Saturday, March 29, 2008

Sewing and Quilt Expo

Today Jeanne and I went to the IX Center for the Original Sewing and Quilt Expo. It was 3 whole days of everything fabric and fiber art related. Four hours of this afternoon were spent walking the aisles, booth by booth, taking in all the fantastic fabrics, drool-worthy fibers and kick ass new gadgets. I found a few booths that I really loved. Oh, had I about $1000 to spend there today! Ugh. It would have been brilliant. I also wish we could have taken some of the classes that were available. Next year I think we're going to try and plan it better so that we can participate more in some of the activities. Towards the end of the day we walked through the the galleries, filled with some amazing artists and even got watch a fashion show while grabbing a snack before we left.

I will say, there was one particular booth that absolutely made my day. Jeanne and I were walking past and sitting in front were 3 spinning wheels and two looms. My interest was peaked. We went over and watched a felting demo and then found ourselves entranced by all of the beautiful handspun. The owner came over and started talking to us as we were checking out a lovely scarf that was on the larger loom. She described the weaving process and asked if I'd like to try my hand at it on the smaller loom. What the hell, why not right? It was a small lap loom and I only made a few passes but I was hooked. I want one. I've always been a bit interested in weaving but now I'd really like to learn more. Since the owner was so nice I asked her about the spinning wheels, having never seen someone actually use them in real life. She gave us a run down of it's parts and showed us how to spin. The ideas immediately flashed through my head. She gave me her business card and told me about some of the classes that her shop gives. I may have to take a couple! Spinning looked like so much fun and the more I've crocheted and got into knitting the more and more interested I've become in handspun yarns and fibers. It's really just the next logical step! ;-D

Yay for the Sewing Expo for giving me just one more craft to dump my money into!! :D

Thursday, March 27, 2008

The Golden Girls Swap!

I LOVED this swap. When I saw the original post about it I just knew that I had to join, and I'm so glad that I did! I had a fantastic partner who totally spoiled me and while working on the projects for her I really got into a craft that until know I had just dabbled in, but know really enjoy and want to learn more.

The main idea that I had was to make one item that showcased each girl and then one to incorporate them all. The magnet tin is for Rose. While magnets don't directly relate to her, I thought they were kind of lighthearted and frivolous - much like Rose. :) The tin was originally a Camel cigarette tin. I covered the top with a photo of all the girls and added a string of pearls and some antique buttons that I had laying around. The final touch was a layer of diamond glaze over the whole picture. Inside is a set of magnets with pictures of each of the Girls on them and some scenes from the show. The quote that I used is from one of the most popular episodes - where Dorothy and Rose are writing their song about Miami.

Next up is Sophia. Since she is the famed cook in the house I decided to make an apron, with her infamous line "Picture it, Sicily... " on the front. I found this super cute fabric with the sheep on it to symbolize the farming village she grew up in.

On to Dorothy. Being the intellectual of the group and a teacher I turned a mint tin into a book and made some bookmarks. One is a book thong and the other is a ribbon slide bookmark. Making these and playing with jewelery findings really got me in the mood to make some jewelery. These were one of my favorite swap items to make. I even made another of the ribbon slide ones for another friend of mine. :-D Oh! And the quote for Dorothy reads:
Dorothy "I have a date"
Blanche "with a man?"
Dorothy "No, Blanche, with a Venus fly trap"

Finally we come to Blanche. Being so full of herself, and that fact that I wanted to play with my jewelery making stuff some more I decided a jewelery set might be fun for her. After all, she does always have to look her best! I had a 7 Gypsies glass top tin and turned that into the jewelery box. I used my wonderful Tim Holtz alcohol inks on the lid to keep that sheer look and under the lid added the quote to some white Bazzill. For the base I took a scrap of some pretty blue fabric that I had and put it over a circle of cardboard and added some fluff and voila! A nice puffy base. The jewelery itself is really simple - just some eye hooks, glass beads and pearls, but being the first bit of jewelery I've ever made I really love the way they came out. Simple but sweet.

Last but not least there is the item for all the girls. Being that whenever they have a problem or have something to celebrate they head into the kitchen for some cheesecake I couldn't very well leave that out! I made a set of cheesecake recipe cards. There are 5 recipes in all. There's a little bit of everything - you have your classic New York style, the no-bake cheesecake and even some yummy fruit ones!

All of the pictures were taken by my awesome swap partner jloveg. This is what I received in return - she went all out!!

-super cute Rub Ons that are absolutely perfect for some scrapbook pages
-two lovely little fabric flower pins. The blue and yellow one reminds me of some pattern paper that I have.
-a blue and silver butterfly pendant - very Dorothy indeed! Grin I think I have a silver chain that will hold it perfectly!
-3 clever magnetic bookmarks with the most perfect quotes on them! I've never seen that type of bookmark before but they'll definitely come in handy on the road!
-cheesecake!!!! Grin in the form of very yummy looking earrings, a necklace and a key fob. I love that the necklace and key fob are whole cheesecakes and the earrings are little slices - so cute!
-there's a nod to Rose with some sweet little sheep stitch markers. I don't have any stitch markers at all so these with definitely come in handy!! I can't wait to try them out! I'm going to have to make a cute little drawstring bag to hold them in my needle roll so i don't loose them.
-a Dorothy paper weight with the quote "How come whenever my ship comes in it's leaking?" A perfect Dorothy quote- love it!! Grin
-last but not leastly two bags, both different styles- one paisley and one with big, lovely, pink flowers. Paisley is one of my favorite prints, and it's funny because the fabric used on the lining is the same fabric that I used a while back to make a Regency Era gown! The bag with the flowers will be PERFECT to carry crochet/knitting projects.

Thank you jlove g for making this such a great swap.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Swap, Swappy, Swap, Swap. The 1950s and Jane Austen

I've been kind of obsessed with Craftster swaps lately. Not really sure why.

In January I did a 1950s swap. I had a WONDERFUL partner and she made some amazing things for me. Maybe that's why I'm so hyped up on swaps right now - she got me into a great crafting groove!

So, without further ado, here is the package that I received from perlabella!

A 50s Corvette cozy. I keep my cell in it since i have a terrible habit of dropping it. :-P

Since I've become so domestic since moving in with Bri I got a lovely green potholder. I like to use it when I bake. ;)

I absolutely love this decoupaged box. It came to me holding a fantastic little beginners embroidery kit but since the color of the wood and all the red in it matches my kitchen perfectly I've turned it into a recipe box.

This might be my favorite item - the embroidered roller girl!!! Isn't she perfect? I just love it!

This was the package that I sent to her. :)

She's a big Lauren Bacall / Humphrey Bogart fan so I when I found this stencil of Lauren Bacall I knew it was perfect.

I LOVED working on this. The pic just doesn't do it justice. It's three 4x4 canvases, each with a pic of a pretty pin up. I edged each pic with a mix of black acrylic paint and texture medium. Then, while that was setting I added some black, blue and green rhinestones. Lastly I added the chunky black ribbon to hold them all together and make them a wall hanging.

Here is a teal and brown quilted sleeping mask (with matching bag- not pictured here) because really, what true 50s girl doesn't need her beauty sleep?

This is a small wooden box colored with walnut ink and a gold shimmer walnut ink. The letters are MM rub ons. Inside the box was a set of Bogart/Bacall magnets. Each one is a shot of their romance on screen. :-) Super fun little project.

Now for Jane Austen. Here's what I sent:
This is a cameo wall hanging using a stucco texture medium. This picture is actually in its half finished phase, before I added embellishment around the edges and the ribbon to hang it from. I am an idiot and forgot to get a pic of it completely done, but this way you at least get an idea. Oh! And it's the supposed silhouette of Jane Austen.

Since I had seen that my partner makes Regency gowns I made a work apron so that the pretty frocks won't get dirty.

This is a wooden keepsake box with another famous pic of Miss Austen done by her sister Cassandra. Inside was a small drawstring bag holding two sets of glass marble magnets, one set for Persuasion and the other for Bride and Prejudice.