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1  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Discussion and Questions / Can you help identify this crafty medium? on: December 25, 2014 05:16:15 PM
Can you help us figure out this question raised at the dinner table today? We were talking about crafty things we did as kids, and someone brought up a kind of plastic sheet almost like shrinkydinks that you cut out and build a layered model before melting it together in the oven a bit like a plastic version of fused glass. Does anyone know what this was/is called, and whether its still available anywhere?
2  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Discussion and Questions / How can I remove icky smells from swavoski crystal and brass jewellery? on: January 31, 2014 07:15:26 PM
Gosh it's been a million years since I last posted to Craftster. Anywho, I have a question to which I don't know the answer and I am pretty sure you lovelies will.
The store I work at sells, among other things, hand crafted jewellery. We just received product from a new vendor, and unfortunately it brought with it a rather unpleasant odour. We think it's that brassy smell that base metals sometimes have by themselves, combining with the fact that the artist who makes the pieces is a smoker.
How can we remove the smell without damaging the jewellery? The pieces use swarovski crystals, swarovski pearls, fresh water pearls, semi precious stones (I believe there is amethyst and peridot), and they are on a mixture of sterling silver, silver plate, brass, gold plate or copper chains and findings. Some of the brass has an oxidised finish, and one piece in particular has a verdigris finish that we really don't want to harm in any way.
Any help will be oh-so gratefully received! Thank you!
3  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / My Latest Obsession...Felt Brooches. on: February 10, 2013 06:04:20 PM
I have a habit of getting a little obsessed with something, over-indulging in it, and then moving on to the next. Right now, my obsession revolves around brooches, particularly felt badges. And so I have found myself playing with felt quite a lot this weekend, with these as the result....
A little foxy lady.

Inspired by the house from Up!

A ribbon, because frankly I'm a present and should be gift wrapped Cheesy

And thanks to an idea from a friend, a badger. This little chap is the test-run, and has netted me a commission to make at least 25 for my friend's ladies' rugby team. *happy dance*
4  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Felt Pinwheel Brooch on: January 29, 2013 07:33:41 PM
So for some reason I've had a bit of a major style crush on brooches recently, particularly kitschy or slightly kooky designs. It all started when someone came into the store I work in wearing a pin with a picture of a jackalope wearing a scarf... I never did manage to find out where she got it from Sad. Since I don't have enough monies to be buying all of the cute and wonderful things I want, I figured I'd try making felt brooches. And since I have never tried this before, I thought starting simple would be a smart move. So I made a pinwheel. I'm rather chuffed with how it turned out considering (and this is quite a large admission and indicative of my sheltered youth) I have never even made a paper pinwheel before now... It measures about 4"x4", and everything was in my stash (wheeee! stash shopping!) Anyway, on to the pics.

Penny for your thoughts?
5  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / I want to ride my bicycle... (picture obese) on: January 26, 2013 08:28:50 PM
So, I hadn't made anything for myself in what was beginning to feel like a million or so years. I decided to take a break from craftster for a while because I couldn't afford to do any more swaps for a while so I exiled myself to avoid the temptation (temptation and I are good friends, we go waaaaay back...). Anywho, after the crazy that is Christmas and making gifts and cooking for a house-load and baking 9255925465238 different things, I finally decided to sit down and make something for myself.
I've used the Coffee Date dress from Burda a bunch of times. Or rather, I've used the bodice from the dress a bunch of times, and either frankensteined it with another skirt pattern or drafted my own. This time I figured I'd actually try the pattern as nature intended, so to speak. Actually that's a lie. I stick to patterns about as well as I stick to recipes... I think I may have a problem with being told what to do... The fabric is part of my haul from JoAnns black friday sale LAST thinksgiving, that I have been saving until I felt competent enough to tackle something and not trash the fabric. It turns out it creases like a fothermucker, which is mighty annoying, but it does have a slight stretch to it so all may be forgiven.
So anyway, on to the pictures....

I'm less than thrilled by the fit. Like I said, I've used the bodice pattern before and thought that the fit was ok, but this turned out horribly.

There's just far too much ease through the waist and hips, and it makes me look really wide and completely swamps my figure. It's weird though because it fits across the shoulder and bust. The dressform is set to my measurements and is lost in there...

Weirdly, it also seems to look right from the side.

I'm so proud of this zip. I hand sewed that sucker in. I think I may have made myself go blind in the process, but I think it's worth it.

I decided to forego the facings because I found bias tape in the stash. It wasn't mine but it had been sitting in the drawer for ages so I'm fairly certain that whatever project it was bought for has long since been forgotten... I really like how it adds a bit of dimension to the neckline. Also, the original pattern had a ruffle down the front of the bodice. It's cute, but not me, so I skipped that too.

Check out how well these seams line up. *smug*. Ok, less smug, because the fit is atrocious and I need to alter it, so chance are I will lose my perfectly lined up seams.
I'm super proud of how the dress turned out in terms of the finish. I put a lot more thought into this than I have previous projects. I even hand sewed a (very nearly) blind hem which took me far too long and incurred too many puncture wounds... I'm just disappointed by the fit, but I will go back and make some alterations because I freaking love this fabric and I really don't want this to be another project that gets flung into the back of my closet and ignored.
Please, your comments and criticisms are more than welcome, especially if you have any idea how to tackle the alterations. Have any of you made this pattern, and how did you find it?
6  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Taggy Lion on: January 03, 2013 08:39:41 PM
I made this for a friend's baby, who while not due for another 4 weeks, is determined to arrive early. She's already proven that she's a formidable little character so a lion seemed somehow appropriate.

The idea came from this, which I found on Pinterest. I fell in love with the idea of a looped ribbon mane.
7  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Just a quick sweater resizing... 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.

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.
8  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / The chicken and the egg... (Slightly naughty word in image) 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.


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!
9  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / One day, one bedsheet, one dress... 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
10  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Braided Strap Jersey Maxi (and a plea for help) 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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