Hi there! Well, it’s been a while again… Lately life hasn’t been too much fun. Just a lot of stuff isn’t the way I’d like it to be and I often have trouble imagining that I’ll ever be free to live my own life…. Well, to escape from all that drama, I usually make stuff. Lately I discovered a Chinese book on handbags which all have fairy tale themes. I don’t read Chinese, but I was able to combine the images with my own sewing know-how to make a very cute Alice in Wonderland themed bag. My mom wanted to know how much I’d sell it for, but this first one I’ll probably keep (its not as professionally finished as I’d like it to be). If I do make another to sell, I think it would be in the $50 range. Does that seem too expensive? Keep in mind, all the applique has to be done by hand!
There wasn’t a pattern for the actual bag, so I had to make it up myself, and I’ve never sewn in-the-round like this before. I had to do the bag twice actually, because the first time I somehow messed up my circumference measurements.
The bag is 10.5″ in diameter, made from faux suede with interfacing (to stiffen it) and a cotton lining. The strap is long enough to be worn cross the body (my preferred arrangement), or can be adjusted to be shorter. The applique are done with a lovely 60% wool, 40% rayon felt (a Japanese brand). There’s gold colored beads, key-chain rings, and gold embroidery thread for the charm-bracelet design.
There are a few things I’ll fix for next time. I meant for the tabs which attach the D-rings to the bag to be in the seam, not sewn on the outside of the bag, but I forgot to do it, and then having done the bag twice, I got lazy and just put them on the outside. The strap could stand to be about 3 inches longer, really. And on the applique I think that I’ll do the embroidered chain (on the watch) for the top chain part of the charms bracelet (the little row of beads leading towards the upper corner of the bag).
I wanted to add a fur ball pom pom key-chain (they show it with one in the design book), but I’ve been frustrated by the fact that I can only find real-fur ones, not faux ones. Idk… I’m not strictly against fur, but since I used faux-suede, I think adding a real-fur accessory would be rather odd.
I discovered this great YouTube channel earlier this week and knew I had to share it with you all. I’m very jealous of Katy Towell’s talent, because I would love to be able to write, illustrate and animate my own little stories… Her’s are mainly creepy – although some are more on the sad side. All a bit strange. Many of her little girls have black, uneven google-y eyes, which is adorable. The mixture of cute and creepy is just right, in my opinion.
I had a hellish time deciding which video to feature here…. In the end I did not choose my favorite(s) because they are multi-part. When you visit her channel be sure to watch Death & Elsie 1-3, and Ida’s Luck 1 & 2, as well as The Mockingbird Song.
Here’s one of her videos, which is definitely more on the creepy side:
And here is the “You Tube Channel Trailer” with glimpses from her channel:
Yeah, so I took a drawing class last summer… I wanted to post the pictures up here, but then got in a hurry to get ready to go to Poland…. so here they are, a year later. I haven’t decided whether or not to take a class this summer.. sorta need to decide, lol. I do need the motivation, because left on my own, I hardly ever draw complete things (just little squiggles and sketches).
12 hours of charcoal… massive drawing…someone in my class wanted me to give it to them…lol, obviously i said no
Painted on rubber cement, washed with india ink, removed rubber cement…
Unfinished mixed media of Ophelia based on a classical painting. Google it…lol. Hair is embroidery floss, pastels for skin and face, she doesn’t have horns – there is a vine and flowers entangled in her hair. I was going to do those with silk fabric.
In December I visited Wroclaw for Christmas. I decided to pay a visit to the Jewish Cemetery, because it is old, grand, and in ruins. After the events of the Holocaust there was no-one to take care of the Cemetery, and it fell into ruin. Today it is a museum and you can pay a small fee to go in and walk around, take pictures, etc. It receives only minimum maintenance – as the derelict state of the cemetery is considered to be part of the memorial to the Jews of Wroclaw. I went two days after Christmas… it was cloudy, cold, and nearly empty – I only had to share the large cemetery with a British couple (they still managed to get in the way of some of my photos, however). Many of the fancy tombs are falling apart, and some areas are so overgrown that you can’t even see the stones, just lumps under the ivy.
All Saints Day (Nov. 1) varies from country to country. Here businesses close and everyone goes to the cemetery and spends much of the day visiting graves, tidying the grave, and placing flowers and candles for the departed. All the Catholic cemeteries, which are much much bigger, are a bus ride away, so I found a smaller, “Evangelical” (historically Lutheran) one only a few walking minutes from our home, and made my flatmates take me there on their way to a bar that night. At first we couldn’t figure out where the entrance was, then we finally got inside and walked around a bit. All of the graves were lite, except the very old historical section. It was very lovely and of course a bit creepy. 🙂
On Sunday I went hiking with two of my co-teachers in the “mountains” at the edge of our city. Our discussion lilted from topic to topic, mostly bitching about certain other teachers. I’m not sure how the topic came up exactly, but I mentioned to my two friends that in one of my recent classes, a student had responded to the “Do you doubt that ghosts exist?” question with a firm “No, I don’t doubt that ghosts exist.” I was a bit surprised because every other time students have always said that they don’t believe in ghosts. So I asked why she didn’t doubt. Unfortunately due to level of English and time restrictions, the most I could get from her was the explanation that she had had some person experiences that made her not doubt.
Mentioning that event launched the three of us teachers into a conversation regarding the existence of ghosts and our reasons for our beliefs. And I got two ghost stories out of it to share with you. 🙂
I’ll start you out with the less creepy of the two. Basically my friend’s grandmother died, but continued to reside in her home. My friend said that she had always felt her grandmother’s presence, but the ghost’s existence became obvious to her after two particular events. My friend was living in her grandmother’s house alone, and invited some friends over. She went into the bathroom, and noticed a towel on the floor. She didn’t think too much of it and went back to her room to get a few things for the shower. A minute later, she returned to the bathroom to find the towel perfectly hung up. She was sure no one else had been in the bathroom and questioned her friends who had been on a different story of the house. None of them had gone into the bathroom.
Then, on a different occasion she was alone in the house. While her grandmother was alive, she had been very strict about making my friend make her bed every morning. One of those “If you don’t make your bed, the rest of your day will be sloppy!” sort of things. Well, since my friend was the only one living the house at the moment, she didn’t think that anyone would care if she didn’t make her bed one morning, and left her bed clothes in a mess on the bed and floor. She went down stairs to get some breakfast, and returned to her room about 20 minutes later, to discover a perfectly made bed.
The second story is a bit more creepy. I’ve been assured that the person who originally related the story was a no-nonsense sort of fellow, and shocked my two friends by telling them about his experiences in Asia. This fellow lived in a house in Thailand that was haunted by a very creepy poltergeist. While problems started small, they eventually escalated to the point that he had to move out. In the beginning, it was just strange sounds at night, like a person moving around down stairs. Gradually, the poltergeist started moving things around the kitchen, and even opening and closing the cabinets. The fellow who lived in the house is of the vaguely anal / OCD variety, so when a he discovered cupboards open in the morning, he was certain he had not left them that way. Things reached their peak, when one day he felt particularly uneasy, after finding things moved around during the day. That night, he went up into his room, and closed and locked the door. He slept uneasily during the night, and awoke in the morning to find that the chair from his desk (which was in a separate area of the room) had moved during the night. It was positioned next to and facing the bed. It was exactly as though someone had been watching him as he slept. Needless to say, that was the last night the he spent in that house.