The Blue Castle – Embroidered Book

4 Jul


Hey there! It’s been a long time, but I decided that this blog had been dormant long enough–besides, I actually completed a new craft project! I took my paperback copy of The Blue Castle (which had a totally irrelevant cover) and turned it into a hardback with an embroidered cloth cover. 


The embroidery took me about 12 or 15 hours (lots of episodes of Law & Order!), but it didn’t take very long at all to put the new cover on the book–a tutorial will be coming shortly!


Elizabeth II: A Silhouette

3 Jun

Here’s a quick post for you–it’s 11:30pm on a Sunday, and I meant to post something entirely different today, but my plans were foiled by the fact that I couldn’t find the butter (the sneaky butter was hiding behind the blueberries. You know how Superman can’t see through lead? I can’t see through blueberries).

So instead I made this! You may have heard that this week was Queen Elizabeth II’s Diamond Jubilee, and I’m an American with a lot of love for the United Kingdom and a lot of respect for Elizabeth II, so in a hasty bit of crafting I made this:

Silhouette of Elizabeth II


It’s a silhouette of Elizabeth II, cut out of black cardstock. I based it on this image, from a portrait that was taken of her in 1966–a sculpted bust based on the portrait was used on stamps. Since it’s 11:30pm I couldn’t get a very good picture, but here is one with the contrast turned up to 11, so that you can see it clearly:

Sometime in the near future I’ll be moving bedrooms (and gaining some space!) and when I do I plan to rotate all of my wall art, putting some of my pictures and posters into storage and putting up fresh things that I have been saving because I don’t have room for them. And I kind of accidentally started a collection of silhouette portraits. Ahem. I’ve always loved them, as you may remember from my tutorial, and I just happened to get several in a small space of time, from a few talented artists, so now I am apparently planning to have a silhouette wall in my new bedroom. It’ll probably be a mixture of portraits (art prints and paper cuts) from other artists, and a handful of silhouettes like this one by me.

What do you say to a queen having a Diamond Jubilee? Do you say ‘Happy Diamond Jubilee’? Or ‘Congratulations’?

How about ‘Well done, Elizabeth II’?


A Green Beginning: Wedding Shrug

27 May

photo by Diana C. Kim Photography

Last year one of my good friends got married, and she asked me to make a shrug for her to wear with her wedding dress.

I said of course!

I drafted the pattern, and made the shrug out of a beautiful vivid green silk dupioni from Fabric Indulgence and Art Supply.

Before I could sew the fabric, I outlined each piece with Fray Check, to prevent the edges from unraveling–I learned that this was necessary the hard way, when Shrug 1 came apart on me :P On the inside the shell and the lining both have French seams, as well.

photo by Diana C. Kim Photography

The tricky part was that Sophia lives in Atlanta, and I live in Texas, so drafting the pattern was a biiiiit difficult. I managed to make my dress form Doris match Sophia’s measurements, but Doris doesn’t have arms, and my first attempt at sleeve drafting was less than stellar–the first version of the shrug had elbow length sleeves, but they prevented Sophia from moving her arms! So I cut them off into cap sleeves and hemmed them hastily by hand the night before the wedding.

photo by Diana C. Kim Photography

The trim was also pleated and sewn on by hand. Box pleats, because I love them.

In the end I think the shrug was about 70% handsewn, most of it taking place during my trip for the wedding. Because that’s kind of how I roll.

Sophia’s lovely jewelry was all made by our friend Mara!

photo by Diana C. Kim Photography

Best garter ever? Yes.

photo by Diana C. Kim Photography

All of the lovely pictures in this post are by Diana C. Kim Photography, used with her gracious permission.