Tuesday, December 31, 2013

December Sketchbook and Goodbye 2013

Is it really time to say goodbye to 2013?
Really? I just got used to writing 2013 as part of the date...

Ah well, such is life. On to bigger and better things, right?

For my last post of this year, I thought I'd share some of the highlights of what has amassed in my sketchbook since the last time that I shared my artwork. Nothing too fancy, but I wanted to put it out there anyway [and maybe turn this into a regular monthly update thing].

Angel Sketch

I love sketching wings.

Cat Sketches

And cat facial expressions. THEY'RE SO PRECIOUS. Especially since the one on top is basically a self-portrait...

Red Panda Sketch

And who doesn't love red pandas? But for real though-- does anyone know what kind of sound they make? Because I imagine it being like a muffled hrrfrrfrrrr or something.

Compass Rose

I also managed to ACTUALLY do some colored sketches too. This one was inspired my compass roses.

The Magician

And sexy magicians. Nuff said.


Oh yeah, and welcome my newest OC-- Micah. He's another precious babe :] Because I have an obsession of making a disproportionate amount of male OCs... I regret NOTHING.

Micah Profile

I mean come on, look at that little faaaaace! [and the amount of washing out that my scanner did!]

But anyway, I hope to be able to draw more in 2013. The last semester really limited my amount of free time, but hopefully I'll be able to accomplish more in 2014--

[maybe] Linkin' up:
x x x

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Blogger Spotlight: Forever Last in Line

Hey kids- I have something exciting to share today :'D

I want y'all to meet my dear friend Carolyn:

Carolyn is the owner of the Last in Line Shop, as well as the author of Forever Last in Line.

Not only that, but she is a supa-rad, dope-as-hell, very dear friend of mine. Carolyn and I met back in our freshman year of college, and it's been madness ever since. We've been on some crazy adventures, from walkabouts through random parts of the city to climbing rooftops to getting kidnapped from the library to playing with parachutes and taking over lounges. This girl people, this girl.

She is also a fiber goddess, and can crochet and knit literally ANYTHING. I def encourage y'all to check out her blog and shop to experience her skills firsthand. I mean come on:

Unicorn hats?

Cozy hipster beanies?

And straight-up gorgeous knits? What isn't to love?!
Carolyn is actually the one who first introduced me to crocheting, and she is seriously the best teacher I could have asked for. She is also a recent newbie to the gluten-free/thug life, so she has tons of great reviews of gluten free delectables on her blog!

But for real though, dawgs, I love this girl. She is super fun, super crafty, and has such an awesome sense of humor. I'd love it if y'all checked her out!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Cowboy Boot Refashion

Well howdy :]

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! And aren't too emotionally damaged over Matt Smith's departure from Doctor Who BECAUSE YOU KNOW I AM.

But beyond that I have one more refashion of sorts to share before 2013 leaves us for good. Or not for good if you have a Tardis and I said I was emotionally compromised OKAY.

Over the summer, my roommate and I went to this hella-big flea market and found a few treasures; one of which included these beauties:

Cowboy Boot Refashion

However, they did not exactly look this when I found them. Actually... they were a little more like this:

Cowboy Boot Refashion

Ooh girl.

Cowboy Boot Refashion


Cowboy Boot Refashion

You nasty.

But when I stumbled across them, I knew I could not just leave these poor defenseless booties to suffer on their own. They had such potential. And for seven dollars? One does not simply pass up seven dollar cowboy boots-- I don't care who you are. So with a few materials and a little bit of insanity experimentation, I decided to refinish these puppies and give them the facelift they deserved.

What I used:
-Fine grit sandpaper (at least 220)
-Paper towels
-Painter's tape
-Acrylic paint

Cowboy Boot Refashion

First, I taped off the edges of my boots that I wanted to be protected i.e. the fake snakeskin on the bottom portion of the boots. Because we all know that fake snakeskin is super dope. Then with my fine grain sandpaper, I started to take off the old finish of the boots. As you can see, the leather was already majorly coming off, so the sanding just edged it along.

Cowboy Boot Refashion

It really makes you wonder where these boots have been though, right? I like to believe that they once belonged to a shirtless cowboy.

Cowboy Boot Refashion

Eventually, I sanded them down to a point so that they were pretty uniformly worn. I used about medium pressure to try and take the leather off, but I made sure to avoid sanding over the stitching, lest I ruin the integrity of the boots.

Cowboy Boot Refashion

Then came the acetone, which is basically like a type of paint thinner [you can find it next to the rest of the paint thinners at the hardware store]. Yeah, acetone is an ingredient in nail polish remover, but I would not use that remover itself, mostly because it has dyes and whoknowswhatelse that would affect the leather. So working one section at a time, I poured a little acetone on a paper towel and rubbed the rest of the finish off of the leather...

Cowboy Boot Refashion

... until it was all shmooth.

Cowboy Boot Refashion

Next came the painting. I mixed up two tubs-- one was just straight paint, the other I watered down to make a wash.

Cowboy Boot Refashion

Then I just painted in stages. I painted three layers with the wash on each boot, then went on to paint two or three layers with the unwatered-down paint. The wash was really just to prep the leather for the thicker layers of paint, and I didn't really bother to let those layers dry in between. With the thicker paint, I did let those layers dry before painting on top of them again.

Cowboy Boot Refashion

And now I have a pair of brand new old boots! I thought about adding some sort of protective finish on the painted parts, but acrylic is plastic-based and waterproof anyway, so I didn't really bother. If anyone has any suggestions on what to use though, I'm open :]

This makes me excited now though because imagine all the possibilities... and how many other ugly leather Goodwill shoes this technique can be used on.... hmmmmm.

Well, have a happy Friday!

Linkin' up:
x x x

Monday, December 16, 2013

Boxy Dress Refashion

Hey-yo kids :]

Guess who is back with another refashion? This was another one that I did right at the end of the summer, but didn't get around to importing the photos until a short while ago. I know, I'm SO on top of life:

Boxy Dress Refashion

But anyway, I scored this beauty for a dollar at goodwill and thought that it would be a pretty easy update [PS my shins in these pictures are evidence that I'm really good at moving furniture out of apartments. CLEARLY.].

Boxy Dress Refashion

All I did was make a big ol' chop right across the bottom, which I promptly hemmed...

Boxy Dress Refashion

...then pinned and sewed up the sides so that it wasn't so boxy...

Boxy Dress Refashion

... and finally finished the whole thing up by putting a zipper the the back. Because who doesn't love bright yellow zippers, amiright? Right.
Actually, I only put it in because once I took in the sides, I was no longer able to just slip the whole thing over my head. But still, let's just pretend it was for fashion purposes~

Boxy Dress Refashion

And just like that, this dress went from "hey look, I'm pretty much wearing a body pillow" to "hey look, now it's kind of like a little black dress."
Awww yeeeeeah.
I feel like you can always find these big boxy dresses at the thrift store, so I'm excited to try and do this again sometime!

Because I'll be linkin' this one up here and here!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

DIY Pleated Skirt

What up, homedogs?

So I recently just rediscovered some pictures I took of a project that I did back in the spring, back when I was first trying my hand at this whole "sewing thing."

DIY Pleated Skirt

Now, as it should be abundantly clear by now, I'm not the best seamstress. I'm more the "oh my gosh let's pretend we're on Project Runway-just start making things up-SEWING MACHINE GO" kind of seamstress. So needless to say, there are plenty of ways to improve on this project. But I thought I would share anyway in case you were interested in what I did :] All you need is 2 yards of cotton fabric and then BOOM. Skirt.

DIY Pleated Skirt

Step One: First things first, I measured my hip/waist region, since I wanted the top of the skirt to sit somewhere in that general vicinity. Depending on where you want your skirt to rest, this would determine the exact measurement you use. I ended up selecting 30 inches as my magic number, then added another inch for seam allowance. But that measurement will come in handy in just a sec-- FIRST first, I should mention that I threw my fabric on the floor like a real sewing champ and cut the whole piece in half lengthwise, which determined the overall length of my skirt.

DIY Pleated Skirt

Step Two: Going back to my magic number of 31 inches, I began pleating my skirt back and forth in one inch pleats... kind of like making little Z's with the fabric, lining the edge of one pleat up with the next. I'm sure y'all already know much more about pleating than me though :]

DIY Pleated Skirt

Step Three: THEN CAME THE NON-OPTIONAL PART. I had Kitty assist me in pleating because cats know hella-lot about that kind of thing.

DIY Pleated Skirt

Step Four: I kept on pleating until I got to my magic number of 31 inches.

DIY Pleated Skirt

Step Five: Then, to keep everything in place, I did a quick basting stitch across the top of the pleats.

DIY Pleated Skirt

Step Six: Next, I cut out a piece of fabric that was 4 inches by 31 inches. After folding the right sides together, I sewed down the bottom long edge, then turned it back right-side out.

DIY Pleated Skirt

Step Seven: Finally, I tacked the waistband to the top of the pleats, then stitched it down for good. In retrospect, I would have done this differently, like instead of just sewing it down, I would have sewn the tops of the pleats inside of the waistband [but I can't words right now so that probably doesn't make sense]. But mostly I would have finished my edges first. FINISH THOSE EDGES, YO. For real. Because that looks like a hot mess right now, I realize.

Then as the final finishing step[which I forgot to photograph], I sewed the the skirt together into a proper skirty-circle and put a zipper in the back.

And just like that, we have skirty-goodness. Because who uses a pattern anyway? Oh yeah, normal people... oops.

Ah well, have a pleasant Thursday!
Linkin' up hurr and hurr.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Mod Podge Purse

Heh. Eheh. Ehhhh.....

So one thing that I finished a while back was for a contest that a local boutique back home was holding:

Mod Podge Purse

What the contest basically entailed was that you were given a plain black plastic purse, and you had to decorate it any way that you wanted.
And for some reason, my train of thought took me in the direction of birch bark. I don't even sometimes.

Mod Podge Purse

All I really did for it was tear up a lot of scrapbook paper, phone books, paper doilies and brown paper bags and then mod podged it all on there haha. And then to finish it off, I painted some simple stylized birch branches and glued it all on top. Simple but fun, yeah?

Mod Podge Purse

Yay mod podge, yay.
And on the cool side, I actually ended up winning the contest. That's what sitting in your basement and hoarding craft supplies will get ya, kids. Live the dreeeeam~

And, as ever, I'll be linkin' up here!