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1  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Funny Quote Embroidery Hoop on: May 26, 2015 02:40:52 PM
 
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Just something fun I felt compelled to stitch just for giggles!  Wink
2  CRAFTSTER CRAFT CHALLENGES / CHALLENGE 108 ENTRIES / The Blue Man Group Fanart Resin Heart Necklace Image made with altered GI Joes on: May 20, 2015 08:24:10 AM
One of my most dearly remembered live events was going to see the Blue Man Group.

It was more than a show... it was an experience. I had felt such a connection between the performers & the audience. I highly recommend anyone to go check out their show & see it for themself.

Never heard of the Blue Man Group? From wikipedia: Blue Man Group is an award-winning global entertainment company formed in 1991, and best known for its creative stage productions around the world.






A lot of work went into this piece behind the scenes. Wink
I cast one of my original altered artworks in a huge resin heart with glitter, glitter stars, & pigments...but that was the easy part.
The artwork was created first my altering GI Joe Dolls I had purchased at a thrift store. I knew they'd make great Blue Men because I wouldn't have to shave their heads. Cheesy
I painted them blue, and sewed little black outfits for them & then posed them for the photograph. The photograph is digitally layered with other photos I took of glitter & lite bright pegs with the camera out of focus & with a bokeh lens attachment. I upped the saturation to make it super colorful & love how it turned out! I think it captures the feeling I had when seeing the Blue Man Group.

I'm so glad that Craftster has continued to have craft challenges like this that motivates me to create things that otherwise I wouldn't have made time or had the motivation to do.
The next time I see The Blue Man Group...and I would see them again in a heartbeat, I'll definitely be wearing this necklace! Smiley
3  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Summer is nearly here, so why not make your own Hula Hoops? on: May 17, 2015 06:24:53 PM
Summer is the time for picnics, parks, adventures & festivals! Wouldn't it be great to make your own custom hula hoops for the whole family? I think so!  Grin

What you'll need:

A roll or length of (3/4" pvc pipe large enough for your hoop
3/4" pvc pipe couplings/connectors
pipe cutters or saw to cut through pvc pipe
electrical tape
a heat gun
duck brand duct tape if you can't find the type I used

I bought a roll of pvc pipe & a bag of couplings, so I have plenty of length to make several of these for my kids & their friends. Everyone will all have one to play with when they come over. Good times!

First, I cut a length of the pipe to the desired size for my daughter.

Next, I heated up an end with the heat gun. This makes the plastic more pliable & easier to insert the connector.

After heating the other end, and inserting the connector, I squeezed both ends together tightly and wrapped the gap in electrical tape.


Now for the fun, yet fussy part... wrapping the hoop with colorful duct tape!  Cheesy
A little tricky at first... I recommend wrapping it at a slight angle to make it wrap smoothly.  Undecided

I had some sparkly pink tape that my little girl loves. Wrapping was tricky at first, but it became much easier as I went along.  Wink


My minis loved their hoops...and I'm making a super-deluxe one just for me!

I hope this inspires y'all to make your own! For under $40 you can make about 7-10 of these!
4  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Walking Dead - Zombie Jewelry - Shrink Plastic Fandom by isewcute on: April 01, 2015 02:36:20 PM
The Walking Dead just wrapped up this past season last week, so to hold me over until next season, I whipped up some 'not so cute' Walking Dead & Zombie inspired jewelry!

I used the Shrinky-Dink brand of printable shrink plastic to make these.
You can find it at craft stores such as Michaels, Joanne Fabrics, Hobby Lobby, or online.
I made a printable file of many characters from the show, along with a few zombies thrown in for good measure & adjusted the opacity of the print file according to the recommended directions on the package.
After printing them out, I used small sharp scissors to cut them out & also punched holes where I wanted to string them all together with jump rings.

I baked them in a toaster oven for a couple of minutes at 275 F. (following the package directions)

It's so fun to watch them curl up & shrink!


After shrinking them, I took them outside & gave them a clear coating of Krylon acrylic spray. (I wasn't sure what was the best coating to give them, so I called the company & this is what they recommended)
It dried rather quickly in the afternoon sun & gave them a semi-gloss finish.

Finally, I just strung them all together & added a bit of chain & a clasp for a necklace & attached earwires for earrings. I hope they inspire you to make your own zombie inspired jewelry!




5  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 104 ENTRIES / Knock, knock! Who's there? Precisely! on: November 03, 2014 10:20:47 AM
Two days before Halloween, my boy says to me that he wants to be Dr. Who for Halloween...the 11th Doctor, so I start wondering where I'm going to find a sonic screwdriver, a tweed coat, and a bowtie.


We found the sonic screwdriver at Barnes and Noble, & after thrift store hunting for a coat, I realize my only option was to make one for him. You just can't find a little boy's tweed coat in a size 10 around here. It proved difficult to even get a pattern in his size, so I bought this bazic blazer pattern that goes up to a size 8 at joanne fabrics...and I altered it to fit size 10:


My boy picked the fabrics he wanted with the help of a very fab character reference book on all the Dr. Who characters:
I highly recommend this book to any Dr. Who fan. Wink

Keeping in mind that I don't get along well with commercial patterns, nor have I ever made any formal looking clothing for my boy, I knew this was going to be a challenge for me. This coat had lining, button holes, & welted pockets...oh my! However, I was up for the challenge...I couldn't let my little guy down.  Grin He asked me to make a pocket on the inside to fit the sonic screwdriver. After watching this_instructional_video ...I gained enough confidence to even make the pockets on the outside front for real! I was initially going to just sew fake pocket 'flaps' to match the coats that the 11th doctor wears, but after spending so much on nice fabric, and the pattern & all... I just couldn't bring myself to take any shortcuts. This was going to be something he wouldn't only wear one night for trick or treating... I know my boy. This would become part of his regular wardrobe. That's why I'm going to have a tailor do the button holes!  Cheesy


Here I created the inner pocket to accomodate the sonic screwdriver.


I sewed the bowtie following the simple instructions on this_blog This was so much easier than I thought it would be!

We also altered a tardis cookie jar for a trick-or-treat pail. He was thrilled & took it all very seriously as you can tell by his expression. He wasn't in costume. He WAS the 11th Dr. Cheesy

Now I have a hard time getting him to wear anything else...he loves it!
6  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Bewitched - Hoopla from the Vintage Halloween Swap on: October 21, 2014 08:03:27 AM
Hey y'all! I'm just too excited about this piece I worked on for the Vintage Halloween Swap. My partner has received, so now I can share!
I made a Bewitched hoop based on the intro animation to the original tv show. Smiley
It's mainly appliqued felt & a little embroidery here & there.

The finished hoop. Now I need to make one for myself! Cheesy
7  Halloween / Halloween Costumes / A Wicked Fascinating Fascinator for Halloween on: October 10, 2014 08:14:25 AM
I saw the little pre-made witch hats at my local craft supply store & was inspired to throw together a fun little fascinator as a hostess gift to a friend who is going to have a handmade Halloween party at her house.  Smiley

This is an easy project - minimal sewing skills needed.


Supplies:

Witch hat ( you could make one out of felt if you can't source one...or look online )
headband (I used a padded one covered with satin ribbon)
mardi gras bead strand, skull beads, & feather boa hair clip (I used the Darice brand)


"Tools" Needed
scissors
needle
thread
glue (optional)


First, I sewed a string of mardi gras beads around the base where the brim & hat meet.

Next, I added a skull bead where the 2 ends of the mardi gras beads met with a dab of glue & a few quick stitches.

Then, I positioned the witch hat where I wanted it to rest on the headband.

...and tacked it to the headband on both sides of the brim.

It only took a few stitches to attach the feather boa to the fascinator after I removed it from the little plastic clip it was attached to.
Please note that I didn't stitch it on before attaching the hat to the headband because it was easier to attach to the band without all the loose feathery tendrils getting caught in my thread as I tacked it down.


Voila!


This would look fabulous with other embellishments such as buttons, ribbons, bits of lace, a vintage brooch...the sky's the limit!

This is super cute with these little vintage pumpkin earrings: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=436143.msg5252005#msg5252005

Happy Haunting!
8  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Halloween Pumpkin Earrings made from Upcycled Vintage Cupcake Toppers on: October 10, 2014 08:02:34 AM
This is a super easy & fun project for Halloween. Wink



What you'll need:
plastic cupcake toppers (I used Halloween Jack O'lanterns that I bought online).
Earwires
Sandpaper (or a dremel with a sanding drum attachment)
Heavy duty scissors (or wire cutters)
Needle nosed pliers to open jumprings or earwires
Jumprings or Chain (for adding optional length if you like your earrings super dangly)


This is what I started with. As you can see, the pick which sticks into a cupcake needs to go.

Take your wire cutters & trim off the plastic post, then sand it smooth, so there are no sharp edges.


Add your earwire to the top. If you prefer longer earrings, you can add some chain & a jumpring. Make sure they dangle straight. I added the earwire right to the jack o'lantern handle.

Voila! Go rock those festive earrings at your next Halloween soiree! Happy Halloween!

9  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Completed Projects / Black & Orange Glitter Nails - Manicure for Halloween on: September 28, 2014 12:54:27 PM
Black and Orange Glitter Manicure for Halloween by isewcute



What you'll need:
Shiny Blackish Nail Polish (I used OPI Lincoln Park After Dark)
Orange Glitter (I used a variety of different orange glitters blended together)
Clear Top Coat Nail Enamel (I used seche vite dry fast top coat)



Brush on Black polish & while it's wet, dip your nail tip into a cup filled with a little glitter.

Tap the loose glitter off & gently use your finger to pat down any glitter sticking up. You don't want to smudge it.
Brush on a coating of clear top coat & let dry. You can add another clear coat if the glitter still feels too rough. I did 2 coats. Wink


Enjoy your Halloween sparkle!   Smiley


For more great ideas for your nails, check out the Awesome Manicure Thread: http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=421432.0#axzz3Edr7glDh
10  COOKING / Dessert / You have to try my Banana Pudding! on: September 12, 2014 12:10:28 PM
This is hands down the best banana pudding I've ever made/had. My husband was dying for me to make it, so here it is. He says it tastes more like a banana cream pie than pudding, so I guess that's a compliment.  Cheesy

Ingredients:
4-5 large bananas
1 box Nilla wafers (vanilla wafer cookies)
1 lg box instant vanilla pudding (Not banana pudding...Weird, right? Just trust me.)
3 cups + 1/4c. milk
1 pkg. cream cheese
2 cups cool whip

Mix the milk & pudding together first, then blend in the cream cheese. (leave it out of the fridge for awhile so it softens a bit to make mixing easier)
Then blend in the cool whip until creamy.

In a deep dish/pan, what have you, line the bottom with the nilla wafers.
Spoon on a layer of pudding mix & smooth it out.
Slice up a layer of banana on top of that.

Repeat these steps until you have come to the top of your dish & have hopefully ended with a layer of fluffy pudding.
With the leftover nilla wafers, I crushed them up & sprinkled on top. I know it's not perfectly pretty, but for what this is lacking in good looks, it more than makes up for in taste! It's banana heaven baby!

Enjoy! Smiley
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