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11  CROCHET / Amigurumi: Completed Projects / A very happy bee to cheer me up (with a wee bit of knitting too) on: November 16, 2008 09:36:06 AM
I have been feeling a bit down over the last couple of weeks due to an injury that is keeping me housebound, so to cheer myself up I thought I would crochet something very happy.  Here he is, my happy bee! 

The stuffing doesn't show at all in real life, the camera flash brought it out.  The arms and legs (all six of them) are actually knitted i-cord rather than being crocheted, mainly because I hate crocheting small things with black yarn as it's impossible to see the stitches  Cheesy

Hope you guys like him!
12  OCCASIONS AND HOLIDAYS / Winter Holidays / What crafty stuff do YOU want for Christmas? on: November 14, 2008 02:26:56 AM
I know we craftsters are a benevolent crowd and love giving gifts to other people, but I'm sure most of us have a few things we'd like for ourselves! 

I've been dropping hints to my husband, and I have an Amazon wishlist that my inlaws usually buy me stuff from.  This year I would really really love any of these:

A set of Prismacolor pencils for my shrink plastic jewellery
Lots and lots of tiny seed beads (they cost next to nothing, I hope some appear in my stocking!)
A book about soap making
A knitting book called "Victorian Lace Today", the patterns are just gorgeous
A class at my LYS or a local place called the Make Lounge to do something I haven't done before
Anything to do with polymer clay
Gift vouchers to Hobbycraft as every time I go in there I blow the month's salary!
13  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Beads: Completed Projects / My first beaded thing - spiral stitch bracelet. I'm in love with beading! on: November 09, 2008 05:11:00 AM
I love seed beads but never know what to do with them.  So I made this pretty bracelet, it was really easy and only took a couple of hours.  It's my first ever jewellery that didn't involve shrink plastic or polymer clay! 

The core beads are clear and the outside beads are pink with a hint of topaz.  The colour didn't photograph terribly well, the topaz is much less obvious but the camera flash brought it out.  Unfortunately there isn't enough natural light in our apartment for photography  Sad

My arms are not this hairy in real life, I swear!  It's only because I used a macro lens.

I think I'll make some of these for Christmas presents, but I love this one too much to give it away.
14  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Shrinky dink icons! Elvis, Marilyn, Hendrix all in pink. on: November 08, 2008 02:49:54 PM
Well I hadn't played with my shrink plastic for a while so I got out some pink sheets tonight and made these.  The discoloured bits at the bottom are from camera flare, they're not there in real life.  Elvis is my favourite  Grin  The colour is closest to real life in the group shot.

Comments/questions/criticism all welcome  Cheesy
15  KNITTING / Knitting: Discussion and Questions / Needed: good EASY beginner's sock pattern on: October 29, 2008 12:58:24 AM
I had enrolled in a sock knitting workshop but they had to cancel due to not getting enough numbers  Angry  I was so disappointed.  I really want to learn to make socks but for some reason it terrifies me.  I'm perfectly happy using dpns but I hear things like "short row shaping"  and "grafting" and get all intimidated.

Does anyone know of a nice easy pattern with good clear instructions that I could try? 
16  CROCHET / Crochet: Discussion and Questions / Crochet book recommendations please! on: October 02, 2008 05:22:59 AM
What I am after is not a book with patterns, but something like a directory/encyclopedia of different crochet stitches.  Oh, and preferably in US terminology, not UK.  There are lots on Amazon but I have no idea which of them are any good.  Does anyone have any particular recommendations before I just go ahead and order one?

Thanks  Smiley
17  KNITTING / Knitting: Discussion and Questions / How should I block cotton? on: September 29, 2008 06:14:59 AM
Despite having knitted on and off for a few years, I have never bothered to block most of the things I have made!  So I'm a bit of a noob when it comes to blocking.

Currently I'm knitting some washcloths from cotton, and they need blocking to even out the stitches.  I'm not really sure how to do it - I've heard steam is best for blocking cotton.  Anyone got any advice for me? 
18  JEWELRY AND TRINKETS / Trinkets and Jewelry: Completed Projects: General / Swallow tattoo necklace on: September 11, 2008 01:42:01 PM
Isn't it awesome when you have an idea for something, and you make it, and it turns out EXACTLY like you imagined?   Grin  I saw a necklace like this somewhere but it was plain black, and I decided I wanted one in colour.  So I got out the shrink plastic and made this for myself.  I love it.

Action shot:

Close up:

Shot with the chain:

I googled for a swallow tattoo and liked these ones, so I copied one with coloured pencils and sharpies.  And I used embossing powder to seal it and make it look shiny.

Thanks for looking  Grin  I would love to hear what you think, any comments/criticism appreciated! 

19  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Discussion and Questions / How on earth do I clean my utensils? on: September 11, 2008 12:27:28 AM
Doubtless this is a stupid question but I can't figure it out!  I have a little paint palette for mixing up liquid Fimo with the solid stuff, and I am finding it absolutely impossible to get the stuff off afterwards.  Water just runs off it, I've tried rubbing washing up liquid into it and that doesn't do much, and I've also tried vegetable oil thinking it might dissolve the clay and while it's definitely better than water and/or washing up liquid, it's still not brilliant.  It's not that the clay hardens, it just sits there and whatever I'm trying to clean it with just kind of runs over the top of it, if that makes sense.

Any ideas?  (Diane B, if you read this, I was going to PM and ask you, but thought it might be useful for others to read in case they are having the same issue.)

Also, I have discovered that if you wear enamel nail polish while working with clay, the clay will EAT it!!
20  POTTERY, CERAMICS, POLYMER CLAY / Polymer Clay: Completed Projects / Second attempt! Lemon Meringue Pie and Hot Dogs, yum yum on: September 08, 2008 11:14:39 AM
Honestly I think I am in love with polymer clay.

After my first attempt, I got hold of some liquid fimo, and what better to make than some gooey meringue?  I made these in exactly the same way I would make real lemon meringue pie - make the pastry base, make the lemon filling and stick that in, make the meringue, pile it all on top any which way, and throw it in the oven.  I love these charms!  But not as much as I love the real thing...

I think these will be a set of stitch markers.

You can see how gooey the meringue is in this photo:

And I also made some hot dogs, because it wouldn't be right to have dessert without dinner.

Thanks for looking, and I would love to hear what you think!
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