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Thursday, March 22, 2007

... talking about flies - I seem to have a thing about insects lately!

... because these are all photos that I have taken during the first 2 months of this year:

A weevil:

what u looking at?

front view and ...

... from the top (yes - on my hand ;-)


This one is a praying mantis (a juvenile - it will probably moult a few more times before it is an adult)


A bug:


... another one of the sort of bug that laid these eggs I posted about a few weeks back -

A very strange looking little spider I found on the wall:


yes I know - a spider is NOT an insect ... but I like all sorts of "creepy crawlies"

... and there are even some weird creatuers that don't crawl or walk too

like this -

something in a rock pool at the beach:

some weird marine creature

and some more stuff in another rock pool nearby:

molluscs and anenomes

still more insects ...

A moth on the screen door:

weird moth

another view showing the amazing colours:

weird moth, again

DD (Dear Daughter) tried to catch it ... but it flew into the garden and someone else caught it instead!


it must have been rather tasty ...

... because there was not much of it left when I took this photo!

DD caught this one (yes she likes insects/etc too)

cricket nymph

- that weird looking thing is what a cricket looks like before it grows up ... has weird claws on the front, so it can dig (which is what it was trying to do when I took this photo ... as DD found out when I took this photo - it kind of tickles when one of these tries to dig between your fingers ;-)

This one is on my arm - a ladybeetle:


I grew up calling these "Ladybirds" ... but they are definitely not birds. They are also called "ladybugs" by a lot of people - but they are not bugs (order hemiptera) either - they are beetles (order coleoptera) ... not that it really matters, so I will stop boring you with the technical stuff now.

Here is a rather nice coloured moth:


and an "inchworm" (which is a caterpillar, rather than a worm ;-) that I found on a geranium leaf that I picked, to be used by a science class, at the school I work at.


I am sure I have taken a photos of a few more "creepy crawlies" this month too, but if I have - they are not on the computer yet ... (or they are already in one or 2 of my other blog posts ;-)

btw ... if the formatting is a bit messy - blame the editor thingy I am typing this blog post in and/or the person who invented "div" tags in html (the editor thingy puts them in ... all over the place ... and they do strange things like make spaces between the lines show up or not show up ... and at this hour of night I can't be bothered editing the html and removing all the ones that don't need to be there ... but weird things kept happening so I just ended up doing what I did last time and removing them all! (which seems to work ok as long as I put some <p> and <br> tags in there, and get them in the right places)

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Time Flies ...

Tempus fugit and all that - yes, time does fly ... is it really half way through March already?!
... I suppose I could waste even more time raving on about how fast time goes by/etc, but I won't - because that is just the silly title I came up with for what I am really posting about, which is Fly Stitch ...

The "Take A Stitch Tuesday" stitch for week 8 was fly stitch.

ok ... how about this?

bzzzzzzzz ... B$%^%^&^& blowflies!

Not a very good fly is it? ... but it is done mostly with FLY stitch though!

This is what else I did on that bit of felt:

mostly fly stitch on a bit of yellow felt

I have not used a lot of fly stitch (possibly not even any) in things I have made, I think I tend not to use things that seem to be isolated stitches, because I tend to do things in rows/etc ... so I experimented with making it into interesting motifs etc ... I like what I came up with ;-)

I also did some fly stitch on the November journal quilt that I was just finishing (I thought I had finished until I decided the red bit was too blank and needed some stitching on it ... LOL)

some stitching on some thing

I have actually finished that quilt now - so I guess I should take a photo of it and post that here too (I will try and remember to do that sometime in the next few days ... weeks ... months? ... whatever ... LOL

While I was digging out the photos of the stitching on the yellow felt I also found this one (it was taken the same day)

spiraly plant

it is a plant in my garden, with a rather interesting spiral pattern ... which has just given me an idea for another possible design for fly stitch ... so I might have to try that out tomorrow/whenever I get to do some stitching next ... except I also want to fiddle with this weeks stitch too ... I need another 100 hours in each day!

These photos were also in the same folder (taken the day before the felt and the plant ones) and the colours match the previous one so I decided to throw these in here too, seeing there are not many fly stitch photos -

water snail eggs

another, smaller, bunch of snail eggs

they are actually water snail eggs on a bit of rather sad and sorry looking elodea (a weed that people buy for their fish tanks) ... the elodea is left over from a science lesson at the school I work at, and it and the snails were in a glass bowl on the window ledge beside my desk ... I think the weed is now in a jar with a few other bits, because another science class used it (it is good for looking at living plant cells under the microscope) ... having interesting stuff like this on/near my desk is one of the good things about being a science assistant at a high school ...

The same day I also took this photo:

oooh there are spiderwebby thingys on the mossy stuff

- this moss/etc is also on the window ledge beside my desk ... but I hadn't noticed that a little spider seems to have made it's home in there ;-)

it is actually in this terrarium thingy that I made from a styrofoam meat tray (the trays that meat/etc comes packaged in at the supermarket) and a clear lid that I think came from somebody else's box of chocolates ...


hmmm ... it is now 1:35am where did my evening go?!!!!!
(I guess the fact that I didn't come in here until fairly late, and then spent an hour or 2 getting lost in my e-mail/etc digging out free crochet pattern URLs to put into a reply I was posting to a crochet yahoogroup might have something to do with it?! LOL)

Goodnight ...

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Feather stitch, and a bag.

I have been keeping up with the stitching for the TAST (Take A Stitch Tuesday) challenge ... but, due to being back at work and all the usual things that are on during the school year keeping me busy, I have not kept up with the blogging quite as well as I did in January, when I was on holidays ...

I actually started working with most of those stitches on the Tuesday, and I even came in here and put the photos of my stitches onto the computer a few times ... along with a LOT of photos of insects and plants and sunsets and lightning and more sunsets etc etc ... but I seem to keep running out of "evening" before I get around to actually putting any photos onto my blog ...

Anyway ... week 7 was Feather stitch

(I think that was where I was up to ... that is what I said at the end of one of my last couple of blog posts ;-)

Talking about where I was up to ... this is the point in this blog post where I got called away from the computer to drop DS (short for Dear , or dratted/etc as the case may be, Son) off at a friend's place somewhere 10 minutes down the road, duck in to the shop on the way back (to buy cream for the cheesecake DD (short for Dear, or dratted or whatever, Daughter) wanted to make, then I got home in time to feed the dog and cat and take DD to Scouts ... then I got back and walked the dog, and made a tuna mornay (because DS said he wanted it for tea when he got home and it sounded like a good idea - some for my tea and some to take to work for lunch tomorrow ;-) ... then it was time to go collect DD from Scouts and DS from his friend's place ... then I had to help DD finish the cheesecake ... so now here I am trying to finish typing a blog post while eating tuna mornay ... and a soup in a cup thingy that DD made and didn't like ... (mmm potato and leek - but she put a bit much water in it ... sigh ... )

I had already been doing some feather stitch on a couple of things I was working on, because it is one of my favourite stitches ... so of course once I found out it was also the TAST stitch that week - I did a whole heap more of it ...

One of the things, with feather stitch on it, started when I found a bit of old ribbon lying on the ground, while walking the dog ... I found it sort of interesting that I was walking the dog when I found it - and the design it had woven into it was ... dog bones!

Anyway, I was sort of thinking it might make an interesting "found object" for the TASDA challenge (which I will probably write about in a different blog entry sometime in the future) and it also would go well with orange (orange is also part of the challenge) and it would go well on this bit of felt ... so I grabbed some shiny variegated thread and couched the ribbon onto the felt with cretan stitch ... and then started adding other stuff that went with it ...

Actually - I just noticed that I put that photo on my blog about a month ago - in my post about eye stitch (and I said I would post more photos later - so I guess "later" is now ... LOL ... gee - I actually did what I said I would ... amazing ... I also said, in that same post, that future postings might happen a bit less often than they were in January ... I was right there too ...

and this is what one side of it looked like at the start of the week when feather stitch was announced as the TAST stitch for that week:

- it has been folded in half and stuff worked over the edges, because by then, I had decided it was going to be a bag ...

Here are both sides, after I did more feather stitch on it ...

The bag was almost finished when I took these 2 photos ... in fact, at the time I thought it was finished, but then I added a bead and loop fastener thingy.

Actually, I might as well stick some more bag photos in here and tell the rest of the bag story now ... else it could be another few weeks before I get around to it ... and someone at work is waiting for me to give them the URL for the photos I am about to put up, so they can show their Daughter ...

But first - the other bits of feather stitch (because I did them before I finished the bag ;-)

2 weird little thingys:

- some red feather stitch turning into Cretan stitch and back in to feather stitch, with colonial knots tucked in there for fun ... and feather stitch that became double, trebble, quadruple and quintupple - I was having fun fiddling with it.

And some yellow feather stitch/etc on a black bit of felt:

I got to have a play with the stitch and end up with something interesting looking too ;-)

... my current plan for this stuff is to use it all together in some kind of wall hanging or something - which is why I was sort of trying to just stick to black and white ... then when I found that yellow thread I changed it to black/white/yellow ... but then the red/orange sort of snuck in ... LOL ... so who knows what I will end up with?!

What red/orange? - this red and orange - I put some danglies of feather stitch on this bit of felt ... then did a few more "eyes" - they make good daisy flowers:

the red and the orange are actually 2 different strands from the same weird ball of thread - it came from the same Asian grocery shop as the balls of yellow thread I have been using on here, and on the black bits of felt ... the thicker red stuff, with white bits in it, also came from the same shop (there is some on the bag - I used bits of all 2 threads for the feather stitch on there) ... I don't think it was being sold for doing stitching/embroidery/crochet etc - it was up in the back corner with the shiny paper and kits of glittery stuff for religious shrines/etc.

It isn't really ideal, or in the case of the thicker red (with white bits in it) thread - it is not at all good for stitching ... but at 70cents a ball - I just had to try it out ...

I might buy more next time I am near that shop - using things that are "not what you are supposed to use" can be lots of fun ... and leads to a lot of creative solutions to whatever problems there are with using it ... like the thick red thread that kind of frays and falls apart - works ok for some things if one is careful when stitching, and I am sure it would look good couched down with another thread (I was going to try that, but I don't seem to have got around to it yet)

Anyway ... back to the bag:

The TASDA (a textile art group I belong to, here in Canberra) challenge was to make something that is in, or is (or has something to do with) a container, and it also had to include:

The colour orange

Polar fleece

a "found object"


so ... it is a Bag - which is a container for whatever I put in it, and I already had the colour orange in it, and the ribbon was the found object (because I actually did FIND it ... and I did wash it before I used it ;-) ... so all it needed was polar fleece and stripes ... so the dangly bits of feather stitch are sort of stripes ... but then I remembered I had some bits of striped ribbon - the black and green bit I have used on the edge of the bag was just perfect! (well I think it is - gives it that bit of "zing"). What about polar fleece? - well ... what better thing to use for a lining than polar fleece?! (and I just happened to have some polar fleece that was also orange ;-)

As you can see in that photo - I like dangly bits and I like interesting yarns - so, of course, the bottom of the bag is fringed with dangly bits of interesting yarn/etc ...

Here is a close up of heaps of mostly feather stitch ... the green thread is another one of those not really sewing threads ... it is kind of like working with a thin version of that brown packaging string ... but I like how it looks when I have stitched stuff with it, and sometimes things need a bit of that colour green!

The red, red/orange and yellow bits are those threads I got at the Asian grocery shop (these photos are clickable for a closer veiw ... or at least I hope they are - that is usually what happens when I stick them in here like this - it does it automatically ;-)

Here is a photo of the finished? bag:

and here is the other side:

That photo was taken a couple weeks later - and yes - I snipped off the tassel! - I decided it didn't look right, so now I have a (sort of) matching key tag ... or something ...

Here is a closer up view:

... I think I might have to find an interesting shell or something and sew it to the end where I snipped off the tassel ... it needs something (just not that dangly tassel that didn't quite look like it belonged there ;-)

btw, this is an even better view of the feather stitch done with those 3 threads from the Asian grocery shop ... the red one with some white in it, the red one with a strand of yellow/orange in it, and the yellow one that is sort of a cheapy version of fine crochet cotton.

Anyway ... I should be asleep - I have to get up and get ready for work in 7 hours time!

I will try to find time tomorrow, or at least some time this week, to come in here, log in, and post something about the other weekly stitches I have messed around with - and today is Tuesday (well it is actually Wednesday now, but it was still Tuesday when I typed most of this stuff ;-) so we got given another stitch this morning - and I even did a bit of that one in my lunch break today!

I hope this lot all made sense ... it seems to be a bit "all over the place like a mad woman's knitting" ... jumping back and forth between all the stuff I was raving on about - just like my mind does ... LOL