Friday, September 30, 2011

Glitter shoes!

This was going to be the first installment of glitter week...but after spending a half hour spitting glitter after trying to make glitter lip balm (vaseline + glitter = nope,) I'm gonna go ahead and not pressure myself. But since I caved the other day and bought this:


You can expect to see some more glittering happening real soon.

But anyway! Glitter shoes!


Neat eh?


-Shoes you don't love anymore
-Glue - I used Aleene's Jewel-It because it's meant for glueing rhinestones to fabric, so I figured glueing glitter to shoes was similar. Lots of people have luck with Mod Podge though.
- A container & stir stick
- A paintbrush you can bear to part with
- A tray of some sort (I used a shoebox lid) and maybe some card stock to make a funnel (to get extra glitter back in the tube.)
- Sandpaper, if you're working with shiny shoes.
- An easily cleaned space, or a space you don't care about (our porch is now permanently sparkly) because you are probably going to make a huge mess.

And yes, I'm stirring with a penis straw, left over from my bachelorette party. Let's take a closer look, shall we?


Amazing. The sort of sick part is that they took the time to make veins on it, yet the balls are super totally uneven. Apparently realistic circulation was more important. Anyway, I figured I didn't care if it got covered in glue.

Step 1: Sand down your shoes if they're shiny and smooth. I don't truly know if this is necessary but I feel like it makes the glitter stick a bit better.


Incidentally you may recognize these shoes from this pattern. I swear I had way more people interested in buying the shoes than in making the spats, haha.

Step 2: Water down your glue (but not as much as I did- go for "paste-y", not "milky". I had a lot of dripping.) Stir it well, and start painting it on the shoes with the paintbrush, doing just one section for now.


Step 3: Glitter that bitch UP. Be generous, and hold it over your tray. You can get the extra back later. Let it sit for a second, then shake/tap it gently to get most of the extra off.


Step 4: Repeat that all over both shoes and let dry. This is what mine looked like after one coat:


Blotchy, yes, but don't panic yet.

Step 5: Retrieve your glitter, using a funnel or whatever.


Step 6: When the shoes are dry, fill in the patchy areas the same way. Keep doing that until they're looking good. Once they're dry for the last time, stomp them on the ground outside (or somewhere easily cleaned up) to get as much extra glitter off as you can.



Mine lost some glitter on the first wearing, so I think I'm going to patch them up again and then maybe get a spray fixative to put on there (I think they make sprayable Mod Podge (!?!?!) so that might work.) And I might try mixing the glitter with the glue, next time, though from looking at other tutorials, it seems like that gives you more of a flat effect. But anyway, they held up better than I would've suspected. Do realize that you'll be leaving a trail of sparkly fairy poops wherever you go... so I suggest you go somewhere besides your house. Perhaps to the house of someone you don't like.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Top 5 Sucker-Punch-to-the-Gut TV Moments of Modern Time

Ok, so I know this isn't really craft-related, except inasmuch as crafters seem to watch a lot of tv (hey, we have to keep our eyes busy somehow while our hands are cranking out awesome stuff.) But I've wanted to do it for a long time, so I'm going to anyway. But first:

SPOILERS. This post has them.

5. The one where Chandler reveals his intention to marry Monica
Ok, I'll be the first to admit that I don't even LIKE Monica, but I saw this episode as a kid and for some reason it really stuck with me as being terribly sweet. Chandler, having discovered that his girlfriend put her name on a 2-year waiting list for a primo wedding venue, spends the episode in a commitment-phobic freak-out to keep her from finding out that he's planning to propose. People got all gooey eyed over the actual proposal one, but I think this is the cuter bit. Though it took me forever to find this clip so maybe I'm just weird. ("The One Where Paul's The Man", Friends, season 6, episode 22.)

4. The one where you realize how good a show Firefly could've been, if only Fox hadn't shat on it

I mean, it's already a good show. But that first season laid the groundwork for SO MUCH complexity and richness and plot-twistiness that Serenity had no hope of ever really exploring (Two by two, hands of blue?) I think Joss Whedon proved, with the much maligned Dollhouse, that if given the proper chance to wrap up a show, he can make shit crazy. He just starts off a little slow, is all.

(since you can't sum that up in a clip, really, here are some random quotes)

3. The one where Susan Boyle hands your cynical ass to you on a platter
Admit it, you did NOT think she'd be this good, right? Brutal choice of song, too. (Britain's Got Talent 2009, episode 1.) Click the title for a link- embedding is disabled in this one too.

2. The one where Spike saves us all, even though Buffy will never love him.
Arguably the series finale of a much-loved show shouldn't count, since it's guaranteed to be a bit heart-wrenching... but, c'mon. Spike. You beautiful monster. Goddammit. I've heard he comes back in Angel, but I got bored with Angel's dramatics before I made it that far. ("Chosen", Buffy the Vampire Slayer, season 7, episode 22.)

1. The one where Fry's dog....*NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO*
I can safely say that this is the only thing I've seen on tv that actually lowered the quality of my life. As someone with a particular soft spot for dogs, the viewing of this episode would probably make the top ten list of sad things that have happened to me IN REAL LIFE, along with the deaths of ACTUAL dogs, and, you know, people. Futurama had sort of a habit of tossing in moments that made you want to rip your own heart out and stomp on it, including some brutal Fry-Leela scenes, and that entire episode with Leela's parents. But this is worse. So much worse. Fry finds the fossilized body of his dog, and is given the option to create a clone that would have the same personality and memories, but cops out when he finds out the dog lived another 12 years without him, figuring he was forgotten. Here's a video, but don't blame me if the emotional scarring lasts a lifetime. ("Jurassic Bark", Futurama, season 7, episode 4.)

I know there are a ton of other tv moments that make you want to staple your eyes and ears shut and stop feeling feelings, but bizarrely enough, I haven't yet found time to watch EVERY show on television, so I hope you'll help me fill out the list in the comments. All I ask is that you preface the post with "SPOILERS: 'Name of show'" so that fans who don't want to have their souls crushed prematurely can delay the inevitable.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

5,4,3,2,1 Things things about...

So Craftzine has this little series going where they ask for 1/2/3/4/5 specific things about various makers and shakers, and they're encouraging other blogs to get in on it as well. So I figured I'd indulge my narcissism a little.

One Project You Are Particularly Proud Of

1: Well, I've knit a lot of things that I like... but just to mix it up, I'll say the needle-felted squid beret I made for my sister a few years ago:

Squid Vicious 2

I don't even think she wears the darn thing... but it's pretty much the only thing I've needle felted (besides a slightly less impressive octopus hat, later.)

Two Mistakes You've Made in the Past

1: I did college all wrong. Flitted from school to school, changed majors, wasn't social enough... I graduated with a degree that I find really interesting but certainly don't use (psych.) I should've taken more time to figure out what I wanted to do before going to school, I think.

2: Quitting drinking. I know that sounds odd... but I quit drinking a few years ago because I was having some anxiety issues and as a result, my tolerance has tanked and I can't even have a drink with friends or wine with dinner anymore :-(

Three Things That Make Your Work Unique

1: I knit almost every hat on 16" size 7 needles.

2: I only make stuff that I want to wear. And then I DO wear it, which is bad form, since it ruins it and I can't use it for trunk shows or re-shoots. How terribly unprofessional!

3: I will tell you my dirty secret: I barely ever check gauge ahead of time. For most of my projects, it either doesn't matter much (shawls) or I've made the basic shape so many times with so many yarns and needles that I can just guess pretty effectively (hats). Now that I'm trying to make sweaters I actually have to be diligent about gauge and it's kind of a drag.

Four Tools You Love to Use

1: Addi Turbos. Yes yes.

2: Schoolhouse Press knitter's graph paper. It's specially proportioned to mimic stockinette stitch, so you get a more accurate image when you're mapping out colorwork.

3: Soft merino, kettle-dyed, worsted-weight yarns - Malabrigo and Madelinetosh come to mind.

4: Pilot Varsity pens. It drives my husband nuts, he hates using them, but I LOVE them. They're basically disposable fountain pens.

Five Inspirations

1: The internet. It sure has a lot of stuff on it.

2: Texture

3: Shape and form- specifically, making a particular shape in an unusual way.


4: Colors! And the combination thereof. I spend a lot of time tossing my stash around looking for combos I like. I also am sort of neurotic about putting things in rainbow order.

5: Totally overwrought magazine spreads.

Man, answering questions is kinda hard. Anyway, what are 5/4/3/2/1 (so..15) things about you? Leave me a link in the comments if you decide to answer them on your blog, so I can read 'em!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Fun with Pantone's 2011 Fall Palette

I don't usually pay a ton of attention to officially-prescribed color trends, but I have to admit I rather like this year's Pantone selections for fall:

Out of curiosity, I thought I'd delve into my yarn stash and see what I had that fit the bill:


I seem to have an over-representation of nougat. Mmm, nougat.


I tried to do the same with buttons, but I seem to be short on subdued colors. I'm set on pinks for life, though.


What do you guys think? Do you pay any attention to the official seasonal color trends when picking out outfits or starting projects? What do you think of this season's palette?


I think that I need to stop tearing apart my stash on a whim. Now I have to put it all back...

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Regretsy/CF4L Hat

ETA: As seen on Bronc, here!
If you have to ask, you don't want to know. Trust me.
Click to embiggen.

Charts, in case something is wrong with you and you want to make one too:

cf4l chart


The area between the yellow lines is the repeat- you can make as many centipede dudes as you want. *Shudder*

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Quick & Dirty Lightbox for Small-Thing Photography

So, I know that, as my dear friend Vivian has pointed out, it really doesn't cost that much to buy a light box.* But I needed one, and I needed it now.


Since there are a bazillion tutorials on this sort of thing and most of my process photos turned out a bit shit, I'll just give you the quick run down. You can see the whole photo tutorial on Flickr.

1. Start with a box, a good bit bigger than whatever you need to photograph.
2. Cut off the flaps.
3. Set the box so that the opening is facing you and you've got it positioned the way you want when you'll be photographing.
4. Cut a big window in the top of the box, and another on whichever side your light source will be coming from. You want to leave at least an inch around the edges for stability.
5. Cover these two windows with some sort of transparent white paper. I've used tissue in the past, but I wanted to try parchment this time. Tape 'em down.
6. Cut a piece of poster board or paper (in whatever color you want the backdrop to be) that is about as long as the back (formerly bottom) and bottom (formerly side) of the box, and as wide as your "stage". Attach the paper at the top two back corners of the box, letting it curve down and out (as shown in the picture.)


This is the set up. The window is to the right, and on the left a piece of regular white printer paper has been stuck in the side to act as a reflector. You can experiment with different color reflectors or shinier ones, like tin foil.

I used parchment paper as my backdrop because I was curious what it would look like... I don't recommend it, though. As you can see in the first photo, it comes out a little grayish, even after fixing the levels in Photoshop. I'll be replacing it with poster board. But it's not bad for being made out of a bunch of household junk!

*fair warning, I am an Amazon affiliate so if you choose to buy a box through that link instead of making a sweet, ghetto-fied cardboard monstrosity like mine here, I do get a little cut.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Pretty Color Palettes from Ugly Photos

Suuuure, anyone can take a gorgeous photos and pull some colors out of it. But what about a snapshot of your goofy looking dog, or a picture of a nasty bathroom floor?

Challenge accepted.

(photo- husband's old Turken, David Lynch!)

This seems like a bit of a spring palette. For when you want that "I'm a naked-necked freak of nature poking around the lawn" look. You know, like, in spring.

(photo credit: Veronica ML, used under Creative Commons license)

Now, this is a bit of a feminine look, but the various shades of gray make it sophisticated. Good for a girly, but grown up, boudoir. Or a slobbering, bug-eyed dog. Your choice.
* Bonus! This dog might fit in your purse, if you get kind of a big one! *

(photo credit: SharonaGott, used under Creative Commons license)

It is always disturbing when you realize how much of your wardrobe (and yarn stash) is made up of the colors in a bruise. (No? Just me? Damn.)

(photo credit: atravellingmom, used under Creative Commons license)

Mmm, those warm, inviting, tungsten-in-a-gold-bathroom tones.

(photo credit: Megan Ann, used under Creative Commons license)

I own a shirt in every one of those foul-concert-venue-bathroom colors.

(photo credit: Yortw, used under Creative Commons license)

Everyone knows that teddy bears are TOTAL shopaholics. Also, colorblind. Luckily we get some leeway if we ignore the red and green on the mug. The real question is, what the fuck are those tags supposed to say? There appears to be a 99-cents on there, but everything else is just a scribble.

TEH BEAUTYZ! IT IS IN EVERYTHING! Or... just because you bought good ingredients doesn't mean you can make a decent meal.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Multistrand Pearl Wedding Necklace

I wanted to share some photos of the necklace I made for my wedding, inspired by this tutorial.


I used a different sort of clasp, and let the strands get a bit more tangly than the original. Truth be told, I think I still like the original sliiiightly more... but I'm pretty happy with this.



...and now I have a ton of extra pearls to play with! Hmm...

(action shot by my wedding photographer, Nicole Ladonne.)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Quick & Dirty DIY iPhone Tripod Mount

Oh, and cheap. Cheap too.

I've been slacking off about doing video because I lost the charger to my main video camera and didn't have a way to put my iPhone on the tripod- until today.


What you need:

- a cheapo, but sturdy, iPhone case that fits your model
- duct tape
- a corner bracket (like this*)
- a tripod with a screw mount thingy (I have this one and I love it*)
- a wing nut that fits that screw (or, if you're dumb like me, you'll forget to bring the tripod screw to the hardware store and will end up swapping it out for a random bolt out of the garage...but same idea.)


1. Screw the corner bracket onto the tripod, holding it in place with the wingnut.
2. Set the iPhone, in its case, on the horizontal part of the corner bracket (pushed up against the vertical part) so that the screen faces back towards the tripod and the camera faces out.
3. Duct tape the vertical part of the bracket to the iPhone case, being careful not to cover the camera or wrap around and get any on the actual phone. The phone should still be able to pop out of the case easily.

Easy, yeah? It seriously cost me like $2, since all I needed were wingnuts and a bracket. I am going to need a new iPhone case now, though...

*disclosure: I'm an Amazon affiliate, so should you choose to buy things through those links, I get a little cut. Heinous and greedy, I know, but I figured I'd be linking you to products anyway, so...hey. Anyway it'd be easier to just go to a hardware store.


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