Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Raffle Basket

First & Last Arts & Crafts is having a raffle this weekend to raise money for us to advertise the show more. This is a picture of the prize basket. And guess who's in there! My Easter Nubbins!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Easter Nubbins: Chocolate Bunny Nubbin

So, I know I've been neglecting to do some plush/nubbin updates lately. But, y'know, life gets in the way sometimes. Here are my completed Easter Nubbin prototypes. These particular little guys in the first picture below are now temporarily residing at Moonflower awaiting someone to purchase them and take them home.

The Chocolate Bunny Nubbin above was one of two prototypes I made for the Chocolate Bunny design...

I ultimately decided to make them with the felt ears and buck-teeth (the one on the right) but to make the ears a dark brown felt instead of the lighter brown. The bellies are done in the light brown, but are heart-shaped instead of square...

Keep your eyes peeled for them to be listed in my Etsy shop soon!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

My Very Own Muppet!

I got my Christmas gift from my brother in the mail yesterday! My Muppet Whatnot!

I was out running errands, my husband was working from home...and he called me and said, "Something came in the mail for you today."

"What is it?"

"Something you ordered."

"My puppet???"


I wasn't expecting it for a few more weeks! I only ordered it last week (finally!) and the site says to expect 3-4 weeks for delivery. It was a pleasant surprise. I have a voice for him, but I need to name him still. When I pick a name, I'll record a video and have him introduce himself!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Monster of the Day...Patchwork Monster

I've mentioned that my husband and I are planning on buying a house this summer. So in trying to prepare myself for packing up my household, I have been going through my disaster-area of a craft room and trying to sift through all my supplies...deciding on what is worth keeping, knowing I will have to move it when we get a house. I was going through my box o' scraps and made this little guy made out of corduroy scraps. (I love corduroy!)

The "M" is for Mary. My friend saw this monster as I was finishing it up at church last week (closing it up and adding the eyes), and she wanted to buy it to give to her friend (named Mary) who was coming to visit her this week. So she asked if I could add a little pocket on with an "M" on it...and, gladly, I obliged.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Necktie Snake

I was just wondering the other day what to do with some ties my husband was getting rid of. Why didn't I think of doing this? Making a necktie into a stuffed snake toy! I found this via The Crafty Crow. I'm going to be doing this project soon!

(picture taken from "Dave's Garden")

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Art From Junk: Audio Cassette Tapes

I randomly decided yesterday to make an art piece out of random junk I've had lying around the house. My husband and I are talking about buying a house this summer...so I am in the mindset of cleaning out. Which means going through and clearing out all the random stuff I tend to hoard to use as "craft supplies". I have such a hard time throwing anything away! Case in point...cool art piece made from junk. But I figure if I actually MAKE stuff from the junk NOW....that I won't need to MOVE it all LATER. Well, it'll be moving (unless I sell it), but it will be a piece of art and not random componants that contriute to being part of boxes & bins & piles of junk.

Now I'm no uber-enviromentalist or eco-freak, I just hate being wasteful. My protest to my husband is usually "But I can USE that for SOMETHING!" It's the curse of being an artist. I know it's got to drive him crazy sometimes, but he loves me anyway!

I love the idea of making something cool from stuff that most people would throw away. This is my first piece I've done like this. This is made of scrap wood (much cheaper that canvas!...like...FREE), some old mesh screen that I picked up off the curb once a while ago (also free), and some old audio cassette tapes I found yesterday. And of course...paint. And some hot glue. And screws (which were unfortunately too long and stick out the back...so I either need to figure out how to cut off the pointy ends sticking out the back...cover them with something...or just redo it with smaller screws).

The tapes were ones I knew I wouldn't be listening to again, like mix tapes I'd made back before I had a CD player in my car. None of the tapes were pre-recorded ones. Even though cassettes are practically obsolete, I can't bear to destroy a pre-recorded one. One of the ones I found was a Rainbow Brite song tape. Rainbow Brite! You think I could put that on E-bay? Some 80's nostalgia nut might want it right? Others I found were some of my "nature story" tapes I used to listen to as a child...like Peter Cottontail. Those I am most definitely keepng. Aunt Grandma gave me those. I'm curious if they exist on CD or if I'm going to have to have my husband or father transfer them from the cassette to CD (or mp3).

How many people ou there still have cassette tape players? I have one in my car (in addition to a CD player) and one on a small CD/Cassette/Radio boom box. Right now I use the tape deck in my car to play my iPod...through one of those cassette adapters that was originally for playing a Discman (portable CD player) in the car. It basically looks like a cassette tape with a cord sticking out that you plug into the headphone jack.

Triquetra Paintings

In honor of St. Patrick's Day...here are some Celtic inspired paintings I did a couple years ago.
They look a lot better in person. They photographed a little funky, due to the metallic paint I used for them.

The triquetra, or trinity knot, is one of my favorite celtic knotwork images. I love its beautiful simplicity, plus the symbolism of the three-in-one Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

"According to legend, St. Patrick used the shamrock, a three-leaved plant, to explain the Holy Trinity to the pre-Christian Irish. " (from Wikipedia)

Saturday, March 14, 2009

A Friend's Wedding Stuff on Pi Day

So...my good friend Kasey is getting married in June...and I get to have the privilige of being one of her bridesmaids! We had a get-together today with all her bridesmaids and my mom (our resident Queen of Cardmaking) to help her put together her invitations.

This "sealing wax" came in a modern form to use in a glue gun...so none of that tedious burning the wick and trying to drip the wax perfectly...without burning yourself.
Mom was in charge of the glue gun sealing wax.
Kasey...the bride...writing addresses.
And I'm so proud of her...for this rose design, Kasey bought a rubber stamp from a shop on Etsy! (Yay for Etsy! Buy handmade baby! You can check out the shop here. This lady makes some awesome rubber stamps!) The rose is actually stamped on the inside of the invitations, but for the image above on the RSVP card, the stamped image was scanned into the computer and incorporated into a graphic design program...cuz my girl Kasey is cool with graphics like that!

Oh...and who knew that today was "Pi Day"? March 14th...3/14...pi is approximately 3.14? Get it? Yeah. So...since it was Pi Day...we had pie. Kasey's mom made Shepherd's pie, apple pie, and (my favorite) pumpkin pie.

We all had a blast!

Friday, March 13, 2009

First & Last on Facebook!

Hey there Internetland! First & Last: Arts & Crafts now has a Facebook group!


*UPDATE:* And the group's administrator has just appointed me to the office of "Nubbin Tsar"! Sweet!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Monster of the Day...Berslymp

Meet Berslymp...

I haven't developed a personality/backstory for Berslymp yet. Little help? Any ideas? Leave me a comment! Not an official contest or anything...just help a monstermaking girl out!
The best one will be put on his Etsy description.
It doesn't have to be anything long or elaborate. Check out Trilli's description for inspiration if you want.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Monster of the Day...Trilli

I realized I needed to give you some closeup shots of the new monsters I finished up at Friday's show. So for the next few days, I'm going to be doing a "Monster of the Day" post. First up...meet Trilli...

"Trilli wants to be a hairstylist when she grows up. But she just can't seem to pass beauty school. Every person's hair she dyes turns out green! Trilli doesn't know what the big deal is...everyone loves green hair right?"

I love the pink & green color combination! Not a typical color combo I would love...but for a monster, I think it works very well. It has a certain girly appeal. I think pink & green is the hip chick's pink & purple. And I gave her the same cornrow style hair as Zogra...so her hair is very play-able. I can see some 'tween girl absolutely loving her.

You can find her in my Etsy shop here.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Pottery Fix

The hubby and I got our pottery fix this weekend at our friends' house. They live on a farm and have a seperate building that serves as a studio/office/workshop. And in the studio, they have two pottery wheels and a kiln. We spent the day Saturday out there and played on the wheels. I made 6 pots and CJ made a cute little bud vase. He has big hands, but he makes the tiniest little pieces on the wheel!

(Luna thinking "Mommy...are you done yet?")

We have our own pottery wheel at home that my mom and grandma bought for us as a wedding present (I took a pottery class with my mom and some friends a few months before I got married)... but I don't use it as much as I'd like to. It tends to take a back seat to my other crafts (sewing and painting), especially now that I'm crafting more as a business lately than as a hobby. Plus, pottery is rather messy. I've thought about asking our friend/landlord about possibly setting it up in the basement where there is a concrete floor and a utility sink. I've also debated about taking my wheel out to "the farm" as well. It's more motivating when you know there's a kiln you can fire your work in the same building rather than having to wory about transporting your work in order to fire it (and worrying about breaking it the entire way). Plus, with three wheels, we can have a "pottery party"!

I don't know...I haven't decided anything yet...except that I miss practicing my pottery skills!

KiraArts News (March 9th)

Here's a quick recap of what's been going on in KiraArts' land this past week/weekend...

  • Woo Hoo! I just hit 50 "hearts" on Etsy! (I know..."big deal" right? "Tell me when you make it to 100". Hey, fifty is a lot for a small time Etsy girl like me!)

  • In other news...I sent out another box o' monsters out to Vegas to Mystery Rider. And he was nice enough to make this little mini-commercial for me on You Tube!

  • Here's a rather fuzzy look at my rather fuzzy monsters at a not-really-so-fuzzy table at the First & Last: Arts & Crafts show at Spot on Friday.
  • I added some of my art into the mix of monsters this week...and actually had a girl comission a piece based on the Luna Moth painting seen in the basket...

  • I finished up 4 more sock monsters while I was sitting at the show (I like using the time there to get a lot of hand-sewing done). They'll be up on my Etsy shop soon.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Come see me!

If you're in the Rochester Area and like Art & Craft...come over to Spot Coffee tonight!

Get directions here.

I'll only be there tonight this weekend, but you can still check out the other artisans on Saturday and Sunday night. If you can't make it this weekend, mark your calanders for March 27th-29th and April 3rd-5th. (I'll be there April 3rd and 4th.)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Finished Argyle and Galliwumpf Sock Monsters

Okay...I told you I'd get them done!

You can see more detailed pictures when I post each of these on my Etsy shop.

Galliwumpfs Sneak Peek

I've been going through my box of sock remnants and I'm really liking this new , what I call "Galliwumpf", design.

It's nice because I can use remnants of a sock that isn't really enough to make a whole monster, so I fill in the belly with a coordinating fuzzy sock material. I really would like to obtain some more of this fuzzy sock material, since I know eventually I'm going to run out. Anyone got any unwanted fuzzy socks?...send them my way!

Don't you wish I'd just finish something already?
Well, I try to save the hand sewing and such for when I'm chilling out at night, watching TV with da hubby. I got a little bit done last night on those two sock monsters I posted yesterday, but we were watching Hellboy II (our newest Netflix DVD) and I got caught up in the movie and didn't end up finishing them! The green shamrock guy just needs some eyes, and the argyle guy needs eyes as well as his lips finished up. I promise, they'll get finished by tomorrow and I'll let you see the finished product. I actually think I'll go work on them right now!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

More Custom Emoti-Nubbins

I just finished another set of custom Emoti-Nubbins.

And here's a look at the finished Shamrock Nubbin.

Both have already been reserved a trip to Vegas in order to go to my #1 Etsy customer The Mystery Rider. But I'm willing to do more if asked!

So long Nubbins! Have fun in Vegas! (but not the kind of fun that "stays in Vegas"!)

More Sneak Peeks

All these sneak peeks...I'm just such a tease aren't I?

I've come up with ideas for Easter Nubbins. But they're going to be a bit different than my typical Nubbins. Originally I was just going to do egg shapes on the bellies (which I still might do)...but I wanted to do something different...

So I came up with the chick and chocolate bunny Nubbins.

And here's some shots of some in-process sock monsters