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61  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Completed Projects / Polyester = wasp food!?! on: June 20, 2011 07:35:20 AM
My mother in law believes in waste. As soon as it's at all damaged, it goes straight in the skip. The concept of charity shops or freecycle or just giving stuff away does not compute for her, so when the last skip came, I rescued quite a lot from it. This is my first finished project from the rescued items.

Background on me: My husband and I have an obsession: Kites, sports kites in particular, but any sort will do for me! STACK (our sporting association) is in need of a new gazebo/marquee after our last one failed to stand up to the winds (a failing, I know, in a sport that is wind dependant). The commercial ones that are available start at 10 times our budget and go up from there! So, a gazebo with a wasp damage for free sounded great.

That was until I started looking at the damage: who knew wasps would eat 100% polyester with waterproof coating impregnated in it. So, I cut up one of the side walls that we are unlikely to use and set to.


This is a typical set of holes, as you can see the side walls (patch) are a different grade of polyester than the roof, but I discovered it before I cut, but decided to go with it anyway as there was no chance of getting patches in the same stuff. All of this material frays like mad, but I'm a kiter: I know how to stop fraying in polyester, just singe the edges- much quicker and more reliable than hemming. So I used my trusty 2mph wind detector (a cheapo lighter- blows out in anything above 2mph, which conveniently is also the minimum wind for competition)

Because we've had trouble with wind damage before, I made a vent at the top.


So if the wind pressure inside increases, it'll just blow out the venting panels and not shake the gazebo to bits.
Conceptually it's simple: holes in the top and then a loose cover over the top so the wind can get out, but the rain can't get in.
This was a bit of a nightmare: the top panels are very slightly tapered, but if you put a 90 degree angle to the tent, it is visually correct. I thought a bit harder however and then realised that I needed a little give in it so that the vent can work efficiently.  In order to stop it blowing off completely it is stitched down at 8 equidistant points around the circumference and at the summit.

And this is the finished item (I really couldn't be bothered to put it up to full height for photographing, I could just reach to stitch the top at half height).


All in all, about 6 hours of repairs.
62  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Getting it all together on: May 26, 2011 12:15:50 PM
I'm not really convinced that this should go here, but I can't really find another board where it fits either, so, with apologies if I've got it wrong, here goes:

I made myself a whopping great crochet hook last post, and since then I've been inspired to dig out my other crochet hooks, to see if I can actually follow a pattern yet, BUT, I'm sure I had more than these 2, they seem to have been disappearing, so I'd better get my act together before the remaining 3 run away.
I tied them down!

but to make their little prison a bit nicer it is silk lined!


I raided the recycling again and found a pair of formal trousers and a pair of silk boxers of my husband's. I wanted some nice tight weaves as I knew that my smallest hook I found was a 2.5mm and I didn't think it was the smallest I had (but heaven knows where my tiny one is), likewise there are many more spaces than the hooks I can currently find.
The applique is because it was looking a bit boring, and because I could!

p.s. I still can't follow a pattern!

63  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: General / Cutlery keeps falling at my feet. on: May 26, 2011 11:52:30 AM
It's windy here, very windy. The sticks are falling from the trees. I look at them and see shapes inside, begging to come out Cheesy

So far, apart from the crochet hook I made first, I've got a little pickle fork (although I can't stand pickles, I love olives and stem ginger in syrup, just not together!) and a spreader for my butter, jam, honey or marmite.


Now, I wonder what else is waiting to emerge?
64  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / A load of old rubbish! on: May 24, 2011 08:22:01 AM
First of all I have to say thank you to the lovely tutorial on this page http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=232043.0 from lovething who inspired me.

It's been a work of love and has taken far, far longer than I ever imagined it could. On the way it inspired some trivets and maybe, if I feel up to it, a necklace, but that comes later, much later!



So that you know scale, it's 30cm high, about the same as an ordinary room waste bin. It has a lovely urn shape that just evolved as I glued it.
65  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / It's a long way to the shop. on: May 24, 2011 08:12:49 AM
It IS a long way to the shop, compared with the 50 meters away where I used to live! It takes a planned half day and with the price of fuel the way it is, if I can make do closer to home, I just have to.

I was given 4 very old T shirts and it's a fair way to the fabric recycling bin too, so I made yarn from them, and then I had no tools to work with it Angry

But it's windy round here, sticks are falling from the trees all around, so now I've got waste sticks too..............
AHA! Smiley

One pen knife and an emery board later:


and later there may well be pictures of a rug too Cheesy
66  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) / Snakeskin effect on: May 07, 2011 03:42:01 PM
I do like ATC's, they enable me to experiment.

The title for this one is Beastly's better.


Ok, so I cheated, the easiest way to get a snakeskin effect is to use snakeskin! And as my beast has just shed his skin I thought I'd try it. I loved the way it was translucent, so underneath is an ink and pencil sketch of the beast in his favourite pose. The drawing hasn't come through in all it's details, but it's a learning process.
I've also used the edge blackening process I learned from the share a technique thread. I'm quite pleased with that.
I wanted to try the embossing technique for aluminium cans, but really, it's very scarce that we drink any, so I had to make do with heavy duty tin foil from a pie case, so it's not as sturdy, but was much easier to emboss.

Do you like it or is it a bit creepy or icky?
67  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / But I moved house... on: April 18, 2011 08:03:43 AM
I had a Tshirt, I wore it a lot, but then I moved out and no longer live in Wales


so I had to do something


Not very complex or difficult, but it's changed from a tshirt I can't wear, to one I can Smiley That's reconstruction enough for me.
68  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing Machines: Discussion and Questions / Is there a foot out there for me? on: April 10, 2011 02:44:30 AM
I have an old, old, electric machine (the same one that was bought second hand to make my baby clothes and I'm over 40). Mostly it is used to make kites, however, the new design means we have to sew a slippery fabric (icarex) to a round cross section braided line (think firm, quite dense string). Is there a foot on the market that will guide the string under the needle? One that has a groove in the centre? A zipper foot doesn't work at all, it just pushes the line away from the needle.

We have used less dense line in the past, but now we really need the properties of this dense one. It's not impenetrable: I can hand sew it, but not for the amount of line we need attached!

Any advice would be gratefully received, even if it is that such a thing does not exist.
69  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / One day, when I was pruning...... on: April 07, 2011 02:22:15 PM
One day, when I was pruning......
.....I accidentally dragged the prunings across the ground and thought "oh, that seems like a good idea" and my hand broom was born


The broom bits are the dead pieces out of my upright thyme bush, so they not only sweep well, but they smell nice as they do so. The handle is a dead branch from the leylandii outside the front door that I whittled smooth, then sanded to be rid of the last few splinters. N.B. Just underneath the bark of the leylandii is very sticky, perhaps resin? but just a couple of millimetres beneath that it's fine. It's bound together with cotton yarn.

In a perfect world I'd have chosen my twigs so they had a nice straight piece of stem for the binding, and they would have all been the same length too, but seeing as I used all of the prunings I had to go with what I've got. So if a twig falls out, I just push it back in.
70  PAPER CRAFTS, SCRAPBOOKING & ATCs (ARTIST TRADING CARDS) / Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) / Physics is fun on: February 24, 2011 06:25:16 AM
Well, I thought I'd try my hand at some ATC's. But what could I do? Well, I've been seeing all these altered book pages and liking the look of them, but I just can't bring myself to destroy a book, not even a dreadful one. So a rummage in the recycling bin later: Physics World. It has some amazing articles in it about fascinating things (yes I am a geek) which, after I'd reread a few, emerged as a cool theme in my opinion.

So, here are my first set of cards


and a close up of one of them

titled Moving in High Society

I've learned lots of things in the process of making these:
I don't like using a water based glue on paper is one of them!
But among the better things:
Tea staining (and beetroot staining)
Different edging styles for paper
Different methods of creating texture
The difference a border can make!

In future I would try to curve the corners, perhaps add some different materials, dry the cards under pressure to keep them flat (later pressure doesn't work so well), improve my drawing skills! and use a different glue.

Constructive criticism very welcome
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