Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Red Velvet Bag

I have been terrible at taking pictures this week.  I'll try to take some tomorrow.  Until then, you'll have to be satisfied with this picture of the custom character bags I made for plastic monsters.  Sure, it's silly, but don't you think it's nicer than a plastic zip bag?

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Plastic Monsters at Play

Last night, we got together for a little fun with the Wrath of Ashardalon. I figured it was time to take some pictures so you could see how this thing actually helps with game-play.   In the lower left corner, you can see the Cleric's cards just under the edge of the play surface.
 I know, the flash lit up the foreground too much.  The point is, the party is those little blue figures over there.  Everything else is a monster.  We were really on a roll at this point.
Here is a shot of my character and the stack of defeated monsters.  Oh, and it appears the Paladin was suffering from poison at that point in the game.  I wonder if I ever remembered to make my saving throw.

I have been doing some actual sewing, too.  I should go back to that and remember to take some pictures.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Undead Poncho

As the days grow colder, I start looking at fleece, and all the things you can make with it, with longing.  Last Christmas, I gave away some fleece scarves and arm warmers to a bunch of the girls at work.  I didn't want anything in return, I just enjoy making things and thought it would keep them warm during winter.  In return, they purchased me a gift card for Joann Fabrics

I knew I wanted some fleece, so I picked up some fun fabric with winged skulls and roses.  Somewhere along the line, I'd picked up Buttericks' 5715 to make myself a poncho.  This fabric fit perfectly into that "eventually" plan.
I had some plain, black fleece for the contrast hood and yoke.  Sure, the pattern didn't call for it, but this is my poncho and I'll take any liberty I want with construction.
The new sewing machine sews like a champ.  I am still totally in love with the one step button hole, which is even easier with the on-screen set up for size.  I'll admit the poncho isn't perfect, but the first time I construct something I always learn ways to do it better the next time.  It may not be the warmest thing in my wardrobe, but it is fun and easy to wear.

If I make this again (which is likely) I think the yoke screams to be embroidered.  Maybe on my next holiday, if I don't get bogged down trying to figure out what to make for All Hallows.

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Plastic Monsters

We have been having friends over to play what we lovingly refer to as "plastic monsters."  Sure, that isn't what Wizards of the Coast calls it, but we are taking liberties with our entertainment titles.  Wizards of the Coast makes a fun little game called Wrath of Ashardalon.

During play, we would run out of table space for the continually expanding game board.  Honey, because he is so smart, said we needed a pedestal or small table to put the game board on during play, which would free up space on the table proper for our character cards, magic items and all those plastic monsters.
We poked around IKEA's website until we found what we thought were the proper components. 
To build this simple table we picked up the following from IKEA:
  • Vika Amon table top, $5.99
  • Capita 4" legs, $10.00
  • Dioder LED kit (includes four LED lights), $29.99 (they also have one that you can change the colors for $39.99)
I tried to capture the little reflections from the LEDs on the underside of the table.  I think it will work.  We have rather poor lighting in our dining room, so we couldn't just go with the table.

This post isn't meant as a tutorial, just to show what we put together.  I'll try to update with pictures of the table in-use during our next game.  The legs seem rather short, so we may have to pick up new legs, but that will be figured out during play.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Sewing & Quilt Expo

Last weekend, I managed to make it to the Original Sewing & Quilt Expo in Chantilly, VA. I had to juggle some stuff at work to be able to attend it, but I did manage to make it.  Since I used my phone to navigate there, it was mostly dead by the time I arrived, so I got very few pictures of all the shops, vendors and the amazing quilt displays.  I'm rather sad about the quilts, they really were amazing.
I managed to get this picture of a shop filled to overflowing (this is the back of the shop) with fiber.  Yarn, wool batts and all kinds of stuff for felting and knitting and so on.
I wandered until I found the Pfaff dealer and this wonder.  Yes, I found my embroidery machine, complete with my name on it.  Literally.  If that wasn't a sign it should come home with me, I don't know what is. 
I got the demonstration (where she made it actually write my name) from the great staff from SunSewVac in Alexandria, VA.  I then, wandered around the expo, shopped and basically fought with myself about my need for an embroidery machine.  Sure, I wanted one, but I don't really need one.  Life isn't all about need, thankfully.  I consulted with Honey.  I consulted my bank account.  I waffled.  In consulted a friend.  I waffled.  Finally, I purchased.  The most upsetting part was that they didn't have one at the show.  I had to return the following day to pick it up.  It isn't a horribly long way from my house (1 hour 20 minutes, assuming no traffic around D.C.) but I was like a kid on Christmas Eve.  I didn't want to sleep, I wanted to stay up all night, I was so terribly excited.  It was pure torture.  I was there about fifteen minutes after they opened the next day.  Ready to grab my machine and run home.  I was forced to do a little shopping.  I still had to find some embroidery thread.

Here we have the boxes before I got the shipping cardboard pulled off.  The embroidery attachment box is huge.  Since it includes a nice bag to carry all the embroidery attachments in, I'll forgive them.  I really splurged and picked up the embroidery software suite, which is pretty awesome.  It lets me put together embroidery designs from images in a multitude of formats.  I'm still learning the software, but I think I'll be able to make it do really amazing things.
In case you're worried, that I will lose my ability to sew, this machine does everything my previous Pfaff does and embroidery.  I love my Pfaff, and knew that I'd buy again.  Maybe not this soon, or this high up the line, but it was going to happen sooner or later.  (Besides, who says I can't set the embroidery machine up to do some embroidery and use my other machine for assembly at the same time?  Truthfully, no one that is my friend.)
Here it is, mostly set up.  I say mostly, because I was still trying to figure out how to properly attach the embroidery unit (the little plastic bit that keeps it from sliding around during shipping was not immediately evident).

Oh, yeah, and when I stopped at the thread booth, to pick up that rainbow of embroidery thread, I mentioned that I'd bought a new embroidery machine.  The nice shop-keep said "you've got the brush, now you've got the paint."  I like that.  I'm going to go paint.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Recycling Makes Me Feel Good!

I've been playing around with turning thrift store shirts into t-shirt dresses.  I've got all the pictures taken for a tutorial, but I don't have the time to write the tutorial.
Let's just agree that I will tell you how to turn two t-shirts into one t-shirt dress that will make you feel good about saving money and the environment.