5 Dec 2008

Need a Break?

March 17, 2008 by Laugh Lines

Volume 3, Number 6

Need a laugh break? Check out these hilarious anecdotes followed by practical, creative tips on a variety of life's topics. Come on! Laugh a little!

A New Craft

I think I told you about how I love to find old books on sale. The next part of that weakness is finding books or manuals that have new craft ideas. I see you rolling your eyes! Recently I have seen some real treasures at yard sales, flea markets and rummage sales. I still remember when my elderly, stooped neighbor, Ethel, taught us how to make pin cushions from tuna cans and pot scrubbers out of netting. I have actually found books filled with marvelous ideas like that.

Sometimes I can find new crafts in old craft books with black and white photos from the 1940s and '50s. At other times it seems that crafts pass through our circles of friends by word of mouth. If someone starts collecting old bottles to place on a tree stripped of its foliage, soon the neighborhood is full of bottle trees. I have seen entire flea markets, church bazaars and rummage sales filled with macrame wonders, silverware wind chimes, and amazing plastic canvas creations.

When I was growing up, months before the holidays my mother would start us on craft projects. We always made a new project to present as Christmas gifts to our grandparents, aunts, and teachers. We were told it was much more special to give gifts we actually made with our own hands. I agree with that, but looking back, I also realize it was easier on our family budget. I shake my head now when I remember some of the crazy things we made over the years. I'll never forget about the folded catalogs, spray-painted and used as door stops, or the empty tuna cans glued into a tree shape with bobby-pinned ornaments. Everything looked good with enough gold spray paint on it, and was always received as a remarkable gift.

Well, it happened again. At a recent used book sale at our local library, I found one of those little eight-page booklets that give photo directions and complete instructions for making a craft. The title, "Toothbrush Rugs" caught my eye. The first page actually shows how to cut off the head of a toothbrush, sharpen the tip and use the hole in the handle for thread like a needle. I was intrigued by the oval rug that was shown in the little booklet. Suddenly Mrs. Bingham, the librarian I used to see every summer for the reading program, saw the booklet I was purchasing. She was thrilled and asked to borrow the booklet—because her group of friends were all trying to make toothbrush rugs. I had just stumbled on a new craft!

Pam and Kathy’s 7 Tips for Starting New Crafts

  1. Look for a craft that you will enjoy or really want to try.
  2. Try a sample project or interview someone who does the craft before buying a lot of supplies.
  3. Determine if the craft is one you will enjoy keeping for yourself or giving as a gift to others.
  4. Keep your craft supplies in one place so they are not scattered or damaged.
  5. Start with all the necessary supplies needed to complete a basic form of the craft for your first try.
  6. Only continue to buy additional supplies if you are sure you will use them, so you are not stuck with leftovers when you move on to a new craft.
  7. Find a friend to craft with and crafting will be twice as fun
by Pam & Kathy @ Laugh Lines
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