Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Circular Knitting Needle Labels - DIY

Since I've been trying to improve my knitting skills, I picked up a stack of circular needles from the thrift store.

They're in great shape - except none of them had any sort of size markings on them. Are all circular needles like this? The previous owner had attached stickies to a couple of them marking the size but the rest were a mystery.

First I had to figure out what size the needles were. I did it by comparing them with my marked straight needles, although they do make a needle gauge for this. Then I wanted to mark them so I would easily know what size each needle was. Here's what I came up with:

Number beads, attached to a safety pin, then clipped to the circular part of the needle.

To Make:

Place the appropriate numbered bead onto the head pin, clip to size, loop, and attach to the circular opening at the bottom of the safety pin.
Here's a good picture tutorial on how to use a head pin.

That's really all there is to it. And now my needles are nice and labeled.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

How To Sew A Baby Hem On Delicate Fabrics

I have no idea if this is a legitimate sewing technique or not as the majority of my sewing knowledge and techniques have been developed by trial and error. But here's what works for me when I want to sew a tiny, narrow, baby hem on a delicate fabric.

front side of fabric

I used this technique on this dress re-fashion:

Thrifted vintage dress ($2) - I removed the sleeves (they were really pouffy)with my seam ripper, cut off about 6 inches of length, and then used the baby hem technique to sew both the arm holes and new hem.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Nailpolish Jewelry Make-Over

Nail polish can be a great tool for making-over, updating, or re-vamping jewelry. I used it for this bracelet . . .

. . . back for 30 Days for 30 Dollars, tutorial here.

Yesterday, I found this little necklace at the thrift store for $1 -

Cute image, but I thought it would be better with a little color. Nail polish to the rescue!

My new and improved necklace -

I just painted it with nail polish. Then dabbed on some antiquing glaze - the same stuff I used for this project - to take some of the shine off.

Here's a hint - nail art polish works well for very small bits of color because it comes with these very thin brushes (sorry, not the best photo). I got mine at the dollar store.

Here's another necklace that I made a long time ago, back before I started this blog:

gold brooches, painted with nail polish, then attached together with jump rings

Friday, February 24, 2012

I Learned a New Hair Trick

For those of you that know me, you're probably thinking you've stumbled upon the wrong blog. Hair? I am so not a hair girl. I am in complete awe of people who either have beautiful hair or can do amazing, pretty things with hair. I do not have good hair - it is thin, and fine, and really doesn't do much. Yet I have had very talented hair stylists who can get it to look good (only to fall apart later after I try to fix it myself). If I manage to blow dry my hair and not put it into some sort of clip, it's an ambitious day for me.

The other day I came upon The 1 Minute Messy Up-do from A Pair and A Spare.
It actually looked do-able.
Here's the result:

Kind of liking this - and it really doesn't take more than a minute, maybe 2.
(Btw, trying to take pictures of the back of your head when you're home by yourself is not an easy thing to do!)

Thursday, February 23, 2012

A DIY Fail

I've seen several tutorials on Pinterest for making your own liquid handsoap. It looked easy enough - basically shred a bar soap, melt with water and a little glycerin and you're supposed to get bunches of liquid hand soap.

It did not work.

My soap:

Although it seemed all was well when I first made it, as it sat over the next few days, it separated itself back out into 2 layers: a watery liquid and a thick, gloppy layer. And it's not very soap-like. It takes tons of it to get any real lather. So, I'm not entirely sure what I did wrong but apparently there's more of an art to soap-making than I realized.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

My Finished Go Vest + My Next Knitting Project

I finished my Go Vest (free pattern from Pickles):

While it's definitely not perfect, I think it is wearable. I like the color and the chunky knit. If you look closely, you may notice that I left the sleeves off from the original pattern - I ran out of yarn. Planning the amount of yarn I will need is not my strong suit!

And now I've started The Carnaby Skirt from Knitty:

My progress so far:

Monday, February 20, 2012


Playing with my camera at my daughter's last horse show . . .

Saturday, February 18, 2012

DIY Accent Rings

These are really easy to make - from old clip-on earrings. Here's how:

You may also want to use a metal file to file any rough edges off of the clip-on.

Cut small slits in a piece of cardboard and slide ring blanks in to hold steady. Apply adhesive and attach earring. If you want your rings to be really durable you may want to use a strong epoxy adhesive. I wasn't too worried about it, so I used E6000 which I already had on hand - it's pretty strong and should hold pretty well. Let adhesive dry completely - at least overnight- before wearing your rings.

A few of my favorites:

I love this one - made from seashells.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

In Progress: Attempted Knitting (Plus a Great Website to Check Out)

My knitting skills are extremely limited. But I would like them to be better. So I am attempting to create The Go Vest from Pickles:

And so far, so good. Minus a few little mistakes that hopefully won't be noticable. If you haven't checked out the Pickles website, I highly recommend it. There are tons of free patterns. If you do knit, or would like to knit, it is a great resource.

If my vest turns out, I'd like to try this Cropped Lavender Jacket

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Ski Weekend

Keystone, Colorado

We spent the past weekend skiing in Keystone, Colorado. While the kids were in ski school, my husband, brother, and sister-in-law and I hit the slopes. For having not skied in almost 8 years I was moderately successful (which really just means I came back in one piece!).