Wednesday, February 11, 2009

valentiney goodness!!

have you noticed that i like the word "goodness"? i love it! it drives my mom nuts when i invent my own words (she's a writer/copywriter/editor, so she's big into words!), but i've always done it. i like adding "ness" onto the end of words especially.

anyway, you're wondering as i babble, what is this valentiney goodness of which you are speaking???

swap stuff!

i LOOOVE valentines day! it's right up there with christmas for me in terms of crafting, and almost as close as halloween. i hate all the overpriced grossness of it, you know, roses that cost 3 times as much as they will on feb 21st, chocolates, impersonal purchased consumerism, all that, but i love the basic concept of showing love! i love the pink and red frilliness, and vintage valentines, and hearts are always good, whether they're broken, winged, anatomical, sacred, or just plain old hearts.

so i signed up for a couple of valentine swaps on, and organized one as well! i joined the classroom card exchange, and my cards have been received, so i'll post those soon. i organized the love/hate atc swap, and those cards are currently winging their way towards my partners (that's another thing i love about valentines day - the imagery and idea of love letters!)

and i also joined the valentine's day tea towel swap! i'd never done one of the tea towel swaps, but i've been really getting into embroidery more and more, so i was super excited about it!

finding the flour sack towel itself was a challenge! though they're apparently really common in the US, they were much harder to find in canada. in the end i think i tried 8 or 9 different stores! ikea, no, walmart, no, superstore, no, dollar stores, no, etc, etc! i found a set at zellers, which is what i ended up using, but i wasn't really happy with them. they were cut off grain, so after i preshrunk them they were all wonky, i had to trim them all and rehem them, and then the quality of the cotton wasn't as good as i would have liked. i mostly embroider on kona, so i've been spoiled by quality fibers and tight weaves! i did eventually find a (cheaper) set at canadian tire, though not until after i'd already started the towel. the new set seems much better, we'll see!

my towel turned out fabulously even with the tribulations, and i loved the end result!

my partner loves cupcakes and cute stuff, but not so much the precious memories type of cute so much as kawaii cute, which i definitely agree with! she also had several matryoshka things on her wists, which are a favourite image/subject of mine, so she was really fun to craft for!

the tea towel! i had a lot of fun trying new stitches for two of the cupcakes, i wanted them each to have a different stitch for the frosting and the heart, to add to the loveable quirkiness of the design!
the cupcakes are based on a stamp made by Studio G and the writing is a font downloaded from called DJ Candy Hearts.

the base is backstitch (j&p 4300), the frosting is scroll stitch (anchor 89), and the heart is overcast stitch and french knots (dmc 815).

the base is backstitch (dmc 915), the frosting is pekinese stitch/chinese stitch/blind stitch/forbidden stitch (dmc 553), and the heart is fishbone stitch (dmc 498).

the base is backstitch (anchor 112), the frosting is stem stitch (dmc 3607), and the heart is chain stitch (dmc 815).

the hearts are back stitch, and the writing is stem stitch and french knots.

the matryoshka pouch! i LOOVE this!
pale pink upholstery weight vinyl with a glitter vinyl appliqued matryoshka and hearts. her face is stamped in stazOn in using hand carved stamps.

it has a pink vintage deadstock zipper and a handle with a snap so that it can be hung from the strap of a larger bag (easy access to essentials!), or hung from a towel rack if used as a toiletries bag.




i also entered the pouch in the craftzine valentine's day project contest, because honestly, how can you resist the glittery cuteness? ;)

the heart pendant
UTEE cupcake heart pendant
this was just for fun, i tossed it in at the last minute. i've been playing around with UTEE lately, and i'm seriously loving it! after the UTEE was slightly cooled, i stamped it with the cupcake stamp and pigment ink, then heated it a bit more that the image would melt into it. i made a few other pieces at the same time, i'll post them soon, with more info.

and all the extra goodies i sent as well!
valentine kinder surprise eggs, variously chocolate hearts, including a lindt (mmmm), a cupcake vday card, and an envelope made out of cupcake scrapbook paper sewn together, filled with cinnamon hearts, valentine's smarties (y'all don't have them in the US), and valentine jelly bellys.

it's been a while since i've sent a swap package that's multiple kinds of crafts, so it was fun. i wish i could've wrapped it up all sweetly, but i had to take it through the border to mail it USPS (so much cheaper!), so it couldn't be wrapped up.


bee listy said...

the most widely available flour sack towels here are the Aunt Martha.

They're not great quality at all, but they're widely available.

Kristina said...

Everything is wonderful!!!
I LOVE LOVE LOVE the matroshka wallet! Can you use vinyl in an embroidery machine!? I've never tried, but would imagine it might break the needle with as fast as it goes, no?
I think I might have to steal this idea form you!

amy dame said...

bee listy, thanks! apparently martha makes some that aren't bad, and are available at one of the chains. target maybe? there just seemed to be so many places that were suggested to me, but they were all in the US! if i'd had time, i could've ordered them online, but that wouldn't have left me much time for the actual stitching.

thanks mama krit! you can use vinyl in an embroidery machine, i've done it before! the bibs i made for christmas were made out of vinyl, you can see them here -

this pouch is applique, which i do a lot of with vinyl. i have a bunch more, including this design, that i need to finish up and get posted in my etsy shop soon.

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