Monday, March 28, 2011

do you ever get tired of giveaways?

I suppose it's possible. Blogs all over are doing giveaways. Lots of them! And I suppose I'm not much of an exception to that. My latest and greatest is over at Heather's blog, Angel Face Designs. (Thanks for stopping by AFD readers!) You can win any bangle listed in my shop. Or use code angelface20 at checkout for 20% off.

I don't really have much else exciting to say today. We're moving this week so I'll be busy loading, unloading and unpacking. Then the projects and painting can start.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Studio 8 Ten, First Fridays, Made in Vegas

Slightly Askew (aka me) will be at Studio 8 Ten for the Las Vegas First Fridays event, on April 1, May 6, and June 3 selling wonderful items from my shop. That actually were all made in Vegas. Come see me!

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

tutorial: jcrew rhinestone bracelet

I promised a tutorial for the JCrew bracelet I made. You can click on the pictures to make them bigger.
Here we go!

You'll need:
  • A cuff, bracelet, or bangle with a flat surface. Mine was 1/2 inch wide, aluminum cuff., found on Etsy.
  • Rhinestone trim in two different sizes, the length of your bracelet. I used one row of 6mm for the middle, 2 rows of 3mm for the sides, found on eBay but some Joann's may have it. Your three rows of rhinestones should be the same width as your cuff.
  • Glue. I used E6000. I'm sure if a glue gun would work but I like to be able to adjust the rhinestones as I go.
  • About 1 1/2 yards of lightweight ribbon. I used 7mm, pure silk ribbon, found on eBay. I'm not sure that a heavier ribbon like grosgrain would work. You could also use strips of a lightweight fabric.
  • Scissors, paper towels, whatever else makes you happy.

Spread glue all over the cuff. It's okay if there's glue showing inbetween the rhinestones because it'll get covered by the ribbon.

Add your large rhinestone trim down the middle of the cuff, cut off at the end.
Add your smaller rhinestone trim to one side, cut off at the end, and repeat on the other side. Let it dry for a couple hours or so. Or in my case, just long enough to get my ribbon out.

Glue the end of your ribbon down underneath the end of the cuff.
Start wrapping. Some of your side rhinestones may get covered which is fine, but make sure to wrap inbetween your large ones. Put a little bit of glue at the other end of your ribbon and with a flat tip (scissors, screw driver) tuck it under the wrapped ribbon. And that's it!

The originals from JCrew were about $35 each. So I saved at least $30 per bracelet. ;-)

For the pink bracelet I used 6mm and 4mm rhinestones which also fit on the same 1/2 inch cuff. But I think I like the 3mm rhinestones on the white cuff better, though you can't really see the difference in the pictures.

On the white bracelet I placed the rhinestones all the way to the tips of the cuff and started wrapping after that. But for the pink I put the rhinestones down a little and tried to wrap the ends of the bracelet, which was awkward and not great.

I also think this would look good using different stone trim like this or this.

And wouldn't this bracelet look great with a few of these? Yes, yes it would.

Monday, March 21, 2011

what i'm excited about today

Have you noticed that hemlines are a bit longer for this Spring? I'm very excited about this trend! I really only wear skirts at my knees or below, but all the adorable ones are always tiny minis. (I'm a mom and no longer 18. No one needs to see above my knees.)

Here are a few of my favs.

Anthropologie always has wonderful skirts and this one is perfect. Long enough and not super expensive either. It would also work in the warm Arizona fall and winter with tights and boots.

Adorable little fifi skirt from Poetrie. (Also by Eva Franco, it's the same design as the Americana skirt at Anthro.)

I love the cutouts and scalloped edge on this Ruch skirt. And it's a nice, easy color for Spring and looks easy to wear with a tee and flats.

Another longer skirt by Anthro. I love one review where the gal said it "runs long". It doesn't run long, it is long. As in 27 inches long. As in child lifting your skirt up with his shoes as he climbs all over you proof.

And you'll find this one on Etsy. I love the polka dots and easy-breezy feel to it.
I love anything asymmetrical. Also on Etsy, you can also have it custom made to you and choose the color.

I'm a sucker for all things yellow. This skirt isn't quite as long as I would need, which is fine because it's also kind of expensive. But it would be super easy to make using a basic gathered skirt (like this with a wider wasteband) and a white trim like this or this or this. It's on my to make list.

And, if you're into making your own skirts, I just found this awesome one. Leanne from Elle Apparel made it without a pattern and she shares how to make it. (On a side note, she also has a tutorial for the awesome Anthro ruffled shower curtain that I fell in love with a while back and vowed to make and will make and my husband will love it, I swear.)

That's my Spring skirt line up (not that I'll end up with all of them or anything). Are you ready for warm weather, picnics, barbeques, and play dates at the park? Or are you a desert dweller and start to hybernate in your air conditioned house by mid-May? Our first Spring and Summer in Kingman is on its way. We'll see what the weather has to hold for us.

Friday, March 18, 2011

five for friday

UPDATE 3/19: I updated the pictures of the JCrew knockoff bracelet so they aren't all fuzzy and bad anymore. Go look here.

First of all, I have an amazing giveaway going on right now over on Tatertots and Jello. (WELCOME T&J!!) It's for a leather and chain cuff not available in my store. Sooo exclusive, right?

We signed all our papers and should have the keys to our new home today!! (As long as Fannie Mae doesn't mess anything else up. We're buying the house from them.) We are so stoked. I have tons of plans for the house and can't wait to get started. But first is cleaning. Lots and lots of cleaning.

I am working on a tutorial for the JCrew knockoff bracelet. (With better pictures.) I've just been working on my son's science experiment with him all week. We're cleaning pennies. And ya, it's Spring break this week. The experiment and big poster board are due Tusday, right after Spring break. Love it.

I've been meaning to share these guys with everyone for a while now. Cuz they are just too fabulous to keep to myself. We found them outside in the yard. My dad hung them on nails one afternoon and there they continue to hang. (Have I mentioned my parents are only an hour and a half away now? About 90 miles. As opposed to 1900 miles.) I'm guessing they were some kind of father/child activity. I'm hoping that's what it was. What else could it be?

My computer is still dead and I still don't have photoshop installed on another computer so my pictures aren't so good. And I don't have all my other pictures and documents or book keeping software so I can finish my books and get them to the accountant. (Eeek! Running out of time.) I also haven't linked up to Project 64 lately.

And that's my five, fun things going on for this fine, Friday. See you at Tatertots and Jello! (Did you forget already? Go now!)

Friday, March 11, 2011

a j. crew knockoff

Some time ago I saw this bracelet in a J. Crew catalog. I tore the picture out and kept it, knowing that I had to remake it. The picture sat in my little bin of craft supplies for months. Finally I decide it was time to make it.

Finding the rhinestones and ribbon were easy and I ordered them right away. I searched all over the internet for a bracelet with a hook or latch of sorts, that was flat for the rhinestones, and just the right size. I couldn't find anything.

Eventually I came up with this:

It's a cuff bracelet but it was exactly the right width for the rows of rhinestones. I really love the way it turned out.

Do you want a tutorial for it? Maybe I'll get one up once I have a computer to myself again... If you want... (Follow me so you know when I have it posted.)

Thursday, March 10, 2011

weird vending machines

I noticed several years ago that airports started having vending m achines where you could buy cameras, ipods, and other electronics. That's great if you forgot yours or ended up with a crazy-endless delay. I just found this article that shares some of the weirdest vending machines all over the world. The pictures wouldn't size down, but you get the idea.

A few of my favorites:

Hairy crabs in China. They're kept cool so they are sleepy but not dead.

A flat iron for a few bucks for a few minutes.

Need toilet paper?

If you need fried chicken, french fries, pizza, a bike, a Bently, a penthouse condo in Miami, they have a machine for that, too. Awesome.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

stupid laptop

First it was the moniter. If you moved or set it down too hard it blacked out. Then you had to close it for a minute and open it again for it to come back.

Then the power cord broke. Good thing my husband had an extra one. (He has an extra everything.)

Then the battery wasn't lasting very long. It's supposed to be a 2-3 hour battery. It would last for like 40 minutes.

Then the battery just stopped charging. I could get 5 minutes out of it without it being plugged in.

My husband is ready to buy me a new one. But it's just more money right when we're about to close on our new house and have things to buy for that.

The moniter seems to be working a little better now. So I'm getting by.

It appears the charge port on the laptop is no longer working. It doesn't register being plugged in.

My husband says I told you so.

Oh, no. Now it says to plug in your computer before the battery dies. It is plugged in!

Now it all goes to black. No more pictures, photoshop, financial books (hello taxes due!)

Stupid crap, totally sucks. I'm hoping to steal one of my husband's 3 laptops. He'd rather buy me a new one. I'm using the kids laptop and it's not working out so well. They keep kicking me off.

Friday, March 4, 2011

at the top of my list

We close on our new house in less than 2 weeks. We have a long list of things we want to do to the house. We won't be able to get it all done at once, but I really want to get the kitchen done pretty quickly.

We already bought new stainless steel appliances because Sears was having a 30% off sale on all Kenmore, except the dishwasher, which was 40% off. Score!

We pretty much decided on a white kitchen this time. We'll paint all the cabinets, maybe get new doors and drawer fronts, new countertops, new sink and faucet, and add a stone backsplash around the stove. I can't wait to share the transformation!

The only thing I really don't like about this kitchen is that the only upper cabinets are those 5 above the stove. Then there are two more, generally useless ones, above the fridge. (Which is to the left of the pantry door. Yeah, a pantry!)

I love the big picture windows but they take up valuable cabinet space. Oh well.

Those windows look out to the huge backyard (1/2 acre!) Which brings me to the next thing at the top of my list. A new swingset for the boys. The weather in Kingman is much milder than the rest of Arizona. It only gets around 100 degrees during the summer--very doable for outside playtime.

I'd really like this one but don't want to spend that much. We're looking on Craig's List to see if we can find something. But my kids need to get outside and play and a field of dirt doesn't make you want to stay outside, so this is a top priority for us right now.

So after we close on the house, we'll clean it (it's been empty for a while), clean the carpets and move in. Then my husband and dad are heading to Indiana for all our stuff. (We left most of it in storage there until we had a house so we didn't have to move it ten times.)

The rest of my list right now consists of cleaning the bathroom and going grocery shopping. Maybe tomorrow.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

on the fence

Have you heard of Modern Bird Studios? I'm somewhat on the fence on the look of the art they create; I'm not sure it's for me. (Yet I love the idea of painting a photo on wood, or even more so, painting it on acrylic and then attaching it to wood.)

I thought I'd try out the look of the Modern Bird Studio. I don't think I'll be starting a new business anytime soon. Maybe it's just me or my kids, but I think they look kind of goofy-wierd.

So did I get close to the look of Modern Bird Studios? If you had the money to spare, would you purchase one? I'm just not sure!
As I think about it though, I think I would really like something like this next one painted on wood or acrylic. I might have to try that, even if I'm not as good as Modern Bird.

(Actually, I just showed these to my husband and he doesn't like it with people. Landscape only. So, we'll stick with the pier.)

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

photography: project 64 - lavender

project64 button

I love how the lavender comes through in the background. One of my favorite cactus plants in Arizona-the Lady Slipper.