The Den of Slack

Square Kashkuli Gabbeh carpet & free petit point charts

In January I posted about the Kashkuli Gabbeh carpet that I charted based on a picture I found online. I finished a smaller version in May, but the move got me distracted and I only just got around to taking pictures and cleaning up the charts. (Scroll to the end of the post for download links.)

This carpet is about 5″ square, which would make it 10′ square in half scale. It fits perfectly in the Rosedale’s second floor living room.

Here are the two carpets side by side (click the image for a bigger version):

The larger carpet is 5″ by 7.5″. Both are stitched with one strand of DMC floss on 40-count Verdal evenweave. Of course, if you want to use these for 1:12 scale you can stitch them on a lower count fabric. The variegated blue borders are Weeks Dye Works Union Blue. If you don’t to use the variegated floss, I think either the light blue or dark blue that already appear in the design will work as a substitution.

I made a few changes the second time I stitched it that are reflected in both charts. The dark red is a little darker, the light yellow is a little lighter, and I used dark blue in the borders with the red H motifs instead of the variegated blue. I also changed the spacing on the border with the light background, so none of the medallions get cut off.

One change that isn’t reflected in the charts is that I stitched the variegated borders vertically instead of horizontally on the vertical edges. This strays from the look of the original rug and I’m not sure if it was the right call. It might have been better to stick with the horizontal rows, but to use much shorter lengths of the variegated floss so I didn’t end up with blocks of solid color like I did in the large carpet. I’m not stitching it for a third time, though!

Here are the charts for the two versions (for personal, noncommerical use):

Large Kashkuli Gabbeh Carpet Chart
Square Kashkuli Gabbeh Carpet Chart

Things I found while packing

So, I moved. From start to finish, it happened pretty fast, but it didn’t feel that way when we were carting carloads of stuff from the old house to the new house — including 20+ dollhouses!

Here’s Rosy, a bit out of sorts, sharing the back seat of my car with several dollhouses during the move. She was a very good girl.

As I was packing up my workshop — a task I plan to never repeat, but I’m sure I said that last time, too — I took pictures of a few things that I’ve acquired (somewhat) recently and hadn’t posted about yet. But first, here are photos of the nicest workshop I’ve ever had.

Geoff made me this workshop in a corner of the garage not long after we moved into this house. Last year, after some of my dollhouses got damaged from sunlight and damp air, he revamped it by leveling the floor and adding insulation, a pocket door, and a heater.

The cabinets were just the right size to hold the large plastic bins containing all my mini supplies.

I’ll miss you, climate-controlled workshop. :(

You might have noticed a relatively new addition to my collection in the photo above — an attic room box built into a trunk.

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Half scale arts & crafts accessories

The theme for this year’s half scale swap (through the Halfscale Minis group on was Arts & Crafts. I made skeins of yarn, matte finish spray cans, and paintbrushes. And now I’ll show you how I made them, so you can make some too!

Download the labels here and read on for the instructions. The labels are 600dpi, sized for 1:24 scale. If you want to make 1:12 versions you can change the resolution to 300dpi before printing. (No idea what I’m talking about? This article will help!)

Skeins of Yarn

The yarn skeins are made out of thin plastic straws and fine wool that I had left over from cross stitch kits I stitched many years ago (I think it’s “crewel weight” wool). You could also separate thicker wool into individual strands, or use DMC floss.

I cut a straw to about 7/8″.

With the wool threaded on a number 18 tapestry needle, I pulled it through the straw and left a long tail.

Then I looped the yarn through the straw and pulled it tight, holding on to the tail to keep the wool from pulling out.

I continued this as many times as I could to completely cover the straw. It started to get bulky and difficult to pull the needle through, but I was able to loop it as many times as necessary to completely cover the straw.

With the straw fully covered, I used sewing scissors to snip off both tails.

I made a bunch of these while binge watching The Wonder Years on Hulu. That was a great show!

I looked online for label graphics but didn’t find anything I liked, so I made a trip to Michaels. (This was back when people were allowed to leave the house…) I bought a skein of yarn that had a relatively simple label, so it would still be legible when it was reduced down. Here’s the full-sized skein next to one of my half scale skeins.

I scanned the label, resized it in Photoshop, and printed out a bunch of them. Before cutting them out, I sprayed the labels with UV-resistant coating, let them dry for 24 hours, and then painted on a coat of gloss varnish to make the label more durable.

The coat of varnish might have been a mistake, because the ends of the paper really didn’t want to stick together! After I glued on all the labels I had to go back and do a second round because many of them had come unglued. I tried some with double stick tape instead of glue but those also came apart. The labels stayed glued on the skeins I got back in my swap package, so I hope that’s the case for other recipients too.

(Wow, the little hairs on the wool are very visible in that picture! They’re not so bad in real life, but if you can’t live with them, they should be easy enough to trim off with sewing scissors or nail scissors.)

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