Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Turning Cowls into Art

Without too much thought, I DM'd Jeannine on twitter and asked if she'd be interested in doing a swap.  Maybe I could make her a cowl in exchange for a drawing/painting?  She accepted.  I was excited for about 30 seconds.  And then I started worrying.
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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Saori Weaving Present

I got the most wonderful gift for my office from my friend Pam of Gingerbread Snowflakes!  She made this weaving for me to match my office chair covers.  It's perfect!
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Thursday, August 13, 2009

2009 Challenge - Update

I still haven't spent one penny on craft supplies.  Believe me, I'm as shocked as you. :)  I gave myself $20 worth of wiggle room, but I'm pretty sure I won't use it.
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Thursday, July 23, 2009

Starling Earrings

Mia, world's sweetest pattern tester, sent me a pair of the cutest Starling earrings to celebrate my pattern release.
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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Most Wonderful Specky Surprise

Ester sent out Specky Surprises for her Second Blog Anniversary.  Last year's specky surprise is *amazing* a makes me smile every day.

This year's specky surprise makes me ridiculously happy, which is why there is a ridiculous number of photos in this post.  Thanks, Ester!
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Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Dice Buttons

I wore three of the adorable dice buttons today.  I don't wear pins nearly enough.  It made my tired, old brown shirt feel like a brand new outfit.  That's probably something all you girly-girls already know ... the power of accessories.
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Saturday, March 14, 2009

Mushroom Swap Loot

I got the most wonderful mix of mushrooms from the swap.
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Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Vintage Japanese Craft Book - Post 3

Handbags handbags handbags!
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Monday, March 02, 2009

Vintage Japanese Craft Book - Post 2

I highlight some little-used techniques that I found in the book.
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Sunday, March 01, 2009

Vintage Japanese Craft Book - Post 1

Mimi found this Japanese craft book (or maybe it's a magazine?) from 1966.  She gave it to Diane when she was in Portland.  Mimi told Diane that she thought that either Diane or I would really love it.  Diane sent it to me.

This installment talks about the front and back cover and the diagrams.
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Saturday, February 21, 2009

Mushrooms Finished

OK, these are the most fun things EVER to make.  I love making them so much that I had to consciously and diligently promise myself to not make more than five.  There are just so many other fun things to do.  If I let myself, all I would do until the end of time is make mushrooms.
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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Mushroom Production In Full Gear

Well, the third time was the charm.  The blue spotted mushroom was my third prototype and it was perfect.  I've scrapped the first two prototypes (I tried to retrofit them, but it was a no-go).  Now I'm just cranking them out.
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Friday, February 06, 2009

Mushroom Test

This is my first test mushroom for the now-closed mushroom swap hosted by the super-wonderful knitsonya.
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Thursday, February 05, 2009

Pandacub Hair Cuteness

A week or so ago I received the sweetest email from Stephanie offering to send me a set of owl hair elastics.  I just got them and they are the *cutest* things in the world.  I wear my hair braided a lot, and I love having cute little elastics at the top of them next to my ears.
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Thursday, January 29, 2009

I Feel Your Pain Penguin

I can't remember the last time I saw the sun.  It's been about 3 days of dreary, sunless, deep-freeze around here.  The only change yesterday was some snow/slush/rain.  boo.
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Monday, January 26, 2009

Contests and Swaps

Anti-V-Day Contest

I'm so excited to be a judge for the 2nd Annual Black Heart Anti-Valentines Day Contest from Dabbled.org.

Mushroom Swap

I also just signed up for Knitsonya's Handmade Mushroom Swap which is going to be awesome!  You can still sign up, so scoot over there, right now.
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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Gifts From Shannon

Shannon of Shanny Lee sent me a wonderful surprise box of goodies the week before Christmas.  And, despite the best efforts of UPS and my apartment building's concierge, I got the box in time to enjoy these goodies for the whole holiday vacation.
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Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Start The New Year Clean

OK.  2008 took most of my crafty plans, and there weren't all that many to begin with, and threw them in the same hole where America throws it's money*.  But I'm not going to let that get me down.  Especially when everywhere I look in my apartment, I see the lovely things I've made or my crafty friends have sent me.
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Wednesday, December 03, 2008

I'm Running Away To Join The Circus

Tina Jett from Scatterbox sent me this amazing hand sewn felt circus tent.  Actually, it arrived on the same day as Bethany's package.  And they both arrived on the same day as our new router.  It was a red letter day, alright!
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Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Package From Bethany

Bethany of Bitter Betty has been a blog friend for years.  We've even met in real life.  I recently received the dreamiest of packages from her.  She is a magician of packaging and a present-picking-out sage.  Every single item in the package is so wonderful and perfect.
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Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Mini-Me (well, not me-me ...)

This is a mini-me doll I made for my boss' birthday.  He totally wears a green shirt that exact color with white pearl buttons and he sports a long black ponytail, too.  While he was in a meeting, we set up the cake and mini-me in his office to surprise him when he returned.  It was too much fun!
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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Wait For It ...

There is nothing like a box of goodies to brighten the week.  Angelina sent me this wonderful selection of fun stuff last week.
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Thursday, August 14, 2008

No Time For Love Dr. Jones

After getting the box o' yarny love from Shannon last weekend, I *had* to do some crocheting.  The package contained a wonderful variegated yarn that I really wanted to see as a handbag.  There was some major blue-pooling when I was doing the base which I wasn't loving.
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Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Link Fest

[ Lots of great stuff ... owl earrings, gifted yarn, mouse pins, stitchy circles Photoshop brushes, and crochet blanket ]
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Thursday, August 07, 2008

Andrew The Owl Enabler

Last week I also got some surprise gifts from Andrew, too.  [ summary: owl magnets and the most awesome notebook ever ]
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Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Isa The Owl Enabler

Isa was the very first person who asked me to swap.  She has a very special place in my heart.  And, last week I got a special surprise package from Germany.
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Monday, August 04, 2008

It's Not A Mistake, It's Character

Recently I sent a package of goodies to Diane of Crafty Pod.  One item was a custom-made wristlet.  I love making things knowing who they are for.  I'm able to put a little extra love into them.
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Tuesday, July 22, 2008


This cute little ninja was made from a pattern in Creepy Cute Crochet, just like the monkey in a fez.  I made it for another a co-worker's birthday.  Instead of making a card* for the ninja, I had everyone write their birthday message on a 2"x3" piece of card stock.  Then I taped each one on a pin (the ones with the flat flower heads on them) and stuck the pin in the ninja.
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Monday, July 21, 2008

Birthday Squirrel

This is a birthday card I made for a coworker.
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Friday, May 02, 2008

Ask And Ye Shall Receive

I've been walking around for days saying to anyone that will listen that I've been craving a sugar cookie with icing.   And then yesterday in the mail ... I GOT SUGAR COOKIES.  They didn't have icing, but they were button shaped and had sprinkles.
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Saturday, April 26, 2008

Thank You Ester

This is the present that Ester sent me for her 1 Year Specky Surprise.  It's just as wonderful and amazing as it looks!
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Friday, March 14, 2008

Unbelievably Busy Week And Wishes Fulfilled

I thought I was used to being crazy-busy, but this week has completely flattened me.  I'm afraid that when I go to bed tonight I won't wake up for a week.  It's been *that* busy.  It looks like I have a whole March-full of busyness to look forward to.
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Thursday, February 21, 2008

Wedding Blanket

This is the blanket I made for my sister, Nancy, and her husband when they married over seven years ago.  That sucker is huge!  I made it long enough to hang over both sides of their king-sized bed.  Thank you so much, Nanner, for taking the time to take these for me.  I know you're busy-busy-busy.
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Monday, January 07, 2008


My friend Grace arrived from Australia last night.  At first she pretended she was a little shy.  It took quite a bit to convince her to take off her coat and hat.

But by the end of the night, she was being her outgoing self, and was having a blast playing UNO with Ernest.  She beat him by 37 points.

Grace must have brought a little of the Australian summer with her because today it was 60 degrees in Philadelphia.  No joke.  It was beautiful!

Grace was sent to me by Jodie at Vintage Ric Rac.  I won her 100th post giveaway.

Grace herself is amazing, but everything that came with Grace (see my Flickr) just totally blows me away.  She has two toys (one is a pink sock monkey!), two reverseable dresses, a cardigan, a wool swing coat with one red button, a hat and scarf, adorable pjs, and a quilt made of vintage chenille.  Everything is impressively and impeccably made.  I'm so completely overwhelmed!  It's amazing.  Thank you, Jodie!
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Sunday, December 30, 2007

Neopolitan Blanket

All I could think about when I was making this blanket was the Neopolitan Coconut candies I would get as a child at the Pick-A-Mix station at the grocery store.  They are heaven!  I also liked the Jelly Nougats which look totally gross to me now.  Anyway, crocheting this blanket made me CRAVE candy.

The blanket is made of worsted weight cotton and is alternating rows of single and double crochet.  The single crochet gives some structure to the blanket and the double crochet makes it cuddly.

The top and bottom edge have an edging of *dc ch dc ch dc* all in one stitch and then a sc on either side.  The right and left edges are just single crochet.
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Thursday, December 13, 2007

Ravelry And (Gasp) Another Ornament

I got my invite to Ravelry today!  I've been holding my breath since I put myself on the waiting list.  I figured I waited too long to sign up and the user name "futuregirl" would be taken*.  Lucky me!!  It was still available!  I only had a second to look around, but it looks like a great site.

Yesterday I got this ornament from Jessica at Funky Finds.  How adorable is her little dog?!
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Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Tie-Dyed Jellyfish And Purple Fish

Here is a more evidence of my "little problem" in regard to ornaments.  When Crafty McGee posted that she had a couple left over ornaments to trade, I JUMPED on it.  Breathlessly.

For my part of the trade, I made her the tie-dyed jellyfish above.  I have a stash of tie-dyed felt that I finally cut into for this little guy.

The jellyfish seems to be the most popular of the Supercute Sea Creatures, which is a little bit of a surprise to me.  I would have thought it would be the octopus.

I also made her a purple fish with a sequin eye stripe.  I thought the silver sequins would look good paired with Christmas lights,  But now that I think about it, these little guys might be on her light-less tree ... in which case the sequins will bring a little bling to the mix. :)

I can't wait to get my little tree from Crafty McGee.  I think it's uber brilliant that she put the eyelet for hanging in the middle of the treetop star.
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Thursday, November 08, 2007

Floss Accomplished

With some help from Kari (whose mom and sister and used to own a cross stitch shop) and one last trip to the craft store, I have now become the proud owner of ALL of the colors of DMC floss.

A calm has settled over the craft table*. I now know that I can find the perfect color of floss for any craft project ... and if I can't, then it just doesn't exist.  Crafting with confidence, that's my motto.

*I'm only half joking. :)
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Thursday, October 18, 2007

Thanks, Laurie!

Laurie of Old School Acres had a drawing on her birthday, and this is the box of surprises that *she* sent to *me*.  How amazing is all that stuff?!

I LOVE the gigantic stuffed acorn. All the vintage jewelry is gorgeous, especially the bejeweled blue birds.  The background is vintage linens, and I love the embroidered peacock on the right one.  I have a vague idea about crocheting something onto existing clothes, and that novelty trim would come in handy for starting things off (it's got a picot border on one edge of the bias tape).

If you haven't already seen her blog, totally take a look.  She's talented, creative, and funny as all get out.  She's had me singing sweater pig instead of "spider pig" for weeks now.

Thanks, Laurie!
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Saturday, October 13, 2007

Baby Alpaca Yarn

I'm finally starting to feel better.  It sucks to come out from under a huge pile of used tissues and realize a whole week has passed you by.  Thanks for all the well wishes *and* crochet hook holder love!  You guys really make a girl feel better. :)

Another thing making me feel better ...

BABY ALPACA!  It's not just the name ... it's 80% Baby Alpaca and 20% Acrylic.  AMAZINGLY soft.  I got two balls each of charcoal, forest, plum, and cream.  This is officially the fanciest yarn I've ever touched.  For reals.  I've never gone into a LYS (local yarn store).  Funny thing is, he found this in the back of a fancy boutique in Philly's Old City, not a yarn store.  I've been literally dreaming about this yarn.  I'm not sure what I'm going to make yet.  Ideas?
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Saturday, August 18, 2007

Sweet Isa

Isa is the first person who ever emailed me and asked me to swap.  We've been trading packages and favors since then.

Isa's workmanship is beyond amazing.  She labors over every detail.  If you are a Blythe fiend in need of couture clothing for your little darlings, subscribe to her Flickr feed so you don't miss sale announcements.

This is the most adorable quilted pouch.  The hedgie's boat is named "Alice."  I love the cute embroidery.  She's made two other little pouches for me over the years.  I use them to hold jewelry on trips ... and this one will be perfect for that, too.

She also included lots of vintage German Fabric, trim, and buttons.  The fabric is amazing.  I love the retro prints.  And there is always chocolate ... which is already eaten, of course. :)

To continue the hedgie theme, Isa included this vintage children's book.  It's just like one she had as a child. The illustrations are so awesome.  I love the multi-colored hedgehog.  And look at that terrific owl.

Thanks again, Isa!
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Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Handbag For Barb

* * * * * *
UPDATE:  The Starling Handbag crochet pattern for the purse above is now available on the free downloads page.  Yay!
* * * * * *

I made this handbag for a previous co-worker.  She noticed that I made myself a handbag, and saw me crocheting all the time, so she asked if I'd make her one, too.  She took me out to lunch a million-and-one times in exchange - which was fine with me. :)

As you can see, I based the stripe and dash pattern on the fabric I chose as a lining.  I love the blues in the fabric.  I just happened to have just enough teal yarn left over from another project to use for this handbag.  Yay for stash-using.

I have a thing for stripes in a big way.  It's totally accidental.  I never think about it, I'm just drawn to them.  Years ago a friend pointed out that over half the shirts hanging in my closet had horizontal stripes on them ... I'd never noticed.

I didn't make a label for this handbag because I never told Barb about my craft blog.  In fact, I never told anyone at that job about it.  Is that weird?  Do any of you not-tell certain people about your craft-blog-self?
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Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Tiny Squirrel For Frizz

Here is a little extra bit for my swap with Frizz.  Thanks again, Frizz, for such a great swap! :)

This tiny squirrel and giant acorn come from this Japanese craft book, ISBN 4834755894.  It's full of the cutest little creatures. I was glad I had a reason to finally make one of them.  You can barely see it in the photo, because I blew out the white, but there is white center stitching on the squirrel's cute buck teeth.  The tail swirl wasn't easy to cut out, but it's so freakin' cute!  Each of the arms on this guy are about the size of a lentil.  I actually lost an arm in all the crafting hubbub and had to cut out another tiny appendage.  Thank goodness for my crafting fingernail scissors. :)

Andrew was just snapping away during the squirrel photo shoot and caught this portrait of the back of my head.  This is what my hair looks like 98% of the time.  My favorite hair sticks are black, child-sized chopsticks I bought at Pearl River in New York.  They were 10 sets for $3.

See how teeny the squirrel is?  Actually, this photo is a little misleading, because I have a monstrously huge head. :)
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Sunday, March 25, 2007

My Stash Gained Ten Pounds

I used to be a big hoarder.  I saved anything and everything, you know, just in case.  Seven years ago we were in San Francisco and now we're in Philadelphia with several stops in between. In that time I've learned to declutter my life.  I've come to love having just what I need.
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Thursday, March 22, 2007

Owl Needlebook From Esther

You may recall that Ester* was the inspiration behind my crochet wristlet.  In addition to buying the prototype, she sent me this wonderful needlebook.

I must confess that I spied it in her Flickr feed. I really really hoped she didn't know another Alice and that this needlebook was a surprise for me.  I was so happy to find a package from Malaysia in my mailbox yesterday!

The whole thing is hand sewn with beautiful tiny stitches.  The words say "Hoot Alice Hoot."  The little owl wing flaps open to reveal the snap.  It's unbelievably precious - it actually pains me.  I feel like I'm getting a Vulcan Nerve Pinch every time I think about that wing/snap opening and closing.  I've already filled the inside with pins, needles, and some paper clip stitch markers.

I was using a scrap piece of felt for needles in my travel craft bag that I take to work everyday.  I'm so happy to have this needlebook to replace that.  I want to protect this little treasure, so I made a  Ziploc® travel case for it.  Did you know you can just sew new seams for Ziploc® bags?  Oh, yes ... yes you can!

Esther -- I appreciate the time you spent sewing this for me.  It's such a sweet thing for you to do. This needlebook will always be very special to me.  I love it!

*You should totally check out Esther's Flickr account.  She's been making super-cute, crazy-tiny matchbook dioramas.  This little pig farm is so adorable that you can't look at it directly without safety goggles.
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Friday, February 23, 2007


This handbag, for Bethany of Bitter Betty, started as a dream. I awoke one morning with the image of a cream and black striped bag floating in my head. It'd been months since I decided to make her a handbag, and I'd been waiting for the perfect inspiration.
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Thursday, February 01, 2007

Made Especially for Green Kitchen

Michelle of Green Kitchen is one of my favorite craft conspirators and a good friend.  After she sent me this this wonderful package, the least I could do was make her a bag.

This bag is totally different from all the others I've made, and I had a great time designing it for her.  I actually made Michelle's bag before the one for my mother-in-law.  I loved using my brand-new-for-my-birthday fabric to make a gift.

Since she has a baby to carry, she needed something hands-free.  She sent me a sketch with dimensions, which totally helped me out.  The strap is long enough to wear across her chest.  I was afraid that the cotton yarn would stretch over time, so I made the strap adjustable.  It loops through a rectangle ring and then attaches to itself with three buttons that slip right between the strap's stitches.

The three decoy buttons on the outside of the strap stabilize the functional buttons.

No one sells 1.5 inch rectangle rings, so I liberated one from an unused backpack.  I couldn't even find them online.  If you know where I can get them, please tell me, because they are the perfect size for all sorts of uses.

I crocheted a removable cell phone holder that hangs from the rectangle ring, and there is a key hook attached to a long strap.  I made the key hook strap long enough that the keys rest on the bottom of the bag so their weight won't pull down the top edge of the bag.

I was afraid that my normal felt and embroidery floss embellishments wouldn't be tough enough to withstand the reality of errands with two little ones, so I tried something new.  I used cotton yarn to embroider in the spaces created by the single crochet stripes.  I love the way it turned out, and I have plans to use the technique again.

I totally took a chance that Michelle would like the kooky fabric and crazy embellished stripes.  The fabric is so enthusiastic and bold, and that's how I picture Michelle.  And, from a fashion standpoint, with so many colors it would equally match (or not-match) everything.  I love thinking about her running around town with a bag I made for her.
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Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Ornament Swap

First, I want to thank Michelle of Green Kitchen for organizing this ornament swap.  With all the stuff she has going on (you know, life), it was great of her to initiate it and make it happen.

When I first saw the participant list, I thought, "Kick Ass. I totally want stuff from these people."  Luckily, Michelle reassured me that my lack of Christmasness wouldn't disqualify me, so I've been waiting here for my avalanche of awesome ... and these women didn't disappoint.

Michelle from Green Kitchen sent me two (two!) ornaments.  They are exactly the kind of lovingly made, retro ornaments that hung on my Grandmother's Christmas tree.  I love the vintage bulbs, chenille stems, and crochet bodies.  They are heartwarming to look at and evoke a nostalgia for Christmas that I rarely experience.

Bethany from Bitter Betty sent me this freaking adorable deer, Bad Bambi.  Amazing!  She knows, of course, that I love skulls and cute-edgy stuff and Bad Bambi is exactly that.  It's smaller than any stuffie I've ever made.  I'm totally in awe of her tiny handy work! Do you see the perfect minuscule cigarette!?  Take a look at the rest of her tiny creations.

Stephanie from Ruby Crowned Kinglette sent me a wonderfully stylized reindeer.  The design is amazing.  I love simple graphic shapes.  The suede body feels great and the natural twig legs and antlers are wonderful.  It's just gorgeous!  Check out the whole set.

Tricia from Frizzelstixs sent this awesome embroidered panel. I always love her animal characters and I can't believe I have one for my very own.  A deer drinking coffee - he's so cool!  I imagine he's home from a long day of lumberjacking and, before he even takes off his plaid over-shirt, he's warming up with a cup of joe.

Meg from Pixiegenne sent this wonderful button wreath.  Since my button stash isn't big enough for me to make one of these, it's especially appreciated.  I like the way Soule Mama used hers as a frame and I'm going to find a cute picture of us to put in it.

Cassi from Bella Dia created this wonderful, graphic ornament.  It's a bright, cheery decoration, perfect for combating the shortening days.  I love the simplicity of the colors and shapes, but close up you can see all the detailed, careful stitches. It's beautiful.

Kristin from Kleas sent me the cutest little elf girl.  Do you see those tiny braids?  The precious pointy shoes?  The stripey tights?  The elfin mushroom?  She is so completely adorable.  I love that her arms are thrown wide like she's ready to give everyone she meets a big hug.

Thank you, everyone, for making this such a *great* group swap!
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Thursday, November 02, 2006

Embroidered Paisley Patch

Two of my commission purses will have paisley embellishments on the outside.  I figured I should do a practice run and make a patch for the Red Button Tree Patch Swap at the same time.

The paisley is about 2" by 1" on black acrylic felt.  It makes me happy just to look at it.  It's so bright and cute. It came out 110% better than I thought it would.

I used a pattern from this book.  It's full of great designs and I'm happy I finally had a chance to use one.

I have two more paisleys traced and ready to stitch, but I feel like I need to make some significant progress on my big projects before I make more patches.  Maybe when I need a break, I'll pick them up.  My self-imposed mail date for the patch swap is November 10th, so I still have some time.
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Friday, September 22, 2006

Korallin and Marietta Get Bags

These two bags were sent to two great women: Korallin and Marietta.  I can't say enough great things about these two.  Korallin left the first comment on my blog and has been a hilarious and steadfast friend ever since.  Marietta and I clicked right away.  She sent me a super-cool stash of felt after exchanging only a couple of emails with me.  They are both exuberant, kick ass women.  And I wanted to send them both a kick ass present.

I've been on a mission to make a totally awesome crochet bag.  The first step was designing a bag with no seams.  This bag is a smooth, solid, strong, single crochet bag - even the handles are integrated.

  The second step was making a great lining. The bottom is squared off and reinforced with thick iron-on interfacing, which helps keep the bottom of the bag flat, even when it's loaded down.

I was worried that the top edge of the bag would buckle around the snap when it was full and you picked it up by the handles.  As reinforcement, I added boning along the top edges.  The boning is light-weight, but still strong enough to keep the crisp line across the top of the bag when it's snapped shut.

The bird embellishments are inspired by the lining fabric and are pretty much embroidered freehand.  The embroidered "handmade by futuregirl" tags are created by printing out the letters on paper using the font from my blog.  Then I trace it onto see-through tear-away stabilizer, embroider over that, and then (kinda) tear it away.  Be warned:  tear-away stabilizer is meant to be on the back of machine embroidery, not the front of hand embroidery.  The labels in these purses were done with one strand of brown floss.  I almost ripped them right out of the fabric when I tried to tear away the stabilizer.  My heart fucking stopped.  Ugh!  Luckily just a couple of the stitches had been pulled funny and that was easily fixed.  Now I carefully use my manicure scissors and tweezers to remove the stabilizer.

One of my favorite parts of the whole process is sewing the lining into the
bag.  First I pin the lining in, then I hand stitch around one single crochet stitch, bring the needle in and out of the top fold of the lining (so the thread is inside the folded top edge of the lining), then around the next stitch, etc.  It comes out looking so nice and smooth - like it was machine sewn.  The stitches don't even pull when you unsnap the purse - they are super sturdy and secure.  And, of course, I have my handy dandy snap tool to do the snaps now.

It's a great feeling to have done all this work and end up with a bag that I'm really proud of.  It's an even better feeling to have people to share them with. :)
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Monday, August 21, 2006

Green Kitchen Gifts

I can't believe the incredible package that Green Kitchen sent to me.  I'm totally blown away by how thoughtful she is.  Everything she sent is exactly something I would have picked for myself.

The package included a print of a mixed media skull with flowers.  I absolutely love it!  I already bought a frame and put it up on the wall behind my computer.  It looks great with everything else.  I took this opportunity to build a little shelf for Kate and Pipka, which were gifts from Isa.

Inside the package was a small swatch of printed fabric wrapped around a small, but weighty, bundle.  Inside the fabric was this wallet.  Ahhhh! The Dreary Xmas wallet series was featured in her first blog post. Santa Skull is a sister wallet to the Sad Snowman, the head of which she uses as her profile photo.  Her kick-ass wallets inspired me to make the Bad Eggs around Easter when I was fed up with the all the saccharine consumerism (thank goodness Easter doesn't have it's own music...).

The stitching on this wallet rocks.  There is a tiny translucent red bead in the middle of the hat pom-pom ... which can also be spelled pom-pon ... which also means artillery designed to shoot upward at airplanes.  I can't believe she sent this wallet to me.  To me! :)  It's mine.

The wallet was awfully heavy, so I opened it and found this amazing owl tucked inside.  Owl! When I pulled it out of the wallet, in a stunned, low voice, I uttered, "Oh my fucking god."

Apparently I gave the impression that there was a severed finger in the wallet.  Andrew seemed relieved when he looked over and I was holding an owl necklace.

It's metallic gold and white with awesome glass eyes.  I'm definitely going to wear this out, even though it is 3.5" long and weighs about 4 pounds.  It's just too incredibly cute to keep all to myself!

I found another big owl necklace recently, in addition to the one that I bought to put on my little green bag.  The big owl necklaces have officially become a collection.

Thank you, Michelle!  I love it all. :)  You totally rock!
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Friday, July 28, 2006

Bird Fabric Surprise

Andrew and I don't celebrate most holidays.  Ok, that's not true.  We don't celebrate *any* holidays ... except for the ones we make up ourselves.  Today is one of those days, the email-versary, commemorating our first email.

Normally we only give presents on birthdays and *the* anniversary.  Email-versaries (and the like) are a nice dinner out and a bottle of wine.  But occasionally, one of us will sneak a load of presents home without the other knowing.  This time I got the big surprise!

This bird fabric is actually a queen sized throw from Urban Outfitters. Andrew calculated the cost per yard and realized it was about the same or cheaper than buying me fabric. It's the coolest fucking fabric, ever.  I fell asleep dreaming about the craft projects I will do with it.

My pile of presents include two super-neat notebooks from Urban Outfitters.  This owl one is beautiful.  The swirly stampy bits remind me of what I did with my blog design.  I was swooning when I saw this!  The other is a blue and brown bird print that is very cool, too.

The book, Colour Me, Pictoplasma, (say it out loud, it's fun) is from the AIA bookstore, where all-things-wonderful can be found. It is a pseudo coloring and activity book full of line drawings from super cool character artists.  It will be a great source of inspiration, like Happy Kitty Bunny Pony. He also found the coolest pencils made from Chinese newspapers there.  They will be very useful for sketching my stuffie parts in my new notebooks.

To top it all off, there is a 2007 Edward Gorey page-a-day calendar and a clear plastic two-sided storage bin for all my little goodies.  I feel so spoiled.  Half of me is overwhelmed by how perfect all the gifts are, and the other half is jumping around like a five year old, "Yay for me!."  I fell asleep with the card on my bedside table last night (he surprised me at midnight - we usually can't wait any longer than that), and I had to stop myself from taking all my stuff to work.  Now I have the whole weekend to play.
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Sunday, July 09, 2006

Felt Magnets

These felt magnets were a part of the package that I sent to Marci for our swap.  They are about 2.5 inch diameter felt circles.  Kinda big for a magnet, but I wanted to get as many of those cute sequins on them as possible.   The magnet is glued on the inside and they are lightly stuffed.
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Thursday, July 06, 2006

Werner the Squirrel

Werner the Squirrel and his traveling companion Klaus the Acorn have arrived at their new home in New York City!  They now live with Marci.

Werner ("verner") is named after the German director Werner Herzog.  Werner Herzog is so cool that even Henry Rollins (from the punk band Black Flag) thinks he's the shit.  Henry has a show on IFC. Henry was recently interviewed on Nerve:
NERVE: I read recently that one of the people you most wanted to interview was Werner Herzog. Did you get to?

HENRY: I did. He's going to be on the show. It was so cool. He said stuff I'm using now as rhetoric. I said, "As far as Hollywood is concerned, you're kind of an outsider." He just nodded his head and said, [In a German accent] "No. They are the outsiders." Thank you! New tattoo, please! We talked about when he was shot recently. He was doing an interview and someone shot him. [In a German accent] "Yes, but it was a small bullet in the abdomen; it did not perforate the intestine. I finished the interview. It was not a serious bullet." And I'm like, "You know, Werner, there's a lot of people out there, myself included, who think every bullet is a pretty fucking serious bullet!" So he goes into this long story about all the times he's been shot at, and what a rush it is for a guy his age to have someone attempt to kill him and be unsuccessful. I would follow that man anywhere.

I'm not sure why he gets shot at so much, since, from what I can tell, he is a sweet, warm, intelligent, and thoughtful person, but we should all be thankful that no one has been a half-decent shot because Werner makes *incredible* movies.

And then there's Klaus the Acorn, whom Marci christened "Angry Acorn."  He's named after the actor Klaus Kinski.  Werner and Klaus go way back - all the way to their teens.  Their collaboration is quite a crazy story.  This page of quotes from them kind of sums it all up.

The starting point for Werner is a pattern in Palm-sized Stuffies ISBN 4834722449.  I altered the tail so I could attach the marabou feathers and I designed a whole new head.  This is the third head I made.  The first two were rejected by quality control (a.k.a. Andrew).  One head was accused of looking like an walrus!  I used the same dark brown embossed felt as I did for Wim.

Klaus was created in a free-style frenzy of felt.  The big bulbous top is a little much (it's almost as big as the bottom part), but once I noticed the eerie resemblance to the real Klaus' vaguely swollen head and mop of unruly blond hair, I realized it was meant to be.
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Friday, June 16, 2006

Felt from Marietta

When I posted Wim, Marietta (knit or get off the pot!) emailed me and said that her JoAnn's had some embossed felt and offered to pick some up for me.  The only embossed felt I've seen is the brown I used on Wim.  Of course I took her up on her generous offer.  I was hoping for a few colors in the pattern I found for Wim.

F*ck me blue!  I got a bulging package with 9 colors and 8 different embossed designs.  This is the coolest felt in my stash.  The patterns include alligator, florals, butterflies, concentric circles, and a wavy-starfishy design.  They are going to be a great source of inspiration.

Thank you, Marietta!
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Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Wim the sweet Deer

Wim is named after the excellent German director Wim Wenders ("vim venders").  Then name Wim is short of Wilhelm ("vilhelm"). Wim, the deer, now lives with Isa in Germany. Isa's post about getting the package is very sweet.

Wim was made from a pattern in Palm-sized Stuffies ISBN 4834722449. He is supposed to be made of fabric with seam allowances, but I'm addicted to hand-sewing felt right now so I made some alterations. It was mostly an easy transition, but the one thing that absolutely freaked me out is putting on his ears. It isn't explicit in the instructions (or maybe it is if you read Japanese), but you can see it in the pictures: you must cut slits in the felt head of the deer and insert the ears into his head. After spending lots of time sewing his head, which wasn't easy, I had to CUT SLITS into it. This process took days. First I made the ears and pinned them on the head. As I sewed the rest of the deer I would look at the head, reposition the ears, look at it some more. I wanted to make sure they were where I wanted them to be. Normally, if I sew something up and it's wrong, I just rip out the seam and re-sew it. But I can't un-cut a slit. Luckily, I did it right the first time.

The brown felt is embossed with a swirly stamped-leather type of design. I'd been waiting for the right project to use it. I'm amazed at how wonderful it makes Wim look. His eyelashes are a starburst sequin with some of the "bursts" cut off. Then the rest of the eye is a felt circle, dark blue small sequin, and a pearl bead.

I made a little photo album for the Isa's swap package. The picture above was taken in the backyard of Independence Hall which is featured on the back of the $100 bill. It's run by the National Park Service. Luckily, I came prepared with scissors to trim the grass because it was so tall it hid half of Wim. I was fully prepared to be tackled by guards for destruction of federal property when I started cutting the lawn.
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