November 14, 2009

52' North Latitude

I just learned that Belgium is way up on the top of the world! Well, farther North than I have ever been. This explains why I see sunsets at 5 pm or 17 hour. Perhaps this explains my sleepy feeling overall? But it definitely explains my very tall, extra long legs in my shadows.

Or, maybe that is all the bicycling I've been doing...

November 8, 2009

Fun with Paper

Hallo! It's been a crafty weekend here in mi casa. Last night I finally finished my knitting project, (Yay!) and I will post pictures as soon as I get some good shots of that piece. I am pretty happy with the way it turned out, and I am eager to get started on the next yarn project: felted coasters. I have the colors selected, I just have to decide if I want to crochet or knit the pieces, and if I want them circular or square. Ah... decisions, decisions.

I made a few more paper cranes and have built up quite the menagerie. I wanted to string them and make some sort of mobile or hanging element, but I am not able to do that because my ceilings are way too high and there is just no place to hang them. In the meantime, I have placed them throughout our apartment for pops of color, here and there.

Last week I stumbled upon the website Dollar Store Crafts. Some of their projects look vapid and cheap, but if you scroll through some of the archives you can find some decent inspiring posts; like this one. And, I do like the idea of crafting from the dollar store. If only we had one here in Belgium, but we do have second hand shops where I found this vintage book in French. I think it's about some kind of psychosis...

Not exactly my kind of reading material, but it's browned, fragile, vintage, French printed pages are perfect for my project du jour.
Also,

I found a CRAFT STORE!!!!

This is a very exciting development in my life here in Leuven. I know where the store is, but I don't know the name of it yet. When I went last week they were about to close for lunch. I was only able to take a quick scan of the store's inventory; they have so many tools and materials, and they even offer classes. I will definitely go back when I have some time and some €s.

In the mean time I did pick up a styrofoam wreath and a glue gun:
Both items are also necessary for my project du jour.


Project du jour: I thought I would give the book page wreath a try. The original post is from the blog Living with Lindsay, which is a great DIY blog with tutorials and all kinds of fun projects and great design. She has one of those blogs that makes you think, "why didn't I think of that?!" But, at least she does and she shares them.

Her blog post on the book page wreath has a video tutorial, it's very helpful. I took an action shot as I was rolling up pages today.

My wreath didn't take too long to make.
(Sorry for the terrible picture. I will try to take a better one when I have some daylight.)

It only took one and a half episodes of the new show Glee to complete. (I absolutely love that show!)
I love, Love, LOVE the way this book turned out.
Who doesn't love a good page turner and a happy ending!

November 5, 2009

Yesterday's News

I finally got around to making this newspaper basket that I posted about here.

It was not as easy as the instructions made it out to be, but then that's the way I tend to do things... (I tend to make things difficult.) I was having a hard time keeping the form upright and trying to make my weaves tight. My fingers were black by the end and only two and a half editions of the daily Metro were mutilated. It took me about an hour and a half from start to finish, a much needed break from knitting and everything else I am supposed to be doing. It's my first attempt and I will make more. I like the look of the softly muddled newsprint with occasional color. It's a nice/aesthetic/eco-friendly project that will help tame my bookshelf/craft shelf/catch all.

I got a new skirt:
It's from HEMA and is a light weight, simple, A-line jersey number. It's a much needed addition to the other black skirts that I brought because this one will ride well on the bicycle, something I've been doing quite a bit of lately. It was 16 €, and I am very pleased.

I also learned that rok means skirt in Dutch.


I also bought a package of dried bay leaves. Bay leaves make chicken taste better and is an essential ingredient in various soups and stews. A simple addition of a few leaves makes an enormous difference. I am pleased with the little effort on my part this has required.
Don't they just smell divine?

And...
It's beginning to look a LOT like Chirstmas! (?)

November 2, 2009

All Saints Day and the USA

Yesterday was All Saints Day. I'm not sure what that means here in Belgium, but from what I remembered of my time in Mexico, it's a day to go to cemeteries and honor loved ones who've passed. The only cemetery that I know of here in Leuven is at Park Abbey. I came across it a few days ago, and blogged about it here. Park Abbey was open for a tour yesterday, so we hopped on our bikes to check it out. I'll post more about our tour later this week, I took WAY too many photos in awe and inspiration. The history that is in this town is AMAZING!

A memorial inside Park Abbey.

Spooky trees.


There is some hint of Halloween here, but not much.

I found this popcorn & candy-corn hand,
Gooey caramel apples,
And Pippy Long Stockings next to Michael Jackson.
These sites made me miss home a bit.

I was hungry for just a taste:
So, I made the best of it.

Bon app├ętit!