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1  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Discussion and Questions / I want to carry a brooch bouquet down the aisle, but... on: January 24, 2012 09:12:23 PM
...I don't have any heirloom brooches or costume jewelry.  My mom's side of the family had a lot of this stuff, but there was a lot of emotional baggage in that family and nothing was really passed down to her.  My dad's side of the family were all depression era farmers, so there are no luxury heirlooms.  This is less of a sentimental thing for me, and more a theme thing - pirate wedding = chance to carry a totally blinged out bouquet, plus I want to be able to have my bouquet as a keepsake.  So, my question is, where's the best place to hand-pick costume jewelry pieces for cheap?  I have some thrift stores around, and a big community garage sale coming up in may, but I was wondering if anyone has any other suggestions, like where I could look online, or what alternatives to brooches I could use.

2  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Wedding dress help! on: November 01, 2011 11:59:51 AM
So, being artsy fartsy, I can't just *buy* a wedding dress...nothing is up to my specifications, and I refuse to pay $900 for a couple yards of satin and tulle.  Anyway, I'm envisioning a sort of french ballgown style overskirt over a colored petticoat, but I'm not quite sure exactly how to do the overskirt.  I want to use a heavy material, like velvet or brocade, so it can stand alone and I can take the petticoat off for the reception.  I'm not sure what the technique I want to use for the overskirt is called (I've heard festooned, scalloped, draped, and gathered), but it looks something like this:

The original inspiration being Marie Antoinette's wedding gown (though I don't want it to be so overwhelming):

My first thought is that all I would have to do is make a circle skirt that completely covers the petticoat, then run gathering stitches up in 2.5' intervals to get the gathered scallopy thingies full and pretty.  However, I can't find a pattern to confirm this for the life of me, and I know the heavy fabric I want to use will probably act differently from any cheap fabric I practice on.  Does anyone have any experience making this sort of skirt?

Thanks in advance!  And the wedding's not till next year, so I have time = )
3  COOKING / Dessert / Xmas in May, or Peppermint Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies! on: May 11, 2011 03:14:22 PM
So, my boyfriend and his friend outsourced some baking to me for their class potluck tonight.  To make it easy on myself, I made one big batch of chocolate chip cookie dough, divided it in half, and then added new flavors to half the batch.  We have these three HUGE - we're talking like three feet long - candy canes left over from xmas, so I decided to use one of them up.  What's good with peppermint?  You guessed it - chocolate!

Absolutely to die for!  Chocolate chip cookie dough is my absolute favorite base dough, so adding more chocolate and mint and candy cane...so so good!  Plus, the house smells absolutely awesome now!

Recipe for Peppermint Chocolate Chocolate Chip Cookies

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup wheat flour
1/2 - 1 cup cocoa, depending on how chocolaty you like your cookies
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup softened butter, or some type of margarine
3/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup packed brown sugar (dark brown is best)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon mint extract
2 large eggs
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup crushed candy canes or other peppermint candy, plus extra for garnishing

Preheat oven to 375.  Cream butter and sugar together in a large bowl until light and fluffy.  Mix dry ingredients in a seperate bowl until well combined.  Add eggs, one at a time, and blend with hand beater or stand mixer until fully incorporated, then add in the mint and vanilla.  Slowly beat in the flour, scraping the sides with a spatula until the dough is one uniform mass.  Stir in the chocolate chips and candy canes.  Drop onto cookie sheets covered in parchment paper/foil, and sprinkle extra crushed candy cane or peppermint candy on top, as much as you like.  Bake in the center of the oven for 7-10 minutes, until solid but still soft. 

I hope you all enjoy these as much as I am!

4  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Completed Projects / Monsters for your daily routine! Tute added for scenting powders! on: April 30, 2011 03:39:21 PM
Hi all!  If there's one thing I love more than faux fur, it's vintagy stuff like powder puffs.  So, I've combined my two loves in these fuzzy MONSTER PUFFS!!

They're stuffed with this awesome silky polyfill I found at my local fabric shop.  It doesn't bunch up so it's easy to work with.  The faux fur is from Mendels (http://www.mendels.com/fur2.shtml), which is really an awesome site!  I also found some great plastic eyes that I glued onto the ribbon handle in lieu of a rhinestone or similar.

An action shot:

I also cooked up a homemade scented shimmer powder to use with them...I was looking at scented powders, and shimmer powders, and realized they're never sold as one thing.  So, I went to my local organic market and got some rice flour and tapioca powder, mixed it with some lip and eye safe mica, and scented it with some scented oils using the cotton ball method (I'll make a tutorial on that if anyone wants!).  I found some cute sifter jars to put it in:

I'd have loved to have gotten a picture of the shimmer, but it's very subtle and doesn't show up on camera well.  It smells amazing, though!

Special thanks to my friend Jessikah, who modeled the puff for me!


EDIT:  Here is the powder-scenting tutorial I promised!

This technique is really easy, and yields great results!

First, formulate your powder/makeup/dry ingredients however you wish.  This is all about personal preference.  Put your powder sample into a container with a lid that you don't plan on using for food later, and label it by scent so you don't forget what it is =D  I divided my powder into five batches, with about half a cup of powder in each. 

Take a cotton ball and put about a drop or two of the scent you want to use onto it.  For larger batches, use more scented cotton balls.  To mix scents, but about a drop of each scent on each cotton ball, to ensure even distribution.

Now drop the cotton ball(s) into the powder, close the lid, and shake it around for a good couple of minutes.  Shake around at least twice a day for about a week, or until the powder has absorbed the scent.  If the scent is not strong enough after a week, add more scent to the cotton balls and repeat the process until you are satisfied.  I prefer a light scent, so this was all I needed.

And thats it!  Now go grab your favorite powder and add your favorite scent, or make your own! 

5  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Contain your inner monster! TUTE added!, image heavy on: April 30, 2011 03:30:43 PM
Hi all, this is my first craft post, though I've lurked prettymuch forever and just started posting recently.  I wanted to show you all something fun and furry I cooked up recently!

I call them MONSTER CUFFS!  They're faux fur cuffs, lined with satin, with so many snaps and baubles and chains they make me happy!  I used snaps to close them, and used pop rivets to secure the d rings that hold the chains on.  You can take the connector chain off, too - it's got these awesome big lobster clips.  I figured such a long chain could get dangerous if you couldn't take it off =P but it's 18 inches long so you can still wear it while you type!

Here's a piece by piece view so you can see all the little details!  All the fur is from Mendels (http://www.mendels.com/fur2.shtml), which has just about any faux fur you can imagine!  They also sell assorted fur remnants if you just want to play, like I did =D

which brings me to....


These are so easy and fun to make (though your hand cramps up a bit after making a lot in a row...) and a great way to reuse your scraps.  If anyone wants a tutorial, I'd be happy to oblige!

Two of my favorites:

The fur from Mendels has such great personality, and I think it really shines through with these rings!

Special thanks to my friend Jessikah for modeling for me!

Enjoy, everyone!

EDIT:  You all seemed interested in a ring tutorial, and since the hardest part is the pompom, I decided to give you a very detailed step by step on that!  Keep reading!


Start out with a rough 1-2" square of faux fur or other fuzzy material.  Thread a needle with like-colored thread and tie two knots at the end to keep it from pulling through.  Lay fur wrong-side up in your palm, and push needle through one corner.  Pull tight.

Push needle through opposite corner, through right side.

Pull tight.  It should look like a little taco!

Now push needle through another corner, through wrong side. 

push needle back through opposite corner, pull tight.  Now you should have four little loopy things that create your new corners.

They look like this!

Keep sewing opposite corners together until there are no loops remaining and the fur has formed a rough sphere.  When you are satisfied with the shape, pull tight, then repeat your last stitch to solidify it.

Now make a loose stitch and push your needle through it to make a knot.

pull tight, then repeat to double knot it.

You should now have a tight little pom!  Clip the thread (unless you plan on sewing it onto something)

This is what the bottom should look like.  Go ahead and pull out any fur clumps that are stuck in the stitches if you wish.

Now put it on anything your heart desires!  Sew or glue butt-sized down so your stitches don't show and the fluffiest side is up.

Hope you enjoyed this tute!  Feel free to ask questions if anything is unclear!

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