Thursday, October 29, 2009

More Hooked Wool

Since I had a large piece of burlap that I was hooking random pieces on I wanted to finish as much of the surface area I could before cutting up the individual elements. The reason is, once I cut into the burlap foundation it will not longer fit on my hooking frame. I was still able to save enough of the burlap to use on my frame later, but I was ready to finish these pieces. As well as a bunch of hooked flowers to put in my Etsy shop. The Crow was finished months ago and posted on The Welcome Mat. I knew I wanted to make more wool covers for my finished Moleskine journals, so I got busy.
Man, it's tough to shoot these picture and have the color come out right. I have been playing the the white balance, but unsure of what exactly I am doing. Just sort of pushing buttons. Similar to what I do in Photoshop!

I really love natural backgrounds when hooking. Many Hookers I know, (yes, that is what we call ourselves) can hook designs with dark backgrounds and add the colors without them getting lost or losing contrast.
This Crow Under the Stars was hooked almost too large to fit on a Moleskine cover. And of course, on my journals you can see many paint splotches. I never worry about getting things on the outside of my journals, it just adds to the story. Besides I usually embellish the cover after the journal is filled. It is easier to work in that way, especially when adding bulky hooked elements. I adhere them with Fabric-Tac. It grips so well and stays for ever. I am not worried about archival, but if you are, you can use Gel Medium (regular or heavy). I have used that also, but it is a good idea to rest a heavy book on top of the piece while it is drying.
Watch my Etsy shop for more wool flowers blooming!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Sweater Books

Ok, so I was inspired to create some more wool ideas I had rolling around in my head. I love my little hooked flowers but wanted to do more with them. Not everyone wants to wear flower pins, so I decided how about a journal? I love journals, making them, looking at them, holding them, writing/art journaling in them and have I a good collection....many, many are filled and of course some partially filled. I decided a long time ago that partially filled books were absolutely fine. Why stress about filling them up, especially in a linear fashion? No doubt I have many journals filled. I also keep little sketch books of ideas and illustrations I collect along the way. Blah, blah, blah.....

So back to my inspired day, yesterday. I wanted to do something with some old sweaters I had grabbed from the Salvation Army last year, which I felted and then stashed on my fabric shelf. I knew these flowers needed a fabric background if they were to be used on a book cover. I came up with the coziest little Sweater Journals, which I adore. I used blank index cards for the pages and recycled boards from old legal pads, etc. (yes, I save them) for the book board. I had to paint the edge of the board to match the sweater and choose a inside wool for lining. Then needle felted the stems from my stash of wool roving, that I bought from a fellow Etsian PrimnProper, it was a huge bag of roving filled with many colors that I got on sale for under $10.00! I then punched out my book board and index cards using the Bind-it-All machine by Zutter, and sewed my sweaters onto the boards, just around the edges. Then I trimmed the edges and bound the book and adhered my cute wool flowers. And yes there are imperfections in the sewing.....more wonk, like I do so well. Well let's just say 'perfectly imperfect'.

So, get out your old abandoned wool sweaters, felt them and make Sweater Books.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

I've Been Rug Hooking!

Well, ok nothing major, but the weather has me in the mood for some hooked projects. Hooking in the summer doesn't really feel right to me, I am usually working in my journal and carving stamps....or maybe making a quilted book or two.
I have a little set up of some bamboo boxes (filled with wool and supplies) next to a chair in a corner in my living room so I can get in a few minutes of hooking here and there, when we are busy living our family life. Since I am not really working on any big pieces right now, (or more accurately avoiding the long runner I started years ago from a pattern by Primitive Spirit, which sits rolled ontop of my wool bin...)I am making some more flowers for pins and some more small patches that I will make into door hangers or adhere to my some my filled Moleskine journals that need some fiber on the cover. These these little hooked pretties are on burlap which isn't my favorite support to hook on, but I am using what I had. Watch my Etsy shop for these pieces becoming sellable products. Holidays are coming....and I have a new idea for the flowers.
Anyway, here is a picture of my corner,.........complete with my faithful Golden Retirever (Red Golden), Leo. We adopted him accidently from the MSPCA several years ago on my son's birthday. We had gone out for breakfast and decided to drop by on the way home, and register our name for a future adoption. We ended up leaving with Leo. He was a year and a half and perfectly trained. We scored! Anyway, he is constantly at my side. My daughter says he pouts when I am gone and my husband says, I am Leo's Goddess. Well, at least someone gives me the god-like respect I so deserve. And yes, there are piles, bags and boxes of wool strips. You can imagine the lint, fuzz, and miscellaneous fiber that accumulates in this little corner of the my world. But who has time to clean when there is time to create!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Quilted Pillow

Fall is such a great time to play with fibers. With my Mother-in-law's birthday coming up I decided it was time to try this Wonky Log Cabin block I got from Quilt Dad. He has other versions of Wonky Log Cabin blocks that look fun to try.
Since I am not a precision sewer and everything I do has a bit of a "wonk" to it anyway, I thought this would be perfect. And it was..."perfectly imperfect". I was actually making two of these at the same time. The other one is not finished. Since I am more of collector of fat quarters, rather than yardage I had to run to The Red Barn and get my sashing fabric and fabric for the back of the pillow. Always an excuse to buy fabric or any kind of art suppy for that matter.
I found this black print with tiny yellow flowers and I just adore it. I think I will go get more to add to my stash. Of course, I had to throw in a few Kaffe Fassett fabric and some batiks. But, I like how the black sashing grounded the whole block. I hope you all are enjoying gorgeous a fall. I know us New Englanders are.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Quilted Collage Journal class

This past weekend, I taught my Quilted Collage Journal on the South Shore, hosted by Marissa, of Broken Branches, she is very talented jewelry maker. Starting far left is Marissa, Me, Rachel, Susan, Mandy, Helga and Elyce. Thanks to all you great, talented women for joining me. And thanks to Marissa' husband, Jim for happily going on food runs for us. We had a fun fiber filled weekend. The fabric was flying....take a look. Here is Marissa, using a skein of fluffy pink fiber for embellishing her journal, which works well as a lovely scarf too!
Susan and Mandy showing off Mandy's handiwork with her Janome 6600 which she used to embroider Susan's name on her outside cover.
Marissa's fabric layout for her outside cover, before she pieced it together. Mandy made an aquatic gem, focusing on her fish fabrics. Some of these she painted and many more came from her stash....which was huge. Sea Life was really happening here. Helga, (Marissa's Mom) who is an experienced seamstress. She enjoyed learning something new and needless to say she finished first. Helga's outside cover embellished with shells and sparkly green beads that she couched inside the spine. Helga's outside back cover. You can really see the detailed stitching she used with her machine. She and Marissa created these fabrics together after my Irresistible Fabric Painting class last week.
Susan's journal was made with cool watery colors with
whimsical bold flowers. You can see she quilted her
inside cover with different colored stitches and topped
it off with cute quilted pocket
Mandy and Susan having fun in class.
Rachel made her outside cover using rich purples,
golds and metallics, and added brown leather.
Rachel in the foreground and Elyce in the other room.
Elyce's vibrant outside cover. She wasn't sure she wanted to
embellish the cover once she finished piecing it, but once
she started.....she didn't want to stop.
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