Archive | February 2014

attaché.

attached. tied. bound.

all such words appropriate for a post on valentines gifting! ha!

to sit alongside a new wrist wrap which i macrame’d out of coated cotton cord and the large dark chocolate Haigh’s frog (yum), i thought to replace T’s grossly deteriorating rubber grips on his bike, with new leather ones.

valentines_wristwrap_leather_bike_grips

these would be the 3rd set i have made. the lessons i learnt from the previous sets were:

measure the width of leather needed to wrap around the handlebar, then less 0.5cm to accommodate for the thickness of the leather (especially if you’re measuring with a tape rather than the leather itself) and the stretch. a snug fit is better than a loose fit, or even just a fit (i’ve learnt this by losing grips by having them fly off mid-pedal. no grip happening there).

– leather to metal does not grip as well as one would think. this also contributed to the flying lost grip incident above. a fellow cyclist commented on how cool those previous grips looked when i was stopped at the traffic lights (obviously before i lost them). i mentioned how they weren’t as grippy as they should be and he suggested i use cut up inner-tube as an underlay. genius!

you need a sturdy lacing. even doubled leather sewing waxed cotton is not enough. i’ve gone for coated cotton cord, strong and actually looks good too.

so after working out the exact size of rectangle i needed for each grip, i ruled lines to ensure that my punched holes would line up. (tip: one of those plastic chopping boards is good to have under your leather when using a punch, resistant enough to make a clean hole while safe for the tool) make sure that your holes are a generous size for whichever lacing you are using, particularly if some fraying might occur on the ends (otherwise you can tape up the ends and trim after). after a good half hour of malleting (sorry downstairs neighbour!), i was ready to pre-lace. of course, you can lace them directly onto the handle bars, but for gifting, it needed to look a bit pretty so i threaded through the lace leaving a substantial amount of length at the ends to allow for loosening when the time came to put them on.

now i need to make a set for me!

diy_leather_bike_grips

après la pluie le beau temps. (de couleur).

after the rain, the nice weather. (of colour).

or during? if a rainy day means having the chance to laze around the house and maybe finally crack into that book that’s been sitting on the bedside table untouched since it was bought months ago?? well this i am happy for!

if you’re interested in colour (color/couleur/farbe) – its history, theory, weird stories, fun facts and random trivia, i think you will enjoy ROY G BIV by Jude Stewart as well. granted, i am only in the intro, but i’m tracking along surprisingly well considering the font is TINY!!

ahead of me, i have readings on the average colour of the universe, the different cultural meanings of colours, the reasons why pink would be for girls and blue for boys… and so on.

20140216_125938

another book i’ve read in the past on colour is Colour: Travels through the Paintbox (the original title in Brit & Aus) by Victoria Finlay. it’s a mix of history reference and travel novel – generally an interesting read, despite being a bit slow in parts. did you know that the yellow we commonly associate with the coating on pencils was actually a little marketing trick to link back to the yellow colours of the Manchu imperial robes in the areas where graphite was mined from? random, right?

les sauvages.

the wild.

the wedding marathon continues into 2014, along with all the other ‘complementary’ activities… including the hen’s night. while i approach all hen’s events with great fear and trepidation, the night turned out to be pretty fun and i had an excuse to make something fun to wear for the theme of ‘wild ones’.

i was after a jungle-ish/tropical look but found all inspiring tropical foliage too large to wear on my head. and more than that, where was i going to find it short of buying a bouquet only to dismantle or waking up at zero a.m. to head to the flower market? unsure of what i would find, i searched high and low for what Syd had to offer in the way of articial flowers and foliage but found nothing that would work… that is until i got to the dollar store just around the corner from my house (of course). i found all i needed right there… a whole garland of mini monstera (!!!?), a wire comb headband and wire.

tropical_monstera_wild_headpiece

i trimmed the leaves off the main garland keeping a few cm’s of stem to work with. starting at one end, i lined up a stem horizontally with the headband’s main and started winding wire around both to secure in place. to conceal the headband and create a fuller look, i maintained a lot of overlap with each new added leaf stem. once i got to the centre, i started working from the other end in the opposite direction to meet in the middle.

when i finished, i was happy with it until i realised that from a distance, i looked like:
a) i was wearing a green toupée
b) i had walked into a thick jungle, gotten lost/stranded and finally came out again with random leaves stuck in my hair… although i guess this would have been more true to the ‘wild’ theme. bit too much.

i was rescued from the real trapped-in-the-jungle look with some artificial orchid stems from ikea. complete!