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1  Another painting... in More Art, Less Craft: Completed Works by jenna_alive on: March 07, 2008 10:50:49 AM
9x12, acrylic on canvas board.

This is actually a memorial piece for a close friend who passed away a couple of months ago.  There's no way I'd be able to do a portrait of her that did her justice, so I just kind of thought about her and I remembered that she had a tattoo of a purple cow with pink spots.  So it's kind of a stealth portrait, I guess.

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2  First adventures into acrylic painting... in More Art, Less Craft: Completed Works by jenna_alive on: February 20, 2008 11:35:45 PM
I've never really painted before as a practice.  I've done it once or twice here or there, and although I've never been very talented or skilled, I've always really loved it.  So in the past three days, I've churned out three paintings just for fun.  I'll go in order of how I did them, but for the record, most recent one on the bottom is my total favorite.

First, just to get a feel for the paints...

Then, just because I was feeling completely silly...

And then my favorite, which I completed like 20 minutes ago...

Details on the last one:

Thanks for looking!  I sure had fun making them.
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3  Re: Tree Wall Art in Interior Decorating: Completed Projects by jenna_alive on: January 12, 2008 12:34:55 AM
How bizarre!  I haven't posted it, but I've been working on something similar.  Now, the concept isn't groundbreaking or anything, so it's not that shocking in that way... But they look REALLY similar!  Great minds think alike!

I don't have a finished photo with it divided up yet, and I've actually added a crow on one of the branches, so this isn't entirely indicative, but you can see the similarity!

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4  My first purse (and it totally doesn't suck!) in Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General by jenna_alive on: April 09, 2007 10:26:49 PM
I just finished my first purse, using the awesome tutorial here:


Considering that I can barely work a sewing machine (that's half the purpose here... trying to figure that s.o.b. out), I think it turned out pretty darn good, despite a few noob mistakes.

Both the inside and outside are light-to-midweight cottons, and I used a lightweight fusible Pellon interfacing on both pieces to give it a little bit of substance.

The patch on the exterior is cut from the same fabric as the liner and stenciled with fabric paint with a little robot dude that's from some Japanese dingbat font set. 


Interior (pockets for my cell phone and iPod):

And now for the list of n00b mistakes:

  • Accidentally sewed the liner so that the pockets opened to the bottom, despite having checked and rechecked a billion times (or so I thought).  Didn't discover this until way too late and had to jury rig it by sewing a new seam along the bottom (I think you can see the double there), and not having any seam along the top.  I will probably go in and hand stitch something in there eventually.  D'oh.
  • Put the straps on wrong side out.  The one area where this tutorial was lacking... they didn't explain where your right and wrong sides went, because they used a strap that didn't matter.  oh well, I consider this a happy accident because it actually looks really cute this way.
  • I obviously did the box bottom wrong.  I was working in a different room from my computer screen and just duh-ed out on this one.  I know better now.  Too bad, too, because this is the first tutorial that made the box bottom make actual sense to me!
  • I intended to reinforce the wonder-under holding on the applique with black stitching, but kind of spaced on the fact that this should have been done before sewing the thing together.  Narf.  Again, life and learn.
  • It wasn't until I had sewn together my black bag completely that I realized I was using white thread.  Jeez.  Luckily none of it shows. 

All in all, I'd call it a success and it actually turned out A LOT better than I was expecting it to.  I'm pretty thrilled.

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5  Re: bathroom mirror screen print....my first one! in Screen Printing: Completed Projects by jenna_alive on: April 02, 2007 10:28:09 AM
I got the Photo EZ screen printing kit from ezscreenprinting.com and it's SO much fun to play with.  I made a screen this weekend.

The drawing fluid thing is just too time consuming for me, so this process is really fun.

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6  Overly ambitious first freezer paper stenciling project. in Stenciling: Completed Projects by jenna_alive on: March 28, 2007 09:33:59 PM
As most first projects are, this one was plagued by mishaps, starting from an extremely crappy experience with extremely crappy Michaels employees, to an iron that has some sort of awful black stuff on it.  I didn't get the tote size, shape, or color I initially wanted, but in the end, things turned out pretty okay.

This was, um, ambitious for a first stencil.  Man, oh man, that was quite a bit of cutting.

Now, I really want to lay the stencil down again and do, like, a slight off impression of it all in white, so the black looks like a drop shadow.  The general consensus seems to be that these are one time use stencils though, huh?  That seems like an awful waste!

Anyways, it still feels unfinished.  Can anyone think of embellishment ideas that don't require me to do epic battle with my sewing machine, of whom I'm not very fond and the feeling is mutual?

Thanks for taking a peek!
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7  80s bachelor pad to cozy contemporary pad with personality! in Interior Decorating: Completed Projects by jenna_alive on: March 27, 2007 10:54:59 PM
We finished this a while back, but I never realized there was a "home makeover" section on this board!

When I first moved in with my fiance, his sister was still his roommate.  His sister, more or less, furnished the place.  Her taste is very, um, 1980s bachelor pad.  White walls, black leather everything, black metal, smoked glass, etc.

My fiance had long outgrown that, and I HATED it with a passion, so we literally tore the place apart and redid it the weekend after she moved out.


(Note:  The only things of ours in this photo are the tan rug, the red placemats -because we're heathens that eat in the living room-, and the paint chips stuck up on the walls!)

This is the after:

Close ups of art that is now on the wall...

My guy works at a reprographics company, so he took little dia de los muertos postcards we got in Santa Ana, and photoshopped in our red accent color as a background.

In this Christmas shot, you can see he did the same with some of Tim Burton's Meloncholdy Death of Oyster Boy illustrations.

He also did the same for a Groovie Ghoulies album cover and a Ramones illustration (the Garbage Pail Kids one), but I can't get a decent photo!  They're all framed in the same silver frames with white matting though.  They look pretty awesome.

What do you think?  I'm super happy with it, and it's so much more warm and cozy now.  Before my fiance insisted we always watch tv in the bedroom, now I have to DRAG him off that couch!
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8  Re: Apples and Pears With a Booth! in Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General by jenna_alive on: March 16, 2007 04:32:56 PM
i LOVE LOVE LOVE your booth!!!!
i think it needs glass and chrome sugar,salt and pepper shakers and a table top jukebox. also how about adding some vintage 1950's metal signs or posters?
and then look out for 50's tableware in thrift stores
oh and the ketchup/mustard dispensers u get in diners!

They have the very basic, 50s style shakers at BBB for dirt cheap.  We have them in our kitchen, too, which has a 50s retro feel.

One thing we did in our kitchen is take old food ads from this little book called Mr. Product and frame them.  My fiance photoshopped all the backgrounds into solid color blocks and then we put it in this five part Ikea frame.  (All of our kitchen art is framed in these brushed chrome frames, which adds to the red/white/chrome scheme.)

We also replaced all of our cabinet hardware with really simple, cheap, arced chrome handles.
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9  Joey Ramone doll FO in Projects from the Stitch 'N B**ch Books by Debbie Stoller by jenna_alive on: March 01, 2007 01:24:02 PM
Well, he definitely has quirks but hes finished and gifted and everyone is happy.

Caron Simply Soft in black, red, white, and tapioca.  Size 6 needles.  Patons Lacette used for the hair.  Details about eyes below.

First and foremost, the most frustrating thing about this project was all the godawful seaming.  Im not good at seaming, and I find it tedious and totally pointless if something could have been knitted round.  Alas, I am a noob and was in a time crunch, and figuring out how to convert a pattern was not in the cards for this project.

Second, the photo in SnB Nation shows the doll with red shades of some sort, but gives absolutely no indication as to how to achieve that.  I looked through all the beads and sequins at the biggest Joann Ive ever been to, but found nothing that would work, so I had to get a little creative.

I recently bought a new sd card for my digital camera and it came in one of those evil, hard to open plastic blister packs.  I ended up taking that thick plastic, cutting out lenses and tinting them red with a permanent marker.  After the ink dried, I used a finishing nail and hammer to poke two little holes in each piece of plastic, effectively making it like a button.  When I sewed them on to the face, I put a little black seed been on the outside of the lens to achieve a similar look to the french knot without the danger of screwing it up (I often end up with the knot way off the surface Im embroidering... whoops).  Ta-da!  Red shades!

The other thing that I had trouble with was the hair.  Ive never made a doll before, and all the pattern said was attach hair.  No suggested method, so I was basically out in the wind.  At first I tried the latch hook/fringing method, but it didnt look right at all.  The one in the picture didnt have those visible roots.  Eventually I ended up wrapping a ton of the Lacette around my SnB book, then cutting it, and tying up the middle.  I then pulled the yarn I used to tie up the bundle through the small opening in the top of the dolls head with a bit of the bundle itself (with much force), and then I sewed that around a bit inside the head to secure it.

The seams look really awful in a couple of places, but all in all, Im really pleased with him.  My fianc certainly seems to love him, and thats what counts!  Ive already had several requests from friends to make them a Joey too, but Ive pretty much told them all to go fly kites.  Im not jumping into this project again until I have time to figure out how to convert it to be knitted in the round!
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10  Re: Looking for ideas for an picnic themed wedding. (10/20 Orange County, CA) in Weddings and Bridal Showers by jenna_alive on: February 13, 2007 09:46:40 PM
Ok, I've made up my save the dates, although it still needs a bit of my guy's superior photoshop powers to fix it here and there.

The center part is a magnet, and the grass part is a 1/4 page card.  I plan to stick the magnet to the card with one of those glue dots, or as I like to call them, "glue boogers."  This is a mockup of the two put together.

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