Friday, May 22, 2009

The Fate of Birdy

M'lords and ladies, we have found our stoner cat.

Actually not a stoner, but rather, The Indomitable Baroness Lydia, belonging to my good friends (and gracious saviors when we're learning Bon Odori), His Majesty David and Her Highness Rachel. David is a design king, Rachel is a J-food queen, and together, they rule over a kingdom of anime and manga.

Thank you, Your Majesties, for allowing me the honor of drugging your cat. >w< ♡

Thursday, May 21, 2009


Watermelolon. >w<

Still workin' on it.

Back shortly.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

String Graffiti

That's what it looks like to me, anyway. :3

A work in progress. Behold its desaturated, scanner-flattened glory.

Having been inspired anew to try my hand at embroidery, I am working on a needle roll. The plan is to stitch pretty colors all over this lovely piece of black cloth I've got, back it with muslin and a strip of thick velvet, load it with all my runaway needles, and roll the whole thing up with a loop-and-button closure. If it works, you can expect a pattern and a tutorial.

German brick stitch/Gobelin stitch be damned; I quickly got carried away and gave in to the temptation to stitch sideways and crossways and every which ways, hoping to pin down (no pun intended) a few of the more traditional Japanese fill patterns. I've got the 矢羽根 (yabane, arrow-tail pattern) and 十字 (juuji, cross pattern) down fairly well. I'm also experimenting with 七宝 (shippou, cloisonne pattern), but it's messy. Hmm.

I'll chart and post the first two patterns. They're not that hard, actually; you could probably just read them from the image.

A side note: By the numbers, this is 28-threads-per-inch jobelin cloth, stitched with 4 strands of cotton floss (DMC). Three strands will also give coverage without encroaching on bare rows, but it's noticeably thinner.

Saturday, May 9, 2009


I really do not have an excuse for all the made up words. ._.

Oh god oh god, the new store is so very big. I keep getting lost. I also, however, keep finding terribly fun things to experiment with. You can expect some softies to start showing up in lovely printed or dyed cotton fabric soon, some paint+ink tutorials, more beading, and embroidery.

On the topic of embroidery, I have recently had the good fortune of discovering Medieval Arts and Crafts by Ms. Kathy Storm. She specializes in... well, Medieval art and craft traditions; including iconography and small authentic items done in a wonderful type of embroidery called German brick stitch (upright Gobelin stitch in modern terms, when applied as a single element). She has close to a dozen patterns charted and available for free right on the blog, along with pictures of finished purses and needle cases and a whole library of links to explore.

If you, like I, have an unyielding aversion to cross stitch, the German brick stitch might very well be your key to enjoying embroidery. It's simpler, faster, smoother, and highly geometric. It also has a fascinating history, which you can learn all about from the venerable House Wymarc. You can also snag some more patterns there - very cleanly charted and easy to follow.

I'll be at the store if anyone's looking for me, probably buried in an avalanche of fleece bolts. (Send help!)