Thursday, 28 January 2016

Color inspiration for quilting

I just wanted to pop up and tell about this weeks DIY project. I felt a sudden urge to have a new bedspread that reflects more the spirit of spring. In the autumn I was after deeper colors like dark red, green, gold and brown. And I know that next autumn it will be the same thing. The autumn/winter bedspread is waiting in the closet for it´s next season. The good thing about changing textiles is that by using different shades of color you can bring various atmospheres during the year.

In this new project I use brighter shades of red and green. Color combination that I love. I have also added some light blue, orange and yellow. I actually got inspiration from the furniture I have. Green kitchen table and light blue closet. I also spray panted some little elements with yellow, a project that I will introduce later this week.

The fabrics are a combination of old and new. Most of these are from flea market. It is difficult to find these kind of colors from fabric store so I prefer to use retro fabrics like old pillow cases. I have also found some interesting fabrics that I think someone has brought as a souvenir from foreign countries and were now in the flea market. The new ones I have bought from Handicraft fair that was in November and from a summer trip to Ostrobothnia where there was this big department store Kärkkäinen.

Quilting with this block technique is easy because you don´t have to spread all the little pieces to your floor to remember where everything is planned to go. You can plan the project and then work similar smaller pieces that are quick to combine.

I hope that at the end of the week I can show you the result of this project.

Until that, bright winter days to you all!


Saturday, 23 January 2016

DIY of the week: Colorful chandelier

I am very enthusiastic about sharing this project with you because it has taken me the whole week! To be precise I started this project a week before and now spent this week doing "the finishing touches". As I have not worked with tin before I had to learn and plan all over again during the project. It was great fun but also challenging. I wanted to make you a small tutorial and show how I made this. Maybe it inspires you to try this material and different techniques that I used. I am sure there is plenty of ways what to do from old tin jars. This time my aim was to show how you can use recycled material in a way that does not highlight recycling when you place it to your home. Tin is just material among others that happens to be free if you choose to use recycled tin.

So lets get started with the project. Below you can see how to make leaves and flowers.

First about equipment. Use good quality working gloves that protect you from cuts (tin is very sharp!) and protective eye-wear. Earmuffs are also good when hammering. Then you will need tin scissors, wire cutters, a ball pein hammer, scissors, tongs and a pike.

Then you can see a cutting plan for a normal tin. First using tin scissors cut of edges (black line). Then cut the tin to a rectangle shaped sheet. After this take the scissors and cut the sheet to small rectangles as the green lines show. Now it is easy to cut leaves from the smaller pieces. Then use the ball pein hammer to make the leaves flat and pike to make a small hole for the wire. Fold a leaf to its shape by using tongs. Now the leaves are ready to put into a wire. Twits a leaf at a time to fasten it to its place. Leave couple of centimeters between leaves. Paint the garlands with spray paint. Use a lighter shade of green to draw the lines.

Now we make the flowers. You can use the top and bottom from a tin or round tin covers that you get from bottles, glass jars etc. Begin by cutting straight lines like in the first picture. Then round the petals. Hammer the flower to make it flat and use pike to make a hole for the wire. Spray paint to wanted color. Then plan how to decorate the flowers. I browsed some books about Indian style decorations and draw notes. After the decorating session put a bead into the middle of a metal wire and fold the wire to u-shape. Put the ends of the wire through the flower. Now you can easily hang the flowers.

Now spray paint a plain chandelier and decorate it with the leaf garlands, flowers and beads. Glass beads are very expensive so I recommend that you check your local flea market.  I found a small bag of worn jewelry for 3 euros. It does not matter if the beads have lost a little bit of their color. I also buy craft supplies from sales. I bought the Indian beads already at autumn sale for 45 cent per small bag.

I really like how this chandelier looks now. It fits better to my home and it matches perfectly to the crocheted lamp in my blue corner.  I have had this chandelier for six years and the last two years in a storage. This is one way to get new look for an old piece. 

Now I will change for sewing and knitting for a while. Though, I have lots of more ideas for tin... :)


Sunday, 17 January 2016

My weekend projects

As I have told you I usually have lots of projects going on at the same time. This weekend I managed to finish one of them: the pair of woolen socks that you saw in my last post. Then the other project that I have to continue tomorrow is about used tin cans. I have cut and hammered these leaves (awful noise!) from tin cans. Flowers are in progress, cut but not hammered and shaped. If my project succeeds these are to become something colorful and pretty.

Then I have been hooked to Charlaine Harris´ book Midnight Crossroads. I could not get it of my hands last night. I read till 3 a.m. :) I found her novel from library by accident. I did not know that she has started a new book series 2014. I have read all Sookie Stackhouse novels and I love her humor. This new book is as entertaining as the last one and full of supernatural mysteries. I still have 100 more pages left, luckily. I truly recommend if you are bored to watch tv but seek after action.

Now I am listening to old hit songs from the radio and planning what kind of socks I am going to knit next (I have to get rid of the bags full of yarn:). I went outside just to notice it is too cold (-25 C) to be there for long. The dark period of the year `kaamos` has finally ended even in the northernmost part of Lapland. They can now see the sun for an our a day when it did not rise at all for two months. Imagine that. In this part of Lapland we have seen glimpses of the sun even during the darkest period. From that perspective I am living in a southern resort :D

Have a good start for the week!