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Old 11-22-2000, 04:00 AM   #1
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Cool Tricks of your trade

Okay everyone, doesn't matter what your craft specialty is, I just thought we might all be able to share some of the tricks and techniques we use for different types of craft work.

Here is one of mine - when I am working with small feathers from plating on fans, drops or even accessories and I want to extend them I like to use the shaft of a plastic Q tip as the extension for the feather. For small feathers it fits perfect. Just a touch of crazy glue on the tip and they are there. It adds about 3 inches of length. It is great for straight dance shoulder feather bundles. Y'all know the ones that are on the back of the bandoleers. Just dress them on up and you are in business.

Everyone else feel free to share. Doesn't matter what kind of craftwork your trick is in, someone might benefit from it right away.

Hope this helps someone, now who's next?
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Old 11-22-2000, 03:44 PM   #2
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NIENIE

I don't know the specific name of it, I have always heard it called 'shrink tubing'. I know folks that have used it, but I haven't tried it yet, even though I do have some in my dance bag for emergency repairs. From what I have seen it works pretty good.
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Old 11-22-2000, 09:39 PM   #3
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Hi,
Do you ever wish that brain tan did not stretch as much when beading it. Take a lightly damp wash cloth and very slightly dampen the back side. That rubber like stretch is gone. And as you bead the piece the stretch and the texture will slowly return!
Have fun!
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Old 11-23-2000, 12:33 AM   #4
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When doing two needle applique bead work keep your threads separated by using a long needle on the thread you string beads with and a short needle on your sewing needle
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Old 11-23-2000, 12:36 AM   #5
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The best materials to make twisted fringe with is ultra suede. It is of even texture and you have no waste because you have no holes to cut around. In addition it has about half as much strech as brain tanned
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Old 11-23-2000, 01:01 AM   #6
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THIS ISN'T MY TRICK ,BUT I THOUGHT IT WAS PRETTY COOL. WE GOT SOME WINTER HAWK TAIL FEATHERS FROM A FRIEND OF OURS. THE FEATHERS WERE USED AS DROPS, AND SO THEY WERE ALREADY WRAPPED, BUT I WANTED TO MAKE A FAN FOR OUR OLDEST DAUGHTER WHO DANCES JINGLE. I HAD TO UNWRAP THE FEATHERS, WHICK PROVED TO BE DIFFICULT BECAUSE THEY WERE WRAPPED VERY SECURELY. OUR FRIEND HAD USED THIS PLASTIC STUFF THAT IS NORMALY USED TO COVER WIRES. YOU CAN BUY IT AT HARDWARE STORES, AND IT COMES IN THE FORM OF A LONG THIN TUBE. MANY DIFFERENT COLORS ALSO, AND CLEAR IF YOU WANT TO COVER IT FURTHER WITH BUCKSKIN OR WHATEVER. ANYWAY, THE COOL THING IS THAT THIS STUFF SHRINKS BY APPLYING THE HEAT FROM A HAIR DRYER, AND HOLDS THE FEATHER VERY TIGHTLY. HAS ANYONE ELSE EVER USED THIS STUFF? IF SO, WHAT IS IT CALLED?
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Old 11-23-2000, 01:32 AM   #7
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I have a few.
1. When drawing out a pattern use a crayon from one of your kids. It dissapears when ironing. http://www.powwows.com/ubb/biggrin.gif:
2.Make and keep a design journal. What you do is everytime you see a little design on something, it could be from anything a piece of fabric or beadwork , draw it out in a little notebook. You can scribble out ideas and designs you have and keep this journal as a reference. Like if you are sewing and can't think of something flip through your design journal and it will help!
3. To keep fluffs or plumes their whitest gently wash in cool to warm water with woolite. Once cleaned lay on a towel and with a low setting blow dry them. It may take a few heart-stopping seconds but they will begin to fluff up even more than before. If you are trying to straighten a fluff, after they are completely dry they them as straight as possible in a heavy book and close it. Next put another heavy book on top and leave for a few days. Get it out, shake a little, and bang, your fluff is straighter aleaner and fluffier.
***** Warning*****
DO NOT OVER WASH YOUR FLUFFS!!!
This will dry them out and I have yet to figure out how to fluff them back up!!

Hope All this helps someone out there http://www.powwows.com/ubb/wink.gif
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Old 11-23-2000, 09:23 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by FancyStar:

3. To keep fluffs or plumes their whitest gently wash in cool to warm water with woolite. Once cleaned lay on a towel and with a low setting blow dry them.
My boyfriend found a neat way to dry washed fluffs -- we found one of those old metal screen chestnut roasters (like a screen box) at a tag sale -- put your fluffs in there and blow dry them -- and keeps them from blowing all over the room! :-)

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Old 11-23-2000, 11:49 AM   #9
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When cutting and trimming feathers to achieve a straight edge first put masking tape on the feather, trim the feather and remove the masking tape from the base to the tip of the feather. The masking tape keeps the fletching from moving in front of your scissors letting you make an even straight cut.
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Old 11-23-2000, 03:42 PM   #10
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Hello,
I have a trick.. I know most people already know it but for those of you who don't here ya go! If you have feathers that the feathers separate... lightly wet the area and press it back together with your fingers.
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Old 11-23-2000, 03:45 PM   #11
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hello,
I have a question. I have to bead a crown and i am using one of those hoops that keeps the fabric tight. I found that once i am done beading and remove the hoop the beads can bunch toghter cause the fabric is no longer tight. Does anyone have any tips on how to bead but not have the beads pop up and bunch? Thanx!
-kelli
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Old 11-23-2000, 06:58 PM   #12
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n8tivechick...here is some help,your tension is too tight on your material. if your going to use an embroidery hoop,use it just enough to make your material flat,w/out pulling it taunt. or just use a heavier canvas w/out the hoop.
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Old 11-23-2000, 09:41 PM   #13
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If you will use two pieces of mending fabric with a piece of paper ironed in between each piece you will not have to use hoops, there is also almost no strech and the beads stand up nicely.
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Old 11-24-2000, 05:11 AM   #14
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Dang these are all good one's. Keep'em coming folks!!!

Ok my turn again!

--- When cutting rawhide for drum heads use a large wheel rotary cutter. It zips right through even the thickest hide and when it gets dull the blade changes easily.

--- Use up the left over scraps of rawhide that are too small for cutting into lace by cutting them into little silhouettes like hearts or bears or hands or feathers and then painting designs on them. They can really dress up thing for a dance, like staffs, wheel and roach pins.

I'll see what else I can think of.
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Old 11-24-2000, 08:39 PM   #15
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To avoid taping your feathers for cutting, a little trick I learned years ago has to do with the scissors you use. Get a pair of special "polyestor" or silk cutting types.
One side has very TINY little teeth like the big pinking shears and the other side is the usaull straight sharp edge. These are hard to find and sometimes pricy. But they are the best for cutting any feather without the feather moving on you. Great for cutting fine leather too.

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Old 11-25-2000, 03:25 PM   #16
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This tip has been around a long time but I've found it useful. Whenever you want to bead a straight line of lazy stitch but don't want to mark your leather up with ink or pencil, you can bead along side a strip of masking tape instead. This works great if you are doing lanes of beading with empty space in between like on tipi bags or beaded robes. After your row is compete, just peel the tape off. Ingenious or what? http://www.powwows.com/ubb/smile.gif
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Old 11-25-2000, 03:26 PM   #17
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Oh yeah, that masking tape thing also works well for the first row of applique beading too.
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Old 11-27-2000, 08:53 AM   #18
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A painters easel makes a perfect loom. I've got a cedar easel that costs about $40. Make sure you get a wood one that has an ajustable top so you can tack some springs or evenly spaced nails. Perfect for long hours of looming and you can not beat the price.
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Old 12-04-2000, 09:27 PM   #19
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Talking

Here is a tip or the latest trend out there.
Sewing sequin material!

* To keep your needle from getting gummy get some sewers aid ( available at wal-mart or any fine sewing place) and dab some on your needle and threads. Good Luck!!!
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Old 12-07-2000, 04:40 PM   #20
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Here's a tip for an easy handle for a large wing or tail fan. I had been given a wing and was trying to figure out how to make a handle for it. One day I was in a kitchen goods store looking for a gift and got a sudden inspiration. I saw a wedge-shaped jar opener, the kind with a handle made for arthritic folks and thought "Ah ha!" An instant fan handle! I was happy to see that my feathers fit right into the wedge and all I had to do was fill in the back side of it, sand it down and cover with leather. It saved me the work of having to carve the whole handle. This tip will only work well for large feathers otherwise the fan will be too bottom-heavy.
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