Sunday, June 28, 2009

Book give-away and podcast on

Jennifer at craftsanity is buzzing with enthusiasm and ideas for craft-niks. She inspired me to start making aprons, denim ones, and then, naturally, one apron developed into three, and then four.
Visit her site for a podcast with me. We speak about fashion, designing, fashion sketching, combining work and family, and naturally, sewing denim cast-offs. I loved meeting Jennifer, who is an amazing mother, journalist and online, craft trailblazer.
Jennifer also is doing a "Denim Revolution" book giveaway! Yes, it's free, just leave a comment on her blog to enter the drawing.
And, a step-by-step how to make the "Hanky Panky Cowgirl" apron in the top photo.
Which can be downsized or done up differently for little girls like in the photo below. (I've discovered it is the perfect outfit for play dates in Central Park, jumping on backyard trampolines and even as a cosy blanket for a sleepy plush puppy.) It's an easy craft project for a lazy summer day.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

More homemade Pin Cushions in Pots

The pin cushions are taking over the studio! As always, I have a well founded excuse. It's just that I have so many rather useless but truly lovely containers that can now serve a purpose -- masquerading as pin cushions. And honestly, they are more often becoming quite useful paper weights with the windows open in the summer time, or, funny little decorations that just appear in the house in unexpected and humorous ways.

Posh Pin Pot
This one, held by a trio of angels, is made out of lovely embossed silk velvets, an olive silk looped cord and topped with this goregeous, chinese hand made silk button.
Orange Pekoe in the Pot
The old chinese tea tin is topped with a retro printed cotton, a polka dot jersey covers the join, and buttons are everywhere, covering joins and adding to the festive character. It looks to me like either a jewerly stand, to keep dimestore jewerly, or to stay as a pin cushion ... hmmm. What do you think!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Pin cushion on a vintage button jar

Okay, I caught the pin cushion bug! Here's another one. This time the cushion is on top of a glass container, maybe from the 30's. I've turned it into a button jar, for storing favorite vintage buttons - and the pin cushion is a patchwork of vintage fabrics encircled with a bit of bandana, topped with - naturally, some vintage buttons. Now, since it was finished, I'm waiting for someone to ask me to sew on a button ... .

Monday, June 8, 2009

Summer hearts, flowers, bees and butterflies is where you can print some lovely cotton or linen cotton blend fabric in one of your own artistic visions or afavorite memento, or order yardage from another artists' original work. I am always amazed and delighted by what I discover there and have entered my fabric, "Sweet Charity" in their their fabric of the week contest.

My design, is centered in a fabric width 42" x 36", printed from a hand drawing by little ole me scattered with love, flowers and bees and butterflies. In the photo just above, it is on a garden table. And naturally, I used it as a backdrop for a screen saver (in the photo down below), ...but it has mostly functioned as a sunscreen taped to our large kitchen, picture window (the top photo.) When I gaze up at it, I think about finishing the edges with some lace or woven braid, or how beautiful it could look in the center of a large quilt, with a pretty floral border, picking up the black and yellow tones...or maybe adding a patched floral and gingham border to fit a larger table...hmmm... Since it is from an original drawing, it is signed once on a repeat, and it is also open to the public domain to purchase at Spoonflower. One repeat is all you need, to gift, sew or brighten up your day. Vote for your favorite fabric - and I hope it's "Sweet Charity" and that I win!

I would love to hear how you would use this cloth.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Another handmade pin cushion

Cherry Blossoms
I'm calling them "Cushy Pots" because they are just that, a cushion snug like a bug, stuffed in a pot.
For this one, the base is a simple, a very plain piece of damaged pottery found for 50 cents, that I covered with strips of cotton printed fabric, and then the cushion, a funky shape, pretty vintage fabric scrap, a bit of lace and gaudy silk flowers taken apart and sprinkled on top.
More to follow but I'd love to hear from you -- your thoughts about Cushy Pots...

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Cocconia - almond scented glue

Charming equipment enhances the joy of handmade. I adore this glue, Coccoina, the little brush, the lovely tin, the sweet almond scent, and a wonderful addition to any craft-nik's box of tools.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Pin cushions to make and enjoy - from flea market finds

I'm busy making pin cushions!
With fun names like "Lady Limoges" and "Orange Pekoe Tea Time." It all began when I found a piece of Limoges pottery in the flea market for 3 Euros, a one of a once pair of candlesticks. A quick decision was taken, without much consideration or consultation that it couldn't be left behind but deserved to be re-cycled into something else that was pretty, useful and decorative.
Much more to follow soon with a tutorial or two!

Monday, June 1, 2009

Trash becomes preschooler's art at Beginnings

Wow, this looks like every craftnik's candy store! Organized household disposables of all varieties have become an integral part of art and self-expression at every age (above they fill the art supply room of a NYC nursery school.)
When confronted with a pile of "trash" and a desire to create, the range of possibilities is full of intriguing surprises. There is something that captures our imagination about the concept of taking something that has been tossed aside because it no longer has a practical use and making it once again a worthy item, of looking with fresh eyes at something that is raised from the junk pile to a thing of beauty. Everyone has their own vision. We incorporate our wishes, dreams, experiences and needs into our re-invention of junk. What better material to work from than the functional, ordinary items that we used to carry to the re-cycle center and are becoming obsolete and precious?