Archive for the ‘And Everything Else’ Category

Patio Chair Covers

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Meet our tired old patio chair cushions.  They’ve been faded in time, and this year when we sat on them, it was more than the fabric could take.  The sad thing is, the chairs are still in great shape and very comfortable.  The cushions themselves have held up.  It was just an issue with the fabric that was covering them.

Hubby was convinced that there were only about three years old, but I was sure we’d had them much longer.  A bit of research through my digital photo library revealed that they were entering into their 10th season.

The easy solution would have been to buy replacement cushions, but that was easier said than done.  They are oversized and, of course, not a standard size. When I finally did locate replacements that would work, they were $100 to $125 per chair!

Then came the debate.  For $500, we could easily replace the entire furniture set. While hubby was all for that, I just didn’t feel right about it.  Clearly my conservationist daughter is rubbing off on me.  Besides, as previously mentioned, the chairs are very comfortable.

I had some outdoor fabric I had purchased some time ago to recover the cushions for a glider that has since rusted out.  Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough yardage to completely encase the old cushions for all four chairs.  At best I could do two, but then what about the others?

So I did some measuring and determined a plan that would address all four chairs. Rather than completely encasing them, I could cover the main surfaces and secure the covers with velcro.  Since I already had the fabric and the velcro on hand, it wouldn’t cost me a thing but my time.

Hubby still wasn’t convinced but after a shopping trip where we couldn’t settle on any new furniture that we liked better, he acquiesced.

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The sewing potion itself was rather easy.  It just involved some straight sewing. There was enough body to the fabric that I didn’t even have to pin the fabric.  I ironed the first hems in place.

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The second sides required a bit of measuring, but again, no pins, just a bit of ironing followed by straight sewing.  Once all the hems were in place, I sewed the velcro onto the fabric by machine.  It all went rather quickly and I finished it in a single afternoon.

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Attaching the velcro to the cushions was a bit more work.  I had no choice but to do so by hand.  I used a curved upholstery needle.  It took some pressure to punch through the velcro and get the stitches in place.  The hand stitching wasn’t exactly pretty but the new fabric would hide it so I wasn’t concerned.  It took me three nights to get all the velcro attached to the cushions.

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Of course I could not wait to check out my finished project.  The velcro securely held the covers in place and I was relieved that I didn’t have to attach any more pieces.

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To be quite honest, I would have much rather been able to make proper covers. However, this solution works and we should get a few more seasons out of our furniture. With a long term goal of moving to a different house in three to five years, this will get us by so that we can purchase exactly what we want for the new place. But then again, if there is still life in the frames and cushions, maybe we’ll be revisiting the recover versus replace debate again.  Shhhh!  Don’t tell hubby!

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Wine Cork Bulletin Boards

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I’ve been saving corks for years.  Which was a good thing as it was surprising how many corks it took for this project.

The other challenge was finding the right frame.  I knew I needed a frame that was deep enough to accommodate the thickness of the corks.  It took quite a bit of searching the thrift shops to find just what I was looking for.

I cut a new backing from corrugated cardboard and stapled it to the back of the frame.

The cork pattern was a result of a Google search.  It is actually a quite forgiving design as there is some variation in length of the corks as well as diameter and shape since mine were all used corks.

The only other things I needed was a sharp knife to cut the corks to fit around the edge and my hot glue gun.

To say I was thrilled with how my project turned out is an understatement.  Not only will it be a great conversation piece, every cork represents a bottle of wine we shared or a winery we visited.  It’s a piece of our history and a reminder of wonderful memories.

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I still had some corks left.  And another frame.  So I created this second bulletin board for my daughter.

She has started a wine cork collection of her own but didn’t have near as many as I did. Between my corks and the ones my son collected from our winery visits, (he wasn’t old enough to drink, but he was cute enough that he always managed to acquire corks from the wineries), I still had plenty available.  I used the same pattern since it worked so well.

My husband was impressed with how the bulletin boards turned out.  He also remembered that one of the wineries we visited had used corks to create a table top which was done under glass.  So now we have a new mission to find just the right table to transform.  And to start another collection of wine corks.

There’s only one question tonight.  Red or white?

 

Grape Vine Decor

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With Christmas over and the decorations packed away for another year, my attention turned toward creating a new wreath I could display year round on my door.

Last fall, I inherited some gorgeous artificial miniature grape clusters from a friend. She didn’t have plans to use them and graciously passed them on to me.  She also passed on some artificial grape leaf vines as well.

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I originally had planned to use an actual grape vine wreath as my base, but when I ran across this wire frame at the dollar store, I decided to give it a try.  I wove the leafy vines around it attaching them here and there with wire.  Once I was satisfied with the fullness, then I added the tiny grape clusters.  The wire base made the wreath much lighter and it was not too thick to place between my front door and the storm door.

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I had some vines and grapes still left so I wired them together to create some pretty swags to decorate the tops of my bookshelves.

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There were still some sprigs left and I just couldn’t stop.   I wired on the grape clusters and poked them in between wine themed items on my display shelf.

The greenery adds such a nice warm touch to my living room.  Care to join me for a glass of wine?

One More Wreath

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This wreath thing is really addictive! After deciding to do my daughter’s wreath in purple and silver, I still had all those red and green ornaments that were just begging for a place among this year’s decor.

I also needed a special gift for my friend and supervisor at work. We have been friends for years and she was instrumental earlier this year in helping me attain my job that I love so much.

What better idea than something hand crafted with love?

This one turned out to be a slightly different style and less busy than the previous two.  My husband actually liked this one the best of all.

My friend was thrilled and displayed it in her office all day for everyone to see before taking it home at the end of the day.

Wreath Redo

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Having created a wreath for my daughter, and having had all the remaining ornaments strewn all over my craft table, I was inspired to redo my own wreath.

My original wreath was a number of years old.  The base was a styrofoam ring and after many years of enjoyment, it had fallen into disrepair.  I had thought it would just be a matter of reattaching the ornaments that had come off and reinforcing the glue in places, but upon examination, it became clear it was time to start over.

I had hoped to salvage as many ornaments as I could, so I carefully disassembled it.  I soon found that the years and the hot glue had done a number on many of them.  I was able to salvage some, but others were a total loss.  Luckily I had plenty on hand so I was not lacking.

The new wreath base is an artificial pine wreath.  It was so much easier to work with than the original styrofoam.  I remember what a lengthy process it was to have to hold the ornaments in place until the glue cooled and solidified.  I also remember burning all my fingertips in the process.  The pine base was definitely a quicker and safer option.

I finished it up and hung it on the door right about the time my husband came in from work.  “Wow!  Could you fit any more ornaments on it?” was his reaction.

Playing along with him I told him, “Yes, I probably could,” but we both agreed that the wreath was perfect as it was.

There are still more ornaments on my table.  Hmm…  Could I run out to purchase another wreath base?  Should I?  It’s so tempting!

Girlie Girl’s Wreath

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It’s hard to believe it’s been nearly six years since I made an ornament wreath, but my original blog post below testifies to that fact:

Crafting with Capri – Ornament Wreaths

These wreaths are so much fun and the results are always stunning.

I created this wreath for especially my daughter.  She now has a home of her own and I had been planning to make her a wreath since she moved there.

My original plan was to do one in red and green holiday colors, but when I pulled out the stash of ornaments I had been collecting for some time now, I found a bunch of purple ones.  I also had inherited quite a number of silver ornaments my Mom no longer wanted.  It didn’t take me long to determine this new direction was the right way to go.  Purple is her favorite color and she has always preferred silver over gold.

She was in town this weekend for a big holiday event with friends and would be breezing in and out before leaving for home.  I only had a short time to get the wreath done and have it to surprise her as well as for her to be able to enjoy during the holiday season.  So I set to work.

I was so pleased that it went together effortlessly.  Not only did it have ornaments from her maternal grandmother, but the purple bead garland came from necklaces we all wore at her paternal grandmother’s memorial service.  The finished wreath had all the bling and sparkle that is so representative of my daughter.

I had it hanging on the door  waiting to surprise her when she came in. She was thrilled. While we were putting lunch together, she kept disappearing from the kitchen.  She would come back to tell me she had to go look at her wreath again.

With that statement, I’m not sure which one of us got the better Christmas present!

 

 

Wine Cork Reindeer

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A little bit of research revealed to me that I had neglected to post these little cuties when I created them for gifts two years ago.

The result of another Google search, these little reindeer are made from a whole cork for the body and then corks which have been cut in half for their head and legs.  Some hot glue holds them together and they are embellished with googly eyes and a shiny red bead for the nose.  The antlers are from some small bits of stiff twine.  I formed the ears and tail out of white polymer clay that I over baked just a bit to get the tan color

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They were so much fun and I knew all my wine drinking friends would enjoy them so I made an entire herd!

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They are just too cute hanging on the tree!

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