Has anyone read Makoto's Cross Stitch Super Collection? Do you have any thoughts on it? I'd never had an interest in cross stitch before, but after finding this book at Barnes and Noble and flipping through it (I wish that I had the money to buy it, or that my library carried it; I'll request it at my local library), I'm now interested in learning how to cross stitch. Before, I'd only seen cross stitch on those plastic canvases that I guess people hang up on walls or set on tables. I'd never thought to cross stitch on other items (though I'd seen knitting books that suggested cross stitching on knitted fabric but the examples were uninteresting to me).
This is his Web site. Even though it's mentioned in his 2011 book, his Web site hasn't been updated since 2007, unfortunately.
I also just found his flickr. The photos seem to be from classes that he has taught. I wish that I could take a class with him.
Amazon.com has a typo in the first instance of the book's title. It misspelled his given name of Makoto as "Makato." It's right everywhere else on the page.
How are the wrinkles near the topstitching on some ready-to-made clothing made? Is it an effect of washing the garment after construction and having the fabric shrink? It'd be neat to get a similar effect at home.
Here's an example of what I mean:
The fabric ripples near the topstitching, whether it's a single or double line of stitching.
1. Why is it recommeded to use smaller needles for ribbing than what is used for the body of a piece? 2. What is the recommended difference in needle sizes? By what do all of you swear? I've seen patterns that instruct to use needles that are one size different (say US 7/4.5 mm for ribbing, US 8/5 mm for body), and some patterns that say to use needles that are two sizes different (US 6/4.25 mm for ribbing, US 8/5 mm for body).
I have some projects with ribbing that I have put off for some time, and I won't get back to them untill I get other people's opinions on this matter.
My theory as to why it is recommended to use smaller needles for ribbing is that the smaller needles cause the rib stitches to bunch close together, instead of leaving the stitch open if worked with a single size of needles.
Case in point-
I have a plain black superwash wool cardigan in the works, made up with US 8/5 mm needles. A small sample of the details: for the fronts the ribbing has 44 stitches , and increase by 6 stitches (for a total of 50 stitches) for the stockingnette stitch body. I don't mind the way the ribbing looks, as the stitches are beautiful and well-defined, so I may not have to redo it with smaller needles. Flat Slightly stretched
(On my laptop at home the stitches in the photographs are visible, but the photographs are dark on this computer that I'm using at the public library. In order to see them, you'll either have to adjust your moniter's brightness or I can lighten up my images.)
Some lighter images of the ribbing.
Unfortunately, however, I have a skull argyle sweater vest in progress that uses the same amount of stitches for the ribbing as well as most of the body, and the ribbing is just unsightly! I think this might be because I used acrylic yarn. Acrylic yarn (in my experience) doesn't seem to be able to handle 1X1 rib, though it's fine with 2X2 rib Flat front Ugly, open rib stitches Stitch detail (don't stare too long, you might have to get eye transplants) Another detail shot Stitch detail (slightly stretched)
I even worked up a swatch using the same yarn as the vest (Bernat Satin) in a different color to see if the stitches would look better if the piece were made with less stitches for the ribbing compared to the body, as with the black cardigan. The results: Flat Stitch detail Slightly stretched Stitch detail (slightly streched)
Not bad, compared to the argyle sweater with the same amount of stitches for the ribbing and the body. But as one can see, the rib stitches are open. I thinking using smaller needles would help "close" them up.
So to recap, I think smaller needles are used to "close up" the gaps in the rib stitches, since they seem to open when another stitch (like stockingnette stitch) is introduced. But the "openness" problem seems to be affected by fiber as well; wool seems to look fine without having to change needles. When worked in one needles size, acrylic looks terrible with 1X1 rib, but decent with 2X2 rib. This is 2X2 ribbing for an acrylic vest.
So what are your ribbing experiences, tips, and recommended readings (if any)? I look forward to hearing from a lot of people!
As referred to in this thread, here are some shots of my calendar project that I did for design class.
We were to design a calendar for a fake book club. I decided to base mine on a made up book to practice my drawing and watercoloring skills.
Cover January spread, "Flight of Fancy" March header, "Mourning Skeleton" April header, "The Box and the Key" June header, "The Forgotten Ones" September header, "The Dark Mermaid" November header, "Raven's Secret" Back cover
How embarrasing, I just noticed today that I misspelled "calendar" on the cover, and I'd turned this in a few months ago! *Edit: Uploaded a corrected version of the cover.
The scenes are pretty, and though the book is made up (I only came up with the general idea of two young siblings lost in a strange land and having to find a way to return home, so original, right?) the images make the book seem tangible. I'll probably use these characters in the future somehow.
Being the idiot that I am, I procrastinated and didn't do the paintings until the day they were due (I just had the ink outlines done), and ended up turning in my calendar tres late. I roughed the illustrations and inked them on plain printer paper, and then I placed watercolor paper on top of the image and used a light box to paint the watercolor. I later found out that I could've just painted directly onto the printer paper, as I'd come across an old painting that I did on plain printer paper. Then I just merged the ink drawing with the colored paper. The colored paper looks quite abstract as there are no defining outlines, just areas of "random" color. I'll post some samples sometime.
And since I procrastinated to painting my illustrations, I stayed up all night and morning painting, and had NO SLEEP WHATSOEVER. Then I had the class in the morning. Fun times.
I made this sometime last year. It's a gray fabric, I forget what kind. I think it's lightweight denim. I drafted my own pattern, but a bad habit that I have is I forget to make outerwear bigger than clothes worn directly on skin. This vest is no exception, so it's really tight when buttoned up.
The back has a yoke, but nothing else special. I'm not sure if most vest yokes look like this. Mine was simple: just right sides together, sew, press seam, and topstitch the seam flaps.
I could not for the life of me get the one-step buttonhole stitch on my machine to be balanced, so all of the holes are crap. My machine's a recent Singer model, so it sucks. Most of the time it works decent, but the first month or two that I used it, I had to get it fixed because the needle was hitting the throat plate.
The buttons are handmade from polymer clay. I didn't realize how big I made them until I finished the whole vest. I definitely want to get into moldmaking so I can make one button by hand and just make more with the mold.
People are so obsessed with brands, so to be ironic, I came up with a fake-o brand-o name-o put it on the clothes I make for myself. "Royal Tears" was hand painted on. Originally I wanted to embroider it on, so I tried both hand embroidery and satin stitching with my conventional sewing machine (I forget the order I did them) but neither worked like I had hoped.
The pocket was pretty simple, more than I thought it would be. The flap is made with two layers, with one layer handpainted with leopard print. I couldn't get the layers to match at the point under the buttonhole, so I trimmed that part off. So the two layers are folded against each other, except for the buttonhole area, which is a bit frayed.
The bat and skull are hand painted. Pardon my French, but the skull was a real female dog to do with the blending of paint.
I really like ornate crosses, so I hand embroidered a black one and studded it with round studs, the kind that have prongs that one has to fold over.
In the future I'll make the hem a bit longer so that I can fold it twice before stitching the hem. For this vest, I folded it once, and so the raw edges are visible. Such a newb mistake but I guess it adds a bit of an edge ? No, I'm just making excuses.
This is the first time I did a lining. Well, this is the first time I really did most of the stuff I did, but whatever. I believe the method that I use is known as bagging, where the garment and the lining are made first, and then the lining is put inside and the garment is hemmed to hold the lining.
The color of the lining is very tricky. In certain lights, it looks just like the denim, and in other cases, it looks like a weird light red-gray. I used a stencil to spraypaint leopard spots onto the lining, which bled. Then after the first wash, the black paint washed away, leaving a gray color. I was upset, but it actually looks pretty good! The spraypaint is that fabric paint that seems to be popular. I forget what it's call though.
Wow, this is my first post in a long time. I finally got a digital camera about 2 or 3 weeks ago, so now I can actually post stuff more often! Yay!
So a few months ago I had a class project to design a calendar for a book club, so my concept was to do a calendar for a "book of the year". I came up with a fictitious "gothic" children's book as the book of the year. I'll start a new topic to show what I did for the calendar, but in this topic, I'll show some old doodles and show off my "roots". I pride myself in having different styles in everything I do, from having different tastes in clothes, music, and even drawing styles.
Gothic is one of my styles, and as you can see, even that style has different styles in it, from Western to Japanese influenced. But the problem with having different styles (for me at least) is that I can't summon the right one when I want to.
These were done when I was in the 10th grade. Not to date myself, but that was 4 years ago. Where has the time gone???
Note: I am not inspired by Tim Burton. At the time I did these, I believe Corpse Bride came out, and I saw it and I liked it a bit but not much. It might have influenced me, possibly, to draw in an elegantly macabre style, but I've been interested in dark but beautiful things long before seeing Corpse Bride.
Also, I'd never seen The Nightmare Before Christmas, except for a few minutes of it when it was on t.v., when I did these. I'd only actually seen it a few months ago when I did the calendar project. I actually bought it to influence me on purpose, since I'd been rusty with the gothic style. Yes, when I did the gothic children's calendar, the last time I did anything like it was these doodles from the 10th grade! Anyways, enough babbling. Onto the doodles! (I don't have a scanner, so I took these with my camera, which came out dark, so I did a quick and bad editing job to present them here).
Not much to say here. I like her, but the hair doesn't seem natural. Looks a bit like dreadlocks. For some reason, I think of bugs when I look at her. I think it might be the eyes.
I've gotten older and a bit more experienced, so looking back at my work, I can notice goofy amateur errors. The house behind the girl shouldn't be so close to the gate! No house has gates right in front like that.
I don't read it, but I stumbled onto Squee a few years ago exploring the Internet, so I drew this with that image in mind, but it's not Squee. My local Borders does have a Squee graphic novel and I picked it up and read a bit of it a month ago to see what the hubbab was about. It was okay, but the writer/artist Jhonen Vasquez curses too much. I much prefer Invader Zim.
These three characters in frames were just random characters that I came up with for no real reason, though they look like I've spent time on them! I think I should do something with them, like a comic. I believe I've drawn them once or twice more because I liked them. Just by looking at them, they have such personality to them that I can imagine stories with them.
This girl is holding a lunchbox with Japanese katakana characters that phonetically sound out "PUFFY" which is this music duo I just adore. When I think goth, I think PUFFY! [/sarcasm]
I think I was going for a count with this.
I was going for a 1920's flappergirl socialite thing, but ended up mixing it with a gothic Victorian element. She's supposed to be smoking and flicking off the ashes, but I forgot to draw the holder, or I did and drew it wrong. I looks like she's got a sterotypical wand and is performing magic. Sucking is a lot of fun.
Awwww, baby! The diaper on the left leg side should curve with the leg. The right toe is too big and looks out of place compared the the rest on that foot. The left hand's index finger looks like a thumb!
The hat does not fit the head at all...
Sometimes I doodle several things on one page, so here you can see a girl's forehead on the man's elbow. I erased the rest of the girl for this presentation but could not erase what overlaps the elbow. I don't know if the hand is right or not (but it is the right hand ).
You can see the doll's left arm bottom seam, which means the arm is tilted, which was not my intent. I meant to draw the top seam for the left arm and so it looks awkward.
A ballerina dancing on a tombstone. I don't know what I was thinking, okay? The girl looks like Amy Lee, which is weird because I don't like Evanescence. They're okay, but overrated for no good reason. They have a "gothic" image, but Amy's lyrics are contemporary, present day stuff. I don't get it. Like the video for Call Me When You're Sober, she's vampire-like with minions, but the song's about the guy getting drunk...? But that song didn't come out when I drew this, but my point's the same. (Side note: I saw Tarja in concert in NYC last week, and they actually played Bring Me to Life while we were waiting in front of the stage. What an insult! People compare Evanescence to Nightwish and vice versa and that was just insulting to Tarja! I don't think she picks these songs, because they also played Bjork's Army of Me while we waited, which is a good song but isn't anything like Tarja.) The arms are too long, and I think the left side of her chest sticks out too much.
A girl influenced by the style of Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi. The hairstyle is even one that Yumi Yoshimura had in 2004. It's hard to see, but that's a rose on her shirt.
A bit out of place; a nerdy/punk boy. Also influenced by Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi with the hands. The right hand pinky it too big.
Comments and critiques welcome (although I think I took care of most of the critiques)!
This sweater was made for my baby brother. I think I started it last September, with on and off knitting and I swore myself I'd finish it in time for his 1st birthday in November, but I didn't finish it until maybe 2 to 3 weeks ago. Yes, EPIC FAIL!
The yarn is soft acrylic. It features a bunny intarsia motif with embellished features. There is also a big pompom tail at the back.
I'd "practiced" intarsia before (I'd always frog my attempts to reuse the yarn), but this is the first real application. In fact, I'd say this is my first real project!
Before I did a scarf with fringe for my sister who doesn't use it, and I've attempted a cardigan for myself, but as I don't use patterns, I've had to redo it a few times to fit me (and it's still a work in progress!). I've also finished 2 beanies, but they're imperfect, with a hole at the top where I should've knitted an extra round to fill up the hole.
Anyways, the bunny head was done in plain white from a chart using square graphing paper, so it ended up short and stout, but it looks okay. I blanket stitched circular knit fabric for the eyes, blanket stitched acrylic felt for the pupils, ears, and cheeks (will use wool felt from now on for durability!), and satin stitched the nose, eye highlights, and backstitched the outline of the eyes and the mouth.
The ribbing is K1P1. If I were to do it over, I'd make the number of stitches in the ribbing a little less than the stitches for the body. This helps in creating a clingier fabric.
Originally, the eyes were outlined with satin stitching, but that looked terrible because it was uneven, and it was too much black. Black isn't normally used much in baby clothing, unless it's for an alternative baby. But alternative baby just doesn't sound right... that can't make the choice of being alternative! So I settled on using backstitching, and it looks perfect! Enough black to outline the eyes, but it's not overpowering the rabbit. You can see the first attempt with the eyes in these photos taken by my phone (I can't believe I live in an age where I can say I took photos with my phone. What next, will I be able to bake casseroles with my pants?) Ahhhh! SCARY BUNNY!!! (Ripping out the satin stitch)
I don't like how the sleeves are attached to the sweater. It puckers around the shoulders. Does anyone know a better way to seam sleeves?
I have yet to get my brother to wear it. He wouldn't let me put it on him the first time and I've since ceased attempting to make him wear it.
I like the playfulness of it, especially with the tail. Maybe I should make one for myself, but that'd be creepy 'cause I'm 19.
In regards to making pompoms, I came up with the idea to reinforce the yarn strands with sewing thread. This keeps the yarns from coming loose. Here's how to do it:
1. Make a pompom by wrapping yarn around 2 cardboard circles the usual way. I use cardboard to recycle cardboard that I already have, plus I don't have to spend money to get different sized pompoms. 2. After having wrapped the yarn around the circles and filling them up, pull the cardboard away from each other to expose the yarn in the center of the pompom. 3. Thread a sewing needle with matching thread and backstitch around the pompom in between the cardboard, catching only a thin layer of yarn all around. 4. After backstitching all around and ending back where you started, insert the needle through all layers of yarn and pull the needle out the other side. Continue entering and pulling the needle out in a zigzag, meandering fashion. Do this several times to be sure to catch each yarn strand at least twice. 5. Now that you've threaded and grouped all, if not most, of the yarn strands, you can tie the needle end of the sewing thread with the other end of the thread and clip the rest of the thread. Then poof up your pompom and give it a test by pulling at random strands. If you sewed the yarn together well, you should have minimal loose yarn that could come out from daily or frequent use of the pompom or from washing and drying it in machines.
The above method only work if you use circle pompom makers. I don't know how it could be used for different pompom makers (like Clover brand ones that are semicircles) as I've never used any other kind. I guess with a bit of tweaking, you could apply the above method to different pompom makers.
I hope you all found that tip useful and actually apply it to your pompom making. Maybe pompoms are just as good off without threading them together. I wouldn't know, I've done most of my pompoms reinforced with thread after I made one or two the normal way and got really paranoid from how easily the yarn could be pulled out. I didn't want to take any chances!
I appreciate everyone who actually took the time to read my novel of a topic. I always have wordy posts as I've got so much I want to get off my chest, and I have no crafty people in my physical life, so spilling my heart out to online strangers is all I have.
I really like trucker hats, but there are none here in America that is my style. The cool ones are from Japan but can run at least $90. So I made my own from scratch.
I undid a hunting cap and traced around the pieces. This is my first hat, and I've learned some things to improve on for next time.
The crown is craft foam.
The netting is....netting, but it's really weak, so I made the panels out of four sheets of netting laid on top of each other, which made sewing it a pain! The netting wouldn't stay still; instead it kept shifting, so the hat is actually a bit uneven. And since the netting doesn't lay flat, there are little "hills" all over. I was thinking of going over the netting with a lighter to melt it together, and I bet it'd have a nice "destroyed" effect. And plus it's fun to burn things.
The skull is my own design. I drew it, inked it, scanned it into the computer, then colored it in Photoshop, and printed it onto an iron-on sheet of paper, then applied onto the hat by sewing. I was going to sew around the spikes, but got incredibly lazy, so you can see some stitches cross over the mohawk.
The bill and sweatband are polyester. The bill was very difficult to attach! First off, the fabric frayed easily, so I used a nonfray liquid, but didn't get all of the spots, so part of the bill unraveled, and you can see the interfacing inside.
I tried to attach the bill to the crown at least four times. It's still not right; it's lop-sided, as you can see in the photos. I've given up right now, but I'll probably try again some other time.
And you can see the holes made from those failed attempts of attaching the bill. One part even had so many holes on it that it just completely ripped, that's what that "black slit" is. The black is the fabric showing throught the hole. The stitch holes actually kind of look cool, and almost even look intentional.
I machine appliqued a lightening bolt made of stretch knit. I painted on my fake brand name, Royal Tears, onto it using Tulip paint. I read that you should heat set your paints, but I can't find any information on whether or not I should do that with Tulip paint. Does anyone know if it should be heat set or not?
The studs, believe or not, were from A.C. Moore. They were by "Nicole Crafts". I bought them maybe 3 years ago. I probably bought them there twice, but have never seen them there since. They came in a pack of both round and pyramid studs. The round studs came in 4 sizes, and the pyramids came in 2 sizes, with 10 studs of each size for a total of 60 studs a pack. I really adore this kind of pyramid stud. They have very straight edges and look very "streamlined". Most pyramid studs you see are round-ish or poofy. Unfortunately, I'm running out of these studs, and since A.C. Moore doesn't sell them anymore, I bought some from BizKrafts. The picture they have for the 1/2" pyramid stud looks like these, but when I received them, they were different! They're still better than most studs, but I thought they'd be like the ones from A.C. Moore.
The adjustment strap is Velcro. This was hard to sew because the part that had the studs wouldn't have fit on my machine, so it was hand sewn instead, and I stink at that.
Me wearing the hat. Sheild your eyes! I'm joined by Hermione and Luna. They're my girlfriends.
We are Dumbledore's Army! I didn't even know this photo would turn out this way. Ha ha, pure coincidence.
Obligatory Asian peace sign when taking pictures.
A few weeks ago, I was at JoAnn's in the back section where the on-sale fabric is (CHEAPSKATE, yes), and I never noticed it before, but that time I saw these huge rolls that had the EXACT fabric I was looking for for the crown of trucker hats. One side was some kind of knitted fabric, and the other side was a thin layer of foam. Unfortunately, the only good color they had was black, and it was $12.99 a yard! Way too expensive! The other colors they had were some ugly puke green, a burgundy, and I forget what else. I really need one in white! I wonder what this kind of fabric is called?
Does anyone know what other material I can use for the brim instead of interfacing? I heard that cross stitch canvas works well.
And here's a cool treat: some previews on my current projects:
This tank will be one part of a 2 tank combo. I like the brand Candy Stripper, and they make combo shirts that look great layered. Here are some examples: one, two, and three.
I wanted this tank to be baggy, so it'd be easy to layer over other things, but being the idiot that I am, I added maybe 2-3 inches to the width from what I normally wear, so now I'm resizing it. I will then stencil on zebra stripes! And of course my fake brand name. The inner shirt will be black with white polka dots.
And here's my inverted black and white striped skull knit sweater vest. It's a black and white knit vest with skull intarsia, but whereever there is a black stripe, the outline of the skull turns white, hence the "invert" name. I think I might end up unraveling this. I messed up BADLY on my calculations, because the skull is almost done, but it's barely to my chest. I wanted it to be a big skull picture, and then 2 rows after it, the v-neck starts. From the looks of it, the skull will end too soon, and I'll either have to make a very deep v-neck, or fill in the space with other pictures, or worse, start all over.
Anyways, thank you to everyone who stopped by! I hope you all like it. Please give me any hints, suggestions, or criticism. Thank you again.
It's nice to see that everyone is so original and unique. Sadly, I can't come up with my own styles, so I just copy my idols.
I really like two-tone hair, in what I call the "Japanese way", where they have the two colors vertically, as opposed to in America, where people mostly do one on top of the other.
Here's a weird photograph of me. This is very old, and I regret ever changing it.
Now my hair is short with faded blue (so that it's green). I'm going to shave my hair down to my black roots in a few days and start out fresh after I get emo-framed glasses. It'll be a kind of dude makeover.
I've been working on this for about a month with on and off knitting. I've decided any clothing I made, I'd use the fake brand name "Royal Tears" or "RoTe" for short for irony. It's funny when kids walk around with just shirts that say "A & E".....
This is my first prototype, so I know what to change if I were to do this again.
"RoTe" embroidered on crown with pyramid and round stud, and felt skull on bill. Oh, and a big pom-pom too.
Black and white are my favorite color combination, and I think they look great on this hat.
EDIT: New photographs.
The back view. Ewww, I hate my neck in this perspective!