of fonts for the initial!

If you don't know how to duplicate stitch, this is a great video!



Duplicate stitch all finished!


Weave in all the ends and you've got yourself a Weasley Sweater!

You could do the same thing with a top-down raglan pattern for an adult sweater too... Happy Crafting!


Thursday

Fun with Antiquing!

One of the gifts I'm giving is fairly large and I wanted a box that the item could be stored in.

I tried to find a really vintage looking box to go with 3 other hat boxes that I had already decoupaged. I failed.

The only hat box that I could find that was big enough looked like a giant bright red and white peppermint!


Not very vintage at all. Thankfully, I'm crafty ;-)

I grabbed some brown paint and a big brush and set to work "antiquing" the box.

video

Sorry for the wiggly camera work... I didn't have a helper right then!

I'm very pleased with the way the box turned out.



It will go really well with the other boxes I made... You can kinda see them in the background there, but I'll share more on those soon :-)

Monday

Buttons... Sew Many Buttons... Get It?

I was wondering through one of my favorite local antique stores this weekend and I found a great buy!

Three big jars of buttons for only $12.00!

Aren't they pretty?

This may sound a little silly, but a card (set of 2-4 buttons) of buttons at the craft store can cost as much as $4.95!

I ended up with 775 buttons (yes I counted) for the price of just a handful.

They were all vintage buttons and I can't wait to start using them!

So next time you're out and about looking for buttons, stop in at an antique store first!

Happy crafting :-)

Saturday

Steampunk Hardware Organizer

You guys are so lucky! You get to see all the Christmas presents early ;-)

I found this really cool lazy susan organizer at Pottery Barn and thought it would be great for organizing screws, nuts, bolts, etc... But it wasn't really the perfect match for the decor of the house it's going to live in after Christmas.

So naturally, I steampunked it.

Here is the original... it is now sold out at Pottery Barn stores.

I happened to find this one at the outlet store in perfect condition.


Don't get me wrong, it's pretty cute, but I just thought it could be quite a bit better. Also, one of the things that bugged me was that the only compartment on this 12 compartment organizer that was actually a drawer is the very bottom one!

I didn't like the idea of someone pulling on all the knobs only to find that it wasn't an actual drawer!

So first thing I did was remove all of the white knobs.

I grabbed some metallic spray paint in a bronze tone and sprayed the heck out of enough knobs to go back on the actual drawers.


For the rest of the compartments I found these really great clips from Tim Holtz.

I used some J.B. Weld to attach them to the wood. I had to get a little creative to keep them in place as they dried though. It took about 8 hours for the "glue" to stick; the use of a little brown box take came in handy to keep them still for the drying time!


I elected not to fill in the holes since I was going to cover them with some really cool paper that I found.

Really wanting a place for the soon-to-be owner to be able to write what was in each space, I was hoping to have little chalkboards at each space.

I couldn't really find what I wanted and was beginning to lose hope... what I found these!

Chalkboard paper!!


I cut them in half and clipped them on the organizer. You can actually use chalk on these and it erases really well!

Here is the finished product... I loooooove the way this turned out!


See you guys soon for more from Santa's Workshop :-)

Wednesday

Handmade Christmas Tree #1

I've decided to make a "handmade Christmas tree" this year! All the decorations will be homemade by me and I can't wait to see it all put together!

I wanted a really organic natural feel to everything, especially the tree topper.

This star turned out more perfectly than I could have hoped for, though it doesn't look like the pattern depicted at all!

This is the original...


And here's mine...



This isn't my first go-round at the crochet hook and I do know how to read a pattern, but for some reason, mine looks nothing like the original!

The original pattern is here and the finished size is listed as 5 1/4 inches finished... I used the indicated hook size and thread size and it ended up being 12 inches across!

No idea what happened, but I love it!

To keep it on the tree, I placed a loop of elastic from one side of the center hole to the other. It makes a wonderful holder without distracting from the beauty of this piece.

I did starch the finished piece as part of the blocking process so that it will stand up as the tree topper.

I can't wait to see it all together as we get closer to Christmas and I'm looking forward to you seeing the rest of the decorations!