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1  Re: Shop the Swap Winter Market-Discussion Thread! in New Swap Theme Ideas by calluna on: December 08, 2012 11:24:31 AM
Other than trying to finish my school semester's work this weekend (deadlines are tomorrow and Monday; what am I doing on Craftster!?), I'm struggling with deciding what to make out of this handspun yarn, since no one claimed it from my shop! These are swatches I did this week to see how the stripes would turn out:

I love the colors and stripes, and it's all fairly even (for my rudimentary spinning, at least  Smiley). There's just under 300yds, and it's a little too scratchy, for my preference, to be an item that touches the skin (other than if it were, perhaps, slippers or a hat). It's also very fullable/feltable, so I thought about making a fulled bowl/box/vessel with it, but I'm liking the look of the stitches, too.

What do you think would be the best use for this yarn? I'm all ears (but not very skillful -- basic crochet techniques, and loom-knitting with a 60-stitch maximum width, is all I'm good for, when it comes to yarn  Cheesy).
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2  Re: Shop the Swap Winter Market- Gallery! in The Swap Gallery by calluna on: November 20, 2012 01:51:03 PM
Sold to jillybeans - the epic, super-fancy 2013 Craftster ATC calendar

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3  Page-a-day calendar full of Craftster ATCs - disappointingly few photos! in Paper Crafts: Completed Projects: General by calluna on: November 19, 2012 04:39:08 PM
Every year I end up embarking on some giant project that has called to me (its not something I seek out, honest), and some years I manage to finish. Since this one is a 2013 calendar, I had to get it done quickly! After having worked on this steadily since July, I have a 365-day calendar full of prints of ATCs (artist trading cards) Craftster artists allowed me to use for the project.

I have made several page-a-day calendars for Craftster swaps over the years, and after each one I swear I will never make another! But somehow, eventually, I come back around to them. I put them together in Microsoft Word (I dont have any fancy desktop publishing software), print 4-6 days on standard size sheets of paper, cut them apart, and assemble them with adhesive or binder rings (after hole-punching all the pages). When I came up with this theme, I knew it would be an insane amount of time and work, but it had to be done. I couldnt pass up the chance to get a bunch of great people involved in an all-Craftster community creation.

It doesnt look like much in the picture, but theres so much work and almost a hundred Craftster artists work represented within it!  Since its primarily other peoples art inside, and I just organized the project, compiled and cleaned up the images, and printed/assembled the pages, all thats really mine to show you is the overall project.  (That's also why I'm posting it here instead of the ATC board.  Smiley) But heres a page with a favorite from my personal ATC collection, created by HappieHina.

I am working on a basic tutorial for making a page-a-day calendar using Microsoft Word and Excel, but so far that tutorial is far too long to be of any use to anyone so I have to revise it extensively. I should be adding it to this thread, with screenshots, before the end of the year. In the meanwhile, here's what the pages look like before I cut them apart (the other artists' cards aren't in my possession, so I didn't want to take the liberty of reposting them):

The first point I need to make in discussing this particular project is that I gained proper permission from everyone, and included (or excluded) attribution according to the artists wishes, as well as I could. I was relieved to find that everyone who granted permission was friendly with no ego issues and many were really excited about the project (I love Craftster people!!  Kiss). Unless someone responded to my request and told me I could use their work for this project, I did not use their ATCs or their posted photos of others' ATCs.

So, the organization of this project was the big task. First, I sent a PM to people from whom Ive received an ATC, asking if I could include these in the calendar, and if they would be open to allowing me to use images of other ATCs theyve made. I probably could have made a 365-day calendar between all of these artists work and my own, but the desire to make this a Craftster-wide project was just too strong so I kept seeking more people to include. I advertised the project in relevant discussion threads to see if there was any interest or big legal considerations I hadnt come up with, and got good feedback there as well. But I knew there were also a lot of people who have made ATCs on Craftster who would probably never see these posts, and many who hadnt been online for quite some time. And so I stalked the ATC board, as well as the galleries for ATC swaps, and PMed a bunch more people.

Since it would be impossible to contact everyone on Craftster who has made ATCs and include that many peoples work in the calendar, I set the guidelines that I would reach out to those who had a) been online within the past 2-3 years, b) no negative swap feedback, and d) at least 1-2 usable images of their ATCs somewhere (later, I had to further narrow it down by only using vertical-format ATCs). Sad to say, that ruled out a lot of people. But when I sent a PM to various people asking permission, well over half of them responded and agreed to let me include their work.

Gathering and deciding on the images to use was great fun and also very difficult, especially with those artists who have posted a prolific amount of awesome ATCs, because I had to exclude so many that I really loved. I was juggling a pool of probably 1000 images. In order to get everyone represented, no artist has more than 5 ATCs in the calendar. I used Microsoft OneNote to sort various peoples images into holidays, seasons, and themes, and after these kinds of cards were assigned to their appropriate days or seasons I added cards without these kinds of themes to other days. In this process I also searched for those weird holidays/observances that dont show up on most calendars but which related to the content of an ATC. For example, there is this ATC by Queen of Fools on Talk like a Pirate Day.  Cheesy Not all such days are marked on the calendar, but many have a card that is somehow relevant.

I turned the finished calendar into a PDF file for participants to download. (And for those of you who did download it last month, I made one additional correctionmy apologies to gozerso I can send you the improved PDF if needed.) Because most of the artwork in the calendar is not mine to share, I cannot make that PDF available for public download.

My intention was to print a few for organized or personal swapsLamentably, printing more than 2 of these is not financially reasonable. I found a nice coated color copy paper that works great (Mohawk Pegasus Color Copy, Super Smooth, 24 lb., acid free), but even with the highest quality setting on my home printer the images are justblech. These ATCs deserve better. I had a professional printer print out a copy with the same paper, and it looks incrediblebut it cost almost $40!  Shocked  Cry Though some participants wanted to pay me for printing and shipping, no calendar is worth $40, so I have to rescind on that idea. I should have checked on the price for printing before I even started the project, but then it might have never happened at all.  Undecided

I should mention, the other supply I used in this project is something thats brand-new to me: padding compound. I dont know why it has that name. Its only been mentioned a few times on Craftster, so maybe thats why Id never heard of it before. Plus, Ive never seen it in an art/craft supply store; I bought it at a paper/printing supply store. I had always used PVA glue to glue-bind the pages of my page-a-day calendars, but Im now sold on padding compound instead. Both are expensive, though, so if you have to choose and you have a lot of gluing to do (not just binding the edges of papers together), choose the PVA. If youre binding notepads, thick calendars like this, or little journals, padding compound is better. It looks like white glue but it dries as a clear, dense, rubbery solid without bleeding into the papers margin. So it doesnt warp the paper the way other adhesives do when you spread it along the edge of a stack of paper.

The printed and assembled calendar has a piece of paperboard (cereal box) on the back, which I glued to a patterned bookboard from a mid-century Readers Digest Condensed book. Then on the bottom of that, I affixed some fabric so it would look a little more finished. And now it is complete and headed to its new home!

I did not intend for this project to be a showcase of the best ATCs on Craftster, since Im in no position to judge that kind of thing. Since it is a calendar, having ATCs that are relevant to seasons, holidays, and days was a priority, as well as showing a variety of styles and media (though some kinds of media do not show up well in photos, so that was a limitation). We are a community that values creativity, heart and effort in ATCs most of all, so thats what I wanted to reflect, along with the community itself.

Making an actual published book featuring high-quality images of Craftsterer ATCs, through a service like Blurb.com, would be an awesome thing, but I dont have plans to tackle that project because the legal issues get more complicated. However, if it did get off the ground, I think it would actually cost less than printing these calendars, with much less work!

Bottom line is that the idea had to be brought to life, but its too expensive and time-consuming to do it again (I think Ive said that about many projects Ive taken on Cheesy). Im glad I was able to do it; I just wish it were more affordable to create and share them with the people who contributed. The best thing about it is that several of the artists told me that even though they hadnt created ATCs in quite some time, finding out about this project was inspiring them to start making and trading ATCs again I couldnt ask for a better outcome than that!
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4  Re: Shop the Swap Winter Market- Gallery! in The Swap Gallery by calluna on: November 13, 2012 01:24:59 PM
Sold to MissingWillow: 4 rubber stamp alphabets with carrying case - plus freebie of 6 mini-tins

Thank you!
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5  Re: Shop the Swap Winter Market (signups sept 16-Oct 16; closed Nov 30) in ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED by calluna on: September 29, 2012 05:36:04 PM

This California-based shop is OPEN
Items crafted by a non-smoker in a house that has no pets or indoor smokers.


Handspun Capelet/wrap - knit and spun from undyed, 100% alpaca fiber, with a bit of embroidery with metallic gold yarn (easily removed if you don't like it). Slightly fulled, but stitches still visible. About 4ft long when laid out flat. Removable i-cord to adjust how it fits; without i-cord it can be a child-sized wrap or a table-runner. I used Renee Van Hoy's 'Simple Lace Wrap' pattern. -- 2 points

Wet-felted bowl - blend of fibers with a needle-felted black alpaca swirl.  -- 2 points

Tranquility handspun - 100% cheviot fiber, single ply, perfect for fulled projects (not for something that sits against the skin; the fiber is rather scratchy). Approximately 295 yards. -- 2 points

Gourdy handspun yarn - about 150yds. Single ply. Will felt/full; I think all of it is BFL wool. -- 1 point

Crocheted handspun mug cozy - with wooden toggle button - It shouldnt felt or shrink when washed, as I already tried to full the yarn for a previous project and nothing happened. It is snug enough for you to tuck a bag of tea or packets of sugar in between the mug and the cozy. However, I learned that when you use a mug cozy, you still need to hold onto the mug handle when it is full of a hot beverage--trust me on this one.  Wink  half-a-point, or take for free with any other claim!

Crocheted handspun pouch - button closure - just the right size for a gift card or an ATC (though its extraordinarily chunky packaging for these!)  Free with any claim!


Custom prayer flag - Give me some themes, colors, and or pressing concerns and Ill send you a 5x8 mixed media prayer flag. It wont be the greatest work of textile or fiber art, but there will be lots of love in it. -- 1 point

'Virgin' recon journal - mixed paper sewn journal made from 1920s book. Over 100 pages. Because the cover and spine are well-worn, I added two closure ribbons so you can tie the book closed for added security. 1 point


Free with any claim - fulled sweater scraps

Heavy-duty pick and hook tools -  half-a-point for both, or take for free with any other claim!

Marvy Calligraphy Markers - All are used but still in good working condition. Take all 4 for half-a-point, or take 1 for free with any other claim! If claiming one as a freebie, please specify ink color and line size...
Black: 5.0mm
Bright red: 3.5mm
Bright red: 2.0mm
Deep red: 2.0mm


Giant clothespin-style clips - Two wooden clips waiting to be decorated. - half-a-point for both, or take for free with any other claim!

Fulled sweater to repurpose - not that anyone would be wearing it, but for an idea of the size it would probably fit a 6-year-old. - half-a-point, or take for free with any other claim!

Partial skein of sock yarn - Schoeller & Stahl Fortissima Mexiko Country - Madagascar (Color #22). Fiber Content: 75% wool, 25% nylon (machine washable). Gauge: 7.5 stitches to an inch on U.S. size 1 or 2 needles. Not enough left for a pair of socks, but plenty for a scrappy project. Socks not included.  Wink - half-a-point

Vinyl letter stickers - 3 packs of generic capital letters, not complete, but all letters are present. Red and blue, all about 1inch in height. If youve been wanting to try that project where you paint over an old ugly painting and use vinyl letters to mask off a phrase on it, heres your chance. - half-a-point, or take for free with any other claim!

Fabric Markers - pebeo SetaSkrib+ Fabric Markers in Black, Gray, Blue, Red, Green, and Orange. I dont know how much ink is left in them, but they still work well (except the red one--its starting to dry out some). Permanent on fabric after heat-setting with iron. Large conical tip for fine-point or wide markings. - All 6 for 1 point half a point


Claims made from me:
calluna to loves2experiment: "poppy" mawata silk (1)
calluna to LeapFeetFirst- Green Copic Markers - 1pt
                                - Custom Prayer Flag- 1pt
calluna to craftaddiction: custom calendar (2)
calluna to MissingWillow: 4 rubber stamp alphabets (3)
                                 - 6 mini-tins for altering (freebie)
calluna to jillybeans: ATC calendar (3)

Claims I have made:
Eiseldora to calluna: Decorated mug (1)
sarahj2001 to calluna: Sky Fire (fiber) (3)
TroubleT to calluna: Caramel Apple Cider Jelly (1)
                            Candy Apple Jelly (1)
jillybeans to calluna: Pluot jam (1)
Angelicus to calluna: floating necklace (#2) (1)
Missing Willow to calluna: dark chocolate peppermint bark (1)
LeapFeetFirst to calluna: dark green buttons #2 (.5)
                                   copper sequin waste (.5)
indigo_roses to calluna: Cranberry Pistachio Biscotti (1)

Started with: 3
Current: 3
Total: 3
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6  Altered playing cards (APCs) in Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) by calluna on: August 27, 2012 10:00:30 PM
Over the past couple years (mainly in wild spurts of activity many months apart) I've finished almost a full deck of altered playing cards. But considering the old saying about "not playing with a full deck", maybe it would be most appropriate if I didn't end up completing the deck.   Grin

If you're interested in making altered playing cards and trading them, the size is still supposed to be 2.5 x 3.5 inches -- I'm told that poker cards are these dimensions, while many other playing cards are not. Some people are fine with other sizes, but unless it's discussed and agreed upon ahead of time, they're expecting to receive a card with standard ATC dimensions.

The other guideline is that the card's number and suit need to remain visible (uncovered) somewhere on the card (otherwise no one knows it's a playing card!  Smiley). This deck I have is a U.S. Civil War replica deck, which has no numbers. Instead, I've added the number in some other way, either writing, collage numbers, puff-paint, or embroidery.

Two techniques that I had good luck with were these melted crayon backgrounds (link is Youtube slideshow of how it is done), and layers of thin papers with melted beeswax. Beeswax is on pretty much all of these cards. I printed various images on tissue paper and with the beeswax they just melded with the other elements on the card. Because of the coating on the cards, it's easy for glued and melted items to pop off, so it can take some patience, and getting a feel for how much beeswax it takes.

I keep tinkering with some, but here are some of my favorites (all traded unless noted otherwise)...


(still available) (still available)

(still available)

(My late Shelbe-dog!)
(still available)
(Back-story on this one: Dr. MLK, Jr., and the three civil rights workers who were abducted and murdered in the 1960s. As I was starting this card I encountered a poem from the 1920s which said that instead of grieving those who took a stand and died because of it, we ought to grieve the apathy in the masses, still alive and unmoved. The words were put together from photos of 2 separate pinback buttons that people wore during the '60s.)


Now, get yourself a deck of cards (or just a few stray cards), play around with them, and share what you come up with! Here or in a new thread, it's up to you.  Smiley
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7  Re: July 2012 Birthday swap = Discussion and Gallery in The Swap Gallery by calluna on: August 14, 2012 06:50:33 PM
The birthday joy continues to roll in! I just received a wonderful, multi-gift package from alwaysinmyroom, which is being loved now and into the future, too, it wiiiiill be loved, it wiiiiill be lo-o-oved (I don't know what corner of my mind that came from  Cheesy)...
Okay, let's get started...

Yes, that is a birthday card, with fabric patched together and machine-stitched onto the front of the card, something I can never get enough of. So the card, in itself, is a gift. And then there was a gift bag full of pom-pom trims and some sparkly yarn, additional loves of mine, which I can put to use in so many kinds of projects, most likely in handspun yarn!

Getting further into this box of delights, I found the sweetest leafy handmade pincushion--I've never had a pincushion, and didn't have a sewing kit, and thanks to alwaysinmyroom and mom2em in the past month now I finally have both of these crafting staples in handmade form, which is, of course, my strong preference!
There was also this wee pouch made from beautiful fabric...

And what was in the wee pouch? Two beaded bracelets! YaaaY!

Then I saw various fabric patterns peeking out at me, and when I pulled them out to inspect, I found...

It's difficult to make them look as nice in photos as they look in person, so they're being modeled on various sizes of bowls stacked up. The inside is a wipe-able material that is useful and safe for food purposes; I know what it's called but the name is slipping my mind at the moment (and more songs are filling the place where it's supposed to be  Cheesy). These are going to be so useful! And I love the fabrics. The art nouveau print, also on the pouch, is very similar to a little scrap I found recently and passed on to another art-nouveau-loving swap partner who I knew would like it as much as I did; now it's kind of like the universe has sent it back to me tenfold.  Smiley

And after all of that, this hefty blessing of extras!

These are all different varieties of loose-leaf tea (which smell heavenly!) from Adagio Teas, and the tiny tins they're in are perfect! I'm not sure what they're going to become just yet, only that they will become! (After I finish enjoying all this tea, of course.  Wink)

Huge thanks to the always-incredible/generous/thoughtful alwaysinmyroom for all this spoilage!  Kiss

AND, since I was too frumpy-looking/feeling when Avesthel's hair-gifts arrived, I finally got a decent action-shot of some of them:

Sooo lovely they are, and they don't snag in my hair at all, which is a big plus. Thank you again!
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8  Re: Ongoing ATC Swap - JULY 2012 Gallery in The Swap Gallery by calluna on: August 03, 2012 03:09:59 PM
In theory I was just going to have one card to share with the Gallery this month, but SunnyDawn sent me two!  Grin Both are on my mental health theme...

And this one is "Bipolar"! (And sparkly!)

Thank you!
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9  Re: Prayer Flag Swap Gallery (send by Aug. 3 2012) in The Swap Gallery by calluna on: August 02, 2012 08:24:35 PM
The flag theatreorchid sent me is rocking my socks off:

(the scanner shows the detail better than a photo for this particular flag)
I had a whole truckload of themes/prayers on my list, but I'm sure it became clear in our conversations how suffocated I feel while stuck living in a heavily-polluted area and how much I value being in nature (and how jealous I am that she lives in the Pacific Northwest  Cheesy)...She gave me a forest as a result! The tree to the left says "breathe"; much easier to see in-person than to capture on the screen. The trees in the foreground are sewn onto the green surface, and all the details and background are painted/drawn.

And here is the beautiful back, with variegated embroidery...I didn't expect so many people to do nice things with the backs of the flags! (Lacking a sewing machine, the fabric ones that I'm making have so far been unfinished on the back, but maybe I should stick some backing fabric on with fusible web or something....)

It was all wrapped up in tissue paper with a lovely note and it feels like something sacred. It is exactly what I need, and I love it!
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10  Re: 27 July 2012 Fiber Friday in Spinning: Completed Projects by calluna on: July 27, 2012 01:18:00 PM
Yes, they are beautiful, jexxican!
After being altogether absent for many Fiber Fridays, I have something significantly less beautiful to add:

It looks more vibrant in this photo than expected, but it's essentially 292 yards of flesh.  Lips sealed The roving, dyed by freestyle, looked great and was easy to work with, so she's not to blame.
All I could think of as I looked at what was accumulating on my spindle was the textbook anatomy diagrams of the integumentary system (skin)!  Puffy skin, veins, ducts, sweat glands...Cheesy If I could get these thoughts out of my mind (and the image of a really creepy fake-skin mask that could be made with it), I would probably like it more.
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