As a courtesy to me and the universe, please speak to me before you copy or transcribe anything from this blog for profit- my work may be unpublished but it is of value to me, and if you are using my ideas to profit, hey, I want my cut of it!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

I've been charmed!

So, I've been gripped by another fever..... charm fever. I blame my friend Robin for this. She told me that there was this massive quilting store near my home. I went in and saw a quilt I *must* make. So I ordered the pattern, thinking it would tell me what the corresponding order numbers for the fabric were. A month goes by, I hear the pattern is in and find out that they don't tell you what materials are used and it's supposed to be "fun", picking out your own materials. And I also find out that the pattern uses charm squares. For those of you who are in the dark (mostly not crafty types, I suspect) charm squares are a 5 x 5 inch square block. Many textile companies put together charm packs, collections of their line so you can own bits of the whole line. Awesome concept. And apperently, they colour coordinate too.
They are a bit of a collectors item since people can't bear to cut into the pack and break it apart.

My first attempt at the quilt, I went hunting for material and got a nasty headache. Matching up materials isn't easy. Nor was it fun, either. This is my first attempt.

If I were to do it over again, I'd pick different fabric.Something not as busy and balance between large and small patterns.Yes, its not done. I kinda stalled as I discovered I don't sew straight. And during this time, I had been salivating over the various charm square packs out there. And the Creative Stitches show came to town last weekend and I went crazy buying charm squares and came up with this- my second quilt.

I've slowly been chipping away at the charm squares. I even dragged out my iron to use. Yes, you heard me, my iron. That thingy that was still brand new and in the box it came it when I bought it 9 years ago. What can I say, I don't iron upon pain of death. Until now.I might even invest in an ironing board. Yeah, that's crazytalk, I know....

No significant papercrafting for awhile. It's been on the backburner as I work my way through this charm fever. Wish me luck.

Yes, the first is not done yet. Am working on it. But the second one will match nicely since its a combination of two charm pack patterns- Astor Manor and Gypsy Rose. I got them on sale.And because of better technique, the second one will look nicer too :)

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Altered puzzle pieces

I felt bad, holding up this wonderful swap with my swap buddies. The wait was definitely worthwhile. Kimmie suggested this swap to use about 3 months ago. She bought the puzzle blanks and numbered them all. We picked our colour themes. Mine was marmalade and oranges. It was a vintage swap. Everyone did lovely work, did they not? My picture does not do this justice. The puzzle pieces are luminous and beautiful.

Here's a closer view of the gorgeous work done by my very talented friends.

L to R, top:
Nancy, Dena and Me

L to R, bottom:
Deb Moon, Phyllis, and Capt. Tammy

L to R, top: Jan D , Kimmie and Mrs Noofy

L to R, bottom: Loretta, Me and Lolita Sue

Isn't this fantastic? The attention to detail is amazing. Kimmie had a little rusted heart tied to the saddle fo the cowboy. Deb and a tiny little antique boot button. Mrs noofy has lovely vintage buttons as well. I am going to mount them separately as they are too lovely to place next to one another.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Pictures from the new nest

The new furniture. View of the living room.

Looking out the front picture window.

The back yard from the patio. The weeping birch may be able to hold a hammock. I am going to investigate closer.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

No more excuses!

So, afer a long hiatus, I am back. Havn't felt like blogging as I have been rather uninspired in the art department. Am in the midst of an altered puzzle swap with some friends and Miz Muse has taken off. Part of it is my craft room is in disarray and I still have no idea where everything is and its frsutrating when you spend hours looking for one thing, only to find it won't work. I just have to muster the willpower to get off my sorry butt and organize. Something I am not so fond of. The other thing is the craft room is too dark fro crafting. there is a giant ash tree outside my window that blocks out all the light and it is so sad for me. I suppose I could light the place up but I have taken to the dining room as there is plenty of light there.

Anyways, below are some of the said puzzle pieces.

Top row: Nancy, Mrs Noofy and Lolita Sue
Bottom row:Kimmie, Beanie and Tammy
Pink Rabbit is going to Deb Moon.

I have also taken some pictures from my travels for work.

Fields of purple wildflowers in Morley. It kinda looks like bluebells or canterbury bells (campanula) but not quite. I'd love to get some seeds to have them grow wild in my garden.

Sitting on the edge of the pristine Bow River in Morley.

Abraham Lake, a manmade glacial fed lake on the highway to the Ice Fields parkway.

View from the Bighorn Reserve.

Crescent Falls in the summer.

Friday, June 5, 2009

New beginnings

I finally moved into my new home. New to me, as it is still older than me but younger than my previous home. Its been a long six weeks and on Tuesday, I was playing "bingo" with the movers as they efficiently moved my stuff into my place and as I crossed off the various articles had in storage for what seemed like ages.

Let's say I have more stuff than I thought I had. And my living room here is a lot smaller than my old place so I am scrambling to find a new home for a lot of my stuff. I see lots of rearranging in the near future. I have been a little overwhelmed at all the unpacking and organizing- as those of you who know me know that I am not an organized person and I don't really care for the minutae of organising. Still, it has got to be done.

I did end up giving up the master bedroom for a den/office/art studio. My bedtoom is small and functional but the den has my large desk, a matching cabinet/buffet combo and a round table for art creation. And best of all, two giganto closets for all the stuff. And maybe I might move in a couple of tall shelves for the stamps. It does overlook the backyard, which isn't as spacious as the previous place. But I do have two lovely flowering dogwood trees and a birch tree so the view isn't so bad, except at night when I have the lovely neighbours flourescent back alley light cast an eerie glow to the leaves and branches of the trees. I want to get to my art but am forcing myself to unpack so I don't have any unopened boxes like from the previous move.

There will definitely be more art to share in the next little while. I created an ATC for my friend Susie, who is needing some "grace" in her life and I want to start an art collaboration with my friends, where I send them two stamped images and see what we can come up with using the same image but everything else our own. Another project I want to start would be "Your Inner Muse", and again, I want to involve friends I craft with and we all create what we would imagine their muse would look like based on what we know of our friends.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

How to start on your Inchie Journey

So, I signed up for Dena's 100 inchie in 100 days swap. 100 inchies. It may seem like a lot but it really is very managable. We got to discussing inchies and how to start making them without going blind and batty. I started putting down all my ideas and thought a post on things I've learnt on my inchie journey might help someone starting out. Yes, I am actively converting the masses....

First start with great lighting. Lots of of crafters will espouse the Ott-Lite. It is pretty pricy but supposedly gives you true colour representation. I myself, use a Sunlight lamp from Lights of America. Got this from Costco a few years ago and am pretty happy with it.

A good one inch punch is a must. I have several. There is the 1" whale of a punch from EK Success. It is pretty good. And the same company also makes 7/8" and 3/4" punches, also great for matting inchies. Marvy makes a Clever Lever Extra Jumbo punch that is a 1" punch too. It is a smidge larger than the whale punch, though. But only if you're counting.

Other companies that make 1 inch punches are Creative Memories. Martha Sterwart has some scalloped edged and stamp edged punches that can be layered onto the 1 inch square.

Some people like to mat their inchie with something sturdy, like chipboard, or cardboard, to give to more weight. You can also purchase 1 inch chipboard squares from Magenta Stamps. And I think Inchie Arts also carries these. My recent favourite is 140lb watercolour paper. I gotta thnak my fabulous friend Phyllis (Pugs) for this idea. It's sturdy and it accepts colour very well.

Precision tip scissors is also a must since you'll need to be getting in crevices when you're cutting out images. Mine is an EK Success Cutter Bee with teflon coating. An Xacto knife is also useful, along with a self healing mat as well.

Other things needed are tweezers (to pick up small embellishments, half pearls and other tiny bling), good glues like the Sakura glue pen, or Judikin's Diamond Glaze, or Stampin'Up! Crystal Effects or Ranger's Glossy Accents.

Another must are micron pens with a really fine tip, such as the Sakura Pigma Micron Pen. They come in very fine tips and normally available in artist supply stores.

Various embellies can be obtained from crafting stores, dollar stores and even second hand stores. You want them smaller, of course, than the usual so keep your eyes peeled for them. German scrap foils are also lovely.

Then all else you need are the old magazines, art catalogs, flyers, postcards and away you go. You will only be limited by your imagination. Inchies typically have a word them and also a bling item.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

I'm still here.

Nope, I havn't expired. I am still alive. Just busy with the big move. Whenever that happens. Well, when the house sells. It saddens me that people aren't as enamoured with the house as I was. I am very sad to leave it as I like it very much. Meanwhile, I am still living in limbo. Half my crafting stuff is in Calgary.

I did manage to get some art done for Tammy's ATC/Twinchie/Inchie swap on SCS. Here is what I submitted.

And to appease some of you, here are some beautiful pictures taken earlier this year-the top picture of Crescent Falls- a lovely gorge with some awesome falls, I am told. I only saw it in the winter and I look forward to taking a picnic lunch there in the summer. The middle one was taken on the way back from Bighorn or Kiska Waptan, which is in the Rockies. The third picture is taken just a ways away from the Rafters Six Ranch, just outside Kannanaskis. There are still some other lovely views I've yet to share- and I do look forward to doing that sometime in the future.

I know, I am sooo blessed to work in such beautiful surroundings. The only downside is the weather can be unpredictable and dangerous.

I was trolling my pictures file and noticed I have in inordinate number of dog pictures there. Next post, I shall include my favourite doggie. He is very expressive. And maybe I'll also have more art as well. (I can hope my muse will visit).