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1  NEWS AND DISCUSSION ABOUT CRAFTSTER / Attachments Support / Can't add an attachment on: November 18, 2018 02:07:26 AM
The links to the pdf patterns on my Star Squares blanket post became non-functional so I removed them and tried to re-attach but I keep getting the error message -

      Cannot access attachments upload path!

This problem occurred once before with my Asymmetric Cowl pattern and sweets4ever was able to fix it for me.
I've checked the size of the three pdfs and they are 229KB, 1.57MB and 198 KB so they ought to be able to upload.
I only found out about it because I someone who wanted to download the patterns found that they couldn't.
2  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Dragonscale running stitch tutorial on: October 29, 2018 02:37:02 AM

I thought I'd put up a tutorial on this stitch because I think it will be very useful as a filling stitch for any scaly creature, not only my dragon
I don't know what its real name should be as I only discovered it while messing about with a needle and thread as suggested by Mary Corbet in her Stitch Play articles.


First Row
1 Simple running stitch to the left.
2 Simple running stitch back to fill in the gaps



Second Row
3 On each stitch slip the needle up and under the thread of the stitch above,
4 Before going back down into the fabric to complete the stitch
5 Going back the other way the needle passes from above downwards under the thread of the stitch above before going back into the fabric.



Third row
6 Start the row half a stitch length in from the edge so the needle comes up below the centre of the stitch in the previous row.
7 Pass the needle under the threads of the two stitches above where they meet before going back down into the fabric to complete the running stitch.  It is this bit that makes the nice scale effect.
 Repeat this going back the other way to fill in the gaps.


Fourth Row
8 This is basically the same as the third row but starting from the edge.

Repeat the Third and Fourth Rows to fill the space.

I also did a Twisted variation of the stitch



The First and Second Rows are the same as for starting the basic stitch but on the Third and subsequent rows the stitch is twisted.
1 Stitching to the left the needle passes from Left to Right under the threads of the stitches in the row above.

On the return pass it is slightly more complicated
2 The needle goes from Right to Left under the threads of the stitches in the row above
3 And then goes from Left to Right under the thread of the stitch you are making to make the twist.

I hope that isn't too confusing. It is actually a very quick and easy stitch.
3  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / United Air Flight attendant's uniform on: October 18, 2018 01:01:41 PM

The theme for our Needlecraft Guild competition this year was Come Fly With Me which I remembered had been a slogan for United Air long ago.
For my entry in the Miscellaneous section of the competition I thought it would be fun to make an air hostess uniform that recreated that old fashioned age of flying.


I found some pictures online of old United Air posters and made a copy of the uniform of that era for a teen doll that I had.
I made her some long black boots out of Oogoo - a mixture of black silicone caulk and cornflour to make it set. It was my first time working with Oogoo and so the boots are a bit thick and clumsy.  I still think it is a clever way of making shoes for dolls and will hope to improve if I use it again

The dress was made from an old teen doll pattern by McCalls (number 9099 in those days) The hat, I had to improvise from felt and it was a jolly awkward design.
I used an old CocaCola bottle to make a display case for her and lined it with photographs of United Air flight attendants of that era
4  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / Embroidered dragon on: October 18, 2018 12:21:45 PM
This was my entry in the embroidery section of our needlecraft guild competition this year.


She is embroidered mostly in House of Embroidery perle threads on green polyester taffeta backed with plain cotton for strength.  The front gusset and the underside of the wings are in yellow taffeta. I used metallic threads on the head and stomach and the wings.


I drew the pieces on the fabric and stitched round them on the seam line with my sewing machine. I also used a lot of Fray Check as I was afraid the taffeta might fray when I tried to stuff it. Then I put them in a hoop to embroider them.
I was a bit stuck for a stitch to fill in the tail and would like to record a debt of inspiration to Mary Corbet of NeedlenThread whose stitch play articles inspired me to mess about with a needle and thread and discover an easy filling stitch that I don't know the name of but I'm calling Dragon Scale Running stitch for now until I find out what it is really called.
I liked it plain and also twisted so the tail was just plain but on the head gusset I used the twisted  stitch with gold DMC


The legs are button jointed at the hips. I was originally planning on her having 4 legs but it just didn't look right so she has two. My son informs me that that makes her a wyvern rather than a dragon.

She won second prize.
5  California / California: North / Craft supply shops in San Francisco? on: August 17, 2017 07:57:53 AM
I am visiting my daughter in San Francisco in September. I'd really love to take advantage of the excellent craft shops in the US so would be most grateful for any advice about shopping for fabric, yarn, threads etc in San Francisco - preferably within walking distance of Haight Ashbury where my daughter lives.
6  TOYS, DOLLS AND PLAYTHINGS / Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects / Gone Fishing on: August 03, 2016 03:36:24 AM
Our Needlecraft Guild competition theme this year was Around the Pond.

This was my entry in the Miscellaneous Category.
He is a soft bodied doll with button jointed arms and legs.
His fishing rod is a bamboo skewer and the fishing reel is a press stud - the kind with a hole through the middle so it can be held on with a pin and with a beading pin cut and bent to shape and glued on with super glue to form a handle. So it does actually turn - a little Wink
His fold-up seat was made from ice lolly sticks (Ours have Childline numbers stamped into them which took me  long time to sand off) and bamboo skewers cut to size.
He has one fish on his line and one in the catch net in his pocket. I filled their bodies with fine sand to weigh them down a bit.
The frog trying to escape from a pocket is made from beads and is a little two dimensional.
The jersey is knitted from the top down more or less from the pattern I posted here
and the hat is a circle cut from the woven raffia you sometimes get wrapped around a bunch of flowers, stiffened with diluted PVA glue and shaped over a ball in a cup.
The judge liked the piece and gave him a first.
7  CROCHET / Crochet: Completed Projects / Around the Pond lap rug on: July 29, 2016 08:38:05 AM
The theme for our Needlecraft Guild competition this year was Around the Pond.  For my crochet entry I took inspiration from A Blanket for Squiggle by Vicelikeplague.


My inspiration for the terrapins came from http://www.crochetbug.com/all-roads-lead-to-fresno/;
for the rabbits from http://lovethebluebird.blogspot.com/2012/04/spring-bunny-tutorial.html; and the water lilies were modified from http://www.hopefulhoney.com/2015/04/dahlia-hexagon-crochet-pattern.html;
The fish I made up myself using a standard pineapple for head and body and the snake was an exercise in crocheting a two colour spiral.



8  NEEDLEWORK / Needlework: Completed Projects / organza applique cafe curtain on: July 25, 2016 10:36:36 AM
The theme for my Needlecraft Guild challenge this year was Around the Pond and this was my entry in the embroidery category. 


I made a cafe curtain because I needed one for a bedroom and also because all my embroidery has to justify its existence. so even a competition entry still has to be useful.
The background is white organza for the sky and blue for the water.  All the plants  are organza, fixed with fusible web and blanket stitched around the raw edges - apart from the iris and bulrush leaves and stems which are organza ribbon that was slip-stitched into place. The dragonflies wings are white organza with a silver print and they have bead heads and bodies.

I got the applique design for the irises from http://www.quilterscache.com/I/IrisWreathBlock.html nd the design for the frog from http://azcoloring.com/coloring-page/19879?album=frog-prince-coloring-pages

The curtain is lined with white organza and I used white satin bias binding to finish the loops for hanging.
There are a lot of mistakes. In particular one of the irises is concealing a large hole that I melted with the iron when applying fusible web.  Tongue  And my stitching got rather uneven towards the end.  But the judge liked it enough to give me third place which I was glad to have as it was rather more than it deserved.
9  KNITTING / Knitting: Completed Projects / Jacket from vintage pattern on: July 24, 2016 04:44:56 AM
I've been away from craftster for a bit but I have been busy making things - just haven't gotten around to posting them.

This is from an old pattern that belonged to my mother-in-law.  The pattern is by Lux and just calls for Double Knitting wool of any make.

I dont know the date of the pattern but Lux were still using the "If it's Safe in Water, it's Safe in Lux" slogan. I guess they hadn't heard of goldfish.  Roll Eyes

The stitch is a bit like a moss stitch but with slipped stitches carried up to the row above.

I used acrylic yarn from an ugly twin set I  had made years ago where the tension had gotten looser as I knitted so the whole thing ended up very shapeless.  I did wear it occasionally but decided I could make something better with the yarn. After unravelling and washing to remove the kinks I soaked it in a lot of fabric softener and that made it much easier to roll into balls and to knit with.
If I make this pattern again I won't do the pockets as they don't hold their shape at all. Also I need to learn how to stitch up seams.  Mine turned out very lumpy especially on the cuff which is knitted in one long strip and I had to sew the cast off edge to the cast on edge.  Sad

I much prefer knitting in the round and no seams, but that wasn't entirely possible for this design.

10  HOME SWEET HOME / Pet-Related Crafts: Completed Projects / Mat for animal shelter on: September 30, 2015 11:23:31 AM
At our monthly Needlecraft guild meeting a couple of months ago we set aside the whole afternoon for making these mats to go under the dog and cat beds at a our local Friends Animal Welfare foundation.
Someone had donated bags and bags of fabric off cuts.  The non-knitters/crocheters cut the fabric into strips and looped the strips into continuous lengths of yarn and rolled them up into huge balls.
Those of us who had large knitting needles or crochet hooks knitted or crocheted the yarn into square mats. They will go under the pet beds and will provide insulation during the cold weather.



This is a picture of mine.  It took a lot of yarn and was very hard on the hands. Just as well there were so many of us. Wink



And here it is half way through showing the large needles I used for it. They are about 13mm diameter.
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