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After a bit more than one year since I finished, I finally posted the pattern and instructions for my backpack.

This was my first big #MYOG project, and I've been using it almost daily as my “handbag”. #sewing
#MYOG #sewing blog crafts


Comfy clothing

Last autumn I followed the Otari Hoodie sew along using black cotton sweatshirting as the main body and leftovers of cat print cotton jersey as the lining.


I had enough sweatshirting for a matching skirt, with applied pockets, using the circle_fraction_skirt pattern (on my git repository.

I had pockets on the hoodie and the skirt, but they aren't very big (and knits aren't great at carrying weight), so I added zippers to both seams so that I can access my pockets, so that I can have the “privilege of not lending” my scissors :D


And then today was a great day to wear it while on the couch (not pictured: warm blanket, book)


I only need to be careful not to wear this while playing munchkin steampunk in case those things count as toy cats for the mousetrap level 2 monster (“+1 for each living or toy cat you can see in the room when this card is turned up”. I wouldn't see my own clothing (riiight?), but other players would, and I suspect that they wouldn't be happy :D )
blog crafts


Lady Ada pendants and brooches

Part of my under-development #steampunk costume is a chatelaine, and I wanted to decorate the brooch with something adequate for an analytic engine programmer.

Today I finally managed to do some laser toner transfers on #cernit on a couple of brooches and pendants; the top right brooch is the one that will end up holding the chatelaine.


I've posted WIP pictures on pixelfed.

The image is the famous Ada Initiative design, but I've removed the frame for improved clarity in the small format and the edited SVG is on openclipart.
#steampunk #cernit crafts


Map/Ticket Sleeve

I've added a new article to my website #MYOG
#MYOG crafts


Pair of Pockets

I've added a new article to my website:


Buttonhole Anonymous

Hello, I'm Elena, and I prefer to make buttonholes by hand.

It may be because all of my machines only have the classical 4-step buttonhole that requires a bit of manual handling, and I've never tried the automagical 1-step set-the-size-and-the-machine-does-everything, but I consider making machine buttonholes a messy process where you lead fabric under the machine hoping for the best, then precariously cutting in the middle of threads, and finally discover that you've doing it wrong, but at least it's usable.

By hand, instead, you first cut (too little), try the button, snip another bit so that the button actually passes, and then proceed to do neat, carefully controlled stitches. It does take more time, but you can easily do it while e.g. lurking an IRC meeting :)

Am I insane? should I try the automagical machine and that would convert me? Would that require me to surrender to the idea of proprietary software in my sewing machine?

some might might say it is insane to think any idea is proprietary indeed. Yet, some might say it is not the idea but the interpretation that is unique no matter what.

Uhm, copyright law says that no ideas are proprietary, only their fixed expression.

Besides, I wasn't talking of the idea of one-step-buttonholes being proprietary, just the specific expression (or rather implementation) of it (and all other functionalities) that run on the processor inside all modern electronic sewing machines.

It may be possible to implement a one-step buttonhole that is purely mechanic, but that is going to be quite a complex and expensive bit of mainteinance-requiring engineering, not something that one would usually get in a home sewing machine.

That leaves the electronic ones, where implementing such features is much easier (for values of "easy" that require the right actuators, possibly sensors, and patient work from the programmers to time everything at the right moment, but probably no big ideas), but I've been avoiding them for various reasons including the fact that AFAIK they all run proprietary and not-easily-replaceable code.


Backpack done! or is it?

My new backpack!


I started this project in august (pattern and material list) / september (actual sewing) and finally, this evening, it is usable!

It wasn't the only project running (not even the only *sewing* project), but still it took enough time that I'm glad I can finally use it, even if right now it doesn't really have any real advantage over what I could have bought from any store for less money than I spent on materials (but I have many leftovers — and plans to use at least part of them)

It also was pretty challenging, both for my skills and for my home sewing machine, and there are a few things that could have been done better (and maybe they will, in the next backpack I'll make?)


But is it really done? No, that webbing in the front (and sides) is there to attach extensions, and I have at least a couple planned (one easy, that I will do soon, and another complex one that will wait until I've recovered from the project fatigue with something completely different).

I'm also still waiting for the buckles that will close the compression straps in the front (not that they are really needed now that there are no extensions to keep compressed), but they are details I can take care of later.

P.S. I took pictures and notes, and the pattern is already on git, but a full tutorial will have to wait, probably even months, as now I have a bit of sewing backlog.
Questa voce è stata modificata (1 anno fa)


improved slatts belt

In one of the comments (near the bottom) on there was a suggestion to alternate the direction of the loops to prevent the paracord from twisting badly.

This is the process and the result:

(making a full belt with 20m of paracord took about a day of picking it up, doing a couple of rows while in front of the computer and putting it down again)
Questa voce è stata modificata (2 anni fa)


Instant gratification

In the last few days I spent my sewing time on a complex project that — of course — was having issues, so today I decided to take a break and go for instant gratification and a couple of quick project.


A ticket bag with magnets closure, to be worn on the same lanyard as a badge to prevent the issue of people being called "on site meals" .

This involved sewing tiny (~2mm ⌀) magnets on slipperynesssilicone coated fabric, because instant gratification is one thing, but making it too easy wouldn't be masochistic enough.


A simple drawstring backpack. I'm not completely happy about the ends of the drawstring channels, so when I make another one I may change them a bit.

Both are made in cheap, relatively light (90g/sqm) silnylon, and thus at least water resistant (I didn't seal the seams to make them completely waterproof).

I took pictures and notes, so full instructions will be posted on my website... sometime...

Nice, that ticket bag looks really handy!

And the drawstring backpack:

@Harald Eilertsen yes, I've now had a chance to use them and they are working quite fine. They don't completely solve the problem of badges turning around and the ticket bag covering them, however.


Travel piecepack v0.1


A piecepack set of generic board game pieces is nice to have around in case of a sudden spontaneous need of gaming, but carrying my full set takes some room, and is not going to fit in my daily bag.

I've been thinking for a while that an half-size set could be useful, and between yesterday and today I've actually managed to do the first version.

It's (2d) printed on both sides of a single sheet of heavy paper, laminated and then cut, comes with both the basic suites and the playing card expansion and fits in a mint tin divided by origami boxes.

It's just version 0.1 because there are a few issues: first of all I'm not happy with the manual way I used to draw the page: ideally it would have been programmatically generated from the same svg files as the 3d piecepack (with the ability to generate other expansions), but apparently reading paths from an svg and writing it in another svg is not supported in an easy way by the libraries I could find, and looking for it was starting to take much more time than just doing it by hand.

I also still have to assemble the dice; in the picture above I'm just using the ones from the 3d-printed set, but they are a bit too big and only four of them fit in the mint tin. I already have the faces printed, so this is going to be fixed in the next few days.

Source files are available in the same git repository as the 3d-printable piecepack, with the big limitation mentioned above; updates will also be pushed there, just don't hold your breath for it :)
blog crafts


Blue capelet

A few weeks ago I was passing by the haberdashery stall at the market and saw some nice blue and white 5 cm high lace; I got back a few days later wearing my blue tunic, confirmed that the colors were matching and bought "3 meters, well, if it's not that much more *all* of it".

Then I stumbled on this, and while I didn't exactly read it (more like recognizing a few words and simple phrases here and there) the pictures were clean enough and I had an idea on how to use the leftover fabric from the blue tunic.


Making most of it, including attaching the lace and assembling the collar with iron-on interfacing took a couple of hours. Then I attached the collar and realized that it wasn't elastic enough and my head didn't enter in the capelet anymore. Unmaking and remaking that part took maybe 3-4 additional hours, in two days :(


New pajama

I may have been sewing myself a new pajama.


It was plagued with issues; one of the sleeve is wrong side out and I only realized it when everything was almost done (luckily the pattern is symmetric and it is barely noticeable) and the swirl moved while I was sewing it on (and the sewing machine got stuck multiple times: next time I'm using interfacing, full stop.), and it's a bit deformed, but it's done.

For the swirl, I used Inkscape to Simplify (Ctrl-L) the original Debian Swirl a few times, removed the isolated bits, adjusted some spline nodes by hand and printed on paper. I've then cut, used water soluble glue to attach it to the wrong side of a scrap of red fabric, cut the fabric, removed the paper and then pinned and sewed the fabric on the pajama top.
As mentioned above, the next time I'm doing something like this, some interfacing will be involved somewhere, to keep me sane and the sewing machine happy.

Blogging, because it is somewhat relevant to Free Software :) and there are even sources, under a DFSG-Free license :)
blog crafts
Questa voce è stata modificata (2 anni fa)

Nice! And I have the same FSF Europe sticker on my laptop :-)


Early Edwardian Outfit

I will do another post later with the sources[esc]bdwapattern of the skirt (the shirtwaist is adapted from a commercial pattern) and more details, but this is the outfit I wore at Lucca Comics this year.


And this post is completely SFW *even* in an Edwardian workplace!
Questa voce è stata modificata (2 anni fa)


Blue long top

I've finally found the courage to cut the wool jersey I've bought more than one (two?) years ago.


The pattern has been drafted using valentina and sooner or later I may publish the file.

I wonder, why nobody reacted on your RFP, yet. This seems to be a very useful program.

It is useful indeed. I suspect that the intersection of people who make clothing and people who have the skills to package a relatively complex qt package is quite small, which may explain the lack of answers.

I gave a quick look at it, but I prefer to maintain packages where I can understand what's going on in the code, and that rules out C++.

(It's also probably a good idea to wait for Buster before getting it into debian prober, since it's still missing a number of features, but then experimental exists for a reason...)



Yesterday I wanted to use up some scraps and leftovers, and I didn't have a pincushon, so the Papero (italian for duck) was born.


Made from cotton jersey leftovers, stuffed with fabric scraps.



Enrico Zini coined the BDSM Free Software Manifesto (formerly Definition, which however isn't as precise as a description and more importantly doesn't fit in a cool geeky acronym):

I refuse to be bound by software I cannot negotiate with.

This begged to be turned into a cross-stitch wall hanging. I couldn't refuse.


More information and context for the phrase can be found in the notes for Enrico's talk at DebConf 2015: "Enrico's Semi Serious Stand-up Comedy". Note that while fully textual, the topics may be considered not really SFW, and some of the links definitely aren't. It also includes many insights into the nature of collaboration and Free Software Communities, so I'd recommend reading it (and watching the video recording of the talk) anyway.

I've finally also published the pattern on my website:

* The image I've used while embroidering
* kxstitch project (converted now that kxstitch is back into Debian)
* kxstitch generated PDF

Edit: fixed broken links to kxstitch resources.
blog crafts
Questa voce è stata modificata (3 anni fa)


Paracord belt

I realized I forgot to post about this: paracord bracelets are sort-of-nice (but also not really usable in practice), but I've found instructions for a very nice belt out of which you can actually unravel bits of cord and use them.

I've done a bit, as a test, and I'd think I will just add D-rings to the end and use it as a bag strap (which also helps being able to cut away some and still keep it usable: a belt with a side release buckle doesn't give lots of room for size adjustment, even if it is somewhat elastic.

Slatts Rescue Belt Knot

Do you ever travel in the wilds, back pack, or have you ever needed a rescue, safety or escape rope? Ever since I was at school and a boy drowned in a local river I have always wanted to make something that could have saved his life. Like Batman's Utility belt So, one day I started to play with a bit of 5mm climbing rope and to ...



While I was sewing the small swirl plushie for the Racoon I thought that it would have been nice to have a bigger one, and I already had enough felt for it, so here it comes.


Completely random sheet of A4 paper included for size comparison.

And now comes the hard part: to draw the pattern I enlarged the official swirl fit onto A3 and pdfposter-ed it to print it, then roughly followed the outline in pencil to get something cuttable. The problem is that this doesn't fit into the scanner, so publishing the sources is going to involve some manual work that I've been postponing because of lazyness O:)

They will be available. promise! Before the Release! (not necessarily Jessie, but...)

P.S. -one is the italian suffix for "big".

@Debian blog crafts


BDFSM preview

I've picked up crossstitch after a long while; this is my current WIP.


See the author's blog (textual and discorsive, but not completely SFW) for context on the phrase.
Questa voce è stata modificata (3 anni fa)