#395

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This is what the box die turns out like. Very pretty, and would make a great gift box for small jewellery or a couple of chocolates or something. I think I’ve figured out how to make the larger one work, it just needs some surgery first. I have to finish this box off, yet with an embellishment and ribbon for a handle. I think I’ll be making a few of these to have on hand for future gift giving.

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I also had a go at making myself an embossing folder for my big shot. It worked surprisingly well, considering last time I tried one, it failed completely. To make this, you die cut a pattern out of card from a food box, keeping all the pieces. Then, lining them up over another piece of card, you glue in the pieces in the slots, so they match up completely, taping the two rectangular pieces together so it hinges and lines up. Then you can use it as a regular embossing folder. You might have to play around with the shim plates and bulking with card to get the right amount of pressure through the machine, as this isn’t as thick as a regular embossing folder.
I’ll also have to try making my own embossing diffuser plates.

#350

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Just a quick update today. I’ve been busy working on a secret project. But while I had the paints out, I’ve nearly completed my pirate chest.
I covered it with texture and turned it into a money box. All I need to do is figure out a closing, and it’ll be ready for all my gold coins. I was thinking of supergluing a metal clasp from another box onto it, or maybe Velcro or a snap popper. I think I’ll try the clasp first, as it’ll look the best. Maybe I could try a bracelet clasp with chains. I’ll see what I have. It’s a small project, just for myself, so I’m not going to go and buy anything specifically for it. Maybe if I make more, for other people.

#348

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I had no choice but to go to the doctors today to get a script. I wasn’t happy about leaving my cozy station that I had set up to do some Christmas themed embossing.
To take the sting out of sitting in a waiting room for two hours with screaming children and snotty women, I decided to buy some craft supplies. I’m not sure how much of a reward this was, as I had to spend my own money. Luckily I didn’t go too crazy.
I found some paper pirate chests that you fold and decorate yourself. I thought it would be nice to cover it with paper mache for texture and sturdiness. When I put it together, the lid was just a strange flap that you tuck in to close. I performed a little bit of paper surgery, and turned it into a proper lid. I can add a clasp or something later, if I decide to. There are six boxes in the pack, so I have some to play with.
I also got a bag of craft foam off cuts. This will be great for cutting out letters and shapes on my Big Shot, as well as freehand. Most of the pieces are adhesive already, but I have plenty of double sided sticker sheets left.
I picked up some supplies for card making, like rhinestones and number stickers as well.
I should get to bed. It’s been a very long day, and there isn’t enough money or craft stores to keep me sane without some beauty sleep.

#322

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The funny thing about efficiency is that I had to stop what I was doing to make something to help production. I’m making something for someone, that needs a lot of pinning. I bought cheap pins so I could get more, but cheap ones are often less sharp. I saw a pincushion on the internet that used steel wool in the cushion to sharpen the pins as you stick them in.
I thought I found some steel wool without soap, but now I have weird smelling green powdered soap everywhere. I used it anyway, so hopefully it will be fine. The box says rust free, so that’s useful.
Luckily, I have a drawer full of painted and decorated boxes to choose from, saving time.
Now, back to pinning.

#208

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Today’s art exercise was about using a light table (or a glass computer table with a nightlight where the keyboard is meant to go) to ink my own drawings, so there is not indents and flaws in the paper. This way inking or coloured pencils don’t get caught in grooves from the pencil sketch, and when scanning its a lot easier to clean up the lines without using a blue pencil.
Basically I drew a rough image, where I could have guidelines and sketchy lines, then using the light table, ink directly onto another piece of paper. This way you not only won’t mess up the original sketch, but this let’s me play around with positions, since I could draw each element individually, then bring them together without worrying about sketching behind something to figure our size. Also, I was able to do the original sketch on cheap printer paper, which I like to use for ideas, then I inked the image onto bleedproof marker paper, saving pages of better paper if I need to rework the sketch.
This image is of a plush toy of Link from Legend of Zelda and a figurine of Sylvanas from World of Warcraft that I bought my partner for Christmas. We were playing around with Link and I ended up giving him a drunken personality. We decided this would be a good comic strip, where he picks fights with the cats and loses. I’ve always thought that toys come to life and have adventures (even before Toy Story came out) so it isn’t hard to imagine what this drunk toy could do. I thought he might try to pick up the first lady he sees, which of course was Sylvanas. My partner doesn’t usually take the figures out of the box, as was the case here, so I incorporated it into the drawing. It’s so wonky, but I didn’t notice until I took the photo. The inking isn’t complete, as Link has a bottle of Jack Daniels next to him. I didn’t put a lot of effort into getting things right. I think I just wanted to rush to the colouring, and I didn’t focus on inking nicely or getting perspective right. It was meant to be much smaller, but I just went for it.
Lessons have been learned.

Day #168

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Busy sewing day, today. I almost finished a belt, did a fair bit of a bag, half made a pincushion and half heartedly made a cat ball.
The reason I couldn’t finish the belt was that I started using the eyelets that I had gotten the other day with my eyelet setter, but they didn’t come with washers, they were gold instead of silver to match the buckle, and they were too small for the buckle to fit into. So that project has to wait to be finished.
Next, I began making my bag. I’m using instructions for a bag, but created my own pattern from the pictures, as I wanted mine bigger, and couldn’t print out the pattern. Essentially it was a square with rounded corners, so easy to reproduce in the size I wanted. I can’t find my iron from when we moved, but i have to find it to flatten the strap.
As for the pincushion, the glue is currently drying, and is functional for the moment, just needs some decorating with some paint and ribbon. It’s actually a box, so I might clean up the inside edges, and I can keep a miniature sewing kit with small scissors and thread in it.
As for the cat toy, I felt like making something, and couldn’t think of anything else. It was quick and cats don’t care if they can see the stitching.

Day #159

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I got my supplies out to decorate the boxes today, and had no idea what to do, so I only got to do a couple. I quite like the square gems on the gold. They look pretty and the pattern matched up without really planning it. I tried putting micro marbles on one, but for some reason couldn’t figure out a good way to do it with minimal mess, as I wasn’t able to use my craft room.
I did look up some ideas and thought I’d try quilling on one later, and maybe get some fabric and ribbon out.
I finally got around to baking the clay that I moulded the other day. I’m loving the fondant mould I got, but I’m unsure if it’s because I used cheap clay, or that I didn’t bake it long enough, but the pieces are a bit bendy. I’ll have to try the super Sculpey that I have although they come out a bit mottled. I think I’ll have to experiment because I couldn’t find anything online about it.

Day #158

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So, if you’re reading this, you might have noticed a change in the theme of the site. I even made a quick banner. I realised that the website was taking a long time to load. I think this is because the theme took the actual pictures from the pages instead of making a low resolution thumbnail, cropped as a circle. I did like the theme, but the meta menu was bugged and there wasn’t much that I could edit. The new theme I picked, (I think it’s called sketches,) is a lot cleaner and nice looking. I need to update the ‘about’ page more, but I didn’t know what to say. At least its better than the blank/default one I had.
I felt like doing something crafty this evening, without much effort. I was originally going to decorate boxes, but realised that a few of the boxes, that I had in my drawer, weren’t finished and needed another coat of paint.
I got a few disposable oven trays the other day, so I could use them for polymer clay, baking them when the tray is full. I discovered that they are good to put drying boxes in to keep them out of the way.

Day #155

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Didn’t do a lot today. I had the energy of a pine needle. Must be the change in weather. I should migrate with the winter so I stay cold.
I felt like doing some polymer clay pieces, but only got as far as warming up three pieces of clay to push into moulds. Being silicone moulds I know it’s possible to bake the clay in them, but I like adjusting the clay, and they pop out easy enough before baking. I’m not good at mixing nice pink colours, so I’ll probably paint the S after I bake them and I’ll need to sand the back flat.
While I was cleaning, I found one box that hadn’t been painted, so I found a lovely red that suited the heart and got to painting. All these boxes that I paint will come in handy for gifts or selling eventually. For now, I have a whole drawer full, and will continue painting them for the fun of it.