Tuesday, September 30, 2014

A Little Weaving - Trying An Old-Fashioned Pin Loom

Isn't this a pretty little loom? I was walking around a craft festival on a gorgeous, sunny day this past weekend, and found this booth--Dewberry Ridge. They handcraft their own weaving looms of many sizes. I've actually been thinking about weaving, so it wasn't really on impulse that I bought this beautiful little loom. They are the nicest people, and made sure to give me a lesson and all the tools I needed.
It tightens and shrinks when it comes off the loom.
My last weaving class was in 1988! I was working at a college, and they had a gorgeous weaving studio--gorgeous, huge, amazing! There was a whole room devoted to one loom, and another whole room devoted to the threads! At that point, all I did was cross-stitch, so I had not come into my full crafty goddessness, and I don't think I appreciated that experience like I should have. But I remember how relaxing it was to sit at the loom, and throw the thread boats back and forth and make fabric. I thought it was really cool. BUT! Threading the loom was a whole different story. 

My first couple of squares were wonky--getting much better at it now!
Threading the floor loom was a nightmare to me really. The painstaking process just wasn't worth it. But the love of weaving stayed somewhere in the back of my mind, and here I am 26 years later, discovering a little old-fashioned style loom, self-warping so no threading needed, and I love it. The wood is beautiful, soft and polished, and this thin variegated yarn is a fun one to start off with. Each square only takes five minutes to make, so soon I'll have a basket full to make something with! And I'll definitely use the first wonky pieces I made for a mixed media project! Have a happy day! Weave something! (I'm off to start my weaving board on Pinterest)

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch, Weave



Wednesday, September 24, 2014

WOYWW 277 - Buttons and Tags and Gelli Printing

Wednesdays are more fun when you link your messy desk up to the
What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday
linky party over at Miss Julia's blog, Stamping Ground.
I'm just showing a peek today. I'm working on a tag art project. I keep a tag punch at my office. Whenever I'm tossing old file folders or cardstock paper, I punch out a bunch of tags first. Now I'm Gelli printing those little upcycled tags and embellishing them for art projects and scrapbooking. Don't you love upcycling? Right now I'm sewing buttons to these little Gelli-printed wonders. I have an antique Ball jar with my great Aunt Sis' buttons. Aunt Sis had the same birthday as me. When I was five and she was in her eighties, she babysat me sometimes. She had been a beautiful, wealthy lady, happily married with no children, and my mother adored her. 

I love these buttons, and have used them for so many things over the years. They are special to me.

And by the way, I blogged Monday about my first attempt at Gelli printing. I am definitely hooked! Then I did a "selfie" photo shoot. I was thinking I need updated selfies sometimes for profile pictures on some of my social media. So here we go! I am not the greatest selfie-taker, that's for sure! Have a happy week, lovelies.



Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch Happy

Monday, September 22, 2014

Gelli Printing Newbie

Whether you make your own Gelli plate, buy one or borrow a friend's, I highly encourage it. What a fun way to paint and make one-of-a-kind monoprints.

Gelli printing on deli paper
My new 6X6 Gelli plate arrived in the mail the other day. Being a newbie at this, I wanted to start small. There are lots of great YouTube tutorials on Gelli printing, so I basically took a free workshop!
My new Gelli plate was so perfect looking!
My Gelli plate is not homemade, so it must be placed on a nonporous surface. I kept mine on the plastic backing as I worked. But after I finished, I had to peel off the backing and wash the whole plate, because I'm kind of a messy Gelli printer.
It was fun to experiment with different textures for making prints. Stencils, string, leaves, flowers, a pencil eraser for polka dots, q-tips to write letters, bubble wrap--there are many things lying around the craft room you can use. You just have to keep in mind not to use anything that would scratch your plate and cause permanent damage.
 
I made so many tags in no time at all.

I got great results on kraft paper, manila tags, white cardstock, and deli paper. It's fast and easy to make many prints that you can use for art, scrapbooking, cards, and your art journal. I was going for a lot of tag-making that I could embellish on later, and use in artwork and scrapbooking.


 Some tags pulled up more paint than others, depending on how I was using the stencil, and I liked that since some of them will have embellishments and sentiments added later.
I embossed some cardstock and used it to create some fun prints with the embossed side down, of course, and now I can also use the actual embossed sheet. After this photo I went over the raised parts with a gelato stick and I love the results!
I love both the texture and look of Gelli on deli! I get big boxes of deli paper at Sam's, so it's economical too--can't wait to apply it to scrapbooking and my art journal.
 
I found an old heavy cookie sheet to work on - perfect.

 The next day my nine-year-old nephew visited and he started Gelli printing with me. He used the tags and made bookmarks for his friends--so cute. He had no trouble catching on to the technique!



Old file folders make cute art tags
I upcycled old file folders into tags (I used a punch--I also have a tag diecut I use a lot), Gelli printed them, and now I'm embellishing them to create an art piece. I am a frugal crafter (thank you Lindsay Weirich!) and I do a lot of
upcycling and shopping my stash, so I don't jump right into buying every new thing that comes out. But I have decided that this was a great investment for all my paper play and so glad I bought one! I thought about making one, but the price of a big box of gellatin with several packets in it is quite expensive at my grocery store! It was better for me to buy a Gelli plate that will last a long time. On Amazon I didn't pay shipping or tax, so it was truly economical! (I was buying a couple of other things, so it was free shipping.) There are recipes out there to make a longer lasting Gelli plate, and the advantage to that is that you can make it square or round, and make it any size you wish. A small little stamping-size square would be great, and you could actually turn your little Gelli plate into a stamp! But for now, I'm sticking with this 6X6 size, it is perfect for what I need.


Happy printing!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch, Gelli













Wednesday, September 17, 2014

WOYWW 276 - Tea with Paper

Welcome to my crafty corner of the world. Thought I would give a different perspective from across my desk so you can see how truly messy I get when I'm into a few projects! Visit other crafty desks around the planet at this link:
What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday

Just take a photo of your messy middle-of-the-week desk, and share it on Miss Julia's blog. We love new desks! Now, here's what is actually going on when you see my side of the crafty corner table.
I am making little paper teacups. I have no idea why I'm doing this. They will have sentiments on them, and I don't know...I love teacups...I love my scrap papers and so it all goes together. They might end up in collages or greeting cards, who knows!
And I'm playing with all these Itty Bitty stamps I won on the Unity blog--loving it.
And here's my newest addition to the crafty corner--the quilter's cut 'n press. So cool. Now I can iron my little pieces of fabric right at my craft table. The cashier at JoAnn Fabrics said that this is the best one of all the brands, and has the most cushion to it. And I used my coupon...yay! I noticed Pokey Bolten using it on her quilting show the other day, and I went on a mission to find one. Only JoAnn had it--that's why I love that store.

Have a happy week lovelies!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch Happy




Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Embroidered Wristlet - Doodle Stitched

 Happy Tuesday. A morning with my favorite coffee and a little embroidery really does make me happy. This time of year you see all the ready-to-decorate bags go on sale in the craft store. I bought a very plain little wristlet--but the sale price was so good, I could have never constructed it myself for that price and it's nice to save a few steps. I'm having so much fun doodle stitching all over it, I will need to buy a few more for Christmas gifts! I just pulled out my basket of on-the-go embroidery, where I mostly use #5 cotton pearl flosses, and I just start stitching. You can't go wrong, because the more you stitch, the better you get. If you just know a few basic stitches, you can doodle stitch all day! 
My embroidery basket goes everywhere with me

First I removed the wristlet handle, and ran it through the sewing machine, using a flower stitch and variegated purple thread. I'll add some ribbons and beads to the handle too--a true diva bag!

Then I put a few rows of machine stitches around the top of the bag itself with the same purple variegated thread--I think it's Sulky brand. I appliqued a diecut heart, from my stash of diecut fabrics, and then I just started stitching. I'll share it when both sides are done! I love having an ongoing little project like this, and the best thing is, I'm creating wearable art. I'll get to share my embroidery with anyone who sees me using my little bag!
The basic wristlet
Stitching around the top with a decorative machine stitch
Forgot to mention - I added a trim to the bottom
A whimsical heart, appliqued and embroidered, and a butterfly!
 I'll be stitching the daylights out of this little bag, and you won't recognize it. More to come!

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch Happy
 


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

WOYWW 275--Need Coffee

It is actually very early on Tuesday morning. The lighting is terrible. But I'm about to have a busy day and evening. My art journaling is piled to one side. My embroidery and knitting is plopped on the table. I am canning tomatoes in the kitchen. And this afternoon I will be attending another taping of FYI GUY--a craft show that is filmed here in the Ozarks. I love to go and see what Jeremy is creating, and he is so funny, it will be a good time. They will tape two shows tonight. Woo hoo!

In the meantime, I've been embroidering a little plain wristlet I got at Hobby Lobby. I am covering this thing with embroidery!
Canning these while they're fresh

Now, if you're not a regular desker and wonder why in the world I'd show the world my messy desk, then join us at Miss Julia's fabulous, long-running blog party:
What's-On-Your-Workdesk-Wednesday

Eat, Write, Dream, Stitch Happy

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Sunday Threads

Keep your heart with all vigilance, for from it flow the springs of life.
Proverbs 4:23