Tag Archives: butterscotch grove

Hearts Full of Snark for Anti-Valentine’s Day Types

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So, I’ve never been much of a Valentine’s Day-flowers-and-hearts type of girl. (Notice I did not say I object to candy or wine….)  This year – actually last year, our supermarkets broke out the conversation hearts about 3 days after Christmas.  You know, the ones that say things like “Call Me” or “Q T PIE.”  Gack.  The kids are too old to fall for my “Candy hearts are not ripe until February, you know” line anymore. (Worked for years!)

Anyway, in past years I tried making candy heart-like polymer clay charms.  It worked great, and I have a cute little bracelet loaded with them…but it’s not very me.

This year, I had a vision of a different sort of candy heart.s  Ones with the kind of messages I sometimes felt like sending back in the pre-happily-married days.  Messages like “BACK OFF” or “R U SERIOUS?”  Pastels didn’t seem to fit the idea, so I came up with these (available for purchase at my Artfire shop):

Red Hearts Full of Snark

Red Hearts Full of Snark

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White Hearts Full of Snark

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Black Hearts Full of Snark

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More Black Snarky Hearts

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Well, they ALMOST look like candy!

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Some New Dollies

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So, here is part of what has kept me from my keyboard the last month or so…these dolls were supposed to be Christmas presents, but they just would NOT cooperate.  Fortunately the lady who ordered them is very, very nice.  She told me she wanted happy dolls, with no stress sewn in to them.  At last they are done and delivered. (Actually, they’ve been delivered for a week or two…I’ve not been on the ball with uploading photos, either.  Sigh.)

 





It always amazes me how they come out with their own personalities, even if I’m using the same pattern!  I used the same basic pattern for the three smaller ones, and they couldn’t be more different.  The two henna dolls started out the same, too – but the blond is definitely sassier than the brunette, don’t you agree?

New Stuff

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Wow – have you ever had one of those mornings when you need coffee just to make the coffee?  First I forgot to put the coffee in the maker – so I was just heating up water.  Then I put in too much (I guess – it’s REALLY strong).  Then I poured it on my cereal.  Sigh.

Well, at least my cane making has been going better than that – WAY better!  Long ago, I tried making a rose cane that, well, looked cool, but was not very rose-like.  So, last Sunday I spent some time studying the lovely roses that Marcia Tzigelnik makes.  It took a bit of concentration for me to get the idea of how to make these flowers look 3D, but I really like how they came out.

Purple Rose Cane

Peachy Rose Cane

I used the scrap from my purple rose experiment to make some nice springy filigree pins:

Spring!

And then, yesterday, I suddenly HAD to work on something I’ve wanted to try for a long while.  The Kuna people (the women, anyway) of Panama wear beautifully vibrant reverse-appliqued fabric panels on their blouses. Here’s an example:

Geometric Mola

Check here for more fabulous examples!

Since I was introduced to this lovely craft (in a Piecework magazine article, years ago), I’ve wanted to make one.  Thing is, although I love needlework of all kinds, I’ve never had the patience to try it in fabric.  Somehow, I have more patience for fiddly stuff in polymer clay, so here’s my first pc mola (I decided to try one a bit less complex than the example above):

Parrot Mola Cane

The small picture in the upper right is the image I was copying.  Needs some work, but I’m really happy with it.  Can’t wait to start the next one…but I have to go get some more clay first!! 🙂

Spring is … well … not here yet.

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Here’s my Girl’s pretty new Easter dress, made by ME on my lovely NEW MACHINE.

Yes, it is displayed on snow.  Yes, I did take that picture March 24th.

The pattern is from the book Absolutely A-Line, by Wendi Gratz.  It’s great.  She gives a basic pattern in several sizes, then show how to modify it to make 28 variations.  Some of her variations are not my taste, though most are adorable.  The dress is simple, sweet, and a really fabulous canvas for all sorts of embellishment.

I found the main fabric for next to nothing at Value Village, one of the resale shops in town.  Then I went to Joann’s and bought the ruffle fabric and the ribbon trim at full price with no coupon.  So much for frugality.  Here’s a close up:

Pink with silver trim. My Pretty Princess will be pleased.

Here are a few other things I’ve been working on lately:

Baby Magnets (No not for attracting babies; for putting on your fridge!):

and a misplaced gecko on a mirror:

The babies and mirror are for sale in my Art Fire shop.  I’m trying to stock up my online and simultaneously get ready for this year’s Tanana Valley Farmers Market, which will be opening for the season on May 8th.  Drop by if you’re in town!

And the winners are…

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I was going to use the random number generator to pick the winners of my One World One Heart giveaway, but so many folks asked me to “toss [their] name into the hat” that I decided to use this:

This is a straw hat made for me by my Wonderful Husband, after I told him about the chapter in Little House in the Big Woods where Ma makes straw hats for every body in the family.  Such a nice hubby.  In the hat are 182 teeny slips of paper, each with a number on it.

I had two willing helpers to draw the winners:

First my 5-year old Girl picked Anji from Juneau’s number (can you believe that? 182 responses from all over the world, and the 1st winner is from Alaska!).

Then my 3-year old Boy got to pick the 2nd winner, concupiscent335.  (As you can see, this event took place pretty early at our house – the wee ones are still in their pjs.)  Then, the Boy put the hat on his head and shook all the bits of paper all over the living room. Sigh.

So, CONGRATULATIONS TO ANJI AND CONCUPISCENT335! If I don’t hear from you by Friday, 2-19, I’ll choose another winner…and I really don’t want to pick all those little bits of paper out of the vacuum cleaner bag. 🙂

Smooshers’ Valentine Scavenger Hunt

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Wow, this is starting out to be a GREAT month – first the books, then the machine, then the giveaway and now I get to add this info, too!  The Polymer Clay Smooshers Guild of Art Fire is hosting a Valentine Scavenger Hunt.  You can check out the rules and prizes at the Smooshers’ blog.  Have fun!

This is Didimaa

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She was my entry for the Polymer Clay Smooshers Guild of Art Fire’s January challenge, which had an Asian theme. I’m so glad I decided to enter this challenge. I’d been thinking about trying to sculpt a woman in a sari for a long time, but I kept putting it off. I love doing sculpture: it’s wonderful to watch a character emerge from blobs of clay.

Polymer clay has been called “the chameleon clay” because it can mimic so many things so beautifully – stone, metal, wood, etc. It also works great as fabric. For Didimaa’s attire, I started by dressing her in a blouse and petticoat:

(This is a good shot for showing scale, since she’s sitting on an Altoids tin and resting her foot on a cookie cutter.) I wasn’t sure, at this point, what color to make the background of the sari fabric. So I went upstairs and did dishes for awhile. Problems often seem to solve themselves at inconvenient times, like when I’m up to my elbows in dishwater, but only half done the chore. Sigh.

So, when I came back down to the studio, I’d decided to go with green’s compliment, red. I didn’t want it to look Christmasy, though, so I chose a kind of pinky red. I chopped up some red and dark pink Cernit and added some translucent Fimo, in hopes of making the finished sari a bit transparent. That didn’t work too well – next time I’ll use more of the translucent. I also added a bit of green Cernit to tone down the pink a little. Here’s the beginning of the sari:

After a few passes through my pasta machine, and the application of a few cane slices and gold trim, that mess up there turned into this:

(Canes, for those of you who don’t play with clay, are logs of clay that have a picture running through it, so that the cross section of the log shows the picture. Ever buy those tubes of cookie dough at the grocery store that have a picture of a ducky or a chick on each slice? Same idea. Here’s a better explanation, with pictures. The paisleys and patterned dots on the sari fabric are cane slices. The gold dots are just smooshed balls of clay. )

This fabric was still too thick, and the decorations needed to be smoothed into the background, so back to the pasta machine it went. After a few more passes, it was as thin as I could make it, and starting to stick to itself. Trying to drape 15″ of extremely thin, sticky clay into a sari around a seated figure was, um, a challenge. (I would have used a stronger word, but my mom is probably reading this….) Next time, the figure will be standing. And holding her arms out to the side. And on a bigger scale!

She still needed jewelry, make up and something to sit on. I made her a little polymer clay stool for her foot to rest on, and a seat, covered with more polymer clay fabric decorated with another paisley cane.

Make up and nail polish are painted on with acrylic paint. Jewelry is jump rings and the chain off a bracelet that’s supposed to keep you from losing it if the clasp breaks.

I think I might need to make some grandkids for her to be telling a story to!

Update:  My good friend Tammi just returned from her winter break trip to visit her hubby’s family in India, and she gently pointed out that “Didimaa” is not spelled “Deedeema,” as I’d first spelled it.  I also tied the sari a bit goofy, as the part going over the left shoulder should be going over the right and it should cover her chest more.  Next time….!