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1  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: January 2011 Birthday Swap - Discussion and Gallery on: January 20, 2011 08:45:59 AM
The MIA is no longer MIA!! My poor, ancient, limping, dinosaur of a computer came home from the shop this morning. He's been there all week, the poor thing. So, in order of importance:

1) hardyswanton01, your package was sent out Monday, but I couldn't get you the tracking number because the site is blocked at work and my machine was having major surgery. Which is probably an OK thing, because it showed back up at my house with the mail this morning. It will be going back out tomorrow.

2) kaz814, I received your package, and the notecards are AWESOME!! I've got plans for their use already! Pictures to be posted soon.

3) It would be nice to pick another gift (or three) to claim, but not until all of this is sorted out and I've caught up in all my classes. It was hard to stay apace since they're all online classes. Hard to access without a computer.  Roll Eyes
2  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Misc. Gift Idea Brain Blockage / Re: All work and no play. Urgent help needed. on: January 15, 2011 06:30:04 AM
Do you have a spare shoebox, and a bit of cardboard or posterboard to split it in two?

Library side: a small notebook with a pocket on the front to hold the library card/student ID, a couple of pens/pencils (for taking notes from books), some bookmarks, or sticky note tabs, maybe a handful of snacks (if food and drink is allowed in your library)

Play side: depends on what your flatmate likes, doesn't it?
3  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Tiny Wooden Winter House - Lots O Pics on: January 13, 2011 01:16:51 PM
OK, since the pics of this have been posted by the receiver in the swap, I thought I would share here, too. This was the third attempt at making a tiny house for the swap. The first two were COMPLETELY different, but this one turned out better (and much less broken) in the long run.

It was made with scrapbooking paper (cardstock grade), wooden bits, fake snow, and acrylics. Not to mention lots of glue. Lots and lots of glue. The chairs are scrapbooking brads and jewelry wire, with a bit of hot glue gun stabilization.

3/4 front view

3/4 rear view

without the roof

front open, looking in

laid flat, the inner walls

close up of the floor and chairs
4  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: January 2011 Birthday Swap - Discussion and Gallery on: January 13, 2011 06:59:51 AM
Happy birthday IrishDitz!  Grin

I'm finally getting half a moment to start constructing this thingy, but need to run to the store first. It shouldn't take too long to actually sew it all together, but I have the wrong color tassels for the belt. Can't have that happen, can we? Besides, it's a good excuse to run to the craft store!
5  FIBER ARTS / Spinning: Discussion and Questions / Re: silk cocoons? on: January 09, 2011 12:27:21 AM
I did it once, and swore to never even think about doing it again. -eyetwitch-

First, figure out whether the cocoons still have the worms inside, or whether they've hatched. It makes a huge difference. The ones with the worms inside are much, MUCH easier to deal with. The cocoons themselves are each one long thread of silk that the worm has made. If they are whole, the silk will just unravel. If they've hatched, you're dealing with a boatload of thin silk fragments that need to be strained out of the water before spinning.

To actually spin them, you have to soak them in a mixture of water and (I think) vinegar until they soften and the natural glues in the cocoons let go. Then find the ends of the threads, which are pretty impossible to see, and start unravelling the cocoons. Once you get enough silk ends to make spinning them into a thread worthwhile, you start to spin, with the cocoons themselves still in the water. If all goes well, the silks will unravel from the cocoons without much sticking, and without the threads and cocoons getting too tangled in with each other.
6  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: January 2011 Birthday Swap - Discussion and Gallery on: January 09, 2011 12:17:53 AM
Oh no hardy! Lots of healing thought being sent your way to hurry the process along. I've got all the "stuff" to make yours, but haven't had a moment to sit down and work on it yet. It -should- be out by or on Friday, though.
7  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: One Tiny Winter House Swap Gallery on: January 08, 2011 10:45:56 PM
All right! I finally got the batteries for the camera recharged, and took a moment today to take a couple of snaps of the house sinellia sent. It's absolutely wonderful!

Love the snowy little yard and roof! The darling boyfriend was impressed by the use of the pebbles to build the walkway and walls - he and I both have an affinity for stone houses (I especially adore ones with thatched roofs, so the use of the green grassy stuff got me) so that might have had a bit to do with it.

See the glowing window? It looks like there's a nice, toasty fire inside, or like there might be somebody curled up reading a book, or something similar.

Inside, with the little table and potted plant. Aren't they adorable??

Thank you so much, sinellia! It will have a place of honor on my brand new shelf.
8  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Re: Knotty but Nice hat on: January 07, 2011 11:01:00 AM
Looks like I'll be making one of these too. Nice job on it!
9  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing in General: Discussion and Questions / Re: New Sewer - Overwhelmed :-/ on: January 07, 2011 04:31:02 AM
I still feel that way sometimes, and have been sewing for over 20 years! Grin

Chances are, if you can sew a straight line on your machine, you could make a simple blouse. Think something like a tunic top, a tank top, something like that. Just don't try collars or fitted cuffs just yet. It shouldn't take long at all from there.
10  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: January 2011 Birthday Swap - Discussion and Gallery on: January 05, 2011 05:01:40 PM
I bought some of the missing supplies for hardyswanton01's belly dancing belt, and will hopefully be able to get started working on it tomorrow. It's probably going to be heavy, but very SWISHY!! Not to mention juuuuust a little bit blingy, for the fun of it.
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