Monday, September 27, 2010

Halloween ATCs

I seem to be becoming addicted to hand needlefelting. I drew a complete blank on the Halloween theme for my ATC group's October exchange, so I puttered with fall-colored roving (unspun wool) until the lightbulb of inspiration went off in my brain. After sewing over the felted piece with various colors and styles of stitch, I chopped it up into little 2.5" x3.5" pieces. I found a vintage illustration and made tiny reproductions of it, which I hand-sewed to the center.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Scrappy & Tyvek Bracelets

I love to putter with recycled elements. Two of my favorite therapies are making scrappy fabric from bits of leftover cloth, yarn and ribbon. Another favorite thing is making beads from old USPS and FedEx tyvek mailers. So, I put the two together for a recent art challenge and made bracelets for my Kokoma group.

I sewed a little piece of velcro onto them for the closure, edged them with a contrasting blanket stitch, and decorated with tyvek beads. The four pieces are scattered around the globe: NY (me), Greece (Jo), Hawaii (Sonja) and Texas (Kate).

A group called Threads of Sanity spun out of Art for Mail 17, then we lost members and four of us formed Kokoma. [Kokoma stands for keep on keeping on making art...after the old 60s expression keep on keeping on]. The three other Kokoma women taught me much of what I know and helped me grow tremendously as a fiber artist, and the bracelets are my way of saying thank you.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Tyvek Beaded Necklaces

Last week I took a 'stay-cation' and stayed home to putter with my art supplies, sleep late and go to the beach. I finished 4 artquilts that I had started before I started my no longer 'new' job, almost two years ago.

I also finished up some jewelry I had half done. I tried to use up my abundance of tyvek beads (see my tutorial on if you don't know how to make tyvek beads) and my odd assortment of semi-precious gem chips and mismatched silver findings.

I also discovered that I could make some really delicate necklaces with silk cord and little husband got my daughter Amanda a gorgeous necklace for her recent birthday. (I loved it and was tempted to keep it for myself.)After inspecting it, I discovered that it was not gemstones floating on a delicate silver chain, but grey silk cording with the gems, along with tiny glass beads. So, I have been puttering and tying tiny knot after tiny knot. I think I have finally gotten the hang of it. I inherited a bunch of crystal beads from my sister in law, Carol (thanks Carol!)and didn't quite know what to do with them, but I do now.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Eye of Panic

I have been working on this piece, Eye of Panic, for months, and finally finished it.

There was a steep learning curve on this one: the concept was good, and I did all the should have been all square and level and even. However, fabric wiggles and moves, and rotary cutters slip, and I guess I am not as precise as I would like to be.

I had trouble getting the grommets even, and although I measured the chain link, it just didn't hang right. So...I had to put clear vinyl in between the pieces to make it hang better, which was less than a joy to sew through. And the sleeve was a challenge; I pieced fabric and vinyl for that also.

The border is made of two panic designs: the yellow one was scribbled during a big attack and I printed it on fabric later. The other was a big piece of pellon that I drew on with crayon during an attack, which, sadly, ruined my rotator cuff.

The center eye is my own eye, done from a photo and overpainted and stitched.

Tiny Dancer Fractured Photo

A few years ago, I took part in a fractured photo fiber art project. My old group, Threads of Sanity (which has since disbanded) exchanged black and white pieces of photos. No one knew what each other was working on, we only got a little snippet of a photo and had to translate it into fiber any way we wanted, and add color.

I chose a photo of my daughter Amanda (who is now 22) when she, at age 3, was in a production the Nutcracker at the local Y.

I finally put the pieces together and finished the piece.