Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Another sneak peek

Another sneak peek today ;-) It's a Christmas present for a friend.  I think you'll be surprised when you find out just what that bit is :-)
I went to the doll group on Sunday where we started to make a pincushion.  It's going to have 2 little 'babies' round the side.  The pattern is from a book by Kumiko Sudo - Omiyage : Handmade Gifts from Fabric in the Japanese Tradition.  I'm not sure about the fabric I've chosen now, but when the little babies are done in complementary fabric it should look fine.  It's made using half a polystyrene ball covered with fabric, but we put a layer of felt under the fabric.  The base is just a piece of card covered with fabric.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Sneaky peek revealed and film review!

I can now reveal the 'sneaky peek'; shown 1st Dec; in full, as it has arrived safely.  Tada! it's a mermaid,
which I made for the wonderfully talented and very amusing Donna aka Doings of Doone

I've also been busy making a Unicorn for a very poorly friend, the Unicorn had been promised for quite some time so I'm glad I finally got it done.
The mermaid is completely my own work - need to work on heads though as I think she has 'Hammy Hamster' cheeks - whereas the Unicorn is a pattern by Laurilee Taylor at The Magic Doll.

I went to see 'The Tourist' (Johnny Depp + Angelina Jolie) with a friend yesterday.  It's rubbish so if you're thinking of going, save your money; even if you love Johhny Depp!  It's supposed to be a romantic thriller but it's not thrilling and in parts tries for humour but it's not funny either.  It takes an awfully long time to get going and sooooo boring to begin with and even when it does get going there's not enough action or enough anything really.  Didn't care for Angelina Jolie in her role at all, if you like to look at dolls then she's fine, she just pouts and poses.
Edited to include: My friend who is a huge Johnny Depp fan didn't enjoy it either and we heard a few negative comments about how boring it was as we were leaving.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

365 Journal

A bit late with December's pages but they're ready at last.  They have had the colour added for a few days but only put the little journalling squares on yesterday.  I wasn't too happy with November's pages after the first few days of starting but it was easier to carry on than try to take off all those little bits of paper to paint over them again.  I was going to post yesterday but the pic for the Nov pages was too blurred and I couldn't be bothered trying again as it was late on and rather dull so decided to have another go today.  For the Dec pages I've used blue, but you can tell that can't you LOL I've added a bit of white and some silver accents with transfer foil.  I started using a blue pen for the text but it ran out!  I coloured the paper for the daily squares with Brusho using the shaving foam technique - basically spray shaving foam onto a surface (I used and old chopping thing; well it doen't seem right to call it a choppping board when it's glass :-/) drop your colours onto it lay the paper on top and press it all over then lift off, set aside to dry.  You may find when it's dry you'll need to brush off some bits of dried foam.

The snow is finally starting to clear a bit here, still lots around though.  I finally dug my car out a few days ago and parked it on the road so I could use it if I wanted to, though have to admit I haven't been anywhere only to post some cards but that was only a few yards.  Did a bit of shopping today and mooched round the White Rose shopping centre just to get out but didn't manage to buy any prezzies.  I was a bit peckish so bought just a cheese toastie from Subway, I didn't want to spoil my appetite for later.  I say I bought it, but very nearly got it for free.  After ordering I suddenly remembered I had no cash, did a quick check and had about 84p but the toastie was 89p.  I had to aplogise and said I'll just go to the cash machine.  The guy serving said there's one just over there - a few yards away - but unfortunately there was no cash!  In the meantime the guy had obviously spoken to his superior 'cos when I got back to say I'd have to go to another machine, the 2nd guy said it's ok and proceeded to give it to me, I said I've got 80 odd pence and was getting it out, he said again it's ok, but I dug out all the change I had and handed it over :-/
I just have to say, I'm chuffed to little mint balls that Ann Widdicombe has finally been kicked off Strictly Come Dancing Yay!!!!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Snow, sun and blue skies

We've got a good covering of snow here in West Yorkshire and it's still coming down.  However we also have sun and blue skies today ;-)  Thought I'd share a few pics.  If you're wondering what the contraption in the back garden is it's the kids' trampoline with the netting hanging off, probably stay like that till the weather gets warmer as I'll need to try to stitch the elasticy bits back on, have already done this but you know how rough kids can be, they use the netting as walls, not just as a safety feature :-/  Ooh it looks like lots more snow today as the blue sky has just disappeared while I've been typing, the sky is all white now, well off-white!

Thought I'd show a sneak peek at something I've made as a surprise for someone; don't know when it'll get posted 'cos I'm not inclined to dig the car out and clear the pavement to get onto the road.  Though DD is mobile and she needs to go to the post office sometime so I can get her to post it.  Can you tell what it is yet?

Monday, November 29, 2010

Knitting & Stitching show

I went to the Knitting & Stitching show at Harrogate on Friday with a few friends, we had a great day.  Luckily we missed the snow by 1 day, though we've only had a bit here - about 2 inches so far!  In between we've had some lovely sun and blue skies but it hasn't cleared the snow.  Thought I'd show you what I bought and just a few pics of some quilts on display for Elizabeth.  I didn't take many pics as I'd forgotten I had my camera with me till later on.  I bought some fabric, lovely threads, Brusho, Koh-i-noor waterbased dyes (the little palette), a brayer (I already have the softer one but this one will be better for using with textiles), something for a Secret Santa gift (just peeking out from under the fabric) and soy wax to have a go at Batik.  The checkered fabric and the 2 underneath are a much deeper shade of green than showing here and look much better IRL.  The other little pile of fabrics aren't normally colours or patterns I would go for, but I think these co-ordinate really well and will be great for dolls.

Haven't been online much due to going to the show and then on Saturday I was on for a short while earlie on but I had a migraine later and was in bed by 9.10 :-(  I thought it best not to use the PC yesterday.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Blog Award

The lovley Linby has kindly nominated me for this award.  I have to state 3 things that make me different from everyone else, these are:
1 My eyes
2 My nose
3 My mouth
Hehe, just a bit of fun, but they are unique to me ;-)  I should also nominate 5 others for this award and they are, in no particular order:

Now supposedly you can claim $5 of digi downloads but the link didn't work for me, but I mention it here in case anybody has seen this award on other blogs and is wondering about the downloads.  If I can sort it out I'll amend this.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Getting Plastered

We had a fantastically messy playday yesterday at the doll group.  As I've explained before although ostensibly a cloth doll group we do much more, yesterday being a case in point.  The work? (I question the use of that word 'cos it was pure fun :-)) we did yesterday was the result of some of the member; our leader included; having attended a workshop with the author of the book 'Get Plastered, Plaster, Print, Stitch'  I don't have the specific recipe for the plaster mix but it's basically a dollop of white emulsion paint, a dollop of PVA glue and enough plaster to mix to a single cream consistency, though in fact ours was thicker and worked fine.  Then we took a strip of calico and painted areas with the mix adding texture in the form of lace, string, bits of thread, stamping into it (you can use rubber stamps but wash immediately) etc.  You can also stitch into the calico first then pull some of the stitches out after plastering - of course you can do anything you like but just giving some ideas if anyone would like to try but may be stuck for ideas.  On one of my 'squares' I've added a piece of textured wallpaper but on another just used a piece of textured wallpaper underneath the fabric while painting the plaster mix on; you could use your stamps in this way without having to clean them but I think you would need a stamp with a strong outline to show up.
Then paint with any medium you like; if using acrylic paints they need to be watered down well to a runny consistency.  I've used Brusho (see end for description) on mine and added a little mica powder in places once dry.  My pieces are far from complete, I'm going to add some stitch and embellishments, maybe some images etc  You are meant to iron on the back when it's dry, though I'm not sure what this achieves as it didn't appear to make any difference.
I've done 11 'squares' altogether (the top 2 pics)

BRUSHO is a form of transparent watercolour available in an extensive range of exciting colours, supplied in small drums containing dry, crystalline powder. They mix instantly with cold water to produce a painting medium that is renowned for it's versatility.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Mini art quilts

I can show the mini art quilts in full now :-)  On the fishy one I've used organza ribbon to represent scales.  The picture looks a little fuzzy, this is due to the organza I've used on top of felt.  Just so you know the stitching on the seaweed is intentionally wonky - though I do wonky very well even when it's not intentional (but not quite this wonky) LOL
Translation should you need it (Elizabeth): wonky = not straight; lopsided; unsteady. ;-)

Monday, November 15, 2010

Sunday Stampers - Santa

Hels theme for the Sunday Stampers challenge this week is 'Santa'.  I've made 2 tags and used 2 different Santa stamps.  The first one is black card which I inked all over with Versamark, then covered it all over with mica powders.  I then inked the stamp with Versamark, this lifts off the mica powder where you have stamped; I've sprayed this with a clear acrylic spray but you should be able to use a cheap hairspray to set the mica powders.  The snowflakes on this one I've had for a few years, they are a clear material which I covered with Jones Tones Diamante glitter.  For the other tag I used Adirondak Butterscotch and Ginger inks for the background and also inked over a Craftynotions stencil.  Both the snowflake and Santa stamps are Tim Holtz stamps.
NB I've realised the last sentence is misleading, only the Santa stamp with 'Believe' on is by TH the other Santa stamp isn't - I said stamps 'cos I was referring to the snowflake and Santa stamps on that one tag.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Mini Art Quilt number 2

I've almost completed another mini art quilt, just need to do the backing and bind the edges and put something on to hang it.  Not showing the whole thing again as it's a gift, but I'll show it and the other one (shown in an earlier post) once they've been given.  This one measure approx 111/2" square.  The bit showing here is about 5" square.  I've used felt covered with a piece of rainbow organza for the base.
Lovely day here in West Yorkshire, so I hope it's just as nice where you are ;-)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Sunday Stampers - Winter

I'm early with my entry for the Sunday Stampers challenge this week.  Pop over to Hels for more info.  the theme this week is 'Winter'; I decided I'd just do another card to add to my Christmas card collection.  Just a bog-standard card.  The thing I'm most pleased about is the sentiment - my own homemade rub-on yay!! soooo easy :-)  Sorry I can't remember whose blog I saw the link on, but here is the link
Ask Erin

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Creating pages in someone else's journal

Someone asked me if I'd like to do a page in a journal; she'd just completed her pages but the journal belongs to another person.  How scary is that, letting other people loose in your journal :-0  hehe.  As the owner is unlikely to view it here I'm showing my pages.  I started with colour without any idea of where I was heading.  I'd sorted one page and was trying to make a kind of papier mache bird for the other; I used a mix of kitchen roll and book pages and didn't want it too dimensional but when I was painting it I decided I could've achieved the same thing with some thick card and though it would've still been ok to use I started looking for something else for a focal point.  I came across the house I made some weeks ago for the Sunday Stampers'challenge and thought the colours fitted really well with my pages, I just added a little Wild Plum ink to the other page to tie it in.  The pages are a bit greener than they look here.

I've been doing more sewing and am just showing a sneaky peek of a mini art quilt I've made for someone; I'm still a novice at free machine embroidery!  The quilt only measures 101/2"x73/4" and the piece I'm showing is 4"x5".  I've used a mix of sheer fabrics for the background, the stems and leaves are felt.

Monday, November 1, 2010

365 Journal

I actually managed to complete October's pages on time :-)  Not sure about all the circles on October's they were an afterthought but just think there are too many; I am not going to attempt to alter it now :-/  I also added a few images from Crowabout Studios as a nod to Halloween.

I painted November's pages yesterday and have just finished putting the days on and added a border at thetop. I painted the background but it was a bit dull so went over it with my gorgeous 'Colourful Thoughts' paints from Craftynotions, these are multi-surface including fabric (need to heat set) they do have a wonderful lustre to them so the Sunshine yellow looks like gold. I'm going to the Knitting & Stitching show later this month and plan on buying more of these as I only have 3 at the moment ;-)

Friday, October 29, 2010

Sunday Stampers and a Playday

Check out Hels' blog for more info on the Sunday Stampers challenge.  This week the theme is 'green'.  I've done a canvas and am rather pleased with the way it's turned out.  After doing the background, including the hearts I couldn't decide at first on a focal point, then hit on the idea of doing a felt tree - this was the 2nd attempt!  I sewed a piece of fabric on the back of the tree, stuffed it then added beads and buttons.  I've used some micro beads and puff paint for texture and painted over both as I didn't have any suitably coloured micro beads.  For the stamping (the clue is in the title - Sunday Stampers) I've used an Anna Griffin flourish and a text stamp.

On Wednesday we had a playday at a friends - Ann at Flutterby Crafter (you can Ann's on her blog)  We had a wonderful time crafting, chatting, laughing and eating.  We made a canvas with metal pieces which we embossed - we cheated with most of the embossing by using embossing folders run through the Big Shot ;-)  These were mounted onto mountboard.  We painted the the canvas board then added the metal pieces.  I made the curly hanger today which I coloured with a Marvy Metallic pen then went over with a Krylon Red Shimmer leafing pen 'cos the Marvy one was too pink.

Monday, October 25, 2010

The doll is done!

Well! nearly 2 weeks since I posted anything.  I decided to try not spending so much time on the PC for a week 'cos once I get on I spend an awful lot of time here and that's great if I have the time; which I do; and I'm enjoying it, but you know sometimes you just feel that you should be being more productive.  I've finished a doll I was working on.  As I was going to the doll group yesterday I wanted to get it done.  Speaking of the doll group I'm in the process of setting up a blog as we did originally have a website but as it's now lapsed we thought it would be easier to set up a blog.  I offered to do it as Chris who runs the group is very busy.  It was a bit of a faff though but eventually it seems the only way to do it is using another name so I invented one :-/  I didn't want to use my own account to set up another blog.  The other thing is if I log into the other blog on my PC I can't log into my own - does anyone know differently?  Not that it really matters but I wanted to become a follower of the new blog but it seems I'll have to do that through DD's PC and if I want to post anything in both blogs I'll have to login to one then out to login to the other???
 Anyway here's dolly ;-)  She has a wire armature which I've wrapped wadding then fabric strips round.  Her nose is a bit odd, but adds to the character - at least that's what I'm telling myself LOL  If you have any questions about it please ask.
She's based on dolls in Ray Slater's 'Dolls for Textile Artists' though I didn't follow the book to make her.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

WOYWW - Oct 13th

 :-0 :-0 :-0 No improvement this week on my desk!  Just more stuff dumped on it.  You can see a doll-in-the-making under my journal pages and the blue thing bottom right is a weight (not sure whether it would be called a dumbbell 'cos of the shape? )  I've got a sore arm which has been sore (muscular pain) for months but the doc prescribed anti-inflammatory tablets which give me an upset stomach, he did say if it didn't improve he may send me for physio, but I'm not sure how that would help - anyone know?  Anyway thought I'd see if exercising with the weight would help.
Some of you may remember the doll chair I was making some months ago, well I finally finished it :-)  It's 14" high.  Just need to make a doll to sit on it.  Want to know more about WOYWW? then swing by Julia's to find out.  That's where I'm headed right now see if there's a brew going and a bit of cake ;-) then pop round some blogs for a snoop.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Sunday Stampers - String

To check out the Sunday Stampers challenge pop over to Hels Each Sunday Hels sets a new challenge based on song titles.  This week's song is Puppet On A String, but you only need to make something and include some string.  I cut a house out of thick card; had to coat it with gesso first then used Adirondak Wild Plum, Buttersotch and Stream inks.  I coated it with Mod Podge Gloss.  The butterfly stamp is an Anna Griffin one, stamped once onto acetate and once on paper.  I've used string for the 'smoke' and on the buttons.  Tried several things to stiffen the string for the smoke but had to resort to wrapping thin wire round to keep it's shape.
Dull day here today :-(

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

WOYWW - 6th October

On my workdesk today is a mess, the tidy desk didn't last long!  I've mainly been dumping stuff on it as I've been sewing. You can see my Anna Griffin Christmas stamps and a couple of recently purchased wood mounted stamps.

Not strictly on my workdesk, but this is what I've been working on this week.  After seeing nerllybird's wonderful mannequin makeover last week, it spurred me on to finish mine.  I've had it for ages but did paint it some weeks ago and made her skirt.  I also got round to making a silly sock creature; his name is Dandy Dinmont; again after having bought socks months ago to make some.  (I have posted these 2 in earlier posts).  I've also completed another sock creature and her name is Miss Knucklefunty - Dandy's new girlfriend :-)   If you'd love to see what other bloggers are creating or just a snoop round their workspace pop over to the delightful Julia's to find out more.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Sock Creature

I bought some socks months ago to make some of these after buying a book on them.  I haven't looked at the book since I first got it so my sock creature isn't based on any in the book though obviously having read it no doubt it will have influenced what I've created ;-)

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Altered Artist Mannequin

I've had this mannequin for ages.  I bought it with the intention of 'altering' it.  I did paint it a few weeks ago and had an idea what I wanted to do and made the skirt, but have had various ideas for the body since. After seeing one this week on WOYWW (sorry can't remember where) it inspired me to finish mine.  I decoupaged book pages onto it using Mod Podge Gloss but then hit on the idea of wrapping her with linen thread, which I started yesterday evening but decided to go back to the paper.  I had to draw the eyes and mouth on a separate piece of paper then cut them out to stick on as the surface was too slippery to draw on.  Initially I was going to make her black boots and then shoes - perhaps out of felt - but decided to paint some shoes on :-)