25 August 2015

Jeans Rugs

I recycle most of my clothes. After they are no longer decent I wear them around the house and then use them for a number of uses but mainly for rag rugs. 
Jeans follow the same life up to a point. I find it hard to reuse them. 

The technique I found here: www.curbly.com works and produces rough rugs I am using in the bathroom.

For the core I have used the cheap synthetic clothes line cord they sell in the pound shops.

I have cut strips of the jeans and wrapped them around the cord. I found it easier to do the wrapping before starting to stitch. I have used pins to keep the wraps in place and used a long straight stitch to block the jean strips to the inner cord.

I have then used a zigzag stitch to join them in the round.

I have one small rug and a bigger one made of 3 circles.

19 August 2015

Crocheted baskets

It is possible to crochet and in-globe another material. I have done so in: Tissue paper basket.
For this basket I begun by crocheting flat to make a base and then I started crocheting in the round. I only use the basic crochet stitch. 

I have staggered the strands of raffia. This helps keeping the diameter of the basket even. Most often you need only add one strand at the time to the bundle that is being tied to the spiral.

30 July 2015

Aragorn's shirt

Aragorn's gray shirtThis is my take on Aragonrn's grey shirt. He is wearing it in "The company of the ring" and, luckily for me, it is mentioned in the extra material of the Lord of the Rings box set I received for Christmas years ago. 

Aragorn's gray shirt - toileI started using a commercial pattern: Butterick 4486. I then proceeded to change it almost completely. I have added a yoke. The white toile has a too-small-yoke that I then enlarged. 
Aragorn's gray shirt - smockingI have replaced the cuffs with draw strings and I have divided the sleeves in to pieces. The top part was replaced by a smocked section. The drawstrings and the neck closures are cords made on the lucet.

16 July 2015

Packing Paper Baskets

These are made using the paper that amazon uses to pad their products. They are long sections of recycled paper they have ripping dots at regular intervals and I always feel bad throwing them away. I usually fold them and keep them. They can be useful if you move house and need to wrap your glass and crockery but for a while I could not find much use for the paper.
I then saw a picture showing baskets made of paper strips that had been stitched together. 
woven paper baskets
This is how I have interpreted the concept. 

I calculated how long each strip had to be to make decent sized baskets. I found that I had enough for a large one and a small one. I have ripped the paper at the length required. 
I have folded the paper lengthwise twice and stitched it along the edge.

I have woven the strips with the help of an army of clothes pegs and this is the result:

I have trimmed the edges and added a bias tape and handles. The handles are more for show than anything else. They are useful to pull the baskets towards you from the high shelf where I have them but I would not trust them to hold the baskets when full.

24 June 2015

Double weave

I have wanted to try double weave since the day I purchased my loom. I even bought a double weave ebook from Interweave Press...

It took a while but I have finally warped the loom with some dark and light gray commercial whool. I wanted it to be a test run. Following the advice in the Interweave book I added a fishing line at the fold but that seemed to help me creating loops rather than avoid draw-in.
Considering that my edges rarely draw-in and that my usual shortcoming is the creation of loops I have removed the line and kept going.

I was still half way through when I received a commission and decided to remove early the experiment to complete my commission as quickly as possible.

The resulting fabric was only about 1 m long but I have been able to use some of it to make a sleeve to protect my boyfriend's computer.
The fabric at the fold is a bit tighter than the rest of the weave but not as bad as I feared.

II have now started a blanket using hadspun cream shetlan in the warp and hadspun alpaca in the weft. My loom is only 24" so I will weave a double lenght, cut it in half and hoin in the middle.

The green wood with the black clips is my version of a temple because I have -so far- been unable to find one that I could purchase at a reasonable price...


31 May 2015


This cloak did take some tinkering. 
In the book it is described as follows:

[…] He pulled open the pack, then whipped out a dark gray cloak. Large and enveloping, the cloak wasn't constructed from a single piece of cloth-rather, it was made up of hundreds of long, ribbonlike strips. They were sown together at the shoulders and across the chest, but mostly they hung separate from one another, like overlapping streamers. […]

[…] “It is colored and constructed to hide you in the mist” [...]

I wanted it made out of a very light material. I tested the overlapping technique on a white sample of synthetic voile.. The sample tended to gather static. It seemed to move by itself which I found was a positive characteristic of this fabric.
I ended up using the same fabric in dark gray.

The cloak is made with a number of strips of fabric, each is folded in half and stitched to the neighbouring stripe across shoulders and upper arms.  

I have used a shimmering fabric paint to obtain a mottled effect and  so that it will reflect the light in unexpected ways.

I am not sure that these cloaks would be decorated but I used the same tendril design used in Vin's gown on the shoulders of the cloak.

The Cloak is held close by 2 polymer clay buttons painted in metallic acrylic. This s in keeping with the story where no nobleman or woman is supposed to use metal on his or her clothing.

28 May 2015


Before I started this I did not know what a gambeson was supposed to be. 
Turns out that it is a sort of padded tunic used in medieval times uder a coat of mail for protection. 
It is also used now-a-days by SCA (Society for Creative Anachronism) people

I researched a bit and decided to make 2 tunics and sandwich them with synthetic padding. We went for synthetic for ease of washing and because it is lighter in weight. 
The main material is upholstery twill linen. 

I made a toile and then I made the 2 layers of linen tunic. This was simple enough but the quilting of the many layers was a bit of a nightmare. 

If I ever wanted to make a second one I would make and quilt the separate parts and then stitch them by hand.


These are details of the gambeson-in-progress.

The tunic was made in one piece opened from the wrist to the bottom of the skirt on both sides. These were then stitched by hand using two passes of whip stitch. I have created a series of crosses by reversing the direction of the stitch for the second pass on the same seam.

25 May 2015

Vin's dress

This is one of the dresses I imagine Vin would have worn at the balls. 
I made itn as the assignment for the Theatrical Costume Class I completed at the Belfast Metropolitan College.

Reading the book I imagine that the dresses mentioned would be similar to those of the mid 18th century in North America. At the same time those dresses require very large cages and a number of crinolines. Vin doesn't seem to have do undress completely in order to run or jump. My dress is, therefore, less cumbersome.

I initially considered the possibility of usin the tipe of corsets found in Elisabethan dresses because the corset was described as rigid. The profile was, however, too squared and I decided for a more modern type of corset.

The decoration is meant to be a reminder of the nature of Vin. As a Mistborn she finds solace in the Mists. The tendrils of mist are made of bias binding tape I made using leftovers of silk from the main dress. The fabric was dyed with acid dyes in darker shades of blue and hand-stitched on the dress. 
Other, thinner tendrils are made with a double or single whipped running stitch using hand-spun and had-dyed silk and metallic embroidery thread.


The dress is held in shape by a petticoat with inbuilt hoops. 

The dress, with its inbult corset is closed by a long laced fastening. 

The dress was exhibited at the End of Year Show in Stormont.
As I had only one mannequin at my disposal the dress is displayed with the Mistcloak.


20 April 2015


This is a calico cylinder held in shape by 4 strips of boning on the inside. 
The lid has a circle of boning along the rim.
The original idea was to dye the body of the hamper in lightening shades of blue. I has some success with several fabrics and assumed that I'd be able to do the same here. Dip the end of the fabric and allow the dye to wick up the fabric.
I am not sure whether the problem was the fabric or the dye but the result is less than impressive. 
The tentacles have been colored using fabric crayons and stitched on top of the body. 

Although it is not as I envisioned I believe I am satisfied with it.