Thursday, March 28, 2013

Out of Focus - A Few Photos

I finally feel like my voice is coming back. I put everything I had into my book for so long that I felt I had nothing left to offer here on my blog. I've been cleaning out my computer...and came across a slew of photos I have taken, but haven't had time to share them on here yet.

I have always loved photography. I wanted to be a photographer for National Geographic and travel the world. That all changed when I was at a mall and my friends car was stolen from a mall parking lot while we were inside the mall hanging out with our peeps. My camera was in my friends car. I couldn't afford a new camera at the time, changing my major from Photography to Fine Arts, with a focus on Illustration.

I find peace in my camera though. It captures things I cannot capture on my own. While my girls were outside on a warm fall evening, I decided to play with my camera on manual focus. The sunset was so beautiful, and the colors in that light were so surreal.

Much of my life has seemed very out of focus lately - which makes these pics somewhat cathartic to come back to. Sometimes out of focus provides a different type of clarity we weren't expecting. There is still beauty when things are out of focus, and when the time comes, and things slowly come back into focus, there is beauty in that too.

Have a great day.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

What's in My Craft Room - My Photo Set-Up

I love seeing other peoples crafty spaces. I love getting ideas from all the pictures and feel inspired to keep my space as organized as I possibly can. I am fortunate to have my girls sharing a large room, so I can use the small room as "my craft room". However, they are growing, and so am I, so we are currently in the midst of renovating (finishing) the space above our garage to become my "studio space". And I couldn't be more excited.

I thought I would share a few pics of my own crafty space and the light box that became my best friend while working on my book. It looks pretty clean here - but that's only because I would work on one chapter for the book (about 4 patterns), clean it all up, and then get working on the next chapter. So I snapped the pictures in between chapters. Cheating? I think so! I didn't take pics of my fabric stash or my knick-knacks - but will do that when they are all unpacked!

A few people have also asked (as well as my offering) what my photo set up is like. So I'm going to share that too.

This is my trusty Kenmore sewing machine. I do hope to get a Bernina soon, a Juki someday, and a baby lock as well...but until then, this workhorse has been so good to me. It currently sits on the Porter Desk (from Pottery Barn). The drawer underneath is awesome - but the weight of my machine is proving to be too heavy for the top, and is beginning to sag! *cringe*. So I will have to switch things up when I move up to the studio and will most likely put my computer on this desk instead.

My awesome green chair is from my husband. It was my birthday gift a few years ago and he picked out my favorite color.

Here is my photo box. It's actually a light tent and can fold up into a little pouch. I know it's quick and easy to make a cardboard photo box - but this is a great investment since it's about $60. You can't put the cardboard one away and hope that it survives. This one is great for using, traveling, and storage! That's totally my opinion and I'm not being paid to say that. I will say though - that I had to by some white fabric to hang & lay inside, because the material it is made with is very wrinkled and not seamless. I bought some bright white velour material at Joann's. You can ask them if they would recommend anything in particular - but this white material is great because it doesn't show everything (like wrinkles). Keep a sticky roll next to the light box though - you'll need it once in a while to remove threads and fiber specs. I pinned the fabric up in the back at the top, so it drapes nicely and doesn't create a shadow.

To make this box or any box work right - you also need the right lighting. The awesome thing I was told at a photo store nearby - was to use photo bulbs in a regular desk lamp - saves you a ton of cash! The bulbs (added a pic of the packaging below) will run you about $15-$20 and the desk lamp can be purchased at Target or anywhere for $10! That is - if you don't already have one! I used 2 that I already had - and they have both been great. You can use up to 4, both sides, top and back. I only have 2. And it works fine. The green one was from target years ago and the other one is adjustable up down and every which way. That helps too.

I took a few pics of some Heather Bailey and Amy Butler fabric in the light box, and some little lavender stems in an old ink jar.


If you have any questions for me let me know. You can leave me a comment below - and I'll reply as soon as I can. Just so you know - I didn't use any filter effects on any of the pics. It was a while ago - but I did change the saturation levels on the flower image - it was fun playing with these flowers in the light box. Thanks for visiting and I hope you all have a great time creating in your space.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

Sunny Side Up Easter Eggs w/Buttons Galore and More

Good Saturday morning to you all! What's for breakfast at your house today? Over here we have made some sunny side up eggs just in time for Easter (or April Fools!).
A couple of months ago I agreed to do a fun blog hop with some other designers and the folks at Buttons Galore and More...Here's just a few of the buttons I got...and get to play with! The first thing I did was sort them all and played with them. As I look at them, I let the ideas come to the surface and the first project I knew I had to make was some eggs...sunny side up! It was the only thing I could think of when I saw these huge yellow, asymmetrical buttons...yolks! Does that make me weird? I think so! But fun. Always fun!


Here's what you'll need:
I used a natural wool felt for my base
I used a bright white wool yarn to make the egg whites.
You'll need needle felting tools (Mat, needles & brush (for cleaning the mat)
The "Buttons Galore and More" Yellow "Yolk" buttons
& a little Yellow yarn or ribbon for tying the yolk to the egg
I cut up the bright white yarn into small pieces and needle felted it into a random, oval-ish, egg white pattern. The longer you continue needle felting, the softer it will be, eliminating the lines of the yarn. When it was all done. I cut out the "egg whites" and then wet felted them (warm water and soap, rinse with warm and cold water, then dry), and then attached the yolk to the eggs, using some bright yellow ribbon.


(If you want to make these way easier - you can use bright white fleece and sew a couple of pieces right sides together, leaving open a small space for turning, sew on the buttons, and then close the opening with a ladder stitch.)

These would be great for Easter Egg Spoon Races - put them in a plastic Easter egg and off you go...if it drops and pops open, you've cracked the egg and have to start all over again. They would also be a lot of fun for April Fools...maybe on a slice of felted bread, with some felted bacon on the side?!


Be sure to check out all of the other designers today participating in the Buttons Galore and More blog hop! I hear you can also enter for your chance to win a Viewtainer, packed with buttons and ribbon, by simply entering a comment at this link here. Fun Fun Fun!

I hope you have a wonderful day! 






Although I was given free buttons from Buttons Galore and More, the opinions set forth in this post, are my own. This tutorial is shared with you in the hopes that you will learn a new fun craft. Please do not use my tutorials for your own gain. Please do not use my photos without permission and please do not retake any photos to remake the tutorial for your own blog or another company or in another language. These photos and the text are copyright protected. If you'd like to "Pin" the one finished project photo, please credit me by using "#kidgiddy". Thank you for your cooperation.