Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Garden Day and a New FREE Website to convert HTML to PDF

Well, I have had a wonderful day in the garden, cutting overgrown shrubs back (yes I know, wrong time of year) however it needed to be done.  Cleaned everything up, now I just need to get rid of all the cuttings.

I found a wonderful new website than will convert HTML to a PDF.  What this means to us crafters is that all the wonderful tutorials that bloggers share with us, can now be easily converted to a pdf document that you can save for use at a later date.

You can find the FREE converter here ...  try it, it is great.  You may get a little more information than you want, like comments etc, however you do not need to print those off.

You just copy the web address (url) from the site that you want to convert (this is in the address bar on the top of the screen, and usually starts with http://......) 

See the example below where I have put the address from my blog about the casserole carrier I made.

Then you just click on the "convert to pdf" button
If the site has a lot of photos it may turn out to be quite a large file, but you can save it for use at a later date.

This is a screen dump of the information, saved into a pdf file from my blog

Try it out, you may find it useful.. I certainly have. 

I am starting off my Australia Day celebrations with breakfast in the park tomorrow, followed with a family lunch .... I am really looking forward to it.

Enjoy the day, no matter where you are.

Australian and proud of it.  



Sunday, January 22, 2012

Recycling - Grocery Bag Container

I seem to use a lot of these wipes lately, and the container is so strong, it seems a shame to just "throw" it away.

They have a large opening and are huge inside.

Enter the grocery bag dispenser ..  take your grocery shopping bags, fold in half lengthwise.  Ensure you push all the air out of the bags.  Then line each bag up end to end with the handles overlapping the bag before it.

Keeping the handle of the first bag in the line free (folded to one side) roll up the long line of bags tightly.  I used 20 bags in my container, and it could have used at least another 10-15, but that is all I had on hand.

Place inside the empty container.

Add the lid, and pull the first bag handles through the slit on top.

Cut a piece of fabric to fit around the container, and modpodge to the surface, overlapping a little at the back -- this acts as a glue and sealant.  If you then brush modpodge on the outer surface of the fabric as well, it is a mild water proofing sealant.

Keep this container in the boot of your car, for those occasions when you need a plastic bag.  Wet towels, general car rubbish etc.  Great recycling and looks a lot prettier than having those bags stuffed into a drawer.


Saturday, January 21, 2012

Casserole Carrier

After two weeks of not being in the craft studio, I needed to SEW ... the flannel fabrics for the rice bags were still out, so I made a quick and easy casserole carrier, following YouTube instructions from Crafty Gemini. 

Two pieces of fabric, quickly quilted with "Warm & Natural", sewn together

Two loops on opposite corners, and one strap across the other diagonal.

Place casserole or pie dish in the centre, under the strap.  Then thread the strap through each corner loop, easy!  Pull up, so the long strap becomes a carrying handle.

Reversible - just flip the long strap to the other side

Same directions, strap through loops, pull up for handle

Viola, all done.... now if only that casserole dish was filled, I would be right for dinner for tonight.

Another quick and easy gift to add to the gift box


Saturday, January 14, 2012

Under The Weather

A flu bug has invaded my body and kicked the legs right from under me.  Four days in bed, and only just starting to feel half way human again.

Be back as soon as I am my old self again. Fingers crossed very soon

Sunday, January 08, 2012

Rice Bags

A blogging friend, Selina (find her blog here) sent me a rice bag kit and instructions before Christmas, however I did not get a chance to make any until now.  How I wish I had, they would have been a perfect gift for a lot of my friends.  Not to worry though, as I have now made them, and they are ready for gifting.

The outer covers:

The inner bags before filling with rice

The bag filled - you only 1/2 fill the bag with rice, so that it will move around and mold to your body.

The rice filled inner bag inside a cover

All packed up with a instruction label on the front


I filled four of the bags, and left the other four unfilled.  They will be ready to fill whenever a gift is needed.  Great idea to have these on hand for a quick gift.  Suitable for both men & women.

Selina gave a tutorial over on Sew We Quilt for these rice bags, you can find her instructions here

Update:  3 of the filled bags have already been claimed by family members ... that is a good sign!


Pillowcase Grocery Bag

What can you make with a pillow case?  Apparently a lot of things, however one item that caught my eye was the grocery bag.   

Take one very wrinkled (I should have ironed it first) pillow case.  This is a vintage pillowcase and I love the colours and pattern.

Then using the instructions from this site turn it into a grocery bag or everyday tote.

Very cute and practical.

Now anyone that knows me, will know that I will always think of another way of doing things ... Well, I am going to track down some Christmas Santa Sacks (in the sales) and make some cute gift bags using the same principle.  I will need to be careful with ones with designs as the pillowcase is turned into itself to make the lining.  I hope to be able to get some and show you the results very soon.


Saturday, January 07, 2012

2012 - Breast Cancer Drain Bags

I managed to make a start on my Breast Cancer Drain Bags for 2012.  Belinda, our local coordinator with the hospitals, needs 27 bags each month, and I have committed to making 6 each month to help with the cause.

This month, Sue in Griffith, donated some Japanese Fabric, which I then made up into lovely bright bags.

I did not get any help with trying to find the kimono / cross-over style tissue covers, so I just made the standard ones to pop inside these bags. 

These ones still need to have the tissue covers made - but I love the brown bag

Four made, another 2 to go ... they do not take very long to sew up, it is only the cutting out that takes the time.  I want to get a good start, with at least another six made, so that I am not having to make them at the last minute.

Belinda reads my blog, so she will be happy to see that I have made a start!


Friday, January 06, 2012

5 minute craft

Just to keep myself sane, I managed 5 minutes of craft time yesterday ...using just two items.
Jumbo paperclips and patterned tape

I first saw the idea on a french site, here

I tried, and I must admit my first response, was "what a non event" ... they looked boring, the paperclip looked too big for the tape.  Oh well, I tried.

Then I was looking through a cooking book that I had received for Christmas and wanted to mark the page I was up to.  I grabbed one of these paperclip bookmarks, and was pleasantly surprised.  How good they looked in the book, but more surprising how effective.  The tape was easily seen. (although this is not a good photo, to show you)

I popped some more in a novel, that I have yet to read. Maybe if I stayed out of the craft studio and off the computer, I may get a chance??  This photo shows just how effective this bookmark is.

So, even if you are going to give them away to family and friends, presentation is the key!
I amended the backing card that I had made for the button bookmarks before Christmas, and placed these on it ... I think they came out nicely

Just a closeup

All in all a good five minutes... there are many lovely Japanese masking tapes and decorative tapes available at the moment, that these can be a quick and easy craft to do.  I am going to get my nieces and nephews to make some when they next come to visit.  Maybe you could layer the tape and get different effects?  Worth a try!

I hope you managed to get at least 5 minutes of craft time today?

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Looking for pattern or tutorial

I picked up this cute kimono style tissue cover at "The Handy Dog" at Gundagai and I was hoping someone could help me find the pattern or tutorial so that I can make some.

I am starting on my Breast Cancer Drain Bags for the new year, and was donated some Japanese print fabric and I thought these tissue covers would be nice to pop inside the bag.

The tissue cover has a separate piece of fabric across the back, and insert down the centre of the front. You can see this in the photo below.

The other reason I like this cover, is that it holds the top opening tissue packs, which are more readily available in the stores

If anyone can help, I would appreciate it.  I have searched on the web, but cannot find anything similar. 


Monday, January 02, 2012

Fabric Twist Ties

As I am going through my list of quick and easy craft ideas to try, I found this post from Sew Many Ways - Fabric Twist Ties

Most of us have a lot of scrap fabric, and this is a great way to use them up.  I followed the instructions in the blog, with the exception of sewing the fabric together.  I left the pipe cleaner (chenille stick) in, and sewed close to it. and sewed it closed, all in the one step.

I am loving the idea of recycling, making my own bags, ties etc... so I have started the year off well.

I like the idea of matching the tie with the handmade gift inside.  Will need to try some with Christmas fabric, ready for next year, he he

Have you started crafting yet this year?

Sunday, January 01, 2012

Newspaper Gift Bag

On the first day of 2012, I manage to get one craft item made - good start to the year!

I have been wanting to try the Newspaper Gifts Bags for a little while and while browsing Pinterest I found this tutorial...

So using the movie section from today's Sun-Herald - this is what was made.

This is showing both sides of the bag ... I did make some changes to the sizing, as the tutorial was for a small gift bag.  I wanted to use the full size of the newspaper to make a larger bag.

Sizes I used:
Top fold - 1.25"
Bottom fold: 3"

Folds across the width of the newspaper at 7", 4", 7",4" and 1/2"

I then had to change the sizing of the card stock to match.  All other instructions were followed.

I am really happy with the result, and it is one more craft item I can cross of my list of things to try.

PLUS - the Christmas tree has been dismantled, and all the Christmas decorations put away for another year. 

Hope you had a great day