Sunday, June 30, 2013

Back to Mundania

Well, it is officially over. I have returned to the Mundane world and left medieval camping behind. 51 weeks and counting until the next foray into the past. Yay for work tomorrow?

I wish I had remembered to use my camera, but I have no pictures this year.

Our campsite got moved again, this time to a large open field with plenty of space to expand and located conveniently on top of the hill very close to both real bathrooms and the camp store.

It wouldn't be Ragnarok without at least one major disaster. This year we had trailer trouble and then got hit by a tropical storm on Tuesday evening. One of our canopies attempted to escape into a power line and thanks to the help of our neighbors, we were able to recover it before it took out the camp across the street. When the storm officially hit, we spent the time outside in the ice cold rain and 81 mph wind desperately hanging on to our other canopies to keep them from blowing away.  The camp never really dried out the rest of the week. It was by far the rainiest Ragnarok I've seen yet.

Despite all the drama of fighting the elements and the personality clashes that come with living with ALL your friends for an entire week, we overall still had a great time and left Slippery Rock, PA today fired up about the rest of the Dagorhir season, with big plans to prep better for next year (HAHA!). My primary goals are (1) prepare and pack all the camping stuff so that next year we just have to load it up and (2) all projects must be finished before we go! There will be no more toting unfinished leatherwork, weapons, and garb with us, along with all the accompanying supplies to finish said projects.

Toward this end, I'm going to start a new thing I'm calling Project 144. I'm hoping to get 12 people completing one Dagorhir project a month for the next twelve months, or 144 projects total. It may seem like a lot, but a single item of garb can count as a project. I took more than 12 pieces of garb with me this year. I'm hoping this will alleviate the pre-Rag rush.

Yes, I've rambled a bit and I'm sorry. Thanks for sticking with me to the end. Stay posted for Project 144 launch in the next couple of days and an elaboration on this year's Ragsolutions and July Get It Done List! And lets not forget, Camp Nanowrino starts this July.

Friday, June 21, 2013


This is it, last day of Rag prep!

I spent the last few days cleaning and packing and have gotten zero, I repeat, ZERO sewing done. Its all going in a bin to travel with me.

I need to pick up drawstrings for belts, a cloak clasp, and probably more eyelets. I also thought it would be great to make a bag for my feast gear.  One of the problems with feast gear is that it all gets left around and people borrow your silverware and next thing you know, there is none left!

But we have not been completely crafty free, as Jack and Kieran are spending their evenings cutting and dying leather.

Jack's armor grade helmet  in progress
Nose guard and decorative pieces
And Kieran made his artery guard freely articulated spaulder

We are going to look wicked cool at Rag this year!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Dragon Tunic

Finished this last night! Still chugging away at my Rag list. I used my free motion quilt foot to do the detail work. I'd like to use a thicker thread next time so that it shows up a little better. If anyone has any suggestions, they would be appreciated.

I had originally used a blanket stitch on the outside but ended up redoing it with a satin stitch and I'm much happier with the results.

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Deepwood Rangers of Akron

Check it out! Jack has been staying up late to work on his Ragnarok gear and this is what he's come up with.

He is making us each a quiver so that I can learn to arch. I went down to the basement today and found this beauty.
Jack's quiver
My quiver
He also made leaves to hold the straps on.

I asked him to keep mine simple, I'm going for a more rugged ranger look in my garb. He picked up a dragon conch for my quiver.

Last year I found this ranger dress online and fell in love with it.

I made this mockup. It didn't go quite as planned, but it works in the short term. I'd like to redo the straps, as they itch and are generally uncomfortable.

I'm just starting to get into the groove of garbing instead of quilting. I really wish I had an extra month to work on this stuff before Ragnarok. Last year was so chaotic and stressful that I really hated garbing. This year I'm starting to enjoy it again and I still don't have enough time. Oh well, that will probably never change. :)

I have in my mind an image of a leather scrap cape, but I can't find a picture of anything similar to it online. I'm using wool felt/fleece as the base and I'll stitch on leather scraps in scale mail type layers. 

Saturday, June 15, 2013

I Want One

I recently found this and decided I wanted one.

I mean, look at this face! Whats not to love?

Who wouldn't want one of these little guys? I'm trying to get Jack to get tested for hedgehog allergy so that I can get one. Its not going so well.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Front Yard Bragging Rights

Just a quick note to say... HA! Look what I did...

I took this:
And made this:

It took three hours. Now for the back yard.

"I will have order!"

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Double Check Your Measurements

Tried to sew all weekend but I got distracted by Astrid, who consented to hang out with me this weekend. We watched two movies, played Sims Medieval, started a new book, and made homemade banana muffins. She's a great kid!

I did do my June block swap. The paper piecing block took much longer than I expected, but it went together nicely when all was said and done. I choose the Ohio Star pattern from 50 Fabulous Paper Pieced Stars.

My swap partner requested teal and lime green, with white, if a third color was wanted. 
The fabrics I choose
First four segments

All eight segments
Final Block
The instructions recommend that you leave all the paper on until the block is completely put together. I tried it this time, and I guess it worked out okay. But the seams got very bulky at the end, which made pressing them difficult. I think that in the future I will leave the paper on until each quadrant is done, then remove it before completing the block. If I could do it over, I would change the color scheme slightly. I'm not too happy with the way it came out.  Or maybe just the overall color scheme doesn't quite appeal to me.

Finally, I sewed together two pairs of brown pants for Jack. These are pairs that I cut out a year ago. Turns out I cut them out two sizes too small! Oh my, that was just par for the course last year. I also attempted to make him two T-tunics last year and they both failed epically. I'm hoping these pairs will fit either his best friend or my brother. I don't know what to do with them otherwise. Lesson: double check your measurements and your pattern sizes.

Back to Mundania tomorrow...

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Thursday Threads

I think the reason I spend so much time daydreaming about new projects its because I can't work on them! Until after Ragnarok, all my sewing is falling into the necessity category. And I'm fighting the urge to start new projects until I complete a few.

I finished my purple sucoat, mostly. Except for a little hand work, its done! WOOOOOO!!!!!
One project off my UFO list.

 I also decided I want to make a sampler quilt. Again, I'm not a huge fan of most traditional blocks. I recently acquired a copy of 50 Paper Pieced Stars by Carol Doak and I think I will make my sampler quilt from that book. I'm planning on using my red/white/black fabrics for this quilt.

For the block swap this month, I'm going to do my swappee's teal and lime block in the Ohio Star pattern. I don't have a picture handy, but if you visit Wombat Quilts there is a great picture of it!

And last but not least.. finished the quilt top for Nana's Quilt! I'm only a month behind schedule on this baby. The angle is a little funny on this picture, but that is okay.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

When You Just Can't Justify Staying Indoors

I'm the last person to do yard work. I usually let my lawn go for a week and a half (much to the horror of my perfectly manicured neighbors), and forget landscaping.

Lets not even mention the backyard.

But it was a beautiful day and so I determined to go outside and try to wrestle some small corner of my overgrown "gardens" under control.

Here's the thing. The nice family who lived here before me either had unlimited time, to maintain the landscaping, or unlimited money, to pay someone else to do so.

The only way I can convince myself to do this instead of sewing is to take before and after photos in which I can verify my progress. So here they are. This little bit of order took me three hours.



Look! You can see the rocks now! Still needs a lot of work.

My goal is to make this as minimally maintenance requiring as possible. This is going to mean removing a lot of bushes and hard work. Ugh. I put down newspaper under the rocks. Supposedly this will keep plants from putting down strong roots. I just don't know how often I will need to replace the newspaper. Every five years, great! Every 6 months, not so great. I heard a rumor once that newspapers take 20 years to degrade underground. Here's hoping!

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Time Is Running Out

I have just under three weeks to get everything done for Rag! And I really need to finish Nana's Quilt before we go, and I just took on an extra project...argh. I'm an overachiever. Fortunately, my good friend Ravenna offered her assistance with anything I need and I will plan on taking her up on that.

My partner for the block swap hasn't contacted me as of yet, but I looked up her theme. It is lime and teal, any pattern block. This threw me off, because I wouldn't think of putting those two colors together. But I looked it up and here are some examples I found. I actually think this is going to be a fun block to put together.


image courtesty of
So once again, this block swap is making me think outside my box.

This weekend I finished Jack's green shirt, except for some hand stitching. It now has button holes and went into the "Ready" pile. The hand stitching can be done in the car or at Rag.

The work on the dragon shirt didn't go so well. I stitched down the dragon, through both layers of shirt. Oops. It took me 20 minutes to stitch and more than an hour to tear out.

And finally, I tackled my purple surcoat! The skirt is now put together. Here is a rough estimate of how it will look.

It falls to just at my knees. Perfect. The pattern I had was a little snug last time I made it, so I added a little extra room by reducing the seam allowance to 1/2 inch instead of 5/8.

And finally, my delicious snack for the day: bananas, nectarines, strawberries, and brie. Yay for eating healthy!