Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Challenge #3 at Amber's Crafts & Stuff

Our challenge this week was to use flowers.  I started a project based on this little lovely:

From here:

But of course, I couldn't find the same yarn nor any daisy trim.  But I did find these cute littel brad flowers with blingy centers.

And this - On Sale - and sufficiently green and fluffy (second pic shows fluffy-ness)

A little "hairy" I'll admit, but OH SO VERY VERY SOFT!!

And I made this:

Close up of the top banner - which was hand cut and hand lettered because I am the owner of neither Cricut nor printer.

Close up of the cute little bee sticker at the bottom.

But I can't say that I was truly happy with it, so I tried another project.  (Another lamp refashion)
I found a cute shiny red cardboard hatbox type thing at The Goodwill.  It has originally housed a paperwhite bulb (for forcing) and had a dome-shaped spray of silk paperwhites on top...which I quickly decimated.

Enter one ugly black parchment lampshade (with requisite icky gold interior) - like this:

Took it to the La-BOR-atory and spray painted it "Lagoon" - a lovely peacock blue - which I'm currently crushing on. (Picture shows it turquoise, but it's totally not)

I of course forgot "during" pictures - I was doing this about 11:00 pm.  Here's the final project.  I'm really kinda liking this one.  (again the pictures don't show the absolute LUCIOUSNESS of this color.)

Not quite sure what I'm going to do for next week's project - I'm not really good at working out of my comfort zone....

Coming up:  Pictures of the terrarium and dish succulent gardens I made this weekend.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Craft Challenge #2

This is my latest finished project.  I made this for the weekly challenge at my sister's blog,

The challenge is to use a DIE CUT.

Now, not being a paper crafter, I've had very little (read: none) experience with die cuts.  I don't have a die cutter.  I don't have a Cricut, no Silhouette, NADA.

Since I'm a "home décor" kinda girl, my first thought was to have my sister die cut me something, and then use the negative space as a stencil and make a set of pillow covers or a shirt or something.

Well, due to my inexperience, that didn't quite work out – there were all these little teensy pieces from the die cut that I didn't know where to put and I just couldn't work it out, so I decided to flip my thinking 180 degrees and use the actual die cut as a mask and do a "negative stencil".  You guys know what I mean, even if I can't explain it.  Cuz you're brilliant that way.

Here is the original stencil:

Here is the actual die cut.

And here is the final product.  I'm not 100% happy with it, but my daughter likes it, so maybe we'll hang it in her room.

Once again, being a craft nOOb – there are no "DURING" pics.  But here's an overview of my process.  (Like you crafty wenches couldn't figure it out….)

I picked up the little canvas for 1.99 ages ago at The Goodwill (always capitalized, cuz they are special that way.)  I pulled off the plastic – very very important step – and covered the whole thing with silver acrylic paint.  Then I let it dry.  Sorta.  Okay – I'm impatient and it was still slightly damp when I tried to iron on the freezer paper die cut.  This was a mistake.  It didn't stick, not even a little.  So what's an impatient, crafty girl to do??? Pile on another layer of silver paint and splodge that stencil down in the wet paint.  Worked pretty darn good.

Then I took it out to my La-BOR-a-tory – aka the Garage - grabbed a can of spray paint in both hands (left hand NUTMEG – right hand CARRIBBEAN) and whirled them around randomly onto the canvas.  ARTISTICALLY, of course.  When I liked the way it looked, I stopped.

It was still a little plain, so the next step was tube of Walnut gel stain, which I watered down a bit in a little bowl.  Then I got a paintbrush, took a few steps back, and slung some on the canvas.  AGAIN, ARTISTICALLY – what do I look like, some amateur??

Then I let the whole thing dry and as a final step, went in and outlined the leaves with the same Walnut gel stain.

I let it dry, then went over the edges of the canvas once more with the silver to cover any splotches of stain or overspray and called it done.

Like I said, not my favorite, but not ALL of our projects are worthy of a museum, right??

But it's all experience – and teaches us how to be better next time…

Thursday, March 17, 2011


I don't know that this really qualifies as a craft - more of a junky remake (which is what I TRULY love doing).

My future daughter-in-law is a glamour technician (beautician, hair stylist, cosmetologist, whatever you call them these days).  And on her days off, she cuts the hair of her friends and family for free!!!  Yes, I get free, fabulous haircuts for the rest of my life (or the duration of her relationship with my son).  Feel free to be jealous.

My sister found her this chair at a thrift store.  Its original life was as a drafting chair I assume, otherwise, why would you ever need an office chair to extend to 3 feet high???  But it had definitely seen better days.  A little dingy, a little rusty, a little sad in general.

And it was useful, if homely.  So I thought as a gift to her (after my first faboo FREE haircut) I'd re-do her little salon chair.  I talked it over with her and she decided on a black and white theme.  I took a trip to my local Hancock Fabric and wandered around with my camera and took pictures of EVERY SINGLE black and white fabric in the store.  This was the one she chose:

Luckily it was a nice, strong, thick fabric so it would stand up well to a reupholster job.

On a nice day off, I disassembled the chair, cleaned it up and gave it a fresh paint job with Krylon Fusion paint (specially designed for plastic).  The padding was still in good shape, so I ripped off the old polyester tweed fabric, and stapled the new fabric in place.  Re-assembly was a bit of a challenge, as I had a few more staples in the back than were originally there, but some strong hands (in the form of my son) and it went back together.

Here's the finished product.  (Once again, forgive my pathetic photography skills.)

She loves it, and it still looks great - even through repeated use.  (And she hasn't gotten any hair color stains on it yet - keep your fingers crossed!)

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Past Crafts - Crafty/Geeky Christmas Ornaments

My son is a geek.  There, I've said it.  Technically all my kids are geeks, but my oldest is a geek of the highest order.  He got his very first Nintendo (the original NES) at age 3 and had mastered every game given to him within mere hours.  He is my very own personal tech nerd, fixing everything from computers to cable boxes, DVD/blu-ray players to stereos, cell phones to servers and everything in between.

But his first love is video games, particularly the old school NES games.  So for Christmas, since his "big" present was car parts (can't fit those under my tree), I made him some little geeky presents to open on Christmas morning.  First - some Perler bead Christmas ornaments.  He and his fiance will be getting their own apartment soon (I hope) and they'll need something to hang on their own tree.  There were MANY MORE, but I only took pics of the first few.

And some porcelain tile coasters (love me some Mod Podge) for his glass computer desk since he is a clean freak and water rings/fingerprints totally flip him out.

Not much, but he got a big kick out of them.

Do I Really Need To Explain Why I Posted This?

Nah, I didn't think so.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Why, hello...kitty.

Yes.  This is my brand spanking new Janome Hello Kitty sewing machine.


I've only used it once so far (after losing the manual and having to download it from the interweb) and that was only to take up the sides on a blouse that was too wide.  But I like it.

BTW - who knew the pre-wound Singer bobbins I bought at Walmart don't fit a Janome machine.... That was a waste of 5 bucks. 

The machine only came with one, so I'll have to find some, otherwise my joy of sewing will diminish greatly if I have to re-wind the bobbin every time I want to use the machine.

Lamp Re-do

As I promised, here's the little thrift store lamp that could....

Lamp - thrift store price $4.54

Shade - Goodwill price 1.99 (shown on lamp)

Supplies - 1/2 Yard of fabric (3.99/yard) Spool of ribbon 1.99 (hot glue not shown)

I used about half the fabric and maybe 1 yard of the ribbon.

Final product - still makes me squeeee a little when I see it.

And a close up of the shade.

All total - less than 10 bucks and I ADORE IT!!

EDIT: Hahahahahahaha, just noticed I TOTALLY have the shade on upside down in the last 2 pics. Oh dear. Whatever shall I do with me...

My first linky party!!!!

I've joined the linky party at:

Welcome, welcome, welcome...

Okay, well, new season, new blog. Gone is the old blog, the funny one, the desperate "class clown" attempt to garner attention by being funny. No one cared, no one came...

So, at the behest of my sister, I'm starting a craft blog. They seem to be pretty popular these days, and I certainly enjoy crafting. Making things, re-making things - fun things, beautiful things, all sorts of things. But, as my projects don't always work out as planned, sometimes it's just junk. Hence the name CRAFT-JUNK.

So I'll share them all, the crafty - and the junk. There will probably end up being more junk here than craft, but we'll see.

My sister also has a craft blog and she has started doing these weekly crafting challenges - which you should ALL be signing up for. Go. Do it now. You won't regret it. I promise. Her blog is:

Hopefully the link will work, I've tried it 4 times now... I totally fail at HTML, apparently.

I'm part of her "design team". What that means exactly, I'm not quite sure, but I'm supposed to do sort of a "sample" craft for each of her challenges - to show people the general theme - and give some ideas.

Her first challenge is this week (due date 3/16) and it's called STASHBUSTER - you pull out all the stuff you've had stashed away and never really found a use for and make something out of it.

Well, my stash was felt. Not the good, wool kind, the cheap polyester 4 sheets for a dollar junk from Hobby Lobby/Michaels. I had many good intentions for this felt, little stuffed, embroidered doo-hickeys and whatnot. Then I discovered something tragic. I couldn't embroider. I know...shocking, right??? So, the felt got stashed away in a box - doing nothing. Until this weekend, when I dutifully pulled it out and went about creating something. This is what I came up with.

(Yes, I'm a terrible photographer - really terrible - please forgive).

Now, since I'm new at this whole craft blog thing, there aren't any before/during/after type pics--just the final product. Hopefully I'll get better at this process and eventually even be able to do tutorials. (For your sakes, I might even take a photography class, so the pictures won't burn out your retinas.)

But the basic premise of this wreath is simple. Styrofoam wreath form. Wrap with yarn. Make flowers out of felt, hot glue them on and voila! A nice, springy wreath that will hopefully take me through summer into fall. Whereupon I can show you the leaf wreath I made last year (a Dollar Store craft) which I love, but is only up for a short time, because I'm one of those awful people who starts decorating for Christmas waaaay too early.

And, yes, there are SEVERAL Christmas wreaths that I've crafted which I will be happy to show all of you.

Gee, that kinda sounds like I'm obsessed with wreaths. Maybe I am. Maybe I'm not. (Okay, I totally am).

Stay tuned this afternoon, when there will be another post on the thrift store lamp I re-made on Sunday. I'm so happy with how it turned out - and how cheap it ended up being (less than 10 bucks!). It turned out so well, I giggle a little every time I look at it.