Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween My Little Witchlings

We came back early from Queen's Champion Archery. We got pretty soaked camping Friday night. We definitely need a more weatherproof tent. And we weren't making any sales because 80% of the attendees just saw us at an archery event last weekend. So all things considered we came home Sat. night instead of Sunday.

So once again I find myself without Halloween plans.  This is the first year in a long time I haven't done facepainting at Pumpkins on the Pier in Pismo Beach, CA. That's because with all the budget cuts, my job got cut.  They are sticking to volunteers to do all their facepainting at many county events these days.

So I decided to start a new art journal today. I was going to follow Willowing's free art course online, but her first lesson was the same lesson I already saw Suziblu do on youtube a year or so back, maybe two years. I was so disappointed in that, but I'll still do my own thing in a new art journal for November.

The Zombie Nanner Gang is doing a Thanksgiving theme this month with Pilgrims, or gourds, or what have you. So I'll be making 2 Thanksgiving tutorials for that I think. One for knitting and one for crochet. Maybe turkeys. Plus I should do a hard shelled gourd project, before all my gourds rot. I really shouldn't have left them out in the weather, but I have no more space indoors for storing things.

Today is a Sabbat for me and a holy day. Whatever the rest of you do today I hope you have fun. Stay safe, keep away from open flames, and share your treasures.


Friday, October 29, 2010

See You Monday~Happy Halloween!

Between getting ready for an SCA event this weekend, making videos of crochet and knitting projects, and getting ready for Halloween, I've been busier than a long tailed cat in  a room full of rocking chairs.
Cooking, cleaning, scrubbing, packing, and running errands.
Then I find out there is an 80% chance of rain on Saturday.

Since I won't be home on Halloween, I took down most of the porch decorations.  I don't want them walking off before I get home. I was hoping to set them up in our SCA camp but there is no room in the truck for anything excess. That's the problem with vending.  Shop stuff comes first, and the fun stuff I usually take to SCA events has to stay home.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Knitting Loom Flat Panel Tutorial

I just finished a loom knitting tutorial.








It shows how to get started on making a flat panel on a round knitting loom. If you have the KniftyKnitter looms this is the yellow one that is too big for a hat. Perhaps you never knew what to do with it before.







Three of my friends just had baby boys. And my daughter is expecting a boy too. So I need to make baby items. I better get busy.

New Knitting Loom Tutorial

I just finished a loom knitting tutorial.

It shows how to get started on making a flat panel on a round knitting loom. If you have the KniftyKnitter looms this is the yellow one that is too big for a hat. Perhaps you never knew what to do with it before.

Three of my friends just had baby boys. And my daughter is expecting a boy too. So I need to make baby items. I better get busy.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Five New Tutorials

I'm super busy today. I got 3 of my five tutorials finished this week. My first one was just added here: http://www.youtube.com/user/AllFreeKnitting on AllFreeKnitting's new channel. I'm so excited. I'm about to send them a holiday scarf tutorial as well, but I have another foot to knit on it and I can't knit and type at the same time.

I'm enjoying this red/white/green variegated yarn. I've had it in my stash forever and I'm so happy it's going to be something lovely to sell or give to someone special.

My other two tutorials are on a Plarn Rain Hat and a crocheted jingle bell holiday scarf.

If I get the knitting one finished, I want to get on to finishing my pumpkin diorama today.  I'd dying to work on it, but had to get my paid work out of the way first.

I still have no plans for Halloween, but I may be out of town at an SCA event, so we'll see. Does SCA garb count as a Halloween costume if the event is on Halloween?

What are the rest of you doing for Halloween?

It's a bit mentally confusing to be making Christmas tutorials the week before Halloween. I keep having to shift my porch decorations.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Five New Tutorials Coming Out on Knitting and Crocheting and Crafts

My next five tutorials will be:
How to Purl
Quick and Easy Christmas Scarflette
Quick and Easy Crocheted Scarflette
Crocheted Plarn Rainhat
Skeletonized Mermaid Pumpkin Part 2

Hopefully they will be up on my Youtube channel by the weekend. Ambitious I know, since it's already Wed. Time flies when you're having fun.  Plus it's been raining for three days. So it's been a wee bit challenging since I do all my videos outside where the light is better.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Spiral Beadwork and Paleoplanet Meeting

Yesterday was a fantastic day at the archery range. I spent most of it talking to other artists and paleontologists and working on a beaded spiral vessel. One of the women from Beverly Hills wanted to buy the bead project right out of my hand. I tried to explain that it was part of a much bigger project but I could turn it into a brooch if she was serious.

Well she was serious but her husband put his foot down. So I handed her my business card, so who knows.

My friend Roland recently took up loom beading and made some amazing things. I'll post his photo here.
Lawyer by day, beader by night.

Boy using an atlatl to shoot at a cardboard mammoth

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Yay For Craft Days

Yesterday we went to spend the day with some friends to work on craft projects. She has a walking foot sewing machine, so Guy used that to sew up all his bow socks. It's much easier on her industrial machine. 

I worked on a peyote (gourd) stitch necklace.

Then we all helped our friend dye some canvas fabric for a line of backpacks she designed. The dyeing turned out to be quite the project with the four of us sharing in the mixing, stirring, rinsing and washing of about 5 yards of fabric in three colors. The process is too labor intensive to be practically. I have a feeling she'll just buy colored fabric from now on.

While some of us were on dye duty, Guy and our friend were in the kitchen making chicken stir fry, basmati rice, and a cake for dessert.

Then we had a little music jam session with piano, mandolin, ukelele, and drumming on a cast iron wok. That was pretty darn funny. It made me miss my own piano, which is buried somewhere in my living room.

My friend also gave me some camo flannel which I'm thinking would make a cool big-mouthed puppet.
We always have so much fun when we go over there.

I purposely left my camera at home so it wouldn't be a distraction.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Boy oh Boy oh Boy

Artistically speaking, today has been very productive. I finished my tutorial on crocheting a brooch with a doll's face on it. Then once that was uploaded and off to the editor, I made another tutorial on the pumpkin diorama project.  I finished part one of that. I'll load it up to youtube when I'm done using my computer.  The uploads are painfully slow so I can't do anything else while they are doing their thing, or they go even slower. I don't know how this computer can be even slower than my old one but it is. And still no word from the computer guy on when my memory will be ready. I don't want to keep calling him and bugging him, but seriously even if he bought it on Ebay shouldn't he have it by now? I think it's been 3 weeks.

Another one of my friends just had a baby boy.  That makes 2 friends who just had baby boys, and one that is in the hospital giving birth right now, and my daughter due in Dec. Whew, that's a lot of boys. I'm not sure if Chris is having a boy or a girl but she said she'd email us when she got home from the hospital.

I haven't met any of these new babies yet. Two of them might be at the archery range on Sunday, but I have a feeling just the daddies will come and the babies will stay home.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Upcoming Projects

I just gave my blog a make-over. I couldn't decide between autumn or winter so I went with ducks instead.  That's the way my mind works. Scary, isn't it. Well, I never claimed to be a linear thinker.
I took the background photo at Irvine Lake recently where I was painting. Lovely weather for painting outdoors lately.

Some of the projects I have coming up include more designs on the knitting loom, for all you loomers out there. And I want to design an amigurumi snowman so people can learn the basic body form. Once you know the form you can turn the same shape into a bunny, a cat, a panda, or many other animals. I have some white yarn sitting here that will be perfect. But first I have to finish knitting my baby pirate hat in black and white stripes with it.

I am also finishing up some beaded projects. I can't wait to finish some of these things so I can either wear them, gift them or sell them. They don't do much good sitting half finished in boxes.

Oh and I still have to decorate for Halloween. Sounds like I need to get off the magic box and go do some work.

If you don't follow my blog because you are reading the RSS feed somewhere else, please visit the main site and hit the follow button. It's only by your comments that I know what you are all interested in me talking about.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Pumpkin Diorama Update

My pumpkin was dry from gluing the glitter inside. So I used purple and blue acrylic paints on the exterior. It took 2 coats.

I dyed some cheesecloth in tea and then streaked it with green fabric dye to make it look like tattered fins and fishing nets and seaweed with the light shining through it.

The upper mermaid body will be a small skeleton and the lower part will be a wire armature with cheesecloth tail fins over it.  The wire will make it poseable. I have some greenish blue fun fur that I'll use for mermaid's hair. And I hope I can find some seashells and maybe a starfish to decorate the interior.
I'm not sure what the mermaids will sit on. I could make a papier mache' rock. We'll see.

I picked up a pumpkin light with a cord at Joanne's. I can't wait to get it all assembled.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Carving a Rubbery Faux Pumpkin

My current project involves a fake pumpkin and some glitter. Here's a bit of a sneak peek.
video

After I get it all together, it will be a diorama with skeletonized mermaids. Right now I'm dyeing some cheesecloth in tea for the mermaid tails. I hope I can find a light for the inside at the hardware store. I melted a hole in the back of the pumpkin for the cord to go through.

Saturday, October 09, 2010

Turning a Rubber Pumpkin into a Diorama

I never had much use for fake rubbery pumpkins, but when I saw some uber cool ones at Michael's this morning that were used as dioramas, I decided I had to give it a go. So I'm going to make an underwater scene with mermaids.  So I got the white version so I could paint purple/blue over it easily. The floral consultant said to cut it with a hot knife, so I'm going to use my woodburning tool to cut out the 'sea cave'. This is going to be fun. I'll keep you posted.

Friday, October 08, 2010

How to Crochet a Circle

Along with my new 'used' computer came a new movie making program called Movie Maker Live. I tried to get my 'How to Crochet a Circle' video in yesterday, but no matter what format I saved it in the file was too big to send to my editor using either yousendit.com or transferbigfiles.com.  My video uploaded to youtube just fine and was over 13 minutes long. But I can't get paid unless I can get it to the editor so I was losing my mind. There is definitely a learning curve with such things, and my deadline was choking me.

So I turned to the Internet and Youtube. After a dinner break I thought "What if I just download the old Movie Maker and make it on there." I raced home to try it only to find you can't put that on Windows 7.  Or can you?  Many videos later I found a guy that said you can run Windows Movie Maker 2.6 alongside Movie Maker Live.  Problem solved, or so I thought.  Even saving it on the old program made it to big to upload to my editor. So I gave up for the night.

This morning I realized the only way this was going to fly was if I did it in 2 parts.  So here it is...how to make a Circle Parts One and Two.





As for me, I'm done tutorialing for the night. I just want to kick back and play with my friends.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Child's Tiara

I got some plastic beads today to make a tiara for my niece. She just had a birthday and I wish I'd thought of it sooner, but that's the way life goes sometimes.  I also got some tri beads, a type of plastic bead I used a lot as a child but got away from as I grew up and decided plastic beads were too cheesy. I'm rethinking that idea now because they have their uses in many children and holiday projects.

My boyfriend said he used to use tri beads in fishing on the leaders. So I guess they have their uses in fishing as well.

I also picked up some more storage bins for beads and doodads. Trying to keep my craft addiction under control requires more organizational DNA than I seem to have, but I keep trying.

I organized a bunch of bins in my house yesterday too so I could start working on home dec projects for my other blog.

Monday, October 04, 2010

My New Home Decorating Blog

To celebrate my new  home decorating blog that I've dubbed http://novelhoveldeco.blogspot.com/ I'm giving away a pair of my hand beaded earrings to my first ten followers.

They will be sent to the U.S.A address of your choice.

You may request your favorite color of earrings.

To enter, go to the blog, hit the follow button in the right side bar, and leave a comment under the first welcome post.

And by the way, ArtTales already did so and she didn't even know about the give-away, so she wins the first pair if she sends me her address to queenofdreams@gmail.com. Woot!

Rain and Murphy's Law

Yesterday and today I was working on some earrings for a friend. And I had to rearrange everything on the patio three days in a row. So now I have a bit of a pinched nerve issue in my left shoulder blade area. I've had those before in that very same spot.

The first time I moved everything was because I woke up to thunder, and ran outside to move all our projects so they wouldn't get wet.  Then it never rained. 

That night the landlord called at bedtime to say he was sending a crew first thing in the morning to cut down a giant tree that overhangs our patio.  Well, wouldn't you know it, the gardeners decided to drag the whole tree through our narrow back yard, so we had to move everything we could out of harms way. 

So on the third day we put a few things back like the canopy, the work table and a few bins. So of course I woke up to rain, so everything I was trying to get out of the rain in the first place got soaked.  Sigh. It's raining right now; the first rain I can remember since last autumn.

I've had to hold off on making videos too. This computer is out of memory. I thought I was going to get another used computer yesterday, but the guy changed the pick up time to today. So hopefully by tomorrow I can finish the two crochet tutorials I was right in the middle of.  One is on how to crochet in a circle, and the other is a crocheted beaded brooch with a face on it.  I hope to make a third one with a necklace.