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1  An old shirt plus an 80s taffeta formal = my six-year-old's Christmas Dress in Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects by abblie on: February 16, 2007 07:57:04 PM
The night before my daughter's Christmas pageant, I decided she needed a new dress.  I had a red stretch velvet tee that was too big and an ENORMOUS and also HIDEOUS green taffeta formal and I managed to craft this:

It was pretty simple.  I used a top she already had to make a shell out of the stretch velvet.  I kept the skirt of the formal basically intact because I didn't have matching thread and I wanted to keep the existing hem.  I just cut enough of it off to fit her tiny little waist and added an elastic waistband.
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2  The SCARIEST BED in the universe!!! IMG HEAVY in Pet-Related Crafts: Completed Projects by abblie on: April 04, 2006 11:31:44 PM
So, being a chihuahua, and smaller than everyone in the house, including a very small cat, Cooper is scared of roughly, oh, everything.  This includes the awesome bed I made for him.  It's so cute, a real frame with a headboard, footboard, mattress and a throw pillow!

Coop will lay on it if I'm petting him (or if my husband is talking to him to distract him) but the moment I stop touching him, he looks at me all "WHY would you make me stay on this SCARY-ASS bed, Abby??  When did you stop loving me?"  Then he starts yodeling and scales my chest like a mountain and curls up on my shoulder, safe from the tiny, evil furniture.

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3  My Chihuahua's Furry Jacket with Tye-Dyed Lining in Pet-Related Crafts: Completed Projects by abblie on: April 04, 2006 10:18:56 PM
This is my chihuahua, Joseph R. Cooper.  We call him Cooper or Coop.

Cooper is modeling the jacket I made him for the hour and a half it was cold in Dallas this winter.  He's no bigger'n a minute, so he looks exceedingly pitiful when he shivers in  the backyard!  It's black fun fur with a tye-dyed knit lining the inside and underneath the collar.  The lining was actually part of an XXL "That 70's Show" promotional tee. I used the logo for a skirt and was left with all this awesome tye-dyed knit.  I thought it looked really great with the black!  It fastens at the chest with a snap.

Cooper is looking all proud because this is one of the few masculine garments I have made for him.  He's little and he's cute.  I've tried explaining that what with all his little and cute, I just can't NOT make him frilly tutus and Dorothy dresses with "ruby" slippers and what-have-you.  I think he's beginning to understand...
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4  KISS me, Little Green Men! in Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: Reconstructed by abblie on: March 10, 2006 08:42:36 AM
Here are a couple more glass-n-solder charms I made last night, music-themed this time!

KISS  (You can see that my newly-dyed purple hair got in the way since I'm wearing it and didn't bother to take it off for the pic!)

Little Green Men  (A bad-ass local metal band)

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5  Lincoln Postage Stamp Charm - Solder is fun!! in Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: Reconstructed by abblie on: March 05, 2006 11:59:20 AM
I've been working on microscope slide charms for a couple of weeks now.  It's taken a while for me to get the hang of soldering, but I'm getting better.  Someone on Craftster said her mantra is "Solder is Hot!" and I definitely need a t-shirt that says as much!

Anyway, I've made a dozen or so charms, but this is the first I'm willing to post.  I found some 1"x1" mirrors at Hobby Lobby, and I used it for the back.  My soldering is still a bit lumpy, but it's getting better.

Please, let me know what you think!




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6  Re: STENCIL TIPS in Stenciling: Discussion and Questions by abblie on: February 05, 2006 01:44:00 AM
The first problem I had was keeping the stencil in place, I used a thick piece of paper and did my best to tape it down, but it didn't work well. I figured it would be best to use contact or some sort of adhesive paper next time, but I forsee it providing some difficulty when using an exacto and getting through both layers of paper without ripping on up.

For keeping your stencil in place, freezer paper is your BEST FRIEND.  If you have an inkjet printer that does not use heat , you can cut your freezer paper to letter size and print directly on the non-plastic coated side.

(I think there's one brand of printer with models that use heat, don't remember which one.  A forum search should locate that tidbit of info.)

Freezer paper is fairly thin, making the cutting part easier.  Once your stencil is cut out, just iron it on to your fabric and it will adhere firmly enough to keep it in place and prevent paint seepage beneath the stencil.  Just peel it off when you're finished painting.  I usually wait a few minutes before peeling to let the paint set just a bit, but not dry completely.

Which brings me to my second issue: conquering the exacto blade. I can't begin to explain how hard of a time I had trying to control the blade without cutting two far around a corner OR pushing two hard and ripping up the paper. Does anyone having any tips to tame the beast? I ended up spending a long time cutting out the stencil, instead.

Ah, the X-Acto Blade!  I made many a product mock-up at work before I tamed that particular beast!  First of all, using freezer paper will solve a few of your X-Acto issues.  If you cut too far on freezer paper, it's not a hugantic deal as long as you make sure the pieces are aligned without a gap when you iron it onto the fabric.  Second, since freezer paper is so thin, you don't have to push nearly as hard. Big tip --  CHANGE YOUR BLADE OFTEN!!  Change it more often than you think you should.  On a large (8x10) stencil with a fair amount of detail, I usually change mine at least twice.

Another thing that helps me is I use a self-healing cutting mat and a clipboard when I cut out stencils.  The mat slows down the blade a bit, helping me keep control and the clipboard keeps everything still.

Finally, letters, letters, letters. How on earth does anyone cut out letters?! I tried with scissors and my best friend Mr. Exacto, but it was literally impossible. I ended up using the writing from an old screen I'd made. ANY suggestions at all?

I think if you use freezer paper (thinner), a super-sharp blade and a cutting mat, it will be easier to cut out letters.  Below are two stencils with text that I recently put on shirts.  (I'm too lazy to go look to see if I actually took pictures of the finished shirts.)  The letters on both of them came out beautifully using this method, even the Munich one with the teensy-weensy letters!

Wow.  I'm sorry, I just read the above and it is really super-long.  I hope you get something out of all my ramblings!  (If you can even get through all of it!)  Let me know how it goes!

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7  *Added the Jacket* Mitch Hedberg Loves Koalas! My best stenciled shirt EVER! in Stenciling: Completed Projects by abblie on: January 15, 2006 10:40:17 AM
I am so proud of this one!  I found the image online, stencilled the black outline and then filled in the other colors, shading where necessary.  What do ya'll think?

(I'm pretty sure I've seen some other Hedberg fans here, haven't I?)

I went ahead and started the Mitch jacket for my husband last night and almost completely finished it. (Thank you, "All in the Family" marathon!)  I have a bit of touch-up work to to to it, but I'm pleased.  It was kinda dicey for a while there because I forgot that it would be more difficult to do on black fabric.  I pieced together the huge stencil, ironed it on, got out my black paint and went, "Well, crap.  That won't work!"    I'm still going to add some text to the back and I may put a "Caution" sign on the front that says "Escalator  temporarily stairs.  Sorry for the convenience." on the front.

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8  Metallica Pillow in Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed by abblie on: January 13, 2006 09:19:05 AM
I made this pillow last night for my best friend.  Super simple-t-shirt and an old throw pillow (or a pillow form).

It looks a little uneven because I haven't done the final stitching yet.

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9  My very awesome stencilled BAND QUILT!!! *Img Heavy* in Stenciling: Completed Projects by abblie on: January 13, 2006 07:41:47 AM
I made this for my best friend's wife for Christmas.  (Yes, I just finished it.  Almost a month late.  I know.)

Anyway, I luuuuv it so much I almost don't want to give it to her!  I stencilled the grey squares with her favorite bands.

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10  Yo! (Marshmallow) Peeps hoodie in Stenciling: Completed Projects by abblie on: January 04, 2006 02:06:34 PM
I stencilled this cropped hoodie on Monday using speedball inks and freezer paper.  I love the way it turned out.  I wore it to the office today and got lots of "Omigod, you MADE that?!".  What do ya'll think?

The colors are all funky 'cause I used my phone.  It's really purple and a lemony, springy yellow.

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