Saturday, December 4, 2010

{Fabric Saturday} Alice Apple...

Ok, so Friday turned into Saturday rather quickly for me. The days are starting to blend together a bit. However, I have fun fabric find to share with you for Fabric Friday. Do you ever see something that someone made and wonder where they got their fabric? I do all of the time. I bought this great little dog plush from  Alice Apple about a year ago & had been drooling over the bright, cheerful fabrics that she used for her creations ever since. 

I recently visited the Alice Apple website and discovered that Alice Burrows (of Alice Apple)  is now selling her fabric designs through Spoonflower! I think it is so wonderful that we live in a time that designing you own fabric is so accessible, along with being able to buy other independent designers fabrics as well. The nice thing is that you can select your favorite colors & design - then select the kind of fabric that you would like it printed on. 

Alice's love of vintage fabric comes through her designs which is why I respond to them so strongly. Plus, how could you not smile when you look at them? What would you make with her fabrics? Happy Fabric Fraturday!
{images via here & here -except the dog one is mine}

Thursday, December 2, 2010

{Thread Drawings} From Heads to Figures...

As if I wasn't busy enough, I took on a new project a few weeks ago. You may remember me mentioning awhile back in a post , that Chris & I were recently contacted about creating some new art pieces for an upcoming gallery show. The deadline was really tight but we both took on the challenge. The gallery opening is this weekend & Chris is dropping off our work today. I wanted to share a bit of the history behind what I ended up making... 

Back in 2005, I started fiddling around with drawing in thread on the sewing machine using free-motion sewing- relying on my ability to draw more than my ability to sew. The first images that I ever drew were people. They weren't people I knew, they were just made up characters. I ended up framing about 18 of them. Since then, they have been in different shows, I sold some and the rest ended up on our bedroom wall. I did start drawing birds, nests & other woodland creatures shortly after -which paved the way for my thread drawing tees, pillows, mobiles, & prints. You can see an example of how I draw in thread here

The gallery that contacted me was interested in my thread portraits, but also liked the  untraditional format of my screen of printed lino block portraits (on vintage patterns) too. I had been thinking about making figures in the same free-motion drawing method for some time so this gave me an opportunity to play around with that idea a bit.  One of the  tricky things, is that I don't draw things out on the canvas first. I can't really see it at that angle under that machine & I lose concentration in the actual drawing if  I try to follow lines. So, I really just go with the flow. For the figure, I needed to draw the head & the body separately. If I work with too much fabric, the drawing becomes even more difficult, not to mention, I can't judge perspective accurately from  where I am sitting behind the machine. I really had to cross my fingers that the bodies & head would work together. But then I gave myself another challenge- I decided to draw the backs of the figures too.....

To say that these characters are quirky, is an understatement. But I do like the way that they turned out. I really love how the two figures relate to each other too. I did them on different days and never intended for them to be displayed together. They ended up being, "Circus Lady" & "Circus Man" quite organically.  This process is really interesting for me because it uses the right side of my brain when I draw- but the left side of my brain to actually sew & make sure that I don't sew over my fingers. When I am done- I'm usually cross-eyed and 100% spent. I like the sculptural quality that the figures have & hope to continue to explore making more figures when I have time. I have to say, I've enjoyed making new "fine art". It was also really fun to have Chris & I both in studio mode into the wee hours. I would go to my studio (in the attic) & Chris would go to his (in the basement) every night. Last night we met in the kitchen at about 1:30am - bleary eyed & rummy - excitedly chatting about what we had made. Those are times I really enjoy & I'm grateful I married another artist. It's Sayer's morning wake up call at 6am that is a little tough. So that's what I've been up to (aside from filling KLT orders). I'll take my camera to the opening to see what I can capture. Oh, and l will definitely show you what Chris ended up making too. That's worthy of it's own post. Thanks to those of you that encouraged me in the last few weeks. I really appreciate it! I think I had better head to bed now... it is officially tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

{Everyday Inspiration} Close to my heart...

The minute I became a mom, I was on the lookout for a special locket. For some reason, finding one hasn't been easy. It had to be the right combination of unique & artistic - simple & nostalgic. Oh, and in my budget.  I've been really patient because I knew I would find the right one.

Thankfully, I stumbled on The Blue Balloon Etsy Shop. I knew when I saw Marie's work (& read her "about me" section) that I didn't need to look any further for my locket. She has so many beautiful lockets to choose from that it literally took me a month to narrow down my favorites. She is also a photographer and uses her own images for her jewelry and other shop treasures. It was when I saw the Cold Water vintage locket,  that I finally made my choice. I was immediately drawn to the water. Working with Marie made my new locket even more special. I sent her one of my favorite pictures to use on the inside. I chose one of Chris & Sayer in the water that I took on our trip to Cap Cod two summers ago. It was our first east coast trip with Sayer  to visit Chris' side of the family. 

Here it is - the inside of my new locket!  I just got it in the mail yesterday and it's just beautiful! The whole process was really enjoyable and I'm so glad I waited for the perfect fit. If you are looking for a special & unique gift this holiday season (or something special for yourself) you should really check out the The Blue Balloon. It's handmade, vintage goodness... 
Thanks Marie- I just love this sweet necklace!
{first two images via Blue Balloon}

Monday, November 29, 2010

{Music Monday} gives me goosebumps...

Nick Drake has been playing in my studio a lot lately- both from my cd's & Nick Drake radio on Pandora. My all time favorite song of his is Northern Sky (from Bryter Layter) - I probably listened to it 20 times or more this weekend. Whenever I hear it, I ALWAYS think of John Cusack.... which isn't a bad thought at all. Did you see the movie Serendipity? Do you remember that scene I am talking about?  It still gives me goosebumps... 

This is one of those movies that I will stop what I am doing and watch it if is playing on tv - even though I've seen it a million times. It's sort of like, When Harry met Sally, like that. It makes me feel good, gives me hope, & a shiver.  The song is beautiful & it fits that scene perfectly. It's a good time of year to feel sort of magical & hopefully about life, don't you think?  Happy Music Monday

Sunday, November 28, 2010

{Everyday Inspiration} four fun finds # 4

Cozy weather & the holidays inspired this mini collection. Here are four fun finds that keep me thinking about the idea of "home"....

1. This Peter Rabbit Cabin Ornament stole my heart immediately when I saw it.  Chris has been making little cabin ornaments & garlands at hutch studio lately & I adore them. He uses recycled, vintage children's books- in this case, Peter Rabbit. I first saw the storybook cabin garlands on the hutch studio FB page & immediately inquired about them when he came home.

2. I actually own a little Alice Apple plush dog that I find really sweet. The new House & Apple cushions caught my eye when I was checking out what's new in her shop.

3. This dollhouse from Ferm Living is really smart. The house is wallpapered with Ferm Living wallpaper designs & it's easily foldable. 

4. Not an afterthought at all, this print by Hollie Chastain called, "Afterthought"  has been in my "Etsy Favorites" for a little while now. 

Hope you are having a nice weekend! What makes you think of "home"?


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