Wednesday, March 26, 2008

My Sewing Club

My studio partner, Susan, recently told me about a newly formed group of women interested in fiber arts.  I was thrilled when I was invited to join.  Since last fall, we have been meeting twice a month to share our mutual interests in crafting and sewing, show off our current projects, get inspiration, etc.  It has really been fun, and I have enjoyed meeting some new people.

At our meeting last Monday, Kate, who is has a unique sculpting talent, showed us the mascot she is busily making for our local children's museum (The Virginia Discovery Museum:  Right now she has the head constructed of what is sure to be a most amazing kangaroo.  Here she is showing it off!

And trying it on: 

We also talked about and looked at pictures of a dress that Rose made for a Home, Health and Heart Show in Charlottesville.  It was made of organic fabric and woven, appliqued, and sewn. Truly a work of art!  Rose makes custom clothing and bridal gowns (she has an etsy shop, also:

As an incentive to encourage us to expand our creative horizons, the group decided to come up with a monthly "art assignment" using fibers.  After much discussion, we decided that the theme for the month would be determined somewhat randomly.  We all wrote several words on little slips of paper that were put in a basket.  Someone drew out two words, and, voila!, we have a theme!  The assignment for this month is to make something, anything, using the words "telephone" and "closeness".  

Susan Leschke has started working on her project.  It is a cell phone case in which she has printed a photoshopped image of herself onto fabric.  She is going to stitch and embroider the hell out of it (all beautifully, as is her way).  So, get it?  She is going to have a telephone close to her!  I will post pictures when we have our meeting.

In the meantime, I would like to say "thank you" to all of you who have posted comments regarding my button collection.  While I appreciate all of the, er, helpful ideas on ways to use the buttons, what I was looking for was ways to organize them.

I will let you know when I finish the Coat of Many Buttons.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

So, What's Up With Blogging?

Yes, I do enjoy reading blogs. No, I have not enjoyed setting this thing up. If I ever thought for a second that I had a future in computer programming, I can now officially say that I will not be pursuing that line of work.

Anyhow, the point is that I created this blog as a way of showcasing my work in the world of crafting, and to also keep in touch with other crafters. I have set up a nascent etsy shop (see link at right), and I am hoping to add more and more items as time goes on. If all goes well, I may even sell a thing or two!

I set up a studio in an old school down the road from me. It is a rather run down building that has a certain charm. Mostly the enormous windows that let in loads of light, the wooden floors, the plaster walls. I love it! I share the space with a lovely woman named Susan, also, and she makes dolls and other very cool and artistic things (check out her etsy shop: Threads of Inspiration:

My newest obsession is wondering how I am going to deal with my pretty impressive button collection.  I have been collecting buttons for awhile, and now I am trying to figure out how to sort them.  For awhile, I was putting them in this tray that has separate compartments:

Obviously, the tray got a little full, so I had to come up with another plan.  Then, I found this wooden tray at the thrift store:

I could store some buttons in here, but it will eventually fill up.  And that is because I also have all these buttons:

And these:

One day, in an effort to avoid cleaning (a skill that I am quite gifted at), I sat down and decided to organize the white buttons that were in the black tray.  So, I took floral wire and strung the matching ones onto it.  That system might work, although I am not thrilled with it.

In a seeming stroke of brilliance, I bought this darling set of little watchmaker's cases that come in these boxes (I got them from my favorite gardening catalog, Lee Valley: )

Each box has a bunch of really cute containers.  I decided to put the buttons in them, so I started with the red ones.  Needless to say, I filled most of them up in no time, and I barely made a dent in the button collection.  

While I would love to use these cases for all my buttons, I really can't afford to buy the number of cases it would take to house them all.  So, if anyone out there has any good suggestions for my dilemma, send them on!