Saturday, January 21, 2012

Quotes via Picasa II

Here's another small group of prints (found here) that I've combined with some special quotes using Picasa.

Today would have been my father's birthday. I still miss him. If you're lucky enough to still have your father around, give him a hug or a call today.

Thanks for stopping by! I'm back to sewing this weekend. Hopefully I'll have some new projects to share soon.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Vintage Watches Bracelet

I teased about a tutorial for a cool bracelet I made last weekend. I had some computer problems last week, so that set me back a few days. All's well now, and I'm so happy because I've been itching to show this off! I'll just start with a picture of the lovely finished product.
Isn't she pretty? I love how it turned out! Here's how I made her.

I knew I wanted a jump ring with beads between each watch, so I sorted through my beads and picked some from my stash that had lots of sparkle and a dressy feel.

I chose some clear, red, and brown Swarovski crystal beads that I had rescued from some vintage broken necklaces and set each one onto a head pin.
You know how to do that, right? Insert the pin, cut it off, bend it about 90%, then curl the end using round nose pliers. When you're done with that step you'll have beads that look something like this.
With my beads all pinned and ready, I gathered my watches.
These are some that I've had that no longer work. A couple I acquired through family, a few were bought for small prices at thrift stores, (I'm talking like $1 each). Now, here's a little tip if you decide to use vintage watches in this same manner. See the two watches on the right in this next picture?
The last one wouldn't work for this project. See how the strap attaches to the watch? It has two lugs with a pin between. The pin holds the strap on. Whereas the one on the left, (as well as the other four I'm using for this project) has a single lug coming off the watch frame. One with a pin wouldn't give you the integrity you'd need for this bracelet. I'm afraid the pin would pop out. 
So with my watches gathered I had to remove the bands. I could have just cut them away, but I'm a frugal crafter and figure I can surely find a use for them, so I studied how they were attached and removed them carefully. I won't include that process here, as each one was a little different, you'll just have to study and see how they come off of the watches you've chosen.

With the watchbands removed, I gathered my watches, jump rings, and pinned beads, for assembly.
I joined the watches with a jump ring and added three pinned beads to each side.
Continue this process until you have all of your watches joined together. My wrist measures 6.5inches, so depending on your wrist size and the size of the watches you might use more or less than five. That's what I needed for my bracelet.

I tried a couple of different clasps, but settled on a lobster claw with a short chain on the other end. 
Since none of the watches run, as an after thought, I decided to set each one with a time that holds a special meaning to me. One is set at 3:31 for my daughter's March 31st birthday, one at 10:52 for the time she was born. 8:28 for August 28th, my anniversary. 1:11 for Mr. ShowMe's January 11th birthday.  No one knows the meaning of those times but me, and that's ok. When I look at it on my wrist and see the various times, I know what they mean, and it gives me another reason to love it!
Thanks for stopping by. If you decide to make something similiar, I'd love to hear about it! 

I'm linking up with Angie's party over at Knick of Time and all the other fun places listed on my Link Parties page.


Sunday, January 8, 2012

Quotes via Picasa

I don't have a fancy's a Nikon Coolpix that Mr. ShowMe got for me a couple of years ago before my first overseas trip. It's fine for what I used a camera for before I started blogging. Now that I'm taking pictures with the purpose of web posting, I'm learning how to beef them up a bit. Mr. ShowMe told me about Picasa and gave me few a pointers to get started. I've had fun playing with it. I made a collage with it that I used for my blog button, (see bottom of this page, or my Buttons page.. and while you're there, feel free to snag it to display on your blog if you'd like). 

In playing with Picasa I've put some pictures and quotes together and wanted to share them with you. 
This was an old print ad for dog food. I replaced the advertisement verbiage with this Dean Koontz quote.
I found this picture at the Microsoft website amongst their royalty-free photos. I've always loved the poetry of e e cummings.
Another royalty-free photo from the Microsoft site. I don't know who first said this quote. It's been around for years. I tried searching the web, but found it attributed to a few different people, so rather than put the wrong name, I'll just consider it Unknown.
Can you tell yet that I had fun at the Microsoft site downloading images?...and a fun quote from Gilda Radner.
Thanks for stopping by! I made the coolest of all bracelets this weekend. I have a few more photos to take of it and will posting a tutorial for it sometime this week, so stay tuned for that.
I hope you have a lovely Sunday :)

Monday, January 2, 2012

Wrap Strap Watch Tutorial

Happy New Year!

I'm not much for resolutions, I tend to not keep them and then just end up beating myself up over them. So while these aren't "official" resolutions, I do plan on trying really hard to accomplish a few things this year. First off to lose the extra pounds that I gained last year when I quit smoking, and also to be better about blogging more often.

In that spirit I thought I'd start the New Year off with my first tutorial. I've certainly followed plenty of tutorials that the other bloggers have posted. I thought it was time I offer one of my own. Bev over at Flamingo Toes wrote a tutorial for this same project. Here's my version.

It's a knock off of this La Mer Wrap watch that I fell in love with! That is to say that I fell in love with the watch, but not the $175 price tag!

 As Bev recommended I found a skinny belt at Target on clearance. I had been checking the thrift stores for one, but couldn't find one that was "just right". I bought the watch at JoAnn's with a 50% off coupon and found the rivets at Michaels. I had to buy a package of 60 rivets, but I'm sure I'll use the extras on something else. Everything else that I used on the project were things I already had, so it cost me about $18 in all. I like that much better than $175!!
I didn't want there to be so many holes in the strap, so I cut the end of the belt off between the 3rd and 4th holes. I rounded the end and burned it with a lighter to "seal".
I then measured and made two cuts, 14 inches from each end. This gave me the two watch strap pieces.
I figured out how far I'd have to fold over the end piece through the bracket on the watch and punched holes in belt ends accordingly.
With the holes punched we put the end piece through the bracket on the watch and set the rivet. I say "we" because Mr. ShowMe had to do that for me because I'm a weakling, so I don't have a picture of the rivet setting action, but the tool and instructions came in the pack of rivets.
At this point I had a watch with a really long strap.
Now for the fun part! I got out the chains I had to work with. Thrift store necklaces and some pieces of crafting chains. I decided on which chains to use and cut each the length of the buckle end of the strap plus one inch.
I gathered the charms that I had. As it turned out, I have a lot of beads, but am a little short on charms.
I like the Eiffel Tower and the heart.. but I didn't think I wanted the lady bug on this piece. So I went through my silver beads and picked out a few that I liked. I put them on headpins and used my round nose pliers to make loops to hang them with.
Once I got the charms all figured out, I attached them to one of the chain pieces. 
See that top chain in the picture? It wasn't quite long enough, so I lengthened it by using an eye pin in two pearl beads and then inserting them into the chain to make it long enough.
I put a fairly large jump ring at the ends of the chains joining them all together and attaching one end to the buckle and the other to the watch. I wasn't able to use that third chain in the picture with the tiny pearls. The links of the chain were just too small to get the jump ring through, so I'll have to save it for another project. 

Here's the end with the chain attachment.
And here's a picture with her wrapped and buckled as I'll be wearing her. 
I'm happy with how she turned out. The strap is a bit bulky and I may trim more off of the end, but I'm going to wear it awhile and see if it relaxes some before I make any further alterations. 

Thanks for visiting my first tutorial! 
Have a fabulous week!