I’m on a brown bagging kick right now, trying to save some pennies on my daily lunch habit. But, on Sunday night, when I gathered my cobb salad with bread and vinaigrette on the side, I realized that a traditional brown paper lunch bag was not going to cut it.
SO GEEKED! Just found this set of eight pain, never-used, natural cotton place mats and napkins. $11 for the set! Whoever invented the garage sale should be awarded the Nobel Peace Prize.
So have I mentioned I’m an NPR-lovin’ nerd? Yeah, I know you’re not surprised.
A few weeks ago, I posted to Marketplace Money’s facebook page about the belt tightening Jake and I did during his unemployment and I was awarded their Piggy Award where they send this awesome blue piggybank to people who make good financial decisions.
Karen Walrond (@Chookooloonks) was sweet enough to tweet me pictures of her and her daughter making the Swap-O-Rama-Rama 10-Minute purse together!
When I sat next to Karen Walrond of Chookooloonks.com at the BlogHer Handmade/Creative Connection lunch today I had no idea it would lead to a crafty showdown in the hotel lobby!
After I posted last night I got inspired to make something, anything, from all the amazing swag given out by the BlogHer Handmade/Creative Connection conference.
I chose “Spaceships and Robots” as the theme for my daughter’s nursery because I wanted to create a special environment that would inspire her to reach for the stars and “boldly go where no man has gone before,” so to speak.
I’m looking for some ideas for practical projects for wearable and interactive textiles. LilyPad is a company that, in combination with Sparkfun Electronics, has developed affordable round-edged circuit components meant to be used in clothing and textiles. They are even washable!!
(Photo from sternlab.org – one of the best sources for Lilypad projects I’ve found)
If you are interested in trying out this combo of high and low tech crafting, there is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to get a jump start. Sparkfun Electronics is having a Free Day on Jan. 7, 2010! They are offering each household the opportunity to purchase $100 of free materials – just pay shipping! How amazing is that!
Using conductive thread and small, lightweight batteries, you can combine their different products to create amazing interactive pieces of clothing!
This is simple stuff that can be combined for awesome results! They have sensors that can detect changes in:
- Movement and vibrations (accelerometer)
You can complete your circuit using:
- Push button
- Magnetic Snap
They interface with components that can give you:
The best idea I’ve seen online so far is a jacket that lets bikers signal their turns with buttons on their sleeves:
You’ve got to check out this video – posted on Instructables.com and created by Lilypad founder Leah Buechley:
(Electronic Material components for this project on Sparkfun.com are $113 + $9 shipping to Chicago – but only $22 total if you get in on Free Day!)
Other cool projects I’ve found that use these types of electronics:
An adorable frog and firefly embroidery from Becky Stern:
A GORGEOUS Wind-sensitive electronic dress:
I just know there are more awesome ways to utilize this technology in a way that will solve problems that I’m currently having (the conductive finger iPhone gloves are BRILLIANT).
I’ve got an idea for a purse that alerts you when your phone is vibrating inspired by a project in the book Fashioning Technology that you will hopefully see realized in a future blog post.
This stuff is only just becoming affordable so I know there are new uses that haven’t been thought of yet. Please let me know if you can think of any projects and I’ll attempt to prototype them!
UPDATE 11/25/09: You can see the video here: http://abclocal.go.com/wls/video?id=7137645
Tune in at 10 p.m. CST to Chicago’s ABC7 to see a story by Leah Hope about Swap-O-Rama-Rama with an interview with yours truly!
For the shoot, we took cloths from Rebekah’s closet (which the film crew had watched her “weed” out that morning) and created a new out fit by “frogging” or unraveling an old sweater, and altering and silkscreening an old t-shirt.
A big thanks to Cathey, Maddie, Jessica and Maureen from the Waldorf School, Betsy from Foxglove Accessories and Rebekah (both return volunteers from the 2008 SORR Chicago), Jake, a.k.a. Fearless Husband, and the always craft-tastic Kevin Reed without whom, I never would have been able to pull this off!
Tell your friends – We are still looking for volunteers and fashion designers for the 2010 SORR Chicago! Click here to join our mailing list.
March 20-21, 2010
Chicago Waldorf School
Swap-O-Rama-Rama is a clothing swap and series of do-it-yourself workshops in which a community explores creative reuse through the recycling of used clothing. Bring in all those abandoned clothes from the back of your closet, swap them for something new and then get creative! At Swap-O-Rama-Rama you get unlimited access to Singer sewing machines, Yudu silk screens, and all the supplies and coaching you’ll need to make an amazing garment, some new accessories, or anything you can dream up. All while supporting some very worthy non-profits!
I know it’s been a while since I’ve written – my crafting energies were focused on our Halloween costumes! They came out pretty awesomely hilarious!
Here are the characters we were going as:
These are Codex and Vork, characters from one of our favorite web series, The Guild.
I think we came pretty darn close with our versions of the costumes!
My costume was made from a shirt from Forever 21 and a corset from an old costume that I recovered with the red fabric and trimmed the whole thing in gold. For Jake’s costume – It’s mostly made from cardboard and shiny diner-booth-type green vinyl, trimmed with yellow tape. We had a blast making the costumes and weapons!