Craft curiousity

January 14, 2008

I’ll admit it. I get distracted easily. As happy as I am that I’m capable of doing crafty stuff other than knit, all the different little things I can do tend to cut in to eachother timewise. Case and point, last weekend I found some cute fabric at JoAnn’s. I had absolutely no idea what to do with it when I bought it, but I ended up making a little zip-pouch:


This project was good, not only because it gave me another chance to use yellow ric-rack, but also because it kinda showed me the anatomy of a piece of sewing…it also showed me that the tension on the machine was psychotically high and no wonder some of the other things I made were getting little puckers. Seriously how the hell did that happen? Did didn’t even know *how* to mess with the tension, or even what tension *was* up until that weekend. For the record, I picked up that little piece of knowledge from Sew U, which I got a while back using up some Borders coupons. It’s a great book for people who know up to “This is my sewing machine. It makes the thread go up and down and puts fabric together.” It gets in to the more technical stuff like tension, seam allowances, and all that other stuff I eat up.

While I was at that Borders, I ended up buying a copy of Craft magazine. I read the online blog all the time, but the print issue had a lot of reall cool stuff. The first thing I noticed was a pair of felted slippers that might help me once and for all destroy the Lamb’s Pride That Will Not Die (I’ve made no less than 4 projects with this stuff and I haven’t used up a single damned color). But then I found a little article on Japanese stab binding…and it stuck in my head.

As a bit of background, I have this thing  with blank books. I’m not a writer or an artist, but blank notebooks have been a staple of my life since high school…actually it was probably *middle school* now that I come to think of it. I have trouble keeping a proper day planner. Too structured. I’m best suited when I have a big empty notbook that I can write anything I need in, including important dates and assignments. It seems haphazard, but I can always seem to find what I need and I don’t forget things once they’ve been written in my little book. I got a blank book from my best friend for Christmas about a year ago, but instead of using it as one of my general purpose journals, it’s for design ideas. For the first time in ages, I’ve been without an Everything Journal.

 So I was bouncing around the idea of making a book for about a week. I thought of all the things I was doing at the time and did I really need another craft to spend time on? Then I found the newest round of Project Spectrum on Ravelry. This years theme is The Elements, starting with fire. And here’s how my brain went from there…

Fire Red Fire Culture Asia Those Big Red Shinto Gates Japan JAPANESE STAB BINDING

I had to make the book.


Here’s my new baby (more on the flickr of course). It’s not perfect: the edges are wavy, the internal paper is all different sizes and the binding is a bit loosely threaded but it’s all mine. In the day it took me to make this book I got crazy attached. Doesn’t hurt that the total cost of the project was a whopping 59 cents (without tax) for the cover paper. I already had the thread, the scissors, the awl, and the filler paper (cut out from the unused sections of old school notebooks). Plus I got to use a hammer to make the holes, which was probably a bigger selling point for the craft than it should have been. I have a feeling this hobby is going to be around to stay, so I’ve decided to let other crafts I’m curious about get their fair shot. To keep it in check, I’ll say I’m going to try one new type of craft for each cycle of Project Spectrum.

And for the record, I actually *have* gotten some knitting done, but this post is already way too long.


One comment

  1. Love your Japanese-bound book! I really like how you used a variety of papers for the inside. 🙂
    Katherine R. Willson
    Ann Arbor, MI

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