June 22

Baby Bender Amigurumi

Precocious little scamps, aren’t they? These Baby Benders were made by Loefferst (one commissioned by a friend, the other to keep for herself). “Taken straight out of the episode “Lethal Inspection” these lovable little Benders come complete with Mexican beer”. Those beer bottles are life size! These have to be my favorite Futurama amigurumi ever! They took 30 hours, so they’re both full of that emotion I understand is called love.

June 22

Book Review: Makoto’s Cross-Stitch Super Collection

Makoto's cross-stitch super collectionMakoto’s Cross-Stitch Super Collection by Makoto Oozu is, as it says on the cover, very cool! and not lame! Originally two books published in Japan (Hop, Stitch, Jump! and My Stitch Book), this is an awesome compendium of tiny, geeky patterns and projects to stitch. It’s got robots, dinosaurs, monsters, aliens, insects, sea creatures, travel, and electronics to choose from.

I love the way the book is organized. Part 1 shows you all of the designs stitched in full color. Part 2 is full of an interesting variety of projects with everything from shirts to pillows to an amazing pegboard wall panel (who needs Aida?). Part 3 goes over cross-stitch materials and tools, basic stitches, and detailed instructions for all of the projects.

As much as I would love to make the pegboard wall panel, I don’t have room for that in my house (seriously, I need to make room for this!), so I went small and stitched on a Moleskine notebook cover.

Makoto's cross-stitch super collectionTo get the holes in the right place, I was going to draw lines with a pencil, but the book had great advice–photocopy the pattern from the book and use that as a guide for punching the holes. I opted to use my Japanese screw punch with the smallest tip instead of a book awl and decided to go with the purple pterodactyl. I punched the holes and started stitching.

Since the design is so small, I was able to use threads from my loose stash and stitched with two strands. I think that the next time I stitch on a notebook, I’ll use more strands, but I’m still very happy with how my dinosaur came out.

These designs are so quick to stitch up–I think the pterodactyl took me 15 minutes–these notebooks would make great last-minute gifts.

Rad news! I’ve got one copy of Makoto’s Cross-Stitch Super Collection to give away. Leave a comment telling me your favorite dinosaur and why by Friday, June 24th at midnight ET and I’ll pick a winner at random. Respond to another reader’s comment and get an extra entry (limit one, please). [Edit – midnight ET. I can only stay up so late :)]

June 22

+1 of Awesome Towel

My friend Ruth Suehle (who contributed the Drive-In Messenger Bag, the LilyPad Arduino Cake, and an essay on costuming to World of Geekcraft) just came to visit Portland for the first time this week, and brought me an epic gift! She machine-embroidered a hand towel for me with a design from Urban Threads that pairs a d20 with the caption +1 of Awesome. I just love it so much.

June 21

Tutorial Tuesday: Polymer Clay Superman Keyring

I know we’ve HAD father’s day already (and if you’re a father, grandfather, godfather, father-to-be, stepfather or any other variation on the theme I hope you had a lovely Sunday) but if you’re not gift-giving until next week, or if you want to make next year’s fathers day gift WELL ahead of time, I’ve got a tutorial for you.

Craftster user and youtuber MeiIris made her Dad an adorable polymer clay Superman keyring/key-chain, and her video tutorial is just downright sparkly and beautiful.

June 21

Breakfast is Power Placemat

breakfast is power placematFrom Link’s bottled milk to Mario’s mushrooms, video game heroes have long depended on tasty foods to gain their powers and heal their wounds.

You may not be able to shoot fireballs out of your eyes after your own breakfast, but you’ll definitely feel like a champ with this Breakfast is Power placemat from Petek Design.

If you’d rather the design as a reminder to your little heroes (or not so little heroes) on the importance of fueling up, you can also order it as a poster for your geeky kitchen.

June 21

Alice Omega Necklace

Alice Omega NecklaceIn honor of the release of Alice: Madness Returns, here is a beautiful replica of the necklace that Alice Liddell wears in the game.  The Omega symbol is made of a hypoallergenic metal, and has been beautifully crafted by Etsian CaarigzkopfWorks. American McGee’s Alice was one of my favorite games, despite how difficult it was, and I am really enjoying playing through Madness Returns.