Category Archives: crafts

Expectation vs. Reality

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2012 is coming to a close, and I feel like I have done a less-than-acceptable job in keeping up with the blog this year.  Do you ever set a goal you know is too hard to keep, but you tell yourself “this WILL be the time I prove everyone else (and myself) wrong!”? I’m afraid I must admit defeat.  Time got the best of me.

I’ll give you a little insight to my life:  When I feel overwhelmed, I tend to shut down.  I already feel like I have failed, and so I just decide not to try again.  Well, I am not going to let that happen this time.  I am going to try this whole bloggin’ thing again!  You can expect more blogging in 2013! (and if I fall off the wagon, just remind me to hop back in).

I am happy to report that even though I have not been consistent with posting blogs recently, I have been staying busy!  I have been doing a lot this year!  I thought a perfect way to present this post would be to re-cap my year in pictures.

This time last year, my life was a breeze.  I discovered Pinterest, was not drowning in school-work, and had lots of free time.  What happened?  The clock struck 12, and we rung in the new year.  Yay, 2012.  I had no idea what was coming.

January 2012

I attended Passion2012 with two lovely ladies.  Something I was able to cross off my bucket list!

I attended Passion2012 with two lovely ladies. Something I was able to cross off my bucket list!

I turned 20 this year.

I turned 20 this year.

February 2012

This is Sean.  He's the best boyfriend in the world, and our first date was on Valentine's Day of this year.  Since then, we haven't missed a monthly date on the 14th of every month.

This is Sean. He’s the best boyfriend in the world, and our first date was on Valentine’s Day of this year. Since then, we haven’t missed a monthly date on the 14th of every month.

Kelli and Sean Holding Hands

He makes my heart skip a beat.
You can find his blog here.

March 2012

This year was a big deal for me quilting wise, because I actually finished my first quilt! I began this quilt two years ago, and kept getting stuck at new parts.  It took lots of questions, google searches, frustrations, and kind people to help me along the way, but it's my favorite quilt by far. In fact, I am wrapped up in it right now as I write this.

This year was a big deal for me quilting wise, because I actually finished my first quilt! I began this quilt two years ago, and kept getting stuck at new parts. It took lots of questions, google searches, frustrations, and kind people to help me along the way, but it’s my favorite quilt by far. In fact, I am wrapped up in it right now as I write this.

April 2012

Granny Dicey Quilt

I was so thrilled that I actually knew how to start and finish a quilt (even though it took me two years), I quickly began working on a quilt using fabric from my great-grandmother who has passed away. I had no idea what I was going to do with the fabric, so I just started cutting, and had just enough to make a picnic-sized quilt. I know you won’t believe me when I say this, but after taking almost two years to finish the first quilt, this one only took… 2 WEEKS! I gave this quilt to my mother since it was made from her grandmother’s fabric, and she says it makes her feel like a little girl whenever she uses it. The quilt is done, I promise… I just don’t have a photo.

May 2012

I did a lot of laundry this year...

I did a lot of laundry this year…

June 2012

I also made a big mess that I plan on organizing this week...

I also made a big mess that I plan on organizing this week…

July 2012

I made a cute little lunchbox to go with me to school this fall.  I found out how to actually utilize my sewing machine's fancy stitches, hence the scalloped edges on the brown.  Yes, it's a fully insulated lunchbox.

I made a cute little lunchbox to go with me to school this fall. I found out how to actually utilize my sewing machine’s fancy stitches, hence the scalloped edges on the brown. Yes, it’s a fully insulated lunchbox.

August 2012

In August, I began my 2nd internship in an elementary classroom.  There's three total internships, so I still have one more to go!I was with sweet first graders this time.

In August, I began my 2nd internship in an elementary classroom. There’s three total internships, so I still have one more to go!
I was with sweet first graders this time.

September 2012

Grrrrr... I really became busy in September.  School was in full swing and I was in over my head.  There weren't many crafts being made this month.

Grrrrr… I really became busy in September. School was in full swing and I was in over my head. There weren’t many crafts being made this month.

October 2012

Still busy! My schedule never seemed to clear up.  As soon as I finished something, I had to move on to something else.  I'm pretty sure there were lots of tears of frustration this month.

Still busy! My schedule never seemed to clear up. As soon as I finished something, I had to move on to something else. I’m pretty sure there were lots of tears of frustration this month.

November 2012

Here's the sketch design and fabric for the soon-to-be Zelda quilt for Sean.

Here’s the sketch design and fabric for the soon-to-be Zelda quilt for Sean. I had no idea it would turn out to be so big.

This is what Sean wanted for his birthday.  I am to;d this type of quilt is a big deal for video gamers, though I know very little about that world.  Regardless, it's the fourth, and most recent, quilt I have made.  It's also the largest because it fits on his queen sized bed.

This is what Sean wanted for his birthday. I am told this type of quilt is a big deal for video gamers, though I know very little about that world. Regardless, it’s the fourth, and most recent, quilt I have made. It’s also the largest because it fits on his queen sized bed.

December 2012

This December, I decided to host a table at our church's elegant Christmas event.  This entailed providing deserts, dishes, and fancy decor for 8 beautiful ladies.  This cake was a last minute idea that turned into something gorgeous.

This December, I decided to host a table at our church’s elegant Christmas event. This entailed providing deserts, dishes, and fancy decor for 8 beautiful ladies. This cake was a last minute idea that turned into something gorgeous.

This is the centerpiece and some of the deserts I made for the event.  The apple and pineapple structure was a pinterest discovery, and the form that holds it all together was quite a contraption I had to convince daddy to create! I was so happy with the result.

This is the centerpiece and some of the deserts I made for the event. The apple and pineapple structure was a pinterest discovery, and the form that holds it all together was quite a contraption I had to convince daddy to create! I was so happy with the result.

Sean and I were invited to an Ugly Sweater Christmas party.  (P.S. I made his sweater)

Sean and I were invited to an Ugly Sweater Christmas party. (P.S. I made his sweater)

He's a good boy.  And by the look on his face, I think he knows it ;)

He’s a good boy. And by the look on his face, I think he knows it.

And that’s my year.  As you can see, lots of unexpected business occurred this year, and adding a boyfriend in the mix certainly was a huge blessing, and also gave me an opportunity to learn how to manage my time.  There were some major learning opportunities this year, and I can’t say I have mastered anything yet.  I can say that the things that kept me sane were staying close to the side of God, and asking for lots of prayer from everyone I knew.  After I learned that, things began to settle down.  I am so thankful for the prayers of my family, Sean, my good friends Emily and Jessica, my life group, and all others.

Like I promised: stay tuned! 2013 is sure to be a bumpy ride here on Kelli’s Kache.

Happy New Year

To Keep or KNOT to Keep

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To Keep or KNOT to Keep

I’m really excited about this bag.  I wish the fabric was brighter and more vivid, but this bag came with a requirement… It had to be green.  I was making it for a friend’s gift bag.  The reason I am so excited about it is because it totally came to me out of nowhere.  It was fun, quick, simple, and rewarding.  I apologize in advance for not having pictures for the way to tie the knot.  I didn’t think I was going to put this bag on the blog until I realized it was going to be pretty cute!  You can use this as a gift bag, or a little book tote! (Hence the title, “To Keep or KNOT to Keep.”)

Here we go!

You’ll Need:

  • 2 pieces of fabric for outside 12″ x 11″
  • 2 pieces of fabric for inside 12″ x 11″
  • 2 strips of fabric for straps 14″ x4″
  • 1 strip of fabric for knot design about 7″ x ?” (I didn’t measure this part, but you could be safe with 20″ and then cut off extra)

First thing I did was the knot.

I’m going to tell you to make the straps first.

      

This is the same concept we have done with pretty much every strap or string we have made so far.  Fold in half long ways first, and iron flat.  Then open it up, and fold the edges in to meet in the center.  Fold a final time down that center again.  You can stitch the open edge with a straight stitch to finish it! (do this with both straps, then set aside)

Now, we will make the knot.  You are going to fold your fabric exactly the same way you folded it for the straps above.  Remember this strip is just wider… That’s all.  I did not sew a straight stitch on this one, mainly because I was worried I wouldn’t have enough thread to last me through the end of the project.  You can sew it up if you like, but it stayed pretty good without being sewn.

Once it’s folded like the strap, you can tie a knot.  You may need to keep untying and retying.  I certainly did.

I then took my front fabric piece and pinned the knotty piece to it. The picture shows you… Then I cut off the extra wings that the knotty strip had. 😉

      

Now that you front looks like this, you can lay the back piece on top so that the right sides are facing each other.  Pin ot along the sides and bottom edges, and sew!

For some reason, I didn’t take pictures of this part either, but it’s simple.  Just do the same thing as you did above, but with the lining.  Sew the right sides together, bottom and side edges, leaving the top open, of course.

      

Fold down the tops of both the front and lining so you have a nice edge, and slip that lining into the bag.  You can begin to pin these pieces together at the top edge.  I find it easier to pin all around and then add my straps, so everything stays in one spot.

I measured about an inch and a half from the side seam and then inserted each side of the strap.  After you have the straps pinned down nicely and tucked in, you can sew your final stitches around the top to close it up!  THEN… you have a bag… to keep or KNOT to keep… that is the question!

Dinner No. 5: Orange Cashew Chicken

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Presentation: (how did you like the way it looked on the plate?)

Nice! It looked good, but tasted better!

Taste: (pretty self-explanatory!)

Probably the best meal I have ever cooked.  I don’t usually care for orange chicken from the restaurant but this was fantastic!  I made it twice already!

Cost Efficient: (did the prices justify the taste?)

I was satisfied… the only outrageously expensive item was the honey roasted cashews the recipe called for, but it was so worth it.  Plus, Once I bought the ingredients, I was able to make the meal again.  In fact, I think I have enough to make it once more, even!

Time to Cook: (The recipe says 30 minutes… did it lie?)

About triple the promise.  I do NOT like to handle raw chicken… I have decided it makes my fingers cold, and the little fat pieces are gross. I guess the most frustrating part was cutting the chicken thighs into tiny pieces.  NOT fun!

Make Again: (would you make it again, or recommend it to someone else?)

Already did!

p.s. I just thought you might like to hear a funny side story about this meal… I had never cooked rice before, and didn’t know that once the rice goes into the boiling pot you are supposed to turn down the burner to low.  I guess you could say that I found that out the hard way… It went something like this:

(about 15 minutes after the rice had been cooking)

DAD: “Do you smell that? It smells like something is burning…”

ME: (already noticed the smell… hoping that if I ignore the issue it will go away) “Yeah, but everything’s fine I’m sure”

COURTNEY (8 yrs old): “Kelli, what’s that smell? Are you burning something”

ME: “No, everything’s fine!” (still hoping that if I ignore the problem it will go away)

SARAH (7 yrs old): “That smell’s horrible… Dad, do you smell that?”

DAD: “Yes.  Kelli- you need to go figure out what’s happening!”

ME: “ok, but there’s nothing wrong… I followed directions!”

-so I go in, scoop the rice, and find charred white rice (that is now more like brown rice).  My sister Courtney says, “Kelli, if you burnt the rice, I’m not eating it!”

On Hold

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Good Morning my lovely readers!

I have a few things to say:

1.  Congratulations to Britney Koch for winning the Sleep Mask! 🙂  I will be in touch with her later this week!  Keep following the posts, because this will happen at the end of each month.

2. I know there was no post on Friday about my food.  You will be happy to know that I DID indeed cook, I was just in such a hurry to get out the door to take it to a party that the picture never happened.

The meal was insanely divine.  My family was so upset that they didn’t get to eat it, that they have requested it again this week.  So don’t worry!  You will see it soon.

3. We have had company 3 weeks in a row, and as you can imagine, I am overly behind on my sewing projects.  Since I am still a college student, my studies must come first.  This week, I will not be posting a sewing project.  Have no fear- I am sure you will be lucky enough to have one week with two or more projects (most likely over the summer)!  Keep reading!

Bless you.

Last Sunday of the Month: “Simpleness is Bliss” Giveaway

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Last Sunday of the Month: “Simpleness is Bliss” Giveaway

It’s HERE! The last Sunday of the month.  If you don’t know what that means, you will get to know it pretty quickly.  The last Sunday of each month, I will post the top-visited item, and give it away!

This month’s giveaway is this sleep mask.  The one pictured is the exact one that will be given away.  Yes, that’s right… AWAY… for FREE.  So, how do you enter?

Here’s HOW TO ENTER:

  • Share this post on Facebook using the below “share button”
  • Leave a comment at the bottom of this post letting me know you’ve shared it!

That’s all!  You have until February 1st to enter.  At 12:00 a.m. on February 1, 2012, the names will be entered, and randomly chosen.  The one winner will be announced on this blog, and will be sent a message through Facebook.  At that time, I will receive the address, and within a week, the item will be sent in the mail.

Any Questions?  Let me know!  Happy Entering!


					

Dinner No. 4: Sirloin Burgers

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with Garlic-Black Pepper-Parmesean Sauce & Roasted Tomatoes with Basil & Balsalmic Drizzle

Presentation: (how did you like the way it looked on the plate?)

Beautiful!  I was very please with this portion! What do you think?

Taste: (pretty self-explanatory!)

Delicious!  I think it may be the best meal I have made yet! There was lots of flavor, the only thing that could have made it better would have been bigger patties, because the bun almost overpowered the meat taste.  None-the-less, it was very tasty!

Cost Efficient: (did the prices justify the taste?)

Eh, depends… It wasn’t my cheapest meal, but it wasn’t my most expensive.  About average I suppose.

Time to Cook: (The recipe says 30 minutes… did it lie?)

Almost an hour and a half.  There were lots of mini-recipies in this one, like the cheese sauce, the tomatoes and balsalmic drizzle (which was AH-mazing!) and then the meat, so it took a little longer, but it was worth it!

Make Again: (would you make it again, or recommend it to someone else?)

Absolutely!  Can we have it next week too? 😉

The “Put a Chain Around my Neck, And Lead Me Anywhere” Lanyard

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The “Put a Chain Around my Neck, And Lead Me Anywhere” Lanyard

“Oh let me be… Your teddy bear.”   “la-la-la”

Now that you have Elvis stuck in your head, you can successfully complete your craft! Though the picture here lacks in color and pizzazz, the lanyard is pretty nice, and multiple colors would probably have been more pleasing to the eye.  Regardless, I think you will find this little beauty to be a quick easy project that you can show off to all you work with!

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • a strip of fabric that is 38″ long and 2 1/2″ wide
  • a ribbed ribbon that is 38″ long and 1 1/2″ wide– you will NOT see this ribbon, so color doesn’t matter a bit. (or interfacing that measures the same)
  • an average looking lanyard that you don’t mind tossing… (or just the metal piece if you have that too)

Here we go!

   

I used a ribbon to add sturdiness to the lanyard because, well, I tried making it with only the fabric, and it was not good.  If your crafting stash looks like mine, you NEVER have interfacing on hand when you need it.  So, the ribbon was ushered in, and thus we have… ribbon interfacing! (yay).  So anyway, now that I have said my piece, you can create yours.  Run the ribbon down the middle back of your fabric like so, and pin.

      

Now you will take your iron and press the open fabric sides over the ribbon on both sides like this!

      

Now you will take your pins out from the center and rotate them 90 degrees, after folding over the fabric in the center for the final time.  Follow the above pictures for clarity.

Then, sew at the edge of the fold all the way down the strip, and the down the other side.  Now, you should have a funtional “strap” (?)

      

Take your ugly lanyard that we need for the metal piece.  Ccut off the ribbon part, and throw it away!

(p.s. I know they give lanyards away for free on campus, so I’m sure they aren’t hard to come by if you aren’t like me and my family, who have about 20 stashed up in our junk drawer)

      

The best way I can describe to lay the lanyard-to-be is in the form of a cancer symbol (picture 1).  Slip on your matal piece that will hold your tag.  Then, tuck under the raw edges and sew them inside out, so that after it’s sewn, the raw edges are caught in the underside of the lanyard.

   

Lastly, I did a few stitched back and forth to keep the piece in place.  I did one above the seam first, then I tamed down the bump by sewing it closly to the metal.  You now have a cute and functional lanyard to impress all your freinds and co-workers with! (p.s. the last picture had the remaining lanyard tucked behind the maniquine.  (It’s not this short).  In fact, I will show you how long it really is…)

Maybe now your job will be more fun because you can glance down and see your craftiness every now and again! That always makes me happy!

Send in your pics when you make yours, so we can all get our creative juices flowing!