Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Spool Hop

Wonderful, beautiful, talented Christine from One Kiss Creations sent out some vintage wooden spools, she tossed down the gauntlet and said "make something". 

First I wanted to saw the biggest spool in half, maybe with the very vague thought of doing some embroidery.  The idea seemed innocent enough, but my electric mitre saw was just too much for that little spool.  I almost had it in half when "pop" a piece went flying across the garage, never to be seen again.  Sigh.  Lucky I had a few more to play with.  Not one to give up on power tools, I pulled the drill out . . .

Cabochon, anyone? 

I picked up a ball of hemp and had an attempt at macrame. 

Funny thing, that hemp is strong.  All the pulling to get the knots tight gave me a blister.  I had to laugh because I split 1.5 cords of wood in the last month with no blister.  The clasp was made from a carnelian bead that was part of the spool package.  Love carnelian.

This second piece in no way is some hidden debasement of these spools, its all about appreciating the little things in life. 

Did you know toilet paper was first recorded in China in the 6th century and was actually mass produced in the 14th century?  I had no idea it had been around so long.  According to Wikipedia, before the more standard TP existed wealthy people used wool, lace or hemp.  Less wealthy people used various materials such as rags, wood shavings, leaves, grass, hay, moss, plant husks, etc.  "In Ancient Rome, a sponge on a stick was commonly used, and, after usage, placed back in a bucket of saltwater."  Yikes!!!   Like I said, this is about appreciating the things in life that we generally take no notice of.

I feel extremely fortunate to know Christine and am having fun getting to know more about the other ladies in this hop.   I'm fascinated by these pixilated threads that span space and time, connecting people in so many different ways. 

Here are the early finishers: 

And these are the ones yet to come: 

Hurry up ladies!  I want to see what you make :-)


  1. Awesome post.and I do admire the way you decided to take on these spools ;)

    Must admit I had a good laugh over the history of T.P...thanks, made my day ;)

  2. I knew yours would be good!!! The cab is such a cool piece...the goldstone and the hemp and the color of the triangles you used all go so well together~It is a fantastic mix! What a gorgeous, unique idea! I was too afraid to go with power tools...I kept mine manual. You are a brave woman! And the TP is too funny and a great piece! When I saw that you photographed this outside, I laughed even harder. I mean, when you are back to nature and you have to find a place to go, don't you dream of seeing a roll of Scott TP at the base of a tree?! I think I have used a lot of the items you mentioned in the history of toilet paper. Great inclusion in the post! And Albert has now secured his place with all of your other Hotties...a great mind is the most attractive feature on a person, so he fits right in. Thank you Liz~for your willingness, your whimsy, and your beautiful pieces :-) You always give me lots to smile about.

  3. The first thing I thought when I saw your second piece was "huh, that looks like a roll of toilet paper...." and then I read your post and realized, yes indeed! that is exactly what it was! LOL ... I traveled through India for 5 weeks, and I tell you I dreamed about it. It isn't as common there, and so somewhat scarce. But my MIL grew up there and traveled with us, so warned us and we packed extra !!

    The first piece is very cool. I really love how you did the macrame ... I am forever trying that, but it comes out wonky. Your's is perfect and goes so well with your spool cabachon. Really great piece!

  4. Love your work! LOL I need to get pictures and finish off one more project and then I will be done! I now know all about TP too!

  5. omg - I will say here what I said on your quill post... you must be a little crazy! lol! That's the way I like my peeps. I love the macrame and ha, I wouldn't have thought of a cabochon!

  6. I love the toilet paper. I would never have thought of it, but the spool was perfect for it.

    I also love the cab attached to the first pool. Again, nothing I would have thought of, but something that woks so perfectly!

  7. Wow, Liz,
    I love the first necklace and the funny story that goes with it . I can just see you intently sawing the spool in half and then all of a sudden you are wide eyed cause it takes you a second to realize that it broke and a piece went flying.
    The macrame rope is beautiful and goes so well with the spool. That was a cool idea to put a cab on the spool too.
    Your imagination is awesome to think to use one of the spools as a tribute to toilet paper, to cute!

  8. You made the spool into a bezel!!! I am stunned and impressed -- both by the inspiration, and by the bravery it took to go after one of those little suckers with a power tool. And I love how you made a tiny TP roll look so elegant and sparkly. Wonderful!

  9. Both of your pieces are so much fun! SO impressed with the bezeled spool. The macrame neckstrap is the perfect finish - love how the colorful seed beads pop against the matte white of the hemp cord. And you certainly brought your best creative thinking to the question of what to do with that second spool. I'm still smiling!!

  10. I LOVE that you set a cab inside the spool. That gives me so many ideas and reminds me that the form and function of items can change if you just try to make it so. Speaking of the form of something changing, I had no idea I knew so little about toilet paper. Thank you for the history lesson. . .I think. I'm going to remember the sponge on a stick for a long time. Ha!
    Anyway, both of your pieces are really super!!

  11. Thanks for the inspiration! I have some spools--already dyed with wood stain--that I'd forgotten about. Maybe I'll get them out!

  12. I love the cab in the spool. This is really beautiful and a great way to use the thread spool!

  13. These are so much fun! How clever to drill into the spool and use it as a cab setting! I also love the cheeky homage to toilet paper! Genius high-low art!


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