Sunday, April 11, 2010

Almost out of the woods...

I love holidays as much as the next person, but I have come to the end of my entertaining repertoire. Thank God school is back tomorrow! I, of course, did not get nearly as much studio time as I wanted to, but we had trips to Tralee and Killarney and art projects and sleepovers and lazy mornings in pajamas. Had to be done! But I am ready for our old routine again so that I can do some fibre focus. After two weeks break from class, it will be a good thing to get into class and see what everyone else has been stitching over the last weeks. I made some progress on my second project, but I have a lot more to get done over the next month to be ready.
This is the new hair barrette that I completed yesterday in the studio. Funny how long something new takes to finish; at this rate I will have to charge a fortune for them. I finally got around to ordering the metal barrette frames from The Galway Bead Shop. The felt beads I had made months ago, so I simply stringed them together and added the beads. I think they turned out cute, so I am going to make more beads this morning and try to crank out some more. This is the medium clip and I got a smaller one for younger girls. I had the idea that I would do pure white ones for Holy Communion outfits, but I have just realized that I only have natural coloured wool and so must try to find pure white--sheep aren't by any means pure white, so I must hunt it, I think.
This little lady is the angel prototype that I have been working on the past couple of days. I am not a doll person per se, but I like the funkier looking dolls and they are appealing all of a sudden. I will keep this one because there are design errors on her, but I am thinking of doing more for when I am ready to open my shop. How much would you pay for her? She is 18 inches long and made of pure wool. I hand-felted the eyes, lips, and wings and I space-dyed her body in the microwave. Considering the lips on my first doll were a bit of disaster, this one looks ready for her first kiss! She is a cuddly shape that would be good for young kids. I am not sure if I would do the beaded necklace for young kids, but she does look pretty. Needle felting in the hair was probably the most time-consuming part of it. I need to source more of the wool fabric for the body as its very easy to sew (not too thick) and wool so I can quick dye with acid dyes.

I just saw a really lovely light-weight scarf done with merino and tussah silk on another blog, both of which I have in my stash right now. Light and soft and breathable for this time of year, and yet warm enough for the evening chill. I think I might use natural and some colour and then paint on some dye afterward to give it a little pizazz. Must get felting because the day is fabulous again and the afternoon must be spent trying to tidy the garden. If energy holds out, I need to sweep around the house, wash windows, tidy the shed, and clip the hedges before they grow too much more. Also pruning poor plants that did not fare well during all the hard frost that we have had this year. Almost all are bouncing back, but must get rid of dead weight!!
Happy stitching everyone....

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Happy Easter!

Well, it's a fine Easter morning. The house is a complete bomb site. I have made two trips to the recycling bin and I would hoover and at least TRY to contain some of the debris, but there are hundreds of small Lego parts all over the sitting room floor. I will forgo the inevitable drama and just not look at the mess. I think the same coping strategy will have to do with the grubby, chocolate-faced boy on the floor in his pajamas (still). Thankfully, we get few visitors and can just please ourselves. I remember seven years ago, when he was a just a small fella, he smiled at me for the first time on Easter Sunday and it wasn't just wind! My grandmother always made Easter fun for us and had Easter Egg hunts and a nice, family dinner. It seems so quiet with just the two of us...

This new Blogger is for the birds. I tried to upload photos twice and I gave up and finally got one pic loaded. I am not a great fan of new-and-improved as it always means extra work, not less as promised (I got more loaded, but it has taken over a half hour to do the three). Dingle's new market did very well on her maiden voyage on Holy Ground. I didn't sell anything, but that didn't surprise me. People just aren't buying handmade things, certainly not in Dingle. Oh, they will be very nosy and ask lots of questions, but that is just not getting the ball rolling in my new career. This is one of the pins, I made. I made them as fancy Easter Egg pins, but they will just have to be considered OVAL now :) It's Merino and Wensleydale with a bit of silk and glass seed beads. Something lovely and pretty for Easter. And priced at €12 it isn't too bad, really. The yellow star above is my daffodil in Merino and glass beads.

Fionn had a go at his first needle-felting project and he made a fairly decent egg (I just helped needle the edges so the colours wrapped around the egg). He seems to have a pretty good eye for colour. I told him he could try to sell it and have the money and, of course, he wanted to charge €30 for his masterpiece. I though €7 was a tad more appropriate...

I am trying to keep him busy in the studio while I am working and so I have been trying to gather art supplies for him to mess around with--we have clay and paper, watercolours, glitter glue, and window paints. I usually tried to keep him away from the felting needles because they are so sharp, but he did really well. He needled into a scrap of felt I had leftover. Must think up a bigger project for him now as I have loads of work to do!!

Now that we are through all the birthdays for a few months, major holidays til Halloween, and all other interruptions, I can hopefully sock money away for loads of fun supplies and get some real work done! Don't eat too much chocolate everyone!!