Moved, getting it together

Well, I am settled in beautiful Asheville… Again! Making new stuff, doing school stuff (LiSci!). You can follow me now in Instagram, hashtag #fetchingartefact and see cool stuff!

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Getting back on the saddle

What a year. Will be revamping this after the bug bold move BACK to Asheville, NC. Will be adding more, later, but a bit of info on what has been going on: my parents house buying drama ( Bank of America blows), going back to school ( librarian! ), thyroid troubles and other personal crap. After the move ( and a new computer) I swear to Cthulhu I will restart. Ad nauseum.


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Stylized granny square canvas hightops

Granny squarin’ the high-top way!

So, you like those designer granny square kicks?  Well, we all “like like” them, but I am not “in LOVE” with them… why?  Because they are like a kajillion bucks!

Here is a SIMPLE as pie (and cheap as well!) project!

Granny squarin’ the high-top way!

What you need:

  • Plain canvas Ked/Converse type shoes (I prefer a complete canvas.  Go to Family Dollar or other big box to get plain white or black canvas shoes on the cheap!)
  • slanted/edge acrylic paint brush
  • Assortment of acrylic paints in fun colors! (I used what I had!)
  • pencil to sketch your design -optional

get your supplies!

Okay,  first, take out the shoe laces… trust me on this.  Alternately, you can dye them another color or replace them with cooler laces!

Next, get your paints ready.  I tend to use a plastic ziplock or paper plate for a palette since it is easier clean up.

gold, red, black shimmer and silver were chosen.

If your hand is not steady or you are as paranoid as I am, pencil in your idea.

So, I am going for a more folks-y stylized granny than the original designer shoes had and am opting for one LARGE granny on the outside (like chuck taylors.)


build each layer carefully, but know that you can smooth it out after!

In retrospect, red was a royal pain and VERY unforgiving.  I had to wait for it to dry and then re-border it, making it chunkier… c’est la vie.

Now, don’t limit yourself to granny squares!  Painting “macro” knit or crochet stitches would also rock!

Have fun! -Krys

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Upcoming tutorials…want to see us make something?

Leather fringe earrings, a stuffed pal out of an old sweater, gem sweater, decoupaging fabric, tshirt chain necklace. These will be haphazardly photographed with my cell phone until has enough for the camera! Don’t worry, I will try to use instamatic!

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Breathing new life…with a purpose!

I have been avoiding this blog, not because of just not wanting to do anything, mainly because I have moved to another city, ::finally:: got a job to pay bills, killed my poor camera, taught some 60 people to crochet at Maker Faire Raleigh, and have been down a computer. What a heck of a few months, eh?

Well, fear no longer, my crafty denizens!  I have been writing the outline for 2 books, re-imagining the brand and talking a ton about something called ‘synergy’… Mainly because I am keeping Craftystuffs as a FREE site for tutorials, heads up on free patterns, linkies to events and the like!

This also means, dear crafters, the consolidation and renaming of my handmade line of accessories and oddities.  They will not make their presence be known, save the event of a giveaway. That line is still yet to be named.  I will be holding a contest to help me name it, once I have a gift bundle to send out!

Also, I am working on an campaign to help me re-launch this site to better glory and ease of use for YOU, dear reader! I want to own the craftystuffs domain and build a better site, host videos, get a good used camera capable of some video clips and macro depths (if you have seen my old tutorials, you would understand that up close detail is a MUST!)  I am writing the proposal to ask for a micro fund of $1500 which will allow major things to be done!  Look for that link soon, there are perks for people who donate!

Again thank you.  I have gotten encouragement from friends to relaunch after I taught them something or other… I love teaching and seeing new generations of crazy crafters emerge! -*K

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Started a new line of earrings!

To go with the thread of my gypsy strands line, this is a single earring to wear in one ear, wear a stud in the other, or a small hoop.

Considering doing custom ones and a tutorial, who’s in?

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Kirsten H’s artist trading card tutorial!

Artist Trading Cards

Part 1: what is an Artist Trading Card?

Artist Trading Cards, generally referred to as “ATCs”, are a wonderful medium for expressing creativity without having to get too invested in a big project.  “Sounds great” you say, “but what the heck are you talking about?”

An ATC is a trading card sized piece of art. ATCs are about 2.5 by 3.5 inches (like a baseball card) and done in any media (Seriously, fabric, glue, paint, chiseled stone) although most of them are painted, stamped or inked. They are always traded, never sold and are usually signed (and numbered if part of a set).   They may be swapped randomly or in themes (like frogs, or dogs) and may be gifted or traded online or in person.  The only limits on how to create one is if the *specific* swap you join has restrictions.

They were originated in Switzerland as part of the “mail art” and “art for the masses” movements, Which just means that they originated as part of a big movement to make art *personal* and part of daily life.  Just remember, if you create an artist trading card you are the artist! You! Yes, YOU!.  You are an artist and you are trading your art with other artists.

Because they are small, and there are no inherent limits on how to make one, they provide a great opportunity to try out new techniques, experiment with fancy papers, or otherwise take chances.  An ATC was my first experiment with watercolor, and my first attempt at freeform embossing. They are also a great way to use up those small scraps of craft supplies you probably have that are too good to “throw out” but never seemed to be enough to make anything with!

A quick search online will find you trading groups, instructions, suggestions, cutting diagrams to get the most ATCs out of common paper sizes, and other useful information.    Just type “Artist Trading Card” into a search engine and you will be INUNDATED with webpages.  I will however warn you that like any other image intensive art some of those “free download clip art” files may come with Trojans or Viruses so if you don’t trust the source and have good anti-virus software do NOT download any images.

Part 2 will be a step by step discussion (hopefully with pictures) of creating an ATC for a trade….

and a great book on the subject:

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The Guest blog series bio #1!

Kirsten Houseknecht, who does business as Fabric Dragon in the SCA and on Etsy and around the web, has been involved in crafts and arts since she was a child.   “I have probably tried any craft you can name, and while I don’t claim to be good at all of them, I have at least tried them.”  She is a fixture at most craft stores, hobby shops, Science Fiction conventions, and Steampunk events.

She teaches beginner to intermediate knitting, spinning, jewelry making, and costuming, as well as teaching introductory classes in scrap booking, journal arts, and ATCs.   Since most of her students are now better than she is, she claims she must be a REALLY good teacher.

She currently runs a home based business selling beads and jewelry and other odds and ends, and has gone back to school full time for her B.S. in Fashion Design.

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I need dedicated crafters to interview! if you would like to be interviewed/your blog/shop/page plugged, email me!  !

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Wilmington Crafty events – Come see Craftystuffs!

Calendar of events for the next 2.5 months:


An Evening of Aesthetics, Paint n’ Play, Wilmington NC

October 26th from 7:00 pm til Midnight!

/facebook- An-Evening-of-Aesthetics


Bizarre Bazaar! November 12, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.

Here’s the 411!



This event helps the area by charging both sellers AND buyers non perishable foods for NH County schools food drive as admission! A worthy cause!

fb info is here

December 4 – ANIWAVE!!!!!

Wilmington’s one and only Anime fest! 6$ admission gets you into see otaku crafters, handmade costumes and a Japanese tea ceremony AND MORE!

Aniwave info*

I will be at each event with mah booth!

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