Thursday, April 28, 2011

Crochet Fabric Basket

When you have very limited storage space, you need to get creative.
I got a nice big basket for our board games at Home Goods. The problem was that it was not enough.
I needed one more basket to contain our ever growing collection , but the prices of big baskets are outrageous.
About a year ago someone gave me a big amount of craft supplies from a state. It included tons of scraps.
Most of the fabric I had no use for, until I had an idea... to make a basket.
So, I cut  long strips of fabric two inches wide.
I folded the the borders, so it would make a "clean" basket. If you want a ragged looking basket, skip this part.
I  made balls as I was folding. I think if I make another project like this one, I will sew the pieces together.
This time I just tied. With the big pieces of fabric I just left about an inch or two on each side making a long strip.
I am sorry, I have trouble expressing myself in English sometimes.
You can see this step here .
Anyways, I started to make the basket. Let me tell you, I am not a crochet expert. I had to call my Mom in Brazil.  Here is how it looked like after working a while.
And a little bit more.
It is pretty cool to crochet with fabric. Goes fast! :)
The boring part is to cut all those strips.
As I said before I am not good on crochet. I had some trouble shaping the basket, but at the end was not so bad!
I like the colors and the texture.
I am happy that I could use part of the scraps, and make it into something useful for my home.
It was really a fun project!

Thanks for stopping by!
Ana Paula.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Recycled Baby Dress Matryoshka Doll

I love to recycle some of my daughter's baby stuff.
When I saw the cute dolls made by Our Shabby Cottage I knew exactly what to do with that cute dress Brenda had the opportunity to wear for only a short time.
I am sorry but I don't have a picture of the "before" dress.
Here is the Matryoshka doll.
I used pretty trims to dress her up. And pink polka dot for the apron.
Here is a close-up of her hand embroidered face. I had fun doing it!
And guess what? This doll is so cool, she has a sleeping side!
I wish the shape was a little better... but I am happy with the overall look.
I  love the fabric... pink roses on pale blue background.
Brenda likes this doll. Well, she loves any doll. The good thing is that I have leftover fabric to make another project coming up soon.
Hope you like the idea and recycle some old clothes and turn them on new beautiful things.
Thanks for stopping by and have a great day!
Ana Paula

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Some Very Special Books

Today I want to share some of our favorite Children's books.
Our collection of My First Little House Books based on the Little house books series.
Being a  Laura Ingalls Wilder fan, I started getting these books for my daughter when she was about three years old.
It's a great way to introduce the Little House Books and feed the excitement for the "real" ones.
Brenda loves these books. Every birthday and Christmas she got a couple of them. 
They are lovely books. The illustrations are beautiful.
Brenda is in first grade and can read these books with little help .
We told her that she will get the "real" ones for her birthday in June. She can't wait.
But then she asked me - Mommy, when I get the Laura books, can you  save these ones?
Please don't give them  away... I want to save them for my kids!
You see? That's my girl! Of course I will save them.
Here some more pictures.
So sweet! These books are a real treasure!  I love Pa Ingalls!
I don't think I need to tell you about the great values these books can teach children. Especially today's children. I really could go on and on talking about them.
Brenda asks so many questions.  How things were at that time, why the Ingalls family had to move, about the chores the girls did, about Jack, about everything.
She is very impressed with the fact that Mary sewed a dress for Laura's doll on her birthday.
Last Christmas she asked for a Laura doll. I made one for her. You can see it here .
She also has two sets of Little House paper dolls.
Now, Brenda has to wait and be a good girl and she will get the "real" books for her birthday.
They are already in my special hiding place. We got a set of the first five books with full color pictures from Amazon at a really great price. We plan to get the rest of the books again for Christmas and birthdays, since she is still young to read all  the books by herself.
I hope you have a great day!

Ana Paula

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Girl and the heart flower tree

Hi! I have a little cross stitch to share. I just finished it this morning.

The design comes from a magazine called  "Special Burda - The best suggestions of Anna"  from 1988.
It is a very special magazine to me. First of all, it was the first cross stitch magazine I ever brought.
Before of that I used my Mom's stuff - mostly from some kind of samplers she still has- pieces of fabric with cross stitch designs all over, not organized or framed. Just pieces of fabric where she "copied" designs when she had access to a new one. When my Mom was young, in her little town on the interior of Brazil, magazines were very rare.
Anyways, this magazine is also special because the cover and the instructions inside are in Portuguese. The rest of the magazine is in German. I don't speak German, but this is not a problem, anyone can understand the patterns . And there are many pretty ones in this cherished magazine.
The sweet girl and the heart flower tree is one of my favorite designs in it.

I changed the colors a little. The original had a blue dress. I "pinkified" it.
I decided to make it into a mini pillow decorated with white ric-rac. I am very pleased with the results.

The back of the mini pillow was made using the same polka dot fabric.
One more close-up of this darling design.

Have an enjoyable weekend!
Ana Paula

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Cross Stitch Easter Eggs Pattern

If you read my blog, you know that I like crafts. Most of all, I love Cross Stitch.
Sometimes I go crazy looking for a pattern. Right now I am looking for this one.
I think this is just lovely! Especially  the sampler style eggs.
I tried to get this a couple of times on e-bay.
An e-bay seller told me it is a Cross Stitch calendar page.
The last seller who had it said it was from a book, but she will not give me any more details.
There is no way I can find out, unless some nice lady out there can recognise this pattern and be gracious enough to give me some info on that.
I am sure someone saw this before. So, if you have any detail on this pattern, please let me know. It will be very much appreciated.
Here is the picture again.
Thanks for stopping by!
Ana Paula.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Rabbit with Hyacinth Cross Stitch Cube

I finally have a cross stitch finish!!!!!
I am so late on my cross stitching goals...what a shame! he is:
This is "Rabbit with Hyacinth" a freebie from Ellen Maurer-Stroh
Ellen is so talented and so generous! She has tons of free patterns to download on her website.
You need to became a member of her Cross Stitch board. That is free and easy to do.
Here are more pics of the rabbit. He is the cutest thing, don't you think?

Now, I finally have a little Cross Stitch item for Easter and Spring.
Thanks for stopping by!
Ana Paula.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Easter countdown - Resurection Eggs

Since last year our family is counting down to Easter Sunday to focus on the real reason we celebrate Easter.
My daughter Brenda is always very excited to learn about Jesus.

I have seen this all over, and after lots of thinking and reading I came up with my version.
You can make it very easily, mostly with things you have around the house.
You need to start the countdown on April 13th this year.

Here what you need:

- 12 plastic eggs  (you can nest them in a basket or in a egg carton. I got my ceramic carton at Home Goods, but you can  use one made of cardboard or Styrofoam, the kind you bring the eggs home from the grocery store- if you are using an egg carton, make sure to get small eggs that will fit.
- A permanent marker or scrapbook stickers.
- Countdown items and scripture references written on small pieces of paper.
Number the eggs using the markers or stickers. Put the appropriate item with the correspondent scripture reference inside each egg and place them on a basket or egg carton.
Here is the list of scriptures and items for the eggs:

1-   Matthew 26:26-28 (small cracker)
2-   Matthew 26:14-16 (3 dimes)
3-   Matthew 26:48-49 (chocolate kiss)
4-   Matthew 27:15,17,21,24-26 (chunk of hand soap)
5-   John 19:2 (small thorny branch or a large thorn and a small piece of purple fabric)
6-   John 19:17 (small cross made of tooth picks)
7-   John 19:18,34 (a nail)
8-   John 19:23-24 (swatch of burlap and a small dice)
9-   Matthew 27:34 ( small piece of sponge)
10- John 19:40 ( bay leaf, whole cloves or other whole spices)
11- John 20:1 - Matthew 28:2  (small flat stone)
12- Matthew 28:5-7 (empty)
This countdown is great because you will read direct from the bible.  We like to read just before school, but it would work at any time of the day.Thanks for stopping by and I hope you enjoy this meaningful countdown with your family.

Ana Paula.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Spring/ Easter Decor

I love seasonal decor. I try to make a little something for every holiday.
My little girl also loves it. She gets so excited every time we get the decorations out.
It is not different with Spring / Easter. She loves the bunnies, the eggs, the chicks, everything.
I make this "tree" every year and keep out until the end of summer. After Easter I just put the egg ornaments away.

And here is Brenda's favorite bunny.
I made her using a pattern that I believe is out of print now.
I got the babies at Michael's.
I have a couple of Easter projects in the making, hope to finish on time!
Thanks for stopping by!
Ana Paula.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Pom-pom Spring chicks on recycled mini pots

I love Spring! Like many moms do, I try to teach my child about the wonder of planting seeds.
Last  year we got some cute polka doted  egg mini pots with seeds at Target's dollar section.
The seeds were great : daisies, zinnias and sunflowers. The daisies survived the snails...In a couple of weeks or so I will have daisy flowers  in my little garden patch.
I got the same kind of seeds this year. Looking good! The little plants are getting bigger and bigger now.
I saved the empty little pots from last year.
Here what I made: a little spring craft ... pom-pom chicks!
I used Bernat Sofiee Baby yarn, but any baby yarn will do.
I made two different sizes of pom-poms using Clover pom-pom maker from Joann.
The package includes two sizes: 1-3/8'' and 1-5/8''.

Of course you can make pom-poms the old fashioned way...will work the same.
I used beads for the eyes and felt for the beak.(just cut a little diamond shape on orange felt, fold in half and tuck in place with a little dot of glue).
Now, place the little guys on the egg pots, and you are done! 
This is a great spring craft to do with the kids.
 Adult supervision always!
 A cute addition to your spring / Easter decor.

I am linking to  these great parties: