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Archive for the ‘Needlework’ Category

Another Craftster Swap I took part in last summer was the dog swap. I love dogs (they’re my favourite animals in the whole world!) and I also have a dog, but she doesn’t live with me due to my landlord not wanting any dogs on his property, she lives with my parents.

Blanket

Blanket

Bone stuffie

Bone stuffie

Personalized Dog Collar

Personalized Dog Collar

So I made a fleece blanket for my partner’s dog, a bone stuffie, and a personalized collar (see pattern at: http://www.canadianliving.com/crafts/sewing/sew_a_cute_dog_collar.php), all in bright blue because, Lykos, the dog, doesn’t see very well. Also, my partner loved Harry Potter, so I made a cute Gryffindor dog scarf (my own pattern) and a poly clay golden snitch charm, for either her or the dog, with real gold incrusted in it!

Gryffindor Dog Scarf

Gryffindor Dog Scarf

Golden snitch Charm

Golden snitch Charm

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Last summer, I was part of the wonderful Mythology Swap on Craftster. I had the chance to have the organizer as partner (she later had computer problems and then flaked on me :,( ) who had very similar tastes to mine.  We decided to combine the myth theme with fairy tales and literature also.

I made her a “Snow white, rose red” rose cuff.  I remember from a long time ago that the story of Snow White starts with her mother pricking her finger and the blood falling on the snow next to the window’s black wooden sill. She then said that if she had a girl she would like her to have skin as white as the snow, hair as dark as the ebony wood and lips as red as blood. To combine these elements, I made a cuff with black fabric that I embroidered with a red rose. I made the rose look like a splatter to represent the fallen blood drop. And I added lace for the snow and for added feminity!

Snow White Wrist Cuff

Snow White Wrist Cuff

My favourite item of the package was this Excalibur letter opener. I made the rock out of aluminum paper (around the letter opener, so that it could fit in), covered with polymer clay of different tints of grey. After baking the clay, I painted some vine on it with regular acrylic paint. For the sword, it took several tries to come up with something decent. I bought a regular letter opener and covered the handle with a strip of black leather. I added glass beads glued to sparkly red scrapbooking paper and blue wire for decoration.

Excalibur Letter Opener

Excalibur Letter Opener

Another poly clay project was the Lady of Shalott mirror. We both loved the poem from Lord Tennyson and she loved John William Waterhouse’s “’I Am Half-Sick of Shadows,’” Said the Lady of Shalott” painting). So I tried to illustrate that quote through my craft: I took a simple oval-ish mirror and added poly clay to create a frame and added poly clay roses and vines. After baking (and hoping the mirror wouldn’t melt!!) I wrote in goth-ish script “I’m half-sick of shadows” with craft paint.

Lady of Shallot Mirror

Lady of Shalott Mirror

My partner also liked pirates so I made her a treasure chest. I simply painted a wooden chest that I got at the dollar store with acrylic paint and hot-glued some sea shells on it. To achieve the “old” chest look, I used a make-up sponge with (very!) diluted black paint and “scrubbed” the edges in the direction of the wood grain.

Pirate's Treasure Chest

Pirate's Treasure Chest

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Léon le mouton

I made this little sheep for a friend’s birthday. All the supplies come in a kit and you just have to make it.  I bought the kit in a bookstore (I know. What have bookstores become?) but you can also get them online at La Sardine.

Without further ado, Léon le mouton!

Léon le mouton

Léon le mouton

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I made this for the I Love Ewe Round 2 Swap. My partner liked asian stuff and bunnies (among other things!). So I made her a bag out of chinese jacquard. I embroidered the japanese symbol for bunny on it (because I know Japanese and not Chinese!).

 

Asian purse

Asian purse

 

I had a lot of trouble with the fabric because it kept unweaving itself after I cut it. Plus my machine was eating at it! And of course, on the sendout day of the swap, my machine broke! I had to finish it by hand!

I still think it turned out great, though!

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I came across this amazing tutorial on Craftster on how to make paperback bookcovers. I love anything bookish and I read a lot so, of course, I had to make one!

I chose a summery fabric (this was back in May), bright green, blue and yellow, and embroidered a yellow sun on the front in chain stitch. Unfortunately, it was too small for my book…

So I made another one (since I didn’t have enough of the bright fabric left, I chose a red polka dotted one), embroidered this time with a music note. I also lined the flaps on both of my covers. I had to adjust the measurements and the cut list to:

Outer fabric  (1) 11¼ x 8
Interfacing  (1) 11¼ x 8
Lining  (1) 11¼ x 8
Flaps  (2) 3 ¾ x 8
Interfacing  (2) 3 ¾ x 8
Flaps lining (2) 3¾ x 8
Closure tab (2) 2 x 4 ½
Interfacing  (1) 2 x 4 ½

Summer bookcover

Summer bookcover

Music bookcover

Music bookcover

I have since made two other bookcovers, one for an angel package in the Fairy Swap, and another one for my boyfriend for his birthday.

Fairy bookcover

Fairy bookcover

Fairy bookcover

Fairy bookcover

I had so much trouble with this one because the fabric shrunk a lot in the embroidering process, so it’s a bit shorter. The patch is there to hide a mistake! Eh! Plus, it was my first *major* embroidery project, and it didn’t turn out as good as it was in my head! The Fairy is based on Brian Froud’s Gwenhyfar and the leaves and nuts are based on the oak pattern from Adeline Dieudonné’s Broder les saisons: 90 modèles de la Maison Noël.

Bookcover

Bookcover

This last one was for my boyfriend for his birthday. My original idea was to embroider the little falling man icon from the game Portal on it but I didn’t have enough time! It’s made out of flanel, so it’s like a book pajama!

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I got into swapping on Craftster. Now I’m totally addicted! I spent most of my summer money on that! Uh oh… Anyways, this was for my first ever swap, the Douglas Adams Swap. I’m a huge fan of the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. I haven’t heard the radio episodes though, it is on my to-do-eventually list! I thought the movie was horrible and I started cursing in the first minute when the dolphins started singing… Horrible stuff… At least Marvin’s design was cool and Alan Rickman was awesome as usual.

My favourite thing in the Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy is the total randomness of everything… It’s hard to explain, but you know how the author just goes off on an explanation about some alien planet that has nothing to do with anything? Or better even, you remember the alien (I can’t recall his name, sorry!) who is so bored he insults everybody in alphabetical order? Who would’ve thought of that?! It’s so awesome!

This is a quote from the first book. In the begining, Arthur Dent, the main character, is about to have is house detroyed, against his will, to make way for a bypass. The guy with the bulldozers tells him that the plans have been on display for a very long time and that he could have complained then, that now it was too late. Arthur says he went to find the documents:

“I eventually had to go down to the cellar…”
“That’s the display department.”
“…with a torch”
“the lights had probably gone”
“so had the stairs”
“well you found the notice didn’t you?”
“Yes. The plans were on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet, stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying ‘Beware of the Leopard'”
(source: Wikiquote)

Isn’t it so random?! “Beware of the Leopard”! The man is a freaking genius!

Beware of the leopard

Beware of the leopard

I think that would be my second favourite thing I’ve made to this day! There are 2056 stitches on there! It took me so long! I don’t know exactly how much time it took me to do everything. I only counted the hours for the green ornaments and they took me 4½ hours to stitch. Am I a slow stitcher or what? Is it supposed to take that long??

At first I wanted it to look very bureaucratical. So I chose the squarest letters I could find and did them in black thread. Then I thought it was ugly… So I added the green ornaments for more kitschyness…

The letters are from this website: http://www.freepatternsonline.com/xscharts/page/abc19.htm
I doubled them so they would take up more space. So every square on this pattern was four stitches on mine.
The flourishes are from the Subversive Cross Stitch book by Julie Jackson. I don’t own the book, I only took the pattern for the “Search inside” feature from Amazon. Again I doubled it up, so it would take more space.

Of course, when I wanted to frame it, I cut the fabric too small. So I sewed it on a plain black fabric with a zig-zag stitch. I think it looks nicer this way. I should have folded the edges though because you can see the Aida is fraying… Oh well!

I’m so proud of this! My swap partner liked it. And later, she sent me a link to a blog where my project was featured! That really made my day! Here is the blog post.

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