Original: I had a stomachache, and didn't want to get out of bed.
Next to the bed there was a small amount (2 grams?) of quiviut. I'd removed it from a small bit of musk ox hide earlier in the day. I figured, what the heck, I'll try making some quiviut thread, by hand, just like in the ancient, ancient days.
Got about 15 yards done so far (oh there's *tons* more fluff to work through, LOL, I had no idea 5g of quiviut = 100 yards!), using my left hand as the orifice, and my right thumb and forefinger as the twister/spindle...
Update: OK, it's done! The scarf weighs a whopping 900mg -- under a gram! and is over 6 feet long x 2 to 3 spaces (2 to 3 knit-holes) wide. It appears to an observer to be about 1/4" wide and slightly openwork. (I still have 5 little balls of yarn left over, so, I might make another scarf ) It will make a fabulous base for a fur scarf. The entire process: grooming the quiviut out, finger-spinning it & setting the twist, then finger-knitting it in to the scarf, took 2 hours. The value on an item like this is based more on the time/labor then the materials; this scarf was 2 hours x $40 + 900mg spun-up 1-ply pure quiviut at $10/g. = $89. It is not for sale -- I am just showing you one way of how to calculate the value of an item you produce. To compare, my former lightest scarf base was made out of nylon microfiber and weighed about 10g at 5 feet long x 2-3 knit holes (spaces). Now I only have to decide what fur is most worthy to be woven through one of the most expensive and rare base fibers available.
If you want to dress her up in pictures or just for pics and laughs, take some pictures of her in her natural clothing - just her fur - then dress her up in Photoshop. That I can guarantee you will not irritate her, especially her little armpits. There's a free version of Photoshop available online at Adobe (or so I heard). I don't mean the trial version - they apparently have a web-based freebie out now for all.
OneRedBoot was my swap partner. She got this item from me yesterday, but is very pressed for time -- so much so that I haven't heard from her but twice in the whole swap. So here's my favor to her, I'm posting the picture.
In person, the greenish color, is much more blue. The color scheme is dark lapis/indigo, and dark/rich turquoise. It is beautiful.
the undyed, all-natural, naturally-molted feathers of USA born, living pet birds: hyacinth macaw blue-throated (caninde) macaw emerald toucanet ### all of these birds are very rare, and the feathers are very hard to find! ###
and: premium white deerskin suede acrylic paint & ** enamel clearcoat blue rice-paper (under the feathers) ** corrugated board (for stiffness)
** denotes the item was free
valued at approx. $150 (cost of materials ~$85) but sent to my swap partner for free (I also sent some emu feathers worth about $20).
One of her messages to me said she liked my brooches, so, I figured I'd make a couple. Originally I was going to send both but the cost of materials was just too high. So here is the one sent. Inspired by her wist. One of the items on it was made out of 2 colors of opaque stained glass and had similar swirly designs on it. It was a circle with lead-tin solder edges, high polish. This one is more oval, is a pin, and has additional work done to it, and is in a completely different medium. That is because I believe knockoffs are bad, so I was very careful not to knock off anyone's design.
The natural edge of the feathers was used where possible to emphasize their authenticity; where it was impossible the edges were trimmed.
The back is very plain. It could be decorated if she wished. I used extra adhesive to make sure the pin would not peel off the suede; the leading problem of brooches and pins.
> say the swapper that had the organizer as their partner... and they were hoping for a master crafter that would send a hand stamped, amber and sterling silver cuff bracelet, but the organizer/partner is only new at bracelet making and she ends up with a pre-fab cuff form made out of nickel and brass with a swarovski crystal accent.... maybe the recipient is so ticked that they give the organizer a low score
I'd fault both of them for shoddy communication. The swapper should communicate with their partner in detail regarding what is to be produced, prior to commencement! If the swapper is asking for artisan quality stuff they had better be able to produce the same - matching n00b to master craftsman is an error, but, can be worked around.
All this "surprise your partner" stuff is where the monkey wrench comes in to play. It's nice to have a surprise, but at least give the recipient some kind of clue what's in store for them before they are disappointed. Asking for a range of items in a variety of skill levels, can mean you get stuff you are sure to like. The swappers can always request different items, sometimes made much simpler!
To use the above example, if the recipient got a nickel/brass cuff with a genuine Swarovski accent, what is stopping them from ripping the crystal off the bangle, chucking or cutting up the bangle and making a pendant out of the crystal? Why should they be mad? People on this board make stuff out of old tableware spoons, used plastic bags, and duct tape FCOL. Post it up on the board that you got something less-then-stellar and get on with your life, no need to trash someone else's feedback.
Neutral didn't work on eBay. They got rid of it by counting neutrals against sellers once 2 or more neutral feedbacks are reached. So if you get 3 neutrals, it counts against your score. Or something like that. Having neutral feedback on here would presumably also fail.
ALL feedback is subjective and personal. Great to one person is just okay to another. Slow to ship to one person is very fast to another. Any feedback system is open to bias.
Personally I'd rather rate partners - there are far more of them. Plus it's nice to see someone else's track record before you start working for them
If there was major interest then I'd seriously think about it, but the views seem to be low, the number of postings seems to be low, and a few of the people are saying (start in) "MAY" which leads me to believe that I'm 2 months too early in proposing the idea. I'm kinda sad, I wanted to do a very early April swap, sigh! Within the next 2 months I am *sure* someone else is going to grab the idea, so, I highly doubt that this swap is going to fly. Maybe, maybe not. We shall see!
Someone who is kind, polite, communicative, actually replies to e-mails, doesn't send info. out to other people without telling me first, doesn't act ''gimme'' when in direct conversation - i.e. is friendly and positive, not gossipy, etc etc etc. Basically, the opposite of selling something where in selling, it's just "here's the money, now send me my stuff." It is how I have tried to treat every swap partner I've had: we are supposed to enjoy the process and the connections made, not just the results.
My second batch (using rendered fat) came out almost white in color, fairly crumbly in texture, medium hard, and very pretty! I haven't demolded it yet because it's still more yellow in the center then on the top. I want it to be uniformly whitened before I pop it out of the mold to crumble it up.
Today: I re-batched my first soap (the stuff made from the raw ground fat.) I put about 90-95g of pure virgin olive oil in to a container. This is because I estimate I poured out about 90-95g of oil when I thought the batch had failed. I added about 35-40ml of water to the soap flakes. Then I heated up the soap flakes/water and the olive oil at the same time (2 different containers), in the microwave. Once everything was heated up almost to the "foam over the top" point -- I was watching for the dreaded volcano effect (LOL) - I took everything out of the microwave and combined the oil with the soap flakes/water. It went from oil on top, to emulsified and beginning to react, within a minute or 2. I stirred with a plastic fork. The color went from off-ivory (palest beige?) to a medium warm beige. The faint smell was like cooking olive oil. I stirred a lot. I broke up the larger lumps with my gloved hands, then I re-reheated it and stirred a lot more. It came out like a gooey semi-translucent (mostly opaque) gel? but at least it's not lye-heavy anymore. It has hardened up considerably and cannot be stirred anymore. It is resting in it's container now. It will be fun to use as an organic pesticide for the garden, and a great ingredient for my second favorite oddball thing to do... brain-tanning of hides.
That was a fun mess! Friday I shall do it all over again, but I'll render the fat and tissues this time! hehe!