Spot the Bot

I’m not a fan of the way WordPress inserts random blog posts into my reader page, but usually I scroll past without even registering them. Today, however, I couldn’t help noticing something unusual (from yesterday, I should add, as the most recent “recommended” posts were different).


Given that WordPress targets professionals and businesses, this is an embarrassment.

(I extend my apologies to Ms Blades for including her post in this rant.)

Mastodon for crafts?

I hardly ever used my Twitter account and I deactivated it when the platform was acquired by voldemusk last year. Like many others I’m considering getting a Mastodon account but there doesn’t seem to be a server oriented to crafters. I found some art servers, which seem to be more for Serious Artists (not that there’s anything wrong with that, but I’m definitely NOT an Artist), and but that seems to be more for people with Etsy shops and I doubt I’ll ever have one. I would, however, like to be able to upload mini posts, such as the daily block, which would only make clutter here on the blog. (Please don’t suggest Instagram — I have no intention of enriching that person either.)

Does anyone know of a handcrafts-oriented server/instance? If there isn’t one I might join one of the Australian servers but the chance that I’ll upload anything that isn’t handcrafts is very low and I suspect that there aren’t many average Australians who would be interested. I’d much rather upload to a local that has quilters and embroiderers and historical costumes.

Typical. Just typical.

Is there a name for the law that dictates that you only find what you’ve lost after you’ve bought a replacement?

I’ve been looking for the container that houses my buttons, eyelets, and hooks & eyes for weeks. Last week I gave up and bought another punch, some eyelets and some hooks and eyes from Lincraft (I’ve been buying small doll-size buttons as I need them anyway).

Guess what I found today? Yes, indeed, it was that very container. It was hiding behind the recliner — the one I haven’t sat in for weeks because the front support is broken and although I have the brackets and screws to fix it I can’t find my drill …

Quick Note

I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned it before here, but I have a medical condition (auto-immune polyenthesitis) that makes me exceptionally prone to repetitive strain injury.** I was sewing through some rather thick fabric a couple of weeks ago and strained the first carpo-metacarpal joint in my left hand which affects my pinch grip. Since it’s very painful at present to hold any fabric (or books or magazines or forks or anything small) I haven’t been very productive. I have a couple of projects that I’m trying to complete by machine but it’s not easy. On past experience it’s going to be two to three months before I can get back to regular hand sewing but I will try to do as much as I can by machine in the meantime.

**On checking previous entries I find that I’ve mentioned the issues but not the actual condition.

A Tiny Sleeve Ham

Tiny sleeve ham

As I said in the last post, I improvised a small ham out of an old cotton sock so that I could press puff sleeves on doll dresses. When I was last in Lincraft I found 35 mm wooden beads and realised immediately that they would make a perfect base for something more permanent.

The resultant ham has five layers of cotton batting and is almost two inches across, which is a bit fatter than I intended, mainly because as a supposedly intelligent person it took me far too long to work out the circumference of a sphere (which, for your reference, is the same as the circumference of a circle, that is, 2πr or πd (where r is the radius and d the diameter). Then, once I had got the size right, it took me another two layers to work out how best to avoid huge folds. For the final layer I ended up cutting a circle the with a diameter of the circumference (close enough to five inches at this stage), marking another circle with about 75-80% the diameter of the sphere, cutting 8 slashes from the edge to the inner circle, stitching down the centre of each flap and then trimming to shape and overstitching the resultant seams. It’s close enough to spherical now, with minimal bulging over the previous layers’ mistakes, so I’m calling it done. The “handle” is a short piece of inch-wide cotton twill that I’ve had forever and was very close to being thrown out as useless.

I’d like a cotton fabric cover, but it wouldn’t stretch over the sphere without folds, and if I cut and trimmed the same way I did the batting there would be frayed edges everywhere, even with overcasting. I figure if I can keep it safe from the cats it shouldn’t pick up too much in the way of dust and fluff.

I am tempted to make another one with only two or three layers of batting because I think this one might actually be a little large for some of the smaller sleeves. If I do I’ll take photos as I go and post the method as well as the results.

So happy!

I just logged in to upload some photos and found that my last post had a whopping 14 views! That may not be much to some people but it’s my highest total ever and I’m really happy about it. I also noted that I’m up to 20 followers which is even more amazing. Welcome to all and I hope I can keep you interested with my little projects.

How do you use Pinterest?

I finally caved and opened a Pinterest account because every time I search for costumes more than half the links are from it, but now I’m really confused. I thought it would be a lot more organised than it is — I’m a very linear, numbered list type person, and Pinterest … isn’t. I thought I would be able to pin or compile a list of image boards, but it doesn’t seem to work that way — I can follow users and I can pin individual images but I don’t seem to be able to pin/bookmark the boards themselves without using the browser bookmarking tool, which irritates me. I didn’t sign up to this platform just so I can use a browser tool, and I don’t want to duplicate all the image links that everyone else has compiled. The menus within Pinterest aren’t helping, Wikipedia gave me a lot of info on the company (which I knew wasn’t particularly good, but a $20 million dollar settlement is extremely unsettling) but nothing on how to use it, and googling gave me tutorials that were either a decade old (which weren’t helpful) or with an emphasis on business (not applicable).

I guess that what I was looking for was a way to nest board links in a folder-like structure, similar to how my computer is organised, and what I’m seeing is a mess of top-level items (like saving everything to the desktop). Given that I want to use Pinterest as a reference resource rather than a social media resource, is there are way of pinning (and organising) boards without browser-bookmarking them?

[As an aside, there are way too many boards that include either modern reproductions or (much worse) 19th century paintings of 18th century outfits.]

Injury updates

I haven’t accomplished much the last couple of weeks. I’m still working on the petticoat for the second 1770 doll dress but I’ve been hampered by injuries.

My left index finger is healing nicely and in fact I don’t think there will be much of a scar. This is how it looked last night, at +14 days. The centre section is still a little tender if I press on it directly, but I’m able to do most things as long as I keep it clean and dry.

2020-11-07 Healing at +14 days
Healing at +14 days

Unfortunately, a few days ago I was making the bed and managed to get a vertical tear in the nail of my right middle finger, far enough into the quick that it was bleeding. I had a dressing on it and of course that’s my thimble finger so I couldn’t sew at all for a couple of days. It’s all sealed over now and I trimmed the nail as best I could but the tear extends down further than I can cut. I know from prior tears that nail polish alone will not protect the nail, so I was going to cover it with an artificial nail but I can’t find the box because I haven’t hand quilted in a long time (I use them on the nail of my left index finger to reduce the damage from the point of the needle under the quilt). I ended up improvising with a layer of nail hardener, some Micropore tape trimmed to the shape of the nail, and two more layers of nail hardener. So far it seems to be holding up well but sewing is still a bit uncomfortable and I’m avoiding any activity that might re-injure the nail.

New injury and improvised dressing
New injury and improvised dressing

I hope to have the dress and petticoat finished in another week but we’ll see how things go.