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11  Re: End of Summer Random Swap Gallery in The Swap Gallery by charlieandwillow on: October 06, 2012 11:57:30 AM
Ok, now don't all be jealous, but I received the most amazing package from Queenofmarigold today. Check out my swag. Grin
I had a slightly excited Bear helping me unwrap everything, so I apologise for the blurries. Now, onto the pics...
The goodies before Bear realised his name was on some of the packages...

An excited small person. He's been a Swampy Snot Monster of Doom for the last week and is finally getting over his cold so I indulged him and let him attack the wrappings. He has been practicing being a vampire today and so drew fake blood running down his chin with Sharpie, in case you should be wondering what the red marks on his face are. I will wash the child later.

Robot guardians. I'm pretty sure there is a mummy, daddy, and Bear-sized robot here... Despite Bear's protestations, these are mine!

This is meant for my viking, but I think Bear might have staked his claim to it already.

Beautiful pot holders. I can never have too many potholders and the ones I have are getting a little raggedy. I am in awe and have absolutely no idea how you made yarn into something so structurally beautiful.


Amazing hooplas of Ursa Major and Ursa Minor. I have a few Great Bear things pinned on my pinterest and I'm planning a tattoo of the same. These are just awesome. Bear said he likes the stars (he also recognised the Big Dipper because he and Grandma go stargazing).

I love this. Just love love love it. It's such a fabulous and natural marriage of Sailor Jerry style tattoos and Dia de los Muertos. Amazing.

This is too cool. I love Phillip Pullman's His Dark Materials trilogy, as does my fellow book-nerd swap partner,  so she made me chocolatl!

A lightning bolt superhero hat, for cold weather superheroing. Bear's alter-ego is Lightning Boy. But ssssshh, it's a big secret!

And finally, a group shot, showing the amazing customised Where The Wild Things Are artwork (complete with Bear in his bear suit instead of Max's wolf costume) on a new book tote for Bear's and my library adventures. (I only realised after uploading the pics that I didn't get a picture of that on it's own, and now my camera battery is super flat and I can't take any more pics.)

I hope you're all suitably jealous. I love everything. EVERYTHING! Thank you sooo much!
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12  Just a quick sweater resizing... in Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed by charlieandwillow on: September 25, 2012 11:26:28 AM
When I was working at camp, each summer we would get t-shirts and hoodies printed up. Annoyingly, the last summer I was there the screen printing place couldn't get the same brand of hoodies which we'd always used and the new brand had some "interesting" ideas about sizing. Translation: these things were HUGE. I like my sweaters on the big n' snuggly side usually, but this was pretty much unwearable because it was so boxy. I've been meaning to [literally] cut it down to size for ages, but between watching Stephen Fry being fabulous as Oscar Wilde and Sarah Jessica Parker strutting around Manhattan as Carrie Bradshaw, I finally got off my patootie and fixed it this morning.
This...

woke up this morning looking like this...

Much cuter, and instead of just taking up room in my closet I will actually wear this now.
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13  Re: Put a Bird On It! Swap - Send out Friday July 27th in The Swap Gallery by charlieandwillow on: August 01, 2012 12:27:33 PM
You may have already seen it in her post on the Miscellaneous Topics board but I received the most truly staggering package on Monday from microjivvy. I took photos that night but they were horrendous so I meant to take some yesterday in daylight...but then spent yesterday hoping the couch would actually devour me to put me out of my misery (migraines suck). So today I am finally posting pictures.

















I have run out of superlatives and my jaw is still on the floor. Not only is it phenomenally beautiful and skillfully crafted, but she totally "got" me. I love it. You have no idea...
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14  The chicken and the egg... (Slightly naughty word in image) in Needlework: Completed Projects by charlieandwillow on: July 29, 2012 01:50:22 PM
It turns out I quite like this whole needlework malarky. I'm never going to be a fluffy kittens and flowers kind of girl, and this was inspired by a notecard I picked up to include in a package for the Put A Bird On It swap (which had a slightly naughtier word on it, but my 5 year old 'helps' with crafting so I censored it a tad). It's going in a box of goodies to send to my partner in crime.


Detail

Another detail


The chick ended up looking more evil/diabolically possessed and less confused/moderately put out than planned...
Also, my pictures stink today. Sorry about that...
C&C appreciated.
Thanks for looking!
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15  One day, one bedsheet, one dress... in Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed by charlieandwillow on: July 29, 2012 01:30:14 PM
Ok, before you start with the "but it's a bedsheet so it should be on the reconstructed board", it may be made from a sheet, but it was a brand new flat sheet purchased because that's the cheapest way to buy cotton fabric in pretty colours.  Tongue
I've been making a bunch of dresses using the bodice from Elainemay's Coffee Date Dress on Burda as a foundation. I've frankensteined on different skirt patterns, drafted my own skirts, and changed the neckline around in various combinations. I'm still not 100% happy with the fit but I'm learning more about alterations with each incarnation.
For the latest renaissance of the pattern, I knew I wanted a fun, sweetheart neckline and a big full skirt. The striped fabric is just so lighthearted I wanted a really easy-breezy dress. I opted for a full square skirt just because I've never used that before, and I felt it added a bit more personality (also, so much easier to hem than a circle skirt!). I also made the back a little lower than the pattern in it's original form, and the bodice is self-lined rather than just faced because the fabric was a little sheer (and this way the darts are hidden so I don't have to worry about finishing them more neatly!).





Comments and criticisms as always gratefully received.
Thanks for looking x
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16  Braided Strap Jersey Maxi (and a plea for help) in Clothing: Completed Projects: General by charlieandwillow on: July 29, 2012 01:11:41 PM
So I have a bit of a thing for jersey maxi dresses. They're super cute, you can make them as girly and adorable or bad-ass as you like with a few accessory changes, and they show off my arms while covering my legs. Hooray! However, I'm 5'10'' so most store-bought dresses are that horribly awkward just-above-the-ankles length, so I like to make my own. My most recent creation is this...




However, In order to make the skirt fit the fabric I ended up cutting it against the grain. I hadn't anticipated how weird this would make the stretch. That much fabric is heavy, so it ended up being about 6 inches too long. Also, it's incredibly clingy, and shows off all the wrong curves on my tummy. I think I want to add ruching/gathers/some detail to the waist to camouflage my wobbly bits, but I don't know how to go about it. I absolutely do not want to unpick and reconstruct, so I was wondering how feasible it would be to gather the excess length upwards at the waist, secure the gathered/ruched area and then run a couple of lines of (maybe decorative) top stitching up the sides of the dress to hold everything together. Any ideas? Huh
Comments & criticisms please.
Thank you creative folks!
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17  Harry Potter wands in Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects by charlieandwillow on: July 25, 2012 01:23:48 PM
Pinterest came up trumps again when I was looking for creative things to do with Bear. This time Majann's amazing wand tutorial on Deviant Art.
I wielded the glue gun, but Bear did everything else to his himself. It was definitely an exercise in patience as he had to wait until each process had dried completely before he could add the next layer.

Bear's wand (the white one) is 9 inches, hot glue, chopstick core, surprisingly swishy.
Mine is 9 1/4 inches, hot glue, chopstick core, reasonably pliant.

Bear's has a layer of acrylic gesso over the glue, then tempera paint to add some colour.
Mine started with the same gesso and tempera processes, but I couldn't get the saturated colour I wanted so I raided the spray paints in the basement and layered black, red, metallic copper to create some interesting texture and patina, followed by a couple of layers of clear lacquer.

Mine has a large bead salvaged from a broken necklace at the end, and Bear's has a couple of pearls from a broken string embedded in the glue.

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18  Herb Markers in Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects by charlieandwillow on: July 25, 2012 12:02:56 PM
So, Sharpie pens are currently my absolute favourite thing to draw or write with, so when I wanted some plant labels (because I can never remember what I planted where, even in the confines of a small planter) they were an obvious choice. Super simple project - just write on craft sticks with the Sharpie pens and then I sprayed both sides with a couple of layers of lacquer to make them more durable, and I didn't want to be brushing anything like mod podge or white glue over the writing in case it smeared.
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19  First ever hoop. First ever embroidery actually... in Needlework: Completed Projects by charlieandwillow on: July 25, 2012 11:43:15 AM
So I've had this idea floating around in my head for a while now, but today I finally got around to making it a reality. It's an ongoing joke in the house that I only ever add poison to the food when my brother in law is home from college as I really wouldn't want to waste it (he is convinced I can't cook because I don't cook how mommy does it... *eye roll*). So this is going to hang in the kitchen...



This is my first ever attempt at embroidery/needlework of any kind and I'm utterly stoked at how it turned out. I used a cheap poly-cotton remnant which was bought for another project but never used, and friendship bracelet thread as its about a million dollars cheaper than buying floss. It's in a 7" hoop.



I completely winged it. I had a really clear picture in my head of how I wanted it to turn out and for probably the first time ever I think I surpassed my expectations.
HOWEVER, I do need some advice. Right now, it still looks like this...



And the back looks like this...



How on Earth do I finish it so I can hang it on the wall? I want to keep it as a hoop, but I don't know how to go about tidying it up and finishing it.

Comments, critiques and advice incredibly gratefully received!
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20  Make me a superhero! (pic obese) in Costumes: Completed Projects by charlieandwillow on: July 13, 2012 07:06:02 PM
Bear has a birthday party to go to tomorrow, and I had neglected the whole gift-giving part of birthdays until this morning. I can't afford to be hitting toys r us or target for something plastic with flashy lights, so I asked Bear if he thought she'd like a super hero kit. The kidlings are often running around outside together being super heroes of various kinds, so it was a no-brainer. From the conception to creation it took about $10, 6 hours and one broken sewing machine needle to create A reversible cape, wrist guards and eye mask for the birthday girl, and wrist guards for Bear (I'm pretty sure he's gone to bed wearing them).
Here come the pictures...





I'm not quite sure what kind of face Bear was pulling in this picture, and looking at it I realise the mask is not going to fit the intended recipient as it's too wide across the bridge of the nose for Bear, and he's considerably chunkier than this little lady.




Weird little boy... You do get a good view of his wrist guards in this pic though.


I now have to make Bear a new cape because he wants a plain one for the days when he doesn't want his Superman print cape....
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