Friday, August 29, 2014

I made a loom!

Lap Loom | Red Circle Crafts

I am so excited! I've been staring longingly at woven wall-hangings all summer thinking thoughts about how difficult it must be. But I've been inspired. A Beautiful Mess has a tutorial for making one that looks easy. But first you need a loom. So I made one. It's a little wonky, I know. But I can't even tell you how difficult it is to nail 32 finishing nails exactly evenly in two straight lines. That's not true. I can tell you, but you and I would both rather get to looking at woven things.

First a few more photos of my new lap loom.

Lap Loom | Red Circle Crafts

It's made from a piece of plywood that I had laying around. In fact it's a piece of an old sign from the bakery my husband and I used to have. And has 32 finishing nails total in two lines approximately 8.5 inches from each other.

Lap Loom | Red Circle Crafts

I need a few more things: a shuttle and a shed stick. I'm still learning what that means. But I'll find/make them as necessary.

I've heard that once you start weaving, you don't stop. So dear family and friends, you may all be receiving woven wall-hangings for Christmas this year as I may not have time to make anything else or know what to do with all of the many pieces I shall be weaving.

And now, the fun part. The very beautiful pieces that other people have made.

Cheif and KewpieFrom Chief and Kewpie. I totally recommend following her on Instagram too.


Wall Hanging from Lemon CuculluFrom Lemon Cucullu on Etsy.


Wall Hanging from racheljOKFrom racheljOK on Etsy.


Wall Hanging from Southern Textiles on EtsyFrom Southern Textiles on Etsy.


Wall Hanging from wolfandwoodland on EtsyFrom wolfandwoodland on Etsy.


All photos of finished, woven wall-hangings in this post belong to their respective, linked owners.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Making Friendship Bracelets

Friendship Bracelets | Red Circle Crafts

I'm not sure when the last time I made a friendship bracelet was, but definitely a long time ago. I may have even been in single digits. Frankly I was way more into lanyards than friendship bracelets, but I did go to summer camp, so I'm sure they were a thing at some point.

What I had apparently forgotten was how difficult these things are. Or maybe I wasn't looking at them with an adult's eye trying to make a pattern or consistent width. These are my experiments where I occasionally didn't have enough embroidery thread to make it long enough or pulled things too tight, or not tight enough. But I kind of love them. And I adore the process of knotting them. It takes all of my concentration and yet is exactly the sort of repetitive action that I can just completely zone out with.

Here are some friendship bracelet tutorials for you, if you want to make your own crazy patterns and designs.

The second from the left I made from this tutorial from Honestly WTF, which frankly started my craze. I blame pinterest.

This is a good, basic tutorial from Craft Scope with a pretty awesome idea of how to keep the all strands straight with just a piece of cardboard.

For a different style of friendship bracelet that makes a six-stranded braid, this tutorial from Panda Hall Learning Center looks pretty great.

Honestly, once I started looking, I was amazed at all of the different methods pinterest threw at me. I may be knotting and braiding for the next month or so, just so that I can try them all.

Friendship Bracelets | Red Circle Crafts

Friday, August 22, 2014

Renegade Mini Fair Portland Recap

Mini Pinata Workshops | Red Circle CraftsI'm finally getting through all the photos and putting away everything that exploded in my apartment before, during, and after Renegade. If you missed it, Renegade Craft Fair did their first ever fair here in Portland this year, August 9th & 10th. It didn't have nearly the traffic that some of their other shows have, but plenty of people wanted to make pinatas and we had a great time.

Mini Pinata Workshops | Red Circle CraftsWe were happy to move on Sunday to a new location closer to the action, even if it was sooooo hot. Thank you to everyone that came out despite the heat.

Mini Pinata Workshops | Red Circle Crafts Mini Pinata Workshops | Red Circle Crafts Mini Pinata Workshops | Red Circle CraftsI love all the pinatas that everyone made. I was really pleased that people made them with techniques I hadn't even thought of.

Mini Pinata Workshops | Red Circle CraftsWant to see more photos of pinatas? I've got an album on pinatas and their makers up on facebook. Did you make a pinata? Feel free to tag yourself and your friends! If you were gracious enough to have your photo taken at the event, but don't want it on Facebook, let me know and I can take it down.

Mini Pinata Workshops | Red Circle CraftsLast, but not least, it's time to announce the winner! Thank you to everyone who signed up for the mailing list. I send out monthly emails about tutorials, free craft nights, classes, and more. If you'd like to be added to my mailing list, you can sign up on the Contact Page.

And the randomly selected winner is: Misti!

I've sent you an email to get an address and your birthday party box will go in the mail shortly! Congrats!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Rolling Stamp Wrapping Paper

Stamp Rolling Wrapping Paper | Red Circle Crafts

It was J's birthday last week. I kind of love Birthday's. Mine was more than a little hectic this year what with it falling in the middle of my super-crazy schedule, but we did a bit more to celebrate J's. And a little more birthday-ing for me too.

While I didn't get a chance to make anything for his birthday present this year (just too busy), I did manage to whip up some cute wrapping paper for him.

I don't really like buying wrapping paper. I don't have room to store rolls of it and it's just going to get thrown out as soon as it comes off the gift. But I also think that part of the gift is presentation. So I've been trying to achieve a balance by upcycling papers to use as wrapping paper or finding re-usable packaging.

For this, I decided to use kraft paper (from a gently-used, paper bag), though you could easily print on rolls of kraft paper* if you don't want folds in your wrapping paper.

Stamp Rolling Wrapping Paper | Red Circle Crafts

Have you seen those adorable rolling stamps* that you can use to print patterns? This is a much more DIY version of those. I used the end of a lint roller (just one clean, sticky sheet left on it) and cut out pieces of foam from a sheet (like these*) in the shape of birthday hats and stuck them to the sticky paper on the lint roller. It was surprisingly easy to make. The more complicated and/or small the shape, the harder it was to cut out nicely. Different sized hole punches definitely worked wonders for adding small details though.

Stamp Rolling Wrapping Paper | Red Circle Crafts

When you're ready to print, cover the foam, evenly, but not heavily, with paint (I used acrylic) and then carefully roll the roller along the paper. Re-inking your roller as the paint fades on your print. I had hoped that I could roll the roller along like I do on my clothes to get off cat hair. That did not work. I had to hold the roller with both hands and roll it along, otherwise it just smeared.

I kind of love how uneven and crazy it came out. I may get better at it with practice, but I think I'll keep to rough shapes that are easy to understand so that I don't have to try for a perfect print each time.

Stamp Rolling Wrapping Paper | Red Circle Crafts Stamp Rolling Wrapping Paper | Red Circle Crafts

*These are affiliate links. I make a few pennies if you purchase these products through these links. While I'm happy for you to purchase these, my main goal is to give you an idea of the products I'm thinking about when I mention them.


P.S. I'll be posting the winners from my contest at Renegade to with a Birthday Party Box in the blog later this week. So if you signed up for my mailing list at Renegade, stay tuned!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Division Street Fair

You're probably wondering what happened to me last week. Or not. Either way.

I ran out of my prepared blog posts and thought maybe I'd have a chance to make some things and post some things, but frankly I am swamped! I've had big, huge, life changing, crafting events two weeks apart all summer. How amazing for me, right? Also I'm a bit on the exhausted side. I'm super, super lucky that I have some amazing friends who have been more than supportive while I suffer these growing pains.

I've got some great photos from the Division Street Fair, which was pretty hot and a lot of fun. But first, news!

My etsy store is open! It only has 4 things in it, but more to come. So go check it out and tell your friends! You can see a link to it on the sidebar too. In case you need to find it again.

Renegade Portland is coming to town August 9th & 10th and I'm doing free Mini Pinata Workshops all day(s) long at it. For anyone unfamiliar with Renegade, it's an awesome craft fair with amazing vendors and cool happenings. It's got a little different flavor than the local Crafty Wonderland. And this is the first year it's in Portland.

Thanks to everyone that I met and talked to me at the Street Fair. I loved seeing how people interact with my products and I got some great feedback that I needed.

Red Circle Crafts Sign

While I was actually pretty good and got most of my prep work done in advance, I did end up making my sign at 10:30 the night before when inspiration finally struck.

Division Street Fair | Red Circle Crafts Division Street Fair | Red Circle Crafts Division Street Fair | Red Circle Crafts Division Street Fair | Red Circle Crafts

There was a parade!

Division Street Fair | Red Circle Crafts

There was much more than this one band, but I was too busy to leave my booth to get any photos except for a few shots of these guys. That rolling drum set was amazing.

Division Street Fair | Red Circle Crafts Division Street Fair | Red Circle Crafts

The Birthday Party In a Boxes were a big hit. People were absolutely fascinated by them, although I think most people were at first confused by the concept. This kid negotiated with me so he could buy one with his allowance.

Hope to see more friendly faces at Renegade this weekend. I'll have more kits and patterns available for purchase as well as the free pinata making.