Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Quote of the week


I have NOT lost my mind — I have it backed up somewhere.


Image: WikimediaCommons

Monday, May 30, 2011

Soy silk roving - part three



I love the silk fusion that I showed you last week, but the fabric is still a bit flimsey for some uses, like heavy beading. One way to solve that problem is to add more layers of roving or to use a heavier-bodied polymer medium, but I don't like either idea. Extra layers of roving just wastes roving, although I know some folks use non-dyed roving for the middle layers that won't show. Still. And making the polymer medium heavier will not only spoil the feel of the fusion, it will also make it more difficult to stitch through.



So, I thought about merging an aspect of needle felting with the process of making silk fusion. What about using a piece of lutradur as the bottom layer of the silk fusion? And even further, what about adding color to it?



It worked great! Using the same technique as I showed you in part two, I simply layered the roving onto a piece of pre-painted lutradur (dried). I only wet the fiber sandwich from the top and used just a bit less polymer medium. The drying time was a little bit longer, but not much. Before using the silk fusion, I ironed it with a warm iron as before. Be very careful...lutradur will melt if the heat is too high.




All the posts of working with soy silk roving:
Part one
Part two
Part three


Copyright 2011 Cyndi Lavin. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

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Saturday, May 28, 2011

More artsy links!

 

Mo(o)re Gourd Whimsies
Show-Me State Gourd Festival

Baseball Photo Collage
Created with a brick matte background andd Artistic (textured) Letters  

Beading Arts
Cyndi has been featuring wonderful wire artists all this month...take a look at what these folks are doing!  

Creative Dreamer
June's got another give away going! This time it's a village for your wrist... come see!  

Eileen - The Artful Crafter
See how Eileen used a 3D Valentine’s Day card template to make a 3D card suitable for many special occasions. 


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Friday, May 27, 2011

Artsy blogging round-up!

 

Craft Bids
Craft Buds shares some tips for handmade bloggers on effective ways to host a giveaway, including how to set the rules, find new followers and work with sponsors. 



Crafty Princess Diaries
The Jane Austen Society becomes sensible and sensitive to stitchers at its next convention.

Eileen - The Artful Crafter
See how to make zero-calorie fortune cookies for your next party. Hint: they’re made in the craft room – not the kitchen.  


Stefanie Girard's Sweater Surgery
How to make a fallen soldier uniform pendant.  

About Family Crafts
Check out the graduation quilts Sherri designed and made for her kids.  

Carmi's Art/Life World
Carmi has a special post honouring an artist's passing.

Craftside- A behind-the-scenes peek at our crafty world
This week at Craftside there are tutorials on how to make a three-page spread in your art journal, the components of a page layout in grid format, how to make doll hair with yarn and an amigurumi octopus sighting at Maker Faire.  



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Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Recent publications: May 2011

Spunbonded Textile and Stitch 

Cutting Across Media: Appropriation Art, Interventionist Collage, and Copyright Law by Kembrew McLeod and Rudolf Kuenzli

Painted Pages: Fueling Creativity with Sketchbooks and Mixed Media by Sarah Ahearn Bellemare

Meet Me at Mike's: 26 Crafty Projects and Things to Make by Pip Lincolne

Surface Treatment Workshop: Explore 45 Mixed-Media Techniques by Darlene Olivia McElroy and Sandra Duran Wilson

The Artist Unique: Discovering Your Creative Signature Through Inspiration and Techniques by Carmen Torbus

Plaster Studio: Mixed-Media Techniques for Painting, Casting and Carving by Stephanie Lee and Judy Wise

Digital Art Wonderland: Creative Techniques for Inspirational Journaling and Beautiful Blogging by Angi Sullins and Silas Toball

Spunbonded Textile and Stitch by Wendy Cotterill

Thread Painting With Style by Nancy Prince

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Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Quote of the week



Drawing on my fine command of the English language, I said nothing.
~ Robert Benchley


Image: Zitona Qatar, Wikimedia Commons

Monday, May 23, 2011

Soy silk roving - part two


Ok, as I showed you last week, I wasn't too excited about using soy silk roving for needle felting.  Although it worked, the fibers lost their luster, which just wasn't the look I wanted.

My next attempt to use soy silk roving as a background for beadwork led me to a technique called Silk Fusion, or Silk Paper.  According to the folks at Treenway Silks (who have an excellent tutorial, by the way), using silk in felting goes back to 1989 to a felter in Holland named Inge Evers.  The idea has been expanded upon and passed about extensively now, and you can find instructions all over the place.  The first time I came across silk fusion was in Susan Stein's book Fabric Art Workshop


1. The fibers need to be pulled from the hank and laid out on a piece of netting.  With more netting folded over the top, the fibers are moistened thoroughly. 


2. After squeezing out the excess water, some sort of polymer medium is added to the fibers.  Some folks like textile medium, some use regular polymer medium thinned with water.  I used Golden's GAC 100: it's thin and flexible, and is used for making glazes, so I didn't think it would interfere with the sheen of the fibers.  Drizzle it on and spread it out with a sponge brush.  Don't use too much.  You'll need to experiment a bit to see what product you like best and how much is needed.   

Nice luster, huh?  It looks even better
in real life.

3. The fiber sandwich needs to be set aside to dry thoroughly overnight.  When it is dry, the netting will just peel right off without pulling fibers with it.  As a final step, I chose to iron my new fabric with a low iron.  Some textile mediums must be heat set anyway, but I feel that even if yours doesn't, it will help the fibers to all stick together a bit better to heat them.   

All the posts of working with soy silk roving:
Part one
Part two
Part three

Copyright 2011 Cyndi Lavin. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.
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Saturday, May 21, 2011

More artsy links!

Laura - Taz's Corner
Art Journal Fun with Laura!

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp
When spring gives you strawberries and rhubarb, you've got to make crisp! 

Beading Arts
And yet another chance to win a fabulous bead package giveaway!

Creative Dreamer
The final Creativity Invitation prompt is up... June hopes you'll all come play!  

Eileen - The Artful Crafter
Who doesn't recycle cards and gift bags these days? This was a real simple recycling project. Look at the card Jackie gave Eileen for her birthday; and then how Jackie received it back on hers!  


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Friday, May 20, 2011

Artsy blogging round-up!

 

Craftside- A behind-the-scenes peek at our crafty world
This week at Craftside there are fun tutorials on how to make a spinning beach ball invitation greeting card, a gold leaf crackle finish on polymer clay and measuring tape and button bracelets, 6 Steampunk guns, and some "hand crafting".

Crafty Princess Diaries
The Crafty Princess has picked up knitting needles! Find out some resources she discovered to help you learn how to knit.


Eileen - The Artful Crafter
See how Eileen used a 3D Valentine's Day card template to make a 3D card suitable for many special occasions.

Stefanie Girard's Sweater Surgery
See how to make a two headed girl in a cage photo op.  

About Family Crafts
If you are looking for a great family activity, learn how to make garden stepping stones together.  

Aileen's Musings
Aileen was back in the kitchen again baking up Peanut Butter & Jelly Cupcakes! Stop by and snag her free printable recipe card!  

Carmi's Art/Life World
Trying to keep Provence in her life, Carmi makes up a new vision board.  




 

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Thursday, May 19, 2011

Digital Arts Online



Are you familiar with this online magazine?  Digital Arts Online is really worth checking out if you enjoy mixing your physical and digital media, as a lot of us here do.  You'll find profiles, tutorials, and more detailed info about the digital world than you could probably ever read and digest!
 

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Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Book review: The Artist Unique

The Artist Unique: Discovering Your Creative Signature Through Inspiration and Techniques 

A couple of months ago I mentioned that The Artist Unique was coming out in May and that I hoped to see a copy.  The artwork that I saw on Carmen Torbus's own site made me particularly excited to read it.  Lucky lucky me, FW Media sent me a copy for review, and I'm here to tell you that this is a phenomenal book!

Some of my favorite things to read about, besides new techniques, are the inspirations and creative processes that different artists enjoy.  So imagine my glee when the bulk of this book is dedicated to exactly that.  Although it is titled "Discovering Technique", this section is far more than just techniques: Carmen has interviewed 15 other artists (plus herself!) to explore what part creativity has played in their lives, what forms it has taken over the years, and what it is that moves them in creating artwork.  Artists with many many different styles.  And then they each teach a technique or two that you can apply to your own work.  You're going to love this!

The last section of the book is called "Defining Your Style".  I love this section too, as Carmen discusses how to shut up your inner critic, embrace imperfection, and just get down to making art.  Her philosophy on art-making pretty much matches my own.  Carmen writes:

What does a dependable routine have to do with intuitive painting?  It seems very unromantic to think that painting intuitively isn't about magic and inspiration on high.  Well, it can be.  It is a lovely thing to be taken away by the muse, but to do the real work of intuitive art means taking a long, extended trip into art, not just short jaunts now and again when the whim happens. 

Oh yeah, baby!  Don't sit around waiting for the right mood and conditions to align...it might not happen.  Grab this book and just get started.  Wonderful things may happen!



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Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Quote of the week



As a child my family's menu consisted of two choices: take it or leave it.
~ Buddy Hackett

Monday, May 16, 2011

Soy silk roving - part one


I've been fantasizing for some time about what all could be done with needle felting, to create a beautiful background for bead embroidery.  Recently when I was checking out some online sources for roving and needle felting supplies, I came across a fabulous material called soy silk roving.  Talk about the ultimate in recycling!  Soy silk is a fiber that is extruded from the waste products of tofu manufacturing.  It looks like silk, feels like silk, and behaves somewhat like silk.  It supposedly can be used in needle felting, and that's what I wanted to experiment with first.

I bought a couple of hanks of soy silk roving from eXtremespinning on etsy. 


Beginning to needle felt at the top


I have to tell you right upfront that although I am in love with soy silk roving, I am not in love with the look of it when it is needle felted.  It looses all its luster, and there really doesn't seem to be much point in working with it instead of with wool roving.  Plus, it doesn't needle felt as easily.  I had to try several different background fabrics before I found one that worked really well.  Lutradur, thankyouverymuch!  Since then, I've learned that wool "pre-felts" might work well too, but they are very very thin and flimsey, and besides...I didn't have any!  Lutradur was almost perfect: it's stiff enough to hold up to future beadwork, and it tangled the fibers well enough that they didn't pull right back out.



Still, I'm not satisfied, and so I'm not finished with the experiments.




All the posts of working with soy silk roving:
Part one
Part two
Part three

Copyright 2011 Cyndi Lavin. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

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Sunday, May 15, 2011

More artsy links!

 

Eileen - The Artful Crafter
Believe it or not, a friend of a friend whom Eileen had never even met gave her everything she needed to explore the luscious art of silk painting.

Laura - Taz's Corner
A Recap of Found Poetry and Altered Text  

Made By Nicole
Learn how to make easy paper flowers with this step by step tutorial.  

Moore (Gourd)Whimsies
Put a little bling in your life!  

Pinwheel Craft
A fun and easy summer project for kids  

Beading Arts
Cyndi shares her method of making a charm necklace from a vintage button!  



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Artsy blogging round-up!

 

Carmi's Art/Life World
Some days you just want to draw dolls. Carmi has a new book!

Craftside- A behind-the-scenes peek at our crafty world
This week at Craftside there are a couple of recycled rhinestone buckle necklaces, a pattern for knitting penguin sweaters, vintage style anchor and star embroidery patterns and some fun pictures from Unique LA Spring 2011.  

Crafty Princess Diaries
Come on! Stop diss-ing Red Heart Super Saver yarn. It does have its place in yarn crafting.  

Eileen - The Artful Crafter
Who doesn’t recycle cards and gift bags these days? This was a real simple recycling project. Look at the card Jackie gave Eileen for her birthday; and then how Jackie received it back on hers!  

Mixed Media Artist
Do you have spare t-shirts hanging around that need a new purpose?  

About Family Crafts
If you or someone you know is graduating this year, check out these fun graduation related projects.  

Aileen's Musings
Aileen is excited to announce her article & how-to that just came out in Amy Power's INSPIRED IDEAS: The Happy Birthday Issue.  



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Thursday, May 12, 2011

Adrienne Miller's mixed media art


Adrienne Miller sounds just like my daughter when she talks about her life in art: neither of them can seem to remember a time when they weren't making things.  She is primarily a 2D artist, and I think you'll really like her lovely moody prints, photos, and mixed media pieces in which she explores the themes of private memories and personal experiences.  



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Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Calls for entries and submissions

SAQA: Layers of Memory
Deadline: 06/15/11  
   

Art Quilts Lowell 2011: The Sea
Deadline: 06/15/11  
   

The Art of Textiles
Deadline: 06/15/11  
   

Quilting Arts: Tag, you're it
Deadline: 06/17/11  
   

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Quote of the week



A two-year-old is kind of like having a blender, but you don't have a top for it.
~ Jerry Seinfeld

Monday, May 09, 2011

T-shirt shopping bag


OK, we are diving deep into flea market craft territory here, but I can't help it.  If you're like me, you probably have a large collection of oversized t-shirts, because no one ever orders enough of the right sizes!  When my kids worked at our local grocery store, one of them brought home this beauty...in a 2XL.  No one was ever going to wear it, so it went into The Pile.  You know, the pile of mis-fit shirts, not to be confused with the Island of Mis-fit Toys.  These shirts never got a musical written about them.

My mother-in-law reminded us of the super-simple project where you turn your unwanted t-shirts into shopping bags.  Since this is a grocery shirt, it seemed particularly appropriate!  And super easy.

Materials and Tools:
T-shirt
Scissors
Sewing machine
Thread

1. Cut off the sleeves of an old t-shirt.
2. Leaving at least 3 inches for a "handle", cut off the neck band in a scoop shape.  Try to preserve the shirt decorations!



3. Turn the shirt inside out and stitch up the bottom, going over it at least twice.
4. Optional: stitch along the raw edges at the neck and arms.  I didn't bother.

 

Copyright 2011 Cyndi Lavin. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

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Saturday, May 07, 2011

More artsy links!

 

Creative Dreamer
It's a book... no, it's a frame... June has altered another book, this time into a double frame!

Beading Arts
Don't miss our next giveaway package from the fabulous Cherry Tree Beads!  

Eileen - The Artful Crafter
Need a last minute gift for mom? Check out the Mother’s Day Parade of Crafts on The Artful Crafter. You’re sure to find something to make that will put a smile on mom’s face. Kid-friendly projects are indicated by our little Miss SmArty icon.  

Laura - Taz's Corner
Spring Has Sprung! Postcards and An ATC  

Made By Nicole
Make a gorgeous spring wreath with scrap cardstock and burlap.  




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Friday, May 06, 2011

Artsy blogging round-up!

 

Aileen's Musings
Aileen offers you a slide show demonstrating how to create your own vibrant deli paper backgrounds.

Carmi's Art/Life World
Carmi shows off three years of hand cut silhouettes!

Craftside- A behind-the-scenes peek at our crafty world
This week at Craftside there is a cool tutorial on how to melt foam into a cute doll basket, 10 great "shoe" themed greeting card ideas and a great list of self-portrait ideas from the new book Unfurling by Misty Mawn.

Crafty Princess Diaries
Find out how you can show your patriotism while you have fun crocheting.    

Eileen - The Artful Crafter
Who doesn’t recycle cards and gift bags these days? This was a real simple recycling project. Look at the card Jackie gave Eileen for her birthday; and then how Jackie received it back on hers!  

Stefanie Girard's Sweater Surgery
How to make a sock gift card.  

About Family Crafts
Watch these videos and learn how easy it is to decoupage!  




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Thursday, May 05, 2011

Water balloon luminarias



These would have been beautiful for Christmas, but I didn't have enough time.  So now I'm thinking that I may need to make some for a wedding this spring!  Wendy shares the instructions at Wisdom of the Moon.  Thanks Wendy!


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Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Quote of the week


Those parts of the system that you can hit with a hammer (not advised) are called hardware; those program instructions that you can only curse at are called software.  ~Author Unknown



Image: WikimediaCommons

Monday, May 02, 2011

Beaded fabric


A couple of months ago, I bought a beautiful piece of fabric from an artist friend who just got herself set up on Spoonflower.  We've talked about Spoonflower and other print on demand fabric services online before; I have experimented with having some things printed, but this is the first time I bought a fabric piece from someone else.

It was a good experience.  Elena Malec is the artist, and here is the link to her fabric called Rock Roses.  The fabric's colors are saturated and the fabric quality is very good.  I let the fabric sit around for quite sometime before I chose my first project...just a simple beaded piece that follows the colors the best I could.



1. Pick a swatch of the fabric and mark off the area you plan to bead.



2. Starting in the middle, back stitch size 11/0 seed beads in a spiral.



3. Finish the edges by turning them under and mount the beadwork. 

FREE e-BOOK CHAPTER
Shows you how to do the back stitch


Copyright 2011 Cyndi Lavin. Not to be reprinted, resold, or redistributed for profit. May be printed out for personal use or distributed electronically provided that entire file, including this notice, remains intact.

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