Thursday, May 31, 2012

Doing a lot of hand sewing these days

I think the reason why I haven't posted in a while is because hand sewing takes awhile!  I am still in love with felt and fabric applique and this is what I am now doing most nights after my boys go to bed. 

I haven't worked on this project much more except for sewing blue beads into the water pattern and a few pearls into the rocks and shells at teh bottom.  As you can tell I still haven't finished the metallic green embroidery work in the the coral.
The reason why I haven't finished my underwater project is because I've been spending time In My Flower Garden.  Please don't be fooled, I don't have a green thumb... I've been creating a felt garden.  This was the the beginning stage:
I mount my finished pieces on stretched canvas (like I did with Gypsy Love) so that's what the white chalk outline is for.  This piece will eventually measure 8" X 10".

If you have been reading this blog for a while you know how much I love buttons and painting on them.  So after I cut out these designs I found 5 of my painted buttons that I thought went pretty well with the colors of felt I had chosen.  Then... let the hand sewing and embroidery (and bead work) begin!!

And this is my newest piece I finished a few days ago.  In My Flower Garden.
Close up of details:

And right now I would get back to my underwater felt applique but I found this adorable fabric the other day that I knew immediately what I was going to do with it.  First it involved making a 40" X 12" frame, buy felt to cover the frame then start appliqueing!
The cat laying on the branch on the left hand side caught my eye in the store.  Again if you see the white chalk lines, this is where the felt will be wrapped around the canvas.
I have also added 7 felt leaves to fill it in and to have fun doing bead work on them later.  Inspiration will be taken directly from the leaves in In My Flower Garden.  The two dark leaves are purple not black as they appear.
The only work I've done on this piece so far, besides sewing everything down, is to start sewing wooden beads onto the branch but I have lots more to go so stay tuned!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

More fabric bowls!

Most people that know me know that I have ADD when it comes to my art stuff, one week I'll be sewing and then the next week I may be painting.  Other people can't keep up with me but this is how my mind works.  I have found something that is so easy and so addictive that (once again) I keep returning to it, it's making fabric bowls.  It does take time and is very tedious but I love the process of one coming together.  We had a huge art festival this weekend near my art gallery so I decided to make a few more of these fun bowls.  Six to be exact:

They are now all for sale at Olde Towne Art in Portsmouth, VA

Friday, May 11, 2012

Not a new endeavor but putting creative thoughts together

My cousin Susan has always been intrigued by the thought process of my ideas, which I've never paid attention to, but am now more keenly aware of.  So just for Susan I'm going to write down the steps that lead me to today's blog post.

1.  Quilt convention in February ---> bought wool felt pattern packet to make a candle mat

2.  Wool Felt ---> Craft Felt ---> searched for an old project I had started months ago

3.  Small project became large project with beads and sequins and embroidery
     (See previous post called Gypsy Love)

4.  What else could I do with felt? ---> Searched for more felt project books online

5. Found my next endeavor, making little people!

This may be my cheapest project yet! 
All I need are pipe cleaners (now called chenille stems) from my kids craft box. 
Little felt pieces -  .30 cents a sheet 
Embroidery floss - have tons of from my cross stitch days
Markers for the face - who doesn't have a marker laying around!
Wooden balls for the head - 3.00 for a huge bag
And the last thing I need is time - PRICELESS!

First you have to measure and bend the pipe cleaners according to what size doll you want.  Her patterns range from a 1 1/2" doll to 4".  I'm going to start with the 4" size because I plan to do a lot of decorating on their jackets and skirts.  A good hands-on activity to do at night while watching tv is wrapping the pipe cleaners.  These are my first five that I will be "dressing" in the next few days:
The only thing I don't like about the little figures in the book are the way the faces are drawn so mine will be be getting a face lift plus more sequins and no acorn hats.

Here are some pictures from the book:

I purposely cut off the head in this picture so you could see the detail of the clothes:

I'm not sure I'll make any fairies but with some pink tulle I may design a ballerina
My husband and boys are out of town today so I may actually find some time to sit down and dress my little people.  But we have a huge art festival coming into town tomorrow (right near my art gallery) so I'm trying to finish up six of my fabric bowls for my studio too.  Oh the life of an artist... I LOVE IT!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Sequins galore!

This post was going to be combined with another one but I think I just need to share with you my new found love of sequins.  It all started with my first project Gypsy Love (previous post).  I found that to add more sparkle to something I could stitch on sequins because I didn't want to use glitter glue, I do have my limits. 

I already had a tremendous amount of sequins that my mom pawned off on me at some point.  I had no idea what I would ever do with them but I never turn down any art or craft product.
So as you can see I clearly didn't need any more.  Besides what other types of sequins could possibly be out there?  Well that was all I needed to go searching on the internet to see what was out there.  I really didn't think I would find anything other than circles, boy was I wrong!!

I came across this company called Cartwright's Sequins.  I was blown away!!  The sizes range from 2mm - 30mm and they have shapes like squares, butterflies, fans and you have to see their kaleidoscope sequins, they look like mini doilies.  

Here are 6 of the 8 different designs I ordered that arrived a few days ago:
Look at the hologram ones:
But my favorite so far are the square embossed ones:
I have a few ideas for these but it's getting late so you'll have to wait until tomorrow when I write my next post.  Good night!

Gypsy Love

I like deadlines because it makes me finish projects like the one I wrote about in the previous post.  I did end up finishing my felt applique in time for the show AND I decided to put a price tag on it too.  When I finished it, and mounted it on a stretched canvas, I still felt like it lacked something... more beads!  So I added the tassels at the bottom, again all hand strung.
Close-up of bead work:

Details, details: