Patterns from the Past sells recycled sewing patterns from the turn of the (last) century to present day. If you like the look of vintage clothing but the second-hand shops aren’t fulfilling your needs, now you can make your own.
I love retro style (well, the 70’s we could have done without), and it’s fun to browse these patterns and see what the “look” of each decade was.
This amusing little time-waster allows you to select various wording options to generate your own “original” gothic poetry. I love the author’s tongue-in-cheek treatment of the horrible, soul-crushing despair of it all.
Around, all around, the shadows gather.
My dread grows as the dagger of your words falls against my naked soul.
It crushes me, and darkly my
to the wicked earth that is my prison.
In a frenzy I call your name
while oblivion laughs cruelly.
Now alone, my cascade of tears falls upon darkened eyes.
For the digitally-artsy amongst us, Photoshop Roadmap has compiled a neat gallery of 70 tutorials for creating spooky photo effects. Burns, scars, demons, zombies; there’s something here for everybody.
I suppose, since I blather on about quilting so much, that it might be nice to actually talk about how to do it for a change.
Quilting strikes many as too daunting a task to attempt; something that requires arcane knowledge and maybe a long apprenticeship. Nah. If you can sew two pieces of fabric together, you can quilt.
A quilt is just a fabric sandwich: A top layer of fabric (which is often made of pieces sewn together); a middle layer of batting; and a bottom layer of fabric. The three layers are held together by stitching. That’s it.
The stitching can be highly decorative–indeed, there are many gorgeous quilts where the top is just plain fabric and the stitching is the star–but it can also be nothing more than straight stitches used to tack the three layers together.
Patchwork is a good place to start: There are many easy patterns, you can play with loads of color combinations, and if you have a lot of scrap fabric left from other projects you might be able to use some of it.
I’m not going to go into great detail about calculating yardage, color combinations, or anything else; there are a zillion books and Websites out there that do it better than I ever could. All I want to do is try to wrap your head around the idea that making a quilt is totally within your grasp.
Neil Gaiman’s Hugo-award winning novella Coraline (beware, spoilers) is currently being made into an animated movie. Gaiman recently released some not-quite-final footage of the film. It looks suitably creepy.
I’ve mentioned Skull a Day previously, but briefly the artist’s intent is to create a skull out of a different material every day for a year. I love this one; he got a commercial latch hook rug kit of a puppy and used the yarn colors to make this.
He’s been kind enough to include a pattern grid, so if you like to latch hook (or do anything else that uses a grid, like cross stitch), you can make a fluffy skull to cuddle.
Instructables user steampunk_rocker made a hanging mobile for her little niece out of felt bats. This looks like a cute, easy project to liven up (so to speak) a child’s room. I like that each of her bats has a bell hanging from its rear; who could ever be put off by Jingle Bats?
The Grand Guignol was a Parisian theater founded in 1867 whose staple was macabre “horror plays.” It was immensely influential on the art of horror performance and special effects, and the term “Grand Guignol” has come to mean any dramatic entertainment that features over-the-top horror and violence.
Thrillpeddlers is a contemporary San Francisco theater group that’s translating oroginal Grand Guignol plays and bringing them back to the stage, and they’ve put together a clearinghouse of information about the theater. The site features some wonderful vintage posters; it’d be nice if someone sold reproductions of these.
A man stood upon a railroad bridge in northern Alabama, looking down into the swift water twenty feet below. The man’s hands were behind his back, the wrists bound with a cord. A rope closely encircled his neck. It was attached to a stout cross-timber above his head and the slack fell to the level of his knees.
Defective Yeti put together a nice collection of classic, creepy short stories, just in case you feel like your productivity needs to take a hit.
Not included on his list due to length, but a must-read as far as I’m concerned, is The Turn of the Screw.
Heather “Danger” Hard of the AntiCraft knitted this adorable baby hat, and has provided full instructions. I like that you can optionally include a red hourglass or brown fiddle if you want your baby’s hat to be something really toxic.