Tag Archives: crafts

Smooshers Thursday – CNewcomb

Standard

This week’s Smoosher is Chris Newcomb, aka EagleHawk.  Chris lives in Cypress, Texas (the 2nd largest state…;) ), with his wife (“the most wonderful woman I know” he says! Isn’t that sweet?) and two daughters. He is primarily a woodworker.  Something I love from his Art Fire shop‘s Artisan Gallery is this wonderful decorative violin:

More representative of Chris’s work is this gorgeous little scrollsaw ornament, which he says is “perfect for little hands to hang on the tree.”  Living as I do only a few miles from the North Pole, I had to include this one!

How does this work make Mr. Newcomb a Smoosher, you ask?  Well, although Chris is relatively new to polymer clay, he has come up the great idea of inlaying some of his woodwork with polyclay, which has resulted in some very cute keychains. 

Using wood and polymer clay together can be problematic, because of wood’s tendency to shrink and expand.  It is nice to see someone experimenting with the combination, though, because there is wonderful potential for creating beautiful items.  This is my favorite of Chris’s keychains – I love the combination of the poplar with the pearl polymer clay:

I hope you’ll have fun browsing at Chris’s Art Fire shop!

Advertisements

Smooshers Thursday – Crafty Baby Hope

Standard

This week, the Smooshers spotlight lands on Jennifer, of Crafty Baby Hope.

Jennifer uses her Art Fire profits to fund treatments for secondary infertility – hence the name of her shop.  You can read about her story at her blogs, Jewelry for Hope, which is where she shows her creative side, and A Look Into My Life which is her forum for discussing her hopeful, if frustrating, experiences with MTHFR, PCOS, and endometriosis…and an active little Boy Scout called “Boober.”

She does lovely wirework, as well as polymer clay work.  I love this little bird’s nest pendant:

And this bracelet is just stunning:

Of the many adorable polymer clay items in her shop, I think my favorites are the “kawaii” things.  I had to look up what that means – “kawaii” is the Japanese word for “cute” and refers to the culture of cuteness that has developed in Japan since the 1980s.  This is the trend responsible for Hello Kitty and Pokemon, though even everyday items and food can be kawaii.  Here are some of Jennifer’s kawaii items:

I hope you’ll take the time to visit Jennifer’s shop and blog.  She is a strong lady with a lot of hope, and she makes really cute stuff!

Trash to Treasure

Standard

Tonja Lenderman, whose blog is Polyclay Corner, has been hosting the most amazing swap for a very long time. The idea behind this swap is that we all have stuff that we’re not going to use, or beads or polymer clay pieces that we’re not happy with, or that just aren’t right for some reason. Tonja came up with the idea to fill a box with her “trash,” send it off to a swap participant and have them take what they wanted (up to 25 items). That swapper would then replace the removed items with their own “trash,” then send it so the next person on the list. We had something like 25 people on the list…and wouldn’t you know, being up here in Alaska, I’m the last one before the box goes back to Tonja. This box has been on its way here for a LONG time. (And if you want to follow its travels and travails, Tonja’s been blogging about it since the start – and restart.)

Soooooo, it FINALLY GOT HERE! YEA!

All that fit in a medium flat rate box!

Here’s what I took out (except the 2 Polymer Cafe magazines I kept – which are already on my nightstand):

Non-cane stuff

Canes I took

And here’s what I put in:

Non-cane stuff I put in

Canes I added to the box

This was so much fun! Thank you, Tonja, and BJ (who helped the swap get going again after a theft).

Spring is … well … not here yet.

Standard

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!

A Good Day to be ME!

Standard

Yea!  Yesterday was a good day to be me.  Well, other than slicing my finger with the kitchen scissors while doing dishes (see? doing dishes is BAD NEWS), and having to clean up after the Boy (who is resisting potty training vehemently).  Why was it a good day, you ask?  Well for starters, I got my order from Amazon:

I’ve already read through most of the Maureen Carlson book and am perusing the Katherine Dewey book.  No more arthritic space alien hands on my sculptures! (Unless I’m sculpting arthritic space aliens, of course.)

Secondly, I finished a goofy little bird I’ve been working on:

Chirp!

This is the first thing I’ve ever made that looked anything like the picture I drew first.  I’m either getting better at claying or I’m getting better at drawing. 🙂

And one more thing:  On Thursday I took my sewing machine in to have its yearly (um, more like once-a-decade) check up.  While there, I succumbed to the sales lady’s offer to show me some of the features of the cool little Baby Lock I was looking at.  They were having a floor model sale – which ended  today.  After a lot of thought (no, I didn’t buy it right then) and a conversation with Wonderful Husband, ta da!

Now I can sew with BOTH HANDS!

Isn't she cute?

Look at all the stuff that came with!  This is the newest machine I’ve ever had.  It was a floor model, but it is not “pre-owned.”  So it actually had all the stuff that it it was supposed to.

Feet!

Wonderful Husband thinks I have a foot fetish. 🙂  There is one more on the machine – an embroidery foot.  Yep, this is a sewing and embroidery machine.

Oh, I’m so psyched!  I played around with some of the decorative stitches and embroidered the kids’ names and the word “Alaska” on the fabric that was conveniently hooped up for me.  I spent enough time playing with the machine that Wonderful Husband and the kids had the living room cleaned up for me by the time I came upstairs to cook dinner.  Which ended up being nuked potatoes with salsa and cheese.  I don’t think we’ll be having any multi-course meals for awhile.  I can only be diva-like in one domestic sphere at a time, and until I’ve worked the novelty out of my new machine, I’m afraid the kitchen will not be the one.

Second Post Today! Studio stuff

Standard

My darling hubby installed my countertop! Yea!

30-something by 8 feet!

And I got some cubes to hold my yarn stash (that’s not all of it, just the bits I’ve recovered from the mess so far).

Remember I said my drafting table drawer holds a lot of clay?

It’s a bit out of focus, but you get the idea.

Lest you think I’m the only artsy one in the family, here is some of my kiddos’ work.  When 3 1/2-year old Frederich finished this drawing on the white board, he came to me and said, “Mommy…I’m finished my masterpiece!”

Thomas at Night (The dot at the top of the picture is the moon.)

And this is 5 1/2-year old Eliza’s favorite new craft.  Anyone have any suggestions for what to do with nail-polish covered pistachio shells?