Monday, August 27, 2012

Still Purple

Here's what I couldn't post yesterday in case the birthday girl saw the blog.
The sofa fabric was admired and it turns out that the cutting layout left plenty suitable for throw pillows which I photographed with my vacation camera rather than my beadwork camera so that the buttons (you'll have to take my word on this) show as merely buttons when in fact they are beaded buttons.

Not sure why the Primary Cat looks so uninterested.

Perhaps she realized that she was no more than decorative here.

Guess she wants love for who she is, not just what she looks like. Can't blame the girl

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Purple, As It Happens

There's something I'd like to show you, coincidentally also purple and I wish it was the loveseat I started covering on Thursday evening and which I'd hoped to have finished yesterday before spinners came here, but it isn't, and it's also not the loveseat so I can't show you eaither of them, so yarn will have to do. Not the best plying job I've ever done, but blame Breaking Bad.
But holy crap plying all this yarn will make me old because there are still seven and a half bobbins and I've only spun about half. Maybe more.

It's sort of pretty but I confess I don't adore it and I don't adore spinning it when the object of my spinning desire is some luscious handpainted yumminess, the sight of which as Amy pulled it out of her bag was obviously so apparently lust-inducing that I didn't even have to beg; all I had to do was drool.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Some People

Some people have said I talk about making furniture or reupholstering.
 Some people seem to be implying that I talk and don't do.
 Some people might not admire my efforts quite as much as my cat does, in spite of the stripes not being perfectly aligned with the edges. Not utterly dreadful, mind you, just not perfect.
 Some people might be mollified by the ridiculous underside lining.
 Some people might believe me when I say that the next project is the sofa.
Meanwhile, there's always knitting, and I know they believe me when I talk about knitting.
At least I think so.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Not Going Anywhere

I had an idea and tried and tried to get it to work, but I think I'm giving up in disgust.
 Apart from the colour of the seed beads which clash horribly with the marbled fire-polsihed beads, it's a bit messy-looking, so I thought herringbone would look tidier and more substantial.
 Yeah no sort of, but the whole thing no longer fits and the rivoli wobbles around. The intersection points where the strings of seed beads converge is also messy, with beads fighting for space. And the gap I don't like too much either.

There was one more try which looks a lot like this one, but with more untrimmed threads floating around.

So I made a fancier Cuboctahedral Bouquet, inspired by the students in my class today, and necessitated by reworking the instructions. It's quite large, I must say, since I made some of the spikes longer, and used bigger beds for their decorations.

I don't have a problem with the size, I'm just saying. The diameter across the equator is about two and a quarter inches.


I'm okay with that. Size, y'know. It kinda does matter, doesn't it?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Not Entirely Awful

It's actually not a bad bracelet, though not entirely practical since it's not amenable to minute size adjustments in this form (six medallions). Turns out it looks quite nice on the wrist though. I think it'd be sucky as a necklace so whew, luckily it's not.
 And I made too many of these, but they look so pretty all lined up like this.
I haven't made a huge amount of progress in the home decor department aside from covering two chair pillows.

Baby steps.

I look at my sofas with murder in my eyes, scheming their demise and dreaming of replacements, but the most likely scenario is a new slip-cover, though with my general procrastinatory attitude towards sewing projects (I have three pillows, still unmade, promised to a friend for a very big favour. Four years ago. Yes, I'm a bit ashamed, but piping, I hate attaching piping).

In the real world though, the one of the here and now, I should probably get a new dishwasher before I get a new sofa, since the old sofa is perfectly functional and the dishwasher only marginally so.

Ugly and Useless

Seriously. There's just no point in doing anything else because even though yes I do have hexagonal tiling with twin beads down pat, this thing is huge and floppy and anything I do to it only makes it bigger and uglier and I guess if I needed a small doily or a coaster (but then I'd need at least half a dozen and I'm not sure I could stomach that but you never know) there's really little point in paying any more attention except perhaps with scissors.
I need to reconsider how I spend my time.

It all started with this.
 Those funky mushroom-shaped button beads.

wasn't quite sure it was either attractive or repeatable (sometimes there's a sweet spot when certain finishes of certain colours of certain beads collide, and any time you try to duplicate it, the minute variations in size and shape of other colours and finishes make it impossible. I hate it when that happens), and the voices in my head couldn't reach consensus on the attractive part, so I decided to work on the repeatable part, and got here.
 Attractive was fast losing ground, but I wondered about the bits of this without the mushrooms, and the  hideous coaster above is what happened while I wan't paying enough attention.

So I finished up the sample I started for last Tuesday's class.
 Made a couple more of these.
 And another one of these in colours quite unlike me which I actually really like.
I should spend more time outside because the temperatures have gone from "Are You Kidding Me, Humans Can't Survive Out Here" to Absolutely Gorgeous. Really, it's quite a pleasure.

Favourite comment heard recently: You can never have too much foam.

I could give you the context which doesn't diminish the quirk factor for me, but I think it's funnier out of context.

Monday, August 6, 2012


I mean, isn't it?
Why on earth did it not occur to me that these crystal rings are perfect, so much better than stone donuts which tend to have smaller holes, so the beadwork covers more of the surface?

I guess I got here eventually. That's why they pay me the big bucks. Oh yeah, livin' large.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Head Pin Love

A matching set, what can I say. I love the head pins, but haven't quite tried my hand at making them myself. I've thought about it, that's all.
 Last year when I drove my son to college, it poured with rain. It was a wet, wet summer, and moving the new students in was slightly miserable, parents and attendant siblings huddled under the shelter in a parking lot inundated with kids vying for the huge bins on wheels with which to cart their worldly belongings up to their new homes.

Nothing of his was hopelessly wet even though we used a truck; luckily my brilliant child had the foresight (and the truck had a back seat) to put the valuables and water-permeable things inside.

This year, the driest summer in recorded history (plus or minus), the year that all growing things do not, when threatened storms turn out to be thunder, lightening and a thimbleful of moisture, it was of course raining as we left for college for his sophomore year.

At least it wasn't raining at the other end, and we arrived a few minutes early so we snagged wheeled bin; three trips moved everything into his room.

Actually not painful at all.
 I've been revisiting old designs.
Somehow I was never able to find a satisfying mixture of seed beads for the above two donuts (both of which I have in quantity: I had intended them for kits but was never satisfied with colours). I like them both!

No picture, but I finished the sweater (tee-shirt) I was working on before my trip in May. The colour is unusual for me (rather pink), but the yarn is fabulously drapey. The styling is a little schizophrenic: the neck and sleeves are lovely but the bottom half isn't quite as flattering as I'd like. I'll still wear it though - apparently I'm only slightly vain: enough to show off what I made, but not enough to care (that much) that it doesn't look as good as usual.

Dunno what it is lately, but I have ants in my pants about the interior of my house. My furnishings, to be exact.

Except for my one and only little apartment in South Africa back in the Dark Ages which I kinda loved, every other place I've lived in has been filled with, well, filler. Stuff, not possessions. Things I cart from place to place that aren't what I chose.

The sofa from the divorce was never to my taste, neither the design nor the fabric, so I made a cover for it, but still don't love it much.

When my parents emigrated around the time I was pregnant with my now-adult daughter, they sent furniture that they no longer needed, some of which I really like (the dresser that belonged to my father as a child, my maternal grandmother's dining room table, my maternal great-grandmother's brass bed), some which is OK (one of the card tables; don't ask, there are a few), but quite a bit which I don't like at all (the display cabinet which I almost object to on principle, and ugh, those two Art Deco chairs), and which is too fragile to be anything but decorative. And you should like your decorations, right? The word "decoration" has positive connotations, right?

I hate having chairs that look prissy and uncomfortable, not to mention too delicate and precious to actually sit on.

A coffee table that's too fussy, too small and a bit tippy.

My brothers got the Persian rugs. Those would have had a more secure home with me than all that dark wood.

At the time, I was instructed that anything I wanted to sell, I had to first offer to one of my brothers, so I've kept all these things, but I think I'm done living in rooms full of stuff that's inimical, that doesn't fit with me. It's stuff. Things that I'm storing for no one. And I'm not sending them to Australia: if a small care package to Switzerland cost sixty dollars, then a few antique chairs, coffee tables and card tables will be way more than I'm prepared to drop on shipping costs.

There's some clearing out in my future, some acquisition too. Some upholstery, some of which I will pay someone (no doubt handsomely) to do, some of which I will do myself, albeit grudgingly. Just because I can do it, doesn't mean that I love to. But I will.

Starting next week or the week after, perhaps.

I did upholster eight chairs, y'know.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Title Eludes Me

It's been one of those weeks. Intensity at work, so brain-dead by the end of the day that evenings slipped by in a haze of Getting Nothing Done. I hate it when that happens.

Luckily last weekend left me with inspirational head pins.
 Earrings were the result.
They almost make me want to break out the torch, although I will honestly say that I'm not very good and should leave lampworking to the people who really know what they're doing, and do it so well.

The thing is that it's fun playing with fire and molten glass, there's something exciting and dangerous and sexy about it and I'm reasonably certain that while big, precise, gorgeous works of art in a focal bead are beyond my skill, equipment and the time I'm willing to devote to this, I Think I Can when it comes to these itty bitty blobs of Cute.

Meanwhile, beaded beads to make earrings to showcase their deliciousness.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

I Know You Didn't Ask

But this might be useful, probably not to you, since I'm pretty sure you're well versed in the social graces, but then again, it's good advice and potentially applicable to everyone. You might know someone who could benefit, for example.

For the sake of argument, let's say you're a boy. For example.

And let's say you met someone that's fun to talk to. A girl, for example.

And you think it might be fun to hang out and talk some more, get a drink, that sort of thing. So you make the suggestion and eventually she agrees (she might be taken by surprise for example), and you agree on a day but not a place or a time and so you tell her you'll call her the night before to make plans and then you make sure you have her phone number and then hold fire for a few days because the day you've agreed on is three or four days away.

And then.




You know you haven't called, you hope (kinda) that she knows you  haven't called, and you feel the need to let her know that you know that you haven't called, so you call her up and leave a message to that effect.

There are two words that you should not under any circumstances say to her message-taking device if you wish to leave a good impression.

"I forgot".

If you're salvageable, you might realise, as you hear the words coming out of your mouth, or shortly thereafter, what a monstrous faux pas you just committed, but in the event that you really have no idea, let me spell it out for you.

You're trying to impress this girl, or at least not make a bad impression, right?

You know about the flattery thing, right? That if you compliment someone just the right number of times (not too many because that seems decidedly insincere and if it's overdone enough, more than a few bricks short) they will think well of you in return for having noticed some of their finer qualities. We like people to like us back after all, because it shows that they have good taste.

So the flattery thing, it works in reverse too, you see. If you do or say something that indicates to this person in whom you're at least vaguely interested, enough to invite her to spend some time with you, that actually, spending time with her is so unimportant to you that YOU FORGOT TO CALL, then you might be monumentally clueless.

I'm just sayin'.