Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Mad Person-Who-Stitches: Mini-Project

We have some large blocks of foam that are good for pillows.  Scaramouche also likes them.  He especially likes to rip nips of foam off the blocks (fortunately he doesn't actually eat them).  I'm making large pillowcases out of used saris, both for aesthetic and for anti-cat-nibbling purposes.  I used two saris: a blue with leaf-ish designs and a matte purple with bright orange border.

The blue:
I love blue.  So did my Grandmama.  The exact right shade of blue thread for this sari is from her stash.
Scaramouche will happily sit on the foam, even if he can't nibble.

The purple-and-orange, still to be turned into covers:

I love the purple-and-orange sari, too.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Caturday Post: Feline Graffiti

Charming cat graffiti from New Zealand, courtesy of my new favorite blogger, the amazing, informative, superlatively talented, and beautiful Dreamstress:

http://thedreamstress.com/2009/07/happy-graffiti/

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

The Mad Person-Who-Stitches: Final Fantasy X Yuna's Sleeves

Back to where I left off in June: I am attempting to make a Yuna costume suitable for aerial performance.

Yuna:

My recreation of her sleeves, version 1.0:

These were made in heavy white polyester satin (leftover from Princess Zelda's dress, which I still haven't written about), and I attempted to give them a gradient dye job with a fabric marker.  I gave up about 2/3 of the way through, because my marker was starting to run low, and I didn't want to have to buy another whole set to get that shade of pink in a reasonably broad point.  Also the satin did not take marker well, and it was much more difficult than I anticipated to get a good gradient.

So I took to the internet to see if dyeing sleeves might be a possibility.  I was terrified of dying fabric.  In every by-the-way description of historical dying methods I've read it involves a terrific amount of work and substances that are either really gross or that humans shouldn't be around (for instance Memories of Silk and Straw by Junichi Saga has a chapter about a dyer).  But the good people of the internet provided youtube tutorials and assured me that thanks to modern technology, I can buy small packets of fabric dye in every color of the rainbow and handle it without more precautions than gloves and ordinary ventilation. 

version 2.0
Lightweight white cotton sateen, unlined, dyed in the kitchen sink: 
I can dye fabric!  Eureka!  QED!  The world of white fabric is my oyster!  

The light is a bit too bright to see well, but I got a lovely gradient on both sleeves, with far less work than I was anticipating.  The better sleeve had the hotter water: next time I have a dye job small enough to fit in a pot I'll do it on the stove, so as to better maintain the temperature of the dye bath. 

I made version 2.0 with square margins as shown in Yuna's illustrations, discarding trying to round the back corners of the bottom hem (it's a female/male distinction with probably as much worth as buttons on the left or right for western shirts).  The purple cord is for show: I basted the sleeves to a long-sleeved nude leotard to make sure they'll actually stay on during performance.  They are a royal pain to work with in aerial fabrics, but they make all my sweeping gestures look lovely.  Dance adapts to look beautiful in the style of clothing it is danced in, and in turn influences the clothing worn to dance.

Friday, August 12, 2016

Friday Fabulosity: Theoretical Muffin Topology

from the ever wonderful webcomic Questionable Content: http://questionablecontent.net/view.php?comic=3284

I would say that muffin topology is my new career goal, but actually I found algebraic topology straightforward but boring until we got to homology, at which point I became totally lost.  Fortunately that was at the very end of the introductory course, or I would not have passed that preliminary exam.  

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Recycling My Un-listened-to, Unwatched CDs and DVDs

They've accumulated, but local recycling facilities almost never take them.  If I can't find a recycling source, they'll have to go back in a box, taking up storage space that I could be filling up with more anime and baroque concerti.  Internet to the rescue:

http://cdrecyclingcenter.org/recycle-now/index

I'll need to sort them out from cases and inserts, box them up, and mail them off.