August 18, 2010

What’s With All the Screaming?

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , at 12:27 pm by Pam

When Sublime Stitching first announced their Combo Contest, in which participants had to combine three or more Sublime Stitching patterns, I knew I wanted to take part. I spent a good deal of time thinking about what patterns to use and how they could be combined into a coherent picture, but I kept coming up with exactly nothing. I put the idea away and moved on with my life.

But then one day, as I was listening to some Jonathan Coulton, the idea finally came to me. Coulton’s song Skullcrusher Mountain is about an evil villain, talking to his girlfriend (read: a girl who he is keeping captive in his lair). In the second verse, he describes a gift he has so lovingly crafted for her: “I made this half-pony half-monkey monster to please you, but I get the feeling that you don’t like it. What’s with all the screaming? You like monkeys, you like ponies. Maybe you don’t like monsters so much. Maybe I used too many monkeys. Isn’t it enough to know that I ruined a pony making a gift for you?”

Monkeys, ponies… these are things that Sublime Stitching has patterns for (kind of), I thought. I ended up using the Unicorn Believer, Monkey Love, and Craftopia patterns. It took a little while to get the patterns to fit together, but once they did, I was extremely happy with the outcome.

I crayon tinted the fabric so I could just focus on the outlines. I used back stitch, outline stitch, split stitch, and French knots.

Edit: Great minds think alike! The wonderful Beefranck also recently made a Skullcrusher Mountain piece, and it’s amazing!

April 25, 2010

Self-Winding Yo-Based Toy

Posted in Uncategorized tagged , , , , , at 10:28 am by Pam

Do you ever have a day where you see something and immediately think that you HAVE to have it? Usually, it’s stuff that’s easy to obtain – food, clothes, books, etc. But images?

A few months ago now, I was watching an episode of The Simpsons with friends (The Color Yellow, in which Lisa researches her family’s place in the Underground Railroad). The episode has been pretty well panned since airing, but I loved it – I laughed out loud more during this episode than I have at most recent Simpsons episodes. In the middle of the episode, Milhouse disputes Lisa’s claims, and uses his distant relative’s journal as proof. Flashback to a very-Milhouse-looking boy reading “Mr. Thomas Jefferson’s Marvelous Inventions.” The page he had open was for a Self-Winding Yo-Based Toy, complete with copy about the wonderful things it can do.

From first glance, I was smitten. I loved the design and the simplicity, the old-time feel, the cross-hatching – all of it. I wanted this on my wall. I tracked the episode down on Hulu and took screenshots of the image, then set to work.

I crayon-tinted the fabric, although looking at it now, I probably would have been better off doing some sort of fill stitch for the black areas (I’m quite happy with how the yo-yo itself turned out). It was very detailed work, especially the lettering, but if anything, this taught me patience 😉

By the way, the lettering, which is my favorite part, reads “This device, which will astound that natural scientist, delight the wizened crone, infuriate the feeble-minded, can be manufactured with a mere six months of whittle-work and hemp winding. It can perform tricks most unnatural, including exercising the hound, oscillating the infant, and lunar cannonading.” A close-up shot of the stitching is here.