Things have been a little busy lately, with some work and plenty of Pearl time, plus the lows and highs of a migraine, a round of dim sum, and a trip to the zoo to meet the new baby elephant in the mix… he was awfully cute!
but now that I’m back in front of the computer, I wanted to post up a few crafty tutorials you might be interested in.
Some others there that I thought were awesome this week are Diane‘s button cards, Kayte‘s leaf napkin rings, Lee‘s holiday count-down projects, and Linda‘s ongoing crochet-a-long (one of these years I swear will learn to crochet!). In fact there is a whole section of the site on holiday crafting ideas, so you can browse a whole bunch of handmade decorating and gift projects in the same spot.
And here is what I am super eager to make for Pearl (and since she is six months old and doesn’t read my blog, I’m not too worried about ruining the surprise): this beautiful play kitchen made with Ikea stuff! I’m doing a play food swap, too, so in the next few months I’ll be getting a nice mix of handmade felt food for her to play with. I’m so excited. Hooray for play food and play kitchens!
Speaking of swaps, I am also very happy to be part of Nancy‘s Mixtapes for Minis music swap! There is still time to join up, so if you want to trade music with us, please do. I am already planning mine out — I think it will start dance-y and end lullaby/nap-friendly. We’ll see if it works any magic on the actual minis.
Okay, a personally stressful day gave way to a politically amazing night! I wouldn’t have it any other way.
I sewed this hope flag up this morning using the last print I had from Josh and Sarah‘s awesome Screenprinting for Change party! All the t-shirts and onesies found homes, the ones we kept for ourselves have been on heavy rotation, and this one last piece of fabric was still patiently waiting for me. So the morning of November 5 seemed like the perfect time for one last round of celebratory porch-decorating!
The pennants and sign I made with Lise‘s help survived three weeks of rain and Halloween night, so things are looking pretty festive around here!
I promised last week to re-print my Gocco election postcards in a new colorway to celebrate if we got an Obama victory, and I’ve never been so happy to keep my word! I will be sending one to everyone who commented on those posts, and if you’d like a card too, just comment on this post and it’s yours. Here’s the original from the party, from the first run, and I’ll be picking out some brand-new colors for the sequel.
Thank you for the comments, the emails, the temporary tattoos, the text messages, the pictures, the screenprints, and for giving me so much hope these last long weeks.
I’ve got about a half-hour before I run over to the museum for the crafty panel thing and just wanted to say hi! We’re crossing our fingers and waiting patiently until some polls start closing and some results start rolling in… Pearl is wearing her beautiful hand-screened shirt from Rachel that we saved just for today, and we have her Obama-circle union suit all set for the inevitable switch at some point!
In the meantime, I’d like to take a minute to say thanks so much to everyone who’s stood in line, voted early, voted absentee… or is about to. We get our ballots by mail here, three weeks early, and I can attest that voting in your living room is a luxuriously easy process. So a huge thank-you to those who made the effort, whether it was weeks ago or on the big day!
To celebrate voting, Lee is offering an awesome thank-you as well: a rad PDF she’s put together that’s full of craft projects like a flared knitted hat pattern and an applique project, a hand-drawn card and a mac-&-cheese recipe collection. Just leave a comment on her post (details over there) and she’ll send it to you ASAP.
Hope to see some crafty folks at the museum so we can pass the time together… see you tomorrow!
p.s. Though I’m not in California anymore, I’m sending some good thoughts south — just another happily married person with her fingers crossed that folks will Defeat Proposition 8!
update: the museum event was so cool and I was really grateful to be asked to participate — the crafts conversation was so interesting. Unfortunately, I had kind of a perfect storm of bad luck unfold… Andrew was planning to come along to take care of Pearl and suddenly had an unbreakable work meeting come up right beforehand, so I had an unexpected lapful of baby to deal with. Worse, she got really sick halfway through the hour, which was stressful to say the least, and I had to vanish to take care of her. I’m so disappointed about not being able to stay, and really sorry about all of it. On a happier note, now that we’re home she’s resting and seems much better so that is a huge relief.
back to the waiting and finger-crossing…
With Pearl’s Halloween costume finished (thank you for the sweet comments!) I finally had a minute to think about making my day of the dead altar. We’ve lived in three different places in the last three years, so I don’t exactly have a traditional place for it — but now that we have a fireplace with a mantel for the first time, it seemed like a perfect spot to decorate instead of setting up a table somewhere. I did a pretty simple version this time: five family photos of my grandparents, my aunt, and my dad, each adorned with candles, flowers, charms, sugar skulls and chocolates. I brought Pearl around to each person’s picture and told her all about them, and what I think they each would have loved best about her if they’d gotten the chance to meet her themselves.
Just like every election year, I am leaving the altar up a few extra days; I know everyone would have absolutely loved to find out what happens.
And on a sad note, my heart goes out to my friend T., and to Barack Obama and Maya Soetoro-Ng, and each of their families on the loss of their grandmothers yesterday. I added two extra candles to my altar in honor of them.
I have more details about everything in this flickr set, if you’re curious. And if you want to share photos of your altar, I would love to see them!
I was still working on Pearl’s scarf on Halloween afternoon (by far the most time-consuming part of my crafting, I am the slowest knitter on earth), but I finally finished it, a half-hour after we were supposed to meet up with Andrew downtown for a little-kid costume party (oops). We made it fashionably late and she was a very cute and cooperative little Harry Potter, right down to sighting the Golden Snitch and diving for it, broomstick and all!
This was a fun set of mini-projects! I cut and sewed an old black v-neck t-shirt to convert it into her robe (with a felt-and-corduroy emblem); sewed up a long felt tube and stuffed it for the broomstick, along with a flurry of yarn for the bristles (I added an elastic loop to keep it on her wrist so I wouldn’t have to pick it up off the floor six or seven hundred times); and for the scarf, I cast on 12 stitches on size 8 needles, knitted endlessly, and changed colors from scarlet to gold every 18 rows. Confession: when time got tight I decided to invest my last precious late-for-the-party minutes in fringing instead of weaving the ends in, so embracing my inner bad knitter and snipping them off took all of 30 satisfying seconds.
The only thing I didn’t make myself is her beautiful Hedwig, who was crocheted by the lovely and talented Jenny Ryan!
Pearl was a sweet thing for the rest of the night and seemed to enjoy carving the pumpkin, trick-or-treating around our block, and helping us give candy away to our visitors. Then we watched the Blazers beat the Spurs (woo hoo!) for the perfect end to the evening!