homemade ginger: October 2012

Gray Gray Gray

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

No, this post isn't about gray paint or gray fabric or gray decor...it's about gray nails.

Not my typical post, i know. But, I thought it would be fun. I'm not a huge nail polish person mainly because most nail polish comes in shades of red or pink. And I never wear those colors because they just don't look good on me. But, I've been loving gray nail polish. It's versatile, goes with everything and doesn't feel flashy! However, I've discovered it's kind of hard to find the right shade. I thought I'd give a low down of the 3 colors I have on hand and maybe one of them will fit your fancy.

The steel gray by Rimmel was the first one I bought a few months ago. I think it was the cheapest gray I could find, so I snagged it. I got the Essie in Master Plan a few weeks ago and the Loreal in Stroke of Midnight last week.

First, the Rimmel. It's fine, but it actually is more brown than gray. The name is deceiving. It's almost purple at times. I like it fine, but I definitely wouldn't call it "gray". It's a good neutral winter color, though. I really like the application brush. It's wide and holds a lot of polish on it, making you able to get away with just one coat.

Next, the Essie color. This nail polish is the highest quality of the three by far. It dries very hard and stays on for a long time. It's also a few dollars more than the others. I like the color, but it's a tad too light for my skin tone. I'm so white, that the color ends up being the same value as my skin tone. If you are not super pale like me, it would probably look awesome on you. I will definitely still wear this color, but I wish it were slightly darker.

 Lastly, the Loreal color in Stroke of Midnight. I love this color. It is slightly sparkly and looks almost navy sometimes. The nail polish itself isn't very high quality, it requires about 3 coats and doesn't last very long. But, the color is great and it's not hard to just brush on another coat to touch it up. Plus, it was cheap!

So, I would say in order from LEAST favorite to MOST favorite, it would go Steel Gray, Master Plan and the winner is Stroke of Midnight. And the Essie wins the longest lasting award!

So, there you have it. Do have any gray nail polish that you just love? Please share!

Oh, and a HUGE thank you to everyone who participated in the first ever Ginger Jamboree link up party! I've been slowly going through all the links and there are so many cool projects. Last I counted, there have been 140 projects linked up so far....140!! That went beyond my wildest dreams for the first day of the first link party. There is still time to link up your projects or there is always next week! Go at least check it out and visit some other blogs!

Ginger Jamboree Link Party #1

Monday, October 29, 2012

Welcome to the FIRST weekly Ginger Jamboree Link Party!

I'm so excited to see all the projects and yummy treats that YOU have been making lately.

Here are the "rules" if you could so kindly abide by them.
1. Link up to your blog post, not your blog homepage.
2. Please visit a few other links and give them some comments and hopefully they will do the same for you!
3. Link back here in your blog post. It would be amazing if you could include the Ginger Jamboree button (code is below), but a text link works as well!
4. Only link up tutorials, DIY projects, recipes and those types of things. Other random blog posts that don't apply will be deleted.

Here is the Ginger Jamboree button!

Next Tuesday I will feature my favorite projects from this week, so be sure to come back to see if yours is featured. And also come back next week to link up again!

TUTORIAL: Repurposed Trick or Treat T-Shirt Bag

I did not make any adorable or complicated Halloween costumes this year. (Unlike the sock monkey costume from last year). We are just using something we already have on hand. However, I did whip up some trick or treat bags using old T-Shirts.

This was super easy and it's so easy to customize. You could make these bags for any occasion...a cute one for the farmers market or grocery store, make one to wrap a present instead of traditional giftwrap...the possibilities are endless!

First, I grabbed 2 nasty undershirts of my husbands...he tends to wear them even though they have huge holes. Lovely. I also picked up some liquid RIT dye in Sunshine Orange .

I followed MADE's directions for dyeing fabric without using the washing machine.

Once they were washed and dried, they looked like this:

To make these shirts into bags, I turned to good old Martha Stewart's tutorial.  First, turn the shirt inside out and stitch the bottom hem closed.

Next, grab a bowl and use it as a guide for making the neck hole bigger.

Cut it out.

Cut the sleeves off....and you now have a bag!

I could have stopped there, but I decided to add some freezer paper stencils to make them a little more festive. There are zillions of tutorials online for this method of stenciling. Just google it.

After some black fabric paint and using the hairdryer to dry it out (I'm impatient)...I was done!

Two bags for my 2 trick or treaters!

And hopefully they will hold up to use next year and the year after that and so on...

Have you ever tried making a T-Shirt bag? I am curious how well they hold up when carrying heavier things like groceries.

And don't forget to come back TOMORROW for my very first ever Ginger Jamboree LINK PARTY!!

It officially starts tomorrow, but I will put up the post tonight for any of you early birds!

Noonday Collection Necklace Review

Friday, October 26, 2012

I've the opportunity to review an amazing organization called Noonday Collection.  My friend Holly works for Noonday and sent me a necklace to review (and keep!)  First of all,  Noonday is a company that sells fair trade jewelry made by artisans around the world.  They are committed to providing stable jobs and income for poverty stricken families around the world as well as caring for orphans.

Here are some of their goals (found on their website)

  • Providing jobs that create a pathway out of poverty for families. A stable income means a family is less likely to abandon their child.
  • Help families raise money for their own adoptions. We give 10% of trunk show sales directly to the adoptive family when they host a trunk show.
  • Aside from donating 10% towards qualified adoptive families, Noonday Collection also gives towards orphan care and prevention. Watch the video to see one of our beneficiaries.
  • The dream: Take YOU on a trip to visit artisans and visit orphans in their distress. 

And their jewelry is actually really beautiful! Here is the necklace I was sent. 

It's the ancient ways necklace made in Ethiopia.

With every piece of jewelry, you get information about where is was made, who made it and what materials were used. This is the information on my necklace:

This piece is handmade in Ethiopia using recycled nickel, copper, and bronze melted down from previous war weapons. Most of the artisans who created the pieces are HIV positive and receive healthcare and literacy training in addition to job training. 

Isn't that awesome?

Some of my other favorite pieces are:

The twisted necklace

The Cascading Falls Necklace

Dulce Necklace

Bengali Sunset Earrings

Crocheted Juxtopostion Earrings

And really, there is so much more!  I love finding quality organizations like this that are passionate about ending poverty in responsible ways: by providing fair jobs and opportunities.  And I love their commitment to caring for the most helpless of us, the orphans.

You can buy from the Noonday website, or even do a home show or party for your friends. What a perfect way to buy Christmas gifts while doing a little good! You can also email Holly if you are interested in finding out more: hwnoonday@gmail.com

A Journal Project Part 2 & An Exciting Announcement!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Welcome to Part 2 of my little journal project. You can check out journal #1 here. Remember the journals started out like this:

And journal #2 ended up like this:

It doesn't get much better than maps and chevron! I simply had an old map that I cut some chevrons out of...

And then I sewed them right onto the front cover with my sewing machine.

After trimming off the excess, I was done! On yeah, just like in journal #1, put a dab of glue on the backside to reinforce those seam endings. (this is pre-glue)

Two more journals to go!

Now, on to an exciting announcement, as promised. Drumroll.......

Starting this Tuesday, October 29th, Homemade Ginger will be hosting a weekly link party called "Ginger Jamboree" !

Every Tuesday you can tune in here and link up your wonderful tutorials and projects for everyone to see. I will be picking my favorites and featuring them the next week! I even have a handy featured button that you can put on your blog to brag to the world!
I have so many people tell me about fun projects they have been doing, that I figured this would be the best way to share the love. I can't wait to see what everyone comes up with each week! Pass it on to the world, the more the merrier!!

You can even grab a Ginger Jamboree button found on the right hand sidebar!

I've also changed some design elements up on my blog.  I have put a "Ginger Likes" section on the right sidebar where I will change out some of my favorite things I'm loving or wishing for right now on Amazon. Check it out, I will change it often!

I can't wait to see you all back here on Tuesday for the first ever Ginger Jamboree!

Fall Fun: Leaf Garland

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

 The girls and I had some fall fun in this beautiful weather. We collected a bunch of leaves and made a little garland.  It was such a simple activity that the girls could do themselves!

 First, we hunted for the best leaves in the neighborhood.

After we acquired a colorful stash, we spread them out and sprayed them with hairspray. This is supposedly supposed to help "preserve" the leaves. I'm not sure how well it will work, but it was worth a try.

Flip them over and spray the other side.

Next, it was time to assemble the garland. I found a jute rope at the craft store for $1.50. I stuck a piece of double sided tape to each leaf while the girls stuck them onto the rope.

And then we were done!

Now to find a place to hang our creation...

We decided on the fireplace so that everyone can enjoy it.

Now we will see how long those leaves last before shriveling up and turning brown.

What fun things are you doing with leaves to decorate?


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