Monthly Archives: August 2012

Preview: random commentary to come

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Third attempt here; WordPress apparently does not approve this post.

I keep opening the Add Post on my browser window, and then freezing up. Not good. I do have stuff to say, but I haven’t gotten any crafting done. I was considering myself ahead of things last weekend, and I had a guest for the weekend. Though the week I’ve had some intermittent vertigo (Monday was all day, other days more come-and-go), which led to me missing art group night. That’s a bummer, since we don’t have group on the last Wednesday of the month, and I’ll be out of town the next Wednesday. I do have a project I plan to finish up and post today, and I need to plot out what’s next.

And also, I got a tattoo yesterday that’s going to complicate my usual routines for a couple of weeks, which I didn’t really think too much ahead about. It’s on the inner part of my right wrist, and I’m not supposed to touch it or submerge it in water, which is making me rethink a lot of movements I never think about. But I’ve been having some ominous twinges in my right shoulder and wondering how I’ll cope if I eventually have to have surgery (something I experience on my left shoulder), so maybe this is just good practice.

But right now I’d like to write about epic disasters, disappointments and the like. Because just about everyone has seen the story about the elderly church lady who “fixed” the fresco in her church that had seen some damage over the years. Most of the accounts I’ve seen so far have few details, and being a story-brained person, I want to know allllllll the answers. I was planning to write this now, but I just ran across a bunch of delightful comments about it via a friend’s Facebook, so I want to get permission to quote them. Have messaged, am waiting.

Maybe I’ll do some crafting now.

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It was on Pinterest, so it must be a craft; Project 27

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It was on Pinterest, so it must be a craft; Project 27

I must now confess to my terrible habit of divesting myself of socks and … ahem, such … and leaving them in little sock balls on the bathroom floor. So I perked up when I saw an incredibly simple DIY on Pinterest. It was so simple, in fact, that I don’t even think I pinned it.

Someone had taken a large embroidery hoop and attached it to a long pillowcase (a king? a body pillow? Not sure) and then hung it on the wall. I already had a big embroidery hoop (which I’d just barely avoided ruining some jeans with when I started to do a bleach pen craft on my lap but stopped myself just in time) that I’d bought at a thrift shop. A few days later, I’m checking out the flea market where I have my stuff, and there’s a whole rack of old cloth feed sacks from somebody’s farm. And my brain actually makes the connection on the spot.

If you’ll look close, you’ll see the Archer representing Archer Daniels Midland (a name I cannot help hearing in my head in the NPR-guy’s voice. Their slogan refuses to come to mind, but that’s totally okay with me).

Hung it on the bathroom wall with a nail, and there you go. Craft. Done.

I went back and got a few more of the feed sacks, in slightly less awesome condition because they were selling like crazy and the farmer was down to his last few. They washed up pretty well, though not perfectly, so I will be doing something or other with them — maybe tote bags, maybe something else.

Ohhh, halfway there, OHH-OHH! LIVIN’ ON A PRAYER! Project 26: more bleach dye

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Ohhh, halfway there, OHH-OHH! LIVIN’ ON A  PRAYER! Project 26: more bleach dye

Woke up bright dark and early to a deliciously long thunderstorm (which is still going on) and a feeling of accomplishment. Two, count ’em, TWO crafts done! I’ll post them one at a time, though.

I made two new bleach pen shirts last night, since it was the featured craft at our (mostly) weekly art party, and I was showing people how it was done and whipping out all my samples of things I’d done with bleach or bleach and paint or bleach and glitter. I’d had a design in mind using a painter’s tape resist, which completely flew out of my head, and another based on a Zentangle pattern, but then I forgot to look it up before I left for class. So I didn’t really do anything planned, but I liked what I ended up with.

I had a couple of black cotton tees I had bought — one I got at the outlet for one of the catalog companies around here, which I’m not even 100% sure I originally meant as a shirt to bleach. It might have been one of those “can’t have too many black tees” impulses. Oh well, it’s black with bleach embellishments now! Among the goodies at hand in the Fabulous Back Room of Art was a book of lace samples that had been donated from another catalog company (they gift the arts center with various sample textiles, buttons, etc, which are just enough to make some wee thing from, not to use for a sewing project). I found a substantial strip of lace and placed it on the shirt, then put bleach gel in and around the strip. I wasn’t sure how it would come out, because some of the holes in the lace (is there a term for that?) were very small, so I didn’t know if it would go through or all mooosh together or what. Then I watched it for color, and when it looked right (and the last bit I had done seemed to have had enough time to take), I went into the kitchen and rinsed it off the best I could. (At home, this step is just tossing a thing in the wash mashine.)

I’m extremely pleased with how it turned out. The pattern is a bit low, but now I remember I was thinking of flipping the lace and doing the same thing above it, without really thinking about the fact that you have to avoid overexposing the first bit you did while working on the second. If I decide it needs more, I’ll go back and repeat the process. (But the first part should be washed and dried before repeating.) Or maybe I’ll just try on the shirt and see if I like it fine as is.

[Tried on the shirt. It’s fine as is!]

The design had a particularly gorgeous red tinge to it when it was still wet, but it’s still pretty gorgeous.

Come closer, my pretty. Clooooooooser.

The second shirt is a tank top from a local thrift shop. For this one I did a quick-and-dirty version of the process I used making my previous stenciled shirt (https://dangerouscraftsforgirls.com/2012/07/21/dont-worry-its-only-a-nip/). I used two stencils from a pack that Plaid sells of Wingdings-like patterns, flipping one to use it twice. Instead of making a stick-on stencil with Contact paper, I just lifted the stencil off as the bleach did its work and wiped it, flipped it, and did the other side of my pattern. I didn’t do any careful measurements of where to put them, either, just eyeballed it, and it came out well.

It’s a bit more rust than orange, which I’m not sure comes through in the pics.

I get fewer “artifacts” from smeared bleach every time I do this, yay.

So I came out with two shirts I’m very pleased with, despite neither being the things I had kinda sorta planned. Go, serendipity!

The other shirts my fellow art partiers did came out great, too! Too bad we didn’t get a picture of all of them.

Remix culture For the Win

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Search for “Somebody That I Used to Know” on YouTube and you’ll find a squizpillion covers and remixes done by everyone from solitary kids in their bedrooms to a full choir. Instead of sending out Cease and Desist notices or having YouTube take down the vids, the original performer of the song, Gotye, did a brilliant remix that’s visually enjoyable and musically amazingly beautiful.

Somebodies: a Remix by Gotye http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=opg4VGvyi3M

This is why I am in favor of loosening the corporate grip on music and film and TV, to add to that cultural conversation that fans participate in when they express their love of a work in making another work. And how cool is it when the original artist then enters the conversation in the same spirit of joy and love?

Does cooking/baking count?

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I did both today, making brunch for a friend who came out to visit and catch up on some “Supernatural” episodes she missed getting onto her DVR, so she can mainline the whole season.

I have a terrific, adaptable recipe for a frittata that bakes in the oven, which I made with potatoes and vegetables from a Green Giant variety called something like Backyard Grilled Potatoes or something, which had red and yellow peppers and onions mixed in. It may be the best lazy version of this frittata I’ve ever made. The coffee cake was a mashup of a recipe and 2 variations I found on one of those recipe sites. This time out there was no extra creativity involved; I just followed the recipe I had cobbled up before. Still, cooking is work and it’s beautiful and useful. It counts, right?

Also, this long weekend I threw two sweaters into the wash to felt them, and they both came out beautifully, including one I was very dubious about. One had a long zipper, so I cut that off and am going to finish it up into a zipper bracelet, but I need a lobster claw clasp to do so.

Oh, and this Wednesday I’m going to share some of the stuff I’ve done with bleach pen decorating with the art gals.

Yow, total energy drop. I am going to sign off and curl up.

Those days when your eyeballs hurt

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Somehow my full day of housecleaning evolved into me goofing off all day and getting a sunburn and a migraine and then goofing off some more. Which is unfortunate, since I invited a friend over for tomorrow, and she’s never seen my place.

It started out innocently enough. I had a couple of things to take to the flea market stall I rent, and when I got there I realized that ermagerd! the outdoor flea market is this weekend. And of course I had to make the rounds, where I did score some epic crafting type stuff. Oldish yardsticks with advertising for $2, $3 and $4. Shutters for $5 each. A couple of pairs of jeans for $1 each, which I got mostly to be nice after I picked some stuff out of the same people’s free bin. (Including some awesome, though completely broken down, cowboy boots, which I plan to alter like mad.) Oh, and a wheelie bin that’s probably meant for gardening but will be good for schlepping things down to the basement via the hill outside and not the stairs. Also chatted with some people and enjoyed that thoroughly. Though it was a beautiful day and not too hot, I got a little fried, and after I came home and put stuff in the garage, I sat down to catch up with a friend on the phone and cool down, and by the time we’d talked for 1 1/2 hours, I was reeling a bit from not having had lunch. By the time I finished eating, a migraine had set in already, and so I napped a while, and then have mostly lounged and eaten ice cream.

I am partway through a craft that’s a bit of a quick one, and maybe it’ll be postable tomorrow at some point when I’m not madly grabbing up things and hiding them somewhere, or hanging out with my friend.