April 20

Make a Steampunk Crown from a Burger King Crown

BurgerKingCrown

Wait a minute.  That’s a Burger King crown! Not a steampunk crown!

No worries, people.  Tyson Vick, a costume designer and photographer, has got the coolest tutorial on making that cheesy Burger King Crown into one spectacular steampunk work of wearable art.  Just take a look at the final piece!

SteampunkCrown

How gorgeous is that!? And he’s got step-by-step photos to show you just how he did it!  While you’re tooling around this tutorial, be sure to check out his other posts detailing the making of his upcoming book, A Steampunk Guide to Hunting Monsters.

More Links of Interest!

April 13

Huggable Monster Dolls for Kids in Need

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A Monster to Love is this great online shop where, for every cute little monster doll you buy, Sam, Ben, and their dad Ray, donate a monster doll to a kid in need.  They partner up with children’s hospitals and even the World Relief Refugee program out of Atlanta.

I ran across their awesome work about a year ago on Craftsy, including a pattern to make your own monsters to donate to local kids in need, or send off to Ray and his boys in Colorado so they can donate the cuddly little monsters to kids in need.

Interested? Here’s the A Monster to Love PDF Pattern and Instructions.  Ray and his boys take donations year round, and you can send them one monster, or one hundred. It’s up to you!

I try to organize a Monster Making Party at least once or twice a year–they’re fun, and pretty easy to do.  Here’s how:

1. I buy a couple yards of fun colored fleece fabric when it’s on sale (usually in the summer).  You can get quite a lot of monsters out of a yard of fleece, or even half a yard. Just be sure to shop when it’s on sale! Along with fabric, I’ll pick up a box of stuffing when it’s on sale too (or with a coupon).  One box can last a long while and stuff a lot of monsters (probably around 30).  I’ll also purchase Safety Eyes for the dolls, which can be attached before sewing, and don’t require any sewing knowledge to install.  I purchased my Safety Eyes here, but there are tons of vendors and craft stores out there that sell them.  The 18mm sized ones are what I used, and I liked to mix and match colors too. 15 pairs of eyes cost about $15.  You can also use buttons for the eyes, but make sure they are SEWN on really well.  If the eyes are not sewn on securely, Ray and his boys can’t use them.  Do not glue on eyes.  Ray and his boys can’t use the monster dolls if the eyes have only been glued on (hello choking hazards!).

All in all, I spent about $40 on supplies for making the monsters, but I did it over the course of a couple of months.

AngieSewing

Angie brought her own sewing machine and helped build a couple monsters. That’s my mom in the background stitching away madly.

 

2. I set up a FB event and ask folks to bring their own sewing machines if they’ve got them, but I also tell folks that there’s plenty of other ways to help too: attaching eyes, stuffing, cuddle testing, and hand stitching are great ways to get even the most novice of crafters involved in a Monster Making Party.   Along with the fabric, stuffing, and safety eyes, I also bring along thread, scissors, and hand sewing needles for people to use.  If you’re worried about materials cost, you can always ask people to pitch in a couple bucks to help out.

3. I cut out at least some monsters before the party so there are dolls ready to be sewn.  I also set up stations for people to work at installing eyes, stuffing the monsters, and hand sewing the monsters closed after stuffing, and even cutting out more monsters if necessary.

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Here, my friend Chrystal is stuffing a monster.

 

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Eunice is hand sewing the monster closed.

4. We have music playing, and I ask folks to help out with some food (like chips and dip, cupcakes, and frosty beverages).  And I invite folks to come when they can and stay as long as they’d like to.  It’s a fun way to spend an afternoon or evening.

5. I’ve found three hours to be a great length of time for a Monster Making Party.  You can get a lot done, have time to chat, and still steal a cupcake too.  Once the party’s over, you’ll want to box up your magnificent creations and mail them off to A Monster to Love! Their address is on the last page of the PDF.

All our Monsters boxed up and ready to go!

All our Monsters boxed up and ready to go!

If you have your own Monster Making Party, be sure to take pictures and share!!!

 

More Links of Interest

 

Category: Craft, Geek, Toys, Tutorial | 1 Comment
April 9

Outwit Winter with 8-bit Spring

Today as I gazed out my living room window at the nice April spring afternoon SNOWSTORM in my front yard and resigned myself to an entire lifetime of winter weather, I found my thoughts wandering (trudging) to…Steve from Minecraft.  Steve from Minecraft has all kinds of warm weather biomes to choose from.  Steve from Minecraft can play in the snow, sure; but when he’s bored (or his feet start to go numb in his diamond boots (are diamond boots even warm?)) he can go to a desert, or a forest, or even a jungle.  Steve from Minecraft can be standing in a snowy blizzard one second, and then take a step into a swamp biome and immediately find himself delicately wrapped in warm, balmy, humid rain.  Not to mention Steve from Minecraft’s freshly-planted daisies that he got for his Easter party four days ago don’t take one look at the incoming north winds and promptly die in their planter. (At least, not in the XBox 360 version.)  So why should Steve from Minecraft get everything?!?!

Good news!  Instructables poster lirpaeel has shown us how to bring some of Steve’s coveted greenery to our very own biomes!

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The best news?  You don’t even need to build an ax to knock it down!  (Or a sword, like the kid in the picture.)

Happy Spring!

March 23

A Bracelet DIY Using Old Comics

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I have a friend who creates awesome jewelry by recycling old comics, which got me thinking . . . what else can a person make with old comics? That’s how I found this tutorial on Oh! Rubbish! Blog. It’s a super easy DIY, with great pictures.  Plus, I’d bet magazines, newspapers, and old photos would probably work well with this idea too.  Just think of the possibilities!

March 21

Magic Mirror on the Wall

I have one of those long, dark hallways in my house that’s terribly difficult to decorate.  There’s just one tiny window on one end, so I’m always looking for ways to lighten it up.  This evening I tried putting up three mirrors of different sizes…and it looks excellent!  Clearly, if three mirrors looks excellent, five mirrors would look even better (and ten would look incredible)!  I can see this quickly becoming a new obsession…

Have you seen this lovely LEGO mirror spotted on OurNerdHome?  It’s singularly simple to make (and will be featured prominently in my new mirror hallway by the end of this weekend):

lego mirror3

I particularly love the gold spray paint – something we go through a lot of at our house.  Have you ever wondered which gold spray paint to use for your projects? Julia at ChrisLovesJulia experimented with several different kinds, and writes about her findings here.

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What are your favorite mirror projects?  I’d love to see!

March 13

Happy Earmuff Day!

Ah, yes…it’s that time again: Earmuff Day!  Actually, I’m ashamed to report that somehow this very salient holiday escaped my notice until this evening, when a friend alerted me to its existence.  My response was, of course, to make little miniature earmuffs out of all of my leftover pipe cleaners and mini yarn pom pom balls from previous projects and go around the house putting earmuffs on everything from the owl shaped cookie jar in the kitchen to the hurricane lamps in the living room.  (My boyfriend will be so impressed when he wakes up tomorrow morning and sees my handiwork! Is there such a thing as the Earmuff Fairy?  I think I sense a new tradition…)

In the spirit of Earmuff Day, here are some crafty earmuff ideas from around the web:

These Princess Leia earmuffs made me smile (links to a YouTube video with DIY instructions, thanks to DeviantArt user Taniathepirate):
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I want to learn how to crochet just so I can make these Spock ears (spotted on Croshame)!
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I was unable to find any instructions for these Pokeball earmuffs found on Etsy.com [via monster.loveitsomuch.com], or these R2D2 earmuffs (spotted on DeviantArt from user Bee-Delicious), but they both look like they could be recreated pretty easily with some faux craft store fur and felt:

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Plus, how to create faun earmuffs (thanks to Meri Greenleaf at Elfling Blog):
IMAGE_FaunEars
So, I’m dying to know: What are you up to this Earmuff Day?  Any big plans?? Hope you have a good one!

Category: Craft, Geek | LEAVE A COMMENT