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1  1947 style rose-printed dress! in Clothing: Completed Projects: General by stitchencupboards on: June 15, 2011 08:04:25 PM
First, the dress:


So I needed a day-to-evening dress for all my vintagey events, and I found this fabric at WalMart for $1.99 a yard! AMAZING! So I snatched it up. I discovered that, after sewing the hem crooked, that this fabric runs so quickly and easily, you'd think a puma was chasing it. Never again! Never again, WalMart fake-silk-polyester shenanigans! I warn you all (also, does anyone know a way to keep polyester from running when you take a seam ripper to it?)

But it ended up working great for a day at the Flight Path Museum at LAX, and for an evening event at the Queen Mary, a beautiful art deco cruise ship from the 1930's.



The pattern was really great--I think it was a McCall's pattern-- it's a halter dress, but the pattern also features the sleeves and the backing to make it into something a little more versatile. Wish I could remember the pattern number for all of you wonderful people...

Anyway, C&C always welcome! Thanks for reading!

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2  I plan to startle many fish with this dress.... in Clothing: Completed Projects: General by stitchencupboards on: May 01, 2011 02:09:15 PM
Hey, all! First, the dress:



And now, the backstory: I love Sea World, and I love sitting in the soak zone at Sea World. After all, there's nothing like a good refreshing gallon or two or whale-y saltwater to get the blood pumping. But I also tend to wear jeans. For those of you who have never worn water-logged blue jeans before, it's a lot like that recurring nightmare where you're being chased and you try to run but you're legs just won't move, even though you're trying as hard as you can, so even though you feel like you should be running, you end up just walking slowly. This is the bane of my existence. Well, that and when the restaurant gets pickle juice on my french fries, but that's neither here nor there.

The solution, of course, is to use a lightweight fabric and make a quick dry sun dress that, when completely soaked, would dry in less than half an hour and not leave me dripping wet for the rest of my day at Sea World. Pictured here in front of an ancient shark jaw (ooooh! aaaaah!):



So, since I just got a dress form from the bestest friend in the whole wide world, I decided to use it to make my first patternless dress. I went deep into the quilting fabrics section of Joanns (that's where all the good prints are!) and found a whole section of fish. Angel fish, clown fish, and finally, adorable sharks! Well, of course I had to get the multicolor sharks. The dress was pretty straight forward. The bodice is sewn like a 1950's bodice, with darting on the sides and below the bust, and the skirt has an inward pleat (is that even what you'd call that?) in the front, and an outward pleat in the back. The straps are actually just the scrap fabric from the sides of the skirt, which gives it this interesting fold in the back that looks a bit like a kimono (sadly, I didn't get a picture) and kind of a faux-sweetheart neckline. It works out nicely, I think.

And if you've been nice enough to read through this whole post, I'll reward you. Here's a picture of cuddling sea lions. Thanks for reading!!!



C&C always welcome!
 
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3  My 1940's sweater! in Knitting: Completed Projects by stitchencupboards on: March 30, 2011 12:12:09 PM
So my boyfriend and I do WWII re-enacting, and from there we branched off to re-enacted scenes from old Los Angeles. My need for civilian clothes, as well as my slightly taller than average body and my slightly thicker-than-depression-era-women-ever-got figure, I've found it's just best to make my own vintage clothes! So voila! My 1940's era sweater!



I went two places in it--Disney's California Adventure, which is vintaging itself as we speak, and a railroad museum that has many a PE Red Car (which was LA's old mass transit system, and was the best in the world for YEARS. Then someone came up with the brilliant idea to convert to buses. Now we have traffic jams.). That picture is on an old Red Car.

I got the pattern offline from a site that has tons of vintage patterns absolutely free (http://www.vintagepurls.co.nz/), but had to rework the fair isle pattern since I used larger yarn and larger needles. But I think the biggest thing I learned is to move my buttonholes an inch over, so I avoid that pucker that plagued me the entire night. Each craft is a learning experience!

So to sum this all up (cuz I'm posting it at work and trying not to get caught, gotta rush this one!), here I am at CA Adventure, getting weird looks from people cuz I was about 70 years out of style... but they were wearing Mickey Ears on their heads, hypocrites...



Thanks for looking! C&C always welcome!

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4  The first true, completely honest Asian inspired cross stitch kit in Needlework: Completed Projects by stitchencupboards on: February 23, 2011 11:17:44 AM
First, a little background; I happen to speak (and coincidentally, read) Mandarin Chinese, and one of the greatest joys of my life is when I walk around public places reading people's tattoos, then asking them what THEY think it says. Sure, most of the time, it does say something polite and generic, like "Peace", "Harmony", or "Love", but there are those moments where I look at them as they detail how they got this ancient Chinese symbol for "Virility", and what it really says is, "Train Ticket". My personal favorite was a man who said that his tattoo said, "Strength of the Bull". It really said, "My mother is a cow."

So when I first sat down to design my own cross stitch kits, I was grossly offended why my doting cat lady aunt told me to do Chinese characters, because, as she says, "People love Chinese words, I see them everywhere!" The fact that you see these characters everywhere with no one truly understanding them is not comforting to me. But I decided that, since my aunt is a sweetheart, she was just trying to get me to make something that represents me. That's when it hit me. I'm sarcastic. So I made something in Chinese that was ironic. So, I present to you a Chinese couplet in 4 character phrases, a Mandarin poem. It says, "Ni bu zhi dao, Zhe shuo shen me."



It translates to, "You don't know what this says." Because when people see it hanging on my wall, they'll probably assume that it means, "The river flows through mountains and the sky is always clear", but I'll take delight in the fact that my Aida cloth is snarky. Cheesy
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5  My Mario Bros. Valentines in Needlework: Completed Projects by stitchencupboards on: February 22, 2011 06:36:56 PM
First, the project:



My boyfriend and I often spend time together playing Super Mario Brothers, so for Valentines Day, I made him this (along with an imitation card of the one Lisa gave Ralph in Season 4 of the Simpsons... "I Choo-Choo-Choose You!"). It worked out well, because while he was at Drill for the Army National Guard, I sat at home and made this, and presented it to him when he got home on Sunday.

It was pretty easy to make, I just kind of winged it, and I think it turned out okay. What do you guys think?
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