Sunday, December 4, 2011

Low Maintenance Dog

Meet Daisy, the knitted dog.  The instructions in this book are vague and hard to follow, but the results are fabulous.  

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Sock Monkey Hat

One of my friends posted a picture of her daughter wearing an adorable sock monkey hat.  I said, "Please, please, please tell me someone made that for her!  I want to make one!!!"  It was a photo prop and she wasn't sure where the photographer got it, so I headed immediately to Google for some answers.  I found a cute crochet pattern and attempted it (for about 5 minutes).  Although I can crochet, it's not my favorite thing to do.  Then I tried to design my own pattern but it came out looking more like a fez.  I ended up going to my local knitting store and getting a pattern for a baby cap with ear flaps and then I designed my own ears and mouth.  It will be long as my friend's baby has a cantaloupe-sized head!

Monday, June 20, 2011

Wheel of Fortune Quilt

It's finally done...8 years in the making!  This is the Wheel of Fortune quilt from Kaffe Fassett's Caravan of Quilts. It was the most challenging and frustrating quilt pattern I have ever made!  To start with, there were hundreds of pieces to cut out using 13 different fabrics.  Joining the diamond-shaped pieces with their stretchy bias-cut edges was difficult.  Then getting 8 seams to match and lay flat in the center took a few tries.  Of those 8 years, the quilt spent about half that time in a closet after being tossed inside for its own protection!  The finished quilt is about 61"x61", hand quilted, and now hangs proudly on the living room wall.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Of Towers and Turrets

Here is the end result of two fantastic online classes.  I just finished "Of Towers and Turrets", taught by Deryn Mentock and Sharon Tomlinson.  Sharon taught us collaging and how to paint faces and Deryn taught us how to build a bezel and turn it into a one-of-a-kind pendant.  Last spring I took Deryn's Build Zone class, which helped me perfect my jewelry-making skills and taught me a lot about design.

The bezel itself is made from brass and copper, cut and soldered to resemble a house.  I took apart an old crown earring and riveted it onto the roof.  On the bottom is a piece of an old belt buckle  soldered onto the piece.  The picture is a small piece from the collage in my previous post.

The bezel was then filled with resin and strung on carnelian beads, some other assorted beads and African Snake trade beads.  A beautiful vintage rhinestone clasp holds it together.  And for some extra added flair, I made a rosary-style dangle to flow down the back when worn.  I just love how this turned out!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Towers and Turrets

I'm taking another fantastic online class from Deryn Mentock and Sharon Tomlinson called Of Towers and Turrets.  This is acrylic paint on canvas board with some snippets of old books tossed in.  I had no idea that I could paint a face, but this class made it easy-peasy!  Eventually, this will be scanned, shrunk, and put into a handmade bezel to create a focal piece for a necklace.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Wild, Wild West

What a difference some newly learned skills have made!  I am taking a wonderful on-line workshop taught by Deryn Mentock.  What is so awesome about this class is that we are learning to build sturdy, well-designed pieces.  To show you what I mean, here are some photos of the same necklace that I built on my own (before I took it apart):
I made a beaded, macrame chain that I liked well enough, but I didn't love it.  Then the macrame slipped, exposing the beading wire, so the whole thing ended up looking cheesy.  Also, since Deryn taught us a little about design, I see that the beads and the macrame are too busy and detract from the focal.
In week 1, we learned how to make rosary-style links, S-links, jump rings, and clasps.  Here is a close-up of my rosary links:
And one of my clasp:
Here is my twisted, wrapped jump ring:
And my focal, made in Linda and Opie O'Brien's class:
Now that I have the skills to build something solid, the effect is much more polished and professional looking, don't you think!