Monday, 30 May 2011

Christmas Through the Year - May

Phew, another nephew's name panel finished for this month:

Ben - front

Ben - back

This time, instead of sewing on a hanging sleeve, I did "fast triangle corners" as recommended by the Alzheimers Art Quilt Initiative. The quilt is just a little one, 13 x 10 inches, so think this will be a fine and dandy way to hang it.

I have now made name banners for four of my six nieces and nephews - just Charlie and Harry to go.

Hop on over to Allie's blog to check out what all the other Christmas Through the Year participants have been crafting up.

And talking of challenges, I have decided that I will join in with Daisy Yellow's Index-Card-a-Day challenge this summer. The idea is to do something creative on an index card each day throughout the summer - be it drawing, painting, doodling, poetry etc. The boys will also be joining in on this one, so I will be posting updates on this blog as well as on my home education blog here. Why not join in too? It's achievable and should be fun :-)

Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Playing with Paints

I've dared to start painting in the Eagle annual!!

I prepped the pages with good ole gesso, then tried watercolour painting, followed by a sprinkle of salt for this background:

prepped Eagle spread

This one I painted, then lifted some of the paint with scrunched up clingfilm:

escape imminent

I decided the plane was worthy of being kept in and was taken with the words from the story: But at this moment, when escape seems so imminent, his hopes are shattered by a firm inexorable downward pull. Not sure where I'm going with this, but just loved the words!

And if immitation is the sincerest form of flattery, then I am thrilled that both my boys have decided to keep their own art journals. Gman (11) is using his to explore feelings, emotions and poetry, so won't be sharing pics, but Waif (6) is enjoying experimenting with paint, collage and mama's stamps and inks. Here's his first spread:

waif - rust

I think it's fab!

I haven't been able to find any kids books on art journalling, so if anybody knows of any, let me know!

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Buried Treasure

buried treasure postcards
I made a set of fabric postcards for the Three Creative Studios postcard swap. The theme this time is "Buried Treasure". As seems to so often be the case these days, my inspiration came from a children's picture book :-). The book is "A Seed is Sleepy" and included in it is this page:

oldest known seed

When I read that, I just knew it had to be my focus for this!

For the background of the cards, I used the same fabric collage technique as my journal quilt for May. I think this is fast going to become one of my favourite ways of building a background. I like the "painterly" feel of it. I then fused the pots and leaves to the background before adding stitching for definition. I was going to make up a template, but instead I just prefused various scraps of brown and green fabrics and cut them to shape as I went along. That way they are all unique. These will be winging their way out on Monday.

Sunday, 15 May 2011

Art Journal Inspirations

I have been doing quite a bit of art journalling these last few weeks. When I started, I figured this would be an exciting, creative journey. Quite unexpectedly, it has turned into something of an emotional and spiritual journey as well. The spreads I am creating are really quite personal and private, hence me not showing many of them on here. However, I am also really getting into the painting, collaging, stamping aspects and would like to explore the journalling further and so I ordered this book:

Art Journal Workshop

It's an excellent guide for those getting started on creating art journals. There are tips and how-to's on the practical things like choosing a book, adding colour to the page, integrating collage items. This practical advice is supplemented with a series of prompts to give you ideas for spreads and these are accompanied by process photos of the author making her spreads on these themes. There is also a DVD with the book, but I haven't got round to watching this (I have always preferred learning from books).

One of the ideas the author gives is to repurpose an old book to use as a journal. I am just about overcoming my childhood reluctance to write in books (even in pencil) so to paint in a book! And stick things in it! And rip pages out! Wow, that would be out of my comfort zone...but then I found this old Eagle book in a charity shop:

Eagle Annual cover

As you can see, it's in a pretty tatty state so I am guessing not worth any more than the £2.50 I paid for it...and it's not really to modern boys' reading


And who could resist the collage potential of pages like these:

eagle annual toadstools
eagle annual bicycles
eagle annual river of life
eagle annual knots


Wednesday, 11 May 2011

Poppy Love


I finished my journal quilt for May, slightly ahead of schedule :-). I made this one using the technique described by Donna Funnell for the 3 Creative Studios Technique of the Month Challenge.

The background is scraps fused to pelmet vilene and then free motion stitched (don't look too closely - FMQ is so not my forte!!). Next I fused the stems in place then cut circles for the poppies from some dupion silk. I didn't fuse these cos I wanted them to flop about like real poppies, so just used a few simple embroidery stitches and the buttons to secure the circles in place.

I am pretty happy with this one, it feels like "me". Dontcha just love poppies?!

Friday, 6 May 2011

Put the kettle on

Now I can share with you something else I made this week :-)

tea for paula front

tea for paula back

It's another mug rug, loosely based on this tutorial from a cuppa and a catch up blog. This time instead of the cup and saucer on the back I went with a teapot. This was a present for my lovely friend Paula. I think she likes it :-)

Thursday, 5 May 2011

Mostly Green

After last week's burst of yellow, this week's WIPs are mostly green :-)

WIP - Ben
Rather shamefully, I didn't manage an April gift for Allie's Christmas Through the Year challenge, so figured I would make an early start on May's. I have pieced another name panel, this time for my nephew Ben. I have quilted by hand and now all that remains is to bind it and add a hanging sleeve. I love these two fabrics together.

WIP - fabric collage

May's journal quilt technique is collage, and fabric collage is also the 3 Creative Studio blog's Technique of the Month so I have made a start on a collage background for this. I gathered together a load of green scraps, plus a little orange and gold shiny bit for "zing" and fused them onto Vilene. Next job is to FMQ all over this to secure the pieces, then I will be adding collage flowers. I am hoping for a lovely spring-like feel to this one.