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41  A Real Family Tree -- Photo Ornaments in Winter Holidays by nikschaf on: December 27, 2011 09:07:39 AM
I made photo ornaments this year for our tree, thinking it would be cool to have a REAL family tree during the holidays.  Growing up, I would occasionally see photos of great-grandparents and have no idea who was in the photos.  Now that I've started researching our family history and know who's who, I want  my son to know who his ancestors are!  I just made black and white photocopies on regular printer paper, and cut them to fit inside a 2.5 inch empty glass ornament.  I've got photos going back to my son's great-great-grandparents, and I wrote their names on the back so that if these ornaments (hopefully) last a long time, he'll really know who each person is.  By keeping them all black and white, even modern photos have an archival feel to them.

I know this isn't an unusual craft, but I"m just delighted at the results.  Here are a few samples:

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42  My epic set of 12 Sailor Jerry tattoo napkins is complete!! in Needlework: Completed Projects by nikschaf on: December 08, 2011 08:47:18 AM
At long last, I have finished the last four napkins in my set of 12 Sailor Jerry tattoo napkins!!  The embroidery itself has been done for months, but it took me a long time to get out my sewing machine to finish the edges.  I've been posting the napkins four at a time, so this is the final post.

These were made from an old flannel sheet I found around the house, and the designs are Sailor Jerry tattoo flash.  All are done with two strands of floss, and mostly stem stitch, with some back stitch and satin stitch.  I mainly use seed stitch for shading.

A Sailor's Grave



Ship (I had fun with all the detail on this one)

In case anyone is interested in looking at the other 8 napkins, here are my older posts:
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43  First Crayon-Tinted Project -- King Friday XIII in Needlework: Completed Projects by nikschaf on: December 03, 2011 05:20:07 PM
Fans of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood will recognize this as King Friday XIII of the Neighborhood of Make Believe.  This is my first attempt at crayon-tinting and overall I like how it came out.  Took the pic before I'd set the crayon with an iron, so the colors are a bit richer now.  Since this is a dishtowel, I sure hope the crayon-tinting will hold up to regular washing!

Embroidered with two strands.  Mostly stem stitch, as that is my fave, but also back stitch and chain stitch where needed.

Thanks for looking!

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44  Projects from SAORI weaving class today in Weaving: Completed Projects by nikschaf on: October 22, 2011 05:03:34 PM
My mom and I attended a SAORI weaving class together today.  My mom has done a little weaving on a rigid heddle loom, and it was my first-ever weaving class.  It was such a treat!  The looms were already warped, the studio was full of yarn and scraps, and I loved the improvisational nature of this type of weaving.  It was a good type of weaving for me for a first attempt, since I tend to dislike following rules, and there's no right or wrong with SAORI.  When I look at my project, one minute I love it, and the next I think it's the crazy ugliest thing I've seen, but overall I had so much fun making it. 

Here are pics:

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45  Fiber Friday 14 Oct 2011 in Spinning: Completed Projects by nikschaf on: October 14, 2011 09:20:59 AM
Howdy!  Finally got around to some dyeing and spinning.  This is "Fractured Black" -- used black Wilton's dye in a low-water immersion to let the component colors separate, the did a bulky corespun yarn.  It's only 76 yards but my bobbin was jam-packed!!  I've still got half of the roving left.  Not sure if I'll spin it this same way or do something different.

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46  Fiber Friday 16 Sep 2011 in Spinning: Completed Projects by nikschaf on: September 16, 2011 09:22:41 AM
I'll start us off this week.  After finally finishing my Sheep to Shawl entry it was nice to spin for fun without a project in mind.

My yarn is kind of goofy-looking, but it was fun to spin.  It's called "Dirty Santa", 66 yards,  spun directly from locks.  The name is because after being in storage for a year, the locks had kind of matted together, and there was still lots of vm in there, but it looked like Santa's beard, if he hadn't taken a shower in a week.  I can't remember what kind of locks they were, but they were long and very curly.

I didn't do much to prep the fiber except separate the locks and tease the tails open a bit so I could spin them.  (Does it make this a tailspun yarn?  I don't know.)  I do like how it turned out, but it'll have to just be an accent on something because of the low yardage, and it's not super soft wool to begin with.

eta: added yardage amt.
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47  Sheep to Shawl Entry -- Cherry Berry All Shawl in Spinning: Completed Projects by nikschaf on: September 01, 2011 12:45:56 PM
For my entry I used "Doris Chan's All Shawl" pattern from ravelry.com for the body of the shawl.  Then, instead of the elaborate lace trim the pattern calls for, I decided to do a simple ruffle trim instead.  I figured my yarn was busy enough without the lace edging.

First, here is one view of the completed shawl:

Now, the in-process shots.

First, I gathered up all my black and white sheep shed studio roving:

Then, into the dye pot with one little tub of Wilton's magenta dye.  I used just enough water to cover the wool (low water immersion) and did not stir the roving to evenly distribute the dye.  I wanted a nicely variegated yarn:

Then I spun the yarn.  Since I had a very limited supply of the roving, I spun my yarn as a singles.  Did not ply with anything.  I named the yarn Cherry Berry Smoothie, because I happened to make a smoothie which matched this yarn exactly.  Here's a view halfway through spinning:

Now, for the modeling shots.  My son, who is sick today, was kind enough to model for me despite running a little fever.  (Hence the Transformers pajamas and "Fever Bugz" thermometer sticker on his forehead.):

I think I must have used around 800 yards of yarn for the project.  I was cutting it close.  Here is a view of how little yarn I had left once I was done!

Whew!!  Another "whew!" is the fact that I dropped the almost-completed shawl on the sidewalk by accident while my son and I were leaving a park, and didn't notice until we'd gone over a block!  Fortunately we went back and found it.  So all in all, glad I didn't lose it on the sidewalk, and glad I snuck by with just enough yarn to do the edging I wanted.  The shawl hits me at elbow length.  I really love it.  The shape of it makes it lay on the shoulders very nicely, and it's easy to drape one side over my shoulder if desired for a little extra warmth.

Thanks for looking!!
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48  Locker-Hooked Rug from My Son's Old Blankets -- Really Upcycled!! in Crafty Housewares: Completed Projects: Reconstructed by nikschaf on: August 30, 2011 10:22:25 AM
I used cloth diapers when my son was a baby.  I sewed most of them myself from upcycled materials, like t-shirts, flannel sheets, etc.  When he got bigger and needed a larger size diaper, I cut apart his old flannel receiving blankets and sewed diapers from them.

I was too sentimental about the scraps left over after sewing the diapers to just throw them away.  I mean, they were his baby blankets after all!  So, I took the scraps of the blankets, tore them into strips, and made them into a locker-hooked rug.  I'd never tried locker-hooking before, but it was easy and so inexpensive, because you just use that mesh canvas you'd use to make latch-hook rugs.

I didn't have a set pattern in mind.  I just grabbed the strips randomly from a bag as I went, and really like how the rug turned out.  It's now a bathmat.  You'll see the edges are a bit wonky in the middle where I started pulling the string too tight between rows, but I think it'll relax eventually since it'll see heavy use.

A closer view of the texture:

And, for those who haven't heard of locker-hooking, here's a good introductory youtube tutorial: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2iQwz-JesM
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49  Fiber Friday 12 Aug 2011 in Spinning: Completed Projects by nikschaf on: August 12, 2011 08:24:37 AM
Howdy!  I've been gone for a while, part of the time in lovely Stanley, Idaho (pop. 100) staring at the gorgeous Sawtooth mountains without internet access.  But I have missed my Fiber Friday fix.

Here is a yarn I've been working on for the sheep to shawl challenge.  It's black and white sheep shed studio roving which I did a low-water-immersion dye with magenta wilton's dye.  I call it cherry berry smoothie, because it's the exact same color as a smoothie I made the other day.  I didn't notice it until I set the smoothie down next to the yarn and it matched perfectly!

What lovely yarns do you all have this week?
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50  Hand Embroidered Superhero Cloth Napkins in Needlework: Completed Projects by nikschaf on: July 07, 2011 09:17:43 AM
I made this set of 4 superhero cloth napkins.  My family and I had dinner with some good friends last night, and I surprised them with these cloth napkins as a gift.  There was no special occasion, and we normally don't exchange gifts, but they love comic books are were thrilled with their "just because" present.  I know they use cloth napkins on a daily basis, so these should see a lot of use.

It's two strands of a silvery-blue embroidery thread on blue linen napkins.  Mostly stem stitch, as that's my favorite, with some backstitch and satin stitch as needed.  Spiderman is my personal favorite.

Thanks for looking!

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