Thursday, February 23, 2006

Here today, gone Temari

O.k. So what exactly can one do while waiting for 6 weeks to just float by? I decided to get out an old craft that I had worked on years ago and see what I could come up with now. The answer is Temari String Spheres!
This is a Japanese art that looks intricate, beautiful and, if you are out of the habit, makes your fingers sore! Essentially you start with a styrofoam ball (this one is 3 inches), wrap an entire bolt of cotton thread (300-375 yards prefered) randomly around the ball, and hide the end of the thread inside the wrapping via a #1 sharps needle.

Using a thin strip of regular paper, you will make a tool for measuring the circumference of the ball and many divisions; placing coloured pins to indicate certain points as being the top, bottom, diameter and points in between on the sphere. The first winding is made of metallic cotton thread; in this case size 5, around the points to make a geometric grid and divide the ball as perfectly as possible.

Now comes the fun part; the winding-sewing of pearl cotton embroidery thread (size 5) to make the geometric designs. This ball had 6 centers, so I could begin sewing or winding the thread at any one of those points. Each ball is different. Not only in particular design, but because it is near to impossible to make a perfect sphere once you keep adding thread to the original ball. The slight imperfection means you must keep adjusting your design so that it looks as perfect as possible. Small "herringbone" stitches keep threads in place and are used in making points, etc. within the design. When the sphere is completed there should be no starting or finishing points visible, nor should any thread ends be visible. This sphere took about three days of bright daylight to complete (or about 12-15 hours total). It's a goofy craft, but I love it; sore fingers and all.

add to sk*rt


holli jo said...

Very cool! And quite a unique hobby.

David B. said...

Glad you are feeling up to doing crafts and blogging! The Temari String Sphere looks quite interesting.

I think they would make great gifts to your children and grandchildren. They would be a nice heirloom. I still have some handwork that my grandmothers (now departed) made for me. I treasure them as a connection to them. I know that these crafts were made by their hands, and made with love. I can touch something that they once touched, and feel a physical connection to them.

I had the same kind of feeling when I visited Martin's Cove. I pulled a handcart with my family, trod on the same trails that my own handcart ancestors trod. I felt a connection to them.

Oh well, now I'm rambling.

Hope you recover quickly, and that you find good ways to use your time.

s'mee said...

holli jo, thanks! i just love spheres for some reason...all kinds. there are tons of different ones from around the world, clay, metal, paper mache, and evidently string! anyway, fun to look at for sure.

david, you know it's so crazy, i feel really well except for being tired and a bit weak, but this surgery thing is very good! haha! i like to think someone will become as fascinated with these silly balls as i am someday... you never know! i know i have grabbed onto some of the things my grampa made, a shadow box, bowling pin lamps, and gramma's hand tooled wooden bracelets - thoses are gorgeous and all the more special because grampa made them for her! anywho, i totally get it and hope the same, thanks for the kind words and thoughts!

chronicler said...

Incroiable! That's french for holy smokes! What an intricate design. Very pretty! You have way more patience than me.

s'mee said...

chronicler, actually this is one of the 'easy' designs! some of them just freak your eyes to look at, they are amazing. this was only the second one i have done so it's kind of basic, but still pretty. thanks!

Lisa M. said...

Smee, S'mee....

My other soul sister. *chuckle* I think David B. Is telling you, that you are old?


Okay, maybe not.. but I had to tease. Mostly because that is um.. well that is just MY forte?

(sorry David B. I am only kidding)

These are beautiful. I have never seen them before. Could they be used for Christmas tree ornements?

With you beautiful tree's you put up at Christmas I can SO visualize some of these amazing creations.

Really really neat. I agree with Chronicler... You do have a LOT more patience than me.

Susan M said...

I love crafts like that! Never heard of these before though. I just don't have time these days for anything crafty, but maybe eventually.

s'mee said...

Lisa, (a-hem!ignoring comments on the aged) lol, actually they *can* be used for Christmas trees if you add a hanger. The instructions suggest adding a tassle as well if you are going to hang them...gorgeous! I also thought about the whole Christmas tree covered in them, then thought about the 12 hours to make one and tossed that idea right away!

Susan, I hear you, that's why I haven't done one of these for several years. Unless you are trapped in your house for 6 weeks there are other ways to spend your time (like housework, groceries, being the taxi, you know the fun stuff you do everyday)! I am *only* 48 (miss Lisa, David! lol) and have manage to only crank out two in my lifetime...haha! yup, pretty, but time exhausting!

tahnks you guys..ya'all crack s'mee up!

p.s. word verification for today:
getiggz (get eggs)-well not anymore! haha!

Kimberly said...

that is gorgeous. I love it.