About This Blog

In this blog, I will show you all the fun crafts I work on during my free time. All patterns, information, and ideas are available to the public for use for free. If you feature any of my crafts on your own site, please link to this blog. Please feel free to leave comments, and explore my other blogs, featured on the right-hand side of this page.

Friday, January 3, 2014

Christmas Presents: The List

So, now that all of my recipients have gotten their gifts, I can tell you what I did for Christmas this past year.
Way back in October, I came to the realization that I would not have enough money to buy Christmas gifts for everyone on my list. With this knowledge in hand, I decided I would make my gifts. Every single one.
So I started them in October and worked all the way through December to make everything. Keep in mind that I didn't work every single day on these projects -- I did have some wiggle room.
Also, I will not be posting patterns here, but I may, in the future, post patterns and tutorials for individual items.

I made this extra large, stuffed amigurumi whale for my best friend back in my hometown. I should have taken a photo with her and the whale; she looks much cuter with it than I do.

This is a hairpin I made for my friend Jamie, formally known as my wife (we're not actually married). It's a really simple workup with a sewn cloth flower and some beads on chain. Simple, but elegant and cute!

I made this panda pair for my younger brother, who loves him some pandas. One of them is just a little hug buddy, whilst the other one was turned into a keychain, so he could take some cuteness wherever he goes!

I made this little white pig bun for Rich's sister, Kai Lei. 

Finally, I made this dual-coloured beret and infinity scarf set for my beautiful mom. See how cute they look on her? They were both made with grey and light blue yarn crocheted together with a large hook.

I also made two photo frames, one for my mom and one for my dad, but I didn't get photographs of those, because I was too busy packing at the time.
So that's it! So next time you need to give a gift, try not to worry about how much money is in your pocket -- make something!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Little Sew-Bows. Necklace and Hair Pin

So, it is December now, and Christmas is coming up on us fast. Which means that there's a lot of cool Christmas-like patterns to scope out!
This year, I'm making all of my gifts, since I don't have the money to purchase any, and I've been feverishly looking through patterns and tutorials to get ideas for fun stuff for my family and friends. It's so cool to see what people have thought up, and it's fun to tweak their ideas with tidbits from my imagination!
Anyway, I saw the tutorial for these bows on Becca's Ladyface Blog, and I just knew that I had to start making like... tons of these little guys. There's so much potential!
To make the bows themselves, I pretty much followed her tutorial to a T, so check out her site if you want to learn how to make them. For the orange Christmas bow, I just stuck a bobby pin through the back, just like she did. 
For the green necklace, I played around a little more. I just sewed some jump rings to either edge, going underneath the bow's middle to hide the thread. Then I made a little string of matching beads on straight posts (normally used for earrings), and hooked everything up. The whole thing took maybe a half hour of work time. Longer because I played around with my bead colours a lot!
These are fantastic crafts for pretty much any season -- especially because crafts stores that sell fabric often have seasonal samples. I love to get the little 4-packs of seasonal fabrics and play with those! The range of fabric types can be played with, too! From flannel to satins to leathers, if you can sew it, you can use it!
One thing I would recommend is to be conscious of your fabric type when sewing these. Sure, the thin quilting fabrics used here will make a bow of nice size, but if you follow the tutorial for a thicker fabric without adjusting the amount of fabric you use, you could end up with a thick tiny bow that is hard to do anything with. 
That said, adjusting your measurements will make bows of every size! Play around with it!

I decided to model this one, but the lighting is poor because it's in the living room...

What will you use your bows for? Let me know below! 

Sunday, October 6, 2013

The Half-Hour Steampunk Bracelet

Hi everyone! I've been busy, tinkering and toying around. I have been meaning to post the pattern for the beret I just made for the coming winter, but I haven't been around my computer much!
Today, I finally got my hands on my very first roll of Washi tape. And it was a steampunk one, with cogs all over. Yaaay!
That said, I really love steampunk stuff. Cogs, machinery in general, browns, brass, and the fashion. Oh, the fashion. I could go on.
But I'm also poor. Like, really too poor to be very steampunky. So I try to add some notes to my wardrobe that have that motif. My latest venture was this bracelet.
Really, it takes about five minutes to make, but then I let the super glue set for about twenty-five, hence the "Half-Hour" notation. But it's super quick, super easy, and is the perfect last minute addition to an outfit, steampunk or not.

1 wide bracelet of your choice. I used a plain pleather bracelet I had use for something else that unfortunately (or fortunately!) come apart.
Washi tape
Charms, beads, or other notions. My local JoAnns had these cogs by Blue Moon in the jewelry notions section.
Super glue
Xacto knife, or other sharp tool.

Lay a strip of Washi tape on bracelet, trying to make sure an equal amount of space is left between the tape and bracelet edge on both sides, all the way down. Cut excess corners of tape.
Secure tape by rubbing out any bubbles or imperfections.
Arrange notions on bracelet as you want them to appear, and when you have the pattern just right, carefully use super glue to attach them to the bracelet.
Lay weights (or something heavy) onto notions and all them to set for about 25 minutes or longer, if desired.
Using Xacto knife, cut out holes of bracelet through the Washi tape.
Cut excess length of bracelet, if desired.
Wear with something fabulous.

My middle charm is actually two cogs layered together using super glue. I really like how it adds a little extra oommph! to the bracelet!
My bracelet was already die-cut and ready to wear when I purchased it, so I didn't have to use any intense hardware. This is part of what makes it a super simple project -- I didn't have to punch the holes or anything!
A lot can be done thematically with this type of bracelet. You can also get some scrapbooking notions (the kind that aren't stickers) and add those to a bracelet like this.
Beads could also be used with a bracelet like this. You could string them on pins or embroidery floss and punch them through the bracelet. Really, the possibilities are endless to turn a simple and plain bracelet into something uniquely you!

Thanks for reading! I hope this super easy "pattern" has given you some fun ideas for making your own bracelet at home!
If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to leave them below.
Don't forget to subscribe to this blog if you want to keep up to date on the fun crafts I'm working on!

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Photo Frame Revamp: Home Decoration Made Cheaper

This Thursday, I had a rather harrowing experience that resulted in me having to go to the emergency clinic. The day prior, I had noticed that I was feeling very ill at work -- dizziness, nausea, trouble breathing, and most scarily... intermittent warmth in my left calf. After doing some research, I discovered that these could be symptoms of a deep vein thrombosis. Since I have been on birth control since the age of thirteen or so for my polycystic ovarian syndrome, a DVT is something I've always been taught to keep an eye out for. When I felt these symptoms for two days (and with some heartfelt insistence from my dearest mum), I decided to go to hospital and get it checked out.
We stayed in the room for while watching television, before the attending came to examine me. Thankfully, he determined that I didn't exhibit any of the most telling signs of DVT, like redness and tenderness. He also determined my symptoms were not from an infection. Instead, I was diagnosed with intense muscle strain, and gave me a prescription for 800mg ibuprofen three times per day. He also ordered me to stay off my leg as much as possible for 48 hours. I cheated, because I had to work yesterday, but today, I've tried to rest as much as possible. To keep from going insane, I've been crafting.

Without further ado, let me tell you about what I've done.
Richard and I have been meaning to decorate our home with some photographs of us, to make it more... well.. home-y. Having had one printed when we went to Ohio's Kings Island, I thought it was a good opportunity to set it into a frame.
I hate buying frames. They're expensive, finicky, and they don't always fit the decor of the house, or the mood of the photo.
Some might say that, at my age, you would want more elegant frames for your photos, to convey a sense of maturity. I say they're not having enough fun!
So, without further ado...

1 blank wooden frame from Michael's wooden crafts section
1 page cardstock paper (I have a pack of 180 sheets from Recollections)
X-acto knife
Tacky glue
1 photo of size

Really, one of these little guys will do.  It's just a dollar at Michael's!

Using the frame as a template, cut cardstock paper with the X-acto knife.
Cover the frame in cardstock paper using tacky glue, laying it as flat as possible.
Decorate with stickers, ribbons, buttons, or other notions.

And that's it! From drabby, boring wood, to fun, beautiful, and full of personality.

With these methods, you could reduce the number of photo frames you buy significantly. This is also a great craft for children -- they can make their memories just as fun as the events themselves with this fun craft! Just be sure to give them a helping hand with the cutting part.

Thanks for reading! If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Be An Angel Day; Crochet Bracelet

I haven't posted anything for quite a while here. I've been working on this afghan (which is taking me forever and ever), and I tried hard not to start any other projects before it was done. Well, now I'm taking a break from the blanket and doing some smaller projects to gear up for autumn and winter, so I'll likely post more often.
Recently, my department had a surprise baby shower for one of my very expecting co-worker. I spent six hours (staying up until 3 am) to make her baby a hat. Gosh, am I a slow crocheter. Unfortunately, I didn't get a photo before I wrapped it up. Just imagine a baby hat. In yellow. There; you've got it.
Additionally, my place of employment celebrated Be An Angel Day, which was yesterday, August 22. Those who wanted to participate were given five dollars and could choose to spend it (or more or less money) on a gift, or not spend it and give something else. I wanted to make something for my recipient that would be interesting, cute, and useful (I will leave this person anonymous, because she doesn't know I'm her angel!)
I decided on this thick crocheted bracelet, since it followed with the style I'd seen her exhibit, and was neutral enough to go with a lot of things in any wardrobe. It was also a quick work, so I didn't have to stay up late this time!
Want to make a similar bracelet for someone you want to give a gift to? Here's how I made mine:

Sensations Truly Superfine wool blend yarn in Truly Charcoal Grey
Caron CuddleSoft in White
Size G/6 -- 4.25mm crochet hook
Yarn needle

Chain 34 using mc.
Row 1: HDC in 3rd chain from hook, HDC across, chain 1, turn work.
Row 2: HDC across, chain 1, turn.
Row 3: SC across, chain 2, turn.
Row 4: HDC across, chain 2, turn.
Row 5: HDC across, switch to cc, chain 1, turn.
Row 6: SC across, switch to mc, chain 1, turn.
Row 7: SC across, chain 2 (counts as first DC in edging row), turn.
Edging: DC in first stitch, slip stitch in next stitch, *2 DC in next stitch, slip stitch in next stitch*, repeat ** until end.
Tie off with 6 inch long tail. Using yarn needle, sew ends together.
Weave in any loose ends.

I love this cute little bracelet. The use of HDC stitches give it a wonderful lacey quality (although the photo doesn't show it much.
A pattern like this has lots of potential; you could make it slightly longer, make it twice, and then you have wrist warmers. Make it even longer and you can make fingerless gloves.
Add details to your bracelet that make it visually appealing to the person you're making it for. Asymmetric patterns are really popular right now -- add a set of contrasting buttons of uneven sizes, add more stripes or colours.
As an awesome note, I found out later that my recipient really liked her gift! Yay!

Thanks for reading. If you have any questions or comments about this pattern, feel free to leave them below. Don't forget to subscribe to this blog for more inspiration and fun crafts!

Thursday, April 25, 2013


So, I've fallen in love with cowls a little bit. I have this big brown one I got in winter, and it's so fantastic it almost makes me with it was winter again. Almost...
Anyway, I've never made one, and I wanted to find a colour that would be suitable to my personal style, and I decided on this nice rusty one from Lion Brand. It also gave me the chance to use my nice, big crochet hook, which I've fallen in love with since making the boot cuffs. What could be better?
I was able to work it up in a few hours (spread out over two days), and it's super cute. I decided not to twist this one in the work-up, so I could twist it on my own depending on my mood!
Also, I decided to work this in the round to eliminate any visible seams. I think it looks nicer that way.

Crochet Hook US N15/10.00mm
Half Skein Lion Brand Vanna's Choice in Rust
Yarn needle

Chain 60 (or more; you decide).
Join round using slip stitch, taking care not to twist (or twist if you want. I don't care).
Round 1: Single crochet in each stitch. Join round with slip stitch.
Round 2: Half double crochet in each stitch. Join with slip stitch. For tutorial on HDC, look here.
Round 3: Double crochet in each stitch. Join with slip stitch.
Round 4: Repeat Round 3.
Round 5: Repeat Round 2.
Round 6: Repeat Round 1.
Round 7: Repeat Round 2.

Continue this pattern for the desired length. Keep in mind that the double crochet round is repeat twice in a sequence, but the single crochet round is used only once.
When finished, tie off, weave in ends, and enjoy!

This pattern was inspired by Amanda's cowl at Parent Pretty. Check out her site here.
You can change how this item comes out by varying a ton of factors. Change the hook size to give tighter or looser stitches. Change the weight of the yarn, or the length and width. The possibilities are there -- work with your personal style and wardrobe to design the perfect cowl!

If you have any comments or questions about this pattern, feel free to leave them below. Don't forget to follow this blog for the latest in crafting fun!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Craft Storage Boxes



If you're anything like me, you have amassed some knitting and crocheting supplies without a place to keep them! I don't have a pouch or anything to keep my stuff in, so I devised a way to keep all of my supplies -- little handmade boxes! They're a little time consuming to make, but really nice once they get done.
I made one each for my knitting needles, my crochet hooks and double pointed needles, and my miscellaneous stuff, like my cable needle, stitch holder, and stitch markers.

Plastic canvas -- two sheets
Sewing needle with large eye (a yarn needle will not fit in the holes of the canvas)
Scrap yarn

This is mostly up to you. Size your plastic canvas pieces according to the size of your needles. Since my size 9 needles are really tall, I needed something to hold them without tipping, but not so tall as to hide the smaller eights and sixes. Sew a design into the plastic canvas first, and then fill in the background colour. Sew pieces together and outline the top of the box in yarn as well.
If you choose to make a lidded box, like my miscellaneous box, cut the bottom of the frame first, then the face of the lid with one box extra all around. This will give you an extra lip to sealed the box properly.

My boxes are fairly small, so I didn't feel like I had adequate room to make an intricate design on the box sides. If your boxes are larger, or you're just feeling adventurous, plan your design carefully before executing.
Have fun with this project! It takes a long while to get everything sewn up, so mix up colours and designs, or make a neatly coordinated set, like mine.

If you have any questions or comments about this craft, leave them below! Don't forget to follow this blog and stay up to date on the fun projects happening at the StegoCraftasaurus!