Friday, 26 May 2017

Niffler (inspired by the Harry Potter Series)

Who would have thought that such an adorable little creature could cause so much trouble! Well, I suppose anyone who has seen Fantastic Beasts would be able to tell you that, but still it's not something you believe until you have one running amok in your own home. Jewellery has gone missing, trinkets have been taken, even forks have disappeared. A Niffler on the loose is more dangerous then you might have expected, but who can stay mad at such a cute little critter.

This little Niffler looks just how I imagined, with his long snout, black coat and bottomless pouch. Only he was created without the fur as I used only materials I had on hand, in this case it included a pair of black pinstripe pants that were sacrificed to make this little guy. Along with this, a cream coloured fabric was used as well as black safety eyes to finish. He was totally hand-sewn from head to tail and his little feet were actually sewn to the legs sideways so they would be flat when the legs were attached to the body. (I hope that made sense.)

The pattern I used had a couple of issues, for one thing the pieces didn't exactly match up properly. The body front and body back pieces did not line up in the pattern when following the markings on the pattern pieces, the body back pattern piece seemed too tall maybe, so I ignored some of the markings on the pattern pieces to get the pieces to match. There were also no instructions for this pattern, however it really wasn't too hard to figure out how this was supposed to go together.

This little Niffler is fully poseable with jointed arms and legs. He was also made with a fully lined pouch to hide all his shiny treasures. It's amazing the things this little thief has managed to acquire, Hermione Granger's Time-Turner, Slytherin's Locket, the Philosopher's Stone, Porpentina 'Tina' Goldstein's locket necklace and somehow Sailor Moon's Star Locket to name a few. Although I'm sure if I held this little fella upside-down by the feet and tickled him much more would fall out of his pouch.

Who wouldn't want an adorable little Niffler for a pet, they are cute, furry and have a nose for treasure. Just be warned, when you invite a Niffler into your home you might soon find all your bright and shinies disappearing. This cute little critter was made from a FREE pattern that I found online with a simple google search. But for those who are interested, this pattern can be found HERE.

Friday, 19 May 2017

Harry Potter Wand Wallpapers set8 - The Elder Wand

These wallpapers are all about The Elder Wand, one of the fabled Deathly Hallows that was said to be created by Death himself. A wand with such a bloody and deadly history, said to be the most powerful wand ever made, that it had become known as the Wand of Destiny. There had been many owners of this most dangerous wand over the years, however for many it will always be remembered as the wand of Albus Dumbledore.

These wallpapers are all for The Elder Wand also known as the Wand of Destiny and most notably owned throughout the Harry Potter series by Albus Dumbledore. To download click on the picture of the wallpaper you want and "Save Image As" to save to your computer or alternatively you can select "Set As Desktop Background". Please let me know if your having any problems with these. Hope you enjoy.

View all the wallpapers in the Harry Potter Wand Wallpaper Collection HERE.

Friday, 12 May 2017

Cornish Pixies (inspired by the Harry Potter Series) Part 2

We've been on a pixie hunt, Henry (my ginger cat) and I. Hoping to find a pixie nest we were sorely disappointed in our quest, although we did happen across a new pixie friend. Maybe next time we will discover where these tricky little blue cuties hide themselves when they are not causing mischievous mayhem or playful pranks. Because despite their unruly reputation as terrible little troublemakers, I just love the idea of a home filled with a gang of gorgeously clever Cornish pixies.

In Part 1 of my introduction to these beautifully designed Cornish Pixies, I compared the original pattern (here seen on the left) to the updated pattern but printed at a reduced size, that is 85% (here seen on the right). The middle pixie in this photo is made from the updated pattern printed at its correct size. As you can see the updated pattern produces a taller pixie then the original pattern. The original pattern produces a 9 inch tall pixie, whereas the updated pattern produces a pixie that is 10 inches tall, leaving its reduced sized pattern to produce an 8 inch tall pixie as described in the Harry Potter series.

Side by side it is easier to highlight the similarities and differences between the two patterns. For the most part however these two patterns are much the same, the only real difference being the leg pattern pieces that have been modified in the updated pattern, as have the wings but more about that later. Both patterns provide the same options for either a single coloured or two tone coloured pixie so I have created one of each for comparison. Both I think are lovely, so I guess it comes down to personal taste, or the amount of fabric you have.

As mentioned above, these two pixies are from the same pattern, only one is made at a reduced size. They have the same size eyes, as 10mm safety eyes are the only size eyes I have. They also have the same size antennae as I found the antennae a little tricky to turn once sewn, the tutorial has a great tip for this. Because I thought the reduced size antennae would be too difficult for me to turn I used the standard pattern piece antennae, only I shortened the length a little for the reduced size pixie. I love the different looks you get with the different sizes and one could always experiment with different size eyes, or eye colours.

As a hand-sewer it does take longer to complete a project then it would if using a machine, but the longer I sit with a project the more proud I am of how it turns out, imperfections and all. I have found that you can hand-sew just about anything that can be done by machine, you just need a lot more time and the patience to go with it.
As with the Garden Gnomes, these pixies were sewn together in pretty much the same way. Ignoring the seam allowance I cut-out the pattern pieces following the sewing line then traced the pieces to the fabric. I then cut the fabric pieces to be sewn together. I used a double stand of thread and a running stitch to sew the pieces together, however you could use a backstitch or whatever other stitch you are comfortable with. It is just a mater of following along with the tutorial but stitching by hand in place of a machine.

The patterns for the wings included with these pixies are so beautiful. There are two different designs for these, the wings at the top of this picture are from the original pixie pattern, the middle wings are those from the updated pattern and the bottom wings are from the updated pattern but at a reduced size. I wont give-away how these were made as the tutorial has great instructions for making these but I will say they are cleverly designed to be removable using pinbacks. So you can have wingless Cornish Pixies like those described in the Harry Potter books or you can have the option with wings like those seen in the Harry Potter movies.

No wizarding home would be complete without its own pack of Cornish Pixies. They are additively fun to make and honestly you can never have too many Cornish Pixies fluttering about. I do recommend that for those not so experienced with sewing that you attempt one of the regular sized pixies before making a reduced sized one if a smaller one is desired, just to get used to the pattern as the reduced size pixie can be a little fiddly in places. As mentioned previously Tiffany Hinnen (aka. Mieljolie) designed these pixies and you can find her on her blog All Things Crafty, or purchase this pattern on her etsy store HERE.

Friday, 5 May 2017

Remembrall & Golden Snitch

These two items may not be at once recognisable to the average muggle, but they are common place items for many a witch or wizard. The first item is... um... I've forgotten what its called. But don't worry, I'm sure it will come back to me sooner or later. I definitely remember what this second item is called though, it's a Golden Snitch and it is super fast.

If you have ever seen a Quidditch match then you know all about this small speeding golden ball. For those of you less familiar with this wizarding sport, this is arguably the most important ball in the game. Your team catches this ball and they score an extra one hundred and fifty points, which in most cases also means your team wins the game as the game is over once this Snitch is caught.

Speaking of teams, my Quidditch team is the Woollongong Warriors. If they were to play in the Quidditch World Cup in place of our Australian National Quidditch Team then maybe we would have won a World Cup since 1966. But I'm not here to complain about our performance in the World Cup, no matter how disappointed I am with it.

Snitches have flash memories and this Snitch, like Harry's, is also able to open and concealed within is the Resurrection Stone. This Golden Snitch is made from 3D printed plastic pieces about 3.5cm diameter and painted gold, contains magnets to hold it closed and has two feathers or wings attached to help it fly about. The ring was obtained separately but seemed a must companion item.

Oh, I remember! Remembrall! This is a Remembrall. Although if I now remember, then why is it still red? Unless there is something else I have forgotten...
A Remembrall is a clever little item for that forgetful witch or wizard. It turns red when you've forgotten something and clear when you've remembered. Only problem is, it doesn't tell you what you've forgotten. This is made from a 5cm clear plastic ball, 3D printed plastic ring painted gold and filled with pieces of cotton pleads painted pink.

These two items are designed to replicate those seen in the Harry Potter movies. The Golden Snitch, less the feather wings, was purchased from ebay HERE, you can see more about this piece HERE. The Remembrall was also purchased as a kit from ebay HERE, and you can see how this was put together HERE. Alternatively you could make a Remembrall with a clear plastic ball, red wool and a golden ribbon.