Sunday, March 29, 2009

Waxwear swatch set

Waxwear - 6.5 oz in stone.

A start. I picked a color and ordered several yards for the next anorak. Searching for some cord for the drawstring and thinking about zippers on the sides for ventilation. Looking for the right kind of cord. Not so easy.

Shock cord with Toaster toggle on L.L. Bean down vest.

Anyone know who might carry shock cord (if indeed it is shock cord) in this color combo? I've yet to see the clear plastic grommets anywhere as well.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

kim chi

For the last several years I've been making my own kimchi. Tastes nothing like what I've had in restaurants or purchased in stores. Fresh, clean, with the bite of ginger and garlic, delicious. Pretty easy, too. I added some turnip greens and jalepanos to the last batch.

kim chi recipe:

1 napa cabbage
daikon radish w/ greens if possible - chopped.
carrots - chopped, sliced into matchsticks, whatever you want.
scallions - one bunch, chopped.
garlic - as much as you want, but at least half a head
ginger - about the size of a walnut
fish sauce - a couple of tablespoons
korean red pepper flakes - several handfulls. try a small amount at first and taste.
sesame seeds - a handfull
a little sugar to feed it

(you could also add broccoli,turnip greens,lemons, apples... no potatoes or green beans)

first you need to salt the cabbage. i use a big plastic bowl. a glass or ceramic bowl would work just fine, but i would avoid metal.

remove several of the large outer leaves of cabbage and spinkle some salt over them. use sea salt or kosher salt. salt with iodine inhibits bacteria growth.

next cut the cabbage into quarters lengthwise and salt between the leaves. cover bowl and let sit for several hours or overnight. the cabbage should be limp.

rinse cabbage and cut into strips (leaving the large outer leaves to place on top), mix with the chopped vegetables, garlic and ginger, salt (you can be generous), pepper flakes, and sesame seeds. you want to make sure that everything gets well coated. the amount of pepper is really up to you. you can taste it as you go and see what you think. add some fish sauce and little sugar to get things started.

once everything is mixed place kim chi into a jar. i use glass jars with the metal fasteners and gaskets. you can also use a jar with a screw on lid. pack the kim chi in tightly. use a wooden dowel or pestle to pack it down, getting out as much air as possible. leave a little room at top and place one of the large pieces of cabbage on top and salt lightly. don't screw the lid on tightly or snap the metal fastener shut ( i use rubber bands to keep it closed, but if the gas in the jar builds up it can lift the lid slightly). what's happening is the kim chi is beginning to ferment and will produce gas (co2). oxygen will cause mold to grow, so you want some room for the gases to get out, but not for the oxygen to get in. leave out for 48 hours.that should be long enough to get things going.

sometimes the juice will seep out so you might want to place a plate under your jar.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

First published in the "Last Whole Earth Catalog" in 1971, and well worth reading today.

read it here.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

George Washington Sears - "Nessmuk" (1821-1890)

"Go light; the lighter the better, so that you have the simplest material for health, comfort and enjoyment."
-from "Woodcraft and Camping"

Sairy Gamp - courtesy the Smithsonian Institution, obtained from

The 9ft. Sairy Gamp, which Nessmuk used for a cruise in the Adirondacks, weighed just 10.5 lbs.
Built by J. Henry Ruston.

more Nessmuk here and here.

Monday, March 16, 2009

East Greenland anorak, ca. 1850-1892. Inventory number 1071-2. Courtesy of the Museum Volkenkunde, Leiden

East Greenland anorak and mittens, ca. 1925-1934. Inventory 2823-2. Courtesy of the Museum Volkenkunde, Leiden

Jaap van Zuylen wearing a Greenland anorak. Courtesy of the Museum Volkenkunde, Leiden

East Greenland anorak, ca. 1960-1970. Inventory number: 4458-81. Courtesy of the Museum Volkenkunde, Leiden

Pair of sealskin mittens (aaqqatit) AOA Ethno 2001,Am14.15ab. Courtesy the British Museum

Kayak jacket of sealskin (tuilik) AOA Ethno 2001,Am14.1. Courtesy the British Museum

Inspiration for a future sewing project.

I found some 6.5 oz. waxed cotton which has a nice translucency, not unlike the anoraks made with seal intestine. Below is a prototype made with cotton twill from a pattern from the Rain Shed.

Sunday, March 08, 2009

A recent article in the New York Times caught my eye. This is a topic that everybody seems to have an opinion on. Personally, I find the author's suggestions reasonable and easily worked into the daily ride. Creating a culture that recognizes biking as something more than a casual activity or that all cyclists are uncaring individuals will no doubt take time. Good to see the Times addressing this issue, but until the "powers that be" take cycling seriously and more people take to riding, my guess is these issues will continue to divide and prevent real understanding. Ride safe, ride responsibly.

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Riverside School Portrait #16 Julie Fasey 1977

RS dmj 1

RS ttl1

Riverside School Drama 5


RS Hanife Saleh 1977


George Plemper took these photos when he was a science teacher at Riverside School, Thamesmead, in the late 70's.

"When I started to post my photographs on Flickr I thought that at the most I would post 100 - if I was lucky. Now the Riverside School series numbers over 300. I am astounded, mind you most of the photographs are interesting because of their age. The problem is that it has become tedious - cleaning up images that have very little photographic interest. So in one final act of boredom I have posted this set without attempting any significant clean up. I think they will only be of interest to those interested in the history of schools or England at that time, if you are interested in the art of photography do not spend any time on them."

I recommend that you do spend a good amount of time on this amazing collection of images. Be sure to read the comments, as well.

found via your heart out

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Bilenky Single Speed / Fixed?

Nice rack. And check out the Sögreni bell.

Bilenky Mixte

Chainring detail

Bilenky Porteur

Bilenky Lugged Tandem
Winner of the Best Tandem Award.

Stephen Bilenky

“Learn how to do the craft well. Learn how to fix mistakes. Learn how to avoid mistakes.”

Stephen, Simon, & Bina

Bilenky Cycle Works at NAHBS Indianapolis.

Read more about Stephen Bilenky and his bikes here.