ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] ysabetwordsmith
This is the freebie for today's fishbowl. It was inspired by a prompt form [personal profile] eseme. It also fills "The stuff of which things are made: iron / stone / clay" square in my 4-19-16 card for the [community profile] genprompt_bingo fest. This poem belongs to the series An Army of One.


"Crafts Out of Necessity"


The wirefloss became
enormously popular as
raw material for crafts,
both for practical items
and decorative ones.

People made it into rings
and earrings and necklaces.

They sent the scavengers
back out for more, and
the scavengers cracked open
consoles to find color-coded wires
in all the shades of the rainbow.

People made platters
and baskets in patterns.

They wove sculptures
to hang on the plain walls and
break up the unrelenting expanse
of grey and white station.

The scavengers offered up
bits and bobs of wreckage --
old insignia pins, coins, buttons,
nuts and bolts and washers.

People incorporated those
into their crafts as well.

There were, too, a few chunks
of crystal from the comet traps,
or shiny nuggets of nickel-iron.

People sliced those and made
earrings and pendants, or carved
the prettiest lumps into rings.

The traders began to notice, to say,
"Oh, that's pretty, where did you get it?"

"I made it," said the crafters.

And the traders' eyes narrowed
with keen interest as they realized
that the people of the Lacuna were
making things quite different than
what could be found in the Arms,
beautiful things that might sell.

Jewelry and other small art objects
made excellent trade stock if you
had a market for ornaments.

So Astin took some to Trunnion,
where the Alta Familia coveted
bits of memorable jewelry

Anne Goede was more ambitious,
stocking some of the larger sculptures,
but then she specialized in luxuries
and doubtless knew gallery owners
who would buy such things.

It worked.

"What else do you have?"
the traders asked when they returned.

The crafters showed them necklaces
made from aeration balls, ceramic discs,
and fish spine beads. There were shards
of broken dishes made into pendants
and buttons and beads of all kinds.

"We'll take some," the traders said,
and they did.

* * *

Notes:

"Crafts make us feel rooted, give us a sense of belonging and connect us with our history. Our ancestors used to create these crafts out of necessity, and now we do them for fun, to make money and to express ourselves."
-- Phyllis George

Culture comes in material and non-material flavors. Material culture is all the stuff people make -- jewelry, dinnerware, tools, objects of art, etc. -- to express themselves and make their lives easier.

Wire weaving can be used to make all kinds of arts and crafts. There are tips on choosing wire, but it's important to remember that many wirecrafts arose from people using whatever they had. Today's expensive colored craft wires began as yesterday's discarded telephone wire.

Kumihimo is one type of wire jewelry.

You can make all kinds of things from junk such as bracelets, earrings, and rings. Here is a charm necklace. These are chain bracelets. This pendant is made from scrap metal melted together. Here is a necklace made mostly from nuts.

Telephone wire can be used for more than jewelry, though. African crafters make lovely baskets like these. Learn how to weave wire bowls and baskets.

These hanging sculptures add color to a room. So does this wall hanging crocheted from wire.

Meteorite jewelry comes in various styles. They may be sliced, whether plain nickel-iron or with peridot inclusions. Small attractive nuggets are often turned into pendants or rings with little modification.

Ceramic balls are used in aeration and filtration systems, and can make interesting jewelry. Ceramic discs are used in many appliances. Fish spine beads are used to separate wires.

Ceramic beads and buttons may also be scavenged from tiles or made from shards of broken pottery.

Jewelry has been such an important trade item throughout history that it is possible to map ancient trade routes by tracing beads, gems, and other ornaments.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-20 01:48 am (UTC)
stardreamer: Meez headshot (Default)
From: [personal profile] stardreamer
Hey, I have that kumihimo book! For an example of a bracelet made using wire kumihimo and beads, look here.

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 01:31 am (UTC)
stardreamer: Meez headshot (Default)
From: [personal profile] stardreamer
*blush*

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-20 02:47 pm (UTC)
redsixwing: Red-winged angel staring at a distant star. (Default)
From: [personal profile] redsixwing
Oh wow. That's gorgeous!

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-20 09:26 pm (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
ZOMG

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-20 02:49 pm (UTC)
redsixwing: Red-winged angel staring at a distant star. (Default)
From: [personal profile] redsixwing
Yay, meteorite jewelry!

That's a good use of coated wire.

Huh. I never thought of the filtration beads as... well, beads.
Then again, the ones I use in the aquarium tend to go to dust after a few years of use. Hopefully they've got nicer ones.

Re: Thoughts

Date: 2016-04-25 03:11 pm (UTC)
redsixwing: Red-winged angel staring at a distant star. (Default)
From: [personal profile] redsixwing
Off topic of meteorite jewelry: I have a nickel contact allergy. It's been sort of sideways-useful in authenticating various nickel-iron bits, though - if it leaves a precise imprint of its shape on my skin within 2 minutes, it's got nickel. If not, it's either coated or not nickel-iron.

Fortunately, most coins don't set me off, though I've handled a few with enough nickel content to feel buzzy or burny when touched.

>> The open cagework kind are more durable, usually fired but either unglazed or with a porous glaze or glazed with a surface that microbes can grip easily.<<

Ah, that would do it. The kind I have are the unfired porous spheres. Nicer beads are nicer in lots of directions.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-20 09:28 pm (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
OOH OOH OOH YES THIS

pls allow me to show off a lil

bones & trash & things picked up from the side of the road • seaglass & wire & hammering & twisting • $60 + shipping here, comment SOLD • #onefurtivelight #thevagabondtabby #vultureculture #bones #bone #death #animalparts #bonejewelry #osteology #taxiderm

bones & trash & things picked up from the side of the road • seaglass & wire & hammering & twisting

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-20 09:56 pm (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
I tend to call them window jewelry or wall jewelry. They're a lil short of windows most places there, though! Viewscreens, now...

I love love the idea of using them for that visual indicator, too. & I'm now contemplating making really light mobiles where the movement, stirred by the light breeze of an air vent, would be part of the beauty, too.

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 01:34 am (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
I've got some pretty thin sheet aluminum kicking around...I'll have to see what I come up with.

> Your ideas inspired the free-verse poem "To See the Air." Dr. Syden Caermichael feels uneasy after
> her close brush with life support failure in her lab. So Case makes her some wind chimes and
> mobiles to show that the air vents are still working.

*delight* *joy*

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 01:48 am (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
I've got tin snips & I _think_ have a file somewhere-or-other. All else fails, there's sandpaper, which I could use to get an interesting 'distressed' look too.

I got the stuff from my mom, who runs a trophy store. I used to work for her, & lemme tell you, you think a paper cut is bad? Try a brass cut. Aluminum cuts aren't fun either but the brass cuts sting more.

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 01:55 am (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
> You can in fact make a stencil from masking tape to create patterns. Rub over that with sand paper
> and it will give you a shiny/dull design. Punched tin patterns also work if you want tiny holes.

OooOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooOOooooOOoooooooohh, yassss

> I once cut myself on the ripper strip for a box of aluminum foil, pushing down to close the lid.
> That actually ranks as one of the more unpleasant injuries I've had.

OW OW OW OW OW OW OW

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 03:24 am (UTC)
thnidu: glowing light bulb. tinyurl.com/33j2v8h (light bulb)
From: [personal profile] thnidu
This got me thinking about zero-g and micro-g environments, which I imagine there are a lot of in the Lacuna. You can't hang a mobile if there's no significant gravity, so what could you do instead?

Well, you might make spheres within spheres. ("Fishbowls"?) Think of a sphere maybe a meter in diameter, or more, or less – lightly woven of wire, with a surface almost completely open (think of chicken wire). Inside are smaller spheres and maybe other shapes, with partially solid surfaces (possibly transparent!) so they can react to the slightest air currents, blowing or floating inside the fishbowl, interacting with each other in different ways: bouncing off each other, clinging and repelling magnetically (maybe switching on and off too). Lights and sounds. Changing colors. Some with springy "wings" to enhance their bouncing interactions. And once the farms get going, maybe there'll be some plant fiber - reeds, inedible stems, who knows? - to weave with, too.

Come to think of it, they could probably make mobiles, too, mounted on a rigid or semi-rigid stem.

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 06:03 pm (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
ZOMG ART FORMS I CANNOT DO YET

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 06:42 pm (UTC)
thnidu: A shield-shaped hunk of watermelon rind, with bits carved away to make 2 staring eyes and a mouth. By bensanaz (melonhead)
From: [personal profile] thnidu
Not in air...But in water, yes! Take that "fishbowl" literally...

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 06:45 pm (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
Which also adds the effect water has on various metals to the art. EXCELLENT, I thank you!

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 07:25 pm (UTC)
thnidu: edited from img383.imageshack.us/img383/3066/ss35450qf7.jpg (smiley)
From: [personal profile] thnidu
Glad that helps!

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 06:45 pm (UTC)
thnidu: glowing light bulb. tinyurl.com/33j2v8h (light bulb)
From: [personal profile] thnidu
«Tabletop mobiles do this too.»

I never thought of that, and I've seen them!

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 07:31 pm (UTC)
thnidu: my familiar. "Beanie Baby" -type dragon, red with white wings (Default)
From: [personal profile] thnidu
On any magnetic surface, yes. But if your interior partitions are made, say, of a lighter, non-metallic substance to reduce fuel expenditure, then a magnet won't do it.

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-04-21 08:37 pm (UTC)
thnidu: X RATED Food Porn. The X is a crossed fork & knife (food porn)
From: [personal profile] thnidu
Very true, I hadn't thought of that. I suppose it would have been possible for the Carinans and/or Orions(?), with their vastly greater resources than the Lacuna, to ship biomaterials off-planet into asteroid belts and Lagrange points, and build farms to grow such resources, but I'm not sure it would have been worth it.

OTOH, if you're fighting a prolonged war against a well-matched opponent, you'll probably have a lot of troops (and techs and whatevers) to feed. Given that, it might be worthwhile to build such farms so you don't have to lift it all out of gravity wells.

Re: Wow!

Date: 2016-05-01 03:48 am (UTC)
From: [personal profile] chanter_greenie
Jumping in late, because all the talk of mobiles is making me ponder. Ysabet, I know you've made mention in a different series that fluttering, drifting items can cause problems for PTSD sufferers. Considering the way much of society treats the sorts of folks likely to emigrate to the lacuna (especially considering the use of the term 'psychiatric survivors', not to mention the large local contingent of ex-soldiers), I wouldn't be surprised if a few people there dealt with the condition. That could make mobiles stirred by air vents/moving in variable gravity/what have you a potential problem, yes?

Beg pardon for the potential wet blanket-ness. First thing I thought of when air-stirred mobiles came up.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-21 01:30 am (UTC)
stardreamer: Meez headshot (Default)
From: [personal profile] stardreamer
Nice wirework! I'm only beginning to get into that sort of thing.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-21 01:33 am (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
It is SO MUCH FUN. SO MUCH. I especially like working with random stuff I find on the side of the road, because the stakes are lower than if I'd spent money on it & it's easier to play.

Re: Yes...

Date: 2016-04-21 01:46 am (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
Plus it's a lovely way to deconstruct & delegitimize a lot of the really crappy 'expense=value' stuff that comes with capitalism.

Re: Yes...

Date: 2016-04-21 01:54 am (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
I figure the time I spend wandering up & down tiny roads & along creek beds to find the seaglass & bones that I use helps a lot -- specially since nearly everything I use comes from some sort of liminal space.

Re: Yes...

Date: 2016-04-21 02:07 am (UTC)
kyleri: (Default)
From: [personal profile] kyleri
Yeahhh I wind up out there around duck pretty often.

(no subject)

Date: 2016-04-20 02:33 pm (UTC)
eseme: (Default)
From: [personal profile] eseme
Oh yay! I love these sorts of crafts, this really made me happy to read. Thank you! It has been a rough few weeks, and the optimism in the poem was needed.

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