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  • Coloring a Little at a Time

    I'm coloring another page in Natural Wonders Color Art for Everyone.

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    It's a little surprising to me that this page is from the same coloring book as this one:

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    But I like that!  The different pictures allow for very different coloring styles.  Or just different moods.  Sometimes you want to color large floral patterns and big, bold leaves when you're playing around with natural wonders and sometimes you might feel like coloring in teeny tiny spaces and thinking about the little shifts in color you see on a feather.  I liked the big patches of blank space for my colored pencils last time, and I'm liking the small spaces to add little dots of color to this time.

    I'm enjoying myself so much, in fact, that I've been working on this page for nearly a week and a half--and I don't know when I'm going to finish! There's a lot here to keep me occupied, and I'm really in no hurry to finish it.  It's like a treat I save for myself to enjoy in small doses.

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    This past weekend I colored a few more places with reds and yellows and blues.  I'm a little appalled at how far outside some lines I am getting, but I hope that coloring in these small spaces will help me build a little control.  Goodness knows my handwriting could use some help, and it's a fun way to 'work' on my skills.  I added more colors and details to the page while listening to my daughter chattering in the kitchen while she helped my husband bake some gingerbread.  She even took some breaks to help me!  See if you can spot her handiwork:

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    She drew one of the squiggles as a smiley face just for me.  It was a pretty darn perfect moment with the coloring and the happy child and the familial baking.  But moments that good don't tend to last very long.  Which is fine because that's what makes them so special.  I know better than to try to make them last longer.  So after a nice spell of coloring, I stopped when my eyes got tired.  Coloring is kind of odd for me because it's so different from knitting or crocheting.  This isn't a present for anyone.  There's no need to finish this, and there's especially no need to finish this in a hurry.

    I'm going to keep this on hand, to color in little fits and starts whenever the mood strikes.  I think this is going to take me a while.  I'm excited about that.  006

  • Coloring Books, Coloring, and Colors: Oh my!

    Hi!  It's me, Jen.  I used to write posts for Leisure Arts for a couple of years, mostly about crocheting and knitting. Recently my buddy at Leisure Arts asked if I'd be interested in writing a few posts about their coloring books.  I was pretty tickled because it's nice to talk to you and because, what do you know, I already had one on hand to write about!

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    Or in my hand.  Whatever. I had actually picked up Natural Wonders Color Art for Everyone a few weeks ago when I was Michaels.  I have some coloring books of geometric patterns that I've played with since I was a teenager, but I like the new adult coloring books I'm seeing pop up everywhere these days--they have small spaces to color and swirling lines and are generally patternless so you can work on them however you want.  Some of them are designed specifically for people who feel anxious and some are for people who just like the soothing repetition of moving their hands back and forth over the paper while they choose what colors they want set out together. There are days when I want to knit something and just don't know what.  So sometimes I just pull out my yarn and look at it.  Sometimes looking at the different textures and colors together gives me an idea for a new project, and sometimes it just makes me happy.  Coloring is like that for me as well.

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    Coloring doesn't accomplish a whole lot, but I think that's kind of the point.  I started this page last week after mortifying myself at work in front of several different people in multiple ways.  After putting my daughter to bed, I shouted some things at my husband (mostly to let him know about the mortifying things I'd done. None of those things were his fault, but I couldn't stop myself from shouting), and then I flipped through the coloring book for a nice page to color.   I also went ahead and shouted at the guide at the front of the book offering up helpful advice about color wheels and tones.  There were some excellent points in there, but I was apparently in a mood to sass a coloring book about how I was a grown woman who could put clashing colors together if she chose to do so. That also doesn't accomplish a whole lot, but I was already on my way to feeling better.  After an hour or so, I was pretty happy with my fall leaves.

     

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    I picked up this page again over the past weekend when my daughter had a nasty cold and I was stuck inside on one of the most beautiful fall weekends I've seen in quite some time.  The coloring eased my self-pity a little bit and kept me entertained while she napped.

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    My final touch was to fill in the background with brown.  It just seemed like a good idea.  It was the only space left on the page and I still felt like coloring for a little while longer.

     

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    Natural Wonders has coloring sheets for leaves, flowers, mushrooms, and some cute pages with birds and flowers.  There are even owls!  I think I'll probably try one of the bird pages before I get in a grouchy mood.  And I think I'll use markers next time.

  • Knit Hat

    I have been coloring in my Leisure Arts coloring books off and on all week and my favorite colors right now are neon iridescent colors. When I saw the Toybox Collection yarn called Candy at my local yarn shop called Yarn Kandy the yarn is 100% acrylic. I knew that I had to get it to knit a hat for a friend who runs very early in the morning.

    Beginner Friendly Knitting

    I know that she wears other iridescent clothing when she runs. But I wanted to knit her a hat to keep her ears warm, and something else so that she can be seen when it is still dark. Leisure Arts has neon iridescent colored yarns but it is a bulky yarn. You can use it but you will probably have to cast on less stitches and use a bigger size circular knitting needle.

     

     

    Finished Knit Hat CircleCircular Knitting a Hat

    My knitted hat pattern isn’t a written pattern. It could be written some place. I just haven’t seen it. Leisure Arts has a hat similar to the hat that I have knitted called Beginner-Friendly Knitting by Rita Weiss.  I just played with it until I got it right. I casted on 88 stitches on size 8 circular knitting needles, the first time I casted on 96 and it was way too big. I noticed this after I was 6 inches in and I had to rip it all out and start again. Joined in the round make sure not to twist. Going to start a rib stitch which is K2, P2 for an inch to inch and a half, but don’t forget your place marker to show were you joined. Then knit in the round until the hat is 6 inches. Decrease knit 6 knit 2 together all the way around to were your place marker is. When you start decreasing you are going to needle double point knitting needles. Knit the next row. Continue decreasing until you have 11 stitches left. I know that the photo has a hole I stopped at 22 stitches because my friend who this was for asked to. She wanted it so that hat could have a little ventilation. When you are done cut a 6 inch tail and with a darning needle weave the end through all the stitches on your double point. I always go around twice just to be safe. Tuck in your ends and you have a hat.

    Finished Knit Hat

    I hate to say it but Christmas is going to be here in a blink of an eye. School starts in a few days. Everyone needs a warm hat. Great for Christmas, birthday, or a just because I was thinking about you.

  • Bead Bracelet

    I got some new books from Leisure Arts. The book that I was most inspired by is the Easy DIY Jewelry Book 2. You know how much I like buttons. Well getting to play with beads to me is equally fun. I wish I had some silver peace signs like in the book's project, Peace Sign Bracelet.  It was the one that I really liked. I have wrapped beads, made earrings and wine charms as gifts but I rarely make things for myself. This is my first bracelet and I chose real pretty green glass beads, and a couple of green gemstones with silver beads on both sides. I usually give the things that I make away as birthday, Christmas, and just-because-it-made-me-think-of-you gifts. This bracelet would make a great gift for a friend or family member for any occasion.

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    I wrapped my beads on an eye pin, but before you wrap, put on another eye pin to make a chain for your next set of beads to wrap. Continue until you have the desired length you want. I used my wrist and a friend’s wrist to measure so that it’s not too small or tight. I used two pairs of needle nose pliers, a very small set that I found at Hobby Lobby several years ago, and another pair that I got at my local hardware store along with my wire cutters. The only thing that I did not have in my bead box were clasps. I will have to pick up some tomorrow at my craft store. I will then use two jump rings which I call o – rings. Have fun playing with your beads. I know that I will be after I restock a few things.

  • I'm back!

    Hello friends!

    It's been a few weeks but I'm back and will be adding a new post to my hand piecing series tomorrow. Today I thought I'd tell you where I've been and a little bit more about myself.

    I've been...

    I'm high-fiving the world. I'm high-fiving the world.

    Finally! I graduated from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Applied Design. As a non-traditional student with a family, I feel a little more like I crawled across the finish line then danced. All in all, though, it was a tremendous experience and I'm thrilled to take on the next chapter in my life.

    Some of you may be familiar with work I completed as a student. Anyone remember this post about the Arkansas Arts Center yarn bomb? That was me! Well, me and about a hundred volunteers. I was thinking I might do a post here with some tips and tricks for doing your own yarn bomb. Anyone interested?

    Me and my pièce de résistance! Me and my pièce de résistance!

    If you're interested in seeing more of my work you can go to my website http://chelsyemae.com.

    In other news, I am recovering from the throat funk that's been going around. It left me plenty of time to plan my summer projects. Expect lots of posts about quilting and cross stitching this summer!

    Like I said, I'll be back tomorrow with the 3rd post in my paper piecing tutorials series. Be sure and check out the first 2 posts- just click on the photos!

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  • Button Barrettes

    Buttons! Buttons! Who’s got the buttons? I have the buttons. Remember when you were a kid and played this game on a rainy day at school. About a month ago I bought a jar of old buttons at an antique mall. One could say I have had button fever ever since. I have been looking at many projects that I could use my buttons on. I went to my current favorite book by Leisure Arts called Crafting with Buttons and Ribbons. I went and got some clip barrettes and sewed some different buttons to make Button Barrettes. I know that the book shows ribbon and a buttons. But I am not a fan of hair bows. After knotting the thread to secure that they do not come undone I dabbed a little super glue. It’s a very cute and unique style.

    Buttons! Buttons! Who's got the buttons? Buttons! Buttons! Who's got the buttons?
  • Summer Headbands

    FullSizeRender (18) Roxanne's Headband

    I created this pattern a couple of years ago right after I learned how to crochet. I can’t stand to have my hair in my eyes especially during the summer. This pattern is quick and easy. It should only take about 30 minutes. I also like to use Lily’s Sugar’n Cream yarn because it is 100% cotton. Cotton breathes a lot better than acrylic yarns, especially during this time of year - you want some ventilation. I used a size H crochet hook.  You can crochet headbands in all sorts of colors to wear with everything!

    First you chain 28.

    Then for your first row go into the 25th chain with 3 double crochets, and single chain in between the 2nd and 3rd double crochet.

    Then for the rest of the headband you will chain 3 at the start of every row and 3 double crochets with a single chain after the 2nd and 3rd double crochet.

    When you reach the length that you want, or use your head to measure the circumference of your headband, then you are ready to decrease.  I chain 3, and then decrease over the next 3 and then chain 25 and bind off. Tuck your ends in. Never just cut the end of your yarn; if it comes loose, your whole project could unravel. Here is a really cute epattern Too-Cute Kerchiefs Crochet  from Leisure Arts and yes it is really too cute. I was thinking about how to make one this afternoon - I'm totally going to try this!

    Too cute
  • Ocean Waves

    (Click Here for Digital Download)

  • Fashion Doll Wedding

    (Click Here for Digital Download)

  • Victoria Layette

    (Click Here for Digital Download)

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