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21  Re: OMG - I need a drink swap GALLERY (send outs July 10) in The Swap Gallery by Wulf on: July 21, 2015 07:26:07 PM
By next month, Lynda, you'll really need that drink! Wink

I received my package from spazgirl1981 today, which has a lot more inside it than its small size would suggest.

First, some fun extras:

A wine glass yoke, so you can sling your drink around your neck to keep both hands free for the buffet table. This is such a great idea - I'm just not sure if I could ever be so openly greedy to use it! A couple of bottle opener rings (so smart! so discreet!) and a bottle of lime-flavoured salt for the rim of your beer bottle. I can't decide if this is brilliant or awful - I'll have to try it to find out. Cheesy

Next, a tiny cocktail shaker, decorated in copper and gold. I've never used one of these single-serving shakers, so I can hardly wait to try it out. It's very funny that we each sent the other a shaker!

Recipes and a card with great 3-D drinks stickers on it. One of the recipes is for "Highly Alcoholic Butterbeer", which calls for Whipped Cream Flavored Vodka. That sounds like a Harry Potter product too!

I mentioned Nick and Nora Charles in my questionnaire, and Betsy put their silhouettes on bar towels for me! If you don't know, Nick and Nora (and their dog, Asta) are the stars of "The Thin Man", "The Return of the Thin Man" and other 1930's mystery movies. They're New York socialites and detectives - sort of. Mostly they just wear great clothes, drink an astounding amount and make witty remarks. If you don't have time to watch any of the Thin Man movies on YouTube, someone has edited this short collection that shows Nick and Nora doing what they do best. And incidentally, I love the size of these towels, too - one of my complaints about glass towels is that they're usually too small, but these are absolutely huge!

Thanks so much for all this! I knew this swap would be fun, and it has been. Cheesy



I tried the tiny cocktail shaker this evening, and it's terrific! Fits perfectly in one hand, and seals tightly. (Not always the case with shakers, unfortunately.) I can't believe I've lived this long without one!
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22  Re: Setting the Miniature Scene - Gallery in The Swap Gallery by Wulf on: July 21, 2015 06:57:11 PM
Okay, get right up close to the screen, because some of this is so small it's hard to see. Cheesy

In my questionnaire, I mentioned that I my future retirement hobby is going to be making miniature room boxes of scenes from the Sherlock Holmes stories. As I hoped, Ludi took up that idea, but she ran off with it in directions I never expected.

I could begin anywhere, but I think I'll start with the piece de resistance. I've included a small ruler in most shots so you can see the scale.

One of Sherlock Holmes minor eccentricities is that he keeps his pipe tobacco in the toe of a Persian slipper beside the fireplace. And here is that tiny slipper! I'm so thrilled to have this, because it's something I could never make for myself and I can't imagine how else I would ever get one. And of course, no miniature of 221b Baker Street would be complete without it.

The story "The Adventure of the Three Napoleons" involves plaster busts of Le Petit Empereur, one of which contains a secret. I love this little sculpture - it would be shame to have to smash it apart! Sorry my photo isn't very good; for some reason my camera would only focus on the ruler, not the bust.

I don't think these three little bottles are specific to a Holmes story, but they're amazing. I measured them with my scale ruler, and in 1:12 scale, they're only 2 inches high!

Holmes and Watson read a lot of newspapers, and Ludi made two sheets of microfiche-sized Victorian newspaper and magazine pages.

My camera can't hope to capture the detail, but these pages are perfect!

But there's more! Some pages from an old collection of Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories: "The Sign of Four", "A Scandal in Bohemia" and "The Ring of Thoth". The last one is very funny to see here, because although it's by Doyle, it's decidedly not a Holmes story! I guess the publisher thought no one would notice.

That particular page of "The Sign of Four" is the scene with Toby the tracking dog, and here he is!

And finally, the only large package in the box, a whole pile of assorted heads, limbs and bodies of racecar drivers and other people. Shocked (Are these your creations, Ludi?) Plus other figures in several different scales, and a metal figure of a skeletal horse, which I'm going to have to find a very special place for. (What is that object with the sphere on top, anyway?)

I love all this so much, Ludi! Having the Persian slipper in hand, I've decided I'm going to get a jump start on retirement and make the fireplace of 221b Baker St. now. That way I'll have a place to display the slipper, the bottles and the Napoleon bust!

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23  Re: Monthly Dotee Swap - JUNE OCEAN GALLERY in The Swap Gallery by Wulf on: July 08, 2015 06:08:14 PM
Acadian Driftwood and I mailed our packages one day apart, and they each arrived one day apart.

She sent this fabulously original dotee of Yemay, the ocean goddess of many African Diaspora religions.

Her face is built up of layers of cardboard, which gives it the look of a carved African mask.

I love the collection of charms that seem to have just washed up on the shore, including coral, shells, sea glass, and even a tiny barrel carved from bone. The whole dotee, in fact, seems almost more like a natural object than a constructed artifact.

Thanks so much for this! She's beautiful, and absolutely embodies the spirit of the ocean.


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24  Re: Monthly Dotee Swap - June OCEAN Theme - Send out July 1, 2015 in ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED by Wulf on: June 15, 2015 07:53:15 PM
This isn't quite a dotee, but I had to share it anyway. Picking through a box of someone's abandoned yard sale leftovers last year, I found this little ceramic baby and what I think is probably part of a Barbie mermaid outfit. Inevitably, they've been together ever since.

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25  Re: Scrappy Happy Swap -GALLERY in The Swap Gallery by Wulf on: June 15, 2015 07:20:25 PM
Okay, here goes! (A lot of pics here, so make yourself comfortable.)

The large box is filled with individual packages, each wrapped in yellow tissue with its own identifying label. The first contained a pair of these very funny coasters.


A good start. But then the next three...

A beautiful little fabric container (a bottle cozy, perhaps?), a piece of the astounding fabric it's made from, and a little pouch of the most elaborate paper beads I've ever seen. The fabric is made of torn strips of sari silks, sewn down with decorative stitches. And there was some sort of over layer of chiffon that was singed away to give it even more depth. I don't know what I'm going to do with this patch, but it'll be spectacular whatever it turns out to be! And my sister, who makes paper beads herself, is going to be very jealous of these. Cheesy

A large packet contained this stunning fabric bag. It's about 8 in. in diameter (it would nicely hold a large cantaloup) and has a drawstring top, which is beautifully set in, by the way - when I've tried to make these, this is the part that never works well!) I love the map fabric, and the colour combination is beautiful. I think it might be perfect for carrying embroidery supplies, if I can fit out the inside suitably.

But the best is still to come!

Doesn't look too amazing so far? Well, inside these modest, slightly faded covers is the most creative and, well, amazing altered book I've ever held!

The theme is the Wheel of the Year, and each of the eight Pagan seasonal festivals gets its own page. This is Yule. Just look at it! Everywhere you glance there's something extraordinary, from the image of the Raven swallowing the moon to the tag and medallion to the background images of ice and snow. And then of course there's the owl geisha applying her makeup...

Here's Litha, the summer solstice. I love that the colours are not at all the stereotypical ones that everyone (including me) usually applies to these seasons. The background painting is vibrant enough even without the sharp silhouettes of Pan and the fairy teasing a faun. (The fairy's wing seems almost like a real butterfly's wing!) And look at those beautifully painted sunflowers.

Throughout the book there are little metal charms tied to the pages: a key, a swallow, etc. Litha gets this beautiful hand-soldered spiral one.

I know I can't show every page, although I would like to, but just a couple more...

Instead of pumpkins and ghosts, Samhain (Hallowe'en) gets Zentangles and a book witch swinging a lantern. I realized I've cut off the bottom of this page here so you can't see the Camus quote at the bottom: "In the depths of winter I finally learned that within me lay an invincible summer." And isn't that Le Grand Albert himself peeping out the window there? I wonder what he's keeping inside...

There are about ten double-page spreads, each one impossibly more creative, leading up to the last and most gorgeous.

The texture around the edges is so thick and crusty you just can't stop touching it. And the tag on that little phial of stars reads "Potential". Cry That's a photo of my partner Ian and me, printed on canvas, behind the trees in the window. (I wondered what you wanted that for! Wink)

There's a tiny charm in the corner that says "Made with love", and I don't think I've ever seen anything in a Crafter swap with more love in it than this book. Thank you so very much, and although I don't really deserve this, I'm so happy to have it!  Kiss

Thanks so much for all of this, and I wish the package I'd sent you (which is oddly similar) was half as wonderful.

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26  Re: Setting the Miniature Scene Swap signups 6/5/15 - 6/12/15, sendouts 7/10/15 in ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED by Wulf on: June 14, 2015 11:45:52 AM
This is really for my partner, Ludi, but I thought everyone else might like to see it too.

I bought this clock at a yard sale a few weeks ago, thinking I would remove the clock and use the rather odd case to make a shrine or something. But it got set on a shelf and now I've decided I like it as a clock. But beneath the clock, now hidden by a painted glass panel, is a little 3" x 3" x 5" space that's just begging to be turned into a miniature room of some sort. At the very least it would be a great place to display a few tiny items.


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27  Re: OMG - I need a drink swap (Sign ups May 23 - June 11, send outs July 10) in ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED by Wulf on: June 12, 2015 04:58:09 PM
Yay, Betsy!

Spazgirl1981 and I haven't been partners in a swap for a long, lo-o-ong time, and I've missed her! This doubles the already high fun quotient for this swap.

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28  Re: Fabric Art Journal Pages Swap - Round 4 (Send out by May 26, 2015) in The Swap Gallery by Wulf on: June 04, 2015 06:32:47 PM
Here is another shot of the page I sent to CraftyMamaBee, and a close-up of one of the bumblebees:

The embroidery is just satin stitch, but the wings are done with shimmery organza ribbon. The hardest part was the fact that the soft, textured surface of the floral fabric absolutely refused to have a design transferred onto it by any means. In the end I had to free-hand sketch the bees on with watercolour and a very fine brush. Even then it was hard to keep the image from disappearing as I worked!


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29  Re: Fabric Art Journal Pages Swap - Round 4 (Send out by May 22, 2015) in The Swap Gallery by Wulf on: May 29, 2015 05:22:40 PM
I appreciate the Dr Who pages more! Because I watch the earlier 1965 movie last night & it was good!

Was that the one with Christopher Lee as The Doctor? I remember him, but I don't remember anything else about the movie!

I received another tree-themed page too, this one from CraftyMamaBee:

The trunk of the palm tree is made of real palm fibre that she picked up in her own neighbourhood! I love that the idea of "tree" is so local. I grew up in northern British Columbia, where trees were pines, spruce and fir. Where I live now is Carolinian forest, so my idea of "tree" has expanded to include oak, maple, beech, ash and other classic storybook trees. But in San Diego, where CMB lives, the local trees are palms, which are so totally different and yet still trees.

Thanks so much for this!

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30  Re: Fabric Art Journal Pages Swap - Round 4 (Send out by May 22, 2015) in The Swap Gallery by Wulf on: May 22, 2015 04:13:36 PM
Wow, I love that dress-up Troll. What an utterly brilliant idea!

I just received TWO fabric art journal pages from pioneer9. Now, I know we were only supposed to send one page to each partner, but there's an explanation (of course).

You see, she embroidered the tree (r) to put on the twig background fabric (l), but when they were put together, they just didn't go. So there was nothing else for it but to make another background for the tree and another patch for the twig fabric. What's a crafter to do? Cheesy

I'm so glad this happened, because I got two great pages and I love them both. The embroidered tree is beautiful and that quote is perfect - I've always thought it was someone like John Muir or Thoreau, so I was surprised to look it up just now and find it was Picasso who said it! And the twig fabric is really terrific - I'm lucky I haven't found it for sale here, or I would buy the whole bolt.

Oh, and I also got a lovely card with a photo of the immortal Walt Whitman. Extra thanks for that!

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