The Heartbreak of Crafting

Dear Craft Universe,

I don’t understand why I still love you. I’ve given you my heart, a good portion of my paychecks, and you break my heart with lumpy surfaces and embarrassing results. I offer my best creativity, I research similar projects, spend hours in the craft store reading labels and scouring the shelves for the proper offerings. I spend time thinking about you, talking about you, sketching ideas, writing lists, and all kinds of projects other people make with you. Why can’t I count on you? Sure, there was that brief flirtation with West Elm and their gorgeous designer items but I never completed the check out. I chose you.

Will there ever be a time when I’m not insecure or unsure of the results? Why can’t we ever have an easy evening together just enjoying the hand-made process? Why do you continue to disappoint me?

I just wanted some little candle holders. I thought it would be so neat to have them match some napkins I was making. Even though it was a simple concept, I thought the project through and looked around for similar projects. I would never take you for granted Craft.

Warning: Don’t follow these directions for this project. Don’t buy any supplies to do this the way I’ve done it or you will have some sad, cloudy, lumpy glasses that just look ridiculous. 


  • Pretty fabric
  • Rustic Twine
  • Thriftstore glasses, tumbler size would be best if this actually worked
  • Battery-operated candles – I found mine on the clearance table at Joanne’s. I was ready to be smug about it when I thought this would actually work.
  • Mod Podge
  • Good scissors
  • Hot glue gun
  • Glue stick

When you are buying your glasses at the thrift store, try to find glasses that are straight up and down. When you don’t find them, go with glasses that curve a little. They are the perfect size for little candle holders. Find another candle holder project for them right now. Don’t do anything I’m suggesting here.

Make a paper template that goes all the way around the glass and about 3/4 up the glass.

Use the template to cut out a piece of fabric. Find that even though the paper template goes around the glass perfectly, for some reason the universe changes the fabric so that it doesn’t fit at all. Holding a pen, try tracing the actual outline of the glass on the fabric as you roll the glass across the fabric. This actually works pretty well. Except you shouldn’t be trying this right now. Please walk away from these directions. They will only bring you heartbreak.

When the fabric strip is ready, use the glue stick to cover much of the area that the fabric will cover. This ends up being a terrible idea and should be ignored. The fabric sticks and also does not stick at the same time defying the laws of the universe. I think Physics departments across the globe should be examining this phenomenon. Notice I KEEP moving forward with this project despite the many clues that something was going wrong. I’m determined like that.

You will either find that the piece of fabric you JUST tested on the glass, and that fit perfectly, now is either too short or too long. The following two pictures were of pieces of fabric made from the same template. This is Craft mocking me. Toying with my emotions and showing me that no amount of preparation and measuring twice will matter. Craft will do what Craft will do. This time it was giving me a slap down.

At least the fabric that is too long can be trimmed down. This might provide you with the illusion that the project is salvageable. For the love of glitter, please don’t try this project. This is false hope.

Brush Mod Podge across the surface of the fabric. I chose the hard-coated Mod Podge thinking it made more sense for a candle holder. It’s kind of cute that I thought anything I did would make this work. Please don’t follow my lead here. Just turn away now while you still have a shred of self-respect and hope for crafting in the future.

This is an important step. Try to pretend that what you see drying isn’t hideous. Denial is very important. I’d recommend putting them up to dry and leave the room. This helps you pretend that the time you just spent hasn’t been wasted.

Once they dry, you are the proud creator and owner of candle holders covered in fabric that is kind of lumpy, cloudy and shabby looking. Great job! You can top off the project by winding and hot gluing twine around the top and bottom as a border. This adds a lot of panache to the project as the twine is too small and the glue just globs out the side. The twine drunkenly wobbling up and down is just what you need to emphasize your utter failure.

I highly recommend this project if you are ever feeling confident about Crafting and want an easy project to look terrible.

Otherwise, just walk away. Don’t try this. Don’t let Craft break your heart too.

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3 Responses to The Heartbreak of Crafting

  1. Amy says:

    Personally, I really want to do this iron-on bedding idea. I also know that it totally won’t work.

  2. Sue says:

    I too dream of beautiful handcrafted items. I cannot draw a straight line so I’ve given up the fantasy.

    I loved your thoughts on your dark hallway. We had ours painted white, with oak floors and just a little oak stained modling to make the transition from floor to wall. I would like a skylight next.

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