Tuesday, December 31, 2013

50 Swallows

I ordered 100 die cut birds in cream coloured card stock from a lovely etsy seller to add to my christmas cards.  sadly due to the slow mail they did not make it in time. (although i probably would not have had time to finish them anyway!)  CHeck out her site HERE.
Since i was going to see my sister over the holidays, and it was her special 50th birthday on the 21st - i decided to put the birds to good use.  i created a garland with 50 birds - just by running them through my sewing machine with about 5 inches in betwen each one. 
Here you can see she hung them over her kitchen door and windows where they can enjoy the snowy winter until spring when they have to fly from Calgary to Capistrano!

Monday, December 2, 2013


 My friend and neighbour E gave me a big surprise last week.  She made me a quilt! How unbelieveable is that?????!!!  It was so generous of her and i am delighted with how beautiful it looks on my bed. She hand cut and sewed this pattern with type dye style fabric in a rainbow of colours.  The background was sewn on a long arm machine by her friend.  They chose a dragon fly pattern.
 How can i thank her?  well this is just a "start"!  I made a little quilt inspired thank you note with some origami papers and glue dot buttons.  I'll have to come up with a better way to show my appreciation.
Here is the quilt with my existing cushions and artwork.  I might change things up a bit - but for now - it is just so beautiful and fresh and lovely.  Thank you E!!!!!!!!!!!!

Altered Book - Paper Dolls 2

 I have been having fun creating paper dolls for L's altered book.  I previously worked on the book HERE.  Our little spiral bound calendars are almost finished their journey through the 6 of us - each getting the books twice this year to work on.  I started with a pretty gal cut from a catalog.  I put her on a swirly green paper background and added a few "fashion" phrases.  For her first frock i created a whimsical polka dot party dress and added a netting petticoat and a pink bow.  The dress attaches with a gemstone magnetic so you can actually PLAY with this paper doll!
 Here is a mod a-line dress made from a handmade paper that looks a bit like tie dye. Oops - your slip is showing...!
 All girls need a little black dress - this one cut from this silver/black check.
 Finally i made a big poufy skirt and organza blouse.  all made with paper and a copper organza bow.
 And every girl needs a nice big closet for her clothes - they all go in here!
 Here is the next spread.  A cute little kewpie style red head with a paper wardrobe accented with ribbons and trims.  Her background is a mixture of orange and purple stained ledger paper, some striped fabric and some jumbo orange rick rack trim.
All her clothes fit in the sheer pockets on the left and attach to the doll with another magnetic gemstone.  Have fun playing with your doll book L!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Christmas Papercrafting 2013

My dear friend K had another one of her magical crafty play dates yesterday - our third annual christmas card making extravaganza.  What's a play date without a theme?  K chose Pretty Pink Shabby Chic Holiday Papercrafting Affair.  She dressed up her house is all sorts of pretty vintage pink adornments for our pleasure.  (just about making her husband run screaming from the house!).
No - this is NOT a pink tree.  it is a WHITE tree with pink feather boas.  How pretty is that?  Seriously - her husband did run screaming - in search of a football game...
 Here kitchen was set with places for us 6 ladies to play and chat.  With blue statin, and pink organza and bling decorating the railing and windows.
The family room was laid out with our afternoon tea and a roaring fire greeted us. The TV was tuned to the christmas carol channel.
This cute little tree IS pink!
 I prepared little goody bags to share with the girls.  Each pink striped bag was garnished with a vintage Paris postcard, some grey seam binding ribbon tied around a gunmetal clip.
Inside were some papers from my stash, plus a vintage christmas card, some birdies and jewels, and a pretty woodcut angel doll from Artchix.
 K also gave us all some new toys.  at each of our place settings was a glue roller, some die cuts, some jumbo pop dots and some BLING!
K put out some of her supplies for us to use - i took advantage of some of these little coloured pearls you can see below.
 After a morning filled with a frenzy of 6 ladies making cards and decorating envelopes it was time for lunch.  K set a beautiful table with pink and silver accents
 Each of us received a mini shoe ornament as a memento of our girl bonding.  At last year's event we got a little "glass slipper".
Lunch was yummy with a persimmon and fennel salad with candied bacon to start.  then a pecan crusted salmon, green bean bundles, scalloped potatoes and a carrot jello mold. 
K was going for a recreation of this vintage looking meal!  I think she nailed it...!
Ok - yes - we managed to do more crafting after lunch.  I brought my suppies in a vintage wicker tote and a cute cloth bag from artfest.
I went to Once Around in Mill Valley to get some inspiration for my cards this year.  I picked up this assortment of teal and blue cards in two sizes.
Last year after the holidays i picked up these music cards from Pottery Barn on clearance.  I thought these could be the base for some cards.
I used jumbo scallop scissors to trim the edges and added some sepia ink.  i punched two holes near the top corners to hang from ribbon.  But that's as far as i got. 
 Next i took a bunch of blank cards and made these.  i used green scroll-y scrapbook paper cut to size as a base.  I added copies of vintage postcards with a bird theme and cut them out with scallop scissors.
 Here you can see those pretty little pearls - each attached with a tiny glue dot.  I also added some sequin leaves.
 Next i took a few little blue cards and added a sheet of soft printed scrapbook paper cut to size.  Something else will be added on top - just not sure what!
 For these cards - i took the same robin's egg blue blank cards and added a piece of flocked decorative paper.  I LOVE how these turned out - especially when paired with the deep teal envelopes.  They too might get a final doo-dad to make them a smidge more festive.
 For these i cut ornament shapes from a piece of scrapbook paper and attached them to the card with the large foam pop dots K gave us.  I think i'll add some string to make them really look like they are hanging.  a little stamp (from K's collection) adds a nice touch.
Among the toys K put out for us to play with was a embossing machine.  I used regular card stock to print a bunch of sentiments which i cut out and glued to some of the cards shown above.
 Around 4 o'clock we took a break for tea.  On one table was an assortment of cookies and scones.  Some of them were sugar free for anyone with dietary considerations.  How thoughtful!
For those of us with a sweet tooth, however, we were not disappointed with this beautiful and delicious coconut cake.  there was a lovely assoirtment of teas (i had pink rose velvet!) and dainty emboridered tea napkins to place on our laps.
After tea, we were each given one of these cute envelope bags. inside were a pretty notebook, a mini sewing kit (one we think we can sneak on planes) and a delightful vintage hankie with festive embroidery.
What a magical day we had.  And i made a good start on my christmas cards.  Thank you K!
Check out last year's play date HERE.
And here are my cards from 2011 HERE

Monday, November 11, 2013

Play Date - Caged Santos Dolls

We were all given a basic papier mache covered foam torso from Michaels to play with for this month's play date.
The original concept was to make caged santos dolls like this one (like mine - purchased online)  - but you give 5 ladies the same starting point - they are bound to go off in different directions!
 I found the perfect sized head on a Bratz doll - painted it white and put her unruly greenish hair in a bun, and painted it white as well.  I used an oval embroidery hoop for the base and rulers for the cage.
I wrapped her torso in plaster gauze which helped to secure the tops of the rulers.  I tried nails and glue but the gauze really did the trick.  i used fine wire to attach the rulers to the base.
I threaded a wire through her shoulders and attached arms made from thinner guage wire and paper clay.  The hands are a bit out of proportion - so i can sand them down when they dry fully.  She will get a coat of paint, a new painted face and a cute bird.
 Z.'s santos begins with a vintage industrial thread spool he saved from her grandfather.  she will drape the santos in a skirt of vintage ecru laces and ribbons. Including her grandmother's tatting!
 Without the head - you cannot get the total effect - but you can imagine how awesome it is going to look!
 K. decided to make her torso into a mermade.  she fashioned a head ,arms and a tail out of clay.  She painted them sea green and added beads and other bling.
She will be getting a full head of hair, but for now you can see how cute she is with her beaded fins.  and she is perfectly balanced to sit "just so".
Karen sent us a picture of her painted face she completed after the play date.  WOWSA.  Check out those eyes!
 D. is known to like to go off in a different direction from the rest of us - to push the envelope, so to speak.  So you give a girl a human torso and before you know it it has a clown head and a birdhouse for a "skirt".
But then she goes 17 steps further, and adds golf tees for hair, juice tins for wings, and a chandelier lampshade for a base.  And since this is nowhere near completed, there is no telling what direction it might take!
We all loved creating these santos inspired dolls and agree that we must create another, or three.  SInce there are just too many fun ideas to try!