Friday, November 29, 2013

Military Dolls

I have such a soft spot in my heart for these four little guys.

  Military Doll 1

Military Doll 3

Military Doll 4

Military Doll 2

I realize not every branch of the military is represented in these dolls.  I promise it's merely due to the availability of fabrics locally and has nothing to do with any rivalry or preference on our part.  I wanted to make sure there was an option for anyone so I added in the little red, white, and blue guy in the last picture to fill in that space.

While the days of deployments are long behind our family, those that are still serving (and the families supporting them) are always in our thoughts and prayers.

Monday, November 25, 2013

Christmas Bats?

Due to popular demand a few new bats made their way to the craft show this weekend.  I am still amazed at how quickly the first set of bats sold out at Halloween and even though Halloween is long over they're still really popular.  My daughter was the one to point out that bats are around all the time so we need bat dolls all the time.  Good point kiddo.

Bats 7

Bats 5

Bats 1

Bats 3

I have to admit they're really starting to grow on me too.  The second two pictured didn't make it home from the show but the first two are still available and will go up for sale in the shop this afternoon.  These of course came from the same pattern as the original bats did.  

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Craft Show

Saturday my big girl and I attended a local craft show together.  This was the first year that she had her own official table, though she was quick to remind everyone that she did have pictures and pipe cleaner creations on mama's table last year.  Regardless this was a very big deal for my little crafter.  She worked very hard on her creations in the days leading up to the show.  Knowing exactly what she wanted to create and exactly what she wanted to charge for it.  The night before she was so excited she could hardly sleep, and just a little bit nervous as well.  She woke up once during the night worried that people might not like her work.   "What if they pick it up and then just throw it on the ground?"  My sweet little tender heart.  We assured her that definitely wouldn't happen and she drifted back off to sleep.  

She was up before the sun ready to get on the road and start her big day.  True to her nature she worked extremely hard to make sure her table was exactly like she wanted it before the shoppers arrived.  Tweaking things just a bit time and time again until it was perfect.  

As the first shoppers started to arrive she could hardly contain her excitement and just beamed as she explained to the (often surprised) customers that she did actually make everything herself.  She was proud to pull out her pot holder loom or her embroidery hoop and give examples of how she put her creations together for anyone that would stop and listen long enough.  

I do believe she may have outsold everyone else at the show that day.  

Craft Show 1

Craft Show 3

Craft Show 5

Craft Show 4

Craft Show 2

Though most of her profits didn't stick around for long.  With every break in shoppers she was off to "explore" the other tables just to see what they might be offering that she couldn't live without.  After several rounds I may have suggested she consider saving some of her money, but that idea fell on deaf ears as she headed off again.  "But Mama, we're at a craft show after all."  Very true little love, very true.  

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Girl Dollies

We are in full on crafting mode around here right now.  With the holidays approaching a craft show just around the corner the fabric is flying and everyone is up to their elbows in projects.  With all the crafting going on I realized there are still a lot of doll photos that were never shared, and with new dolls still coming off the machine I better start sharing before I get completely buried in dolls.

Girl upload 1

Girl upload 2

Girl upload 3

Girl upload 4

Girl upload 5

Girl upload 6

Girl upload 7

Girl upload 8 

 For all these pretty girls I, once again, turned to my favorite pattern from Bit of Whimsy Dolls. They're just so much fun to make that I can't seem to tear myself away from this pattern. I love the versatility of the doll and the fact that it's simple enough for even the youngest doll lover but it isn't limited to just the young ones.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Home Again

The girls were fortunate enough to spend a very long weekend with their grandparents this past weekend.  Off on an adventure without Mama and Daddy and knowing they were in for a great deal of fun and some alone time for Mama and Daddy as a result.

It's a tricky deal, time alone.  While we were both very much looking forward to some much needed relaxation, we are always a bit hesitant to send the girls off.  Not because we have a lack of faith in the grandparents (I turned out quite fantastic I believe), or a doubt that they would have the time of their lives, none of that at all.  Simply just a knowledge that we would miss them like mad while they were gone.  And miss them we did.  Certainly it was nice to catch up on a bit of missed sleep, and have the time to finish an actual conversation with one another.  There were lots of projects finished, lots of quiet enjoyed, and a bit of surprise crafting completed while they were away. (and a dead camera battery the entire time)  I am very thankful they have grandparents who look forward to spending this wonderful quality time making memories with them and who are happy to give us parents a bit of a break from time to time.

I will be the first to admit I was more than ready to pick them up again to bring them home.  I was met with loads of hugs, and even more stories of the excitement from their trip--Did you know Grandpa has a beard?!  Enough stories to last us the trip home and then some.

GIrls 3

Everyone is home again, right where they belong, and all is once again right in our world.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Rainy Day Coloring

Sometimes when there have been too many cold and rainy days or where there are too many deadlines approaching a mama needs some easy activities to keep the natives from becoming too restless.

Today is one of those days for us.  These girls of mine do love to draw and color so I knew pulling this out would make for a happy and busy morning.  

Coloring blankets 1

Coloring blankets 2

Coloring blankets 3

On our trip to Texas this summer we picked up some yardage of this adorable fabric and a package of fabric markers.  We've pulled this fabric out on many occasions and have all had a lot of fun coloring in the various drawings.  At some point we're going to turn these into blankets for each of the girls but there is some debate as to whether or not they have to be completely colored or not first.  So for now we'll just use them as is.  

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Halloween Costumes

While I may not love much about Halloween, my girls certainly love any excuse for a new costume.  We start discussing Halloween costumes long before the holiday comes around.  It gives the kids a chance to change their minds 100 times before and figure out what they really want to be.  Kaitlyn wanted to be everything this year including a ghost, a bat, mickey mouse, and even an ice cube.  Kinsley, however, didn't waver much at all.  She wanted to be a viking last year and due to other things we had going on it didn't happen, so this year she was ready.  She didn't want to be just any old viking though, it had to be "just like Astrid" from the movie How to Train Your Dragon.  Sure kiddo, Astrid it is.

Meet my wild and crazy vikings...

Halloween 1

Halloween 2

Halloween 7

Halloween 4

Halloween 6

Completely fierce right?  They were both so excited with how their costumes ended up, I was simply happy I managed to complete them in time.  It doesn't really matter how early we start planning or buying supplies even as I always manage to be working on them right until the very last minute.  This year was certainly no exception.

 Little miss attention to detail was sure to supervise every plan and purchase I made to ensure accuracy in her costume.  It took ages to find a fabric for her shirt that would pass inspection until a friend brilliantly suggested upholstery fabric.  While it wasn't great to work with it provided the necessary colors and stripes we were looking for.  I didn't use a pattern for her costume, I just freehanded it based off of pictures of the character.  I think I came pretty darn close.

Halloween 14

Halloween 13

The skulls on her skirt and shoulder pieces were hand formed out of Crayola model magic dough.  I loved that it could easily be made into the shape we needed and were still really light weight.  I then made the necessary details with a crochet hook and painted each one so they weren't quite the stark white of the original clay.  The spikes were little sew on beads that I found at Michaels.  While they don't have the size of the originals, they were ready made and I think worked out just fine. 

Halloween 15

Halloween 16

The important thing is that she was happy with it and thought she looked "almost like Astrid" pointing out a few technical details that didn't make it into the costume due to time restraints.  Heaven help anyone who ends up working for her one day, she knows exactly what she wants and isn't afraid to let you know about it.  

Kaitlyn's costume was much easier to complete simply because she had very few opinions about it at all.  I designed her look based off of Hiccup from the same movie.  I used the Charlie Tunic pattern, with the dress add on, from Made by Rae to make her dress and it was perfect.  I've been wanting to make this dress pattern for ages and I'm so glad I did.  I already have a couple more in the works for her.  It was so easy to put together and perfect for this costume.  I skipped the buttons to save on time and with the jewelry I made her I didn't really think it needed them.  I'll definitely add them on the actual dresses though.  

Halloween 8

 Halloween 10

I trimmed her dress with the leftover leather from Kinsley's skirt and love the way it looks with the green.  The necklaces were simply a couple packages of beads picked up at Hobby Lobby and strung on some brown embroidery floss.  Her costume didn't take much time to complete at all, except for one last minute added detail.  The hat.  

Halloween 11

A viking hat had always been part of my original plan, but not Kaitlyn's.  She insisted the entire time that she did NOT want to wear a "biking hat" and wanted a headband like Kinsley's, but of course I should have known better.  Thursday afternoon she decided that she needed a hat to wear and luckily I had the right yarns in my stash to make it happen.  I used the Lael Viking Helmet pattern by Mamachee on Etsy.  I had saved this pattern ages ago and was ready to try it out.  I found that mine worked up a bit big (this final hat is the medium size).  The yarn I was using was a worsted weight but is a bit dense to work with so that very well could have been the problem.  Everyone in the family can wear this one though so that's been sort of fun to see.  Regardless the pattern is adorable and I would definitely recommend it.  It was also very quick to work up, which was a major plus since I was right down to the wire on time.  I finished the hat in just about an hour before we were to leave to trick or treat.  Whew.  Kait declared it was "so awesome" and that makes it completely worth the last minute rush.  

Halloween 12

They had a great time running about scaring unsuspecting villagers and raiding their candy stashes.  Happy Halloween indeed.

Halloween 18

Halloween 19

Friday, November 1, 2013

Pre-Halloween Costumes

Being the master of procrastination that I am, I hadn't finished the girls' Halloween costumes in time for dance class earlier this week so we had to get a bit creative and make our own last minute costumes. 

We pulled out butterfly wings from the dress up costumes and added it to a black dance leotard we had to make Kait a butterfly for ballet class on Monday.  We added a pipe cleaner snapped in with a hair barrette for antennae and she was ready to go. 

Ballet Costume 1
Ballet Costume 2
Ballet Costume 19
Kinsley decided she wanted to wear her birthday dress and be an Autumn Princess. We made a quick headband out of felt and she gathered some beautiful leaves from Nana's yard to make her crown. A little hot glue to hold them in place and the Princess was ready to dance.
Ballet Costume 5
Ballet Costume 4
Ballet Costume 8
Neither costume took more than 10 minutes to put together and the girls were both so proud of coming up with their ideas. Sometimes procrastination can be a beautiful thing.
Ballet Costume 6
Ballet Costume 10
For tap day on Tuesday they still weren't quite ready so we had to whip up a bit more costume creativity. I always have a stash of blank shirts in my crafting supplies for last minute needs and they came in handy this time. I cut a basic ghost face out of a black and glitter felt in our stash and used a bit of fusible webbing to iron them onto their shirts. They had the best time making ghost noises and trying to scare everyone.
  Ghost Costume 2
Ghost Costume 3
The costumes for both days were made in very little time and from things we already had on hand so they didn't cost us anything to make. The girls went on an on about how "awesome" their costumes were and had an absolute blast putting them together. Sometimes it really is the simple things that turn out to be the most fun, which is something that I need to remember more often.