Wednesday, December 17, 2008

On the Fifth Day of Christmas

Hooray! More finished projects today.

A couple of packages and the bulk of the Christmas cards were mailed off this afternoon, and then it was on to the next thing. A request from my husband: something warm for his feet.

Microwavable insoles! Since he was home all day, if he figured out what I was doing, he did not let on. I tried to sneak one of his shoes out of the closet and over to my work area, and traced it on four layers of flannel. I sewed all around the pair of "feet," leaving a space for the "filling". Then I mixed some dried lentils from the pantry with two drops of lavender essential oil. I filled a bit of the insole, then sewed it off, filled the next section, sewed it off, and then the last and sewed it shut. Each one can be heated and put in his slippers. I doubt he would want to walk on them, but whenever he is working at his desk he can heat them up and keep his feet warm.

At My Heart's at Home told me of a site where there were some beautiful bookmarks, so I did print some out for stocking stuffers. I would have punched a hole in the top and put a ribbon through, but I managed to stretch my dwindling pile of card stock by printing these double-sided. Clever me! And I got the other side upside down. So I decided not to do a ribbon, but leave them as they are. 

A very handy tool for putting Contact paper on things is this roller (is it called a brayer?) that I got from a rubber stamping store for a project long ago. It helps get things smooth.

The other project I finished (all but the frames) today was something I started early this summer: silhouettes. My grandmother once did our silhouette the old-fashioned way (shadow tracing) and I thought that it could be even easier to do nowadays with the computer.
First I got a side photo...
Then my Photoshop-handy husband found the edges for me (I think it was the magic wand tool?). Once that is done, you can fill in the profile or the background with whatever color you wish, as seen below:

I thought I was being so thrifty to print things and do something that required no money, but the thirsty little printer tells me that I am running out of ink! So it is thrifty if you forget about the cost of ink! These can also be matted and framed and will look quite nice.

It saves ink to just take the plain lines of the silhouette, and print on a colored piece of card stock or paper. Then cut around the silhouette and paste on black paper.

I read a post about using cloth for gift wrap, which I found interesting. It is so nice to have quality wrapping paper and fantastic package toppings, but they are only there for a moment of glory before getting ripped up and thrown away. I tend to rescue bows and things from the trash pile to re-use, if they are in good shape. This year, I found that the rolls of wrapping paper at the dollar store came in different lengths. If you look carefully, you can find a 50 foot roll for your dollar.
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