Wednesday, April 30, 2008

By the Lion!

Oops. My, time did fly past this month, didn't it? Here it is, last day of the month again, and I'm just now posting my GPP Crusade entry. And I apologize, fellow Crusaders; I haven't kept up with everybody else's entries either. Only read a few of them so far.

This month's crusade assignment was stencil cutting. OMG. Michelle is such an enabler. I mean, there are worse things to be addicted to, true, but really, how many addictions does she think we can handle?

For my stencil, I decided to go with a Narnian theme. Gee I wonder why. Anyway, what came to mind was Peter's shield, the one that Father Christmas gives him. "The shield was the color of silver and across it there ramped a red lion, as bright as a ripe strawberry at the moment when you pick it." The shield of the kings of Narnia.

And of course I couldn't do something easy and/or conventional. That wouldn't be any fun. But more on that later...

So I dug out my little Dover heraldry book that I've had since the 6th grade, enlarged a lion rampant and a shield, and lo, I had my design. So I got a slab of glass that Mom happened to have lying about from our days of experimenting with polymer clay, dug out some quilter's template, and opened my brand-new handy-dandy little stencil burning tool, popped in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe DVD, and set to work.

The design:
See all those little points? Why I do this to myself remains a mystery.

Step 1, the Lion:
All those little black spots are where the stencil burner actually, well, burned the quilter's template. Apparently that stuff's not as hardy as it looks. Works, though.

After cutting out the Lion, I then cut the outline of the shield. This way, the shield with the Lion cut out of the middle would be a combination mask+stencil, with the additional Lion mask that came out of the middle of the shield. (Was that coherent?) Two pieces of plastic = two masks + one stencil. w00ties! My master plan. I'm sure someone somewhere has done this before me. But I didn't know about them, so I'm gonna claim it as my idea. *plants flag*
Dum-dum (that's me) didn't take a pic of the shield before actually using them, so you only get to see its shape after it's been doused with paint. These, and others, to be precise:

The results of which are such:
The one at the far left bottom had the Lion mask laid down and the paper spritzed with copper Shimmer Mist, then the mask peeled up and the shield laid down and pounced with red acrylic paint on a sponge. The middle top one was the same sequence, with gold and red acrylic paints applied by sponge. The far right was also the same sequence, with acrylics and Shiva Paintsticks sponged on.

And yes, I know, it's supposed to be silver, not gold. Gold shows up better and I like the way it looks with red. And copper is just what we happened to have in the Shimmer Mist. Oh well.

With the Lion laid back into the stencil after all that painting, it looks like this:
Pretty spiff, no?

Anyway, I have now purchased some spray fabric paint, and have grand plans for this stencil. I'm also resisting the urge to stencil it on EVERYTHING I OWN.

Me? Obsessive? Nah. Well, maybe a little.

Coming Soon to a Pocket Near You: The Chronicles of a Narnia Scarf

Monday, April 14, 2008

Handspun FOs!

I have been remiss. I finished a project last week and didn't post it. In fact, I finished it exactly one week ago. Bad Carrie.

But, as it is made from my own handspun and I have nothing new on bobbin or spindle (and I'm sure you don't want more pictures of the same roving in varying amounts on my bobbins), I feel that it is appropriate for Handspun Monday. Ladies and Gentlemen (are there any?), I give you -- the Ocean Waves Boteh scarf!



Actually, I've been on a roll with the handspun this week. Because on Saturday I started -- and Sunday I finished -- another long-planned, never-executed project. This one is from the roving that I bought at Stitches East in 2006 and spun on my first Golding Spindle (I've since started a collection). The roving caught my eye because the colors reminded me of the sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean, and I eventually decided I would make a moebius wrap out of it. Sadly, some of the color washed out in the finishing bath, butit still makes me think of that beautiful sunrise. So about a year after finishing the yarn, I finally sat down and made the moebius. If I don't just decide to make it happen, it's not gonna make itself, right?

The color in the picture is off, unfortunately, but that's what I get for having such yellowy lightbulbs in my room. I'll try and get a more true-to-color pic. Since the color is really what's important about this piece. *sigh*

I've spun half of the Earth & Sky roving, and I need to ply what I've spun and get to spinning the other half of the roving, so that I have more handspun yarn to play with!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Red Woolen Muffler

It's spring and the days are not only getting longer, they're getting warmer too. But that's no reason to stop working on this:


It's my Tumnus Scarf, version 2.1. Version 2.0 was a gift for a very dear friend, but this is the same stitch pattern, with the addition of two stitches of garter stitch at each edge. Dunno if that'll help the tendency to roll at all, but there it is. If you recall, I'm working this one in the real thing, the yarn from Stansborough Fibres :) I've had some difficulty settling on a needle size, which is why I have so little done right now, but I've finally found a satisfactory size, so I'm going with it. Should be a quick knit. I gotta keep with it though, because my new deadline for it is May 16. Why May 16, you ask? Scroll up. Yes. I have to wear it to opening day. I know Tumnus isn't in Prince Caspian, but still. It's Narnian anyway. Yes, I am aware that this is an illness. But I can think of worse things than Narnia-itis.