Tag Archive | stress

Have Yourself Some Merry Little Christmas Crafting.

T’was the night before Christmas and all through the house, not a creature was stirring…

EXCEPT for the crazy crocheter with visions of grandeur still frantically crocheting her Christmas mouse!

2015 Christmas Card Picture

 

I told myself NO CHRISTMAS PROJECTS this year, despite all the wonderful ideas and patterns there are to read about in the blogosphere and on Ravelry for Christmas crafters.

But, right around Thanksgiving the Christmas crafting bug bit me and I decided that just one little, teeny, tiny, project that could be easily completed before Christmas came and went would be ok to make.

This project needed to be something small and simple that could be made with minimal stress and time. As I looked at my patterns and some ideas on line, I found this pattern for some amigurumi Christmas light bulbs and picked it to be my one and only Christmas crafting project for this year.

The pattern for these Christmas light bulbs is very simple and it only took a couple of Christmas movies for me to have 10 bulbs, 2 of each color, crocheted up. It took a few more Christmas movies to stuff the 10 bulbs, and then I had to stop watching movies altogether so that I could concentrate on the details of these Christmas bulbs. The devil is always in the details isn’t it?

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It took just a few minutes to stitch the tops of the Christmas bulbs closed once they were stuffed. I decided to use googly eyes instead of safety eyes, so, with the husbands help, it only took a few more minutes to glue the eyes on to each bulb. But now the long process of giving each bulb a smile and a personality started.

I tried big smiles, small smiles, v-shaped smiles, rounded smiles, and crazy zig-zag smiles but nothing looked good to me. I finally decided on smaller v-shaped smiles. I was using black yarn to make the smiles but the black yarn was not showing up well on the darker color bulbs so I tried white yarn instead. That looked awful, so I switched to some silver color yarn. After much trial and error, I completed the 10 smiles on the Christmas bulbs.

Now, what should I do with 10 Christmas crocheted amigurumi light bulbs? I could chain them together into a string of lights to make one Christmas decoration. Or I could put a bulb on a long piece of string or yarn and make it a necklace for all my friends and coworkers, but who wants a silly Christmas light bulb necklace? At last, I decided to make them up as Christmas tree ornaments.

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I dug through the closet and found some silver and gold metallic cording to make loops to hang these Christmas light bulb ornaments. I carefully cut even lengths of the cording, and threaded the cording through the top of each bulb. I knotted the cording, planning to twist the cording around and then hide the knot in the top of the bulb but this did not work.

The knots in the cording were too big to pull into the stuffing at the top of the bulbs. In hind sight, if I had stuffed the tops of the bulbs less, this would have worked, but I stuffed the tops good and plenty so hiding the knots in the top was not an option. I tried using yarn instead of the cording but that did not look as good. The silver and gold cording added an elegant Christmas touch to the bulbs. So, after much debate, I decided to just leave the knot at the top of the cording so it was still visible.

This was a great idea and a simple solution except that the bare ends of the cording knots frayed like crazy. I wanted the ends of the knots trimmed close but then the cording would fray and the knot would come untied. Flustered, I turned to the husband who said one word.

GLUE!

So thank heavens for clear drying glue. So, after carefully knotting and trimming the cording ends, I doused the knots and ends in glue to seal the cording, stop the fraying and keep the knot tied. After much patience with the knotting, cutting and glueing, the glue dried clear and the Christmas light bulb ornaments were done.

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At first, I did not like what I had made and I thought seriously about tossing the bulbs into the garbage can. But after they sat on the cutting table for a little while, their silliness grew on me and I now think that they are very cute silly little Christmas light bulb ornaments that my friends and family will be more than willing to hang them on their Christmas trees this year.

Until next time, Crochet forth and Christmas craft on!

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That Voodoo that You Do

My work is very stressful. So, we like to use humor at work to lessen the stress loads. One of my co-workers is particularly funny. She often says “Well, if you don’t help me with this, I’m going to go home tonight and stick pins in your doll.” At which we all respond with a chuckle and “I’m not afraid of you.” Although now, she is going to be afraid of me.

IMG_1713This is Lottie Lou. I made her to help me out at work with the ongoing voodoo doll joke theme. The next time I work with this co-worker, I will wait for the right comment from her, then take Lottie Lou out of the drawer and start sticking pins in her. I can’t  wait! This is going be hilarious!

IMG_1716I didn’t spend a lot of time in the construction of Lottie Lou since I had no pattern. I fashioned her after a “dammit doll” I had made previously for some family sports fans. I stuffed her from the top of her head, making it easy to just sew a seam to make her legs. Her hair was a little bit of a challenge.  I sewed the yarn to one side of the doll then folded the ends into the doll then stitched the other side of the doll to the yarn side. I had to sew the yarn a couple of times to catch it all and keep the look I wanted. The next time I make one I think a little bit of adhesive spray would help keep the yarn in place as I stitched. I was not particular about having perfect seams because I wanted Lottie Lou to be a little rough around the edges. I spent very little time on her shirt. I finished no edges. I wanted it to be in a rag-like style. Her face was fun to put together. Although the red lips and the glasses and the wiggle eyes make her look less like a voodoo doll, they do make her look more like my co-worker.

IMG_1709With Lottie Lou completed, I needed pins. I wanted big hat pins, but could not find any at Joann’s. (For that matter of fact, Joann’s does not carry doll making products at all, so my husband had to make Lottie Lou’s glasses for me.) I finally bought these heart topped pins. Fortunately, they are much longer than a regular pins and I can tell my co-worker that the hearts are because I loved her. Yeah, she will buy that story!