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41  First knitting project: A scarf for my monster. in Knitting: Completed Projects by charlieandwillow on: January 21, 2012 03:36:04 PM
So the last time I knitted, I was probably ten years old and knitting with my gran. As I remember, I managed about 8 inches of stockinette before I entirely lost interest and unraveled the lot, and that was the end of that hobby. However, over the holidays, both my MiL and SiL were knitting, and it turns out that knitting is a bit like the common cold and has no known cure. So a trip to Joann's for some knitting needles (pretty blue ones!) and a trip to the basement to raid the box of weird leftover yarns later... I had a few false starts (including about 2 feet of scarf in a beautiful soft cotton yarn, which I have unwound to reuse for another project because I dont want it to go to waste as it's so snuggly and lovely) but I ended up with this!

I wanted it for myself but ran out of yarn so my monster has it now.

I apologise for the fuzzy pics, but 1) my dSLR's battery is dead and 2) the only place the monster would stay still so I could take pics was the top of the stairs, and I wasn't allowed to turn the light on or he ran away...

C&C greatly appreciated (but be nice, or I'll set the monster on ya Cheesy)
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42  Wreath of STAAAAAAARS! (pic obese) in Winter Holidays by charlieandwillow on: December 03, 2011 01:54:44 PM

My son and I wanted a Christmassy project to fill a few hours, and we had never made salt dough. I was loosely inspired by the plushie awesomeness of the happy plushy wreath http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=395759.0 but knew I didn't want to have to buy anything new for this adventure. So the wreath itself is a plushie! It nearly made me insane trying to work out how to sew the front and back together and then turn it right side out. There was a lot of swearing involved, let's just leave it at that.

The stars are salt dough (1 part water, 2 parts flour, 2 parts salt), dyed with food colouring and baked at 200 degrees for about 5 hours and then left in the oven to cool over night. Some have glitter in them too. We punched holes in them before baking as I was planning to attach them with ribbon, but it turns out I don't have any teeny tiny ribbon left (oops, my bad) so instead theyre glue-gunned on. They're coated with a layer of spray varnish just to give them a little protection from life.

The front of the wreath is the remains of the hoody I sacrificed to make my dala horse plush, the back and the bow were left over fabric from making christmas stocking last year and the grosgrain ribbon it hangs from is from my stash of hair bow supplies.

I'm really happy with how it turned out in the end, once I'd figured out the structural engineering side of things, and stopped stabbing myself with a needle when handsewing the last seam and attaching the bow. It's now hanging inside our living room, framed by the window in the door. I'd love to hear c+c!

Happy holidays craftsters!
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43  Dala Horse Stuffy. in Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects by charlieandwillow on: November 30, 2011 09:30:02 PM
I'm on an even-tighter-than-usual budget for Christmas, and so I'm trying to supplement my gift purchases with handmade goodies too. My mother in law is half Swedish, and so the house is full of dala horses, tomtes and Scandinavian fabrics. I'd been making Mystery Critters (http://lesliesartandsew.blogspot.com/2011/09/mystery-critters.html) and was really enjoying making plushies, so I decided to try one of my own design. Using a sweater I had from Halloween last year when my (then 3-year-old) son and I were going to go as Thing 1 and Thing 2, remnants from a plain white T which had given it's life to another project and some of the HUGE-NORMOUS! bag of polyfil I bought for my Mystery Critter project, I turned this...

 into this...

I'm really proud with how it turned out. Technically, it's probably really really bad, but I achieved what I set out to do. The detailing is machine appliqued (in the loosest sense of the word) and then top stitched using (read: playing with) the fancy stitches on my M-i-L's fancy-schmancy Pfaff and different coloured thread. The poor pony is not at all symmetric, and were I to make another I'd be a little more concerned with placing the details a little more carefully so they weren't so smushed once pony's two halves were stitched together and turned right side out. I'd also change the shape of his bum because there's something funky going on there. I may even let him have four legs should I ever make another...
When I'm feeling a little more attached to reality I will get around to updating my blog and adding more detail about the birth of my wonky little dala pony, but for now, c+c would be gratefully received!
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44  Not what I expected, but actually rather cool... Dying a dress. in Clothing: Completed Projects: General by charlieandwillow on: November 06, 2011 11:36:17 AM
I'm heading to a wedding later this month. I need something cute and formal to wear, and I fell in love with a gorgeous dress that fits me like a glove. The trouble was, it was white. I've never dyed anything (well, besides my hair a whole rainbow of colours....) so was a little nervous and despite having the dress and the dye sitting in the house for weeks, I didn't actually feel brave enough to take the plunge until this week. It didn't come out entirely how I planned, but I really like the result. I am tempted to dye it again to try and get a deeper colour, I was aiming for a rich emerald green...
The result...

I do need to fix the hem (the dress accidentally hitched a ride in someone else's load of white laundry, thankfully the only damage was the hem), but I have hem tape waiting for a time when my four year old wont 'help' me with the iron...
Before (linked from the store website)...
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45  Twinkle Toes! Or, exercises in glitter-ification of shoes, an alternative method in Shoes: Completed Projects by charlieandwillow on: September 28, 2011 10:34:20 AM
So having seen a number of tutes regarding the glitterification of shoes, both on Craftster and scattered around the interwebs, I finally got around to customising my mary janes. They started out life as a pair of gold cute-but-really-not-me Steve Madden Deweys, and they ended up spangle-encrusted beauties. Check out my first blog post about the process http://charlieandwillow.blogspot.com/2011/09/twinkle-toes.html.

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