Saturday, December 12, 2009

Shuswap Landscape

This fibre art landscape is the view of Shuswap Lake looking west towards Scotch Creek and Sorrento. It measures 22" x 35" and is constructed of hand-dyed and hand-painted fabrics. A photo of the actual view follows. The art quilt was commissioned by the home owner.

There is additional texture in the foreground trees, created by the use of cheesecloth, tulle and little snips of fabric that were stitched to represent shrubs. The sky has a layer of organza over the surface.

This wall quilt has been delivered to the owner where it looks beautiful hanging on the gorgeous log wall. SOLD

Thursday, November 19, 2009

A trio of purses

A short while ago I received an email from someone who had purchased one of my little purses through my Etsy shop . . . with an inquiry about whether I might be interested in creating a purse for each of three of her friends . . . to remind them of the costumes they wore to a masquerade recently.

I was sent photos of each of the costumes and given complete freedom to create . . . what fun! You can click on the photos to see more detail of the purses.

Here are photos of the costumes (with permission) and the bags that I created, as well as the costume and the bag that I made for the customer initially (I didn't know it was to go with a particular dress.) The costume photos are a bit small but I think you will see enough to know where the inspiration came from.

The first purse was made for the "ice witch". The purse is made of black and white dupioni silk that is pieced in a soft curve and is beaded in black and white . . . with a few of the black beads drifting into the white and a few of the white beads drifting into the black. The strap is also both black and white and it is lined with charcoal cotton.

The second purse was made for this costume that I initially had a bit of trouble identifying . . . but we referred to her as an "owl person" as her costume included a beautiful cascade of feathers down the back as well as around her neck and she had an owl perched on her shoulder. The bag is constructed of brown silk noile and has a little black tulle ruffle at the bottom of the flap which echoes the ruffle beneath the hem of her dress. The purse is stitched to look like a tree trunk and has "moss" and "fir boughs" made of thread lace that I constructed separately and then added. There are a few feathers tucked secured under the branches and a smooth polished stone weighs the flap closed.

The third purse was made for this "princess". I was concerned about matching the colour of her dress so I was delighted when my customer was able to obtain a piece of the fabric that it was made from (the photo of the purse was taken indoors and the colour appears different from the dress -- but it is the same!). The flap on the purse has been made in the same shape as the top of the dress and beaded to invoke memories of this beautiful gown. It is lined with silver dupioni silk.

The final costume is my delightful customer who commissioned these purses and her purse, which was made for her a couple of months before the other three. All she told me at the time was that she would like to have a purse that was black with silver stitching . . . the one I made is constructed of black dupioni silk and the swirls are metallic silver thread as are the beads. The beads on the lower edge of the flap help to weigh it closed. There are also more beads on the back of the purse.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Liturgical stole for Sorrento Centre

This summer I created a stole for Sorrento Centre that co-ordinates with the banner that Val and I made for them three years ago.

The stole depicts the beach, lake, mountains, and sky that are so much a part of Sorrento Centre and the cross hanging in St. Francis Chapel is at the back of the neck.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Wristlet key fobs

It seemed like it might be a good idea for me to have a few low-priced items on my table at the local craft sales so I have made some of these fun little wristlet key fobs. They are a popular item online and I have not seen any around here so have made up a few to try out at this week's sale. Most people make them with ribbon on a webbing base but I have made mine with fabric of course and, some are on a webbing base and some are fabric-wrapped Timtex with another piece of fabric sewn on top. One of them is a pieced strap (I like it best, of course, but it takes longer to make those. . .) and if I have time I will make a few that are truly fibre art.

The wristlet part is about 10" long and slips over your wrist but fits securely enough that you won't drop your keys. I have made a few that are a bit larger as well because I think that people with larger hands would need a bigger one. The hardware clamps onto the wristlet and has a split key ring. These are great for putting into your purse, too, because the wristlet has a distinctive shape so you can find your keys easily.

I have a bit of a concern about selling something like this when my table is, otherwise, just my fibre art purses, cards and landscapes. I don't want people to think that I'm going "bazaar-like" because that's not my intent. But, I'll take the chance this week and see what the reaction is . . . if I don't sell any of the fibre art I'll have to reassess:) Let me know what you think . . .

Friday, November 6, 2009

Pre-Christmas Sales

I'm getting ready to do a couple of local pre-Christmas sales and the first one is tomorrow at the Cedar Centre just down the road. I will be selling my little purses as well as greeting cards and landscapes. I will also do another craft sale next Saturday in Sorrento.

Norm made me a great "tree" on which to display my purses and I think it should work well. It is made from dowels and I have washed it with a dark blue paint so that it still shows the wood but blends in with the dark blue table covers that I use. I have eighteen purses ready and they should all fit on the tree.

Here's a pic of the bed in the spare room . . . the gathering place for everything. I am very fortunate that my stock is easy to transport and set up . . . I look at some people who have very bulky and/or heavy items and I'm glad that mine is easier to move about.

The landscapes are a bit more difficult to display but I use an easel with a ceiling tile that is covered with flannelette to hold a couple of them and others go in seagrass baskets on the tabletop.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Forest Fire postcard

In August and September this year we had an uncomfortably close experience of a forest fire burning only a few kilometers from our home. The Mt. Hilliam fire at Notch Hill consumed many hectares of forest while blanketing the area with smoke and it came within spitting distance of some homes and businesses . . . but the firefighters build guards around it and extinguished the fire within that guard . . . and our winter rain and snow will extinguish any smoldering pockets that remain by that time.

I have wanted to express the fire in fibre art and this postcard is the size that I chose. This postcard is 4" x 6" and is created on a piece of hand-dyed dark blue cotton. The branches on the trees are dark green hand dyed cheesecloth and the fire in the tree tops and the bit on the ground is created by needle-felting dyed wool roving. A few fibres of orange cheesecloth flare up. The ground cover foliage is created with little snips of cotton and a few bits of the orange cheesecloth representing the falling sparks. It is then covered with black tulle and then quilted to Timtex. There is a beige cotton backing for writing my message and the edges are couched with black rayon cording and then a black yarn that looks just like the ashes of the needles from the fir trees that landed on our deck during the fire. The photo is pretty dark in spite of my photographing it outside on this sunny afternoon . . . please click on the photo to see the detail.

The Salmon Arm Gallery of Art is currently accepting art postcards from around the world and I will send this one in (even if Salmon Arm is only about 25km from here -- I am from "out of town") in recognition of the residents who were evacuated from their homes, farms and businesses in the area and of the firefighters from our local area as well as those who came from across Canada and from as far away as Australia and New Zealand to fight the fire.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Yet more purses

There can't be too many more new purses, can there?? Oh, yes -- here are a couple that haven't appeared in the blog yet -- and there are a few more waiting to be photographed so you'll just have to check back for them.

The bag created in the autumn colours is one that I made a few months ago but I've been having a hard time getting a good photo of it. It is slightly larger than my usual little bags (by maybe one inch) and the lines are much more geometric than my usual flowing swirly lines. Click on the photo for a zoom view.

The turquoise and dark brown bag is made from an Amy Butler fabric and is lined with a batik that echoes some of the colours.

Both these bags are in my Etsy shop, too, with photos of the inside as well.

Thanks for looking.

Friday, September 18, 2009

More little purses

I have been having lots of fun creating new little purses lately so here are a few more that have emerged this week. . . I'll add some more photos of others in the next while.

Most of these little bags are approximately 6" x 7" (give or take an inch) and have a strap that is long enough to wear across your body.

The first photo is of the detail on the flap of the purse that is shown on the model. I have included the model photo so that you can get an idea of the size and the way these little purses fit.

The third photo shows a bag that was made from re-purposed fabric given to me by a fibre art friend (so I'm not sure of the fibre content). The design and stitching is part of the original fabric and I have simply created a purse from it (this one has a little buttoned pocket on the inside, too) and then I added the bead cluster on the lower flap and bead trails on the front and back of the purse. The fabric has some "pleats" in part of it which adds to the texture and interest.

The brightly coloured bag was so much fun to make with leftovers from a quilt -- the little circles and ovals are added and stitched in layers and it has a wonderful bright lining in similar tones.

Friday, September 4, 2009

New little purses

I have been making a few little fibre art purses this week, after being encouraged by the sale of one of them in my Etsy shop. If you are not familiar with Etsy, you can visit it at Etsy is somewhere for artisans to sell their handmade items online. I had been about to close down my shop there since I had only sold one item in my nine months online -- and then someone found my shop and emailed me that she was interested in a purse and purchased one that I made especially for her. Since I had to upload that item for her to purchase, I decided I might as well add a few others and I'll see if there is any more action over the next few months (items are listed for four months at a time).

Anyway . . . that's a bit of an explanation that you probably didn't need to hear but the sale has resulted in a lot of fun creativity this week and quite a few new purses that I thought I would also post on my blog. There are a couple more almost finished and I will try to remember to post them when I have them completed and photographed.

If you click on the photos you will see more of the detail that I used on each of the purses.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Freehand curves jacket

I have designed this comfy jacket that I will be teaching as a class this fall so thought I would let you see how it looks.

The curved piecing is all freehand and the flowing lines give a new look to the jacket.

The sample is made on beautiful turquoise sweatshirt that was "de-constructed" and then sliced and styled before being used as the base for the curved pieced fabric that was created. There is a binding around all the raw edges and a pocket on the inside front.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Finny Fantasy

This wall hanging started out as one of the samples for an upcoming embellishment class but I soon realized it was too large a project for this particular class -- and the theme might not have been the greatest for a bag (which it was to become) . . . but what a wonderful image for the wall! With a bit of creative cutting and re-positioning, the large fish and the smaller fry are heading off in search of who-knows-what. Of course, there's always one who wants to swim against the tide. You might have noticed that the fabrics are the same as those I used to create the fibre art purse in the previous posting . . .

Click on the image to see more of the details that include layering sheers, encasing glitter, layering gold netting and hand beading. It measures approximately 45" wide by 18" high.

Updated July 11, 2009 -- "Finny Fantasy" won a Juror's Choice Award at the Shuswap Lake Festival of the Arts in Sorrento this week.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Embellishment class samples

grey green purse front
grey green purse insideThese are photos of the two sample purses I have made for an embellishment class I will be teaching later this winter.

The greyish-green purse with the golden brown lining has been embellished with a burned organza flower and free-motion dimensional organza leaves. There is swirly stitching and hand beading as well. It looked so classy that I didn't want to add any more embellishment to it so I chose to make a second sample with some other techniques.

dragonfly purse backThe second purse has a dragonfly theme (seen them around here before, have you?) with some of the dragonflies being stamped then cut apart and puzzle-pieced together in different combinations. The largest dragonfly has wings made of three shades of Angelina and a thread-painted body. dragonfly purseThere are also smaller dragonflies stitched into the design swirls. Other techniques include layering sheers (some with bits of glitter layered in there), top-stitching, couching decorative yarns, beading, and hand embroidery. This purse is more casual than the flowered one, and would go well with denim or weekend attire.

These little purses measure approximately 5-6" x 7-8" and are perfect for those times when you don't need to carry your whole life with you -- it will hold a small cell phone, keys, drivers' license, money, and lipstick. Or -- on a cruise they will carry your necessities without burdening you with a large bag.