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Monday, August 25, 2008

Peculiar Plastic

Yes - I am sure you will all agree this looks peculiar:

- it is actually a set of "Inchies" - which are 1" x 1" squares - that I made for a swap on ... the theme for the swap was "Plastic" and we each made 7 sets of 9, kept 1 and sent in the other 6 sets so the person doing the swapping could swap them all around and send us back 6 different sets ... I got mine back the other day, but I have not taken photos of them yet ... I might blog about them when I have actually mounted them on something, or whatever I end up doing to display them ...
(this is the 4th inchie swap we have done, and I have not done my thing with the ones I got back in the other 3 swaps yet either - lol)

so ... why am I blogging about this lot now?

well - I thought someone (either someone from the swap or the one or 2 of you who actually come here to read my blog - lol) might want to know how I made them.

The pink fabric is non woven polyethelene (the stuff they use for "green" shopping bags etc - actually it is one of those bags you get when you ... or your teenage daughter ... buy clothing at a certain shop with very loud music playing and a few "normal" items of clothing in amongst lots of stuff in very small sizes that seem to be designed to fit peculiar shaped kids who want to look like they are adults who belong on a sleezy street at night - lol) the silvery looking stuff printed on the pink fabric is parts of the logo that was on there.

The 2 with blue on them (top right and bottom left) have a layer on top that was done by cutting up strips of blue plastic shopping bag and laminating them (with laminating sheets in the laminating machine they have in the front office at work) ... the middle square was done the same way, but I laminated some little motifs that I tatted - in fact those squares were the reason I used the laminating machine in the firtst place - the others happened because the laminating sheets were A4 and the tatted motifs only used 1/3 of a sheet, so I grabbed some other stuff to experiment with the other part of the sheet (I also laminated some dead flowers, from a pot plant I have next to my desk, on the other 1/3 of the sheet but I have not taken a photo of those).

The bottom left bluish square has a purple sequin stitched on with lime green thread, and stitched on top of the sequin (holding it on) is a bit of fishing line tied into a weird knot.

The other bluish square (top right) has a round plastic beady thing (that I made - more on that later) also stitched on with lime green thread.

The top left, top middle, bottom right and bottom middle squares have a layer of black and/or clear plastic over the pink - it was the front of a "book" of furnishing fabric samples, that I was just about to throw away (the plastic, not the fabric - lol) when I remembered I was about to make plastic inchies. The bit of plastic was black and clear, so some squares ended up clear, some had black on (carefully cut/chosen so they had the black stripes/corners on them) and one lot (top middle) had all black.

The top left and bottom right squares (and the one in the middle on the left hand side too) have offcuts of plastic, and those weird beady things I made, sewn on to them (with lime green thread again) ... the offcuts were from both the plastic I used on the tops of those, and from the laminating sheets (it was a real pain to sew through those - they are rather tough!).

The middle square on the top row has a purple heart (cut from a plastic bag from some yarn I bought from that big fabric/yarn/craft shop that has purple bags) and on top of that a heart cut from some netting (I think it came from the lolly bag I got at a wedding reception last year) and on top of that is a pink heart (same pink fabric stuff as the other lot) ... stitched with lime green thread of course (well with the pink and the black and stuff - I just had to use lime green - lol).

The middle square on the bottom row is decorated with a square of "fabric" I made by ironing shredded bits of shopping bag and other plastic (lolly wrappers etc) and cutting it up.

The squares on either side of the middle row have the same plastic (from the fabric sample book cover) on the bottom, under the pink fabric (except for the set I kept, which for some reason has the right hand side one on top - oops - there were a few "mistakes", most of them ended up as spares that I kept and didn't put in the sets, but I must have missed that one - I did finish them in rather a hurry so that I could post them [almost] on time)

The middle left square is decorated with another one of those beady things I made, on top of some more "fabric" I made - by ironing different coloured bits of shredded plastic shopping bag (btw - both lots of ironed stuff were done with baking paper under them, and on top of them - so it wouldn't stick to what I ironed it on, or to the iron)

I think that covers what I did on/to all the squares ... probably in more detail than anybody cares to know - LOL

Now ... about those beady things I mentioned ... how did I make those?

well ... I had this weird idea and tried something, and it actually worked - I got some plastic drinking straws and cut them into bits about 1 or 2 mm long (so I had a pile of little circles) and I spread them out between 2 sheets of baking paper and ironed them flat ... and the 2 coloured ones? - some of the straws were a bit thinner than the others so I put them inside each other before I cut them up ... some of them stayed together when I cut them, and became 2 coloured beads ... now I need to find a 3rd size of staw and try 3 colours - LOL

(some of them did squash together flat when I cut them up, but most of them popped open when I touched them, and the rest did when I picked them up by the ends and squeezed a bit)

I have not got around to taking a photo of a pile of the drinking straw beads, but here is a scan I did, of some of the beads in with some other leftover bits that I put in a plastic bag and gave to the person organising the swap.

btw, they also look really good stitched onto black fabric, and decorated/embroidered around, with that same lime green thread!
(but I have not taken a photo/done a scan of that yet either ... that will have to join the long list of other things I still need to blog about)

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Wiggly worms

Who ate a hole in my quilt?

- the very hungry bookworm did!

(apologies to this bloke, who wrote this book :-)

Here is another bookworm:

also "eating" the same quilt.

not that it is really a "worm" ... it's body is worm like, but it has antennae ... which would technically make it a caterpillar ... but then an "inchworm" is a caterpillar too, and they still get called inchWORMs ... LOL

Here is the quilt:

The name of the quilt is "Bookworms" - It was/is my entry for the challenge section of this year's Canberra Quilters Exhibition - the theme was "A Novel Idea" ... most people made quilts about books they liked ... I made a quilt that looked like a book, with bookworms eating holes in the plot ... maybe that was because I have "lost the plot"? LOL

The "worms" are actually made from needle felted and stitched dog hair, which I just happened to have dyed with the same hair dye I did my hair with a few weeks earlier (there was dye left on my gloves and the blob of hair was lying around handy - so I decided to see what colour it would go ... then I realised it would be perfect for my bookworms). The yarn I used to stitch the segments and antennae with was some stuff I got given at a garage sale ... I also used it to make a shawl ... which took me ages ... and which I will blog about some other time ... (eventually ;-)

The "pages" of the book are bits of fabric - there is no batting - just layers of fabric ... some of it was an old sheet or something, and most of it was the lining from a rotten old set of hessian curtains that I found hanging in a store room at work (they stole our store room to make it into an office, and they were not going to want those rotten dusty old curtains in there ... so I took them down, took them home, and washed them ... not sure what I will use the hessian for - something weird and creative ... if I ever get around to it that is ...).

The "cover" of the book is a bit of leather ... it came in a bag of scraps I was given a few weeks before I made the quilt ... I was going to find something else for the cover (possibly the dead hessian curtains) but then I reallised the leather was perfect - the bit I used was about the same shape it is on the quilt - I just trimmed the edges at the top and left hand side, then snipped the little chunks out of the other edge to look like the bookworms had eaten chunks out of it ... I also ended up with a little chunk missing from my left index finger ... oops ... sharp scissors and blunt brain?

I wrote on the pages with an overhead projector marker (a permanent one ... which I have found work as well as any fabric markers I have tried, and actually seem to last longer before they run out/die) I kind of made up bits of story/etc that sort of half made sense with the first half of each line missing ... it was kind of fun doing that ... I wrote some of it before I finished the sewing, but then I had more room on the pages so I made up some more stuff ... I did the writing (and some of the sewing/etc) on the day that I had to deliver the quilt - nothing like a looming deadline to give one a spurt of creativity!

Talking about caterpillars and stuff - while I was looking for another photo, to go in the post I just put on this other blog of mine, I found this photo:

yes - it was meant to look like we have some kind of weird worm/caterpillar crawling around near the videos near my desk at work (the science staff room at a high school) ... but it is actually a potato chip/french fry (with a pin holding it onto the side of the shelves) ... and I did not put the eyes on it - those 2 dots, that look like eyes, were on there when I pulled it out from my bag of hot chips (from one of those take away chook places) a night or 2 earlier ... I couldn't eat it - it was too cute - LOL
... actually I think it is still lying around on/near my desk at work ... unless the mice have found it.
oddly enough - guess what was the first thing I thought of when I found that weird chip (french fry) ... I thought of a cartoon that got faxed to somewhere I used to work (back before e-mail became he way that stuff got sent around - odd things used to arrive by fax, and get pinned up on notice boards for all to see) ... can't find the exact same thing on the www, but this one is a coloured version of the same thing -
actually, I probably still have a photocopy of it filed away in a folder in the filing cabinet beside me, but I can't be bothered looking for it and (if I even find it) scanning it at this hour of night ...

in fact I probably should be going to sleep at this hour of night ... goodnight ...