Tardis Cat Condo

The couple that fostered our kittens before we adopted them loves Dr. Who. In fact, one of our kittens is named Amelia because we decided to keep what they had named her. I've known Dani, kitten foster mom and Dr. Who fan, for a few years and we are friends on Facebook so when she posted a picture of a TARDIS cat condo, I couldn't help but comment that I could make one for her.

Fast forward a few weeks and I got the call, well, text. She wanted a cat condo that looked like a TARDIS. I agreed.


TARDIS Cat Condo by Julie @ Build, Sew, Reap
*I also made their cat a bow tie.

I didn't take a lot of pictures as I went along. I used ripped 2x4s for the structure then 2 full sheets of 1/2 inch MDF for the outside as well as trim. My guess is if you're desperate enough for this same piece, you can probably work out how to make one for yourself but feel free to contact me directly on email or Facebook with questions.

Here are some other fun shots though. A special thanks to Caleb Richmond for his awesome photography.

Tardis Cat Condo by Julie @ Build, Sew, Reap

Tardis Cat Condo by Julie @ Build, Sew, Reap
Tardis Cat Condo by Julie @ Build, Sew, Reap

And one final picture from a total ham of a cat:

TARDIS Cat Condo by Julie @ Build, Sew, Reap

Thank you for reading,
Julie



How To Create Narrow Painter's Tape

Tonight I found myself needing some thin painter's tape. I was looking for something in the 1/4 inch range but had some wiggle room on that measurement. I looked around online to see if the product even existed and figured out I wasn't going to find it at any stores nearby so I got to thinking.

After a couple of hours if it quietly simmering in the back of my mind, it hit me. All I needed was a thick rubber band, an exacto knife, and a roll of any width painter's tape.
Creating Narrow Painter's Tape

Now let me break it down for you one step at a time.

First, grab that nice wide rubber band and stretch it around your roll of tape ensuring it lays flat.

Creating Narrow Painter's Tape


Lay the roll of tape on its side on a flat surface and gently press the rubber band all the way to the edge.

Creating Narrow Painter's Tape

This is how it should look now.

Creating Narrow Painter's Tape

Now using your craft/exacto knife, score all the way around the roll of tape, using the rubber band as a guide. Watch that you don't move the band by accident.

Creating Narrow Painter's Tape

Now remove the rubber band and using gentle pressure, cut around the roll of tape with the knife in the line you just scored. Go around and around and around as many times as it takes to create enough tape for yourself.

Creating Narrow Painter's Tape

See how my knife was getting pretty deep into the roll here?

Creating Narrow Painter's Tape

I needed quite a bit so I kept at it for a few minutes, until my knife was nearly all the way to the cardboard at the center of the roll. If it still isn't enough, I'll repeat this process using the opposite side of the roll of tape.

Here's the nice narrow 1/4 inch wide painter's tape, ready for my project!

Creating Narrow Painter's Tape


Check back in soon to see the latest project I'm working on. I'm hoping to finish it up over the next few days. Yippee!

Thank you for reading,
Julie



Simple Greenhouse

In the fall of 2013, I decided to throw together a greenhouse over two of my raised beds so that I could grow some winter crops AND so that my tomatoes would be well protected for the 2014 growing season. I thought I might take it down halfway through the summer but it worked out so well and my tomatoes were so happy that I never ended up taking it down but instead improved upon the original design.

Simple Greenhouse

I built the frame out of 2x4s. I don't have measurements at the moment but if I get requests in the comments below, I can write up another post with specifics. The one thing I can't tell you is how to acquire your own windows but they aren't that important anyway. I found these two by the side of the road. They were used as demonstration windows in a manufactured home salesroom. While I did keep them open a lot of the time, I don't think they're necessary as long as you have other ventilation.

Before I move on to just posting a whole bunch of pictures, I wanted to point out that the top of the greenhouse is vented. The whole greenhouse is 8 feet long by 10 feet wide (10 feet on the door ends). I put a very long piece of lumber across the whole top which leaves triangles that aren't covered by plastic open for proper ventilation. If you don't do this, the air will get stale and you'll have a mold problem pretty quickly. Make sure you keep the air moving around, even when it is cold outside.

So, now on to the pictures. I hope these inspire you to build your own greenhouse.

Here's the frame before I covered it with greenhouse plastic (that I ordered online from a greenhouse supply retailer).

Simple Greenhouse

I used some screws I had left over from when we put a new corrugated roof on our back porch. These screws are really easy to use plus they come equipped with a washer that seems to have some sort of rubber backing on it. This greenhouse has now survived two windy seasons in the PNW and this is a particularly vulnerable part of our yard.

Simple Greenhouse

In the spring, I start my seeds indoors in seed trays. Once the seedlings emerge and are strong, I transplant them to 4 inch pots and move them out to the little greenhouse with lots of good plant happy lighting. When I have too many in the little greenhouse, the more mature plants can now be moved out to the big greenhouse. This past spring, we started over 100 plants using this process and most of them grew up to be big and strong. I added a brooder light in the spring when the nights were still dropping down to freezing or below. That kept the plants just warm enough to continue to thrive.

Also, I suspended an old crib side from the ceiling. It served as a great slatted shelf for the plants so the water could drain off but they received lots of sunlight.

Simple Greenhouse

I mentioned before how important it is to keep the air moving inside the greenhouse. Well, in the warmer summer months, I rolled up the sides and opened the doors. My tomatoes LOVED having the protection from the top while still receiving tons of good sunlight and a cross breeze.

Simple Greenhouse

After trying many different ways to hold the sides up, I finally created a casing at the bottom by folding a few inches up from the edge then stapling it in place. I ran an 8 foot length of PVC pipe through the casing to hold the bottom edge straight on each side. Last, I drilled 1 inch holes in my greenhouse frame and cut four 4-inch lengths of pvc pipe to stick in those holes. The little pieces of PVC hold the long side in a rolled up position.

Simple Greenhouse

My tomatoes were incredibly happy in there this summer. I've never seen such huge and healthy tomato plants before. I had 12 Striped Roman variety plants that I had started from seed and from those, I harvested more than 100lbs of juicy ripe tomatoes. I probably could have gotten more but I burned out and stopped harvesting fast enough so they started getting blossom end rot. It was an absolute jungle in there though. Truly mind blowing.

Simple Greenhouse

At the end of the summer, I set harvested seeds out to dry on the suspended shelf. It kept the squirrels from stealing my bounty but allowed them to dry out at a natural pace.

Simple Greenhouse

I swore I would plant lettuce in the greenhouse for the winter but it never happened. I'm disappointed in myself for dropping the ball on that one but I was exhausted from such a busy summer and I needed a break from gardening. Maybe 2015 will be my year to get a winter garden growing strong.

And now I'll leave you with this vision of summer. It's almost seed planting time again. Are you ready?

Simple Greenhouse 

Thank you for reading,
Julie



Crocheted Silkie Chicken Beanbags

If you follow me on Facebook, you may have seen that my new obsession is crocheting. Well, I'm still loving my chickens so when I found a pattern for crocheted beanbag chickens on Petals to Picots, it was an obvious project to take on but of course, I had to make some changes to better fit my flock.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken Beanbag

These are quick and easy to make and super cute to boot.

Let's back up the truck a little first. Here's what I made using the pattern exactly as written:

Crocheted chicken

But we have two silkies so I had to alter the pattern to make a chicken beanbag to reflect the cutest members of our little flock. I present to you the grey silkie beanbag chicken:

Crocheted Silkie Chicken Http://buildsewreap.com


How to make your own Crocheted Beanbag Silkie Chicken

Here's what you'll need:

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

  • Main yarn color
  • Comb yarn color (red most likely)
  • Beak yarn color (yellow most likely)
  • A bit of black yarn for the eyes
  • Sizes G and H crochet hooks
  • Yarn needle
  • Cotton balls or batting
  • Beans
  • Scissors
  • Stitch markers (I use bobby pins)
Body:

Petals to Picots did a wonderful job of outlining how to make the body. I'm going to let you refer to her post to see specific directions but for this sized chicken (she outlines how to make bigger ones too), the body should be 12 stitches by 28 rows using a size H hook and I left a really long tail.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

After making the rectangle, I veered from her instructions a bit.

When I folded the body in half, I whip stitched the pieces together using the long tail I left on the rectangle when I finished off. If you didn't leave a long tail, just use a new piece of yarn.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

Pull all tails to the inside of the body.

Comb:

Using red yarn and a size G hook

Join the red yarn in 2nd stitch from slip stitched corner. Make sure the opening is towards the back of your hook hand, not facing down.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

Chain 3, work 2 double crochets (dc) in same stitch as join, 1 single crochet (sc) in next, dc 3 in next stitch (around the front of the square), slip stitch in next, fasten off.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

Pull all tails to the inside of the chicken body.

Beak:

This part is straight from Petals to Picots.

"Join yellow in next st, ch 1, work 1 sc in same st as join, ch 3, 1 sc in furthest ch from hook, 1 sc in next st, Sl st in same st, fasten off."

Pull in ends.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

Eyes:

Using black yarn, make a french knot for each eye.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

Wing: 
*Make 2, use H hook

Chain 9, turn
skip 1st stitch, sc 8, ch 1, turn
sc 6, sc2tog, ch 1, turn
sc 7, ch 1, turn
sc 3, sc2tog, sc2tog, turn
sc 5, ch 1
Finish off leaving a long tail.

Position as shown below and use the long tail to whip stitch in place. Poke the ends through to the inside.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

Signature silkie hair

Create a lose pom pom in the same color as the body. Wrap the yarn around your fingers 40 times.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

Tie off at the middle and snip the loops (snipping is optional but I prefer the look). Using the middle tie, secure it to the body of the chicken just behind the comb. I just threaded one half of the center tie through and tied it in a knot to the other side.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

Finishing

Open the back of the chicken, stuff some fiber fill or some cotton balls in at the face. Fill the rest with beans. Make sure your beans are bigger than the holes in your crochet stitches. Nobody wants a bean pooping chicken.

Crocheted Silkie Chicken

Fold top seam down to center of bottom fold. This back fold goes perpendicular to the front of the bird. Whip stitch closed the back of your chicken and enjoy!

Crocheted Silkie Chicken


Thank you for reading,
Julie



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...