Saturday, December 27, 2014

Makers' Mark

We have been having a creative bonanza here at home.  The holiday season has provided materials, motivation, and time - all the necessary ingredients for a Maker's movement.  Here are a few of the results!

Kilt Hose - knitted by Duncan

I started learning knitting maybe two years ago, a combination of necessity and opportunity.  The opportunity portion came about with a sudden abundance of wool fiber, the contributions of our little flock of sheep, shorn annually.  Anticipating this, I thought it would be nice to start learning a few ways to put that stuff to good use.  The necessity bit...well, necessity is a bit of a stretch.  But still, a man that wears a kilt now and again needs some kilt socks.  And let me tell you, good kilt hose are hard to find.  Heavy-duty, cable-knit make the best impression when showing off a Scotsman's calves.  The best quality fetch a handsome price, probably because they are hand-made gems that come right from the source, deep in the Highlands.

After a couple of starter projects (cable-knit scarf, that kind of thing), I put together a design for the socks, drawing from a variety of sources in order to get the look I wanted.  I actually produced a pair in a charcoal color, then started these in a classic creamy wool.  Then I set them aside....for like...eight months.  Then, a week before Christmas, I decided I wanted to wear them with the kilt for a Celtic Christmas Eve service we hold at the church every year.  So, I drug them out and finished them off.  They turned out great, I'm very happy with the weight and wear of them.  In the photos you can catch a glimpse of a sgian dubh (pronounced skein doo), the "black knife" that is part of a kilt outfit.  I crafted the knife, too, though it is not quite finished, lacking a proper sheath and a final polish.

AT-AT, Snowspeeder, et al - constructed by Evie

Evie had a Christmas list this year that was topped by pure awesome: she wanted a LEGO Star Wars model of an AT-AT.  Yes, an Imperial Walker, famous for stomping around Hoth in The Empire Strikes Back.  She nurtured this want for months, and, anticipating that we would make this awesome dream come true at Christmas, we primed the pump on her birthday by getting her a Snowspeeder model, complete with Luke Skywalker in pilot garb and a still-living Dak Ralter.  Having now completed both models, she is well on her way to staging complete battle re-enactments.  StarWars parents are the best parents.

Of course, I had to stage a few extra pics with these "toys", trying to capture a few movie-moments.  I think all fans will appreciate the way Luke is working his way to the underbelly of the walker.  Also, take note of the Imperial troopers as they march on the rebel stronghold.  "The shield will be down in moments.  You may start your landing."  Oh, good.

Proud and accomplished builder.

He is the Special - LEGOs by Tavish

What?!?  You haven't seen The Lego Movie?!?  Well, you should - it's a fun romp for anyone who has ever played with the famous interlocking block system.  Tavish has put together a variety pack from the movie, including a Micro-Manager ("Micromanager, commence micromanagement!"), Metalbeard ("Be ye disabling of yond shield."), and Emmett's awesome construction-themed destruction robot.  He even has an angry Unikitty to complete the set!

We've also converted an old coffee table into a lego table, which is a fun staging ground for all of this creative work.  Everything IS awesome! (That is totally my jam....)

Making Believe - by Piper

All making starts with imagination, and Piper has lots of it!  This one lives with one foot in this world and one in a fantasy world - she now has a travel companion for her flights of fancy.  Her new doll, her top-line request for Christmas, even comes with glasses - tea parties for the near-sighted can now commence!