Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Don't Steal Tide...Try This!

I just saw a news story about a rise in the theft of Tide laundry detergent.  Apparently laundry soap can be quite expensive...I haven't bought a bottle of laundry detergent in over 3 years.  My family is not wearing crunchy, crusty, smelly clothes that haven't been washed in 3 years...in fact their clothes are more clean then they were when I was buying laundry detergent!  I have been making my own laundry detergent.  I have a front load washer and the soap is better than any other I have ever used.  It is FAR cheaper and lasts so much longer.  I make a 2 gallon batch ever few months (I have a family of 5 and do at least one load of laundry every day)

Recipe:  You will need; a "soap" pot* (I bought mine at Goodwill), a cheese grater* (also from Goodwill), a large bucket, Fels Naptha Bar, 20 Mule Team Borax, and Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda
*These items only be used for soap making.  Not for food!

Grate 1/3 of the Fels Naptha bar and place into pot with 2 quarts of water and simmer on low until fully melted
Then put 1/2 cup of 20 Mule Team Borax and 1/2 cup Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda into pot slowly until mixed in (soap will begin to thicken)
Remove from heat and pour into bucket with just under 2 gallons of hot water
Let the mixture sit over night and then it is ready to use!
Mixture may separate (especially in cold temps) just stir or shake and it is good to go.

TIPS:  ~ I collected some empty laundry bottles and pour my homemade soap into the bottles for easy pouring.
~I cut the Fels Naptha Bar into 1/3's and grate each portion and place them into snack size baggies so they are ready to use.
~Pre-measure the Borax and washing soda into baggies so they too are ready to use.

This laundry soap is dye free and perfume free for sensitive skin.  It is very very affordable!  One box of Borax and Washing soda has lasted 2 years.  So give it a try...you won't be sorry :)


Monday, July 4, 2011

I love Half Off Saturdays!!!

Goodwill is an awesome place for finding upcycled and vintage goodies...you probably already knew that.  Every other Saturday they have a half off everything day and I try to make the rounds whenever my wallet will allow it.  This Saturday I went on a spree and made out like a bandit!  I found awesome vintage sheets, monopoly fabric, a great Italian travel apron, a ton of vintage sewing patterns, and other stuff I can't remember right now.  I am going to take some pics before I start my planned projects and post some tutorials.  I am getting ready for the Arizona Recycling Coalition conference in August so I am dedicating this month to upcycling tutorials.  Any tutorials in particular you would like to see?

Friday, April 15, 2011

The Joy of Sewing

I love sewing!  I really do...but I have a love hate relationship with my sewing "technologies"  My serger is a bit on the high strung side and likes to be over dramatic.  Anyway, I am working on some bloomers for the CCC show this weekend and my serger is giving me a run for my money.  I am thinking of writing some patterns for the original designs I have...I wonder if anyone would be interested in patterns?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Hello. My name is Sabrina, and I am a fabric-aholic...

It all started when I was in high school.  I was a young girl with a part time job and money to burn.  My school was really close to a Hancock Fabric store and I couldn't resist the temptation.  I would shop...first with others more as more of a social thing, but before long I would find myself there alone for hours at a time.  The problem has grown over the years and I now have a room dedicated to my addiction.  I have even introduced my best friend to the dark world of fabrics and now she too is addicted.  I can't resist the temptation and I can find fabric everywhere.  I bought shirts at a department store to deconstruct for their fabric. I go to thrift stores and upcycle anything with a pleasing pattern.  I find it most difficult to avoid a funky print or houndstooth.  Nothing is off limits...I have used the sheets off my kids beds, and it's not like I dont have an addiquate stash I just can't help myself.  Admitting I have a problem is the first step to recovery...but I am not sure I want to recover ;)

Thursday, November 11, 2010

holiday bootcamp

I, Sabrina Thompson (owner of Bella & Bruiser), pledge to participate in the Etsy Success Holiday Boot Camp to the best of my abilities. I vow to check in every week, do my homework and support my fellow Holiday Boot Campers. I will read the weekly newsletters and blog posts, check in on the weekly forum thread, read the weekly blog post, check off the checklists and salute the mascot. I promise to share what I've learned with those who need it, support my fellow Etsy indiepreneurs and, most of all, have a positive and persistent attitude. I understand that together we can spread the word about our handmade and vintage goods, making this holiday season a more unique and meaningful one to gift givers and give-ees everywhere!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Goals Goals Goals

Ok so the plan is to make (or finish) between 2 and 5 projects (there will be extra credit for more than 5 in a day) every day and to post at least one on my etsy, artfire, and cafe handmade.  I expect everyone to keep me honest and working toward my goals!  So today is day one and I am working on some heads and a plate all with decoupage.  I will have pics up by tonight :) 

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Cricut applique

ok there are a few tuitorials available for how to cut fabric with your cricut but I have tried it and been only sorta successful...so why am I providing you with a tuitorial?  Excellent question!  This is sorta a what not to do tuitorial.  The first big thing is the kind of backing you use on your fabric.  Dont go with the cheapest...this is one of those "you get what you pay for" items, so use Pellon WonderUnder "The paperbacked adhesive web that turns any fabric into a fusible fabric." - Pellon website.  The other thing is the blade and settings on your machine.  Dont leave the machine speed on max with a blade that has been in your machine since you bought it (unless you've never used it)  The results are a torn up shredded mess!  Finaly dont use a highly detailed small image,  make sure the image is large enough to allow the details to show. Try these settings on your machine Pressure Max (5), Speed Low (2), Blade 6. I have created appliques with my cricut but there was a great deal of cussing and throwing things before I got there so learn from my mistakes.  Go forth and create beautiful appliques!