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1  Halloween / Halloween Costumes / Harley Quinn (Arkham Knight version) - Halloween 2015! on: November 02, 2015 09:05:58 AM
My best friend got me into cosplay a year ago, and she's been making all my cosplay costumes so far. So, for this Halloween, I decided I needed to make my first one all for myself.

And reference photos for anyone who isn't familiar (pulled from the game's "Play as Harley Quinn" trailer):

There's a lot to it, so let's go piece by piece:

- The wig was ordered from Arda Wigs, and I dyed it myself (hand-Sharpied). (Read more about the wig here: http://alexampersandra.blogspot.com/2015/10/harley-quinn-wig.html.)
- The bat was a children's foam bat from Walmart that I painted (and distressed with silver Sharpie). (Read more about the bat here: http://alexampersandra.blogspot.com/2015/10/distressed-bat.html)
- The only clothing that was purchased was the white shrug (I ran out of time to sew one) and the leggings (one pair black, one pair red, cut and put together, plus I painted the diamonds and added the studs).
- I sewed the bra, corset cover, skirt, and the arms.
- I painted the left boot red and bought new shoelaces. I also put studs on the back of the boots, but they aren't in any of my photos.
- And my favorite part is the leather harness. It's real leather (belt blanks from Tandy Leather) and I sewed the pieces together with a sewing awl, added the O-rings and the studs, and snaps. The arm bands have elastic on the inside holding them together. (Read more about the harness here: http://alexampersandra.blogspot.com/2015/10/harness-weekend.html and the prototype here: http://alexampersandra.blogspot.com/2015/09/prototype-harleys-harness.html)
- The laughing gas bomb is also one of my favorite parts. I painted a Splash Out (remember those? You put a water balloon in it, turn the timer, and play Hot Potato with it until the timer's out and it pops the balloon and you get splashed!) and filled it with pink EL wire and vellum paper. (Read more about the laughing gas bomb here: http://alexampersandra.blogspot.com/2015/10/finishing-harley-quinns-bomb.html)

Hope you enjoy! I certainly had fun being Harley!
2  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Simple Casserole Carrier on: April 16, 2015 06:19:07 AM
I made this casserole carrier for Bow & Sparrow for the Spell My Name Swap Round 11, and since lots of other swappers said they wanted casserole carriers now, I thought I'd share how I made this one. I'm in the very early beginning stages of learning to sew, so it's VERY basic.

What you need:
- inside fabric
- outside fabric
- something to serve as a base/stabilizer
- eyelets and eyelet punch
- ribbon, leather lacing, or extra fabric to make tie/handles
- sewing machine and thread
- measuring implement

I made a carrier for an 8"x8" or 9"x9" pan or pie plate. You can rescale it to whatever other size you need. I haven't done the mental geometry to figure out how to make this method work for a rectangular dish but I don't imagine it would be too difficult.

I cut 17" squares of the inside and outside fabric, and my base/stabilizer was two layers of cardboard, cut 8" square. (In retrospect, I wish I had used something else, because I didn't realize until I was writing the notes to my swap partner that you can't wash this thing or the cardboard will get all soggy.)

Put the inside and outside fabrics right sides together and sew around three sides. Turn it inside out (press it if you like neat edges).

Put the base inside the "pocket" you've made, and center it, turning it to be a diamond to your square. See image below.

(The turquoise is the fabric, the dotted black line is where the cardboard is on the inside.)

I used binder clips to hold the cardboard in place on three sides while I sewed the other side, but you may find a more efficient way. However you do it, hold it in place relative to your fabric and sew around the base, as close as you can, on all four sides.

Tuck in the edges of the fourth side of your square of fabric, and sew around all four edges.

Use the eyelet punch to add eyelets to the four corners of your fabric (I measured one inch in from the corner, and used large eyelets, which I think are 1/4").

Thread your eyelets with the tie/handle of your choice. I used a leather lacing that went with the color of the fabric, and doubled it up so there's extra length in case Bow & Sparrow wants to rethread it a different way. Make sure there's enough length, however you thread it, to be able to open at least one side to get your pie or casserole in and out.

If I left out anything important or if you have questions/critiques/etc., I'd love to hear about it!!! I think this might be the first tute I've done (or at least the first in a really long time) so feedback is appreciated.
3  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Misc. Gift Idea Brain Blockage / Most popular Christmas gift of 2011 on: January 05, 2012 05:21:09 PM
I discovered the perfect gift this year for Christmas. I gave out ten of these things, and everyone adores them (and the people who didn't get one wish they had). They're great for men or women (of all ages, except maybe little kids), they're easy to make, they require few materials, and they aren't expensive. These amazing gifts are, of course... rice-filled heat packs.

I made ten of these things, and I only just started sewing in October. I'm working on a tute to put on my blog, but there are several great ones on Craftster. The basic steps to my version are: fold a rectangle of cotton in half lengthwise and sew up the sides; turn it inside out and fill it with rice (scented rice if you want! I used a few drops of candle fragrance in a big bowl of rice to make mine smell like lavender and vanilla); sew the top closed (I sewed across it twice to deter spillage); sew a sham cover for it so if it gets dirty, you can take off the cover and wash it (since the inner pack can't get wet or it can get gross and moldy).

I've already been informed by some of my recipients that these are great for: post-yoga muscle relief; pre-bedtime relaxation; mid-PMS cramp relief; dead-of-winter foot/bed warmer; backache deterrent. I also learned somewhere (probably elsewhere on Craftster?) that you can freeze them and use them as cold packs.

I got a TON of my Christmas gift ideas from this board, so I wanted to give a little something back Smiley
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