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1  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / Re: Christmas stockings-- the perfect project for the procrastinator. on: December 28, 2010 06:04:55 PM
Thanks for all the encouragement! Once I finished them, I was a bit frustrated that they all weren't identical in shape. But then I stepped back, looked at them all together, and couldn't stop smiling-- I'm so proud of them! Not bad for a beginner without a pattern. Haha. Thanks again, craftsters!
2  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / Christmas stockings-- the perfect project for the procrastinator. on: December 28, 2010 09:24:57 AM

This year has been an adventure in the crafting department for me-- after ignoring my sewing machine for about 2 years, I was determined more than ever to learn how to use it. Many projects were made and celebrated, and some were completed half way and then ripped apart in an early morning over-caffeinated haze. Either way, I knew my Christmas crafting this year had to be something sewn (relatively quickly, since I tend to procrastinate in every department of my life), and I was looking for something fun that could make its way into being a tradition of sorts. And with the addition of my adorable niece to our family, I wanted something for everyone-- even the 6 month old.

Alas! Christmas stockings were the answer! After many, many trips to the fabric store, I found material to reflect the personalities, hobbies, or interests of each stocking recipient. I originally bought a faux fur for the strip around the top that was very classic, but since it shed like crazy, I figured it would be a cruel act to use it... the excitement of opening stockings would be ruined by the fact that you would be covered in white fur for the rest of the day. Instead, I went with a fabric that had a shearling/sherpa feel to it, and although I was hesitant to use it at first, I am very, very happy with it now. I didn't want to spend $18 for the pattern I wanted, so I just made my own by tracing a $2 stocking I found at the fabric store and adjusting the size a bit (my family goes a bit overboard with stockings). The most time consuming part of this was cutting out the fabric... otherwise, each stocking took about 20 minutes total to pin, sew, and tweak.

This is mine. I used this fabric for my first big sewing project (a halter dress), and am still in love with it.

This is my boyfriend's stocking. He is a science junkie, and I fell in love with the colors of this fabric.

This is my mom's stocking. Her most prized possession is her shoe collection.

This is my step-dad's stocking. He is very outdoorsy (we call him the Great White Hunter). I was unsure about this fabric at first, but I think it turned out for the best... I really liked it once I added the white around the top.

This is my sister's stocking. She is a yoga fanatic, and this fabric just caught my eye... I love the variety of imagery.

This is my brother-in-law's stocking. He always jokes that he's a hustler and a big money kind of guy, and when he first started dating my sister years back, he had a rapper persona figured out.... it has been an on-going joke for years.

And lastly, but certainly not least, this is my niece's stocking. With the addition of her to our family, the "magic of Christmas" is back. And since her mother/my sister is obsessed with Peanuts, Im assuming she will grow to love them too (and if not, I can take another 20 minutes to make the stocking she wants!).

I realized after taking these pictures that I was in a rush (I completed these about 5 hours before I had to give them to my mom). The white strips are not as uneven as they look-- I promise! And the flash makes the white look very sheer, so I may line the back of it after Christmas (I know it is after Christmas technically, but my family has not celebrated yet due to the fact that every member has had the flu since Christmas Eve). I plan on re-evaluating them and perhaps resewing so that they are a little more uniform and clean looking, but I think I may just ride out the glory of actually completing a Christmas project on time for a week or so, and then revisit them.

Thanks for looking, and reading through this!
3  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Re: First dress! (Simplicity 2362) on: July 22, 2010 08:16:38 AM
A pattern was nice because I dont have too much confidence in my fabric cutting abilities... haha. The pattern helped with that portion immensely! But the girl who Ive recruited as my teacher thinks of a great idea, and then just sews it up... I hope to get as good as you non-pattern craftsters one day!

And yes, that IS a pineapple tattoo on my leg. To keep that company, I have a ball of yarn with bamboo needles stuck in it (right below the pineapple... and that bamboo needles were key), a red quill pen, a cupcake, an Irish harp, a cherry blossom tree, a daisy, and a sugar skull. On the other leg, I have a pin-up, but you cant see her as well.
4  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / First dress! (Simplicity 2362) on: July 22, 2010 07:51:59 AM

I bought a sewing machine a year ago, and outside of a few pillow cases, it has been severely underused. A friend of mine offered to show me how to make anything I want-- literally, ANYTHING. So why not a cute dress for the summer? We went to the store, found this cute pattern (Simplicity 2362, view E), stumbled upon this fabric that made us both drool, and 7 hours later (Im not the fastest, I'll admit), I had something I could brag about.

(Please excuse that: a.) I look like crap-- it was close to 1AM, and b.) our torn up kitchen/dining room-- that's also a work in progress!)

I love the pockets! So practical, cute, and fun to make!

Thanks for peeking! This was a fun project, and not bad for my first!
5  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Re: Cute Psychobilly/Pinup Inspired Summer Dress!! on: July 12, 2010 09:11:00 AM
Great job! I just made this pattern over the weekend, and it was my first time sewing clothing. I agree with you-- the pockets are great, and I was surprised how easy they were! This pattern is definitely versatile as far as the skills needed... I feel like a pro after this one. And I love your version, and the modified zipper. You did a great job, and you should be proud!
6  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Re: my plush monsters on: February 19, 2009 09:27:11 AM
I love monsters. I love these. Great job!
7  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Re: plush trophy heads on: February 19, 2009 09:26:22 AM
These are absolutely amazing... I can't even deal with how much I love these! Great job! Im sure they were difficult to make, but they look awesome!
8  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Completed Projects / Re: Post Photos of Your Tattoos! on: February 13, 2009 07:50:02 PM
Here are three of my tattoos; they are all on my lower left leg... they will eventually become a mish-mash of random ink. A homage to the things I love.

My pineapple, on the back on my leg, right below the bend of my knee. I love pineapples-- how they look, how they smell, and mostly, how they taste (especially upside-down on cakes). They always just make me happy.

My cupcake, on the inside of my leg. It's a stylized version of the cupcake on the cover of Vegan Cupcakes Take Over the World. I love baking-- vegan baking, that is-- and have been doing it since I was a wee lass. It's my tribute to my domestic self. Plus, it's hard to find a cupcake you dont like.

And my latest-- my ball of yarn. It's right below my pineapple and kind of curls around my lower leg. I dont need to explain too much with this, especially to my fellow craftsters. Green is my favorite color and I would never dream about using anything else but my bamboo needles.

I also have a Radiohead minotaur on my right wrist and the Sigur Ros lyrics "Agaetis Byrun" across my left foot.

All of the ink on my leg done at Detroit Hardcore Tattoo Co. by Kari, my friend and an awesome artist.
9  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Discussion and Questions / Re: Coffee table idea... epoxy/resin question. on: December 05, 2008 10:08:12 AM

Thank you both!

I figured I would need raised sides because, so far, I have not been able to find a suitable table with a lip on the edge (or maybe Im just looking in the wrong places). Thanks for the tip... I'll need all I can get!

Thanks for the advice... gorgeous table, by the way!
10  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Discussion and Questions / Coffee table idea... epoxy/resin question. on: December 01, 2008 08:27:12 AM

These boards are too inspiring! Anyway, I have been hounding all of my friends and family to save their bottle caps because I'd like to cover a coffee table in them. I have been reading on here that most people have chosen to lay their caps down and, to seal them, pour epoxy over the caps in very thin layers until the caps are covered.
(You can find several examples of what Im talking about on this site.)

Im wondering about this process for another table idea. I am planning on doing something similar to the bottle cap idea, but it wouldnt be covering the whole table... more like a raised up design in the center. So I would need to basically form an transparent "table top" to make the surface level once again. Is epoxy okay to use for this or is there some other resin that would be better for this? Im thinking I would need like a 3/4" layer on top of the table... I would plan on doing a similar method to the bottlecap tabletop-- thin layers to prevent bubbling and ensure a level setting.

If anyone has any experience in doing a project like this, I would really love your input. Im not very experienced in modifying furniture and, since I have to spend a Michigan winter mostly indoors while my garden will be under a foot of snow and my Christmas knitting/crocheting is done, I might as well learn something new.

Thanks, Craftsters... you guys are always so helpful!
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