Carowyn's Secret page - Shhh.....It's a Secret!
Hi! I've trimmed the pages a bit to cut down on Giant Pics of Doooom from clogging up my boss' system. For a secret page, it's been getting some attention! (oops) I'll add things later as I get more projects done, but for now, it's slimmer and trimmer - like me! ;-)
UPDATE 10/1/13 - OK, OK, people have been asking about the period condoms! They're at the bottom of the page, under a rather large disclaimer.
7/10/12 Rose Beads - take rose petals (fresh or frozen, I'll do dried ones next year for comparison), mush them in a blender, cook in a cast iron pan over simmer heat (and top up with water when it gets low). Now, most only do this for a day's time, I do it on and off for a whole week. Then I let the water get low, scoop up a LARGE ball, roll and mush and form it, put them on mandrels (but any type of thick wire will do), let dry, turn on rods each day so they don't stick. I've also done this with azalea flowers, but they don't shrink as much / get as hard as rose beads. I'll try more flowers in the future, and post pics as they're made.
5/11/12 Hilights from the 2011 Challenge Event in Hartshorndale: 1) the spinning and plying I did for the handspun entry; 2) German wrist paternoster; 3) spinning very very *very* fine silk on a chopstick, with a pewter whorl I made myself!; 4) a metal scroll, with strung beads down the side similar to the trompe l'oil original!; 8) the marble slab that I cut game boards into from the Via Dolorosa in Jerusalem, they can still be seen today (and my piece can be seen in my back garden!).
My latest insanity (11/16/11) - pewter pendant caps for a lobster claw necklace - hey, if bear claw pendants are cool, these are too, and I ate these lobstas myself! It will serve as a warning to the others the next time I eat some.....
5/11/12 - veil pins I made:
The first set are regular hobnails and a smiley face, because I could! The second set are an experiment, I've been playing around with some molds I made years ago. I need to refine my technique. Stay tuned, I'm not done playing yet! (Yes, the two last pieces broke, but they're cool in a crescent-moon kind of way, so I'll again experiment.)
Challenge Event - Hartshorn-dale's November 2010 Event:
My first woven pouch (hand dyed), glass buttons and glass aglets, a hnefatafl board that I wood-burned and made all the gaming pieces for, hand-dyed skeins, and my pewter casting in cuttlefish!
My Beads for January's challenge, the Meare Spiral:
Things I learned: the spiral is easier the smaller your stringer is, and I had the best results when I pulled my own - but ONLY if I also used my hand to draw them on, and not the pliers! The second best was the 1mm stringer from Bullseye.
Also, starting at the center of one and going continuously to the second spiral gave me a tighter pattern.
It also worked best when I worked with very cool beads. The hotter, the worse for getting a tight weave.
PATERNOSTERS: various pics of paternosters I've made over the years. Chinese Fusion, Evil Eye, 14th Century Black Plague, Egyptian Fusion, Jewish Fusion, 14th Century based on a period piece in a painting:
My glass bead orrery! My own planetarium, based on Alfonso X El Sabio's description! Highlighted beads: a very spiky sun, Earth and Luna (I have a flat earth too), and Saturn. All are based on the medieval color scheme. The sun's in the center because I'm a Copernican!
This is the brass sheet scroll I did for Phlip for the 50 Things challenge. It's done in Humanist Bookhand script, which I learned for this project - neat challenge! This is my second metal scroll, but the first in a period hand.
Black Oak Bark overdyed with Cochineal - Aurora Orange!!!
ARABIAN FOLDED BEADS & VERTEBRAE BEADS
The black bead I purchased at a gem show years ago, and the red / yellow one is what I made to imitate it. I think the vertebrae beads are Arabian folded beads that were stopped before they completed folding, so I did the copy to test the theory. How close did I get?
At some point I'll add more of my glass bead pics, and my Challenge pics for 2012, but that's for another day. Hope you enjoyed looking at some of my insanity!
WARNING!! WARNING!! WARNING!! YOU'RE ABOUT TO ENTER A NAUGHTY ZONE!! YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED!!!
Ever since I displayed my period condoms, people have been asking about my documentation and pics. Well, here they are!
It's a BOOKMARK! .....Well, That Was Its Secondary Use.....
I find it funny that there are 2 sources for period (and close to period) condoms - the Scottish midden where they found 14 all nestled together (andtherefore probably thrown out at once when discovered by the missus), and.....as bookmarks....in books.....
So, would you like to see my bookmark?? *waggles eyebrows suggestively* (Why yes, I've made some lovely etchings too, why do you ask? ;-) Here's how I made 'em:
1) Went to the local butcher shop, and totally wigged out the butcher when I asked for 3 yards of casings.
2) Soaked them for a week in cold water with a glug of ammonia added; changed water every 24 hours.
3) Transferred them to cold soapy water.
4) Cut the 3 yards of casings in fourths - a manageable size.
5) Realized they'd already been scraped, and therefore turned inside out already.
6) Lit a candle, held a fourth of the casing above the flame, and lit another match. This is as close as I could come to exposing the casings to brimstone fumes without gassing myself out of the apartment at night on a rainy day. Hydrogen sulfide fumes....well, I like living.
7) I tied a knot in the end of each casing, ran the open end onto the nozzle of a bellows, and inflated the casings.
8) I tied a knot in the other end, washed them again in the sudsy water, and left them on a paper towel to dry overnight.
9) The next day, I inspected my charges (did Caro just make a bad, BAD pun? No biscuit! Hee!). One had deflated, so it was rejected. The other three were still inflated, so they were selected! I cut each one in approximately three parts; that made each about 8 inches long. Various methods were used to seal an end....silk cord (dark blue ribband), cotton cord (light blue), linen thread (white), folded and glued (I used tacky glue, I figured it was a good substitute for hide glue), and cut rounded and sealed (tacky glue again).
10) A silk ribbon was threaded through the open end.
OK, so they're a bit curved! They'll never be used, so I took the liberty of making condoms out of pieces that would have never been used for being to curvy. For display purposes, it'll add to the comedy.
What would I "adjust" (what, another pun?!?): I now know how to make sulfur candles. I'll be using one of those outside (where it won't tarnish my silver!) the next time I make these! (Yes, there*will* be a next time!) I'll change the ammonia water more frequently. I'll try to inflate the casings more, or even dry them over a glass form. It may be out or period, but I'll still try it! Yes, definitely need a form. I'd forgotten that casings want to naturally curl. They need to be straightened...already looking for large test tubes on eBay.....
Yes, I certainly *will* be doing another set! This was fun! If you're interested in the research, I can send you the list of URLs, just email me.