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1  CLOTHING / Clothing: Discussion and Questions / Sewing with stretchy jersey fabric is driving me SPARE on: May 31, 2012 07:12:46 AM
Okay, can anyone tell me how on earth you're supposed to work with jersey?  The problem I'm having is that the fabric is stretchy, meaning I can't actually leave a mark on it with tailor's chalk - neither the pencil sort or the traditional little triangles of the stuff.  The fabric just stretches and distorts under the chalk no matter how hard I hold it down, or where I hold it down.

What on earth am I supposed to do here?
2  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Discussion and Questions / Looking for the original images off these soup cups for embroidering on: April 15, 2012 08:50:07 AM


My great-gran had a whole set of these mugs when I was a wee one, all hung off hooks along one wall of her kitchen.  I'm currently trying to find out more about them so I can collect the whole set (I think they were some sort of magazine thing where you order one a month or something), and I also want to make some complimentary stuff for the kitchen to go with.

I'd love to embroider some teatowels, wall hangings and other stuff to go in our kitchen with the images from these - has anyone seen the images printed flat on anything?  It'd make it way easier to work from, I could directly trace the images instead of trying to hand-draw my own (inevitably flawed) versions.  Also, a flat image would let me convert to a x-stitch pattern to get the required thread colours.

I'd appreciate any help you guys could offer...
3  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / TAST and Embroidered Diary Project on: April 14, 2012 10:25:20 AM
So I've been working on learning more stitches by taking part in the TAST 2012 over at pintangle.  I joined late, so I'm playing catch-up each week by doing the current week and a previous one at the same time.  Instead of making samplers, I decided to learn by stitching up an embroidered diary entry each week to incorporate that week's TAST stitch.  Two finished and I'm about to start my third in the next couple of days.

I wanted to upload pics here, but my photos all turned out to be HUGE (4MB in some cases), so I hope you don't mind if I just post a couple on here and add links to my tumblr, where there's more detail?

Here's my entry for week ending 1st April 2012, which incorporated stitches for TAST weeks 2 and 14.  It also includes shisha, beads and a variety of other stitches.


Tumblr link with more pics here:  http://uristmcdorf.tumblr.com/post/20463952843/woo-finished-well-okay-so-the-embroidery-part

And here's the most recently finished piece for TAST weeks 3 and 15


Tumblr link with more pics here: http://uristmcdorf.tumblr.com/post/21083954164/apologies-for-the-variable-picture-quality-i
4  CLOTHING / Clothing for Curvaceous Craftsters: Discussion and Questions / Looking for a jacket or waistcoat pattern to showcase some embroidery on: March 30, 2012 04:54:34 AM
So I finished up some embroidery based on an Urban Threads piece, and I want to show it off by adding it to some clothes.

Here's the piece I made

http://uristmcdorf.tumblr.com/post/20073885337/finished-you-can-sort-of-see-where-i-fucked-up

I've decided I want to make a waistcoat, or perhaps a thin Spring jacket, and reverse applique the embroidery over the shoulder.  Anyone know of a decent plus-size waistcoat or jacket pattern that I could make work?  It'd probably want to make the jacket in black linen and add some more fun accents to it, so something designed for a lighter fabric would be brilliant. 

I've been googling for ideas but it's hard to tell how well something will suit me when all the pattern sleeves show tall, slender, small-breasted women on them, and I'm short, fat and busty!
5  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Discussion and Questions / Take a Stitch Tuesday - Week 11 on: March 14, 2012 04:19:45 AM
So, I've decided (fairly late) to take part in Take a Stitch Tuesday over at PinTangle.  http://www.pintangle.com/journal/2012/3/13/take-a-stitch-tuesday-week-11.html

This week it's the whipped spider's wheel stitch.  I really want to do more than just a few copies of the basic stitch, and was wondering if anyone else is taking part, and if any of you guys have suggestions for possible creative ways to play with the stitch?
6  CLOTHING / Clothing for Curvaceous Craftsters: Discussion and Questions / Trying to figure out a pattern on: January 03, 2012 12:11:56 PM
I really like this top...

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Strapless-GOTHIC-Long-Wrap-Buckle-Bustier-Waistcoat-Top-BLACK-RED-Size-22-/120824087632?pt=UK_Women_s_Tops_Shirts&hash=item1c21ad4450

Except for the ruffle along the top.  I'm doomchested, so frilly ruffles on top will look a bit odd on me.  Also, while the top is offered in plus sizes, the model is straight-shaped, slim and moderately-chested, so 'm not sure how well the larger sizes will fit (what is it with plus-size clothes being sold on slim models?!)

I'm trying to work out a pattern for the top to make my own- anyone able to offer any pointers?
7  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Some Shisha Embroidery Projects on: May 20, 2011 04:25:22 PM
I have fallen somewhat in lurve with shisha embroidery.  I've been making some little trinketty things and have been trying to figure out things to do with them, I might possibly make some stuff to sell if it turns out good enough.

My photos are awful but...



I worked a shisha'd glass mirror in with beads, french knots and satin stitch and fixed it onto a faux leather backing.  My first thought was brooch backs, but then I thought... how about a hand mirror?  Get some round glass mirrors the size of my palm, work up the back the same way to be the size of the mirrors, sandwich a palm-sized mirror between the shisha'd back and a faux leather ring of fabric with a hole in and you've got a decorative handheld mirror for the handbag.  Do you think something like that would sell?  Would it be worth the time spent making them, or should I just stick to making them for personal use and as gifts?

Here's a WIP using the same method, but worked to a larger, more mirror-appropriate size.


Whatcha think?
8  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Discussion and Questions / Soap Failures of the Day on: April 21, 2011 02:30:32 PM
First, a lovely creamy white HP soap set dry and crumbly, cracked with dark yellow oil oozing from it.  Then, the rebatch somehow got full of crunchy black bits.  Next, a new batch of HP soap using the same recipe did not saponify, but instead separated into a huge vat of clear oil with an inch of white scum on top and refused to do anything more.  In addition, a lovely men's shaving soap poured into pots that was well mixed with bentonite clay set with streaks visible through the pot.

Sigh.

I don't know what I did wrong, but commiserations would be appreciated.
9  BATH AND BEAUTY / Bath and Beauty: Completed Projects / My soaps were saved after all! on: April 18, 2011 09:57:35 AM
So as a few of you will know from the discussion page, my soapmaking experiments have been ALL OVER THE PLACE recently.  I rebatched my soaps, combining them where necesarry to save them, and it worked!  My soaps are okay!


Black tea soap with little chips of goatsmilk soap - soft and very gentle on the skin, but you feel sooo clean afterwards


Small-size bars of goatsmilk soap.  The soap turned so dark I was worried, but it lightened to a yummy pale caramel colour in the end


50% castille 50% goats milk marbled bar.  I love this one - going to make a bigger batch of just the castille next.

I would like neater, square sides to my soaps so I'm going to try lining a drawer to use as a mold next, I think.  Also got my first sale from my shop and have used the proceeds to buy loads of yummy supplies for more soaps.

I'm making a green tea soap next.  I was wondering - has anyone used matcha powder instead of leaves for it?  How did it work out?  What about bubble tea powders?
10  CLOTHING / Clothing for Curvaceous Craftsters: Discussion and Questions / Gifuring out a few top patterns on: April 17, 2011 04:14:13 AM
Since Joe Browns have not bothered to update their plus range for almost a year whilst their "normal" range updates every season, and since they still only sell their plus range at one of those pay-back-monthly places, I've decided to try and remake their clothes myself.

I love the style of so many of their pieces.  More than that, the few plus items I bought from them are SO comfortable.  But if they don't want my money then this is going to have to be it, I guess.  I'm wanting to figure out the basic patterns of some of their pieces...

http://www.joebrowns.co.uk/sp+Womens-Casual-Tops-White-Cornelli-Blouse+LC494
This one I think I've figured out.  There is a seam running along under the bust shaped to the bust itself, and arching up along the back.  From there it looks like I think pintucks along the front and back centre, so in theory then the body section would be straight at the sides, just wider than the bust section.  When I've bought tops from Joe Browns before that have a bust seam, the seam tends to be elasticated but I can't tell if it is in this piece or not.  Also, does anyone know - would I shape the bottom hem to curve like that when cutting, or would the curved appearance come from the tucks at the top?  Am I seeing tucks at the armpit?

http://www.joebrowns.co.uk/sp+Womens-Casual-Tops-Two-Layer-Sacred-Spirit-Top+LC499
Trickier because the website doesn't show images of the two separate items, just the two worn together.  But the undertop at least looks fairly simple - I'm going to assume a simple flared torso and I'll probably not bother with the elastic stitching (forgot what it is called) at the front neck.  The waistcoat/tunic type thing looks simple but if anyone knows of an existing pattern that I could use to get things like the bust shaping right I'd be grateful.

http://www.joebrowns.co.uk/sp+Womens-Dresses-Tunics-Sexy-Waterfall-Dress+LD200
This one is pretty self explanatory, but again if anyone knows an existing pattern I could use for a dress that I could then just hitch up to match that would be great.

Soooo yeah...

If anyone can point out anything I've missed or suggest useful base patterns to work from, please let me know!
Also, anyone who wants to join me in badgering Joe Browns customer service guys to SELL BIGGER SIZES DAMNIT please do Cheesy
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