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1  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions / The Book Surgeon on: March 17, 2011 12:15:15 PM
I stumbled upon this today, and it absolutely blew my mind.  This guy makes sculptural work from books.  He doesn't add anything to them--just manipulates the spines/pages and cuts parts away to reveal what is already there.  Astounding. 

Enjoy it, please. 

2  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 40 ENTRIES / Auntie Bigmouth Stand-In on: July 05, 2009 07:33:29 PM
My brother and I have odd senses of humor.  When my brother got ready to have a baby, I knew I needed to do... something.  He and I lived four states away from each other.  My new nephew wasn't going to be able to puke on me nearly as much as I would have liked, so I made a cuddly version of "myself."  I procrastinate like a champ, though, so I didn't get to work until I heard my nephew was born.  I worked through an entire evening on Photoshop and printing/preparing the inkjet printer fabric, and another trying to figure out how to attach two pieces of fabric with a needle and thread.

The final product--with darling nephew.

I can't show the original photos, because I lost them in a hard drive crash.  I used two different photos:  one for the body, and one for the head (because my face was straight-on to the camera in the photo I tried to use, so I found another I took of myself where I was flexing in front of a Rosie the Riveter poster--haha). 

I wanted sort of a South Park aesthetic:  big head, squat body.  I thought it would be easy:  Crop the head, and squish the body vertically.  Oh, how wrong I was.  The width difference between hips and ankles caused the body to turn into a wide diamond shape, and the feet pretty much disappeared.  (If I'd known that, then I would have stood with my feet apart to allow for easier proportions.  Oh, well.)  So I ended up cropping four separate pieces:  head, upper body, lower body, and feet.  The body sections each needed different "squishing," and I still ended up shaving parts of the side pockets from my jeans.  I had to make sure the top of each body piece matched with the bottom of the piece above it.  If I'd known how much work it would be, then I'm not sure I would have done it.  But I was pretty amused with the result.

I'm pleased to say that my brother (the baby's dad) laughed so hard that he was gasping for breath, and really looked like we might need to call an ambulance for him.

I'm also pleased to say that my nephew loved it.  I stuffed it so full, that it was the only toy allowed in his crib for quite a while.  I went to visit them when he was 21 months old, and the first thing he did after I walked in the door was to fetch "Aunt Bigmouth" from his room and bring her to me.  That resulted in an awesome '80s fist-pump from me.

And, just for fun, I took Little Bigmouth on a tour around my town before she went to her new home.  She drank coffee, talked on the phone, hung out at the bookstore, climbed a tree, and went shopping at CVS.
She drew a fair amount of attention from curious passerby!

Obviously, this isn't a new project.  My nephew is over three years old now.  Pardon me if you've seen this project before (https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=86422.0)--but I saw the challenge topic, and just had to share again.  Smiley
3  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 19 ENTRIES / The ringer--the winner--this one can't fail. 'Coo! 'Coo! 'Coo! on: July 03, 2007 08:32:17 PM
Step aside, amazing pie tiara maker.  Rackycoo is the undisputed Queen of the Featured Projects.  She's had at least four.  This is going to look so great on her.

To coronate the 'Coo, I used yellow computer paper, sharpies, a paper punch, tape, a piece of yarn, and printouts of her featured projects (as you can see, I'm running low on ink).  Stunning, eh?  It has the Scrabble box purse (in the background, too, because I was the lucky recipient of that one), and the lined woven magazine purse on the sides.  In the center are her challenge victories:  the ATC clock and good old Nanny B.

An action shot.  Here I am, playing the role of the 'coo.  A girl can dream, you know.

Come on.  You know it's an awesome project.  What would make a better challenge winner and featured project than a bunch of challenge winners and featured projects?

Please, everyone, don't overload Craftster's servers by hitting "this rocks" at the same time.  Spread 'em out a little for the sake of Craftster.

Man, oh man, oh man.  This is going to look so sweet on rackycoo.
4  NEWS AND DISCUSSION ABOUT CRAFTSTER / Craftster Itself / Who's read the Bitch Magazine article on crafting (with reference to Craftster)? on: January 07, 2007 11:02:38 AM
I just got the latest copy of Bitch magazine (for those who don't know it, the subtitle is Feminist Response to Pop Culture).  It's issue 34, Winter 2007.  Wendy Somerson wrote an article called "Knot in Our Name:  Activism Beyond the Knitting Circle."  She's a knitter, a metalsmith, and a general crafter.  The article is pro-crafting, but critical of "crafting as a return to the domestic sphere" and "ironic crafting" (including going after Craftster's "no tea cozies without irony" tagline).

I think the whole thing is rather thought-provoking--and I just read it, so I haven't really had much time to process what I think about it.  Has anyone else read this?  Anyone ready to offer their discussion or their thoughts?

Bitch is quarterly, and this edition may not have reached newsstands yet.  The website is www.bitchmagazine.com, and I know the major bookstore chains and many independents carry it. 

C'mon, let's chat this article up!  I'd love to write a response letter (once I decide what I'd say), and it would be even better to have a discussion thread to refer back to Craftster.
5  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / I took three candy boxes and made, um, two candy boxes. on: December 21, 2006 10:15:58 PM
I'm a teacher, and we're a staff of three in our class.  On the day this August when we all met each other, I found out the other two both had a little obsession with Hot Tamales candy.  (They sucked me in on that, too.)  They love all the crafted goodies I bring in, whether I made them or someone else did, and they especially love the reconned Altoid tins I've shown them.  So I used two Altoid tins, a Hot Tamales box, some beads, a whole lot of micro-marbles, and some cord to make these for gifts:

Wow, I really got cruddy photos this time. 

I got them into making marble magnets, and they've expressed interest in doing more crafty things.  So I rounded out the gifts with an Altoid revamp starter kit--with fun scissors, good adhesives, and nice things to put on tins.  I hope they have fun with them.  They're becoming crafty converts really quickly!  Smiley
6  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) / Nanny B's Halloween (for rackycoo, of course) on: December 21, 2006 02:56:22 PM
For this card, I totally--totally--ripped off another person's work.  But I felt no guilt.  Why?  Because I made it for that person!

The inspiration:  rackycoo's winning entry in the Thrift Store Art Revamp Challenge (Craft Challenge #11).  Please don't edit me for quoting a photo--it's from a different board, and I want the author credit with the photo (please!).


The recipient:  rackycoo herself, of course.  If it had been for anyone else, I'd consider it plagiarism! 

The occasion:  ATC Swap Ring with Book #2 (or whatever it's called). 
Her chosen theme?  "Vintage Hallowe'en." 

I used her image of Nanny B, a couple images I shrank down from the book Halloween:  Vintage Holiday Graphics (published by Taschen), elastic cord, confetti from one of those mixed confetti/sequin packs, several layers of cardboard, plenty of Podge, and some packing tape (I think it was packing tape I used on the mask...).  And I sent her "Nanny B.'s Halloween"!  She (racky, not Nanny) requested I post here.  So here it is!

Scanned a little crooked, I see.
Who's really under that mask, Scooby?

I had so much fun with this one.  Thanks for the material, rackycoo!  Cheesy
7  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / NPR/Flickr ornament/menorah contest (with judges from Make & Craft mags) on: December 03, 2006 09:22:08 PM
It's a current events menorah/ornament contest, sponsored by NPR!  I can't wait to see the entries (and enter one myself, if inspiration hits).  I thought I'd share.  They're looking for snark, people, and I know there's a lot of that around here!


I keep wondering how I could make three-ounce bottles of liquids and gels in a gallon-sized Ziploc bag into something festive.  Probably can't.  But think of all the crafty possibilities of this year's current events:  E. coli in spinach, all the campaign and election craziness, O.J.'s book that isn't, North Korean nuclear tests, controversies over illegal immigration, movie stars (and the Spears family) acting like fools, Leah's husband's design getting ripped off by Gilmore Girls Wink . . . 

I want to see Craftster represent!
8  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Frida Altoid tin with rock-solid beading on: November 09, 2006 07:36:59 PM
So, I sent this to Stifflersmom in round 3 of the Altoid Tin Themed Swap:

I had a slew of questions about how I got the beads to stay on the tin, so I thought I'd post about it.

It was all about using every super-adhesive I had in my closet.

I used Oh So Tacky tape (or something similar) on the sides, then rolled the tin in beads.  I shoved the beads around a little to keep them close together and make room for even more.  I pushed them hard into the tape, and let it all sit to start curing.  Later, I covered the beaded area with polyurethane from the craft store (Plaid Folkart Outdoor Gloss Sealer--I like it because it's completely clear, it doesn't stink, and it comes in a nice, small, cheap bottle Smiley). 

I strung beads for the top, and affixed them with super-thin lines of E6000 (I used a toothpick to apply it).  And then--you guessed it--more polyurethane on both the top and the sides.  I just kind of squeezed it out of a sponge brush and let it fill all the crevices.  Then I let it sit to dry for a day or so before I dared touch it.

Before I packaged it to send, I threw it in my bag with all my other junk, took it to school, and let my students handle it.  Not a single bead moved, and it always felt completely solid while opening and closing.  I hope it holds up in its new home with Stifflersmom!
9  Archive of Past Craftster Challenge Entries / CHALLENGE 12 ENTRIES / The 600-Pom-Pom Purse on: June 01, 2006 08:38:32 PM
I really wanted to do this challenge, and I really wanted to limit myself to the supplies on the list. 
I had a vision.  A vision of pom-poms.  Lots of pom-poms. 
I went to Hobby Lobby, and found a big, cheap bag of 'em.

That's a lotta pom poms.

I used quilting thread to make a looooong string o' poms.  Here it is at 25' long.  When I got into the project, I squished them tightly together, and the string was more like 8' long.

I had colored popsicle sticks, so I arranged them like so....

...glued large popsicle sticks perpendicular to these on the back, and sealed with polyurethane because the colors have a tendency to run.  This became the base of the purse.

I tied the string of pom poms to the base with quilting thread, and began to wrap.  And tie.  And wrap.  And tie.  And tie.  And tie.  And wrap.  I tied thread to thread, and did it tightly so it wouldn't show.  When I got to the top, I tied on two shorter strings of pom poms for handles.

Then came the Easter grass!  I never thought I'd use Easter grass!  I tied strands together and knitted an i-cord with help from the Knitting Knobby.

I added light blue pom poms to stick out from the front, and tied the i-cord through the back to make a closure.

Fewer than 125 stragglers and factory seconds remain.

600-Pom-Pom Purse!

10  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Measuring Tape Purse & Pouches. NEW photos added. on: May 17, 2006 10:00:55 PM
I was inspired by rackycoo's lined magazine purses: https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=52309.0
which were inspired by craftin pretty's woven magazine purse: https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=52309.0

I was also "inspired" by the fact that Stifflersmom (my secret partner in the Friends of Craftster Swap 2) liked them, too.

I had a stash of measuring tapes I bought on clearance, with the original intention of making tape measure rosettes, like this one by skirt: https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=22722.0

I combined those thoughts.  Here's the result:

They're woven like baskets.  Bottom first, then sides.  Each button is a little different, but they're all brown (some vintage).  The "trim" at the top of the purse is the fuzzy side of Velcro.  It reeeealllly didn't want to stay put.  Self-adhesive Velcro doesn't work on measuring tapes.  Even E6000 requires a bunch of clamps and a lot of insistence.  On the coin purse, I used self-adhesive fabric tape that I colored with a Sharpie.  Smiley

I thought I'd never be so masochistic as to try it again, but I had some awesome lavendar measuring tapes.  So I thought I'd try something small.  Ha.  It was still a pain.

I had enough "soft" Velcro only for one side, so I used the prickly part for the other.  Okay as a closure, but terrible when it touches fabrics.  I glued a skinny measuring tape around the outside, and it took care of the problem.  I kind of like the loop, and I think I might make a wristlet that way.

I was seriously procrastinating on things that really needed to get done--so I did another measuring tape pouch.  This one was quick, because I figured out a better way to weave it (do the bottom AND one side first, then fold and finish).  It ended up neater, too--it's a more consistent weave and it doesn't have tighter and looser rows.  I thought the color combination would be ugly (I used scraps from the others), but I rather like it.

There they are!  Smiley

2/10/07   Here are some more I did (some very recently):

(this lovely photo was taken by lamamarco--mine never turn out this great!)

Whoa!  Giant photo!  The elastic reaches around the low button for closure.  The whitish bead is sort of a tab for the elastic.  Dollar store measuring tapes for the dollar store swap!

Two sides of the same bag.
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