Archive for January, 2009

* doily shirt

Posted on January 31st, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Sewing/Fabric Crafts.

My mom got me this intricate knotted lace doily in Greece Cyprus last fall.  I’ve been coveting all the doily wearables out there lately, so I hand-sewed it to a t-shirt that had a stain that needed covered up.  Easy and cute.

Now I want doilies all over the house too: look at this incredible table and this couch.


* Goodbye design mags

Posted on January 28th, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Crafty Review.

Ugh, annoying, apparently Domino is going under, taking its website with it.  Time to export all my Deco File links before they disappear.  I sporadically subscribed to Domino, until it would get repetitive, then I would quit until eventually another subscription deal would present itself.  Also a favorite airplane read.

The Design Sponge comments also mentioned that Mary Engelbreit Home Companion is gone.  It’s another magazine that I found generally annoying, but it occasionally had good artist features, and hey, bonus points for paperdolls.

And there’s speculation that Readymade‘s days are numbered.  I realized the other day that I’ve never made a single thing from Readymade, but I still subscribe to it for some reason.  Hmm.

And let us observe a moment of blog silence for the long departed Blueprint.

Never leave me, Martha.


* covered cork board

Posted on January 26th, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Craft Room, Projects with Instructions, Sewing/Fabric Crafts.

Becket has been posting about her wonderful fabric-covered cork boards this week.  Seeing how great it was looking in her in-progress post really got me motivated to finally revamp my craft room cork board.  I got this great vintage honeycomb patterned linen from Make Me when they were having a sale a while back.  I’d set it aside for eventual cork board use, but it seemed like using it for the whole thing would be too much.  Then yesterday I found the perfect coordinating orange fabric at the thrift store.  I originally thought it was linen too, but upon washing and closer inspection, it’s something else.  Still fine though.

My cork board was lodged in a groove of the frame pieces, held together by brads at the corners.  It’s kinda cheap, so it wasn’t too hard to pull apart at one joint.  I stole the aspect ratio and the idea to adhere it with spray glue from Becket.  Glued down the orange layer first, then layered the linen over it, with the lapped edge folded over to make a clean seam.  Another unexpected advantage of the cheap fabrication: it was made of the thinnest possible cork veneer over some sort of particle board, so I could just staple the excess fabric around the back.  Wedging it back into the frame grooves wasn’t too hard, but it did cause a little bit of fabric bubbling near the edges.  Not too bad, though.  After wedging it all back together, I stapled the frame back together.  I really like how it turned out.


* failed coaster experiment part 2

Posted on January 25th, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Crochet, Wants.

I got some cute pink yarn at the thrift store yesterday and thought I might as well see what it would look like on the coaster prototype.  Still meh.  Besides being too chunky, the seam where the rounds join is really bad.  I think it’s worse because I didn’t turn between rounds (as futuregirl‘s seamless crochet tutorial advises), but I’m not sure there’s a way around the 2-chains-don’t-really-look-like-a-double-crochet problem.  I do like the pink rim enough to try again, at least, with a lacier pattern.  Besides this color, I also got a ball of a coordinating light pink, so the imaginary set would be a few of each.

Other thrift scores: red gingham apron with chicken scratch embroidery, one elbow-length lace glove, giant piece of orange linen, home dec-weight fabric in a great geometric pattern, baby sweater with tiny knitted reindeer trim, faux cross stitch dishtowel, giant piece of cream waffle-weave, yard of dark denim.

Thing I didn’t get that was the whole reason for going to the thrift store: hotplate for encaustics.


* candy molds for resin

Posted on January 24th, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Resin, Wants.

I’ve used candy molds before for resin (scroll down to the dogwood flower with plastic embed).  In that test, it did work, but it destroyed the mold in the process.  Luckily, a whole sheet of candy molds is only like $2.  Different plastics are also likely to react differently, so even if it melts into a puddle of plastic goo, $2 per experiment is also not too bad.  Anyway, this is all just my half-hearted justification of buying some molds from Bake It Pretty.

I’ve wanted to try to make buttons ever since I started with resin, so the button molds were the “have to have it” item. I mean look at them.  (Picture from Bake It Pretty’s candy button tutorial)

I got the button lollipop molds too, which are on the larger side and are also more heat-resistant plastic.  Annnd, I got some owl lollipop molds.  I’m thinking owl necklaces for everyone.

And I might have also bought Blythe a cupcake-topper phone. :)


* failed coaster experiment

Posted on January 18th, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Crafty Review, Crochet, Experiments.

I really like these crochet coasters that Yvestown made.  Cozy Crochet (by Melissa Leapman) has a coaster pattern, and I have a stockpile of white cotton yarn my sister-in-law gave me, so should be an easy project, right?  The coaster does crochet up pretty much as advertised, but it is not very pretty.  I like the little bit of lacyness to the Yvestown ones and the CC one is more solid.  Hmmm, first sign project is not going as planned.

Next, add in my brilliant idea to try to Kool Aid dye the yarn for the colorful edges.  I know, I know, everybody on the web says Kool Aid doesn’t work on non-animal fibers, but Biscuits and Jam did a very scientific study of tropical punch Kool Aid on cotton and had some success.  And my grandma’s couch had a red Kool Aid stain on it for like at least a decade, so that’s a good sign, right?  Well, let’s just say I was unable to replicate those results.  fwiw, I strongly suspect red Kool Aid is probably stainy-er than the random green and blue packets I had leftover from my last experiments.

Well, at least the house smells nice. :/


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* Domino Deco File

Posted on January 17th, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Crafty Links, Inspiration.

There’s a new little list of stuff I like over on my sidebar there.  It’ll be a rotating list of random blog posts, shops, artists, music, whatever that caught my eye but I never bothered to make a full post about.

There’s also a link to this thing I’ve been trying out from the Domino magazine website: My Deco File.  It’s essentially a bookmark tool that lets you save images from websites and organize them into books.  My previous “system” was saving images I like right to my computer, in folders according to type.  The main problem with this scheme is that I can never remember where an image is from, which is a problem when I want to refer to it or go back to the original site.  The Deco File thing saves the links for you, and it’s got a reasonably nice browsing system.  Also, it tells you if you’ve already saved a particular image.  Of course, it has it’s own problem, which is that the image isn’t actually saved, it’s linked somehow so that if the original is deleted it disappears from your book too.  Some websites also don’t work with it.  But despite this I still like it a lot and have been using it pretty regularly.

Anyway, here’s mine.  I’ve got idea books for sewing, embroidery, house stuff, etc.


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* topo love

Posted on January 16th, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Wants.

At the risk of being obnoxious, I’m going to start posting crafty and handmade stuff I buy.  I think I stopped doing it because it seemed show-offy, but then I realized that those kind of posts on other blogs are how I found lots of my favorite shops.

The concentric shapes + color fade topo map thing is my favorite lately.  Exhibit A: pretty much everything from Crafterall Handmade Works.  After going back and forth a few times, I finally decided on this bigger piece, plus a card set.  I might or might not frame the card set along with the big one, we’ll see.  I like the idea of an archipelago of little islands framed in glossy white with white mats.  There’s a gaping blank space over my (glossy white) dresser in my bedroom, so I think it could look great.

Exhibit B: my matching Infinity Tumbler that just came in the mail from Jill Rosenwald.  I think it’s going to be my new office mug.  Of course now I want a whole set. :P  I also love this perforated lamp she made.


* felt bead necklace and ring

Posted on January 15th, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Jewelry.

Since stringing my sister’s resin necklace on weedwhacker cord worked so well, I’ve been itching to make myself a necklace with it.  Poking around in the toolbox that I keep all my jewelry stuff in, I found these Japanese felt beads I got from Reprodepot a while back (they’ve got them in a ton of colors in the notions section) and wondered if I could force them onto the cord.  I had to made a hole first with progressively bigger needles, and cut the cord at an angle to make a point, but it actually worked pretty well.  It’s got the same adjusting mechanism as the resin one, and I think it’ll look good at a choker length.

Mixed in with the beads, I had even already glued a darker pink one into a bezel cup to make a ring and then never finished it.  Now I have a set.

p.s. Looks like a couple of Etsy sellers have some great variations on this idea!


* 2009 calendars

Posted on January 14th, 2009 by maitreya. Filed under Craft Room, Paper Crafts, Wants.

I love calendars.  Becket sent me an awesome Gocco one from modern printed matter that I have up in my office.  I love the layered colors and natural silhouettes.  Instead of the CD case stand, they’re hung by binder clips on my bulletin board.  It’s the first year in a while that I haven’t put up a Nikki McClure one, but change is good.

In my kitchen, I printed out this calendar from LollyChops.  Originally I was going to make the alternate version using vellum overlays, but I don’t have any vellum handy and tracing paper ended up being too flimsy.  The narrow size is a perfect fit in my kitchen where I put my A Little Hut calendar last year (you can get 2009 ones in her Etsy shop).  In fact, I even used the same wire hanger I used on the old calendar.

For my craft room, I printed out this ridiculously cute town calendar from Canon.  It replaces the tiny showcase letterpress lunar calendar I had last year (which also came in a 2009 version).  Actually, replace is the wrong word since I left the 2008 calendar up too because it’s so pretty. :P

And last, in the bedroom, there’s the bubblewrap calendar.  It’s not exactly the prettiest thing in the world, but I like the vertical-months design, and it’s like a year round advent calendar, so how could I not get it?  The bubbles are really satisfying to pop, so loud that Mark sometimes calls “what was that?” from another room.



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