For my final thing on Saturday, I added some red herringbone stitch seam decoration to the green wool tunic I've worn to the last couple of events. This counts toward my A&S 50 project list as item 2.

I'm very glad February is over, because now I can just plug away at bigger projects without worrying about whether or not they'll get done by the end of the night.

Sunday we did a bit more wedding planning and I worked on the brown cardigan that I'm making for my dad.
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 28th, 2009 10:02 pm)
My Thing for yesterday was a linen White Scarf for Rigo to where while he fights heavy. It is a hemmed 7"x60" linen strip hand stitched with cotton thread, with a compass rose (NS design) embroidered at one end in black cotton embroidery floss... Picture on Monday.
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 27th, 2009 09:26 am)
People-Who-Make-Paper-Cranes-and-Call-It-A-Thing? I salute you! Last night after I got done working out at the gym, picking up Zig's car from the mechanic, and running 2 loads of laundry (I swear, folding and putting away clothes should count as a Thing...), I was so exhausted that I could barely function.

But since it was Zig's first Dinner off in a long while, I made him sushi... So I'm calling that my Thing.

We had ginger chicken and spicy tuna rolls with avocado, red pepper, and green onion. (I had intended to put in cucumber too, but my cucumber went south prematurely...)

I also got some knitting on my Dad's cardigan done, and finished a single that will be plied into more 3 ply chocolate yarn for Dad's sweater - which is eating through yarn at an alarming rate. This may end up being the 3 pound sweater of DOOM. Once this Thing-A-Day challenge is done, I'll show you pictures of all the sweaters I have in progress that were abandoned because I couldn't get them finished in a day. :P
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 26th, 2009 09:31 am)
Last night's Thing was more turmeric dyed wool...

Unfortunately, I fell asleep with the crock pot on and kinda over-cooked my dye project. Thus this set of turmeric doesn't have as much of a red caste as the previous batch. It is, however, much closer than the batch before it. Tonight I'll likely work at carding and spinning it so that I can finish Keg's leg wraps by the end of this month.
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 25th, 2009 09:35 am)
I think my Thing for last night was made of fail... Maybe...

I was kinda hungry for spice cookies, but I'm trying to avoid eating junk food so that I can lose some weight before the wedding. So instead of making cookies, I decided that I would make SOAP that SMELLS LIKE spice cookies. I had vanilla and ginger essential oils and lard, so I started puttering around making my soap.

The first mistake was dumping the water into the crock pot along with the oils, instead of holding it aside to mix with the lye. No matter, I decided to just dump the lye in with the oil water mixture and resign myself to the fact that it was going to take longer for me to get trace, as the lye wouldn't mix as readily in powder form.

I was right and my soap did take a bit longer to congeal, but it eventually did and I added my scents. Lovely... The soap smelled fantastic, but it didn't have any color or character... So I thought... Maybe if I add a little cinnamon, there will be some fancy texture/color variations to make this soap super-good!

Riiight... There were some texture variations all right. I discovered a soaping uh-oh called "ricing". Soap in "trace" phase looks a lot like vanilla pudding. The second the cinnamon hit my soap, it went from pudding to cottage cheese. FAIL.

The intarwebs had no advice for me on how to correct my experiment... So I continued with the heating and stirring of my soap in hopes that I could fix the problem...

Eventually I managed to get a mostly homogeneous mixture again, and I slapped my soap into the cute molds that [ profile] eithni gave me for 12th night, but I guess I didn't work fast enough, because the consistency of my soap changed between the first mold and the second mold... The soap went from creamy to crumbly in less than 2 minutes. Pictures of fail behind the cut. )

This morning when I popped my little soaps out of the molds you can really see the difference between the creamy fishy soap and the crumbly fail flower soap. I'm going to let all my soaps cure for 4 weeks and then I think I'll mill all the crumbly soaps and re-mold them in hopes that I can rescue them.

As an aside for those of you who are wondering... The soaps do at least smell good. Raise your hand if you want a tiny fishy soap...
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 24th, 2009 09:30 am)
So my Thing for yesterday was the long-put-off repair of the sleeve of my favorite cardigan...

I wore it so much that I managed to wear a hole in the elbow... )

So now I have a hot pink elbow. :)
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 23rd, 2009 10:29 am)
My Thing for yesterday was a linen coif to go with my cute Viking outfit. This also counts as item 1 in my A&S 50 project list.

The coif is linen, hand sewn with linen thread and then decorated (after this picture) with red linen embroidery floss.

Detail photos and pictures of Stephen's Cote. )
I didn't even bother to post my Thing-a-Day for Friday, because you've already seen pictures of the similar Thing I did earlier in the Month. I made 2 more skeins of 3 ply chocolate brown yarn for Dad's Future Sweater.

My Thing for yesterday was to finish up the hemming and the facing tacking on HRH Stephen's cotehardie. I have pictures in my phone, but as usual, you won't be able to see them until Monday. The cote was constructed of brown and white wool, broken herringbone twill, and lined with brown linen. The buttons on the sleeves were all hand made (as seen here) and all the button holes were finished by hand as well. The long seams were constructed using a sewing machine, but all the "fussy bits" were sewn by hand. In all I think I worked on the cote off and on for about two weeks. (More off than on, really.) Now that we have established a working pattern, copies can be made and sent out for construction by the ladies of the house, so that Stephen will have more than one outfit.

Elizabeth will make the blue brocade one.
Abbey will make the Red brocade one.
I will make the Black brocade one (coronation.)

The time of button making is near... I'll send out swatches soon.
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 20th, 2009 09:51 am)
My Thing for last night was to spin the Kool-aid dyed wool into a single and set the twist so that I can use it to knit a pair of socks. I think it's funny how the newly skeined yarn springs up into a frilly wreath until you wet it and weight it to set the twist.
Before and after pictures of setting the twist: )
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 19th, 2009 10:04 am)
Gleh. Yesterday starting at around 3:00 in the afternoon, I had tension creeping up my shoulders - headed for my brains. By 5:00 I had a pounding headache, so I drugged myself in attempt to feel better in time for Fighter Practice. By 7:00 it became apparent that doing anything other than laying down in a warm, dark room was out of the question.

So the only Thing I have to report from yesterday was gathering my tax documents together, scanning them and emailing them off to my accountant.

While it was an Important Thing, it feels not right. It didn't involve string... But the money that comes back will allow me to buy MORE STRING! So. I guess that's OK.

I went to bed for the night at 8:00 PM and woke up this morning at the normal time feeling hung-over. At least I wasn't awake to enjoy the migrane, but I didn't even have a chance to tidy up the house before I passed out. Hopefully today I'll feel good enough to finish a proper Thing and get some tidying done.
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 18th, 2009 09:16 am)
My thing for last night was a case for all my lower gauge DPN's.

The outside of the case is hand-woven wool made with commercial warp and hand-spun weft. It is sewn together with natural colored linen twine and held closed with a button.
Apparently some of you are still rockin' out with the dial-up connections: )
But now I have a nice needle case to keep all my knitting needles tidy... They *were* in a zip-lock baggie that just wasn't doing it for me aesthetically. Now I can pull them out of my work basket without being embarrassed.
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 17th, 2009 11:34 am)
My Thing for yesterday kept me up past my bed-time in order to get finished by the deadline. However, I do think it's a pretty sock:

This was knit with the same pattern as my other brown sock only I used a commercial string of a finer gage than my hand-spun. I wasn't sure I liked the previous sock because, while it looked OK, it didn't show off all the prettiness of the pattern to advantage. I think the commercial yarn does a better job of that. I shall endeavor to knit this sock's mate shortly...
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 16th, 2009 11:15 am)
My Thing for yesterday was another tumeric dying experiment, and I'm somewhat sad to report that I don't like the result...

This time, I heated the tumeric until the color developed and then strained it through a paper towel... Most of the goop came out so I don't need to re-card the resulting dyed roving, but the color was less than satisfactory:

As you can see, it's significantly less vibrant than the previous batch. On the other hand, my non-Thing-A-Day project that the last batch of dying was used in, seems to be coming along quite nicely... Gunther will be positively BLINDING in his "Von Kulmbach Twill" leg wraps...

And yes, intarwebs... You don't have to tell me "I told you so!" about the sizing... Next time I'll take the extra day to add sizing to my warps, because the fluffing, and felting being caused by the motion of the sheds was shredding my warp yarns... The aquanet trick for sizing projects on the loom is saving my bacon, but now my office REEKS of 1980's beauty queens... But at least I've managed to get a fair chunk of the weaving done...

Only 5 more yards to go...
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 15th, 2009 07:38 pm)
I pretty much wiffed on my Thing due to spending time working on a Big Project at TOC, but at the last minute, I repaired the pretty embroidered bag that [ profile] eithni made me and Jasmine chewed to death. It has a new drawstring now, and can be tied to my belt. Hopefully my time management will be better today.
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 14th, 2009 10:24 am)
My thing for yesterday was a pattern draft for my next project... I call it "Von Kulmbach Twill."

Isn't it just horrifying? I love it... That's what all that string from yesterday's post is destined to be... I will probably need to make some more yellow...
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 13th, 2009 09:10 am)
Yesterday's Thing was the spinning of the singles that I will use as warp/weft for my next loom project.

It's really hard to tell from the craptastic colors in the picture but those are black and turmeric gold dyed singles. I spun them, and then used my fancy new Target drying rack to set the twist. The black appears to be much sturdier than the gold, but that's to be expected. Carding the gold turned it from a combed roving into a carded one, and therefore a woolen yarn instead of a worsted one. Since the bulk of the warp will be the black worsted yarn, I don't think there should be too many strength issues. They both appear to be sturdier than the yarn we used in the last project, and after the loom was tightened, that yarn really didn't present a problem.

Because the black yarn seemed so sturdy, and because this project represents an experiment from start to finish, I have decided NOT to size my warp with gelatin. This may prove to be a huge mistake that ends everything in tears, but on the other hand, I may save myself a fortune in Knox purchases if it turns out that my singles are sufficiently over-spun not to require sizing. I won't know until I try!

If things start getting a little hairy, there's another technique for adding sizing to a project while it's on the loom by hitting it with a bit of aquanet. Not period, but it's good to know that there's something that can bail me out before I hit "epic fail" status.

For those of you who were waiting with bated breath for pictures of the sock and the bear from Wednesday and Tuesday respectively, here they are! )
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 12th, 2009 09:16 am)
Well, despite being SICKEST EVAR, I still managed to finish a Thing yesterday. I finished knitting a sock based on this pattern that I found on Ravelry. The sock took 2 weeks to knit, being as I worked on it only when I was riding the bus to work, but still... That's not terrible completion time for a project that I totally wasn't paying any attention to.

I'm home from work again today, so there won't be any pictures of the sock until tomorrow. :P
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 11th, 2009 09:54 am)
Ehehehehehehe! IT'S ALIVE!!!!

My thing yesterday was the COOLEST THING I HAVE EVER MADE. It's a little green teddy bear, made from the wool left over from my viking under-dress. She is, predictably, hand stitched and stuffed with wool from my friend Lisa's sheep, Rudy and Peaches. Those things are cool, but they're not the coolest part.

The bear... She talks... I got a custom voice box from a doll making company and did a recording of my voice. So when you squeeze her she says, "WOULD YOU STOP TOUCHING ME?!" in the most exasperated tone I could manage.

I will admit now that I giggled maniacly the entire time I was putting her together, because the process of attaching her arms and legs jostled the talky button quite a few times, and she complained her way through the entire "ordeal."

Sorry, there aren't any pictures of her all in one piece yet, but I decided to stay home from work today because my annoying cough kept me awake all night last night... So you can have pictures of the finished bear tomorrow.

This morning, I managed to take her by the UPS Store and get her mailed to the friend for whom she was made... It's hard coming up with Valentine's Day presents for male friends that are JUST FRIENDS, but I think she'll do quite nicely... I can already hear Steve snickering as he uses his new toy to torment his relatives, friends, and random small children.
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 10th, 2009 09:00 am)
So my things for yesterday weren't really all that exciting. I carded all the turmeric dyed wool to even up the color and remove some of the excess dye dust. The color is now even, but the wool is still shedding turmeric as I spin... And my fingers are yellow. Hopefully more of the excess will come out when I rinse and size the wool once I'm finished spinning.

My other thing was to finally sit down with Zig and hash out an initial draft of the guest list for our wedding. Wedding planning is truly a test of one's relationship. By the end of a two hour period of going through our lists, pages, Pennsic pre-reg lists, and personal address books, we were both pretty snippy. The beer and irish coffee helped a bit, but there was still a certain degree of dissent about the annoying people we "have to invite" to avoid social SNAFUs later and the best way of going about inviting the people that we don't even seem to have proper email addresses for...

If everybody on our list accepts, we will have well over 250 people at this point, and this is only the first draft. I KNOW I'm forgetting people... CRITICAL people... I'll have another look at it this evening when I feel less stabby.
mightyjesse: (Default)
( Feb. 9th, 2009 09:12 am)
The thing-of-the-day yesterday was more dying... I dyed some more roving gold with turmeric this time... 3 TBSP turmeric to 1 gallon of water and 5 oz of roving... I had to leave them in the crock pot on high for about 3 hours before the color developed the way I wanted it to... The wool is still rather light in color in the middle... I think I need to use less wool/batch.

The turmeric was added directly to the dye bath and never filtered... This resulted in gold "crust" on some parts of the wool which will have to be carded out... The carding will also help even out the color. The next batch, I think I'll heat the dye and filter it (with a coffee filter or something) before adding the wool... This should lessen the cook time and MAYBE even out the color... We'll see...

(I also splurged at La Target Boutique and got a drying rack with which to process the large-ish quantities of wet wool I seem to have lying around the house recently...)

Here is the koolaid dye that I did as my Thing a Day for Saturday:

The colors are uneven again, but much more pleasing and deliberate looking than what happened with the turmeric. This lead to me looking at my morning Tang in an entirely different light... "Hmmm... I bet that would make a pretty color!"

Of course, the Tang is pre-sweetened, so if I DO experiment with it, my wool will be all sticky and need an extra rinse... I think I want to experiment with putting the roving into a delicates bag before dumping it into the crock pot... That'll make it easier to drain, and may make rinsing a much easier prospect. [ profile] eithni has an EEEEBIL Plan (tm) that may or may not come to fruition if this whole dying thing gets any more out-of-hand.

My other Thing for yesterday was making 26 cloth buttons for HRH Cotte Simple.

Soon the time of the button hole making will be at hand... And after that, the true test of Saturday's Pattern Making stint: Setting the sleeve!


mightyjesse: (Default)


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