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Archive for the ‘Beginning’ Category

Goodbye old site!

The time has come (the walrus said) for me to move on to a shiny new domain!

Over the last couple weeks I’ve slowly but surely been working on a new home for this blog, one that provides me with a multitude of new options to explore and customize until all my geeky needs are filled. The road to nerdvana has been filled with setbacks and frustrations, but I feel that I have finally gotten the new site working well enough to be shared with all (2) of my loyal readers and the rest of teh intarwubz.

That being said, over the next month or so you’ll see this blog slowly begin to disappear into the vast nothingness that is the data stream. I’ll start by deleting the oldest posts and working my way forward until this site is no more. But don’t worry, everything is already up on the new site, safe and permalinked in a shiny new paid-for server.

So clink on the banner below to come and visit me at my new digs, and maybe leave a comment or two? With any luck, I’ll see you all there.

Come visit my new home!

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While this isn’t much of a post I thought I might let you all know two things:

1. I am currently working on upgrading this blog, and will hopefully be rolling out a fancy new site with all the bells and whistles soon! I’ve purchased hosting and will be forwarding everything over to my new domain just as soon as I get it all figured out.

2. Today I entered into the Neil Gaiman Audio contest, which offers the winner a speaking role in the new recording of American Gods, as well as the opportunity to meet Mr. Gaiman himself. Now, considering there are literally hundreds of entrants into this contest already, I’m not terribly optimistic about my chances. But it would be lovely to see a few votes float my way between now and the time the contest ends. So do me a favor? Go listen to my recording, and if you like it well enough, send a vote my way.

You can vote for me here.

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Well… maybe not vengeance, per se, but I’m definitely back!

I wish I could tell you that ninjas kidnapped me from my dorm room one night and spirited me away under cover of darkness, only to be discovered escaping by a band of wayward pirates, and as morning’s first light crept across the bow of the ship an epic battle was waged between the crew of the Scarlet Temptress and the clan of the White Order like none had seen before nor ever will again, leaving only one who could lay claim to my soul…

But  sadly there were no ninjas (though there were some pirates), and my soul is still safely housed inside my body. Just kidding. We all know gingers have no soul. Instead, life got in the way (as it usually does), and I often found myself either at a loss for words, or with far too many and no time to type them all up.

That doesn’t mean I haven’t been crafting though! Hoo boy have I been crafting! I did my best to take pictures when I could, and in the coming weeks/days/etc. I will be updating this blog with evidence of my crafty nature, so that my readers (all 4 of you) can see what I’ve been up to in my absence.

In the meantime, here are a few things I’ve done recently to tide you over:

Thing One:

A couple months ago I began seeing a therapist again for the first time in years. She quickly discovered that I love to create things and am a creative person in general, and therefore has been coaching me to use this as a means of working through/with my various issues. One of the things she asked me to do was to “visualize” my depression, and eventually I was able to describe it as sort of a rorschach test, made up of varying shades of reds, oranges, and yellows flowing through an inky blackness. Once this description was established, she asked me somehow create this visual, using any type of media I desired.

Depression

I chose to paint it, since I figured that would be the easiest way to get the textures I wanted, and since in my mind the image I described is so large it encompasses my entire field of vision, giving you the sense of feeling surrounded, I hunted for the largest “canvas” I could find. This wound up being a piece of plywood about 2 feet by 3 feet in size, and it weighs a friggin’ ton*. I used black spray paint for the base coat, then worked with various brush sizes to splotch on the colors in three separate layers. I then sprayed a final coat of black spray paint over the top of everything to give it a sort of blurry, cloudy look.

Thing Two:

Early last week I got a message from a friend asking me if I wanted to go a “country event” on Saturday. I said yes, not really knowing what I was getting into, and Saturday morning said friend showed up at my door with a costume in hand for me to wear. It turned out that “country event” actually meant 1870’s Frontier Era Reenactment event, which is completely different than what I had in mind.

Me doing my best to look like an 1870's rancher/housewife.

While we were wandering about the little town, I discovered a group of spinners working in one of the buildings near our camp. Since I’d had the foresight to grab a basket of knitting supplies (including my drop spindle), I seized the opportunity to re-learn how to use a drop spindle and spin my own yarn from the kind ladies who were willing to teach me.

Drop Spindle with Blue Wool

I probably spent a good hour or so being coached and getting helpful tips on how to get just the right amount of twist on the fiber, how to pull from the bundle, etc. It was a ton of fun and I made sure to get some contact information on their spinning group, which means now I have someone I can run crying to when I mess up get help from when I need it.

And of course, because they were crack dealers lovely ladies who want to share their knowledge and art with others, they gave me this when I left:

Lots and LOTS of future yarn!

I look forward to finishing this skein of wool, and then knitting something nifty with it when I’m done. If I can keep up this skill well enough to actually produce the occasional skein here and there, then I will get to knit more with actual, honest to gods, hand-spun WOOL, which would be a beautiful thing.

Thing Three:

A couple days ago I discovered a link to instructions on how to make your own Star Wars snowflakes on several of my friends Twitter feeds. After making the appropriately nerdy excited “OMG!!!” noise, I decided to try making a set for myself.

Boba Fett/Clone Trooper and Darth Vader Snowflakes

I’m pretty happy with how they turned out, though I do wish my Vaders looked a little more “Vader-y”. As a Generic Winter Holiday treat for you all, here are the directions!

Star Wars Paper Snowflakes

Be sure and watch the Star Wars Holiday Special while you make these, for an added sense of festivity.** Enjoy!

*1 friggin’ ton = approx. 10lbs multiplied by exaggeration

** Do not EVER, under any circumstances watch this. You have been warned.

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A long while ago I bought a crafting book that I’d originally seen at a friend’s house. It is a lovely little book called Generation T: 108 Ways to Transform a T-Shirt, and I’ve been waiting for the perfect excuse to break it out and try some of the patterns in it. Whilst attending a school production of the Vagina Monologues last month, I came across the perfect opportunity to do just that. They had these lovely purple t-shirts with the production logo on it, and all of the proceeds from their sales went to charity. Unfortunately, they no longer had my size in stock by the time I went to buy one. Undaunted, I bought one anyway, knowing I had the perfect solution waiting on my shelf at home.

After carefully pouring through the book several times to settle on which pattern I wanted to work with first, I finally settled on one that involves lots of cutting and lots of lacing, and sat down and got to work this week.

Working on the VDay t-shirt

The pattern calls for cutting out the sleeves, then removing 2-3 inches from either side of the shirt. The problem I ran into is that the shirt itself is so large of a size that in order for me to remove the right amount from the sides I had to re-cut the curved shape of the sleeves further into the shirt, or else I’d loose them all together. Once I’d figured that out I started work on cutting all the tiny little holes for laces that I’d need.

I used my pair of Fiskars Embroidery Scissors to snip out tiny holes along the sides of the shirt for the laces. Then I wrapped the ends of the t-shirt shreds I was going to lace with in tape to make it easier to thread them through the holes. I’ve still got a few steps left to complete the shirt, and I’m going to play with the design a bit more before I call it done. So far though, I like the way it’s progressing and I can’t wait to finish it!

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Here’s hoping that you all spent New Years Eve with friends and family who made it a wonderful night, and helped you begin this new year with some joyous memories.

My resolution for the new year? To stop letting past events dictate my actions and to be more creative and crafty than ever before!

And to start 2010 off right, I give you the baking madness that was my New Years Eve day:

All three of these tasted fantastic, even if the peanut butter popcorn did come out a little overdone. The only other problem I had was that the recipe for the cheesecake layer on the brownies made too much cheesecake, so it didn’t quite swirl.

But in the end it didn’t matter much, because there is no such thing as “too much cheesecake”.

Happy 2010 everyone! May it be filled with happiness and joy, and be your best year yet!

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Make it so!

One day this will all be scarves...

Welcome to my latest adventure into the world of online blogging!

Having spent the bulk of my life playing with various craft materials and exploring hobbies traditionally meant for little old ladies with lots of time on their hands, I decided that it is finally time for me to try and keep better track of the various things I’ve done and want to do in the crafty world. And what better place for that than the internet?

So this is my beginning. I promise to post blogs about the various projects I’ve embarked on and hope to one day complete (because who doesn’t have the odd half-finished project lying around their craft bin these days?), as well as pictures and links to useful information. And hey! Maybe one day I’ll get all fancified and post a video or two!

So here we go. Set a course for the unknown and disengage the the docking clamps. It’s time to push that big red button your mother always warned you about.

And don’t worry, I know where my towel is.

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