Thursday, December 29, 2011

Monster Mistake part 2

Medallions from cut up purse overlay
So far, I have the big front piece complete and now will finish working on the neck strap.  I'm thinking that I'll add two more medallions at an angle so the piece will lay flat.  Then I'll use a rope of RAW which I find very strong compared to other bead woven ropes to finish it all off.  Doubt if I get it done before New Years Eve but then where am I going to wear this work?  I think not!  But I want to get it done before my birthday next week.

Monster Mistake necklace without the neck strap

Here also is a picture of me at Christmas dinner.  I was able to eat soft food so having our annual Christmas dinner at China Dynasty was just perfect.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Monster mistake

You know sometimes after you've been working on a project for over two weeks, you've just got to give up on it and move on.  I did this to a purse project.

Fabric insert with glass blobs attached
I bought a big purse in a thrift store loving the shape of it and thought it would look great with a newly fabric and beaded covering.  I picked out a really fun looking fabric, glued some flat back marbles on it.  Then to give it a Scottie flare, I went through all my old jewelry and found a cute pin to use.  Then I started to work on it.  And I worked. And I worked. And I worked.  I finally was happy with the beading making sure that at least 50% of the fabric was still visible.  Then I attempted to put the covering on the actual purse.  It was a disaster.  Luckily I hadn't glued it down yet or else I could never have salvaged a thing.  I had it all pinned on and was looking at the piece from every angle.  Suddenly, my brain just said this is a big monster mistake.  First off the piece of jewelry didn't match the beading. Then the actual overlay on the purse looked even worse. So I took it all off and threw it on my worktable vowing to never try that trick again.  The shape of the purse was just all wrong for attempting this in this manner.

So it sat there for only a day when out came the scissors and I began to cut it up.  At first I was going to take all the beading off, but luckily my wits stopped me short saying what was I doing after two weeks of work. So I stopped and rethought the destruction process.  Then I cut each of the pieces apart and sat them aside playing with this like pieces of puzzles.  A flash! This was going to become a necklace instead.  So now I've been playing around weaving all these pieces together.  Oh it is one big necklace.  I haven't any photographs of the actual necklace construction, but that will come later.  I'm just hoping this works out as what will I do with a huge monster necklace?

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Happy Holidays

From Dot, Chris, Fiona, Frodo, and Arwen

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas to all

Pam's Santa doll & Mary's wee mouse
Merry Christmas to all my followers out there.  I'm so blessed to have you all helping me with my problems and my successes this past year.  It has been a roller coaster ride for me, and you've all been my rock.

Christmas Party Dolls

Dot's Doll (Jinty)
Evelyn's doll

Mary's doll

Mary's second doll

Mary and Pam

Mickey's doll (Santa's Ho)

Sue's doll

Mickey & Mary's dolls

Vera's doll

Last Sunday, I felt well enough to head up to Akron for our Time for Doll's Christmas party.  It was so much fun to get together with this small group of friends to share our year with food, laughter, and dolls.  This year we all brought our challenge dolls to share. The theme was Christmas so how perfect.  We met at Craft Akron which has a fabulous studio space, but I must admit that the lighting wasn't the best for picture taking as everything had a yellowish tint to it.  Plus, one of the dolls which was so amazing wound up being out of focus, but I am showing it anyway.  I got a little workout with Photoshop doing these so I had to brighten them up and adjust the color hues (without help from Chris).  So please excuse some of the images and blame the photographer.  ME!  Anyway, enjoy some of Christmas dolls made with love by the ladies of Time For Dolls.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Christmas Anyone???

Christmas is going to be a very quiet affair here this year.  At least I hope I don't get influenza on Christmas Eve like last year so I'm going to knock on some wood.  We decided to not put up a tree this year.  Just can't seem to get into the mood.  Maybe because I can't eat anything delicious & Chris' funky after getting the steroid injection into his back.  My family is doing things separate which seems to be more and more frequent as we all get older.  This will be the first year that Grandma isn't coming up to stay with Mom for the holiday either.  Only thing really planned is that we'll be going to China Dynasty for Christmas dinner with my sister, her new friends, & at least one of my nieces.

Tomorrow though, I am going up to Akron for a Christmas party. We did have a challenge for this year's party.  We all are suppose to make a Christmas themed dolls.  At first I had this ideas of making a Santa from this primative Santa pattern, but it was huge!  I got to thinking where would I put this thing after I made it?  So I got out all the other patterns I had bought at AFIC last May & came upon Jinty the Sewing Elf from Leslie Molen.  He came with a premolded face so all I had to do was put cloth over clay (her pattern used felt, but I think the cloth looks much better).  Then I used my gel pins to color his face (she recommended paints). I hand stitched all his clothes and even hand stitched the bunny using quilt batter to make it look more rustic.  He's sitting on a quilted ornament I also made.  I think he's adorable.  So tomorrow he's heading up with me for show & tell.  I've seen one other doll for the challenge that Pam made & it is amazing.  I've got to remember to take my camera with me.

I've been watching a whole lot of True Blood on HBOgo.  I'm such a vampire girl.  Love most of the stories except the Twilight stuff.  Just can't get into that one.  Maybe I'm just too old for the teenager romance angle.  While watching the episodes of True Blood on my lap top, I've been working on a purse top.  Oh I got one side all done & went to put it on the purse that I got at the thrift store, and it just looked so funky that I got my scissors out & cut it up.  I guess the "redo" button was pushed.  So now to take all that work & try to figure out what to do with it.  Guess it might come in handy for some future jewelry/box project.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Daryl & Edward

Thought I'd go ahead and show both of the boys together. You can really see how both though made at the same time look so totally different.

Met Edward & Mick

While I was making Daryl & Mike, I also cut out & sewed up a companion piece Edward with his bunny Mick. Though I made them both at the same time, Edward's face turned out a whole lot different than Daryl. Needle sculpting really puts character into a dolls face. You can sit there and do them one after the other & no two will be quite the same.
Mall shopping was iffy yesterday. I walked through a couple of stores before my jaw started to hurt so I called it all off. Found a couple things for Chris, but nothing I really wanted. I was going to try on a jacket at Sears, but thought "why?". I already have too many jackets as it is.

Today we are going to see the new Sherlock Holmes movie. Gotta run. Fiona is barking to come in.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Daryl & Mike

I love making new trolls from Ute's Oggie pattern. I can't stop! It is an addiction, but a very fun addiction. I sew up the pieces, then go through all my stash of socks and fabric to dress each up differently. These are my two new dolls. The first is Daryl and his bunny Mike. Daryl is wearing a pair of monkey socks that my niece gave to me. The bunny slippers were bought at Joann's. I made Mike out of left overs from Arwen's crate fabric. The hair is from a feather boa I had hanging around.

I'm feeling better now. Tried to eat a Wendy's hamburger last night but it was so cold and greasy that I gave up & just had an orange instead. Probably was better for me. Today is is warm outside, but gray & gloomy. I can't let that stand in my way as I need to get out to buy some Christmas presents. I really hate going to the Mall but since it is only 5 minutes from the house at least I don't have to drive for hours. Usually I find a close place to park in the back so no problem there. Now I just hope that the crowds are in a better mood than last time I was over there. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

December going fast

I just can't believe that here we are half way done with December. I've been missing in action here because I had some oral surgery last week. I need to have three gum grafts, and I'm so happy that I had it all done at once as I would never have gone back if I had had them done one at a time. I basically have four holes in my mouth right now. I haven't been able to eat anything solid for this whole week, and I'm so missing out on all this holiday foods. Which maybe isn't too bad of a thing as I really don't need to gain any of that predicted holiday pounds. Haven't gone out much except to buy more soup or dog food, so I've had plenty of time down in the ArtCave experimenting with Hal (my Janome sewing machine) and all the beads I've accumulated. The dogs have been happy that I've been home. Arwen has made herself my nurse. The first night I was home, she slept outside my bedroom not letting Chris near. Then when I finally got up, she sat next to me licking my hand. She wanted to lick my jaw, but I had to say no there. She also has been sleeping with me at night, and I must say that I've been enjoying having a furry warm bed partner with these cold frosty mornings.

I've missed out on several things here in Columbus. Didn't make it to the Guilded Lily Christmas party nor did I make it to a retirement party for a coworker. One good thing with all this is that WOW our cable provider finally gave us HBOgo. I'm so thrilled as now I can watch all the HBO shows while I'm downstairs working on projects. What am I watching...True Blood. I watched the first year from NetFlix and was waiting to get the other seasons, but now with HBOgo, I don't have to wait at all. They are ALL there! So lap top is downstairs with me. Sorry TCM, but HBOgo has hooked me.

This Sunday I am going up to Akron for the Time for Dolls Christmas party. I'm sure I'll be ready to drive up there by then. Probably still won't be able to eat any of the delicious holiday party food, but I'll get to be with my fellow doll makers enjoying food, laughs, displaying our holiday challenge dolls and the exchange. This year we are exchanging pincushions. I had no idea how in the world to make pincushions, so I went to my file & pulled out some patterns I've bought over the years. So I came up with these two pincushions. Not sure which one I'll exchange. The Elvis one actually has the head off of the Inca Prince by Barbara Schonoeff as it was just sitting there wanting me to use it for something. I think it kinda looks like a post peanut butter and banana sandwich Elvis who just got out of bed. The other is from Marcia Acker-Missel's pattern. I spent hours playing around embellishing it. Don't know if there is room for actual pins!

And just a reminder that you have two more days to enter the big Lark book give away. Over 30 books can be yours if you leave a comment at this link.

More later. I have been a sewing maniac.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Button necklaces

Are you like me & can resist that jar of buttons whenever you head out to a flea market? I just can't help myself. I found this big jar of metal buttons for only $12 at a local market. It has been sitting on the shelf over my work desk for month now just taunting me. So when I started to experiment with doing RAW I looked up and an idea popped into my head. Why not use these as cabochons for necklaces. As in the top picture, you can use them in a piece that incorporated more than one cab as they are all uniform in size so you don't have to figure out the count with each individual cab and can just whip these puppies out.

Or you can just find one big button with a nice design that is all right being the main focal. And did I say that I've been using up all the seed beads I've been hoarding from the destash over at Byzantium when they closed. Have no fear that I'll run out...the wall of seeds is still very well stocked! Plus, now that I work at 1 Stop, I get the teachers discount so I'll never ever fear of running out ever again.

Friday, December 2, 2011

And now for something different

My brain has been on fire since I came back from Bead & Button in Milwaukee in June. I learned to design with Right Angle Weave with both Marcia De Coster and Carol Wilcox Wells. I knew how to do RAW and had no trouble with my tension, but I was just doing flat pieces that did not excite my imagination at all. So after 4 days and classes with two great Masters, I want to do RAW all the time. I even find myself dreaming of the bead weaving patterns. I have been working up simple chains and bracelets using beads I have on hand including the large amount of cabochons I've picked up over the years. The rest of this week, I'm going to share some of my experiments.

Today is a piece I call Fandango. It is basically a RAW chain embellished with Magatamas. The actual fans are stone cabochons captured in RAW and then attached to the chain using RAW. The tricky part is in the actual attachment. You have to really keep your brain wrapped around the concept of three dimension to get it right. About the only thing I don't like about this necklace is that after wearing it for an hour, the fans seem to no want to remain spread out. I think to make me "happy" with this piece, I'm going to have to take off at least one of the fans and reattach it in a different spot. I wanted these to lay overlapping each other. The drawing board needs to be brought out and more experimenting to make sure this turns out the way that will make me pleased with it.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Another Troll Girl

Please Welcome Arline to the Lewallen household. She's going to be joining the family of Trolls residing in Dot's upstairs studio. Arline is from Ute's Oggie pattern. This time i just wanted to try to make a smaller nose, but as you can see Trolls just want big honkers. Arline is wearing a lovely sweater made from one of Shannon's monkey socks. I love the hair. I went crazy using some old yarn I had sitting in a box with other UFO projects. Arline does need some prop for her to have in her hands. I think I might have some miniature water cans and gardening implements somewhere.