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Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Alabama Flowers

In addition to having lovely patterns for clothes, the Alabama Stitch Bookalso has instructions for making flowers from scraps of jersey.  I'm almost finished with another skirt, and couldn't resist making a couple of blooms from the burgundy knit:
It was super easy -- cut two long strips of jersey, and on one long side snip every quarter inch or so to make fringe, then roll the two strips up together and stitch through the base to secure.  They will join the rest of my crafty flowers.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

Beaded Beads III

These beads are all from a pattern by Sylvia Becker, from the Winter 1998 issue of Beadwork:
The pattern is an odd one, using odd-count tubular peyote but with distinct rows rather than a spiral.  I found it hard to keep track of the rows and the extra beads to complete them offended my sense of symmetry, so after the first two I modified the pattern to make it even-count.  In either case I ended up with a slightly squashy, blobby bead with a sturdy core.

These beads were begging to be strung into a simple necklace, so I obliged with some hemp cord.  I experimented with different spacers:
but I didn't like any of them, so I tried knots instead:
Much better.

Odd is better than even, so I omitted one of the pink beads.

I finished it by just tying the cord ends to a clasp and jump ring; that way I can add more beads if I make more.

Monday, September 15, 2014

To the Stranger who Stopped Me on the Street to Give Me Parenting Advice

I think Wendy Molyneux says it best:

"Oh nice lady, you are probably right! I should definitely cover his face always so he doesn’t get sun on it. If he is exposed to the sun for even one moment, even as I am simply walking from the mechanic to a coffee shop where I have to unexpectedly stop to feed him because my car broke down, he will probably immediately get sun disease or burst into flames."

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Floral Garland

This idea came from the Crafty Chica, when she appeared on a long-ago HGTV craft show (they only do home renovation stuff now, boo!).  I can't find any trace of the show, segment, or even a photograph of the project, but I remembered enough of the basics -- pull apart fake flowers, glue the petals together in a chain -- to make it anyway.
For interest I layered two petal segments on top of each other, and added a sequin to the centers.  This is the only photo I have because the natural light from all the windows makes taking a decent photo impossible, but the garland is about 26 flowers long.  It is currently draped under my vejigante masks.

Monday, September 1, 2014

It's Curtains for the Birds!

I decided I needed a new way to display my birds, and I got the idea of attaching a white panel surrounded by a colorful border, and using that as a curtain for a pair of bare windows in my living room.
(Despite the fact that the windows are on the north side, they still get enough light that I could only photograph the curtain at night.)

The white center was easy -- I had some nice fabric left over from simple white curtains I made for my bedroom.  It wasn't wide enough to cover both windows, but that would be fixed with a border.  Rooting through my fabric stash I found a collection of half yard and fat quarter cuts of bright Guatemalan-inspired fabric, which would be perfect.  I chose for the first border a half-yard of a bargello-like print in a rainbow of colors, which yielded a three inch border.  That wasn't enough, so I added a second border of five inch squares and five by ten inch rectangles cut from an assortment of wovens shot through with contrasting threads.  Satisfied, I held it up to the windows, and it still wasn't wide enough.  I was running out of fabric, but I took the two black fat quarters, cut them up into two and a half inch strips and had enough to border the whole thing.  But now the height of the curtain was way too long, and interfered with the air conditioner -- too bad I didn't pay attention to that dimension when I was sewing.  Off came the black borders on the top and bottom, along with an inch of the second border.  I finished the curtain by lining it with a spare white bed sheet, and I was done.

I don't keep my birds up all year, so I think I will use the curtain as a display for other things, too.  Like all my brightly colored, handmade ornaments -- I've finally reached the point where I have too many to decorate a medium-size tree, and I no longer display extras on the mantle (having become thoroughly enamored of my Three Kings display).  Maybe I'll put my Day of the Dead doohickies there, too.