Free Patterns :: New Projects Using Smoothfoam for Valentine's Day

 Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love. ~Albert Einstein

Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love. ~Albert Einstein

I love Valentine's Day.  It is my favorite holiday.  What's not to love about pink, red, lace, chocolate and smooches???
Here are a small selection of fun Valentine Crafts from the design team for Smoothfoam.  

 

 

1.    Valentine's Day plaque by Beth Watson.

2.   Hugs and Kisses Tabletop Decoration by Michelle Frae Cummings.

3.   Carved Sweetheart Valentine by Carmen Flores Tanis

4.   Stenciled Heart with Crackle Past by Lisa Fulmer.

5.   Conversation Heart Statement by Jennifer Priest.

6.  Love Blooms by Kristi Parker Van Doren.

7. Silk Rose Topiary Ball by Angela Holt.

 

Valentine’s Day Desk Cube

 Oh, if it be to choose and call thee mine, love, thou art every day my Valentine! -- Thomas Hood  

Oh, if it be to choose and call thee mine, love, thou art every day my Valentine! -- Thomas Hood
 

Valentine’s Day is my favorite holiday of the year – all that pink, red and sparkly with liberal doses of chocolate. I mean what’s not to love about the holiday of love? My desk is a giant mess, so to keep certain papers in order (and also to honor the holiday), I made a desk paperweight. Smoothfoam is lightweight, but all the straight pins used to tack in the sequins gives the cube some heft. You can decorate the sides any way you want – try adding photos inside the hearts and flowers.

You will need:

3″ Smoothfoam cube
Red acrylic paint
100+ silver sequins
75+ fuchsia/pink sequins
1 tube red seed beads (size 11/0; silver-lined)
1 tube pink seed beads (size 11/0 )
Washi tapes – red and pink patterns
Valentine-themed scrapbook paper
Card stock – pink, yellow, fuchsia, hot pink
4 pink head pins
2 packs silk steel pins
Scalloped circle punch
Felt heart stickers
Red craft felt
Craft glue
Sponge brush, scissors, pencil, ruler

ObermeyerValentineCube.jpg

1.  Paint the cube with two coats of red. Allow to dry in between coats.

2.  Cut a 3″ square from the Valentine-themed paper. Fold it in half, draw half of a heart shape and cut it out.

3.  Glue the paper heart to the top of the cube, let dry, then glue a felt heart to the center. With a pin, pick up a red bead and then a pink sequin (with the cup side facing up) and push it into place along the edge of the heart. With a pin, a pale pink bead and a silver sequin, edge the square with sequins.

4.  Cut four 3″ pieces of washi tape. Pin a row of silver sequins with red bead on the edge of one side of the cube. Lay down one strip of wash tape. Pin 2 rows of silver sequins with red beads,  lay down another strip of washi tape. Continue in the same pattern until the side is covered. Add more silver sequins/red beads to the top and bottom edges of the cube face.

5.  On the next side of the cube, glue another paper heart to the center. Pin an outline of silver sequins with cup side facing up.  Stick a felt heart to the center.

ObermeyerValentineCube.jpg

8.  Push pink ball head pins into each corner of the bottom of the cube for feet.

ObermeyerValentineCube.jpg

Woodcraft Halloween Decoration

  At first cock-crow the ghosts must go   Back to their quiet graves below.    -- Theodosia Garrison

At first cock-crow the ghosts must go
Back to their quiet graves below.
 -- Theodosia Garrison

A little more Halloween fun.  I love these laser cut wood bases for painting.  They have me thinking of how I could apply such technology to my fine art.  I need to do some research on it.  Anyway, I thought you might enjoy the latest addition to my holiday decorations.  

Take a close look. I naturally had to apply a few sequins.  The bats add just the right amount of texture and sparkle.  

©2013Lindsay-Obermeyer-lasercut-woodcraft

 

 

Sparkly Valentine's Day Door Decoration

 "Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love." -- Albert Einstein

"Gravitation is not responsible for people falling in love." -- Albert Einstein

This sparkly door adornment let's everyone know exactly where your sentiments lie.

You will need:

10" diameter  x 1" deep  Smoothfoam™disc

1000 5mm red sequins (give or take a sequin)

100 5mm pink sequins

Pink glitter paint

1 ball of Vanna's Glamour® in Diamond (white)

1 ball of Premier Spangle Yarn in Pink Punch

Aleene's® Turbo Tacky Glue® Pen

Flex-i-File™ Sticky Micro Stix

1 yd red grosgrain ribbon

12" of 1/4" satin ribbon

large eyed blunt tapestry needle

Scissors

sponge brush

3 thumbtacks

4 ball headed straight pins

Download Heart template

Let's create!

©2013LindsayObermeyer-Dazzling-Valentine

 

1.  Paint the Smoothfoam™ disc.

Paint 4-5 layers on oneside allowing the paint to dry between layers.  Repeat for the other side.

©2013Lindsay-0bermeyer-Dazzling-Valentine's-Day-Door-Decoration-2.jpg

 

2.  Glue down first line of sequins.

Download, print and cut out the heart template.  Center it on the disc.  Hold in place by securing the paper to the disc with a few thumbtacks. Trace the edge with a line of glue.  Add one sequin at a time using the Sticky Micro Stix.  These are available online or at local hobby shop and make this part go quickly and easily. If you don't have one, use a toothpick with a dab of glue on the end to pick up the sequin and position it. 

©2013Lindsay-Obermeyer-Dazzling-Valentine.jpg

3.  Remove paper template and fill in the heart with more red sequins.

Remove the thumbtacks and carefully remove the paper template.  Working in a concentric manner from the outside in, add a line of glue and then the add the sequins.  Continue until the heart is filled.

2013Lindsay-Obermeyer-Dazzling-Valentine.jpg

4.   Add the pink sequins.

Add a line of glue around the perimeter of the circle and add the pink sequins.  Add random dots of glue and place pink sequins between the red sequined heart and the pink sequined circle.

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5.  Add the ribbon along the edge of the disc.

Cut the ribbon to 33 inches.  Make sure to cut the ribbon on an angle on both edges to prevent fraying.  Add dots of glue along the side of the disc.  Starting at the bottom (the side where the point of the heart faces), position the ribbon in place, adding more glue as you may require

6.  Make a large tassle.

Cut one foot of Vanna's Glamour® yarn.  Thread the needle.  Put it down. There is no need to make a knot at the end.  Now take a book the length of which will be the size of you tassel.  My book was a 5" x 7" sketchbook. Holding both the Vanna's Glamour® and Premier Spangle yarn in your hand and wrap the yarn 20 times around the book.  The more yarn you wrap, the bigger the tassle!  Take your threaded needle under the top of the wrapping.  Pull tight and knot at the top.  Take your scissors and cut the yarn at the bottom. Now take another 12" of Vanna's Glamour® yarn and again thread your needle.  Hold the long end down with your thumb so it blends in with the rest of the tassle. With the needle end, wrap the yarn several times about an 1" from the top.  The yarn will poof like a ball.  Use your needle to weave the tail in and out of the bit you just wrapped to secure it.  Trim excess.  Trim your tassle so the bottom is even.  

7.  Attach the tassle to the bottom of the disc.

Trim back the edges of the knot you made at the top of your tassle. Add a dot of glue at the top of the tassle.  Attach tassle to the bottom of the disc with two pins.  Once the glue has set, you could remove the pins or leave them in like I did for an extra bit of sparkle.

 

 

 

 

Day of the Dead Door Decoration

 Hay más tiempo que vida - Mexican saying. (There is more time than life.) 

Hay más tiempo que vida - Mexican saying.
(There is more time than life.) 

Most of my adult life has been spent living within Latino communities.  I didn't really feel the influence until I moved to St. Louis. Over the years my cooking was transformed from traditional Southern to one filled with fresh and dried peppers, corn tortillas (not the kind with a shelf life of a month or longer) and the various fruits and vegetables I can no longer find with ease at my local grocery store.  What was once a staple is now a specialty item.  While Day of the Dead  (Dia de Meurtos) is Mexican in heritage, the holiday is one honored by many. In keeping with this upcoming holiday, I made a door decoration. It is colorful and sparkly, acknowledging that despite death, life goes on.

You will need:

Wood laser cut skull shape
2 purple plastic cabochons

1 red plastic cabochon

Decoart's American Acrylic paint - Berry Red, Citron Green, Calypso Blue, Titanium White

Decoart's Craft Twinkle Writer paint - Black

Sharpie - black

Size 1 round brush

Sponge brush

Sandpaper (fine grit)

Silver paper trim (1/8" wide)

Silver pipe cleaner

Aleene's Turbo Tacky Glue

Paper plate - as a paint tray

Parchment paper

 

Let's create!

1.     Lightly sand the entire surface of the wood shape.  Be sure all stickers are removed.

2.     Paint the front and back of your wood form with white paint.  Allow to dry before flipping from one side to the other.  You will need two coats of paint on both sides.

Hint:  I use parchment paper to cover my work surface as I find that the paint doesn't stick       to it.

3.     Use the other colors to trace around the edges of the decorative cut outs.  I mixed paints to obtain pink and lavender.  

4.     Use the writer paint to trace around the teeth and the citron of the eyes.  Allow to dry and then trace those edges with a black Sharpie for better definition.  

5.     Glue the silver trim to the outer edge of the skull shape.

6.    Use a pipe cleaner to form a handle / hook at the top.

Day of the Dead is celebrated November 1st.  I find it a reassuring tradition, a day set aside to remember and honor our ancestors and others in our lives who have died.  

 

 

Free Pattern :: Sequin Pumpkin

 Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons. ~ Jim Bishop

Autumn carries more gold in its pocket than all the other seasons. ~ Jim Bishop

This project is a tribute to my grandma who loved to make fancy ornaments by pushing a few sequins and pins into a Smoothfoam ball. Why keep this technique for just Christmas crafts? Time to dust it off for Halloween!

2″ Smoothfoam ball
Orange acrylic paint
Sponge brush
Toothpick
Pencil, thimble
Assorted cup sequins (I used medium/large sizes of gold and all sizes of blue)
4mm orange seed beads
Size 11 orange seed beads
Straight pins
Large green glass bead and size 11 green seed bead

1.  Stick a toothpick into the base of the ball to be your handle and paint one layer of orange. Allow to dry, then paint a second layer and let dry.

2.  Lightly pencil in the face of your Jack-o-Lantern on the ball and fill in with blue sequins, pressed into the ball with pins. If your fingers begin to hurt, use a thimble to help you push in the pins.

3.  To fill the rest of the ball, starting at the center seam line. Pick up a small seed bead, then the larger seed bead,  then a gold sequin with your pin and push the pin into the ball. Work around the ball in rows to fill the bottom half, then the top half, slightly overlapping the sequins as you go.  Leave the very bottom of the ball empty, so the pumpkin won’t roll.

4.  When you get tot the top of the pumpkin, add a green stem by picking up a small green seed bead and a large cut glass bead on a pin and push it into position.

For more Smoothfoam crafty inspiration, go to there blog.

Free Pattern :: Easter Egg Bling That Doubles as a Christmas Ornament

 "Easter spells out beauty, the rare beauty of new life."  --  S.D. Gordon

"Easter spells out beauty, the rare beauty of new life."  --  S.D. Gordon

Mom was always one to plan for holidays months before they arrived.  Christmas started in July with all presents purchased and wrapped by mid-October and the tree up the day after Thanksgiving. Easter preparations began on Mardi Gras.  I don't know how she did it as the holidays always seem to catch me by surprise. So when I craft for them, I make items that take only a few hours to complete.   This blinged out egg is perfect. It adds sparkle to the usual Easter lineup and can double at Christmas as an ornament.   I call that the win-win of crafting.

MATERIALS

Stryofoam™ egg

Tissue paper (I used pink scraps leftover from my Peony Tissue Paper Wreath.) 

Collage Pauge® Instant Decoupage™

Aleene's® Original Tacky Glue

sequins, same or similar in color to the tissue paper

2" eye pin

8" of 1/4" satin ribbon

Foam Brush

Scissors

Toothpicks

Foil

DIRECTIONS

Cut the tissue paper into 1" squares. 

Pour a puddle of Collage Pauge®  onto the foil.  Using the foam brush dab the Collage Pauge® over a portion of the egg.  Add a few pieces of tissue paper. Dab more Collage Pauge® across the surface of the paper.  Continue to collage the paper in this manner until the entire egg is covered in tissue paper.  Allow for drying.

©2012Lindsay-Obermeyer-Easter-Egg-Craft.jpg

Once dry, push the 2" eye pin into the center egg's top end.

Apply a thin coat of Aleene's® Original Tacky Glue over a portion of the egg.  Use the side of a toothpick to evenly spread it out.  

©2012Lindsay-Obermeyer-Easter-Egg-Sequins3.jpg

With a clean toothpick, lightly dab it into the glue.  This will give the toothpick a slightly tacky surface for using to pick up and position sequins.  Apply sequins to the egg with the cup side of the sequin facing. (This side is more reflective and will provide maximum blingness.)

Continue adding glue and sequins until the entire surface of the egg is covered.

©2012Lindsay-Obermeyer-Easter-Egg-Sequins4.jpg

Slip the ribbon through the eye of the eye pin.  Pull it through so both ends are touching. Tie them together using an overhand knot.

Allow the glue to dry.

Give some Easter Egg Bling as a gift, hang it in the window or display it in your favorite basket.

©2012Lindsay-Obermeyer-Easter-Egg-Bling.jpg

Fall Inspired Topiary with Mason Jar

Obermeyer-Fall-Topiary-664x1024.jpg

To honor fall, my favorite season, I created this mason jar topiary that’s covered with small paper flowers, reminiscent of a chrysanthemum in full bloom. This fake flower topiary is the perfect no-fuss centerpiece.

Let's Create!

Supplies:

– 6″ Smoothfoam ball
– Double-sided patterned cardstock (I used Halloween themes from My Mind’s Eye)
– Fiskars extra large scalloped circle lever punch
– Aleene’s Turbo Tacky Glue
– Orange acrylic paint
– Sponge brush
– 12″ dowel (1/2″ diameter)
– Twine
– River pebbles
– Scissors
– Mason jar (quart size)
– Large knitting needle or screwdriver

1.  Paint the Smoothfoam ball orange and set aside to dry.

2.  Punch approximately 560 scalloped circles out of the paper to make enough flowers to cover the ball.

3.  To make one flower, glue 4 circles together to form the base. Add small dots of glue to the center of the first three, stick together and add the fourth on top. Allow to dry thoroughly.

4.  Make a small snip with the scissors at each indentation on the scalloped circle to form petals.  Fold petals toward the center. Repeat for each flower.

ObermeyerFallTopiary1-1024x413.jpg

5.  Place one end of the twine onto a dab of glue on one end of the dowel. Wind the twine tightly around the dowel, leaving 2″ uncovered at the end. Trim off the excess and add more glue to the end of the twine to secure; allow to dry.

6.  Glue flowers all over the painted Smoothfoam ball, leaving a space open at the bottom to insert the dowel.  TIP – To keep the ball from rolling all over your work table, place it on top of the mason jar lid to hold it steady as you glue.

7.  Once all the flowers are dry, poke a starter hole in the bottom of the ball with a screwdriver or large knitting needle, then push the uncovered end of dowel into the ball.

8.  Embellish the lip of the mason jar by gluing twine around it and let dry.

9.  Hold the dowel and ball inside the jar as you pour in the river pebbles.

 

Googly Eyes Halloween Topiary

  Pixie, kobold, elf, and sprite, All are on their rounds tonight; In the wan moon's silver ray, Thrives their helter-skelter play. --  Joel Benton

Pixie, kobold, elf, and sprite,
All are on their rounds tonight;
In the wan moon's silver ray,
Thrives their helter-skelter play.
--  Joel Benton

Have you ever had the feeling that someone is watching you?

Halloween has never been my favorite holiday, but for some reason I am totally getting into the spooky, creepy spirit.  I tend to lean toward the benevolent scary creatures of Monsters Inc. rather than the hair raising likes of the Exorcism.  Did you know that the Exorcism is based on the true story of 13 year old boy here in St. Louis?  Yikes!   My hometown is also the location of several haunted mansions.   Anyway, you get the gist.  I'm having fun getting in the mood and preparing the decorations.

To make this googly eyed Halloween topiary, you will need:

3" Smoothfoam ball
3" Smoothfoam cube
1 pack of multi-colored googly eyes
2 sheets of 6" spooky-themed paper
1000 black sequins
1yd of black sequin ribbon
1/2 yd of 1/2" wide black lace
1/3 yd of 1/2" wide black velvet ribbon
1/4" dowel rod, 10" long
Aleene's Turbo Tacky Glue pen
Paper cutter
Scissors
Ruler
Sponge brush
Screwdriver or knitting needle
Parchment paper
Pencil
Dark green craft felt
Toothpick
Hot glue gun and glue sticks 

Let's create!

1.  Cover your surface with a sheet of parchment paper.  HINT ::  It's my favorite crafting work surface as it makes for easy clean up and items won't stick to it.  Squirt some paint onto the paper and paint the ball orange.  Allow to dry.

2.  Use your paper cutter to measure and cut 5 squares of spooky paper,  each 3"x3" in size. ( You could also use a ruler and scissors.)  Glue the squares to 5 sides of the cube.  For the bottom, measure and cut a 3"x3" piece of felt.  Glue the felt to the bottom.  Allow to dry.

3.  Using a knitting needle or screwdriver, poke a hole into the ball that is nearly 1/4" in size.  Measure to find the center of the cube's top and poke a hole with the screwdriver or knitting needle.

©2013Lindsay-Obermeyer-halloween-craft.jpg

4..  Glue a googly eye onto the ball. Pour some sequins onto your work surface.  Squeeze some glue around the googly eye.  Dunk the tip of the toothpick into the glue.  Use the sticky side of the toothpick to pick up a sequin and position it into place on the ball.  Keep working, rotating between adding a googly eye and then more sequins until you have covered the entire ball covered except for the hole.  Allow to dry.  HINT ::  To keep your ball from rolling around on your work surface, use a jar lid or large biscuit cutter to hold it in place.

5.  2" down from the top of the dowel,  glue one end of the sequin ribbon into place. Wind the sequin ribbon around the dowel until you are approximately 2" from the bottom of the dowel.  Glue the other end of the sequin ribbon into place. Allow to dry.

6.  Push the dowel into the ball and then into the cube until flush with the sequin ribbon.

7.  Cut 10" of the black velvet ribbon.  Glue the ends together to form a loop.  Cut a 1.25" piece of more ribbon.  Wrap it around the center of the loop.  Glue into place.  Use a hot glue gun to glue the bow onto the sequined dowel.

8.  Cut a 12.5" piece of black lace ribbon and glue to the top edge of the cube.

Huichol Inspired Day of the Dead Beaded Paper Mache Skull

  “Wherever I walk, wherever I sing, there is a blossoming of flowers, a rapture of song.    And there my heart is alive.” - - Huichol saying

“Wherever I walk, wherever I sing, there is a blossoming of flowers, a rapture of song.
And there my heart is alive.” - - Huichol saying

I've long admired the handwork of the Huichols, a Native American group living in western central Mexico.  They are well known for their art, in particular their yarn paintings and beaded objects.

 Huichol Art, thread painting on left and beaded art on the right.

Huichol Art, thread painting on left and beaded art on the right.

I've always wanted to try my own hand at beading a sculptural form, so in honor of the upcoming Day of the Dead, I have.

You will need:

paper mache skull
white acrylic paint
sponge brush
size 11/0 seed beads in assorted colors
Aleene's Glitter and Gem Glue
toothpick
pencil
sheet of parchment paper
plastic lid / bead tray 

Let's create!

1.     Cover your work surface with some parchment paper.  Squirt a quarter-size amount of paint onto the paper and proceed to paint the skull.  It will need two coats of paint.  Allow the paint to dry between each layer. Hint: I use parchment paper on my craft table to keep wet objects from sticking to table surface.  The paper will easily peel away.

 2.     Lightly sketch your design onto the skull using a pencil.  Pour your first color of beads into the bead tray.  Trace your first shape with a line of glue.  Tip the toothpick into the glue.  This adds just enough tackiness to use as a tool for picking up a bead and positioning into place.  

3.     Working in small sections, fill in your entire design with beads.  To keep mine lightweight, I didn't cover the background, simply the foreground / design. 

©2013Lindsay-Obermeyer-Day-of-the-dead-skull.jpg

To learn more about the Huichols and their amazing art, check out this great video.

Googly Eye barette

  Tis now the very witching time of night,   When churchyards yawn and hell itself breathes out   Contagion to this world.   --  William Shakespeare

Tis now the very witching time of night,
When churchyards yawn and hell itself breathes out
Contagion to this world.
--  William Shakespeare

Inspired by the cartoon Scooby Dooby Doo, googly eyes peak out from your hair when wearing this barrette.  It's an easy peasy project that will take you only minutes to complete.  You can adapt it to any size barrette from small side clips to extra long pony tail holders for thick hair.  Add or subtract the number of googly eyes as required.

 

 

You will need:

Aleene's Stop Fraying
french barrette
googly eyes
6" of 1/2" wide black velvet ribbon
hot glue gun
hot glue sticks
scissors

1.     Measure the ribbon along the length of your barrette.  In my case the barrette is 4" long, so I cut a 4.5" piece.  Cut notches into the ribbon on each end.  Add a dab of Aleene's Stop Fraying to prevent the ribbon from unraveling.

2.     Squeeze a line of hot glue onto the barrette back, center the ribbon and press firmly in place.

3.     Arrange the googly eyes onto the barrette.  I chose a large on for the center and two smaller ones for each side of it.  Glue into place.

Free Pattern :: Knit a Heart Pocket Warmer

©2015Lindsay-Obermeyer-knit-heart-pocket-warmer

Valentines Day is my favorite holiday.  What's not to love about all the red, pink, lace and chocolate, let alone celebrating the act of love and loving?  As a relaunch my blog this year after my year of health disasters, I am dedicating this coming month to not only heart-related craft projects but also heart healthy recipes and all things red.If you've been following this blog for some time, then you know that last February I had a stroke.  And in October I had a heart attack.  I am now in cardio rehab, trying to get stronger.  Eating a Mediterranean, heart healthy diet is important as is getting plenty of sleep and exercise.  I've been eating a mostly organic vegetarian diet for 25 years. I never smoked and I drink little ( now not at all).  I walked a mile a day and did pilates twice a week.  So what the heck happened??? Genetics.  There is a strong strain of cardio vascular disease on my maternal side of the family, plus auto immune disease.  I can't negate my genetics, but I am hell bent to neutralize it.  So I eat healthily, get lots of sleep, try to de-stress my life, and now go three times a week for 2 hours a day to cardio rehab.  The cardiovascular disease kills more woman per year than all the cancers combined.  Think about it.  Pretty darn scary.  Scarier yet is that strokes are the leading cause of disability in this country.  Don't let it happen to you!  Please!  Take it from me, stroke and heart attacks suck! If your doctor says, no more smoking, then learn to quit.  Don't roll your eyes at your doctor.  You could end up in a coma in bed for the rest of your life. Sure there is the quality of life vs quantity, but is being in a permanent coma really worth the cigarettes or extra order of fries?  I'm not saying go crazy, just try to start modifying your habits to become healthier.  End of sermon.

The project above is one I designed for eHow.com.  It's a hand knit hand warmer to tuck in your pocket to keep your hands warm while you are in the park taking a walk.  Though if you do have heart disease - stay indoors and walk your local mall to stay warm.  I designed it to keep my daughter's hands warm while waiting for the bus.

Valentines Day is my favorite holiday. If you followed my previous blog, from which this post has been copied.  You know that in February 2014. I had a stroke.  And in October I had a heart attack.  I dutifully attended cardio rehab, and continually get stronger.  Eating a Mediterranean, heart healthy diet is important as is getting plenty of sleep and exercise.  I've been eating a mostly organic vegetarian diet for 25 years. I never smoked and I drink little.  I walked a mile a day and did pilates twice a week.  So what the heck happened??? Genetics.  There is a strong strain of cardio vascular disease on my maternal side of the family.  I can't negate my genetics, but I am hell bent to neutralize it.  So I eat healthily, get lots of sleep, try to de-stress my life, and now walk every day and go to the gym three times a week for at least 2 hours. Cardiovascular disease kills more woman per year than all the cancers combined.  Think about it.  Pretty darn scary.  Scarier yet is that strokes are the leading cause of disability in this country.  Don't let it happen to you!  Please!  Take it from me, stroke and heart attacks suck! If your doctor says, no more smoking, then learn to quit.  Don't roll your eyes at your doctor.  You could end up in a coma in bed for the rest of your life. Sure there is the quality of life vs quantity, but is being in a permanent coma really worth the cigarettes or extra order of fries?  I'm not saying go crazy, just try to start modifying your habits to become healthier.  End of sermon.

The project above is one I designed for eHow.com.  It's a hand knit hand warmer to tuck in your pocket to keep your hands warm while you are in the park taking a walk.  Though if you do have heart disease - stay indoors and walk your local mall to stay warm.  I designed it to keep my daughter's hands warm while waiting for the bus. It's a quick knit and a great gift to make.  And what I find amazing in transferring my blog over is to realize that I designed and posted this post just one year after my stroke! 😎

 

 

crochet a napkin ring

 The belly rules the mind.  --  Spanish Proverb

The belly rules the mind.  --  Spanish Proverb

Hebe Cord is  a nylon cord from Sullivan's USA that is great for knitting,  knotting, braiding, tatting and crocheting.  The fabric it makes feels quite substantial.  Thinking about wanting to have a few friends over for dinner, I used it to make some napking rings in order to give my table a more polished look.  

Guage: 5sts=1", 3 rows=1"

Finished napkion ring when flat is 7" x 1"

To create 4 napkin rings you will need:
2  packages of Hebe Cord ( I used medium pink).
4 buttons (vintage from yoru stash or a novelty one of choice)
B crochet hook
Scissors
Tapestry needle
Sewing needle
Sewing thread.

1.    Chain 33 stitches.  Turn and insert hook into 4th chain from the hook.  The first 3 chains = 1dc.  1dc in each chain until the end.

2.      Chain 3, turn and 1dc in each chain, inserting your hook under both halves of the stitch.  

3.       Repeat step 2 until you have completed 3 rows, approximately 1". 

4.      When you have completed the final row, complete 2more dc in the same chain.  This will make a scallop on the coner.  1sc into final row edge.  3dc into the next row along the edge, 1sc into the final row and then 3 dc into next corner.  *Skip a stitch and 1sc into the next stitch.  Skip a stitch and 3dc into the next stitch. *  Repeat from * to * ending with 3 dc in the next corner. 1sc into the row edge.  3dc into the next row along the edge.  1sc into the fianl corner and then 3dc into the next corner. Repeat from * to * ending with 3dc in the next corner.  Slip stitch along the ttop of the first scallop.  Wehn you are at the top of the scallop, chain 8, slip stitch to teh top of the scallop along the next corener.  Turn and  work 10 sc obe the 8 chains.  (This creates the loop for the closure.) Slip stitch to the top of  the scallop. Fasten off.

5.  Sew in all tails.

6.  Sew a button onto the ring opposite from the loop.  Block the piece flat if stitches are slightly distorted.  Button and use for dinner. 

7.  Hint!  Make the rings in Gold, Orange or Red and use a button shaped like a turkey to add a festive touch to your Thanksgiving table.

©2014Lindsay-Obermeyer-crochetd-napkin-ring

Hint - This pattern also makes a nice bracelet cuff as my 8 year old niece pointed out.  Add chains to make a  length to fit your wrist, otherwise this size is suitable for a young child. 

Disclaimer: Material for this post was provided by the company.

The Mocktail - non-alcoholic drinks for your party

 photo credit: TheCrimsonMonkey/E+/Getty Image

photo credit: TheCrimsonMonkey/E+/Getty Image

There is nothing mocking about a mocktail.  I stopped being able to drink after my stroke.  Rather than bemoan the fact that I can't enjoy a merlot, chianti or fab pinot noir, I now am now deep into the exploration of mocktails.  Add the further challenge that they need to be low in sugar and free of food dyes to meet my funky dietary requirements.  My drink du jour is the Arnold Palmer.  A good one is slightly sweet with sour undernotes.  My easy peasy version is  simply store bought iced tea, with lemonade and a splash of peach juice.  So 3/4 iced tea, 1/4 cup lemonade and a splash of peach juice.  I follow that up with a twist of lemon, for a stronger sour note.  But I''ve been poking around and found some far fancier versions.  Check out the following recipes.  You can really have fun varying it by making different types of iced tea like, Hibiscus which will give it a pink color. The three to one ratio of tea to lemonade keeps the drink from becoming too sweet. Make a raspberry one and add some fruit to the bottom and a spring of mint to make it festive.

The FoodNetwork

Martha Stewart

Houston Press

The Blurry Lime

Now thinking about upcoming parties I want to have, I am thinking a punch bowl of non-alcoholic Sangria might be fun.  Here  are a few versions:

The Kitchn

Food.com

And as mint, ginger and lime are one of my favorite flavor combos, here is a recipe for a non-alcoholic Moscow Mule.

Fever Tree

I am currently experimenting with simple syrups made with Agave Nectar which will sweeten a drink but is less likely to give you a sugar crash.

Try offering a few mocktail options at your next party as someone needs to be the designated driver, but wants to have a fun drink too.

My book suggestion- 

This book, Zero-Proof Cocktails by Liz Scott is filled with tasty ideas and well worth the investment if you are going alcohol free like me.  If you have a great recipe, I'd love for you to share it in the comments section.  Thank you.

Free pattern :: How to create Day of the Dead Beaded Paper Mache Skull

  “Wherever I walk, wherever I sing, there is a blossoming of flowers, a rapture of song.    And there my heart is alive.” - - Huichol saying

“Wherever I walk, wherever I sing, there is a blossoming of flowers, a rapture of song.
And there my heart is alive.” - - Huichol saying

 

I've long admired the handiwork of the Huichols, a Native American group living in west central Mexico.  They are well known for their art, in particular, their yarn paintings and beaded objects.


I've always wanted to try my own hand at beading a sculptural form, so in honor of the Day of the Dead, I have.

You will need:

paper mache skull
white acrylic paint
sponge brush
size 11/0 seed beads in assorted colors
Aleene's Glitter and Gem Glue
toothpick
pencil
a sheet of parchment paper
plastic lid/bead tray 

Let's create!

1.     Cover your work surface with some parchment paper.  Squirt a quarter-size amount of paint onto the paper and proceed to paint the skull.  It will need two coats of paint.  Allow the paint to dry between each layer. Hint: I use parchment paper on my craft table to keep wet objects from sticking to the table surface.  The paper will easily peel away.

 2.     Lightly sketch your design onto the skull using a pencil.  Pour your first color of beads into the bead tray.  Trace your first shape with a line of glue.  Tip the toothpick into the glue.  This adds just enough tackiness to use as a tool for picking up a bead and positioning into place.  

3.     Working in small sections, fill in your entire design with beads.  To keep mine lightweight, I didn't cover the background, simply the foreground/design. 

©2013Lindsay_Obermeyer-Skull

To learn more about the Huichols and their amazing art, check out this great video.

Free Pattern :: Super Quick Crocheted Valentine Decor

©2016Lindsay-Obermyer-Crocheted-Valentines-Decor

This project is simple and takes full advantage of the yarn and Valentine decoration sales happening at local craft stores.  To create a felt heart with a crocheted trim takes just a half hour or less. Use a large felt heart for a placemat or small ones for coasters.  

You will Need:

The desired number of felt die cut hearts in preferred size with edges pre-punched ( I purchased mine at Michaels, it was their brand.)

1 ball of variegated worsted, #4, weight yarn in a Valentine scheme color. ( I used Red Heart Classic in a variegated  hot pink, red, orange.)

H crochet hook

scissors

tapestry needle

Scotch guard

Let's Create!:
Starting at the tip of the heart, slip stitch through one hole and attach yarn to the heart.  #Skip a hole, work 5 dc in the next hole to create a Shell.#  Repeat from #to #. Work the scallop stitch ending with a scallop,  until you are three holes from the point where the two curves meet. The space is too narrow for a scallop, so work a single crochet stitch into the next 7 holes,#work 5 dc in the next hole and then skip a hole, Sl st in the next hole.# Repeat from # to #.  End with a slip stitch.  Cut yarn, Finish off.  Sew in all tail ends.

©2016Lindsay-Obermeyer-Crocheted-Valentines

Scotch guard both sides to protect your efforts.  Washing these would possibly wash out the sizing in the felt. Scotch guarding will allow you to use a damp sponge to clean them off.  

Free Pattern :: Felt Hearts Valentine Decoration

  "At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet." -- Plato     

"At the touch of love, everyone becomes a poet." -- Plato

 

These easy to stitch felt hearts declare your love to all who see it.  

 

 

You will need:
4   9" x 12" sheets of craft felt in 3 shades of pink (You will need 2 sheets for the largest heart.)
6   colors of your choice of stranded embroidery floss
1  yd of pink 3/8" wide grosgrain ribbon
Aleene's ® Turbo Tacky Glue
pillow fiber polyfill
embroidery needle
tapestry needle
scissors
pins
Hearts paper pattern 

 Let's create!

 1.  Cut out the three felt hearts.
Line up 2 sheets of one color.  Pin in place the paper patern and proceed to cut out the largest heart. Take the next color of felt.  Fold it in half.  Pin the heart pattern in place and cut out the next heart. Repeat this procedure for the final heart.

©2013Lindsay-Obermeyer-valentine

5.  Proceed to the second heart.
Tuck the ribbon attached to the bottom of the largest heart and pin it into place at the top of the second heart.  Cut another 4" piece of ribbon and tuck it into the bottom of the second heart and pin it into place. Embroider and stuff as with the large heart.

6. Proceed to the final heart.
Tuck the ribbon attached to the bottom of the second heart and pin it into place at the top of the final heart.  Embroider and stuff as with the other two hearts.  

7.  Finish with a ribbon bow.
Use the rest of the ribbon to make a bow. Evenly trim the ends on an angle.  Glue into place.  Allow to dry.  Hang your masterpiece from a hook.

Variations:  Add some dried lavender along with the fiberfill for a fresh scent and hang it in your bedroom.  For a 4th of July variation, use red, white and blue felt and matching threads.   

Free Pattern :: Valentine's Day Welcome Wreath

  A smile is the universal welcome. -- Max Eastman

A smile is the universal welcome. -- Max Eastman

 The history of the wreath dates back to Ancient Greco-Roman times the first being worn as a crown.  They were worn to represent rank, status and achievements. While these original wreaths were made of ribbon or fine metals, bay laurel branches were later fashioned into the shape of a circle.  Laurel was associated with the Greek God Apollo and became symbolic of victory and therefore the winning athletes in the original Olympic Games wore laurel wreaths.

 

 

The common shape of a wreath is the circle.  The circle is a symbol for life and eternity and within the Christian faith it represents God.  Evergreen branches, symbolic of life, were fashioned into wreaths to mark the coming of Christmas.

Today, wreaths while they still have symbolic meaning such as those made of evergreens for Christmas, the welcome wreath on the front door may be made of any materials you happen to have on hand.

This Rag wreath draws upon the earliest history of the wreath as a crown made of ribbon.  You may upcycle old bed sheets or use up scraps of fabric from other craft projects.  The color may reflect the season, such as pink for Valentine’s Day or Easter, Red, White and Blue for the 4th of July, the possibilities are limited only by the number of holidays you celebrate.

Things You will need:

2-yards of 40-inch width fabric

12-inch Box Wire Wreath Frame  

18-inches of half-inch wide ribbon

Rotary Cutter

Self-healing Cutting mat

Metal or plastic ruler

Scissors 

Cut all the fabric into 1 x 5-inch strips. This process is quickly done with a rotary cutter, though you may also just use scissors. Starting from the inner ring and working your way out, tie the fabric strips onto the ring using a half-knot, continue until the frame is covered. Tie the ribbon onto the ring to act as a hanger.Hang the wreath from a hook on your front door.

©2016Lindsay-Obermeyer-wreath

Starting from the inner ring and working your way out, tie the fabric strips onto the ring using a half-knot, continue until the frame is completely covered.Tie the ribbon onto the ring to act as a hanger.Hang the wreath from a hook on your front door.

free pattern :: Crocheted Easter Basket

  Springtime is the land awakening.  The March winds are the morning yawn. -- Lewis Grizzard

Springtime is the land awakening.  The March winds are the morning yawn. -- Lewis Grizzard

Can you believe Easter is in just over  a month? I am seriously craving pretty spring colors after the
lousy winter i've eperienced.  Be gone polar vortexes!  Anyway, you can hop on over to ehow.com for the pattern of this easter basket I crocheted.   Make it girly in hot pink and limeade greeen or go fo blues with tans for a boy's basket version. This project will work up in less than a weekend  Curious about the yarn?  I used Cascade 220 cotton sport.

The eggs were mostly made by daughter 18 years ago.  The ribbon ones my mohter made.  i love having a bit of the family's reetivity decorating the halls at various holidays. 

This post is from February 2014. I switched blogging platforms and migrated my most popular posts.   I lost all the comments in the process.  So if you've seen this pattern and made a comment in the past, I do apologize.  Leave me a new one!  As always, if you see an error or have a suggestion, let me know.

An interesting side note, this post was made one hour before I was rushed to the hospital with a stroke.  

 

JULY 4 WREATH

  For what avail the plough or sail, or land or life, if freedom fail?  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

For what avail the plough or sail, or land or life, if freedom fail?  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

I design projects for Smoothfoam and love working with the product.  It's affordable, lightweight, easy to carve, dsand and paint.  I used 10 smoothfoam balls to make this holiday wreath.  It's true, I am becoming my mother.  She loved each and eveyr holiday in equal measure.  I used to think it a bit over the top, but now, I can't help myself, I love them too.  For the directions to this project and many others, check out theSmoothfoam Blog!