Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Wordless Wednesday

Last week a blizzard blew through so Rosie and I took some photos on our walk:

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Lemonade with Limes

So my attention was drawn to this cool little tutorial by Jane LaFazio (here) and I decided to play along.  I looked at the tute, walked away from the computer, then went and created my own. After finishing mine, I went back and looked at hers again and I see that she had much more intense color -- something for me to work on.

I didn't have Jane's plate to inspire me, so I went to my little lime tree and used a photo of it to fill in some of the background.

My DD gave me this plant for Mother's day and was mightily disappointed that it didn't grow fruit right away (it was only 11 inches tall) -- but as soon as I brought it in for the winter, it bloomed and now it has these little tiny limes!

And I've been playing around with my photos of the sandhill cranes that hung around our little park this fall.  I drew it in the sketchbook with pencil and had fun painting it with watercolors.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Mul-tex Part 3: the Art Quilt

So for the art quilt I started by stenciling dots on the mulberry side.  The promotional material that came with this notes that "color applied on the mulberry fiber side glows through when viewed from the shiny, laminate side."  Well, I'm all about glow...

After the dots dried, I flipped the mul-tex over and taped it down again.  I thinned some turquoise paint with gold mica flake and  a little glass bead gel.  I painted this on the shiny side (while the dots on the mulberry side glowed through).

I was looking for more texture here, so I mixed the gold with a healthy amount of the glass bead gel -- yep, I was having fun here...

Stenciled butterflies all over the shiny, laminate side.  See where it's curling up in the corner?  More about that later...

I pinned it to a thin white cotton batt and let it sit for a couple of days while I decided what to do next.

I have two kinds of Mul-tex -- actually they're the same -- the difference is that one is a small roll and the other is on a bolt.  I initially took a piece off the roll and drew this tree on the shiny side.  But it wouldn't stop curling.  I taped and weighted it onto my cutting mat, then left it for over a week.  I tried ironing it (between two sheets of parchment), and rolling it back the other way.  Still curled.

So then I got the bright idea of paint.  Maybe that would make it lie flat.  Or at least stiffen it somewhat.

This is the shiny side painted. I laid it on pretty thick.   I used a couple of different brands of acrylic paints.

And here it is flipped over.  Note: still taped.  I like the way the tree glows through.  I was thinking that if I had used another color, say, maybe blue, or black, It would have made a really nice effect.  But it still curls.  To the point where I'm getting really annoyed.

So I cut it into narrow strips and pinned, then sewed it down.  You can see where the tree trunk shadows through the green.  I like the effect.

I didn't want to do anymore quilting on the shiny background, so I left it here.  But I thought it needed something.

Enter the November technique from the ...Fire blog: extreme texture!  I have a bunch of cheesecloth that I've dyed over the years and I picked through it to find this lovely turquoise piece.

I love the way that cheese cloth takes dye.  I scrunched it up and stitched it on using a zigzag stitch.  I left a bit hanging over the edge of the binding.

So do I love Mul-tex?  No.  But it has possibilities.  I'm thinking that it might be fun to burn it and maybe play around with heating it with various implements of destruction.  But that will have to wait for warmer weather so I can do it outside.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

A Journal Cover to Give Away

But not here...

I was inspired by one of the prompts in the books I'm reviewing tomorrow on the "...Fire" blog.  I made a little circle template by tracing around the bottom of the bottle and getting out the deColourant spray that I haven't had a chance to play with.  I sprayed a half dozen circles down the length of a half yard of Kona black.

Then I wet the fabric, scrunched it up,  poured diluted copper fabric paint over it and let it dry for a couple of days.

I love the texture -- the little circles looked like moons over mountains to me, so I went with that.

I layered it with a piece of cotton batting and quilted it using cotton threads in several colors.  Then I traced around the journal and cut out the part I wanted.

Because old books often had marbling on the inside covers, I dug through my stash of hand-marbled fabrics and chose this one.

Here is the inside of the cover -- I used a plain piece of Kona black to line the inside of the journal cover.

This is a shot of the backside of the covered journal.

There are detailed instructions for making a journal cover here.

I'm linking up with Nina-Marie's Off the Wall Fridays -- even though it's really Saturday.

And here is a shot of the front.  I will be giving this away in our December giveaway and book review on ...And Then We Set It on Fire.  Check out tomorrow's post.  

Sunday Update: click here to go to the ...Fire blog and leave a comment to win this book!