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   I was a contestant on TLC's

Craft Wars, August 2012

 

(Check out our projects in Somerset Memories)

 

Crafting Tutorials I've done:

Sweet Sensations Centerpiece

ATC Holder

Voyeuristic Tendencies?  Check out my online galleries at:

My obsessive personality compiled these lists to share:


 

 Watch The Guilty Crafter videos!

 

 

 

 

 

 

I cook poorly, I craft obsessively and I love the look of a retro cocktail. When I am feeling guilty about taking time away from my family with my obsessions, I make videos about my guilt as "The Guilty Crafter" or I blog here. Thanks for stopping by!

Monday
May112015

Here Chick, Chick, Chick

When my son was 11, he went through an intense chicken phase. We had met a woman with a gorgeous coop who was delighted that my son was interested in her chickens.  She ignored my non-verbal hints and armed him with tons of information and even a pet carrier for his future baby chicks. I kept stalling. Finally, I challenged him to read a huge book he picked out at the bookstore about backyard chickens. "Read the whole book and then convince me you know more about chickens than anyone I've ever met and I will let you get chickens," I vowed.  I never learn. Overnight, he became a chicken savant and I reneged on our deal.  Life intervened and his chicken mania abated a little and I was relieved.

Now, my daughter is 11 and she has joined the good fight. I thought having chickens at their new school would take the edge off this need for chickens at home. No. She recently came home armed with her own chicken book. She bombarded us with chicken facts. Soon, Mr. Angela Daniels was staying up late into the night reading up on every chicken coop building site he could find online. I have been outnumbered and out lasted.

 

May I introduce our girls? We each picked out 1 chick (and then 1 as a "spare" because we're cynical like that). We have a: Silkie ("Pearl"), a Barred Rock (her name has changed so many times but for the moment, she's "Frieda"), the so-ugly-she's-adorable Madagascar Game Fowl ("Bacon"), the timid "chicken chicken" Gold Sex Link ("Stardust") and the most adorable and full of personality Ameraucana ("Calypso").  My son is the only one of us who had researched breeds based on personality rather than looks and darned if he didn't hit the jackpot with Calypso.  What can I say, I am a little smitten with our chickens. Chicken smitten.

Mr. Angela Daniels can currently be found building the Taj Mahal of chicken coops a little too close to a neighbor's fence. I think when it's completed, it could  house a dozen or so chickens. Not gonna happen though. We'll stick to our 4 and a spare.  

 

Monday
May112015

Come Create With Me This Weekend!

Of all the many, many crafting events I participate in every year, Maker Faire tops my list of favorites. There really is something for everyone- high end inventions, fire, woodworking, metal, crafts, upcycling. You name it- if it's innovative and from the mind of passionate, creative people, it's at Maker Faire.  Never been?  Jump in your hovercraft and join me. I'll be showing you how to use Rit Dye to makeover clothes you didn't think you'd ever wear again. Bring a bag of your clothing donations and join the fun!

Wednesday
Apr012015

Anatomy of an April Fools' Day Lunch #5

I thought I was running out of ideas for April Fools' day lunches but a trip to the grocery store inspired me. Since my kids now look forward to my twisted April 1st lunches for them, this year, when they open their lunches, I hope they'll trick their friends by eating all this without hesitating. Watching someone eat "mayonnaise" by the spoonful and drink straight "apple cider vinegar-" can you imagine something more disgusting? And apologies to people who don't mind eating a frozen veggie medly on occasion. In the Guilty Crafter house, we would all revolt. In every sense of the word.

Happy April Fools' Day, eveyone. 

Monday
Mar302015

Guilty Crafter's April Fools Day Roundup

Over the past few years, I have really embraced April Fool's Day lunches. My kids are not fooled at all at this point but they do love to see what I come up with. If you search "April Fool's Day" in the search bar on this blog (to the left), you'll get more details on each individual food. Filling a banana peel with lemon jello, was a bit tricky, for example and you might need some tips on opening cans from the bottom to empty them out to add other foods. but since a picture is worth a thousand words, I thought I'd gather all the final photos I have so far for one quick, easy look. Click on the thumbnails for bigger images. Questions? Ask in the comments sections below:




 

Thursday
Mar052015

Sometimes I Teach Classes

Just keep this little "clipping" I found on Twitter. This class was a lot of fun. Color trends are always fascinating but we also gave our class VIP treatment in our booth and had them make several projects using Rit dye.

Thursday
Mar052015

How to Dye Shoes in a Mason Jar

I'm still happily dyeing away for Rit dye over at RitStudio.com. I realized I should probably be adding my projects to my own blog as well as their site. For now, I think I'll add my photos. Just click on the photo to be taking to the RitStudio.com site for my step-by-step tutorials.

 

 

Monday
Feb232015

Portlandia Fashion: Put a Bike On It

Have I mentioned how much I adore Portland? Oh? Just a billion times? Well, in my accelerated attempts to blend in with the locals, I have many clothes that embrace the "Put a Bird On It" concept made famous (or infamous, depends on who you ask) by the TV show Portlandia. But even I know there is a limit to how many birds I can sport around town so I'm starting to have this compulsion to but a BIKE on everything else. And why not? Portland is a total bike city.

Check out this project I did today. I had a spare, oh, 5 minutes in my day when I remembered that I had this really cute S*E*I Iron-On Art flocked transfer from a sponsored goody bag (the perks of attending craft trade shows). What I also had handy (as in , I wore it all weekend and it was lying in a heap in the corner of my bedroom) was this fairly drab skirt I got from a thrift store recently. The skirt is the perfect thing to wear over crazy leggings when paired with my favorite black rain boots but it really is too plain for my tastes.

One hot clothes iron later, and I have permanently ironed on this super cute- and FLOCKED!- bicycle transfer and totally jazzed up my little skirt. Notice how I added it to my skirt straddling a side seam for a little off-center, custom look? Now it looks like one of those expensive, hand silk-screened skirts I've been coveting at the Portland Saturday market and no one will be the wiser. Hmmm... I wonder if S*E*I makes birds too...

Monday
Feb232015

3D Printed Bracelet with a Touch of Class

I've been loving 3D printed jewelry for quite awhile now. The possibilities are endless and gorgeous. I know, I know. You think you can't afford a 3D printer so you're ignoring all the cool things about this new technology. Not true. You can print things so easily from Shapeways.com, for example. Or check your local library- mine prints up to 4 items a month for the cost of thttp://gawker.com/why-worry-about-land-sharks-when-now-there-are-land-oct-1687359330he materials (averaging about 80 cents for, say, an iphone cover).

Now that PSA is over, let's get to my bracelet. I was given the an bracelet as a gift recently at the Craft and Hobby show. Someone was there doing 3D printer demos and the bracelet was a sample. But what a sample! It has a beautiful, shimmery sheen to it. Later, I was gifted a box of (sponsored product alert!) PrimaBead.com Swarovski crystals and I immediately knew the bracelet and the beads were a match made in crafty heaven. I love the idea of taking something so high tech and making it look rich and elegant.

I could bore you with the directions (because they're so incredibly simple) but really, get your hands on a pretty but plain little bracelet. It doesn't have to be 3D printed (but come ON- get on that tech bandwagon already!). And now grab your iLovetoCreate Liquid Fusion Clear Urethane Adhesive (I got a sample of this at the show) and glue some pretty crystals on. Let it dry and wear it to your next outing. When the sparkle catches someone's eye and they ask about it, you'll be able to say? "Oh this? It was made on a 3D printer and I embellished it myself). You get to teach someone something AND show off your creative side!

Tuesday
Dec162014

No More Wire Hangers!

That crazed scene in Mommy Dearest had a few things going for it- camp, great quote and, who would have guessed?!- craft inspiration. Ditch those wire hangers, kids. Wood is wear it's at. I bought mine at Ikea and with a bit of sanding and a quick dunk in a dye bath, they are just what I needed to add a little DIY fun to our guest powder room. You can see the painstaking step-by-step photo tutorial here but I bet you can figure out the finer points just by looking at the picture, right? Right. Now quit crying and go make me a cocktail! 

Tuesday
Nov042014

Simple but Dance-worthy Beef Stew

 

I googled "Pyrex bowls" for an image because no matter how delicious it is, let's face it, beef stew is ugly.

I've mentioned that I'm a completely uninspired cook, right? I use AllRecipes.com religiously which doesn't exactly make me Julia Childs. But whatever. I'm trying. What I have finally gotten comfortable with is not sticking rigidly to a recipe. People who love to cook all the time have been telling me this is unnecessary for years but it takes confidience and experience. It also takes a stellar memory because whe I make something my family loves- like the stew I made last night that made my family literally dance with happiness- any tweaks must be duplicated EXACTLY.

This is why I'm adding the most simple beef stew recipe on planet Earth right here. Not because you don't already know how to make it (I didn't) or because this one is so crazy complicated but because my family LOVED it and literally danced around the kitchen with glee as they polished off WHOLE pot of this last night because they love a simple dish. And now I have to duplicate this dish with OCD-like precision from now until eternity or they will no longer smile and dance on beef stew night. So I'm making a record of any minor adjustment I made.

 

2 lbs cubed stew meat (purchased at the "good meat" store by our pizza place)
3 tablespoons olive oil
 Heat up olive oil in the big le Cruset pot and then add meat to brown it
1 tsp garlic powder, some salt and pepper (sprinkle on meat as it's browning)
4cubes beef bouillon, crumbled
4 cups boiling water from the tea kettle
1 small branch fresh rosemary
1 tsp of thyme
Cover pot and let simmer an hour
Now add:
3 large potatoes, peeled and cubed
4 carrots, cut into 1 inch pieces
 1 large onion, chopped
Cover and simmer until done
Sprinke in some Wondra flour to thicken up the liquids in the last 1/2 hour or so