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1  Two Firsts: Appliques and Quilt! (AKA: pregnancy is another excuse to craft!) in Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General by Synne on: January 29, 2012 12:23:34 PM
Even though I've been making purses, wallets, and the occasional poorly-fitting dress for years, I've never considered sewing one of my "main" hobbies--maybe because I haven't really tried my hand at many sewing techniques. I just never found myself wanting anything appliqued or quilted, I suppose.
Since I've been pregnant, though, I'm using baby as an excuse to try my hand at making all kinds of baby-related paraphernalia! (Branching out from my usual repertoire of knitted baby sweaters and hats with ears on them.) In my mind, babies are ideal to craft for--the projects are small, quick, and then you have what I assume is a more-or-less captive victim...er, recipient to force to wear/use what you've made (as opposed to cats and husband, both of whom can put up quite the struggle)

So, I present: my first appliques--a set of pillows for the nursery sofa:


They are done more or less following this tutorial (http://sew4home.com/projects/pillows-cushions/946-michael-miller-fabrics-citron-gray-nursery-animal-applique-pillows), minus the piping, because I'm lazy. We're doing a quasi-ocean theme for the nursery (still have to paint the walls) and I'm pretty pleased with how they turned out! The fact that the pillow covers are easily removable and washable will be rather key, I imagine.
(HM are baby's initials, of course)

And..my first quilt:

This may be the most basic quilt anyone has ever seen (just stripes on one side, and one big piece of cotton flannel on the other, with binding), but, hey, you have to start somewhere. It's a good thing I kept it simple, because I had no idea how long quilting took! Even just running parallel rows of stitching on this crib-sized quilt took forever (to my impatient mind)! The flannel has little elephants all over it, which I realize do not quite fit in with the ocean theme, but which are adorable nonetheless. Come to think of it, I'm not actually sure what I will do with the quilt, since babies aren't supposed to have soft bedding in their cribs. Oh well. Perhaps I'll think of something if/when my "nesting" instinct kicks in.
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2  The Black Swan in Halloween Costumes by Synne on: October 31, 2011 04:33:39 PM
A few Halloweens ago I made Bjork's white swan dress costume, and it remains one of my all time favorites. To follow it up, this year I thought I'd go the other direction with The Black Swan. I'm a big Aronofsky fan, and while I didn't love everything about the movie I did love the costuming. I had to remind myself to maintain a very very serious face for photos, for maximal authenticity  Wink Without further ado, here it is:




The cats always want to be in my photos. They are great photo props.


Please excuse the cluttered shelves-o-crafting in the background.


Detail shot


Side by side comparison--juxtaposing oneself next to Natalie Portman is perhaps not the best way to make an unflattering photo more flattering, but hey, my self-esteem is pretty resilient.

I built the dress on an existing black bustier, using tulle, black grosgrain ribbon, fabric scraps from a repurposed skirt, feathers, and rhinestones. The tiara is a cheap dollar store tiara with fabric leaves, spray paint, and more rhinestones.
I tried to make the dress as close to the movie costume as possible, however since I made it wear to a work party I changed the skirt from a possibly-butt-revealing "pancake" tutu to a longer, "bell" style tutu. Doing the black wing eye makeup was one of the most fun parts--I wish I had more costume parties to go to just to play around with black eyeliner more!
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3  Re: The Crafty Wedding Craftalong! in Weddings and Bridal Showers by Synne on: June 09, 2009 03:38:29 PM
I put up a bunch of pics over in the show-off thread (http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=53280.msg3538447#msg3538447) but here are a few crafty ones...
I'm really happy with how the things I crafted came out, even though they were pretty small projects (I spent WAY more time on my STDs/Invites than on my actual wedding crafts!) I think it ended up being a really personal wedding for us because of the little touches and our own vows/ceremony/music.
What to do with garter, wedding topper, and hair ornament after a wedding? Stuff them into a shadowbox you've had lying around for years, of course!
Chopstick wedding favors--all I did for these was make the little tags for them. These are for our at-home reception this Sunday, I somehow managed to delete/lose the pictures I took of the ones we gave out to our families for the wedding, which I packed up with airplane bottles (to make everyone's ride home that much more fun!) in little wedding gown boxes.
I somehow forgot to mention before that my husband made his own wedding band out of inconel, a crazy alloy metal for high-pressure/temp environments. I think he did a heck of a job considering it's the only jewelry he's ever made (though he did make me a cable needle out of brass early on in our relationship!) and that apparently inconel is extremely difficult to machine. Clearly we are both craft crazy in our own separate-but-complementary ways.
This picture isn't of crafts, but I did love how dramatic the seascape looks--clouds were rolling in around sunset.
Now I've just got to get the house cleaned and decorated and figure out how to entertain our guests for that at-home reception...we'll start with lots of bubbly and go from there...
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4  Re: Love your wedding? Then show off your photos here! in Weddings and Bridal Showers by Synne on: June 09, 2009 03:20:34 PM
Despite a last-minute venue/date/time change, our wedding went off a hitch! We were married May 22 in St. Lucia--we wrote our own ceremony and vows, had a tiny ceremony with our families, and had a casual reception afterwards in one of the villas we rented. It was a beautiful, hot Caribbean day and we have tons of photos from both the pro and our two camera-happy families. Without further ado...

Since it was a very simple destination wedding there wasn't actually a whole lot for me to craft. I made the cake topper, my earrings, my garter (which you can't see, of course), and the flower for my hair (which is also not pictured). My husband machined his own wedding band--you can see what a nice job he did in the last shot.
Yay for being married!
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5  Re: The Crafty Wedding Craftalong! in Weddings and Bridal Showers by Synne on: May 16, 2009 08:07:30 AM
Thanks guys for the feedback! I think I like the doves better without the initials as well--plus it's one less thing to get broken/bent/lost/eaten in transit!

I DID manage to get my garter done, and I'm rather happy with how it came out:

Crocheted with vintage ecru thread I've had lying around for AGES, pattern improvised (the beauty of crochet!). The gold ring in the middle is from my grandmother, who sadly can't be at the ceremony due to visa issues. Quick, fun, satisfying, and it came out just how I envisioned it.

Vows are done, music is finalized, we're almost all packed...should be all ready to fly out tomorrow! Wish me luck getting my dress there in one piece!
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6  Re: The Crafty Wedding Craftalong! in Weddings and Bridal Showers by Synne on: May 12, 2009 03:30:56 PM
hardyjenni, the invites look fabulous! I love the map, I think a sticker would work great to mark the location if you found the right one--or maybe even a stamp?

On the wedding front for me, the date is approaching fast--a wee bit faster because now we're going to have the wedding on Friday May 22nd (rather than 23rd) at a totally different location (up in the mountains rather than by the beach) and time. Still frustrated that our wedding planner turned out to be irresponsible and unprofessional, but every time I start getting angry I remind myself that I'm still getting married to the man I love on a beautiful island.
And now for some crafty pictures...and requests for your input!

Here's the gown with final alterations--really I just removed a lot of the flowers and unpinned parts of the sheer overlay, I didn't dare to mess with the dress too much.


I've been working this week on  figuring out what the heck I'm going to do with my hair...I'm planning on "doing it" myself but the only thing I'm capable of doing with any proficiency is sticking it up and out of the way in a ponytail, so this has been a challenge. I've bought a set of hot rollers and a ton of various clips/hair products and have been going to town. This is the latest product--comments and advice are very much welcomed, because I'm afraid my hair is going to look a hot mess:

I made up a bunch of flower bobby pins in case I can't get a hold of decent fresh flowers on the day of the wedding--so easy and satisfying to make:


I also kind of played around with a cake topper--we're going to have a little cake for our little wedding group, so I thought I'd keep it simple--I purchased these wedding doves and replaced the rings they once held in their beaks with a hammer (for my mechanical engineer FH) and a stethoscope (for me, who just graduated from med school). I also made some wire initials to stick on them, but I'm not sure whether the doves look better with or without them. What do you guys think?


Still not done (and we leave in 5 days!):
-Final music selections
-Final vows
-Crocheted garter (if I have time)
-Packing
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7  Re: The Crafty Wedding Craftalong! in Weddings and Bridal Showers by Synne on: February 09, 2009 06:49:26 AM
Ok...twist my arm, why don't ya...  Wink Please excuse the messy headless shots.

A B C
A- soft fluffy poly material
B - sheer organza(ish) overlaid on white. The thing I like about this dress is that the flowers are pins, which makes it really easy to change how the skirt overlay layers are arranged--or do away with the flowers altogether.
C - would definitely replace large hip bow with flowers (possibly ganked from dress B), and needs a petticoat. Has a simple lace-up back which I wasn't able to capture because I lack the manual dexterity to lace myself up the back.

They're all a little more fussy than I initially had in mind for my small oceanside ceremony, but since I couldn't find the cotton/linen dress of my dreams I figured I might as well have a little fun Smiley I'd love love love your opinions/ideas/advice on mods.
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8  Re: The Crafty Wedding Craftalong! in Weddings and Bridal Showers by Synne on: February 06, 2009 08:03:02 AM
I like the third one best--I think the sans serif font looks really clean against the flowers.

I too have been quasi-busy on the wedding front, in that I cobbled together and sent out my invitations a few weeks ago prior to leaving for China and just now got internet at our apartment so I could rush to craftster and show them off Smiley
(More gory details at http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=290991.0)

In other wedding-related business, I dragged my fiance over to Shanghai with me and made the poor guy take asian-style wedding photos with me--a whole-day affair with 5 changes of hair and outfits for me and...no changes for him, as they didn't have any suits his size and he wore the suit he'd cleverly brought along for just such an instance. I couldn't resist putting a few of them in the show off your wedding photos thread because I was so excited about them. So excited about them that I'll put one here too:
  So. Cheesy. And yet I love them.

I'm also planning on shopping for a dress while I'm here (I know, I know...less than 4 months away and I still haven't gotten myself a dress...)

I also found these beautiful chopsticks in satin sleeves that I'm thinking to give out as wedding favors--I'm thinking I may end up doing a gift bag with more handmade things for the folks who will be coming to our actual ceremony (very small group of family and close friends) and getting sets of chopsticks for favors for our larger at-home receptions. The chopsticks are both pretty and symbolic (of being a "pair", of my background) but I do worry a bit that people will find them weird/useless. Thoughts?

(Apologies for the large post, I've just now gotten internet access here and I've been craftster-deprived!)
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9  Re: Love your wedding? Then show off your photos here! in Weddings and Bridal Showers by Synne on: February 06, 2009 07:47:01 AM
Not sure if it's quite kosher to be posting these, since we aren't going to be married for another 3 months or so, but I just got my unretouched proofs from our wedding photo shoot and wanted to show a few of them off! They're the ultimate in cheesy, I know, but I'm allowing myself to be a little sappy for this whole wedding business.




Photos are really important to me, so I was pretty thrilled that I was able to drag my fiance all the way to Shanghai to get these taken Smiley
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10  Boarding Pass Wedding Invitations (Picture-Heavy!) in Weddings and Bridal Showers by Synne on: February 06, 2009 07:19:18 AM
In a natural follow-up to my passport Save-The-Dates, I made mock boarding passes for my wedding invitations. (Wasn't sure whether to start a new thread or just tack it onto the STD thread, but decided since I have all these pictures to go ahead and start a new one)
These were made and sent off in a frenzy of hectic activity right before I left for a month-long clerkship abroad in Shanghai (from whence I am finally posting this project!), and while I would have done a few things differently (mostly fiddled with tiny details) had I had more time, overall I think they turned out how I envisioned them.
The front of the invitations--cardstock ticket holders with our names, date, and the chinese double happiness characters Gocco'd in gold ink. Incidentally, this is the only one for which I did the ribbon accent. It was one of the details I skipped on the rest due to time constraints. I was down to putting ribbons on invites or...packing for my month-long clerkship, basically. Yes, it was just that last-minute.

The fronts of the boarding pass pages--I heavily modified a template I found on theknot to match my corner rounder, printer, etc. The map on page 2 was the product of quite a bit of time spent in PhotoPlus. You can't tell from the pictures (and probably no one will notice) but the pages are perforated like "real" boarding passes.
The backs of the invite pages--I stole the idea for the back of the response card from several craftsters and flickrers, and the page is perforated to form a little response postcard. I'm a little sad that I'm not around at home to get responses as they roll in.
The pile of invites--I used a variety of double-sided cardstocks for the ticket envelopes and you can kind of see how they show through the vellum envelopes. I was pretty excited about getting to use the vellum envelopes (which I had bought on clearance and had been hoarding.)

Now with the invites sent, I just have to shop for a wedding dress...
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