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The Video! - Yarn Bomb Addison St. Bridge & Vote


"While the spirit of neighborliness was important on the frontier because neighbors were so few, it is even more important now because our neighbors are so many." --  Lady Bird Johnson

Scarves for the Addison St. Yarn Bombing are due today.  Installation is October 11th.  If you haven't finished your contribution, don't panic, Mary and I are taking submissions until October 8th. October 9th is the last day we will have in the studio to connect prior to installation. 

Drop off boxes are are on  my front porch (message me for the address) and at the Athletic Field Park House, 3546 W. Addison St., Chicago.  

Check out the video.  Joanie Friedman who initiated the entire revitalization of this previously cold and ugly corner of my neighborhood sent it to me this morning.  It really caputres the energy that has gone into the yarn bombing and the mural.  I can't wait until installation!  Get ready for one wild and colorful line spanning the entire bridge like a crazy Dr. Who scarf!

If you have time to help us install, we will be at the bridge next to the mural at 10am on the 11th. Installation will proceed from west to east across the bridge.  Bring scissors with you. 

Don't forget to vote too!  We are neck and neck for first prize in the Space in Between competition. The $1500 award would be used to further revitalize the neighborhood.  You don't have to be a member of the project or of the community to vote.  Just let them know that you like what we are trying to do.

Rogers Park is blooming! : Yarn Bombing at Clark St. + Howard St.


 "We cannot live only for ourselves.  A thousand fibers
connect us with our fellow men."  --Herman Melville

Walk by the southwest corner of Clark and Howard in Rogers Park and you are in for a surprise.   Mary and I installed a full garden complete with butterflies with the assistance of several volunteers and the staff at the Rogers Park Business Alliance.  It's gorgeous!  I love the details.  Children are finding a particular delight running from flower to flower like bees on a mission shouting their joy in discovery.  
©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Rogers Park Is Blooming, Street Art, Yarn Storming, Yarn Bombing  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Rogers Park Is Blooming, Street Art, Yarn Storming, Yarn Bombing

Every flower imaginable and some purely from imagination are growing in this garden.  Look for gerber daisies, plate-sized dahlias and delicate morning glories.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Rogers Park Is Blooming, Street Art, Yarn Storming, Yarn Bombing  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Rogers Park Is Blooming, Street Art, Yarn Storming, Yarn Bombing

The Emanuel Congregation Sewing Ladies were by far our biggest contributor having made several hundred flowers, but even those who had never knitted or crocheted contributed allium and dandelion puffs.
©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Rogers Park Is Blooming, Street Art, Yarn Storming, Yarn Bombing  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Rogers Park Is Blooming, Street Art, Yarn Storming, Yarn Bombing

One gentelman at the Howard Area Community Center contributed a large red crocheted banner.  It became the base for what I call the "pole of wishing flags."  We had a number of rectangular contributions that didn't quite fit the garden theme, but look lovely as flags! 
©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Rogers Park Is Blooming, Street Art, Yarn Storming, Yarn Bombing  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Rogers Park Is Blooming, Street Art, Yarn Storming, Yarn Bombing
©2012 LIndsay Obermeyer, Rogers Park Is Blooming, Street Art, Yarn Bombing, Yarn Storming 
October 6th is the official Chicago Artists Month tour of the Rogers Park yarn bombings.  Hope to see you at the mini yarn bombing event hosted by the Rogers Park Business Alliance at 2pm!  
A big thank you to Ana and Katrina at the Rogers Park Business Alliance and the Sprecial Service Areas for Howard and Clark for sponsoring these yarn bomgings and all the community who contributed!  
Our final yarn bombing of the year will be at the Addison St. Bridge crossing the Kennedy. Installation is October 11th at 10am.  We are looking for volunteers to assist.  The new mural, garden and yarn bombing in Avondale are up for the 2012 Placemaking , Space in Between contest.  Vote for our space!  We are currently in 2nd place.  Help us make it to first!  

Mushroom Risotto in a Pressure Cooker

"The belly rules the mind." --  Spanish Proverb

I 've been busy in the studio.  And when I get this busy, the necessity for good food is even more important. Eating a homecooked meal allows me to slow down a moment, destress and catch up on the news with my daughter.  I love certain dishes, but they can take an age to prepare, such as risotto. Several weeks ago I purchased a pressure cooker / slow cooker.  I swear, this gadget ranks up there with my favorite iron skillet.  Risotto in just 15 minutes from prep to eating.  Unbelievable!

Here is my recipe, adapted from the book Great Vegetarian Cooking Under Pressure by Lorna J. Sass:


8oz of sliced portabello mushrooms
3 leeks, thinly slicked
1 t of minced garlic
2.5 cups of mushroom stock (a low salt variety is best)
1 cups of boiling water
1 T of extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup of dry white wine (or better yet - dry cooking sherry)
1.5 cups of arborio rice 
1/4 cup of grated Parmesan cheese (not that nasty cardboard stuff from a green canister!) 


Add the olive oil to the pan.  (I have an electric pressure cooker with a browning setting.)  Add leeks and sautee until wilted.  Add mushrooms and garlic and sautee until the mushrooms have wilted and are slightly smaller.

Add the arborio rice and sautee, stirring to coat the rice with the oil. The rice will turn slightly transparent along the edges.

Add the stock, water and wine. Stir.

Put the lid on and lock into place

Set to high pressure.  Once it has reached high pressure, cook for 5 minutes.

Open the quick release valve.  Careful!  Don't scald yourself!

Open the lid, check the rice.  If not to right consistency, add a little more stock and cook on browning until you achieve what you desire.  I like mine creamy and with my cooker, I get it perfect without trouble.   In case you don't achieve the same results on the first go, add the stock for more creaminess.

Stir in the Parmesan cheese. 


For more about arborio rice, check out this website.

Rogers Park Is Blooming! : Yarn Bombing Part 1, Touhy Park


"Color! What a deep and mysterious language, the language of dreams."
-- Paul Gaugin

We did it!  Mary and I successfully completed two yarn bombings with the help of the Rogers Park community!  Rogers Park is officially now blooming!

The weather was comfortably cool and sunny.  We couldn't have asked for a finer day.   Students from the Chicago Academy of Math and Sciences gave us a hand.  With their help, it only took 45 minutes to install over 200 crocheted marigolds and a dozen or so papel picados.  Thank you CAMS students!  You rocked!

  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Yarn Bombing Rogers Park Is Blooming / Day of the Dead  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Yarn Bombing Rogers Park Is Blooming / Day of the Dead

We managed to cover 2/3 of the fence along the Clark Street side of Touhy Park which is the length of a full city block.  Given that a Chicago city block is 660 feet long , that's approximately 440 feet yarn bombed!

 ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Yarn Bombing, Rogers Park Is Blooming, Day of the Dead ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Yarn Bombing Rogers Park Is Blooming / Day of the Dead 

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Yarn Bombing Rogers Park Is Blooming / Day of the Dead  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Yarn Bombing Rogers Park Is Blooming / Day of the Dead

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer, Rogers Park Is Blooming, Yarn Bombing, Day of the Dead  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Yarn Bombing Rogers Park Is Blooming / Day of the Dead 

Waste not, want not.  The chunky red flowers were made from upcyled red "thread" from The Red Thread Project®, the community art project I originated and led for 7.5 years.  I love them and want to make a blanket full of giant squishy red flowers.  

October 6th is the official Chicago Artists Month tour of the Rogers Park yarn bombings.  Hope to see you at the mini yarn bombing event hosted by the Rogers Park Business Alliance at 2pm!  

Fabric Flower and Duct Tape Street Art

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Street Art
"There are no rules of architecture for a castle in the clouds." -- G.K. Chesterton

Thursday Mary and I install the first section of our yarn bombing in Rogers Park.  It's been a long process beginning with a proposal in April, followed by negotiations and acceptance in May, workshops throughout the summer, numerous meetings on our own, and lots and lots of knitting and crocheting.  I am ready to install!!

Yarn bombing has really caught on across the country.  In addition to the three bombings with which I'm involved this year, I've been asked to do four more. I've had to turn down these last few offers, partly because my wrists are sore and partly because I am asked only a week or two in advance.  To do it well, you need time to plan the project and rally the community, let alone make it.  

I love the whimsical quality of much street art.  It's art to make one smile.  A few weeks ago I led a street art workshop that involved a mixed media approach.  It was part of Intuit's Visionary Craft series.  The workshop was only two hours long and involved children and adults.  Everyone loved it! So easy to do and has proven to withstand rain and wind!  

Intuit: Museum of Outsider and Intuitive Art    Intuit: Museum of Outsider and Intuitive Art


Aleene's® Fabric Fusion® Peel and Stick Sheets™
Duck® Brand Duct Tape 
assorted fabric cut in strips or other shapes
crafting felt
colorful wire
assorted buttons
assorted sequins
fabric paint 


Cut 2" circles from the Fabric Fusion® Peel and Stick Sheets™. Peel the backing from one side of your first circle.

Push one end of the fabric strip or ribbon it onto the middle of your circle and wind the ribbon / fabric strip around in a sprial fashion, pushing down firmly onto the circle as you go. Trim any excess.   

Cut a 1/2" or so sized circle from the Fabric Fusion® scraps.  Peel one side and stick to the middle of your larger circle.  Peel the other side and push a button into place.  Decorate with fabric paint if desired. 

Proceed to make more flowers until you have used all your circles.  Experiment.  Cut flower petals from felt, layering them in place.

Cut a 4" circle of fabric, fringe the edges and stick to your 2" Fabric Fusion® circle.  Use the scraps to creat layers.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Felt Flower Street Art  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Fabric Flower Street Art

There are so man possibilities!

One boy didn't enjoy making flowers.  That was kid stuff (his younger sister was making them.), so he became our Leaf Man!  

Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, Street Art

To make a leaf, tear off a 7" strip of duct tape.  Fold in half leaving 1/2" still exposed.  Cut into a leaf shape with scissors.  Make several dozen.

Now to install!

Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art

Wind the tape around a light pole or other street sign pole.

Stick your leaf shape into place.  

Peel off the backing of your flower and stick into place.

So totally awesome!

Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, Street Art Project

Thank you to Carol Ng-He and everyone at Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art for making this workshop possible and to all the participants.  We made one very colorful light pole!

Crafty KT: KOOL TAK Manufacturer Challenge: Fabulously-Fall Blog Hop

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box
©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box  Crop7

"Creative people are curious, flexible, persistent, and independent with a tremendous spirit of adventure and a love of play."  -- Henri Matisse

I am addicted to making "knick knack" boxes.  These boxes holding everything from paper napkins in my kichen  to assorted sewing supplies in my studio.  They are also the perfect way to explore different crafting supplies.  


When invited to participate in the Crafty KT Kool Tak Manufacturer Challenge, I knew what I would do!  To get started you need the following:



Kool Tak™ 1 Layer Perfect Tool (Use it for centering, piercing, and edge stitching) 

Kool Tak™ 10 Shiny Transfer Foil Sheets (Earth Tones)
Kool Tak™ 1 pack of Clear Foam pads - ¼ x ¼ x 1/32” thick
Kool Tak™ 1 pack of Clear Foam tape - 3/16 x 1/16 thick by 1.6 yards

Wood box - 7" x 7" x  3"

Craft Acrylic Paint (to match cardstock)

Sponge Brush

Fine Glitter

Scalloped Circle Punch 1"

Assorted Patterned Cardstock 12" x 12" (to match paint)

Paper Lace or Paper Trim (I used a product from Martin Meyer Imports.) 

Paper Trimmer

2" circle of wood

Piercing Tool (or in my case, my high school biology probe!)

Embroidery Needle

Perle Cotton 5/2 Embroidery Thread

Phillip head screwdriver



Pencil / Ruler optional


 Take off the hinges and the closure on the box with the screwdriver.  Set these parts to the side.   HINT:  I put them in an envelope to prevent losing them.  Tiny screws have way of disappearing in one's studio.

Lightly sand the wood, removing any rough bits.  Don't sand it so much that you end up with rounded edges!

Paint the entire box with the craft acrylic paint using the sponge brush.  Do two coats allowing the paint to dry in between layer of paint.

Measure the top of your lid.  My box (from Darice) has a 6.5" interior.

Cut your paper into 4 squares using your paper trimmer (or use a ruler and pencil to measure and mark on the back and then use scissors).  You need a 6.5", 5.5",  4.5" and 3.5" square.  I used two papers, alternating between them.  

If you haven't used the Kool Tak™ Layer Perfect Tool, checkout this great video before proceeding!

Using your Kool Tak™ Layer Perfect Tool, mark the stitch holes on the 5.5" paper piercing as you go.  HINT: I put a piece of old cardboard underneath as I pierced to protect my worktable.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box
Cut a 24" piece of the perle cotton embroidery thread and thread your needle.   Embroider a running stitch around the edge of your 5.5" paper.  Finish off with a knot on the back.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box
Use your Kool Tak™ Layer Perfect Tool to center the 3.5" square onto the 4.5" square.  Tear off a piece of the Kool Tak™ Premium EXTREME tape - 2 ½ x 27 yards and place it on the back of the 3.5" square.  Peel off the paper backing and stick the smaller square to the larger square.  

Proceed to center and tape the 4.5" square onto the 5.5" square.  (Note: I centered and taped my 4.5" square to the 5.5" square prior to the stitching, hence why you see it in my photos.)

Center the 5.5" square within the 6.5" square.  Place 4 squares of Kool Tak™  Clear Foam pads in each corner of the 5.5" square, remove the backing and stick to the 6.5" square.

Place your layered squares to the side.

Next tear off a piece of the Kool Tak™ Premium EXTREME tape that is approximately 2" x 2" and place it on your 2" wood circle.  Trim excess with scissors.  Peel off the paper backing and place a copper colored sheet of the Kool Tak™ Shiny Transfer Foil Sheets onto the sticky surface, pressing it in place as you go.  (HINT: Press from the center to the edges of the circle to prevent any ripples in the foil.)

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop

Carefully peel off the foil.  Use your finger nail to distress the surface a bit and shake some glitter on top.  It will stick to the distressed areas.  Brush off any excess. 

Center the circle within the the top square (the 3.5" one) using the Kool Tak™ Layer Perfect Tool   Add some Kool Tak™ Premium EXTREME tape to the back of the circle, remove the paper backing and firmly press int place.  Set the layers to the side.

Using the Kool Tak™ Layer Perfect Tool, place ten squares of Kool Tak™ Clear Foam pads - ¼ x ¼ x 1/32” thick along the top edge of your lid spacing them evenly as you go.  HINT: It is easiest to place the squares at the corners and center and then the others to insure that they are evenly spaced apart. Proceed to add squares on the remaining 3 sides of the lid.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop

Remove the backing of the squares and sprinkle fine glitter along them.  Brush off any excess glitter. (I removed the paper featured in the above photo from the lid before I shook on my glitter.)  I love how the glitter on the foam squares looks like mini pieces of glass mosaic!

Press a line of the Kool Tak™ Clear Foam tape - 3/16 x 1/16 thick by 1.6 yards along the lower rim of the lid.  Don't cover the holes for the closure or the area for the hinges! Remove the backing and sprinkle the same glitter you just used.  

Proceed to now put your layered squares  / wood circle onto the lid.  The Kool Tak™ Premium EXTREME tape is fabuously sticky, yet easy to tear.  I tore off large pieces, removed the paper backings and then tore off smaller bits to get into the corners.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box.

Place your layered squares /wood circle onto the lid and press firmly.  I have to admit, having never used Kool Tak™ Premium EXTREME tape until making this project, I love how it sticks to both paper AND wood. 

Measure two 6.5" x 1/2" pieces of paper lace or trim.  Cut two 6.5" pieces of the Kool Tak™ Clear Foam tape - 3/16 x 1/16 thick by 1.6 yards and press along the lower edge of the trim.  Remove the backing and press firmly into place along the top and lower edge of the 6.5" square.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop
To make stickers to embellish the sides of your box  take one of your papers and add rows of the Kool Tak™ Premium EXTREME tape to back.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box
Punch 12 scalloped circles out of the paper with the Kool Tak™ Premium EXTREME tape backing using your 1" scalloped circle paper punch.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box
Turn your box to the side. Using the Kool Tak™ Layer Perfect Tool center three of the scalloped circles.  Remove the paper backing from the punches and firmly press into place.

©2012 Lindsay Obemeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box  ©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box

Proceed to do the same on the other three sides.

Screw the hinges and closure back into place.

For the final touch, punch 7 scalloped circles from assorted matching papers. Layer the scalloped circles ontop of each other, sticking them in place with small bits of the Kool Tak™ Premium EXTREME tape

Cut small notches into the circle at each scallop edge.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Crafty KT Blog Hop My Box
Fold each petal forward.  Add a small bit of Kool Tak™ Premium EXTREME tape to the center of the back, remove the backing and place it on your copper circle.  Use the Kool Tak™ Layer Perfect Tool to center it.

And voila!  You have a new box, all glittery and beautiful, to store your favorite treasures.

Want to make one of your own?  From September 8 to the 18th, 2012: sign up for Crafty KT Newsletter and you can participate in the Blog Hop Giveaway.  You could win a box of the same Kook Tak™ supplies I used.  Good luck!

Be sure to check out the work of 11 other designers participating in this blog hop!  The variety of projects is fabulous!



Trying to Get It All Done and Not Lose My Mind in the Process

Fargo 3-in-1 pressure cooker

"Stress should be a powerful driving force, not an obstacle." -- Bill Phillips

How can I cram more minutes into my day without totally losing my quality of life? This was my opening question when I recently met with my business coach.  Michael had two responses - delegate everything that doesn't require you to do it and second, get a pressure cooker.  Good advice for someone who has been working 12-14 hours a day  with few days off.  I'm not complaining, but with recently having accepted a full-time teaching position at a local university at the same time as my business is growing has me running all day long.  I need a better way of managing the details or I may go completely out of my mind.

Michael loves to cook as much as I do, so he sent me a link to the model of pressure cooker he has successfully been using for several years, plus the names of a bookkeeper and a general contractor. I'm excited about the pressure cooker I just ordered (see above).  Good meals are not only more nutritous than fast food, they give me a moment to relax and unwind.  Lately I've been coming home from a full day of teaching to then cook dinner.  By that time, I am so exhausted I just want to cook whatever I can make in 15 minutes or under so I can then attend to my business.  As a result, my menu has become just a tad boring. A pressure cooker opens up a whole new set of possibilites!

Nex,t I called Mr. Brady,the general contractor he recommended. My call was  returned within 20 minutes!  I have been trying to job out the remodel for several weeks and until today, I couldn't get anyone to call me back.  I understand busy, but not returning the call of a potential customer seems like a crazy business practice to me.  Fingers crossed that he works out.  The broken, sliding floor tiles are more than a tad dangerous and the cracked counter probably harbors every known nasty bacteria.

Finally, I  called the bookkeeper.  We had a good conversation.  He's coming to my studio next Thursday to get a better sense of what I require.  I hate doing paperwork.  Quickbooks' inventory module drives me nuts.  I can't figure it out.  I am thrilled to finally jump this hurdle.  Just think, I will be able to generate necessary reports with the press of a finger this time next month!  Such are my thrills at 45, but I really am excited.  Too feel in control with a few more minutes at the end of the day to take a walk, chat with friends or take my daugther out makes me very happy indeed.

Designer Crafts Connection Blog Hop: Vintage: Needlepoint Coaster

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Needlepoint Coaster
"I have measured out my life with coffee spoons." -- T.S. Eliot

This month's CHA Designer challenge is all things vintage.  It was difficult to settle on just one project.  There was my stash of skeleton keys begging to be made into more jewelry and  40 year old Dresden paper scraps perfect for cards and scrapbooking. but it was the giant box of Paternayan wool yarn that called  to me.  I inherited it from my aunt who was an avid stitcher and rarely seen without her "work."  The colors are rich and vibrant, reminding me of her different projects.  She always purchased a little extra to be sure she had enough of a certain dyelot.  I needed some coasters, so I chose 3 colors and got started.


10" x 13" piece of 7-count plastic canvas in white

3 colors of needlepoint yarn 


tapestry needle (size 22 or 20)

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Needlepoint Coaster


I wanted a coaster that was 3.5"x3.5", so I cut a piece of canvas that has 24 holes x 24 holes as 7 holes = 1 inch.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Needlepoint Coaster

Inspired by the paintings of the famous Bauhaus arist Josef Albers, I designed my pattern.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Needlepoint Coaster pattern
I threaded the needle and began stitching with the darkest color first, in my case it was brown.  I used the continental tent stitch throughout the piece, preferring to work in concentric squares rather than row by row.  

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Needlepoint Coaster
When I needed to start a new color, I tucked the tail of the old color into the back of the stitches prior to moving on to the next color.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Needlepoint Coaster
The process of starting a new color is similar to ending the previous one.  You simply pull your tail through the back of the stitches, pulling your needle out where you want to begin.  Note, when first starting, you don't have any previous stitches in which to tuck  in your tail's end.  You can do so later using the same procedure for ending a color or work your stitches over it as you go.

é2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Needlepoint Coaster

Once you have completed the pattern and tucked in all ends, you will still need to stitch over the outer edge of plastic.  I used a light color whipstitching over the edge, giving the work a finished look.

©2012 Lindsay Obermeyer Needlepoint Coaster

As you've worked the stitches in the continental tent stitch, the back of work will be equally coverd, adding a second layer of protection between your hot mug and the table top.  

You have enough plastic to make 4 coaster.  Make a matching set or have fun experimenting with color!

For more vintage craft ideas, checkout the work in the Designer Crafts Connection webring wherever you see this logo.

Each blog in the hop is written by a designer associated with the Craft and Hobby Assocition.  We each have unique styles, so be sure to hop through to see what each is doing with this month's theme on crafting vintage-style!