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1  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / Talk About The Swap Process / Phone numbers on: December 29, 2013 10:32:16 AM
Two weeks ago, I sent a package to the USA and discovered something new on the address form that I have to fill in. I HAD to include the phone numbers of both myself (sender) and the receiver. It was printed in red, and therefore difficult to miss. I did not have the phone number and the lady working in our local post office said that the rule was new, but she chose not to fill in either numbers, and the packages still arrived.

I gave my phone number kind of reluctantly (I always try to follow the rules, but this one kind of scared me), but was unable to give the USA number. I did not like it at all, and it sort of frightens me. If they really make this a general rule, and refuse packages without both phone numbers, swapping will become extra difficult. Giving out my address is one thing, but a phone number?

Is this really new for Belgium, or is our little counrtry following general rules? And how would you feel about this?
2  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Haley's blankie on: December 29, 2013 10:04:18 AM
On another forum, one of the girls had a second girl. For the first, we did not know the sex of the baby, so I had to make do. I made a greenish blankie, with a huge mistake *ahum*. Only to discover, once the baby was born, that both mum and daughter (later on) adored pink. Green, not such a good idea...
So, with number two, I wanted to do a better job. Luckily, she was so kind this time to provide the sex of the baby. Earlier on, when they were still trying to get pregnant, she already hinted at hot pink for a girl, and turquoise for a boy. I remembered, found yarn that I liked, and this is the result. I was able to give the blankie yesterday, and mum seemed happy.

For one reason, I was unable to capture the colour well, it is much more vibrant in person. I could not keep trying at the time, because I made this pictures only one month after breaking my elbow.







On to the next project, because two more members are trying to get pregnant, and I still have to finish a toy.

EDIT: forgat to add the pattern: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/doily-baby-blanket / http://www.redheart.com/free-patterns/doily-baby-blanket
3  CROCHET / Crochet: Discussion and Questions / Making a snood on: October 18, 2013 12:59:06 PM
I have just finished a baby blanket and I'm finishing up a stacking toy.

No more friends pregnant (yes, one, but she doesn't want anything crocheted), so it's about time I make something for myself. I have been drooling on snoods for a while now, and I found this great pattern: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/snood-tastic
I cannot wait to start making one for myself.

But, I cannot help but wondering... Will the yarn make a difference? I mean, I normally take cotton for children's toys and blankets, or yarn that its washable at a slightly higher temperature. When talkings about snoods, I think about static electricty. It's something that I'd like to avoid in something that I'll put on my head. Or is it just unavoidable?

I have some yarn that I bought last year (clearance, yay!) and I think it's a synthetic cotton mix. I just don't want firebolts in my hair  Tongue.
4  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Discussion and Questions / Inspiration and advice please? on: August 17, 2013 02:11:06 AM
I've been away for too long, but for those who forgot who I am, I'm Irish dancer from Belgium. We have our own dance troupe, and it's going great. Tonight we have a big gig, on live music. Exciting!

Since founding Taradance (www.taradance.be and https://www.facebook.com/taradancebelgium?bookmark_t=page) we've been trying to find ways to gain more funds. Recently, we made 'promo boxes'.  These boxes are meant to go to every performance, and afterwards we sell some Taradance stuff. Currently, we sell t-shirts, tops and DVDs that we recorderd during our Aithne show. All good stuff, and people seem to like it, but we have to use a company to get our t-shirts made, so we make little profit.

I noticed that many folk bands also sell jewelry after their performances. Celtic inspired jewelery, very simple, using knotwork and the obvious celtic symbols (harp, triskel,...). I made the remark that I would be interesting if Taradance could do the same, and bang, they made me the jewelry designer in charge.

Now, before I can start, I have to make some designs on paper, using links to the beads I want to use and stuff like that. This is proving tricky. I found a bunch of tibetan silver harps, but they seem to have been sold. Only normal, but it irritates my sister, because she wants to see result. Yeah well...

So, I turn to Craftster, to find some inspiration and maybe guidance.
I'm still looking for websites that sell celtic inspired charms.
I'm still looking for slightly cheaper Irish dance related charms. I cannot pay over $20 for one charm...
I'm a bit lost as to what I need. I already have some of the necessary tools (pliers and stuff like that), but I'm sure there is more. I'm a bit lost when I use Google, there is just so much info...

These are some things I have been thinking about. I also appreciate your opinion as to whether this could be sold or not...

http://delishbeads.myshopify.com/products/18mm-clear-glass-dome-cabochons-for-20mm-ring-setting
To turn into either rings (maybe for kids) or necklaces. I would use our swan logo, or make pictures of our dance shoes, and put those behind the plastic. The sis is not sure about this...

http://wky8525shop.com/50-Blank-Acrylic-Keyrings-Insert-35x50mm-Photo-Keychains-92033--P342167.aspx
Also with the logo. The sis wants an embroidered shamrock in this one, but I fear it will be too much work. Plus, I cannot design embroidery patterns, and that is quite necessary...

http://www.msbijouxbeads.com/shamrock.html
For bracelets, and maybe use them with a tibetan silver charm underneath in earrings.

I would be so happy if you could help me, with whatever that comes to mind. Even if you fear for doing this, please share your thoughts.
5  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Twirling Pinwheels - for Savannah on: July 30, 2013 02:15:56 AM
I've been absent from Craftster far too long, and I'd love to return to the loving Craftster arms. I'm doing this by showing some crochet work that I did over the months. I love crochet, and everytime I hear of a new pregnancy, I just get my needles out and get going.

This is my masterpiece so far, and I won't be making any blankie like this anytime soon. The separate pieces were not too bad, although I struggles with the gauge big time. My first rounds were so small compared to the last ones... It's a good thing my sister asked me to ditch one row, so I had extras Tongue.
So, the pattern came from a book, 'Our best Baby afghans' from Leisure Arts. I first saw this blankie here, bought the book, and waited for the perfect baby. It became Savannah, the dear friend's daughter. But, because it was so much work, I was only able to give the blankie when the girl was almost a year old  Embarrassed. I now know to start EARLY  Tongue.

The colours are my sister's doing, as usual. She has an eye for it. The inspiration came from the friend herself. She made a cradle for her future children when she was in primary school. Her grandfather helped with the wood, and she tie-dyed fabric to cover the cradle. This tie-dye included all shades of blue and a bit of green. I just let my sister see the cradle, and she derived the colours from there.

I love it, and I think the result is great, but oh boy, the work!! Not to mention all the ends I had to tuck in. *shiver*


The edging curled up just a little bit, and I did not have enough time to block it.




And the necessary cat shot  Tongue
6  CROCHET / Crochet: Discussion and Questions / Baby shoes on: February 13, 2012 10:15:15 AM
I'm trying to crochet these beautiful baby shoes, but I am stuck. I hope someone can help me out, because I really want to get them finished...


Instructions: Chain 20
Row 1: Sc in 2nd chain from hook; sc in remaining; chain 1, turn. (19 sc)
Row 2 7: Sc across; ch 1, turn. Place markers at each end of row 7.
Row 8: Sc across; ch 1, turn.
Row 9: Dec 1 sc each side of row; ch 1, turn. (17 sc)
Row 10 -13: Sc across; chain 1, turn. (17 sc)
Row 14: Dec 1 sc each side of row (15 sc)
Turn. Do NOT yo. Draw up a loop in each of the next 15 sc; yo, draw through all 16 loops on hook; pull snugly; chain 1. Drop your yarn.
Fold bootie wrong sides together. Join length of yarn at base of heal, making sure wrong sides of piece are together. Sc up back of bootie to ankle. Fasten off, weave in ends.
Pick up dropped yarn at toe. Sc up to marked rows, then sc around ankle opening. Slipstitch into 1st sc at ankle opening. Chain 3; DO NOT TURN; dc at base of same stitch. Dc around to front center of ankle opening; chain 3; TURN; dc around*. Fasten off and weave in ends. Fold down cuffs at ankles and attach optional 9mm jingle balls securely with yarn at their corners or * incorporate the jingle balls into the stitches at the corners as you crochet them for maximum safety.

This is the pattern. I was able to get to row 14, and draw up all the loops required. But then... Drop your yarn? What is that suppossed to mean? I'm just a bit tempted to really drop my ball of yarn on the floor, but I guess it's not going to help. I mean, do I have to leave my yarn attached, or do I cut it off?

And then this line: Fold bootie wrong sides together. Join length of yarn at base of heal, making sure wrong sides of piece are together. Sc up back of bootie to ankle. Fasten off, weave in ends.
Do I have to work with the yarn that is sticking out there from the beginning?

I realise now this is a bit unclear without pictures. I'll try to upload some as soon as possible, but if someone has a brilliant idea...

EDIT: This is where I got the pattern: http://diymaven.com/2008/12/17/elfin-baby-booties/
7  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Just another baby blankie ;) on: February 12, 2012 02:36:17 AM
I still have to work hard to get to the skill that some Craftsters have, but I'm slowly getting there. This was a blanket for a friend of mine, who had a boy. Yep, a boy. But het favourite colour is purple, so I had to go with that. Credit to my sis though, for het colour choice. I sort of knew what I wanted, but she really helped me out.

Oh, and yes, I made a crucial mistake, that's why the blanket refuses to lay flat. The problem with colour changes is that you cannot go back once you've changed colour (at least, I cant't). So I tried to correct it in the bigger rounds, but to no avail. Oh well, as long as they'll use it to lay on top of the baby, it won't show  Tongue.





C&C appreciated.
8  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Simple monograms on: February 09, 2012 04:38:18 AM
We did a Secret Santa swap on our HP forum, and originally, I wanted to embroider the Slytherin crest. The cross-stitch one, from The Leaky Cauldron. I started really early, got on really well, and then discovered an unforgivable mistake at the very beginning. At first, I wanted to tear it out, gently, and start over. Then, when I realised time was ticking away, I tried to tear the thread out, ruining the fabric in the process. *sigh* I have not looked at it since then, too afraid that I have properly ruined it...

So, I needed a replacement, and noticed the Circus Alphabet on Urban Threads. I bought the entire alphabet, and used the A (for her name) and the K (for his name). My sister helped me with the colours, because she is a genius. It was my first time doing a regular embroidery work, I mainly cross stitch. But I like it, and I hope you do too...


Together with the other gifts...



http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y255/ideliesje/Handwerken/Januari-februari2012005.jpg --> I just need to learn to make my lines more straight, I guess...  Undecided



http://i7.photobucket.com/albums/y255/ideliesje/Handwerken/Januari-februari2012003.jpg --> yep, same story  Tongue

Thank you for looking!
9  FIBER ARTS / Dyeing: Discussion and Questions / How to get the smell out? on: February 08, 2012 04:05:42 AM
I think people will get sick of me, but here it goes, again!

My sister and I are Irish dancers, and we practically have our own Troupe (long story). The 25th of February, we have our first big show coming up, and we are rushing to get everything done. To make sure that we won't spend too much money on clothes, my sister decided to dye some of the fabric using what nature supplies. Being the season, we decided on red cabbage for our purple/blue dresses for the nymphs.
It was tricky, as we used old curtain fabric. The kind of see-through fabric, synthetic all the way. Anyway, it turned out okay. It didn't colour evenly, but that wasn't our goal. It's also not a solid colour, but slightly faint. Also okay.

Biggest problem? It smells. No, let me re-phrase that, it just stinks! My sis is currently cutting the fabric, and she using paper tissues to block her nose, to prevent her from gagging. We have to DANCE in that... Sis tried to wash it today, but even ordinary water, no soap, takes the colour away. No help there... Do you have some ideas? We really want to make it work, and I'm a bit afraid that we might end up as bad-smelling nymphs.
10  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / Talk About The Swap Process / Addresses... on: February 05, 2012 04:43:09 AM
Maybe it's only my problem, but I'm pretty sure that I'm not the only non-American here, and maybe others have encountered this as well. Would it not be possible to make it a general rule that all addresses should be typed as they should be written on the envelope? I have swapped a couple of times now, and often, when I received my partner(s) from my organiser, I just receive one line with the entire address on it. I live in Belgium, so American, Canadian, Australian,... addresses are sort of a mystery to me. I mean, I know what it says, but putting it in the correct order is sometimes a real struggle, as I cannot distinguish between street and state/city, with all those numbers in your addresses  Tongue.
It's just... I'm terrified that I might copy the address incorrectly and I would be considered a flaker or something like it. In the LV swap it was asked to type your address as it should be on the envelope. With all the correct spaces and lines.

Or would it make swapping too complicated?
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