Quilt Block of the Month – Block 11

Posted on

Welcome to the Craft Hackers Quilt a Long (courtesy of fab shop hop!)

Block 11 is the¬†Witch’s Cauldron.


This is an intermediate level quilt. If you don’t have a lot of basic quilting skills you probably don’t want to attempt this quilt or you may get frustrated. The quilt a long will stay posted so if you are learning to quilt you can always come back and join at any time, even if we are finished! Please post your squares as you finish them so we can cheer you along!

Even though I am posting a square a month I don’t want anyone to feel pressured that you must finish the block within a month. This is a relaxed quilt a long that you can complete at your own pace. Although anyone finishing their quilt during the quilt a long time will be featured in a special blog.

The finished dimensions are 72″ by 72″.

Just to remind you, here is the finished pattern:

Here is the pattern for the Witch’s Cauldron Block 11.



Wood Working Tutorial: Weapons

Posted on

Any of you that go to cons will likely know that they have many rules about weapons at conventions. They all basically boil down to nothing real is allowed at the con. No real guns/ammo and no live steal (knives and swords). Even if you bought a really cool 6ft Sephiroth Masamune AT the con, it has to be in a box until you can take it out and it’s not allowed back in afterwards.

So what’s a cosplayer to do? Well, make their own out of other materials of course! I found a great detailed tutorial that a very kind wood working artist has shared online with his step by step process on how he makes his wooden weapons.

The tutorial by Sephiroths-Shadow completely illustrates and outlines how to create a dagger like the one seen above. The link is one long jpg infographic style and right at the top he lists all the materials you will need. It will require the use of some power tools to do, most notably a jigsaw with a small blade and a drill with a small drill bit. The only other item I recommend using with caution is the carving knife as I doubt you want to knick you fingers, so this design is definitely not something for a beginner. BUT! My husband (the wood worker in our relationship) gave this a look over and agreed that the techniques that the artist, Sephiroths-Shadow, uses can be applied to simpler projects as well. ūüôā


Nail Polish Craftings

Posted on

Anyone who knows me at all knows that I’m a huge lacquerista and subscribe to many blogs and sub-reddits dedicated to nail art. ¬†That being the case, I have *somehow* managed to build up quite a collection of polishes that has started to spill out of a packed shoebox. ¬†I have started to notice that many polishes have run their course with me and have gone unused for a long time, or that they simply didn’t suit me and are entirely full, yet I keep them, for just in case.

If you’re like me in that, you’ve probably built your own collection to dive into, but if you don’t really have many this could be a chance for you to get out and look at all the cool new polishes there are to use on these crafts!

Nail Polish Flowers

HandiMania created a DIY nail polish flower tutorial that is very detailed.  These flowers are absolutely amazing and I love that you can make things look just as you like by using your favourite polishes, and even colour co-ordinating with your nails if you really want to be fancy!

One note on these, however, is that it can be difficult to fill the area with just polish, so you may want to do it with glue first, let it dry, and then use the polish on top -> this guy <- explains it well.

Nail Polish’d Planters

These cute planters were created by the folks at Hello Natural, and the DIY is not only very easy to follow but the pictures they took are very lovely.

Colour-Coded Ceys Keys


If you’re like me and have a million keys, this is definitely for you. ¬†A Bubbly Life posted a DIY on these although they are fairly straightforward. ¬†The only thing I’d suggest myself is to use a top coat on these bad boys, as they will rub against each other and other things quite a bit!

Nail Polish’d Headphones


Cremedelacraft came up with this DIY for personalizing your headphones which I think is super cool.  Considering the fact that I am surrounded by bland Macs all day, I will definitely be utilizing this one!

I actually found and thought of so many more nail polish crafts so I may make this a 2-parter and do this again.  I love that I can actually use those neglected polishes again and hopefully these have inspired you as well!  Feel free to share any pictures of these crafts in the comments if you have done them yourself!

Kickstarter Feature: Wyrmwood Gaming

Posted on

If you were planning on ordering anything from Wyrmwood Gaming in the next few months, or even at GenCon this year, you may just have to do it now instead.

Wyrmwood Gaming normally has a selection of 14 core woods. The Kickstarter is launching the portable dice tower, attachable dice tray, and dice vault in 70 different woods! This is the greatest selection of wood they have ever had.

In addition to being able to order a complete set in 70 different woods, they have offered two amazing and unique rewards, the dungeon master collection and the Wyrmwood Adventure.

We offer the ultimate Wyrmwood Adventure to one backer. You will meet with Douglas and Ian Costello, our founders and head craftsmen, to collaborate on a tower, personal tray, and dice vault made from the finest materials available. From sourcing the lumber personally, to brainstorming design elements in a pub, to learning master woodworking techniques, your Complete System will be entirely unique, and you’ll have a hand in every part of the creative process.

I have finally bought my own system. ¬†I can’t wait until it is delivered and we can start using it. ¬†They already have complete funding, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t take this opportunity to get your system in some woods that may not be offered again. ¬†You can find the Wyrmwood Kickstarter here. ¬†Their regular website can be found here, their Facebook can be found here, and their Twitter can be found here.


Meet the Hackers: Too Many Games

Posted on


Today is the start of Too Many Games in Oaks, Pa. ¬†This will be my third time at Too Many Games and I can’t wait! ¬†Too Many Games isn’t just a video game convention. ¬†It will have tabletop gaming and game music as well. ¬†Craft Hackers will be there with Quiltoni, Craftigurumi, and Geek Mythology Crafts. ¬†You can find us here:


In addition to bringing our Crafty Wares, we will be holding a Crafty Thinking panel.  It will take place Friday at 6pm in panel room 3.  If you are thinking of starting your own business, or own one and want to grow your business, this is the panel for you.  We will also be streaming it live.  If you are not able to attend Too Many Games you can watch it through Hang With.  Subscribe to our channel and you will get a notification when we start streaming.

Speaking of Streaming, we will be streaming all weekend long again!  When we see something we just have to share, we will stream it on Hang With and then after we are finished streaming I will share it on our Craft Hacker Facebook page.  I am sure I will share a lot of awesome things including new interviews!


Planting…. Apartment Style!

Posted on

Hello there folks!


Hot weather, patios, sunshine. Summer is upon us and that means my greenish thumb starts itching. ¬†I have planted some plants on the balcony in little pots but I don’t have a lot of room so I started looking at some of the different DIY options for small spaces – It is possible, it is just always a challenge. It doesn’t, however, have to be an impossible challenge.

One of the options I came across was pretty amazing and super easy.

What better way to have plants in a small space than to have small plants that don’t need a lot of care? I have been known to drown my succulents, but I’m assuming most people don’t do that. ¬†This is a super easy craft that you need minimal materials for. All you need are some corks, some soil. some plants, magnets and glue. I would also recommend a drill (and a lot of care) ¬†to make the hole, but it isn’t necessary. Just be careful with whatever you use.

The hole doesn’t need to be super big, though it depends if you’re going to put one little plant inside or a few.

All you need to do is hollow out the middle of the cork till about half way down, and stick a little bit of dirt in it. I mean just a couple pinches – not even a teaspoon. ¬†Succulents need very little moisture and can even grow in very rocky ground so don’t worry too much. ¬†I’d also give a few drops of water inside. ¬†Just be sure that when you buy succulents for these that they are small, and when you remove the plants or separate them, make sure you get the roots.

You can glue a small magnet to the back of these corks to have them hang from the fridge, or you can get super creative and bundle them together in bunches for a centrepiece, or to hang.

If you put more than one inside they can look so beautiful and really don’t need to take up a lot of space. ¬†You could even decorate the cork with ribbon and gems. You can use these as party favours.


Give this a try if you’re like me and your thumb isn’t so green. You can generally forget about succulents and they’ll be fine since they’re desert plants, and if you’re in a space with no counters and very few options for growing things.


Happy planting!


Clever Notions

Posted on

I haven’t talked about it much, but I began my own blogging career mainly on my quilting. I still have a couple of UFO’s sitting around the house that I keep intending on finishing, but right now there hasn’t been a huge push for me.

One of the things I do love about quilting is the modern blogosphere that has built up around it. If you’re unfamiliar, just hit quilting in Google and you will see oodles of fabulous blogs to follow. They are a prolific lot, and a lot of fun. In fact, there is definite familiarity between a lot of the authors whose blogs “grew up” together and have since met and become friends. Being the eclectic that I am, I have never slotted fully into that blogosphere, although it was fun to participate in one of the book tours that came my way. What I did get out of it was meeting some amazing people, one of which has just opened up a design shop with her own quilt designs.

Clever Notions is the brainchild of Megan Dougherty, and let me tell you, this girl has talent.I love all three of the designs, especially because I feel they are ones that with my middling quilting skills would challenge me without overwhelming my actual abilities. Take her design Runway:

I like this design a lot. I also like that with my skills this is a quilt that I could tackle that would force me to try to find those perfect points, and through the repetition, I’d get pretty good at them. I do love a good challenge.

I also know that with the writing Megan has, that I’d be able to get to those perfect points without too much hassle. Megan is a wordsmith and so it shouldn’t be surprising that one of the things I like best about her designs is the well thought out and written instructions. Good instructions are often hard to find, in my experience, and I know I am more likely to finish a project when I can actually tell what I’m doing. She even gives you a sneak peak of the instructions inside for each pattern on the website so you can see what I mean:

And did you notice she provides scaling options for each of her patterns? Genius. I have regularly found patterns I liked only to realise it was for a bed that I don’t own, or a lapquilt that is so tiny I can’t imagine whose lap it would fit. Clever Notion patterns avoid that problem by giving you three different size options within the one pattern. Its the little things like this that make me know these designs, and all those that come down the line, are going to be great.

Daryl Pattern

Of course, you don’t have to take my word for it. Instead of just making us assume that her work is amazing, Megan went out and found some pattern testers who have kindly allowed her to post their photos and reviews of the patterns up on her website. I love the variety of looks you can get with these patterns by simply changing the fabric options (but then again, that may be why I love quilting altogether). If you want to check out what the testers had to say, or just see the designs in different colours, head over here.

Clever Notions also stocks some of Megan’s prior work, including her quilting humour book and some pins and magnet sets that crack me up. You’ll find all of this and more on the Clever Notions website and blog, shop, and Facebook.

~ eliste

Glowing Fantasy Jewelry

Posted on

I found this artist thorugh tumblr, which doesn’t happen often but when it does, man oh man, I’m never happier to have an account there.

Dragon Fly Glass Pendent

This beautiful pendent is the work of Canadian artist Manon Richard of Papillon Jewelry. Though they make a few other designs, the majority of the stock is jewelry and it is just wonderfully elegant. I don’t know how this artist makes their colors, but I volunteer as tribute next cause my goodness they are ASTOUNDING. ūüėÄ Their designs also tick all the fantasy/nature design aesthetics that I love, including a few fanart/recreation pieces such as Arwen’s necklace:

They also makes some pendents from hand blown glass, which is no surprise when you can create custom glow colors like this one. I know I’m always saying I don’t wear jewelry but if their chain won’t get caught in my hair….yeah, I may have finally found something to finally wear as a necklace again. ^_^


A Crochet Masterwork

Posted on

I have quite the amazing crochet project to share with everyone today. My sister brought it to my attention and….wow is all I have to say.

This amazing blanket was crochet by the gentleman in the picture above, a Norwegian amigurumi crafter named Kjetil Nordin. He has spent the last 6 years (800 hours) working on this massive blanket off and on and I for one am in awe of how clean his color changes are!

Based on the closes ups here, it looks like he made it using a half double crochet stitch with each pixel equaling two stitches. It’s hard to say for sure and I can only imagine what the wrong side looks like with all his color changes. He plans on hanging this lovely throw on the wall to keep it nice (can’t say that I blame him!)¬† and at 2.2m by 1.8m (7ft by 5ft) it will be quite the decoration. You can find more close ups here, that were posted by his friend on imgur, as well as see a brief interview he gave to a Norwegian site called NRK (the article I first found out about him on) if you wish to know more.


Shibori timbers!

Posted on

I haven’t had much time for crafts since I started school again at the beginning of June, but I still allow myself a break here and there to unwind and read about things that have nothing to do with what I’m studying. As I was scrolling through reddit I came across a post about a couple that experimented with Shibori and made some lovely curtains. Intrigued, I checked out the pictures, and then looked into what the heck Shibori is and the technique is so cool yet so easy that I knew I had to share it.

Shibori is a Japanese tie-dying style that actually uses different techniques based on the look you are going for.

Kanoko shibori, for instance, is what we usually think of when we hear ‚Äėtie-died‚Äô; binding sections of the cloth to create a desired pattern after being dipped into dye.


Miura shibori, or ‚Äėlooped binding‚Äô involves using a hooked needle and plucking through the fabric, resulting in a ‚Äėwater-ripple‚Äô design.


Kumo shibori is about pleating the fabric evenly, and so requires you to be very precise.


Nui shibori requires some tight stitching and then pulling it in very tight to gather together.


Arashi shibori, or ‚Äėpole-wrapping‚Äô, requires you to wrap your cloth around a pole and then tightly bind it.


Itajime shibori is done by sandwiching cloth between pieces of wood, held in place by string. You can use different shapes of wood and hold them down with clamps instead. As long as the they are tightly held, the colour will not be able to penetrate underneath.

Getting the dye is fairly cheap and easy, so this is a very good way to spruce up any of those older light fabrics that you have lying around the house. Seems to be a fun craft to do with kids… at least the wrapping part, unless you want them looking like human rainbows!

If you’d like more information on techniques for shibori, check out these handy DIYs!

Honestlywtf – Shibori DIY

Art Threads – Kumo Shibori DIY

moomah – Shibori DIY

Video on Niu Shibori

File Under Fiber – Shibori Circles