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the various and sundry creations of sylvus tarn

30apr2014

So waaaaay back on the 5th January 2010, I decided it would be a good idea to create a ‘howtofrenchbead’ index page. Only problem was, at the time, I didn't have much in the way of howtofrenchbead pages to show—the biggest was still only half done. Whoopsie! So this thing sat, until a really strong need for displacement activities sent me on a frenzy of website spring cleaning, and I found it again.

It's still a bit sad, but at least I've completed the big howto page (the heartshaped leaf, detailed earlier last week) so there's something on it, now.

Enjoy.

29apr2014

So backing up a bit, here's a cord and tassel set made for a stocking. Tomorrow I'll feature Six years ago I featured the stocking I put ’em on, so no, I haven't given up on the series.)

And, just to simultaneously bring things up to the present while harking back to the past, here's a couple of fun links...I was trawling through makinglight, and they mentioned an entertaining reading of catullus (quite reminiscent of hiphop/rap in its complex rhythms, plus lovely rolled Rs) recommended, they said, by the ‘always entertaining @phiala’, whom I wondered, was that the same phiala whose phiala's string pages go back practically to the beginning of this website? And lo, it was! I've never actually talked to this woman, but I've always felt a bit of kinship for someone interested in semi-obscure narrow wares whose web presence dates way back to the late 90s.

Meanwhile, via lovejoyfeminism, on quite a heavy post about abuse, a link in the comments to some awesome costuming, wigs, 18th ca fabrics ...I have finally answered a long time question, which was, what color exactly was drab in Georgette Heyer? She mentions, among other things, a drab driving coat of many capes, worn by a high-status protag, so obviously it's ok, but I always rather wondered if it were a sort of dirty white: turns out, it's a darkish, warm beige. Well then. Plus, as a bonus I got exposed to the precise meanings of many other textile terms of the era, so if you're wanting to know the diff between worsted, drugget, fustian, kerseymore, and the like, well now you can find out.

This is what I love about the web, that six degrees of separation: reading about one thing, and finding a totally different interest a click or two away...going to another site, and again, with just a click, happen upon the same basic theme (in this case, historical costuming.)

Aaaaand, speaking of historical, here's today's click, roughly equidistant from the rejiquar's online beginnings and present.

28apr2014

Another 2008 post/page pair: I started the following around 1mar08, scattering half-completed posts about this bracelet with wild abandon, completing none of them...till now.


Not only did I indulge myself with the January retreat (most of which still needs to be documented) I also took a little mini-workshop with Kathleen Robinson, formerly of the Burning Bead studio. This post documents my efforts with the technique.

But, getting back to that retreat, one of the unexpected things I learned, probably from a lampworker who was also a school art teacher, was that #6 plastic could be used to make shrinky-dinks —which, given that f2tY has been complaining that we never do anything fun and also that the new art teacher "sucks", might be a fun parent-child project...

My retreat-mate was able to tell just from the sound whether the plastic was good to go, but I recommend looking for the number;) Unlike the tutorials for which I provided links, she advised incorporating the ridged parts of the plastic right into the design, a suggestion that immediately appealed to my "let's-turn-this-broken/awkward/problem-into-an-asset" mentality.

But if no salad containers loom on your horizon, well, here's today's post—only six years, 1 month and sixteen days late.

25apr2014

Today's FridayFugly is what happens when one is insufficiently imaginative. I wasn't crazy about the focal and positively loathed the color combination of the beads provided in the kit. The result—blech.

This is sad, because so often being forced to work outside one's comfort zone often leads to new, fresh variations; but sometimes, the will just ain't there. However, this ancient (from 2008) post, with the equally elderly intro, at least allows me to collect all the bracelet pages together.

24apr2014

Well, gee, my french beaded flower index seems to have gotten lost, so I'm reposting it today. <—I wrote this about six years ago, but the statement is still true...

Enjoy.

23apr2014

And here's part II of the long-lost six-years-old heart-shaped tut...which I actually only finished writing 13apr14:) (Man, I'm like two weeks ahead on these blog posts, an all time record. Too tired/frustrated/slightly ill to actually make art...)

I like Mandolin's writing on Amp's blog, but her sf&f (admittedly only one short story comes to mind) didn't do much for me—not to say the story wasn't well-written or that it didn't follow through to its logical conclusion, just that I like this old-fashioned stuff except with feminist ideals, and the two often don't play nicely together. In fact I find links to online sf all the time, not just Mandolin's recces, but others as well; and usually the taste the present doesn't get me to, as they exhort, ‘keep reading’.

But Vonda McIntyre, along with Joan Vinge, were my go-to authors back in the 80s: both wrote wonderful stories, with sfnal settings, interesting science, and great feminist characters, McIntyre in particular: her Dreamsnake is very sex-positive. Leaving aside ST adaptations and the like, her last novel (that I've read) was the equally splendid Sun and the Moon, an alternate history sf novel set in the court of the Sun King. It has period science, some interesting conundrums, fabulous historical detail and romance. (Dreamsnake also has romance, cool genetics, a vivid setting, and sympathy for characters not typically tall or pretty. Plus fancy patterned horses, which always gets my attention:)

Plus, I was pretty impressed with the aliens in “To Bell the Cat”, what with their sessile and mobile parts (only problem is, Joan Vinge, not Vonda McIntyre wrote that, but my mistaken memory still contributed) so I figured what the heck, and clicked. —And was duly impressed. Written—or at least published—in 2005, the images of the sentient, partnered spaceships reminded me of Octavia Butler's Imago trilogy; and like the commenter to Mandolin's post the alien biology, obviously based upon anglerfish also reminded me of Tiptree sans the horror.

Or, if you'd rather fight your way through the second part of this overly involved french beaded tutorial, well, be my guest:)