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1  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / New Swap Theme Ideas / A Very Potter Musical Swap? on: January 29, 2010 07:21:16 PM
As anyone who may have clicked on this topic probably knows by now, the sequel to The Very Potter Musical  (The musical parody of the Harry Potter series) is coming out this summer! When I saw the ad on their youtube page, I knew that it would be a fun idea for a craft swap, just with all the random silliness that goes on in the first one, and that we could try to make the send out date happen right around the release date of the new one!

Oh, is you haven't seen it, you really should. It's amazing!

However, I'm only seventeen, and can't technically be in charge of this swap. Is their anyone interested enough to want to be in charge? I would totally help out with anything I can, because this was my idea and all.

Anyway, I thought it would be a fun thing to do and was just wondering if anyone else was interested.
2  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / "beePod" iPod cozy--TUTORIAL on: December 05, 2009 09:04:26 PM

This was originally posted on my blog http://teenswithyarn.blogspot.com/2009/12/beepod-ipod-cozy.html
But I figured that it should go here as well. I tried to write it in pretty plain language, but I am still a wee bit new at writing up knitting patterns, so if you have any problems please let me know.

I originally made this adorable little cozy for my older sister, who is obsessed with bees. It is mostly knitted, but the wings were crocheted. It is fairly simple to make, but you need to be able to do both knit and purl stitches. The crochet is merely the single crochet stitch.

"beePod" iPod cozy:

What you'll need:
US size 8 knitting needles
size F/5-3.75mm crochet hook
medium weight yarn-
one skein yellow
one skein black
cotton crochet thread-white
tapestry (yarn) needle
thread and sewing needle for button*

*My button has the one little hole in the back, and I just used some of my crochet thread (which is the really thin stuff you sometimes see in the yarn department-look for sugar n' cream yarn, for example) to tie it on. Most other buttons will need regular sewing thread and needles.

How to make it:
In yellow, cast on as many stitches as you need to go a little past the width of your iPod. For my sister's iPod video (I don't know if there's more than just the 1st gen, but hers is the 1st gen one) I cast on twelve.
*do three rows of stockinette stitch in yellow
switch to black
stockinette stitch three rows of black

repeat from * until it is twice as long as your iPod, making sure the stripes match up with each other when you fold it in half.
I had six stripes of yellow, five of black
cast off.

Then, pick up the four middle stitches on one needle. To do this, just put your needle through one of the top loops of the middle four cast off stitches so that you start with the next stitch to continue the stockinette pattern. Do four rows of stockinette.

In the next row, knit (or purl) the first stitch as usual. Then knit (or purl) the next two stitches together. wrap your yarn over the top of your loop, and then knit (or purl) the next stitch as usual. This should give you a space for a button to go through.
knit or purl the next row as usual

in the next row, knit or purl the first two stitches together, then the remaining stitches together. You will have only two stitches now.

Knit or purl both stitches together, then cast off the last stitch.

Weave in all ends.

Fold piece together, right sides together. Sew up the sides, making sure the stripes are even with each other. Your button hole strap should be the only part not sewn up. Weave in those ends.

Now you have the body of the bee!

To put on the button, put your iPod in the cozy and fold the strap over. Put your finger through the button hole, and then put the button on the spot where your finger was, sew it there. This should be a pretty accurate place for your button.

Now all that is left are the wings. If you are a knitter who has never crocheted, this could look pretty daunting. But it's not, don't worry.

With the white crochet thread and your little hook, chain two.
single crochet five stitches into the first chain.
*chain 1, single crochet in every single crochet across.
repeat from * four more times.

Using your yarn needle, sew wings on, making sure to sew down the entire straight side of the wing.

Repeat the whole wing process, sewing the new one on to the other side directly across from the first one.

Once you have finished sewing on the wings, you are completely done! Yay!

Go forth knowing that your iPod is now protected from scratches and cold!
3  MORE ART, LESS CRAFT / More Art, Less Craft: Completed Works / "Denny Bird" vector art! on: October 20, 2009 05:53:38 PM
note: I wasn't really sure where to put this, but I wanted to share it and this seemed like the best fit to me. If there is somewhere that it would be better for, please let me know!

So, my freshman year in high school (2007-2008) I took a semester long course for beginning graphic arts, and fell in love. Since then, I have taken the next two levels (Photoshop and Illustrator). I couldn't continue this semester, but plan on doing multimedia next semester, when my schedule allows. But anyway, this is my favorite piece. I titled it "Denny Bird," because I just felt like Denny was a good name for him, with his serious little birdie expression.

It's vector art, but I've heard people say it looks almost like it could be painted, which I thought was a huge compliment.
But yes, there it is!

Anyway, I got the original picture from a stock photo website. The original background was this icky green-red gradient type blurry-ness, and I didn't like that at all. So I did the blue, to make the pink in the flowers pop a bit more.
4  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Discussion and Questions / What Kind of Strap Should I use? on: August 02, 2009 10:36:01 PM
So I have been working on a fused plastic messenger bag for the new school year, and so far all that's left is the strap, and adding some velcro for he closure. I'm kinda wondering whether or not I should make the strap out of the fused plastic (I call it "plabric"), or something else? I had the idea of using an old bag's strap, but it wouldn't look as good as it would if I used the plabric, since the bag itself is made of yellow and pink bags. I know I have some heavy books and stuff, but I think I could just use a ton of bags to make the strap, making it thicker. What do you think?
5  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Plastic Bag Prom Dress (no, really...) on: July 20, 2009 07:01:33 PM
I just got back from vacation last night, and what do you know, I was in the mood for some crafting today! Hey, it's been a week since I even looked at my sewing machine, I was deprived. Anyway, I ended up making a two piece prom dress/ball gown out of about forty plastic grocery bags, and one long garment bag. I wanted a tighter top, but a fuller skirt, so I ended up making a corset-style top and then the skirt, instead of being practical and doing just the dress in one piece.

Anyway, my materials were:
  plastic bags (man, many many plastic bags)
  pop tabs (the holes were perfect for lacing the corset!)
  an old ribbon, taken from a too-small tee shirt (the lacing)
  an old, torn bra (for support)
  a brooch from a hat that doesn't fit anyone I know

Yep, that's it. All 100% recycled. And now, before I bore you anymore, here are my lovely pictures!

excuse the lovely hairdo, I got very hot while making this! Wink

So I might just add a few more things to it, like something to make the top a little more flattering, straps, and something so it doesn't show my back through the lacing. Also, I don't think I'll ever actually wear it to my prom, just because the plastic gets very hot and sticky.

I made this pattern myself, and it's my first attempt at anything like it. So comments and constructive criticism is highly appreciated.
6  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Back To School Fused Plastic Earth Tote (somewhat pic-heavy)TUTORIAL on: July 08, 2009 02:22:45 PM
I'm going into my junior year of high school, and I know I'll need a strong bag because of all the AP classes I have to take. Last year I went through like ten bags, and I just had honors and one AP class, so I decided to save some money (and the earth) by making my own! I decided to use fused plastic, because it's pretty strong and waterproof, and if it were to rip, I could easily fix it with some new bags and my iron.

So, after a bit of collecting, I came up with this:

That's my cat Claws, by the way. He loves posin for pictures, and always seems to know when I'm about to take some...

I made the Earth thingy with a Barnes and Noble bag, a Nordstrom Rack bag, and some scraps from the Target bags, just in case you wanted to know where I got the colors. If you do something like this, though, I recommend putting a layer of clear plastic bag over it, so it holds the shape better. Try dry cleaning bags, they work pretty well.

There's the inside, obviously. I have a lot of little things, so I added a pencil pocket and a bigger pocket for erasers and lead refills and whatnot.

That's just some of the stuff I had to lug around last year. I figured that if I can go to my locker every other passing period, I should be fine...I hope. Half of all of that is science stuff. I'm taking two science classes next year. ^_^

And finally, the action shot. Sorry about the mirror pic, but it's all I had to work with. Anyway, I'm pretty pleased with the overall look of it, though I might fill in the gap between the handles. I don't know if I like that anymore.But you know, it holds a lot of weight, the handles are a good length for me, and it's eco-friendly. What more could I need?

And just because I know there are a few people out there looking to make an eco-friendly school bag, I've attempted a tutorial. I made this bag a while ago, and I don't have any in the making of pics, so...if you have any problems, let me know and I'll see what I can do!

For the basic bag:

12 shopping bags with the handles and bottom strip cut off (I like the target ones because they are the strongest)
parchment paper
Iron with rayon setting and ironing board
old scissors (DON'T use your nice fabric ones!!!!)
and everything else you needfor sewing (thread, pins...)

Start off by opening up your prepared bags as much as possible. Cover your ironing board (all of the surface) with parchment paper. Layer four of your bags evenly on the paper, and cover them with another sheet. This protects your iron and ironing board from melted plastic.
Open up a window, turn on a fan, whatever you need to do to ventilate your workspace. Working outside is good, too.
With your iron on rayon setting (a little more at a high altitude, like Colorado), start ironing the plastic in smooth, even motions. Make sure you iron the whole piece equally.
After awhile, your plastic bags will melt into a sheet. Check this sheet for "bubbles" or air pockets. If you find any, iron over them until they are gone.
Remove the parchment paper, and cool.

Repeat twice, each time using four bags. Two will become the actual bag. Set those aside.

From the third sheet, cut two equally sized rectangles. Mine were about two inches wide and twenty inches long, but you can adjust the length to suit your needs. Also cut a pocket. Mine's about five inches wide, four inches long. If you like, you can also cut a pencil pocket. Make it the same length as the pocket, but about an inch or so in width.

Pin the pocket(s) on the inside of the back panel, somewhat close to the top. It all has to do with your preference when placing the pockets, bu I like mine closer to the top of the bag. A good place is about five inches down from the top.

Sew into place.

Now, placing "right sides" of the two main pieces facing each other, pin together. This can be a bit tricky, because there's no guarantee that the panels are the same size. Just pin so that you have enough room to sew both bags together the entire way around. Sew, leaving the top and bottom sides open. Don't forget to make sure the pocket is open to the top of the bag!

Make it so the right sides of the bag are facing out. Now, making sure the seams are in the center still, push in until you can pinch the bottom tip and unfold the sides to the size you need them to be. Sew along the bottom, making sure to sew the fold into the bottom seam. Now, your bag should resemble that of a plastic target bag.

To give more definition to the sides of the bag, where the side seam meets the bottom, sew a straight line the width you want the sides to be using the zig zag stitch. It should be equal on both sides of the side/bottom seams. Do that to both sides. I know it's a little confusing, but when it's done, it should give your bag a more defined shape, and make it easier to fill with books.

Now the body of the bag is done, so all you have to add are the straps. I'd sa mine are about four inches apart, but it's totally up to you. Once I sewed them on, I went back and Ironed on a patch of plastic to the inside part of he stitching for extra strength, but you don't have to.

And that's it! You can add decoration if you like. I actually ironed parts of colorful bags to the panels when I was making them, but you could very easily add pins or buttons after the bag is done. I've seen people embroider on used plastic for a really cool effect, but the bag will look cool and be earth-friendly no matter what you add to it.

So there it is! I hope it helped. I might just have to make a second one and add pictures, but for now, I hope this works. It is, after all, my fist tutorial, so any constructive criticism is totally welcome.

7  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Brown Plarn Messenger bag with Lining on: June 25, 2009 03:36:51 PM
I love messenger bags, but I can never find any big enough for all of the stuff I have to lug around at school. So, after seeing a crocheted bag somewhere online a year ago (I have no idea where anymore), I made my own version of it out of plarn. Unfortunately, it's still too small. But it makes a great overnight bag!!!! It took me AGES to get it done, and then even longer to add the lining (which I did in a weird way, so I guess that might be why). But it turned out pretty cute, in my opinion.

Well, there it is. The red/silver stripe you see is a Target Christmas bag. All of it. Those things are huge, but when you cut it up...not so much. I lined it with some inexpensive fabric from Hobby Lobby. I would really, really appreciate some constructive criticism on this one. I kinda want to make another one, but better this time. So I can have it for school, and it will hold all of my heavy books.

For any that are interested: the bag was worked in the round, so the only seam I actually had to do was one side of the handle. I didn't have a pattern, so I just kinda estimated how much I wanted it to expand when my books were in it, and how tall it would need to be to properly cover everything. I don't have a closer thingy, the flap just hangs.  I made the strap longer than it needed to be, and then folded the parts closest to the bag and sewed them that way, for extra strength. I used about a yard and a half of the fabric for he lining. I recommend making the flap as long (or longer) than the bag itself without anything in it. Generally, I find that thinner bags (like the ones at grocery stores) are better than the thicker ones (like Target bags). I regretted working in the strip until it was done, just because it was so much thicker than the brown bags.
8  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / My Pop Tab Earrings on: June 25, 2009 02:27:10 PM
Well, this is my first ever post here. Yay!!!

Anyway, a while ago I came across an online store that sold things made out of those tabs that open pop cans. Some of the things were really cool, but some were...a bit much for my tastes. Well, I stumbled upon earrings made out of them! I saw one pair that I liked, but I didn't think ten bucks for a few pop tabs and beads was worth it when I had everything I needed to make them right here at home. So I found some tabs (they're a bit bigger than the usual ones, having come from mandarin orange cans), and my handy little beading kit, and got to work. In less than an hour, here's what I came up with;

and there they are together.

That's me, wearing them. Sorry if it's a bit bright, my flash is acting up.
The bottom bead dangles are a pattern of wood and glass beads, the middle ones are glass. Normally, they have a hole in them that you would put the earring part into, but I had to poke a hole in each of them with a hammer and a nail. I thought they turned out pretty good, for my first try at something like that (generally I stick to sewing and crochet), and when I wore them to the mall yesterday, I was told to enter them, and a few of my other designs, into a local fashion showcase, so...I was pretty excited!

And I might post a tutorial later, but I'm pretty sure they already have them somewhere.
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