July 6, 2009

Non-Jewelry Craftiness

Ok, so I know that this is a jewelry blog and all, but I just had to share with you what I was up to craft-wise this weekend! Last week I said that I would rather spend the 4th of July cleaning my craft room than doing anything "patriotic." Well - rather than cleaning, I got to craft all weekend long! First I got a call from a friend in Kentucky saying that she saw a necklace on my Etsy site that she said perfectly matched an outfit she was planning to wear for a wedding this weekend... BUT - she needed a matching bracelet and earrings. No problem, let me whip one up in time to mail it out by Friday morning! I think the end product looked pretty good, considering the short time I had to create the trio. The best part, between you and me, is that all the beads I used for these pieces were given to me by a friend who bought them in hopes of really enjoying jewelry making, only later to discover she was really a quilter instead. Hooray for free supplies! Next on my list was to re-wire some necklaces for my mom (who is STILL in town, which means I still don't have access to my craft room! More on that later this week!). After that, I was pretty pooped with jewelry making for the weekend (though I still need to finish those necklaces for the wedding in Minnesota I am attending this weekend). The Hubs reminded me that I promised to bring the mid-west game of Cornhole with us to a 4th of July cookout. He had already handmade the cornhole board (if you are reading this thinking that cornhole is a food, I don't think you are alone. Read up on this mid-western/Southern/Great Lakes regional pass time game o'fun here), now all I had to do was to make the beanbags. "Sure, honey, I'll just sew them together really quickly." While this might sound like a "no biggie," let us not forget that, though I have had a sewing machine for over a year now (thanks to my friend Erin), I have only used it to make the Hub's and my Halloween costumes (Tinkerbell and Peter Pan - only I was the later!). And those were pretty rough. But, I saw this as a good chance to get to know my sewing machine a little better and also use some of the fabric I have recently accumulated in hopes of claiming my inner Project Runway (RIP until next month, dear friend!). So, with 4 bags of pinto beans and a lonely sewing machine ready on my craft table, I got to work.
I first had to decided which fabric to use, especially since I needed two differing shades/designs/prints, etc for each team. After going through my huge storage bin of fabric, I found this awesome upholstery piece I got from the As-Is section at IKEA. I think it's some sort of ottoman cover, but for $5, there seemed to be enough fabric to salvage.Next I found 4 sections that were large enough to cut from them 2 6"x6" pieces of fabric. I used a totally scientific method - a school ruler and a jelly pen. I also did the same with some upholstery fabric I got for $5 in the same As-Is bin at IKEA (the rest of it is acting as a valance in my living room). Next, I approached the project as I would a pillowcase (though I have never actually made a pillowcase...) and began sewing from the inside out.
I only sewed 80% of the exterior so as to leave room to turn the bag inside out and add the beans. First we turned the bags inside out and then the Hubs filled them up with 1/2 a 4 pound bag of Pinto Beans (courtesy of a coned-up piece of paper). Next I hand-sewed the rest of these bad boys one-by-one. And by the end of it, understood the worth of investing in a thimble (upholstery fabric, people!).But the end result was worth it. Hello, designer bean bags!The Hubs pointed out that the contrast in our projects - he was proud of his rustic, simple, utilitarian cornhole board, while I was proud of my designer-like bean bags! That's why we make a great team! I am totally not going to let that board stay plain wood - as soon as I get a chance, I am painting it in my beloved Marimekko print! It's going to look SO GREAT with those black and white beanbags!
No sooner was I done with my beanbags did the Hubs remind me that I promised to make cupcakes for the party. No creative rest for a gal who has lots of jewelry to make! I figured if I had to make cupcakes for my ::ahem:: favorite holiday, I would at least make them in my preferred 4th of July color scheme (hint: red, white, dark and light blue).
(I added 2 packets of Crystal Light instant flavoring to the Funfetti mix to add some color and flavor, in addition to using XXL cupcake tins. The whole box only yielded 12 cupcakes! My kind of dessert!) Whew! Now, on to a jewelry making frenzy of a week!


  1. WOW! I'll bet you two have the chic-est bean bags for cornhole (and no, I did not know what that was! :>)! Hope you take a pic to share after that board meets your paintbrush.

    That bracelet and earrings really look great with the necklace! It sounds like you have a mighty busy beading week. Good luck!!! :>

    I've left you an award on my blog! :>

  2. You won an award! I have chosen to give you the Honest Scrap award - please see my blog for details!


  3. I LOVE THIS PROJECT! Seriously. If I could get Sweets to make the cornhole boards (great project for him!), I'd totally be up for making fun bags! You just might have inspired me. Now, if only you could motivate me to actually do it! hahaha.

  4. Man, my cornhole set could use an updating! On a side note...I put some pictures on my blog of a wedding I was in recently. I wore one of the necklases I purschased from your Etsy shop!

  5. Looks like a fun and crafty time! The bean bags turned out super cute.

  6. I adore the designer bean bags. I'm filing this away for the future when ours break and need to be replaced. Maybe it will make the ladies feel more comfortable playing then the current OSU Football motif. ;)

  7. Popcorn for cornhole bags? Never thought of that. I thought you would have to use field corn. cool