Tuesday, December 25, 2007


I made my mom a silly origami thing for Christmas:

The instructions are here if anyone else wants to try. Also, this thread on Craftster.

Monday, November 19, 2007

I knit, really

I'm making Knitty's Calorimetry currently. The purple and orange will be rather exciting with my current hair color (pictures of that when I finish). The yarn was purchased long ago and sort of destined to be a present for my mother, but I didn't have enough of it and so it's been languishing in my stash for a couple of years.

The colors are rather more vibrant than that in real life, but I'm never home during daylight to take better pictures. Plus my camera is rather elderly.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Domestic Arts

Here's some proof that I've not been up to nothing. I have of course been up to grad school, but also the making of exciting things. First of all, my bed is finally finished. It's been in several stages of "almost finished" for a while, but since I added hooks for pajamas and things a couple nights ago the only thing I'd change about it is the squeaking. And I'm not exactly sure how to fix that.

This picture was taken standing in my closet. In the normal course of things, my room is not large enough to get that far away from the bed. As you can see, all of the mess in my room has now been relegated to the space under the bed. It's not nearly so noticeable when there's not a camera flash illuminated the space under there, but I'll probably add a curtain eventually anyway.

I'm particularly proud of the built-in bookcase:

It doesn't hold anything like all of my books, but it's a start.

Eventually I'd like to put the bed up on Instructables, but I'm not sure I took enough pictures along the way. So I might have to wait to do that until the next time the mattress comes off.

More recently, I've been baking lots of bread. My roommates think this is awesome. Here's the most recent four:

In saran wrap: strawberry bread. Almost gone: banana bread. The big whitish loaf: rosemary bread. In the bowl: cheese bread rising for later. There was also my attempt at Irish soda bread, which is gone now. But it had currants and caraway and was delicious. I do however really, really need to learn that I should not begin baking after midnight. Especially not on a weeknight.

When I get pictures back I'll post about the Thing 1 and Thing 2 costumes a friend and I made and wore for Halloween.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Halloween festivities

I carved a pumpkin. Look:

(My roommate seems to take a lot of silly pictures of me.)

Here's a better shot of all of the pumpkins:

I also carved a very small green squash, but I haven't got a picture of that yet.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Dyeing my hair is like a craft...

It is all bluey green now, and will remain so for a bit.

Someday I will update this more, really I promise. The bed is in limbo as I've lent my drill to a friend who wants to use it to make his own bed. I must go steal it back from him.

Also I've started grad school and this is, not surprisingly, time-consuming. I should update the subtitle on here.

Sunday, September 30, 2007


bed parts, originally uploaded by alicen.

I'm working on constructing a loft bed from (mostly) 2x4s to provide some extra storage in my room. Here are some of the boards for it. I've now cut all of them, and just need to start bolting them together.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

green dress

green dress, originally uploaded by alicen.

A dress I made a while back. From a pattern, though not in the recommended fabric and I omitted the zipper. The fabric has small green vine things on it though, which I rather like.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Anime does things to my head

Look! It's a project!

So a while back Dash and I watched Ninja Scroll, a movie with a plot that might as well have been designed by 13-year-old boys. This was the result:

(The shirt, not the utilikilt.)

Here's another:

The whole thing is decent quality cotton. It's pretty thin (not like something you'd wear to tae kwan do, which is usually very heavy, almost canvas). It took 3 yards with no wasted fabric. I did french seams inside to make it more durable, and 1/4 inch hems everywhere that didn't have a facing.

The black facings are black cotton with medium-heavy weight interfacing inside them to keep them from getting all scrunched up when washed. They're all just long straight strips, folded over and sewn down. Nothing fancy.

It closes with hooks and eyes, like so:

The original plan was to add frogs along the black bit at the top, but I couldn't find nice ones and ran out of time to make them. I just moved to Seattle, so I'm now in a different state and not going to continue working on the shirt. I did promise to make another one for another friend, though, so maybe I can refine the design with that.

In other news, I've been living out of a suitcase for nearly a month and am really sick of it. I move into a more permanent place on Friday, thank god. Pretty much all crafting has to be postponed until then.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007


I have things I should post. I need to take pictures.

The following pictures were (obviously) taken with the built in camera on my computer.

At any given time, I have a notebook that I carry everywhere and use to record everything from class notes to to do lists to sketches and random writings. I have a big pile of past ones, with all sorts of stuff in them.

The one I had before this was big, about 12" x 9". It turned out this was really too large. The thing was heavy, and too big for anything smaller than the bag I use when I take my computer places. So I didn't use it as much as I wanted.

My solution was to cut the pages from the old notebook (not show) and use them to make this thing. It was done quickly, and all but the initial sewing was done in a bar while hanging out with friends, so it's not terribly precise. But it's very functional. The cover is some leather I had lying around. The clasp is a magnetic clasp of the sort used on purses. The stitching that holds the signatures together (there are 6) goes through the cover and is exposed on the spine. The strips of leather add stability and can also be used to clip pens etc. onto.

Monday, June 4, 2007

Summertime, and the living is easy

I am still here. I am working full-time-ish, but with very flexible hours so doesn't end up being terribly stressful. Right now I'm at the beginning of the project that'll occupy me for most of the summer. It'll be hard to get motivated until I'm actually implementing something or other.

In crafting/creative news, I have been doing things. Not LOTS of things, but things. I've been sewing a fair amount, including a rather nice dress of green cotton (from a pattern, for instant gratification) and some boxers of entertainingly patterned fabrics for the boyfriend person. I'm also attempting to teach Whitney how to sew from a pattern, and then potentially others. My clothes have generally been boring me, so I'm hoping to make a bunch of things I enjoy wearing over the next few weeks.

The ridiculous striped raglan sweater continues, slowly. It isn't really weather that makes me want to get up close and friendly with wool very often. Gardening has been limited to throwing a bunch of wildflower seeds into the back yard in an attempt to push out the (gigantic) dandelions.

Perhaps I will update this with pictures in a bit. I just dug out my camera, but I probably ought to actually finish working for the day before I go outside to take pictures of things.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Broken Computer

I graduated, I moved out of my apartment, I have a job. I'm finally unpacked and have started making things again. But my computer is in the shop, so no pictures until it returns.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Holy shit guys

Holy shit I finished my thesis, originally uploaded by alicen.

I totally finished my thesis.

Monday, April 16, 2007

This is what I look like all the time now

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Not Dead Yet

My thesis is due in 13 days, so no so much with the posting lately. I do have things to show though - a stripey skirt that hasn't been hemmed, and the beginnings of a raglan sweater.

I think this summer I am going to teach myself card weaving and maybe build an inkle loom. I'm subletting a much better sewing machine along with my room for the summer, so I ought to be able to finish up a number of projects as well.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Very old thing

Once a day is way too much. I'll be happy with posting twice a week or so.

Here's a book I made in high school:



My schedule for the immediate future looks something like this:

March 24 - math dept. picnic with faculty.

Until April 27 - write my thesis

April 27-29 Renn Fayre

May 14 - graduate


Saturday, March 17, 2007

composition sketch

composition sketch, originally uploaded by alicen.

A composition sketch for the painting I'm working on currently.

Friday, March 16, 2007


For lack of other content, here are pictures of some plants I haven't managed to kill yet.

An incredibly happy philodendron (I think):

Some plants that don't get enough light because there's no space by the windows:

I have no idea why this fern isn't dead:

Thursday, March 8, 2007


No pictures for a couple days, as I am traveling. Whee!

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

corset mockup

corset mockup, originally uploaded by alicen.

A mockup of an underbust corset that I made a while ago, probably before Christmas. The tutorial was in this thread. There are a number of things I'd do differently if I was making the real thing, like line it and adjust the fit. It laces in front and back, but I'd probably cut it down to just one set of lacing. All of these things I will do, of course, in my copious free time.

(Corsets are particularly unsuitable for my war against my stash, requiring a fair amount of sewing time for less than a yard of fabric. Also my machine sucks and does not like sewing around cable ties I mean boning. So such projects are basically on hold until I've moved and procured a sewing machine that sucks less.)

Off to the East later this week to look at a grad school. And then back West to look at another. At least after that I'll probably know where I'm going to be next year.

Monday, March 5, 2007

A human heart

human heart, originally uploaded by alicen.

...made of play dough. Made at work on Thursday night.

Saturday, March 3, 2007

cleaning outfit

cleaning outfit, originally uploaded by alicen.

This is actually what I look like when I clean my kitchen.

(Computer was in the shop. Hence no posts.)

Monday, February 26, 2007

Painting with more progress on it

02-24-07_1152, originally uploaded by alicen.

This is the painting about halfway done. It's actually finished, and I think the composition is really boring. We had a pretty mind-numbing critique tonight. A final picture will probably show up soonish.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Very old thing

12-21-06_1139, originally uploaded by alicen.

Handwarmers knit for dash over christmas break. (I finally pulled a bunch of pictures off of my phone.)

Friday, February 23, 2007

I've been sick

brutus diorama, originally uploaded by alicen.

Here's the actual still life I'm painting (sort of). I don't have a newer picture of the painting yet, unfortunately. This is the paint I'm supposed to be echoing the composition from.

Monday, February 19, 2007

Finished my dress

First the bodice:

Then the whole front:

The skirt's a lot fuller than it looks in that shot, as you can see from the back:

Quick, easy. Utterly unwearable until it warms up some. I do hope the ruffley bit at the hem calms down a bit once it's been hung/washed.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

another thing in progress

dress bodice, originally uploaded by alicen.

Here's the beginnings of the bodice for a dress that I started sewing last night. I'm sort of on a crusade to use up as much of my fabric stash as possible before I move again.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Older thing

Here are some wristwarmers I made from a lovely silk/alpaca blend that Laura kindly got me as a present many moons ago. They are boringly knit, but seriously comfy and useful.

And another shot.

I'm not sure either really gets the color right.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Beginnings of a painting

brutus reconstruction in progress, originally uploaded by alicen.

Expect more pictures of this. It's my assignment for the next 3ish weeks. I'll explain the concept at some point. Not now.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007


Getting into grad school (at the University of Washington in Computer Science) has made me think about the fact that I'm not going to be here forever. I may actually be in a position where I'm the one who is dressed strangely again. So I sort of want to clothe myself from now 'til graduation in nothing but reconstructed t-shirts and skirts hacked together from old bedsheets. With big stompy boots, violently striped socks, and electric blue tights when it's cold.

Here is a poorly photographed concept sketch:

It would be comfy.

At least I remembered to post.

composition study, originally uploaded by alicen.

Actually it's De Chirico. And now I go to bed.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007


bread, originally uploaded by alicen.

The bread was really fantastic.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Lazy lately

Picasso color study, originally uploaded by alicen.

Forgot to post some last week. Lame. Here's my copy of some Picasso painting in oils pastels. Like almost everything else I've posted here, this was for class.

I'm baking bread now. Maybe pictures of that later.

Saturday, February 10, 2007


Nietzsche, originally uploaded by alicen.

Not too much art going on lately - I've been feeling under the weather. So here is a drawing of Nietzsche and the amazing moustache his sister cultivated after he went insane from syphilis. Pretty much everyone we've read this semester so far died of syphilis. Things apparently started getting more interesting around 1870, since this was not apparent in the course (Modern European Humanities) last semester.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

The boot is the wrong color

still life, originally uploaded by alicen.

Painting from last week.

PMS sucks. It makes it harder to deal with the incontravertable fact that boys are dumb.

(Really, people are dumb, but the people that have been dumb in my general direction of late are all boys. So.)

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

The Red Wheelbarrow

The Red Wheelbarrow, originally uploaded by alicen.

The Red Wheelbarrow
William Carlos Williams

so much depends

a red wheel

glazed with rain

beside the white

In my final year of high school I took a creative writing class. I signed up for it primarily because I needed an extra semester of English to graduate that year. I didn't end up writing much I'm terribly attached to, but the things we read for the class include some of my favorite poems and stories. I've been carrying around a stack of photocopies for about four years now, so I decided to put them together into a book. It's just an old yard sale book with photocopies glued or taped in, but it's something I think I'll be glad to have for a long time.