Category: Craft

Washi Tape Whiteboard Frame

Washi Tape Whiteboard Frame

Random, quick project for a long weekend; finally found a tape I like to do the job.

Tape used: ‘Duck Tape’ – Black Ornament

Fixing a Christmas Tree

There are many problems in this world that Google can solve. This, apparently, is not one of them.

While taking down my Christmas tree last year I was most dismayed when a whole layer of branches snapped off in my hand. Being 1am on twelth night at the time, I decided to pop it in the box and deal with it next year. Next year is… well, today.

Oh Noes Tree

I rather like trees. They’re like the little friend who pops over every year and stays in your living room. If it had a face, it would be full of smilies. It seems a shame to throw away a perfectly good decoration due to some shoddy plastic work.

So here I am, attempting to fix a Christmas tree. The individual branches are still intact, I just need some way to attach them to the central trunk. I have some 5mm aluminium wire left over from another project that I think will do the job. It’s bright pink. I need to get some duct tape though. Or green electrical tape.

Perhaps I am a little bit insane. I did consider this while sitting knee deep in dismantled branches.

I also need to figure out how to get a set of pink fairy lights on a curtain rail while still being able to actually use the curtains. For now, this remains a mystery.

Mount Doom

Woah, I’ve been pretty busy with Other Stuff ™ recently so haven’t been writing much on here. Apparently it’s summer outside. Who knew?

I bought a new bag last week. It’s *huge*. Alas it has not pockets. Anyone who’s had a bag without pockets is probably well versed in the art of how every useful thing ever invented like phones and MP3 players always manage to find their way right to the bottom of a mess like this:

Bag Without Pockets

Cue Internet Time, looking for a way to add pockets to a bag, and we find the concept of the bag organiser.

[Pattern] from TheGivingFlower, via CraftApple

Bag Organiser


Bag Organiser Filled

Aside: The bloody stupid wasp fromt he last post is still in here. The double patio doors are wide open but it keeps trying to fly through my ceiling.

Anyways… this should make my bag a lot neater.

Bag With Pockets

… I’m not convinced, I think my bag’s a little too big for this to work. We’ll see when I take it out for a test run tomorrow, so long as I can actually find my phone in there without emptying half of the thing then I’ll be happy.

Okay aside 2: the wasp has DISAPPEARED. It was nowhere near the door when I lost sight of it and I haven’t seen it in 10 mins. Really want to get out of this hoody now, it’s boiling in here. With all the doors and windows open my current cost meter reckons it’s still 31 degrees inside.

Back on topic, I also made some other stuff since I last posted. There was a cushion but that wasn’t very exciting, though the fabric I found in a random cute little shop in Caterbury is awesome.

Butterfly Cushion

And I finally finished some handwarmers I started sometime last year but it’s totally the wrong time of year for those. I’d just been putting off finishing them and finally gotten around to it.

[Pattern] Morgaine Fingerless Mittens from blueoceanspureskies (via Ravelry)


Okay, so the wasp wasn’t actually a wasp, it was an enormous housefly. And by enoromous I mean like proper mega ultra huge. After working out that it wasn’t actually capable of stinging me horribly it was rather easy to persuade it to vacate the premises with a broom. Admittedly I didn’t expect it to land *on* the broom, thus letting me walk it over to the nearest open window but hey, that made things a heck of a lot easier.

I’ve never been stung by a wasp before, but from what I’ve heard it’s not something I’d particularly want to happen either.

Things and Things and More Things

Lets get this in order.

Two chapters and 4 exercises left in the Java textbook, kinda happy to get to nearly get to the end of it. Though it is all Swing GUI stuff and I always find that kinda tricky. Sooo many objects, so many lines, so many odd little settings and things to remember.

I made a wallet. It has constellations on.
Constellation ZIppy Wallet
Modified the Riko doll. I’m still not happy with it. It’s missing something but I can’t quite put my finger on it.

Diddy Riko Revisited

I’ve been watching too much anime. Then again, there’s nothing on so maybe that’s okay. With Game of Thrones coming back and some random thing on Channel 5 about fairytales, maybe that’ll change. I still need to finish Battlestar.

A wandering Timcanpy appeared. It was cute.

Timcanpy Plush

An amigurumi dragon stopped by to say hello too. He was resized, but he didn’t seem to mind. He now lves on my desk, amongst other things.

Cute Little Amigurumi Dragon

I got one of these, I thought they were cool:

Baby Angel Cat Qee - Blank

I need to design it. You can paint them with acrylics but seeing as I suck at painting I think paint marker-pens are the way to go.

A friend sent me one of these. It was also cool:

Tea Mug

The fish got new plants. The just-a-bundle-of-leaves fern was a little disappointing, but there’s some baby ones growing off it so maybe those will survive.

New Plants in Fishtank

Yeah… this is totally the wrong kind of camera for this.

I had a go with my new Studio pencils. Can’t say I’m used to them yet as the drawing I’m trying them out on is allllll black so half of the pencils are from a different range, but it’s nice to have so many shades of grey to work with.

Pencil Test - Allen Walker WIP

The polychromos are nice, they cover big areas well and the colours come out darker than the harder Derwents. But then, that’s not what I brought the Derwents for.

I’m on holiday at the moment. It’s nice to have time off work, finding places to go is somewhat difficult. I have plenty of things to do here but it kind of feels like killing time, and that’s no way to spend a holiday. I won’t sit indoors the whole time.

I need a new bag. I can’t find one I like. I considered making one, though I’m not sure where you get the thick kind of fabric that makes messenger bags work from. All I’ve found so far is cotton, and that stuff isn’t much good when it comes to handling book-weight.

Backups and Things to Put Them In

It dawned on me about a month ago that in the whole time I’d had my desktop, I’d never done a full backup. Which doesn’t sound like the end of the world, until I realise I brought Karexi in February 2010. That’s a whole lot of data to lose.

Backups on SilverDragon involved about 3 days of tidying up files and swapping out CD-R’s, so I can’t say it’s a job I particularly look forward to doing. Which may explain why I put it off for so long. But it all seems a bit daft when you realise Windows 7 has an automatic backup facility which just requires plugging in a portable hard drive on the right day of the week and leaving it to it. To be honest I’ve never been a fan of the thought of using hard drives as a backup medium, but seeing as my track record proves I probably wouldn’t bother most of the time it’s better than nothing, as long as I remember to crack a DVD out every now and then just in case. So one quick trip to Staples and a portable hard drive later, everything was backed up. Yay.

I’m sure we all know by now what another new toy means; time to make a new case to put it in! I rather liked this <a href=””>iPod Nano Case Tutorial by Petchy</a> so I went with that, adding an extra pocket in for the USB cable. This design doesn’t hide the side seams like I usually do, so I liked the idea of trying something different.

Aaaaand that was over a month ago. My iron was messed up for a bit so I couldn’t finish it and then I put it off for ages but it’s finally done.

Portable Drive Case 1

Everything I’ve touched this afternoon has given me grief, and this case was no exception. Sticking the extra pocket in and sandwiching the felt between two pieces of fabric with interfacing on the outside layer made it too thick to go through the sewing machine. I couldn’t handsew it because with the side seam stitches visible backstitch would look too messy on the reverse side. So I had to take the whole thing apart and cut the felt down small enough to clear the seams.

Portable Drive Case 2

I also screwed up the ribbon, stiching it under the side seam at first and having to unpick the whole side, and when I finally got it in it’s 5mm too long. I must’ve caught it on something when trying to sneak the stiching in underneath. But it doesn’t matter, it’s not like this drive is destined to spend much time on the move so having the top flap a bit loose is something I can live with.

I’m a stupid perfectionist so there’s a lot of things about this case I could pick holes in but screw that, positive thinking time; I love the blue fabric, and it’s finished! Yeah, that’ll do.

Portable Drive Case 3

As an aside I have no idea what the lining fabric says; it’s French, has matrices, Pythagoras triangle geometry drawings and the odd refence to Nottredame on it but I never did figure it out.


Been a while hasn’t it? I’ve been working longer hours in the run-up to Christmas so between that, Christmas shopping and planning a fish tank install (an entry which shall be saved for another day) there hasn’t been room for much else. Until yesterday, when I got the time to put the finishing touches to this little critter:


Meet Kittybat. He’s a little blue cat, with bat wings. Just because I could. Amigurumi animals are just made up out of simple shapes, so I wanted to have a go at making one myself from scratch without a pattern, and this is the result. It’s taken me a few months to put together, it’s the biggest toy I’ve attempted to make so far so my project wanderlust had me working on a few other smaller things that have already been mentioned on this blog in the meantime, but he’s finally done!

Kittybat Back

I think the wings could do with some wire support to stop them falling about all over the place. It took 4 attempts to get the second wing right, that’s what I get for not writing down what I did for the first one. I recorded the pattern as I went so maybe I’ll stick that on here a bit later.


Crobots by Nelly Pailloux: this book is beyond awesome. These little things are just so addictively cute! And they’re so quick to make, I’ll end up with a whole army if I’m not careful…

Crobots - Mechanobot and Thinker

I Should Try New Things More Often

So it turns out I’m actually pretty good at this Amigurumi thing:

Gabu Amigurumi
Teacup Pincushion

… either that or it’s supposed to be really easy, they were beginner patterns after all :D

Pattern links:
The Gabu from Roxycraft
Amigurumi Tea Cup Pincushion from Lion Brand Yarn

And about the charms from the other day, no it wasn’t the right type of varnish. Rats. It turns out you can get the stuff off with methylated spirit so I’ve borrowed a bottle and it’s working like a dream, hurrah! Going to order a bottle of Fimo branded varnish next, at least if I stick with the clay manufacturer it’s guaranteed to work.

3am: Put the Hook Down and Step Away from the Yarn

Completely on a whim, I decided to learn crochet to make tiny animals this evening. It’s a unusual choice for me; I tried knitting a few years back and was hopeless at it so I didn’t think I’d try something like this again. But they’re too adorable, I was in the mood to learn something new and figured one hook would be easier to manage than 2 needles. Living 5 mins from town is dangerous; I ran straight to the fabric shop, brought a couple of hooks and spent the rest of the evening learning how to use them. 7 hours later, this appeared:

Little Amigurumi Mouse

He’s a little bit wonky and doesn’t quite look like the original, but it was kinda fun. And now my thumbs hurt. I think I may have to get used to that, tomorrow will be spent scouring the web for other beginner-friendly cute thingsĀ  (or at least it will be until that varnish dries…).

Jewellery Drawers

Finally finished the drawers this week:

Jewellery Drawers

Not too keen on the handles; I just improvised with stuff already in my beadbox so the colours don’t really match, but they’ll do.