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Quickie Question: What Are You Dreaming Of?

Thursday, December 15th, 2011
By Twistie

At long last WordPress has allowed me in! During this brief  moment of access, I’m going to ask you all a question : what piece of crafting equipment or memorabilia are you dreaming of owning?

For my part, I would love to complete my collection of hanging bobbins.

I’ve got two, but I would love to have all seven. If I could have only one, though, I would want the one for Sarah Dazeley, the only murderess among the bunch. She was hanged for murdering her second husband at the tender age of twenty-two… and has been suspected ever since of poisoning her first husband, as well.

Yes, I have a fascination with both lacemaking and true crime. Is it that obvious?

So what about all of you? What are you dreaming of adding to your equipment or your collection? Tell us all about it!


Be an Evil Mad Scientist… Or Just Visit One

Tuesday, November 29th, 2011
By Twistie

Have you ever wondered what sort of crafts an evil mad scientist might do? Well, they might do the deadly champagne cork pictured above (extremely tongue in cheek instructions here), or he might create something less obviously dangerous and less obviously evil, such as this nifty LED Menorah:

But whether your taste runs more to deadly champagne corks, kits for electronic Menorahs, or the infamous eggbot which can print on real eggshells (comes in both standard hen and ostrich), it’s exciting to know that Evil Mad Science is having an open house this coming sunday, December fourth, from five to nine pm.

So if you’re slightly crafty, slightly geeky, fond of great silliness, or just wanting to meet the store cat, Zener, and you’re in the Sunnvale, CA. area (note to Buffy fans: that’s SunnyVale, not SunnyDale) then come on out and see what evil lurks in the hearts of men. The place to go is:

Evil Mad Science

175 San Lazaro Ave, suite 150

Sunnyvale, CA.

BTW, about that champagne cork? I wouldn’t advise trying it at home. I’m just sayin’, m’kay?


Hot Ways to Save at Roberts

Friday, July 22nd, 2011
By Twistie

Roberts Crafts has two great deals for all of you looking for, well, great deals on crafting equipment and supplies.

First off is the very limited time Beat the Heat offer of 20% off your entire online regular price purchase. All you need to do to get the savings is enter the code: BEATTHEHEATW at checkout, and anything you bought that wasn’t already on sale is 20% off! Not bad. Hurry, though! The deal ends tomorrow!

But wait! That’s not all! There’s another deal available:

If you happen to live nearby a Roberts, Two Fer Tuesday has been expanded to saturdays, as well, meaning you can use two coupons in one transaction. Again, not bad at all.

And now I think I’ll go off and craft some homemade ice cream. That’s my way to beat the heat! Stay frosty, everyone.


Lacing With Interesting Women

Thursday, July 7th, 2011
By Twistie

Have I mentioned how much I love pretty tools to work with? There’s a gentleman in England called Chris Parsons who makes some tremendously pretty bobbins to toss. This is his set of Famous Women of History. The set includes: Cleopatra, Boudicca, Joan of Arc, Elizabeth I, Florence Nightingale, Queen Victoria, George Eliot, Emmaline Pankhurst, Amelia Earhart, Marilyn Monroe, Margaret Thatcher, and Mother Theresa.

Of course, you may like some of these women better than others. Don’t worry, you don’t have to get the entire set. Pick and choose at your pleasure! And if there’s an amazing woman you feel he’s missed (say, Harriet Tubman or Aphra Behn, for instance), he’ll be happy to paint her for you, special.

Or maybe great women of history isn’t your thing. Perhaps you’d prefer Egyptian gods, celtic patterns, butterflies, famous buildings, or non-figurative pewter inlays.

Oh, and of course in light of a recent happy event in the British Royal family, well, what could be better than a nice commemorative of the event? It’s a long-standing tradition among English lacemakers, after all.

I have several of Mr. Parsons’ bobbins on my pillow, so I can recommend them as excellent tools. Then again, you might just want them around because they’re pretty. They’re certainly that!

 


Bias Opinion

Tuesday, June 14th, 2011
By Twistie

If you sew a lot, you need bias tape. Most of the time, though, it’s difficult to find ready-made tapes that match the color of your project. That’s why it’s a good idea to roll your own.

The Simplicity Bias Tape Maker will make that job easy for you. With the press of a button, you’ll get single-fold one inch wide bias tape made from the same fabric you’re sewing with. Extra tips are available separately ranging from 3/8″ to 2 1/2″ quilt binding tapes.

And best of all, the price is right. The retail price on this bias maker is $99.99, but you can get it from Amazon for a much less painful $58.99.


Online Sale at Roberts Crafts!

Friday, May 20th, 2011
By Twistie

It’s sale time at Roberts Crafts! Now through saturday, you can get 20% off your entire purchase (full-priced items only) so long as you order them online. That means you can afford to learn about a new way of doing your favorite craft, such as using wire to crochet.

Or maybe it’s time to treat yourself to some fun rubber stamps, like this one:

Or even a kit to entertain the kids and teach them scientific principals during their summer vacation:

Whatever your interest, chances are there’s something you can use. Why not get it at a bargain price? Just use the sale code SPRING20W.


Bobbin Along

Thursday, May 19th, 2011
By Twistie

Mmmm… pretty.

I love lace bobbins. I suppose that’s not surprising since they’re a necessary tool for my craft, but then not everyone who does a craft cares so very much about what their tools look like. I get that. They’d rather put the care and money into the thread and the pattern books, and that’s more than cool. But I find that quality tools not only add to the aesthetic pleasures, but make the work easier, too.

And that’s the case with Knotwork Lace Bobbins. Yes, I own about a dozen of these babies, and really want more. They’re very smoothly turned, a good weight for the sorts of threads I tend to use (I like some pretty bold patterns that take coarser threads), and sturdy as all get out. I’m hard on my bobbins and I’ve never once managed to break one of these.

The bone ones pictured above range from $11.00 – $14.00 apiece, and are customized with your choice of paint and wire (where appropriate). They can even be dyed for a small extra fee.

But not everyone wants bone. That’s okay, there’s wood, too. And if you use Continental rather than Midlands bobbins, well, Frances has you covered. And then there are travel-sized bobbins, other lacemaking tools, and a smattering of other sorts of needlework tools.

Sure, you can get cheaper tools. You can make bobbins yourself out of various household items you probably have lying around your home. Heck, I even have a book from the 1970’s that tells you how to make your own bobbins out of used toothbrushes! Great deal, if you have enough disused toothbrushes randomly taking up space in your home, but I think it could take a while to gather up enough of them to do much of a pattern.

But if you love nice tools and aren’t going to learn to turn bobbins for yourself, support a bobbin maker, like Frances. You’ll be glad you did.


Clover In the Round

Thursday, May 12th, 2011
By Twistie

If you love to knit, you’ll be excited by Clover’s new Takumi Combo Set. With twelve tip sizes and five cord lengths, you’ll be prepared for any knitting project in the round. All of this in a handsome carrying case for just $169.95.


You’ve Got Me All Wound Up

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011
By Twistie

Good tools are important when you want to make nice things. But once you have good tools, you need a good system to organize them.

If your craft involves a lot of winding of yarn or heavy threads, this winding station by Schact would be a great way to spend your money. It’s the perfect place to store your swift, cone winders, and bobbin winders. The cone and spool rack holds up to eight cones or spools at once, and there’s even an arm for your umbrella swift!

It’s even attractive enough to display, and at a compact 30″w x 35.5″h x 18″d, you can find a spot for it in nearly any room.

So if you need a way to organize your winders, head on over to Halcyon Yarn. At $268.00, it’s a worthwhile investment.

Oh, and while you’re looking around the site, don’t forget to check out the banner contest for their ruby anniversary. If you have the winning entry, you could get a $400 Halcyon gift certificate! But hurry. The online voting starts on June 1.












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