Fall Colors

These are the fall fashion colors for 2012.

Obviously I’m a little late on this, seeing as how it’s already autumn.  Apparently I was already totes with it though, without even knowing – I have fabrics featuring all of these colors, ready to be made into purses and pouches and tote bags.  I better get sewing or my stuff will be out of style before they’re even made!

Whedonverse Crafts

As I mentioned in a couple of previous posts, I participated in a Whedonverse themed craft swap on Craftster.  I tried to include something from each of my partner’s favorite Whedon shows: Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog, and Firefly.

The first item I made is probably also my favorite of the group – A Dr. Horrible’s Sing-Along Blog embroidery triptych:

It’s based on this artwork, which unfortunately I do not know the source for (though I’ve seen it used on ads for the live show):

On my rendition the silhouettes were cut out of black and grey vinyl and most of the stitching is a variation of a satin stitch.  The lettering was drawn by hand on graph paper then transferred onto the fabric with transfer paper and stitched over.  I want to make more of these, but on a different kind of backing fabric; the aida cloth was kinda terrible for this project.  I changed my mind about doing it as a cross stitch early on, but was already stuck with using the fabric.  I’m still pretty pleased with how it turned out, though of course I’m noticing a million flaws and things I want to do differently on future projects.  Everything is a learning experience. :)

Some closer shots of each panel:

The next project I made for this swap is a nod to my partner’s favorite Whedon project, Buffy – a miniature vampire hunter’s kit.  It’s a little wooden chest containing wooden stakes and a mallet, a bottle of garlic, a bottle of consecrated earth, a bottle of holy water, and a cross nestled on a little red pillow.

The Firefly themed item I made is a wooden box with a shadow box lid, in which I put Serenity soaring through space.  The spaceship is “floating” on a piece of foam core board cut to shape.  I wanted to pretty it up with some pinstriping on the box with gold leaf, but couldn’t find my supplies and ended up running out of time.  This is one of the projects I tried using that horrible Elmer’s Earth Friendly School Glue on, which meant I had to re-glue the pieces a couple of times before it seemed like it was going to stay (and then it still ended up bubbling after it was assembled and couldn’t be fixed.  Argh!).

And lastly, a box of Fruity Oaty Bars (the Elmer’s screwed me up on this one too), with artwork taken from here:

This was such a fun craft swap, and gave me so much inspiration for future projects.  I hope my swap partner will be happy with the stuff I made her!

Brief Lull

Small lull right now, as it’s two weeks until the next show where I’ll be trying to sell my crafts.  The other two shows this month were kind of a bust; I didn’t sell anything at all!  The first show was a tiny street market in a nearby small town.  Unfortunately, I didn’t have a very good setup, and that was a big factor in the lack of sales, but also… it was just really tiny, plus my purses were at too high a price point for that type of event in that type of town.  The event this past weekend was a “marketplace” in conjunction with a horse show, and took place at a race track.  This was a much better experience for me, even though I didn’t actually sell anything.  Several people picked up some business cards, I talked to some nice chicks from Alberta Craft Alert, and may have a lead on a wholesale opportunity.  Plus, my husband and I won lunch money betting on the ponies.

The other good thing that came from having thoese two vendor tables is that now I have a much better idea of exactly what I need in order to make a really good craft show display for my purses and jewelry.  I’ll be working on that in the next few weeks.

Another thing that’s finally off my plate is the Whedonverse craft swap; I sent out my partner’s package last week.  It was kinda stressful at the end, partially due to some glue issues (protip: do not buy Elmer’s Earth Friendly School Glue – it is so terrible!), but overall it was such a fun swap and I got to do some projects and techniques I probably would not have done on my own.  The swap stuff was a nice change-up from all the purses I’ve been making lately, too.

Newest Star Trek Tricorder Purse

Last week I completed one of my tricorder purse commissions, and I’m quite pleased with how it turned out.  It’s a little bit different than the others I’ve made, mostly just because the client needed it to be larger.  This one is about 10″ tall, whereas the others I’ve made have been 7.5″.

Unfortunately, it’s been difficult to get hold of the lovely outer-space themed fabric that I’ve lined the others with, so the interior of this one is just a plain black.  I’m going to have to suck it up and order that space print at a much higher price than I originally hoped to find online; I just like it too much not to put it in these bags.

I’m still pleased as punch with this tricorder bag though, especially considering the deadline I was under.  I hope its new owner likes it as much!

good things

It’s been a month already since my last post here, I can’t believe it.  Things have just kept getting busier, in awesome ways.  It looks like I’ll be getting another commission for a tricorder purse, plus I’m working on a Joss Whedon themed craft swap with a deadline that’s coming up very shortly.

But the biggest thing is that there are three events in September where I’m going to have a vendor table to sell my crafts!  This is a great opportunity and I’m super excited, but it’s going to be rough getting enough stuff together to fill a table.  I only have four finished purses at the moment, and that’s just a drop in the bucket compared to what I’d like to have on hand.  It’s my goal to finish at least one purse every day so I can have enough to sell at those events.  At least I have plenty of ceramic pendants and jewelry to display.

The only problem is that the fabric stores here have such terrible selection, at least when it comes to the fun prints I like to work with.  And the prices are so much higher here than back home.  I tried to order some fabric online, but the stuff I wanted wasn’t available for shipping to Canada.  Boo.  I asked my mom to pick up some things for me at her local fabric store and mail them to me, but I’m not sure she’s going to be able to, since she’s in the process of moving.  I’m keeping my fingers crossed though.  I have managed to find some really cool fabrics locally, so I definitely have plenty to work on while I’m waiting.

There’s just so many things I want to make right now, it’s hard to figure out what to work on first.  Obviously commissions take priority, but there’s also the stuff for the vendor tables, and the craft swap, and I want to make an anniversary present for my husband.  Our wedding anniversary isn’t for another 2 1/2 months, but what I have planned is going to be rather time consuming, and it’ll be something I work on in between other projects.  So I feel like I should start it soon, so I can get bits and pieces of it done during times I can’t work on other things.

Busy, busy busy.

Still working on getting the “studio” up and running; didn’t get anything done this weekend because my husband and I were doing family stuff.  However, I did finally get a nice sturdy table and – hot damn – a chair to sit in while I work!  Of course, I have to get all the yet-to-be-unpacked boxes out of the way before I can get the table in the room.  Still, things are chugging along to get the workroom workable, which is great because I have commissions to make!  Two people just ordered Star Trek tricorder purses through the etsy shop; they’re one of my favorite projects, so I can’t wait to get the materials and get to work.  Fabric is a lot harder to find here though, and a lot more expensive than it is back in the States, and that’s kind of throwing a wrench in my eager plans to start sewing.  Need to make a run to one last store today before I admit defeat and order materials online.

I’ve also decided to start cross stitching again.  It’ll be something I can work on in the evenings while I’m hanging out with my guy watching TV or when he’s taking his turn on Fallout: New Vegas, and I have some fun ideas for embroidery projects that I want to make!

 

Lil Shifter Head – From Start To Finish

One of my favorite projects that I worked on in school is a small latex and polyfoam bust with punched hair.  It’s one of the few things that I took pictures of from start to finish, so I thought I would share the process.

I’m a huge nerd with a lifelong love for werewolves and the like, so I knew right away this little head was going to be a Shifter.  I started sculpting in modeling clay, and made this:

Totally boring, blech.  So I started over and sculpted this:

That’s more like it!  Much more interesting, and a lot more fun to work on.

Once the sculpt was complete, I made a plaster mold:

Then the interior of the mold was coated with about 15 layers of mask latex:

Once the latex was dry, the mold was closed and the inside of the head was filled with expanding foam.  Then the mold was taken apart, the head popped out, and the seams and imperfections in the latex skin cleaned up to get ready for painting.  For this particular head, I only did minimal cleanup on the latex, because it was the first one and meant as a test piece.

Next, the paint:

Then came the really tedious part – hair punching:

This was my first time punching hair, so I decided to do the whole head with that method to get more practice with it.  In the future I will probably glue the hair on the back of the head and just punch the front; all that punching took hours and hours.

After the hair was finally done, I added a few decorative elements…

…and voilá – finished bust:

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