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1  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Completed Projects / Mr. Funky Monkey! on: September 11, 2008 04:05:04 PM
Made for a friend! I made his button eyes out of sculpey. The yarn is Vanna's Choice--I went with acrylic because my friend has allergies and I'm too poor to buy nicer yarn!

I think he turned out pretty cute! The pattern was from the book Mr. Funky's Super Crochet Wonderful, which is one of my favorite pattern books.
2  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Blythe dresses yay! on: September 08, 2008 07:29:08 AM
These take me a long time to make because I don't have the manual dexterity to use the sewing machine with such tiny pieces! The patterns are either xoxoBlythe or Orrietacat, depending upon the dress.

"A Little Birdie Told Me"

"Icing on the Cake," made with the daintiest vintage lace!

"Starry Night"

And this one was probably my favorite:


I wish I had more of this burgundy fabric left, it's so pretty!
3  CRAFTSTER CRAFT CHALLENGES / Craftster Craft Challenge Theme Ideas, Etc. / Changing Perceptions through Crafting on: July 15, 2008 09:29:49 AM
My idea is inspired by this project:

<img src="http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2225/2493149395_2a16083f41.jpg">

Choctopus is doing a series of embroidery pieces featuring dictators. The embroidery makes them look kind of sweet and child-like. So my idea is to take something traditionally unpleasant--Hitler is a good example--and make it seem sweet and lovely. Another good example is the adorable amigurumi smiling poos that are so popular, because poo is generally unpleasant but the amigurumi version is really cute.

<img src="http://farm1.static.flickr.com/56/106075190_2f3e0b336b.jpg">

I suppose that Cthulhu, who is pretty popular as an icon, is an unpleasant topic that can be crafted to be pretty cute. One could also make adorable versions of the Joker, or the President, or Freddy Kreuger I suppose. It could be limited to "bad" people, or it could be anything unpleasant (nuclear waste, great white sharks, those ladies at the DMV).

The only limitation I would suggest is no depictions of violence. Adorable zombies are great and all, but it would be too easy for people to get carried away and someone end up entering an "adorable" version of people being napalmed or something. We don't want people to be traumatized, just for them to look at something in a different way. Seeing Hitler in embroidery really challenged my thinking, so that would be the intent here.
4  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Completed Projects / Mr. Funky's Elephant--in Red! on: August 12, 2007 02:56:12 PM
I made this little guy Friday night/Saturday morning for a 4-year-old's birthday. Luckily, I prepared myself for the tantrum that resulted from the gift--"What is it? I don't want it!" *throws toy on ground*--so I didn't mind. I had a good time making it and the kid's mom appreciated it. She said she thought it was so cute that she was going to keep it for herself!

Pattern is from "Mr. Funky's Super Crochet Wonderful" by Narumi Ogawa, a really great crochet book.
5  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Discussion and Questions / Pencil marks won't come out! on: June 28, 2007 06:38:39 AM
So like everyone else, I thought it was A-okay to use a regular old pencil to draw designs for my embroidery onto a white pillowcase. But now the marks--many of which proved to be superfluous, as I never used them--won't come out of the fabric! I have washed the pillowcase THREE times, once normally, once with OxyClean, and once after using a Clorox Bleach Pen to bleach the marks. But they have barely even faded!

The only thing I can think of that could be the problem is that I washed it in cold water...would hot water help?

ARG!  Embarrassed Thanks for any advice.
6  NEEDLEWORK / Sublime Stitching Embroidery / Ganesh, Buddha and a Pinup all walk into a bar... on: January 17, 2007 02:15:39 PM
Scarf for a hindu friend.


Onesie for my friend's baby girl.


Om on the sleeve.

Fortunately, the mother found this one hilarious.



Ta-da! Thanks for looking.
7  CROCHET / Crochet: Discussion and Questions / Seija yarn--how much do I need? on: November 21, 2006 01:39:28 PM
Okay crocheters, I'm trying to make the seija set from the Happy Hooker. I went to buy the yarn and it occurred to me that I couldn't tell whether I needed a TOTAL of 335 yds of yarn split between the three colors, or whether EACH yarn requires 335 yds (which is, needless to say, a lot of yarn). It says one skein each, is a skein usually so much yarn?

The site I'm looking at (www.knitpicks.com) has balls of yarn that are worsted weight but only 75 yds apiece. Do I buy 5 total balls of yarn (or 6, two of each color) or 5 balls for EACH COLOR?! That seems like a lot of yarn for a tiny blanket and hat!

Thanks for the advice. I'm such a noob!  Roll Eyes
8  NEEDLEWORK / Sublime Stitching Embroidery / Lotus flower from Om Sweet Om on: October 31, 2006 07:17:18 AM
Here's the bag I made and decorated with embroidery.

There's the X-treme closeup! I am going to keep the stitching but redo the applique because the stitching looks terrible--I'll probably use iron-on interfacing so it looks cleaner.

This is the first Sublime Stitching pattern I've ever used. I loved it! I am using more of them to embroider stuff for the holidays, and I've wisted the new book. I can't wait!
9  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: General / Amy Butler Messenger Bag, AKA "The Buddha Bag" on: October 31, 2006 07:05:58 AM
I've had this done and been using it for months, and I'm just now getting around to posting pictures. Naughty panda!

I used the Messenger Bag Pattern by Amy Butler to make this bag. It was overly-complicated and I would not use it again. Her steps are far too confusing for what is, ultimately, a fairly simple project. She doesn't provide all the pattern pieces either--you have to cut your own. If you do choose to make this pattern, I recommend using industrial strength velcro or a different type of fastening altogether, because the little one-inch strips the pattern has you use will not hold the bag closed if you put any weight in it.

I used Alexander Henry fabric that I found on eBay for the outside, and some coordinating denim (for added durability) for the interior. I'm pretty thrilled with how it turned out, despite my hatred of the pattern itself.

And now, pictures!

Please excuse the flash. I took a picture without flash but it didn't turn out well.

Here is the back of the bag in natural lighting, so you can get a better idea of the colors.  You can see that there are two pockets on the back--I find these to be incredibly useful.

This is the detail of one of the Buddhas. I call this one the "Nipple-Tweaker" for obvious reasons.

This is detail of the Sublime Stitching lotus flower I embroidered and made into an applique. I need to redo this, as the shape of the applique is off, and the stitching looks very sloppy. I will probably use iron-on interfacing.

I stitched the applique over the flap that opens the little purse that hangs over the top of the bag. I thought the little purse would be very useful, but the velcro isn't strong enough to hold the flap on when you flip the purse up to get at the main part of the bag. As a result, anything in the purse falls out every time you try to access the main part of the bag. So I just sewed it shut.

This is the first major sewing project I've completed in years. I'm easy distracted, so it's rare that I actually finish a project. I'm very proud of myself!
10  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Discussion and Questions / Iron-on interfacing--can I sew it? on: October 27, 2006 08:32:57 AM
I'm making a purse from a book, and the instructions are less thorough than I would like. The instructions say to iron the interfacing to wrong side of the fabric that will be on the OUTSIDE of the bag, which makes sense. So I got iron-on fusible interfacing and I did that--but the measurements of the interfacing are the same size or BIGGER than the fabric pieces.

This means that I will have to sew together the thick interfacing (with the fabric attached) because even the seam allowance has interfacing. I'm worried about what this will do to my sewing machine. I've never worked with interfacing before and now I wish I'd gotten the sew-in kind, but now I'm stuck!

So I guess my question is: Will my ordinary sewing machine handle the interfacing? Is there a special foot I should use? Would it be better to sew by hand with a big-ass needle? It's pretty firm and thick interfacing, I don't even know if two layers of it will fit under my regular sewing machine foot!  Sad

Thanks in advance for any advice.
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