Psycho-Babble Medication | about biological treatments | Framed
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Here's my latest...

Posted by Racer on August 13, 1999, at 1:11:00

In reply to Brainstorms welcome here, posted by Cass on August 13, 1999, at 0:03:36

OK, so I tend to go a little overboard, sometimes, but as long as I entertain myself, right?

About ten years ago, I came up with an idea for a dress, but wasn't sure it would look good on me. So, a few weeks ago, I had a brainstorm: make it as a nightgown, then if it was wretched, no one but the cats would see it. The only problem was, what to use as trim? I found some cheap, sheer, white cotton, for the nightgown, but couldn't find a print the same weight for trim. So, batik came to mind. I bought an extra yard of fabric for use as trim, after dying it. Since I wanted about a dozen colors, and that seemed like overkill for one yard of fabric, I then purchased a dozen pairs of white cotton panties, six pairs of white cotton socks, and four yards of white challis... That, Your Honor, is why there is now a large pile of white fabric of various sorts sitting in my kitchen with wax all over them, and several pairs of underwear and socks with both wax and dye on them sitting in plastic baggies in the sink, waiting to finish developing, so that they can be washed out and more wax can be applied, and more dye put on, and more wax, and more dye, and more wax and then overdyed in black. At that point, the items get boiled to melt the wax, cooled, the wax removed from the top of the water, the dyed items washed to remove the last traces of excess dye, and voila! A creative project, fairly cheap, and about a week's worth of entertainment for me after work. Not only that, but I'll have a new nightgown in a week or so, and lots of very colorful underwear!

Sewing is therapeutic for me. There's something so satisfying in a really nice seam. Cross stitch, embroidery, knitting, crocheting, all that sort of thing makes me feel calmer, maybe because it takes me back to the days of sitting with my grandmother and her sister, all of us working on some sort of needlework. Something like that, or papermache, or candlemaking, or anything of that sort might work for you. Candlemaking is the simplest and cheapest, and the best double boiler I've found for melting the wax is a soda can with the top cut off. Also, the best candle dye is a crayon! Talk about cheap thrills! Try the Crayola Silver Swirls crayons, wow!

Then there are things like braided rugs, hand painting floor coverings of heavy cotton duck canvas, card weaving is coming back into style, beadwork (I recently saw a wonderful beaded lamp shade that would be a piece of cake to do), mosaic, fake mosaic candles, one of those half-macrame/half sculpture things with found objects woven in, pin-weaving, doll houses, pottery, gardening, scrapbooks (though I think that would depress me in the wrong times), volunteering to read to seniors in a rest home, volunteering to socialize kittens or puppies at the local animal shelter, volunteer to drive for an animal rescue organization in your area, and all sorts of other things.

If any of those sound interesting to you, let me know, and I'll see what sort of information I can send you on the subject. I have a ton of material around here on most of those, and my mother has yet more. My mother, in fact, probably has the largest privately held collection of crafty information from the seventies in this country, just because she has the same sort of monkey brain I do. We do anything until we get good, then we get bored with it and move on... But it does leave us with great resources!

Gee, how could I forget lacemaking! There are tons of lace techniques, and some are easy and some are fun, and most are pretty satisfying!

I do hope that helps some! And good thoughts from my garden to yours! (If you're in a drought area, try Portaluca, which is both beautiful and drought resistant! It's also called Moss Rose. My garden is overflowing with it right now, and is so restful and cheerful!)




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