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1  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing in General: Discussion and Questions / Re: My 6 year old neice wants to learn to sew... on: June 22, 2007 02:47:23 AM
I learned to sew at around 7 or 8 on my grandma's old hand-cranked Singer. My mum let me use her electric machine once but I was actually a bit frightened of it - I didn't really feel in control with the foot pedal, sometimes it would go faster than I wanted and I'd start to panic - not a good thing to do around moving pointy things!
Hand-cranked (or treadle) machines do turn up in junk shops - maybe keep an eye out?

(mind you, my textiles teacher went ballistic at me when I was 11 when she caught me feeding fabric through the school electric machines one-handed, middle and index finger either side of the needle - she couldn't understand that that was how I was used to doing it!)
2  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / Mother-daughter butterfly on: June 15, 2007 03:17:58 AM
Well this isn't actually my craft but I saw it at my sister's and thought it was a really cute idea. My sister and her little girl had lots of fun painting their hands with cheap acrylic paint, then printed them onto canvas. They then added a body and some extra details on the wings, signed and dated it, and hey presto, a pretty memento of time spent together!
3  ASIA / Japan / Re: Japan traveling questions on: June 06, 2007 09:54:12 AM
One more thing, how common are the cash machines? I will be getting her about $50 in Yen but she will have the rest of her money on a Visa card. Do you think it will be hard for her to find machines if she needs money for smaller shops or markets? The people who spoke with us made it seem like they would maybe only see a couple of cash machines during their stay. They will be there 16 days.

It would be best for her to take most of the money in cash - almost nowhere except the bigger department stores  takes credit cards! Post office savings ATMs can be used to make international withdrawals, but of course they are only open Post office opening hours (Mon-Fri 9-5) and charge a hefty commission.

The piggy bank is a cute idea, you see quite a few in the shops so they are obviously popular.

If you can get hold of charms/cellphone danglies from your town/state/country they may well be a hit Smiley

Another useful phrase - Ii desu (pronounced 'Ee dess'). It means 'I'm/that's OK' and comes in immensely handy, as it's used where OK would be in English (e.g. 'can I sit here?' 'OK',) and also like 'No thankyou' (i.e. 'I'm/it's OK as it is')
4  ASIA / Japan / Re: Japan traveling questions on: June 06, 2007 07:12:00 AM
Nothing much to add to the links above, except to say that a couple I know are applying to be a host family for student exchanges and the screening process is very rigorous. I'm sure she'll be taken very good care of.
5  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Completed Projects / International Centre noticeboard on: June 06, 2007 06:58:20 AM
Well I finished this ages ago but only just got a picture of it - here's the notice-board I decorated for the international centre (*lol* it's called that but it just means '3 foreign teachers').

The paper dolls were really fun to make. They are pieced together from different coloured construction paper, only the fine details are drawn on. I also made little collages for each teacher showing where we're from, what we like, our families, etc.

It's on local telly as we speak! (Gifu CATV visits a different kindergarten each month. They filmed student interviews in front of my noticeboard Smiley )
6  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Discussion and Questions / Re: Decorating ideas for a barn/house made from a big box? on: June 02, 2007 03:07:22 AM
Wallpaper the inside with a cheap roll-end?

You can make very sturdy play furniture from milk/juice cartons - rinse them out, trim the top making a long flap so they can be closed square, stuff with old newspaper and stick them together with duct tape or packaging tape. The teaching assistant at my last job (a preschool) made a table and 2 little armchairs that turned out to be the kid's favourite toys.
7  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: Ongoing Wish Swap Round 20 Gallery on: June 01, 2007 03:00:38 AM
Postal oddness - this has to be seen to be believed - I walked in yesterday to A YEAR'S WORTH of mail - bills, last year's and this year's birthday card from my mum... and of course all my swap packages!

So I got both the original and replacement packages from GatheredThreads - the cutest big penguin patch to cover the horrible scorch on my work smock, a knitting needle case, some fab hand-drawn flashcards, and an embroidery kit.

Action shot! Sort of... how the patch will look on my smock

Thankyou so much! Well worth the wait Smiley Sorry you ended up sending twice.
8  ORGANIZED CRAFT SWAPS / The Swap Gallery / Re: Personal/Private Swap Gallery - May 2007 on: June 01, 2007 02:47:48 AM
Oh my , this has to be seen to be believed - I walked in yesterday to A YEAR'S WORTH of mail - bills, last year's and this year's birthday card from my mum... and of course all my swap packages!

travelbug sent me a fabulously funky bag that's big enough for all my work crap and has attracted comments already! Plus a train-pass and business-card holder to match.

Thanks travelbug!

Atsuko sent a lovely turquoise bracelet (I like the square beads, very sophisticated), a row-counter bracelet and matching stitch-markers/earrings, and best of all, a beautiful rose-quartz and onyx o-nenju (Buddhist prayer beads). It is so lovely I almost cried!

And action shot - gassho shimashou!

9  MISCELLANEOUS TOPICS / Discussion and Questions / Re: You know you're a craftster when... (part TWO!) on: May 26, 2007 08:33:52 AM
I lost my sewing scissors a while ago, and it turned out they were in the kitchen, where people had been cutting bacon rinds with them.


*shudders* the horror!!

I just treated myself for my birthday to a pair of these

(I had a brief moment of 'what am I thinking? 5000Y scissors!' - though searching for a picture I just found I got them for 1000Y less than RRP) and had to patiently explain to bf that if he ever dared use them to cut paper or anything else non-fabric then the next thing they'd be cutting would be his fingers (or other body parts).

Actually YKYACW you spend 20 minutes searching for a picture of your new fabric shears so you can post it on craftster!
10  ASIA / Japan / Re: Can someone translate this for me? on: May 19, 2007 08:20:41 AM
I think it can also be someone's name, too

Yep, I used to teach a little boy called Sasuke - don't know if the reading was 'ninja warrior' though!
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