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1  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Fiber/mixed media jewelry swap on: October 19, 2014 11:56:06 AM

I love how jewelry can be a piece of art that you wear, and I love to find unique pieces that show that. Lately my obsession has been with all things fiber, and I was thinking it would be amazing to have a swap where we could push ourselves to use fiber/mixed media/sewing/felting/embroidery/etc techniques to make amazing jewelry for one another. This includes everything under the sun: beads, metal, fabric, thread, yarn, felt, buttons, clay, etc etc!

Anyone else up for a swap?  Cheesy

Here is my inspiration pinboard to get your creative juices flowing!

I'm open on a timeframe - I realize this might have to be pushed back til after the holidays but if there are people interested I'm more than happy to do so. I was thinking a month to craft....we could do either individual partners or if there's a consensus we can do groupings of 3 or 4?
2  NEWS AND DISCUSSION ABOUT CRAFTSTER / Craftster Picture Hosting Support / Quick Insert Photos Function error? Used to be a clickable thumbnail, now not? on: October 16, 2014 04:54:37 AM
Hi, I just noticed this recently. When I would upload an image using the "Quick Insert Photos" function, it would always make the image clickable so you could click and go to the gallery where you would see the full size image. But now it is come up as just a thumbnail image that is not clickable. Is this a glitch or is this a permanent change with the function? I preferred the clickable image link personally. Thanks!
3  QUILTING / Quilting: Completed Projects / Ticker Tape Skulls Art Quilt! on: September 16, 2014 03:13:02 PM
I shudder to even think to compare myself to the amazing quilters that can be found on craftster. But! I have actually managed to make a little art quilt for erica_tattoos in the IYP that I am super proud of and really really happy with the end result. I heard of ticker tape quilts before but never really thought of them as fabric versions of a mosaic. Once I got that concept, and the fact that you sew each individual piece on top of your base fabric, I was set to go, making up my pattern from scratch and sewing each piece individually as I went. I started with the background, using dark blues, blacks, and grays, and then filled in the skull area with whites and creams. I did a faux binding, just folding up the fabric from the backside of the quilt, and then handmade fringe with seed beads and polyclay skull beads I made myself.

The whole thing is roughly 20 x 30 inches I think.

I had a lot of fun making this and there will definitely be more in the future  Smiley

I almost forgot to mention something I'm pretty proud of myself for accomplishing! This is 95% made with supplies I already had on hand. The only thing I had to buy was the black fabric for the base on the front which I got at my local thrift store for 50 cents! For the "batting" I used some leftover fleece fabric which wasn't even big enough so I had to sew two strips together. Talk about getting thrifty with it  Cheesy
4  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / A study in Fungi on: September 03, 2014 07:07:05 PM
I started out this twinchie intending to do full-on embroidery madness, but as I was struggling a bit to get the textures right, I let some of my mixed-media tendencies carry me along.

This started out with bracket fungi being my main inspiration. I did a ton of them (more than pictured) stumpwork style and cut them out, ready to attach to my base. But I had a lot of trouble getting the moss texture right that I pictured in my head - french knots and the like were just not cutting it. So I decided I should try to incorporate the real thing - a very messy endeavor. I tacked the moss down with invisible fishing line, anchored the fungi, and thought I was done...but it didn't feel done. So I thought, what would be more perfect than a smattering of tiny mushrooms - the fungus are among us! (sorry that last bit flashed back from middle school and I couldn't resist). I tried to do super small stumpwork mushrooms but it was just an impossible task. So I went for some polymer clay, translucent Sculpey brand. I actually didn't mean for it to be translucent but I like the effect...they are molded over bits of wire. All mounted on a 2" inch cardboard base covered with brown felt.

5  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 102 ENTRIES / Bird Lady Art Doll on: September 03, 2014 02:58:33 PM
I made this for the fantastic Ludi in the most recent IYP Rd 26. She went through a LOT of changes before ending up as thus but I'm really happy with how she came out.

6  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 101 ENTRIES / Crocheted River Rocks on: August 09, 2014 10:50:31 AM
I've had these river rocks in my stash forever and last year picked up some crochet thread to try my hand at the beautiful crocheted patterns I've seen done on river rocks. Cue to finally a week and a half ago, I decided in a moment of low-but-antsy energy to try to make these. It's all done on the fly, no pattern just making it up as I go....obviously I might need to refer to some patterns now as my skill in variation tops out at about 3 or 4 different patterns haha. But then again, most of these rocks are rather small so it makes much variety a bit difficult.

One will definitely be converted to a necklace pendant, but the others I am abandoning around town for fun. A little spot of unexpected beauty in the most mundane of places  Smiley
7  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Tiny stitching - more stumpwork flora and fauna [pic heavy!] on: July 06, 2014 05:41:35 AM
I have been practicing my embroidery a lot (seriously a lot). I've jumped on the twinchie bandwagon with gusto and have made quite a few tiny little gems so far, all 1.5" to 2" (there is one so far that is only 1" but those are hard!). I'd love to hear your thoughts on all my little stitches  Smiley

This one was left unmounted so my swap partner could frame it as she wished.

An experimental little stitch on glossy cardstock.

Eastern bluebird

This is the true inchie - 1 inch big! - made up of a ton of picot stitches..

Great Mormon Butterfly

I'm thinking to mix and match and pick ones of a similar theme to display in a shadowbox frame, probably 3 x 3 set up or 4 x 4. But first I'm going to keep stitching because it is the best form of therapy that I've found  Smiley Thanks so much for looking.
8  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Psudeo-Stumpwork on the fly - sushi, spiders, and more on: June 07, 2014 05:00:13 PM

I have always admired stumpwork especially from fellow craftsters Ludi and jemimah. So when the recent Twinchie swap came around, I decided to tackle this technique for fun. Everything I did was based off of images and tutorials I found around the web.

The first thing I made was this wee twinchie for the aforementioned swap. While the mounting made the entire piece slightly larger than 2 inches, the stitching itself was contained to about 1.75". The clover was made over some jewelry wire I had on hand. When I do this again I will make sure to use thinner wire since I had a bit of trouble anchoring the wire on the backside. I ended up mounting the whole thing on foam core board and dug out a little hollow for the wire to sit in and liberally glued it so it's not going anywhere. Also another thing I didn't really pull off was the buttonhole stitch that's supposed to anchor the wire to the fabric. I had a really hard time with it, so I ended up just doing a really tight whip stitch which seemed to work well.

After that, I was hooked and had to make more. I made two ATCs for alwaysinmyroom in the current OWS swap. The first one was based on a piece of embroidery I found through pinterest. My only regret is that when I was sewing the fabric to the base (again foam core board) it ended up pulling a little too much to one side and isn't that centered. But live and learn. (I love the little shrimp!)

I also made her this spider fellow...looking up reference pictures were simultaneously awe-inspiring and really creepy (not a huge spider fan in real life). I used wire for the legs wrapped in embroidery floss - that bit was made up on the fly - I doubt that is a typical stumpwork technique, or at least I didn't see anything for it.

Oh, and to keep the spider proportional the front legs ended up being distended off the card. I thought about redoing it, but I liked how it looked like it was escaping. They're also movable somewhat.

I also made another 2" piece with a mushroom and beetle. And lots of french knots. French knots are fun  Smiley The mushroom was rather a challenge (another thing I kind of made up since I didn't see any tutorials on how to form the cap) to stitch through so I don't know if I'll do too many more of those unless I learn of a better way to do it.

Last one, not technically stumpwork, but it was some fun texture stitching I did all for myself. More french knots and looped bullion knots mounted on a copper pendant base (thank you tapestrymlp!). All I need to do now is add a chain.

Edit: Now named "Yummy melted cheese dish" Thanks alwaysinmyroom!

That's it for now. I'd love to hear any tips or advice if anyone has it to offer. I am just getting started with stumpwork!
9  IMAGE REPRODUCTION TECHNIQUES / Screen Printing: Completed Projects / It's a picture puzzle - Doctor Who style! on: May 15, 2014 05:14:26 PM

So I do a lot of screen printing, and have an assortment of screens which might happen to have a lot of Doctor Who themed images on them..because I love Doctor Who and I happen to know a lot of people that do too. So for the most part I was using them to make fabric repeats for FQs which is great and I still do that. But I actually stumbled upon another awesome idea to put these images to use...image mash-ups....picture puzzles...not sure there's really a name for it but basically a aggregation of images that form one larger image. I did one previously which I'll share at the bottom of the post (sorry for less than stellar pictures  Tongue) and then when I did this next one I made sure to capture the process as it went on for fun..because I love process pictures and maybe you do too  Smiley

First thing is first, you cut out your larger shape/image in freezer paper to mask out all the areas you don't want ink to get to. It's best to have a simple shape so that it's easy to tell what the overall image is.

Print print print. (It's probably best to start with the bigger images to make sure you can fit them on there and then fill in the spaces with smaller and smaller images, etc)..

Don't freak out if the images accidentally overlap...like I might have for a second with that stupid bow...it's all good. It still looks great!

Fill in the spaces with dots or lines or don't, it's up to you. I just like having a more filled in look because I think it gives the overall shape a bit more definition.

And peel..ooh crisp lines!....

And peel....and watch the magic of what you just created!

This was my first shirt using this style  Smiley

I'd love to hear what you think, or see your own creations if you decide to try this out. Thanks so much for looking  Wink
10  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / Washi Tape Swap on: May 13, 2014 05:45:12 AM
So washi tape is all the rage now...what about a washi tape swap? It'd be low-stress; make 1 or 2 small crafts using washi tape and send that along with let's say minimum 2 rolls of washi tape to your partner? I'm in love with all the washi tape patterns there are out there and all the possibilities  Cheesy I'm not really up for organizing right now, but if anyone wants to take this idea and run with it, feel free  Smiley
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