Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Random happenings and Mushroom Garden

Share it Please
I promise I'll start taking pictures and putting those up as I talk about things soon, but for now I'm just going to ramble about current projects without pictures and continue clearing out pictures of things I did last year (I figure I'll be that much more motivated to start taking pictures of things when the number of folders in my "pictures to blog about" file is much smaller).

A couple of my current projects:
- making a Star Trek uniform dress for the opening of the new Star Trek movie next month
- making leather crowns for Their Excellencies of Cynnabar

Star Trek Uniform Dress

You know, they look really simple from afar.  Some kind of stretchy textured fabric, a simple flared short dress, with a little bit of trickiness with the exposed seam bindings in the raglan sleeve cut.  That simplicity is DECEIT.  Deceit in two ways.  (Sources:  An awesome set of posts that LJ user LaughingMagpies put together in 2009 that did very detailed analysis of fabric and design of the Star Trek uniforms of the new movie.)

1.  The fabric is actually not textured, but a dyed design on what is most likely jumbo spandex (2 way stretch, 90% nylon, 10% spandex, 10 oz).  The design is a bunch of tiny Star Trek swoops, with a two-tone background.  The jumbo spandex part isn't that hard (though must be ordered online if you're not in the few select places like NYC which have spandex stores) but the design requires custom screen printing.  I debated whether to get this done, but I think it will cost at least $50 (though I haven't called the four local screen printing shops to find out...) and I don't think I want this outfit to get that expensive, even if it would be neat.  My plan is to pick a blue I like in the correct fabric (I've ordered swatches from a couple companies, which hopefully will arrive later this week so I can choose one and order the fabric), and then just make the pattern and everything else super correct and it'll be awesome enough.

2.  This sucker has TWENTY-NINE PIECES.  That's right, you read that correctly.  29.  The exposed seam bindings on front and back at raglan sleeve edges add 8 pieces (two per seam).  The bottom half of the dress actually has six neat swoopy seams in the front and back, which means the bottom half is 14 pieces.  Then there's the neck binding and two sleeve bindings, and the sleeves and the top half of the dress (another four pieces).  8 + 14 + 3 + 4 = 29 pieces.  I made a muslin yesterday out of some thin dark red knit fabric I have sitting around, and it's a neat dress, but also somewhat intricate.  Jeez.  And then there's all the decorative top-stitching over all the bottom seams, etc...

Oh, and then I have to make the sleeveless undershirt/dress (which is most likely a cotton/lycra blend, says others on the internet), and I'm going to whip up some leggings, too, because those dresses are short.  So, yeah.  Complicated.  But I will have a Star Trek dress, which makes me kind of gleeful for all sorts of reasons.  :)

Leather Crowns

I'm working on my first leatherworking commission!  Their Excellencies, the Baron and Baroness of Cynnabar (SCA people), asked me to make the Barony a pair of leather crowns.  Their crowns are very heavy metal ones, and it would be nice to have leather ones to wear during less formal times at events.  I don't want to say too much at the moment, but assuming I don't botch the paint job they are going to be awesome.

I've also had another friend tell me they want to commission something from me, which is super exciting.  And a couple other people ask me for leatherworking advice the last few months.  I'm becoming known as a leatherworker, and apparently one with enough apparent skill to ask things of.  Yay!

Mushroom Garden

And now for the "pick the random thing from last year to blog about" time... mushroom garden!  My lovely sister got me a mushroom growing kit from Back to the Roots, a neat company that takes used coffee grounds and turns them into a kit to grow mushrooms at home.  Here are the pictures of my mushrooms growing over the course of a week (this is as far as my kit grew).  I don't remember how long it took it to start growing, but it's about a week from first two pictures to the last picture.

1st picture day

1st picture day

2nd picture day

4th picture day

5th picture day


8th picture day
I never did try eating them, because I wasn't sure when to pick them and then they got too old and weird.  But hopefully next time? I think this would be fun to try again.

That's all for now!  I'm off to work on the leather crowns at craft night.  ~Kelly

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