Tag Archives: mystery

Day 22: KNEEL!

If that wasn’t enough of a clue for you, after (1) movie series and (2) villain, well, I’m ready to reveal the mystery theme of this craft-a-long that inspired me.

glorious1Loki’s Helmet / Horns.

lokiOkay, this isn’t a real movie. But it should be.

The progress picture above was taken just before I tried it on and discovered it didn’t hang quite right–too long–so I took two beads off either side and now it’s a pretty nice collar.


glorious2Yeah, this is what happens when I develop a celebrity crush. Can I have my life back now?

Tonight, I’m back to knitting. Tomorrow, I’m getting things ready for soldering in the studio. And at some point, I should figure out how to post this over at the forum of Hiddlestoners at Ravelry who got me in this mess to begin with.

Quick links to previous posts on this project: here and here.

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Day 16: Moving Along!

The mystery project continues! I’m not going to reveal the theme yet, but here’s the first clue:  it’s to do with a movie series.

Last time, I had my pieces drawn on brass (jeweler’s bronze, actually; it’s a type of brass made with a higher percentage of copper for a more gold-like color):

craftalong1I re-designed the round piece to look a bit better since I took this picture, BTW.

Monday I cut them out and spent a ridiculous amount of time filing and sanding them by hand. I cut some notches into my homemade v-board to help get at all the angles:


Then I used progressively fine sandpapers from 320 to 2000, turning my work about 90 degrees after each round, to get a nice finish. This seems to be about the best I can do:

brasssandedThat’s the back side of a plastic kitchen placemat they’re on–great surface for wet sanding.

I’m considering taking them to the studio and dropping them into the tumbler for a while to really take out the last of the scratches, but I don’t know. I kind of like the finish the way it is; maybe I don’t want it too perfect. I’ll think about it.

I’m also thinking about whether I want to leave the pieces flat (probably not) or put a slight curve on them. I had my husband carve out the long shape in a block of scrap wood, and pounded a few scrap pieces into it using a hammer and dapping punches:


Well that’s pretty cool, but I don’t know if the resulting surface texture is what I’m going for in this particular piece (But I am so going to make earrings with this technique soon!)

My next hurdle will be to drill holes in the pieces, which always makes me nervous at home. Indeed, I really might just take them to the studio with my own drill bits and do it there with the flex shaft, not my Dremel.

So I’m going to sit on this one for a day and get back to a really unfinished project I didn’t mention the other day because I actually forgot all about it. Here’s hoping I have something to show for that tomorrow!


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Day 13: A New Mystery Begins

I’m generally not the knit-a-long or craft-a-long type; I tend to make things years after other people’s interest in the pattern have come and gone, or I’m just not interested in doing what everyone else is doing.


There’s a Ravelry group I hang around in, and this month a subset of that group is doing a craft-a-long on a particular theme. I won’t reveal the theme just yet (mystery project, anyone?) but it immediately brought to mind certain shapes, as well as materials like brass and emerald green crystals. So I made some sketches and tried out some shapes I either freehanded or made with Libre Office’s drawing program (lame, I know, but I make do). Then I transferred them to cardstock for a template. Here’s where I am now, all ready to start sawing tonight:

craftalong1And before I go, here’s a Good Idea/Bad Idea I learned the hard way.

Good idea:  store your metal sheets in such a way that they don’t scratch each other up.

Bad idea: stick a scrap of leather in between them to accomplish this, and then forget all about it for months.


I sanded off the green bits as best I could, but I don’t think I can bring back that mirror finish again. It might not matter, if I use those areas to make something I can throw in the vibrating polisher. Ah well.



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Mystery Project Complete!

Now, what was that green thing I was getting at last month?  It started out like this:


And then . . .


. . . it got like this . . .


kitthix progress


And finally . . .


. . . after a lot of swearing . . .


. . . and seaming . . .


. . . and stuffing pipe cleaners into narrow channels . . .


. . . it’s . . .


Yeah, you don’t want to see something like that in your bathroom for reals.

It’s the Spider pattern by the incomparable Hansi Singh!  It wasn’t my favorite pattern in Amigurumi Knits, but I took notice of it last year when I went to a members-only open house night at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago (one of my favorite places in the whole wide world). There was a . . . ah, what do you call a spider specialist? Arachnologist? there who was showing off some of the interesting things in her office, like a shed tarantula skin, and a spider stuffie made from this pattern! She was using it to show some kids the various body parts of a spider, and I thought that was awesome because it was a non-scary way of doing that. Also, adorable.

So, I started thinking about getting around to making it, and then I started playing Baldur’s Gate 2, one of my favorite video games, again, and decided on colors based on this:


The happy fellow on the lower right is Kitthix, who can pop out of a black spider figurine once per day and help you fight your enemies. Not the most powerful ally, but I like walking around with a giant spider, what can I say.

So I’ve got a few other knit/crochet projects going on right now, including (finally) my first pair of socks.  I’ll get to talking about that later, as well as my recent misadventures in metalsmithing.

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Mystery Project Solved on the Next . . . TALES OF INTEREST!

So, a couple posts ago, I had this:

zoidmysteryWhat could this mystery thing in progress be?

Any guesses?

No clue?

Not a hint?

Scroll down, why not?

minizoid1It’s John [bleeping] Zoidberg from Futurama! In bathing costume, no less.  I’ve always liked the blue and green stripes against his red-orange shell.  In fact, I’d hoped to crochet the body and knit the bathing suit separately, but as you can see, this is a teeny-tiny mini amigurumi (embroidery floss, y’all) and there was just no way.  Not for me, anyway.  Managing a small number of knit stitches in the round is hard enough when using worsted weight yarn; I couldn’t possibly fiddle with needle-thick DPNs here.

If you’re curious about how to do color changes in the round with single crochet, take a look here.  This is the project I learned the technique on some five or six years ago.

While we’re on the subject of knitting/crochet, this week I started learning how to do continental knitting (i.e. holding the yarn in my left hand, not the right.)  It’s still awkward and fiddly, but when I get better at it I want to try doing two-color projects with one yarn in each hand.  Cause I’m hardcore like that.

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So, riveting practice.  I cannibalized what was left of my copper disc earrings from last year (I re-used the silver parts for other earrings last month) and made what looked like little piles of cookies. Stamped some “chips” in there, highlighted them with Sharpie, polished and waxed and added hooks.  They’re not great, but they were fun and maybe show a bit more personality than what I had originally.

cookie earrings



In other news, I finished an entrelac cowl I made with my Red Heart Unforgettable yarn.

entrelaccowlI think the pink in there is a little too intense for me, but I did like the way the color changed across the greens and blues. Now that I am practiced up again, I’m ready to tackle the shawl I keep saying I’m going to tackle but never do.  I should get it cast on some time this week, though.

And one more:  a mystery project!  What in the heck is this thing, I wonder?

zoidmysteryFind out soon!



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From Pumpkin to Pecan

I thought I should finish up the toilet paper ball project (“Dreaming of Pumpkins” from Spotlight on Wire), so here we go.

Here’s how I wrapped it, using a lot of random twists and turns with two different gauges of wire.  I must admit, I like it more than I thought I would.  Especially the kinks in the 24 gauge wire:

pecan progressAfter soaking it in hot water and poking out the t.p. bits (with, of all things, the blade of a jack-o-lantern carver) I had this little cutie, whose shape reminds me of a pecan:

pecanfinalYep, that green stone was in there all along!  Pretty neat, huh?

I’d also like to note that I took a hammer and some pliers to the ends of the peach-pit-looking pendant from yesterday, and gave it a touch more whimsy.

pumpkinfinalI think that’ll be it for wire projects for now.  I want to make some decisions on what to bezel for our last class on Wednesday, and prepare whatever parts I can in advance.  I’m thinking about a green aventurine bracelet . . . or a wee stack ring with my faux opal . . . or . . . or . . . or . . .

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