Saturday, December 24, 2011

Barbie Parts for Christmas!

Sounds strange but all I really want for Christmas is Barbie I can wear themas jewelry. XD
I found some fabulous jewelry by Margo Lang (post by LA Weekley Blogs, image from there as well) while reading art articles online. It's an old post, so I hope the artist is still producing her work, but the images are priceless.
As a child I be-headed my barbies and floated their heads in food coloring all in the name of fashion (the food coloring was supposed to dye their hair). I also drew on them with permanent marker, mix and matched their body parts, and cut their hair. Margo's jewelry makes me reminisce of my contentious relationship with the perfectly, imperfect Barbie.

She has an Etys Shop too but it's closed for vacation. ReMembering Barbie. I hope it's not a permanant one.
'Hello Margo....are you there?'.....

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Road trip....

I will be unable to answer all e-mails or do much posting for the next 3-5 days. We are driving to NY to visit relative. Can't wait to get going, I love Road Trips for all the stops along the way. :)
I will have my laptop with me to work on Spoonflower and Society6 ect....answer occasional, important e-mails.
Free Golden flower color plates are scheduled to automatic post so they will still appear hear and be downloadable from my flicker account.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Very brief mention in Spoonflower blog....

I didn't realize I was mentioned in a Spoonflower blog post until my sister informed me. They included one of my fabrics in the giveaway for December's 12 days of Christmas. It was listed under the 12/11 post with the Alt-Aesthetic fabric Bundle. The fabric was my Black Webs on Yellow.

That make me happy. :) Especially since I'm feeling under the weather today. Thanks again Sharon! What would I do without my Big Sister?
Here are links to the other equally fabulous fabrics that were in the bundle.
Mershim by Cateanevski, 
Ghosts—Nightshade by Cateanevski, 
Giant Flying Squrill Attack Tolie by ThirdHalfStudios, 
Dotd Skulls White Small by ThirdHalfStudios, 
Beautiful Bones: Sirens - Gold by JessicaSoon, 
Alice in Steamland Doll Pattern by CurlyCue, 
Black Spiderwebs on Yellow by MuddyFoot,
Ambition by Nalo Hopkinson, and
 Large Ghostly Squid Damask by PattySloniger.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Poodle Sculpting!

I have seen all sorts of strange and wonderful things on the internet but today I bring you a new lever of weird. I was doing research of a fabric design for a children's skirt and came across a very colorful and well sculpted poodle. Go browse this Google image search for "Creative Grooming Poodle". Dog and Groomer must have a ton of patience and imagination for this sort of thing. I can't imagine anyone who does this as ever being unhappy. Every day must bring a smile to their face. XD

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Saturday Morning Harajuku

My big sister is an Evil Genius!
She sent me this fabulously trippy Harajuku music video for Tsukematsukeru, by Kyary Pamyu Pamyu. It's a song about fake Eye Lashes!
About half way through the song it gets really good as the singer adorns a costume with eyelashes on the chest and dances with her break dancing lions. The same talented artist also created the song PonPonPon, about eating too much candy, which is equally fantastic! I'm already having visions of clip art and fabric patterns inspired by this video XD!
Thanks Sharon!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Never Hang your Dream Catcher Backwards and My DD's Ultra Cute Paul Revere Model

My sister found a positively weird and wonderful link to 'Brutal Knitting by Tracy Widdess'. This is soo trippy and cool to put it into proper words! Go have a look!
And what every you do never hang your dream catcher backwards!
Watching it has me thinking about the next Spoonflower contest for baby cloth books. I'm seriously wanting to make a 'Cthulu Loves You' baby book. I can see it already with tentacles hanging out of the pages and cuddly friendly representations of Cthulu and his buddies inside the pages for baby to play with. Unfortunately, the deadline for the contest has passed and I'm too busy finishing other things to create it on such a short notice. I'm going to keep the idea on the shelf though, it's the perfect thing to work on when I get bored with other projects. Instead I leave you with this link to What if Dr. Suss wrote The Call of Cthulu? on :) Enjoy!

Lastly my DD had a mid-semester project on Paul Revere due at the end of November. I love the model she made so much I have to share pictures of it! Not bad for a 11 yr old's first attempt to use a hot glue gun, Dremel, and oven bake clay! I'm so proud she didn't use Lego's! Legos are fun, but I don't feel they provide as many problem solving opportunities as creating a model from mixed media. 

Monday, December 5, 2011

New Spoonflower contest...Feathers!

A new weekly contest has begun over on Spoonflower. The theme is 'Feathers.' Because I went geometric and anti-cute on the 'Kite' contest last week, I'm going humorous on this next one. The logic behind this decision is based upon looking at all the current feather related fabrics on Spoonflower. Most of the fabrics I saw are great, but are simply decorative feather motifs. I have a theory that cute and humors motifs score higher in Spoonflower contests. Not that that's a bad thing, but I like to be diffrent. I'm willing to test this theory with my contest entry.
I chose 'Horse Feathers' as my subject matter. It's a fantastical plant related to Snap Dragons and Cat-tails.
It also brought me back to my forestry days at SFA, drawing twig anatomy for class. I chose a nice zig-zag black locust twig as a model and replaced the buds with horse bodies.  I chose simplified feather drawings because I knew the repeating layout would be chaotic and didn't want feather texture to add to it.

Go vote! I'm pleased to say there are some really beautiful entries to look at. My favorite is Paisley Feathers by Irrimari.
As for the last contest I only ranked in the low 70's as my geometric take did not fare as well as my last few entries. Oh well, It's still one of my favorite patterns so far. See the last contest rankings here.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Golden Flower bookplates 2 and 3

It's been a busy week.....I won't go into details, just boring work, work, school, and holiday preparations.
Here are the fabulous chrysanthemum chromo lithograph book plates 2 and 3  from 'The Golden Flower Chrysanthemum'. Remember these are accessible only for a limited time! Read my last blog post if you need to catch up on more information about this topic.
here are a few links to information reguarding this book as well:
NYPL Digital Gallery- Sows other images int he book.
MFA Educators Online- images of the chromo lithographs. The images on my flicker account are much larger than their images, so you can see the printing detail better. 
The literary world, Volume 22; Google Books- a reference to the book from an antique advertisement.

Click on plate descriptions for a link to larger images on my flicker account.

This lovely plate is called 'Kyoto'

And here we have 'Medusa'

One final note about these book plates. They are raw scans. I have done no digital cleaning except automatic contrast; but they are free for you to download and copy. In some cases I had to scan and image in 2 pieces and then piece them together in Photoshop. I did my best to make the pieces 'whole' and merge them back together.
Happy Holidays!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Christmas Countdown, and A Holiday Gift

Ive got several little things to cover today.
First of all I placed 22nd in the Spoonflower Advent calendar contest. You can see the final rankings at the Spoonflower Blog. I'm actually quite thrilled with my ranking considering I felt like this project was seriously rushed and I had difficulty making my theme (Sew Your Way To Christmas) consistent. The competition was feirce too. Some really fabulous calendars won the coveted top 10 slots.
Ive also uploaded a revision of my layout to Spoonflower and ordered a full yard to proof the images on the fabric and sew my own calendar. My mother really wants to see it put together. The revision is pictured below.
 As a side I also entered the kite contest. I fear I won't do so well in it because I chose to go anti-cute for this one. I knew there would be plenty of competing cute images so I went geometric instead. It won't win but it's different and I think it's unique enough to stand out.

Aside from my advent calendar, which I hope will be proofed and posted for sale before everyone starts counting down to Christmas, I have a new t-shirt for sale on Society 6.
Having many geeks in my family I had to come up with something they would actually wear for the holidays.
I came up with a Circuit Board Snowflake. I used Make-A-Flake again to get a good snowflake to manipulate. Its not a new concept. I did a little searching after making and posting my own and found several older images with the same concept, some of them quite good. You can do your own search and be the judge on which ones are the best. Mine is pictured below. The text on it reads 'JOY CAPACITOR', 'HOLIDAY RESET', and '9V BATT'.

Lastly in my Etsy and Melyah clipart shops I have Reindeer, Vintage style Christmas frames, and Snowflake frames. Use the frames for Christmas photos, ornaments, or gift tags. All are on sale for under 2.00 to celebrate the holidays. They use the Spoonflower color palette too. So long as you change them up some for your creative uses I have no problem with you using them on Spoonflower. Just read the attached Permissions and Content file that comes with the files for the copyright details.

Lastly, in the spirit of the Holidays I have some great floral images I'm going to share with you till Christmas.
My mother found a wonderful book copyrighted in 1890 called the Golden Flower Chrysanthemum. As you may, or may not know, anything published before 1923 in the US is public domain. I will share 16 of the fabulous floral book plates with you (roughly 2-3 a week) until December 24th. Once the new year begins they will disappear. So keep your eyes open and your computer ready to copy and save. The first bookplate is below along with a bonus page giving the details of the book and illustrations. Larger images are available from my Flicker set 'Golden Flower'.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Free printable Cut and Paste Santa Ornament

This little Santa ornament was inspired by cut and paste ornaments from the 50's and 60's. The above image shows some of the prototypes I made while trying to get the design right.
Click the image to get the full view than right click it to copy. From there you can paste into Word or image editing software. Print him on card stock if you want him to last past Christmas. You can decorate him further with glitter and silver paint to make him even more glamorus.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Look Mom! I'm posting to Etsy!

We all know mothers know best and mine is no exception. My mother has taken notice that my Etsy shop for vintage items and art has been neglected lately. I help my friend Jo photograph and post her items to Wonder-filled once a week I slipped a few of the things my mother gave me for my shop. Hopefully this will satisfy her for a little bit. BTW mom I hope your listening....I'm going to add more to my shop as I work with Jo. This will occur once a week as Jo comes over every Friday so we can work.

So without further delay here is a peek at what I'll be posting. The tackle box, shown below, was my grandmothers (we lovingly called her MawMaw; that's her in the first image). She had many wonderful sewing sundries tucked away and hidden about her house. We only discovered them after she passed away. Some of these items are beautiful, and lacy. The butterflies are labeled ''Forster Willi', 'Made in Switzerland'.
My mother has added some other pieces of beautiful trim to the box that she found while antique and thrift shopping. All together it now contains pieces ranging from the 1950's to the 1980's.

Also don't forget to visit Wonder-Filled and Jo's new items as well! She listed a bunch of old postcards, a few valentines, and some cute photographs of children today. She's also installed the new shop banner that I made for her this morning (pictured below). Go have a look at her Wonder-Filled store!

The banner background (gnome and animals) came from  The Graphics Fairy and I added some clip-art of my own making (cracked paint in the banner and the cat label) along with a nice font that I manipulated a little.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Roman arthurien

I'm working on a pattern of knights battling each other. I wanted them to look medieval so I did a little research. I found a wonderful illuminated manuscript from 1201-1300 on Gallica; The Roman arthurien.
It has loads of medieval bats, rabbits, and grotesque figuers, as well as knights.
Curious thing about all the knights;  they are usually huddled up in gangs like any thug you would find out on the streets today.

  I love the horses too. They have such cute and beleaguered expressions!

Lastly, here is one knight that I have partially done. Hopefully, I will finish it in the next few days, depending on how much time the kids, husband, and pets give me. XD

One warning about leafing through this massive text; it's over 800 pages and contains a LOT of text. It's a good thing to look at while waiting at the Dr's office or airport. So maybe save it for a long holiday Layover in Chicago or some similar incident.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Spoonflower Advent Calendar Contest

I've entered the Spoonflower Advent Calendar Contest!
I worked on it up until the entry deadline. I wish I could have done more for the presentation layout but I did not have time. Last weekend was entirely consumed with Lily's school project, Her school's Family fun Day at Great Wolf Lodge, Her Birthday Party at Speed Zone, and then another child's birthday party we had to attend. With all the events I lost 4 whole days of work on my entry.

I wish the Spoonflower  website showed better images of my advent pockets. You can't zoom in on any of it or provide thumbnail details. So I'm providing some detail images here and leaving a link on my Spoonflower description for people to follow from there.

I had a hard time coming up with a consistent idea to begin with. I wanted a Quilter's Advent that featured fat quarters or cheater quilt squares but the size constraint (42"x36") was very limiting. So I decided to make pockets shaped like sewing tools. Except sewing tools are not easy to hem unless you put an uninteresting square border around them. I went ahead and made 12 thread spools with Christmas themed colors and decorations and decided to come up with something to accompany them as I worked on them.

 Then I decided to use Illustrations from 'Easy Steps In Sewing For Big And Little Girls'. My original idea was to make 12 trade cards ore needle books featuring the cute little characters from the book. The book was published in 1902 and is written by Jane Eayre Fryerand illustrated by Jane Allen Boyer. The book is loaded with sweet little illustrations on every page. Unfortunately, the scans I took from my copy are very dirty and neede lots of cleaning in order to be usable. Cleaning and coloring one image takes me roughly 2 to 3 hours (with occasional interruption of children and husband). Despite this I managed to get 6 images cleaned and embellished for my needle books. Here they are in detail:

The borders also took a lot of time to create. I couldn't find any copyright free borders so I ended up making my own based upon the borders of Christmas themed vintage and antique linens. The holly border is my favorit. I's actually a bracelet design from the early 1900's.

To fill in the extra spots in my advent calendar I made 6 snowflakes at Make-A-Flake. With practice you can get some really fantastic results from Make-A-Flake! 

I'm sure the competition for the contest is just as good as the last contest! The contest starts later this week. So go have a look at the wonderful work done by the other Spoonflower designers and vote for your favorite!