February 6, 2011

Angels amongst us

Recently, I was an “angel” for a fellow craft swapper who’s partner had flaked on her…
…in simple English, when participating in swaps (on Craftster, anyway), if your partner does not send to you, even though you sent them your creations, you are then eligible for an “angel”.  The person who volunteers for this gets nothing in return (other than the satisfaction of doing a good thing for someone and enjoying the heck out of surprising someone who has been previously disappointed).
I have been an “angel” twice so far. I will continue to angel because it is so rewarding for me and it pushes me to to create really special items that are personalized for the individual recipient.
My latest “angel” experience was called the TV Addict Summer Hiatus Swap and had a theme based on favorite T.V. shows. 
The crafter I created for loves the series Supernatural and she particularly likes the character of the angel, Castiel.  She also indicated on her Wists that she would like a poppet (a really popular type of doll that many Craftster-followers go nuts over).
I had been wanting to create my first poppet for some time now so, for me, the decision was easy. And to my surprise my little Castiel has recently found a fan in Geek Crafts, who did a feature on him/me!
With no further ado, here is my first poppet, Castiel:
If you are interested in learning more about poppets, check out this link to take you to the “Poppet-a-long” on Craftster which has all sorts of pictures, the patterns for the poppet, and additional information.

February 2, 2011

Getting My Feet Wet

I work 60 hours a week as a car salesperson, where there is limited opportunity to get creative.  Art, for me is a way to maintain what little sanity I have left.
Through the encouragement of one of my creative daughters, I have decided to take a stab a blogging some of the “crafts” I have been doing lately.
I am a fairly active member of Craftster.  It is a great way to get involved in creating at a controllable level and to not feel so isolated as an artist/crafter.  Craftster offers swaps with themes so you can do a super simple one or jump in with both feet. If you have never swapped you might want to check out the website it’s really fun and rewarding.
I have just finished a swap using matchboxes.  I chose it because of the size and I figured it would be a no stress project.  I was right it was so much fun!
The swap parameters stated that you should fill a small matchbox (the tiny ones that wooden matches come in – not the big box of kitchen matches) with as much stuff as you can and get it there by a certain date. 
I did some detective work and discovered that my “partner” was interested in Nancy Drew books, liked mushrooms, like to create  “inchies”, does papercrafts and crochets. 
I was so excited that I actually had the perfect Nancy Drew book in my own book case and scanned it then sized it down using Photoshop.  The crocheted mushroom was a bit of a challenge as I used three strands of sewing thread and an incredibly small crochet hook. (there may have been a few unladylike words used in the process).  It became a magnet.
So here is what I came up with . . .
The second matchbox partner had some amazing things on her WIST. I decided to create a tiny magnet Matryoshka doll out of felt.  There was a lot of hand sewing and detail work.  I made a necklace with an owl charm.  I had the most fun making the miniature drop spindle and it even has Merino wool that I spun myself.
I found a printable micro scale 18th Century house online from About.com (here is the link to the original design).  I had to make many adjustments to the original design in order to have it fit the matchbox.  The assembled house was glued on top of the matchbox.  I then used a print of stones to represent the foundation of the house.
Here is the second matchbox . . .
I am already working on another swap.  This one has a Gnome theme.  I will post pictures when I have it completed.
So how am I doing so far?