Craft Bits — Portman's Portables, Tiny Pencil Sculptures, NYC International Gift Fair

Posted by on Jan 31, 2011

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Dalton Ghetti/Solent News via


Welcome to our first edition of Craft Bits: Highlights from the DIY interwebs. This week brings us: Teeny pencil sculptures by Dalton Ghetti that make you wonder what happened to your eyesight over the years, designers crafting to help Australia’s flood victims and Natalie Portman with a brand new book bag. More after the jump!

mudroom makeover from the Wall Street Journal
The Room Won’t Clean Itself, You Know

The Wall Street Journal's lifestyle coverage has been fabulous since former Domino Editor-in-Chief Deborah Needleman took over last year. Check out this mudroom makeover done by fellow Domino alum Rita Konig. You could easily achieve the look with thrift store/vintage finds. (Yes, I miss Domino, okay?)
See the WSJ mudroom makeover here!
natalie portman holds green book purse
AP Photo/Evan Agostini via
Natalie Portman's Portables

The actress was photographed with a super-expensive purse that looks like a copy of Lolita. Because, you know, she is a smarty pants actress even though she agreed to co-star alongside Ashton Kutcher in that movie. Meanwhile, us peons can fashion a sorta-close-in-spirit book purse using little more than fabric, a glue gun and an old novel. (Though I’m still slowly stitching my way to embroidering a Jackie Collins title.)
Get the book purse tutorial here from Curbly!
lock carved into graphite pencil tip
Dalton Ghetti/Solant News via
Yes, That Is a Normal-Sized Pencil

Dalton Ghetti’s teeny-tiny sculptures carved from graphite pencils made the blog rounds in July, which is about 1910 in internet time. But Frankie Magazine reminded me that they existed (and if you didn’t know Frankie Magazine exists, go visit the gorgeous international craft/DIY magazine now). The photos are even more mind-blowing if you’re the old-timey sort who still has a Ticonderoga lying around for real-life scale comparison.

Even more mind-blowing: His totally cool attitude towards his work. “I would get very nervous sometimes, particularly when the piece was almost finished, and then I would make a mistake,” he says. “I decided to change the way I thought about the work — when I started a new piece my attitude would be ‘well this will break eventually but let’s see how far I get.’” Think about that the next time you get frustrated with your latest project.
Australian map pendant
On a Serious Note

There was a huge, terrible, awful flood over in Australia that left over 4,000 people without homes. A small group of designers created this shop on Etsy to drum up support. From jewelry to PDF patterns, 100 percent of the profits from the shop goes to The Queensland Premier’s Disaster Relief Appeal.
Visit the Etsian Australian Flood Appeal Shop.
custom glass vase
Jenny Gaynor
But There’s No “Un-Tag” Option Here 

Glass artist Jenny Gaynor is showing off her line of custom glass vases at the New York International Gift Fair. Though a touch on the pricey side (the Persimmon Memory Vase, left, is about $400), the handblown vases would definitely impress.
Visit Jenny Gaynor’s website.
illustration-inspired craft fair booth
Speaking of NYIGF

Designers Lindsay Harper and Maggie Currey took a Harold and the Purple Crayon approach to their Lamshop booth at the Gift Fair. I’m seriously thinking about borrowing their illustration-inspired approach for my new apartment.
See more shots of Lamshop’s NYIGF booth!

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