vrijdag 28 februari 2014

Currently 24.02.2014

Every week I take 5 minutes and record what's going on right now.

This week I am over at rukristin.com as a guest-blogger to tell about my currently- listing.
And show of this weeks list.
So CLICK and read all about it.

This by the way, is my very first post as a guest-blogger. I am so proud of myself!!

maandag 24 februari 2014

It's almost here: 30 days of lists

Only 4 more days and then we start listing!
I am so excited.
For those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about; March 1st is the start of another round of 30 days of lists.   The whole thing is to write a list everyday. That simple! And even better I don't have to think about what to list because we get a listing prompt everyday.

I have done this once before. Last year I did an old set of list-prompts. I believe it was the last free one..
This time I thought I'd shell out the big bucks not really, it is only 10 dollars which is just over 7 euro's and join in on the fun with the same prompts as everyone else is filling out.

To be ready to start listing on march 1st I have already prepared my album so all i have to do in March is list.
Last year I went for all out color but this year I wanted to do something clean and simple.
Inspired by the list-journal Paperedthoughts is keeping on Instagram I set up my album.
I decided on having black pages and use my white gell penn to write out my lists. I'll add some washi tapes each day and bright pink numbers.
I bound the whole thing with my bindermachine and decorated the cover with washi and some old school labelmaker labels.

There is nothing in there yet except for blank black pages so no pictures of the inside today.
If you follow me on Instagram  you can follow the day to day lists starting March 1st. 
Or check back here in a few weeks and read all about it.

Are you listing this March??

vrijdag 21 februari 2014

Currently 21.02.2013

Each week I take 5 minutes and document what's going on right now.

Also: I can announce I have just sold my very first object on Etsy!!!!

I am so happy about that!

What is happening in your life?

woensdag 19 februari 2014

Around here

Whats up around here?

 First up; the ratty-misters. They have been getting so big! In this bad quality picture ( excuse me but ratties are inmpossible to photograph) you can see Lightning (left) and Thunder (right) snacking on some dried seaweed. The other two (Rain and Drops) are probably somewhere on the lower level bouncing around. Only a few weeks ago they were tiny little babies and now they have grown into full size misters. These 4 are my first gentlemen. Before this I always had girls. And there are most cenrtain some big differences. Aside form the fact that they are eating me poor (4 rats eat so much more than 2 obviously) these little misters are much more cuddly. And more willing to sit with you and just be snuggled.
But, they can also bounce aroung the cage like mini-kangaroos. And they bounce through the cage at the speed of light.
I love just sitting with them and watch them play.

There has been lots of this lately. Snuggled on the couch with Abby. I've finally found some time to browse around on Netflix and find things I want to see. Most afternoons I combine snuggling with Abby with Netflix and crocheting..
My Fibromyalgia has really been acting up with the cold and damp weather and everything I do seems to cost me a 1000 times more effort. So I am all doped up on painkillers, still trying to to everything I want to do. Thankfully Nico has been helping out a lot around the house. He does the dishes and other houshold things that are painfull for me to do. I still have lots of trouble dealing with the fact that I just can't do some things. So somedays I still overdo it and I have to "pay" for that...

I am not a coffee-drinker. Although I love somesthing like an Macchiato occasionally, the rest of the time I drink tea. If I have to drink coffee I have it with lots of milk and sugar.
So our coffeemaker lives in the shed, only to be seen at parties and christmas. But a few weeks a year, when Nico is at home all day, there is coffee being made at home. He however doens't like  making a whole pot for 1 person......
After a long debate ( maily about where to put it) we bought a Nespresso machine.  They were on sale and you would get a voucher for 90,- (euro's) of coffee with it so this was the moment. (we bought almost every flavor)
I've made a small coffee-bar on the dresser; THE machine, little spoons, some glasses and sugar. So that way you have everything on hand to make your perfect cup of coffee. I love the fact there is a milkthing with it! So I have been drinking some coffe regularly lately. Most of the time still with lots of foam and milk, but I have also found some variaties I can drink without milk and even a few I like without sugar! 

 The whole Etsy thing. What can I say? I love making little bits and pieces. I love having my own little store. But I am a bit sad that nothing has sold yet....  (I am not a very patient person.. can you tell? )
 Last week I updated the store with a series of notebooks. Some bound with a plastic ring, some upcycled faux moleskines. The smaller ringbound notebook would be perfect for a round of 30 days of lists.
As they have exactly 30 pages. And consist of 200 gr. paper so you could paste to your hearts content.

I am taking my Etsy store into the real world and am planning to have a stall at several fairs this spring and summer. First one will be in Purmerend on the 23rd of March. But I will keep you updated on that.

 Meet my new to me friend: a canary yellow vintage typewriter. I'm just over the moon about it. I have wanted one for ages and kept an eye on the internet. But they all were just to expensive, far away or just not right. Until this one popped up. Just 20 kilometers from here and price-wise it was a steal!
So I picked it up right away. It belonged to an elderly lady who had probably bought it brand new.
She was really surprised that young people are still interested in these kinds of things.
So far I've only used it for one letter. Well, half a letter. Halfway through I ran out of typeribbon. I thought I would have to order new but my mom showed me how to rewind the ribbon. That way you can use it multiple times. Yay for mothers!

So that's life around here..
Hope you are having a great time!

maandag 17 februari 2014

Today is for....

... trying to complete a massive to do-list

... making some difficult phonecalls (difficult because I hate having to call people I don't know)

... making a start on some blog-posts for the future

... wrapping up some products I made for when I take my little store from Etsy into the real world

... register for 30 days of lists March 2014 edition

... making my 30 days of lists notebook

... figure out a way to make some businescards on the cheap

... having a nice healthy salad for lunch

... and leftover chinese for dinner

... watch season 5 of  "Sons of Anarchy"

... and paint my nails a lovely bright pink in the meantime

... enjoy the spring weather we're having today

... be a good housewife and clean the toilet and fold the laundry

...  but maybe make time for an afternoon nap (I slept really bad last night)

And what are you up to today?

vrijdag 14 februari 2014

Currently 14.02.2014

Every week I take a moment to record the right now.

What are you doing right now?

woensdag 12 februari 2014

Make your own stamp

I love stamps.
The fact that you can use them over and over, use different colors each time and get different effects.
The fact that cute stamps can be pricey.. thats not so nice.

So a few years ago I got interested in making my own stamps. Especially after seeing the beautifull ones Geninne makes.
When I started I used small erasers. Benefit of that is that you don't need to mount them on something.
But last summer I took a workshop at Friday Next in Amsterdam. The workshop was given by Masaaki Oyamada. Those stamps where mounted on a pieces of wood. As it gives you a bit more freedom in your design. As you have more room. Making your own stamp is super easy!

So, today I'll show you how to make your own stamp.
First of all; gather your supplies.

 You will need
* plain drawing paper
* a pencil
* tracing paper
* an exacto knife
* stamping ink ( I suggest using something that easily washes off ass you will get it on your hand)
* lino cutting tool
* soft cut lino (or other material you are going to carve your stamp from)
* a piece of wood; I use blocks from an old childrens building set
* a foling bone (or something similar)
* double sided foam tape
* a pair of scissors (not pictured)

Everything in the picture is from brands that are easily available in Holland. Google will help you find brands that are easily available to you.

Now that you have everything, time to start.

Step 1. The design


First trace the piece of wood you have chosen. 
This way you won't end up with a stamp that doesn't fit onto your piece of wood. 
Do that several times; that way you can play around with your design

Now; to use Masaaki's words: "draw until you are happy"
I wanted to make an arrow. I drew multiple ones ....

Step 2: Transferring your drawing onto the lino

 Cut out a small pieces of tracing paper and trace your "best"design ..

Flip the tracing paper over, so the pencil-side lies on the lino, and rub the pencil lines onto the lino. This works best if you use something hard. I used a folding bone but you could use the back of your knife or somthing like that.
Because you filp the paper over this would also mean that, if your design uses words or letters, they are mirrored. Which is just what you want for a stamp..

Now you have your design on the lino

Step 3: the cutting
 If I have a design with straight edges, like this arrow, I always score it with an exactoknife first. This makes the edges easier to carve. If you have a flowing design or a very steady hand this is optional

After scorin the pencil lines I take the small v-shaped blade and carve out the edges.
Because the lino is very soft, and the blade very sharp, you dont need to punt much pressure on it.'

You can see I carved around my pencil lines. Best is to follow the lines as closely as possible.

Then I switch over to a more rounded blade.

This carves bigger pieces. I keep tracing the lines around my design. 

A bit more...

Almost there...

When you have removed about 0.5 cm around your design cut of the rest of the lino. You should keep a small edge around the actual design but more will only get in your way..

Now it's ime for a test-print. 

as you can see, surrounding the arrow there are still a few small spots. You can leave them for a home-made look but I want them off so I will need to do some more carving. 
The ink helps to show which parts are still to high.
This is also the part where you will get ink on your fingers.....

Step 4 Mounting the stamp

the doulde sided foam tape need to cover the whole of the backside of the stamp. One piece wasn't quite big enough so I had to put 2 halves on it...

This way the whole backside is covered..

Use scissors to trim the edges. 

Now; very important; before sticking the stamp to the wood, first make a stamp on the wood. This way you can identify your stamp...

this is a bit fiddely work...

Now when sticking the stamp to the bottom; try and line it up wih the stamp on the top. This makes it easier to use..

And there is is; one hand made arrow stamp.

It is just as easy as it looks.
Give it a try and let me know how it went!

vrijdag 7 februari 2014

Currently 7.02.2014

Every week I take a moment to record whats happening right now in my life.

and what are you doing right now?

donderdag 6 februari 2014

My top secret project revealed: ETSY!

A drumroll please!!

I have opened my very own Etsy store!

I have wanted to open up my very own lttle store for ages now. 

But opening a real-life store is never going to happen. 
Finances, time-wise.. Physical problems.. 
There are a thousand reasons why opening up an actual real-life store is not gonna happen..

But then it hit me.. why not an Etsy store? !
I love making little simple things. 
But how many , let's say, handwarmers does one need? 
So I opened up my very own little boutique.

You will find all sorts of little things.

Things I've crocheted, stationary, little trinkets like the collection of charms I've just put on there.
The collection at the moment is a bit limited but keep an eye on it. 
I will add new items regularly.

Now, no more talk, hop over there and have a look!
maybe even put in an order?? 

woensdag 5 februari 2014

Moodblanket update

It is the 6th week of this project and so far I am doing an excellent job of keeping on track.
I usually do my square on thursday evening. I have the house to myself and snuggle myself with a drink on the couch. A perfect time to crochet my weekly square.
 At the moment it still looks nothing like a blanket. I "just" have a row of 5 granny squares.
In the small journal I keep track of the color I choose for that specific week and write a bit on why I choose that color.
Choosing a color is not always easy. As the colors are linked to a specific mood, and I have more than one mood a week, I try to choose the most prominent feeling of the week. 

As you can see, I've had 2 "turquoise" aka happy weeks. And have not used my dark blue (sad)  or bright green (stressed). But it's only February so who know what is yet to come.

I'm glad I went with one square a week and not a daily one. Eventhough it means I don't have anything that resembles a blanket yet. But it does allow me to keep on track and up to date. And leaves me time to do all of my other to-do's.

Doing a daily square would mean I would already be behind and once I get behind I often abandon a project alltogether. But I do get a bit jealous when I see all the daily-square-blankets in the Facebook-Group.. All the different corlor-scheme's, different patterns. Amazing!
But I'm sticking to the plan. Eventhough it will mean I have more of a mood-scarf  instead of a blanket for a while..

About the yarn: I chose Drops Paris mainly because I fell in love with the colors. I had never worked with it before.
It is quite thick and does take a moment to get used to handeling. Also, one square seems to need quite a bit of yarn so for a whole year it might have not been the most economical choice. It would probably also be cheaper to order it from internet but I rather support a local independent store. And I love brouwsing that shop. All those yarns in a rainbow of colors. It just makes my soul happy.

Also helping me keep on track is the fact that I have all my supplies all togehter in a smal basket. The yarn, my notebook; for notes and the mood-colorchart, the crochethook for this project and a decent pen.
That way I don't spend any time looking for things. It means I can finish a square in about 20 minutes. Wich measn that not having enough time isn't an excuse not to make a square.
And not having any excuse is just what I need.

And how about you? Are you joining us in making a mood-blanket? Or are you documenting your year in a different way? How is that going?

dinsdag 4 februari 2014

February Snail Mail

One of my intentions for 2014 was to send more snail-mail.
I love the feeling of finding a beautifully decorated envelope on the doormat or a cute postcard.
And reciving such mail starts with sending it out yourself first.

First of all; it being the first week of February; I just finished writing my birthdaycards for this month.
I always do this at the start of the month. That way everyone gets their card on time.

See that yellow post-it tab on the envelope? I use it to write the down when the card needs to be posted. 
Everyday before I go for a walk with Abby I check the stack on the stairs to see if there is a card that needs to get mailed. 

Next; a small stack of Postcrossing cards. 

For those of you who don't know about Postcrossing; it's a community where you can request a random adress, after signing up,  that you send a postcard to. And your adres can also be requested. It is a lovely way to recive postcards from all over the world.

And last one, for now, a card for my mother. Not telling you what's on it. It won't arrive at her house utill tomorrow.. ;-)

I'm still working on my first leter to a penpal. So no pictures yet.
But when it's done I will share it here.