Thursday, June 30, 2011

This t-shirt is my white whale.

Quite some time ago, I missed out on buying this t-shirt by a few hours . . . but I still want it so much.  I'm dreaming of the day it gets reprinted.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Wednesday Wants: Threadless/Society 6

I ultimately couldn't decide between these two things, so here are two Wednesday Wants!

First up is this awesome t-shirt from Threadless.

(Photo via Threadless)

Okay, so obviously this is not a picture of a t-shirt, but I'm sure you can imagine it on a t-shirt.  Visualization Hint: the t-shirt is off-white.

Totally Random Story:
This t-shirt resonates with me for a very specific reason.  Many years ago, my sister and I used to go and play with a friend, whom we'll call Tina, when my mom was taking classes for her Master's Degree.  One day, I decided I wanted my sister and Tina to be horses, while I played the unicorn.  They were supposed to catch me and try and turn me into a horse.  Unfortunately for them, I was determined to remain a unicorn.  After I escaped capture for the sixth time, Tina got very irritated and started calling me "bossy."  This turned into an argument, which resulted in my sister and I not getting awarded the McDonald's Chip and Dale's Rescue Rangers Happy Meal toys we had been promised if we didn't fight at Tina's house.

(I would like the shirt even more if the unicorn was telling the horses to "suck it!")

Anyway, cool shirt!

(Photo via Society 6)

Here's the other item I just couldn't resist today.  After upgrading my phone (and losing the possibility of using my beloved smiling food case), I've been using a plain black case.  I hadn't really been on the lookout for something else until this caught my eye.

I'm a sucker for smiling inanimate objects hanging out together, what can I say?

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Try it Tuesday: Slide Lamp

Today's "Try it Tuesday" features the product of what may possibly be my favorite tutorial ever!   Last summer, I stumbled across HGTV's "She's Crafty" and instantly coveted a lamp that had a shade made out of slides briefly shown in the theme song.  Since I couldn't wait a few days for the episode to air, I scoured the internet until I found this brief explanation of the project.

(Looks like it could have used some styling to straighten out the slides.  Oops!)

The materials for this one took some time to acquire. 

I bought a lamp that had a tubular shade at Ikea (which apparently is no longer available).  
I got the slides (the project calls for 105) through Ebay.  Using your own slides would certainly be an option, but I just wasn't open to that!  I think they'll stay nice and safe elsewhere, thank you very much! :)  

I used a coupon at Michael's and sprung for the Crop-a-Dile, which made punching holes through the cardboard of a ton of slides soooo much easier.  (I tried this with a random five dollar punch and highly regretted my aching hands, wasted time and ragged slide holes.)

I also bought the jump rings to connect the slides at Michael's.

I ignored the specifics about the number of slides needed and figured it out on my own once I started adding them to the stripped lampshade.  The directions call for a lampshade with a 14" diameter, and mine was larger.  Luckily I had a ton of slides!  As you can see above, I turned all the printed logos, etc. toward the inside.

This lamp always gets a ton of compliments and casts such amazing light.  I've always wanted to try adding an unfrosted bulb to make the projection of the slides even clearer!  Here's a picture from our last place, where the wall the lamp projected on was less complex.

If you make one, I'd love to see!  :)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sunday Songs: Glen Campbell Edition

SAD/HAPPY: Glen Campbell- Wichita Lineman

This week had to be all Glen Campbell after I read that he is suffering from Alzheimer's and is planning a farewell tour.  I'm sure this is a nearly impossible time for him and his family, but I'm so glad that he's got the opportunity to fulfill his wish of touring one more time.

"Wichita Lineman" is a song with such potent, lovesick lyrics and timeless music that it's sort of eerie.  It was the best thing from a documentary that my husband and I watched about five years ago.  I may have heard it before that point, but during the movie it gripped me instantly and we scoured the credits to find out who sang it.  Clearly, this viewing pre-dated the shazam app.

It's a song that will always be a classic.

HAPPY: Glen Campbell- Rhinestone Cowboy

If a "rhinestone cowboy, riding out on a horse in a star-spangled rodeo" doesn't automatically classify something as happy, I don't know what would.  

This song is like the country version of "Fame."  The lyric about how he will be "getting cards and letters from people he doesn't even know" really makes me smile.  An era before you could just become someone's fan on facebook to try and reach them seems so long ago, even though technology was something that has changed drastically within my own lifetime.  (Thankfully, computers have advanced a bit though so I'm not just still playing as the Von Schmidt Family on a version of Double Dare you had to run using a DOS command.  Nothing translated to a computer game worse than Double Dare.)

It's a message that can apply to everyone- things may be hard sometimes, but they'll get much, much better.

I hope that Glen Campbell's last recordings and tour are everything he needs and wants.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Shop Talk: The Rumspring Forever Etsy store is live!

Hurray!  The shop is live!

I'm so excited that I've already been featured in a treasury!

It's strange, I just finished all this work, but seeing it up and running is really motivating to get started again. :)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Shop Talk: Sneak Preview

Tomorrow is the big day!  I've been wanting to start my store for real for months, but work just kept me too busy.  I'm so excited to have finally reached my goal! :)

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Wednesday Wants: FforFelt

  These needle felted bear skin rugs from FforFelt are hilarious!  I would love to have a full sized version to lay in front of our (unused) fireplace!

The facial expression on the pink one cracks me up!

(Photos via Etsy)

The Indomitable Animal Spirit: Naki'o

I'm always on the lookout for another indomitable animal spirit story and came across this one this morning.

 Naki'o was left behind when his owners lost their house in Nebraska.  Left in the cold house, he got stuck in an icy basement puddle and had to have all four feet amputated due to frostbite.  Luckily, he was adopted by a veterinary technician who raised the money to buy him two bionic legs.  The company donated two more, so now Naki'o can have the kind of fun seen above.

Such a sweet story!

(via Dlisted, original story at Incredible Features)

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Try it Tuesday: Krang!

Due to my workload for my launch this Friday, I didn't have time to try any tutorials.  Instead I wanted to feature this guy:

It's possible that you have no idea who/what this is if you are unfamiliar with a certain 1987 cartoon series starring a bunch of pizza loving turtles.  It's Krang!

A couple of months ago, I decided we needed more Krang in our lives and made this guy while we watched a movie.  I started with 5 or 6 blobby (for lack of a better word) panels for the body and sewed them together.  Then I made some wrinkles and attached the bottom and legs.  I glued the face on with fabric glue.

He's definitely a conversation starter!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Sunday Songs: Father's Day Edition-Kenny Rogers

         Today's Sunday Songs is a special edition.  What's more special that pre-plastic surgery Kenny Rogers?!  This one's for you, Dad!    

 SAD: Kenny Rogers- Coward of the County

My dad has always loved country music, so I grew imitating Hank Williams. Jr. by singing "There's a tear in my beer 'cause I'm crying for you dear."  As is fitting, I am very familiar with the work of one Mr. Kenny Rogers.

"Coward of the County" was a song I had a very hard time figuring out as a little kid riding in the car.  I had a lot of questions that I never asked anyone.  

How does everyone in the county know Tommy?  How big is the county?  Why was his dad in prison?  What exactly did the Gatling boys do to Becky?  Did Tommy kill the Gatling boys?  Did he go to jail?

Now that those questions are out of my system, let me get to my expert opinion on the sad level.  First of all, any song that contains the line "he was only ten years old when his daddy died in prison" is obviously sad.  Then you have the added drama of Tommy eventually having to discard his father's advice that "you don't have to fight to be a man."  Now if Tommy's father hadn't ever given him this advice, then he wouldn't have a coward's reputation and Becky would have been safe!  This (seemingly sound) advice actually has a very negative effect on his life, as he doesn't correctly interpret his father's words.

Promise me son, not to do the things I done
Walk away from trouble if you can*
They won't think you're weak
If you turn the other cheek
I hope you're old enough to understand
You don't have to fight to be a man 

His dad already knows that sometimes you have to fight when you're a man!  If only Tommy had been old enough to really understand then he wouldn't have to view his Dad's words as naive.  SAD!

 HAPPY: Kenny Rogers- Through the Years

Luckily, Kenny does have songs that remind you more of his orange juice commercials (with his original wife and face) than sad miscommunications.  This is one!  I don't have a specific memory of this growing up, but my Dad and I did dance to it at my wedding.  If it's not being played at a wedding, I see it more as a song for a woman to be listening to while she cleans her coffee table on a cool summer evening.

If you've heard this song, you know it's happy (in a weepy way).  Kenny's learned what life's about by loving you, through the years.  HAPPY!

(NOTE: An infinitely more interesting video that would not post can be found here.  Kenny is speaking at a podium in Giants stadium in 1986 and is surrounded by people dressed in native costumes from around the world.)

Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Wednesday Wants: Old School Stationers

Photos via Etsy

I love these hand printed cards from Old School Stationers!  So many of their prints remind me of the book Travels with Charley in Search of America, which is, of course, awesome!

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Try it Tuesday: Cuddly Koala

This week I made another gift using Naomi Tabatha's awesome book, Felt Friends from Japan.  Hopefully this cuddly koala won't be discovered by the recipient too soon! :)

Just as I did with Sausage Dog, I really enjoyed hand sewing this little guy.  I'm looking forward to trying more projects in this book, maybe while traveling.  These projects seem like they would travel well due to the small amount of supplies you need!

Of course I had to stick him in a tree, even if it's not eucalyptus! 

Monday, June 13, 2011

So ready...

for more of this!

(This is Ollie!  I promise I don't make him do anything he doesn't enjoy!)

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Shop Talk: Launch Date

Welcome to any new readers coming via my ad at Freckled Nest!  Thanks for stopping by!

After a few teacher workdays this week, I will be free for the summer!  It's time to get down to brass tacks and set the launch date for my etsy shop:

Friday, June 24th!

  The initial launch will include handmade bags, screen printed bags and ring bearer pillows (and maybe a few surprises).  I'm really excited, but I have a lot of work to do!

Sunday Songs: A Night Out-The Smiths/ Jermaine Stewart

SAD: The Smiths- There is a Light that Never Goes Out

Disclaimer- Sometimes this song does fall on the happy side with me, just because I do like to belt out "and if a ten ton truck kills the both of us."

Anyway, a song about someone who is homeless and having strange fears grip them in the darkened underpass can't be all that happy.  If you really want my stab at an in-depth analysis, I'll say that this is a song about a guy that can't confess his love to the object of his affection despite an obvious chance.  He would find some comfort in sharing the intimacy of death with this person rather than risk being rejected.

Wow, where did that come from?   

HAPPY: Jermaine Stewart- We Don't Have to Take Our Clothes Off

A song like this could never be anything but happy.

As far as I can remember, I didn't hear this song until maybe 2005 on my way to work one morning.  I was flabbergasted that such an amazingly ridiculous song existed.  Then I saw the video and fell even deeper in love.

It's a world where you can't take your clothes off, but you can spend all night drinking cherry wine!  I also find it hilarious how the song is an anthem for taking it slow and getting to know each other, yet the model is the video is subjected to every "sexy" 1980's video cliche with Jermaine wagging his finger at her.  At least she (randomly) gets to wear a graduation mortarboard while she puts on her lipstick!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Wednesday Wants: Alexander Henry "Sew Much Fun"

This Wednesday Want is a little bit of a cheat, since well...I ended up buying it before I blogged this.  Anyway, isn't this Alexander Henry fabric so cool?

I bought mine from Fabric Worm, and I can't wait to get this and all the other pretty things I found in the mail!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Try it Tuesday: Sausage Dog

This week I used the "Sausage Dog" pattern from Felt Friends from Japan by Naomi Tabatha.  (It's a gift for someone who is hopefully not reading this!)

I got this book a couple of months back and was excited that all the animals seem to be hand sewn.  I really enjoyed making this hand sewn elephant a couple of months ago due to the ease of construction, and was ready to do some more work by hand.

This little guy was pretty easy to make and the directions were well illustrated with drawings (not to mention the sweet photos).  I really recommend this book!  

Look out for another Try it Tuesday from Felt Friends from Japan next week!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Sunday Songs: Don Henley/Eagles

SAD: Don Henley- End of the Innocence

Wow, typing "innocence" sure makes it seem like a jumble of nonsense letters. 

Ahem, anyway...I love this song, but it still totally reminds me of looking at those weird hairstyle books at the hair salon while my mom got a perm.  I'm positive that they also played Wilson Phillips and plenty of other things, but I can't remember them as well.

On a deeper level, this song seems to me to be about the end of innocence propelling you towards the end of your life more quickly than you may want.   

HAPPY: Eagles- Peaceful, Easy Feeling

I wanted to give Don Henley a chance to land on the happy side as well.

To me, this song is about accepting what happens and moving on with your life, even if it's not what you wanted.  So this song becomes happy.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Wednesday Wants: Pop-up Flash Bounce

Photo via Photojojo

We've spent some dollars at the Photojojo store over the years and it looks like it's about to happen again! 

Photo via Photojojo

This handy dandy little thing slips right into the hot shoe of your DSLR and then bounces the light from your on-camera flash up to create more even lighting.  This is an awesome thing to be able to accomplish without something else that contains batteries.

Check out one of Photojojo's examples below:
Photo via Photojojo

I don't know how long I'll be able to resist this one...