Friday, 27 June 2014

"I have loved the stars too fondly" calligraphy style artwork

Hello! I decided to try something a bit different for this latest craft - painting! I'll be perfectly honest with you though, painting is really not one of my greater skills, especially for fine lines. So, of course, this project is almost entirely text. Mmmm, logic ~___^

I made this for Pip for her house-warming; I found it tough to make something for a house I'd never seen before, but hopefully this will fit in ok with the rest of her decor! I based this project on a quote that Phillipa likes, commonly attributed to Galileo but actually by Sarah Williams (the more you know!). I started with a small chopping board from IKEA; I actually have a few left because they came in a four pack, but I brought them so long ago that I don't think IKEA sells them anymore. Which is a pity, because they are the perfect size for little artworks ^___^

I slapped on blue, purple, and black paint in different combinations to attempt to recreate the look of the night sky. I think it worked pretty well, and also it was fun to do ~___^ Then I traced the shape of the board onto a piece of A4 paper and started planning out the quote. I carefully wrote it out onto the board with a lead pencil and then went over everything with silver paint. I used a brush, but I was wishing that I had a paint pen by the first letter!

I made a few mistakes, and had to try washing off the paint, which left some patches lighter than others, and my brush control is really lacking. All that said, I am pretty satisfied with how it turned out. I also added some pretty little stars which were, thankfully, very easy to do. I also went over the stars with glow-in-the-dark paint so they give off a subtle glow which I found quite cute.

Painting is still something I definitely need to work on, but it was fun to do something different, and it worked up a lot faster than embroidery (which was the other medium I was considering for this project!) ^___^ Any artists out there? I'd love any tips you have for me!

- Lisa xx

Monday, 23 June 2014

Lumpy Space Princess Cosplay

Hello! Today I can finally show you my finished LSP cosplay! Yay! I had so much fun wearing this costume, and a couple of people asked for photos and hugs which feels like the best kind of validation ~___^

Here's the whole costume - as one guy at the con described it "whoa, that's a lot of purple!". Yes, good sir, it is! ^___^ I spent a lot of time looking for the perfect purple dress to wear, but in the end decided that it would be easier to just make one. I apparently forget how difficult dress-making fairly regularly! ~___^ I'm lucky enough to have Rebecca as a friend as she not only made the pattern for the bodice, let me borrow her sewing machine, and held my hand through making this dress, but also sewed in the center back zip for me (I am awful at zips!). She is an absolute champion and I have my fingers crossed that she will blog about her amazing Marcelline costume soon (hint hint, nudge nudge ~___^). You've already seen my shoes, my belt was from my Hipster Wonder Woman costume, and my tights were purchased from a department store.

I ordered my wig from an ebay store, and I am so so happy with it. It's really beautiful and soft, and is really comfortable to wear! I'm quite tempted to buy a few other colours, I'm sure they'd come in handy ~___^

The star is a hairclip made from felt and glittery mod podge, with a clip glued to the back. The mod podge is great because it also makes the felt a bit stiffer, which means it doesn't feel like it's flopping all over your head ~___^

My necklace is made from shrinky-dinks and nail polish. I was inspired by Tatty Devine necklaces when I was planning this one; I'm happy with how this turned out, but I'm still considering buying a 'real' one ...

I originally coloured in my shrinky dinks with Sharpies, but I wasn't really happy with the intensity of the colours. However, going over them with glittery nail polish made them look brighter, shinier, and most importantly, sparkly! ~___^

I think that having a bag is a highly important part of cosplay, and I was a little worried that people wouldn't know who I was meant to be (although this didn't actually turn out to be an issue!) so I decided to make myself an LSP handbag. 

I used the same pattern that I used to make my LSP plushie, but I printed it out on A3 paper instead of A4 to make it a more generous bag size. I found the most amazing purple glittery vinyl at Spotlight and just knew this had to be the fabric I used - it's just so pretty! ^___^

Since my sewing machine is still broken, I hand stitched the bag together and used a lot of hot glue for most everything else ~___^ LSP's face is made from leather scraps glued onto the vinyl; I painted some black leather with gold paint and glitter mod podge (I'm getting a lot of use out of that tub!) for her star and her face is the same black leather unpainted.

Her arms are hot glued together as well, mostly because I'm a bit lazy and a little bit because I thought having no stitches would look nicer. 

The chain straps are connected to the bag via some very large metal rings and these little loops of vinyl that are sewed in between the two layers of the bag. I used a metre of chain for the strap and it's a great length.

The zip is also hot glued in and is mostly hidden by the flaps on the back of the bag. I used a vintage zip that I had in my stash which means that it sticks a little sometimes, but it was also free so I don't mind too much ~___^

Of course the best thing about cons is the merch, right? ~___^ I really love to pick up handmade things so Artist's Alley is my favourite area ^___^ I got this amazing watercolour illustration of Wonder Woman and also some button badges of Adventure Time characters and Catbug by Nic Lawson. ^___^ I also brought some wonderful hair bows and some more button badges, but unfortunately I didn't think to write down the store names so I don't actually remember who made them! >___<

I also got this Jubly-Umph tin necklace of an anatomical heart; I could have honestly brought so many of their pieces! 

And I lined up for a stupid amount of time so that I could meet John Barrowman - yay! It wasn't so bad because I made friends with some lovely people in the line around me, and he was very nice when I finally did get to the front of the line ^___^

I wish I could have met Ming-Na Wen as well, and there were a couple of panels that I wanted to go to that I couldn't; next year I'm definitely going for both days! ^___^

- Lisa xx

Tuesday, 17 June 2014

Old lady shoes to Lumpy Space Princess shoes!

Hello! I'm on uni break! Huzzah! Now, don't get me wrong, I love studying and I love my course but after finishing off three massive final essays, I am so so so glad not to have to reference anything for almost two months ^___^ *And* it means that I have more time to actually spend time with my friends and family, and, of course, do many many crafts! I'm currently working on a Lumpy Space Princess cosplay for Supanova and I'm quite pleased with how it's coming along. I'll take lots of photos of it on the day, but until then, I thought you might like to take a look at my special glittery shoes ^___^

Aren't they mathematical? ~___^ One of the hardest things about cosplaying (and, to be honest, general fashion) for me is the shoes. I have dreadful flat feet so if I want to walk around for longer than half an hour without pain, I have to wear special orthotic shoes with my orthotic inserts. I love my inserts for, you know, allowing me to walk properly, but finding cute orthotic shoes is so hard! If any shoe companies are listening; vintage style orthotic shoes would be good for both actual old ladies and old ladies at heart! ~___^

So anyway, I found these Kumfs at an op-shop and since they were my size and only $3, I brought them even though beige isn't really my colour. Wanna guess how many times I wore them? Yup, about zero. I tried them on with so many outfits, but I just couldn't make them work. Which was kinda good because it meant I had no regrets covering them in glitter!

To do this, I covered the shoes in a layer of glitter mod podge and then, with the shoes sitting in a small metal box, I shook purple glitter all over them. For the first couple of layers I didn't do anything on the straps, which made it easier to move the shoes around without getting mod podge and/or glitter all over me. Well, I still got glitter everywhere, but that's just an occupational hazard ~___^

I did about three layers of glitter and modpodge on the shoes, one layer on the straps, and then an additional two layers of modpodge over everything to seal it.

However, when I tried to buckle up the shoes, I ended up taking off a layer of glitter from the straps. They were also quite difficult to get through the buckle as the modpodge made them both thicker and stiffer. Bummer! >___<

I decided that covering up the straps was the way to go, so I picked up some lovely thick satin ribbon from the craft store and made up some bows ^___^ To make the bows I used two long lengths of ribbon (about 37cm/14.5 inches) and two short lengths (about 4cm/ 1.5 inches). I sealed the ends by passing them through the flame on a match, then sewed the ends of the long ribbon together to make a circle. With the smaller lengths, I sewed the non-sealed edges together to make it into a thinner tube.


I flattened out the circle made from the longer pieces of ribbon and pinched it in the middle - this is where it starts looking like a bow! ^___^ I put a couple of stitches in to make sure it wouldn't move, then I wrapped the small tube around the center of the bow and sewed the sealed edges together. The center of the bow was too small to cover up the clip-on earring bases I wanted to use to attach it to the straps, and I wanted to ensure the bow would lay relatively flat to cover up the ends of the shoe straps. So I hot glued two clip-on earring backs to each ribbon; they are positioned so when the bows are clipped onto the shoe, they cover the whole strap ^___^

The inside of the shoes are still not that pretty, but that won't be obvious once they're on my feet so I haven't done anything to them. I'm still working on the dress to go with them, and I'm also making a matching purple glittery handbag! I'm really pleased with how these turned out, and I'm really looking forward to wearing them to the con!

I can't wait to show you the finished cosplay, it's going to be very purple and very glittery and totally fresh to death! ~___^

- Lisa xx

Monday, 9 June 2014

Knitted pineapple tea cosy

It's finally finished! Yay! I handed in an assignment on Friday, another today, *and* I've finished the knitted pineapple tea cosy. Gosh, I'm pretty pleased with myself right now! ~___^

If you'd like to make your own, you can find the link to the pattern on this page or if you manage to find a copy of Nick-Nacks C41, then it's in there too! ^____^


I am not a very skilled knitter, so if you can knit and purl, then you too can make this cosy! ^___^ The body of the cosy is made from two rectangles which are then sewn together on the corners and the bobble pattern is made by repeating four rows until the rectangles are high enough. I didn't block my cosy, but it nonetheless turned out fairly similar to the picture included with the original pattern.

Well, similar aside from the colours and obviously my teapot isn't nearly as retro! ~___^

My leaves also are not as floppy as the original image would suggest they would be, but I think it looks more pineapple-eque to have them standing up, wouldn't you agree? ^___^ The leaves are pretty easy to do, but I don't really like how they are all connected together. If I would do it again, I would do each of them separately, the same way I did the leaves for the crochet version. I think this would make them a lot easier to sew to the cosy!

The base of my tea cosy is a little wavy, which I think means I need to learn how to do a new cast on (I often have this problem!). I think it could be fixed by threading some elastic through the cosy, but since this cosy is destined for a friend's teapot, I don't want to customise it too much for my teapot.


I'm very pleased to have finally cast off on this project, and after I hand in my final, final assignment on Monday (!) I will be on break! I'm so very excited, I'm working on (well, planning on working on ...) a cosplay for Supanova, and then I've got many, many embroideries to do! ^___^ 

Wish me luck!

- Lisa xx

Thursday, 5 June 2014

The Giant Pineapple Cosy KAL is over!

Well, that's it! We've been KALing for a month and now it's time to announce the winners! ^____^

Special pineapple judging sunglasses on and ...


Congratulations to ThistleKnitter! ThistleKnitter won with her gorgeous knitted cosy - isn't it sweet? It looks like it came right out of the 70s! ^___^

But we're not leaving it at that, oh no! We also have five lovely runners up! ^___^
Knitting at the speed of light: FrogWitness


Best Sideshow Bob imitation: JennineBirrell (for the most funky cosy hairstyle I’ve ever seen!) 

Honey, I Shrunk the KAL: DWScissors

Most tropical photoshoot: RenKage

Best use of the Geminio charm: Elvispeth (for making two! ^___^)

Huzzah! Congratulations to all our winners, thank you to everyone who participated, and a big big thankyou to Tanya for helping to organise everything! ^____^

I didn't end up finishing my second cosy, but I did learn a lot while I tried! I now know how to do two more knitting stitches and I think I'm actually getting a bit faster! Once I finish off the leaves I will post it here, but I think for the next KAL the main thing I need to remember is not to organise more deadlines during finals! ~___^ 

Now, I think it's time for a cup of tea, and then it's back to the grindstone! Only eleven more days and I'll be free (frrreeeee!) so expect much more crafty posts heading your way after that! ^___^

- Lisa xx