Monday, July 9, 2012

New Post, New Look

Hey there - glad you didn't give up on me altogether!  It's been a pretty hectic couple of months and I've been sorely lacking for original post material.  Unfortunately, a lot of what I've been doing lately is for other clients, and I've given some serious thought to posting about the work I'm doing for them, since it involves original designs (and not mine at that!).  In the middle of all the work I've been doing, my poor Viking SE experienced a bit of work fatigue and ended up in the shop three times in the last month!  Thanks to the guys over at OC Sewing, she's back at home and raring to go again (you guys seriously rock!).

My oldest son and two of his friends decided that this would be a good time for them to take their first real Road Trip on their motorcycles, up to Sequoia Nat'l Park.  Originally, they had thought they would go north of San Francisco, but we talked them out of that since they had all recently had some mechanical trouble with their respective bikes, and talked them into going somewhere a little closer (we live in Southern California).  My husband just couldn't handle the idea of letting them take off on their own, so he and my younger son drove up there in one of the cars to be on hand, "just in case."  And also to get some hiking in - at one point, my younger son realized he was less than 40 feet away from a bear cub, startling him quite a bit (you just KNOW momma bear was somewhere close by!).  Still managed to get a good shot of the cub before fleeing down the hill (completely bypassing the trail, LOL).

I figured while they were all gone, I'd have myself a nice four day art retreat of sorts and had invited Son #1's girlfriend over to join in on the painting, dyeing & sewing.  The original plan was NOT to work on anything for anyone but myself over those four days, which would have been all well and good - except that a couple of clients had to push their order deadlines out a bit, and then I ended up with a two-day migraine (or stomach flu, or combination - the jury's still out on that one) at the same time.  NO FAIR, COSMOS!  It's not too often that I make time for my "own thing," and I was really bummed.  Still, when the migraine started to clear, we got out the paints, the dollar store t-shirts I'd been collecting for an opportunity like this, the dyes, bought some sheer organza type fabric to experiment with, and set up in the garage.  (No motorcycles in the way meant we could leave all the paints, dyes & fabric out on tables we set up - nice!)  We were having so much fun that we didn't even stop to photograph the process, which was actually a good thing since my free time had gotten so truncated.  In addition to all the other artistic endeavors, we decided it was a good time to dye my hair as well.  Part of it, anyway.

You know that poem, "When I Am Old, I Shall Wear Purple?"

Wearing the aforementioned purple - just not where you'd expect!
The reactions I've been getting have been nothing short of humorous - totally worth doing.  :)

Some of the randomness I managed to actually finish during the short time we were working playing:

A wine-colored t-shirt from the 99 Cent Store, painted & stamped with
Jacquard Lumiere paints and outlined with dimensional gold paint.
Not the best photo, but this was my favorite project.

This one?  Not so much.  It was mono-printed using an engraved foam
plate, then overstamped using the Lumiere paint.  When stamping,
the Lumiere seemed to experience a shift in the mica or metallic flakes
in the paint, which dulled the effect - the three bear images had to be overpainted with a brush.
I still don't like it - I may embroider something on other fabric and applique it
over this one.  Still ruminating.

The organza, which was dyed with Dye-Na-Flow from Jacquard, then stamped
using Lumiere paints when dry.
I am far too symmetrical in nature - I really need to break out of this rigid
grid-like structure.  But it did help to have something like this to work on
while the migraine was lifting.

A close-up of the dyed fabric & the stamps - you can see how obscure the butterfly looks, even though the metallic effect was not lost - the opposite is true of the other two stamps, which didn't lose too much detail while stamping but
lost the metallic sheen in the process.  I'm going to have to experiment a little more with this, it looks like a Rorschach test or something.

The Sewing Assistant, of course, spent most of his time yowling outside the garage door (in the hallway), protesting that he'd been left out of all the fun.  So he decided to have his own "staycation," and opted for a  Spa Treatment:
Ummm...the hot tub appears to be a bit....snug....

Oh, waiter!  I'll take a large Long Island Ice Tea, with one of those cute little umbrellas, please!
Sashimi on the side!

I've also decided to give the blog a bit of a makeover - let me know what you think!

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