Saturday, January 31, 2009

Print Gocco? Check out Yudu!

Dear Kelly,

I know you love your Print Gocco as much as I love mine. With manufacturer Riso no longer producing them or the supplies (or close to it - anyone know what the current situation is?), finding screens and bulbs is getting harder and more expensive. Making the decision to use a precious screen and two bulbs is difficult. Is that design I want to print really Gocco-worthy? Despite this, I still subscribe to the Print Gocco Yahoo! Group, although I don't always read the messages. But today, I am SO happy I read it because someone posted this:

Made by Provo Craft and currently only sold by HSN, this is the brand-spanking-new Yudu Screen Printing Machine. It seems pricey at $279.95, but get this:

You can print designs as large as 11" x 14"!!! And it works on anything flat! Paper, fabric, wood, anything flat enough to put in there!

For those of you who don't have a Print Gocco, here's a little information to put this in perspective:
There are currently two versions of the Print Gocco machine. One lets you print designs to a maximum of 3 1/2" x 5 3/4" - that's the smaller, less expensive version. If you can even find one (there are a lot on eBay), you're going to pay at least $100. The larger version runs about twice that and only prints up to 7" x 9 3/4". I know there are some clever, steady-handed people that use multiple screens to make larger designs, lining everything up exactly, but I know I'd never get good results that way. And the process is more involved, more like traditional screen printing.
So 11" x 14"??? That opens up huge possibilities for what you can create.

The supplies seem expensive, too, but the screens are reusable and it looks like you create your screens using inkjet transparencies.

I don't have the money for one of these right now, but I'm going to seriously consider saving up for it!


P.S. Photo is from HSN.
P.P.S. I have no affiliation with Print Gocco, Provo Craft or Yudu, nor have I seen this in person or used it - I'm just really, really excited about it!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Cashmere cowl

Dear Shayne,

Wow -- what a month I've had. Very busy at work. I actually finished this cowl at the beginning of the month, but haven't had a moment to take photos. I was home today (yay!) so here it is.

I know you think this glass head is creepy, so I apologize. I haven't gotten anything yet to replace her, so look past the head to the cowl.

The pattern is Abby from Knitty. I posted this yarn just about a year ago when I bought it at Stitches West. It's cashmere -- sooooo soft!

Here it is, pulled up as a sort of hood:
Cowl: in "hood" position.

I actually ran out of yarn before finishing the full length, so it would be a bit short in back if I wore it that way:
Not for short haired folks -- a bit short in back.
My hair is long right now, though, so the back of my neck doesn't require full coverage.

I mostly wear it like a regular scarf -- for keeping my neck warm:
Cowl: I mostly wear it like this.
It's nice for pulling up over my nose when it's chilly!

This was a quick knit, which was great. After finishing it, I stated that I would never make another full-length lace scarf again. Who needs all that extra stuff? As long as my neck is warm, I'm good.

Of course, I will forget I ever made that statement the next time I fall in love with some lace scarf pattern I just have to make. Naturally.


Monday, January 19, 2009

Barely crafty

Dear Kelly,

I haven't gotten to any of those crafts I talked about last week, surprise surprise. But I did do something slightly crafty tonight, although I have no photo.

My friend Jenny, not to be confused with your friend Jenny, is buying a house very soon. It's got some major 70s decor going on - wood paneling, brown appliances and the strangest assortment of light fixtures (I really should get pictures of those!). So she'll be gradually gutting the house, room by room. Last weekend, we went in and measured most of the rooms and now I'm working on floor plans.

My mom will be thrilled to know that something useful has come from my two semesters as an Interior Design major.


Sunday, January 11, 2009


Dear Shayne,

I totally want this poster from Obey the Purebreed:

Love it! I think I need the small size.

They've got a bunch of different designs for specific breeds of both dogs and cats -- I think you need something from this line.


PS - Image taken from Obey the Purebreed.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

And for my birthday...

Dear Shayne,

Wow. The last few weeks have been kind of nuts around here. We've had several house guests and things have been crazy busy at work. I haven't even gotten the chance to tell you about my big exciting birthday gift -- a serger!

This was from Bill (he's the best!) It's a Brother 1034D -- not the fanciest serger in the world, but I picked it because all of the reviews at Amazon say that it's very easy to thread. My grandma has some nightmare serger that takes an advanced degree to thread, so I knew that I did not want that.

It's basically a "starter serger" -- not too spendy and it gets good reviews. If I find in a few years that I am serging like a maniac, well, I may consider getting a fancier one then. For now, I am looking forward to making basic skirts (and ruffles, of course.)

Honestly, this is the first free day I have had in three weeks, so I haven't gotten a chance to play with it yet. As soon as I hit "Publish Post" here, I am going to crack it open. (Wish me luck!)


PS - Image (and serger!) from

Friday, January 09, 2009

Lots of Things to Make

Dear Kelly,

As you (and our readers) have probably figured out, I haven't been feeling too crafty lately. But I've seen a bunch of inspiring ideas on the Internet recently, that I may actually try this weekend.

Craft: Magazine's blog is always great for new ideas. I fell in love with these pom pom flowers the other day. Kristen of Domestifluff posted these adorable flowers *and* a tutorial. Would these work as part of your wedding bouquet? I have some fluffy black yarn and some plain black yarn that I will try. I forgot to pick up florist wire, though. I think hers look great with the twigs, but I'm not really in the mood to search outside for my own :)

The pom poms remind me of an awesome Christmas gift I got. I've been wanting one of these Pom Trees for a few years, and my mom finally got me one this year. I hate those little plastics things from the craft store and I know you can just use a piece of cardboard to make pom poms, but I'm a sucker for a good craft tool. I haven't opened it yet, but like I said, maybe this weekend!

I honestly couldn't make up my mind about this Cupcake Liner Garland by Veronica of Petunia (via Craft: Magazine, via Apartment Therapy). But I kept going back to it because my mom has been gradually changing most of her decor to these pretty, pastel colors. I finally just showed her the picture and she loves it, so I have four packs of cupcake liners waiting to make this for her. I'm thinking that it would be pretty to edge some of the liners with glitter glue.

And the last thing... Paper-Source has these very smart looking Day of the Week clothespins, that should be easy to make. I think I will print the labels at Kinkos on the color laser printer to avoid ink running when I glue them onto the clothespins.

Whew, that's a lot of crafting!


P.S. Photos are from Domestifluff, The Pom Tree, Petunia and Paper-Source

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Christmas scrubs

Dear Shayne,

The big crafty gift I gave this year was tubs o' scrub. As I mentioned awhile back, I learned to make salt scrubs at The Nova Studio this year. So I bought a bunch of oils and salt and I set about to make lots of scrub.

Bill laughed at me the day I was making all of this, as it looked like I was a mad scientist in a lab, with my giant jugs of oil, mixing cups, and many plastic containers. Here's the product glamor shot:
Scrubs in tubs

I actually gave them tied up cutely with a hand-crocheted washcloth, but I did not get a pretty product shot of that. I snapped this one late one night while I was wrapping things up:
Lots o' scrubs

I was originally going to make the washcloths myself, but then I found Etsy seller CocoaBeans and I went ahead and bought them from her. If you are looking for good quality hand-crocheted cotton washcloths at terrific prices, go straight over to her shop and pick some up for yourself. Excellent customer service, to boot. Can't beat that!

I bought the oils from Essential Wholesale -- great product, good prices, fast shipping. I ordered the 16oz plastic containers from Container & Packaging Supply -- if you need any kind of container in the world, check there. Amazing selection, great prices, low/no minimums, fast shipping.

I feared the biggest challenge would be finding waterproof labels, but then I stumbled upon these fantastic weatherproof mailing labels from Avery at Office Depot and they have held up perfectly in my shower every day for the past month or so, so I highly recommend them.

I kept one scrub for myself and I'm glad that I did -- it's really moisture-ific, which is definitely appreciated during these dry winter months.


Picture Project

Dear Kelly,

I had this great idea to take a picture of Sam every day for a month and then do something crafty with the results. I went to get the first few days' worth off my camera and realized that I didn't take a picture on January 1st! Now I need to decide if I should just keep going for January, without that first picture, or try again in February. Opinion?

Anywho, here are the pictures I've taken so far.


Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Where has the time gone?

Dear Shayne,

I had a pretty crafty Christmas -- I both received crafty gifts and, of course, gave some handmade crafts. I haven't posted any of them yet because I've been at work from dusk til dawn I mean: dawn til dusk (great. can't even keep time of day straight anymore.) for the past week, so there isn't any light for me to photograph anything!

So I stole this photo from the Letter Writer's Alliance site to show you one thing Bill gave me for Christmas... this awesome bag! (You know how I love bags...)

I especially like the fact that the strap is long enough to go diagonally across my chest. (You can get one for yourself right here.)

I've really fallen down on my letter writing lately, so perhaps this bag will remind me to write more. Ya think?


Saturday, January 03, 2009

Happy New Year!

Dear Shayne,

This year, I waited too long to make Christmas cards and then ended up sending them as New Year cards. Sigh.

I even thought my plan to make postcards was just brilliant, since it would save me the insanity of making my own envelopes like I did last year and the year before. But it didn't help. I still got behind and had to send them out late. C'est la vie.

I used thick bookboard from Paper Source and cut it down to 4x6 inch rectangles. It made a very satisfying giant stack, I must admit:

I found a sheet of scrapbook paper with snowflake cut-outs to use as a mask. Then I went to town with the spray paint.

I like the way they came out, although I probably would have done more with them if I had left myself more time.

It's funny to me that I have used a snowflake motif on our cards for the last two years even though it does not snow where we live. Huh. I guess the "White Christmas" image is just something I cannot shake!


Thursday, January 01, 2009

Super Cute Dolls

Dear Kelly,

I saw these adorable dolls today, made by Craftster user alisonillustration.

If I can clear off enough dining room table this weekend, I just might try to make one myself. I'll probably have to come up with a boy version for Sam!


P.S. Photo is from alisonillustration's post here on Craftster!