Saturday, October 1, 2022

My Temperature Project at Three Quarters

At the beginning of January this year I posted my temperature charts that I had put together in Excel indicating the high, low, and median temperatures by day for 2021.  While they were pretty, they were just there on the page.  I've seen people use the daily temperatures to make very colorful quilts - either sewn, crocheted, or knitted.  I've also seen some elaborate needlework projects that use preprinted backgrounds - something I might look into for the future.  But I kept thinking on what I could do that would give me something 3-D to show the history of our temperatures here in Branchburg for the year.

In 2021 I had relied on a site that was nearby for my temperature readings.  I couldn't rely on our indoor/outdoor thermometer because we typically go away for the weekends in the summer and there was no way to read it when we weren't here.  I had a found a website for a weather station nearby that did have a history mode and used that one, but I felt that it really wasn't true to our home site as there were days when there was enough of a difference in their reading and our home reading that would cause the chart to show a different color.  So I did some investigating and found a weather station that we could install and hook up to the internet and it can be monitored from anywhere.  We named our location "Bluebird Hill" because HWNSNBP installed it up the hill on the rail of the pool deck near to the bluebird nesting box.  And while I do still keep an Excel sheet of the temps, I don't need to rely on a formula to give me the median temperature because I get a historical reading of high, low, and average for the day ....... well let me show you what yesterday looked like.

September 30, 2022

Temperature65.3 °F45.1 °F55.0 °F
Dew Point50.1 °F41.5 °F45.6 °F
Humidity93 %46 %73 %
Precipitation0.00 in----
Wind Speed5.8 mph0.0 mph0.5 mph
Wind Gust5.8 mph--0.5 mph
Wind Direction----NE
Pressure29.97 in29.71 in--

So the project that was forming in my head involved a spiral.  I had to find a template for a spiral that would fit on a regular sheet of paper to begin with.  Then I had to figure out the length of the line making up the spiral and as you can see the very scientific method below involved baker's twine and washi tape.

Then I had to put my math skills to work and divide the length of that twine by 365 to find out the distance of the segments.  Once I got the number, I then had to - again, very scientifically - mark the segments.......

which I did twice because it came out wrong the first time.  The corrected markings are in blue.  I made notations at the end and beginning of each month and then I also included the start date of each new season.

I had a piece of white cotton fabric in my fabric stash and was able to transfer the markings to it using my light box. 

I used disappearing gel ink pens that I had ordered from Amazon for this.  The lines will disappear when the fabric is exposed to heat (by ironing or using a hair dryer).

I ordered a set of seed beads from Amazon and from the 24 colors that were available in the box, chose 11 of them to correspond with increments of 10 starting at 0 to 100.  I also picked out 4 colors of embroidery floss - one for each season.  I found some beading needles and an embroidery hoop and started the project ....... at the end of August.

I used the back stitch to get the spiral down following the blue lines that I had made.  I actually had to restart this after I finished the month of January because I realized that I wasn't doing the stitch correctly and the fabric was puckering a lot.  So I picked those stitches out and started over - blue for winter, green for spring, pink for summer, and yellow/orange for fall.

Then, using the beads and the color key, I started adding them at the red dots which corresponded to the day of the month.  The high temp on the inside of the spiral, the low temp on the outside.  The orange threads are just to indicate the end of the month so I can make sure that I am on the right day without having to start at the beginning again.  They'll pull out easily when I'm done.

So here we are at 3/4ths done.  I've learned a few things already that I would change for next time if I do this again.  1) The fabric is too flimsy for this - I should have used a nicer linen.  This is slipping around too much in the embroidery hoop. 2) Some of the bead colors do not show enough of a variation on the fabric.  In the container en masse, they have a deeper contrast but alone some are too similar.  If this really bothers me too much I think I might try to get floss in those colors and do a lazy daisy stitch around each bead.  

And, this does not photograph very well at all.  The beads are sparkly IRL but no matter what kind of light I tried taking the pictures in I could not get that sparkle.

What will I do with this?  I'm thinking that I will need to back it first and then I think I will either make a banner that can be hung in my craft room or a pillow - of course either way, the year will be embroidered on.

Since I still have the pattern, I can try this again next year and make the necessary changes.  Perhaps I'll use larger beads, or sequins.  I'll definitely get a nicer fabric.  Oh, and I won't have to wait until August to start it!  


  1. You have such wonderful ideas - as well as the patience to follow them through which I admire! This project is just beautiful and will make a fabulous and personal piece of artwork. Vicky x

  2. That looks so wonderful! Time-consuming but so well worth it. Love those disappearing pens, I have a couple in my sewing box. The colours, with the beads and the stitching, just look so beautiful. It has a sort of medieval look, to me.

  3. That is so cool!!! I've never seen one done like this and it would be fun to try. I've often thought of the knitted or crocheted versions but when I add up all the different colours of yarn I'd need it's too costly to contemplate. Beads however I have in spades!!


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