Make New, Again

During my Christmas holiday break, a friend gifted me a pair of earrings gifted to her. It didn’t quite count as a re-gift as she just handed them to me. They weren’t really her thing; she doesn’t do dangles, or purple, or green. I thought there were kind of cute, kind of funky, kind of odd, kind of wild, kind of not really my thing either, but I would still wear them. Better yet, I could make something better with these items!

Unfortunately, I didn’t get a picture of the before, but I turned it into a necklace.  I could have kept it, but I gave it back. Hopefully, it’s more her thing now.

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An idea is born!

Next, my mother gave me a huge bag of costume jewelry that she found in the house. Some of it was hers, some of it belonged to my grandmother, and some of it she had no idea where it came from. We hung out, sipped some tea, and chatted about old memories surrounding some of the pieces.  I left with a bag full of ideas on turning the jewelry into something new. Some things I thought were oddly fabulous as they were and planned to leave those as they are.

Right now, it all looks like junk and clutter sitting on top of my yarn/bookcase, but I have plans to use as much of each item as I can, combine it with beads and findings that I already own (or will purchase) to make a completely new look. Ooo, a challenge!

I immediately dove in to this bag to work on my first necklace, inspired by these gold balls that have been in my stash forever.  Here it is in progress.

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Those “pearls” are connected together and are not my favorite piece to work with, but here’s to the task of trying to turn it into something that looks a little more desirable (at least to me or in great lighting)!

Although, I’m not so sure what to do with this!

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– Nizzy

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Make New, Again

Crafting with Friends

Well, it’s been a while since I crafted with DragonWillow!  Some of our lady friends got together for scrapbooking this past weekend and I, of course, brought the jewelry stash. 

I couldn’t decide on any ONE thing so I brought EVERYTHING and still managed a bit of productivity in a couple of hours.

DW and I made similar charm bracelets:

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And I made a dainty enameled lock and key lariat putting my Philly Bead Show goods on display.

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– Nizzy

Crafting with Friends

What’s My Grade?

September seemed to pass by so quickly however, I managed to squeeze in several simple pairs of earrings.  I’ve tried to stay true to my personal challenge in that no new materials would be used (except notions and findings like thread, jump rings, etc.) and all but one pair of these follow the rule of using what I have in the stash instead of stockpiling beads and fabric like I’m waiting for a Craftpocolypse to begin. 

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Wait…A Craftpocolypse?   I like the sound of that!

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September also was the month I finished the Fashion Studies class.   The instructor was super knowledgable and has further sparked my interest in keeping up with the goings on of the fashion industry.  I’ve learned names of designers (and I never keep up names!), turned my nose up at some fast fashion news stories, learned to appreciate the work that goes into clothing and textile manufacturing, and ogled more 2014 runway shows than ever before.   That last night, my classmates and I brought in and discussed our final projects (mood board (below), illustration (below), technical drawings and swatches), received a gentle critique of or work, and went on our way!  There are only two regrets I have about taking the class:

1. Taking the class for audit.  You haven’t a clue of how well (or how bad) you’ve done.  Although I’m pretty sure compared to others in that industry I would have a lot more to “show and prove”.  On the other hand, learning is ‘spensive!

2. Not trying to “design” a little more.  I froze at the thought of drawing collars, draping, layering, texture, dimension, etc.  I wanted to avoid a complete illustration disaster so I kept it simple enough for my limited drawing skills.

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I was inspired by mathematics, optial illusions, geometry and crisp folds.

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Friends are asking me if I have any plans to make these clothes.  I’ve entertained the idea, but don’t think I will.  At least not yet.  Let’s see what happens in the next class: Patternmaking and Construction.  Maybe these ideas above are simple enough for me practice what I learn.

-Nizzy

What’s My Grade?

Geek Craft: 3.5″ Danglies

At work this week I thought it was time to stop procrastinating and get around to destroying all of my old 3.5″ diskettes.  I don’t have a clue what’s on them and even if I wanted to know, there is no way I’m going to chase down a computer with a drive. 

The conversation in my head went like this:

Regular Me:  “Finally getting rid of these old diskettes.  Cross that off the to do list!”

Hoarder Me:  “No! What are you doing!?  Keep these!  You’ll find a drive one day.”

Environmentally Conscious Me:  “Oh, dear!  What a waste of all this plastic and metal. Recycle it!”

Crafty Me:  “Hold on, I have an idea.”

Hoarder Me: “Yeah, listen to the craft idea and keep something.”

And these were born!

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Most people probably won’t even recognize this metal piece as the center of a disk.  I salvaged quite a few of them to see what sort of fun I could have transforming then into something new.  The easiest choice was a pair of earrings.  I wanted to do a little more with then than just throw the discs on ear wire so I dipped into the bead stash and pulled out a few faceted beads, aluminum discs, and chain.  I also could not resist measuring them.  From the top of the ear wire to the bottom of the disk they are exactly 3.5″ in length!  How perfect!

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– Nizzy

Geek Craft: 3.5″ Danglies

Searching for Style

What is good style?

Is it copying what the celebrities/rich are wearing?  Is it doing your own thing based on exactly what you like?  Is it staying true to the current trends?  Is it all about confidence and fit no matter what you have on?  Whatever the definition, I’m trying to find my way one piece at a time.  Depending on just who you ask, there will be hits and misses with any wardrobe.  Not everyone likes the same type of clothing.  Some adopt the less is more attitude while others like to button up to the neck.

Is there possibly a wrong way to style?

I catch clips of these television shows like Fashion Police where they discuss celebrity fashion and how right or wrong they choose to style themselves.  I can’t help but to feel a bit annoyed about how harshly they get judged.  Let me tell you, if I had millions I would wear what I want no matter how crazy, different, odd it is.  And that is exactly the direction I want to head now.  If I wanna go head-to-toe hooch let me do my thing!  Maybe tone-on-tone is how I’m feeling today.

In the meantime, until I figure out what this ‘style’ thing is all about, I’m going to do me and try to have some fun educating myself on what works and what doesn’t!

Anyhoo…this month’s craft stash challenge is brought to you by Stitch and Bitch Crochet: The Happy Hooker.  I wanted a casual little cover up to wear over strappy tanks and dresses when I didn’t feel like showing my arms and back (especially at work).   In the stash I hated this yarn.  I didn’t like the crinkle, but felt guilty parting with it so I chose to turn all that hate into a great.  I’m digging the finished product!

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With it, I’m wearing one of my finished jewelry pieces that was sitting around waiting for a photo-op.  I’m experimenting in the craft room with some different materials, but my current moment with sewing has taken away some of the one-on-one time with my jewelry stash.  Maybe that upcoming Philly Bead Fest will get my mojo rolling again.

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– Nizzy

Searching for Style

Big Hair Calls for Big Earrings!

I returned my hair to its natural state about 4-5 years ago and I’ve done everything to it: twists, twist outs, puffs, flat twists, curly fro hawk, etc.  Well for the first time EVER I rocked the fro last week.  In celebration, this big hair calls for big, colorful, crochet earrings!

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I don’t know what took me so long to do it.  I guess I just needed to finally feel comfortable with my hair!  I had years and years self-hate to undo, thinking I would be inadequate if I didn’t have some sort of chemical treatment going on.  Chile, I can’t go back to that stuff!

I’ve worn them so much I know folks are tired of seeing them. But earrings are the one thing I hate to leave the house.  Big ghetto hoops, dainty dangles, studs, costume, the real deal: I have to put something in these ears or I don’t feel complete.

-Nizzy

Big Hair Calls for Big Earrings!

Knitting Punishment?

I feel like I’m on knitting punishment.  I told myself not to start any new knitting/crochet projects until I tied up some of the loose ends (literally) on some previously started projects.  I’m so bored with them all.  Part of the fun with crafting is starting something new!  It’s past time to get out of finishing mode and have a bit of fun with starting a few new projects.   I should really stop beating myself up about it the starting/finishing deal.

Speaking of finished projects, for that friend of a friend that just had a baby, I knitted the Baby Moc-a-Soc Booties.  These fall a bit into the ‘UGH’ category because of the twisted, grey yarn.  That crinkly yarn makes the stitches look so messy to me!  I would love to give them another try with something different.

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And I am disappointed to find more yarn of this type in my stash.  I’m going to grin and bear it and see if I can make it into something I like better.   I like a challenge and apparently punishment!

I promise you this is also a sewing blog!  I’ve got a dress waiting to be photographed if only I can get the hem to work out.  I made a mistake in my pattern adjustments which doesn’t look like I can easily fix…without taking something apart!  Say it ain’t so!

I’ll leave you with a jewelry FO.  When I made this some time ago I found inspiration in the Steampunk movement, using gears and copper color.    It’s not all-the-way Steampunk, but it still has a little of that unconventional and irregular feel.

-Nizzy

Knitting Punishment?