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11  wax poetic with glass etching! in Glass Crafts: Completed Projects by sewidarity on: July 23, 2007 08:09:09 PM
I used my electric tjanting needle to apply wax to some cruets as a resist before using glass etching cream. The wax produced nice crisp lines regardless of surface curvature:



Some of its sister cruets had finer lines in the design, but I gave those away before I had even heard of Craftster.

One plus of this method was that it went rather quickly. One minus was that erasing mistaken lines without starting over was not that much of an option.

When I ran the whole thing under cold water to get off the cream, some of the wax flaked off nicely at the same time (had to put a screen in the drain to avoid clogs). The rest of the wax had to be scraped off with a plastic knife, if memory serves - this was all a few years ago.

Dharma Trading (where I got my tjanting needle) sold me a rheostat at the same time - so you can regulate the wax heat and keep it from bursting into flames. So I guess this is another craft process that requires careful watching, but you already knew that by the time I said "glass etching cream."
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12  awesome, wavy-front triptych-style invites (tute) in Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General by sewidarity on: July 23, 2007 07:31:34 PM
My friend Tim (a carpenter/artist/activist) designed this AMAZING wedding invitation for himself. The two front flaps meet in a wavy line, each one is unique, yet they are remarkably simple to make!



You can't tell from this photo, but the two front flaps meet exactly when they are fully closed. (It'd be even slightly more awesome if I'd remembered to trim the top and bottom off before taking the picture).



The execution is pretty easy (the trick is a sharp x-acto knife and a reuseable piece of shirt cardboard), although I'd never have thought of it! So I went right home and made this tute to spread elegant tryptich-style invites far and wide.

'Tis the gif to be simple, 'tis the gif to be free...

step 1: fold




step 2: glue


step 3: stick it together


step 4: one pass with the x-acto produces wavy grandeur!





You could simplify the design if you didn't want the pocket in the back for the rehearsal dinner info.

Best when made with treefree paper like Tim and his bride picked out!
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13  picture frames = a big batch o' shininess in Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General by sewidarity on: June 08, 2007 06:03:49 PM
This took care of most of my Christmas giftmaking needs in one evening, whoo hoo! (Obviously, I'm not real punctual with the posting...)



The glass-front CLIPS frames from Ikea are pretty cheap (3 bucks for 4 in the 5" x 7" size, which is what I used) and simple to dress up with decorative paper (on the underside of the glass) and/or opalescent glass mosaic tiles (on top).

Here are a couple close-ups - the paper isn't really cut in uneven lines, that's just my bad camera work.






Since the back (not pictured) is cardboard hooked on with little metal clips, you need to be careful not to glue glass tiles on the four little places where the clips hook. (It kinda sucks that the back is cardboard - I think larger sizes or non-Ikea brands might have something more solid).

I tried making one with translucent rice paper and it looked odd when the photo went in; opaque paper is probably best.

As I didn't want to work outdoors in the snow, I tried a glue called "incredibly crafty" that was non-toxic and safe to use without special ventilation. I was happy with the result - attached glass to glass firmly. Took a few days, maybe more, to dry completely clear, but made a firm bond within hours. Obviously, for gluing on paper you need to be careful  to use a real thin layer so it doesn't get all ripply.
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14  Finger Puppets - a stampede of fast gifts! in Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects by sewidarity on: May 02, 2007 07:33:17 PM
Ok, so these are nowhere near as cool as most of the things on this board, but they are fast to make in quantity, and fun to give! Your friends who are parents will be glad when you give their progeny gifts that are small, quiet, machine washable, and impossible to choke on.



Basically, I cut out a rectangle of polarfleece, embroidered a little face on it with doubled embroidery floss, and added a smaller layer of polarfleece at the top to make the "hair" thicker. Then I sewed it into tubes (I layered a little fancy ribbon onto the ones in this picture), and cut the top into a fringe.

At first I made the green one, and was going to call it celery. Then I made the other colors too, and decided to call them Martians... or maybe Martian celery. Really, finger puppets require no explanation.
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15  Gi-normous Googly Eye from Scrap Materials! in Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects by sewidarity on: December 06, 2006 03:17:13 PM
It's an 8" long googly eye, made from free stuff, that really googles!

Behold it google left and right:




All you need is a two-liter soda bottle (for the "cornea"), a lid from a glass spaghetti sauce or jam jar (for the "pupil"), some white cardboard (for the "sclera"), scotch tape, and a decent pair of scissors.

Slap a couple of these babies on a child's toy chest...or one of them giant street-theater puppets. Basically, almost any surface could be improved by a giant googly eye.

This particular one was on a yard-long paper mache Chinese-New-Year-style dragon head (except it was a lot more kitschy and homemade-looking than the ones you see in parades. Also, it looked like a mouse head, but that is another story).

TUTE

1) Cut the "cornea" from a 2 liter soda bottle as follows:


2) Put it on top of a piece of white cardboard and trace around it, then cut on the line in order to make a "sclera" that matches the cornea:


3) Insert a jar lid between cornea and sclera.


4) Tape cornea to sclera. You're done!


Caution: Make sure the cornea dome is not so tall that the jam jar can flip over inside the eye and show the less pretty side.


Also, make sure the cornea dome is not so flat at the edge that the pupil gets stuck under it - this is why there was a second cut to the cornea in step 1, so it is more an oval-with-the-bottom-cut-off than a pure ovoid shape.
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