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DSC04873 (1024x783)Sometimes creativity just will not come.  You think on your theme and you cannot hit on that thing that motivates you to start.  You cannot force it, you cannot will it, you must just wait for the right trigger. 

Karla is having another tag swap that I joined.  The theme is the Wizard of Oz.  She put some images on her blog, I searched the thrifts for a book, I searched the internet for some pics to print that might nudge that creative spark.  Nothing! 

Last night, after work, I went to my LQS to get a new purse pattern that a lady in for orientation today was carrying.  While there I happened to ask, “Do you have any Wizard of Oz fabric?”  They had about 6-7 bolts of it.  I picked out four pieces to work with.  Now the ideas are swirling.  My creative juices are flowing.     All it took was a simple question.  

There is still time to join up if you are interested in the tag swap.

Dorothy tag book swap

DSC02640 (1024x843) I mentioned on Monday about the ATC project using some scraps from my scrap bin, but what do you do with the scraps leftover from the scrap bin project?  You make pendants! 

They came together very easily.  I added some more fabric scraps, and stitching and then fused a book page from a thrifted Japanese book to the back of it which I sealed with a couple layers of mod podge since it will sit against the skin.  I coated the thread also as it will be against the skin, too. 

I then stitched around the edge using the variegated thread, added a silver eyelet, and then used my tiny hole punch to punch a hole at the bottom to add some beads.  The beads were strung onto craft string and then added to the bottom as dangles.  I will add a jump ring and they are all done. 

DSC02638 (1024x768) This is truly a mixed media project.  I cut the pendants various sizes so they are all a bit different as are the beads I hung from the bottom.  If I recall, I ended up with 12 all together.  Perfect and easy peasy Christmas gifts!  You could even use the same technique and make ornaments for the tree.  So many uses for these. 

So, the score is Cindy one and scrap bin smaller!  If you are keeping score! ;o)

DSC02628 (808x1024) I had been pet sitting for my little brother this passed weekend and wow, what a menagerie!  They have a dog, Shayna the Labradoodle, one large cat, Haji, two kittens, Graci and Emmit, and two hamsters Romeo and Pippie.  Most of my time was spent with the cats and the dog.  Shayna is one big baby dog!  She thinks she is a lap dog and spent most of the time sharing the chair with me and blocking my view of the TV.  She loved to be petted and to have her hair played with.  The kittens came by every so often for a little bit then Shayna jumped up in my lap and they scattered.  Haji finally came up to me on Friday.  I rubbed his belly for a while and he loved it…then came Shayna and off he went.  I had a lot of fun! 

It felt good to get back home today at lunchtime and have no commitments or anyplace to be.  It has been a while since that has happened.  I was late for the November birthday swap cards, well technically not late until Tuesday.  So I went for broke and while I was at it finished up the year’s worth.  I decided to raid my scrap bin as when I was driving home I DSC02629 (770x1024) kept thinking of a crazy quilt.  I am pleased with how it came out and even had some pieces left over so started working on another little project.  Nothing planned, it just happened.  More on that later. 

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I called the cards Scrap Bin Crazy Quilt.  I like how the batiks came together and the water stained ric rac and the leaf shapes I cut out.  I love the stitching, too’.

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I am late for September’s birthdays for Kate’s Birthday ATC swap and since it is October there are more to make this month.  So I decided to get them all taken care of in one batch. 

As I was struggling for an idea I kept thinking of taking a walk in the woods along the trail at Dutch Gap.  How the leaves sounded as they crunched under my feet, the colors on the ground, the colors of the trees and then it hit me.  That is my inspiration for the birthday ATCs. 

The card is a fabric ATC using mistyfuse to attach the fabric background, leaves, and bits of yarn to the ATC.  On top is a burgundy tulle netting to dull it up a bit.  The edge is satin stitched to finish off the card. 

There are 5 that were mailed, 2 for September and 3 for October.  I am now actually right on track for the remaining 2 months of the swap. 

If you missed day one or day two you can read them by clicking on the links. 

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Welcome to day (and doll) three.  This is the final doll and the final installment in the Mermaid trilogy.  You can read about the inspiration and their beginnings here

There are so many choices involved in making a doll.  There is the fabric to pick, the type of face to give her (clay, cloth, rubber stamp, etc), how to embellish and what beads to use, making the wigs for the hair, and how to wrap her for the shipment so they arrive in one piece. 

I will need to search for the right size shipping box for the dolls.  Since they are almost 12 inches long it will take a good sized box.  I try to make them fit tightly in the box with the bubble wrap and any other packing materials.  That way the jostling is kept to a minimum. 

I try to get a box that is about 1-2 inches bigger than the doll.  It saves on the shipping costs, too.  Trying to keep it under the first class weight cut off of 13 ounces.  Keeping it to under that weight cuts the shipping costs in half. 

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I may not make that this time as the doll is a bit heavier.  Mostly with the sculpey face and the shells encrusting her bra, but I will try. 

I hope you have not been bored with the posts about the girls for the last 3 days.  I didn’t want to make one of those posts with a lot of pictures and I also wanted to give each doll her due.  Thanks for hanging in there!

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If you missed the day one post you can read it here

Creating for a swap is a fun process.  You wonder as you are making the item how to make it stand out for your partner from the other swaps.  How do you make a doll spectacular?  How do you make a mermaid stand out from the other fishy broads. 

You sit and patiently wait for inspiration to hit and you never know what might trigger it.  A trip to the Goodwill in this case.     The ideas start to wash over you like a tide and you get swept away into your creative journey.  The mermaids start to take on their own personality.  They start to live. 

 

 

 

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I enjoy being creative.  Enjoy the process of bringing an idea around to fruition.  It is a marvelous process.  It does take time, but that time is well spent when your swap partners love the item you made.  When they ooh and ahh over your creation.  It makes it all worthwhile. 

Don’t you love people appreciating your work, your sweat, and your creation?  It makes the whole thing worth doing. 

DSC02011 (978x1024) I posted previously about the Mermaid work in progress.  It took me one evening to cut out, sew, and turn them.  One evening per doll was spent stuffing them.  Next, came sewing on the arms followed by a couple of evenings embellishing them.  Then there was a day spent creating, painting and glazing the faces with sculpey. 

Sunday, I spent the day creating the shell and bead encrusted bras and gluing them and the faces onto the dolls.  Lastly I used yarns to create the wigs.  I truly spent the better part of over a week working on these dolls.  So want to take some time to show them off one by one.  I hope you don’t mind.  I am very proud of them and worked very hard on them. 

 

 

 

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The mermaids were truly a labor of love.  I enjoyed seeing them come to life and watching them come together.  It was fun seeking out the bits and pieces I needed to complete them.  The shell necklace I bought to fashion the bras, tweaking the sculpey face mold so it would fit the contours of the head I glued it to, and picking yarns so that their hair looked somewhat like dreads. 

I hope my partners for this swap appreciate all the time and effort I put into the dolls.  I know I do and am sure they will, too.   

This month’s challenge from MAD MAMMA was to create a no sew doll.  DSC01914 (767x1024) It is batting wrapped around a chopstick and tied to form the body. 

This doll was made using strips of fabric that I wrapped around the batting and chopstick.  It was tied with gold wire and metallic yarn.  I also added some beads and various yarn fibers. 

Her face is made from sculpey clay and the flower behind her is a petal from a silk one that I took apart. 

I think I will call her Mother Nature. 

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I enjoy the various dolls that MAMMA finds for us to create.  It is fun to learn new doll styles.  It was really hard not to take out the needle and thread to create her, but she is held together with some thread, wire, and yarns, with a bit of glue here and there.

DSC01869 (1024x893)On Saturday I had a meeting with this lady.  Vicki asked me to keep an eye out for 100% cotton and linen napkins for her to dye.   Since I am the Queen of thrifting I told her I would.  I ended up at an Estate sale late on a Sunday afternoon and hit the napkin motherload.  All of them were meticulously clean and some starched so well they stood on their own.  I got a very large lot of them for $4. 

Vicki and I chose to meet up at Quilting Adventures, our local quilting store and the place where I first met Vicki at a class to learn to make fabric postcards.  I have never been the same since!  You can read more about our adventures in this post on Vicki’s blog.  I told her on Saturday that she would blame me for her latest fabric purchase on her blog. 

She recently opened an Etsy shop selling her hand dyed fabrics.  She also makes DSC01858 (739x1024)the bestest tie dyed creations.  So check out her shop!  She told me that she would give me an incentive for picking up the napkins for her.  She gifted me with some pieces of her painted fabric.  I am soooo lucky and cannot wait to cut into  some of it.  I want to make more of the lady brooches, but also have some earring ideas that popped into my head today as I was driving home.  More on that later.

I also put the finishing touches on my charm for the Flickr Altered Dominos & Other Game Pieces altered heart domino swap.  It needs something else added to it and I have until Wednesday to figure out what. 

The background is some leftover bits of the background of this ATC.  The heart, wings and text are all hand collaged. 

Why yes, I can!  Meridien Ariel hosted an owl swap and I was partnered with Sara in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.  DSC01591 Sara has a 4 year old daughter so I wanted to make a little something for her, too. 

I made Sara an appliqued owl tote bag.  the tote is denim and a thrifted one.  I appliqued the owl onto the pocket on the front.  I love the pink and green colors of the fabric that I used.  I outlined it with pink embroidery floss and added some pink buttons for its eyes. 

For her daughter I made an owl stuffie.  I made it using some blue corduroy fabric, some coordinating fabrics and some yarn covered buttons for its eyes. 

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The package was to contain a thrifted item and candy, too.  This is the thrifted item I sent to her.  I found this lovely apron with the cutest border and smocking.  For the candy I sent along a large box of Mike and Ike’s.  A former co-worker got me addicted to Mike and Ike’s.  I love matching up the colors and eating them in pairs. 

Sara mentioned that she cannot get a lot of the neat craft items we can get here so I also added some crafty items.  I added some letters, borders, trims, and some scrapbook papers. 

I am crossing my fingers that it makes it there.  It was still in transit last time I checked.  Sara mentioned that things occasionally “go missing” there.  It has been in transit since the 12th of February! 

Quote O’ The Month

"What this world needs
is a new kind of army
- the army of the kind."
~Cleveland Amory

E-mail Me

cindyforeyes at earthlink *dot* net

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ReFinery
1221 Bellevue Ave.
Richmond, VA

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