DIY Crochet Owl Blanket

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Returning to my love of crocheting today, I’ve found a super cute and fairly simple pattern to share with you all!

It’s a super bulky Owl Imitation afghan! Designed by Ravelry user MJ, this afghan is one of many designs they’ve released but one of my absolute favorites. 😀 The pattern includes instructions for Child or Adult size for only $6. Besides looking super cute and comfy though, I love how it looks when it’s all folded up.

They’ve also included lots of info about hook and yarn yardage required to make, as well as estimation for yarn substitutions. Overall it’s designed to be worked up in about a day for an advanced/experienced crocheter, with some possible extra time for working on the owl hood part. If you’re intimidated by the hood, fear not! MJ has included a video tutorial for how to sew/attach it all together on her youtube account. I’m definitely considering making some of these as gifts for my nephews this Holiday season. ^_^


Dragon Hair Barrettes

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Back before puberty and genetics completely changed my hair, I used to very thick and wavy hair. Like, can barely put a hair tie around it think. Some days I miss it, but other days I don’t miss the brushing and maintenance involved. One thing I wish I’d had then? Awesome hair pieces like these:

Created in Bulgaria by artisan Ivaylo Zlatev, these are beautifully made hand carved wooden hair barrettes. They’re beautifully created and simple enough to accent just about any outfit so great for daily wear. If Dragons aren’t your thing though, they do make lots of of designs like an Octopus or even just simple geometric shapes. All of them are beautifully done, and if you’re like me and have thin hair, you can instead pursue the lovely collection of hand made woden decorations and toys that are also available in their shop. 🙂


Cosplay Crafting: Breath of the Wild Bow

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Yes, yes, I’m a sucker for any and all things Breath of the Wild right now. My excitement for this game is probably the highest it’s been for any game in at least the last decade. So, I wanna share with you other fans and cosplayers a fantastic tutorial that had been created for making your own Breath of the Wild style bow!

Made and designed by , this is one excellent tutorial on making Link’s bow as well as custom fantasy bows in general. The base bow they got was from Amazon and is not practical for hunting/shooting, but great for cosplay. Obviously metalic paint was used, but you’ll need to get your hands on craft foam (a cosplayer’s best friend) to make the added on guards at the very least. You’ll find the whole detail process here, and I highly recommend it if you were thinking about adding a new costume to your closet this year. 😉


DIY ‘Leave Me Alone’ Sweater

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It’s winter and I’m an introvert, so I already get the isolation I need most of the time, but sometimes….sometimes people just don’t get the message. Instead of running off though, I can now do like I did as a child and hide in my sweater thanks to this awesome instructable!

So what will you need to make this awesome custom refuge? Not much actually; though understanding of sewing clothes/patterns does help.

– Sweater that fits you (to use for sizing)

– 2 yards of fabric: Ideally a thick warm knit

– Zipper: She used a 22 inch zipper and cut it down to 14 inches. Use a longer zipper if you want your sweater to be able to go more off the shoulder. YYK is an excellent brand from something sturdy and long lasting. (~$3)

– Thread ($2)

Tools required:

– Sewing machine

– Zipper foot

– Hand sewing needle

– Jean needle for Sewing Machine (for use when sewing the zipper on. The thick weave will break normal needles)

The full instructions can be found here on instructable, but the quick and dirty has you taking the fabric and cutting it to size, using a current sweater you own as the template for sizing. From there you can alter the bottom length, but the top will be extended to give and extra long cowl that the zipper will get attached to. The idea of not having to talk to anyone will certainly be a big motivator for me to finish it. ^_^


Illuminated Couture

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So in my search to find a good shade providing umbrella, I’ve stumbled upon this wonderful Etsy store called Illuminated Couture. They specialize in light up clothing and accessories, including this awesome tie-dyed umbrella.

Vegas artist, Ronnie Brust, has been pushing is costuming limits for over a decade and LEDs have become his latest passion with them. His glowing products allow you to stand out however you chose; be it with a subtle pocket square or an elaborate headpiece. All of his work is well made an guaranteed to show the world just how much you glow. 🙂


A new year brings change

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Hello to all of you! I’m Kim from Fantastical Menagerie. Toni from Quiltoni asked me if I would be interested in contributing to the blog spot here on Crafthackers, and I was delighted.

I have been running my own art business for twelve years, and full time since 2011. I work mostly in polymer clay, and some mixed media. I tend to work with sculpting animals into wearable art. Besides doing a number of ComicCons and Art Shows each year, you can find my things on Facebook at www.facebook.com/fantasticalmenagerie or on Etsy at www.fantasticmenageries.etsy.com.

I am hoping to have some tutorials over the next few months, along with ideas to inspire you to create! If you would like to see one I posted here in September, here is the link. It’s on clay pumpkin earrings.

DIY: Pumpkin Earrings and Pendant

We have a new year in front of us, and so many things to try.

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Closet Cosplay 2: Leia

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Its Rogue One premiere day here in Ireland! Like last year, I’m out to it in a casual costume. Last year I went as Han, which turned out to make the evening a heck of a lot more heart-wrenching, so I chose a character who I was fairly confident would not die in this movie, Leia. So here are some closet outfit suggestions from me to you in case you want to represent Her Highness on your way to the cinema.

The classic and easy option is her senatorial gown that she spends most of her time in early on.

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All white dress, white shoes, and a silver belt and you will definitely be giving a nod to the original trilogy’s heroine, especially if you add the classic Leia buns. But I’m more interested in another, warmer option out there- that of her Hoth outfit.

screen-shot-2016-12-14-at-11-33-31 White shirt and pants with an off-white fuzzy “Wampa” furred vest and grey boots and you’re done! The hairstyle for this will be a bit more difficult, with the long braid around the head, but this will keep me much warmer as I venture out into the rain that has finally come to Dublin.

Rogue One is looking like it will be amazing. Have a happy Star Wars week ya’ll!

~ eliste


Wear Your Food

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In a move typically only seen in food fights, one fashion designer has decided to make purses and jewelry that look remarkably like food. Like, really, really look like food.

Yup. That is a purse, not a real cake. Made my Netherlands artist rommydebommy, they are all handmade out of various materials including special foam to get the correct food shapes/look. Some of them come very over-sized and are a bit comical looking, but still incredible in their life like detail.

This looks so much like a real cake it’s just ridiculous.

She didn’t forget about the men folk either! For them she has a selection of bow ties (like this apple core one) that probably won’t get approved for formal wear. 😉 You should definitely check out her etsy store to see more of her incredible work.


Cosplay A to Z: Choosing a Commercial Pattern

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One of the things I think many beginner sewers have difficulty with is choosing patterns to sew with. For today’s article, I’m going to assume you’re working primarily with fabric for your costume.

Choosing a pattern can make your life easier or not, so today we’re going to talk about my 4 S’s of pattern selection.

Size
It goes without saying that size is important. Pattern sizing is not the same as fashion sizing, and so at a basic level, you need to ensure you are using the correct size. If your pattern size is the same as what you bought in a store, you’re probably going to have problems.

But in a more abstract manner, size is important in different ways. Maybe you don’t want perfectly fitting clothing. Maybe you want oversized clothing.

Is your character a cartoon with blocky features? If so, maybe you want to ensure that your pattern is going to be oversized to give that less human, more pixelated look. Some designs may be created that are made to hang large on a frame. Looking at the fit of the design on the model can help you get an idea about whether it will really bring your character to life in the way you want to.

 

Shape
Shape goes to the basic shape of a pattern. If you were to represent your costume in 2 dimensions, what shapes would it take?

If you’re looking for a skirt, the first question to ask is does this give the right kind of skirt? Is it a-line? Is it mermaid? Does it go in where you want it to go out? For instance, a short school uniform-type of skirt has a very different shape than a pencil skirt worn by the school principle.

If you’re wondering whether a pattern would give similar shapes, you can easily try drawing them out to compare.

 

Silhouette
Silhouette takes shape to a step above. It is about the lines on the edge of the body and the curves or straight lines they make that that point. You want to check that the pattern you choose gives you the same silhouette as a character.

For retro and historical patterns, you may find that the correct silhouette is not achievable without proper undergarments. For instance, the 1890’s saw the use of spoon-busked corsets. These are very distinct silhouette and corsets that use any other type of busk will not give the S-curve of the 1890’s corsets. Further, any clothing not designed for a spoon-busk may need alterations to accommodate a different style of corset.

The Victorian silhouette

The Victorian silhouette

I think silhouette is best explained by Jessica Rabbit. Any pink sparkly dress with a red wig will evoke the comically drawn Jessica, but only a specialised corset and dress will depict her incredibly tight waist and buxom features for an accurate silhouette.

 

Seam Lines

The last, but certainly not least, consideration is where to the seam lines lie on the pattern?
You can save yourself a lot of effort if you can find a pattern that has similar seam lines. It will be more easily alterable to gain the silhouette you want, as well as looking more like what the character uses.

I will caution that seam lines are not always a requirement for many costumes, but for some, they can make or break a costume. In some instances, seam lines can be the difference between a screen accurate costume and not.

For instance, while any black bodysuit could be used to represent Mara Jade, she is always depicted in the comics with very specific patterns. I had to adapt a bodysuit pattern to add these seams in and take extra seams out in order to get an accurate costume.

All four of these things may not exist in a single pattern. However, if you can find a pattern that has 3 of them, you’re going to have a lot less work to do to make it fit and look accurate than if you just pick the first jacket pattern you find in your size. You could choose the first jacket pattern you buy, but take some time, and you may find one that is not only 1940’s styled, but has princess seams.

There are thousands of patterns in existence, and combing through them can be time consuming. However, taking that time at the beginning of the process can significantly make the construction process later on easier.

~ eliste


Kids Animal Coats

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In the spirit of staying warm and enjoying Halloween, I found a clothing maker who can help your child dress up all winter long. 😀

This adorable coat (and many more like it) were designed by British best friends (Naomi and Nat) to create a clothing line they’ve called Oliver and Vince. It’s all clothing specifically for children that’s made in bright and bold colors and patterns that children are drawn to. Their coats are so popular that you can only pre-order right now for coats to arrive in Spring of 2017. If you know how to sew however, there may be hope!

They’ve just released a new pattern book that you can order right here, and make your own super cute coats and clothes for your own kids! It ships world wide and you can even chose the option to have your copy signed for no extra cost. 🙂 I was already thinking of experimenting with clothing making, and now I think I’ve found some motivation!