tephra: A furry liger-ish dragon portrait in profile (Default)
The craft output of the last year has not been up to the usual level due to life events. I know I mentioned my mother's valve replacement surgery that was scheduled for last summer and ended up being last fall. What I didn't mention is the reason for the delay; my Dad died. I spent late summer and fall with Mom and my brother and didn't get home until early November, which is also why you didn't see any hints of NaNoWriMo last year. I wanted to do NaNo but there was just nothing for me to work with, not even enough to really get a character or setting started, and absolutely no energy to write with, especially not with nearly a third of the month passed already. It hurt a bit to skip a year but not as much as trying and failing would have.

Anyway, I did actually get some crafty things done in the second half of last year. Many photos behind the cut. )
tephra: Close up of doll hands holding knitting in working position. (knitting)
The craft output of the last year has not been up to the usual level due to life events. I know I mentioned my mother's valve replacement surgery that was scheduled for last summer and ended up being last fall. What I didn't mention is the reason for the delay; my Dad died. I spent late summer and fall with Mom and my brother and didn't get home until early November, which is also why you didn't see any hints of NaNoWriMo last year. I wanted to do NaNo but there was just nothing for me to work with, not even enough to really get a character or setting started, and absolutely no energy to write with, especially not with nearly a third of the month passed already. It hurt a bit to skip a year but not as much as trying and failing would have.

Anyway, I did actually get some crafty things done in the second half of last year. Many photos behind the cut. )
tephra: (fangirl squee)
Is faceless no longer!

Talar - New Face 1 Talar - New Face 2

My first, and so far only, attempt to give a doll a face.

I did a layer of pastel shading (which the camera mostly ate) to contour her nose/eye sockets and the sides of her face/behind her ears. Then, in a move I almost regretted, I did her lips with a pastel that looked like a good lip color and painted it on damp rather than dry.

Hello lipstick. I wasn't sure Talar was actually a dark lipstick sort of girl though, hence the near regret. I decided to keep on with it though, and gave the pastels a coat of sealer.

Then it was onto the tubes of water color, raw umber and burnt sienna, for her brows and eye liner. The brows, those were a major pain. I tried sketching them on with powdered pastel... nope, not enough color stuck for me to see it and it was way too imprecise. I tried with an orange pastel pencil about a half dozen times each and was only managing to polish the brown bone as I erased them to redo (and tinted the area orange as well). Eventually I said "screw it" and grabbed a dark brown pastel stick and sketched them in with the corner, it only took about three tries to get her right to match her left close enough. :P Then I attempted to brush the paint on like individual hairs and the 10/0 brush immediately showed that it was not fine enough for that, but it gave a reasonable brow texture so I went with it.

After all that the eye liner was almost a let down for how easy it was.

The lower lashes made up for that.

I then tackled the lips. My paint set has a tube of "flesh tone" paint, it's basically an opaque pale peach color, so I did a wash of that over the lips to tone down the color. Getting that to the point of "not too streaky" was a whole lot of fiddling and frustration. Then the crease between her lips was too pale, so I had to go in with the 10/0 liner and some of the raw umber to darken that up again, and then fiddle with the lower lip and the streakiness again to blend that in. Finally I felt enough was enough and I patted on some powdered terracotta pastel to even out the lower lip and called it good.

I really like the color I ended up making there.

Fingers were crossed when I sealed it; I was told, after I was in the middle of all this, that applying sealer over tube watercolor can make the watercolor blur.

After all that I figured "why the hell not?" and glued in some orange lashes I bought ages ago for her and my other redheads and had never got around to sticking in their eyes.

Now I just need to get my hands on a small bottle of acrylic gloss to add a hint of shine to her lips, but I'm happy enough with the matte look that I'm not going to worry about it.
tephra: (fangirl squee)
I started this in December, not long after I saw the still from Catching Fire that made all the knitters on the internet want to knit That Sweater.

Talar - Mockingjay Front Talar - Mockingjay Back

Every single stitch in everything but the white ribbing is twsited, both knit and purl, including decreases both left and right leaning. For the knitters that will mean something; everyone else: suffice to say that it slowed me down a bit.

I'm so happy with it that if I had other colors of this bamboo thread I'd be seriously tempted to start another one.
tephra: Close up of doll hands holding knitting in working position. (knitting)
Well, not really, but I sure did increase my output there for a bit at the end of May. There was a doll meet/party at Mint on Card, a doll store in Traverse City, and I wanted my girls to look their best so I went a bit nuts for a week or so beforehand.

In more or less chronological order... Photos under the cut. )

Proto Snow Kaver - Side

I love this shot. Therefore I am leaving it out of the cut. Back to the photos and stuff. )

One last thing finished before the party and not photographed, a new case for my camera because the original one is all icky nasty with age. I knit one of out cotton in linen stitch with a velcro closure on the flap.
tephra: Close up of doll hands holding knitting in working position. (knitting)

The aspens/poplars have leaves the size of quarters, the delphiniums are about eight inches tall, the grass is green, and it is snowing.

So, as I sit facing a window that shows me this all too clearly, I will do a knitting update and silently think a stream of profanity to make a sailor blush.

I have been really bad about documentation for the last year at least but here's some attempt at catching up with photographic evidence. Lots of photos under this cut. )



For those that remember my ranting about my craft blog, Omnifariously Knotty, well it's still lacking OpenID... but there are posts! Not many, but there's actual content. To be specific I put up a post on what I did to make Namid's white top (seen in the lace stole photos) from a baby top/dress pattern as well as a post on how to modify my shorts pattern into capris.

tephra: A furry liger-ish dragon portrait in profile (Lily petal)
Anjeni's Red GlassesThe paper clips I have are the vinyl coated ones that are just a bit over an inch long. They straighten out to about three and a half inches long, which is just long enough to do this style of glasses for Anjeni, who has a 14cm head.

For larger dolls you will need a larger clip or a longer piece of wire that is about 20ga in thickness. For an idea of how much wire you will need, measure your doll from the bridge of their nose to behind their ear in a straight line parallel to the side of their head. Double that and add the width of their head across their face, again in a straight line. Add a smidge for shaping the top of the frame, it is better to cut the wire too long than to try to get a too short piece to work.

I straightened the paper clip using my fingers since it's really easy to crack the vinyl if you use pliers. Also be cautious using pliers on anodized clips or craft wire, you can wrap tape around the jaws of the pliers to help cushion them if your fingers aren't strong enough to straighten your clip/wire.

I bent both ends of the straightened clip one inch from the end to make the bows. For larger or smaller dolls this measurement should be the bridge of the nose to the back of ear length, or whatever half the total wire length minus the face width happens to be. 

Then I bent the center of the wire at a right angle perpendicular to the bends I made for the bows to make the center of the bridge. The curves for the tops of the "lenses" I made by curving them over the barrel of a Sharpie marker and then flattening out the curve a bit.

There was a lot of fiddling and trying on to get the shape and size right. And more than a few spring loaded escapes. Thankfully the steel center of the clips meant I could retrieve it with a magnet. :D

I used three inches of the 28ga wire to make the bottoms of the "lenses" by making a lark's head knot around the center of the bridge and then wrapping the ends at the corners of the bows. I used the barrel of a pen for a spacer in the lens area so the two lenses would be at least close to the same size.

If I make another pair I will try to take in process photos. The only problem I have with them is the 28ga wire is very soft. It doesn't take much to get the lenses out of shape. Of course it's on a spool jewelry wire, maybe the core of a twist tie would be stiffer....
tephra: A furry liger-ish dragon portrait in profile (Default)
As part of my Christmas doings today, I redressed my dolls. I was just going to redress Rico, into clothing she would not like much I admit, but while I had her down and headless I swapped her neck S-hook for Anjeni's (and tried Namid's on her, it's too large for her head). Then, since I had them all down and headless, they all got changed for the holiday.

Photos under the cut. )
tephra: A furry liger-ish dragon portrait in profile (Default)
It's been a while, so NaNo status catch up time.

I didn't write at all the day before Thanksgiving. My motivation hit the dirt and buried itself six feet under. I managed not to let myself fall more than a day behind after that and managed to catch up again on Friday.

Then Kris decided to derail me with my Christmas present. I've posted about that more completely at my "archive dolly stuff" journal on LJ.

For those that don't want to read that, well there are some photos under the cut that will explain things. Looky what Kris gave me! )
tephra: A furry liger-ish dragon portrait in profile (Lily petal)
This is a public archive of the post I made at the Den of Devils.

There's a new girl in town. )
tephra: A furry liger-ish dragon portrait in profile (Default)
I know, you're all excited by both of those topics. ;)

I finally managed to get a spot of Not Raining to get some photos of my doll knitting.

First up, that doll shawl that has been done and blocked for months. It's been waiting so long for a photo it almost needs to be blocked again.

Mini Aeolian 2

Two more photos under the cut, one is not the shawl again. )

Not dead

Sep. 21st, 2011 04:54 pm
tephra: Close up of doll hands holding knitting in working position. (knitting)
I really should make a point of posting something on a regular basis outside of the month of November.

Looking back, my last post was in mid-July. Well since then I went and visited family for most of the month of August. There isn't much to say about that other than I figured out that setting up a wireless router with Verizon's DSL is not as straight forward as you would think. But I did it, and after that point I had a nice connection to use the laptop with and did not have to borrow my brother's PC to get online.

Mom waffled on getting herself a laptop again. I told her my first day there that if she wanted one we should pick it out early in my visit. So of course she decides to seriously consider it the day before I planned to leave. Ultimately she opted not to, but I half expect a phone call where she says she bought one and needs help setting up everything (and I do mean everything, the closest she's come to having a computer is an electronic typewriter).

So I guess this is where I bore all of you with knitting. Cut for images and length. )

I really do need to post more often. *whew*
tephra: Close up of doll hands holding knitting in working position. (knitting)
In more ways that one.

I finished the sewing thread bolero for Anjeni.

Candyfloss Bolero - Back

Front view under the cut. )

The pattern is once again Ysolda Teague's Cloud Bolero. I knit the smallest size on 5/0 (1mm) needles with two strands of sewing thread.
tephra: Close up of doll hands holding knitting in working position. (knitting)
Yes, it's that time again, catching up on the knitting projects.

Cutting for the completely uninterested. )

And this last one isn't cut because I am damned proud of it.

Namid's Golden Shawl

The observant with good memories will note that's the same pattern as the neck of my red shawl. I made some alterations to the second section (the mesh, diamonds, and chevrons) and then pretty much did the edging that I plan to finish my red shawl with.

Other than those projects all I did was start the ribbing on the over knee socks.
tephra: Close up of doll hands holding knitting in working position. (knitting)
I do seem to let these things pile up.

Knitting under the cut! )

And the doll stuff is behind this cut. )

And finally, the writing. I have fourteen character bios written, I just have to decide who the fifteenth character will be and I can get to answering the questions. I'd like more questions, really. Maybe I should post the bios, in an order that is NOT the order of the characters in regard to the numbering for the questions? I don't want to bias questions by having people ask them thinking the fifth bio belongs to character number five, since it won't.
tephra: A furry liger-ish dragon portrait in profile (Books)
I'm not in the habit of posting photostories with my dolls, but I did do a story style box opening for Namid and I thought it might be a good idea to have a back-up copy somewhere.

So take a trip back to December when Namid arrived in time for Christmas.

An early Christmas gift (Bobobie March & Resinsoul Mei; some nudity) )
tephra: Close up of doll hands holding knitting in working position. (knitting)
While we were without internet for all of Friday and half of Saturday I managed to finish up a few knitting projects and write (and get sucked into reading my own writing, again).

I'm still writing biographies for the characters I will be using to answer the questions asked in my last post. Hopefully I'll get a few more questions to work on by the time I'm done with the biographies. Since I have just four out of fifteen done it might take all week unless I hit on a really good writing streak, or learn brevity.

Please feel free to go back and ask more questions. You don't have to work up a "really good one" you know, even simple things like "what is eleven's favorite color" can lead to some character development. :)

Knitting under the cut! )
tephra: A furry liger-ish dragon portrait in profile (Default)
I know you are all thrilled. ;)

Let's see, things since the last time I updated.... )

Just finished today so it's not going under a cut:

MSD Vogue Vest - Front MSD Vogue Vest - Back

Pattern #4 from the 2008 winter issue of Vogue Knitting. I used sport weight yarn and size 3 needles for the lace portion, knitting as written for the smallest size. I then dropped down to size 2 needles and started winging it. I decreased after the lace, added some short rows for her bust, changed it to a V neckline, and did raglan cap sleeves. I didn't make button holes, there are snaps sewn behind the buttons.
tephra: Close up of doll hands holding knitting in working position. (knitting)
I know you are all thrilled. ;)

Let's see, things since the last time I updated.... )

Just finished today so it's not going under a cut:

MSD Vogue Vest - Front MSD Vogue Vest - Back

Pattern #4 from the 2008 winter issue of Vogue Knitting. I used sport weight yarn and size 3 needles for the lace portion, knitting as written for the smallest size. I then dropped down to size 2 needles and started winging it. I decreased after the lace, added some short rows for her bust, changed it to a V neckline, and did raglan cap sleeves. I didn't make button holes, there are snaps sewn behind the buttons.
tephra: A furry liger-ish dragon portrait in profile (Books)
[Originally Posted @ Red_Shoelacers]

I said I'd post about it, so here we go. There are a lot of things I will change in the next version (which will be Namid's wig, then I'll make another for Anjeni).

Lots of photos under the cut. )

I am not very happy with this cut. I need to think up another style before I make her next wig. I like the long hair in back. I like the long braids. I'm not liking the fringe or the fact that her ears are covered.

I have learned a great deal about how dense weft is, however, and think I can come up with better styles using weft to my advantage. Namid's wig will be constructed in reverse of this one, the weft will go on the cap before any individual strands are latched in.

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