I joined the Zombie Swap recently and to prepare for my crafting, I decided to do a little pattern testing. I worked a pattern for a small plush zombie made out of green fleece with big creepy eyes.
At the same time I've been obsessed with Amanda Palmer's (of Dresden doll fame) new CD, especially the song "Map of Tasmania." It's about a certain part of the female anatomy and it's resemblance to the shape of Tasmania. I love everything about the song and the video, so when these two inspirations collided I decided to combine them.
Amanda is made out of green fleece with hand sewn felt details. I simplified her costume a bit giving her pasties instead of a corset for the sake of my sanity. Overall I love her, and I plan on sending some photos of her in to AFP's website for her daily art post.
Okay people, I've been holding out on you. And for my penance I am going to write a ridiculously long post...
May I humbly introduce you to Tori P. Elise:
I recently signed up for the newest round of the I Love My Poppet Swap, and I realized rather guiltily that I still hadn't posted pictures of my beloved Tori! So I set out to remedy that, for both her sake and that of my partner.
Tori began her life as a skein of very pretty colored yarn. I saw it in the dollar store and just had to have it, though I didn't quite know what it was for yet. If you're familiar with the Poppet Along you may recognize it as the yarn used for the Rob Zombie poppet's hair. In any event, I quickly realized what I had found and set about creating a poppet. Unlike most poppets I make, I started with Tori's head first, and so for several days she was simple a disembodied head with some pretty cool hair. No face to speak of, but hair.
Her body came next, and it was at this time that Tori's true purpose came to light. People often say that crafting is better (and cheaper!) than therapy, and I agree with that 100%. When I started Tori's body, I was going through a very difficult time in my life. To make a very long, torrid story short, my then fiance and I were in the midst of calling off the engagement and breaking up. I won't go into faults, but at that time I was feeling very repressed. There were many things I wanted and needed to say to him that I never could, and with this in mind I set out to make a poppet who could be outspoken for me. Due to that I gave her a kind of "edgy" appearance, one that expressed how I felt at that moment. So she has a long mohwak and large tattoos on the sides of her head (pictures further down).
The night I finished Tori's body my fiance and I finally called it quits in a very quick but very painful argument. He had gotten to the point where he just didn't care any more and refused to talk to me (and still hasn't to this day unfortunately), so I crafted instead. That evening I began to tattoo Tori's body all over. Around midnight or so I finished and decided I absolutely hated it. So what's a girl to do? Do over! Yes, I stayed up until about 4am that night re-cutting and re-sewing and entirely new body for her. The only original parts were her head, tail, and the tips of her toes. At the time of this writing Tori has undergone another body change because the stitches were too loose for long-term use (I had no working machine at the time and so she was hand sewn). So this is essentially her third body, head still original of course.
Tori encompasses many of my favorite things, some of which will be explained with the pictures below. Her first name comes from Tori Amos, one of my favorite musicians and a big inspiration for her conception. Around the time I was starting her body I discovered the Tori song "Flying Dutchman." (Listen to it here: http://youtube.com/watch?v=pPgtq4EU-qs) This inspired one of Tori's tattoos as well as some of her personality. The rest of Tori's name is a combination of another favorite music artist of mine and my own chosen last name. "P" stands for "Penny," from the Hanson "Penny and Me" fame. Elise is actually my middle name, but I use it as a pseudo last name for all non-legal ventures.
Tori's looks were inspired by a combination of Neil Gaiman's Delerium, the wonderful poppet Quinn from the Poppet Along, fae folk (think mid summer night's dream), and my own personal muse. Personality-wise Tori is a mix of quiet and out spoken. She is at least part fairy and part muse, though I won't claim to know everything about her. She loves to be outside, to dance, and to listen to music.
An overview of Tori in her newly finished skirt. She is ridiculously hard to find clothes for because of her coloring, but this seemed to work.
This is what I have dubbed Tori's "myspace pic" because of the angle. Here you can see her face a little better. Her eyes are two different colors, one green and one blue. When I was little I always wanted two different colored eyes, and in my favorite movie Practical Magic, the hero has one green eye and one blue. The fabric around her and and in her ears was given to me by a coworker who was cleaning out her grandparents' house after a death. It was one of my favorites, and I wanted to make sure it went to good use. She also has a small crystal underneath her eye.
I finished Tori's necklace this evening, though I've been waiting forever to finalize it. I'm a huge fan of all things wolf, and I actually have a substantial number of wolves tattooed on me (including a chest piece). Rather than tattoo her, I decided to make her a necklace similar to one I have.
Tori's tattoos! This first tattoo came out of nowhere, so I can't really give my inspiration. It's sort of like a "tree of life" motif.
Next is her space tattoo, inspired by the previously mentioned Tori Amos song. Both the song and the video (fan made) involve space, and the latter had particularly nice pictures of the planets.
Tori's third and final tattoo is the product of a somewhat misinterpreted lyric. Anyone familiar with the band Something Corporate will recognize the song "I Woke Up In A Car." Basically it's about their tour life and how travel can lead you to your greatest homes, even if you don't remain there. At the time I heard this song I was practically living on a bus, so I felt the sentiment entirely. The song discusses meeting a girl who "kept tattoos for the homes that she had loved." A later lyric talks about seeing "the Mississippi on her knees." For the longest time I connected the tattooed girl with this lyric, and had the mental image of a girl with the Mississippi River tattooed on her knees. If you really go through the lyrics however, this isn't necessarily the case. That notwithstanding, I really wanted Tori to have this tattoo so she does.
Just for fun the back of Tori:
And the requisite panty shot!
That's about it, she's pretty much my most favorite thing/person/muse/etc. ever. If you have any comments/questions feel free to reply!
More Twilight jewelry items from yours truly! I've been feeling rather inspired as of late, and these pieces are the product of that inspiration. Comments are always welcome. Descriptions/info taken from my deviantART.
Someone recently asked me why, if I am such a Seth fan, do I not have more Seth-themed items? So of course I had to start crafting to prove them wrong!
This bracelet features a silver chain woven with a warm brown leather string (the color of Seth's fur). The charms are an "S" for his name, a paw print, and a feather. The whole thing is closed with a silver toggle clasp. A fairly simple bracelet, but nonetheless one of my favorites. I'm wearing it now in fact!
This is the counterpart to the Seth bracelet in my gallery. For all those die-hard Jacob fans, here's your very own bracelet! The silver chain has a length of rich brown leather woven into it (color of Jacob's fur). The three charms are a "J"initial charm, a feather, and a small bone charm saying "dog lover." I picked that charm in particular because Edward and others often refer to Jacob as a "dog" in a derogatory sense, but those of us pro-wolf people see no problem in being a dog lover!
I started some experiments in wire wrapping recently, and this was one of the resulting items. Very much a prototype if anything, but still pretty. I was inspired by Bella when she becomes a newborn vampire, and by the very concept of a newborn vampire in general. The overwhelming lust for blood is represented by the great number of red beads, while the resulting beauty of the transformation is symbolized by three pearls. The wire wrapping itself was inspired by a passage in the books wherein instructions are given on how to fight a newborn. One warning above all else is to not let them get their arms around you. I wrapped the wire in such a way to represent the crushing, stiff, and fierce power of these creatures.
This necklace came to be by sheer chance, I happened to pick up the two charms at the same time and decided to work them together. One pair of pliers, several pinched fingers, and many pictures later we have this.
This necklace represents Edward and Bella's meadow from the Twilight series. It features a small silver leaf charm on a silver chain with a small Swarovski heart attached. The heart has an aurora borealis finish, giving it a beautiful shine. The necklace is closed with a silver toggle clasp which has a smaller leaf charm and green glass bead attached to it.
Alice's Crystal Ball Bracelet
The most recent challenge over at the twilight_crafts lj was to create something that sparkled and dazzled like our favorite vampires. This bracelet is part of my entry, the other half of which is a secret until my current swap ends.
The "crystal ball" is created with a lovely crystalized bead and two bead caps. I used three different chains for it, two beaded and one of actual silver chain. At it's inception I only had a gunmetal finding available, but I will be changing that soon.
Overall I like it. It's a bit larger than what I'd normally wear on my wrist, but I think that adds to its personality. It's definitely Alice!
That's it for the moment. I do have a few more, but they were not cooperating with the camera, so they'll just have to wait. Hope you enjoy my work!
A few more bracelets from my recent jewelry-obsessed phase with info from my deviantART:
I was commissioned to create a Christmas present for a friend's daughter who likes Twilight. Rather than just making the sweatshirt alone, I decided to put together a Twilight package for her.
This bracelet is made using crystal beads (Swarovskis I think) in dark red/brown and light pink/tan. I wanted to create a bracelet that spanned the ever-changing color of Edward's eyes depending upon when he had hunted last. The colors in the picture are a little affected by the flash, the lighter beads can be almost clear in the light and both have a more red tint.
Yet another Twilight wolf bracelet, if you can't tell these are some of my favorite things to create. This particular bracelet features the same beads as Edward's Eyes, but this time is Seth-themed. Since Edward and Seth are such good friends in the book, I figured they wouldn't mind sharing beads.
Seth is my favorite werewolf second perhaps to Jacob, though the two are a close tie if anything. He may be young, but he is so positive and happy that it always makes me smile. I used a small bronze wolf charm to accent the beads, but only had silver findings. These shots show how much these beads change color depending on where they are and how they're placed. For this shot I feel the colors really worked, with the lighter beads fading to a light brown and even pink in some places. Werewolves are warm on the outside, and I think Seth probably has a very warm heart as well!
Finally, a bracelet for my coworker using green glass beads, small green crystal beads, and silver dragonfly beads.
"For the strength of the Pack is the Wolf, and the strength of the Wolf is the Pack."~Rudyard Kipling
That is one of my favorite wolf-related quotes, and it had a hand in the creation of this bracelet. I have had this idea for months, at least since I read Breaking Dawn (so since August?) if not before. I wanted to create a bracelet that represented the smaller pack that Jacob heads, with corresponding charms for each member. I also have wanted for a while to create a bracelet featuring the main components of a general wolf pack (alpha, beta, and omega), so this was born!
On the Twilight side of things each charm represents one of the members of Jacob's pack. From left to right: Seth (gold as his fur is a tan or yellow-ish color), Jacob (bronze for his brown fur), and Leah (silver for her grey coat).
The charms are also arranged to represent the descending order of a wolf pack; with the alpha in gold, the beta in bronze, and the omega in silver. Something I wanted to emphasize with the bracelet was that each of these members are vital to the pack, no matter their place on the totem pole to so speak. The alpha is a strong individual, but alone they are no more than a strong lone wolf. Similarly you would be hard pressed to find a pack without a beta and/or without an omega. Even that lowest level is essential. The turquoise beads are to represent the friendship, love, and loyalty that bind the pack together.
Technical Aspects: This bracelet took forever! There are eight individual strands of those beads with fifteen beads per segment. I strung each strand individually and then brought them together with wire wrapped pieces where the wolves are. I added the little decorative feather charm on the end because I wanted it to have a particularly Native American feel.
This is my version of the now infamous bracelet Bella gets from Jacob (as well as Edward). Mine is slightly tweaked from the original mostly for my own preference. There is a bit of a story behind it...
I do have the "official" Bella's bracelet which I was a birthday gift, but I have always wanted to make my own. Several months ago I was shopping around in Goodwill and I happened upon the crystal heart you see there suspended on a thin gold chain in the jewelry case. Needless to say I bought it ($7 I think) and have saved it since. Similar to Bella's, my heart really is a hand-me-down! I then came across the wolf charm when I ordered those for The Strength of The Wolf bracelet. I had seen a version of the bracelet done in all gold with multiple chains and I loved it. So while I'm not really a gold person, I decided to give it a try anyway.
As mentioned the heart was thrifted and the wolf from ebay, but the chain itself was part of a vintage opera-length necklace I was given by a friend. The bead above the wolf is original to the necklace as is the link connecting the heart.
I am a member of the twilight_crafts Livejournal, and I offered to make a poppet for the winner of our most recent challenge. The girl who won let me have free creative reign other than saying she was Team Jacob (great minds think alike!). So I whipped out my scissors and machine and went to town!
Introducing Guadalupe Uley!
Here's her story from my deviantART:
Guadalupe is the daughter of Sam and Emily (Sam being the alpha of the main Quilette pack) some time in the future. She takes after her cousin Leah, and hangs out with "Uncle Jacob" so much that it really shows in her behavior and fashion sense.
She is also good friends with Renesme and doesn't mind being around the vampires as much as her father. She and Nessie bonded over having an odd up-bringing and both being hybrids.
Lupe, as she prefers to be called, wears her hair short and in a mohawk. This causes her wolf form to have shorter fur except for a long mane down her head and upper back.
Lupe also has two tattoos, a dream catcher on her arm and wolf and human prints on her abdomen (the abdomen tattoos were based on a tattoo that I actually have!).
The jewelry she wears was passed down from one of the original pack members.
Lupe was made using the Pretty Poppet pattern and stands a little over a foot tall. She was my first machine-sewn poppet and I love her! Her hair is faux fur that was attached by hand, and her tattoos were done with a scrapbooking marker (non-acidic). Her jewelry is made out of some turquoise chips and small red wooden beads.
Sorry that some of the pictures are blurry, she just wouldn't sit still! Lupe arrived at her new home this weekend and the winner absolutely loves her, so I succeeded!
I've been slacking off posting her for a long time because I've been so busy crafting! I recently did a craft fair which was what most of my preparation was for, and I thought I'd share some of what I made for that as well as my other projects.
Manitou-Big Grey (his bio from my deviantART):
"Manitou" is an Algonquian word designating spirits, often nature or earth spirits. I first came across the word in Charled de Lint's book "Forests of the Heart." This book encompasses so many of my favorite mythological creatures (some of which I have tattooed on me!), and the manitou in particular caught my attention. In the book they appear as men with stag antlers and arise to protect the land of their people.
I bought this amazing grey faux fur the other day and knew I had to make something special out of it. Initially I wanted to make a wolf (still may at some point), but when I started drawing up the pattern, I came out with this guy instead. He's part bear and part stag, with antlers made of felt as well as little paw pads and a tail on back. This was my first attempt at using safety eyes, and I'm quite happy with how it turned out.
For the moment he is known only as "Big Grey" until a better name reveals itself. He stands about 1 1/2 feet tall and is unbelievably soft. I am quite fond of him already, and oddly enough my friend knew just what he was without any explanation. His details were sewn by hand and then the main seam was done on my newly fixed (and then re-broken :/) machine. I hope to make him some friends in the near future.
The Cuddle Bunnies!
These guys are what I call "cuddle bunnies," and they are a modification of sorts of my Totoro pattern. I wanted to make something with a simple shape that I could customize with different things, so the bunnies were born. The two shown here are the love bunny and the autumn bunny. I also have a rainy day bunny (with umbrella and rain drops).
These guys were my biggest seller, apparently they were a big hit with the kids! I personally think they are adorable, and I'm not entirely upset that I came home with a few.
These guys are a modification of my original Ludo patter, but they are smaller and a little more simplified. I have dubbed them "Faery Pets," and there a little back story for them that hasn't been written yet. Each little guy except the orange one is made of faux fur and felt. The orange guy is made of felt and some crazy-colored cotton fabric. All the pets have wings and tails on back (as shown by one of the pictures) and were sewn entirely by hand.
And finally a pillow version of Luna from Sailor Moon:
A good friend of mine turned 18 recently and I wanted to give her something special when we get together this weekend. I recently found out she is a big Sailor Moon fan (as am I) so I decided to put this black faux fur to good use! The face detail and the ears (felt) were sewn by hand and then the main stitching was done on my newly fixed (and then re-broken :/) machine. She is stuffed with poly fill, and measures about 15" long.
Unfortunately I only have one picture of this girl due to the fact that I was in a hurry to get her off to her new home, but the recipient's boyfriend was kind enough to snap a shot for me!
This girl was created for a very good friend of mine who loves Harlequin Great Danes (so no, it's not a cow). She and I model together, so I wanted to give her poppet a sort of pin-up/rockabilly style.
Moo is made using the poppet pattern and stands over a foot high. All of her spots are hand painted and she along with her dress were hand sewn. It's not very visible in this photo, but she has crazy long hair and a little pomp. She is needle sculpted and fully jointed. She does have a little tail in the back, and her dress is removable (she even has underwear!). Moo probably took about 10-12 hours over the span of a week.
I've had this girl in planning for quite a while, but when someone mentioned it on the Poppet Along, I knew I had to get her made!
Isn't she a sweetie? I used the original poppet patter and just tweaked a few things. It's hard to see, but she has little needle sculpted hooves on her feet as well as horns. This was my first attempt at needle sculpting anything, and I'm really quite pleased with how it came out. Her tail and horns both have pipe cleaners inside so they are able to be re positioned. Her jewelry and facial features are both made of felt, and her hair is a thick black yarn. The hair is actually very detailed in the back (don't ask me how I did it, even I don't know ;P) perhaps reinforcing my suspicions that she is some sort of Draenei princess. She positively refuses to wear clothes, but we compromised on a little linen skirt for her bottom half.