Saturday, March 31, 2012

Washed Ashore

I believe most artists are inspired by their surroundings.

Living in a vintage cottage a few steps from the seashore
where we are no longer allowed to remove or take the seashells
is what encouraged me to create my own collection of ceramic shells
using various clays and glazes.

I have amassed a pretty amazing collection
over the years that I embellish with.

I also use them in mosaics, gift them to friends, barter with them
and as you see here create jewelry with them.

For this piece I used a scrap of fabric in ocean colors that I cut 10 inches long by 4 inches wide and folded it in half lengthwise with right sides together.
Then sewed a half inch seam along the length of it then turning it right side out I tuck the unfinished ends back into each side.
Next I cut a piece of 1 inch wide elastic to fit my wrist and slid it in with a safety pin and sewed one side down before stretching through to the other side and attaching the elastic down before I slid one side into the other and sewed it closed completely.

This is when the fun begins...
pull out your collections of buttons, beads, and baubles
and beginning with the largest pieces either use fabric glue
to attach them into place or sew them down,
and then continue by filling in around them
with buttons, pearls and beads.

I am the kind of artist that will use anything handy
so I've used dental floss to attach the pearls,
colored embroidery thread
for beads and even clear fishing line.

There are bits of plastic, ceramic pieces, glass
and pearls from a broken necklace and combined altogether
they create a wrist embellishment a mermaid may have lost
that was discovered when it washed ashore.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Summer Satchel

I LoVe blank canvases, blank books with no lines
and thick stacks of plain white paper.

To me they represent new beginnings.

So when I was gifted with this simple canvas satchel
and asked to decorate it,
my imagination went on overdrive with the possibilities.

I considered covering it in tapestry with corduroy
and a patchwork of fall colors.

Then the idea of using Sherpa suede with a wide tapestry trim in coordinating colors and vintage button detailing ...

or sewing a pocket inside for storing my paint brushes
and paint a color chart with labels of the various colors
on the outside as reference,the perfect tote for plein air painting.

Any of these would be great,
but last week I was inspired by the fabric paints
left out on the studio table
along with a collection of amazing seashells that caught my eye
and so I chose to paint a summer satchel
for the sun filled days of summer.

Perfect for toting my water bottle,
sun screen, sketch book and towel.
I added the hand crafted ceramic seashell
key chain as a fun little accent and
for easy access to the cottage house key
and the wide turquoise braid
seemed to be the perfect border for the painting.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Embellished Cardigan

I found the sweet peachy pink cardigan at The Gap

and loved the color, fit and length.

By now, my readers would know I can't seem to

just leave it as it was created.

I have several lengths of beautiful vintage laces

needing to come out of hiding and be shown off.

They seem the perfect embellishment.

I layer them and then

they are easily hand sewn on to the sweater.

Then feeling it needs a bit more,

I pull out the treasured vintage button collection

and pour it out on the table looking

for just the right lovelies to create a button bouquet.

The magic mesh comes in handy for laying out the gems

and then sewing them into place.

I cut away the extra mesh and add a magnet to attach it with,

so the fabric will not be damaged by the weight of the pin.

Fortunately I have the perfect vintage crochet top

that works beautifully as a camisole underneath.

I'm loving the happy spring colors being shown this season!