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1  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: Adults only swap round 8 on: August 09, 2013 02:05:04 PM

I got Painted Sparrow's lovely gifts today:

  • a couple of nice little storage bags (which will come in very handy),
  • a beautiful tickler with a hand-sculpted handle,
  • a rope flogger I can't wait to try (lucky my favorite partner for that kind of thing is coming over tonight. . .), and
  • a pillow embroidered with several of my favorite words that is definitely going to have a prominent place in the new apartment I'm planning to move into in a few weeks, 
  • plus, for "extras", a massage candle that just happens to be in one of my sweetheart's favorite scents. 
 
Score!

Thanks so much; I'll really enjoy all of these.  And I appreciate the time and effort you put in to making them with colors and patterns I dig and finishing everything so neatly.  Quality work.  Smiley
2  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / mini-flogger earrings (tutorial) on: August 09, 2013 03:12:08 AM

I made these for my partner in Adults Only Swap Round 8, and was rather pleased with how they came out.  They weren't hard to make, but it did take some figuring, and I thought maybe I'd share the details in case somebody else wanted to make a pair.

For each earring, you will need:

  • 3 two-foot lengths of six-strand cotton embroidery floss in Color A
  • 3 two-foot lengths of six-strand cotton embroidery floss in Color B
  • a French hook

Thread all 6 pieces of floss through the loop on the hook. 


Attach the hook to something handy.  (I used the end of a little plastic basket in which I keep beads and findings and the like.)  Separate the floss, Color A to the right, and Color B to the left.  Smooth the strands.


Gather all of the strands together, keeping the two colors side-by-side.  Tie them in a snug overhand knot that catches the loop of the hook.  (Having the colors separated will make the knot neatly half-and-half.)

Separate the floss into four equal groups, two of each color.  (There will be three lengths of floss in each group.)


Plait the four groups of floss into a standard four-part round braid for about an inch, using a spiraling color pattern.  Gather the floss back together and tie another snug overhand knot.

Split two of the dangling lengths of Color A floss in half, producing four groups of three strands each.  Plait them into a four-part round braid for about two inches.  Tie them with a tight overhand knot.  Trim the loose ends to a quarter inch or so.  (There will be a fair amount of discard floss, but you need extra length to hold on to while you're doing the braiding; it's not really wasted.)


Repeat with the rest of the floss, two matching lengths at a time.  Try to make the braids identical in length.

When you've braided all the floss, straighten the braids and trim the "tassels" to make the finished falls all the same length.  (This will make any variation in the placement of the knots less obvious.)

Gently roll the thicker braid between your fingers if it needs straightening.

The finished earrings are roughly three inches from the top knot to the end of the falls.  (That made them almost 4 inches from the hook to the end, with the hooks I had.) 

I used the same basic technique to make a smaller pair for myself--about 2 inches from the top of the knot to the end of the falls.  I used four lengths of floss instead of six, braided the handle for only half an inch, and separated the lengths into two-strand groups to braid the falls, which I made an inch long. 


How much they look like floggers depends on how bunched up the falls are, whether the earrings are curled, etc.. . .as well as, I expect, who's looking at them and whether they expect to see floggers in their day-to-day lives.  I think they're inobtrusive enough to wear just about anywhere, but look enough like their inspiration to be fun to wear to a munch or party (or just to tip your honey off to the mood you're in tonight).
3  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: Adults only swap round 8 on: August 08, 2013 10:23:00 PM
Painted Sparrow, I'm so glad everything arrived intact, and that you like it!  I hope you enjoy using it all.

The split leather paddle thingy is called a tawse.  They were all the rage in Scottish schools 50-100 years ago.  (Isn't the Internet full of the most interesting facts?)
4  Craft Swaps / ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED / Re: Adults Only Swap Round 8 Sign Up July1-15 Send outs Aug 3 on: July 05, 2013 12:28:28 PM
I'm excited to join this swap.  It'll be my first on Craftster, so please be patient if I overlook a procedural detail!  (I have participated in swaps on SwapBot, and hosted one, so I'm not worried about the crafting-and-shipping part.)

5  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Re: My first attempt at restoring a book from the late 1800s on: June 28, 2013 05:51:21 PM
Lovely work.  And so much better than discarding the cover or covering half of it with repair tape!

I do hope you took the time to write your own inscription, explaining when / how / why / by whom the book was refreshed.  Somebody 100 years from now might revel in that glimpse at its history.   Smiley
6  PURSES, BAGS, WALLETS / Purses, Bags, Wallets: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / tote from pants and a T-shirt on: June 28, 2013 04:04:24 AM

I made this tote for a SwapBot swap in which I participated.  The remit was to make or embellish a reusable tote.  The recipient likes pink, so I chose to start with a worn pink T-shirt with a really pretty scene printed on it that'd been waiting to be repurposed.  I cut the image out, stabilized the edges with strips from the leg of a pair of pants, and then flat lined it with a larger piece from the same source.


I turned sections from another pair of pants into a back panel for the bag.  I used a narrow strip from the T-shirt to create piping where I pieced them together, and replaced the button on the pocket one section contained with a brighter one.  Then I flat-lined it as I had the front panel. 

The waistband from the first pair of pants became the sides and strap, and another piece from the second pair the bottom of the bag.


I'll probably try the "picture frame" approach to giving T-shirt prints structure again.  It eliminated the sagging from which Jersey usually suffers quite effectively.  With its two sturdy layers, the bag has a nice weight and I think it'll hold up well to use.
7  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Re: 50s Housewife gingham circle skirt on: February 17, 2013 02:24:03 PM
Very nice!  That's the kind of skirt that makes a girl think buying a crinoline would be a sensible thing to do. . .
8  MORE ART, LESS CRAFT / More Art, Less Craft: Completed Works / Re: Beginning calligraphy practice on: February 14, 2013 11:43:45 PM
Nice work!

I did notice the difference in spacing on "Laughing", but I thought it was intentional.  Spreading it out a little more is one way to emphasize a word or phrase--an effect similar to but more subtle than that of putting it in a different color ink or a different hand.  I just figured you were saying, "Laughing is not allowed. . .."
9  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Re: Corset Sachets & Pattern plus luggage tag on: February 10, 2013 08:22:13 PM
Lovely job.  You convey such an impression of detail with just a few lines.
10  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Re: Merlin Blackwork on: February 01, 2013 01:53:56 AM
The style of this is a lot like that seen in kits from The Craft Collection Limited that various people are selling or have sold on eBay, including kits for Arthur, Lancelot, and Guinevere and the castle of Camelot.  I haven't seen a Merlin, yet, but it strikes me as likely that there is one, somewhere, and if its pattern is not the kit that aethelberga used, it might be quite similar.

I haven't found a website for the company.  Maybe they don't sell direct to the public.  Or maybe the name they put in big letters on the top of all their products isn't the one they call their company by online, so it's hard to tell their site from all the ones that resell their stuff.  (That's what happens with Aunt Martha's iron-on transfers; their site is under "Colonial Patterns, Inc.".)  In any event, if you're lucky your local needlecraft store might be able to help you track them down, especially if you're in the U.K. (where they're based).
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