Thursday, March 29, 2012

Small Things in Various Stages of Completion

Thanks for all your kind words on the circles embroidery for the 4x6 exchange. I sent it off yesterday with an extra stamp and a note explaining why (I heard back from the Art House Co-op folks and that's what they said to do). I wonder what I'll receive in return?

I have been falling short left, right, and center in my solo parenting role this week. I sort of hoped, after ten years at this job, I'd be better at it. In between meltdowns (mine and my children's), I've done a little creative work here and there. First, I decided I wanted some interesting, handmade note cards on hand for when I send off a package and want to include a note. Nothing crazy difficult to make...I just wanted to play around.

My kids have been spraying canvases with liquid watercolors, so I started by spraying red, yellow, and blue watercolors on a sheet of watercolor paper. I did them one after the other, so the colors blended quite a bit. When the paper was dry, I dropped on some black ink with a dropper and then tilted the paper so it ran in spots. When that dried, I brushed on some gesso here and there with a wide brush. I haven't played with gesso at all, really, and want to figure out what I can do with it.  Then I sliced up the paper into six 4"x6" pieces and printed them sparingly with circles and purple acrylic paint. Some are bubble wrap prints, some a small cork (the kind you can buy in a craft store--so smaller than a wine bottle cork), and some the end of a plastic tube. Fun.

Above is a second Baby Yours sweater in progress, and the embroidery that distracted me from working much on the sweater. After much consideration of other patterns, I eventually decided to go ahead and make another Baby Yours, but modify it to eliminate what I don't like about the pattern. This should be easy enough, given I've already knit it once. The embroidery is on a piece of fabric I printed, and it's Irish Moss (ETA: a type of seaweed) in progress. (I've shown it before as a stamp.) Since I didn't have the energy to post this the same day I took that photo, I get to show you the finished embroidery, too. (The sweater looks about the same, though.)

I'm going to finish this one similarly to the circles and I think it will be my contribution to the local gallery's 4"x6" fundraiser.

A note on trying to transfer the drawing onto the printed fabric...I tried to use stabilizer, because it's certainly easier to see a transferred pattern on a white background. But I really don't like stitching through paper into fabric. So I started over and used an iron-transfer pen instead. If you click on the in-progress photo to make it a little bigger, you might be able to see how faint the lines are in some places. They just don't show up well on blue/green textile ink. I kept the original nearby to consult when necessary and fudged just a little bit. But since it's my drawing to begin with, and I know Irish Moss quite well, it all worked out in the end.

I'm linking up with the folks at creative spaces and am kind of surprised I managed to join in this week!


Michelle said...

See . . . not falling short. You guys are creating things. We had a major blowup over granola. Granola. And I don't have the single parenting excuse. So, it's totally not just you. I'm gonna blame the moon. Can I blame the moon this week?

Love those note cards! What a wonderful idea. Now I'm off to look up Irish moss. We just have the Spanish stuff here. I think.

lamina @ do a bit said...

Hope your week gets better... It's hard work solo parenting! It's so good to have a creative outlet... hey... allows you to concerntrate on something else for a while :) Love the note cards... they look great!

Jill said...

I'll blame the moon with you, Michelle, this morning my 5yo (Amy's niece, so we're all the same crazy) decided to wear an entire set of clothes OVER her footie fleece sleeper to school. Fortunately the whole plan was torpedoed when she had to take it all off to go to the bathroom, but still. Tears were shed.

Bells said...

i'm really coming around to the idea that handmade cards are a lovely idea. I bought a couple from the daughter of a colleague recently and thought, yeah, enough mass production. Handmade is better in so many areas of life. Yours are lovely.

That irish moss is STRIKING!