Archive for project planning

winter break 2011

Winter break is finally here! That means that there’s actually time for arts and crafts now!

Oh I actually made this cute gift bag from a scrapbook sheet paper that I wanted to share with you guys later! haha, there are a lot of imperfections, but I think there’s definitely a seed of something there!

Anyways, you guys should know that I have this terrible habit of buying materials and not starting a project, or even if I do start, never finishing it.  There are so many WIPs for me to complete over winter break (see the project planning category for more).  Realistically, here’s what I’m going to try to work on (and what you guys can look forward to!):

Pokemon Hoodie– I’m so lazy to go set up the sewing machine…. Have to seam rip the bottom band out, add the pockets, resew, sew on the spots, finishing touches. Really not that much.. I WILL work on this! I will start after I get back fromVegas/LA, since there are plans for the rest of the week…

DNA scarf– hahaha. I’ve had this project going since I first got into knitting in 2008. WOW, that’s four years! I keep putting this off, because I keep losing my place when reading the chart. Also I was not smart and knit this at a gauge that is way too tight. It curls terribly. Hopefully I will be able to finish this!

CPH– I really want to work on this some more! I don’t think that I can finish, but let’s make the goal be getting to 50%?

Knit belt– I found a spare pair of D-rings in my drawers, so I want to try and make a belt! I will look through my stash for any of the Sugar and Cream cotton yarn, but otherwise will buy more. FOR SURE if I start this, I will finish.

misc.– As for other crafty things, I actually bought a pad of Christmas scrapbook paper from Michaels! Even though I have so much paper already, the pad was 60% off today, so I couldn’t resist. I guess I will try to make some Christmas cards in advance for next year. Otherwise I will try to use it for gift tags and wrapping this year too!


So those things are what’s planned for now. I’ll keep you all posted on my progress, so you can look forward to (hopefully) more regular updates for this month. 🙂


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end of the summer projects

I’m back in SD, and there’s only about one week left until school starts. Time really has flown! Anyways, let’s take a look at what WIPs I managed to knock off since the last post.

Pokemon Hoodie: I didn’t even take out the box with this project while I was at home. So, the project’s status is still the same. But darn, it would have only taken maybe a day or two to finish this up. Maybe during winter break?

Cherie Amour: Did not complete this, sigh. I’ve knitted up the whole body segment, but still have the sleeves and finishing to go. I’m knitting the sleeves in the round, to avoid seaming. I’m kind of tired of working this lace pattern, and am dreading attempting to join the sleeves with the armholes. Perhaps this project will go into hibernation for another few months.

Central Park Hoodie: haha. What a joke. I still haven’t even cast on for this project. I think that I’m procrastinating, since it’ll be my first actual garment project, and that I really want it to come out well. Maybe I’ll start this after I have a more solid concept of gauge and swatching.

Dragonskin: Started and finished it! I really like the pattern, the subtle arc of the scales, and how it looks so smooth still. But, oops, I think I ruined this with a poor choice in yarn. I tried to use the last of the Lily Sugar n Cream in the Potpourri colorway, but ran out halfway through. Decided to continue with the rest of the Summer Splash colorway, just to finish it off. And ERGH, it came out so awkwardly. Also, made a mistake cabling with the Summer Splash, so they’re reversed. I think I need to do this in a solid, perhaps a deep wineish or burgundy red, or a heather gray. But well, at the very least, it’s a good fit for the DS.
dragonskin front

Ravenclaw Dashing: Yes! I am done with this. I’m not entirely sure about the placement of the stripes, but still, I think that everything came out quite well. The yarn is nice and soft, and since it’s acrylic, it should totally be machine washable too.
ravenclaw dashing 3

Biwa, Mer du Sud: I still don’t know what I want to do with this. If I do a triangular shawl, maybe it’ll become Springtime Bandit or Traveling Woman. But then, I don’t think I can pull off a shawl like that. So, maybe I should turn this into a more regular rectangular scarf, a la Spring Leaves? I really do like these lacy leaf based patterns. But, instead of a scarf or shawl, maybe I could try to do this ProtoPretty DNA Sweater Shell? Since I’m still not done with the DNA scarf, I really want something with that amazing chart. But anyways, I left this cone at home, so all decisions postponed to winter break at least.

Pebble Beach: I found two potential patterns for this, but can’t decide which one to go with! I still really like the Ester shrug, but the charts look intimidating, and I do not get what that “No Stitch” means in the Set-Up row. I think if I actually start, I’ll be able to figure it out, but for now, it’s just scary!  The safer choice I could go with would be the Green Day vest. I get most of the instructions, and it seems like a much faster knit. But then, which one of these would be worn more often? The color and the nubby texture of this yarn makes it challenging to decide.

embroider faces onto GRR: DONE! Actually finished this up at home after finding my plastic needle. I think these came out super cute, with the faces just so smiley and d’awwww. I hope that I secured the embroidery on correctly, and that the faces won’t come loose and get messed up when the washcloth is actually in use!
grrr 1

stuff, sew, embroider Squiddy: Almost done! Gah. I hate running out of yarn when trying to finish a project. Decided to leave the poor squid with only six legs, two of them extra thin, and just finish up the project. Stuffed and sewed it shut, but still have to embroider the face. I might try to felt a bit, since this was done in Cascade 220 wool, as opposed to a cheap acrylic yarn. Hopefully this will come out well!

add findings for crochet earrings: Finished! I tied the smaller crochet circles onto a pair of the sterling silver findings I’d bought from Michaels. They make for a lovely pop of color, not too overstated. The larger ones are a bit too much for me.
crochet earrings small 3

Not too bad I suppose? With so little time before life sets in for fall, I should probably be trying to finish up Cherie Amour, but I’m lacking interest. Instead, I’m trying to finally finish up a crochet project instead: Jiji the Cat. Cast on for this in September 2009, and I’ve totally forgotten what part of the pattern that I’m on. I’ve no idea how to count rows in crochet, but I think I can guess. Also, I’ve totally forgotten how to use the stitch markers in crochet. Yep. I wonder how well this is going to go.

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Inception Totems in Polymer Clay and Obtaining Dice Beads

Spent today making things out of polymer clay. I forgot how fun this used to be!  I don’t want to leave yet! I still want to play around… try and make mini people versions of the characters, in this style.

Anyways, presenting the results of today:
totems copy
Inception totems! Inspired by this lovely poster by neirly@deviantart.

totems all
The whole set! I’m hoping to turn some of these into earrings pairs, and then use the others in a charm bracelet sort of thing.

I’m very happy with how Cobb and Ariadne’s totems turned out! The colors are good, but I just wish that there was more of a metallic flair. PMC is expensive, but perhaps I can paint these over with metallic acrylics?

eames 2
Eames’ came out decently, but really should be a bit more even. Still, not bad for my first try at the millefiori technique. I think next time, work with smaller logs, and maybe add a bit of texturing after cutting?

Arthur’s die drove me crazy. Why must it be translucent red!?  I tried mixing some of Sculpey Translucent with the red in varying amounts, but it doesn’t come out that clear. White die marks added with the double baking technique. I’ll settle for what I have now, but really want it to be less opaque.

Since translucent clay didn’t really work out, I thought of a few other options. I could try to learn about casting resin, but that would probably come out messy, expensive, and not worth the effort. Glass would be lovely, but I have no idea, no materials, and no tools to work it. So, I thought to buy some dice beads.

I spent a ton of time (probably a couple hours at least) looking up dice beads, but to no avail. First off, almost everything is made from plastics. Mass-produced, poor quality. And then I find these Czech pressed glass dice beads, 8mm. LOVELY. But, it’s just my luck that the item’s already been sold. Cue a tedious trawl through random webpages and eBay results for the supplier. So, most of the Czech glass is for dice cubes, meaning just a plain cube, without the die markings! Great.

Finally, I stumble across this listing for 50 Ruby Glass with White Pips 6mm Dice Beads ($5.99, free s/h). YES, I think, but then, I realize… wait, 6mm!? I’m aiming for something about 1/2 in long, which would be ~12mm. 8mm would be a compromise, but 6mm is going to be far too small. I search the proprietor’s other items, but no, they only have an 8mm size available in white or black.

What is a girl to do? Compromise on the material? The size? Whether its translucent or opaque?! So I have to choose to either stick with the clay dice, or to buy one of these:

  • 50 Ruby Glass with White Pips 6mm Dice Beads: $5.99 + SALES TAX ($0.50), free s/h = $6.49
  • DARICE Assorted mix of plastic dice beads, 12mm, 70pc
  • ETA2: Ruby Czech Glass dice beads, 8mm, 50pc
    • UnCommon Artistry: $5.50 + $2.00 s/h (+$1.70 insurance) = $7.50 ($9.20)
    • Bay Bead@vendio: $5.99 + SALES TAX ($0.50) + $2.40 s/h (+$1.65 insurance)  = $8.89 ($10.54)
      hmm, same vendor as the eBay one listed for 6mm. Do I contact the seller on eBay to ask about this item? Perhaps they’ll make a new listing, and I’d save on the shipping?

I’m leaning towards getting the 6mm glass beads, and coming up with a new way to work it into a design.  Studs? Something like this? A hoop, with it dangling in the center?  But then it won’t match with the other totems, so do I make even smaller mini-versions of those? That would be very difficult. Do I just have to go with the plastic dice then? Maybe it won’t be too bad. Also, a bit expensive for a bunch of plastic junk!

ETA: I feel so smart! I spent all yesterday searching for “dice beads” with all sorts of modifiers (“red, transparent, translucent, clear, czech glass…” the list goes on). Then, just now I found the brand of the plastic dice beads on a website (DARICE), and my google-fu has revealed that Joann’s stocks it! Joann’s is close, so I might as well go and buy a pack tomorrow.

ETA2: Oh search terms! Tried searching for “siam” instead of red or ruby, and YES! I found two suppliers for the 8mm Czech glass beads. Oh, now decisions to make again…


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WIPs and ma cherie amour

Summer, despite all these lazy days, passes by so quickly. There’s only one week left before I go back to San Diego. From then on, I’ll be busy again. I’m looking forwards to a change in pace. (Also, I miss my exacto knife.)  But still, I’m not ready for summer to end. There are so many things that I still want to have done, things that I should have done, and things that I’m afraid to start.

I’m don’t want to leave so many plans or WIPs behind. I think my problem is that I’m too ambitious and find more things that interest me than I am capable of doing.

Anyways, back at SD, I’m (hopefully) going to put the finishing touches on a few other projects.

And here’s the current project in progress.:

cherie amour progress

Hah. I cast on for this in September 2008. It’s been such a long time…. will I finish?

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Hoodie Update + Applique

hehe, late update, as usual… but I finally sewed up the hood lining, so have completed the base for the hoodie!

It was supposed to be Sandshrew, but I couldn’t find the right colors at Jo-Ann’s or at Britex, so for now it’ll just be Girafarig/giraffe. 🙂


  • Fit could be improved – narrow body a bit more, neckline is too large, add curves into side. shoulders too wide.
  • For attaching hood, measure enough allowances for both sides (always has to be MORE than 10/8)
  • Try different method for closing lining? Slipstitch makes it look a little puckered?
  • Remember to put pocket on BEFORE attaching waistband!

I cut and pinned some spots, and tried to applique to the side of the hoodie, but failed. I was using embroidery thread and needle, trying to do a satin stitch. It’s hard to pass the needle through all the layers of fabric, especially since the embroidery floss is much thicker, and the polar fleece is quite tight. I kept shredding the cut flannel piece when trying to sew through it. Maybe my technique is wrong, but this approach hasn’t really been working for me.  I think that I’ll have to postpone finishing, until I go back home, and then I can use the sewing machine to attach the spots then.

Anyways, with that in some resources for applique:

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Spinner Cards

david spin card (4)
For David’s 21st. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

I love popups – all the work and thought that goes into engineering something like that makes them seem so special. I think that Robert Sabuda is  one of the most amazing popup artists today. I’m sure that most people have seen his work in bookshops or stationary stores. For this card, I had really wanted to do something like the tornado that actually twists open and spins in his work for Frank L. Baum’s Wizard of Oz book:

I found another example of this spinning mechanism in a popup card by aiai_pop-ups, here.) So amazing! Sadly, I didn’t bring the Oz book with me to school, and I didn’t have enough time to figure out the mechanism.

Anyways, just made a simple card, with an easy twirling motion! Construction should be pretty easy and self-explanatory, but a few things to keep in mind: make sure the hole isn’t cut too closely to the sides, check paper thickness/stability, remember to match the thread color, (work on glue skills)!

david spin card (3)

and ah, sorry, no action shots…

As a bonus, here are some other resources for spinner cards that I came across in my search for Robert Sabuda’s string and skewer method:

Popup Spinner: This card is just awesome. No idea how to tie it into any specific concepts/occasion, but I SO want to try and make this, just to see it work.

This would have been the wrong type of motion for this card, but WOW. This is amazing! I want to try doing this for something.

Ah, so similar, but not exactly what I wanted. It definitely helps to solidify ideas on how Sabuda’s would work though. Could have tried it this time, but time constraints….

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Sandshrew Hoodie

I’m sick and stressing over finals, and life in general is just going terribly, so I thought I’d take a break to do this post. These Gijinka Pokemon pictures have been going around for a while, so I’m pretty sure that a lot of people are familiar with this Sandshrew:

sandshrew gijinka

I am seriously in love with this hoodie, and so over spring break I really want to make one! Either that, or a Girafarig hoodie. Or maybe, I could make both!

BTW, you can find these images and more from the original artist’s site! There are so many amazing pictures, and so many costume ideas that I’d love to try.

So anyways, with that purpose established, this will be something like a project planning resource post! I lost my notes that I made for this last month, so hopefully this will help me to keep organized and motivated.  And who knows, maybe someone else trying to make one will find this useful as well! Please do let me know if you have any other links/advice that might be helpful!

OTHER POKEMON HOODIE PROJECTS {X} {X}: “I made my jacket I used canvas for the majority of it and fleece for the stomach area and hood lining. Although it frayed a bit, the canvas was easy to work with and it’s surprisingly comfy. I painted the canvas area with brown fabric paint and it worked fine.” Kitsuuses fleece material, has plush tail (see comments). -looks quilted, lots of work, careful for fabric puckering. sleeves. “The tail is held up by very sturdy interfacing, so it may not always be perky all the time, but it is more natural and comfortable to wear than a wire inside the garment.  face is appliqued carefully with a freehand satin stitch with embroidery thread. The emblem is made from flannel for extra softness that is sorely lacking from other manufactured products with felt features.”


DESIGN: quilting OR painting the lines – cut out all the pattern pieces for the hoodie, so you can see which way the rectangles need to go, then tape off lines with masking tape (measuring it all out and marking with washable pencil to get them perfectly straight), and paint the lines with textile paints, then once dry, sew the cut pieces together normally like the pattern says.

MATERIAL:  sweatshirt or cotton jersey fabric would work well, just nothing napped, like fuzzy fleece, it doesn’t take paint well. – fleece/flannel. canvas?
amounts: 2+ yards of main fabric, .5 yard lining (for hood), 20″ or longer separating zipper, .5 yard rib knit fabric

HAND COVER (?): two semicircle pieces that fit over my hands of course. I sewed those together and turned it inside out. Then I could pin it to the end of the sleeve, right sides together. I only sewed the top half, where the top of my hand would be when in the mitt. Iron the seam where you sewed and make sure to iron down the seam allowances for the rest of the sleeve and the mitt. If you hem those seam allowances and get them sewn down you’ll have finished edges around the opening for your hand to pop out

TAIL (?): For the tail, I just did a simple flat tail with very heavy interfacing to keep it standing up. For the flame, I took a circle of yellow fleece and sewed a strip of orange around it, and then a strip of red around that, then cut it into a flame shape and sewed 2 of those together — I stuffed it a bit too.

LINING (?): warmer, but too complicated? Will line the hood with the contrasting lighter color fabric.

RAGLAN SLEEVES: drafting pattern instructions, pattern maker examples

GENERAL HOODIE TUTORIALS – trace pattern from existing hoodie with reconstructed t-shirt

Kaiser general, note use of bias strips – random tips in comments

I’d go with Darkrai personally, only because I’ve seen several gijinka Sandshrews already. If you still want to do the Shrew though, I’d recommend painting the lines on instead of quilting, unless you don’t mind sewing tons of little squares together.What I would do is cut out all the pattern pieces for the hoodie, so you can see which way the rectangles need to go, then tape off lines with masking tape (measuring it all out and marking with washable pencil to get them perfectly straight), and paint the lines with textile paints, then once dry, sew the cut pieces together normally like the pattern says. As for fabrics, sweatshirt or cotton jersey fabric would work well, just nothing napped, like fuzzy fleece, it doesn’t take paint well.

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