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I’ve been doing some things in between substitute teaching. Some crafting things. Some other things. I’ve been watching the West Wing. I’m currently in season four and it is delightful. I got this in the mail yesterday:

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Season 2!!!!

And this last week:

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Seasons 8 and 9 of the X Files were pretty sad, but I was super excited to see there was a spinoff with the Lone Gunmen, whom I loved. So yay.

Then there was some crafting. I made this out of a floppy disk metal bit:

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Why yes, that is the Starship Enterprise. Awwww yeeeeeah. There’s a tut here if you want to make your own.

Finally, there’s half a pair of mittens I’m designing:

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They’re for my boyfriend’s cousin who requested the design. What do you guys think? Can you tell what it is? The thumb makes everything a little wonky. It’s a work in progress.

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So I’m pretty sure I told you I was doing a Whedonverse Swap, but I’ve sent my package and it has been received. I’m pretty thrilled with what I made and it was tons of fun to do. So here’s what I sent to my partner, Craftster use FaerieCyn:

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One thrifted long-sleeved tee + acrylic paint + fabric medium = Buffy tee! I’m pretty please how this came out. I freehanded the B.

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One thrifted tee + acrylic paint + fabric medium + Freezer paper = Dr. Horrible Tee! I made a stencil for “Horribleness” and hand painted “I have a Phd. in”. Here’s a close up of the words:

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In retrospect I might have used a color that would show up better, but I was amazed how well wax paper worked as a stencil. I’m never sure if that’s what people mean by freezer paper, but I cut out the letters and ironed down the stencil and it stuck to the fabric pretty well.

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I painted this Sunnydale High logo. I was going to make it into a notebook but then it didn’t fit and whatnot. So I just put it in a frame. This was lots of fun to paint since I don’t usually paint. And I think it came out pretty well.

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Felt/hot glue Browncoats pin! I whipped this up pretty quickly. I may make one for myself to stick on a knitting bag or two. I like pins.

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Tiny Willow with her tiny computer! I used patterns from Teeny Tiny Mochi Mochi (the groom with some mods and the computer).

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I used a variety of sock leftovers and crochet cotton. I think they are super adorable.

My favorite piece is the one I did first, this cross stitch:

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I really love cross stitch. And Buffy quotes. And Giles! Look at Giles:

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I found a pixel set of Buffy characters (here and zoomed in until I could see individual pixels. Then I cross stitched that, with some slight mods. I basically adore how Giles came out and now I want to cross stitch all the quotes with Buffy characters. So yeah.

For more Whedon goodness, the gallery is here, though mine was the first package received. Sooooo yeah. I like Whedon things.

My partner, TwistedTruth, received her package yesterday so I can FINALLY post about the completely awesome things I made her. I have been DYING to show you guys this stuff since I started. I am completely thrilled with everything I made. So here’s what I made:

First, the card:

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Paper cut out, gold cardstock and black sharpie, covered with mod podge. Seriously, you guys. I need to do this paper cut out/pod podge delio more often because I really enjoy it and the results are usually pretty good.

Then a cross stitch bookmark:

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I used the pattern that’s located here for the Professor then sewed some red felt on the back. My partner does a lot of ATC swaps, so I figure this could be a fabric ATC if she wanted.

Then I did some drawings, which isn’t a thing I usually do because I generally consider myself non-artistic. But I can copy an image pretty well:

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Colored pencil and sharpie on card stock. My partner said she likes Pazzuzzu, the professor’s gargoyle. I thought this was a cute scene to sketch. I left the color testing on the side because I find that sort of thing interested, but she can trim it off if she likes.

Next is a somewhat more ambitious art piece:

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Sharpie on card stock. Based on this toadily (yes, I went there) bitchin’ image here which is, of course, based on this iconic Obama poster. I am completely, utterly thrilled with how this came out and I am considering making another for myself. Because seriously, I’m toadily (yes, again) chuffed with it.

Last and not least (greatest, actually) is the pis de resistance, this fantastic stuffie:

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It’s a knitted Robot Devil! Made in recycled wool. A pattern I made up as I went and which is probably entirely too complicated for me to want to write up. He has cardboard in the larger shapes and 18 gauge wire in the limbs so they can be posed. He doesn’t sit up very well but I think it’s a pretty good likeness.

Look at his little fingers!

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I can’t wait to see what my partner makes for me but I’m so excited about the things that I made that getting stuff in return is just icing on my crafting cake.

I made some things for a swap. They are not particularly ground-breaking, but I quite like how they turned out. : ) I claimed Craftster user SciFunk for felted nesting bowls and something else I had yet to determine. Here are the felted bowls:

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I used Lamb’s Pride, Lion Wool, and some orange wool (I think Cascade 220?). And another color of Cascade 220. I like making these little bowls. They’re super quick and a great way to use up small bits of wool. Crochet a bowl, throw in the washer and dryer and hit it with some steam and an ironing and you have cute bowls.

After much dithering and pouring over SciFunk’s list, I finally decided what else to make for her. Dog toys was on her list, so I whipped up three rope toys:

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I used strips of t-shirt fabric from some left-over sleeves (from the university shirt-quilt I’m making and will show pictures of eventually). Cut off the hem, cut the sleeve open, and cut across for a straight strip. Tie a knot in the top, braid, and tie a knot in the bottom. Voila!

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The thicker ones used both sleeves of each shirt (so there were six strips) and the thinner one used one sleeve (three strips). They took about 10 minutes to make all of them and that’s only because the bottom knots in the thicker ones were a little difficult to tie. If my dog actually enjoyed this sort of thing, I’d make some for him, but he doesn’t.

The other week I got a swap package from a crafter in the OWS swap. It contained some metaloic embroidery floss, some perle cotton, and some stamp carving supplies, including a lino cutter and a sheet of speed ball. Armed with that and also some cheap erasers, I made the following stamp (and am a huge nerd):

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Mustache, yarn ball, Erlenmeyer flask, Mac apple, the Earth symbol from Stargate (I just recently finished (and LOVED) SGA and have started SG1), and three gears (I was going for a little steampunk-y).

They weren’t too difficult to carve, especially with tools better suited that the metal end of a pencil. I love how them came out (especially the yarn and the Mac apple) and I will have to find lots of occasions to include them. : )

I’ve also been knitting. I’m almost done with the red/blue striped socks and I started a lace shawl. I also whipped up a set of nesting bowls for a swap. But more on those later.

I received my package for the Whedonverse swap (on Craftster) from FiberAlchemist today! It’s the best thing ever and she’s great! Seriously people, have your wisting fingers in the upright and read position.

She sent me magnets!

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Dollhouse! Bufffy! PUPPET ANGEL.

She sent me a hooped embroidery!

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This is my favorite thing Cordelia Chase has EVER said in all seven seasons of Buffy and five seasons of Angel. She says it in the Buffy pilot.

She sent me paintings of the Scooby Gang!

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They look amazing! Just like the characters! AMAZING.

And finally she sent me the best swap thing I have ever been sent EVER:

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It’s a pillow! With Wash! And so many tiny stitches! And so many words! And SHADING. And soft soft dinosaur fabric.
So basically, FiberAlchemist is the best thing ever! Hence all the exclamation marks! YAY.

So after my recent adventures in earring making, it occurred to me that I needed somewhere to display them! So I made an earring holder, complete with tutorial for you lovely people!

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Materials:

– Crappy old picture frame from the thrift store, preferably with kitschy 50s cross stitch or print
– Paint/paintbrush
– Strong glue, like E6000 or FabriTack. Or I guess you could use tacky glue (which I used) or hot glue. Whatever.
– Aida cloth or plastic canvas (something with holes in) (I used 14-count Aida cloth. If you’re using Aida cloth, go for 11 count cause it’ll have larger holes. I just used what I had)
– Pliers (probably)

Step one: Dissemble kitschy art:

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(IDEK)

Step two: Grab your pliers and yank out the points of DEATH holding the picture in the frame.

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Step three: Paint frame.

Things I will not judge you for doing at this stage:

1. Forgetting until you get home from the thrift store that you do not have any paint and using watered down puff paint instead.
2. Remembering that puff paint will peel off, lacking some sort of sealant, and saying out loud, “Ah, fuck it.”
2. Visible brush strokes. We’re going for shabby chic here. Or something.
3. Lacking newspaper to put under the frame/paint and using ONE ripped apart plastic bag even though you have about a billion plastic bags.

Ahem.

Step four: Measure Aida cloth against the glass that probably came with your frame.

Step five: Glue Aida cloth against the sticky-out bit of the frame. Let dry.

Step six: Add earrings, hang up in the back of your closet so no one can see your shoddy paint job. Or on the wall over the dresser, which is what I actually did.

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(Also, I have more earrings than this and the singular ones have partners, they’re just downstairs in my boyfriend’s apartment and seeing as we’re on Spring Break, he’s not here to let me into it.)

Yay!

Incidentally, if anyone has any idea what to do with several pieces of glass from picture frames, I’d appreciate some ideas. I don’t usually use glass with embroidery, but my frames all come with it.

So the other day I took a couple hours off from knitting because I was sick of shark mittens and I wanted a different sort of project. So I whipped out my Styrofoam mannequin head, my collection of yarn labels, and a container of mod podge, and a couple of hours (and MANY little bits of dried mod podge everywhere), the result was this:

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I’d been planning this project for a while, at least generally. I’d been saving my yarn labels to decoupage something, and I’m really pleased with how the mannequin head came out.

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Now, instead of just a prop for modeling hats, it’s also a decorative conversation piece. : ) The making of the thing was pretty simple–glue on labels, smooth down, coat with mod podge. I originally tried to use an old credit card, but that wasn’t really working on a rounded surface, so instead I just used my fingers. It was super messy (I was COVERED in mod podge), but it was effective. The mess wasn’t helped by my upending the bottle of mod podge all over the floor (glad that stuff dries clear), but it was fun nonetheless.

In knitting news, I am still doing it. Though thankfully, not shark mittens. I am almost finished with a pair of Kitty Hawk mitts, and I just started the matching hat. It’s cute, but I’ll be pleased when I’m done with it.

As I mentioned yesterday, last night I attended a Masquerade ball. Every year the Renaissance Club and the Fencers put on Masquerade and everyone dresses up in costumes and masks and dances. I’m in neither of those clubs, but most of my friends are, so my boyfriend and I attended. It’s great fun and I had a blast last night.

I made my own mask shortly before the dance and I helped my boyfriend make his. I made a template out of paper, traced it onto cardboard and cut it out with an X-acto knife. Here’s mine:

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It’s covered in leather and decorated from there. Lace trim from a thrifted shawl/lace handkerchief (or something; it was at the Goodwill outlet), a couple of beads glued to the corners of the eyes and a butterfly that used to be attached to a bobby pin I never wore. I love how it came out. : )

Here’s the one Joe wore:

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Same deal, cardboard covered with leather. The design was his idea–crossed ribbon and a shank button with the shank snipped off.

Anyway, yeah, it was tons of fun. I do love an excuse to dress up. : )

I finished an item from the challenge I posted about before! From these fish beads and little green beads:

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and some jewelry findings, I made fish earrings!

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I think the little green beads look like bubbles.

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I made two pairs: one for me and one for a gift, as per the challenge. But who is the recipient of this gift? Why, it’s one of you lucky readers! That’s right: This challenge has inspired our first giveaway!

To enter to win these earrings, leave a comment below (make sure you include your email address). For an extra entry, tweet or blog about the giveaway (feel free to use my picture but please credit it to me), then come back and post a comment with the url of your tweet/post. There are up to two entries per person, and open to everyone (regardless of location).

The contest will stay open until Friday, July 2 at midnight EST, a week from today, at which point I’ll draw a winner. Good luck!

This contest is now CLOSED