Thursday, August 27, 2015

Make Plans For San Diego Maker Faire

Two applications... so far. We have been a very busy Make Club... just browse our archives to see everything we've been doing, from hosting a backyard mini make faire to making a Viking tent, and loads of crafting, sewing, wood working, tinkering, playing, forging... it goes on and on! We'd love to bring our drawing automaton, Da Vinci, to the Maker Faire in San Diego, as well as the project we call Giant Robotic Tentacle. I would love for all of our Make Club participants to join us at the Faire, to share projects. Hopefully our applications are accepted, and we find ourselves a sizable space for setting up. We know how things work in the Bay Area... but SD is new to us. If we can't get passes for all of our club participants, we strongly urge you to get yourselves tickets, because Maker Faires are great events, not to be missed! I'll keep you posted on our progress and plans, and please wish us luck with those applications!

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

CNC Router Sign Making

Frankenrouter is a success, thanks to Geoff and William. We have all been eagerly awaiting this day, and the prospect of all that can be done with a personally designed, manufactured, constructed and programmed CNC router, and now you too can see Frank N. Router at work. William made the 3D model using 3ds Max, Mudbox, and Meshmixer, all Autodesk software. Once the digital 3-d image was fine tuned, Geoff and William used MasterCam to generate G Code for the router... but, maybe you would just like to see the movie!

Besides designing the sign, and getting all the details figured out in the software, William painted the finished carving. The details, the shading... it looks fantastic. And finally, he put this video together. I am marveling at all of this, and he's already working on his next project(s).

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Make Your Own Upcyled Style Statement

A few times a year we show up at a favorite resale shop for their Huge Frocking Sale... it's an event, a happening, a great place to build a stylin' wardrobe, and save cash. This time we went with the idea of fulfilling some back-to-school needs, hoping to score a vest, and travel bag. But I don't suggest visiting resale shops with too specific an agenda, because you never know what might capture your heart and imagination. No vest for Max... bummer. No travel bag for Alex... we have a back-up plan. But we did score a sewing lesson and design opportunity for Maria!

Meet Marty, of Marty-O custom clothing. She had her booth and sewing table all set up, under the big top, in the midst of the Huge Frocking Sale, and she generously invited Maria to join her for an introduction to machine sewing and to also design an up-cycled utility apron... buttons, lace, trim, belt loops, ruffles, and fringe all artfully added to an old mini-skirt... this is DIY fashion meets function!

Maria embroiders, so she has some sewing experience, but she was thrilled to step up to the next level, because Marty is such a patient and enthusiastic instructor. With gentle guidance, and sound advice, Maria added the red ruffle to the camo print-mini skirt. I was especially happy to pick up the tip about raising the back of the sewing foot, when approaching a thick section of fabric... such an obvious, yet ingenious, trick for making a smooth transition between fabric weights!

What is upcycling? Before you toss it, before you donate it, or recycle it... see if you can't reuse pieces to make something new, better, unique, your own. See Marty's website for examples, and I keep thinking of the fabulous upcycling we love from Calamity Kim!

I've been collecting vintage handkerchiefs to make a scarf, or to appliqué onto a quilt, but this light and lacy jacket, refashioned with a coat tail of hankies, has me rethinking my options... Upcycling makes old things new, and fashion fun. A sewing machine makes it all faster, and easier, a Serger would be great, too, but there is plenty that can done with just a needle pulling thread. Maria asked if we could try this at home, please?? I think the wool skirt we found at the sale, maybe the gauze dress from Marty's dollar bin, will make excellent foundations for some upcycled creations.

Haute couture, anyone? Marty and her client were designing a fabulous and frou frou tutu tulle coat... a little ensemble for the Playa.

When you upcycle you save resources, enjoy creativity, express your own style... so put a bird on it, add a gear, turn it upside down, give it a new life and make it your own.