Jan 31, 2012

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Column: Ouija Board



College students are all about double dipping. If you can kill two birds with one stone, you should probably be doing it. So yes, sometimes the crafts that I share here get put in my column and vice versa. I think though that this is probably the first time that I shared a craft here prior to putting it in column form. But what can I say? Sometimes I'm just SUPER eager to share things. But yeah. Column of the week, again. I get silly proud of myself.

But if you didn't read my post on my Ouija Board Earrings you can here. And you can read the column version of it here. There are more jokes thrown in (and I'm apparently one of the consistently most read columns on weeks that it runs.)

Jan 30, 2012

I Like You: Jackets



I really like jackets. Like, a lot. I'm generally more one of excessive layering rather than a nice warm coat though. I've survived three Philadelphia winters with layering baseball tees under flannels under hoodies under jackets. Okay. Philly isn't exactly the coldest place in the world. But it does get seriously windy and we rarely have real snow. Just awful slush.

Anyway, this winter I've acquired two new jackets (coats? really what's the difference?) And modified one.

First up is my Carhartt Women's Sandstone Active Jacket with Quilted Flannel. It is SERIOUSLY warm. I somehow convinced my father to drive me out west some to a tractor supply store one Sunday late this fall. It is totally not the cutest thing in the world, but for how toasty it keeps me it is SO worth it. And besides that, it has a hood. I love hoods because they keep rain and snow off of my head and keep my hair from whipping around in the wind.






Next is my leather biker jacket. It was a Christmas gift from my beau. It's made by IK Leather, though he got it at Angry Young and Poor's brick and mortar store in Lancaster. While it needs to be broken in, I am still seriously obsessed with it. It's great for layering and keeps me toasty in the wind.





And finally, I'm sure I've shown this before, is my old faux leather jacket that I've had for years now. And has seen me around the world. I sewed this patch from The Apothecarium and have been getting nonstop compliments since. Because it's lighter (but still helps cut the wind) it's been great with the freaky warmth we've been having.




How do you stay warm?

Jan 29, 2012

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The 10 Year Quilt


I don't think I've fully blogged about this yet. I mean, I think I've hinted at it.

I started a quilt when I was about 12. My brief love affair with quilting began when I sewed together a handful of squares at a Girl Scout event to ultimately be put together in a larger quilt for charity.

I picked out my fabric shortly thereafter, cut squares out and I even sewed some of them up.

Fast forward 10 years and I've finally finished the quilt. There were some definite bumps along the way. Like why were there way more squares of one pattern than the other? I figured 144 squares total makes sense... but the proportion of sky squares to flowery squares made no sense. You'll see what I mean when I finally came up with the pattern (four hours after I started piecing it together!)



A square before marking, sewing and cutting.


Stacks...


And stacks...


Finished!


So cozy.


That pattern.


Front and back.


And of course the first thing I think of as soon as I'm finished? I really want to make another quilt, just with better fabrics and an easier pattern (the diagonal pattern was sort of rough for piecing it together...)

Jan 25, 2012

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Heathers

To make up for my lack of posting recently (I have so many things planned!) because of getting into the swing of this semester, getting things sorted for this semester and wallowing in self pity because I've convinced that I'm not going to graduated in May I figured I'd share some songs that I've been listening to non-stop.

Or I guess more specifically, a group that I've been listening to non-stop. Heathers.





Also I'm finally working on catching up on all of my E4 shows. And by that I mean Misfits series 3 and This is England '88 (oh the Joe Gilgun crotch shots.) I'm also letting my room fall to ruin and knitting and bemoaning my lack of industry experience to put on my resume.

Everyone seems pretty keen on my new goal of becoming a professional asshole though. So at least I have that going for me. Needless to say, the start of my last semester isn't really going as planned.

Jan 21, 2012

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New Additions: Odd Collection



As if me jarring up my wisdom teeth wasn't enough... Yeah, I totally like weird things. I'm constantly trying to create a comprehensive aesthetic for myself and the space around me. But I guess when it comes down to it I will forever swoon just as hard at all things weird and things like designer toys (more on this down the road.)

I like the idea of fusing modern and old. And I've never fully had a space that was entirely mine to define. My childhood bedroom was largely made up of childhood decisions, and much of the furniture (all of it) in there never quite fit my aesthetic. But it was the closest I was allowed by my mother.

Anyway, I've started collecting things that I want to see on my shelves once the "Purging Possessions 2012" begins. I'm working on slimming down my wardrobe (something that will be easier to do when I have the money to buy quality pieces) and also all of my things that are just taking up space that I don't even like that much.



I picked up this anatomical skull poster, because you know, why not? I plan on framing it and pretending that I was good at anatomy. I always found it sort of funny that I was always pretty good at dissecting things, just...not so much as knowing what was what on paper.


I also got this skull model (it's a 4th so it's supposed to be defective, but I think he's fine.) My archaeology skills tell me that Sully is based on a woman. But I've decided to hell with statistics, and Sully is a man. Or at least has a masculine name?


I also got a bat preserved in lucite. I've wanted one ever since I got to hold a mummified bat in my archaeology class. Sorry he's all finger-printy!


I'm seriously smitten with it.


I also got a little flower in a sphere because... well it's just too cute!


Seriously though!


I guess that I'm getting one step closer to creating my own little curio cabinet. Anyway, there are definitely more weird things to come in the future.

Anatomical model things from here and lucite pieces are from here. And if anyone wants to get me this dental model from Shop Anatomical, I would totally not be opposed.

Do you collect anything that others may find sort of weird? Or have a curio cabinet of sorts?

Jan 19, 2012

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Reading List


I swore up and down that I would start working my way through my reading list over winter break. I barely made a dent in it. So this is what I (still!) have on my "to-read" list. It's sort of never ending (as in this is just a small fraction of it. I also have a million books on the occult and various novels on there as well.) But if we're being honest, I'm probably going to get side tracked by my stack of Buffy graphic novels that I have next to my bed.

Also, this isn't to say that I don't read. I read a lot for my major last semester, at least in terms of books. I generally wind up reading a fat stack of articles a week, but I was going through memoirs and children's books (novels) almost weekly. Weird. But it left no time for reading for pleasure.





  1. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest - Stieg Larrson : I swear to you I have been reading this book for six months now. I flew through the rest of the series, but this book is just killing me.
  2. Still Life: Adventures in Taxidermy - Melissa Milgrom : This has been on my list since I picked it up from Border's at their going out of business sale. I'm going to start this as soon as I finish Hornet's Nest.
  3. The Road - Cormac McCarthy : I picked this up at Borders too and it has to do with number 4.
  4. Blood Meridian - Cormac McCarthy : What do you do when one of your favorite musicians bases their solo album off of a book? You decided to read it. Duh. But really McCarthy (according to Wiki) writes Southern Gothic and Western style novels and I'm at least like the concept of Southern Gothic (though As I Lay Dying is also on my to read list and has been for close to four years...) and I like the idea of westerns.
  5. Harbor - John Ajvide Lindqvist : Really I just want to read this because I loved Let the Right One In.
  6. The Shining - Stephen King : As much as I love movies based on King's books (I hated Coujo though) I have only ever made it all the way through 'Salem's Lot. Which I loved. And since The Shining is one of my favorite movies, I figured it was about time that I read the book (plus my mother and grandmother will be pleased.)
  7. Catching Fire - Suzanne Collins : I read The Hunger Games in my Children's Lit class last semester. And I really liked it, so I may as well finish the trilogy.
  8. Mockinjay - Suzanne Collins : See 7.
  9. A Bicycle Tour of Ex-Girlfriends - Joey Comeau : At this point I've read nearly everything Joey Comaeu has published. I think I started this right before I got off of a train on the way home one day. Anyway. I think Joey Comaeu is hilarious and sort of demented in a "I really want you to tell me stories all the time so I can feel a little bit less messed up" sort of way.
Also in the most unrelated of ways, today is my half-birthday. Which really means nothing except for the fact that I feel like I am six months closer to the point where maybe I'm supposed to become an adult.

What's on your reading lists? Have any suggestions for my ever-growing list?

Jan 18, 2012

Craft Attack

So a new semester means I'm back with HandMeg over at The Temple News.


First week back and I got Column of the Week (yessssss!)

And I got a warning at the beginning of my column as well:


"Warning: This column contains graphic injury descriptions that may be disturbing to some readers."

Anyone who reads here will already know (or can assume) that the graphic injury description is regarding my "sewing through my finger incident." I think my favorite part is this:

"Hand washed, nail polish removed, finger wrapped, iced and elevated I sought the advice of some friends and the online medical community known as Yahoo Answers. Apparently, I wasn’t supposed to take the needle out and apparently, I was supposed to go to the hospital. It was a little late for that, but I had my tetanus shot four years ago so I figured I was more or less fine once the bleeding had stopped."

Yes. I straight up cackled when I wrote that. Okay, I was tired and it may have seemed funnier at the time. But I seriously did check Yahoo Answers to figure out what to do. Being a Girl Scout for 12 years has made me ridiculously resourceful, but something tells me that I should have known to leave the needle in and go to the hospital. But like, was I really supposed to drive with a needle through my finger? And anyway, I hate hospitals.

But really, Back To School

Yesterday was my first day of classes. The first day of my last semester as an undergrad. It consisted of:
  • waking up super early because I was afraid I would sleep through my alarm
  • finger fencing
  • learning how to make a daisy chain with rope
  • complaining about rain
  • drinking all of the coffee
  • a professor not showing up for class within the 15 minutes that we're told to stay (and I can't find said professor on the Cherry&White pages)
  • trying to figure out why none of my syllabi have been posted onto BlackBoard (how am I supposed to fill out consent and privacy waivers otherwise?!)
  • one of like, four girls out of a somewhat large class (for not being a lecture) in technical writing
  • being the only one to follow instructions of measuring the damn stapler in technical writing
  • being super exhausted because I am not used to running around this much
And you know, the rain didn't helped much. I would much rather have been snuggled up in bed watching This is England '86 and knitting.

I do however feel that I looked rather adorable and my bangs managed to stay more or less intact.

Jan 16, 2012

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Black Houses and Back to School



In case you were wondering, I LOVE black houses. As in, I regularly go through pages and pages of pictures of them on flickr. I already have a ~normal~ tumblr here. But I figured that I would put my obsession with black houses to "good use." So I made another tumblr called Black Houses here.

So far there is virtually no content, but there's a whole bunch of things in the queue. You know, if you're interested.

In other news I'm back in the City of Brotherly Love. I slept in my real bed for the first time in a month and despite the fact that my sheets desperately need to be broken in, I slept like a baby. I'm currently working on getting some posts together before I have to deal with getting used to being in class again (ew.)

Jan 13, 2012

What I Wore: Rag & Bone Dress


First, happy Friday the 13th! First one of 2011!

Sometimes I get all dressed up just to wear new things. I promptly then changed out of this because I realized that instead of playing dress up I really should be cleaning and gathering stuff to donate to Goodwill. Oh well.










- Jacket - Angry Young & Poor (gift from my boyfriend!)
- Dress - Rag & Bone (gift from my mother)
- Belt - this outfit desperately needed a belt, but lacking one I improvised with a Betsey Johnson ribbon
- Tights - Ellen Tracy Legwear, from Marshall's and they're fleece lined!
- Boots - Blowfish Wang Booties, also from Marshall's



I'm also participating in Moorea Seal's Lipstick Challenge. It seems fun and yes, does make me feel more confident (and pretty adorable too!) I'm wearing Cover Girl's Lip Perfection in Flame, by the way.

Jan 12, 2012

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Handmade: Sorbetto Top from Coletterie



So over summer I stumbled across one free pattern from Coletterie which then lead me to the Sorbetto Top pattern. While I plan on making both of the patterns, the Sorbetto seemed like a good starter garment.


I will say putting this pattern together was sort of a pain. But maybe I was just a bit distracted while watching Buffy...

In the process I decided that my tea set was actually an excellent pattern weight set. I don't even know what real pattern weights look like.


I opted to use a gray and white polka dotted quilting fabric. Probably not the best for clothing, but it is what I have the most experience on sewing with and I didn't want to waste a ton of money if the shirt didn't fit me well.


I opted to not hem the bottom and instead use the leftover contrasting bias tape.

Actually if you look in the background of the last picture in this post, you can see the fabric hanging out on the sewing machine. I ran over my finger when I was finishing one of the side seams of this shirt. Oopsies.



Still, totally worth it. I wish that it fit a bit better in the armpit/sleeve area, but I think that the somewhat ill-fitting-ness has something to do with the weight of the fabric.

Next up I am totally planning on following their pleat-free tutorial and maybe even their scalloping tutorial as well!

Jan 11, 2012

Handmade: Heart Garland


I had to stop by Target's Christmas section to look for ornaments. I was trying to find a cute frog for my mom (I've been getting her little frog things when I can for awhile now) and I was totally unsucessful. Well, I found a gnome ornament for myself and pretty little felt heart ornaments. Three for a dollar and there were lots of them. I could have waited until they went on clearance, but I really didn't want to.

Anyway. I got four different colors and decided that I wanted to make garland out of them. I will forever have a traditional Christmas tree as the main tree in my life.

So this was just a fun little craft that I whipped up while watching TV. I plan on putting it above my bed when I -cough- move home in the spring. Until then, above the TV it goes!


I used a bobby pin as a needle, 12 hearts and yarn approximately 25 times the width of one heart.


I worked from the center out.


And I knotted the yarn on both sides both sides.


The knots are to prevent sliding, but since I used existing holes any tugging will pull the yarn right through.


There's about a heart's length between each heart.


Finished garland: not in its final resting place.

Jan 10, 2012

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Peppermint Nails



I decided to do my nails Holiday-ish after Christmas. Oops. I think that they look a bit like peppermint candies, while my friend said they looked like snowflakes.

- Sally Hansen Black
- Konad White


But that didn't last long before this happened:


Can't really tell what happened?

I accidentally ran over my finger, from the nail almost through to the other side (there's a mark there too!) with the sewing machine. It was, obviously, an accident. The machine got jammed for a split second then went wacky and the fabric got yanked through and sort of to the right. That was fun. Needless to say, I still totally finished the shirt I was working with that night. I just took like two-ish hours off from sewing.

But seriously, not having nail polish on my one finger is awkward enough so I just currently have on Stranger Tides from OPI's Pirates of the Caribbean line.

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