Monday, March 18, 2013

Tote Bag and Other Accomplishments

Rewinding almost a week, between the weather and bad attitude, I took a sanity day on Tuesday.

I meant to work on something-or-other, but spent a whack of time cleaning up data. I didn't delete a lot, but I think its somewhat more rationally organized. 

Other accomplishments Tuesday were getting the sales from Military History Fest actually recorded in the books, and making test pieces for the whole black thread vs. white-thread-with-black-wax question.

Which reminds me, while I was out of the house taking Robin to school, Pippin decided to chew on the tube containing the oil paint stick, which I'd decided was too soft and messy to be useful in waxing thread. He decided it was icky and no fun to chew on. How do I know Pippin was the guilty party? The black oil paint smear on his leg. 

I got the stitching done on the test pieces, finally finishing yesterday, now to carry them around for a few days. More about the whole process when that's done.

Saturday I grumbled about the weather's continuing non-cooperation with taking parts outside to dye black.  

Then I cut out a bunch of little percussion cap pouches. I'd been waffling on how many to make, which I decided by starting out with the strip I'd cut for gussets. I got 5 gussets out of it, so I cut out 5 pouches.

Then I moved on to cutting out a fabric bag to carry the new concho boxes, had to leave for a MuseCon meeting, then didn't work on much more after that. 

Yesterday, after Ron left for a trip to Michigan, I gave up on waiting for the weather, got Robin to set up tables and the small spray booth (which has an exhaust fan, which we installed a Y in the dryer duct for), and got his help dyeing lots and lots of parts black. 

Next, I finished the bag, shown here:

The fabric is denim, bought ages ago, I think to make hakama for Robin. There wasn't enough to make a pair of adult-sized hakama (as no one in our family is short and twiggy), so I apppropriated some of it for this project. 

I cut a piece the right width for the main body from the larger piece of fabric, then realized that the piece was large enough to make the body of the bag two layers. The demin is a little lighter/softer than duck, so I went ahead and made the bag two layers thick. The handles are strips, folded in quarters (edges in). They're a little long, because I used strips the full width of the fabric, so the ends of the strips are the selvedge edges of the fabric, and thus won't ravel. 

I keep thinking the bag is "gaily striped", because I've been reading 19th century young-adult-ish literature lately, and that's the kind of description I think they'd use for it. But I digress.  The bag took longer to assemble than I expected, mostly because of fussing about folding and pressing the handle strips. And I kept having to stop and refill the bobbin (sewed it on the big machine).  

Tonight I need to bring all the dyed parts upstairs and re-sort the pieces back into their zippy bags. The two different rifle cartridge pouches and a pistol cartridge pouch have a lot of similar-looking pieces. We kept them sorted while dyeing and laying them out on foil-covered cookie sheets to dry, so I just have to put each set of pieces in the right bag. 

Ron made a stop at his parents house yesterday, and shortly before he got there suggested I look at what we have and what we want of his mom's knitting patterns. I sent a list, and a little later he called back, and asked about sock yarn. Ron had mentioned that I wanted to start carrying sock yarn, and she offered us a deal on some she had. I think we might be cleaning out her stock. I had been mentally allocating the proceeds from CodCon to more yarn, now it looks like I'll have sock yarn, and new patterns, for CodCon...

...which means I need to get more knitting needles, in appropriate sizes (I started out with just the sizes needed for the lace patterns we had), and see about finding a basic sock pattern. 

I have also declared that before CodCon we will be modifying/making straps for the trailer, dammit. Ron has agreed, I think we'll do those this coming weekend.

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