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1  Halloween / Halloween Costumes / sparks can (the drink!) costumes on: November 18, 2008 02:20:30 PM
so this is the best-worst costume (or worst-best) I have ever made.  By that I mean - I whipped these guys together in a few hours and the stitching is totally not finished but I think they are totally awesome and hilarious.

Here's the finished product:

If you're not familiar with it, Sparks is an alcoholic energy drink that is very delicious - it is sugary and not gasoline-y as some other alcoholic energy drinks are.  My boyfriend and I drink a lot of this drink... it's become our little thing.  So for Halloween we decided to go as different colors of Sparks.

The orange sparks is the original. the blue sparks is sugar-free sparks, or "sparks light".  the black sparks is "sparks plus" because it contains more alcohol AND more taurine (I believe that's what it contains, haha)

Now as I mentioned before, this is the best-worst costume I've ever made, mainly because I didn't follow any pattern to make it, and cut as many corners along the way because of time.  But here's a quick run-down on how I made it:

1. I bought fabric in orange, black, and silver, and guesstimated the amount I would need, which turned out to be WAY too much. I also bought some fusible interfacing, and used some extra batting I had lying around.

2.  To make the letters, I downloaded a Sparks logo, enlarged it in Photoshop, and then printed out these large letters.  I ironed the fusible interfacing to the orange fabric on the wrong side, and pinned the logo letters on the front.  I then cut the letters out.

3. To make the body/can, I estimated the amount of fabric I would need, circumfrence wise, by wrapping the fabric around my boyfriend (who I used as a dress form since I don't have one) and leaving plenty of extra room in case I messed up.  I again estimated the measurements on the black/orange and silver ratio, based on the fact that only one letter fits in the colored part of the can.  I sewed together the black/silver and orange/silver pieces to create the can body.  Then I fused the letters on to the can, and the plus/minus signs.
(note: the letters were tacked on after fusing, because fusing alone wouldn't hold it.  also, if you have the patience I would go ahead and sew everything by machine, because although it's easier on your back to hand-tack, it takes FOREVER.  luckily the bf can sew.)

4. Now I had two big, flat cans. I cut armholes (I do believe this is the most free-form sewing I have ever done!), again measuring both costumes on my boyfriend (we are relatively the same size).  I then used some batting that I had to line the inside of the costumes, folding a hem over the top and sewing through the batting.  I did not attach it at the bottom, but I would have if I had more time.

5. To finish the costumes up, I pinned the two ends together in the back and did a quick seam: just like sewing up a tube!

so there's my random tutorial. although I think I could have done a better job if I'd had time to slow down and stitch, I am happy with the over all conclusion.  In fact, people kept asking us all night if we worked for sparks!! I wish!
2  UNITED STATES / Texas / Seeking Vendors and Volunteers forTeam Etsy Austin's Holiday Bazaar!! on: November 12, 2008 02:27:19 PM
Seeking crafty vendors and volunteers for Team Etsy Austin's first ever Holiday Bazaar! 

Dec. 19th - 21st at the Broken Neck in East Austin.

Fri. Dec. 19th: 4:00 PM - midnight
Sat. Dec. 20th: 2:00 PM - midnight
Sun. Dec. 21st: 2:00 PM - 9:00 PM

NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS! Deadline for applications is November 16th. Click here to download application, and please send application to etsyaustinholidaybazaar@gmail.com

VOLUNTEERS WANTED, TOO! We are looking for volunteers to help run concessions, help with set up and break down and aid vendors who don't have helpers.  Volunteer shifts are only 3 hrs long, and we will be running a Volunteer Raffle with great prizes for those involved. Contact beth@snuggleherd.com if you'd like to volunteer!

We anticipate a great turnout and a very exciting event because of the unique vibe and indie spirit of The Broken Neck. This skate and punk rock venue located in East Austin is definitely not a typical location for a holiday bazaar - this aint your grandmas craft show! However, we think it will be a wonderful opportunity to create an affordable holiday gift-buying experience for people looking for something different.

Our bazaar will be open to a wide range of vendors, such as local artists & crafters; clothing designers; vintage clothing & home goods resellers; record collectors; and bakers & cooks. Aside from all of the great vendors, we will also have live music throughout the event and a skate demo. It promises to be an entertaining weekend that will draw a diverse crowd!

please email applications to  etsyaustinholidaybazaar@gmail.com

3  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / watermelon suitcase **updated pictures** on: August 17, 2008 06:22:37 PM
I was inspired by this fashion spread in Nylon to repaint an old Samsonite suitcase like a watermelon...

***updated "before" shots***

as you can see, the inside was very ugly and it smelled too!


I used Krylon spray paints for the pink & green parts, and just basic acrylic paint for the white, light pink & light green lines, and also the black watermelon seeds.  When I was done, I sprayed the whole thing with matte sealer.

(here's a little tip: instead of hand painting each watermelon seed, I made seed templates with black construction paper.  I then used these to perfect seed placements, traced with a pencil and then filled in the seeds with a small paintbrush and the black acrylic paint)

I tore out the (very gross) lining and relined it with some stretchy pink gingham I had.  I used a spray adhesive to make the gingham stick.  Although it was useful while placing the gingham, it didn't work very well in the long run. As you can see, in many places it is no longer adhered at all.  If I were to do this again, I'd try to find a more heavy duty spray adhesive.

But!  At the top I hot-glued a matching hot pink ribbon trim... I really like this part, as it serves dual duty: making sure the lining doesn't come out and cleaning up the edges from where I ripped the old lining out.

I put the suitcase to good use on a trip I took recently (to the ooh's and aah's of some Continental employees and a few little girls who were on my flight), and was curious to see how it would hold up to the conveyor belts and airplane ride.  It's pretty nicked up, and smudged with black in places, but the way I see it, suitcases are made to be used!

as an advocate of traveling in style (i hate the whole pajama look on airplanes... i usually wear a lightweight dress if it's summer and some slip on flats and i'm just as comfortable) let me just say it was a delight traveling with this little watermelon suitcase.  yes, it was heavy and I had to lug it by hand, but it was the easiest suitcase to spot coming down the conveyor belt Wink
4  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / cute giant-owl handmade candle on: March 27, 2007 12:53:02 PM
This is from one of the molds I recently purchased on ebay.  I'm going to be selling these at craft fairs in Brooklyn once I get the colors/pouring perfected.  I also am making tree-bark pillar candles, and anchor shaped candles.

(sorry - I haven't been on craftster long enough to post the picture directly.  Very soon!)

What a cutie.

<edited to fix picture>
5  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Discussion and Questions / candle making help! - frangrance oil suggestions? on: February 07, 2007 11:38:37 AM
i'm not sure if this really fits here, but I need some help making candles.  I am shopping online for fragrance oils (tricky because you can't smell them, but i know what fragrance I really want - citrus & sage) and was wondering if anyone had suggestions for good fragrance oils?  there just seem to be SO many.

thank you!!

6  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Discussion and Questions / painting plates without toxicity? on: January 27, 2007 11:52:48 AM
I'm wanting to decorate some plates with cute images such as birds or vintage-inspired images.  The problem is, most guides I find for it specify that these plates can't be eaten off.  I'm wondering if I used lead-based paints to transfer images onto these plates or cups they'd be safe to eat off.

Any ideas??

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