Friday, September 30, 2011

Another Me

Some early images working towards my thesis. 

An idea and fantasy of a different me.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Teapot Pinhole Photos

So, I happened to take a regular teapot, fix it up a bit, and turn it into a camera!  A pinhole camera in fact.  These are some of my images taken with my teapot pinhole camera.  Just like Penelope exclaimed in The Brothers Bloom, "You can turn anything into a pinhole camera!"

As you see, the image on the left is actually the paper negative that I had exposed in the teapot.  After processing that paper negative in the darkroom, I scanned it in from a flatbed scanner.  I then took the image into Photoshop, flipped it horizontally, and inverted it.  The image on the right is the end result, otherwise known as the positive.

I like that the images are "egg" shaped, which is caused by the light distortion coming down into the spout.  The sharp detail is soft enough to look more like a photo-realistic drawing.  And since my spout was pointing up, I had a completely different vantage point to photograph.

I'm hoping to create a tutorial on how to make your own pinhole camera soon.  It's fun, easy, and the results are always interesting.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Fort Funston

Sunday was awesome.  Weather in SF finally turned around and now, even us in the foggy Sunset neighborhood, were kickin back, and enjoying the sunshine.  Thom and I made an impromptu hike at Fort Funston.  Who knew that gorgeous views of the city were just a mile away from my apartment?  Although, it's easy to take any view around SF for granted.  It's either a bay view, ocean view, mountain view or gorgeous house view, everywhere!

While we were at the fort, we meandered off the beaten path and took in the coastal views.  I kept warning Thom of the edge of the cliff, because the drop off was quite severe and the coast here is notorious for its crumbling.  While we were walking around, we actually came across a small group of people near the edge of the cliffs watching some firemen and policemen working frantically, pulling ropes and yelling over walkies.  Turns out, a lady and her dog had actually fallen off the cliff!  Yikes. 

Without trying to end on such a downer note, the rescue crew were able to save her and her dog from below.  They were okay.  I'll definitely be keeping this in mind, the next time I go for a hike though.  STAY AWAY FROM THE CRUMBLY AND SANDY EDGE!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

T-Shirt Quilt: Before the cut

Today I got a chance to work on the t-shirt quilt that I'm making for a friend and I picked up where I left off.  (Which was cutting out all the blocks from each t-shirt found here.)  To move forward, I began to cut out the strips that would create a border around each t-shirt block.

Before I could cut out the size strips that I needed, I had to figure out a few important things about the fabric.  Things like, which is the right and wrong side?  How can you tell when the fabric is a solid color?  What is a selvageWhat is the difference between a crosswise and lengthwise grain?

Hopefully this post today will shed some light on these important questions.

To begin with, I had to iron out any wrinkles in the pre-washed fabric.  Ironing is the most crucial step to any sewing process.  It makes all the difference between put-together, for a clean and professional look, to thrown-together, for a sloppy and lacking look.

Next, I needed to figure out the right and wrong side of the fabric.  And since the fabric happened to be a solid color, determining proved difficult.  Always with printed fabric, it's easy to see a "right" or brighter side and a "wrong" or dull, flat looking side.  And with some solid colored fabric, you can determine a "brighter" looking side and a "duller" looking side.  In this case, it was still to hard to tell the difference.

Another way to tell the difference between the right and wrong side of the fabric, is to locate the selvage and find the little factory made pinholes.  One side of the fabric will be smooth, without any notice of the pinholes.  The other side will prominently show the pinholes running alongside the selvage.  This side is your right side.

And how can you tell where exactly the selvage is?  Or what it even is?  The selvage is simply the self-finished edges of the fabric.  (Or, the edge of the fabric that wasn't cut from the bolt.)

Once I determined the right side of the fabric and the selvage.  I placed the fabric on a flat surface with the right side up.  Next, I folded the fabric in half, selvage to selvage.

When folding the fabric in half, you might find that the cut edges do not meet up, even though the selvage will.  In this case, (which is always the case), you'll need to straighten the cut edge before measuring and cutting your strips.

Begin by placing a self-healing mat underneath your fabric.  (My mat happens to be 18"x24", made by Fiskars, found here.)  Place a clear ruler on top of your fabric, matching a straight line directly on the fold of the fabric.

Without disturbing your clear ruler, place another straight edge/ruler against the outer edge.

Move away the clear ruler, hold down your straight edge and using a rotary cutter, carefully cut away the outer strip of uneven fabric.

Here you can see the outer strip that I cut away and the other side of that strip.  See how uneven the edge was?

Once you have your straight edge, you're ready to measure and cut out the appropriate size strips you'll need in order to create your border around each t-shirt block.

Strips cut perpendicular to the selvage are your crosswise strips and any strips cut parallel to the selvage are your lengthwise strips.  Crosswise strips stretch more so than the lengthwise strips and are therefore not as stable.  Choosing a cut is based on the preference of the quilter and type of fabric that she's working with.

In my case, I need long strips between each row of t-shirt blocks, so I will be cutting my strips on the lengthwise grain for less distortion.

I hope some of this quilting jargon has cleared some mysteries in the process and quilting in general.  Once I get all the strips cut out, I'll be piecing and sewing (favorite part!).  More on that next weekend!

UPDATE:  Check out the full progress of this quilt!

Before this post:
New month, new project

After this post:

T-Shirt Quilt:  Part III
T-Shirt Quilt:  Part IV and updates
T-Shirt Quilt:  Part V
Quilting and Binding:  Part VI
Beginning, Ending, Starting, Losing

Friday, September 16, 2011

Two in the same

Yesterday, I caved and finally jumped on the Tumblr bandwagon.  I created the Tumblr, Two in the same, as an "inspiration" Tumblr.  I find that I always want to post a lot of singular images, videos and ideas and Tumblr allows me to do that in a nice and simple way. 

So no, I won't be giving up blogging.  Or this site.  Or move my blog over to Tumblr.  I only created another extension of my ideas and inspirations on a different site.  Two in the same.

I hope you all enjoy and find your own inspiration along the way.

To view my new Tumblr, Two in the same, click here.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Old camera, new images

When I was in New York, I ended up buying a 1913 50th Anniversary Kodak Brownie Camera for $15. The exterior of the camera is a bit beat up but the inner shutter and reel work fine.  The best part about the camera is that it takes 120 film, rather than Kodak's 620 film that they started in the '30s.  With that, I shot some color Fuji film and experimented with double exposures.  Here are some of those images.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

New month, new project

I know that it's already September 6th, but I still consider it the beginning of a brand new month.  And with that, I've begun a new project.  A friend of mine had asked if I could make her a quilt out of all her running shirts.  I accepted.  She sent me a box.  There were nearly forty shirts!  I'm still very impressed by that number.  She still is running.

With her great accomplishments, I felt that I could help bring together all of hers in a nice arranged grid-like quilt.  I purchased some cheap plexiglass at a Home Depot and had Thom cut it down with a razor blade to my specific dimensions of 10 5/8 by 8 5/8.  This is the easiest and cheapest way that I've found for creating templates of any needed size.  Some Home Depot Stores even have their own cutting station, rather than going home and attempting to use a razor blade.  (I always fail at that.)  That way you get nice even and super straight edges everytime.

With my new template, I set out to marking and cutting out all the pieces for the quilt.  Some of the designs were bigger than my template, but I feel confident that once the pieces are all laid out, the individual pieces will blend into one big piece.

More progress coming soon!

UPDATE:  Read more of this quilt's progress.

T-Shirt Quilt:  Part II, Before the Cut
 T-Shirt Quilt:  Part III
T-Shirt Quilt:  Part IV and updates
T-Shirt Quilt:  Part V
Quilting and Binding:  Part VI
Beginning, Ending, Starting, Losing

Friday, September 2, 2011

Cream Blouse Refashion

Another refashion because, HEY!  I just can't get enough.  :)

This time around I transformed a woman's large cream blouse made of some questionable material.  (The feel is similar to a taffeta? Plus, it's sturdy, unlike some polyester that is so thin and fragile, it snags on EVERYTHING!)  I kept the placket and pockets original and even reincorporated the collar...though, it is a bit awkward looking since it's short of the placket.

The back yoke is from a different material/left over blouse that I had to use because I ran out of the original fabric.  This actually worked out well and I really like the two tones complimenting each other.

The pattern is from an old McCall's "Made-For-You" series, dated in 1986.  (Pattern #2418)  Eeek!  To think that this pattern came out one year before I was even born!  But I really love the look and feel.

Refashioning has been something of a new love for me.  I like that I can take unwearable items of clothing, sew them up a bit and turn them into a brand new piece.  It's a "quick thrill" since it's so fast to sew one up.  And on top of that, it's cheaper than buying fabric at a store!  Some pieces at the Salvation Army or Goodwill will sell for a couple of dollars or less!

You just can't beat that.  :-D

Late summer

Some late summer inspirations on the brain...

Via Boy En Girl

Via The Sweetest Occasion

Via The Sweetest Occasion
Via Ditte Isager
Via Divine Timing
Via From Me To You

Thursday, September 1, 2011

It's September.


I can't believe that it is September first today.

What happened to the time?  What happened to this summer?  Better yet, where did August go?!

If you're like me, you're still thinking it's August 7th or something silly like that.  I can't seem to get over how fast time flies.

Anyway, I finally made it back to San Francisco after a full day of traveling from New York.  (With a small side step to Florida along the way.)  Oh, and a small side note.  When I packed for New York, I had brought two cameras.  After returning back to San Francisco, I some how had five!  I bought a Holga, 1930 Kodak Brownie and Canon Snappy.  Can't wait to show some pics soon.

Most of these photos in this post were taken since being home early Wednesday morning.  I did a lot of catching up with my favorite furry man, Connor.  I baked some delicious muffins and got a great meal together today.

The muffin recipe is based from Lara Ferroni's baked donut recipe found here.  I don't own a donut baking pan, so I opted out and made muffins instead.  I also was out of paper liners and just cut up some left over parchment paper to line the muffin tin.

The other photograph is a meal of open-cut ravioli with poached egg and wilted greens.  That amazing and delicious recipe can be found here, via The Kitchn.  The flavors of the bitter greens with the zesty brown lemon sauce and creamy egg blended well together.  I also like that the "ravioli" happened to be lasagna noodles cut up in thirds.  I never seem to finish off a whole box of lasagna noodles, and this was a perfect way to incorporate them.

Lastly, I was excited to hear that the crafty and creative people at Design *Sponge put together their first-ever summer edition newspaper.  I found out that they were distributing them out in Brooklyn and missed my opportunity while in New York two weeks ago.  Instead, I asked Thom to stop by the General Store and pick me up a copy to read when I got back to San Fran.  It is a great edition, full of interesting DIY projects and features some awesome people in San Francisco who just happen to live in my neighborhood!

I can't wait for this weekend to start (since it's Labor Day Weekend) and am so happy that tomorrow is Friday!  I hope that everyone has a great tomorrow and long weekend ahead.  :)