Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Fly, fly fly!

September is a good as month as any to do my best to send some of my creations off into this world, right?

The many faces of owl

This owl has been hanging around here for quite a while now, and had shared his many faces over on Flickr...

The many faces of owl The many faces of owl
Owl wants attention! I'm impatient!

He is now available for adoption in my Etsy shop! He even saved up to help cover the cost of his flight, but would need a little extra if he is traveling outside the US.

What color Owl would you love to adopt?


Originally uploaded by
A custom request for a fuzzy brown owl! Bernat's Boa seems to no longer be available in most stores, so I was one step away from ordering online when I found a skein at the Flower & Craft Warehouse in Blue Ball.

I've been using this particular yarn since back when I worked at Ben Franklin Crafts, so I was surprised to have trouble finding it! WalMart (a few locations, some with the expanded craft section that includes fabric), Michael's, AC Moore, Jo-Ann luck. I hope to see it back in stores again, as it makes an awesome owl! I do have some unfinished projects that used it and some similar yarns, I may frog them to make more of these! What do you think?

Update: looks like Bernat is re-releasing Boa in new colors as the above link shows - good to see! I don't really want to buy yarn online....I want to see the colors in person! Although next time I get a custom order and can't find the yarn in stores, I will use the internet to expedite the process and just order online after all!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Toothpaste and the toilet

I've been reading a few different blogs lately that have been inspirational.

Yup, sappy, but true.

I had filled my Google Reader with crafts and candy and cooking and other fun stuff - but lately I have found some reading topics that have made me feel good on a more personal level. No this isn't about religion (well not to me anyway!) but simplicity.

Simple? huh?

So my use of the internet has brought me some new categories and fun words to share. Words like frugality. Minimalism. Simplicity.

Sounds a little intense and frightening, almost like I've gone off the deep end?

Nope. Nothing drastic. Just me, but better. Happier.

Small changes in my life are beginning to bring to me a piece of mind, and what I see as a healthy thought process in gaining insight to my relationship with my stuff.

So maybe take a few moments and check out some of the blogs I have been reading (in no particular order) and a little blurb about each from their own pages...or scroll down and read about what the heck the above title means!

The Simple Dollar
"The Simple Dollar is a blog for those of us who need both cents and sense: people fighting debt and bad spending habits while building a financially secure future and still affording a latte or two. Our busy lives are crazy enough without having to compare five hundred mutual funds – we just want simple ways to manage our finances and save a little money."

"Unclutterer is the website for home and office organization. It’s not just for the helplessly disorganized who would lose their heads if they weren’t attached, and pack rats looking to put their stashes on a diet, but also for obsessive compulsive neat freaks looking to squeeze even more order into their lives. We hope we can make getting and staying organized fun and informative."

The Simple Rabbit Society
"The Simple Rabbit Society is a society for simple rabbits. And damn cute.

We share articles, advice, hacks, and tips for achieving an awesome life through minimalism."

Simpler Living
"Welcome to Simpler Living! I launched this blog in 2008 to motivate myself to downsize and find new homes for my unwanted things by giving them to my readers, friends, family and charity. I lost more than 100 pounds of clutter, learned to let go of sentimental stuff and got more organized."

Rowdy Kittens
"Somewhere along the way we start thinking we need more and more stuff to be happy. But is that really true? Do we need a bigger house, a better car, or a large salary to find happiness?

Imagine what the world would look like if we pursued our dreams rather than more stuff.

And that’s where this blog comes in handy…"

The Non-Consumer Advocate
"My journey to live well on less and to not buy new is far from over. I am constantly learning new ways to support my goals. I look forward to sharing my insights and foibles with you. I also look forward to hearing ideas and inspiration from my readers."

From these and some other sources that I may have missed (I have a lot in my Reader!) I came up with a fun project today. You see, I like the idea of simplification of stuff, and I decided a nice place to start was the bathroom, where we have 5 different toothpastes in a cup. It bugs me that we only use one type (I've tried to go back to the others but I find the one our dentist gave us is my favorite by far!) I got it in my mind that I was going to throw out at least three of these 5...keeping the one we like and a specialty script fluoride treatment. Then the part of my brain that hates wasting anything chimed in - NO I said, these have been here for much too long... but wait. The toilet is dirty. I don't like to use caustic cleaners in the toilet. What would be wrong with squirting the last of this tube (the one in my hand that was going to the trash) into the toilet and using it with the brush as a cleaner?

Now your thought process is potentially going in two directions - "hey not bad" or "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?!" Hopefully the first as from a logical standpoint, where is the true problem? Normally a product used to remove stains from enamel, why not stains from porcelain?

Or I just brushed the toilet with toothpaste. Weirdo.

Regardless, it worked well on a few levels. I got rid of something we weren't using, repurposed that same product to do another job, used up that product, got a fun topic for a blog post, and a clean minty-fresh toilet...or two, I can't imagine why I wouldn't have tried it on the other toilet too...

Or again, I'm the odd one squeezing toothpaste in the toilet when my other half comes in and asks..."Are you cleaning the toilet with toothpaste?!"

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Sharing the opportunity!

Do you have access to a professional media cutter?

I used to in a sense, when I worked at a craft store - as long as you bought the media in-store, you were able to use the die-cut machine free! For craft foam, fabric, felt, paper, vellum for scrapbooking or other crafty needs, you were able to choose a template (which came in the form of a wooden pad with the design in metal surrounded by thick rubber for safety) and use a table-top hand-roller to press out your design. (Similar to this product only not as, well, contemporary, this was a long time ago!)
Bunny critter
I'm just here to break up all this text
and be cute ^^

Simple, complimentary, and, well, limited. You were stuck with the size of the exact die and its style, as well as access to the device.   

Enter the computer age, where you are no longer restricted to costly kits and die storage – you can do this at home! Small personal machines have been on the market for years in differing input types (Sizzix, Cricut, Cuttlebug) and accessible from your favorite craft store to your local Wally World. While price is often an issue, many of these machines would make up for their price tag with the ability to create limitless projects at home!

What has always made me turn up my nose in consideration of such a device is the idea of having to purchase individual dies or cartridges. Where do you store them? Why are they so expensive? Why can’t the initial investment be more of a catch-all?

Now I will admit I haven’t done substantial research beyond window shopping all these years, I love the idea of something that is CNC from a system I can access. No mill that is heavier than me, no business-level investment. This idea is most appealing to me not only for storage, but also functionality. Want that image smaller? Sure! Need to change that font? No problem! Now what type of product will meet those needs…

Enter The Silhouette SD!

The Silhouette is a digital cutting tool for personal use. It connects to your computer just like a printer, but instead of printing designs it cuts them with a small blade. With the machine connected to your computer, you'll get access to all of the fonts on your PC plus the thousands of cuttable designs found on the Silhouette Online Store.
Click here for the giveaway link!
Humm Online Store, oh no not the upkeep again! Exploring the online catalog though does give me a sense that this really is an all-in-one device. Ohh and then they even have a comparison to the popular Cricut.

So I happen to be feeling pretty good about this machine – but now what, why am I sharing this with you? Well I want to tell you about the amazing giveaway over at Dollar Store Crafts! Stop on over through August 7th, 2010 to learn how you can win your own Silhouette SD package! There are also money-saving packages available to Dollar Store Craft readers, so if this sounds like the machine you've been looking for, utilize those promo codes! 

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Cupcake Plush no. 127-131

Cupcake Plush no. 127-131
Originally uploaded by rengawk

July brings us more cupcakes to share!

  • 127 - Pink Camo print over light pink,
  • 128 - Melonberry over Warm Brown,
  • 129 - Light Blue with White Frosting Edge over Baby Print,
  • 130 - Light Purple (Mohair) and a pastel print of white, yellow, and green over Medium Purple, and 
  • 131 - Light Pink with White Frosting Edge over Pink Camo print.

I will be sharing these tonight in my Etsy shop - have you seen it yet? :)

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


I shared a little craft project over at CraftFail, stop on by and check it out, and please share your feedback! :)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

no. 120-125

Meet another new batch!

no. 120-125

120 - Chocolate Brown over sage green mixed with grey and brown speckles (Green Aran Fleck),

121 - A mixture of pinks, browns, and cream (the last of this yarn I think?) with a Chocolate Brown edging, over Warm Brown,

122 - Pink Camo over Light Pink,

123 - not-so-traditional Rainbow (Dark Orange, Bright Yellow, Mint Green, Medium Blue, Amethyst) with Caron Simply Soft's Grape edging over White,

124 - Chocolate Brown over Bright Pink, and

125 - White with blue beads over Ocean!

Looking to adopt? Stop on by the
Etsy Shop, Unusual Wedge!

I've shared this week's little collection as part of the I Made It Blog Party at Everything Etsy. This is a fun activity from the folks at Everything Etsy to share the lovely projects folks have created this week. Check out the links for more info - you should join in the fun!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

No. 114-118

No. 114-118
Originally uploaded by rengawk
The next batch of crochet cupcakes that are free to travel the world!

These five are just a few of the many that will be showcased this summer in my Etsy shop.

No. 114 is the cutie with the white felt heart hand sewn as an embellishment; No. 115 has a cake speckled base with frosting that is full of color - blue, yellow, green - all with a red cherry on top!
Featuring a new yarn that I haven't tried before, No. 116 has a pink camo top with a tan base, No. 117  features one of my favorite purples and a base called Melonberry, and No. 118 features stripes of white, rose, and a pink edging over a medium brown base.