The Crafting Thread

  • @Auspice I have technically been Not Allowed to Buy Fabric since about 2000, but I came back from Paris with two suitcases full anyway that same year, which is about how that prohibition went until around 2005. ;) Rooms in this house get perpetually repurposed based on the current work project pile, and that was the years of heavy duty doll clothes making. Most was dress fabrics, though.

    I have a startling dearth of cottons, other than the little bits like that I see and just have to have 'for something'. There's a slow-growing bag (that I should really transition to a storage box, augh) of the Japanese prints that I want to make into knitting needle storage/sleeves/etc. for the various sets of things. I found a few gorgeous standing file boxes in metal that go nicely, and am going to try to do something like 'hanging files' with the fabric to organize them all. The butterfly print in the pic likely will land in there for 'augh, sorting has to occur here!', but not get used for that, since all the rest are black/gold/red and mix and match nicely.

    Meanwhile, I keep randomly pining for some of this: (My mother is terrible; I sent her that link and she bought some in the red: to tinker with herself. Evil woman!) Those seem like they'd be neat to embroider over. Picking a colorway is HARD though. :/

  • I should make some storage for knitting needles and crochet hooks. Right now crochet hooks are just all in a pouch and knitting needles are.........

    uhm, they just are.

    But I can't sew for shit. I have a curse on me and sewing machines and lack the patience to hand-sew.

  • @Auspice I have a wonderful sewing machine. They stopped making them ages ago. (I got it for college, since I needed a seriously amazing one for fashion/costume design program.) This thing will do (eta: it's good to finish sentences!) its small catalog of little embroidery stitches through BELT LEATHER, ffs, I love that beast.

    We... lost the foot pedal, somehow, when changing over rooms/moving furniture.

    This means we now have a $1800in1992$s dust collector on the porch under a tarp with my mother's antique four-harness loom somewhere (her epic dust collector lives in MY house, augh), and I have to run next door to use my mom's ancient cruddy Singer that hates me so much the fact that I went into fashion/costume design ever at all is a testament to my absurd levels of stubbornness while she watches Hallmark movies in the background to intensify the pain and prevent me from colonizing it like I did in high school. :/ You can probably imagine how often this happens. (Mayyyyyyyybe once every five years.)

  • @surreality I can use machines from the 50s and 60s, but I hate them because I'm lazy and the maintenance is garbage.

    Anything newer? Naaah.

    And people are always like 'oh yeah threading is hard and-'

    that's not it! I can figure that out! It's like a puzzle and I like puzzles.

    It's just that THINGS HAPPEN while I am using them. One time using my mom's, the needle snapped off all of a sudden and landed across the room in a perfect circle. One time while making skirts with a friend, the machine would jam up every time she stepped out of the room.

    I am just not meant to use sewing machines.

  • @Auspice I wish they still made the ones like the one I had, I really do. It's an Elna Diva (the name is hilarious in itself) and it was a workhorse like whoa. It was made right at the time before stuff got SUPER COMPLEX to set up and thread, so it threaded up simply and then it would just POWER through stuff -- though not at the demon racing speed of industrial machines. (Gods, do I ever hate those, they are not made for people with t-rex arms and boobs in the way. We had to use them in college and every teacher was like 'oh, honey, this is... ergonomic comedy of errors at best with you'.)

    Sad thing is, those machines from the 90s were so hit and miss. I had a Singer that LOOKED great (and was a 10th the price of the Elna) but it was finicky hellspawn to the extent that when we went to go look for a replacement, the guy actually winced and apologized to us when we said what it was we had.

    Whenever we gut the storage area on the porch, I may retrieve it, though; the same guy still runs the local sewing place, and said he'd hunt us down a replacement pedal, or have one of the techs kitbash something for us that'd work, since apparently even by today's standards it's a good workhorse machine he wishes was still an option for folks. (This is the one reason we don't feel as bad as we could going to that particular fabric store, even if it's dangerous to the budget.)

  • @Auspice Double to add: it sounds like you have my coffeemaker luck with sewing machines.

    As an example, at one point, the one upstairs in my workroom died. That was OK! I had the old one downstairs still! I walked into the room where it had been sitting unused for two years just in time to watch the glass carafe explode (probably from ancient thermal shock, though I am not discounting the possibility of actual gremlins) over a dozen feet away.

    Even the cats looked at me like, 'Lady, you are cursed.'

  • @surreality Oh, see, with coffee makers I am p sure coworkers think I am magic.

    We have a pair of these super fancy coffee machines on every floor at work. They grind the coffee beans and you can choose between 3 sizes and 2 strengths. Well, one stopped working. Which is bad with how busy it can be some mornings.

    And SURE. There's the TRADITIONAL giant carafe coffee.
    But these make such good delicious coffee you'll even skip the starbucks run.

    I found that it was the cover over the coffee beans that was the issue. It wasn't being recognized as closed. So there's been a few instances of me walking over to someone futzing with it, taking a coffee stirrer, wedging it in just-so, and the thing working.

    But sewing machines... nope. I just call that a loss.

  • @Auspice I have killed two of those! (In fairness, one had a 2 year predicted lifespan and mine made it almost five, which totally made it worth it, but the second didn't even last two months.) Love those things. Superautos are <3

    People are like 'get a Keurig!' and I'm like... AWWWHELLNAW. Not only does the Keurig end up being more expensive in the long run, what comes out of it is complete garbage compared to the superautos.

    If ever I have $500 to blow (hahahahahahahahahahahahaha) I'm seriously going to pick up the new model of the old one I had. The long-lived one was even super cute, it looked like a little droid! We mourned coffeebot's passing in this house in a big way, even though my husband doesn't even drink coffee. (My folks would find excuses to visit and always seemed to bring a thermal cup, hmmmmmmmm... )

    In fairness, the ninja is surprisingly good and some day I'll pick up the iced coffee pitcher thing for it. For that function alone it's worth having. (Me: 'So what if half my desk is monitors and the other half is coffeemakers, THAT IS HOW I ROLL.')

    ETA: This was the old one. HOW CUTE! Wee coffeebot.

  • @surreality

    Keurigs also die really easy in general. I like them when I'm traveling, but considering how many my mom has gone through... nope.
    I'm happy with my french press and aeropress. Extra effort, but they take up little space, so I'm good.

    This is what we have at work:

  • @Auspice The juras are gorgeous... and that one isn't totally unreasonable, actually. They're on the lottery house wishlist for real, in part because their importer/service center is not a zillion miles from here. Also they have some models that have a double bean hopper, so you can have decaf/caf in the same machine seamlessly, mostly for business/office use. (The husband is well aware that lottery dream house would likely have a bump in home insurance costs purely for the coffeemakers that'd be strewn all over it.)

  • alt text

    finished the page on the left last night.
    Begin page on the right tonight.

    fuck the castle.
    fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuck the castle.
    It's 5 browns. And they're all so similar. It LOOKS good once done but the doing of it is horrendous.

  • Checking into this thread first before diving into the drama posts, best pre-coffee.

    Having to clear/clean organize a ton of stuff before getting to play with the small new creative toy this morning, awful always.

    Clearly the way to get me to clean and organize when I don't want to is dropping some cheap new toy to play with in my lap that requires me to do so.

    I really, really hope my husband never catches on to this, no matter how ungodly obvious it is that it happens on the regular.

    ETA: Somehow I feel this exact same post belongs in the ADD thread. It's seriously ADD crafter life in a nutshell. New coping strategy? Not really; it is how the clutter grows, too, after a while...

  • @surreality just develop OCD
    the only time my place isn't clean is when I'm too sick or depressed to clean

    it's greeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeat

  • @Auspice I have it, but mine is more 'special counting numbers' and obsessive sorting than cleaning. I count myself pretty lucky that way. (Partly it's also because my back simply won't allow much before I can't move at all for three days, which is like 'three days of staring at the ceiling with the itch to do something and knowing something I meant to finish is not being finished'. Ironically a different feel than 'I will start thirty things and never finish any of them', which I also do, and WTF is it with that even?!)

    Like, that craft room floorplan is not even a joke re: dream house. ;) I have a 'space for everything' problem and I'm one of those people that can super-pack things. (Whole college dorm worth of a ton of stuff including all required art supplies and sewing supplies packed into a small car that... well it HAD a back seat, but we called it a two-seater with delusions of grandeur for a reason... and with room for a passenger and their luggage to spare!) I bend laws of time and space when I have the storage gear to manage it like this house is a Tardis re: storage.

    It's why the beach trips are super OCD mellow reset meditation time, though: sorting through a mountain of shells to pick out nice ones to keep is like... AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHhhhhhhhhhhh-I-can-breathe-again. We do the same re: the pebble piles at a beach up here when I'm a ball of tension and the weather isn't pure garbage. (Of course, now we have a ton of boxes of shells and rocks to store somewhere, and I am probably not too far off with 'a ton' after years and years and years of us doing this.)

    A friend of mine who lived around here a handful of years ago would come by to sort sometimes beads while we'd babble on the couch that helped her out a lot, too. She'd call all 'DO YOU HAVE A BEAD REMNANTS BOWL?' and if I didn't (I usually did) I'd just secretly dump out a box for her before she got here. She'd run out of small apartment to clean and be stuck mid-insomnia-flail with nothing left to do, and call over in the wee hours of morning.

  • FWIW, DMC's site was doing a thing where any order from them over X amount, they'll send 3 decent sized pieces of red aida as a Valentine's Day promo. Not sure if they still have any in stock to hand out, but it's good stuff and worth checking to see if they do if you need/want anything from there.

    New experiment below, normal high quality cotton. The stabilizer can go through any inkjet or laser printer, and is water soluable. (Grid is printed on the inkjet here.) Trying the same stitch pattern from the tight gradient thing in a more 'open' look over the fabric, which is a crazy rainbow tie-dye cotton that will ideally show through; the cross-framing will proooooooobably be metallic and done after the stabilizer is removed since I think it will make the metallics even worse, and all the places to put it will be obvious by then. Fingers crossed it will work.

    Also, yay, new neato scissors came. (I've wanted those forever, and while they're cheap as hell at a whopping $9 they kept getting put off for over a year.)

  • Pitcrew

    I've just recently started making bead jewellery as a hobby, simple stuff like flat spiral and hugs 'n kisses patterns.

    Anyone on here have suggestions of decent places to find pretty patterns for free/not much moneyz?

  • @Vixanic said in The Crafting Thread:

    I've just recently started making bead jewellery as a hobby, simple stuff like flat spiral and hugs 'n kisses patterns.

    Anyone on here have suggestions of decent places to find pretty patterns for free/not much moneyz?

    Craftster sometimes has patterns.
    You can adapt patterns from other stuff (like if it's flat-beaded things on a bead loom, check out friendship bracelet patterns and adapt those).
    Just straight google and you might be surprised what you find!

  • @Vixanic Youtube has some great tutorials.

    If you look at amazon, you can find a LOT of older/used books. They may have cheesy or ugly color choices if it's some 20 page pamphlet from the 70s or somesuch, but the step by step illustrations are still accurate and the designs tend to remain the same, just use the prettier new seed beads we can find today and they really are totally transformed.

    Check for beading magazines, too. There have been about a dozen of them, not sure how many are still around since our brick and mortar bookstores went poof in my area, but for about $5 you end up with 20-30 ideas per magazine.

    DEFINITELY check here:

    They don't have a lot of free stuff, but I think they have a newsletter (or had, I ended up dropping it since I had so many daily things already) that sometimes has free projects. They do a LOT of pdfs for $10 or less, and sometimes have some truly amazing bundle deals for more. I know I picked up something for like... $35 once that had five or six nice books and over a dozen pdfs from them. So while those are a bit more, it's enough stuff to be SO incredibly worth it.

    Their photos, instructions, and designs are pretty spectacular. The kits are too pricey for me to ever bother with, but everything else tends to be reasonable. Since a lot is available as pdfs, you can take them with you everywhere, too. They keep up with what kinds of supplies are coming out that are the 'oooh, I wanna try to make something with that weird new shape of thing!' as well, which is really neat.

    (Interweave is awesome for a variety of other artisan crafting work, too, so errybody in this thread should go peek at what they've got, seriously.) <-- a good example of what I mean. $20, 140 projects. Even if half of them suck, that's a pretty good deal. :D

    Another edit to add: <-- they have a bunch. They tend to be simpler/stuff I'm not as fond of (a lot use expensive supplies to make stuff that's kinda 'ehhhhhhhhh' to me, but it is a bead store/supplier so they are trying to push expensive products, can't blame 'em).

Log in to reply