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1  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Learning Silversmithing, First Few Pieces! on: April 21, 2009 02:27:23 PM
Whats up, Craftster!? I haven't posted in ages, but I'm learning a new skill so I thought I'd put a few of my latest pieces up.  I'm taking a silversmithing class . . . last week we learned to solder.  I made these pieces at home from sterling silver wire using my soldering torch.  The oxidized pieces were blackened w/ liver of sulphur.

Oxidized Sterling Wire Knots (a royal pain to make! The wire is so thin I melted it entirely a few times and had to start over)

Oxidized Sterling and Iolite

Oxidized Sterling and Quartz Crystal Briolettes

Polished Sterling and Freshwater Pearls

I'd love to know what you think! (And if anyone knows why liver of sulphur isn't completely blackening my solder joints, PLEASE tell me! Its driving me nuts!)
2  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Weddings and Bridal Showers / Favors for a very small Welsh wedding on: January 25, 2009 08:05:00 PM
My fiance and I are getting married on March 10th at Conwy Castle in North Wales (http://www.conwy.com/).  We're only bringing our immediate family with us, so I was able to go all out on the favors!

I'm giving each of the girls a sterling castle necklace, purchased from Western Mountain Company on Etsy (http://www.etsy.com/shop.php?user_id=5066147)

Since we'll have to fly in for the wedding, I didn't want to spend time wrapping the favors only to possibly have to unwrap them for customs, so I made coin purses to serve as wrapping and bonus favors. The fabrics I used are significant to where we're being married and the whole associated trip.  The fronts were taken from a tea towel printed with the British monarchy from William the Conquerer through modern times, the backs are Irish grown linen in a mustard yellow shade.  The lining is made up of one panel of plaid (for the honeymoon we'll be taking in Edinburgh) and one panel of a red brick print (for the time we'll all be spending at Hampton Court Palace prior to the wedding).

I'm really excited to give these!  Hope you guys like  Grin
3  Halloween / Halloween Decor and Parties / Henry VIII Pumpkin! on: October 31, 2008 10:53:25 AM
So my office had a pumpkin decorating contest and I still haven't forgiven all of my coworkers for the Halloween Debacle of 2006 (I dressed as Rainbow Brite in an all handmade costume, none of them knew who I was!), so I figured I wasn't going to enter this decorating contest unless I was REALLY inspired.  At about 5pm yesterday it occurred to me that a Henry VIII pumpkin would be pretty rad . . . so I broke down and decorated one after all Smiley

He's made with GLUE, LOTS OF GLUE  Smiley  Also:  Freebie filigree jewelry findings from Fire Mountain gems, old earrings and pearl strands, bits of ribbon and lace, an overturned mini pyrex bowl, fabric leftovers and some polyfil pillow stuffing. 

Hope you guys like him! Smiley

and the Inspiration Photo for reference Smiley

4  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing in General: Discussion and Questions / Disney Villain Fabric? on: September 26, 2008 11:40:44 AM
I see tons of princess and tinkerbell fabrics out there, but a villains themed fabric would TOTALLY ROCK! Anyone ever seen any?
5  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Another Corset Tote - Mixed Toiles this time! on: September 26, 2008 10:48:07 AM
I made a gothic corset tote over the weekendhttps://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=270081.msg3046640#msg3046640 and I liked it so much I decided to make another, smaller tote for everyday purse-type use.  I had a stack of toile fabircs that I got from a great antique reupholstery store ($10 a yard!) and I loved the idea of mixing them.  so I used 2 toiles, same patterns but different colors, and lined the bag with a great floral called "Wuthering Heights" that I bought on clearance at Michael Levine ages ago.

Front of the bag:

Close up of the lacing detail:


I especially like how the toiles work together. I was thinking halfway through sewing that it wouldn't work at all but in the end I LOVE it!  hope you guys like!

6  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Gothic-y, Halloween Inspired Tote on: September 22, 2008 01:36:08 PM
Like most girls with desk jobs, I carry a purse to work everyday but also a BIG tote bag.  Mine is filled with things like my wedding planning binder, jewelry bits for my Etsy shop, my mortgage binder, and sometimes my lunch Smiley  I had a bag I'd made for this purpose but it was seeming a bit small, so I decided yesterday to make a bigger one. 

The black fabric is denim from Joann, the center panel and the lining are an awesome kitschy halloween spiderweb print.  The lacing was done with ribbon from the $1 ribbon rack and Joann's.  I've done purses with lacing like this before . . . its a little fidgety but I love the look! 

Total cost:  about $8 Smiley

And a blurry mirror shot for size perspective:

Hope you guys like Smiley
7  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / My Wedding Necklace on: August 08, 2008 11:41:59 AM
For my wedding in March I'm wearing my maternal grandmother and great grandmother's engagement rings on my right hand and my dad's mother's marcasite and silver brooch in my hair.  But since I make jewelry, I knew I had to have something I'd made to wear as well. 

I decided to go with marcasite, since the brooch will be such a big part of my look.  I wanted to add a gemstone element but I didn't want to add lots of color, so I decided on grey/iridescent labradorite.  I bought all of the supplies from Fire Mountain Gems.  I originally intended to have the bail connect straight to the drop but the sizing was waayyyy off, so i used sterling wire to wrap the bail and drop together and i covered the join with a sterling crimp cover.  All of the metal is sterling. 

I didn't want it to look 'too bridal' and i don't think it does at all! i'm really happy with it, hope you guys like Smiley

8  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / Gothic /Pirate-y Window Treatment on: July 28, 2008 12:59:10 PM
So my fiance and I are living in our first condo together, and since this is the first time I've owned instead of renting I'm having a grand old time messing around with the place Smiley  Window treatments in the bedroom were first on my list.  We had these AWFUL 80s pink and white blinds that I had one heck of a time ripping out.  I replaced the blinds on our big window with simple black curtain panels, but we've got this additional dinky window (16 x 27 inches) that I wanted to come up with something more creative for.

Here's a before picture, can you believe someone actually cut blinds this small?!  UGH!

I came up with the idea to do a simple panel shade and then FRAME the window with crown moulding.  This was far easier imagined than done!  My boy and I first tried mitre cutting the moulding but after a week of struggling with our saw and moulding bits, it was obvious we were seriously lacking mojo in the mitre-ing dept.  So we bought corner blocks instead.  I painted everything black and we put the pieces up with moulding adhesive.

And a shot in perspective:

The fabric is Skull Duggery by Alexander Henry.  I used it to make bed pillows too!!!

I LOVE the results, so happy with it!!!  Thanks for looking! Smiley
9  HOME SWEET HOME / Interior Decorating: Completed Projects / I HAVE A CRAFT SPACE!!! (<-bouncing around smiling) on: July 10, 2008 04:09:43 PM
I used to live in "The Most Wonderful Apartment Ever (tm)" by myself but it was sadly lacking a craft space.  I used the kitchen table for my sewing and every time i wanted to do so much as hem a pair of pants I had to set up the sewing machine, go digging through closets and dressers around the house for materials, lay out my cutting on the floor . . . all sorts of unpleasantness.

Then, just recently, my fiance and I moved into our first condo together and WE HAVE A LOFT which works perfectly as his office (he runs an indie record label) and my sewing area! 

I put the whole thing together for about $150 including ARTWORK!  The desk was from the American Cancer Society shop and it came with the chair for $60. The chair was covered in a really gross plaid so i recovered it in a black and cream toile.  The four door chest next to the desk (click the picture for a larger view . . . its sort of dark in the small version!) was from Ross, i talked them into discounting it because of some scratches on the back.  The artwork was all purchased or traded for on Etsy (you can see my blog for details on where I got the individual pieces!) and the frames were all purchased from Aaron Bros during their 1cent frame sale.

I LOVE finally being able to leave my sewing machine out where it belongs!!!

The whole space

Lamp that used to be in my living room, jars of vintage buttons, click for a full view to see the awesome detailing on the dresser top!

Close up of my Etsy Art Gallery Smiley

Fabric stash, with my boy's records in the background
10  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Welsh Flag Purse on: July 08, 2008 12:45:17 PM
My fiance and I just moved in to our first condo together and I FINALLY have a dedicated sewing space!  To celebrate, I made myself a purse.  The image is lifted from a souvenir tea towel (the Welsh flag, our wedding will be in Wales!).  The exterior fabric is a remnant of Irish linen, the interior is another remnant from Joann's upholstery section.   It was really simple to make, just a makeup bag more or less with a strap sewn in.  The best part of making it was getting to leave my sewing machine out on my sewing desk after I'd finished instead of schlepping it off to a closet Smiley

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