Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Oh! Domino!

So I was given a challenge to do an “altered domino” which I have never done before and since I love a challenge, I decided to go for it. What fun! I am in love with those Adirondack alcohol inks---I just love how the colors mix and roll and you end up with fantastic patterns and color combinations. I started out altering one large domino…. and then decided to do a couple dice (the eyes)…which led to doing a couple small dominos (the shoes). Here is my final creation:

I call her ‘No Dice: Guardian Angel for the Bad Things Come in 3’s” Syndrome. Get it? domi-No Dice?

Well… I thought it was clever.

I actually learned a few things from this project:

A. dominos are very easy to drill into. Who knew. You can also carve into them with a Dremel tool--which I did but it's hard to see in the pic.

B. I like playing with wire. Probably cuz it’s so pliable. That’s a hard quality to find in anything these days.

C. I need a new tube of E6000 adhesive. It’s really rubbery in the tube. Does that mean it’s too old?

I’ve got a bunch of dominos left so I’m thinking there’s a bunch of little characters just waiting to make their debut. Woo Hoo!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Dress Stress

Ever notice that no matter how much you plan, organize, itemize, or prioritize…sometimes it just all goes to hell in a hand-basket in the blink of an eye?

Case in point, it's prom season (once again) and, once again, I am designing and sewing the “perfect dress” for my very sweet-but-opinionated, fashion-conscious DD’s senior prom. My goal was to have said dress done in a day or two so I could get on with other pressing matters. “Shouldn’t take more than a day or so” I thought, since this dress is a fairly simple design…won’t require a lot of fit adjustments…minimal embellishment, etc.…. Piece ‘o cake, right?


So I get it all cut out, have the bodice all basted together, all the straps sewn up and am starting to sew up the front skirt panels (mind you, it is floor-length) when, to my horror, I spot (again, pardon the pun) a very noticeable, glaring WHITE BLOTCH on the fabric where apparently the dye machine must have had a seizure or something. And where does this blindingly-white splotch land? RIGHT SMACK DAB IN THE MIDDLE OF THE SKIRT FRONT! ….. 3 letters…..OMG! [followed by a string of VERY colorful expletives which I won’t repeat here….just use your imagination.]

Now I bought this fabric about a month & a half ago which is good reason to panic. That…..and the fact that the prom is only two weeks away and my DD will be home any minute expecting her first “fitting” in the “dream dress”. Hell hath no fury like a teenage girl without a prom dress. EEGAD! Sooo....I'm running around my studio in a complete panic experiencing the “flight or fight” response first-hand. I’m pulling out ink, dye, paint, heck....even a box of Crayola’s to find the right shade thinking maybe...just maybe… I could camouflage it....


After the cruel reality sunk in that there is NO WAY I could do that and not have it look like a big-white-splotch-in-camoflage, I grabbed my car keys and went speeding off back to the fabric store. “There’s no way….there’s just no way” my head kept chanting, “it’s been too long…they’ll be sold out…..there’s no way….” So I park the car, sprint across the parking lot, fling open the door and race through the store looking like a mad woman who just escaped from a secure mental facility. Of course, it didn’t help that I ran out of the house so fast, I forgot I was wearing my slippers. Yup. Fuzzy ones. I was just about to collapse into a sobbing heap on the floor when suddenly…I looked up….could it be?....omigosh…could it be?

YES! I found it! And lo and behold, there was about 2 yards left on the bolt and I only needed one and a half. THANK YOU LORD! Now, I do NOT have a history of being this lucky but I do believe that my panicked prayers were certainly answered. I came home, cut out two new skirt panels and all is well in the world of prom-dom.

For now.

Friday, April 10, 2009

A Real Needle Case

Although I love looking at vintage-inspired art created by others, I don’t generally tend to lean in that direction. My style is usually a bit more whimsical—probably because I am such a color junkie.
Recently, I decided to take a stab (pardon the pun) at making something with a vintage theme and I have to admit it was fun going thru my stash to find feminine bits of lace, velvet, silk ribbon, etc.

Inspired by the article “Sealed with a Stitch” in the Dec/Jan ‘09 issue of Cloth, Paper, Scissors, I created this vintage-themed needlecase. I printed some copyright-free images onto inkjet cotton and played around with some shrink plastic and rubber stamps to create the embellishments. This was fun to do and would make a nice gift so I’ll have to remember that when the holidays roll around.

But next time, I think I will reach for a bright orange polka-dot fabric, some purple rick-rack and maybe a few hot pink buttons……glittery ones. Oooooo.

Thursday, April 9, 2009


Oh well.....time flies and so did I! Obviously, I've taken a bit of a hiatus from the blogosphere but it was definitely time well spent. In the past several weeks, I've spent days soaking up the sun on a Florida beach, perusing the National Gallery in Washington, DC and pounding the cobblestones in Boston's Market Square. Oh, I love being a grown-up.

Now don't think just because I've been working on my frequent flyer miles that I have been neglecting my creativity. Perish the thought. I have, in fact, been taking a "Painting from Life" class at the art Institute which is actually my first painting class ever. I chose pastel as my beginning medium and so far, I must admit that it is truly a love-hate relationship. I love the saturated color, the immediacy (no waiting for paint to dry) and the possibilities. I just HATE that I don't have command of it yet. I pretty much have NO idea what I'm doing. I am, however, determined that I will persevere and win my battle with this medium--mostly because I have spent so much flippin' money on art supplies and I'm just too cheap to give up now.

This is my very first portrait ever-- of "Liza", who modeled for our class. She probably wouldn't recognize herself...except maybe for the green sweater and her skateboard (which, by the way, ended up being a snowboard since I forgot to add the wheels)--oh, and her dreadlocks. She had great dreadlocks. I actually think I did those pretty well. I just pretended they were felted wool.

What's next? Self-portrait. Oh boy....THIS outta be good.