Last year, I did a collection of free cross-stitch patterns – and everyone loved it! I think that’s one of the most viewed posts on the blog. So, as a holiday treat, I’m going to share ten more awesomely nerdy cross-stitch patterns that are completely free! Simply click on the image for your desired pattern, and it’ll take you to the pattern’s website.
Since I got full-time at IT Training, I’ve been working on beefing up my professional wardrobe. And, well, my wardrobe in general. For those of you that know me, while I can be professional when I need to be, sometimes I want to have some fun with what I wear. And after doing some searching, I’ve found that there’s no shortage of work-friendly clothes that show off my nerdy and geeky side.
Star Trek TNG Sweater
This is one that I’d been wanting for quite some time. A comfy, casual Star Trek sweater? That I could wear to work? YES. I’ve worn this one to the office quite a few times, and every time I get compliments on it. (It doesn’t hurt that I work in the IT field, surrounded by Star Trek fans.) My boss calls it my “Picard sweater”. To be honest, though, I call it my Janeway sweater – I can totally see her wearing this when she’s off duty, drinking a large mug of coffee, maybe chatting with Neelix… One of the awesome things about this sweater is that it’s unisex, so it has sizes that fit anyone! Which is always awesome.
Star Trek TNG Sweatshirt
I actually snagged this one before my Command sweater, but it’s a bit more casual – something to wear to work on Fridays, as opposed to something I could show up to teach a workshop in. However, it’s still incredibly comfy, and after a few washes, it’s now the softest sweatshirt in my collection. I get compliments on this too – and a ham radio friend of mine says he’s using the Star Trek sweatshirts for Halloween for he and his wife. 😀 (He’s going as Riker, and she’s going as Troi from Season 2, episode 1 of The Next Generation, considering she’s having a baby herself! Now, that’s an awesome costume idea. 😀 ) Sadly, this sweatshirt does not come with a comm badge, but it’s not too hard to find one online to adorn your sweatshirt with.
Star Trek Command Insignia Skirt
This is one I don’t own yet, but I’m going to have to snatch up soon – I love the pattern, and I love that it has pockets. How many skirts out there proclaim they have pockets? Not many. I don’t think any of the skirts I own for regular use have pockets. Which is a bummer.
This is a far more subtle Star Trek sweater that I’m going to have to add to my collection. I found this on Her Universe (a site I only recently discovered!), and I love that it includes the rank pips as well as the communicator badge. I do have a thing for cardigans, and I’m quite sure this one will end up in my collection sooner rather than later…
Union Jack TARDIS Skirt
You thought this entire post was going to be of Star Trek clothes, didn’t you? Well, I found a skirt on Her Universe that would also be office appropriate, but it’s got the TARDIS on it! And you can never go wrong with the TARDIS. Bigger on the inside, travels through time and space, makes a delightful skirt pattern…
Tiny Pinkie Pie Bracelets
I actually found these wee little ponies at Walmart, for $1 each! They’re so tiny that unless you look up close, you’ll never notice that they’re Pinkie Pie beads. You can find these at the jewelry counter, in a little box of all colored pony bracelets – I tried to find them online for everyone, but had no luck. (Plus, Walmart’s website kept crashing on my Chromebook, which is annoying.)
My Little Ties
For those of you who are of the tie-wearing persuasion… you can now wear pony ties, thanks to My Little Ties! Toothless is modeling the Pinkie Tie for me here, and there are plenty of others at My Little Ties. Ross has a few of these in the bow-tie version, but they make regular ties as well.
Hopefully these can give you some inspiration for showing your inner geek while you’re out and about!
Earlier this week, I was wracking my brain, trying to find a good idea for a blog post. Should I write about yarn? Nah, too boring. Should I show off the blanket I just finished? Eh, also boring. It wasn’t until yesterday evening, when I was working on patching up a piece of a costume I’d ordered, when the idea flopped into my lap, almost literally.
I’d ordered a Star Trek: The Next Generation costume off Amazon (my costume crafting skills aren’t quite up to making Starfleet uniforms yet, sadly), and while the costume itself fit, and the rank pips were beautiful, the comm badge was… less than stellar. Granted, the picture above is after I’d started sanding it, but there were large chunks of paint that had flaked off and stuck to the costume package, which left a lot of big black spots where you can see the plastic. Being the crafty nerd that I am, I didn’t let the sorry state of the comm badge get me down. Instead, I grabbed some of my mini painting tools and set to work!
After sanding the loose paint off the badge, I took it outside and sprayed it with primer – the good stuff I use for my minis is possibly packed in a box somewhere, but I did manage to find some other primer in the garage, so I worked with what I could find.
Post-primer, it already looked lots better than it had when I’d gotten it, haha. I let it dry overnight, and then before my workshop this morning, I broke out the paints!
The paints I have are old, and a little lumpy, but they worked for what I needed them for. (I need to get a new set of paints one of these days…) I worked with some Chainmail Silver and Glorious Gold paints from my mini painting stash, and managed to get the badge all painted before I got to work! I primed it after I got home, and the results were pretty good.
It’s not super glossy like the replica Starfleet communication badges you can get from places like ThinkGeek, but considering the whole costume cost $35, my paint job got the job done. Ross has a comm badge lurking around somewhere, and if he can’t find it, I may splurge and get one of the fancy Voyager ones, even though it doesn’t match the TNG era uniform, since the main reason I got the costume is so I could dress up as my favorite captain…
Granted, it’ll be Janeway in a TNG era uniform, but in order to get a proper Voyager uniform made for me, I’ve gotta spend $80 to order it from FanPlusFriend, the place I used to get my frilly Japanese gothic lolita clothes from, and I wanted something quick for Halloween. However, if I do end up going to Starbase Indy, I might splurge and get the more show accurate costume… Once I get some pictures of me in my costume (I’ve got to get my hair cut and freshly dyed first!), I’ll happily share them here! 😀
I’ll admit, in some ways I’m a bit of a late blooming nerd. I may have been playing video games since I was in kindergarten, in the days of the Nintendo Entertainment System, and I’ve been a fan of science-related things (especially anything related to the solar system) since my dad brought home the Adventures in the Solar System book and book-on-tape combo when I was six. (And yes, that link takes you to the same audio book I listened to as a kid, although with a different book cover. Oh, the nostalgia…) But I’d never watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer until 2013. I hadn’t read Ender’s Game until I was in my late 20s. And I hadn’t seen any Star Trek, aside from Generations when it was in the theaters (it was my first date ever!) and the reboot movies, until very recently. Despite having a mother who really enjoyed Star Trek, though, I never really got into it.
Ross, however, grew up on Star Trek. He can rattle off the specifications of half the ships in the show, and tell you about all sorts of connections between the various series of Star Trek. Heck, he just flopped down next to me with the Star Trek: The Next Generation Technical Manual and is reading it while I’m writing this. And me, being the curious person I am, and looking for something new to watch, and having enjoyed the reboot movies and shows like Firefly and Farscape, figured I’d see what Ross enjoyed so much and jump in with Star Trek: The Next Generation. The only knowledge I went into the show with was that there was an android in there named Data, that Patrick Stewart played Jean-Luc Picard and was generally pretty damn awesome, and that LeVar Burton was in it (I watched a lot of Reading Rainbow as a kid, and was pretty excited to see him in something else). And Whoopi Goldberg was in there somewhere. And that they were all on the USS Enterprise. But that was it.
Now, a couple months after watching my first episodes of The Next Generation, I’m following the entire cast of TNG on Twitter. All my alert noises on my cellphone are various alert tones and computer noises from Star Trek. (I get very confused when the Enterprise gets hailed when I’m watching TNG, as I’m not sure if the ship’s just received a message or if I have) I watch at least an episode a day, if not more, and I’m almost halfway through season six of The Next Generation – and I just started season two of Deep Space Nine. I’m seeing what pulled everyone else into the world of Star Trek.
The biggest thing I’ve noticed about watching Star Trek is that some of these episodes really tug at your feelings. I’ve become attached to the characters, and care about what happens to them. I freaked out when Dr. Crusher mysteriously disappeared for the entirety of Season 2 of TNG, and was incredibly relieved when she came back for season 3. I watched Wesley grow up from a whiny little teenager and enter Starfleet Academy. I felt so many feels every time Data would long to be human, and would try his hardest to emulate human behaviors to become more like his crewmates. I eventually grew to like Counselor Troi, and I can even tolerate her ridiculous mother now. (Barely.) Watching Worf deal with the fact that he’s got a son, and watching him be a parent, is equally touching and hilarious. (I may have recently watched Too Many Datas, and spent half the episode laughing…)
And there’s more to it than the feels I get when watching particularly good episodes. I’ve gotten sucked into the fandom. I spend time poking around on subreddits dedicated to Star Trek, and enjoy reading through new fan theories and interesting discussions. I watch ridiculous videos of You Tube captions failing horribly when it comes to captioning video from a Klingon video game. I make up lyrics to the opening theme songs. (Just ask Ross. They’re ridiculous, and change almost every time I watch an episode…)
And I realized, once I run out of episodes of The Next Generation, that doesn’t mean that I’ve run out of Star Trek. I still have all of the original series to watch, and Deep Space Nine, and Voyager, and Enterprise if I’m feeling desperate (I’ve heard it’s not very good), as well as all the movies. And there’s even more than that. There are books, and websites, and even more to go explore. And it’s ridiculously exciting. I feel much like I did when I discovered Sailor Moon, or My Little Pony – absolutely hooked. I may be a nerdy late bloomer, but I’m glad I discovered my passion for Star Trek when I did. I think I’m enjoying it more now than I would have had I tried to watch more than one episode on my tiny black-and-white TV as a kid. You have no idea how excited I am to watch more episodes of the show, read more crazy fan theories (like the one where Guinan is apparently a time lord), talk about what I’ve seen with friends, and learn all there is to learn. Ultimately, the Star Trek fan in me is what grew out of the little girl who used to sit in her dad’s den, listening to Adventures in the Solar System on the surround sound, looking at the brightly colored pictures of the planets and listening to the somewhat sci-fi-esque adventures of a little boy and his robot that can turn into a spaceship. That little girl loved learning about space and the planets, and daydreamed about going out there herself someday – and this grown-up woman, well, she still dreams about it, and while she can’t exactly hop on a spaceship and go fly around the galaxy, she can lose herself in the stories of characters who do.