anagramofbrat: (halloween)
So last night was the annual Ghoulesque show, and since it was my monthly excuse to play dress up AND the Halloween show, I of course rose to the occasion.


'sup.

Sooo getting up at 7am yesterday to very quickly braid white yarn into the hair was definitely a worthwhile endeavor. I've already gotten one request to do this again for the Spookhouse party instead of doing Lana and honestly I'm considering it for budgetary reasons. Lana will happen at some point, especially since [livejournal.com profile] aersi already does Pam and we've talked about doing a double cosplay sometime. But yeah, this outfit got almost as much love as the Carmen one two months back, so I'm clearly doing something right in terms of theme costumes. Plus even without the eyes, the stitches and lipstick alone freaked Wee Beastie out before I left and he's a tough kid to creep out (with the exception of spiders). So all around, success and victory.

Here have another one for extra special freakiness.



It's MUCH creepier with teeth, I'm told, lol.

Never fails, though, morning after rolling back home at 1am from Burlesque I have to drag myself out of bed for bells. Which is hard enough considering I'm usually beat from the show, but this morning I overslept because I had a warm tiny purring asshole snuggled tightly against me and... cat gravity happens, no matter how annoying your alarm might be. (It's currently "All About That Bass." Which no one wants to hear first thing in the morning. Ever.) We did well, and we were at the beginning of service so I got to slip out quick but still. Ugh. Husbeast is still snoring right now, I'm very tempted to crawl back in with him after I post this. Or make ham and cheese omelets. I haven't quite decided which. Hm.

It is DONE

Jan. 30th, 2014 07:30 pm
anagramofbrat: (old school tetris)


Shotgunned the last six rows last night so OW but BEHOLD. Worth it.

Taking a bit of a break, healing up... and planning the Next Thing.
anagramofbrat: (no more caffeine for you)
Woke up to find this in my inbox. Laughed ass off.



The floating pikachu head remains creepy, tho.

ETA: aw, there's one of just the short folk too.

anagramofbrat: (team tatro (2014))
Well and Happy New Year. In addition to making appearances at [livejournal.com profile] esotericscribe's party, [livejournal.com profile] cell23 and I spent most of our New Year's Eve throwing a mini-bash for the kids. We dressed up and had snacks and watched the ball drop, and laughed at all the cold people in Times Square and toasted the new year and errthang. Well 3/4s of us did. Wee Beastie balked at changing into his good outfit at the last minute. Eh, what can ya do, he's six.

Since we had [livejournal.com profile] aersi and [livejournal.com profile] deliriumdeva pop over from the other party for the express purpose of watching Drew assemble the weird Popin' Cookin' candy the kids' uncle sent them for Christmas (y'all... this candy. I can't even - it's so... O_o) I had them snap some pictures of the four of us, because Reasons. A serious one first:



Then several silly ones, but this one came out the best:



To quote from [livejournal.com profile] 11th_letter, "this is what we show the world, this is how we really are." Except that top photo ain't fooling anyone. Also It doesn't matter who is wearing the Pikachu mask, it is ALWAYS creepy-looking.

I had myself a bit of a cry about half an hour after the new year - Dad was always the first call I'd make after midnight. It felt so wrong just... not being able to, and I kinda freaked a little. It's okay. Grieving, process, etc. [livejournal.com profile] cell23 and Kidzilla hugs plus Moonbeam climbing into my lap to sit and purr (she has never been a lap cat, despite being a rabid cuddler, so this was a Big Deal) helped.

But yeah. New Years was rung in. Tomorrow we take the kiddos back to their mom's... and then... back to life, back to reality, back to the here and now. NGL, its going to be weird and too quiet in the house when they go and I'm going to miss them horribly, but I'm kind of looking forward to being able to unearth my house from the detritus of Typhoon Tatro.

Oh hey also new kidlet icon. They were overdue for an update.
anagramofbrat: (beads)
bit of a lazy bead post, but over a couple days in the beginning of last week I made the Terezi pendant for [livejournal.com profile] firinel/[livejournal.com profile] riordan:



This project flew, it was so much fun to do. Also seeing as I'd never encountered Homestuck before I had a lot of fun reading up on it, especially the trolls in particular.

Haven't done jack since. I think I've finally hit a point of "okay, I can stop for a little while..." Which is fine because it was getting to the point where I was beading instead of dealing with other stuff that needed dealing with. Got a few ideas in the pipeline for when I wind my way back to it though.
anagramofbrat: (beads)
Figured while I had a little downtime I'd go a general bead post.

I've ordered a bunch of findings and supplies lately from various sources, which I'm a varying degree of happy with. First Delibeads:



I ordered a few different colors of thread, as well as some plain old white beads, since I am running pretty low on my previous stock, plus what I have on hand seems annoyingly susceptible to breakage. It could just be me and my insistance on using size 10 needles, but on the other hand I notice I don't nearly have as much breakage problems with dark colored beads. I wonder if there's something in the process of lighter colors that makes them more fragile? Anyway. White's just good to have on hand, and since one of the next plotted projects uses just black and white, I figured I might as well stock up. I also ordered what are known as bead tubes, which are special findings meant for this type of bead.



Still looking for something to finish those wrist straps with, we'll give these a try.

Speaking of those, I also placed an order for strap buckles from Tandy Leather factory. I figured I'd mostly need the 1/2 inch size, but ordered a couple of the bigger sizes just to see what was up and also because they were on sale.



Yeah, the sizes up are way too big/heavy. We'll see about how the 1/2 inch ones work, I have a few experimental things sort of started. The bigger ones I've just stashed for a rainy day/future project.

As I mentioned I have a few more things coming from Beadaholique, mainly pendant bails, cell charm findings and the aforementioned magnets. Course the stuff hasn't gotten here yet and I'm pretty sure I'm not going to order from there again. Or FusionBeads, for that matter. While both of them have an impressive inventory for findings and jewelry-making supplies, they are both based in California and orders take waaaaaaaaaaaay too long to process and ship in my experience. Probably not their fault, and granted I am only going for the cheapest shipping options, but considering Delibeads tends to turn my stuff around in three days and averages out way cheaper, I'm mostly going to stick with them. Granted they don't have much by way of findings and specialty stuff, but I think I'm okay either getting what I need at Michaels/Joann's/Northampton Beadery for now. Meanwhile I'll keep an eye out for a closer distributor for special things.

About to put Vulpix up on Etsy and Tumblr... if these damn pictures ever upload to Google+. Been fighting with Picasa for about an hour now. I have rants about my picture storage process since my primary camera switched from the Hatemonger to the iPhone, but that's for another post.

I also seem to have accidentally a commission. I stated on Etsy that I wasn't taking those, simply because I have enough trouble with focus and procrastination to turn around what I want to be doing, let alone what someone else is paying me to do, but in crafting as in real life, I make exceptions for the "people I would definitely kill last and only if necessary in case of zombie apocalypse" list. This morning I got pinged by [livejournal.com profile] firinel, who requested a Homestuck pendant for [livejournal.com profile] riordan's birthday. Since it's not a surprise present, expect some updates on that in the near future.

Man, looking down at my desk, it's just... very apparent how much these projects and this hobby in general have reasonably eaten my free time and life in general in the past year. Granted before that you could say that the creative project eating my life was the wedding, which was a huge ass project on its own and considering much of the stuff was hand-made and papercraft, yeah I would say it counts as a craft project. Anyway. I keep saying I'm going to take a break so I don't burn out or overstrain my hands or something, but... On one hand it has kinda taken over my life and I'm starting to resent that a little bit. On the other hand, it's been the first time in a long while that I've been able to sustain a creative outlet this long. I've been beading pretty consistently for a year straight, almost. That's pretty good for me. And I do have quite a few projects I would like to do before I put the needle down for a while.

Well, we'll see how that all works out.

Thwomp

Sep. 8th, 2013 01:01 am
anagramofbrat: (old school tetris)






Pretty pleased with how these guys came out. Worth the slight extra aggravation of working with matte finish beads - I find they catch the needle more and are slightly more inclined to break.

I also finally got around to gluing the cork backing to Vulpix, so she's all set to go on sale. Loctite glue is nothing to fuck with, between the Yankee candle atomizers pretty much napalming our house with scent and the fumes off the glue I was pretty high in the not fun way by the end of the day. Whew. Well, I'll take pictures tomorrow.

Unsure what my next step is. I have a bunch of new supplies to play with:buckles from Tandy Leather and bead caps special designed to work with these sorts of beads, plus some findings and YEAH MAGNETS coming in still. Probably on Monday. Almost inclined to start another Big Thing, but whether that will be another screen shot or another one in the Pokemon series I'm not sure yet.

Oh. I have a tumblr for these now. arbtbeads.tumblr.com
anagramofbrat: (dragon)
I got the proper colors in for Thwimp/Thwomp.



'Course, there's no pleasing some sprites.

Haven't tackled Thwomp yet, but that'll come soon. Also maybe another pokemon coaster as well.
anagramofbrat: (beads)
Yesterday I explained to the kids the idea that a lot of the time you have to go through something unpleasant to get what you want. I used the example of how I often want ice cream but getting it often requires too much effort (walking up the hill in the rain, driving all the way to the supermarket or worse, taking the bus) so it's easier to go without. I suppose this could be known as the "ice cream vs lazy" principle.

Today I really want to go to Joann's and get craft magnets. Taking the car is out, as Drew has gotten increasingly squirrelly about me driving it without being on his car insurance, and having him take me right now would involve shoveling the kids into the car as well. I could take the bus, but sunday schedule, regarless of whether school is in session or not, is quite frankly balls; if I left in half an hour, i'd have to bum around Amherst for half an hour then pay 1.25 to get onto the B43 and get there like, 40 min later and then have to worry about getting all the way back which will probably take ANOTHER hour and a half and considering it's college move-in weekend I'd be on a packed bus full of students with a bazillion bags of Target and Walmart sundries and... yeah, no.

Today looks like another hot humid one, and I will likely be spending it working on thank you notes, wondering where the hell the predicted thunderstorms are (I swear, we live in a storm proof bubble - all the storms tend to go immediately north or south of us), and trying not to die from lack of caffeine. Oh also finding some time to stealth-wrap Kidzilla's presents, since she's getting just impatient and nosy enough to start hunting through the house to figure out where I've hidden them.
anagramofbrat: (Default)


George Washington would like an explanation for this bullshit.

Putting down the needle tonight though. My hands are sore, I broke a bead in the second mushroom I was woring on, and the jump rings I bought today are too fat to fit through these damn beads, so I have to go exchange them. :P I think even the Universe is telling me to take a goddamn break for real.



In real life news, Kidzilla's birthday present (a bright shiny purple 3DS) arrived yesterday! I don't know what I was expecting but I was rather taken aback by how small the box ended up being... of course, packaging has gotten more efficient and components for portable game systems are a lot smaller these days - hell I remember the box my original Game Boy came in, and that thing was kaiju sized in comparison. We're gonna get Pokemon and Animal Crossing at least for her next week as well as other birthday stuff.

I spent today at a family reunion. (Pretty much, all of Drew's grandmother's family, so his mom's cousins and stuff.) I ended up having a slightly better time than I expected considering how well I do in the middle of bumblefuck nowhere among people I don't really know, but if anything it was a quiet afternoon spent in a lawn chair eating pulled pork, beading and listening to yet another embarrassing story about my husband, lol. (Nope, not sharing.) And having people impressed by both my cheddar biscuits and my beading are always a bonus.

Tomorrow I have Real Life stuff to do. Blerg. But aside from all the above, it's been a lovely quiet weekend so far. Yay?
anagramofbrat: (Toph (shut up))
Since I happened to have at least three shades of red beads lying around, boom. Red shell. In case you need to make your pet dinosaur breathe fire. (What? It could happen!)



To give you an idea of how not!big this thing is, that's a penny it's sitting on. The Thwimp yesterday is about the same size. As are most of the sprites from Super Mario World, actually - they all kinda fit within an 16 x 16 pixel square. Also barring horrid thread snafus, this took about two and a half hours to do, and only one bit of string. Booya kashaaaaaaaaaa.

I was thinking earrings for these, but someone on FB suggested they might be a good size for either zipper pulls or cell phone charms. Thinking about it - I rather like the zipper pull idea.

I may crank out a red mushroom tonight as well. For Reasons.
anagramofbrat: (beads)
So while staving off the AAAGH NEED TO BE DOING SOMETHING WITH MY HANDS twitchies, I completed a couple of tiny projects. Test runs for future stuff. I met with varying success on both.

First thing is I started up the bracelet project again. A couple years ago I was cranking out these beaded straps on my loom with the idea of turning them into bracelets. I pulled them out recently and found that I'm dissatisfied with the quality of the ones I've already finished, namely that I no longer like the bumpy wavyness of woven work after hand-brickstitching for the better part of a year. Seriously it's a problem - I'm sure everyone else is still all like "what's wrong with you, those look amazing" w/r/t to my woven stuff - Bowser, the Witch, etc - but all I see are the holes and the refusal of the pieces to lay flat, and the unevenness of the bead placement relative to the rows above and below it. Nitpicky and really anal retentive, I'm aware, but there it is. Anyway, just to keep my hands busy with something over last weekend I hand stitched another one, with a new pattern, with an eye towards how practical they are to make, because while the big canvases are nice, if I'm going to make any money off of Etsy I need nice things I can generate reasonably quickly.



This one, all things considered didn't come out too badly. Overall I'm much happier with the look and texture of hand stitching this as opposed to weaving it, even if it balloons completion time from 4 to 9ish hours a strap. (still less time than the bigger pieces by a lot... and honestly the 4 hour woven estimate isn't taking into account the time needed to stitch in the warp threads at the end, so...) What needs improvement is the pattern (it's too wide, I need to condense up the space between the various components of Mr. Table Flip and tighten up the spacing quite a bit) and the method of fastening. Right now its metal snaps hyper-superglued on and I... no. It looks stupid and amateurish. So I'm going to hold off on these for a bit until I can get some small buckles in from Tandy Leather Factory and have a chance to experiment with those.

No rest for the wicked, after finishing that up I immediately decided to test run Thwimp. Because...



hahaha sorry I kinda had to. I had the macro already lying around.





Lessons learned from this one - it flat out doesn't work in the game boy color scheme. (On the other hand the pictures aren't doing it much justice - it's hard photographing something reflective and tiny like this. I do mean tiny, he's the size of a quarter.) Which is okay, this is just a test run. I mostly wanted to figure out how to do something that wasn't perfectly square and that had a lot of jumps between row lengths. Turns out the biggest challenges were the the ends of the longest rows - not only is it weird having to add extra beads at the end of the row, unless you stitch them a certain way they don't quite lay flat and flush with the rest of the row. Also he's VERY quick - I think over three evenings I spent a total of maybe 3 hours on him, and most of that was noodling around trying to figure out what I was doing. I could probably get it down to two once I get in actual matte grays for him and Thwomp. But yeah super not a huge deal, so next check I'm gonna order up some matte grays and crank a few out.

In supply news, ugh! If I had any doubts that switching to C-Lon thread was indeed the right thing to do, they are gone now. These last two projects I found my spool of bulk Nymo black thread and I am ready to throw it the hell out the window. It frays, does weird things when it needs to be waxed and tangles when you look at it funny. The part of me that doesn't like to waste stuff'll probably hang onto it and keep using it while the rest of me seethes with hatred with every stitch. This is the stuff that bullshit Thread Heaven stuff I ended up getting on the Vineyard instead of beeswax (what bead store doesn't sell beeswax? really? Are we THAT vegan, people??) must be made for. Argh.

Moving on the storage, I'd been looking into better ways of storing and organizing my two bead drawers and general supplies since right now my crafting storage is an unholy mess. Basically I have my bulk colors safely holed up in spice jars, but the rest of the stuff I have pretty much lives in the various 5g vials or plastic bags they came in, or they're in various tackleboxes and 35mm film canisters. Not very neat or organized. So because I'm a sucker for storage containers (like empty notebooks, it's a problem) I've been looking into some other ideas towards keeping my bead stuff organized. I was looking rather hard at the Bead Storage Solutions system, but some math revealed that while it's very pretty, it's not super efficient and kinda useless for the stuff I get in bigger volumes. Expensive too. So I think at some point down the line I'll invest in a bunch of those round stackable plastic jars and organize them that way. Someday when I have bead supply money, anyway. I need to get findings, cord, buckles, bails and the aforementioned matte colors for nefarious Thwompy bits. *sigh* This is not a cheap habit, y'all.

foxy loxy

Aug. 15th, 2013 11:15 pm
anagramofbrat: (old school tetris)
Vulpix is done.



I also took the plunge and listed Bowser on Etsy. We'll see where that goes.

Meanwhile I have yet another project in the pipeline - I'm sure someone out there (possibly me) would enjoy a Thwimp and Thwomp earring and necklace set, lol. Lord. I'm never putting my needles down again, am I?

Well I have to, for a little bit anyway. I have stuff to do.

I'm sure at some point I'll post something that doesn't have anything to do with beads...
anagramofbrat: (Toph (shut up))
So I just finished up row 46, figured I'd take pictures since the last time I did Vulpix didn't have feet and only five tails. I somehow got the idea to pull the pattern up on my iPad, drop Vulpix on top and have a pokemon on top of my pokemon or something. It came out surprisingly well.



It doesn't quite line up, but it lines up enough.

18 more rows... I've officially hit the End In Sight frenzies.



3496 / 4864 beads. 71.9% done!

Tail #5

Aug. 3rd, 2013 01:12 am
anagramofbrat: (beads)
Recognizable Vulpix is now recognizable!



I have to keep reminding myself that this project is quite a bit smaller than Tetris Dance, and not to be utterly stunned that I can crank out six or seven rows on her in an evening whereas I maybe could put out three on the other thing. Still even with all that realizing that I'm slightly over 2/3rd through tonight was a Thing. What.



3268 / 4864 beads. 67.2% done!

Still "behind schedule" though. Need to cultivate the habit of doing some every day still. Especially since it's a GREAT way of calming down the rabid brainweasels constantly attacking my head. :/
anagramofbrat: (old school tetris)


So. 29 rows and 29 beads. Vulpix is about to get her nose, and you can now see the tops of four of her six tails. That's the good news. The bad news is a few days ago when I was working on this I finally noticed both sides are missing the black column that would match the line of black on the second row.

Oops.

I strongly considered ripping everything out for a few minutes before coming to my senses and deciding to just deal with it. But I'm really annoyed by this. At least Vulpix herself is coming out quite nicely, and hey, approaching half done.



2233 / 4864 beads. 45.9% done!
anagramofbrat: (lizard happy)


Maybe a bit later I'll do the week in words, too.
anagramofbrat: (beads)


Just finished row 14. I don't know if this project is actually going faster, but it sure feels like it is. Probably has something to do with really short rows, especially in comparison to the last thing I did - 74 across as opposed to 170. So getting to see more progress after an evening's work is definitely a plus. Especially when said progress is a break in the boring stuff and finally getting to the top of Vulpix's pretty head-curls.



1064 / 4864 beads. 21.9% done!

Starting to regain my faith in humanity finally, though did have a minor setback on that front when an ad for a local market car dealer aired during the news. They apparently thought a low budgeting marketing tie-in with The Lone Ranger was a good idea and did this with some bargain basement Native American stereotyping. Because yay racism! But then after beading myself out of a GRR RAWR, watching a couple of episodes of Orange is the New Black with [livejournal.com profile] cell23 (unsure what I think yet, or whether I like it; giving it a few more eps to decide) and witnessing Twitter being collectively awesome I think I'm back down to the general dull roar of "well, all right, I'll shoot y'all last during the apocalypse." Mostly.

in other news, holy flaming asshair of Satan, it's hot this week. Stupid heatwave. Almost can't wait for the Vineyard next week purely because the temperature will not top 80 all next week there. Ocean air and all. Whew!
anagramofbrat: (green things)
Because gardeny stuff.

cut for large pictures )

So far the only problem I've encountered with the new plants is this summer is extremely beetle heavy and as shown in that last picture, they like to snack on the delicious leaves of my plants. Otherwise so far neither tomato plants have manifested the aggravating spotty fungus that plagued my efforts last year, possibly because its been so hot that most of the humidity in the air has been burning off as opposed to a steady 76 degree soup like last summer. It's only been 2 weeks though - we'll see how we do later on.
anagramofbrat: (old school tetris)
...but only because I just discovered how cool this project looks when backlit.

Held up in front of my desk lamp:




And in front of my blanked monitor, for more even lighting.



...some days, y'all, I impress myself.

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