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11  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions / Craft Idea Book or Journal on: December 20, 2008 10:28:58 AM
I'd like to have a spot to keep all my craft ideas in, and I was hoping to keep them separated by crafting categories - maybe I'll just use the ones from Craftster's front page.

I've been trying to think of the most efficient way to do this, and I thought a small notebook with tabs would be ideal, something I could keep in my purse so I have it with me all the time. I have access to a GBC machine at work so I could bind it myself, but I'm not sure what the best way to go about making tabs would be. Any ideas? Any tips from someone with experience binding a tabbed book?

I should probably mention that I'm not a paper crafter, so I have no specialized skills or supplies available to me.
12  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions / Cricut Expressions - Can you use your own images? on: November 23, 2008 07:23:20 PM
I had the TV on this morning while cross-stitching a Christmas present for my dad, and just as I reached for the remote to turn it off, an infomercial for the Cricut Expression came on. So I left it on for entertainment, which probably says a lot about me. Smiley

I might be interested in owning one - okay, who am I fooling? I am interested in owning one, but as a computer geek (coincidentally, what I was cross-stitching was a happy Mac face...), I frequently use stuff I make on the computer or find online in my crafting. I noticed the infomercial people using cartridges. Does anyone know if you can program your own images into the Cricut Expressions machine or into one of its cartridges? If so, it would just be perfect. I'm not a paper crafter by nature (faaaaaar too much of a perfectionist), but when I saw all the other things you could use it for (etching was a big draw, especially), I began drooling. But I'm not about to shell out the $500 myself, and I'm not going to ask for a Christmas gift of money toward the machine if I can't play with images I want to incorporate.

So, anybody know if I can use my own images with the machine?
13  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Discussion and Questions / Beeswax-free Solid Perfume Recipe - Does it exist? on: November 13, 2008 01:22:48 PM
Anybody know of any solid perfume recipes that don't involve beeswax? I've heard of people using Vaseline or Crisco to make a solid perfume, but I can't seem to find any like that online, and no recipes that are beeswax-free and involve only lost-cost ingredients.

I'd like to avoid beeswax because it's hard for me to find, and not exactly inexpensive; plus, if you get it on your kitchen counter, say by being a moron and cutting directly on the counter instead of using a proper cutting surface, Roll Eyes it's darn near impossible to get off!
14  CRAFTY BUSINESS ADVICE / Crafty Business Discussion / How can I spice up my photos? on: November 07, 2008 10:50:43 AM
I've photographed some of my jewelry against a white background, and it comes out really crisp, but it's rather sterile. Unfortunately, I'm not terribly good at setting up a real life/action/mood type shot that includes props and different backgrounds. I'm looking for some suggestions on setting up a photograph that evokes a more emotional response.

What's your inspiration for setting up shots like these? Do you know of any internet resources on this sort of thing? What backdrops and props do you find make for a dramatic shot? Earrings hanging from vases and necklaces snaking across textured stone tiles are neat. Pictures at funky angles are really great if you can pull it off. I've seen some really interesting pictures with things like sugar, beans, and stones sprinkled across the surface the item was being photographed on.

I'd really like advice on how to incorporate this sort of thing into a picture without going overboard and looking like I'm overenthusiastic or just tossing stuff down and calling it artistic. Smiley Advice, please!
15  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Discussion and Questions / Where can I see images of jewelry from TV/Movies? on: August 25, 2008 11:43:05 AM
Occasionally I will see a piece of jewelry in a costume on TV or in a movie that I'd like to reproduce. Surely there's a web site out there that has photos or even diagrams of such things. Has anyone run across something like that?
16  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Discussion and Questions / Amigurumi - Where do I start? on: August 18, 2008 10:30:24 AM
Please direct me to the right topic if this has already been asked.

I have been interested in amigurumi for well over a year now. I have been wanting to make something, but I don't know where to start. I know basic stitches, but am such a beginner that I don't even know how to tell if a project will be simple enough for me to complete.

I need a first project that:
  • is free
  • is fast
  • is easy to make
  • has a pattern that's easy to understand

Basically I want an idiot-proof project I can complete to create confidence. I've had some bad experiences trying to learn to crochet, and I think one more bad one would kind of be the nail in the coffin! If I can turn out something successfully, and have it be cute at the same time, I think that will be the encouragement I need to explore on my own.

To explain a bit as to why I don't have the nerve to just pick something and give it a whirl: I went to a crochet class, but it turned out that everyone else already knew all the stitches. I could chain until the cows came home (my grandma taught all her grandkids to chain, and we'd do them from one end of the house and back), but when some lady took pity on me and tried to show me double and triple crochet, it didn't really work. The ladies were all really nice, and I knew they understood that I was a complete beginner, but I felt like the kid who went to school and was the only one who forgot the science project was due! Smiley I ended up ditching the class for a book, which worked out well. So now I want to try a project, I just don't want to have my first project fail and discourage me further!

Once I do an easy project or two, is there a list around here of free amigurumi sites? I searched Craftster, but couldn't find one.
17  NEWS AND DISCUSSION ABOUT CRAFTSTER / Suggest New Boards and New Features / Crafting Technical References on: July 29, 2008 08:16:46 PM
Is there an area somewhere on Craftster where the technical aspects of crafting are discussed?

To give you a better idea what I'm looking for, here are my thoughts and the reasons behind them. Smiley Sorry if this overly explanatory; I'm on allergy/sinus medication, and it's making me pretty loopy!

I'm specifically thinking about an area where there's advice on things like sealants, finishes/varnishes, paint, tools, fasteners...these are just some things I've needed info on in the past, and I'm sure the list could be endless when added to by other Craftsters.

If there isn't something like this, it would be nice to get something started and perhaps have a cross-reference or reverse reference. For instance, if I were working on painting wood, I could look up wood and see what worked for wood, or if I already had a particular type of paint on hand, I could specifically look it up.

For reference, I recently made something using chalks, embossing powder, ink, and gold leafing pen. I'd read that some types of spray sealant would make embossing powder separate from what it was applied to and come off in tact with itself, almost as a decal. So I tried clear fingernail polish instead, and it ended up making the gold leafing run (it also made the embossing powder start to come up, but it eventually settled back down). I would have asked for advice and would have been happy to post pictures for clarification, but it was for a swap (if this is making no sense, I'll be sure to post my example once my swap partner receives!).

One of my favorite things about Craftster is the generosity of advice and encouragement by other users when someone has a question. If you have a question, usually someone will come up with the answer - many times several someones. Smiley But if you're working on a swap item (like the example above), it can be difficult to ask outright for fear of tipping off your swap partner. And it can be darn near impossible to find precisely what you're looking for via a site search - sometimes you strike gold and get multiple examples of what you want, other times you get nothing. So I thought it'd be nice to have an area to refer to first before posting questions.

I imagine the Craftopedia had stuff like that, but it's not yet up and running again.
18  NEWS AND DISCUSSION ABOUT CRAFTSTER / Craftster Itself / Challenge and Craft-along Updates on: July 04, 2008 09:32:58 AM
Recently I've been thinking about challenges and craft-alongs, and how neat they are! Grin Unfortunately, I'm often not aware of them until someone posts a finished project, at which point I'm way behind. Roll Eyes

Of course, the home page has the Craftster Craft Challenges forum, and I've bookmarked the Category Board Challenges throughout Craftster thread to start tracking them.

Could a thread that tracks craft-alongs also be created (assuming I haven't overlooked such a thread)? Even better, could it maybe be combined with challenge tracking, so there would be a single spot for checking up on the latest "hey, let's all (fill in the blank)" activity? Smiley That could be done via either bookmark-able topics or a new board.

Is anyone else interested in this, or have I been thinking too much again? Cheesy
19  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Discussion and Questions / Glass Attic Navigation on: June 11, 2008 09:33:42 PM
I know there are lots of people who've had difficulty navigating Diane B.'s fabulous GlassAttic.com web site - or who just don't have the patience to figure it out! I asked her about it, and she was as helpful as ever. Smiley I also learned something new about searching a web site from the Google home page.

I got Diane B.'s permission to repost her comments as a standalone topic so that it would be easier to find. Hope this helps the rest of you as much as it did me!

I've noticed you've mentioned searching before - is there a search window I'm just overlooking?

CTRL+F Search
I don't have a search window at my site unfortunately.  But you can always to a Ctrl + f search on any page at my site (including on the Table of Contents page) for any word or series of words that you want. That search method works on any computer and any browser, I think (though Macs and their browsers may use Cmd + f).

(If  you don't know, Ctrl means the Control key on your keyboard... it usually just has the abbreviated letters Ctrl on the key though.  And Cmd is the equivalent key on a Mac, which stands for Command key. 
So to do a search on any web page, hold down the Ctrl or Cmd key, then press the letter f.  That will bring up a search window.  Write the word you want to search for in the search box, or words in exact order, then click Next... keep clicking Next till you've been jumped down to them all.)


Google Site Search
You can also do a "site search" from Google itself (or from their toolbar, if you have one) for those words.  In that case, you'd put the word(s) you're searching for in the Google search window, followed by one space, followed by the site you want... here's an example of doing that with the search word molds and my site:


It used to be that Google's "Cached" link would do the sort of the same thing when you got their results page from doing a Google search, but we've had problems with Google not recognizing our frames (or something like that!) so "Cached" doesn't work unless it takes one to a blank page, or the page but without the navigation bar.

There's one other tiny problem in that Google doesn't seem to crawl all the way down long pages, and I've got some doozies.   So it's possible that Google searches may not bring up in the results instances of the search word when it's farther down a page... but you could always use the Ctrl + f search once you got to the page at GlassAttic.

Diane B.

And once again, many thanks to Diane B.!
20  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Discussion and Questions / Amaco Pasta Machine on: June 09, 2008 03:03:35 PM
Any idea why a brand new pasta machine would start leaving bits of chrome off the rollers after using it for only a couple hours? I've scoured the pasta machine section at GlassAttic.com, but if anyone mentioned it, I didn't see it. Did I do something wrong? Or did I just manage to pick a crappy one off the shelf?

I'm getting a bit frustrated. The first machine I bought was rusty, so I exchanged it for the chromey one, and now I've bought a third from a different store, and will be taking the second one back to where I bought it unless anyone can help me out.

I don't do a lot of claying (yet), so I don't want to spend much more money. Heck, I didn't have any business buying the first one, but we all know how that goes! Roll Eyes
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