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the anticraft > blog

The AntiCraft Blog
Apr 14, 2010
AntiCraft Blog, R.I.P.

So here's the deal. When I realized that this is not the first time I've forgotten to announce a new issue on our own damn blog, I knew something about the process was broken. And it wasn't just the AC blog. My own personal blog, started in October of 2000, has become a wasteland of half-hearted, infrequent posts. Many of the Staff don't even bother with their own blogs. Blogging—for The AntiCraft Staff, at least—as a concept is broken.

We started off using the blog software that our ISP provided... and it was kind of a hassle. More PHP than I knew what to do with. We switched over to Blogger, which worked well, we thought, but as it turns out, we were part of an extremely small percentage of bloggers who used Blogger, but hosted all the blog info (posts, pictures, template code, etc.) on their own server. However, Blogger has decided to phase out that option, given that so few folks use it.

We can't fault them for that. It's good business sense. And, to Blogger's credit, they have worked really hard to make changing over as painless as possible. But it's still a bit of a hassle.

Well, if we're going be hassled, we're going to consider all our options. And honestly, now that Carin has joined the rest of the Staff on Facebook (Gooble, gobble, one of us!), we think that it'll provide a simpler interface for all our sharing needs:
  • Posting a link is super quick, and including a photo doesn't require coding or uploading a photo to our server.

  • If we need to share something longer, the Notes function works quite well, and we can still append photos and links.

  • We're on FB constantly, just like the rest of the zombies , so we're much more likely to update/interact.

  • If you are on FB, it's easy for YOU ALL to share things with US! We love seeing the links you come across or photos of your finished projects.

  • Even those of you who don't use FB can still SEE our page and/or subscribe to the RSS, just like with the current blog.
So in time, the "blog" button over on the left will become the "facebook" button, and clicking it will bring you to our FB page rather than the blog. And since there are 935 (at the time of this writing) fans of The AntiCraft on Facebook, we think it's gonna all work out just fine.

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posted by Zabet at 1:45 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Jan 29, 2010
Imbolc 2010 is here!

With a scant few days to spare [or, at least there was when I started writing this post], the Imbolc issue of The AntiCraft has arrived, full of hearty foods to sustain you while your body begs to hibernate during the coldest and greyest parts of winter.

As I said in this issue's letter, "There are plenty of plans buzzing around Headquarters right now, it's one of the things I love about the Imbolc issue, no matter how difficult it likes to make itself. January just sort of cackles with potential, doesn't it?" So tell me about your plans!



Anyway, enjoy it muchly. The Beltane issue is already 100% planned and the editors and I are about to jump in to working on it! Craziness abounds around HQ! We love it.

Kisses and craftiness,
.:Zabet

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posted by Zabet at 12:05 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Jan 19, 2010
Holy Lumps of Forethought, Batman!

Here is why you should love my friend Janis: She is The AntiCraft's Ravelry editor, which means that I can avoid the huge timesuck that is Ravelry (don't get me wrong, I love it, but I could spend waaaaay too many hours there just in my own notebook), yet all knitting and crochet patterns that pass through HQ's hallowed halls still make it onto Rav's hallowed pages. (Don't know what Ravelry is? Where have you been, under a rock? Short answer: it's crack for fiber artists.)

Also, sometimes Janis has forethought, which is very helpful because mine is often on the fritz. Other times, she simply reads The AntiCraft group's board and reports back when others have forethought. Thank you, Rogue, for reminding us about the Ravelympics! Without your forethought and Janis' dedication, there was a 99.9% chance that once again, Team Angstylvania would be "unofficial" and we'd have to all stand around embarrassed, pretending we did it on purpose because we are just that cool. (Obviously, we're not.)

So, to make a long post short—better late than never, I suppose—I'm pleased to announce that Team Angstylvania is officially part of the 2010 Ravelympics. Whether or not we bother to participate after signing up is kind of a coin toss, but if you do want to participate, check out the Ravelmpics thread. Earwax, ho!

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posted by Zabet at 2:59 AM | permalink |  0 Comments
Jan 12, 2010
Health! Books! Imbolc!

Thanks for all the well-wishes; wouldn't you know that right as I was getting better my husband caught it? Jeez. All healthy now, though, just with a lingering cough, which means we're back to shipping out books and all other orders!

We've has sold books in all but 15 states. There are 18 books left. Coincidence? I think not. (Arkansas, Arizona, Delaware, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Mississippi, Montana, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, and Wyoming, in case you are wondering.)

I mean, Hawaii I get. Who wants to knit with wool or wear black there? But Kansas, oh Kansas. Every autumn you prove to me you can be awesome if you just try, but now this? The woe, the betrayal! And Wyoming, don't you remember when I came to visit and (in theory) ride horses in 1982, before I knew I had a severe allergy and the beasts would kill me? Don't you still love me?

Also, I promise the Imbolc issue will be up before Imbolc. Stick a needle in my eye!

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posted by Zabet at 11:07 PM | permalink |  6 Comments
Jan 7, 2010
Ugh

Flu.

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posted by Zabet at 3:41 PM | permalink |  4 Comments
Dec 31, 2009
Happy New Year!

Just an FYI for folks who might be ordering things: The AntiCraft is closing down HQ from December 31st to January 3rd. We'll send emails/ship stuff as soon as we get back from rural North Carolina.

I don't know about y'all, but 2009 was pretty rough for most of my loved ones. 2010 cannot get here fast enough. Let's all focus on making 2010 the Best. Year. EVER.

Happy New Year, everyone!

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posted by Zabet at 12:17 AM | permalink |  2 Comments
Dec 26, 2009
The AntiCraft post-Christmas sale is here!

A few things left from Bazaar Bizarre are now available for purchase at the post-Christmas sale.

You can only get there by clicking here, so click already!
(opens in a new window)

Quantities are limited. First in-the-inbox, first served!

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posted by Zabet at 9:10 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Dec 10, 2009
AntiCrafters in and around Cleveland! Don't forget the Bazaar Bizarre!

Running out of time but still want to give handmade gifts? Come visit the West Cleveland Bazaar Bizarre and save your sanity without compromising your standards. All manner of handmade goods will abound!

I'm bringing ornaments, books, and stickers. Rebecca will have creepy Santa eyeballs and goodness only knows what else. Robyn is bringing her hand-blended batts and hand dyed yarns. There will probably also be baby onsies in the mix as well as the occasional knitted or crocheted cap. It'll be a fun time, so come on out and shop indie/handmade/relatively local with us!

When:
Sat, Dec 12, noon-9pm
Sun, Dec 13, noon-6pm

Where:
78th Street Studios
1300 W. 78th St.
Cleveland, OH

Vendors:
Click here for list.

More Info:
bazaarbizarre.org





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posted by Zabet at 4:21 PM | permalink |  2 Comments
Dec 2, 2009
Yule Surprise!


Enjoy!

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posted by Zabet at 1:55 PM | permalink |  3 Comments
Nov 30, 2009
Starting to feel like a carnival barker.

I feel like all I do lately is encourage folks to buy things, and it's beginning to make me feel dirty. But I'm so in love with our new holiday card design that I can't not share it. What's a girl to do?

AntiCrafters living in the US: If you buy 25 or more Zazzle greeting card, note card, postcard, invitation, or photo card products (from any Zazzle store, not just The AntiCraft), you can get free ground shipping now until December 31st. Enter promo code FREECARDSHIP at checkout to receive the free shipping.



And I can't leave out our other holiday cards.

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posted by Zabet at 12:34 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Nov 24, 2009
Imbolc 2010 Call for Submissions

Lest we forget!

Coming from the current issue, we have realized the White Witch is right after all: it is dull to drink without eating. Therefore, in case you haven't sussed it yet, the upcoming issue of The AntiCraft is all about comfort food and the accoutrements on the table or in the kitchen that make it happen. We know most of you pull out all the stops during the holiday season and we invite you to submit your must-have recipes, special tabletop touches, and crafty kitchen projects.

Submissions should preferably be in by December 20, but we can probably stretch it until the 26th. Please be sure to check out the new (and hopefully improved) Submission Guidelines.

Look for the Imbolc 2010 issue to be out around January 9th; we'll make an announcement when it's available!

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posted by Zabet at 11:03 AM | permalink |  0 Comments
Nov 18, 2009
For our fans in the United Kingdom

You now how your own book order button under the book tab. The price is $16.76 (~£10), including shipping. Enjoy!

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posted by Zabet at 11:12 AM | permalink |  0 Comments
Nov 16, 2009
Going Out of Print Sale!

When life gives me lemons, I turn off all the lights, listen to The Cure for 24 hours straight, and write horrible poetry on black paper with black ink while I weep black mascara tears all over it. Then I go make narcotic lemonade.

I got a letter from our publisher saying that they have found themselves in an "overstock situation" with Anticraft: Knitting, Stitching, and Beading for the Slightly Sinister (really, I will never stop hating that subtitle). So, the bad news is that it will not be reprinted, but the GOOD NEWS is that I was able to buy 150 deeply discounted copies, which I will in turn sell to you, signed and personalized. I will even go so far as to steal a page from Amanda Palmer and Om Nom Nom on them if you so desire, despite the warning I put in the back of the book about NOT LICKING IT because it was printed in China so Gods only know what might be on it. That's right, I'm totally putting my personal health at risk FOR YOU. That's love, baby.

We ordered the books Friday morning, and they will reach HQ in 10 business days. Which means that you can preorder a personalized book right now and have your holiday shopping done and out of the way in a trice, and we'll ship it out as soon as we have them in our hot little hands. Aren't we so helpful?

Profits from these book sales are going to be put into a savings account to one day fund... are you ready for it? ANTICON. Coming in the next 24-36 months or so to a city probably not very near you (and very likely in Ohio, unless Carin manages to put together AntiCon West first, in which case it will be somewhere nearish to San Francisco), so start saving now for your airfare!

And speaking of holiday shopping, if you want to give a gift to us, you can totally shop via our Amazon.com portal on the Materialism page, where we'll get little kickbacks for anything you buy. Not that you shouldn't buy local (BUY LOCAL!!!!), but when you can't get it local and have to shop online anyway, you can enter Amazon through our portal, get whatever you like, and we get a little kickback. It's all sorts of awesome.

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posted by Zabet at 10:26 AM | permalink |  3 Comments
Nov 15, 2009
Contest Clarification

I have just realized that in the post about the trivets and hotpads contest I didn't exactly spell out that it's a crafting contest, did I? Prob'ly should have run that past the other editors before posting, eh? Whoops!

Anyway, the nitty gritty details are:

1. CRAFT your trivet/hotpad out of any medium.

2. SEND your photos to submit@theanticraft.com by 11:59pm EST, December 10, 2009.

3. If you win, we'll need your INSTRUCTIONS by December 20 so that we can publish them in the next issue!

4. Get fabulous prizes!

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posted by Zabet at 8:21 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Nov 9, 2009
Double, double toil and trouble! Fire burn, and contest bubble!

That can only mean one thing: time for another AntiCrafty contest! When mixing up a batch of eye of newt, toe of frog, wool of bat, and tongue of dog, how do you keep from scorching your counter or tabletops? Better yet, how do you propose that WE keep from scorching OUR counters and tabletops? Trivet? Hotpad? Some ill-begotten offspring of the two? Or something entirely new, say, like a cross between a bicycle and an octopus?

Send photos of your heat protection device—tripad? hotvet?—to submit@theanticraft.com by 11:59pm EST, December 10, 2009. (And then give it away as a holiday gift if you so desire, we don't mind!) The staff will pick one lucky winner who can pillage our library for two books and will get a special cannot-yet-be-named prize from Zabet. (We know what it is already, we're just being coy.)

The winner will, of course, have his or her project included in the Imbolc 2010 edition. What an AntiCrafty way to start off the new year!

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posted by Zabet at 10:03 AM | permalink |  0 Comments
Nov 6, 2009
Submit, Bitch!

Just a note to say that the submission guidelines have been updated, hopefully in a way which you will find to be more specific (and therefore user-friendly). Also, AntiCrafty designers will want to note that we've made an email list just for you! Check it out and sign up!

The AntiCraft Submission Guidelines
http://theanticraft.com/submit.htm

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posted by Zabet at 11:13 AM | permalink |  0 Comments
Oct 14, 2009
Printing a Correction

Here's one for the science geeks: check out the updated Firewater Paint With Me for some corrections involving triple-bonding between carbon and nitrogen. Sexy, we know!

(Thanks Alex!)

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posted by Zabet at 9:59 AM | permalink |  1 Comments
Sep 18, 2009
A Question of Geography

Two things!

1. Announcement to N.Ohio AntiCrafters: The ReBelle girls Robyn and Sarah will be joining with Rebecca and myself to form The AntiCraft Collective and sell handmade goods at the Cleveland Bazaar Bizarre on December 12 and 13. More details as they become available!




2. Any AntiCrafters living in/near Asheville/Hendersonville/Brevard, NC, want to get together for an Angstylvanian Reunion in the first week of January? We would either meet up in Asheville (I'll need location suggestions) or possibly in Brevard if I can get a friend-in-law of mine to let me use his lodge's common room (complete with crackly fireplace and antler chandeliers) on the cheap.

If you're remotely interested, send an email to me (zabet@theanticraft.com) and I'll make up a mini mailing list to let y'all know the plan.

Note: Being on the email list is not an obligation on your part to attend.

Also Note: There MAY be a small fee to join in (no more than $10, I promise) if and ONLY IF we have to pay to use the location where we end up.

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posted by Zabet at 8:00 AM | permalink |  2 Comments
Sep 17, 2009
To FB or not to FB, that is the question.

I almost hate to say it—no, wait, I DO hate to say it—but the automagical linking setup over on Facebook means I'm a lot more likely to post stuff there. Then I feel guilty for neglecting the blog, so I post it here. Then I feel sorry for those who follow both the blog and FB and got a double whammy. What to do?

I recommend you check out The AntiCraft's Facebook page. Most of my short "Hey look at this!" stuff will be there. News will continue to be posted in both places. Not all the staff is on FB, so the blog will remain a place they can share stuff. Sound fair?

Edited to add: Btw, if you are wondering what you're missing on the FB page, here are some recent links:

Artist Crissy Conant

For Strange Women

I Will Not Read Your Fucking Script

Rugged Femininity Work Corset

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posted by Zabet at 10:03 AM | permalink |  0 Comments
Sep 8, 2009
Underachiver's Manifesto

First off, that's a real book, and I own several copies so that I can pass them along to my lovely but hyper-driven friends when they are pushing themselves too the point of absurdity.

That said, by no means let it anyone misunderstand the quote I'm going to post next. I'm not accusing Amanda Palmer of being a slacker or an underachiever or anything with the words "lazy" and "ass" in the same phrase. I am totally, completely aware of her dedication and the constant motion of her whirling dervish craftsmanship. I'm sure if I had half her drive I'd be dead of a heart attack.

THAT said, to keep us creative types from driving ourselves mad, she has some wisdom we need to accept. I think it bears repeating here because sometimes we can only hear things when they come from another creative type.
i warn you against falling prey to the “but it’s not like i imagined it” syndrome.

this actually applies to any and all art. it will be one way in your head. then it will look different on the canvas. you deal, you adjust, you change your head-picture, you adjust.

the ability to deal is the talent, not the perfection in your head. nobody will ever see the perfection in your head. sorry.

this is why some artists kill themselves.
Amanda Palmer
I could do with occasional reminding that the 'zine is a living Frankensteined thing, and will grow as it will in the way that it wants, no matter what the original idea in my head looked like. And I'll love it anyway, because Mary, the impenetrable wall, wide as the sea, it's fucking awesome working with you all.

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posted by Zabet at 11:48 AM | permalink |  2 Comments
Sep 4, 2009
Server Hiccup

While trying to ban some IP addresses from comment-spamming my mom's website this morning, I introduced a typo that made everything on my servers inaccessible. Go me! Everything should be fixed now, but let me know if strangeness continues.

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posted by Zabet at 12:52 PM | permalink |  1 Comments
Aug 27, 2009
Mr X Stitch contest reminder

Don't forget to enter into Mr X Stitch's first birthday contest! You have until noon GMT (that's 7am Eastern) on October 3 to enter. Good luck!

Happy birthday, Jamie and Bee!

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posted by Zabet at 1:27 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Aug 24, 2009
Happy Birthday, Mr. X Stitch!

This Thursday, August 27, Mr. X Stitch is celebrating the site's first birthday with big news and a big giveaway:
"First of all we will be launching a new range of cross stitch and embroidery patterns from some of the newest embroidery talents out there. When you find out who they are, you're going to want them!

We're also announcing a new roster of guest posters, who will be bringing you more views from the wonderful world of stitching.

And finally, the information you've all been waiting for…we're having a giveaway!

Yes indeed, you will have the chance to win one of the following:

* A gift pack from the awesome Subversive Cross stitch!
* One of Emily Peacock's fabulous needlepoint kits!
* A free sampler of your choice from Miso Funky!
* A copy of Manga Cross Stitch, courtesy of Ilex Books!
* An original Beefranck stitchery!
* And a piece of work from some wiseacre called Mr X Stitch.

We've also got a special prize of a batch of light effects threads that will end up with whoever makes us laugh the most over the course of the week. Can't be bad!"
Mmmm...stitchgasm!

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posted by Zabet at 4:23 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Aug 19, 2009
Merch Whore Day

This is straight up whorin' for some folks whose stuff I like:

We Rouges of Wool
Original comic here.
Available as a tshirt or tote.

 

Oh, and Emergency Survival Kit tshirts are finally available!

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posted by Zabet at 1:16 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Aug 6, 2009
Samhain 2009 Call for Submissions

Upcoming themes have gotten juggled a bit, but don't worry, nothing that was in store has been axed.

The AntiCraft is throwing three sheets to the wind this autumn and looking for submissions on a mixological theme. Original cocktails, recipes, bar accoutrements, and all other "spirit"ual projects will be considered. Deadline for submissions is 11:59pm Sunday, September 6, 2009. Please check the Submission Guidelines for details. Drunken crafting is a dangerous and time honored AntiCraft tradition, so join in*!

*Provided, of course, that you are old enough to drink. If not, your consolation prize is feeling left out. Congrats!

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posted by Zabet at 9:42 PM | permalink |  4 Comments
Jul 29, 2009
Poetry and Needles

I've just learned from Helen that the (British) Poetry Society is doing a knitted poem. The Poetry Society has chosen a poem but kept it secret, and folks have volunteered to knit a letter on a square. Then it gets put together into order and will be revealed in October 2009.

Sadly, all the letter squares have been taken, but knitted and crocheted blank squares are needed to fill in around the words. Contact them if you'd like to participate.

I'd also like to point out, especially for any AntiCrafters living in Virginia, that Poked You Too is not just your average tattoo and body piercing parlor, but a gallery and a retail shop for handmade goods.
"As our region continues to encourage artists through the new museum in Roanoke and small independent galleries throughout the area, we wanted to add our own unique style of art to the mix – both through fine art offered by area artists and a retail shop stocked with only handmade goods made from independent artists around the world that simply can’t be found in our area."
So if you're in the area, check them out!

.:Zabet

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posted by Zabet at 9:45 AM | permalink |  0 Comments
Jul 22, 2009
Charles Addams, meet Broadway (Part 2)

Some time ago, I blogged about The Addams Family being made into a musical. There is news on this front.

According to The Associated Press:
"..[T]he show will open April 8 at the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre. Previews begin March 4 after a Chicago tryout that starts in mid-November."

"Nathan Lane will play Gomez and Bebe Neuwirth will be Morticia in the production. Also in the cast are Kevin Chamberlin as Uncle Fester, Jackie Hoffman as Grandma and Zachary James as Lurch."


I can only assume the AP means it will open on April 8, 2010, as the article I read was dated July 22, 2009. Way to be specific, journalists!

I have absolutely no permission to use that image, btw. Sorry, Tee & Charles Addams Foundation.

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posted by Zabet at 1:32 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Jul 17, 2009
Pretty Things to Own or Covet

Janis told me that David Malki ! of Wondermark (An Illustrated Jocularity) will be putting out the following adorable tshirts based on this comic sometime now-ish, with online ordering opening up near the end of the month. Go clicky for more info!



In the meanwhile, this adorable crafty shirt IS available:




Also, this made the rounds in 2007, but I hadn't seen it before Deb posted it on The AntiCraft's FB page (thanks, Deb!), so I figured I'd share in case there were other's like me. Who couldn't love Keetra Dixon's blood puddle pillows called The Great Slumber? They are simple but evocative.


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posted by Zabet at 12:03 PM | permalink |  0 Comments
Jul 14, 2009
Roundup

I'm getting bad at blogging. Facebook's short status updates have spoiled me, leaving my deep-thinking and pontificating muscles unused and beginning to atrophy.

Puerto Rico was fabulous, and I swear if something could be done about the heat and humidity, I'd move there in a heartbeat. While I didn't get to meet up with any AntiCrafters, I was somehow outed to my day job teammates (we were there giving a workshop) as being Strange Craft Girl during my off hours. These are stiff, academic types, but they took it reasonably well, in a "we knew you were weird, we just didn't know HOW weird" sort of way.

In crafting news, one of my favorite cross stitchers, Julie Jackson of Subversive Cross Stitch, just did an interview with my new embroidery heartthrob, Jamie Chalmers of Mr. X Stitch, for Craft. My only regret is that there is not more Bee! Go read it now and leave loving comments for both the subject and the author, for they are both faboo and deserve our cookies.

In other crafting news, Shannon Okey (aka Knitgrrl aka the woman who does not ever ever ever stop working) is opening up Knitgrrl Studio in Lakewood, OH (near Cleveland). She of course had her big to-do this Saturday and I completely failed to tell you all ahead of time. (Sorry!) But if you're in the area, check it out! (Knitgrrl Studio website, Knitgrrl Studio FB page)

And for your AntiCrafting pleasure, proof that there might be such a thing as "too much juxtaposition" (and you know how I loves me some juxtaposition!): Hairy Spoon Rest and Toenail Clipping Spoon Rest. (From Craftster via Craftastrope.)

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posted by Zabet at 2:38 PM | permalink |  2 Comments
Jul 5, 2009
Lughnasadh 2009: Just A Little Prick

Pointy fun for young and old. Go check it out, peeps!

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posted by Zabet at 7:01 PM | permalink |  1 Comments
       
 

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