Recycled Fishing Line Bracelet

Here in the Cocoa Beach area, we are very fortunate to have an estuary system in our backyard. The Banana River (part of the Indian River Lagoon System), is a lovely place to paddleboard, since it’s scenic, protected from the wind, and flat water…. usually.

The Indian River Lagoon has an impact over a lot of area

Unfortunately, not everyone recognizes its’ value. I find trash, lawn chairs, and LOTS of fishing line whenever I go out to paddle. No exaggeration, sadly. I’ll recycle my finds, but if some of it is kinda interesting, I’ll keep it. Like this:

Thick line, must have been hunting HUGE fighting Marlin

There was about 14 inches of plastic fishing line between the hook and float, so that’s perfect for a couple of simple bracelets.

All I needed was:

  • the fishing line (be sure to clean it off, grody)
  • some crimp beads
  • some jump rings
  • a clasp
  • Size 8/0 Seed Beads (I used Miyuki 8/0’s, my favorite)
  • accent beads
  • crimp tool 

Getting my supplies together

I simply threaded a crimp bead onto the fishing line, then a jump ring or clasp, then looped the line back through the crimp bead. I took my crimp pliers, and crimped the loop closed.

Crimping the bead to keep the loop closed


Loop crimped closed

String your beads on in whatever pattern you like and finish with another loop like at the beginning. Just make sure one end has a clasp on it!

Done! With a seahorse charm


A little blue glass


Beachy stuff

It’s kinda nice to recycle something AND save cash on buying more crap from the craft store. I don’t think I’ll stick my hand into one of those fishing line recycling containers anytime soon to grab some, though. However, stuff out in the open (there’s plenty) is fair game. Hope y’all try this one with fishing line you might find out there….

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My Manifesto: Manicure or Ding Repair, Surfer Chicks?

Being a woman who surfs, I’ve noticed that most other surfer chicks just aren’t into the surfing DIY scene. There’s still a bit of an intimidation factor out there to do your own repairs.

Fixing up your own surf gear seems like something a lot of surfer girls just don’t do, and furthermore, don’t want to do for a variety of excuses. It’s a real shame, especially since these same women could probably do a killer manicure and pedicure on themselves. Trust me, THAT’S much more difficult than fixing a surfboard ding, Mr. Dude Brah. 

I’m guilty of being too afraid to fix my own dings and cracks in some of my surfboards, even though I craft stuff constantly. It is a bit intimidating, but I needed to get over it. My first surfboard required some surgery right now, and I didn’t want anyone else to operate but me.

I can’t believe it got this bad

That is gnarly, dude

If you read this blog, you’ve seen my post about this board, my first real surfboard. Its’ tail got cracked all to hell since I’m a kook, with bonus random dirt shoved down into the cracks. The foam had also shown some water intrusion because it was beginning to turn light brown. I had FINALLY talked myself into retiring this board to the wall hanger status it deserves, but I wasn’t going to hang it up with the tail looking that nasty. And it wasn’t coming off with any cleaning. Gross.

I got out my Dremel tool and used a NEW felt polishing wheel bit. Kinda like one of those manicure pens. Perfect. It’s glass, so I wanted a light touch. Remember to wear eye protection and a mask, just like you do when cooking meth, Mr. Wizard.

Buffing it out

The felt polishing wheel worked great, but it’s a process that takes some time and patience. I had to buff down deep into the cracks to remove the dirt, which required me to cut a little into the first layer of glass. I noticed this because the “hairs” of the fiberglass (fabric the board is wrapped in) started to pop up like hairy goosebumps. I stopped when I saw that starting to occur, but I still managed to remove the majority of the damage, which was awesome.

Next, I mixed just a little jewelry resin (I like this stuff because it’s SUPER clear, and it’s self doming, so it will spread into the cracks) and used a tiny sponge brush to “pounce” the resin into the cracks on the tail. I then used the edge to smooth the area over. I used Post-It flags to mark the area I buffed, so I wouldn’t dump extra resin over the good areas.

Make sure you get any bubbles out!

Using a sponge brush

 

Done! This particular jewelry resin takes up to 3 days to cure, but it seems to work better than standard Ding Repair resin on this type of heavy gloss coat. I did this repair indoors since it’s a 100 degrees here, and I was worried that the resin wouldn’t cure correctly in the heat of the garage. I’ll just finish curing it on the wall.


This was a pretty bad “ding”, so the cleaned up version looks a lot better. I just need to keep it on the wall, and swear to no more surfboard abuse. But, just in case, I need to practice on my ding repair. I’d better check Pinterest….

That actually might be useful

DIY Mosquito Repellent Ankle Bracelet

It’s crazy hot here in Florida right now, and the mosquitoes are pretty brutal. After surfing, I like to garden and chillax outside, but the skeeters find me after about a hot second. Jellyfish stings don’t seem to bother me, but mutant Florida mosquito bites can itch seemingly forever.

I saw this post on The Renegade Seamstress showing how to make a pretty bracelet soaked in an essential oil mix to make a smelly deterrent for outdoor pests. Since I’m usually in boardshorts most days during the Summer, the critters bite me low around my feet and legs since they are also getting out of the breeze created by the patio fan. Really, the best place for a mosquito repellent for me is on my ankle.

I hate using hemp for macrame normally since it becomes featureless over time. But, it’s great for this purpose. Mid weight hemp twine (NO JUTE- that freakin’ hurts to wear on your skin) can be pretty absorbent. You can pick up a ball of hemp twine at most craft stores- even Wal-Mart carries this stuff cheap.

Hemp twine

I made a simple square knot sinnet (check out my post about macrame), with a toggle I made from FIMO clay:

Made it long enough for my ankle

Super easy

The Renegade Seamstress’ post has a recipe for the essential oil mix, but since I need a Nuclear Option, I filled a standard empty reusable prescription bottle and filled it with:

  • 3/4 full of Vodka (or, fill it full and drain off a bit…hehe)
  • Rest of the 1/4 with citrusy Essential Oils: Citronella, Lemongrass, Grapefruit blend

The potion makin’ stuff

Soak the anklet in the sauce

Save the mix to resoak the anklet again

Initially, I soaked it for a hour fully submerged, then took it out of the solution, shook it off, and put it on. It worked very well in my gardening space, and smelled nice to me, at least.

Smells better than feet

Once it’s out of the solution, it will dry pretty quickly, but will retain the smell well for about 45-60 minutes. When you come in, throw it back into the bottle again for the next use, even keep the whole thing in the car on the go. Reload as needed.

Floridian Tip:

Reload yourself with vodka as needed until the height of Hurricane Season. Then reload with rum and grilled food until Christmas.

Car Seat Covers….Fast-N-Fly

This past week, we just spent our “End of Summer” in the Florida Keys, paddleboarding and snorkeling. But, my husband’s car doesn’t have neoprene seat covers like my car does. I wanted to put some sort of cover on the seats after getting out of the water to keep them from getting grimy.

I’ve done a seat cover like this before, but this time, I made the top pocket using a plain hand towel folded in half, attached to the top of the beach towels. These beach and hand towels were still pretty new and absorbent, so they made a good choice for this project. The pocket sewn along the top of the towel will make it easy to hook over the headrest, PLUS, if I want to lay it out on the beach, I can use it like a pillow. Gnar.

2 large beach towels, 2 hand towels


Used a long zig zag stitch


Next, I sewed up each side edge of the towel, folded over, to make the top pocket.

The top folded pocket completed:

This could work as a nice pillow if you stuff it with another towel

For kicks, I also added a short elastic loop to the bottom so I could roll up the towel and pack it easily.

Makes it easier to pack in the car

Done!!!!

Holds over the headrest nicely

After we got back from SUP

The covers came in very handy on our short trip, especially after snorkeling when we were still pretty salty, even after rinsing off.
I made the covers in an afternoon, and that’s with hand sewing one of the covers, since the Terrycloth on one was a bit too thick to go through my sewing machine. A simple tight hand whipstitch using polyester thread and a heavy hand sewing needle worked well to sew these up.
Next, I think I’m going to have to craft up this sign that totally reminds me of the Keys….

YIKES!


The Latest Surfing Gimmicks and Fads

Like I’ve said before, I’m a total sucker for new little surfy inventions and fads. But, like anything, some are good, some are….interesting. I’m not a sponsored surfer by any means (still waiting to get sponsored by KFC so I can get my free biscuits), so these are just my random, average surfer insights. N-Joy.

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Dry Start Wetsuit System

Dry Start

Of course, this invention on Kickstarter is from San Diego- the land of chilly water. It’s a solution to dry your Wetsuit fast by using an attachment to the roof of your car. Then, I guess you drive like a maniac until your blow-out of your suit is complete. I can work with that. Also doubles as an impromptu body bag. Yikes.

Pros: Fastest way yet to dry a wetsuit and get out some road rage.

Cons: Bad news if the wetsuit bag flies off the roof of your car and finds a lawyers’ windshield.

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The Orange Peel Wax Container (Peel Surf Co.)

Peel Surf Co.


I’ve used silicone molds a lot for making my own wax, recycling wax, etc., so this is not a new idea. However, it’s a mold with a wax “break” line that fits into a car’s cup holder. Smart. Wax melts everywhere here in Florida, where it’s 90 degrees consistently every Summer day. But it’s microwaveable too, so you can whip up a batch of wax without a double boiler. Gnar.

Pros: Will save the inside of a surfmobile, might make you feel all crafty if you make your own wax

Cons: A little pricey at $12, but then, it’s kinda a specialty item. Good for Crafty Surfers- full disclosure: I totally backed this on Kickstarter since I love making wax. Just hope I don’t accidentally take a sip from this on a hot day.



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Fashion Color Wetsuits

Roxy, Billabong and XCel have reintroduced color back into neoprene again. This time, there’s less neon green and hot pink, and more modern colors and prints. However, sometimes I feel like I’m doing cosplay at the local Trekker convention in the current designs offered.

Pros: Some style in the water, bright Neoprene always improves the look of your surfing photos.

Cons: You may have to report to Captain Jean-Luc Picard, Number Two.



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Quiver Grip Surfboard Rack System

Quiver Grip

This was a new product I found out about recently, and the inventor is from Brevard County, Florida. This rack system uses plastic grips to corral your surfboards upright- like pulling a book from a shelf. It reminds me a bit of an IKEA solution to surfboard storage. It seems easy to install, and it’s cheap (less than $50 for a 3 board wall mount kit). Not crazy about the plastic beer-can holder look of the grips, though.

Pros: Like Huggable Hangers for your surfboards, inexpensive, easy to install and move around on the rail

Cons: Aesthetics of a frat house



Keep on trend, brah!

Ask Mr. Spicoli



Surf Leggings with Custom Digital Photo Print

If you checked out my last post, I had purchased a yard of sport Lycra from spoonflower.com with a digital photo I took and uploaded. The fabric came out great, and I was pleased with the quality and weight. For my project, I decided to make some simple, comfortable leggings I could surf in. I used a pattern I picked up in a clearance bin at WallyWorld:


The only drawback was that the fabric was printed on white Lycra, so with a dark print like I had, some white may show through on the seam lines. To minimize this, and to prevent distortion of the photo, I went with the largest size on the pattern- just in case. But, because I only had a yard, I cut the pants short into capris by cutting on the lengthen/shorten line (hehe!).

Hey, as good a line as any!

I cut one for each leg

This pattern was nice because of the minimal seams. One seam on the inner leg, and a seam up the crotch. Schweet.

This needle worked well

Simple zig zag stitch to allow for stretch

Using a walking foot on my machine helped

Inside seams finished

Bagging one leg into the other and clipping to sew up the crotch

There’s no need to finish off the seams since Lycra doesn’t fray out, but I did serge the seams with a two thread overlock to reduce bulk.

Next, I made the waist casing by folding down the top 2 inches and clipping around. I used 1 1/2″ non-roll elastic, leaving a scant seam allowance around the bottom. I also made a little Lycra hanging loop for the inside back of the pant to let it drip dry if I want.

Makin’ the waistband casing

To make the hems on the legs, I used a twin needle to fake a cover stitch. These work great on Lycra, and look awesome on hems.

These are da bomb

Use a long straight stitch with your double needle

Love the look of a double needle

Done!!!

So I was happy I went with the Medium size, because I didn’t want to overextend the Lycra. Yikes.

These held up well

Water cam!!!

Here’s some surf legging action shots by Ted Schultz from last Thursday:


Next time, I think I’m going to try this:

I can do that face. Totally.

Trying Out Spoonflower.com Fabric for Surfing 

It’s amazing all the various crap you can put a digital image onto now. And for fairly cheap. It used to be limited to posters, cards, keychains, and mugs at your Office Depot. Now, pretty much anything with a surface can be etched or covered with a digital image, and you don’t need to pay for a run of 5000 units to get a custom one made.

Spoonflower is yet another company in a growing market that specializes in using digital photographs to create customized fabric prints. This isn’t an endorsement, just a review of my own thoughts about the trend and their fabric, so it’s just info for ya. Yep, I paid for the stuff myself. Boo.



Love this, my 6’8″ Neilson Blue Hawaii Elvis

I’m really interested in this type of service, since fabric inlays are done all the time on custom surfboards. In fact, I have some Elvis fabric (purchased at Graceland- the Holy Zone- many years ago) glassed into a 6’8″ Neilson. Wouldn’t it be cool to pretend I’m a real photographer and have MY wicked awesome pic glassed into my next surfboard?? Neato. In fact, Swaylocks.com had some discussion on this topic a while back about printing on custom fabric for use in surfboard designs and art.

I wanted to try this digital fabric printing company out for myself. When I noticed they had not only a variety of cottons, but Lycra available to be printed on, that’s when I knew what I wanted my next surfy project to be.

I used this photo of some beautiful orchids from the Florida Keys my friends got me as a gift a while back. I wanted the Lycra to have a black background, so I did a dark vignette filter on the pic.

Original photo I took

Did the vignette filter on my iPhone, nothing fancy pants

The design upload and selection was pretty easy, and I sized the pic to be tiled onto 1 yard of fabric. One yard with shipping came out to around $35, so it wasn’t THAT cheap. But, relatively speaking, it’s not so outrageous compared with the cost of printed Lycra swimwear these days. I just hoped I wouldn’t mess up sewing, or this would get VERY expensive.

The yard came with a nice wide border around it

The fabric arrived in just a few days. I was happy with the heavy weight of the Sport Lycra. I did wash it twice in the laundry- on its’ own- to ensure no problem with color bleeding. I didn’t notice any fade after these initial washes.

Closeup of the tiled image

In my next post, check out what I made with my yard and if it held up to my style of surfing!

Bieber!!!! Shreddin’ gnar