February 24, 2011

gifts of love

This month I was able to finish a couple of big projects. . .one is a fabric journal for jotting random memories of my sweet babies which I'd been working on off and on for a few months and the other is a small "Love" album I completed for my sweet hubby the day before we celebrated Valentine's Day. I was equally happy with them. You can see for yourself how they turned out:

I used the same technique to create the cover as I did on my mom's brag book. Carissa liked the stick pin on the cover. . .

The inside pages are random papers I had been collecting for this purpose. I folded them in to signatures and machine stitched them on to the cover. I broke about 5 needles and I think if I had it to do again, it probably would have been better to just stitch it by hand.

Here is a better look at some of my favorite pages. There is some antique wallpaper samples, Prima packaging, baby shower cards, a Basic Grey mini album and many other fun papers. I'm thinking I may add pages as I go along if I find more space is needed, but this is it for now. It turned out pretty close to what I had envisioned in my mind and that always feels good.

This is my first journal entry and gives you an idea of the type of things I hope to record in it. Random cute things as the kids grow. . .

And now for my Hubby Love Album. I used a 3x3 Creative Imaginations board book I've had lying around forever and put it in a little cigar box I found at an antique store a few years back. So fun when things come together at the perfect time to make the right gift! The beautiful black, white and red paper is all from K & Company.

The album itself is what Ali Edwards would call "words + photos." I don't think I've ever done anything quite like this where a photo takes up an entire page. It worked great for this, though.


January 17, 2011

cheesecloth & acrylic paint ATC's

I thought I'd take a few minutes and post some ATC's (artist trading cards) I made this summer. They're special to me because they were my first creative project after Carissa was born and because they capture the sweet innocence of this period of their lives. It's nice to look back at these on days like today when Kaden is exerting his little two-year-old will to passionately tell mommy "no" and Carissa is vigorously shaking her head and squealing at me in a tone that communicates her displeasure.

I made the ATC's for an Art Chix swap. That was a first time thing for me and it was interesting to get artwork from other people. I made duplicates of each card and the first image below shows them mounted on the scrapbook page home I made for them so I could store them in my album.

January 12, 2011

a little bit of creative heaven

So, for Christmas I always give my sweet hubby this huge, long wish list and he typically ignores all but maybe one or two items on it because he's a romantic and feels you should be more creative than using a list. This year my list had things like "an antique suitcase for my fabric crafts" and "antique buttons." Anyway, Matt felt it was vague enough to allow him room to express himself creatively/romantically, so I received tons of items from my list! His goal was to give me a little bit of creative heaven and did he ever succeed!

Have you ever seen such a great set-up? I was inspired to ask for the suitcase after reading Rebecca Sower's article in Stampington & Company's magazine HandCrafted. I started experiementing with fabric scrapbooking (there's a page in my gallery) a couple of years ago, but didn't have a very good way to store everything. So, some of the contents are things I already had, but here is a close up look at a few of the goodies he added to my collection. The bottom picture is of a "Clutter Box" Rebecca Sower had for sale on etsy.

I was so excited about it I had to add a couple of other little things I saw pictured in the magazine article. Straight off ebay, here they are:

This suitcase and the contents make me want to pick up my needle and sew something! I've already started work on a couple of fabric ATC's with photo transfers on muslin. Check back soon for pics of the results!

December 16, 2010

fabric fun

Lately I've been feeling totaly inspired to work with fabric thanks to Ruth Rae's book Layered, Tattered & Stitched. I was given the book for an early birthday present and here's a peek at my first project:

They're Christmas ornaments for my two kiddos. I hope this is a tradition I can carry on every year. . .making ornaments for them to take with them when they leave home. My mom collected ornaments for us as kids and it was so neat to start my first Christmas as a newlywed with a whole set of ornaments I remembered putting on the Christmas tree growing up.

If you're interested in the creative details. . .the muslin face fabric was hand-dyed with yellow food coloring and instant coffee. Sandwiched between the face fabric and the heavy felt backing is Poly-Fil to give it some weight. The burgandy hearts were hand felted and the knotted piece on top is cut from a vintage hankie. I used letter stamps to put their names on pieces of muslin which I tied to the top.

December 9, 2010

playing with canvas & iron-ons

Back at the beginning of summer, I left my new baby with the hubby for an evening (yup, he's pretty awesome!) and ran off to attend a fabric scrapbooking workshop taught by Donna Downey. It was incredibly inspiring and just the break I needed from all the mommy responsibilities.

So, I didn't finish the album we started in class, but it inspired me to do a brag book for my mom who had been hinting she needed one. Here's a look at how it turned out:

The album is made from pieces of canvas I cut to size with quilt batting between them for thickness. I used acrylic paint on the front cover and made the letters from gessoed denim. The iron-ons are ones we used in Donna's workshop. I purchased them off her website when I decided to do this project. As you can see from the next picture, the iron-on wraps around the back of the album.

The text on the inside cover says "a lasting legacy" and the intro page on the right is letters I stitched to a transparency which read "A Virtuous Woman: her worth is far above rubies." I was going with the theme of the Proverbs 31 woman, hoping that the book would also serve as an encouragement to my mom instead of being just a brag book.

More transparencies here and stamped on the ribbon tabs is the text "the heart of her husband safely trusts in her."

The page on the left has stamped text which reads "her children rise up and call her blessed." Also, the inside pages are colored with watercolors. It's a little hard to see in the pictures.

The last pages are some stitched page protectors I threw in for extra pictures.

The inside of the back cover has a note to my mom. . .

The whole thing was hand stitched to the canvas cover when I was finished. Overall, I was very pleased with how colorful this turned out. I really pushed myself outside of my typical muted color palette and it was fun! When I was done with this project, I wanted something like it I could keep for myself, so I started a journal with the same style cover. I'll post pictures of it when it's complete!