Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Spoon wind chime tutorial

Spring is here and it's time to spruce things up outdoors! We are fortunate to have a great front porch, and once I started treating it as a 'room,' it's been fun to decorate.

Years before there was Pinterest, somehow I got the idea to make wind chimes out of a set of old flatware. I scoured garage sales and antique stores and found exactly what I needed for the job. Today I decided to restring the spoons and thought I would share the project with you.

I bought this at an antique store on Cape Cod. It looked much better when I bought it, but it's been outside exposed to the elements since then, so is showing some wear. At first I thought it had to do with canning, but apparently it's a roasting pan. Those interested can buy one on eBay for a starting bid of $8.99 - I bought mine for much less, I'm sure!

Next come the spoons. I decided to use all spoons in my set, although I've seen some nice ones with all forks.
After hanging outside for awhile, they've developed a nice patina. I think they're silver plated, which produces a nice sound. As you can see, we drilled holes in the ends to thread the wire through. You do have to use a special drill bit for this or it won't penetrate and will break the bit.

I threaded the wire through the holes in the roaster and then tied it off on both ends of the spoons, making a quadruple knot. I pulled on it with the pliers just to make sure it was strong enough.

I used a heavier gauge wire to make a hanger with, which requires wire cutters and pliers. Nothing fancy, but it does the trick. You could even string beads on the wire for added decoration.

For the spoons, I used tiger tail wire from my beading box so it's strong yet flexible enough to let the spoons move in the breeze. They sound wonderful!

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Dream craft rooms

I think it's every crafter's dream to have a sewing/craft room - a designated space to spread out, not worry about having to put stuff away, and just be left to your own devices. I do have a nice musty corner of the basement to myself, so I should consider myself lucky. It survived one mouse invasion (which really encouraged me to pare down my stuff - if you're facing this problem, realize that mice apparently have no bladder, which means they randomly pee at will). In our last apartment, the maintenance department graciously turned an old unused commons area into a sewing room for me, which was great (until heavy rains meant water seeping down the walls and onto the floor, and an occasional frog would take up residence). Anyway, I guess I shouldn't complain.

You've probably caught glimpses of my craft area in other photos on the blog - usually it involves a pile or two of something or other. The bad part is that in getting my motivation back, I usually spend a lot of my time organizing or looking for something when I do find time to get down there.

I love looking at photos to get me inspired. These are definitely some drool-worthy spaces!

Image: Better Homes and Gardens at via Pinterest
I love the designated tables for each area - which means no packing things up and putting them away just to make room. I bet you could pick up one of these at a garage sale - repurpose something old and just give it a fresh coat of paint to brighten it up. The giant cork board above the sewing table is awesome! And the cubbies would be easy to do with a combination of shelves from someplace like Ikea - the 'Billy' model is very popular with "Ikea hackers" who change it up and turn the units into something amazing! I also love the bright colors - very fresh and inspiring.

Image: Better Homes and Gardens at
I love how everything has its place - fun containers make it easy to see and find things. I do something like this, only it involves old coffee cans with holes punched in them. LOL

Image: Better Homes and Gardens at
Hey, I remember those nasty old 1970s dining room chairs! I never thought they could look so cute - just put a funky coat of paint on them to transform them into something new and definitely much more exciting. 

Image: Better Homes and Gardens at
This is a great way to turn a closet into an uber-organized space. 

Image: Better Homes and Gardens at
If you don't have thousands of dollars to plop down for an official redo, cup hooks can work just fine to hang things from. Peg boards are another idea to keep things up and out of the way but still within reach. I like how the rolls of fabric and ribbon are stored here, but I've done something similar with a dowel rod and bicycle hooks hung from the rafters of my basement. If you don't mind the MacGyver look, it works well to hang work lights from or clothing on hangers after ironing. I also originally used it to hang photography backdrops from, after sewing a simple casing on a large piece of fabric. It worked great!

via Pinterest
And this is just totally awesome. I know it's a cloth diaper stash, but I thought how it would make a great easy-to-access storage area for things like fat quarters, paints, notions, patterns and just about anything. It's out in the open so it's easy to get to and see what you have on hand right away without having to dig (too much). Love it!

Happy crafting!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Find me on Facebook!

I decided to create a fan page for the blog - hopefully it will help me to get inspired and share great ideas with others! My sewing pile is getting bigger and bigger, and I want it to get smaller - which means I will actually have finished something!

Find me on Facebook!