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11  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Special Purpose Hot Pads That You Can't See on: October 29, 2017 03:18:05 PM
Last year I got The ManFlesh a dutch over for xmas that he loves and uses all the time. Our existing hot pads work fine for moving it around, but he likes to tuck them into the handles when the hot pot is on the table which is awkward. I have lots of decent sized scraps of the ironing board cover material that I use to make my Hot Dishes! hot pads, so I decided to make him a set just for his dutch oven.

I used all stash for this, but stash he hasn't  necessarily seen before. That's right, my stash pre-dates my decade+ relationship! Anyway, I decided to use words to machine quilt them so I wouldn't have to explain what they were for... they're going in his xmas stocking. You can tell I haven't done that before! It's wonky and all, but that's fine since they'll be in a drawer most of the time and even as is will hold the interior cotton batting in place. Wink

12  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Stash Busting Mix & Not-quite-match Cloth Napkins on: October 18, 2017 03:26:16 PM
Our friend's annual barter party is coming up and I decided to take advantage of it to *bust some of my fabric stash.

There are two sets of 6 and two sets of 4. I made these tags to hype 'em up a bit and explain what's going on, then used my hang tag gun to keep the sets together and attach the tag.

ADDENDUM: I forgot to mention that each set has the same fabric on one side, then different fabrics on the other, so they match on the one side. Wink

* Sadly, it hardly made a dent. Sigh. I do have another similar project on my list before the end of the year, so hopefully that'll help!
13  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Party Planning / Photo & Other Backdrop Thingamabobber on: October 17, 2017 01:25:23 PM

I wanted to make something a little more official and special looking for The ManFlesh's book readings and signings and I wanted it to be easy to store and drag around to events. So I went with that Pinterest mainstay, the PVC pip backdrop stand.

For his latest book, The Trials of Solomon Parker, I painted a mine headframe using copper paint mixed with fabric medium onto pre-washed duck canvas. The stand is only 3' wide, although I did have enough pipe to also have a 4' version in the future, so I cut and hemmed the canvas to width, then sewed rod pockets in the top and bottom for installing and weighting it respectively.

I used an image from the internet and my opaque projector to draw the outline of the headframe, then hand-painted it.

I am stoked to have this stand in my back of tricks for future books as well as possibly parties and such!
14  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Mine Car Book Sale/Book Signing Display - You know, The Usual on: October 08, 2017 04:17:11 PM

The ManFlesh's 2nd novel came out this week so he'll be doing some readings and signings and the like over the next year. Because I can't help myself with a them idea or ways to kind of make his signings stand out a bit, I made this little miniature mine car to hold a few books!

Both sides have the book title and author name on them and one end has the price. That way he can flip it around for situations where the store or booth he is in is selling them or at a different price. I used laser printed images I made in Photoshop and xylene to transfer.

Because the mining parts of the book are from the copper boom in Butte, Montana in the early 1900s, I finished the inside with a couple kinds of copper stuff.

The whole this is pretty rough/crude, but so was mining and so is the titular character, Solomon Parker. I was able to make the whole thing out of stash (except the print outs) and I got to use my new-to-me table saw! I made it so that the wheels don't touch the ground so he doesn't have to worry about setting it on unlevel surfaces or rolling off if nudged. He got to use it last night and it worked like a champ!

15  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects / The Trials of Solomon Parker Scarecrow (lotsa pics) on: October 07, 2017 10:56:37 AM
The nearest town, Stevensville, has an annual Scarecrow Festival and this year I decided to enter with a scarecrow themed on The ManFlesh's newest novel which came out the week of the festival!

The Trials of Solomon Parker has a cyclical plot rotating between two times/placesin Montana: Stevensville in 1900 and Butte 1916-1918 or so. The Butte part is all about the big, rich mining history there so I decided to build a mine car!

The car is mostly rigid foam insulation, textured and painted, assembled with dowels and adhesive caulk. I used painted wood plugs cover the holes where the dowels were driven in and then added more for looks.

The wheels and base are cut from wood scraps. I deliberately made them not spin and they are slightly flat on the bottom for stability.

In fact most of the cart was made from scraps and stash! I had to buy the darker of the brown paints I used and the expanding spray foam that makes the copper ore in the car.

I did have to buy the clothes & hat (from the children's/toy section at the thrift store), then modified, dyed, painted them all. I had the rest of the stuff for the scare crow, though, which is stuffed with bubble wrap around a PVC frame. They whole thing probably weighs less than 20 pounds/~9 kgs and the cart is a separate piece from the scarecrow. I wanted to be able to load and set up on my own as well as not have to put a bunch of effort into supporting Solomon Parker Scarecrow or having the whole thing absorb rain/grow mold, etc.

FUN FACT: I did not intend to make the scarecrow look like the neighbor who played Solomon Parker in the book trailer that a friend of The ManFlesh made for the book, but he sure does!

16  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Printed Cotton & Linen Hand Towels (lotsa pics) on: September 14, 2017 06:55:30 PM
This project was started about a year ago, then halted by running out of linen. Lots of the prints and all the trims came from stash.

For everyday in the main bathroom:

For everyday in the upstairs bathroom:

For October in the main bathroom:

For October in the upstairs bathroom:

Linen on the back for added structure and absorbency. Also, I just freaking LOVE LINEN!

And, of course, I have a few more started, but need just a little something to finish. Next year? Hopefully sooner, because I have some winter prints I want to use!
17  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects / When Life Hands You Wildfire, Make Pumpkin Spice. That's A Thing, Right? on: September 11, 2017 11:53:29 AM

This big portable water tank that the Forest Service parked in our yard 3 weeks ago to help protect our property for the local giant wildfire is called a "pumpkin" by all the fire fighting folks. It seemed only logical to "jack it up."

It's marine vinyl, attached with two-sided foam tape. When I told one of the crew leaders about my plan, he got a kick out of it. He's since ended his "tour," so hopefully the new lead for our area has the same attitude.  Roll Eyes

With any luck, we will no longer need this (and the other two non-pumkin tanks) by the beginning of October, so I don't really think of it as a Halloween decoration - just the obvious way to spruce up our pumpkin.  Wink
18  Halloween / Halloween Decor and Parties / Craniometer Prop (Disturbingly Numerous Photos) ADDED: link to video on: September 07, 2017 06:43:59 PM

I have been scheming and acquiring parts for this project for a few years and over the last few weeks, between being evacuated twice because of the local wildfire, I got to finally make it!

I used one and a half big embroidery hoops from the thrift store, a clearance + coupon candle stick (top removed), a circular plaque, a sale + gift certificate skull, 3 acrylic stains, beads & eyelets from stash, dowels from the junk store, & assorted new and stash hardware and tools.

If it will fit, we're going to use it as a prop in the book trailer that a friend of The ManFlesh is going to film this weekend for Dr Potter's Medicine Show!

[UPDATE: The craniometer made it into the book trailer! Just for a second, but a whole punch of the props, some of the sets, and the costume are my handiwork! WOO!


19  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Just My Type Earrings on: August 02, 2017 08:35:22 AM
I don't really know anything about making jewelry, but I made these very basic earrings to go with my Just My Type dress & purse.

The typewriters are on shrink plastic. The P is for "Potter" and the quote is from "Dr Potter's Medicine Show." The S is for Solomon and the quote is from "The Trials of Solomon Parker." Both are books that The ManFlesh wrote and were/will be published this year! Dr Potter came out in Feb, Sol Parker is coming out on Oct 5.

Here's the rest of the get up, which has it's own post.

20  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Just My Type Dress, A Non-costume Costume? on: July 30, 2017 02:20:34 PM
The ManFlesh and I are headed to WorldCon75 in a week! He's going, because his publisher and agency and other author friends will be there + networking and such. I'm going because this year it's in Helsinki and we haven't had a vacation in YEARS. I am terrible at fandom, but boy do I love costumes. I couldn't come up with a good idea for a costume that was appropriate to the event, something I cared about, would be easy to pack to another continent, and that I could put together very quickly and inexpensively. But I did fall for several of the Tim Holtz prints at Jo-Ann and the whole reason I'll be there is because The ManFlesh is an author, so I decided to just roll with it! I mean, I'm a fan of his, right? The ManFlesh's second novel* comes out in October, so I will probably wear it to whatever event we put together to celebrate/promote that.

I spent no time at all trying to match the pattern across seams, because there is just so much going on and in a large scale on this print, I didn't want to buy a whole bunch extra, and it would've made me crazy. But I got pretty lucky that it worked out nicely-enough on several of the seams.

I did fussy cut the center waist piece and the tab at the top of the neckline. As well as trying to make sure the sleeves had a similar visual weight.

With the purse I made to go with it, that I posted last week.

I added lace to the sleeves to get a little more coverage and have enough to add it to the hem, but I have a feeling I will not have time to do all that hand-sewing before we leave. That pattern is Butterick 6167.

* The Trials of Solomon Parker by Eric Scott Fischl. Published by Angry Robot Books.  Wink  You may have seem some of the neato fan art made by other craftsters (and me) for his first novel, Dr Potter's Medicine Show.
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