Sunday, June 28, 2009

Being Crafty with Patches

So before I became the crafter I am today, I used to rely on patches to show off my creative side...
remember in high school when back packs would be COVERED in patches...buttons, drawings, etc.

I found these cool sparrow patches at repro depot. Now a few years ago, Repro Depot was THE place for me to buy my fun fabric...I don't know WHAT has happened since, because now they are ridiculously overpriced (on average, $7 a HALF YARD!!). Well, back in their hey day, I got these cool patches. I decided to liven up a regular dickies style black shirt. Now it is super cool.

I love China Flats. I love my China Flats SO much that I have completely worn them out and my awesome friend Nancie, went to Chico and bought me new ones. I decided to spice them up a bit. I got these cool star patches from the local fabric store and went to town!

I got a pair of sword patches from a shop in San Clemente (actually, it is that shop with the over priced Virgin Mary Dress...the patches were completely reasonably priced...weird)...maybe I'll convince her to get me another pair and I'll dress them up with swords!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

A little bit of blasphemy, a little bit of AWESOME!

So remember my past post, the one that showed my virgin mary dress and the dress that inspired that dress...well let me tell you what! My Lady of Guadalupe is an inspiration to me almost everyday!
I decided that since I already made some Virgin Mary Potholders (with her in the kitchen, it won't be your last supper)...I should try something new, like a purse!

I used the same pleated purse pattern, but made it about 1/3 the size (the way the fabric is set up, the blue clouded panel I was planning on highlighting was only that big). It's approximately 7inches x 8inches.

Want to know the kicker? Somehow, in a moment of brilliance, I decided to make a rosary to go around the outside! Now I did my research with the big beads being Our Fathers and the small beads being Hail Marys and 5 sets of ten and yada yada yada...I, being Taoist, if anything, felt that I should leave the Rosary making to the professionals...besides, I didn't need mine that long. I still did hand assemble the beads with eye pins and everything!

So I don't know if I'm going to list it on etsy yet...a lot of Cherry Pepsi and a lot of Family Guy got me through the beading process...not to mention the fabric is kind of I really going to find someone who appreciates religious kitsch enough to spend maybe $30 on such a tiny purse? Any thoughts? Any takers?

Oh yeah, I added a tiny little cross to add a special touch.

Did I mention that each of the Virgin Mary panels are super pimp! This one has flowers and clouds and gold threads. I particularly love the black panel and the red panel. Perhaps I'll make purses out of those too...matching rosaries...pretty awesome if you ask me!

Oh yeah! The Virgin is Green! Kind of. I upcycled (if you appreciate pop crafty slang). The cloudy fabric on the inside was an old pajama top that I haven't worn in YEARS!!! I don't even know why I still have them...but I'm sure glad I do because they look great as the lining! Not to mention that sexy lady in a martini glass...I bet the Virgin just loves her inside of her.


Monday, June 22, 2009

A productive night for Swingin Martinis Designs

So as I waited to pick my darling (I use the term loosely sometimes) husband up from work, I decided to visit a local bead shop nearby. Need to Bead is the shop I found and I must say the people were pretty nice and very helpful (not to mention there was a doggy sleeping in the corner, did I mention I like dogs?).
In my recent attempt to make kick ass necklaces, I have found an absence of chains available for some of the super cool charms I have found. So that was my main purpose in visiting Need to Bead. They indeed had the chains I was looking for. Their prices seemed fair enough, although I haven't done my research, so who knows what I'm smoking. I bought 17 inches of sterling silver plated brass for just over two bucks. It is the perfect host for the super pimp sparrow pendant I found.

See, pretty pimp, right!? Yeah. It'll be up on etsy in a day or so...sad for Shannonegans', but great for Swingin Martinis Designs patrons.

Now, when I saw the pewter martini glass, I just had to buy one! (or two!). Perhaps I'll even try to carry these regularly, you know, as like a namesake staple... Finding beads to match the pewter was a little tricky, but the nice sales associate was able to find these African Trade beads and they worked out great!

The same woman was even able to solve my split ring problem (that I was tearing my nails apart trying to split them to get charms through - long story short, I'm an ar-tard who had never heard of soldering them closed).

So if you are near Orchard and Emerald/Fairview in Beautiful Boise, stop by Need to Bead for all your beading needs.

And if you cared to know, this is a necklace I finished (after
giving up last night from my hour long fight with before mentioned soldered split ring). A ship steering wheel and an ancient inspired coin on a silver seed beaded necklace.
A pirate walks into a bar and he has a steering wheel in his pants. The bartender says "hey, pirate, you know yous gots a steering wheel in your pants?" And the pirate says "ARRR! And it's driving me nuts!"

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Take off your pants and jacket

Ok, so I am NOT a fan of Blink-182, but still think it's a funny play on words to introduce you all to the wonderful world of pants!

Some of you may or may not have know that until the gaucho pant became popular, Miss Swingin Martinis Designs wore skirts and only skirts for three years straight. Until about a month ago, Miss Swingin Martinis Designs didn't even own a pair of jeans. Tragic, I think not.

Miss Nancie Nan had me wear a pair of her brown gaucho

pants for an episode of The Crippling Thoughts of Victor Bonesteel, and I fell in love...they were like skirts, but better because I wouldn't flash people during certain sitting activities and playing around. Well, as soon as I discovered I liked them, they were out of style and impossible to find in store. Sad times.

Then I learned how to sew, and I started making my own!

Here's what I came up with:

These pants were made using New Look's pattern #6596. The have an elastic waistband and are pretty roomy and
comfy. I made them out of some red striped suiting material I found in Idaho.

These pants are made using New Look's pattern #6733. They have a side zipper closure and a box pleat on each leg. I made them out of a heathered-ish grey suiting material I got in Oregon.

These pants are made using Butterick Fast and Easy Pattern #B4807. They are a pull on pant with a fold over waist. I made these out of white sweatshirt material I bought at Walmart in Chico for $2/yard. I'd like to find some light weight
stretchy knit and try a pair out of's proving hard to find.

I made these super awesome wrap pants from a pattern I found online. Since I am wider around than I am tall, I got the measurements wrong and ended up making mine a little wonky, but they still wrap and cover what they need to cover. I want to try again and make a shorter pair. I used a teal suiting material that I bought months ago to make a skirt out of, and never got around to it. I found this chick's blog and was SO excited to make them, I used the only fabric I had enough of!
They look like they pull weird in the back, but really, they are comfortable and roomy. I highly suggest NOT wearing them on a windy day, nor around people skiddish of the exposed upper leg. I may or may not have kneeled down to get something at work and showed off a lot more of my leg than the new guy wanted to see...hell, people in Chico PAID to see it, he should consider himself lucky :)

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Hair Today, Gone Tomorrow

Yes, I think I am HILARIOUS! My kick ass friend, Elizabeth, is a SUPER amazing photographer and I just got some shots back from her of my work. She ROCKS! Here are some of the pictures she took for the Hair Accessories I have for sale!

So if you are interested in my super awesome Hair Accessories, email me, or check out my almost completely updated Etsy site (!!!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Sad times at Swingin Martinis Designs

Well, after a really great trip to Yellowstone and a really awful drive back and a couple days detox, Swingin Martinis Designs is ready to be creative again. One of my really awesome friends took some pimp pictures of some stuff I've made. I should get those in the mail and have them up for review in the next couple of days! The items will be posted on Etsy soon after that!
Thanks for everyone's patience!

I love you, June.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Fun Project from this weekend

A friend from work placed an order this weekend. After I made the wrong item with the wrong fabric, and after I realized that I didn't thread my bobbin properly - I finally turned them out! They turned out really cool!

I like to trade!

So I tried out the Etsy Custom page and was so thrilled when I got my first order! Analog Buttons ordered the large "Jennifer Purse" (it's called the Jennifer Purse because my friend Jennifer is the one who came up with it). She communicated what she wanted well and instead of paying me cash, we traded! She makes really awesome buttons/pins with your logo or any other custom design on there. My original design wasn't that great in button format, so she drew something up for was amazing! I didn't chose her image, but the fact that she took the time to make me one was amazing! Once I did finally make my decision, she had my buttons made and in the mail in one day! And I got them two days later! Quick! I love my new buttons! And her prices are super reasonable! Even if we hadn't made the trade, I probably would have ordered from her! For 100 1inch buttons, it's only $20! Think of all the times you've paid a buck or even 50cents for a button with you favorite band logo!
So if you're ever in the market for buttons, go to her! She'll even share videos of her cat with you! She's also on MySpace!
Rock on Analog Buttons, rock on!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

The Weekend of a thousand purses!

One of my super awesome friends Melissa (read her blog too) sent the link to my blog and store to some of her friends. (um, can I take a moment and say that she, and the girls at work, have been instrumental in me getting off of my a** and getting my sewing going! Thank you!)Ok, Melissa sent those links to some of her friends and one of them, within 12 freakin' hours, placed an order! Rock on! I was all sorts of motivated! Another gal from work also placed an order, which just fueled the fire! So I went to the fabric store, bought some really cool fabric and was on my way!This weekend I made five purses, two make up bags, and cut of the pieces for three brush rolls! I love being productive! Here are some pictures of what I got accomplished!

This purse is made from an upholstery weight cotton and has a beautiful gold crepe back satin lining. All of these purses have a small snap closure and an 18-20 inch strap. The color of this red is really deep and pretty.

This is my "Keilana" purse! I was walking around the clearance rack at the fabric store, seeing if I could find any good deals (fyi, I found TONS). I found this purple spotted leather. I thought "who on EARTH like purple leather?!" Then I thought "I know some glam rock awesome punk chick's who would ROCK this purse, even if I don't have the balls to..."

See, even the lining screams "Glam Rock!"

This purse is much more classic with a black damask print and adorable pink button deatil.

I LOVE the lining. I have a zebra print purse planned with either this color on the inside, or pale green or teal blue. I can't make up my mind!

This is one of the purses that I made for Melissa's friend. The hubby said that it is one of the best ones that I've ever made. I don't know if you can tell, but I'm really into the two button detail this weekend. Good thing I bought all those buttons online!

Same lining color - I didn't realize that all the outter fabrics I chose had similar tones...must be a good one!

This is the second purse I made for Melissa's friend. I bought this fabric for an apron and really thought the print was too big for a purse this size, but it turned out great! I love both of them!

And did you notice how super awesome these pictures turned out? "Where did you take them at, Miss Shannonegans?" "Oh, just on my bed!" Super sweet.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Where the "selling" idea began

The Bottle Cap Hair clips!

I went to Camp Hollywood one year in L.A. and there was a vendor there who took old soda bottle caps and made them into hair clips. I bought two pair for a ridiculous amount of money.

I started looking at bottle caps in a crafty way after that. Now, I, being a cheap date and a girly drinker, saw all sorts of fun bottle caps! These Jack Daniels caps, Sierra Nevada, Smirnoff (which are fun because they come in a handful of colors), and Anchor Steam Brewing had the best bottle caps with little anchors on them!

Thank you Phil and the Chico Cabaret for having a bar! I have hundreds of bottle caps and I didn't have to drink basically anything to get all my awesome bottle caps! I think if Phil knew I made money off of his garbage, he might want a cut :) (Love ya phil!)
I have the bartenders save bottle caps for me for about a year (thank you Brother Jeff, Nancie, Allison). I glue them to hair clips that I got at the craft store and Bam! You have the coolest accessory EVER!
I made them for all sorts of friends for all sorts of reasons, and I tried selling them to a super cool store in Chico (that ended up being over rated now) but they wouldn't take them. If they only knew how awesome Swingin Martinis Designs is NOW! Their loss.
I have to send a couple pair to my photographer to get better picture, but these are still available for purchase, just email me for more details.

Expanding my craft part Eins

So I decided that a long time ago that I wanted to be proficient in many areas. I took woods shop and ceramics classes, and even within my theatrical night job I have worn the hats of Sound Board Operator, Light Board Operator, Spot light, singer, dancer, actor, choreographer, costumer, stage manager, assistant director, props, dramaturg, set designer, isher, box office attendant, and patron. Each job had it's pros and cons.

Well, I want the same kind of "exposure" in the craft world. I was pretty good at the "makeshift crafting." Nancie will attest that I never made or fixed anything in the "right" way - even thought I knew how to mend items, all of my clothes were held together by safety pins.

Hot glue has also been my weapon of choice for years. I still resort to it and the hubby has to veto it's use for the appropriate solution 9 times out of 10.

I have by no means mastered sewing yet - so I'm sure glad that my "make shift" crafting skills are there for the more "hassle-some" projects.

But there is a whole craft world out there that I don't even know about!

So in this series of posts, I'd like to explore the other crafts I have worked on, and others that I would like to try.

My Mother-on-law taught me to crochet on Super Bowl Sunday 2009. I'm still only able to make scarves and blankets and other square/rectangular goods.
Next in crocheting, I would like to leaen to make flowers. I found some patterns, but I have no idea how to read them - anyone want to lend their knowledge?!
And what about knitting? What's the difference besides the stick you use? Is one better/easier than the other!?
This is the scarf I started making - see - the long way it looks awesome, but when you look at it normally, you can tell that I need to be counting my loops...oops! Perhaps it gives it character!

Random Project

These are super awesome and super easy! It's just a matter of putting in the dang ol' snaps - which can be a pain, but I've progessed in my snap installation recently, so maybe they aren't so bad anymore!
I just got some sparkly vinyl at the fabric store and cut them to the desired length, added snaps and called it done. I think the fabric store by our house has red, black, silver, and blue.
Email me for more details about how you can get yourself a pair of these super pimp cuffs!

I love my husband

Dresses and Such to Cover my booty Part Dos

This blog is all about the other dresses I have made from New Look Pattern 6457.

Ok, first off, don't make fun of me and my attempt to be 1. a pin up girl and 2. America's Next Top Model. Some people's dreams and body shapes don't match (like how I'm too short to be a Rockette).

For this dress I used view A (the white one, second from the bottom) and Alexander Henry's "tattoo" fabric. I ended up having to lengthen the bodice pieces to make me not look so squatty, and I pinched the front to create a gathered "sweetheart" affect.

I also used view A for this dress and Robert Kaufman's "Our Lady of Guadalupe" panel cotton fabric. I made this pattern as instructed and added cute little satin bows where the straps meet the bodice front.

Oh yeah, I also cut the pieces vertically instead of horizontally like the dress below, because I really didn't want to cut through the Virgin Mary's head, nor have her head right on my chest!

I found this same dress in a ship in San Clemente, Calif last April when visiting a friend (hey, it was actually Stephanie's wedding, which is why I made the first dress I ever made...funny how we've come full circle). Anyway, the exact same dress style, little bow detail, fabric, etc, was EIGHTY DOLLARS!!! Forget that! How much did I pay for the pattern? A dollar! How much did I pay for the two yards of fabric to make this dress? $16. I don't know where they got freakin' $80 ass dollars for this dress. Which is why I made it myself!
(Um, does anyone else find it amusing that I am wearing the first dress I made, because we were shopping before we headed out to Stephanie's wedding!)

First, please excuse the horrible picture. A fatty thunderstorm last night prevented me from taking a super awesome picture of my super awesome dress.

Ok. I ALSO used view A for this dress with a black cotton/polyester blend. The top leopard accent is velboa. I even added a bit of lace, gathered, at the bottom. Like the Tattoo dress, I lengthened the bodice pieces. Note to self when lengthening the bodice pieces on this pattern - widen at the bottom too - I made this dress SO SMALL around the waist the first time b/c I'm not as skinny as the pattern would like to think I am. Weird.

Lastly, I made this dress using view C - but like I did with the first dress I made, I changed it from a Halter to two straps.

I first made the dress and lined it in black - it looked AWFUL! But I had enough seersucker and enough patience to re do it and line it in that.
The black around the neck is just black satin ribbon. I made a belt out of the same ribbon (which I was a moron and forgot to put on when we were taking these pictures) but it really does make all the difference in the world...

I was inspired by this dress (please excuse the photo, it was taken from my camera phone is that same store in San Clemente, which obviously has way cool stuff, but I don't need to pay $60 for this dress).
Remember, like I could let you forget, that this is the pattern I used to make my first dress ever. Isn't it amazing how I can get 5 completely different dresses from ONE pattern! Best $1 I spent ever!