Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Antique Finds

Antique shopping can be lots of fun. Crafted Spaces visited the Roadshow's 400 Antiques Mall, just outside of Barrie, Ontario. This 32,000 sq. ft. showroom is a great venue and has over 200 dealer shops and showcases with an amazing selection of antique finds, from delicate linen handkerchiefs to ornate furniture pieces.

Antique malls are a great source for finding items that can enhance any creative space. You can find great storage solutions or small decorative items that are cost effective and can add unique touches to your creative space. Here are a few of my milk glass dish, which has come in very handy for keeping business cards and hangtags within reach.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Getting Organized: Steps to De-Cluttering and Organization

I have done several posts on different aspects of getting organized and recently talked about the topic on Crafted Spaces Radio - "Organizing Your Creative Space." However, I really wanted to dig into this topic with a more in-depth look at how to get organized at home and at work.

If you are a designer and crafter like myself, perhaps you work from home and if so, this series will be very helpful as I take a look at how to keep things organized to improve your productivity.

Checkout my closet which has been transformed into an office nook!

Listen to the first of three Crafted Spaces Radio episodes in this series. I also invite you to visit my Pinterest board on Organizing and Storage.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Crochet Cowl With Two Strands Of Yarn

I really enjoy crocheting and over the years have never used patterns, but have created my own designs by combining simple stitches. Recently I have found myself looking at patterns and thinking of new projects to try. I have been learning new stitches and I'm learning more about this beautiful craft.

I had never used two strands of yarn together on a project before and I have seen some great projects that inspired me to try to do so. I usually prefer a lightweight piece, but wanted something on the more chunky side. I therefore decided to make a cowl (also a first) using two strands. I fell in love with the Aqua colour of the" Bernet Satin" yarn (Colour: 04201). It is a medium, 100% acrylic yarn that was easy to work with and feels super soft.

Here are some images from my project.

I was inspired by this tutorial at "Aesthetic Nest" on how to make a crochet cowl. However, my finished cowl is larger and I did not really follow the instructions very well and ended-up doing my own thing. I love the size of the one I made, because it gives great versatility for wearing in a number of ways. I think the next cowl I make, will be even larger so that it can be worn over the head, which will be wonderful for next winter. However my thoughts are on spring and the cool evenings off the lake.

My finished cowl measures 11" high and 36" around and I used a USK10.5/6.50 mm crochet hook. I crocheted in the round and added a cord with a flower on one end and a leaf on the other. The cord is piped through and brings the cowl in nicely at the neck. However, I see myself wearing my new spring cowl more often as shown in option #2.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Book Review: Recycling Things to Make and Do

On today's Crafted Spaces Radio I talked about "Eco Crafting." I have wanted to start a segment on this topic for some time now and will like to add more to this topic as the year progresses. There are lots of blogs and other sites that are dedicated to this topic, as well as a wealth of other online resources. I mentioned this book; "Recycling things to make and do," because it is a great resource for working with kids on wonderful craft projects.

The large, bright full colour pages present the projects in easy to follow steps and each project uses materials from around your home as well as items that you may have from left-over sewing and craft projects. The projects are equally great for boys or girls and I think will appeal to a wide age group. Younger kids can make projects that allow them to explore paint and texture, while older kids can make projects like gift bags and tags that are perfect for gift giving. There are a number of other books in the series that look at "things to make and do."

I was asked by my nine-year-old son, "What interesting things did you do as a kid, when you were my age mommy?" His question brought back memories of drawing and working on countless craft projects. I remember spending hours with my craft books and trying lots of new craft projects. I would spend hours anticipating the final outcome. My favourite craft book was part of an encyclopedia set my mother had purchased for me. For years I continued to gain enjoyment from the projects I learnt and continue to use many of the techniques I learnt so many years ago.

My family and I have been having fun with our "Family Art Night" and my son's drawings have been amazing. Watching him expressing himself through art has been an amazing experience. Needless to say, I was very happy to find this book. Let me know what you think and perhaps share a favourite craft book from your library.

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