Over the holidays, the studio welcomed its newest tool, a plotter (cutter). There are many on the market, each having their own pros and cons, but after having done some research, I found the one for me. I have always had a love for words.. quotes and sayings… and being a font addict with a reasonable handle on graphic design and a love for Adobe Illustrator, the possibilities with this machine are endless! It cuts so much more than vinyl… cardstock, fabric, stencils for glass etching and fabric stenciling, heat transfer for clothing.. and I have even sourced reflective heat transfer for clothing. That may sound crazy to most of the world, but living in Norway, the dark season makes wearing reflects mandatory. My son has decided he wants to start a business selling his own reflects designs.. and he is only 8! Time to make space in the studio. Yesterday I made my first wall piece from vinyl. Well beyond the standard size of the plotter (the wording is just over a meter high), …
A while back, I blogged about the raw wool felted laptop bag (see post) that I created for myself, and I thought I would show how the handles were made. Store bought handles of all shapes, sizes and colours are available in most craft stores (or online), but in my opinion, nothing beats a good quality, handmade, adjustable thick leather strap with solid brass fittings. I have not used a pattern for doing this.. I simply gauge the size based on the bag and what feels comfortable. The only factor to consider is the width of your buckle. I cut five pieces of leather, one for the strap, and two shorter pieces that are doubled over and secured to the felt itself using chicago screws (leather bond optional), and two narrower pieces that are looped to keep the strap from flailing about. The side pieces are very simple.. an oval hole in the middle for the buckle to pivot, and in this case two holes matched up on each side. Punch matched holes in your …
I managed to get in some studio time of late to finish off some orders, and get a few pieces photographed. Years ago I read that an artist should take photos of everything they make regardless of whether it is going to be a personal gift or go up for sale (or already sold for that matter). Time to start getting into the habit. Jewelry photography is a tedious task, requiring very bright lights with a light tent to control reflections and shadows. I keep thinking I need to set up a photo spot in the studio, such that it is not such an effort setting everything up each time. My children spend quite a bit of time with me in the studio.. asking questions, playing on the floor.. digging through all the tools and supplies while dreaming of what they want to make next (they now even have their own cupboard of supplies). It has been a productive time, and with studio visits scheduled later this week with neighborhood children, there will be lots …
Lately I have had been reading everything I can get my hands on regarding shibori, the japanese art of creating texture and colour on cloth. There are an incredible variety of styles and techniques that are encompassed in the Shibori classification. Here are some photos (and a quick tutorial) of a piece I made using the bomaki shibori technique.
It has been a while since I have “played” in the studio… sometimes life gets too busy. Today, after a good talk with a friend far away, I feel that my head is starting to clear and the time to play is approaching… that … and spring is in the air!
When I work with text or drawings (either hand-drawn or computer generated), I need to go through a variety of steps to move them from the 2 dimensional world on my computer or piece of paper, to a 3 dimensional format that I can use to create the mold the the jewelry I create. One of these techniques is using photopolymers.
The vast majority of us have things laying around the studio that we no longer need or use, and an ever growing list of things we want. Whether you are learning a new craft, or are just tired of storing the supplies from a hobby you no longer enjoy, this could be a great opportunity.
Felters who make handmade felt all have felt lying around that was either a sample test, a project that just was not right or simply bits left over from larger projects. There is nothing like handmade wool felt, and event the smallest pieces never get thrown away, after all.. each piece was lovingly made by hand! For those of you who are not felters, follow these directions using just about any fabric.
I took at look at my stats today, and just wanted to say thanks for reading. When I started my blog this summer, I had no idea that it would be read by so many people. I would love to hear what you would like to see more of (take this anonymous poll – choose 2 options) : by the way, if you want to subscribe use the RSS feeder links on the top right then bookmark it.
Since that trip, I have been obsessed with trying to new wools. Specifically Norwegian heritage sheep, but also other breeds to get a better understanding of wool and how it felts.
As you roll the ball, you will feel it start to felt. Resist the urge to squeeze it, as the secret to getting a perfect pearl is going slow and gentle.
Some artists prefer to see their work take on a life of its own, only knowing at the end what the final product will be. I have a hard time working that way.
I am working on a line of silver and felt jewelry. I am sculpting fine silver “egg shells” which will be turned into earrings set with a “felt pearl”.
One thing I love is to come across a great tutorial that gives you a glimpse of the day to day workings of an artist. To see a work in progress is something that I cherish. Watching it come to life step by step.