Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Let the Seeds Begin!



I woke up this morning to the smell of hyacinth in the house. My favorite flower. Spring is here, even though it doesn't look it outside. I have to say... this week really means Spring for us. Here's why. Today marks the week that we should begin any indoor seeds, according to my grandmother, one of the greatest gardeners I know. In Ohio, frost can hit as late as May. The end of March looks pretty promising for those young seedlings. They should be the perfect size for outdoor transplanting when the time comes. So for all of you who would like to follow in the footsteps of an amazing gardener, your free to do so:) Her advice is priceless as I've seen with my own two eyes, she can grow some of the most difficult plants.




If your bringing gardening indoors, remember to keep your soil moist with a spray bottle and not a watering can until the seedlings are strong enough. Remember to rotate if your keeping them near a window so that they grow straight and create strong stems. And last, remember to thin. Only keep the seedlings that look the toughest!





To Happy Seeds!
 
 

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Happy Spring!

"Spring is when you feel like whistling even with a shoe full of slush."
~ Doug Larson 
 
 
I came across this quote and felt it pretty much summed up our weather here in Ohio. We had a few days of warmth before jack frost came back. And by warm, I mean 60's:) It made my butt hit the outdoors and clean up some brush and prune back some trees. I brought in lilac branches that I just didn't have the heart to pitch. I figured..... eh, maybe they'll grow.
Take a look!
 

 


  
We'll see if they continue to grow.
 
And...
a seed finally erupts:)
 
 
 On another note....
 
We were lucky enough to tackle a paint job prior to the flu visiting our house.
My older daughter decided that it was time for a bedroom makeover. (And she was right. It was something I've been hesitating for awhile....a looong overdue paint job.) Idea became reality.  I realized why I was procrastinating as the yellow walls changed and the fairy decals were removed. I could feel my heart slowly sinking.... She's growing up and the time is moving so quickly. The new color is a beautiful, turquoise, minty green. Now it's really 'her room'. I love it and I think she gets her unique style from me;) But..... I still walk by and do a double take. It just looks so much 'older.' Ahhh changes....
Future projects: curtains for her room, a little make-up bag... and of course more aprons! 
 
To new beginnings and fresh starts~
Happy Spring:) 
 

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Herbal Closet Freshners

 

With warm weather right around the corner, many of us have begun our Spring cleaning. I decided to make these herbal closet fresheners while tackling my kitchen pantry. It seems that we've accumulated sooooo many herbs that I just had to eliminate some. Is it really necessary to keep 3 jars of dried mint leaves? I don't think so. These herbs were put to good use as closet fresheners and this concoction was all to good not to share. 


 
I used dried sage, dried mint, dried chamomile buds, and black tea. Dried sage and mint for the antibacterial properties; chamomile to add something soft, and black tea for the freshness. I know it seems a little unusual to break open an actual tea bag, but that's what I did. I love the smell of black tea. There was no method to the madness. Just a sprinkle of this and a sprinkle of that. I used a total of four tea bags.
 

 
I used a rectangular piece of fabric and pinned ribbon in the corner so that it would prevent moving while I stitched. Pin it more in the center so that you do not touch the needle while sewing. Fold the  fabric face inwards and stitch so that one side is left open.
 
 
Place your herbs inside and double stitch shut folding the edge inwards.

 
 
Pretty cute, wouldn't you say?
Believe it or not, these closet fresheners have a strong, pine type scent.
I just love them. When making your own mixes, make sure you use only ingredients that have fully dried. Don't add any liquids unless they're essential oils.
 
To keeping it fresh & clean!
Happy Trails:)
 

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Make It!

Why buy it when it's so simple to make it yourself. Right? I came across these adorable headbands at the mall and knew that they would be a great project to show on the blog. The greatest part, you can customize them to match perfectly with your threads. And... you can even use up fabric strips and scraps you no-longer have use for. I'm all about using up everything! So here's how it goes. You may recognize the fabric from the dress I made my daughter last summer. When I find a good deal on fabric, I buy alot:)

 
You will need 1/2 inch wide elastic cut at 5 inches. The elastic could be wider, but
remember that this is the part that will go at the base of your head.
Anything too bulky will be uncomfortable.
Start by cutting your fabric 3 1/2" wide by 58" long.
Cut off 12 inches and put aside.
Take the remainder of your fabric, fold it in half and cut again.
You should have 3 pieces of fabric.
1 at 12 inches & 2 at 23 inches
 
Take each piece and serge or sew them length wise with the face fabric inside.
 
 
Reverse them right side out so that anything that was stitched is now inwards.
 
Take your 12 inch strip and place the elastic inside.

 
You can see below how I folded the fabric.
 
Stitch an inch ~ length wise and then across twice to secure the
elastic from moving. 

 
Do this to both sides.
You should end up with a little piece of ruffled fabric with elastic inside.
 
 
Take the 23 inch strips and fold them into eachother.
Don't make a knot.
Leave the ends open.
 
 
Fold the ends inward so that no fabric can fray.

Working on one side, take your ruffled elastic piece
and insert it into one opened end.
You should insert the elastic far enough that the cross you
stitched does not show.
 

 
Sew them together. Add the loose piece on top and
following the same line, stitch again.
Once you've done it to both sides, you are complete!

 
That's it!
 
 
 
I really don't like to take pictures of myself, but what good would a project demo
be without the finished project being used?
I love my new headband and it's super comfy:)
 
A few things that are good to know:
1. stick with stretchy fabric
2. if it contains a higher percentage of cotton than elastic,
decrease your measurement from 58" to 56"
3. with all the fleece going on sale, this would be a great project to do
with multiple colors and you wouldn't have to finish any ends:)
4. elaborate ~ how cute would adding 3 matching buttons to one side look?
 
Hope you enjoyed this fast & fun project!
May the month of crafting be with you:)
 
 
Happy Trails:)
 
 
 


Friday, March 1, 2013

Hello National Craft Month!

 

Stamping, stickers, sewing, & scissors! What can be better for a crafter than a month dedicated to do-it yourselfers? I'm sure all you creators are excited to browse the internet in hopes of finding new projects. Or as I say, something to spark a new project. The month of March proves great sales and special offers at all those crafty based stores. However, shop cautiously. Past experience has proved that mark ups are put into effect before mark downs. What else is going on, you ask? I'm excited about the quilting & sewing expo this month and starting a 'couple' seeds indoors. I have a sewing to-do list that is huge and almost never seems to shrink, even when a project gets crossed off. Between all the usual, I've decided to take a wing at a vintage lingerie pattern. I'm praying it goes good and that I'll have a fun post to share with you in the near future. I should really start taking some photos of all the projects I've mentioned on The Mint Needle & have forgotten to share. Spring is definitely around the corner as the daffodils have officially begun their climb out of winter sleep and the tree buds are starting to get bigger. I love it! Bring on the sun! And a quick break from the dreary, rainy/snowy weather involved a trip to Pier 1 where I was engulfed in bright colors, fluorescent lights, and reggae music. Ahh... it was so wonderful. Scoring this great deal on espresso coffee cups in my favorite color & a gorgeous print. I thought I was dreaming:)
 
 
Happy Trails:)