November 30, 2009

Simplicity 7018; All the way back to 1975

Awhile back (probably Febuary or March) I started making View 1 of Simplicity 7018 (Copyright 1975).   As I recall, I cut out the fabrics and made the outside of the purse, and then, once starting the lining, realized that I'd miscut it; making it unuseable for this purse.  As I didn't have any other fabric onhand that corresponded with the shell, and I didn't feel like going shopping, I stuffed it back in the pattern drawer and that was that.

Well, I've been feeling abit like sewing, so Saturday, while Beau and I were in Slidell, we made a stop by Hancock fabrics and I picked up a couple pieces of lining fabrics. 

So, it's a nice Sunday afternoon; Beau's tucked into television football ... Time to sew.    This is a very simple pattern ... one piece, calling only for the outer shell and lining.   It goes together easy.    To it, I added a medium weight interfacing (so it isn't a limp fish) and pulled out some beads, leather cord and a metal ring and put together a hanging closure, of sorts.    

It's slightly on the plain side, but it's very sturdy and I like it.

November 28, 2009

Stella's getting a TuTu for Christmas

I'd decided a couple weeks ago that I wanted to make Stella a 'Play Dress-up' Tutu for Christmas.   So, we'd made a quick stop by Hancock Fabrics when in Slidell and picked up some Tulle; two shades of purple and white; 4 yards total.     And, since we were just hanging out today, seemed as good a time as any to put it together.

I used the direction in a tutorial put together by Plumtickled.   They are good, easy to follow directions.  I then added in two different shades of pink, ribbon and clipped sections of the tulle here and there to stagger the heights.   Although it tutu's don't photograph extremely well, I'm happy with it and think Stella will love it ...
We'll be going to Target sometime this week and I'll try and find a pink leotard set to go with it.

I had planned to make a tutu for Lilly as well, but didn't have enough tulle.    I'll get some more for her ... thinking perhaps, yellow and red.

November 22, 2009

The Market @ Chenier

The Chenier (a mixed use development of retail and apartments in a nice park type environment) invited me (along with about 40 other vendors) to participate in the first annual Market at Chenier.   The price to attend was just $20, and it very close to home, so I agreed.

The morning came in on the cool side, and quite damp from rains the day before.  The show times were 12noon to 4pm.  I got everything ready on Saturday afternoon, and around 11am we hauled it alldown the street and set up.   After set-up, Beau went back home ... the Saints playing at noon and I didn't really think I'd need help.

A fair number of folks came through for a Sunday afternoon (on which the Saints were on TV), but no one was experiencing much in the line of sales ... me included.    After the 4 hours, I'd had only two sales.   A bit of a disappointment, but I must say that I met a few interesting folks, made a potential friend in a candle seller next door to me. 

By 3:30, I'd become downright chilled and my dearest Beau returned to help me break it all down and pack up the car.    In an attempt to cheer me up, he took me to Georges for mexican food and a few margaritas.   I'm a bit of a lightweight (having not drank much in a number of years), and after 3 drinks, went home, crawled into my PJ's and snoozed on the couch the rest of the evening ....

November 21, 2009

Yard Sale Saturday, 11/21/09

It's raining and I headed off to the only garage sale posted as inside ...the FHS Robotics Club in the cafeteria.  Surprisingly enough, there were not very many folks there.  It was being staffed by three women.   When I expressed surprise about their being no Robotic Club students, one woman explained to me that generally the students didn't like to get up before 10am.    So, the Student Robotics Club don't even man their own yard sale.  Figures.

Finds ...
  • One really cool wood heart shaped box that is begging to be painted.
  • One Chain
  • A variety of rhinestone Jewelry and a 'slider' bracelet
  • Big buttons
  • Fusible Web
Expenditures = $3.25

November 17, 2009

USPS : Our Customers are First Class

Okay, I'll be the first to admit that some days it doesn't take a whole lot to humor me.  For example, yesterday, I was leaving the Post Office when I noticed this sign on the 'out' door.  I immediately found myself thinking that you'd think it would read 'Our Customers are Priority'.  Then I was thinking how, when I send my customers the note indicating the 'whatever' has shipped, I almost always say, 'Shipping is by USPS First Class Mail, which quotes 2-5 days for delivery.   Yep, they got that right ... that's how it feels working with the Post Office, 2-5 days to delivery; exact status unknown.

So today, I had to go back to the Post Office and I mentioned to the man helping me that I was surprised the sign didn't say 'Our customers are Priority' and he said .....  What Sign.

November 14, 2009

Alex & Lilly

Such a beautiful day,
Outside to play,
My Daddy & Me.

I ran across the yard
with him right behind
and suddenly,
with hardly a jump,
He's laying on the grass,
right in front.

As I skid to a stop,
He scoops me in his arms,
and we fly back across the yard.

On a beautiful Day
My Daddy and Me

Yard Sale Saturday, 11/14/09

Hey Mr. Tamborine Man, play a Song for Me ,,,

It was abit chilly this morning and if I hadn't agreed to take Beau to the Trailhead, I would have declined Yard Sale Saturday and stayed in bed ... But, am I ever glad I didn't.

I came across two tamborines and three handheld drum pieces, at, amazingly enough, two different yardsales.   (It's been well over a year since I've seen one).  I've created three mixed media tamborine pieces which I put over the French doors in my studio and have been wanting more to, eventually, line the entire surface.   (Did I mention how excited I was .. and, the 5 came in costing an entire $2.00.

AND THEN ... at the next sale I came across a metal stand ... apparently some kind of family note center.  Well, last night I was telling Beau that I was going to take a few of the magnet sets to the upcoming shows and needed something to display them on .... This it is, at a whole 50 cents.

Other finds, not quite as exciting, but purchased just in case ....

  • 3 bags of assorted ribbons and lace .. some look quite old.
  • A box of zippers (Yep, in case I ever sew those purses that I've been collecting patterns for).
  • Two bags of rubber stamps
  • Two bags of narrow wood pegs that are about 4" long in a variety of colors. 
  • Two little necklaces that I wanted the charms on.  
That's it ...

November 11, 2009

Soldering .... Still Practicing, after all these years

Okay, so it hasn't been years, more along the lines of a month or two.  So, having started at a skill level of zero, I've now moved up the skill ruler to perhaps a three ... Perhaps.  

A few days back I'd wrapped up some big chunky glass pieces and this morning I finished soldering them.  I also wrapped up three more glass pieces, using some of my handpainted grafitti paper in the middle.   Altogether I put 3 layers of solder on them.  On the last layer, I then held it too tight with the pliers and cracked the glass.  (I did pull it open and rescued the paper, which I'll rewrap tomorrow).   I also another layer on a a couple of the others.    

Tomorrow I'll decide if these need more solder, or if I'm going to get out the dremel and finish them off.

Of course, the biggest question bothering me at the moment is what to do with them.   They certainly are not give away or sell quality, but I sure hate to just throw out,    Decisions, decisions, decisions.

November 08, 2009

Refrigerator Magnets using my Grafitti Papers

A couple days back I decided I'd make some more refrigerator magnets with some of my painted papers.   I ordered 200 3/4" magnets off Ebay and they came in yesterday.
  • Cut a couple inches off  6 different pages and cut down to size to fit on the back of glass globes (from inventory).  The steps are real easy ... 
  • Cut out the paper backing (this is heavy scrapbook paper ... the type from the old vintage paper photo albums).  
  • Glue the paper, front side to the back of the glass gem & allow to dry for a couple hours.
  • Glue magnet to the back of the paper coated glass gem and allow to dry for a couple hours. 
  • Clean the top surface of the glass gem with nail polish remover (to remove any glue residue)

I'm using clear acrylic caulk as the adhesive as it's more durable (not water soluble).    I plan on using them as give-aways with art/craft shipments and will put some up for sale in the upcoming art/craft sales.   

I like the looks of these.  These are some heavy duty magnets.   I'd set them out on the table and they slide together; something not highly desireable while they are in the drying process.   I ended up having to put them on a dish towel so they couldn't slide.    Think I made about 70 today; I'll create some more tomorrow.

Christmas at Chenier

Last year "they" built/opened a large combination/shopping and apartment complex right up the street from us called Chenier.   Now, I must say that if you have to have a large complex within a mile of your house, Chenier is a very nice one to have.

Anyway, I received a call last week indicating they were having a Christmas in November celebration with arts/crafts and food (and hopefully some music will get lined up) and invited me to participate.  Well, heck ya.  

The weather should be wonderful :  Come see me !!!!!

November 22nd :  Noon to 4pm  :  1901 Highway 190, Mandeville, LA

November 07, 2009

Yard Sale Saturday, 11/07/09

Nice chilly morning out there.   There were alot of ads in Thursday paper so knew the day had great yardsale potential.  Took Beau up to the trace and started out from there.   Just for fun, I kept track on a corner of the newspaper; I visited 17 yardsales in all.  

  • A three shelf rubbermaid stand.  I think these are meant to be used to store spices in a cupboard, but think it might have great display potential in my art tent. 
  • A purse that I bought for the bangles; going to cut them right off.
  • A purple and pink wood necklace
  • A small assortment of Jewelry pieces that will go to inventory
  • A container of marbles

Total expenditures = $4.00.    Beau was surprised when I came home (2 hours later) with just this.   But, I already have so many materials and supplies that I find I'm getting more and more selective.   I suppose I'd quit going out if it wasn't fun.

Handmade Louisiana, October Craft-a-Long

I'm also a member of the Handmade Louisiana Guild ... just seemed to make sense; everything in my CTStudios shop is handmade and I live in Louisiana.   Anyway, they have a monthly Craft-a-Long and for October, the theme was FALL, so, when I was making the canvas placemats, I made one set in specific colors for the Craft-a-Long.     

The vote is underway, and oh ... alas ... I don't seem to be doing very well.   The competition is apparently stiff.   So, if you'd be so kind, go on over and vote.   It doesn't have to be for my piece ... just vote.    The pictures of items involved are in the center of the page, the the voting is on the top left.

November 04, 2009

Blue Dog Minstrels, An Art Guitar

Almost finished putting together the purple guitar, which I'm naming Blue Dog Minstrels.   So let's see ...
  • Took apart a blue rosary and selected some thin silver chain and created the dangles that hang from the bottom strings. 
  • Selected a variety of beads, which were added to the strings, before they were secured in the upper brackets (still don't know the correct name for these parts). 
  • Took 7 of the 1" wood balls to the shed and drilled holes 3/4 through; large enough to slip over the string rods, and one for the very bottom.   Spray painted them a bright pink, then added in bits of purple stencil.  Finished with two coats of polyacrylic.   Secured in place with my favorite adhesive, silicone caulk.  Finished off with some very small purple beads in the center of each wood ball. 
  • Selected two pieces of art paper, cut-out and attached at the edge of the round opening.   
  • Attached a few what-nots here and there.   

Well, I'm happy with the exception of the way the pink stands out on the front.    I'm thinking I'll either tone it down with a purple wash, or  ???.   Plan is to hang it on the wall (as a mostly finished piece).   When I get the perfect plan, I'll proceed.  Now, just have to make a quick stop by the hardware store to get some more D-rings, which I use to hang these. 

Two Sets of Morraccas .. continued

The morraccas have patiently been sitting on my side table ... waiting ...
I'd been planning on putting the paints away, some soldering practice is calling me, but there they were ... patiently waiting.

So, took them outside, set up the spray paint area and added some spray stencils.    Let dry for a couple hours then brought in and put some writings on the larger red set.   I felt the orange were so small that writing would be overkill.   I'll plan on finishing Thursday.

November 01, 2009

The incredible art of Karal Soto

I had the recent pleasure of making acquaitance with Karal Soto, who is the artisan of Sotocap Mania.   Karal creates minature wearable art pieces within the shell of bottle caps.    I have way too many 'little things' hanging around here, and decided to send a few off to her to experiment with.     Well, she so honored me by creating and sending me two pieces in which she incorporated two of the materials ... one a small mardi gras face (which she completely changed the look by adding the tiny hat, and the second, a minature bell, which hangs on the Chrismas Ornament.

These are so delightful !   The precision and details are perfect and, although they look fragile and, certainly, more than sturdy for 'objects of jewelry'.

Check out Sotocap Mania ... such creativity should not be missed !

Leroy, My Beloved Laptop, has Returned Home

Well, as luck would have it, the replacement part was lost in the mail, and the shop, Computer Troubleshooters, were not overly concerned.    Apparently, their entire concept of service being, when the part arrives, we'll fix it.  They also don't work on Saturdays.   So, in a way, they have the customer held hostage.   Since you have to pay $59. to get it estimated, (reduced from your bill when you get it fixed), you can't just become fustrated and walk off with your equipment.   So, 12 days later the part finally shows up (I don't really believe it was lost in the mail; probably just didn't get ordered ... I ship many items and nothing gets lost in the mail).    And, to make a sad situation happy ... Leroy is home and fixed.    Yaaa ... No more big clunky chair, but pure comfort of the couch !!! 

Graffiti Painted Canvas Placemats

Over the last year I created three different sets of painted canvas placemats.   We use these almost exclusively on the dinner table and REALLY LIKE them.   First off, they don't require washing.  When they get dirty, you just wipe off with a sponge.   They don't show any signs of wear and are delightfully fun to have on the table.   They are made from artist grade canvas (not canvas cloth), and I'd think would bend for generations ..

They are easy to make, but can be quite time-consuming.   In case you are so inclined, basically this is how it's done ....

  • I cut a piece of canvas (I buy it in rolls at are 17 yds by 60" wide) that is large enough to create 4 placemats, plus a small amount for other stuff).
  • I painted the entire piece of canvas a bright orange .. It generally takes two coats.   The back side was painted with an orange wash.

  • Then, I took the canvas to the outside 'painting area' and, using a couple stencils, added spray paint. 
  • After sufficient drying time, brought back in the house, and using a purple permenant marker, added some writings.

  • Pulled out my containers of rubber stamps and painted, and added additional colors and designs. 
  • Cut the canvas to 4 pieces at 19" x 15"
  • Turned over 1/2" all the way around and stitched. 
I made 5 sets altogether, which I plan on listing in my shop (although I'm loving a couple sets myself). 

Fleur-di-Fish, Art Guitar in Red

I finished this guitar yesterday afternoon and attached a D-Hook to the back for hanging this morning.    Let's see ..
  • Re-attached the hardware.
  • Bought a new set of unmatched strings (couldn't find where I put the old strings; guess I must have thrown them out, which isn't like me at all).
  • Strung some beads randomly on the strings.   
  • Attached two 'found object' fish and some beads to the bottom of the strings.
  • Beads, buttons strung and weaved around among the upper section (can't remember the official name of this area).  
  • There's also some odds & ends added here and there ... some gold washers, a Fleur-de-Leis, round belt components, etc.  

Officially finished.   I'm not planning on putting this in my shop.   I like these guitars as wall art in my studio.