Hiatus


Hello from Colorado, friends! Sorry for my absence of a couple months; I’ve been a bit busy with my summer internship. And new friends. And the wildfires and other various tragedies that have struck this state just this summer. As much as it pains me to say it, I had almost no time for crafts…let alone posting about them.

But there is a light at the end of the tunnel–my internship is drawing to close and I will return to the east coast soon. I will also be posting soon about something I created for a new friend I made here in Colorado. As soon as I can get a good picture of it with the birthday boy, I shall have another post. I am looking forward to it!

Making Books Come Alive


I finally did something today that I’ve wanted to do ever since I saw one man’s brilliant work a little over a year ago. Thomas Allen is an artist that creates amazing work out of books.

Clearly, this man is rather brilliant. I will include the link to his site, but with the warning that a fair amount of his content is for mature audiences only. A lot of it is more than a little risque. Even his website header. I try to run a clean, family-friendly site–so you’ve been warned. thomasallenonline

I created my own book art out of a copy of Rudyard Kipling’s Captain Courageous, printed in 1963. (It was originally published as a serial in McClures in 1897.)See what I did with it!

Pretty neat, huh?

CraftConniption Conversations: Caleb’s Costumes


Caleb Boswell is a very creative fellow–he’s a communication design major at Kutztown University, studying graphics and advertising, but he’s also pretty crafty in his spare time, too. Listen to this short interview podcast with him about his costumes and creative process.

Photos courtesy of Caleb Boswell.

DIY: Global Organization


What do you get when you combine two instant hot chocolate boxes, an artificial sweetener (yes, I know they cause cancer) box, clear postal tape and a 1970s pocket atlas? Your very own global organization…or atlas-decorated desk organizer. I’m so clever.

Here’s how to make your own:

 

1. Gather 2-4 boxes. I would recommend using boxes of the same size for the bulk of the organizer but maybe adding a smaller one for little stuff.

 

2. Cut off the tabs if you want it to be completely open. Leave them on if you want to be able to close your little shelves, just know that it will be more complicated to cover them.

 

 

3. Remove some pages from an atlas.Lesson Learned: Little atlases are adorable and more manageable–BUT, larger atlas pages will look better, having less seams.

 

 

4. (Optional) “Age” your pages in strong coffee or tea ( I did not do that for this project.) and allow them to dry.

 

 

 

5. Attach boxes of the same size. I used postal tape, but you can use own favorite adhesive. Then proceed to wrap them with your atlas pages. If you have large maps, it will be a lot like wrapping a present. If you have small maps, it will still be a lot like wrapping a present, just like that time you forgot you were out of wrapping paper and had to piece some together out of old wrapping paper scraps.

 

6. When all your units are wrapped, it’s time to seal the paper. I initially planned to use Modge Podge, but the texture of the atlas paper and the Modge Podge didn’t get along, so I turned to my second favorite adhesive/sealer. Clear postal tape. Cover the whole thing, as neatly as you can, in strips. Add any smaller boxes to your main unit, attaching it and sealing it at the same time.

 

You can sit the organizer on its side like little shelves or you can sit it upright like a miniature book/paper rack with a pencil cup.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Congratulations. You are now slightly more organized. You also appear scholarly.

 

 

 

 

Time: 30 minutes

Difficulty: ♦  Very easy project.

Cost: ♦  $0-3

A Painted Pickguard and the Benefits of Limits


Yesterday, in a sort of spur of the moment opportunity, I painted the pickguard on my boyfriend’s bass guitar. He (the same fellow for whom I designed this guitar seen in an earlier post) put down the guard, newly spray-painted midnight blue, in front of me on the table. Pushing blue and yellow paint pens at me, he said “paint something!” I almost declined to do so–these things require planning, you know! But before I knew it, and truly I don’t really remember how it came about, I was painting the Old Man in the Moon.

I think the moral of the story is that limits can be good. We tend to think they are stifling; we want limitless possibilities. But the truth is that sometimes limits stimulate creativity. If I’d had more than two colors with which to work, I might never have come up with an idea. Learn to look at limits as opportunities…you might surprise yourself.

First Video Tutorial


You might have seen my post a little while ago about making a laurel wreath headband out of a soda can. (See the post for pictures.) You might also have noticed that I didn’t post a tutorial. Well, I’m correcting that issue now with a video tutorial–check it out!

My First Commission


I was very pleased a few weeks ago when my younger brother “commissioned” me to make something for his girlfriend’s birthday, which is this month. He gave me a couple of subject matter ideas, but told me that the whole thing was really up to me–he figured I’d come up with something good. I decided to play it relatively safe and make one of my specialties. T-shirts! (Below is a selection of some of my best.)

As I mentioned, my brother gave me a couple of ideas (all of them somewhat sentimental as my brother is of a sappy sort…in a good way, I think). One of the themes he suggested was something with Pixar’s Wall-E and Eve.

If you can’t tell or aren’t familiar with Wall-E, the heart shape is supposed to be drawn in the foam from a fire extinguisher, which Wall-E uses to fly so he can keep up with Eve.

I think it’s nice, but I hope my brother and his girlfriend like it!