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the various and sundry creations of sylvus tarn

magic window


This is a typical way I waste time on the internet: Threads magazine, in a vain effort to get me to renew (because the mag has become “Fine (Couture) Sewing” instead of “Fabulous Textile Techniques of All Kinds”) and I'm not much into clothes rank comfort, versatility and durability over appearance, I don't put much effort into stuff that's just gonna get dirt, molten glass, acid, etc on it anyway...sent me a link called 21 sewing myths debunked which was more a well, that's-not-quite-a-myth-but-here's-the-exception-to-that-rule; then I wandered over to a vintage blouse because they do sometimes discuss embellishment (in the context of couture sewing, sigh) and mention was made of a specialized embroidery machine called a cornely, of which antiques are still used in Africa, India and the Middle East where labor is still cheap enough for hand-guided machine embroidery is feasible, where it's become part of the local style, and where, I'm guessing, there's a knowledge base for operating these machines—the guy in the video makes it look easy, but I'm guessing there's a fairly deep well of expertise there. Note, frex, how much more comfortable the Middle Easterner is operating the machine than the person demoing for the museum, in the first link. This is not to say this type of technology hasn't advanced, but the modern machines are neither suitable nor accessible to the artisan; on the other hand, just making this post allowed me to circle back to another favorite video of a woman using an old treadle machine to make lace. N.b., she's Hungarian: that same basic region as the Irish Crochet that inspired this post.)



John Scalzi generously does this thing where he opens up his blog for the rest of the world to flog our wares for the holiday season. So I got off my ass, reopened my etsy shop, and will be trying to fill out the collections over the next few days (in between a number of truly tedious mundane tasks).

Shown is the Bee Princess. I was originally trained in life drawing, and in college hoped to be a sf&f book cover artist. I never figured out how to do that, and getting hired by a bead shop rekindled my interest in beads, which, obviously has persisted.

Anyway. As Mr Scalzi has been so kind to allow me to promote myself, I thought I'd return the favor—he recently published a new novel, LockIn which he admits was



Happy December, everyone. (Eek, definitely not ready.)

Aaaand the parade of links continues. I just loved the art in Nonplayer and I also admired the artist for seemingly getting his promotional chops in a row; but after that first volume...nothing. Turns out there's a happy ending (or middle?) to this story: the creator had a kid, and has been busy.

Oh, ok.

Also chugging along with fantastic art and story, Brian K Vaughn and Fiona Staples’ fantastic Saga. I'm ashamed to admit I totally missed the subtleties that Vaughn uses to make the thing more accessible:

  • no more than six panels per page
  • no more than 12 balloons per page
  • no more than two lines of (typewritten) text per balloon



Hideho, another post cuzza I gotta bunch a links I want to close in the browser window...an interesting looking documentary on 2nd wave feminism (which got good reviews from some folks who'd actually seen it; via strobist, (which I'm perusing for the 2nd or 3rd time—mebbe this time the lessons on using flash will stick) another documentary about recreating the Mona Lisa photographically (which frankly was more interesting to me as a form of the photographer's obsession); also via strobist, some fabulous photography of mushrooms (which have fascinated me with their form and color for a long time).



This is another one of those tedious me, me, me posts I've made as a reminder to myself next time I have to photograph stuff for my friend, Kristin. If you are an amateur photographer getting into using a manual flash, you may find it slightly useful. Otherwise, yawn.

However, I've accumulated a buncha other links—how a Deutsch town ju-jitsued (I prefer this to the ‘prank’ characterization boingboing used) a neo-nazi group; how music engages the brain (though I wonder what would happen if they MRI'ed someone doing a difficult arty task like, say, making a bead, which also has something of a real time performance aspect to it...?



Sorry about the no-posting—first, I caught something at our guild show in the beginning of November; not to mention I had all these bulbs. I managed by Monday to finish planting them, however haphazardly, racing snow and cold before the ground froze hard. On the plus side, perhaps this means the various little rodents won't be able to dig them up and eat them!

Today's piece is a blast from the past.

And seeing as it's wood, a material I'm more likely to compost or burn than string, this rather cool link about flame shape seems apropos...I do wonder what it would be like to try making beads in space—for one thing you wouldn't have to constantly spin the mandrel to keep the glass from drooping!


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