Graphic design has always had a spot in my heart which is why I have always wanted a custom made rubber stamp. Yes, you can print any graphic but there is something about a tangible stamp and ink pad that makes me feel official. It’s silly but this thing has been in my wish list for several occasions so I am happy to finally have one. For Christmas I received this one from my sister and at first I was honestly a bit disappointed because it is so small. Originally I had wanted the larger custom stamp but now that I have the mini I am pleasantly surprised at how useful it is. Although I do have the larger edition in the mail as well I am so excited to finally test out No Issues stamps.
Below is the unboxing in an asmr style and then after I discuss my full review. While I did give an impromptu review in the video I wanted to go a little more in depth here. First, the reason I chose No Issue was I had started following several small shops and noticed many of them use the brand for stamps. Most of the stamps from the small shops did seem a big basic in design though so I was hesitant if it would turn out well or be a flop. It turned out amazing! The details are so sharp which is surprising as the stamp is so small yet legible. One thing I was skeptical on was the additional handle: since it is rather tiny it seemed laughable. After using the stamp a couple of times though I have realized that the rod is an added luxury that allows a full view for placement, so there are no mishaps. On another note I am beyond grateful that the rod comes off for storing so that it is not difficult to organize.
Although I really enjoy the stamp quality the ink pad is a different story. Yes, the ink quality itself seems superb to other ink brands but the packaging/ container of the ink itself was a big disappointment. The pad does not have any type of securing system the acrylic just sits on top of each other. This causes the container to flop open unless it is laying flat. A floppy container thus creates a high chance of the ink pad drying out. Over time I guess we will see if it causes a problem. As of now I can only speculate that it will only be a matter of time. With that said I have decided to keep the packaging so that the cardboard can create a more proper seal for the ink while being stored. If anyone knows why so many ink pad companies don’t more manufacture proper ink pad containers I would appreciate it. I do not understand why they are more so floppy and loose when others lock or click shut. As that is the only concern I have I am really happy with the product and company thus far and am looking forward to experimenting with various uses.
New Years is often referred to as a time to reset: goals, expectations, habits and also to get organized. One part of getting organized is to clean my shoes which is why I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to share an update on my KURU shoes. Yes, I did do an initial review but now that it has been about two years I thought it would be helpful to show how they have held up thus far. The reason I am only highlighting the Roam pair is because they have been my go-to pair. Since these are my daily shoes they are also extremely dirty which is why I am showing how/if they can be saved. In other words will they be yard shoes or continued daily wear shoes. Currently they are an eye sore so I am hoping they can be revived to an almost new appearance in the best case scenario.
Physically the structure of the shoes are good, they still provide arch support as they did when they were new. The two main “issues” which are honestly mostly user created flaws encompass the part of the shoe that you put on and off. In the first review I mentioned that the sides of the leather were rubbing off near the top part of the shoes which has gotten a little worse. The other issue is the back of the shoe has been defected from putting on and off my shoes by simply stepping into them instead of putting them on properly. This caused the back of the heel to get smooshed making it feel weird when walking at times. To see this issue on the shoe watch the video below and I will point it out. Both of these issues are not necessarily the shoes fault, however, I have yet to have a heel get crushed like these did.
Also in this video is an in-depth cleaning of these shoes with a little asmr too. There are three methods I use to clean white shoes so hopefully they help someone else revive their icky shoes too. I personally believe that all three of them combined create the best results when your shoes are to the point of looking like yard shoes. However, if you clean them monthly using a simple baby wipe should be enough to get them back to looking presentable.
Water Based Baby Wipes
Mr. Clean Magic Eraser
White Mixture: Water, Baking Soda and Tooth Paste
Shoe Lace Cleaning Tips
When it comes to cleaning shoes often people throw out the laces and buy new ones which never measure up to the original ones. Instead of simply throwing them in the washing machine try this hack instead. Fill up the bathroom sink with enough water to cover the laces. Sprinkle baking soda and soap into the water. Swirl around the mixture and let them soak for about 20 minutes. Rinse and hang them up to dry.
For the holidays I had a lot of content planned and per usual they fell short. I could say I was too busy, however that was not the case. For some reason my mind gets stuck on certain projects and it is hard for me to pivot before they are 100% complete. Bouncing back and fourth has never been a strong suit of mine and is something I need to work on.
So… instead of creating a half hearted holiday post, I wanted to share a project I actually worked on for a Christmas gift this year. Although I cannot share the pattern with you as it is not my own and not available online, I thought it would be fun to watch me work through the project in a sort of time lapsed video with some holiday instrumental music. I tend to like watching people work on projects this time of year so hopefully you all will too.
Crochet is a new hobby I have picked up and am just now starting to fall completely in love with it. If you have been wanting to pick up a new craft I highly recommend crochet, it’s relaxing and fun to create something out of a little ball of yarn. Plus, unlike machine embroidery it is something that can be done anywhere and travels easily. No inconveniencing the house with loud noises of machines either. Yes, it can be frustrating to try new crafts but it is also part of the fun of learning new ways to be creative. There are so many stitches and I am by no means an expert, so go easy on me if you do crochet as I am still very much a newbie.
Did you make any Christmas gifts this year? If so I’d love to hear all about them.
The fall weather has finally hit California which means its sweater weather. On dreary days we still take out the pups to walk as long as it is not a major down pour. After getting ready for our first sprinkling walk, my little nephew literally shook off his coat. In other words, he went without as it would have been more of a hinderance than anything else. Once the walk was over I wanted to fix his little jacket since hopefully there will be more dreary walks in this desert this season.
First, I want to preference that he is a size medium according to his weight, but sometimes the medium seems like a joke with the size jump from the small. It’s like Goldilocks: one’s too small, one’s too big, except in this case there is not a just right option. Auntie to the rescue! Time to put those crafty powers to work and make some alterations.
This is an extremely basic tailoring project that you can do with a basic sewing machine or even sew by hand during a Christmas movie. Materials needed are velcro, pins, needle and thread. A tape measure can be used however, keep in mind to leave room for two fingers. Also if you are more experienced you could cut and move the straps entirely but I did not want to alter the entirety of the coat. Follow the tutorial below to see how I altered the coat without any major construction changes.
A little over a year ago I unboxed my first embroidery machine and have been sharing my frustrations ever since. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my embroidery machine. I am simply stating that now I finally feel that I have somewhat mastered the machine. The first few times I used the machine I was nervous to do basically anything but now it’s more of an after thought / fun to create.
When I first opened the machine I searched for tutorials and there were not that many that actually showed how to use the machine. This is something I really wanted to change because it can be hard to simply learn through trial and error or understand the instructional booklet. So, when I was asked for guidance on some starter tasks with the machine I knew it was something I wished had been there for me.
Below is a video of mini starter tutorials that are straight through. I hate fluff in between when I am looking for guidance; which is why I hope it will be beneficially for beginners or even people who are just interested in learning more about machine embroidery. Since the fluff is out of the video here is some fluff or more background.
The first tutorial is how to change the needle which can be intimidating. Things to consider are that you have the correct size for the machine used, and it has to be screwed on, not too loose or too tight. Only tighten until the bar with the screw is no longer able to be pushed up. Second is how to thread the machine’s upper thread. Incorrect threading can cause the needle to break so make sure each step is correct. In the tutorial I mention that I am not a fan of the stoppers that come with the machine. The stoppers in the past have caused the thread to catch and thus snap the needle in pieces. Last is the bobbin which can mess up the outcome of the embroidery stitches if it is not installed properly. I’ve talked about it in another video but that small silver piece is so important! Make sure it clicks because if is does not it will break off the thread, bunch up stitches or even break the needle.
While I have created an appliqué post before of my first time creating one I thought it was time to share what I have learned thus far to help those who are also learning embroidery. Appliqués can be intimidating so just like any other file the first tip is to test and take notes on the file. Notes can be for referring to the color numbers used, if there is a trace layer and if there are steps you would prefer to skip to leave out a specific detail of the design. These will make the process run smoothly without ruining finished projects.
If there is a trace layer included in the file it will be easier to pre cut the fabric pieces needed, however, creating the test run through will also aid in this. Next, take the appliqué pieces and prep them with heat and bond. Yes, at first I thought it was an over the top step as well but it really is a game changer. Heat and bond acts similar to botox for fabric as it freezes the fibers in place to prevent fraying as well as stretching.
After the appliqué is tacked down it is time to trim the access fabric with scissors. For this I recommend a curved pair that allows for close cutting; beware not to cut too close or too far. To prevent any issues pull the appliqué fabric away from the base fabric so that there are no incidental cuts that puncture the base fabric. You want a small amount of fabric past the tack down stitches. If you cut too close, when the border is stitched it could rip out the tack down stitches and make the appliqué look messy.
Let me know if you have created an appliqué before and if you have what your favorite tip is for creating them even if I did not mention it in this post. For a full walk through of these tips click on the video linked below.
Although I have not officially classified launches for Custom Little Beasties when the shop first opened this is the first revamp of the shop which sort of classifies it as the second launch. The shop has come along way and I have learned a lot along the way. How to make things more efficient as well as experimenting with new ideas.
Here are some things that have changed since the first launch. The first round of blankets did not showcase mock ups of any embroidery work on the specific fabrics. Yes, they were still aesthetically pleasing, however, if I was looking for a custom embroidered blanket I would want an actual visual on the material I am purchasing to see how the colors worked together. It was also the very beginning of my embroidery journey so there were only two embroidered character choices too.
Now each themed blanket has a unique embroidered character to match its print. The sizing options have also changed from one to two by adding in a lovey option. Loveys are the perfect size for on the go comfort, they are able to be customized and are made with luxurious plush minky fabric. Also the shop has expanded to include more crochet items such as cute hats for halloween costumes and adorable baby photoshoots. More sparkles with bows and dresses for birthdays, holidays, dress up and everyday wear. To view the entire collection and for a peak behind the scenes watch the video below. Go to the shop tab to shop directly.
Learning how to use an embroidery machine is tricky enough so, let’s discuss some basics to make it easier to design with fonts. Softwares for embroidery are pricy but luckily there are some free options. Embrilliance’s free tier is called Essentials which allows you to add and edit fonts together. This means that all the designing is done on the computer rather than on that tiny screen of your machine. The program even allows you to add multiple font styles together to make it one step on the machine. Set a guide for your specific hoop size that will alert you if your design won’t fit. Simply design and then export it onto a USB just as you would with a design file.
Learning how to use an embroidery machine is not easy. It takes a lot of experimentation especially to go beyond the basics the machine comes with. Last week I shared my top tips for digital embroidery files so it is only right that this week we focus on fonts. If you are thinking the rules of files and fonts are the same you would be kinda right but would find yourself in some sticky situations like I did.
Although I would not say I am anywhere close to being an expert at embroidery, looking back I have learned A LOT. If you recently purchased a machine or are curiously researching machines, this next mini series is full of helpful information to get you started. Today’s focus is on digital embroidery files, which seems like an easy concept, however, there are things that can may catch you off guard if you are not careful. First realize that each machine has a set size limitation so depending on how large your embroidery field is depends on which files the machine is able to read successfully.