I have a tutorial featured on the Sizzix blog today! Check it out!
I have a tutorial featured on the Sizzix blog today! Check it out!
Welcome to a new year of Challenge Chicks challenges! If you're a stamper and you like challenges, or you're new to the idea of challenges and want to give one a whirl, I invite you to participate with The Challenge Chicks! We're a small group of friends and stampers hosting monthly challenges. Won't you join us?!
Our challenge for January 2014 is issued by me! I'm not ready to let go of winter just yet, so January is all about Winter Wonderland! For my project I used the Trophy Ice Skates die from Sizzix to create a refridgerator magnet. I adhered patterned paper to chipboard and ran the die and chipboard through my BigShot.
Once the shapes were cut, I inked the edges a bit, colored the heel and blade on each skate with markers, and embellished with laces, sparkly twigs, baubles, a tag and glittery bell. I glued two strong magnets on the back so it would have some holding power while on the fridge.
Now, get yourself a good dose of inspiration and check out the rest of The Challenge Chicks projects:
And finally, you'll find this month's challenge gallery on SplitCoastStampers using keyword CHXJAN14 . We invite you to play along! Upload your project to your SplitCoastStampers gallery, add the keyword above, and your project will be automatically added to the gallery. Or join us on Facebook!
We look forward to seeing your projects!
Supplies for Magnet
Dies: Sizzix Trophy Ice Skates, Spellbinders Tag
Stamp: A Muse
Paper: American Crafts, chipboard, Neenah
Ink: Ranger Distress Ink in Brushed Corduroy, Black StazOn
ShinHan Touch Twin markers: BG7, WG9
Other: Hemp twine, Glittered decor pics, tracing wheel, bell, magnets
Supplies for Felt Ornaments
Dies: Sizzix Trophy Ice Skates, Spellbinders leaves
Other: Wool felt, button, DMC floss
I wanted to share this most wonderful handmade card we received from friend, Troy Louise! She used a very detailed die to create this amazing card using cardstock and foiled paper! Look at the details!
And just as amazing as the card is this gorgeous felt mitten ornament she made. Her beautiful handwork really shines on this piece! Sequins and beads add to the charm -- I love it so! Thank you, thank you!!
Ever have one of those gifts that's sooooo hard to part with you are actually just tempted to keep it for yourself? This was one of those gifts for me. But I knew he was going to a wonderful home, complete with a real life version of himself. So, I sent him on his way. Not before I gave him lots of squeezes, though!
Alan and I were doing a bit of shopping and came across him. I knew exactly who he needed to live with, so home with us he went. I dressed up his hat a bit with the button and holly for a little festive cheer!
I made a little white and yellow felt flower embellishment to decorate the baker's twine bow I wrapped around the envelope to keep the doily in place, and finally, I added a small tag with the recipient's name written on it.
Quick and easy!
Stamps: YouAre2Kind and Gum4Background by The Stamps of Life
Ink: VersaMark, Black StazOn, Stepanie Barnard Color Sprays in Blueberry, Sky, and Grape
Paper: Fabriano Watercolor Paper, Neenah, Bazzil
Other: bakers twine, buttons, thread, tracing wheel, Stampendous Kaleidoscope Transparent Embossing Powder, heat tool, craft mat, felt, glassine bag, Paper Doily, Sizzix Flower Layers & Leaf dies, Corner Chomper
Over the years I've made LOTS of felt flower brooches for the Christmas holiday, usually in pretty reds, creams, or blues. But last night I thought I'd make a nice springy yellow flower pin.
I used Sizzix framelits dies to cut the flowers and leaves out of wool felt. Once cut, the layers were sewn together with needle and thread, which also holds the vintage mother of pearl button in place.
I pinned the finished flower (I sewed a lapel pin on the backside) to a tag I cut using a Sizzix Bigz tag die. The tag is a piece of printed paper adhered to thin chipboard for added support. The sentiment banner and flowers were cut using Banners #2 Framelits by Sizzix.
PS: The little grey "flecks" you don't actually show up as grey on the flower. They're little bitty silver glitter pieces that give the entire flower and tag a pretty shimmer and shine. If I use this glitter on projects, I usually spray them AFTER they've been photographed, because the glitter always shows up in photos as grey. But, this time I forgot to wait to spray the flower until after the photos were taken. In real life, it's just sparkly. *grin*
Dies: Sizzix Framelits Banners #2, Sizzix Framelits Flower Layers & Leaf, Sizzix Bigz Tag
Stamp: tinytitles2stamp by The Stamps of Life
Ink: Stephanie Barnard Colorbox "Grape"
Other: Wool Felt, Vintage button, Coats Button thread, Silver Craft Glitter Spray
Paper: Chipboard, Pattern paper scraps (source unknown)
I've finished more Handy Dandy Pouches, and have listed several of them (varying prints) in the shop.
I found a pattern online, and then altered it a bit so that the final product ended up being the size I wanted. Purdy darn cute, if you ask me!
This holiday elf has been busy, busy, busy! I've posted a few new primitive candy cane ornaments in my Etsy shop!
I've been busy busy BUSY, crafting up some Claudine shelf sitters! Claudine is my own design, and I do love her so ... so much so that I made a flock!
I've posted these clucky friends in the shop.
UPDATE: All the Claudine's have flown the coop!
It's about time I got her finished, isn't it! *grin* Find yours here.
Surprise! One by one, another litter made their way to my Etsy shop! I've been working on these wee ones all week, and must say that they smell so good, and turned out cute as can be!
I also put together an e-Pattern, if you are so inclined to want to make your own litter, which is also available in the shop. It is a 3-page document that includes full instructions, a supply list, pattern, and my tea dying technique for the kitty, seam binding ribbon, and paper tags tags.
Hope you've enjoyed your evening ... I had a good time sewing! And I'm looking forward to seeing the rain gauge tomorrow!!
Last night, just for fun, I thought I would make some fabric coiled coasters. I used this tutorial, but stopped short of forming the bowl that the tutorial continues on to make.
I've never made anything like this before, and it was fun! Some of the coasters I made use 1 fabric print, and others have several different prints for more of a "scrappy" look.
I think they turned out pretty fun, and now I have another project on my "what to do on a rainy day" list.
Tonight I'll be making more kittens! Stay tuned!
I had so much fun making the primitive snowmen earlier this week, I decided to make a litter of kittens! Meet Clover, Ginger and Nutmeg.
One by one, they found their way to my Etsy shop! *grin*
Pretty cute how the tea settled around their faces in the shape of a heart!
To their scarves I added my homemade rusty bells, pins, and tags.
This project was inspired by lots of prim projects I've linked to on Pinterest.
Saturday I made a trip up to the city to run some errands. There was a train passing through town keeping me from getting to all of my errand locations so while I waited for the train to pass I decided to see if there were any new goods at the local antique shops. In one of the shops I found this sweet little hand crafted chicken potholder, and I'm pretty sure she told me that she needed to go home with me. She looks cute propped up on the back of the kitchen stove!
Welcome to the farm, little lady!
Below is a comment Dad made on THIS post that's not to be missed, and a little visual help with a rotated photo to give you his perspective:
"Great pictures and Memories, during one particularly loud giggle session I walked in to see what got them going and saw things from the "wrong side" of the table. For fun go back up through the pictures and check out the Hula girl upside down or stand on your heads.... I thought she was a freaked out Moose.....and the "coconuts" were the eyeballs.... so I said "what's with the moose" Ma?.... What moose? was the reply. So I picked her up and turned her upside down and promptly got laughed out of the shop! We see lots of confused meeses around here in the spring..... I went back to my ham samich and my fishin show.... Love, Dad"
Haa! Thanks for more laughs, Dad!! *grin*
This year we focused on felt projects. Some we made with shapes cut out using metal dies, and others we made with free-hand cut shapes using hand-drawn patterns or ideas from books and magazines. Usually we take over Mom's dining room table with our project mess, but this year we got to enjoy the new quilt room Dad built for Mom. We spread out our supplies along the counter, and pulled in the old (retro-old) kitchen table as our work surface. There was a large stack of felt on the counter, as well as boxes of felt from Mom and Aunt Patty's stash, too! I brought cutting dies from my house to use for our projects (why pack clothes when I can bring craft supplies instead!), and we used Mom's die cutting machine. There were beads in every color imaginable, buttons galore, and every embroidery floss color, all right at our fingertips.
One of the projects we made was made with the Gift Card Envie die from The Cat's Pajamas. We made needle keepers that we decorated with various cut flowers, beads, and embroidery. On my needle case, I used the Sunflower Rosette die from The Cat's Pajamas to create the large flowers for the front of the case.
We also made cookies! I remembered seeing this idea on Linda's Catered Crop blog last year. Her project turned out so cute, I knew I needed to bake up my own batch of cookies! If you do a Google image search for "felt cookies" you'll find all KINDS of great ideas! It's amazing how long a project like this takes... it might actually be faster to bake real cookies! *grin* But using metal dies to cut the felt into shapes works great! We used Spellbinder dies for our cookies and frosting.
I made a gingerbread girl using the Sizzix gingerbread die, and various other dies for embellishment. My favorite is the Icing die, by The Cat's Pajamas! It's the perfect size for these little woolies! To create her dress, I sandwich'd her between two pieces of red felt and carefully cut out the shape of her dress. Once cut, I hand stitched the side seams of the dress together, as well as the arms and shoulders. The white scalloped collar was added last.
And of course I had to make a gingerbread boy, too. Dressed in tidy overalls, he's ready to hang on our tree. A quick way to create clothes for the boy is to cut out a second gingerbread body using the color you want to use for the clothing; for my project I used blue. Then just chop off the extra parts on the colored cut-out, like the feet, the arms, and a little area to create the neckline. Easy peasy, you've got overalls shaped perfectly for your fella!
By FAR, the funniest project completed during the week was this hula gingerbread girl that Mom made. Quietly working away, Mom used the small Sizzix gingerbread die to cut out two body shapes from brown felt. She did a short row of blanket stitching for hair, and embellished the body with two mother of pearl buttons, green embroidery floss for the skirt, and two beads for eyes. It's perfect in every way! We laughed and laughed when she showed us what she had been secretly working on!
On the backside, I used the beautiful Snowflake die from The Cat's Pajamas to quickly and easily embellish the back. I love the stark contrast between the black and white wool felt.
And finally, using an idea from a magazine article Aunt Patty brought with her, I made this snowman face mug rug. The mug is one that I hand painted years ago at a paint-your-own-pottery shop, and just happened to be the mug I used this morning for my coffee!
We sure had a ball creating our projects this year! Wonder what we'll dream up for Christmas 2012!
Thought I would share the progress of Mom's quilt studio, a room Dad added onto their house for Mom to use for her quilting .... nothing short of amazing. She has her pretty fabric all folded and organized on the shelves. You can see *some* of her finished quilts up on top of the shelves.
The counter, covered with the die cutting machine, dies, stacks of felt for our current holiday crafting projects, as well as other odds and ends that we drug out for crafting. There's also one of Mom's cute little Featherweight machines on the counter, begging to be used (or taken to my house - HA!).
The machine, extended to the size for quilting a queen sized quilt, and extra machine parts still in boxes on the floor. Extra parts will move into storage areas. In the foreground sits the craft table, soon to be replaced by a larger handmade table that Dad is builiding. The design wall in the background, soon to have cedar wood trim borders; and all the pretty fabric stacked up on the shelves. Oooooh la la!
Imagine the fun that is to be had in this room!
I thought I would share some of my favorite holiday projects from recent years past. I made this card using the "scrap" of a die cut tree and old sheet music with one of my crystal snowflakes added for embellishment.
Hope you enjoyed this look back at some of my favorite holiday projects!
Painting and sanding and glittering and sewing and gluing and baking... their heads and scarves are hand painted wood, their noses I created out of clay. Their hats are felt, and their candy canes are dyed chenille. Each one was made with love.
I love every one of them... but if you'd like to have one for your very own, or perhaps you'd like to have one packaged up and shipped off to a friend as a secret santa gift, you can find them in my Etsy shop.
Ho ho ho!
I hope you and your families had a great Thanksgiving feast! We had a nice late lunch with Alan's parents, got stuffed, watched a bit of football, took short naps, and then carried on with our day. It was a pleasant way to spend the holiday.
This evening I made some felt poinsetta brooches to sell in the local antique shop. I think the local ladies will like them... I know I do!
I hope these little pretties sell! I'm tucking away the money I make selling my handmades to pay for my flight up north to Mom and Dad's for the holidays. Yahooo!
Just shout if you'd like one of these to make it's way into my Etsy shop as a custom order for you! I'd be delighted!
Here is one of the projects I've been working on for the shop downtown... I made four of these candle sleeves using a light cream colored burlap, some pretty homespun cotton, twill, twine, and a tin star embellishment. The sleeves could be used around a standard candle for decoration, if removed for burning, but I actually wrapped them around vanilla scented LED candles.
All that's left is to get pretty little price tags on them, and deliver them to the shop. Yeehaw!
Are you thawing your turkey yet!?
They're so hard to part with ... but you'll find these and more in my etsy shop.
I did a little non-paper crafting earlier this month and made some sweet wool felt flower hair clips. The felt for these flowers was all hand cut, the flowers assembled, and finally hand stitched to a barrett. I added pearls to the centers, and gave them all a quick dusting of fine silver glitter.
Similar rolled felt flowers can be made using paper crafting tools you may have on hand ... like circle, scallop, or even flower dies (like the Spellbinders Blossom and Peony dies). Or you can buy dies made specifically for making rolled flowers. I chose to hand cut the felt for these. The flowers are so fun to make that I guarantee I will be making a variety of others!
You can find lots of inspiration online if you search for felt flower hair accessories, and look at the images results.
Do you keep your travel sized tissues in a cozy? I usually just stuff tissues in a purse pocket, or jacket pocket, ...maybe when I get older I'll stuff them in my bra... But as I was walking out of my office this evening I saw these cute fabrics on my shelf, just begging to be stitched into something handy! I already had the sewing machine out, so what better time to make something cute?
I did a quick google search for "tissue cozy tutorial" and found oodles of links to check out! Here is the tutorial I followed....sort of. I changed the measurements of the pieces I used. I actually used a 6" square for the outer print, and an 8x6" rectangle for the inside print. I wanted my center stripes to be a bit wider, and the entire cozy to be a bit shorter in length. Other than those changes, I followed her instructions. She has a pretty cute Valentine "knock knock" joke included in her project, as well.
The low tonight is supposed to be in the 'teens'. Brrrr! Hope you're keepin' cozy!
This apron is rather special, as it's made with some of my own fabric designs! I created an all-over print of Farm Girl and Tiny Tim, and then created a coordinating print with just chickens. The chicken wire print is from a line called Fanciful, if I remember correctly. The Farm Girl print is kind of a "second". I ordered the fabric from Spoonflower, and when it arrived the color in the print faded as the length of fabric continued. The black turned to a charcoal gray, and the hair on the girl (and Tiny Tim's feathers) turned from a nice brown, to almost red. I emailed them and they replaced the yardage right away with a new run. But I still had the faded print. I didn't want to have it go to waste, so I created this apron with the faded yardage.
I designed the apron pattern myself, since I couldn't really find an apron-with-an-apron, and that's the style I wanted for this particular apron. A pocket just didn't seem right, so an apron on my apron was the solution. It's a rather long apron, reaching my knees.
In my last post I mentioned the apron that I made last night using fabric I picked up on my trip to town yesterday. The intent was to make an apron that I could use to gather eggs, since I almost always forget the basket in the house, and end up carrying eggs in my t-shirt and/or pockets.
As it turns out, I didn't even put a pocket on this apron, so I'm not sure how handy it will be to gather eggs with, unless I just use it as a pouch (like an extension of my t-shirt). So, maybe I'll make a second apron -- one with a big pocket!
The "outside" of the apron is made with a patchwork print, and the "inside" features little pink and red tulips. The waistband, ties, and bottom ruffle are a cute little sage green polka dot print I picked up at Joann's.
I put together a few zippies, and listed them in my etsy shop. Not only are they made with my Farm Girl and Tiny Tim fabric, but they're also lined with a cute chicken wire print and have a cute flower charm on the zipper pull.
Thank goodness for weekends... I was ready for one.
I was working on a Etsy order earlier and since I had the sewing things out, I decided to put together this little pinchy pot holder for my sister. Shhhh!
The pot holder essentially has two "pockets" on the outside. You slip your thumb into one pocket, and your fingers into the other, and the pockets help hold the pot holder on your hand. There's a nice interior of heat resistant fleece, as well as a second layer of cotton batting for extra protection.
She hasn't received the pot holder yet, so don't tell her about it! I am betting on the fact that she won't check my blog for a while, and maybe I can get it in the mail to her before she finds out about it!
The other pinchy pot holder I made looks like this:
I've been doing a little tidying up, going through things and setting aside things that would be best loved by someone new. Basically, I've been creating stacks. Stacks of stamps. Stacks of fabric. Stacks of things to sell. Stacks of things to use. Lots and lots of stacks.
In addition to making stacks, I refreshed my mental list of ideas and got things ready for projects. I was inspired to store my fabric like this on my shelves by my Aunt Patty. Her craft room is her bit of heaven, right here on earth...
I also went through my inspiration library and gathered up lots of magazines and books that I haven't looked at in about a year. They should go to new homes, so they are listed on eBay as well.
After creating all of these new stacks, I am inspired to get to work on new projects! ...and that means new messes, and new stacks! *grin*
I thought I would keep track of how many eggs we're getting daily. Monday was the highest egg count day of the week. The eggs in the above bowl are all of the eggs I gathered from the girls on Monday. The bowl is nearly over flowing, and it's the largest bowl I have in the house!
With the recent bumper crop, I thought it might be fun to have a little contest!
Post a comment on this entry with your guess as to how many eggs are in the bowl.
If more than one of you guess correctly, all names with the correct number will be entered into a drawing and one name will be selected. If no one guesses correctly, all names will be entered into the drawing, and one name will be chosen.
This cutie of a notepad I stitched up this evening, and a farm themed stay-sharp pencil. The notepad measures 4.5" x 3.5", just the perfect size for tossing into your handbag! The pencil measures just shy of 4".
One entry per person, please! Entry deadline: Thursday, 6pm Central.
Since I didn't have to work today, I spent some time in my craft room. I spied some fabric in my stash that was begging to be used, so I spent a handful of hours putting together a few of quilted journals. What fun I had!
Some time ago, I saw a cute project on the Moda site that featured a row of quilted squares paired with linen to create a book cover. I thought I'd try it out. Pretty cute, if you ask me!
In addition to the cowgirl journal, I also made two other journals that were nearly identical. Instead of a row of squares like on the cowgirl journal, I chose to use a strip of cute whimsical floral material, and linen. This journal is posted in my etsy shop, if you're interested.
Hmm... I wonder what else I could make... the night is still young!
I spent today sewing and made several cute coin purse sized zippies today. I posted them in the shop. I was on a critter kick, so I chose fabrics with piggies, birdies, bunnies, froggies...and more piggies!
In other news, earlier this week I posted a sneak peek of one of my images included in the upcoming spring 2010 Whipper Snapper release. I noticed on the Whipper Snapper website today that the release is planned for March... take a peek at these cute sneak peeks, too! How FUN!
Happy weekend!! I've got two more days to play!
Psst! I posted a few new zippies in the shop!
...How did it get to be Sunday evening already!? Time goes too quickly...
Sewing, sewing, sewing... I've done a lot of it lately! I added a couple new zippies to the etsy shop. I got some fun new fabric and have been playing!
I also made zippies for two of my co-workers. I don't think they read my blog, so I don't think I'm spoiling any surprises... One of them is a dog trainer in her spare time. I thought she would like this little number. It has a 2" wide flat bottom, and a pocket on the front for added storage. I am pleased with how it turned out. And I have enough of this cute fabric to make MORE if you need one, too!
I'll be sharing some paper crafts shortly, too! How much fun I've been having!
I had fun this week designing this cute Valentine love bug pillow case and coordinating plush friend. It's all very pink, and very girly! There's a pocket on the front of the plush friend, perfect for slipping in notes, or hiding little secret treasures!
The pillow case is sized to fit a standard pillow. Designer pillow cases like this have been a staple in our family as long as I can remember. Everyone in the family has special pillow cases, made just for them. They make great gifts, too! I like to send them to young friends, for special occasions like Christmas, Easter, and birthdays.
The plush pillow friend is made from the same cotton prints as the pillow case, but is embellished with felt, lace, and assorted buttons to give it character. I added a cute felt heart to it's "rump" -- and stitched on a cute heart button from my stash!
I've added this little ensemble to my etsy shop, if you're interested.
I worked on a fun custom project for my friend, Diane, this week. Diane wanted a "chicken" themed quilted wallet and coordinating zippy, so I put this little number together for her (sorry, no photos of the zippy, yet).
Hope she loves it as much as I do!
I put the finishing touches on my new Henny Penny Pot Holder tonight. I drew up the pattern and stitched her together earlier this week, so I just had to stitch down the tips of her wings tonight, and she's done!
She's in my etsy shop, if you'd like her to live at your house.
I posted my recent stitched creations in my etsy shop, for those of you who are interested.
You'll find zippy pouches and quilted wallets, too!
Visit my shop for details!
UPDATE: Holy hotcakes! Most of the items posted have already sold -- if you'd like to see the items I had posted, you can view my sales page here. Stay tuned... I have more projects in the works!
This evening I thought I would make a little loyalty card wallet for my Mom, so she can keep all of her punch cards from the various quilt shops she visits all in one place. This should have been a simple project, but it was a three hour ordeal, complete with at least a dozen lessons learned.
I chose to use pieces of various reproduction print fabrics, and rather than using just one or two pieces for the outside cover, I decided to create stripes by using 1x4 inch strips of fabric. By the time you get a couple of 1/4" seams on either side of 1" strips, you're left with 1/2" of fabric, and narrow strips!
Lesson 1: Opt for slightly wider strips.
Lesson 2: When adhering Pellon (interfacing) to unwashed fabric, beware that the fabric might shrink - or at least it seems to...
Lesson 3: Always start with pieces longer than your finished project -- it's easy to trim off excess later.
I decided to free-motion quilt the outside cover of the case. Free-motion quilting isn't something I've done much of, so I'm not very "good" at it. I've heard that you're not supposed to let lines of thread cross each other when you do free-motion quilting, but I don't bother with that idea. I rather like the meandering swirl trails, even if they DO cross paths now and then!
Lesson 4: Practice free-motion quilting.
I decided to add some cute white rik rak to the cover. Nothing like a little rik rak to make things extra cute!
Lesson 5: Acknowledge that the "3-way auto shut off" device on the iron was designed to irritate me.
I was having a bit of trouble with the bobbin tension while I was sewing. I didn't notice it until I had sewn all the way around the wallet -- and I wasn't about to take out all the sewing around the outter edge of the wallet.
Lesson 6: Thread machine correctly. Bobbin tension issues resolved.
I was having trouble with my bobbins winding poorly. They looked like miniature bird nests, all loopy and loose.
Lesson 7: Thread machine correctly when winding bobbins. Bobbin winding issues resolved.
Lesson 8: Learn to use snap pliers before starting project so you know that you need interfacing between the fabric layers on the closure tab where snaps will be placed. You'll notice there are no cute fabric closure tabs OR snaps on this project....maybe next time.
Lesson 9: Do not sew the button on THROUGH the pockets on the inside. Oops! Now there are three usable pockets instead of four. *grin*
When I finally had the entire case assembled, I wanted to give it a good pressing to help give it it's final shape.
Lesson 10: ...darn self-regulating iron... no wonder it takes me so long to do anything. I'm always waiting for the iron to heat up.
Lesson 12: Remember that there are many more lessons to be learned. That's what makes crafting so much fun!
I chose to use this CUTE chicken fabric (from a line called Hen Rietta) that my Mom sent to me last summer. I don't have any snaps (or even a snap fastener), so I wasn't sure how I wanted to go about fastening a closure. I showed the unfinished wallet to Alan and he suggested that I use a button and string, so that's what I did! (I actually used a medium sized elastic hairband to go around the button instead of string).
Inside, I used coordinating fabrics from the same line, of various colored polka dots.
Thanks to the gal at that darn kat for the nice tutorial and pattern.
Volume 1 of the magazine was super, and still sits on my desk to enjoy. Volume 2 is JUST as fun -- you won't believe the creative creatures featured in this issue! This is a must have mag for anyone who loves to dabble in, or wants to dabble in, softies of all kinds!
The magazine can be ordered directly from Stampington & Company, and might also be found at your local Borders or Barnes & Noble.
Meet Pippy. Pippy is a Buff Laced Polish hen with lovely cream and white colored feathers. She's very timid, not the "brightest" gal, and has never been the most coordinated gal in the chicken yard. She really has a lot going for her ... sweet as can be!
She's lost a number of feathers on her back over the past few weeks or so. Spring is in the air and I guess Tiny Tim and Little Buddy like her (they're not the most coordinated with the hens that are larger then they are). I've also seen some of the other hens pick on her, which leads to broken feathers.
I have been applying a healing no-pick lotion to her back feathers to discourage the other hens from picking on her, but the lotion discolored her skin and feathers -- unsightly! In the above photo, you can still see the purplish tint she has from the lotion. Fortunately, she's got a lot of new feathers coming in! I want to protect the new feathers so that they have a chance to grow nicely, without continuing to put the staining no-pick lotion on her. Time for some poultry fashioning!
I wanted to create something that was a bit more open and airy than Tiny Tim's coat, but couldn't decide on how to fasten the garment to Pippy. She doesn't need her wings covered like Tiny Tim does, and she doesn't need it to wrap around her breast, like Tiny Tim does. She's no where near as naked as Tiny Tim! Amazing enough, as I was browsing some blogs this morning, the answer became evident! Rooster Hill Farm recently ordered an apron for one of their turkey hens and she blogged about it this weekend. Perfect timing -- I thought I'd give the fastening method a try!
I brought Pippy in, gave her a bath (every chicken needs a bath now and then, I think!), and measured her up for the right size of the vest. I decided to make it long enough to cover a good portion of her tail feathers, to keep her incoming feathers really hidden. The vest I made is made of cotton and lined with a sturdier linen/woven fabric that's chocolate brown. I chose to use the lighter cream/white polka dot fabric to act as sort of a camouflage for Pippy's feathers.
Here she is all fitted in her new polka dot vest. Of course, it's 10pm as I'm taking this photo, and all she wants to do is snooze. Photographing chickens at night is a task that's near impossible, regardless of how many lights you have on in the room. They have sun-downers, BIG TIME!
Yesterday I hinted at something fun, sewing related, that I had to share with you. Well! Look what I recently added to my arsenal of crafting tools!
My Mom has collected a few machines, and it's because of her cute little machines that I got the idea of having (needing) my own. It arrived late last week ... I set it up on the edge of my table and went to work. I used a piece of scrap batting to protect the paint from the clamp that holds it to the table. I threaded it up, found a cute Crafty Secrets cotton scrap, and started stitching!