week 280

I’m currently crocheting hearts for the kids in my son’s class, for tomorrow, with chunky yarn and a K/8.50mm sized hook, which makes it easy and quick. (Especially when you’re a horrible procrastinator.)

Haven’t really done much but picked up where I left off on one of the knitting projects in my closet. One was completely frogged, and the other is turning into a cardigan. It was going to be a pullover but want to use up buttons from my stash.

reached around thirteen inches on the back of knitting a cardigan

Have been spending a few hours at a time knitting. Unsure what buttons will go with this but it’s going to look nice when it’s done.

I want to build a mini shadowbox and am toying around with posterboard.

askew paper box with separations

Even with the edges, it isn’t straight and was more of a diamond, which isn’t bad. I didn’t make the edges deep enough to slot everything and the measurements are so off. I tried to glue the edges down and it slightly straightened it out but the edges aren’t smooth so the glue didn’t fully take.

week 279

Didn’t accomplish much this past week, but this is a couple clues to what is in the planning stages.

stretcher bars, folded canvas and a peacock feather laying on my bed

I made use of the Michaels’ gift-card that one of my sister-in-laws bought me for Christmas. Bought a couple pairs of 48″/122cm stretcher bars and a bit of canvas. The feather isn’t part of it but will be part of a future project.

Everything arrived yesterday, where one pair of bars arrived then five hours later, the rest arrived. The second box of stretchers was taller than me, and before I disassembled the box and put it in the recycling bin, I was taking selfies with the empty box.

I know I need to put on a cross brace, because of the size of the bars, and am probably going to have to build one.

prelim drawing

I finally put the two studies in a frame (used a cheap 20×28, so the white space all around is obvious and I can focus on them) and currently examining how to mesh them together. This was the first drawing I made and it’s a total mess and will probably either become more complicated or much more simplier. The cool colours will be shades of orange and/or red and the warms are blue and/or greens, and will soften into each other.

week 278

The two studies are finished.

cool and warm studies, greens and blues on the cool side and orange red and yellow on the warm side

The original intention was what can I make with three materials. I ended up using five. Both are first layered with Crayola watercolours. On the left was just one colour, which was a bluish-green and the left was two mixed together. I wasn’t paying attention and the red-orange and orange-red look interchangeable.

After they dried, I taped up the canvas boards in random order and it just turned out the cool side was squares and the warm side was triangular and circles. Some of the circles didn’t stick on and popped off when I was applying the colours with oil pastels. Smoothing them out with my finger didn’t make them completely flat, but neither did applying poppy oil either. They dried for about a week, taking longer because I left the tape on for an extra day, I had let them sit with thumbtacks so I could lean one against the other.

Before poking holes, I sprayed them with fixative spray and let them sit for half an hour. By the way, if you’re indoors, make sure you have the windows fully open and the fan on full blast, I might have gotten a headache for about ten minutes because the smell was gnarly. Left the room after a couple minutes, but that was enough.

Thumbtacks don’t produce big enough holes but luckily, I made use of a bookbinding awl and poked big enough holes to thread an embroidery needle through and attached the embroidery thread through. I like the openness of cool side, and wish I made the warm side more even.

Now I want to analyse both and take elements from both and incorporate them into a larger scale. I finally used the Michaels giftcard and bought a 70″x72″ (178cm by 183cm) canvas fold and a couple sets of 48″ (122cm) stretcher bars. Still need to get the cross brace for the back and some gesso, then go to town on that painting. I’m going to layer a thin wash of acrylic paint, then oil paint, then use laceweight yarn on the canvas. I wonder if I could attach crocheted chains but we’ll see.

Currently looking to frame the studies together but 16’x24″ (41cm by 61cm) frames is an unusual size. Want the middles to touch but not precious about the other sides.

The weaving is finished and it’s uneven on the right side, because when I tied off the ends, I did it a bit tightly.

finished weaving

A couple of the fringe bits are not even and it just needs a trim but it looks like this. This is what the weaving looks like if you keep turning it around but this looks much better than anything else I’ve done.

Most of my time has been spent doing this has been otherwise taken up with this.

wound yarn bits

I don’t remember the blue but the green one is from Knitpicks.

yarn still to untangle

This has been sitting in the closet and am finally sucking it up and unwinding it all. It’s not going to be in one piece, obviously, but it will be usable at some point. Wish I didn’t get it in this condition in the first place but laceweight yarn is such a pain in the arse with a mind of its own.

week 277

Lately, I seem to only focus on two projects per week, or mainly one and another to do while waiting on the other.

Been mainly focused on one project. Have been wanting to see what the end result if I use three specific things, has turned into four. Got two blank canvas board, then covered them in (Crayola) watercolour. Then, after that layer dried, covering them in painter’s tape (made the mistake of using packing tape which I’m not sure why I assumed it wouldn’t ruin the back), then on the exposed areas use oil pastels. Originally was going to just put fixative over it, but my genius brain thought to put linseed oil over it all, in hopes to smooth down the oil pastel as much as possible. Smoothing it out with my fingers still left spots where it wasn’t completely smooth. I didn’t use linseed oil, instead used drying poppy oil. Also, never leave the tape on the panel or such while it’s drying. Still. I have quite a bit of time on my hands while it finally reaches the stage where I can handle it without oil smothering my fingertips.

blue-green squarish and red-orange-yellow circular examples

This is how they look, after the tape has been removed. The tape slightly outlines the pastels on the right, which you can’t tell from this photo. To make the smaller circles, I used those circle label stickers. More than one popped off when I was rubbing the oil pastel over it. For the big one, I taped on one of the ends of the cardboard from a ribbon spool. Using yellow stickers under that colour was mildly comical as I had to remember where they were attached, so they could be removed. It’s also kind of annoying that my intention was that, positioned this way, it would be left leaning, but the size gets more attention than the intensity of colour. The cool colours were supposed to lean right, and the warm colours lean left. The official thing will be changed so it reflects that, and it’s obvious they will soften into each other, and not be hard like these examples. Right now, the materials is more important than anything else.

I’ve stuck thumbtacks in the boards for two reasons. I can safely lean them against each other without their accidentally touching, so they don’t smear onto each other. Also, that’s to give me a rough idea of the path where I’m applying the embroidery thread when it is finally safe to handle.

After everything is finished, I want to do a comparison and take the best elements from both and incorporate them into something more cohesive.

While they’re drying, a bit of playing with yarn.

red weaving

This is an experiment with different textures, as in changing the yarn so it’s crocheted or knit a bit before weaving it in, but staying with monochrome red yarns. It looks nice with the blue peeking out. My problem with weaving, thought, is I never get it tight enough so it doesn’t hang weird. Perhaps because I don’t have that bar underneath it.

week 276

It’s been a slow week as I’m trying to catch up on the piles of reading material and going through my closet, weeding things out, so it slightly cuts into doing other things with my hands. I tend to do that after a semi-huge project, where one thing is complete then sort of putter around then start another project.

I’ve only done a couple things.

One. These red beads have been in a container with other beads and they’re so pretty. I turned most of them into a necklace.

red two layer necklace

The clasp isn’t neat but it looks fine to me.

And two. The other thing is just making a scrap thing, after finding a whole bunch of yarn bits in a container in my closet.

scrap blanket or shawl

I’m not going in any colourway, just literally going “Okay. That one’s next.” The end product will be poo, but the process is always more important the result.

Currently, I’m trying to figure out a way to make holes in a canvas board, because the want to experiment with Dylan’s watercolours, some oil pastels (which I’ve had forever but never really use) and some embroidery thread.

week 275

Bit of a slow week as I’m reorganising personal items and it’s taking up space and time. Have only been able to focus on a few things. Well, two and another one, just wanted it done.

Yesterday, I undid the yarn on the neckline on the striped sweater and made the shoulder seams longer. Have yet to make a sweater closer to personal size, but oversized roomy jumpers are so nice to put on. This was sitting there and just wanted it finished, but need to put on some edging all around.

closeup of purple, grey and blue striped sweater

Okay. Remember how I got indecisive about the knitting of those two Yarnbox yarns?

It started off crochet, then was knitted. It’s crochet.

crochet green and purple variegated shawl

I love the way it looks as it does now, and not sure why I didn’t originally go with this. Started with the green then the purple with pink and white bits. It’s not clear in this picture because the light is washing out the shawl.

Also, didn’t realise but this may have taken a couple days to make.

So, the top using the sloper. My stitches are messy but it’s almost done.

almost finished lace and silk top
seam binding on neckline

I’m somewhat proud of this top although using white lace on a dark fabric shows the stitches and is a bit annoying but unavoidable. Originally the hem was going to be just lace but it made it so the top felt like a sweatshirt which wasn’t fun. I mirrored the hem with the top although the puffy side of the lace is reverse of the top front. Need to topstitch the hem and fix the cuffs then it will be finished. The lace was from an open jacket sitting in my closet, bought at Kmart, and the heavy silk floral fabric was bought at Joanns. Both purchased on a whim.

weeks 273-274

This is the first post of the year. Between the weekend before Christmas and New Year’s Day is this period of time that somehow becomes longer than it really is, where your focus isn’t really on any one thing, except just existing. It’s like the week before your birthday.

I was able to do a couple things, starting a few days back.

One is making a top. Drafting a top sloper seems fairly easy, if you have basic math skills and an extra long ruler. And if you take your time and actually measure yourself.

I was somewhat successful, after making a second sloper because the first time I didn’t measure the space between the bust and my waist. Four inches was the difference between the first sloper and the second one. Also forgot to measure between my waist and hips but added that to the second sloper. There’s something to be said for the quote “measure twice, cut once”.

Didn’t measure right but I’m making a top. Originally wanted something with a pleated angled bib in front but after making a mockup bib, and being indecisive about the number of pleats, decided to save that for something else.

Instead.

lace and silk top pieces

Using lace for a bib, then for cuffs. It looks nice and not sure why I put inch seams all around, but get the feeling more will be cut away on the sides. Especially on the oddly cut sleeves.

(Also, not sure why the picture turned out blurry. )

another crochet shawl to be

This began crocheted of don’t remember the stitch count, then knit a few rows of 110 stitches, then this is crochet of 120 stitches again. Have done a bit more rows than this, and the markers are solely for counting, so haven’t moved them because the number of stitches haven’t changed. When I change the colour and the number count changes, they’ll move.

The two yarns bought off of yarnbox are becoming a shawl. It probably won’t be as long as I hope, but it’s going to look nice when done. I tend to usually avoid mixing green and purple, because it’s not the greatest colour combo, but only one them is a solid colour while the other is varigated.

I do have one more project in the works, as there is a dress waiting to be made. It’s this beautiful golden lace fabric overlaid mint.