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favorite projects of 2011

December 27, 2011

Looking forward to 2012, I’ve already slated out a few sewing projects that I hope to complete (assuming that I find a decent second hand sewing machine).  I’d also like to force myself to finish up a few projects I quietly abandoned in 2011.   And with the happy addition of a Cameo to my suite of crafting tools (can still hardly believe it!) I’m only beginning to imagine the range of paper craft possibilities on the horizon.

So, in this quiet week prior to the start of the new year, I’d like to thank you for your encouragement in the past 12 months:  clicking in, leaving a comment, pinning an image, posting to facebook or subscribing to the blog.  Reading blogs is a wonderful source of inspiration that fuels my own creative energy and writing this blog is my reward.  Thank you for your company here, it makes my journey unbelievably delightful!

And now, a look back at just a few home sweet homemade accomplishments in 2011.

1.  the antique door collage.  my absolute favorite creation in true home sweet homemade style.  The combination of papers framed in this old door lifts my spirits.

2. the beaded abacus.  because of our mutual love of numbers, both Cristy and I adore this artful interpretation of the ancient adding machine.


3. the dining room dresser. oh yes, it’s pink, but a blast of color in the dining room was just what the doctor ordered.

4. the zinnia cutting garden.  my very first foray into growing annuals from seeds.  The cheerful blooms all summer long made the yard and the house so happy.

5. seashell wind chimes.  although our home is filled with treasures from the ocean, mostly fragments, my love for these natural beauties never fades.

6. the map table.  originally a much-lamented craigslist purchase, inspiration from the blogging universe intervened to make this an unforgettable redo.

7. paper tassels.  Most of my creative endeavors involved paper this year and after seeing an example of a paper tassel in one of the merchant booths at Round Top, I knew a version of my own imagination would soon be part of the home sweet homemade repertoire.

8. paper beads.  I don’t sell the things I make.  Consequently, after spending a few months making paper beads, I had a couple of gallons of them.  They adorned garlands, embellished tabletops, filled vases and graced one of my Christmas trees.

9. collage stripe paper shapes.  I made literally dozens of these pretty trinkets in 2011 and my Christmas trees were full of them.  Hearts, angelfish, chubby stars, cowboy boots and oak leaves.  Hand cut all the pieces with scissors.  However, that will change in 2012 with the gorgeous Cameo now sitting in my craft room.  I’ll be making paper teacups, keys and all sorts of shapes I previously could not produce with scissors.

10. bedroom linen cabinet.  The well worn hand-me-down secretary that had traveled to Costa Rica and back desperately needed a fresh purpose and a facelift to soften its chipped veneer and surface scars.  Wood filler, paint and new knobs worked their magic and we are charmed with our new linen cabinet.

11. paper weaving.  The second generation of the paper stripe shapes, and a big step forward in my imaginative thinking process.  This triptych love note to Cristy is among my favorite projects.

12. photo mosaic.  As an anniversary gift, I arranged photographed images as tiles on a canvas to create a truly unique collage, mosaic style.  With an infinite range of possibilities, creating another is a definite must.

13. inexpensive (and pet friendly) window treatments.  Our dining room enjoyed the most attention in 2011, most recently, a change to the window coverings.  The new look is so much softer and prettier.  I predict that window coverings will be appearing more on this blog in 2012.

14. modern art mobile.  While this piece is not in the permanent collection of home furnishings, it made a brief appearance in 2011 to fill an empty corner and did just that with panache and eye-catching style.

15. driftwood and hex nuts.  The weathered texture of driftwood and the pleasing geometry of the standard hardware store hex nut combine to make this outdoor artful hanging one of my 2011 favorites.

16.  updated lamp.  I subscribe wholeheartedly to the belief that the best decorative accessories are already in your home.  This once sad, dated lamp is an impressive example of the power of paint and a new lampshade.  Classic!

17. Make it Merry.  After I started participating in linky parties in 2011, I quickly recognized the vital importance of forging connections with other bloggers and wondered how to do that in a collaborative format.  This is the project that evolved, featuring 14 fabulous bloggers over a 2-week span.  I’d love to try it again in 2012 with improvements, more participants and fresh, craft-party themes.  Blog-collaboration rocks!

While there are others not included here, projects that I love just as much as the creations on this list, 17 seems like a good stopping place.  Or starting place, depending on your point of view.

May the collective creative energy of 2012 shine into our crafty nooks and the supportive love of the bloggy community encourage us to reach into our imaginations in new ways.

Thank you, as always, for your company.  I appreciate you so much!




sharing with
The Inspiration Board at homework
Nifty Thrifty Sunday at Nifty Thrifty Things
SNS at Funky Junk Interiors
Flaunt it Friday at Chic on a Shoestring
Potpourri Friday at 2805
{Re}create into Something New at Not So Simple Housewife
Transformation Thursday at The Shabby Creek Cottage
Primp your stuff at {Primp}
9 Comments leave one →
  1. December 28, 2011 1:00 am

    Diane, what a STELLAR New Year’s post!

    I so enjoyed going back and re-seeing all your outstanding creative projects from 2011!

    You ROCK, girl!

    I love them all, but especially that bedroom linen cabinet. It turned out FLAWLESSLY! And that photo of it is AWESOME! It looks like a photograph from a professional catalog!

    Please know what a joy it is for me to stop by you blog and read your posts throughout the year. You truly have inspired me to be more creative and conscious of being ‘eco-friendly.’

    And thank you for your friendship, my dear friend.

    You’re a beautiful lady – inside and out.

    I feel so blessed in knowing you!

    Much X and blessings to you and Cristybella in 2012!

    I look forward to blogging with you next year!


  2. December 28, 2011 12:50 pm

    Ohhhhhh…….what a very cool prezzie you got!

    And the 17 projects–holy cow. I’m lucky to see one through the winter season. Or, maybe I don’t ‘count’ ’em as I do ’em? (that’s sounds better….LOL…the other makes me look bad!)

    Yours–are wonderful.
    Don’t make me pick!
    But I will blame you for the paperbead ‘overflow’. *laughing* The good news is, they DO look cool in a glass vase or two……… And I will have enough for tree garland next year. Wooohooo!!

    Blessings to you and yours for the upcoming New Year. I’m glad we crossed paths at Ron’s place. I wouldn’t know the joy of wrapping paper around toothpicks were it not for that. 😉

  3. Lesa permalink
    December 28, 2011 12:59 pm

    WOW, so many of these I want to DO……beautiful job. BUT would you please tell me what the object is beside the updated lamp is…..looks like pieces of driftwood???? SO LUV IT.
    I enjoy your blog so much and BEST WISHES for a great New Year. Thank you. LESA

    • December 28, 2011 6:44 pm

      hi Lesa, you are so kind – thank you! Wishing you a very happy new year. That object you noticed is a round bundle of twigs. Looks like they are slightly whitewashed (with very very diluted white paint perhaps). sort of a faux driftwood effect. I found it in a decorative shop in Rockport, TX, just north of Corpus Christi called the Bay Window. It’s one of my very favorite shops – lots and lots of coastal accessories that are not too kitchy. The twigs are about 5″ long and arranged randomly to form the ball. Some of them must be glued together but some seem to be loose. I’m very careful with it when I move it around so that it won’t come apart. I really think it could be replicated pretty easily, but honestly have not tried it myself. The key to getting that driftwood effect is the whitewash treatment to the cut twigs. Or, alternatively if you are lucky enough to have plenty of driftwood twigs to begin with! The ones I gather are usually bulkier. Take care!! xo, Diane

  4. December 28, 2011 6:11 pm

    A cameo! Lucky you! You’ll have a lot of fun with that.
    I love that side table. And the paper beads, and the linen cabinet. 🙂
    Happy New Year, Diane! I’m looking forward to seeing all your projects for the coming year.

  5. December 28, 2011 7:29 pm

    LOVE all of your projects. but that map cabinet and the linen cabinet are to die for! I’m a total sucker for furniture. Especially shabby chic white stuff ahhhh!!

    You are so talented and thaks for being a great bloggy friend. Have a happy new year Diane!

  6. December 30, 2011 2:45 am

    Super cute projects!


  7. December 30, 2011 4:09 am

    You have a unique skill to turn scrap into spectacular. Very creative, and I am already taking notes to at least accomplish something in 2012. Like the Lenin cabinet. I am more of an outdoor person like to facelift patio & yard. I try to bring things that people have no value and try to blend them in yard or patio. My efforts so far are no way close to what I have seen on your blog.

  8. January 4, 2012 10:59 pm

    LOVE this!! And hoping you can link it up at my turquoise lovin’ party!

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