Intro Post

Sep. 27th, 2020 02:22 pm
kerravonsen: (Default)
Howdy, friends and strangers!

This is my intro post. I figured I'd better have one.

This journal is a mix of fannish stuff, ponderings, computer geekery, art and random cookery experiments. More personal posts are friends-locked, some with tighter filters than others.
things you should know about me )
other sites of mine )
Transformative Works Policy

If you wish to transform my work, I have Transformative Works Policy to clarify stuff in advance!

Other stuff
If you want to write fic for me, here is my Generic Ficathon Elaboration Post.

After you have friended/subscribed to me, I would appreciate it if you drop me a comment here, saying hello and what brought you here. No need to ask permission beforehand, but it would be nice to give me a note afterwards.
kerravonsen: a green leaf: Hope (hope)
How do we change the world?
Change the culture.

How do we change the culture?
Change the stories we tell ourselves.

How do we change the stories?
Tell better ones.
kerravonsen: "Homicidal faeries make things more interesting." (homicidal-faeries)
1. Cast Iron Frying Pan
For cooking steak.
Also for attacking Fae who can't cope with Cold Iron.

2. Garlic
For cooking with the steak.
Also for warding off vampires.

3. Vinegar
For putting on the salad you made to eat with the steak.
Also for attacking Slitheen.
kerravonsen: Eighth Doctor's legs sticking out from underneath TARDIS console: "tea, tools, Tinkering" (tinkering)
Yeah, I made another lucet. This one is huge. It is also the prettiest by far. Made of 4.8mm copper wire (approx 3/16 of an inch); the handle is wrapped with brown leather. The handle is twice as long as it needs to be, because I basically didn't figure out how much wire I needed, I just cut a length and started working on it. I made five bends (very thick wire, hard to bend) and then I hammered and I hammered and I hammered. Then I de-tarnished it with citric acid, and gave it "put in the wash" treatment. It came up nice and shiny. Then I wrapped the handle with leather thonging, gluing it down with black (sticks-to-metal) hot glue. And burnt myself once (oops). Then I wrapped more leather thonging around the bit of the fork between the straight prongs, and where it bent inwards towards the handle, so there's a triangular "hole" at the base of the fork.

- distance between prongs, 4cm
- length of prongs, 5cm
- length of handle, 14.5cm
- length of entire lucet, 23cm

Despite this being so large, it works much better than Lucet #3 which I made yesterday. The fact that the wire comes together in a V to make the handle means that the handle is easy to grasp with the last three fingers of the hand, leaving the index finger and thumb free to turn the fork. My hands actually feel less fatigued than they did yesterday.

It's amazing all the things one doesn't realize which go into a good working tool.
kerravonsen: cartoon Ood: "would you like a piece of my mind?" (Ood)
This morning I washed my hair with anti-dandruff shampoo. The bottle said "antidandruff medicated shampoo". Ooooh, medicated! Does that mean it's different from other anti-dandruff shampoos?

To the dictionary, Robin!

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) [web1913]:

  Medicate \Med"i*cate\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Medicated}; p. pr. &
     vb. n. {Medicating}.] [L. medicatus, p. p. of medicare,
     medicari. See {Medicable}.]
     1. To tincture or impregnate with anything medicinal; to
        drug. ``Medicated waters.'' --Arbuthnot.
     2. To treat with medicine.

So, to say it's "medicated" means.... it's a treatment. For dandruff. Which is what "anti-dandruff" means.
Holy tautology, Batman, it's a tautology!

I loathe advertising-speak. So long as they are not outright lying, they can be as deceptive as they want, tossing in feel-good content-free words with abandon, or rendering perfectly good words content-free by using them as a tautology.

I prefer spades to be called spades, not agricultural real-metal-bladed natural-wooden-handled spades.
kerravonsen: Peter Pevensie: Strong will (Peter)
Today I made another lucet. I made it out of scraps of tiny pipe, and bits of craft sticks, and string, and hot glue. On the good side, the prongs were nice and round, and they were nicely spaced apart. On the bad side, the handle was very wide, too wide to turn comfortably with one movement. Grrr. Will I have to learn woodcarving to make the perfect lucet?

Anyway, the characteristics of this lucet were such that I thought I'd try to figure out the "no-turn turn" method of luceting. When I tried before, I was so used to doing the "fast grab" turning method that I got all tangled and confused. This time I decided to ignore all the instructions, and figure it out as if I were doing it via the fast-grab method. One prong was exactly the same, obviously. The other prong, I figured out the following:

1. index finger of hand holding the lucet: press down on the back of the prong you just worked (first prong), holding the stitch you just finished, so it isn't pulled too soon
2. dominant hand: wrap the working yarn around the back, to the outside of the second prong, round the front, and to the back again; hold with little finger (it sounds more complicated than it is)
3. grab the back of the loop on the second prong (dominant hand), lift up the index finger away from the first prong (other hand), and pull on the loop to close the previous stitch (dominant hand)
4. lift the loop over the prong from the back to the front
5. move the working yarn from the middle where it was, through the front, over to the side past the second prong, and tug (again, this sounds more complicated than it is).

Luceting is dangerous. I just lose track of time when I'm doing it, and I end up overdoing it and my hands do not thank me.
kerravonsen: a rose bud: "Beauty is mysterious" (beauty)
I mentioned yesterday that a brown and turquoise colour scheme in jewellery evokes a "tribal" look. I kind of winced at using the word "tribal" (and why I put it in quotes) because, even though it is a common term used in describing jewellery, part of me says "and which tribes are you referring to?". And yet I'm also afraid of referring to specific ethnicities, in case I'm perpetuating stereotypes. And perhaps the imitation of any kind of non-local style is cultural appropriation. Arrrgh!

But I do want to talk about themes of various kinds. We'll see how I go.
Read more... )
This by no means covers covers all themes, but this post, like this day, must come to an end.
kerravonsen: Stone egg on moss: "Art is Life, Life is Art" (art)
One of the first things to consider when choosing a colour scheme for jewellery is "Silver or Gold?" One reason is that the most common colours for findings are silver and gold. The more important reason is that jewellery, unlike paintings, is made for wearing, and it is usually worn close to the skin; the skin is the backdrop of the jewellery. Some people have warm skin tones, and some people have cool skin tones(*). If the jewellery doesn't match the skin tone, the person can end up looking washed-out and ill. Warm skin tones need warm colours (gold), and cool skin tones need cool colours (silver).

The colour wheel can be divided into cool colours and warm colours. The warm colours are fire colours and autumn colours: the reds, oranges, yellows, golds, browns. The cool colours centre around blue: blues, greens, purples. Green and purple, however, are on the edge; the yellow in green can make it warm, and the red in purple can make it warm. Purple can be a bit paradoxical; it can look cool against warm colours and warm against cool colours. Green can look good with either warm or cool colours. Pastels also tend to be cool, because they have a lot of white in them, and white is cool. Silver, white, grey and black are all cool.

Just because you want your jewellery to be warm or cool doesn't mean you're limited to use only certain colours. One can often "warm up" or "cool down" a colour scheme by adding lots of gold to warm it up, or lots of silver to cool it down.
Read more... )

P.S. One thing I don't understand, I have no theory for, is why "jewel-toned" colours work with cool skin tones. I mean, things like sapphire-blue and emerald-green are understandable, but why does ruby-red work? Tomato-red is awful, but things that are crimson and scarlet - those dark, deep reds - they work well. Why?
kerravonsen: colourful circles: "Cool" (cool)
My favourite craft book ever is "The Complete Book of Beads" by Janet Coles & Robert Budwig. Unfortunately, it is out of print, though a diligent seeker might find it second-hand. The reason why I love this book is because, unlike practically every other craft book ever, it doesn't just have "recipes" to make stuff, but it discusses design, and has fabulous pictures of beads and necklaces to inspire you. It talked about planning, about shape, texture, size and weight. And it talked about colours and themes. Awesome.

So today I'd like to talk about colour. Mainly in regard to bead-stringing, but this is also applicable to other crafts where you have to choose coloured items from a limited palette, such as perler beads, chainmaille rings, and yarn. Color Terms for Art and Design 1 tells you about hues, the colour wheel, primary, secondary and tertiary colours, analogous colours, and complementary colours, so go and read it if you don't know what they are, because it has pretty pictures and I don't.
Read more... )
Have some examples from my own work....
Read more... )
I fear this means that I am terribly unadventurous in my colour schemes. Oh well. It works for me.

I hope this post has been helpful in thinking about colours.
kerravonsen: (Default)
Sometimes, when people look at my work, they say "I wish I could make stuff like that. You are so talented! I could never do that!" and I want to stamp my foot and say "Yes, yes you CAN!" Because it isn't that hard, really. I mean, yes, I am talented (being honest, here) and some crafts are harder than others, but "never" is too strong a word. I will concede that if you are colourblind, blind, have no use of your hands, or have the attention span of a deranged ferret, the obstacles to making craft are extremely high, but otherwise, no.

But maybe I'm making assumptions. So here is a survey.

cut for poll )

Crossposted to
kerravonsen: (Default)
I finished the necklace, and photographed it, and entered it into the M.A.I.L. Contest #28: Graduation (link goes to my entry).

I call it the "Oxford Comma" necklace, because it is full of red agate commas.


Or perhaps I should say, it is full of red agate commas because it is an Oxford Comma necklace.
kerravonsen: Stone egg on moss: "Art is Life, Life is Art" (art)
Today I started, and almost finished, a necklace I had been planning for a while. It needed careful planning because it was chainmaille in graduating sizes; that is, it was the same weave, but every section had rings that were bigger (or smaller) than the previous section.

Then when I'd put allllll the links together, I put the chain in the wash with my clothes (inside a bag, though). This tip is brought to you by... someone I forget, but it was either on the M.A.I.L. forums or the T.R.L. forums. Washing your maille with your clothes, and drying it with them in your dryer, actually makes it come up all shiny, because not only is it being washed, but in the dryer it is being buffed, as the rings knock against each other. So that's pretty cool. Though of course, being copper, it will tarnish. The most common advice in that regard seems to be "live with it". Because trying to put a coating on is a pain, and the coating will wear off anyway (and probably wear off unevenly, which will look really ugly). A couple of suggestions were to use Renaissance Wax, which is what they use in museums to preserve metal artefacts. Though that, too, will wear off in time.

I may have to just "live with it" anyway, because it isn't just copper. After it was washed and dried, I added some red agate charms to it... and while some things might be okay with copper, I don't know what they'd do to agate. Oh well, at least it looks nice and shiny for now.

All that needs to be done to it now is (a) add the clasps, (b) make up the matching earrings, (c) photograph it. But not tonight, because it is late.
kerravonsen: Abby: "Take back the glee!" (Abby-glee)
So yesterday I did not post as I intended. Ooops. So this is for yesterday.

Yesterday I was sorting and storing my new Hama/Perler/Iron-Me/melty beads. One lot was a bunch of cool colours bought from a shop on EBay. The other lot... I swear, I get taken over by unrealistic optimism from time to time, and this was just such an occassion. I bought two huge bottles of mixed beads, thinking "Oh yeah, I can sort these out into their individual colours, no worries". Even though every time I do something like that (last time it was one kilogram of small glass rings) I swear never to do it again... I did it again.
on the joys and practicalities of sorting )
kerravonsen: stone egg on wood: "Simplicity" (simplicity)
The wrist is still sore (and now wrapped), so no craft-making for me today. I sorted beads, though that was more of a case of putting things together that had been separated, rather than sorting to save space. But it did mean I reduced the number of mysterious squiggles (drawn with red white-board marker) on the plastic containers the beads were in. So it is still an improvement.

Brother D was checking translations while I was sorting, and every now and then rambled about interesting phrases and vocabulary in various of the languages he was checking... such as the Moronene phrases "dead fish" and "live fish". Both actually refer to dead fish (and "a fish that is alive" is how one would refer to... a fish that is alive) but the difference between them is that "live fish" is fresh fish, and "dead fish" is dried fish. Idioms are interesting.
kerravonsen: Crafty: a medly of beads (craft)
Late last night I made myself another lucet. This one was made of 2mm Aluminium wire, string, and black hot-glue. The string and hot-glue were for the handle, to build up around the wire handle. The lucet part was good, it was the shape I intended it to be, just a little wider than the fork, slightly bent out at the ends, parallel in the middle... with sufficient hammering that it would stay where it was put.

So I played with my new lucet on the bus this morning, and I came to a few conclusions:
the conclusions )
kerravonsen: Eighth Doctor's legs sticking out from underneath TARDIS console: "tea, tools, Tinkering" (tinkering)
Today I mutilated a fork. I turned it into a lucet.
cut for rambling about lucets )
kerravonsen: Ninth Doctor: "thinking" (thinking)
Stumbled across this in my websurfing: "I'm not telling you it's going to be easy. I'm telling you it's going to be worth it."

My first thought was "if it was easy, it would eventually be boring". We actually do like challenges. When we have enough energy and have rested enough from our stress, we do stuff. Human beings are kind of crazy when you think about it: we do difficult things for fun! We are so needy for mental stimulation that we invented these things called "games" which make us think hard when we don't have to!

kerravonsen: Crafty: a medly of beads (craft)
While talking with my brother D (who is currently staying with me for this week) I managed to finish the ruffle-scarf I've been working on (on and off) since the beginning of the year. So YAY.

No, no photo. I should take a photo of it, but it is late. But it is good to be able to cross something off my to-do list. 8-)
kerravonsen: Crafty: a medly of beads (craft)
I used to think that all crafts were basically easy to do... until I tried tatting. After multiple attempts using both shuttle and needle tatting I have managed to make ONE item. I'm not sure if I'll try again or not. But it showed me one thing; some crafts are simply more difficult to master than others. Some are easy enough for kids to do, others take years to master, and not everyone can do it. Note that the "easy" crafts fall into two classes; the ones that are inherently kitsch (no matter what you do, they look cheap and nasty), and the ones that aren't inherently kitsch. (It is possible to make anything look kitsch with the application of sufficient bad taste). I don't intend to include the inherently-kitsch crafts in the following lists. These lists are not exhaustive, because I don't know every craft under the sun.
Read more... )
kerravonsen: Crafty: a medly of beads (craft)
Today I finished the "hex holder" I was making for my new Settlers of Catan wooden hexes. It wasn't intended to hold all of them, indeed, I had no idea how many of them it would hold, I just wanted to make it reasonably tall.
cut for craft rambling and pictures )


kerravonsen: (Default)
Kathryn A.

May 2015

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