The instructions are a bit on the minimal side (for instance, the crafter mentions glazing the petals but doesn’t specify with what), but they’re a great jumping-off point for something similar. The little clay skulls look like they’d be pretty easy to model, but if you’re completely hopeless with sculpting you could use novelty buttons or some other lightweight plastic skull. You’d probably want to choose a skull shape that’s reasonably flat and roundish rather than oval, to better mimic the central disk of the flower.
Paint, seal, glue a circle of petals to the back, and you’ve got a flower with a cute little skull peering out at you. These would be great on a barrette or worn as a brooch. If you’re so inclined, you could also make little teensy ones and affix them to the heads of thumbtacks to make some extremely arresting pushpins.
It’s really nothing more than a pen with a twig crosspiece wrapped in twine. The tutorial calls for minimal decorations such as bits of cloth and beads, but there’s no reason you couldn’t get much more elaborate with your embellishments (keeping in mind that you don’t want the top of the pen to be so heavy that it’s impossible to write with). This Squiddoo lens has a nice overview of making and decorating a similar twig-and-twine doll, and this site goes into a little more detail about the symbolism of various pin colors.
These would be fun party favors or other giveaways, since they’re fast and cheap to assemble and are certainly unique.
The Bloggess, who routinely makes me laugh until I snort in a highly unladylike manner, recently talked about a red dress that she coveted.
I want, just once, to wear a bright red, strapless ball gown with no apologies. I want to be shocking, and vivid and wear a dress as intensely amazing as the person I so want to be. And the more I thought about it the more I realized how often we deny ourselves that red dress and all the other capricious, ridiculous, overindulgent and silly things that we desperately want but never let ourselves have because they are simply “not sensible”. Things like flying lessons, and ballet shoes, and breaking into spontaneous song, and building a train set, and crawling onto the roof just to see the stars better. Things like cartwheels and learning how to box and painting encouraging words on your body to remind yourself that you’re worth it.
And I am worth it.
And last week…?
…I got my red dress.
The whole post is worth a read, not only for the sentiment but also for more shots of the dress (modeled in a graveyard, which is a nice touch). It’s a custom-made job by Etsy seller rubypearl, and although it’s expensive (as custom ballgowns sort of tend to be), it’s certainly striking. It’d be a fantastic gown for an alternative wedding, or just a very special party.
The seller also has a blog, I Will Stab You in the Face, which includes a few photos of her past work. She seems to specialize in hand-embroidered detailing, and she turns out some lovely stuff.
Matt Mets used paper cutouts on both the inside and outside of a lampshade to create a cute “monster after dark” effect.
This kind of fun with silhouettes is ripe for all kinds of customization: A crescent moon with bats that appear at night, a castle haunted by a nocturnal ghost, and lots of other now-you-see-them-now-you-don’t options. A reverse effect might also be possible, where an innocuous-looking doorway could have spooky eyes glowing from within. (The only caveat might be that the cutouts for the eyes may still be visible when the light is off.)
You could do something a little more permanent using stickers or even paint, but I kind of like the idea of temporary paper cutouts that can be changed as the whim suits you.
Nancy Minsky, the author of Denim Revolution, did a tutorial for making a Venetian carnival mask out of a scrap of denim.
I’m not entirely sold on using denim as the base material (nor of using the suggested faux-fur mask lining; I think the fur would get in your eyes), but the general method is a great jumping-off point for creating a mask of your own design. The pattern is easy, and the tutorial gives some good tips for planning the arrangement of decorations. I also like the ribbon-encased back band, which looks much nicer than naked elastic.
Two or three of these done in different styles would be a pretty wall decoration. If you aren’t planning to wear them, you could also use stiff cardboard instead of fabric and simply glue the embellishments in place.
Brittni of paper n stitch used a vintage book to hold the rings at her wedding, and has posted a tutorial for creating a similar book. I like her suggestion of choosing a book that’s meaningful to the couple (I think goth couples would get extra points for using a copy of Dracula), although I quail at the idea of using a true vintage book.*
Fortunately, thrift stores usually have loads of cheap hardback books that aren’t quite as painful to deface. Depending upon the amount of effort you want to invest (one advantage of this project is that it’s quick), you could paint the exterior of the book to match your wedding colors or even cover it with matching fabric.
You could also decorate the page that’s revealed when the book is open to the little “ring box:” Decoupage pictures of the couple or other relevant photos, glue a printout of a medieval manuscript page over the text, or simply paint the page a solid color. There are lots of ways to personalize this kind of project, and the book could even be displayed as a memento after the ceremony is over.
It’s an interesting change from the traditional pillow, and it’s nice that the basic project is so simple whilst still leaving lots of room for embellishment.
*I have a fairly reverential attitude toward books, and the idea of defacing one makes me quiver a little. Shadaughter can tell you about the high school English teacher she had who thought marginalia was just wonderful and encouraged the students to write in their books…and who granted her special dispensation to use sticky notes instead because I was threatening to drop by the school and chat about the subject. Don’t f$#&k with my books, is what I’m saying.