Sunday, August 31, 2008

Bead Simple Review

If you love classic, stark and simple jewelry designs this book has over 100 designs for you. Each has a clear large color photo and  good instructions. Many of these were just not "gobby" enough for my taste, which runs to bling and dangles and big beads. However, I could see my daughter Rachel and my sister Sara would love these designs. Many were made with classic shaped beads of glass and wood. I thought the earring designs were particularly lovely.

Lots of great stuff in here for all--

Altered art book review

This comprehensive book for those wanting to begin creating altered art is thorough and inspiring, or even for those who have no idea what this is about. It has in depth sections on all the things I needed to know when I started and learned by trial and error;  adhesives, papers, attaching items to pages, preparing the book and on to other objects to alter!

When my sister and I first discovered the altered art medium we were so excited. We joined a altered art "club" which met once a month at a local rubber stamp store and cost 15 dollars to attend. They would teach one technique a month. We already had so many supplies between us from her scrap booking passion and my textile and jewelry habits.  We would bring things to swap and were eagerly checking out library materials and purchasing books. Once the shop decided not to let us use the huge collection of rubber stamps at each session, we started to rethink the club concept. We soon realized that since we had each other we would not pay the fee, but rather spend the money on books about altered art and try to keep each other encouraged. 

It was sad when we moved away from each other, we divided our image and text files, the books in progress and our tools and supplies. Neither of us did anything in our books for years, while I continued to buy books and be inspired by magazines like; Cloth, Paper, Scissors, the Altered Arts magazine and Somerset Studios. We still collected odd bits of found ephemera and salvaged goodies. Now we are returning to this medium and I will write reviews of some of my new book finds---

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Native Baby doll Redo

My friend Patty collects Native American Baby dolls. We went to a local trade days event and she found a darling boy baby doll. The only trouble is he was dressed in colors that did not match the rest of her Southwestern themed collection, but she loved his face and wig. He wasn't very expensive and I offered to make him a new costume.

I cut apart his original clothes as pattern pieces for the new one. I chose a soft grayish green ultra-suede and found a thrift store skirt that was a nice coordinating rusty colored ultra-suede. I trimmed him with fake fur, feathers and  embroidered jacquard trims. I also added some beaded and hand stitched elements. He was fun to make.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

3 Blue necklaces

Each of these blue necklaces has a different flavor. The first icy periwinkle blue and silver links has a space age feel, like something in the old star trek shows. I think partly because if the odd placement of the holes in the rectangular silver link components.

The second one with two strand of many different indian glass luster beads has and organic or beachy look. The pale blue dagger beads remind me of wings.

The third has large steely blue glass pendant beads and lots of end caps and silver adding up to a more elegant design. The first and third necklaces are wire work and the second is strung beads.

Friday, August 8, 2008

More Recycled Aprons

Recycling these clothes into aprons is still satisfying, and oh so quick! In the 23rd day of triple digit heat here in Texas, i have to think of fast crafting. The red check one is a toddler sundress with darling appliqued  lady bugs, (second pic close-up). I didnt even have to apply these bugs nor sew on all this rick rack! Such a great idea.

The other apron already had different fabrics and a nicely pleated and formed waist. All I needed to sew was some ties and a bit of bias on the back edges to finish them nicely. Both of the aprons in under 30 minutes.

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Altered book basic technique-word play and journalling

Wow! See what a mess this table is! It is fun to collect interesting words and phrases from magazines and make a whole new story from them. I added a sienna alcohol ink wash over all the text because they were so white, I wanted them to match each other more. I glued these on with paper perfect which rippled the papers a bit.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Altered book basic technique-layering

This spread was originally painted in shades of green and yellow with the standard cheap dollar a bottle acrylic, applied very thinly. A large image was mounted across both pages. The lace paper was painted with acrylics in green blue and yellow to look like seaweed. The yellow  color helps bring out the yellows in the image and the underlying page. This  book is going to a beginning artist and she will get to embellish further on this page, perhaps adding charms or beads, maybe a rubber stamped dragonfly? It is only half way there. The more layers and embellishment the more complex and beautiful this image will become.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Altered book basic technique- cut out page

This page shows using a large scale image glued to the page and cutting out the page edge with an exacto blade. This image is interesting because it hides the image and text on the second set of pages. This back side still has some text peeking through and is shaded with alcohol inks in several dabbed on colors. the ink was sponged onto a stamp and used to make the flower image.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Altered book technique-- Window and translucence

It has been a few years since the delightful times my sister and I had exploring altered book art. Jess is teaching a new class at her library, which inspired me to get out my box and work on some things this week. 

I covered my table with a vinyl tablecloth and spread out all my bits and dabs, fancy papers, inks and glues and acrylic mediums. I also had my file of text magazine pieces and images.

This technique illustrates the idea of  hidden views and revelation. The first page shows the butterfly and then the vellum pages printed with butterflies that you can barely see through. The next picture shows that vellum page open, showing  you the blue butterfly on the previous page through this page and something vague in front of you also revealing the text on this vellum page. As you turn this page a window appears with a partial image of a woman. when you turn that page, you see her in her entirety and can look back through the window at the preceding 4 pages.