Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Shiraya Makes a Tiny T-Shirt on Tumblr

Shiraya's Wardrobe on Tumbler has a bunch of great tutorials, including one for putting a fly front on tiny doll trousers that I need to study (I am so bad at sewing pants). The post that caught my eye today was one on making little stretchy T shirts; you have to figure out the size yourself, but there are step by step assembly instructions with photos on how to do the neckline and sleeves. If you are not on Tumbler, the key points were: to make the neck facing out of a bias-cut bit of stretchy fabric with a slight curve "like a smile," and use a stretch stitch when you attach it to the shirt, so it will stretch enough to get over the doll's head. For me the best tip was how to assemble the whole thing, so you are not trying to set in those tiny sleeves into an assembled body piece:

Having the shirt spread out like that means you can also top-stitch the sleeve caps, which makes it easier to get hands in the armholes and keeps the sleeves from popping out at the shoulder seams. Since I don't like pulling tight stuff over faceups, I would cut down the center back a little, and put more bias edging over the cut edges, and put a button-and loop closure on the back of the neckline to close it.
Shiraya also has an Etsy if you prefer your T shirts ready made :D

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Mintylicious Dyes a Small Centaur

Yes, it's another iDyePoly project; Minylicious aka Mint did the dyeing with some changes from my method--the time in the dye bath was only 5 minutes for the pieces, but the pot and the centaur parts were carefully prepped first. I don't think Mint did a final scrub or sealing afterwards, but because the dye pigment was essentially strained first there may have been no residue to worry about. (My biggest headache with the iDyePoly, besides the smell, was the dissolvable container for the dye--it does melt but there is this awkward transition phase when the thing is melted but still wandering around like a blob of rice noodle.) Here's the article on Tumblr:

In case you aren't on Tumblr and can't access the article, here's a clip of the dye process:

Dye Method:

Before continuing further, I created a dye concentrate in hot water then allowed the mixture to fully dissolve before adding it to the bath. I didn’t want to go crazy and over-saturate the water, so initially I only used 1/3 of the dye packet (without intensifier). When I tested the solution I quickly realized that wouldn’t be enough…

So ultimately I ended up dumping most of the dye into my concentrate—¾ of the packet. I should note that I added the dye concentrate to the big ol’ pot through a coffee filter in an attempt to prevent powder clumps from infiltrating the bath.

I continued boiling eight (8) quarts of water in a sixteen (16) quart pot over high heat. I used 100% polyester string to submerge the pieces one by one.

I wanted as close to an onyx black as I could achieve, so I ended up dyeing each part twice. First dip was for three (3) minutes, followed by a quick rinse in lukewarm water. At this point, I could still see the bronze beneath the dye, so once each piece had a trip in the bath I let them all cool briefly before dipping them again for one and a half (1.5) minutes.

I allowed the parts to cure for 48 hours before restringing.
Gloves were worn through the whole process. :D

Monday, August 29, 2016

Sunday, August 28, 2016

J and a Cat 1970! A cat man from an early age. (If he talks to a strange cat it will come over to say hello).

Various Flower and Landscape Photos

When Akutenshi came over, she brought a little flower from a larger bouquet; some local florist makes "Mermaid tails" by flattening and snipping some flowers (I don't know the variety at all). It looks so cool!
We also went Friday night to Herrick Lake, and the lake in August would be very enjoyable if it wasn't for the sudden arrival of huge numbers of very hungry mosquitoes. I even had Repel on and a long sleeved shirt with a high collar and they were still a pest. Here is the lake. I think no wind was making the mosquito problem worse, but it was pretty:

You can't see it in the above photo, but there were sundogs from the ice crystals in the clouds:

Some wildflowers:

I've only seen these seed pods later in the season--they turn brown, split open and are full of fluff.
More just scenery:

Here's a texture one, this is the small version:

Except for the sticks, it looks like the surface of the Moon. Here's a link to the full 3264x2448 version for your own use, no restrictions:
Herrick Ground Tex

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Just a Quick Link...

Male Embody video is up! You Tube, you will have to Skip Ad.

A Granado Gabe is the photo subject here, being "still the prettiest" like Legolas. :D (Akutenshi came over and we tried on various wigs on various people). Gabe is on the old Lads body.

OK here is one more link--it's a vine so it's only about 6 seconds long. With "owls":

Friday, August 26, 2016

Granado's Embody Body

Photos and measurements for the Embody body are up at Granado! It looks nice, it is indeed in the 68-70 cm range; it is in fact the same height at the Evol, but smoother, if that makes sense--here they are together:

I think this body might be very compatible with Iplehouse heads, both in style and with the 11.5 cm neck. I see that it looks like the shoulders have been reinforced and bevelled a little, which would help keep those areas from cracking, though the hip edge might be a little thin and you would have to be careful not to chip it with some costume details like harness or pocket chains, or extreme poses.  Granado is working to finish up a video showing how the body poses, I expect there will be a link to that on the Granado Facebook page in a few days. While I am not really interested in bringing Michael home (he's the current head on the Embody) I am sure that Crocus will come up with someone I want. The Evol versions of Charles and Uranus should fit this new body, too. Also the new toes are set to be tabi/geta toes so you can put them in traditional Japanese shoes or modern flip flops.

Thursday, August 25, 2016


A sort of muddy Art Rage painting of Coral, a Soom Migma. I love Art Rage-- but it will go along for 20 minutes at a time being wonderfully compliant, and then suddenly get bored and say "We need some purple RIGHT HERE" and I say "Nooooo what are you doing??" and then I will spend the next 10 minutes trying to either scrub it out or paint over it, while AR gets increasingly peevish and random. I suspect it may be a memory thing, because if you just go work on another part of the painting you can come back a few minutes later and work over the problem spot-- and AR just does what you say, having forgotten it's moment of rebellion.

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Woodpeckers and Wigs

I should have added "waifs"; Jo sent me a whole box of wigs, and this was one of them--so many gorgeous wigs in that box! I haven't even had a chance to photograph my favorite one, because it's owner is still in the box downstairs and I ran out of light. Isley modeled a couple of other ones, she's about in the middle of the sizes in the box--here's a curly red one:

A black one that I swear was a Lottie from Monique, but I tried to redo what I remembered the braids looked like... and I need to go look at the actual photo again, because maybe there are 4 braids instead of two on top of the head? The hair is nice, smooth and heavy:

A mermaid wig, black and blue!

There were so many more, too--some Iplehouse sized ones and one Volks wig, I think. Thank you, Jo! <3

Aside from playing with wigs, I weeded, I mowed when it stopped raining, and I took photos of woodpeckers. The hornets are being very inconvenienced by wood ears; I keep hoping they will move to the hole further up, because they are making the mailman nervous. Here is the first woodpecker I saw:

Then there was a second one, right above the dot com:

Then a third one higher up:

Which makes me think the tree might need to be inspected this winter once it gets cold enough to slow down the hornets.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

The Boy of Summer

So this is Alex, Granado Gabe number three. One was traded, two was Ereshkigal 1 for a while before being swapped for a Garnet, and then this guy showed up, courtesy of the wonderful AlisonVonderland. I had some other plans for him but no, he's a merman, with his homemade glitter eyes. I am glad to have him back. :D

Monday, August 22, 2016

iDyePoly Again

I was determined to get Danu (Sicktress' Deesse head) onto a matching color body that wasn't peeling (the acrylic paint was just coming right off again), and my last attempts at dyeing this body on the barbeque side burner weren't too successful. So I bought a packet of iDyePoly brown:

No mess... hah.

 This time I did several things right--I did it on a nice day with the windows open, I scrubbed all the pieces clean, I got a bigger pot than the previous attempt, I put the pieces on stiff wire to keep track of them in the pot, and I put a project china bowl in the bottom of the pot to keep the pieces from direct contact with the bottom of the pot, where the fire was--and I stirred the pot for all thirty minutes the pieces were submerged, just like I was making some kind of bizzare custard, with the flames on low and the pot not quite boiling. Here is the pot:

The spoon was a loss--the iPoly packet tells you not to use things you will be cooking with later, (that is why there is a sticker on that pot's handle that says "project pot" and while Dawn did clean the pot and my hands, there was still residue in the pot--the dye has tiny, tiny pigment particles that are hard to clean up.) The bowl and the spoon came from the Goodwill; the pot is from when I was doing some fabric dyeing in New Jersey.

I wasn't able to dye all of her in one pass--her shins are just too big to fit with enough room in this 12 by 9 inch pot, maybe a big stock pot would work, but you would have to stir harder to keep that volume of liquid at an even heat. Here is what did fit:

Here is what I would do differently next time:
--I would put the smaller pieces on twine and hook them to something over the pot, because towards the end the hands fell off the copper wire and sank into the bowl.
--I would also put a plate, not a bowl in the bottom, a thick plate about 2 inches smaller than the pot so I could lift it out at the end easily.
--I would set up a second fan because even with one fan and the window open, it does smell funky.
--I would set up some kind of rack in the sink to hold the pieces up so they could drip a little while they cooled off--I had to improvise with a wire and the cascade box at the last minute:
--I would put parchment paper on the bottom of the sink and mask off the countertop. (Luckily I didn't splash.)
--I would wear gloves, the thin kind you use for food prep and painting. I was really careful and I still got dye on my finger tips from the wires, which I thought I had cleaned off but still had dye on them. I wear glasses-- but if you don't, eye protection is always good with these weird wet chemical projects.

But--it does seem to work and of course it will save you around 200.00 in resin coloring costs to do it yourself--it won't be even (I actually like the look) and it will be more fragile than having the color cast in. I did spray the pieces once they were cooled, rinsed and dried:

 And I finally have an upper torso that matches Danu's head. :D

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Moore Romeo's Photostream, the Purse, and Flowers

If you like Iplehouse dolls, you are in for a treat--moore romeo's Flickr has lots and lots of wonderful photos of them!

 I kept running across this photo when I was doing google searches for various Iplehouse molds, and it always cracks me up-- it looks just like they are looking in a mirror where the camera is. Pamela is saying, "What do you think of the ombre lips?" and Doria is "Mm, not bad!" (I am pretty sure Doria's faceup is by Lisa Jameson (Pepstar) with those signature brows. Here's another photo of moore romeo's:

(Doria Vampire sees camera, makes derp face) "You always take pix of me eating! Stahp."
There's a great photo of Raffine with a cigarette, and a whole bunch of the rare Rania, looking gorgeous.

My own activities today were doing yard work, cleaning out the fridge, doing laundry, going shopping once I realized that we had reached the end of the Costco Toilet Paper Fort in the basement, and working on The Purse. I actually took it apart again after I took this photo:

 and removed the stiffener I had in it and I want to redo some of the way it's put together. I also went to JoAnns to get more lining for Sicktress' Haru's tunic, since I discovered the fabric I had wasn't big enough for the second sleeve, and I bought an actual small purse pattern so my sister-in-law's purse will look a little more professional than K's. I hope. And as promised, backyard flowers!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Nicola Adams New Record

From the BBC:
Nicola Adams
Flyweight Nicola Adams becomes the first British boxer to retain an Olympic title for 92 years by winning gold at Rio 2016.

That's a long time to retain a title! Congratulations Nicola Adams! looking good for a centarian, too! :D

Friday, August 19, 2016

Foul Batchelorette Frog, with Yarn

I have a few days here of batchelorette splendor while J visits the parents. Normally my routine is work, drink coffee at night, eat toast in a bowl, ignore housecleaning, read horror and urban fantasy novels until very late at night, and catch up on all the movies I haven't seen in the last year. I had thought of perhaps this time being more productive, painting the moldings or ceiling, or moving the hostas and daylilies to the side of the yard...  but instead I started messing with yarn, embroidering on a piece of net I found in a remnant bin at JoAnn's. I have a lot of yarn for someone who doesn't knit, so I thought it would be good to actually do something with it besides buy it, pet it, and store it in a big tupperware. Since I have the house to myself, I dumped out the boxes of craft supplies on the floor and found some stripey decorator fabric , a couple of D rings and a 7 inch zipper, which to me said "small purse". Here is the purse so far with cheesy Under The Sea theme:

The gray thing on the sketchpad is my first doodle with yarn, filled out in a rough rectangle and clipped off of the embroidery hoop. It makes something like yarn fabric. I think I might make some more of that colorway and use it for a vest for Enoch when he comes, just to use up the piece. It goes surprisingly fast with a big yarn needle, which is good since I have other things I need to finish--like actual paid work. 

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Random Thursday Photos

Dragael, a 5 star Angelo painted by cheesedemon88, is wearing her new Sculpey tiara.

It's been wet, wet, wet here--but not like Louisiana! My neighbor Norm got his lake back, but no one has built on the adjacent property, which becomes very squishy when we have hard rains; when the new owner came around to introduce himself we did tell him that property floods and he needed to build upward on a concrete base, and we haven't seen him since :o.

The neighbor on the other side is starting to have her backyard look post-apocalyptic; I like it. If it stays unmowed we might be getting more fireflies and butterflies next summer. I am still harboring "bees", the small hornets in the hollow tree in front. So far they have let me weed under them (though it was pouring at the time, so it wasn't really a fair test), but I can go in and out  the front door without them getting upset. The tree itself may be in iffy shape, and the hornets might also make tree trimming later a bit dicey, so we will see how it goes in December once the leaves are down. I still have water coming in the bathroom fan when it rains hard, and I suspect the insulation above the bathroom is nasty and I will have to "call a guy" to get both of those things fixed. The ants are once more coming out of the kitchen wall, having been flooded out of the yard.

But the morning glories are loving the weather:

Eating the fence. Hopefully this one will have flowers too--there are 5 of these monsters along the property line right now. My kitchen philodendron is out of control:

A wet sunflower:

Wet phlox:

Also, completely unrelated, this is what happens when you don't feed your Iplehouse Panther:

This is at JoAnns, there are also "rats" "Owls" and hilariously, "Spiders". Also more ravens like Poe.