Welcome to My Bag of Tricks

This is a blog to share the things I discover, create and love. I have a passion for creating interesting things, and an equal passion for sharing how it's done! Join me on my journey, and watch what I'll pull out of my bag of tricks!

Thursday, August 2, 2012

The Correspondence Box!

The youngest daughter said she didn't really want anything for her birthday except something I made or money. She was trying to save up for her Opera Workshop this summer, which by the way is going very well.  She mentioned some time ago that she would love some kind of kit full of things to write letters and stamps and maybe make a few cards for those occasions she needs them real quick.   Hmmm, what would be the perfect container for such a kit?  Then I spied it, sitting in my entry hall, a vintage overnight bag! You know the thing, kind of boxy and stout with ample room for stuff.  It had already been decorated a bit by the previous owner so I just added a few more decorations in the form of a few fairies and Behold! The Perfect
Container for the kit.

She loves vintage, old looking things so this was Excellent. 

 I decided I needed to line the inside lid so I picked up some vintage looking paper with a travel to Paris theme and I was set. After a bit of Mod Podge and with a bit of black elastic and a staple gun I made little places to hang things. (scissors, adhesive,pens, whatever)

Next I made a bunch of blank cards and some decorative paper fronts, then I whipped up some embellishments that could be mixed and matched. Sentiments! She needed sentiments so I made a variety of add-ons that would be perfect for the occasion of the moment, (birthday, get well,  thank you, sympathy, congratulations.)  I made each type of embellishment a box and labeled them. I added all the necessary glues and adhesives and included some stickers and jewels, some assorted sizes in envelopes and filled an  envelope with all the different kinds of postage she might need and I had created the ultimate away from home Correspondence Box!  I'm pretty proud of it, and the best things is, she loves it, and uses it!

The finished box in all its glory. 

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Pioneer Days in Monticello

I did my booth at Pioneer Day in Monticello.  I've been preparing for this for a while as I've told you.  I had one goal in mind, I wanted to buy the Luttlerloh Pattern sewing system so I can sew better fitting things for my girls, and me I suppose.
 My booth was well stocked, I made it like a mini boutique for dolls.
   I DID IT!!!!!  I reached my  goal, and my new pattern system is on its way!  First project, performance dress for Jennifer.
 It was fun, but sooo stinking hot.  I almost melted, and I'm sure I could have burst into flames at any given moment!  But let's not remember that.  I did well enough that I've signed up to go do another booth, this time in Enterprise, UT . My sweet daughter in law set me up and since she's going to help her mom with a booth, I'm going with her and my son.   What a shame, more sewing time!  LOL

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Geppetto....or is that The Shoemaker......

Look, I even have hoodies!!!
She called me Geppetto the other day, and I looked at her and said..."No, Geppetto made a boy for himself, that's not what I'm doing here!" Her reply...."You made me!"  "Ok, fine, so that makes you Pinnochio or Pinochiette...Dance, or better yet, cut out some more soles for these shoes!"  I'm sewing, sewing, and sewing some more.  All kinds of fun things for an 18 inch girl/doll to wear.  Jeans, T-shirts, Capris, Bermuda Shorts, Jumpers, Princess Dresses and Shoes!!! I love making shoes!  I'm filling a booth for the Pioneer Day celebration here in Monticello.  I haven't done a craft booth on this scale in quite a few years.  I got my feet wet again around Christmas, and decided I would give it another whirl.  Come see me on July 21 at Veteran's Memorial Park here in Monticello, Utah.  And if you have any 18" doll lovers in your circle, do I have some great Christmas,Birthday, any time gifts for you!

Friday, June 8, 2012


Jeans and a cute t-shirt.... essentials for any girl's wardrobe.  Right?!  I've mastered sewing jeans, and I whipped up this "sweet" baseball T for the 18" doll.  I had to share a picture I was so proud of myself!  The pockets are just like the real big people version, as are the back pockets.   I used Expressions t-shirt vinyl to put the words on the shirt.  EASY!!!!
I'll post more and better pictures later when I have the time and the camera to do it right. Last night I settled for the phone camera and didn't clean off the work area to give the illusion that I'm a tidy person! 
Thanks to Liberty Jane Patterns for the amazing jeans and t-shirt patterns!

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Just 5 minutes!

For Mother's Day, my daughter Jennifer gave me a little journal, it's all plain so I can decorate it, and in the back it has a little pocket.  In this pocket, she inserted a little article about writing in journals.  She knows that some years ago, I stopped writing in my journal, this was mostly due to the fact that I was going through some very heart wrenching events and I found my journal to be depressing and full of sad things. I didn't want my future loved ones to read such miserable stuff, and so I fell out of the journal writing habit.  But, Jennifer wants to know what I think, and who I am, so being the persistent person she is, she gave me this journal.  I like the idea of decorating it, and after reading the article, I've given myself permission to write in my journal again because the article indicated that I should set  a timer for 5 minutes, and just write whatever comes to my mind, even if it's just a list!  How easy is that!  I started doing this every night, and I love it!  I don't always record events of the day, I just write what's on my mind, which truly is a better way to come to know me. I think some pretty strange things sometimes, and random thoughts blow through my head on a regular basis. So at least my journal will be great entertainment for generations to come and they'll know who I really was.  I'm  not formal, I just write precisely what my mind is thinking at that moment.  You should try it, it's very freeing and reflects who you really are.
Happy Journaling!!!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Thoughts.....What I'm up to.....etc......

Since my last post, I've purchased a couple theme books to create my Commonplace books, sewed 5  princess dresses wrapped them in white tissue paper and put them in lovely miniature dress boxes and made a dozen cards.  I also learned how to make a photo box so I can take better pictures for the blog. I just need to put it together.  I've also been to Northern Utah twice, once to attend a concert  that Jennifer's Masterworks Chorale choir gave at The Cathedral of the Madeline, and again this past week to attend Jennifer's vocal recital in which she performed two incredible songs.  I love to hear her sing.  I took Chantelle on this trip and we made it a fun girls time. We attended a couple movies and went up Provo Canyon and had a picnic hiked around Bridal Veil Falls, shopped. We just had fun together!  But now it's time to put the nose to the grindstone and get some creations on this blog!  We'll see how the day off pans out.......In the meantime though, here's a picture of my goofball girls on our picnic.....
They called this picture....Mom Kidnapped Us!  I tell you, it is never boring hanging out with these two!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Common Place Books

As many of you may or may not know, I'm a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes, I've read all the stories, and own several copies of the complete collections of Sherlock Holmes.  Anyway, Sherlock Holmes is always putting things in his "common place book"; I have wondered for some time exactly what that was.  I've done a bit of research and found out that during Victorian times people would write down things they had learned, formulas, recipes, poems, stories, whatever they thought was of importance and wanted to remember.I am going to start one for things I hear and learn.  It sounds lovely, and like another excuse to use all that lovely designer paper to make a cover.  I think a little theme notebook would work nicely, and would be easier to tote about. I'm always learning something or hearing a quote I like and I forget too easily these days.  It would also be nice to make one just for my crafting. I know there is Pinterest, but I love the feel of a book and turning each leaf to peruse what I've recorded. I also have ideas all the time and need a place to record them.  Hmmm....two lovely books covered in luscious designer paper...... Elementary!