Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Lets wreck some something!

My partner just up and exclaimed that our nightstands were friggan' ugly. I kind of agreed. They are standard ikea ones, a kinda greyish white striated finished laminate. They had also seem better days. 

Why did we even buy them??! 
We hate them now. 
SO lets wreck them!!

before Ikea nightstands DIY by
 Ugh, so boring. The laminate is peeling a bit from those bottom cut outs too. I peeled off any edges of laminate that were sticking out, glued and filled the edges then sanded them. Then I  took off the doors and the little shelf.

Painting Ikea nightstands DIY by
The internet is like "Oh use chalk paint, its the best" I TRUSTED YOU INTERNET. Ok, I am sure chalk paint is great when you get the right materials, but my DIY plaster/paint mix was chunky AND translucent and pretty much garbage. But we are WRECKING these things, so no matter, just try and make it pretty smooth, and do a few coats and it will alllll work out...

Painting spatters on Ikea nightstands DIY by
Oh, did you like that subtle, chalky finish? That is great but ohmygosh so dull. Lets wreck it more by dripping black inky paint on it. Also use a straw, dip it in paint then blow forcefully through it to get amazing spatters. Let each side dry before moving it.

Painting clear coat on Ikea nightstands DIY by

Hey, that is pretty neat actually.
Ok, now once it is all dry you have to clear coat it. I used a satin polycrylic with a pretty small brush. Do a few coats (let each one dry) especially on the top where it will get wear.

Final painted Ikea nightstands DIY by
Ok, they are pretty weird.
But they are SO MUCH BETTER than the boring ikea grey joykillers. I didn't even have to change the knobs like I thought I would, because they disappear. YAY.

Final chalk painted Ikea nightstands DIY by

Now we can relax. 

If you are thinking of trying questionable projects, you can't beat using an old Ikea piece as a starting point. Literally every step of this was a disaster, but I pressed on and the end product is super neat! 

The nightstand update is literally the first thing I did to my standard beige rental bedroom. Better find some more stuff to DIY/wreck...

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Sometimes Screwups

Sometimes screw ups happen.

I just completed a design called Skull Feels. Nine skulls with different expressions, pretty straightforward right? NOPE.

Sometimes it takes a while to get to where you want to be. This design had some screw ups, which I worked on, and I think it came out good in the end.

Here is an example of the final products I made with this design.
See it all turned out ok.  The background of these items (except for t-shirts) have a faint bones pattern that you can see up close. These things are available at my Redbubble shop. You can see bigger and clearer images of A TON of items I put this design on.

Ok, so lets get to the screw ups parts of this post. (Under the cut)

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Real Life Test Drive

I rarely, rarely keep anything I make.

Other than original paintings, I basically sell everything I make. Or at least try to, har har.  So now that I have branched out into the world of print on demand it is SO SWEET because I can actually have some shit for myself!

blacklilypie wearing regular day tshirt by society6 grumpy tshirt

Yesss. Getting shirts (and bags) and other junk from Society6 or Redbubble or Spoonflower is AMAZING. 

Regular Day and Stay Back t-shirt from blacklilypie and Society6

I got these two from Society6, and they are pretty great. The "Regular Day" grumpy dude is a tri-blend black, fitted women's tee by American Apparel, and the "Stay Back" Batcat is a regular black women's fitted tee. You can get them in a ton of colours, and in different styles of apparel too. I have always thought American Apparel's sizes were tiny, its wise to get a size up, or if you have boobs...don't have boobs. Also the tri-blend seemed to be a bit smaller than then regular black tee. Looks fancy though! 

Society6 sometimes has free shipping worldwide too, so if you follow them on social media (or artists who use them, LIKE ME) its a great way to get cheaper goodies.

The colours came out pretty true. Its always a toss up when you get something printed, the colours never look the same onscreen and in person.

Here is one without the fancy Hipstamatic filters. Not too bad, maybe the design is a bit lower on the body, but pretty darn close. Tee held up to washing too, which is kinda a big deal.

I got a bag from S6 a while ago and it is super great. I was thrilled with it.

Good quality, universal message. Good for grocery shoppin'.

So far, I have only had good experiences with the stuff I test. I always check out pics that other people send me when they order my stuff. (WHICH I LOVE!) but there is nothing better than getting your mitts on the real thing and seeing how it holds up to harsh treatment. I am planning on slowly replacing all my wardrobe and household items with junk with batcat or grumpy boy faces on them. Slowly but surely...

Friday, July 11, 2014

Fabric from Spoonflower

I made a ton of fabric designs from my art a while ago, then promptly uploaded them all to Spoonflower and forgot about them....heheheh. Ok, I got my act together,  and ordered a set of swatches, and it just came in!
Spoonflower fabric swatches by blacklilypie (

Spoonflower is a site that lets you design fabric, and then they print it for you. They have a ton of different options of fabric to choose from, plus they print wallpaper, gift wrap and those neat wall decals your mother-in-law buys. You can buy your own designs, or just buy from other designers. Its a community as well, lots of design inspiration. Lots of amazing stuff to be found. Here are the designs I have available right now...

Spoonflower shopfront grab by blacklilypie (

When you upload a design to spoonflower, before you can buy it (or sell it to others), you have to get a swatch. Which makes a lot of sense because a lot can go wrong with something like this. Its good to have a real life test print, to check out the colours as they are never quite the same on fabric as they are on screen. I mean, that goes for ALL printing. I test print everything.

So here are some images of the swatches. 
Spoonflower swatch kona cotton closeup by blacklilypie (

Spoonflower swatch kona cotton closeup "bring my tea" by blacklilypie (
They came out great! The printing is super crisp! Tiny details are clear. The colour ones look awesome! I actually did a lot of black and white, but seeing the colour swatches, I might make more colour patterns in the future.
Spoonflower swatch kona cotton closeup by blacklilypie (
I chose a Kona cotton for my swatches, which is at the cheap and cheerful end of the fabric selection they print. I think this would be great for lining purses or pouches, quilting, or other projects that you don't want bulkiness.

Spoonflower swatch kona cotton closeup by blacklilypie (

Spoonflower swatch kona cotton repeating pattern (

I am happy with my swatches, I will definitely be ordering some yards of fabric in a few of these designs. I didn't take photos of all of them, I swatched 15 designs, and a few didn't make the cut, not because of quality, but because I thought the design could use some work. My absolute favourite is THIS ONE.

Now I can get to it, making TONS AND TONS more patterns. I have plans to do a bunch of stuffed dolls and such with my fabric incorporated, and it is going to be super fun.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Canada Day

It was Canada Day weekend, and my parents came to visit.
And of course a bloody HEAT WAVE struck. Like, a terrible, horrible sweaty muggy heatwave, had the nerve to during their trip.

We went to to see the DorĂ© exhibit at The National Gallery of Canada. Which was interesting, but mildly disappointing personally because I had confused him with another artist in my mind. Like getting chocolate when you wanted vanilla really. You can't ever really complain about seeing AMAZING art. In my opinion DorĂ©'s best work is this:
Puss in Boots by Gustav Dore
SO CUTE. Like the angels and demons are cool and all but awwwwww.

So mostly we spent the weekend eating, sweating then eating again. I don't get to see my parents very often, we mostly just wanted to hang out so we could compare what british shows we have watched. (My mom didn't like SHERLOCKKKKK! *internaly weeping and judging*)
blacklilypie and cute parents laughing at the beach

We did do some Canadian stuff. We touched beach, saw people doing extreme water sports things.

blacklilypie and cute parents laughing at the beach
We bought beer, saw lakes and trees and ugly tent caterpillars.

But maybe the best part was when it was too hot to do anything, we just got in the car and drove, and ended up on the top of Champlain Lookout in Gatineau Park, we got there as a storm was blowing past and it was crazy neat.
Storm at Champlain Lookout Gatineau Park
Seriously cool. There was a tornado somewhere in the area that wrecked a bunch of things, we found out later. 

All the pics and driving were done by Nathan, who I told I would credit for his hard work because its not cool to steal content. haha. Plus he is better at taking pictures. All the ones I took of this amazing storm are pathetic.

My parents slept in my cramped studio with all my prettyboy Supernatural pin ups and half finished projects. They never, ever complain, and they always buy extra ice cream "JUST IN CASE." :-) Ugh so cute.

But this blog post is the final step before getting back to work, so I am trying to drag it out for as long as possible..................

Friday, June 27, 2014

Papier Mache Bat with Donut

That damn bat just stole my donut.
Papier Mache Bat and Donut (
I just finished and listed this papier mache bat with a wire skeleton. The donut (and his feet) are hinged to his body, so it kind of swings back and forth.

Here are some process photos...
My super elaborate idea sketch. Hahaha.

Papier Mache Bat and Donut process shot (

I really should have taken one at the skeleton stage, but anyway...Here is his unpainted body when I was adding the feet. I Added another few layers of papier mache and then sanded it.

Papier Mache Bat and Donut painting shot (

Base coats.

Papier Mache Bat face painting shot (
I drew his face with a pigment liner then put a coat of white overtop for there is just a faint guide to paint from. 

Papier Mache Bat face painting shot (

I think this is almost the completed face. I used like, the tiniest brush I had, and then cut most of the bristles off to make it tinier. Then sealed it with varnish before doing the rest of the sculpture. 

bat wing painting resist shot (
The wings I gave a weird crack/resist effect. You only get one shot at it! Painting over a wet layer, so it kind of breaks and resists the paint as the bottom layer dries. Also because he is not flat I basically had to do each wing segment at a time so it wouldn't all run everywhere. Lots of interesting imperfections.

papier mache donut (

The donut looks pretty good in real life. Adding a few coats of gloss always helps food art. heh heh.

papier mache bat holding donut (
He hangs from an invisible wire that attached to his wing tops. I designed him to be viewable from all sides, so you could hang him from a ceiling.

Its always fun to make these papier mache work, but it takes FOREVERRRR because you have to wait for each coat of stuff to dry. Like,  this was hanging around for weeks. Turned out cute in the end though. He is here.

I want a donut.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Its 2014?! Why didn't you tell me!

batcat oops drawing (

Ok, so its been a year since I posted anything. Heheheheheeh *nervous laughter*

But I decided to start it up again, because I am working on rebranding a lot of my stuff and a blog just fits better now. 

I *just* made a new little hub website. Live today. website frontpage grab screenshot had been pointing to my etsy shop for a few years now. It was just the easiest way to show people what I do. But recently I have been doing work for selling on sites like redbubble and society6, so I thought, I should make the website I should have had for years now. 

So I made my website in an afteroon. It is pretty much the most basic of sites that an 8 year old who wanted to get into web design would make, but its functional. Its probably only a temporary one that will be replaced with a serious bizznas one with an incorporated shop someday, but not this day.

So the blog is starting up again, I will probably be posting lots of work in progress pictures, shop updates, sprinkled with instagram pics of cats, Ottawa stuff, and me doing a derp face.

So hi.