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231  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Domestic Violence Is Ludicrous. on: October 12, 2009 07:01:26 PM
I was really interested in completing this challenge when I saw it back in Sept, but I had a really hard time coming up with something to stitch for domestic violence awareness.  At the time I was also really interested in doing another stitch on the Beatrix Potter toile I'd worked on earlier this spring.  I couldn't see anything in the cute little critters dressed as country gentry that fit.  Then I noticed that these squirrels all running to get on rafts looked a bit like they were rallying against an enemy of some sort.  Hmmmm.  Shortly after I remembered I had some copyright-free images from Dover Publishing of the "War of the Worlds" alien invasion.  Hmmmmm.

My stitch is a metaphorical illustrating the inanity of the powerful attacking the less powerful.

Some details:

The alien invaders.

I used these 2 squirrels in dresses as nurses at the ready to help treat those wounded in battle. Something about the dresses seemed Florence Nightingale to me (which I have no idea if is historically accurate) and it also gave me a way to bring some color to that part of the piece.

I signed this hoping that I might be able to donate it to a fund raising event at some point.

The back to which I'll add some information if I donate the piece. It's stretched over wooden canvas stretchers and I wanted to hide the staples and knots and such.

The side is covered with some single-fold bias tape in black.

The title is stitched on the left side.

I was able to use only supplies I had on hand (part of my New Year's resolution for 2009). It's back stitch, satin stitch, split stitch and french knots.
232  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Admiral Cottonbotham Hates Cancer (NSFW-crass language and fuzzy bunnies) on: October 12, 2009 06:31:43 PM
It seems like all of a sudden I'm surrounded by friends or the family of friends getting cancer.  While no one that I know of in my circle (and my circle's circle) has breast cancer right now it is also true that none of them have the same form of cancer.  I feel hyper aware of all cancers these days and I've had my own "abnormal mammograms" in the last few years. This sums up my complex responses to cancers.


I used satin stitch, long-and-short stitch, french knots, stem stitch (my first time!), and some unnamed stitch.  I was also able to use mostly supplies I already had on hand (except the blue floss and the hoop for display) which includes the thrift store magenta of his sash... which bled and caused me some distress.

I posted a plea for help and advice and through the kind and patient answers I decided to try the bleach pen which I applied with a small paint brush.  It's not perfect as there are spots I couldn't get to, some bleaching of the floss and the black print on the fabric and some discoloration of the fabric.  Also, a mystery brown stain at the outer edge of the bleached area that would not come out with bleach.

I had plans to use light-colored sewing thread to add a bit of color to the fruit at the bottom of the piece, like I did on his ear, but after the whole bleeding incident and recovery (and the resulting imperfections) I couldn't bring myself to work on it any more than mounting it in the hoop.  I didn't finish off the back as planned either.  I was SO loving his little dandy jacket with all the metallic details, but now he's just sort of disappointing.

The fabric was another scene from the same Beatrix Potter toile I used on my Fuck Cancer piece this spring. http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=303150.0  This is what Admiral Cottonbotham looked like before.

233  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Gag Gift Commission (NSFW) on: October 09, 2009 07:37:26 PM
Several years ago a friend of mine's cat got ocular herpes which is in the same family as chicken pox, shingles and oral & genital herpes. This friend's sister gave him and the cat LOTS of grief about it, calling into question the cat's moral character.

You can see the scar on the lower right edge of her right eye.

Well, turns out this same sister contracted ocular herpes herself over the summer!  And my friend only found out through their mom.  Seems it's a very common virus, but turn about is fair play and he's been getting even on behalf of his cat.  Part of that is this birthday present which he commissioned from me.

He gave me the parameters of "penis shape, obvious chancre, and the phrase "I survived herpes. One day at a time."  I suggested making the "I" and eye.  Because she's not going to like it- like it and it's not the kind of statement one displays AND I don't like to think my work, even the simple, crude work, will be just thrown away, I made it into a lavender sachet.  That way she can throw it in a drawer and forget about it.
234  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Discussion and Questions / Helped by craftsters and giving it back: Floss bleeding. on: October 04, 2009 05:01:53 PM
Friday I had a tragic incidence of floss bleeding and posted in this forum asking for help (http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=323166.0). Some AWESOME craftsters (you know who you are) offered patient advice and well wishes.  I decided to try the bleach pen solution and bought one on Saturday night, planning on trying to on Sunday or Monday.  Luckily, before I went at my project I remembered that my white cotton fabric had black print on it.  I did a test swatch with two methods offered up by the lovely and talented kittykill and then one I thought up after remembering about the print.

Test swatch with the offending vintage floss:

The test swatch after trying the 3 methods:

Left: Apply with bleach pen, using q-tip to pick up smudges. Cleaned up the magenta stain, but made short work of the black print and spread it a bit. The floss wicked it up and faded quite a bit.
Middle: Apply to moistened q-tip to dilute the bleach a little. Cleaned up the magenta stain, bleached the black, but not as much as full strength bleach. also less damage to the floss.
Right: Apply with paint brush to try to keep it on the white part of the fabric. Cleaned up the magenta stain and had the least effect on the black and the floss. Took a few more applications.

All methods would work just fine on all-white fabric. I chose the process on the right for the project and as it has less black print in the effected area, it worked pretty well. I'll "repair" the bleached black areas with black thread or floss. There were some areas that were too small to get to and they'll remain a bit pink. I'm still going to enter it in the Good Cause Challenge, because I'm pleased with how most of the rest of it turned out and until the tragedy of bleeding floss I enjoyed doing it.  After that, I'm not sure what I'll do with it as I wouldn't feel right donating or giving it as a gift.

When the date to post comes, I'll put a link in here.

Hope someone found this helpful or a good starting point to find an even better solution should you be struck.
235  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Discussion and Questions / HELP! I hope to fix where floss as bled onto the fabric! on: October 02, 2009 07:25:30 PM
ACK!  Help!  I wanted to get the visible pencil marks off my fabric after finishing (mostly) the embroidery I've been working on for the Good Cause Challenge and a bright magenta floss (a vintage skein I picked up at the thrift store, probably Coats & Clark) bled onto the white cotton fabric!  

It's really upset me as I've put hours into this and was pretty pleased with the results - AND I don't want to do it again and certainly won't have time even if I did.   Cry  I've never, ever had floss bleed regardless of brand or color, but I also haven't stitched that much. I do have a small collection of vintage pillowcases that I launder in cold water with all my other whites and have never had a problem, even though I bleach a smidge every time I wash my whites.

Anyway, my first instinct is to use one of those laundry detergent pens I've seen advertised.  Anyone have any suggestions or advice?
236  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / Barking Spider Disguise + Alter Ego Outfit (shameful number of photos) on: August 31, 2009 01:49:53 PM
So, a friend of mine since grade school gave me the honor of nicknaming her baby boy.  I've never met this kid.  I did know that he was early standing on his own and declared him a super hero.  So in the brainstorming process I threw out Super-J and Happy Pants.  She like Super-J, but said that he'd unfortunately inherited his dad's pants... i.e. noisy.  Ahem.  Hmmmmm... I KNOW!  He's a super hero called The Barking Spider!  She loved it! 


The web and parts of the spider glow in the dark!


Again, the web glows in the dark!


The cape attachment and back:

A wee orange spider on each sleeve:

After we'd agreed on The Barking Spider, she showed me a saggy-bottomed photo and thought compared it to the infamous 'plumber's butt.'  We decided that his alter ego would be that of a plumber.  He's his Mild-mannered Plumber Outfit.


Close-up of name badge:

Company name on the sleeve:

They're both size 9 months and I should get them sent off in the next week or so.
237  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Varmint Voodoo: Shrieking Harpy Edition on: August 30, 2009 04:50:57 PM
The latest in my Varmint Voodoo collection: the Shrieking Harpy Edition.

This Varmint Voodoo doll is for those situations when you must tolerate a Shrieking Harpy. The neighbor, friend-of-a-friend, sibling, in-law, ex-girlfriend/wife, baby-mama, co-worker, boss, supplier, vendor, distant (and not-so-distant) relative, coach, board member, client, etc. that is in your life and, at least for now, there's nothing you can do about it. No real or imagined hexes have been placed on Varmint Voodoo dolls, but dang if you dont feel a little better after poking one with a pin* (three included).

*No one at Bubble Off Plumb Productions Inc. or anyone we willingly associate with endorses or approves of harming harpies in such a manner as could get you (or us) in trouble.
238  HOME SWEET HOME / Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed / That Old Leopard Chair on: August 28, 2009 12:34:01 PM
When I saw this post (http://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=319003.0) on the same day I got a job to paint a beauty salon door with zebra stripes with a hot pink frame and lettering I remembered an project I did about 7 years ago.  I can't find the before photos, but these chairs (2) had about 3 layers of paint and no upholstery, although there was evidence that they had at one time had an upholstered seat.

Front & back:

Why the photos are taken in 2 locations?  I don't remember.
239  HOME SWEET HOME / Pet-Related Crafts: Completed Projects / Backseat Cover/Dog Blanket: Who wants to go for a ride? (litter of pics + NEW 1) on: August 25, 2009 12:51:46 PM
Obviously she's so much happier AFTER getting her new blanket than BEFORE.

The ManFlesh's sad old sheets and towels weren't quite doing the trick of protecting the backseat of his car from his beloved dog, the lovely Miss Olive (above).  I had this thrift-store bedspread that I'd picked up to make into pet blankets for the Snuggles For Homeless Pets* program and thought it would be the perfect car seat cover.  Of course, I had to customize it.  Roll Eyes


The headrests in the back seat come off, so that made for a great place to attach it AND keep it in place:

I made some slots for the seat belt fasteners which also help keep it in place.  Of course, sitting back there on top of the blanket kind of defeats the purpose as you'll surely be covered in dog hair if you do.   Kiss

A close-up of the bias tape binding of the edge and one of the holes for the headrest posts:

I also made the bias tape from free fabric from my aunt's stash, so the whole project cost < $2 including the thread.

The in-progress shot with my helper.

*The scrap from this and the bunches of other blankets will be made into smaller blankets for this project.  Grin
240  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / I think I'm addicted, but I might be biased... on: August 24, 2009 06:38:00 PM
My name is TheMistressT and I like to make bias tape.  (Hi, TheMistressT!)  The reason this might be more of an obsession than a skill is that I usually make it before I have a project to use it on.   Undecided  I have been pretty successful not buying fabric just for the purpose of making bias tape, though - the only time I've done so was with that tiny turquoise gingham which was on clearance.

Not all of these are cut on the bias, actually.  The gingham, stars and stripes are and the green dots and purple swirls are cut on the grain.  The stars and stripes are double-fold, the rest single fold.  I had to put a closer shot because I love these darn things.

I originally thought to put this in the Sewing In General board, but there's not a "finished project" section that I could see... and these are for sewing, but not sewn.  If this belongs somewhere else, I'll be happy to move it or have it moved.

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