Monday, July 14, 2014

Challenge #11 - Tag, You're It!

It's time to try my hand again over at Craft Hoarders Anonymous. Gloria and the Design Team have wonderful inspiration pieces, and you can see all of these tags, tagging along, here.

Every once in a while, I change gears in my crafting life. When my paper creations are not so creative, I take a break from them, and for the last few weeks, that means I've been mucking about with fabric, specifically, some version of fabric postcards.

Tags are one of my most favorite formats for mucking about.  (If my experiment fails, no biggie; if it works, there's another tag to use.) Just so happens, that with my embroidery, I was experimenting with seam binding and (drum roll please), my Spectrum Noir markers. My craft expense account is not huge, so both a roll of white (or off white) Hug Snug seam binding, and Spectrum Noir markers (you can buy them in six packs and make a large starter set without selling the farm or any animals you happen to have on it), are right up my alley.

The test: Can rayon seam binding be used instead of silk, for ribbon embroidery? What do you think? The rose in the lower right hand corner is silk, and the other two are the seam binding.

Well, the seam binding isn't quite as fluid as the silk, but I really like the result, and I LOVE the affordability.  Here's where the markers come in. After I completed the two spider web roses, I took a Q-tip soaked with alcohol, slathered the seam binding roses until they were "wet", and touched my Spectrum Noir markers to the ribbon, here and there, making sure the center of the flower was the deepest hue. (You could also do this alteration to the seam binding before doing the embroidery. A flat paintbrush loaded with alcohol, or simply soaking the ribbon in alcohol, would be the best way to go here. Then add as much, and as many colors and variations as you like with the markers.)

Well, now I'm back to playing with paper for a while, and hope that my fabric entry is in keeping with the rules of the CHACB. One last note: The "spider web rose" is very easy to make, and it is wonderful on all manner of paper art. You only need a base material that can have a needle pass though it, thread, and ribbon. The larger the rose, the wider the ribbon should be, and the more flexible the ribbon, the more natural it will look. If you have any questions, don't hesitate to ask. Hopefully, there is a "seam binding rose of many colors" in your future too. Thanks for visiting.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

CHACB - Challenge #8 - Show Us Some Metal or Glass

Chances are you are coming here from the Craft Hoarders Anonymous Challenge Blog - Challenge #8. Thanks for visiting, and I hope you will leave me a comment because there are a couple of questions I'd love savvy answers to.

I've been following the fabulous Gloria Stengel for quite a while, and this new venture is so exciting. The talent displayed by the DT and participants just blows my socks away, and it's taking some guts on my part to add my entry among your projects.

Fresh water pearls and gold stitching on background.
Let me ask my two questions now, so if you have any ideas, they can percolate while you're perusing. Normally, I would finish off a fabric postcard by adding a ribbon or buttonhole stitching, etc. around the sides. If this were your project, would you bind it, and if so, what might you use as a "frame"? And second, I have a small grease spot transferred from my embroidery hoop (residue from a label?) and I tried powder to remove it, but no luck. It was too late to start again, and the lace is about 100 years old. Any ideas on how to remove it?

Detail of metal butterfly and beads.
This fabric postcard grew out of wanting to use ribbon in a unique way. (Remind you of the last challenge on this blog? Yep, I'm that late!) I also wanted to use my gold butterfly and gold beads too, which satisfies this week's challenge of using metal.

These ribbons are large enough (NOT embroidery sized), that I needed to find new ways to help them pass through my fabric base. If anyone is interested, I would love offer more details about my journey with this technique. Pretty much it is like silk ribbon embroidery, but special consideration should be given to the background chosen, and opening areas for the ribbon to pass through.

One inch wide light-weight ribbon forms the flower head.
I bonded my 100 year old lace (the backing of the lovely but faded, pillow front) in the picture below.
Some of the supplies I used on top of the lovely (very old) lace pillow that adorns the background.
These unbelievably small cross stitched flowers are on the pillow front. Doesn't it just blow the mind how diligent artisans can be?!
This stitched flower center is just over an inch wide!
My gold stem stitching is a bit off because I was not able to see well enough on our dour rainy days. (Yes, I did put on the light...not good enough.... or my eyes are starting to get old along with the rest of me.) I will blame the grey weather for the lighting in my pictures though!

Here I have my grease spot circled. Your answer? "I don't think that grease spot makes your hips look big."
Now it's your turn if you have any helpful suggestions about spot removal, finishing the frame, or any other comments. Thank you so much for visiting and  sharing your thoughts. Learning from other artists is just "the berries". Now I'm off to see all of your takes on the challenge, and be wowed.

I'm updating this post to include a picture of this postcard framed by a beaded picot edge. 

Many thanks to those of you who suggested this might look better with some sort of frame around it. I AGREE!


Saturday, February 8, 2014

Poinsettia Tag for Festive Friday #24

Hi folks. I've been following my dear blog friend, Geri at Paper Wishes, for quiet a while now. She is a spectacularly talented artist and a down right beautiful soul. Her designs always blow me away, and I've been loving the places she visits in Blogdom.

Her designs for Festive Fridays Challenge Blog are some of my favorites, and I decided to give it a try myself, especially since this week's FFC24 inspiration photo is ripe with potential, and features one of my favorite color schemes.

My contribution is an eight inch tall tag. This composition is a bit more Rococo than my usual fare, but I kind of like it. Here are the ways I think this card gibes with the photo:
1. Many different colors of white with gold enhancement.
2. Organic twisted "lines" that run through the image.
3. Round white and gold balls.
4. Glitter here and there.
5. Both have a fair amount of depth. (The picture below was taken with side lighting to capture the feeling of depth that really doesn't show too well in the picture above.)

The poinsettia dies from Spellbinders, and the "merry" die from Papertrey are some of my favorites. (By the way, don't you just love the gold paper the word is cut from; it's wall paper from the 1940s backed with heavy stock.)  I really like the ribbon at the top and think it goes, BUT, I sure don't like the bow it makes. Do you have any suggestions for a better topper that won't cover up the tag?

Can't thank you enough for visiting. I'll be visiting your place soon!

Friday, February 7, 2014

Papertrey's 7th Birthday Bash - Timer Challenge - Love In My Heart

If you like a great birthday party with lots of fabulous gifts, head right over to Papertrey's 7th birthday party that is lasting for the first fifteen days of February. Talk about partying!!! There are lots of activities, prizes, and hints about upcoming events this year. You can join the party here.

My small participation in all the frivolities, is this card for today's challenge - 7 supplies in 17 minutes. (Just reading the posts, is like reading a newspaper cover to cover - only more fun.)  Folks seem to be doing fabulous work, given the constraints. It not quite as easy as it sounds at first!

Love in my Heart

I think I came in at seven supplies.
PTI cardstock - black, white, pure poppy, & raspberry fizz.
PTI dies - Limitless Layers: 2 1/4" Hearts Die Collection (2 of them) & Framed Love.

If I had to count the die cutting machine or scissors, I'm two over. Now off to continue looking at your great creations! Thanks for visiting.

Monday, February 3, 2014

Anything But a Card Challenge - RRR#88 - Second post

If you're here, chances are you've come from Really Reasonable Ribbon's 88th Challenge  - Anything But a Card. 

My contributions to the challenge are postcards, but they are made of fabric and other embellishments that are sewn on. I fused cotton fabrics, using 'Heat 'n Bond' onto a material called "Timtex", a VERY stiff Pellon like material, developed for use in the brim of hats. (My design was inspired by a tag in Basic Grey's beautiful 'Lily Kate' line from years ago.)

Using hand and machine sewing, the design was worked on top of the card. It was a blast figuring out how the different flowers could be formed. Below is a map of ribbons and trims used.

As you can see, there are quite a few heart shaped elements (one of my favorites), and I challenged myself to make the largest flower with heart-shaped petals. 

 Each open petal is a length of narrow ribbon with the ends brought together with the same side facing up, side by side. (The tip of the pedal will not lie flat at this stage.) Attach the two cut ends down next to one another where the center of the flower will be. Grab the tip of the petal and rotate the top side of ribbon to face the card's surface. Still holding the petal tip, move towards the flower center until you like the shape. and tack the tip down to the surface.

The ric-rac flower is formed by using a thread to draw the valley points together. Other embellishments include glass, brass, and shell beads, buttons, ladder yarn, and invisible thread.

Thanks so much for coming by to visit, and please leave me a comment. I would particularly like to know if my instructions for the large flower are clear, and if making one, is something you might try.

See you at your place soon!

Anything But a Card Challenge - RRR#88

Over at Really Reasonable Ribbon they are having a challenge to make 'anything but a card' using ribbons and trims. (Since my couch made from ribbons is out at the dry cleaners at the moment, I decided to share one of my smaller projects.) This heart seems timely with Valentine's Day close at hand.

 I fell in love with fabric postcards the first time I was given one by a friend. The postcard is basically a fabric sandwich with a stiff filling. This makes it very easy to embellish to the hilt, while having a 'canvas' that doesn't collapse under the weight.

A narrow red trim covers the boundary between the two background fabrics. (My trim wobbles a bit since I chose to sew it on, rather than use glue.)

The leaves and other bits of greenery are made from 7mm (about 1/4") silk ribbon. Any very soft narrow ribbon can be used for ribbon embroidery; it just needs to go on a needle and be able to be pulled through the fabric 'sandwich'. Sequins, beads of glass and brass, invisible thread, and embroidery floss, finish off the composition.

For more fun, visit Really Reasonable Ribbon's blog to see what their designers, and other folks, have made. If you enjoyed seeing a fabric postcard, please leave a comment. I'd love to share more, if there is an interest. (OK. More than just the ones I shared for this challenge.)

P.S. If you like fabric postcards with a holiday theme, you might enjoy my Easter egg cards here.

Saturday, January 11, 2014

Addicted to CAS: Challenge #29 - Die Cuts

You're probably here from the CAS Challenge blog, and that means this is your first time visiting. Welcome!

 I just had to participate, because lately I've realized I'm a bit of a die nut. Sitting around playing with dies, using them to fashion something other than the original shape, really floats my boat. (Hints: the cup is three different sized oval dies; and the four leaf clover is a heart die.) It's a bit early for St. Patrick's Day, but that was my original thought. It also seems appropriate of other occasions as well.

My style is all over the board, so I'm not sure about my having gotten CAS just right. Would you be willing to tell me if my card is CAS, or not CAS? Oh, I would dearly love to know if there is a better spot for my sentiment?!

Thanks so much for visiting and I'll be seeing you on your blog.

Papertrey - Fancy Flourishes stamp set, Heart Prints stamp set and coordinating die, Ripe Avocado cardstock and dye ink, Flower Fusion #9 stamp set, Stamper's select white cardstock. 
Sizzix - Big Shot, Oval Nestability dies.
Miscellaneous - Stripped white vellum, gold pearlescent with white dots paper.
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