Crafters I like, creativity boost, fiber arts, spinning, textile history

How to spin on a wheel

Crafters I like, creativity boost, fiber arts, spinning, weaving, yarn

Magpie Yarn

illum_the other day I stumbled onto Stacey Budge-Kamison’s work at and I was inspired!  My first project on my finished loom was getting irredeemably frogged, so I busted it down and rewarped with colors – fresh from watching Stacey’s work.

Watching art yarn go from scraps of fibers up to a finished piece was so exciting.  But I don’t have a massive fancy fiber stash.  What I have is a moderate stash of really nice acrylics and blends, as well as a lot of Lily cotton, with some miscellaneous fibers in there (wool, cellulose, and silk).  One thing I learned from watching Stacey’s videos was that one doesn’t need super expensive fibers to make exciting yarn.  A great big old duh moment for me! Continue reading “Magpie Yarn”

creativity boost, fiber arts, new projects, weaving

So I’m doing this thing…..

I have a mighty need to make larger objects than my Whoopsitsaloom allows.   For those who have no idea what I’m talking about, this is my Whoopsitsaloom:

It’s a 16×20″ poster frame.  I got rid of the “glass” front ages ago and lost the side pieces that hold stuff in.  Instead of trashing it, I thought I’d do an experiment and whoops – ’twas a loom!  As you can see from the photo on the right, I carved little grooves into the top and bottom to warp on, about a half inch apart.  This does limit my warping possibilities, but this is an experiment.  I have it warped with one continuous piece of yarn.  From here on out, I will probably not be using yarn, or at least one of my budget ones.  The fluff really comes up when you’re manipulating this stuff. Continue reading “So I’m doing this thing…..”

aromatherapy, beach, creativity boost, Lady Lazarus' Designs - the stuff!, new projects, shells, specimens

Aromatherapy beads, reliquaries, sachets: WIP’s

So here’s to a beautiful May!  I am feeling rejuvenated and happy!  Hopefully you are as well.  We’re all glad to be outside again after the rough winter here at studio Laz.  Things are calming down, and I’ve got a bunch of new things on my worktable.

Beads and baubles!
Beads and baubles!

First, there’s the new thing I’ve been trying out: diffuser pendants and beads.  I bought some Crayola terra cotta air-dry clay and I’ve been playing with it.  When it dries, it will soak up any essential oils dropped onto it.  I tested one out and it takes about a week for a few drops to disappear.  This is good because it means you can change out oils if you want.  I haven’t assembled these into necklaces yet because I’ve been decorating them.

I’m anticipating making lots of these over the summer.  They’re unusual but functional.  That’s my new watchword – functional.  I want people to have a reason to buy my jewelry.  I find the color a bit odd, but that’s why they’re decorated – to fancy up the humble clay a bit.

Closeups of a couple with insect specimen and dried flower pendants for company.
Closeups of a couple with insect specimen and dried flower pendants for company.

Besides, we all need some aromatherapy from time to time.  I’ve been getting better with simple oil blends and applications.  I want to add more aromatherapy/bath and body merch to the store.  It’s  relatively inexpensive to make, and can be produced fairly quickly to generate sales.  Also – much of it can be used up.  I like crafts that disappear!

As much as I love my jewelry, I want to keep people coming back for more.  Unless you’re a collector, you probably won’t rush to buy baubles, as lovely as they may be.  So we gotta round out the stock a bit!

I’m also planning soaps, “therapy sprays” (essential oil/carrier oil mixes), and lotion bars if I can get those right.


Next up, we have reliquaries, because not all creativity can be functional!  Or rather, I have stuff to put *in* reliquaries.  The shadow boxes you see here used to be for stock display, but I find people like to touch jewelry more, so I no longer put things under glass.  This frees the boxes up to hold my strange little treasures: specimens, bones, shells, dried flowers.  These are things I have collected, want to use, but can’t be handled.  So here we go!

This one will be sweet and flowery.  I found a good amount of dried flowers and a few shells and feathers.  I have more to add (floating somewhere around the flat).

None of these are arranged yet.  I just laid them out in the boxes for safe keeping.  But they are quite pretty, so I couldn’t resist sharing some snapshots with you!

The next one will be for you creepy crawler fans.  I found some abandoned wasp’s nests last week, and a weird sea bug carapace at the beach the other day.  I’ll be adding more bugs and some appropriately weird things.

The “sea bug” is largely intact (DOA) except for a hole in its shell.  I can only assume that something feasted on it well before it washed up to me.  It’s “feet” or claws had a slight mother of pearl sheen.  This has disappeared for some reason, which is a pity.  It looks so cool on both sides I might try to find it its own tiny box with more glass so it remains visible!








Finally, we have the start of sachets.  I cleaned out a closet and looked really hard at my fabric.  Like many crafters, I love fabric, so I will pick it up.  But I don’t really sew enough to justify it.  It’s just sitting here, not seeing the light of day.  Something must be done.  Something that smells good!

Sky blue to start – got 8 done between yesterday and today!

So I’m chopping fabrics into squares and rectangles (“rustically” meaning quickly), sewing them 3/4 of the way closed.  Later I’ll press them, fill them with lavender and dried herbs, sew ’em closed, and add charms and beads.

People love my existing sachets when I table, so I may as well fancy them up and make them a serious part of the stock.  Any excuse to play with herbs 🙂


So that’s it for now!  I’m up to my eyeballs as usual and loving it!