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1  Teto the squirrel-fox! (Any Miyazaki fans out there?) in Felting: Completed Projects by Nandra on: August 14, 2013 07:15:55 PM
As soon as I'd finished my Nausica cosplay, I realized I had a golden opportunity: the perfect excuse to have a Teto of my very own! For those of you not familiar with the manga, Teto is a fox squirrel - a notoriously untamable creature, but one who develops a strong friendship with the heroine. (Some reference pics: http://images4.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20130417170846/studioghibli/images/7/76/Nausicaa_and_Teto.jpg and http://media.animevice.com/uploads/0/3695/406348-6264_large.jpg)

Bottom line: I love Teto. If I were a genetic engineer, a fox squirrel would be my top priority. But I'm a crafter, so I turned to needle felting in order to bring him to life. (And THANK YOU, fiber arts community of Craftster - you're the ones who introduced me to needle felting and made me realize it would be the ideal medium!) This is my first attempt at the craft, and I'm totally hooked on it now.

Okay, enough rambling. Here are some pics!












If anyone is interested in the process I used, I can post some progress pictures as well. He's got a soldered armature, making him very poseable. Also, rather than completely felting his outside layer of fur, I chose to felt it on in wefts, like one does for a long-haired critter; I thought it gave him a more lifelike appearance and texture. Oh, and speaking of texture - his white fur is alpaca, making him oh-so-very-cuddleable!! I can't stop petting him!

I just can't believe how cool needle felting is! I'm so grateful to you Craftster geniuses for opening my eyes to this awesome medium.
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2  Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind (author: Hayao Miyazaki) in Costumes: Completed Projects by Nandra on: May 29, 2013 11:27:57 PM
So, I just finished rereading Hayao Miyazaki's manga, "Nausicaa of the Valley of the Wind." And it is beyond good. It is beyond profound. It is
--- EDITOR'S NOTE: lengthy rhapsode about Nausicaa removed from this post for the sake of everyone's sanity ---
so naturally, I had to whip together a Nausicaa costume for Fanime! Here are the pics.








I'm actually pretty proud of how I didn't panic about the two-week time limit, for once. I got to play around with a lot of fun new techniques, and I really learned a lot!

A couple highlights of the process:
- I sharpie-dyed the wig blue, believe it or not; the original color was just a shade too orange. *

- This led me to use the same method for the entire tunic, hat, and spats, as well! I really wanted to use microfleece as my fabric, but 100% polyester doesn't bode well for dyeing. Sharpies, however, worked great. **

- Thanks to this costume, I finally got around to making my own sloper! As long as I was drafting the tunic, I figured I might as well do it at the same time. I'm so glad I did; it's going to be a fantastic time-saver.

- I also drafted the cap, which was a really interesting / mind-bending challenge.

- The bodice emblem is my first attempt at reverse applique. I'm thrilled with the results, and it was more straight-forward than I had feared! I also used the same technique, with clear packaging tape instead of white fabric, for the goggle lenses.

Perhaps the best thing about this costume? It's so. Freaking. Comfortable. It's like being wrapped in a fuzzy blanket, with a nice warm hat to cover my ears. (Oddly enough, cons are WAY more easy to enjoy when you're not in pain.)
Anyway, I hope you enjoy the results! Feel free to ask if you have any questions about anything. And seriously, READ NAUSICAA if you haven't already.



*For the record: when sharpie dyeing, DO IT OUTSIDE. Just... seriously, don't be an idiot like me. And don't wear your favorite shirt.
** This is a qualified great. After a day of wear, my skin had definitely picked up a lot of blue. I think, however, that this is more because I was too impatient when rinsing the excess dye out; I probably stopped too soon.
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3  Re: Gaming Swap - Retro and Modern in The Swap Gallery by Nandra on: April 06, 2013 12:08:59 PM
HOLY cow! Just got my package from Rae-Mazing, and I am so over the moon! It wasn't supposed to come till Monday, I was trying to be very patient - which made it a fantastic surprise to see it on my doorstep today!

Okay, here's all my loot!
First of all - I lifted off the tissue paper, and LOOK WHO WAS LOOKING AT ME.




And get this: his shield is detachable!

You should've heard the squeal I made when I saw him, except you probably couldn't have heard it, because I think it went supersonic.

And then there were these adorable rings...



...which are fully adjustable! I'm not sure which one I like the most. I keep thinking it's Oddish, but then Clefable smiles up at me... Eh, I won't try to choose. I love them all.

And finally, there was the beautifully crafted pouch with a super nintendo controller painted on it!

Just look at that lining! And it really is beautifully done, the sewing is so clean and neat.

To top it all off, she threw in a pokemon comic from way back in '99, and some candies that I cannot wait to start tearing into! (Especially since two of them seem to be handcrafted from where she works... and I am extremely jealous of that job, by the way. ;] )

So finally, all of it together...

...and me cuddling Link, whom I love more than words can express.


THANK YOU, Rae-Mazing! This has been a fantastic swap!
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4  Potter Peeps! (Quidditch pitch peeps diorama) in Easter by Nandra on: April 02, 2013 09:24:33 PM
"It's a peeps diorama themed party!" said the host.

"?" I thought.

The host of our Easter party asked us all to bring peeps dioramas for a fun, silly, festive contest. My family had never heard of such a thing, but Google image search is awesome, and introduced us to the fantasticness that is a peeps diorama. (BTW: Sergeant Pepper's peeps? Cutest things ever!) Then I got the idea for a Quidditch themed one, and of course had to pull out all the stops. What fun would crafting be without trying to cram way too much stuff into a tight deadline, right?

For the record, this is a definite team effort with my mom, who is both a stellar artist and and a rock.

No further ado - Potter Peeps!








(Note the gummy bear spectators. ^_^)







Hope this brings a smile to you guys's faces. Happy Easter, everyone!
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5  My WAY too ambitious Senior Ball dress... also my first attempt at draping! in Clothing: Completed Projects: General by Nandra on: May 15, 2010 09:24:53 PM
I honestly think I could be certified as insane for having done this. During the busiest year of my life, I decided to make my own dress for a Senior Ball that happened to take place the weekend before my most important A.P. test. Add in that I'd never designed an entire garment from scratch, hadn't draped anything before, and didn't even have a dress form - and yeah, I'm insane.

But here it is! I'm really am so happy that I did it. Even if it nearly gave me a nervous break-down. The craftsmanship isn't great, obviously, given the time restraints and my inexperience, but I'm still pretty happy with how it turned out.

So, voila, my one-week Odyssey.



(Some of the embarrassing clutter in the background has been blurred to protect its identity.)





Thanks for looking, I hope you guys like it! ^^
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