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1  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 104 ENTRIES / Gimli LOTR Costume -- Toddler Sized and Picture Heavy on: November 01, 2014 04:06:10 PM
This year for Halloween, I decided to have our not-quite two year old dress up as Gimli from Lord of the Rings. I'm thrilled with how it came together, and even more so that he actually wore it! Everything except his basic fleece pants and boots is homemade.

There are five parts: the beard, helm, tunic, bandolier/belt, and treat bag.

For the beard, I scaled down this most excellent Instructable. It is made with two colors of acrylic yarn and plastic canvas for a base. I modified it to snap on to the hat with oversized snaps. It wasn't his favorite part to wear, so I wanted to make it easily removable.


For the hat, I made changes to this free fleece knight helmet pattern. I added chain mail-ish stitching on the back, as well as a medallion and cheek straps cut out with my Silhouette Cameo. I freehanded the designs based loosely off of movie screenshots. Finally, there's a little elastic chinstrap to keep him from tearing it off.

The tunic was based on Butterick 3244 -- a simple fireman's jacket. The sleeve pattern was chopped into a few pieces to get the look I was going for, and a faux chain mail underlayer was added.

The bandolier/belt was made from a few chopped up belts I found at the thrift store. I glued them together with industrial adhesive, then drilled holes and laced with decorative leather cord for extra reinforcement.

The treat bag is probably my favorite part. I traced a movie still of Gimli's axe and cut it out of fusible web backed felt on my Silhouette. I created an offset around the original design and cut it out of another color of felt, then mounted the first on the second. It was reinforced with cardboard from a cereal box. I used a strip of felt to gusset the front and back together, and another thrift store belt for the handle.



I had so much fun making this costume for him. I already can't wait for next year!
2  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / Desperately Seeking Flannel PJ Pattern for One Year Old! on: September 24, 2013 07:11:50 AM
Hi all! I'm looking to make a traditional pair of flannel PJ's for my son this Christmas. He will be right around one year old this December. I am amazed by how much trouble I'm having finding a pattern for a simple two-piece flannel PJ set (with collar) in his size. The closest I've gotten so far have been two by Oliver & S and 'Sweet Dreams' by Peekabo Patterns. None of them are exactly what I want... Not looking for kimono style, and the exaggerated collar on the Peekabo Patterns one isn't what I'm looking for. Just plain. 'Ol fashioned. Flannel. PJ's. Help me out! Does anyone have any suggestions?
3  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / Star Wars Nursery -- Picture Heavy! on: December 28, 2012 06:06:51 PM
A long time ago, in a galaxy far far away... I decided it would be a great idea to make our son's nursery Star Wars themed. Never mind the fact that there are very few Lucasfilm products aimed at the infant set! So I ended up making a lot of the things I had in mind. This being Craftster, I'll focus on the DIY goodies.

On the recliner is my R2D2 quilt, as well as a Boppy cover that I made.

The toybox was woodburned by my sister and brother-in-law, using the art of James Hance as inspiration.

The bunting on the wall behind the crib is made out of felt, and you can read more about how I repurposed the mobile in this Craftster post. I also made the crib skirt, which you can't see too well but isn't anything special.

My husband helped me with the wiring on the lightsaber lamp. It's made out of one of the 'spares' from his collection, and some cheap IKEA lamp parts.

I also designed the two little pieces of text art in the center here. The two much nicer pieces are from James Hance.

The biggest DIY project in the room is the fiber optic starfield ceiling. I can't claim too much credit on this one -- I found the idea on Pinterest, but my husband executed 90% of it because I couldn't crawl around the attic in my delicate condition. Here is a video of it in action. I also made the roman shade, using fabric from Spoonflower.

And used the same fabric for closet curtains...

... and an upholstered cardboard initial.

This paper lantern mobile was inspired by some others that I found on Pinterest and Etsy.

Hope you enjoyed our geeky little nursery! Thanks for looking  Smiley There are lots more pictures on my flickr and my blog if you're interested.
4  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Star Wars Mobile on: October 21, 2012 01:18:50 PM
Recently, I repurposed a mobile and small toys for our January baby's nursery.

Star Wars Mobile by staarlight, on Flickr

Once upon a time, it looked like this:

Mobile, Before by staarlight, on Flickr

Then I took it apart, and used the fabric pieces as patterns to make new pieces from fabric leftover from the R2D2 quilt that the room is based around.

Let me be clear that I did not make the plush characters. They were 'talking plush keychains' that I repurposed for the mobile. I did make the Death Star, using felt and embroidery floss.

Star Wars Mobile, Death Star by staarlight, on Flickr

In an ideal world, it would play the Imperial Death March or something, but it's limited to a traditional lullaby. (Lame.) The characters do make their own noises when you squeeze them, though, from Chewbacca's signature roar to R2D2's beeping and booping.

Star Wars Mobile, Chewbacca by staarlight, on Flickr

Star Wars Mobile, R2D2 by staarlight, on Flickr

Star Wars Mobile, Jawa by staarlight, on Flickr

Star Wars Mobile, Darth Vader by staarlight, on Flickr

Star Wars Mobile, Yoda by staarlight, on Flickr

Each plush is securely attached with floss, buttons, and generous amounts of hot glue.

Thanks for looking. C&C welcome!
5  QUILTING / Quilting: Completed Projects / R2D2 Baby Quilt on: September 09, 2012 01:59:40 PM
I'm so excited to have finished the first major project for our January baby's nursery: an R2D2 quilt! No pattern -- just made it up as I went along using lots of reference photos from the movies. All of the fabrics are from JoAnn's. Approx. 36" x 48".

Kept the back very simple on purpose. I figured there was enough happening on the front. Love the effect of the rounded corners up top.

Used my machine's zig zag stitch for the embroidery on the back. It's not perfect, and got even wonkier after quilting, but overall I think it works.

Off to work on a stuffed Chewbacca...
6  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General / Star Wars Valentines on: February 14, 2012 06:28:43 PM
My hubby didn't want anything for Valentine's Day... But then he sent me flowers at work. And gifted me some sweet fabric. I felt like a schmuck! So I really wanted to do a little nice something for him.

Enter... homemade Star Wars valentines for my jedi-wannabe hubby.

I got the idea for the stormtrooper one online, but the other puns are (sadly) mine. "I wanna  Leia"... "You're the Obi Wan for me"... "Need someone to love? I'm-a-ya-doll-a!"

Designed the greetings in Word, then printed them on card stock and assembled with a glue stick. Couldn't be easier.

For the backs, I used the awesome exchange between Han and Leia in The Empire Strikes Back. Add in coupons for cookies, foot rubs, and uninterrupted time with his favorite (awful) Star Wars show...

I hid them around in his stuff so he'd find them throughout the day. Pretty sure they were a success -- he voluntarily posted the Obi Wan valentine in his office at work!  Grin
7  QUILTING / Quilting: Completed Projects / Innocent Crush Canasta Quilt on: January 22, 2012 04:58:49 PM

Dimensions: 72" x 96" (twin)
Pattern: Natural Canasta Quilt from Oh, Fransson!
Fabric: 11 prints from Anna Maria Horner's 'Innocent Crush' line, one Amy Butler print, and six solids
Quilting: Free motion stipple

Can't say enough good things about this pattern. Keeping track of all the little strips was tricky, but worth it. I think it has the artsy, bohemian sort of look that I was going for.

This is my second finished quilt of 2012, though admittedly it's a UFO from 2011... it was supposed to be a "good luck at college" present, but I had some serious problems with my sewing machine that caused lengthy delays in quilting. I'm so glad to have put the final stitch in this one!

I'm shipping this quilt to my cousin tomorrow to (finally) brighten up her dorm room. I hope she likes it!
8  QUILTING / Quilting: Completed Projects / Modern Baby Train Quilt on: January 10, 2012 05:15:38 AM
There's no better way to kick off the new year than with a quick, fun baby quilt.

Unfortunately, I was working on it until the very last minute and forgot to get final dimensions, but it's around 30" x 38". The fabrics are all from my scrap bin. The train cars are pieced, and the wheels and letters are appliqued on.

This is the second quilt of this kind that I've made -- this one was commissioned from the first one, completed in 2009, and is very similar in colorway. I'd love to make a girly version someday. I think pink with a circus theme would be so much fun! Maybe with some appliqued animals? But I digress...

This is my favorite locomotive on the quilt.

The website that I got my original inspiration from has since been moved, but I posted a workaround on my blog so you can still check it out if you're interested.

Congratulations to Logan's family... he should be arriving any day now! I hope he uses the heck out of this quilt.
9  Halloween / Halloween Decor and Parties / Spooky Skeleton Wreath on: October 16, 2011 07:04:42 PM

Skeleton Wreath by staarlight, on Flickr

We have been decorating our house for Halloween, and we were in need of something to one-up the guy down the street with awesome blinking eyes in his bushes. The bone wreath tutorial I had saved from last year turned out to be just the ticket.

The bones are from two "lawn skeletons.'" Basically, they're hollow plastic arms, legs, and a head that you poke into the ground to make it look like a skeleton is clawing its way out. The ones I bought were assembled at the joints with small screws, which were easy enough to remove.

Then I laid them out and glued it all together. Once I figured out the right glue to use -- high-temp hot glue -- it came together quickly. [I detailed my trials and tribulations with adhesives on my blog.] Add a fake black rose from the dollar store, and he's ready to spook trick or treaters!

If you want to make your own, I used this great tutorial from Meg at Mega Spooky. Happy Halloween, everyone!
10  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Baby Showers And Gifts For New Babies / Harry Potter Themed Diaper Cake Baby Shower Gift on: August 09, 2011 09:02:27 AM
I have made a lot of diaper cakes over the years, but this one was by far the most fun! Behold, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter diaper cake, for a baby girl. Not the girliest thing in the world, but I think it's pretty awesome!

Usually I use mostly store-bought items to decorate cakes, but after a bit of searching I determined that HP-themed baby gear pretty much doesn't exist. Bring on the crafting!

On the front of the cake there's a stuffed Hedwig (purchased), a felt baby-sized student hat, and golden snitch rattle. The rattle is also felt. I used a tutorial online to make a ball shape, then freehanded the wings.

At the bottom I included bibs embroidered with 'Witch in Training' and 'Muggle Born'. Used my mom's Husqvarna Viking embroidery machine and a free font called 'Harry P'.

You can't see them in the picture above, but I also included a set of four onesies on the middle tier. They started out as plain Jane white Carter's onesies. I dyed them each with Rit dye and then appliqued on each house's initial. H for Hufflepuff, S for Slytherin... etc.

The cake also included store bought flannel receiving blankets, little socks with dragons on them, and a whole lot of Huggies organic diapers (around 60). I added a ribbon on Hedwig's neck to dress her up a bit before wrapping the whole thing to be gifted. Hope the recipient likes it!!

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