Monday, October 31

sewing kits, part 2

So this weekend I went on a bit of a rampage with some of my business funds: bought new fabric with gnomes and mushrooms, bought some kimono(s) and an obi, bought ink for screenprinting, new screens for the gocco, bulbs, and (splurge) a color of ink for the gocco that is called 抹茶, or 'green tea;' also some packaging things.

Then I came home & worked.

Here are two new sewing kits. I found thread scissors wholesale and bought some for inclusion in half the sewing kits (will make them a bit pricier, but I think it's a good move). The one on the left uses that gnome/mushroom fabric. On the right, the outside fabric is one from A. Henry, with stylized animals in pastel colors on a green background. I have it in blues/greens as well (on a white background).

  • wash kimono + obi
  • get PRIDE & PREJUDICE and watch while frogging sweater etc?
  • finish cleaning apartment
  • make some more cards? (made a bunch last night)
And! I've recently found out I have two contacts in Japan who are willing to get crafty books and supplies for me, so that's exciting, too!


Friday, October 28


Well, on a good day, this is what my workspace looks like. Above is my drawing table, where I paint, draw, etc. Below is how my sewing table used to look; now it's turned perpendicular to the wall.

The machine on the right is an Elna; on the left (the front machine) is my Kenmore, which I got (with all its original accessories, manuals, and warranty) for $5. I have to take it to Sears yet to get it working right, but once it does I've got some people lined up for sewing lessons. (Excellent!) On the wall are a little type case my dear Z. gave me to hold (er, some of) my thread, my favorite piece of kimono cloth, and a litho I printed on fabric last semester.

I'm sick with a sinusy thing again. FUN. But yesterday I blew out my screen and sketched ideas for a project I'm working on...and today I made the positives for it. Can't wait. It's ambitious (therefore secret; no jinxes), but possible, I think. If it does work, there will be pictures here within the month.

Domani: shopping for art supplies!

Wednesday, October 26


Elephants all dressed up + waiting for their pins to be attached.

Busy week so far (as per usual), so fewer oh, look! posts and more, oh, dear, I have a lot to get done ones.

Tuesday, October 25

in progress

She's a flower fairy. Linen body, kimono silk shirt, felted roving for hair. Skirt of vintage satin and chiffon. As is proper, you can't see her bloomers, but they're long, gathered, cotton ones, printed with pink, orange, and brown flowers on long, thin stems. Petals and bracts for a hat.

I've been working on her very occasionally since May, when she was going to be a "May flower" for A Month of Softies. What with moving, going to Italy, and disliking embroidery, that goal kind of fell by the wayside. I'd like to finish her one of these days, though.

Monday, October 24


I've got a series of prints in the works to do with a scary-ish rabbit-like creature who goes into children's rooms at night and gives them disquieting dreams, and I thought I'd try to make him in cloth. This rendering sort of turned into a zombunny...with a heart. I suppose you'd really have to bonk him over the head with a carrot if he were roaming your neighborhood.

Also today:
  • Finished piecing two more tuffets
  • Frogged (with help) more of the sweater
I'm thinking about poems, snow, working in the printshop tomorrow--and the Ben Folds concert tomorrow night, to which I have a ticket! All good things.

PS: the observant will notice by one detail how the weather has changed since yesterday afternoon. :)

sewing kits

I made a sewing kit as an experiment and to test my spacial skills (you know, like on the PSAT), and the prototype came out so well I made another. I think I'll aim for ten of these. Between the two shows they should sell. The little tins will have more beads in them, and I might include a card of vintage buttons. Not sure about that one yet, though. Lots up my sleeve. Can't spill all the secrets just yet.

Went to Savers with my mom, dad, and brother today to drop a bunch of things off and got a lambswool-angora sweater in variegated blue-white. Frogged the sleeves tonight + balled one for immediate use. T'other is hanging in the bathroom to see whether the kinks will steam out of it eventually.

In other news:
  • idea about the dream-rabbit (and a felted black cashmere-wool sweater for it)
  • made tons (!) of labels, business cards, and tags on the GOCCO tonight
My mom's tags/b.c. are so cute. We both made sew-in labels, too, although I think hers came out better than mine. We each ended up with probably 60-75 business cards (which can be used for tags) and the same number of labels. I'm going to do some more b.c. tomorrow, too.

Friday, October 21

how to keep ribbon

I would always coil it and put it in a tiny chect of drawers I got at IKEA, but this wasn't practical: whenever I wanted a ribbon that was beneath another, lazy-I would just pull out the bottom ribbon and leave the drawer in disarray.

All this changed when my friend showed me how she keeps her ribbons--a long, thin board, painted however you like (I've done horizontal stripes of transparent acrylic colors), with nails attached every so often across the top.

I can't keep myself from anything that can be organized in rainbow order!

Thursday, October 20


Last week a reporter from the Minnesota Daily emailed me about doing an interview on Fashion Weekend stuff--of course, I said yes!

The article is here.

So exciting and weird (mostly weird) to see my name on there, as though I'm some sort of expert. Ha!

Wednesday, October 19

and then there were two

a green mallard, perched in my sweet hypertufa that dear miss M. made me (eventually: here). He is green + orange felted ex-sweaters, zip-top, with a little bobble on his zip-pull.

The hypertufa is planted with strawberry begonia, oleander, a tiny fern, ivy, and a pepperomia of unknown variety. Apparently these were v. popular in Victorian times (as with all the strange miniatures). I can see why. I love having this tiny garden inside my urban apartment.


After having seen mollychicken's animal pouches, I was inspired to make some of my own. Unlike hers, mine zip (I think hers have a snap on the side). Hers also have super-sweet arms, legs, and faces--and ears at the tops of their heads. I think the side snap accomodates that.

But anyway, this little bunny is just waiting for the No-Coast where, I hope, she and her friends will go off to new homes.

She's felted angora (appropriate?! or disturbing?) with vintage kimono cotton for her ears, zip-pull, and covered-button nose.

Today I have to work at the International Conference of Writing Centers, which our university is hosting, so all my free time is gone. (I do have work off tomorrow, though--). Maybe I'll have time to post more tonight.

Tuesday, October 18

the misses

here are my lovely mannequins! I got them for an absolute song from a bridal shop that is changing its image. They're old, heavy ones with tiny casters on their 'feet,' so they're easy to move. I love their little knobbies. The owner said that the fabric is the original fabric, but I have my doubts. The one on the right has a metal cage that extends from beneath her body.

& & & they are modeling two of the stoles I made last night--both lined in kimono fabric (turned out to show detail: the brown is silk; the pink, synthetic blend). Fairly easy to make, and they look really luxe. I made them larger than my own shoulders so other people can actually wear them!


oh dear--what a mess!
...blogger is better. It's so luxurious not to have to edit my photos before putting them online! That alone is enough--but I like the templates here (and how I can [can't] modify them).

Last night my dad brought over a bureau, so I finally have one--and B. and I went to pick up two vintage mannequins and two pieces of display furniture for bara. My little workroom became crowded very quickly! I'm so excited to clean it all up this week. (The painting came from the garbage + went home with B. last night, to be painted over; hanging over it are three of the four [faux] fur stoles I made yesterday. Two for the DC, two for my shows...I think.)

Monday, October 17

ポン flowers

Just as the fashion show came along, a little commission came in. I've just finished these little pomflowers & they are now on two black hairbands & will be on their merry way on Thursday, providing the customer likes them!


I've been working on these little tuffets--for sitting or sleeping or just looking pretty--among other things. I'm getting ready for two shows--one at the Minnesota Center for Book Arts in November, and the other the No-Coast Craft-o-Rama, which is the Minneapolis equivilent of Renegade (etc.). Between these preparations and the fashion show that happened two weekends ago, my time for taking, editing, and posting pictures has been limited!