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21  KNITTING / Knitting: Discussion and Questions / Re: I need a Scarf Pattern, help! on: October 04, 2009 11:21:57 PM
Hmmm  . . . it's hard to tell from the picture; it *kinda* looks like just big giant regular stockinette, on giant needles, with doubled/quadrupled yarn.

BUT it also could be one of my favorite and most easiest stitches -- [yo, K2tog], repeat.
(I've also done it the other way, I think: K2tog, yo)

Also, I think results are different depending on whether you start with an odd vs. even number of stitches cast on.

Experiment with it, tho -- it has easy but pretty results, and it's also a great way to make yarn stretch farther, project-wise; it's so airy that you can get a longer scarf out of the same amount of yarn.

Hope that helped -- good luck! ;o)
22  HOME SWEET HOME / Exterior Decorating / Yard Art / Gardening: Discussion and Questions / Re: Iris and .. the spider.. on: August 23, 2009 11:06:28 AM
Spider anatomy: unless I'm mistaken, that's its abdomen, just swollen up really big. All spiders have abdomens, but some are clearly bigger than others.

(The thorax is where the legs are attached; the abdomen is where all the spider's important organs live. It's *part* of the spider, not attached to it.

It may be swollen up because it's about to lay eggs, but it's not an "egg sac" -- when a spider lays eggs, they stay put in a little cocoon thing, usually (I think) -- it doesn't carry them around.

And spider venom glands are in the head, not the abdomen -- so unfortunately you can't de-venom a spider so easily!

So, unless you're interested in squishing the spider in order to kill it, don't squish that part of it!  Wink

And what a cool picture of those eggs! Well done. "Lacewing" seems an appropriate name.
23  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing Machines: Discussion and Questions / Re: WHY CANT I OPERATE SEWING MACHINES!!! im so FRUSTRATED!!! on: August 22, 2009 05:40:13 PM
Deep breath. Wink

Previous poster is right: YOU control the MACHINE, not the other way around.
It's really important to understand HOW your machine is threaded, so when something goes wrong, it's not a mystery that makes you go, OMG, it's broooooooken, I quiiiiit! You can figure it out. You're smart. Don't let yourself give up.

If you're not a person who can figure things out from manuals (and that's perfectly OK), maybe get your aunt or someone to come over and go over with you HOW the machine gets threaded, not just set it up for you and leave.

AND, especially if they're familiar with sewing machines, I'm sure they KNOW what causes, or at least what fixes, these really common problems. Ask them to go over some common problems and what they do to fix them, and then have them hang around while you sew something, even if they're not looking over your shoulder. That way, if something weird happens, they can help you troubleshoot a couple times so you feel empowered to fix stuff.

Hard to say what's going on from far away; could be the needle, could be the needle or the bobbin is misthreaded, could be the tension, could be lint stuck in the bobbin race, could be that there's no pressure on the presser foot (could be that the presser foot is still UP instead of down, that's a common beginner error),  could be that you're pushing or pulling the fabric weird . . .

Get help, figure it out, and then CONQUER this thing, by golly! You can do it.
24  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Re: Monster Puppet on: August 19, 2009 11:10:53 AM
NICE JOB! Great craftsmanship -- the hands look especially awesome (I am toooOoo lazy/usually in a hurry to do foam hands with actual nice sculpted roundness -- love the skooshy thumb-bulge on the palm!)

And great job with the eye blink mechanism! I had to figure out one of those for the first time for a commission -- on a papier mache head that needed to be a mold of an actress's face. Yikes. It took me hours. Yours looks seamless and awesome. Are those actual parts meant to be part of such a mechanism (those eyelids look pretty fierce) or are they found objects?

And, what's your preferred mouth-grip construction? I like to collect different ideas -- a lot of my puppets were made up fast for a show, and the mouth grips (especially the early iterations) are kinda falling apart. Any tips, anything that you like best about yours?

Rock on. Nice job! Wink
25  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / Re: Flirty Braided Tshirt on: August 03, 2009 07:18:49 PM
Oooo, cool!
I looked it up: was it this tutorial?
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O6SWN4_IhAA

also: surprise, it's knitting! Wink That's exactly how you pick up a dropped stitch -- you're technically knitting your shirt, not braiding it, I spose. That's super cool!

I love the curvy design you did -- it looks awesome.

Thanks for the inspiration!
26  COOKING / Dessert / Re: i made mochi... i think? on: August 01, 2009 10:18:03 AM
ALSO, apparently  YouTube is a good source for inspiration.

Get a load of this: strawberry daifuku (made with whole strawberries!) AND, explained to you by a DOG. What could be more tasty/awesome?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-Cv5LsqKUXc
27  COOKING / Dessert / Re: i made mochi... i think? on: August 01, 2009 10:06:33 AM
MmmmMmmmmmochi! Smiley

Good job -- that looks like mochi to me. I think of it as kind of like a rice marshmallow. And reading your process -- didn't realize it was that easy to make! Well done you, forging ahead into unknown territory!

Mochi snacks that have things inside (like red bean or green bean or whatnot) are often either rolled up or more often formed into little balls -- I think chocolate mochi balls with peanut butter inside would be the AWEsome.

And one possibly easy way to check out the mochi competition -- if there's not an Asian grocery near you, cause they'd have lots of kinds -- is to look in the ICE CREAM section of your regular grocery store. Woo ice cream! They sell mochi-wrapped ice cream balls in all sorts of flavors; they come in packs of six, and you can get chocolate, green tea, mango . . . they're the bestest.

 I know you can get them at places like Trader Joe's and Whole Foods, at least, and probably your own local slightly-more-upscale-than-Safeway grocery store option. Smiley

good luck in your food adventures and thanks for the inspiration!
28  CLOTHING / Clothing for Curvaceous Craftsters: Discussion and Questions / Re: small bust, big everything else. Need help.. on: July 13, 2009 11:54:01 AM
aw man, silly clothing sizes! They really aren't built to fit anyone except the figment of someone's imagination anyway.  Smiley

I would third (fourth? fifth?) the suggestion of bra fittings. It really makes such a huge, huge difference. If you don't live near anywhere, you might try looking up online the way to properly measure yourself, size-wise, and then ordering some stuff to try. The right bra really makes a huuuuge difference in how one looks -- and then feels. I know it works for me!

You might try something like, a closefitting vest or corset shape -- cause what you want is the idea of an hourglass kind of shape, right? (rather than, say, a triangle -- stupid plus-size clothing designers!) I'm thinking of . . . basically the upper part of your body in a bright color, and the waist/hips area in black.  Cause black makes things recede, so even if it doesn't *actually* cinch in at all, it *looks* like it does, and therein lies the magic.

like this:  http://img.hottopic.com/is/image/HotTopic/541027_hi?wid=500

Cause you want things to be in proportion -- a wide sort of belt/vest/corset might be great, better than a skinny belt, and even if you wear it over a flowy shirt, it cinches *in* instead of poofing *out* at the all-important preggers-zone. Smiley 

(I gotta say -- I was always a fashion minimalist -- but the recent discovery of wearing clothes *over* other clothes -- wow! duh! Like, a foofy shirt *under* a tank top, or a dress over jeans . . . it's amazing how the details of layers can make you look so much more put together! yowza.)

You could also look into tops with ruffled necklines, or other details that enlarge the neckline as well as draw attention to it. And in general, details win every time over a pattern, I think. Plain, with lots of texture and details (piping, same-color embroidery, princess seams, ruffles, bandings, intricate straps, the right jewelry) *I* think look way better than an all-over print on a garment. Wink But I always was a print-a-phobic.

And yes! You have a lovely face. Wink So just rock it! And good luck with everything -- hope this was helpful.

29  CLOTHING / Clothing: Completed Projects: General / Re: My first piece of clothing - lots of pics on: July 10, 2009 06:23:41 PM
Nice job!  Smiley

If you think it looks unflattering, it might be the circle-fullness as suggested, BUT perhaps it's also the length -- it's hard to tell from the pictures just how long it is, but typically a hem that hits between knee and ankle somewhere is often awkward. Smiley

You might try shortening it to just below the knee, and see how that looks. And, here's a(nother) trick -- mark where the hem goes while you're *wearing* it, because commercial patterns don't account for the difference in roundness between the front and the back of a person. Smiley

Speaking as a not-size-4-chick with lots of difference in roundness between front and back, I often find that my storebought skirts hang longer in the front than in the back on me (the skirt has to travel around my butt, dontchaknow, which makes it look shorter back there!), and that always looks awkward to me when the front is so obviously longer. Shortening up the front, even so it then hangs purposefully *shorter* in the front than the back, is a great tailoring detail that might cute-ify it for you.

But nice job! And I'm sure it's the first of many excellent sewing projects. Go you! Wink
30  CLOTHING / Clothing for Curvaceous Craftsters: Discussion and Questions / Re: Big breasts, small waist, relatively petite - help! on: June 24, 2009 10:04:15 PM
Woohoo! Take the plunge! Clothes look so much better when they're made to fit YOU! Wink

I'd say the first step (speaking from experience) is to alter things by putting them on you inside out, pinching where it's baggy or makes folds (like at the sides, and under the bust, and from the armpit to the bust) , pinning those pinched wrinkles, and then sewing them together. Put it back on right side out, and voila, a garment that's built for your shape!

I think it's useful because it teaches you what all those weird seams on a commercial pattern are FOR -- bust darts, waist darts, shoulder darts, etc -- and gives you an idea of how those seams go in order to give you certain shapes (princess seams, etc).

Taking apart things is also useful, if it's a piece of clothing that really fits you well and you wanna duplicate it (you can also trace pieces withOUT taking it apart).

I think doing at-home alterations of premade things is a great first step, because it's hard to conceive of making something for yourself *without* a pattern, and  commercial patterns probably won't fit you right off the bat---and then it's good to have an understanding of how to alter THOSE to make them fit you.

And I'm always in favor of just diving in. Sometimes you're like, oh. And sometimes, brilliant things happen! Experimentation ho!

Good luck! Smiley
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