May 1, 2011

CraftLife Episode Four – Hacking The Craft

Posted in Podcast tagged , , , , , at 7:36 pm by treacleandinketsy


Hey, hey all you hackers out there! This one’s for you!

WARNING! Before you precede any further, please familiarize yourself with that hacker genius, MacGyver.

If you’re looking for inspiration from other crafty hackers, check out the works of Rachel Betty Case and Hye Jin Lee .

And if you’d like to do a little more reading about hacking in general, take a peek into “The New Hacker’s Dictionary”.

So you still want to try your hand at cow tipping?? This how-to video provides step-by-step instructions.

Indy Mogul offers up some great inspiration and DIY goodness. Their Backyard FX series is full of incredibly good how-tos. You can watch their Fallout fan Film, Nuka Break, and then see the episode about how some of their props were constructed.

About that yarn swift that Mr. E. Bunny told me about… check it out for yourself here.

I have managed to cast on and complete the Waterfall Scarf since the last episode… though it may get frogged and re-knit.

April 16, 2011

CraftLife Episode Three – Fiber, Fiber, Everywhere

Posted in Podcast tagged , , , , at 8:36 pm by treacleandinketsy


Whew! After being up to my neck in fiber over the past two weeks, I am just itching to share it with you. But first of all, what do you think about my new design?! Much better, no? Many thanks to Adam, my resident Photoshop whiz.

And now on to the fiber-y goodness!

Looking for yet another knitting podcast to try? Check out the Knitting Podcasts Blog for a whole slew of options.

Hone your expert garage sale-ing skills, and you just might score some used knitting books such as “Knitting Today’s Classics”, or “Knit Tricks”

If you’re ever in the Horseshoe bay area, a trip to Nan’s Needleworks is well worth your time. While you’re there, pick up a few skeins of Trabajos Del Peru in honor of me!

If your calendar is looking pretty empty this time next year, you might like to plan a trip to the Dallas Fiber Fest. Here you can find all kinds of interesting fiber dealers such as Two If By Hand, FiberLady.com, Knitting Fairy, and Shabby Sheep.

Still have more questions about CSAs? Check out Jacob’s Reward Farm for more details.

While I still may be working on those pink ribbon fingerless mitts, I have cast on the Liesel Scarf to keep me interested in the mean time.

If you haven’t done so yet, please join me in the CraftLife Ravelry Group!

March 30, 2010

How To – Easter Hat Tree

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , at 9:20 pm by treacleandinketsy

In Your Easter bonnet, with all the frills upon it...

All that talk last Friday about Easter bonnets led me to recall a crafty Easter project from my past. Easter was drawing near, and my mother set the idea of an Easter hat tree before us. I believe it was an idea that originally came from my great Aunt Edna, who is a crafty queen in her own right. What resulted was a wonderfully tacky little Easter hat tree that is a great family project, or even a good long afternoon project for the kids to do once the Easter egg hunt is over and the adults are ready for a nap.

Here’s what you’ll need:

small Styrofoam cups

floral foam

floral moss

flower pot

small tree branch with multiple limbs – one that looks like a small tree

spray paint

poster paint and brushes

craft notions (ex: feathers, sequins, ribbons, buttons, etc.)

craft glue

Step 1:

Preheat your oven to 300 degrees and arrange the Styofoam cups upside-down on a cookie sheet.

Before - Cups

Step 2:

Place cups in oven.  They will shrink and curl into small hat-like shapes.  My cups took only about 3-4 minutes, so watch carefully.  You may have a few “duds” to toss out, but that’s okay.  Just do another batch.

After - Hats!

Step 3:

Decorate your hats however you wish, using your paints, craft glue and crafty bits.  I stuck with mostly bright Easter-y colors, but you could definitely alter your color scheme for other holidays.  As you can tell from the picture below, I always save those little extra buttons and beads that come with new cloths, and I raided that stash for this project.

Decorating Goodies

Hat in Progress

Step 4:

Take your tree branch, making sure it is clear of all leaves and dirt, and spray paint it.  I went with white spray paint, but like I said before, you could go with whatever color you want.

Before - Branch

After - Easter Hat Tree! (close up)

Step 5:

Cut a piece of floral foam that will sit tightly into your flower pot.  Insert the “trunk” of your tree into the center of the foam so that the tree stands straight.

Insert trunk into foam.

Step 6:

Cover the top of the pot with the floral moss, making sure to hide all of the floral foam.  You could use any type of covering that you’d like.  A bag of inexpensive jellybeans (that you don’t intend to eat) might be a neat idea…

Cover with moss.

Step 7:

Decorate your tree!  Just arrange the little hats on the branches, and you’re done. 🙂

Finished Easter Hat Tree

I tried to use mostly things that I already had on hand for this project.  The flower pot, spray paint, tree branch, buttons, ribbon, and sequins were things I already had.  I did have to purchase the floral foam and moss, but for the most part this was a very inexpensive project.  If I had to make one change, I would have chosen a shorter tree branch.  This one is just a little too tall.

Hope you enjoy, and if you wind up trying out this little project, let me know how it turns out!

March 29, 2010

The One That Started It All

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , at 3:01 pm by treacleandinketsy

In my “First Ever Treacle and Ink Giveaway” I passed along a set of Easter eggs that were made from my fabric set – that is, the set of fabrics from which I made my own tablecloth set last summer.  This was before I got my sewing machine, the one I had previously had been broken beyond repair, and so I did the entire set by hand.  Yep, just me, a needle and thread, and endless Jane Austen movies and classic BBC Miniseries.  It was quite an undertaking, and at one point I really began to wonder if I had it in me to see the project all the way through.  Thankfully, I did manage to finish it, and just a short while later, my sweet husband gifted me with a sewing machine.

The time has come to share with you my tablecloth, the one that started it all!  As you can see, the color inspiration came from my curtains since they were already in the kitchen. 🙂

March 26, 2010

Featured Fridays – Topsy Turvy Design

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , at 11:54 am by treacleandinketsy

An email from my pastor this morning reminded me that this Sunday is Palm Sunday.  Wait a minute, where did that come from?  That means that next Sunday is Easter Sunday, and it just seems a little too soon for Easter to be here already.  Palm Sunday really sneaked up on me this year.

As I was thinking about Holy Week, I was reminded of Irving Berlin’s Easter Parade:

In your Easter bonnet, with all the frills upon it,

You’ll be the grandest lady in the Easter Parade…

Now, of course, the point of the Easter season is the celebration of the loving sacrifice that Christ made for us.  However, it also brings back childhood memories of bright sunny Easter mornings, waking up to see what the Easter Bunny had left during the night, and getting all dressed up in our new Easter dresses before heading out to church, and then to a big lunch with family.  Sometimes the Easter dresses were accompanied by special accessories like…dare I say it…hats!

I love hats.  I don’t have terribly many, but I love to have an occasion to wear one.  I watch British films with envy when they include wedding scenes, because hats at such functions appear to be the standard over there, and not so much over here.   A few weeks ago, this week’s Featured Friday seller was featured in Etsy’s Handmade Portraits, and I greatly enjoyed the segment.  So, without further ado, here’s this week’s Featured Fridays seller, Topsy Turvy Design!

Store Name: Topsy Turvy Design

Tag Line: I Make Hatties!

First Name: Kim

Physical Location: Oakland, California

Inventory: “Costume Accessories for Stage, Film & Play”…hats, hats, hats!

Links: shop, flickr, facebook, twitter, customer gallery

These hats are something else.  No, I really mean that.  You won’t be able to swing by your nearest department store and pick up a hat that rivals anything you will find at Topsy Turvy Design.  They are vibrant, whimsical, colorful, and full of life.  Kim’s toppers come in a wide range of sizes, from the Mini Rhinestone Top Hat and small peacock feather hair clips, to the Seafaring Pirate Hat.  Her shop is full of wonderful photography featuring gorgeous models showing off her beautiful creations.  Be sure to check it out!  And just to whet your appetite, here are a few of my favorites.

While I’m not suggesting you grab one to wear to church on Easter Sunday (who would be able to focus on the sermon with one of these awesome hats in the room?), I definitely think you can find find an occasion for at least one. 🙂

The Holly - Victorian Bridal Top Hat - As Seen in Gothic Beauty Magazine 28

Bell Hop-Cigarette Girl- Pill Box Hat

The Polly - Feather Fascinator - Flapper

Seafaring Pirate Hat - Tricorn - As Seen in Gothic Beauty Magazine 24

March 23, 2010

The Doldrums Of Inspiration

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , at 5:16 pm by treacleandinketsy

Some days, I just feel craftier than others.

I have another set of stuffed Easter eggs that I am wanting to list in my shop.  They have been pieced together and stuffed.  The only thing that remains to finish them is to sew them closed.  I have been carrying them around with me for about a week now, planning on finishing them, but so far, nothing.

Why?  It really won’t take that long to just sew them up.  It’s not a strenuous activity.

I just don’t feel like it.

APPALACHIAN RIDGE BLEND Organic Custom Blend Coffee - by katherynmd

I have only recently begun to pay attention to where my inspiration comes from and what things put me in the crafty mood.  One thing I know for sure: I craft better if I have my morning coffee.  I can focus better on what I am doing, and I can get more done.  I’m not going to make excuses for it, or apologize for it.  That’s just the way it is.  I went off of coffee completely for about three weeks, and it totally interrupted my rhythm.

Pirate Owl 6 x 6 Print - by leearthaus

I also craft better if I don’t feel like there are other things that I need to get done first.  A sink full of dirty dishes?  Those need to get done.  Dirty laundry?  Those need to get done – although I will admit I have forgone many a load of laundry in the pursuit of more creative activities if I felt like I was on a roll.  You have to ride the wave of inspiration when it hits, or you just might miss what it’s bringing!

Alas, at the present time, I can neither diagnose the cause of my slump, nor prescribe a remedy.  I’m just waiting for it to pass.  In the mean time, I would love to hear any suggestions that you may have for getting out of this slump.  Is there something that you do to inspire a creative mindset?  Leave me a comment

March 17, 2010

And The Winner Is….

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , at 9:41 am by treacleandinketsy

Happy St. Patrick’s Day to you! Ireland is my number one dream destination, and I think that’s why I love St. Patrick’s Day so much. In honor of the day, I am spending the afternoon preparing a delicious Irish meal – the same one I made last year, which we ate off of for days. I have the pork shoulder roast brining in the refrigerator, the butter for the soda bread softening as I type, and I’m debating whether or not I want to attempt a batch of shortbread cookies as well. Pandora is set to my Celtic music station, and it is a bright and beautiful sunny day! I hope you enjoy it as much as I plan to. 🙂

Now, on to what we have all been waiting for. It’s time to announce the winner of The First Ever Treacle And Ink Giveaway!

This giveaway is for:

A Set of Three Stuffed Easter Eggs

And the winner is….

Tracey from MyDivineTreasures!

Congratulations to Tracey, and thanks again to everyone else who entered!  This was just the first of what I hope to be many giveaways, so there will be more opportunities coming your way in the future.

Have a great St. Patrick’s Day!

March 16, 2010

An Eggceptional Treasury

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , at 3:12 pm by treacleandinketsy

It’s that time again!  Yes, I managed to grab yet another treasury.  This time, I had Easter on the brain.  Remember the days when you were young enough to actually hunt the Easter eggs?  I miss those days.  I mean, don’t get me wrong, I like to hide them, but there is something infinitely more fun in finding them.  It’s like finding a treasure!

I hop…oops, I mean hope…you can stop by and check out all of the wonderful Easter eggs I found on my Etsy Easter egg hunt.  And, just like before, I wanted to give you a peek at my alternates!  Remember, if something is purchased from this treasury, I will trade it out for one of the alternates as quickly as possible.

Now, on to the good stuff!

Easter Egg Applique Bodysuit Onesie Newborn, S, M, L - by monsterbugblankets

Easter Morning Bracelet - by RoughMagicHolidays

Set of 3 Easter Tags - by Rosengarten

 Medium Patchwork Easter Egg

Medium Patchwork Easter Egg - by GlassCat

March 12, 2010

Featured Fridays – Ukrainian Easter Eggs

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , at 8:00 am by treacleandinketsy

My BFF (oh yes, I totally just said BFF) and I met in college and have been friends ever since. She has a beautifully original name, of which she is a bit protective, so I shall refer to her from here on out as “The Marvelous Maven,” because she is my go-to girl anytime I am puzzling through scripture, life, or anything really. She’s got the smarts and always knows just what to say.

The Marvelous Maven has quite a unique heritage. Her father’s family journeyed to the US from the Ukraine, and she has always been curious about the land from whence they came. I know that she would love to make a trip over there to see it one day, but for now there is just daydreaming. So in honor of The Marvelous Maven and Easter, I bring you this installment of Featured Fridays!

Store Name: Ukrainian Easter Eggs

First Name: K.T.

Physical Location: Toronto, Canada

Inventory: Ukrainian Easter Eggs

Links: shop, flickr

Ukrainian Easter Eggs is a new shop on Etsy, though a quick profile perusal will tell you that K.T. is definitely not new to the craft. For those who are unfamiliar with the way that Ukrainian Easter eggs, or pysanky, are made, they go through a process where they are alternately written on in wax and then dipped in a dye. For a more detailed description of how this process works, click here.

There are other Etsy sellers who sell pysanky, but I like the Ukrainian Easter Eggs shop because these eggs really cover the whole spectrum of colors and designs. The photography of the eggs is wonderful as well, with good clear pictures that really let you see the items up close. I have no doubt that you will find eggs here to suit just about anyone’s taste.

Here are a few of my particular favorites. Check out Ukrainian Easter Eggs Etsy shop and show some love to a new Etsy seller!

Bleached back to white Pysanka- batik Easter Egg - Pink and Black

Pysanka on Brown Egg with Pink accents

Turquoise Flowers on Black Pysanka

Green Leaves and White 8 pointed Stars hand painted easter Egg

March 10, 2010

The First Ever Treacle And Ink Giveaway!

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , at 12:58 pm by treacleandinketsy

I am so excited to be finally hosting my first giveaway!  It’s something I’ve been wanting to do for quite some time, and the day has arrived.

As you know, I have been working on some fun little stuffed Easter eggs that will begin appearing in my shop this week.  Since Easter is a time when we celebrate the most wonderful gift ever given, what better time than this to have a giveaway. (Although, my little gift bears NO comparison to wonderful gift of Christ’s sacrifice.)

On to the Prize!

A Set of Three Stuffed Easter Eggs

Here's a size comparison with a real egg.

These particular eggs are very near and dear to my heart.  They are made from some of the fabrics that I used to create my own personal tablecloth – the very first one I made!  You won’t find anything for sale in my Etsy shop that features this collection fabrics.

How to enter:

You can have up to three entries in this giveaway!

#1:  Become a subscriber to my blog. Simply click the button in the right column that reads “Sign me up!” and follow the directions.  Leave me a comment on this post and let me know you’re a new subscriber.  Or, if you are already a subscriber, just leave a comment letting me know you’d like to be entered.

#2:  Become a Facebook Fan. Click on the link to my Facebook Fanpage and become a fan.  Leave me a wall post to let me know you’re a new fan.  Or, if you are already a fan, just leave me a wall post letting me know you’d like to be entered.

#3:  Heart an item in my shop. Which one of my items is your favorite?  Just heart the one you like best and leave me a comment letting me know.

That’s three easy ways to enter!

*This giveaway is open until 3/16/10 at 11:59pm CST.  Each entry will be assigned a number in the order in which they are received.  The winner will be chosen on 3/17/10 at random using the random integer generator at random.org.

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