Big in Japan

As a well known master criminal, and international woman of mystery, you may assume I get lots of subversive and odd mail, NOT TRUE! On most days my post box is as quiet as the grave, except for the occasional past due notice or latest edition of Crime Spree Magazine .

And while some writers might shy away from the Cathy Bates “I’m your biggest fan” person, I say “you’re my kind of crazy, let’s get a little nutty off some Modge Podge fumes and go yarn bombing later”.

So you can imagine my excitement when I got this delightful note from code name “Hana”…

“Hi, Demeanor.
I’m Hana, from Tokyo JAPAN!
I looked at your report by the “Craftzine.com blog”.

I got the chills!
It totally blew me away!
Your “Criminal crafts” are sooooo coooool and intense!

I can really relete to them.

I get a your AWESOME BOOK! Definitely!
You are fucking Awesome!

Please make me want to be friends.

Keep it Brutal !!!
<333

From Hana.”

Clearly, she is my new BFF forever. And I was so stoked, I nominated and approved her to be “Head of the Tokyo Criminal Crafts Fan Club” If you live within the city limits or outlying areas of Chiba, Kawasaki, Saitama or Yokohama, you’ll be reporting directly to Hana, she’s in charge. What Hana will make of this position is entirely up to her, I’d like to think she’ll be staying up late making Voodoo doll pincushions and baking cakes with files inside, but really it’s at her devious discretion, I only inspire subversive behavior, never cross it.

To commemorate Hana’s new position, I’ve made her a very special fan club badge, which I hope she uses all the time, to gain entry into places she shouldn’t.  Similar honorariums are going out to my global craft syndicate with a special shout out going to our Madison WI branch for their nefarious crafting efforts.

You too could be inducted into the Criminal Crafts fan club and get a special badge, it’s pretty easy, no blood oaths or wacking off an enemy needed. Just send me one photo of you, with a project from the book and a sassy fan letter I can post on this blog and blammo, you’re in the club.  Sounds like fun, right- OK, with my blessing, go make some mayhem!

 

Spy Glasses for Grown-ups A Tutorial

It was an absolute delight to demo the spy glasses construction on KATU morning news.  I’ve re-posted the directions if you’d like to make a pair of your own.  For more deviously fun projects you can pick up a copy of Criminal Crafts here, or come on out to Powells Cedar Hills Crossing on May 16th where I’ll be doing a reading and signings OR join me and my buddies from SCRAP at Beulahland on the 17th for flaming cocktails at SCRAP Noir, where there will be crafty kits for sale and other fun give-aways.

On to the tutorial… The kids accuse me of having eyes in the back of my head and you know what, they’re right.  I’ve crafted up some stylish glasses with custom fit wing mirrors so I can look ahead of me and see who’s checking out my ample assets in the back.  These are super quick and easy to make, you’ll need a glue gun and cut-able plastic mirror sheets which you can pick up at the craft store or on-line.

The most important part of this project is finding the right glasses to modify.  First, you want something hip and fun, no sense leaving the house looking like a meff.  Look for glasses with lenses and frames which are as flat as possible.  If you try to put your mirror piece up against a curved lens you’re gonna get distorted images like at the circus.  Keep in mind that the bigger the frame the more space you’ll have for a mirror and a large field of vision behind you, also with big glasses you look like Edith Head, style points all around!

Ok time to get to work. Gather up your supplies, you’re going to want: Mirror paper, scrap paper, ruler, scissors, pencil, grease pencil and dark lens sun glasses.  The dark lenses hide the mirrors so make sure you get something a black as possible.  Avoid the mirrored ones too, they make you look like a cop and the idea here is to be in disguise not give away the gag.

Step One:  Gently lay the glasses face down onto scrap paper and trace around front frame.

Measure your right frame area into thirds.  Mark a vertical line 1/3 away from outer edge of frame.  Repeat steps for left side.

Cut template silhouette, discarding center piece.

Set scrap template on back of glasses and adjust to fit on frame, depending on frame style and fit, you may need to trim around hinge area.

Trace template onto back of plastic mirror sheet and cut out.

Set mirror pieces on frame and temporarily tape in place.

Try on glasses you should be able to see in front clearly and behind yourself as well, adjust mirror  as needed.  Mark placement on frame with grease pencil or masking tape and REMOVE mirrors from the glasses.

Layer hot glue onto glasses frame and let cool.  DON’T PUT MIRROR ON YET.  When the glue is cool set mirror in place and check for fit.  Can you see behind yourself?  If yes add small layer of hot glue and set mirror into place.  If no either break off glue and try again or build up glue until adjusted for rear viewing.

Mommy Dearest

Since the publication of Criminal Crafts, I’ve been in a bit of hot water with my mom. This is nothing new.  The current bee in her very antique, threadbare bonnet is over how I portrayed her in my book.

Now she’s calling at 3 a.m. ranting about “character defamation”  and hinting that my exaggerations are the basis for a very expensive slander lawsuit and her lawyer’s retainer is paid up in full.  So, before this whole ugly incident can go into litigation, I’d like to say, in a very public forum.  My mother has never been arrested for a crime, actually served time or been convicted of any crime that I am aware of.

However, I still have my suspicions, and until evidence is presented otherwise I’m going to assume the only reason mom isn’t doing time, she’s that good.  Good at getting away with it.

Her fanatical cleaning binges are really all about wiping down prints and the whole gardening kick only thinly veils something much darker and deeper which she’s burying in the back yard.

Since she’s got to leave all that stolen loot to someone, I’m staying on her good side and making her something extra special for Mother’s Day, a decoy book with hidden compartment for her hooch. This is a pretty well known and fabulous craft, something which I’ve detailed in the book.  If you live in or near Portland Oregon, you can come make one with me.  I’ll be leading a series of workshops at a number of Multnomah County libraries and all the supplies and instruction are free.  Best of all the 1st class is on Mother’s Day, so you can bring your mom too, if she’s anything like mine, making a cagey cubby to secret her stash is the perfect way to spend the afternoon, beats doing time.

 

 

Put Your Parole Officer on Speed Dial, it’s Time for Criminal Crafting

This past week has been a whirlwind tour of fun and mayhem with two fiendishly lovely kick off parties for the Criminal Crafts book at Bridge City Comics and the Someday Lounge.  I’m new to this whole game, but I’m beginning to catch on to some of the rules of author signings and being interviewed by the press.

#1 When someone approaches the table don’t offer them the choice between signing in ink or blood, you might freak them out- just use a sharpie, don’t be a smart ass.

#2 Books featuring flaming cocktails and shiv cozies are actually well loved by children too and if an adult offers to buy it for their kid, it’s between the two of them, you won’t actually be around for the fallout.  Since my kids had a whole lot to do with the making of the book and my daughter has a great idea for the perfect bank job, I’m in no position to judge.

#3 Don’t break the reporter.  I had a lovely interview with a cool guy two weeks ago and we made some flaming drinks for his story.  During the process of filming we managed to: accidentally pour a drink on the owner of the bar we were shooting in, get locked out of said bar, the reporter fractured his elbow scaling a chain link fence attempting to return us to civilization and was ALMOST ARRESTED BY TRI-MET POLICE FOR IMPERSONATING AN OFFICER, and we set some stuff on fire.  I am known to exaggerate on this blog a wee bit and sometimes outright lie, but this one is totally and completely true, all of it.  My agent has asked me to only do interviews by phone from here on out, wise plan.

I am super, super excited for the next big signing event at Murder by the Book which I’ll be doing with the amazingly talented craft author Susan Beal.  I’m a huge fan of her books especially  World of Geekcraft and Button it Up which have cool projects for when I’m feeling less maudlin.  There will be snacks, Susan is bringing along a couple of her most mysterious projects to show off- A Coraline inspired sewing box and Tribbles!  I’ll have a couple projects from Criminal Crafts including invisible ink and a ransom note kit, because we’re all about depraved writing.  Susan was kind enough to do a write up of the event here….

It is an absolute treat to be hanging out at Murder by the Book, everyone in the shop is delightful and I always walk out with my arms loaded down with a stack of thrillers, local ner-do-wells and classic who-done-its.  One things I love about the shop is their excellent selection of mysteries for kids, since my posse is destine for either incarceration or a future in law enforcement I figure it’s never too early to have them bone up on the fundamentals of the criminal world and espionage.  With that in mind I picked up three fantastic books last week:

The Man from U.N.C.L.E. was one of the best things that ever happened in spy TV, though the Prisoner will always be 1st in my heart.  U.N.C.L.E. did get the best licensed toys, and spin-off books, I was stoked to find this at the store- not quite sure what a “gentle saboteur” really is, but I’m about to find out.  The illustrations are dope and I love the writing style  “The truth struck her like a tremendous gong.  She was not a soldier but a mercenary, a paid professional.  She was not part of an army but a member of a world organization of professional criminals, covering their crimes by a pretense of political activity, earning huge sums of money as the lackeys, without conscience, of governments that desired unrest and turmoil”  Booyah! That is some good shit!

 Vanishing Acts by Phillip Margolin and Ami Margolin Rome- A mystery story with Jr. High heroine, Madison Kincaid set in the ever sunny Portland Oregon.  I love reading local authors telling stories about the city I live in and Phillip’s books never disappoint.  This is the first project he’s written with his daughter Ami and though it’s for a kid audience, I’ll be reading it 1st because I’m already hooked.  I got the chance to meet Phillip and Ami at a signing last summer and they are both charming people with a quick wit, looking forward to snuggling down with this one!

 Freddy the Detective, the 1st book in the Freddy the Pig series.  Don’t let the title woo you into thinking this is just a book for kids, Freddy is the shiz, love this little guy a whole lot- Super dry humor with the writer, Walter R. Brooks as a contributing author to the New Yorker and Atlantic.  Though the stories were written between the late 1920’s up to late 50’s, the political commentary remains astute and timeless.  Freddy is a dapper hero with a supporting cast of barnyard friends who manage to over-come their animal instincts to demand labor reforms, start their own bank and covert espionage agency and eventually diplomatic relations with the people of Mars.  Since meeting Freddy last month, the kids and I have become obsessed and he’s our hands down favorite read aloud.

Aside from having my head in a book this week, I plan on doing some long overdue crafting.  I’ll be spending a part of Thursday and Friday (10-2 ish) hanging out at Backspace Cafe as the “Crafter in Residence”.  I’ll be making some projects from the book and a few other things on my to-do list.  Drop in and say “hi” bring something of yours to work on or stump me with craft questions or master schemes.  This is an informal meet-up so tweet me if you’re heading over @criminalcrafts I’ll be in the back probably drinking one of the tantalizingly delicious Upright Brewing’s Criminal Crafts Barley Bocks.

 

Take it to the Bridge- And, Thanks!

 

The Criminal Crafts world tour is off to a ridiculously fabulous start and I’m super stoked to be doing the official launch signing at Bridge City Comics this Friday night at 6pm.  Since it’s on the suitably unlucky Friday the 13th, I’ll be doing a super special give away- If you come in with a written hard luck story, you’ll be eligible for a prize, something awesome and devious from my Criminal Crafts shop!  Since a couple of my pals are real Sad Sacks the competition for this will be fierce but I’ll probably do a drawing rather than go for saddest story since many of my friends are also big liars and will do anything to win a contest.

Along with the book signing- there will be snacks- I’ve busted out a couple batches of my G-men cookies from the book, who’ve all tragically run afoul of hard times themselves, we’ll also be sampling the Upright Brewing Criminal Crafts Barley Bock which is so freakin delicious that I’ve decided to write another book so we can get more beer.

Best of all Bridge City is an all ages venue so the juvenile delinquents in your house can come too, if they’ve checked in with their parole officer 1st.  There’s a great collection of comics for kids and I plan on picking up our back issues of Tiny Titans and the new Asterix too!

While I’m name dropping, wanted to send a special thanks to Karen at the Someday Lounge, she put together a fantastic catering spread for our cocktail party last Tuesday night, the stuffed mushrooms were especially divine, looking forward to more special events there!  And as hoped, Kick Ass Oregon history delivered, we got a fab review of some of Oregon’s more notorious and ingenious criminal moments as well as sage advice- Tip: don’t pick up hitchhikers on the road outside the women’s prison, words to live by!

Bring Out Your Easter Zombie Crafts

Technically this isn’t a criminal craft, but zombies so frequently walk (lurch) that fine line that crooks and other miscreants get lumped into that featuring them on my blog doesn’t feel like cheating.  And while pairing zombies with a fuzzy pastel holiday might not be for everyone, at my house we find a little sprinkling of mutant monsters adds a bit of joie de vivre to almost any occasion,  like a dash of Tobasco sauce for the psyche. One of my favorite on-line stores, Think Geek featured zombie bunnies but they sold out before I could get my order in.  This gave me the perfect excuse to make my own.  Since my tableaux featured bunnies in mid feed I bought a few that were already broken and the store gave me a discount.  Zombies=thrifty.

To make this craft you’ll need:

Store bought bunnies one larger than the others-

1 bag white chocolate chips

New, clean paint brush

Green and red and black gel or powdered food coloring (NOT liquid)

1 Cup powdered sugar

Red hots

Oreos

 
To make:

Set a small pot of water to simmer on the stove- put the chips into a metal or glass mixing bowl that this slightly larger than your pot and place on top.  What you are creating is a double boiler effect that will evenly melt your chocolate at a consistent low heat. Keep an eye on your chips, once they begin to melt you’ll want to grab a hot pad to hold your bowl and whisk gently with your other hand- be ready to pull this off the heat if it starts happening to quickly.  Add your green food coloring-  This step is really important – DO NOT USE A LIQUID FOOD DYE, it will seize up your chocolate and you’ll end up with a big green lump.

Once your color is mixed in, take a paint brush and coat the exterior of your bunny, if the chocolate gets too cool and hard you can always put it back over the simmering water. Let chocolate bunny cool completely. Break a couple bunnies in half or large pieces and dip the edges into the green chocolate

Next you’ll be mixing up your icing- add water a few drops at a time to your powdered sugar until you have a slightly runny consistency, not as stiff as tooth paste instead, comparable to maple syrup.  Add red food coloring to the icing.  For this layer you’ll be going for more of a splatter effect.  Dip your brush in the warm icing and flick it across the bunny.

 

I used red hots for the zombie eyes, you can dip these in either the chocolate or the icing to stick them to the bunnies.  From here on you’ll be setting the scene- Toss your cookies into the food processor and blend at high speed or if you’re old fashioned you can put them into a bag and break them up with a rolling pin.  Dip the base of your big bunny into the warm chocolate and stick him on a serving platter.  The extra chocolate layer will keep him from toppling over.

Spread the cookie mix on the serving platter and add bunny bits.  I went a bit overboard on this part- When I tried making this the 1st time I forgot about liquid dye in chocolate and my 1st batch was a lump.  Ever the inspired crafter, I took the rejects and shaped them into egg form, drizzled them with more chocolate and the red icing and added red hot eyes.

I’ve been collecting egg shells for cascarones and used some of these to nest the zombie eggs.  So here’s the absolute best part about this craft- I’ve still got a few days until Easter and if I sneak downstairs and start eating these bunnies before anyone actually sees them, no one will be the wiser- the more I eat, the more authentic it’s going to look. So brilliant.

A whole lot of badness going down

Holy smokes, the Criminal Crafts book launch is less two weeks away, how is this possible?  To say that I’m stoked to share fabulous projects with my friends, is the understatement of the year.  My partners in crime and I are lining up a number of unique and maniacal events each a special trip into the dark abyss of the craft world.  I’ve just added a handy event page on this blog along with a calendar which has more detailed info on all these crazy shenanigans…

First and foremost we’re going to celebrate with a 21+ event to toast with flaming cocktails, come Get Lit With Criminal Crafts at the Someday Lounge.  We’ll be getting our berserker freak on with featured drinks from the book- Atomic Cherry Bombs, Mug Shots and my favorite Flaming Amy which has a whole mess of rum and charred effigy of my nemesis flailing on top for a garnish.  The amazing Miss Karen from the Someday is whipping up some snacks for us, I’ve got a book excerpts to read and as a special treat, resident historian Doug Kenck Crispin of Kick Ass Oregon History will be giving us the lowdown on Portland’s criminal past.

Friday the 13th is the Official Criminal Crafts Book Launch and Signing at Bridge City Comics . While some folks might consider this date as a most auspicious harbinger of bad things to come, I think  it  compliments the malicious intent of the book and is the perfect time to get out and tempt fate.   I’ll be demonstrating a couple evil crafts from the book and giving out prizes for hard luck stories.  In order to compete,  you’ll need to bring along a written tale of bad luck, while these antidotes should be based in fact, I’m a big fan of embellishments, so if you’ve got to lie to win, I’m not going to hold it against you, we’re friends for a reason, right?  This is an all ages event, which is just the excuse my kiddos need to stock up on back issues of Tiny Titans– Aw man!

 

At the end of the month I’m doubly delighted to be doing a signing and event with the amazingly talented craft writer, Susan Beal at one of my favorite haunts, Murder By the Book.  The afternoon’s theme is Depraved Writing, which seems perfect for a mystery book store- we’ll have craft demonstrations of invisible ink and ransom note kits and Susan is bringing her Coraline Mystery Sewing Box from her super awesome book World of Geekcraft .

Though it’s not one of the conditions of my parole, I am trying to work off some of my extraordinarily large over-due  fees and have  signed up to do four workshops with the Multnomah County Library on how to How to Hide Things in a Book. I’ve been lucky enough to do a presentation with them in the past and they are lots of fun, free and you get to take something cool home with you in the end.   You’ll need to pre-register for these as space is limited.  Along with your hand made literary treasure chest, I’ll also have a reading list of some of my favorite books to accompany the craft… Shawshank Redemption of course being at the top.  Workshop dates are May 9th, 13th, 23rd and June 9th.

Also in May I’ll be doing a signing and craft demo at Powells Cedar Hills Crossing.  This is a great chance for my friends who live on the other side of the mountain to have some quality time at making mischief. They have a fantastic craft book section and true crime stories too so I’m guessing I’ll be leaving with an armload of books, a happy beast of burden!

And because I’m a party glutton, there’s a whole mess of other fun stuff coming up including a Noir Night, crafting after dark with SCRAP and sampling Upright Brewing’s Criminal Crafts beer around town.  More info on this fun coming soon.

 

 

Notes from the Underground

With the Criminal Crafts book launch just a few weeks away, I’ve been scheming plots to get a little publicity for the book, unfortunately plan A was so devious it would land me back in the clink, plan B involved public exposure and while that might have worked in my twenties, gravity and life on the lamb hasn’t been as kind to me as it could, plus it’s March and I’m not too keen about hanging from a window ledge, in a thong, in the freezing cold rain for seven hours, so, plan B- out.  Plan C involved me re-creating The Blues Brothers, shot for shot, but using monkeys.  This one had potential but teaching a chimp to drive a stick might be out of my skill set.  My bookie, Flavio said keep it simple, “stay with what you know, what do people like?”.  Having ruled out the naked thing, I moved onto the next obvious choice, people love beer, I love beer, and like my taste in rare gemstones and foraged paintings, I want only the best, this quest for perfection led me skulking over to Upright Brewing in Portland Oregon.

Tucked away in the basement of the historic Leftbank Building, Upright specializes in Belgian and French Farmhouse style beers with a special room set aside for open tank fermentation.

Beers there are being made using some of the old school techniques, and by old school, I’m talking 100 years ago or more like the Gose which adds salt to a wheat beer giving it a complex and crisp finish. The wine barrels spread around the brewery aren’t there for ambiance, but are instead storing up all sorts of goodness, specialty one-off beers some with peaches, others with berries and lots of great herbs like ginger, yarrow and calendula.

So, last Tuesday morning I “let myself into the place” and presented my plan to head brewer and owner “Alex” Ganum.  Here’s the weird thing I didn’t have to tie him up or hold a gun to his head or anything, he was totally into the idea of making Criminal Crafts inspired beer.  We talked a bit about styles, and he suggested it compliment the book, dark and noir-ish, a respectively high, alcohol

content, and slightly sweet, hmm, except for the last bit, I’d say he gets me.  The first game plan was to make a Dunkel Wizenbock which sounded pretty cool, I like the dark malty beers, brings back my old espionage days in Bavaria– but then “Alex” got inspired, a mad genius kind of thing and he went all grain on me, we’re talking many, many 50lb bags of barley, I’m thinking it might have been 700lbs, but I’ve been known to tell a tall tale. And it was four different kinds of barley including a Munich malt that had me singing Edelweiss all morning.   Then just to be a rebel, he didn’t add any wheat and only five lbs of hops in the last boil.  In the end “Alex” called it a Barley Bock which sounds pretty kick ass to me.

Now that the beer is happily percolating away in big yeasty bubbles in the fermentation room, destine for greatness, I’ve had a little time to reflect on my pal “Alex” and his seemingly altruistic behavior.  I’ve come to this conclusion, he isn’t what he seems.

My first guess was witness protection program, like my in-laws, but on further internet digging, I’ve decided it is much more complicated and sinister… In 1958 famed Argentinean F1 race car driver Juan Manuel Fangio was kidnapped at a Grand Prix race in Cuba by  a group of revolutionaries who were trying to gain publicity for their cause (I know how they feel).

Fangio was released pretty quickly, and remained life long friends with his captors.  What no one has been able to confirm is that Fangio sired identical triplet sons while being held captive.  These young men went on to driving careers of their own, though substantially less reputable,  one of the boys was a bag man for the mob, another ran speed boat mule runs off the coast of Miami and the third, Castro’s personal driver.

This was the family “Alex” was born into- rather than live a life of crime and fast cars he stowed away on a cargo boat to Europe that crashed on a stormy evening off the coast of Belgium.  A Trappist monk found his body washed up on the rocks and gave him shelter at a nearby abbey.  Over the silent years “Alex” learned the secrets of the order, grinding grains by hand using large rocks and harvesting late season hops by moonlight.   Eventually he found his way up to the Pacific Northwest surviving only on his quick wit and prodigal brewing skills.

I’m assuming, “Alex” knows I’m on to him and the whole Upright Brewing Criminal Crafts Barley Bock is just a ploy to keep me from flapping my gums.  Maybe I’ll keep the story to myself or, maybe not, if nothing else I know who to call when I need a get-away driver.  And I could be totally wrong about this whole back-story, though it would go a long way toward explaining the email fishing shakedown he tried to pull off a couple months back and the suspect plea for wired cash when he’d supposedly been mugged in Manila.

As for the beer, it gets kegged on Thursday and half of it is getting set aside with currants and aging barrels the rest will be at bars around Portland and at some of the Criminal Crafts book signing events including cocktail reception at the Someday Lounge on April 10th.

 

 

Monkey’s Uncle

Don’t know about the rest of you but I’ve got a wild weekend planned.  There are two days left to finish my diorama for the Kick Ass Oregon History Diorama contest , not even sure if it is fair for me to enter since I’m donating the prize, but I LOVE TO ENTER CRAFTY COMPETITIONS.  Also, I’m pretty sure my diorama is going to win because it is f-ing brilliant.

For those of you who didn’t grow up in Oregon, some quick back story- in 1970 an 8 ton sperm whale washed up  near Florence Oregon and died.  At the time the beaches were under the jurisdiction of the Oregon Highway Patrol who were responsible for cleaning up the mess.  Their obvious solution was to explode the whale with a half ton of TNT, as you might do with a wayward boulder that was blocking a country road.  Like other poorly thought through plans that involve well- intentioned men facing a freakishly large aberration of nature while in the possession of explosives- mistakes were made, big ones.  For my entry into the diorama competition I plan to capture that “Oh Shit” moment when workers, camera crews and innocent bystanders realize that this was a very bad idea.  The full story is a great read and maybe the funniest thing I’ve yet to see on Wikipedia especially since it digresses into other instances of whales exploding including the self combusting kinds.  KATU news covered the whole thing live and it really is worth five minutes of your day.

And while accurately depicting this with Star Wars action figures and Match Box cars should be the highlight of my weekend- I actually have bigger fish to fry… a few weeks back I sent in an application for a new reality TV competition show The Ultimate Craft Throwdown and OMG, OMG, OMG they like me!  They like me enough to see what else I can do, what I can do big, and get in a video by Monday.  With a little advance warning I could have recreated the whole whale exploding thing life size in felt, but I’ve got about 72 hours to come up with something interesting since most of my work is small and sinister.

Enter the 8′ sock monkey,  that’s the plan anyway.  I managed to score a couple dozen empty burlap coffee bags from Stumptown roasters and I’m stitching them together over a PVC frame my husband has built.

Some things I’m learning along the way.  Burlap doesn’t take spray paint well but latex house paint does the trick.  The perfect tool for cutting PVC isn’t a saw but a wire with plastic handles that looks just like a garrote from the old spy movies.  8′ is big, really big all things considered and now that I’ve built the monkey I’m not sure if I can actually get him out of my house.

Other plans this weekend?  Well, I’ve got a comic book class to teach this afternoon and putting the finishing touches on a dog jacket made from crochet beer cans. Living the dream baby, living the dream.

 

How to have yourself an Angry little Christmas

Well friends, it’s that time of year again, when my ice cold heart warms slightly and in an eggnog fueled stupor, I indulge in a little cute craft making.

What can I say.  I love Angry Birds.  I’ve never played it, but I love it.  I love that it is on my phone and I can give the children my phone and have twenty minutes of quiet mommy time. I love that it’s a game about throwing pigs, express bacon, what could be better?  I like that it is “angry” not, plain old “pig toss” or “fussy birds”  there is unabashed emotion here, cartoon characters not afraid to live out their inner id.  They are angry and I can totally identify with that.  If I wasn’t the “Criminal Crafter” I might be the “Angry Crafter”  because that suits me pretty well, except for right now, as I’m the “Deeply Amused and Pleased With Herself Crafter” as every time I look across the room and see my new wreath, I crack up, as the little beady eyes are glaring back at me.

The whole project was a bit of a whim.  I was at the thrift store last week and found a giant bag of small feathered birds for $3.  Seeing anything with a bag over it’s head makes me slightly uncomfortable, so I bought them just to let the poor fake beasties out of confinement.

I gave them the usual treatment- anything that makes it’s way into my house and isn’t a food object, eventually will get glue gunned to something else frequently being covered in glitter 1st.  I knew school glue and feathers probably wouldn’t be a good match so I went with a light coat of spray adhesive and liberally applied the red glitter.

 

 

My son acted as facial consultant, my prototype birds really weren’t angry enough.  I tried calling them names and mocking them, which didn’t really work, so I just drew thicker eyebrows on the next birds and that seemed to work out just fine.

I had a grape vine wreath in the basement which gussied up quick with a thick coat of spray paint and I made the pig eyes and ears out of card-stock.  I’ve a number of birds left over so we’ll be handing them off to special friends as Christmas gifts, which is perfect since I ate all the rum balls.

 

 

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