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Showing posts from January, 2008

Tonner Company Store Grand Opening Exclusives

The Grand Opening Mera doll, Tiny Betsy Visits the Hudson Valley, and Winter Romance...which looks like a russet haired Glinda doll maybe?

Free Shipping Promo Code TCS01 until February 14th and three store exclusives.

Blocking and Knitting Complete on Vogue Scarf

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Vogue Epstein Anniversary Scarf In Progress
Originally uploaded by alyrenee

Yippee...it looks so nice and pretty all steamed. Now I have to sew all the little ends up to make the flowers...ugh its going to be hateful.

Spring 2008 Knitting Preview Interweave Magazine

The spring preview for the next Interweave magazine is up and I am swooning. Often I find the patterns a bit boring in there and have yet to attempt anything from them...but these images have me hungry for more. Lots of vintage inspiration. I especially love the Holly Jacket and the Hexacomb Cardigan. Both look like yummy Anthropologie numbers and completely my style.

Nikki Epstein 25th Anniversary Flower Scarf In Progress

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I just loved the scarf and had to make it....here we are.



Now I have all the annoying finishing work to do. Which is something that I have almost no experience at so I might use this as my craftster challenge.

Crocheted Buffy Plush Stake!

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Well I got my box of knitting goodies from Knitpicks and tried making a plush Buffy stake for safe stabbing fun. I used the Palette yarn in Inca Gold. I sort of free form riffed the design starting at the pointing end and slowly increasing on the way up. In a few spots I would increase then decrease again to give it a bump would like appearrance a la Mister Pointy. Hope you like it. I plan to make a fabric version and maybe sell some since the originally planned soft plush stake never was made. I just need to find a fabric with a wood texture print. Or maybe print up my own.

Current Project: Vogue Silver Anniversary Flower Scarf

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Well I started on the gorgeous flower scarf from the cover of the Fall 2007 25th Anniversary Vogue Knitting designed by Nikki Epstein. I am using Anny Blatt silk yarn in noir and mryte (black and silver blue) and a skein of Eden bamboo yarn in an ivory. Its a really easy repeating pattern that is perfect to do while in meetings or watching tv since you don't need to think or count too much. I plan to make or buy a black cocktail dress to wear with it. I cannot wait to finish!

One of my favorite costume sites: Costumer's Guide to Movie Costumes

The Costumer's Guide rules! As a costume designer for the stage, I often use it to reference things I have seen in films to get ideas. But it's really great for the crafty uber-fan that wants to recreate a garment from the big screen. I have not had the time to do this yet but someday I want to make a whole slew of re-creations. Right now I am starting small and doing some for my 16" Tonner dolls. I bought a Spiderman Mary Jane with an official Kirsten Dunst likeness to revamp into Marie Antoinette! I started on a muslin and plan to make the milkmaid costume and possibly the blue silk dress or the one with the red velvet belt. (Plus I MUST make the belt for me too!) I also have the Elizabeth Swann/Kiera Knightly doll to makeover into Lizzie Bennett from Pride and Prejudice (just ask my boyfriend how often I watch that film...at least once a week). And of course, Jack Sparrow/Johnny Depp to redo as Sweeney Todd. I am hoping to nab another Euphemia doll to use as M…

"Charmed" Reversible Cable Scarf

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This was another project I started in San Francisco last Christmas and finally finished up. My very first efforts at cabling and I was really pleased with the results. Its in a cushy aqua cotton worsted yarn and made from the free "Charmed" pattern.

Superdoll Ban the Hunt outfits and Moon Sybarite Doll back in stock!

The really sweet Superdoll Sybarite Ban the Hunt outfits are back in stock (briefly I am sure). Darn I really want the Bloodhound outfit...but it ain't gonna happen. My wallet simply won't let it happen. Maybe yours will?

And the lovely Moon Sybarite is also back in stock. I think she has really unique face paint. The eyebrows are very Theda Bera and she would look swell in twenties fashions.

New 2008 Tonner Doll Collection Up!

The new doll collection for Robert Tonner Doll Company went online monday-ish with lots of surprises. The biggest being the change in the face sculpt for Tyler Wentworth. I kind of like the new face. The old one was sort of blah in my opinion and the newer version is more defined and looks older. I liked a lot of it but dolly dollars are really tight these days so I don't think I will be getting very much. The prices are dressed dolls and outfits were pretty jaw dropping. The only must haves for me are Viktor Dreary, Sister Dreary, and I REALLY want the new Lyra Golden Compass doll in all her winter gear but I might have to sell a liver to get it. Sigh. Beyond that, I am waiting to see what the new Jason Wu AvantGuard dolls are all about and what's new with the Ellowyne line before I make decisions. In the meantime, I am just enjoying sewing for my dolls and trying to slim down the collection to my absolute favorites. Dolly Survivor basically. But I vowed not to pre-or…

Alchemy Ascot using Monarch

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I finished this one up in December. I bought the yarn last Christmas in San Francisco. Its so yummy and soft. I worked on it during meetings and finally got it done. Steady one wins the race I guess. Its knit with super soft (and pricey) Monarch yarn (70% cashmere, 30% silk) in Air and Fire.

Knitty Knecklace and Emilia's Belt Finished!

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Here's Emilia's belt...

So I finished Emilia's belt with yarn to spare. My current resolution for 2008 is "No Scrap Left Behind" meaning yarn, fabric, etc...trying to use up everything and waste nothing. So I hit the internet looking for something swell to do with the rest of the manos del uruguay yarn I had left after the crocheted belt...and found the Knecklace pattern. It knits up really quickly and I am half way done in only one act of the opera. So hopefully I will have a finished picture by tomorrow night and be able to wear it on thursday! I love quickie patterns. Let's me feel like I've accomplished something...

And here is the finished Knecklace...

DIY Magnet Paper Doll: Dress Me Up Aubrey Phreque!

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Aubrey is one of my comic strip characters from my comic, The Family Phreque, about a traveling sideshow circus that retires in a small midwestern town: hilarity ensues. Aubrey is, obviously, the bearded lady. I drew up the paper doll and colored it in photoshop. I printed up the page and then got a sheet of self-adhesive magnet from the local craft store and stuck it on. Then I cut it out with sharp scissors and an exacto knife without too much blood loss. I already had a swell metal lunchbox to sport her around on...but she also looks great on the fridge! I have a Dress me Up Buffy paper doll started too and will post pics shortly.

Ivory Cable Socks

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More socks finished! Weee! These are in ivory wool on sz 3 needles. I used the same basic pattern as the skull socks but instead of the skull I did a little cable down the top of the sock. And voila...


I have started my third pair of socks in two shades of teal cotton and I am calling them my thin mint socks...

Buffy Custom Figures: Fantasy Vampire Buffy

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One of my many hobbies...is to customize action figures. Here is an example of a Vampire Buffy I made by combining parts from several figures, sculpting new details with scupley, and then painting with acryllics. She is currently on ebay...

My Skull Socks of Fury!

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My first attempt at socks and doing an intarsia design...mine definitely don't look as nice as the pattern picture...but they are sock-like, have skulls, and keep my feet warm. They could do with some blocking...but that was more effort than i could muster at that point. I used Bernat Sox yarn in Hot Tamale.

Otello Costumes

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Here's a promo pic from Otello...I designed the costumes for this. We made everything in this picture except for the brown wool robe...that was already in stock. More pics too come.

Hansel & Gretal Candy Witch Mask

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I made this mask from a basic carnival/mardi gras paper mache' mask from a costume store. It was used in the 2007 production of Hansel and Gretal at the Dupage Opera. I just repainted the mask and hot glued some flowers, ribbons, gems, and sequins to the mask. And don't forget the glitter!

Wool Licorice Cap and Cowl

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I sort of made this pattern up...I had this Sensations Licorice 100% Wool yarn skein and did not know what to do with it...and really you can never have too many hats and scarves in Chicago! So voila. I knit both in the round on size 15 needles. I made some swirling decreases on the hat and switched to dpns to finish it off. I like the little point at the top that reminds me of a Dairy Queen dilly bar. It's one of those evil thick/thin yarns...but it still turned out nicely. The cowl was knit in k2/p2 rib for 10".

Crocheted Cloche...my new hat of choice!

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I made this over Christmas break. It was my first attempt crocheting anything larger than a squid. Its from a Knit Simple pattern from the Holiday 2007 issue and made with cream and sugar cotton yarn. I wear it with a swell vintage teal boucle coat and get lots of comments on both. I need to make some gloves and a scarf to go with the hat and coat now.

Winsome Wardrobe Additions: Agnes Dreary

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Poor Agnes had nothing but her original dress to wear. So I took two patterns from the Tonner Newsletter and the Tonner book from the Denver convention and made them up in appropriately dreary fabrics for Miss Agnes. The first is a wool jumper and t-shirt and then some cotton jammies.

Ellowyne Wilde: Recent Wardrobe Editions

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I have been doing some stitching for one of my favorite dolls, Ellowyne Wilde by Robert Tonner and Wilde Imagination. The first is a raincoat pattern featured in Haute Doll Magazine. I made it with fabrics left over from a costume at work (my little method to recycle and reuse in the costume shop...no scrap left behind!):

I think the hood needs a tassle or something to keep it weighted down...otherwise it points up in a semi-sinister manner.

The next is a pattern by Gary Fletcher called "Snowflake" that I made for the January pattern challenge. Once again, I used some cognac silk dupioni and beaded trim leftover from a costume. I also threw some feathers in the mix for drama. We all know Ms. Wilde loves drama...


I love this pattern and think it would be fabulous on a Sybarite with some alteration. I plan to make it in silver and white for my Blade!

High Falutin' Luxury Jayne Hat...

So while looking for yarn for my hands of blue gloves...I thought maybe I would do another Jayne hat as well. The one I already made is fine...but a little tight for my taste and a touch scratchy. Oh and did I mention that when i wear it I feel like my head is on fire! So I threw some Andean Silk in the jayne-y colors in my basket for a silky luxury Jayne hat that will be cooler and softer! Perhaps this is what Ma Cobb would have knit for high falutin' companion like Inara. I am thinking of using this pattern since my yarn is worsted weight...but I might just make up my own. We shall see.

Hands of Blue Firefly Gloves...

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Okay I seem to have mastered the sock. I made two pairs now (pics to follow) so now I think gloves are in order. I was thinking of the fabulous Firefly villians with the blue gloves and thought, "You like blue...why not make hands of blue gloves?"

So here is the pattern i plan to use...mostly becuase its free and i have dpn sz 3 needles already. I ordered some Blue Palette Wool yarn from Knitpicks...it seems to be the closest blue to the rubber gloves on the show. I am super excited about this project....we shall see how it unfolds.

Help me fight MS! Donate Now!

Howdy...I am walking to fight Multiple Sclerosis on May 4th....My brother in law, Mike was recently diagnosed and the whole family is walking to raise money for research. Click here to donate and check on my progress! I am thinking of knitting something for the walk. Orange is the MS color...so i will get to pondering.

Medieval belt Shenanigans

Ugh...I needed a belt for Emilia to wear with her gold cote dress in Otello..and I thought...hey, I'll make it with yarn! Well, I thought that a crocheted belt would be a better option than a knitted one due to sturdiness. I purchased some swell manos del uraguay wool yarn in color #105 Woodland. It's lovely stuff but after about three stitches I remembered how much I dislike crocheting yarn like this. But its coming along nicely. Pictures to come shortly...

Amigurumi Octopus and Jellyfish

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I made these for my boyfriend's nieces for Christmas. This was my first animal making adventure.... I used the Knit1.com pattern for the octopus and then sort of winged it for the jellyfish. Twas fun...I want to make some more of these.