How to do an Invisible Single Crochet Decrease

December 13, 2013 in Tips and Techniques

Amigurumi look best when all of the stitches are uniform.  A normal decrease is much bulkier and has a different texture which results in a non-uniform appearance.  Since it’s also bigger, it causes gaps through which your stuffing can poke when you are finishing your project.  The invisible decrease creates an stitch that looks very nearly like a normal single crochet stitch.  Make the switch to invisible decreases using this tutorial and have more polished looking amigurumi!

Make a Flexible Camera Mount in 10 Minutes

December 10, 2013 in Tips and Techniques

When I first started doing photo and video tutorials for crochet I was stymied on how to position the camera.  After a quick internet search I concluded that people were filming  with the tripod in between them and their hands.  I made my magic ring tutorial this way and it worked even if it was a bit awkward because I couldn’t see what I was doing and my arms were outstretched.  Then I stumbled on a DIY where someone disassembled a task lamp and turned it into a suspended camera mount. Brilliant!

The tutorial involved making several pieces with some sawing and drilling involved.  I live in an apartment and  don’t have many tools or access to a place to make tiny cut up pieces of wood with precisely drilled holes.  So I came up with this 10 minute hack using a table top tripod that I bought for around $10 and a flexible task lamp purchased from the thrift store for $5.  So here’s my tutorial on how to make a flexible camera mount in 10 minutes using less than $20 in parts and a handful of tools.

Step 1: Gather Your Tools and Materials

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  • A flexible neck task lamp. This one at Amazon is exactly like the one I bought at the thrift store.
  • A table top tripod like this or maybe this.
  • Phillips head screwdriver
  • Pliers
  • Wire cutters (not pictured because I wasn’t sure I’d get that far)

The camera that I use for filming YouTube videos is this Logitech C920 HD web cam.  This mount will also hold up a little point-and-shoot camera but it probably would droop under a heavy DSLR so if you’ve got one of those you might want to look for a swing arm task lamp that can clamp to a table.

 Step 2: Disassemble the Lamp

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First, I removed the front bezel by twisting and pulling firmly.  If your lamp is all one piece you might not have anything to remove here.

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Next, I grabbed the knob on the back and pulled to reveal the switch underneath.

Make a Flexible Camera Mount | RiotofDaisies.comUsing the pliers, I removed the nut from around the switch.

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If you turn it over, it will now look like this with the light assembly almost ready to remove.

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Next I unscrewed the plate from the bottom of the lamp.
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This is a weight to keep the lamp from falling over and some carboard to keep the weight in place.  I saved both of these because I wanted to put the weight back.

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Next I cut the wire where it entered the neck of the lamp.Make a Flexible Camera Mount |

Then I trimmed it closely on both sides where it went through the base of the lamp. The plastic plug used to hold the cord in isn’t removable without destroying it and I didn’t really care if it was there after the fact so I saved myself a headache by not trying to remove it fully.

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I grabbed the white ceramic insulator and pulled the light assembly out through the head of the lamp.  I then replaced the weight and cardboard in the base and screwed it back on.

Step 3: Disassemble the tripod

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I moved onto the tripod dis assembly

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Turning it over, I saw that there was just one screw in the plate holding the legs in place so I just unscrewed the screw.

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The parts I used were the mount assembly, the plate and the screw.  I kept the legs because I can always quickly reassembly this into a tripod if I wanted it.

Step 4: Flexible mount assembly

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Looking down in the cup for the head of the lamp, there are a bunch of vent holes around the central hole where the switch came through.  If you buy a lamp that is switched in some other way (either at the base or on the cord)it might not have these holes so be careful.

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I inserted the screw into the plate and then placed the plate and screw over the center hole in the lamp head.

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I used the screwdriver to hold the screw in place and gently screwed the mount assembly onto the screw from the outside.  And that’s it!

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What do you think?  Will you be making one for yourself?


How to Make an Embroidered Mouth for Crochet Toys

December 6, 2013 in Tips and Techniques