Saturday, February 21, 2015

over and under

Weaving's been on my mind (and my head).

It started when I saw a weaving at my daughter's new school that was done with different 
thicknesses of twine and rope for the "warp" and plastic shopping bags for the "weft." 
Next time I'm there, I'll remember to take a picture of it.

Now some really fantastic pieces online have been catching my eye lately.

source: Tumblr

Embroidered weaving.

Dimensional weaving!

Impatient as always and lacking a loom, I thought of making my own
using an empty picture frame, a chopstick, and a comb.
It's been slow going...

Eventually I'll fill the frame with varied "pieces, and wrap the frame with yarn & string.

After making this myself, it occurred to me to check out youtube, and lo and behold,
I wasn't the first to have this idea. There are plenty of weaving how-to videos there,
which is great, because I've got lots to learn. 

I'm interested in making large wall hangings using all kinds of fibers and materials
and figuring out ingenious ways to create my own looms.
Because there aren't quite enough projects on the go around here. 

Friday, February 20, 2015

purple friday

someone said i was too old for this, so naturally it became mandatory that i do it immediately.

when i glance down and see the color, it's a little shocking!
 ... but it's a relief to be out from under all that
light, bright, high-maintenance blonde.

maybe too old for this... but i think i'll grow into it. :)

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Gloria Vanderbilt & controlled chaos

Have you frittered away hours of your life on  discovered Tumblr?

(Here's where you can see evidence of my copious waste of time  
my Tumblr blog, btw.) ( It's supposed to be relaxing.)

I was thrilled to find pictures on Tumblr of Gloria Vanderbilt's 1970's home.

One of my few prized possessions is this book, which I bought, used, for a song 
many years ago (you can see how worn it is -- it did have a cover, once).
The book (c., 1970) was old and unpopular when I bought it, but I was captivated by 
Gloria's controlled chaos style. To me it was genius and perfectly timeless.
It hasn't stopped being an inspiration to me in all these years. 

She covered every inch of their home, floor to ceiling, with her own hands, 
in quilts, paintings, & collage.

My heart has never stopped beating for her patchwork floor ♥
"Someday," I say to myself...

Wyatt Emory Cooper’s bedroom Photographs by Horst P. Horst
Paintings by Gloria Vanderbilt Vogue magazine 1970

 Here is perhaps the most fascinating picture in the book - 
Gloria's "work table," which was 
"an old drafting table with lots of shallow drawers in which 
I store the bits and pieces I intend to use in my work--
things like old and new photographs, postcards, valentines and greeting cards, 
paper dolls, lace doilies, aluminum foil, lengths of fabric and myriad other things. 
The top isn't usually arranged so neatly: I have put out my tools 
and some of the fabrics I might use in a collage. 
If you look carefully, you'll find tweezers, scissors, a razor blade, a mat knife, 
glue, an iron, paint brushes, tubes of acrylic paint, and a gesso board."
It's like an entire contained studio space,
chock full and orderly.

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

the color purple

So yesterday after learning how to star stitch,
I just kept star stitching 'til I couldn't star stitch no more 
and made this purple cowl.
Hard to take a selfie 
& practically impossible to get the true purple color to photograph... 

but I wish I could, because I'm thinking of dyeing my hair the same pruple
as a first step toward dyeing it all a dark ash brown.
What do you think?

Monday, February 16, 2015

stars, crocodiles, and snow

It's mystified me for a long time, but it's so pretty, I was determined to figure it out.
The star stitch. Really not hard at all, once you know what to do.

Written directions were too futsy for my faulty noggin, so I learned with this video.

Then I learned to star stitch in the round.

I made a sweet star-stitch friendship bracelet for my girl
(even though I sometimes have to remind her I'm her mom, not her pal).

That went so well, that I decided to learn another new stitch - 
The crocodile stitch. Tricky! 

There's been plenty of time to stay in and learn new stitches... did I mention it's been snowy?

I'm feeling pretty sorry for the people around here who don't love snow!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

snow day doings

It's been snowing and snowing and snowing some more. So I've been staying in (one of the great things about living in a second-floor condo is that I don't have to worry about doing much shoveling -- not that I'd worry, I honestly enjoy shoveling) and I've been pretty aimlessly frittering away at various projects (in between dealing with a few pesky real-life unpleasantries) (which makes the frittering all the more necessary, while keeping me from approaching it in any kind of organized way). So here are some random snow-day happenings...
I promise the only "psychedelic healing" I'm getting is from mixing colors on my gypsy ripple-ghan - but I have been peeking into this book, and so far it seems half fascinating and half crazy. Kinda like my ripple-ghan. You know how when you go to doctor appointments one of the questions they ask right up front is, "Do you use any recreational drugs?" First of all, dear intelligent medical personnel for whom I have the appropriate level of respect, does anyone actually ever say, "Why yes! I just shot up on the way here!" or "Certainly! I never leave home without my bowl!" So sometimes I answer by saying, "No, but I was thinking of starting!" It gets a laugh about 2/3rds of the time -- but I have actually been lectured on how "the things we say in jest sometimes having the ring of truth," and admonished to desist from entertaining the temptation. Maybe after I finish this book, I'll be able to come up with snappier retorts on the subject. But most likely it will still just end up with my humor having no place with medical personnel, like for instance the last time I gave my stock reply to my son's psychiatrist, and he actually shook his head and said, "No." Which I took to mean, "Don't try to be funny with me," or perhaps ((more hopefully)), "No, you are in no way in need of psychiatric medications, that much is clearly evident to my highly trained super-shrink perception powers." ANYWAY! I'm not really happy with the ripple-ghan, it's not giving me nearly enough psychedelic happiness, so I'm thinking of selling it at the fair, which is a mere six months away.

It's not too early to start amassing my handmade fair junk. I made these covered bottles (left) 
and re-usable covers for novena candles (right). 
These are quick and easy and always get snapped right up at the fair. 
Just a little finishing work left to do, and I'll be making lots more of them.

I finished this bath mitt of my own devising. It came out okay, and it showed me how to
 make itself better next time, so I may attempt improved versions for selling at the fair.

And I finally put handles on this bag, having given up on finding the kind of leather straps 
I had originally wanted for it. I cast about the place for some other strappy solution...

I had decided a while ago not to finish this bag, so I tried  its handles on the cross bag 
and am happily surprised at how well they worked on it! 

I have lots of other bags that I'll be trying to sell, 
but my big "emergency chocolate" bag is for me to keep. 
It looks so cool in real life, my daughter actually came right out and asked if she could have it. 
To which I could only reply:
"No! Are you taking any recreational drugs? 
Possibly you are in need of psychiatric medications!"


Thursday, February 12, 2015

stick up your doilies (y'all)!

One of my multitude of marvelous sisters gave me this massive magnificent doily.
I pinned it up to this large fabric-filled frame for inspiration.

And these small first-try doilies of my own for humility.