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Wednesday, October 28, 2009

No more cross-stitch

I have finally sold my cross-stitch fabric on ebay--2 pounds worth.  I haven't cross-stitched in several years since it takes such a toll on my eyes.  The cross-stitch pattern books and cross bars were the first to go (to the Salvation Army), followed by most of my DMC floss (see the blanket I made in my second blog post).  Now, even the cross-stitch fabric is gone.  I only have a few incomplete skeins of floss, the cross-stitch organizer boxes, and floss card holders left.  I was planning on giving the floss card holders to the person who had purchased my cross-stitch fabric, but that would have increased the shipping cost quite a bit, so I decided not to do so.  I'll have to think of something I can do with them.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Macrame and Crocheting in one project

After reading what one person said he/she wanted as a gift for a 4-year-old girl, I decided to make what I thought would be a good gift for that girl.  I crocheted a little red bag with a shell design, which had holes in between the shells so you could see what was in the bag, just in case the child was carrying something she shouldn't be (I know how kids can have sticky fingers sometimes).  I macramed 2 stars in bright girlie colors, since the child liked those types of colors.  I stitched the stars onto the bag.  I left tassels on the ends of the stars for her to play with, so they look like shooting stars.  It can be used as a wristlet in case she is prone to losing things that aren't tied to her.  It's meant as a keepsake, and can be used to hold her iPhone when she is older, although by then, we could have iPhones implanted directly into our brains.

I enjoyed making the bag and thinking of what the child might like.  My only regret is that I didn't have many colors of crochet thread to work with, so my choices were limited.


Materials used: crochet thread, knotting cord, glue
Time taken to make: 6 hours

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Micro Macrame Goldfish Earrings

I made these earrings out of 1mm synthetic cord.  They are 3-D goldfish.  Most of the macrame jewelry I have seen are in 2-D.  I used 6 mm black crystal beads for the eyes.  I like how the goldfish are posing for the camera in the second picture.  

Materials used: Knotting cord, crystal beads, blue
Time taken to make: 3.5 hours

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

The History of Knotting

Knotting has existed for centuries.  Stone blades would be tied to wooden handles with knots to form axes in prehistoric times.  Rope ladders were made with knots.  Some knots were meant to be functional, others to beautify.  Knots existed in many different cultures.  Here are a few interesting excerpts about the history of knotting, which I found on the internet.

In 1867 after observing Scottish physicist Peter Tait's experiments involving smoke rings, Thomson came to the idea that atoms were knots of swirling vortices in the √¶ther. Chemical elements would thus correspond to knots and links. Tait's experiments were inspired by a paper of Helmholtz's on vortex-rings in incompressible fluids. Thomson and Tait believed that an understanding and classification of all possible knots would explain why atoms absorb and emit light at only the discrete wavelengths that they do. For example, Thomson thought that sodium could be the Hopf link due to its two lines of spectra. (Sossinsky 2002, p. 3–10)  The History of Knot Theory
A resent study has found that man is not the only specie to tie knots, that gorillas use them to hold creepers and saplings down in their nests. In one nest two dozen knots were counted, most were grannies but some were square knots. There is a bird that ties knots to fasten their nest. There are still primitive races who fasten their huts, traps and even clothing with knots. KnotPro

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Crocheting a Gift



I learned to crochet when I was about 10.  I recall making a brown granny squares bag as one of my first projects, as well as worm-like bookmarks.  Where did they go?

I still enjoy crocheting, and still like granny squares.  Here are pictures of a more recent project of mine, which was given away as a gift about a month ago.  The multi-colored portion consists of granny squares made from cross-stitch DMC floss.  I don't cross-stitch anymore since my eyesight is not as good as it used to be, so I used the floss for this project.  My initial plans were to make a baby blanket, but the granny squares turned out to be, in my opinion, too heavy for a baby blanket, so I decided to assimilate the granny squares into a blanket large enough for a twin bed by sewing a blue border and tassels around the granny squares.





Some computations:
I used 2 skeins (of different colors) of floss per granny square, and was able to make every square in a unique color combination.  There are 15 X 15 squares (i.e. 225 squares), so a total of 450 skeins of DMC floss was used.  In order to make 225 different squares by choosing a combination of 2 colors per square, I would need only 22 unique colors of floss:

Combination(22, 2) = 231 > 225

I am very sure I had far more than 22 different colors of floss, and made an effort not to duplicate color combinations.

Materials used:
1)  2 skeins of cross-stitch DMC floss per granny square.  Each square is about 2.75" X 2.75"  (7cm x 7cm).  Total of 15 x 15 squares.
2)    knitted fabric for (blue) border
3)  blue bedsheet for backing
4)  white, pre-made tassels

Time taken: 4 months

Size:  5' X 6' (1.5m x 1.8m)

Tip: I found it convenient to connect the granny squares in a diagonal manner:

Sunday, October 18, 2009

My First Post

This is my very first post on my very first blog. I'm planning on posting my thoughts about my crafting projects here.  This way, I can have a crafts portfolio to flip through when I'm old and have arthritis or can't see well enough to make anything.  It is possible though, that when that time arrives, I won't be able to see well enough to read my own blog. :)