Thursday, May 19, 2011

Arts & Crafts Minute with Ily

As you may know, some folks have adopted a black ring, worn on the middle finger of the right hand, as an asexual symbol. As far as visibility goes, it's pretty ineffectual. But, I think it could be powerful to look down and remember that you're part of an asexual community, especially when so many of us rarely interact with other aces in meatspace. The black ring was one of those things that I would wear if I already had it, but I didn't feel like running out and buying one, since I already have a bunch of rings I rarely wear. So I managed to come up with a solution that was free, took under five minutes to make, and avoids some of the issues with metal rings (like getting the perfect size). I present the t-shirt ring tutorial.

First, find a scrap of black t-shirt material. If you don't have some lying around, you can cut the sleeves off a black tee from your closet or a thrift store. (I suggest the sleeves because then you'll still have a wearable shirt.) Figure out what side of the material you want to be the outward-facing side. T-shirt material rolls up, and if you put the rolls on the outside, your ring will have a nice 3-D effect. Remember to sew on the "wrong" side of your fabric, because you will be turning the ring inside-out later.

Steps shown in the picture:
  1. Cut out a small strip of fabric that is slightly longer than the circumference of your finger. This is as scientific as we're getting here.
  2. Wrap the fabric around your finger and when you get a good fit, pin the two ends together.
  3. Take out the pin and sew over the area, either by hand or with a machine. It doesn't need to be perfect. I sewed mine crookedly with white thread and the finished product still looked fine!
  4. Cut off the ends and turn the ring inside-out. You could iron the ends flat, but as I wore the ring, the ends got pressed down flat anyway.
Here's the finished product:

The only problem with a fabric ring is that it'll get soggy if you wash your hands with it on. But the stretchy material will help accommodate finger size fluctuations (don't tell me I'm the only person who has that), and if it gets lost, who cares? From one t-shirt sleeve you could make at least 20 more.


Emeraldgirl said...

I made mine by stringing some tiny black beads on a piece of thin elastic string. If you want it to be wider, you can do two or three strings and tie them together. It seems to be holding up really well as long as you tie the knot really tight.

Ily said...

@Emeraldgirl: That's a good also bypass the sizing issues that way. ¡Viva DIY!

Eli said...

I'm getting the purple ace triangle logo tattooed on my left ring finger next week! I like an "I don't want a wedding" ring more than the awkward middle finger "f*k you but don't f*k me" sort of concept. Tattoos also skirt any sizing issues :)
Viva DIY! I like the t-shirt fabric idea. I may do that,too.

Ily said...

@Eli: Wow, good luck! You should post pictures somewhere, when you get it done. Do you have many tattoos?

Eli said...

I have two tattoos now! The one on my left arm is punctuation marks and copy editing symbols. I have the semicolon on me forever :)The one on my left arm I got this year to celebrate being grey-a and minimally romantic. It's a corseted heart on a black spiky background. When I get the ace tattoo I'll post it on my xanga and give you the link!

Ily said...

@Eli: Sounds cool! I really like tattoos, and have just one, but may not get any more because of my pathetically low threshold for pain.