Tag Archives: do it yourself

Lady Gaga Valentine’s Day Card

My husband and I have always had the type of the relationship that isn’t smothered in ooey gooey “I love you”s and cliché romantic gestures. I’m not a touchy feely/overly emotional person by nature and I married someone that isn’t either.  We’re very sarcastic and we take nothing seriously, so we always find it funny when people comment about how we interact with one another. Here’s the deal… we just like to do things our own way. lol.

Valentine’s Day is no exception in our house. Although we went skiing together and had a nice dinner yesterday, our gifts to one another were not your traditional sentimentally-fluffed purchases. My favorite part of my present to Chad was my handmade card, which I had to share… simply because it makes me laugh every time I look at it

We both share a deep love for Lady Gaga. Yes, she is a bit over the top…but her music is fabulous. So, after having a debate over what she means by a “bad romance,” the idea of a Lady Gaga inspired handmade Valentine crept into my head. Ta-da!

What elements of this card make it an all time favorite of mine? 1.) The picture of Lady Gaga. Although everything she wears is outrageous, this is one of the best ensembles to date. 2.) The lyrics from Monster; they are ridiculous. 3.) The schizophrenic magazine-style cutouts.

I know not everyone will be producing a Lady Gaga Valentine from this. However, I think the idea is a good one. Nothing says “I love you” more than something handmade. Focusing on something you have in common or share a love for makes it even more special. Even though my husband and I clearly have a bizarre sense of humor… for Chad, this was a perfect Valentine.

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Homemade Headbands Sent with Love

In October I went to Christmas in the Woods and saw some amazing ribbon headbands with accents. I knew it was a DIY project in the making… it was just finding the right person to craft them for me :) I’ll admit that it was probably something I could have done on my own, but I enlisted the help of my cousin Stacy instead. She is an amazingly creative person and I knew she’d whip these out in no time.

These little gems arrived in the mail shortly thereafter.

My favorite part about Stacy’s headbands was that she created several flowers for me to choose from and apply on my own. (Very thoughtful since you never know if other people have the same sense of style as you – as she so eloquently put in an enclosed note to me.)

 So, how can a girl decide on just one when there are so many beauties to choose from??? I don’t. When I want to wear a flower, or two, or three… I just sew them on. If I want to change them, I take them off. I obviously don’t sew them on very securely… but it works.

Just a little story in case your crafting for someone else and you want to add a little variety into their life; think about sending several options of your design for them to choose from.

More of Stacy’s creations are coming soon to Mia Knitwear.

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A is for Apron … B is for Big Pain in the Butt

During one of my many leisurely and expensive trips to Hobby Lobby before Christmas, I played the part of average consumer and got sucked into the DIY book section by the checkout (nice ploy for us to by more craft supplies HL). It didn’t take me long to spot a treasure in the racks –A is for Apron” by Nathalie Mornu. Judging the book only by its cover – yes, I do that – it immediately went on the must-have gift list. Santa (my brother) came through and I must say “A is for Apron” was one of my FAVORITE gifts this year.

If you’ve done any research on the book, you’ve read a lot of smack about the patterns it contains. There are 25 unique designs created by a community of pattern makers that range from traditional waist aprons to smocks for little kids. Downside: Most of the patterns need to be enlarged 400% to use them but some even go so far as having different percentages for each piece in the pattern! (Insert sigh of disappointment here.) At the Amazon.com price of $12.21 for the book, I have a problem with paying a copy place to enlarge the templates to the right size – and those are the only instructions you get from the author on how to make them larger. Could that be any more annoying for those of us who 1.) don’t like to spend money and 2.) just want to get down to business?!?!

Part of the reason why I’m a crafter is because I don’t care what it is, I always think I can make it/do it on my own. So last night’s mission critical was to tackle one pattern enlargement. It was a successful operation but a painful one as well. So, here’s what I did in hopes that it helps someone out there create the apron of their dreams.

Step 1: Scan the pattern onto your computer and save.

Step 2: Open the image into a program that allows you to enlarge the print. I used Adobe Photoshop CS4, but there are a TON of others that will work as well, just find out what software you have on your computer or Google it and go from there. Post a comment if you have questions :) Check if the enlargement is correct using the heights Mornu includes on the pattern pieces.

Step 3: Enlarge the image 400% (or whatever other percentage it is based on what pattern you’re using from the book.)

Step 4 (and this was the hardest): It’s time to print. Locate a program on your computer that allows you to print the images into a tile format – like you would a banner or a poster. This will print the image at a large size across multiple pages without the use of a commercial printer. Working on a business laptop, I didn’t have Microsoft Publisher but I read that was the best program to use. I ended up using the standard Windows Live Photo Gallery that comes with Windows 2007 and finding “Poster Printing” under the Advanced print options. Apparently there are lots of ways to do this… just find the easiest and best way for you and your computer. NOTE: Make sure the entire image is included in the print – I made a whoopsies and cut off the top and bottom on my first try.

Step 5: Once the image is printed, assemble it (another PIA). My tip here is to use the original, smaller copy of the pattern to work off of so you know what it should look like when you’re finished. I think that goes without saying but just in case! Also, don’t reorder the papers when they come off the printer. In a tile formatted print, you can usually go row by row in the order they printed off in making it less of a puzzle piece nightmare.

After writing this post, it seems like a lot of work for a silly apron pattern. However, I’m confident the final product will be well worth it. Stay tuned for an update on the finished apron :)

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