As if we didn't already have enough irons in the fire, we saw what fun Elle is having playing with her altered books and off we go in yet another direction.
From Elle's blog, we followed the breadcrumbs to the Altered Book Lover blog and found that Elizabeth is running an introductory course explaining how to get started with altered books. Sign us up!! So, this week, we played with making some backgrounds.
We love that she says we should use the cheapest art supplies available. We have some cheap construction paper and some paint from the Dollar Store. We dampened a sheet of paper with a spray bottle of water and dabbed on some globs of paint and smooshed it all around with Dollar Store plastic wrap. The important thing is to leave it all to dry before removing the plastic wrap. (You know us by now. We checked. You really do have to let it dry.)
Once it was good and dry, we peeled off the plastic. Isn't it pretty? Mostly just one colour of paint. We see flowers in there and we're just aching to grab a pen and complete the garden. Maybe we will.
And here's another, with lots of colours ... a little muddy but, hey! live and learn ...
It's like finger painting for the elderly. :) We have a book chosen that we bought at the GoodWill last week when they were having a 50% off sale. Really? As if GoodWill's prices could get any cheaper! AND we've picked a theme. We're going to use it to display all our Illustration Friday drawings. Should be fun!!
We have decided that sewing machines are like babies.
We bought our baby years ago. Over the years, we've gotten used to her. We know her little idiosyncrasies. We know how to keep her happy. We even take her in from time to time for Paul to take her temperature and give her a little check-up. We're good to her and she's been good to us.
We were stitching right along this week, machine quilting on our Say Cheese quilt. Everything was going fine until we had to re-fill the bobbin. Right away, she started to skip a stitch here and a stitch there. Darn! Now what?
So, just like with a baby, we started to think about the possibilities... is she hungry? is she wet? is she teething?
We changed the needle. Nope. We checked to see it was threaded correctly. Nope. Tension problem with the newly-wound bobbin? Nope. Bobbin thread OK? Nope. Hmmmmmm. We called it a day and hoped it fixed itself overnight. Stranger things have happened. Can't do that with a human baby though. :)
So, this morning we sat down again. Still skipping stitches. Darn!
We'll just have to dig a little deeper. This time we removed the bobbin and the bobbin case and lookey what we saw!! Lint!! And plenty of it. All that stitching on the WhirlyGiggle quilt had produced a lot of lint. Some little chunks of it were even on the ledge that supports the bobbin making it uneven. We cleaned it out, put everything back and held our breath while we tried again.
Or....Why we didn't really master free motion quilting in a week.
We were seduced. No, really! We saw this at Taylor's and we couldn't resist.
Some of the very good advice we received about quilting this little quilt involved the suggestion that we should go with pretty much invisible thread since we are just learning to Free Motion Quilt. Uh, yeah. That sounds like good advice. Too bad we didn't think of that when we bought the aforementioned thread. :)
It's beautiful thread with its lovely shades of turquoise. So pretty. But it's definitely no shrinking violet. We did a few practice sessions with it and tried out all the tips and tricks for FMQing that we got from all our advisors. We definitely need a bit more practice.
So, for this quilt only, we decided to do something we're not famous for. We decided to compromise. We quilted it by machine in straight lines with our even feed foot and the dogs up, up, up! We really haven't done much machine quilting at all so we're looking at this as the Grandma Coco equivalent of crawling before we walk.
What a beautiful June day!
The good news?? We LOVE it! This quilt's turned out way better than we had even hoped. We stitched the binding on by machine and we were half-way around hand-stitching the back of it in place when we realized we should have stitched that down by machine, too! It would have gone so much quicker. Next time, for sure!!
Grandma Coco, old doll that she is, is gradually moving into the 20th century.
Too bad, we're now in the 21st!!
We're linking to the Needle and Thread Network (sneaking right under the wire this week!). Click on over and have a look at what other Canadian crafters are up to!
We feel totally vindicated!! This morning, we received an email from Beading Daily that mentioned a woman who's doing a special project. She's decorating the lid of a ... wait for it!!...CARMEX jar each day for the whole of 2012.
How did we not know about this?? And, more importantly, how cool are we now? The woman's name is Lisa Pavelka and you can see all her lids (completed and yet to be) at this link: https://www.lisapavelka.com/Home.asp
We have managed to be both totally hip and totally behind the times all at once. A first, even for us!!
And now, for something that IS new. We became interested in beaded micro macramé when we first saw the work of Sherri Stokey. She makes beautiful jewelry and we were totally inspired. At the time, Sherri didn't have a web presence and it took us months and months until we found her on Facebook. She maintains an Etsy store which you can find at http://www.etsy.com/shop/KnotJustMacrame?ref=em Actually, Sherri does more than just macramé but it was the macramé that drew us in. Just this week, Sherri's launched her own website and she's even offered her first tutorial. If you're interested in trying your hand at beaded micro macramé, you'll want to head right over and have a look.