Thursday, December 30, 2010

Art Journals

Current Book: Artful Journals by Janet Takahashi

this beautiful journal was found on etsy - but I am sorry, I don't remember the artist's name

My current obsession is art journaling. I have decided to start taking my creative self to the next level. It is a big part of my life that gives me joy. So why haven't I embraced it more fully? I know why... when I make something I put myself on the line for criticism. What if they don't like it? which translates to What if they don't like me? I've got to grow up and just get over it.
How do I go about doing that? I am starting a year long project of art journaling. A Year in the Life of an Art Journal provides twice monthly prompts to help get your creative neurons firing. The first prompt is "vision."
What is my vision for the year?
I have also been pouring over Artful Journals by Janet Takahashi. I have been wanting to make my own mixed-media art journal for several weeks but I didn't know how to correctly make one. This book gives you step-by-step instructions and definitions of the technical language. Did you know that the middle section of a journal is called the signature?
My creative light bulb is on bright.
Normally, I use a little notebook to make notes about the day, keep track of information, and keep my "to do" list. Why don't I make my own journal?
I had been thinking about my journal and I knew I wanted it to be made of recycled repurposed paper; however, I didn't know where I would find enough paper that was interesting enough to make the cut. I know now... I am going to use all those beautiful pictures that my girls draw for me. You know the ones... they are so creative but you can be gifted 5-6 a day and you can't keep them all.
This meager little journal will be a great keepsake as well as a daily record of this time in our lives.
The girls better get to creating! I have a big "to do" list waiting for a journal.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas Eve 2010

Shoveling Snow
Cookies for Santa

Sledding in the Snow

Dry Erase Masterpieces

Friday, December 17, 2010

Bookmarks & Mixed Media Fiber Art

These two are extras. I think I will have to keep one for myself.

I chose a word that best describes the person and their job at the school. I only wish I had a set of small font stamps to do the lettering. Squirmy material is difficult to write on.

Felted wool rosettes.

I have this growing obsession with mixed media art - fiber and textile art in particular. If it is a bit vintage and grungy, (is that a word?) it is for me. I pour over the Sew Somerset magazines. Their whole line of publications rock but they are a bit pricey. Hmmmm, I should ask for some for Christmas.

Back to the topic on hand... the bookmarks

I still have scraps of left over from my attempts at felting... and tons of material scraps... and tons of ribbon scraps... even some pleather scraps (I know, who has scraps of pleather sitting around? Now you know.)... odds and ends buttons... I could go on and on. So, I made bookmarks to give as Christmas gifts to the "extra teachers" at school.

My next project is a handmade sewn journal. I am still working out the kinks and trying to find all recycled material. I have to hurry on this one because the journal/day planner I use now is filled to the brim. I started writing in the margins yesterday.

Oh ya', I threw in a picture of the felted rosettes I made. I don't love-love them but they are much cuter on something.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Good Bread

While Gene and Gigi played video games this afternoon Greta and I kept busy in the kitchen... YUM!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Felted Wool Scarf

I tried my hand at felting wool. It took some reconfiguring of my initial ideas to come up with something wearable. Now I love it.

Gene and the girls went with me to Goodwill and we scoured the store for wool sweaters. I brought home about 6 sweaters for about $20. I washed them in super hot soap and water twice. That was my first mistake. I ended out with toddler size sweaters and really stiff material. OOOPS!

Initially I wanted to make a messenger bag... but I wanted one bigger than a dollar bill. So, I cut the sweaters into strips and sewed them together. My original design had unfinished rough edges but it looked so bad... I thought the trash was my only option left. It was a depressing thought because I had put a couple of hours of work into this failed idea. So I set the hunk of material to the side and brainstormed. This is what I ended out with... a lined scarf with lots of cool do-dads and stitching. The loops and buttons are positioned so I can wear the scarf in several different styles.

Now I am using the felted scraps to make rosette pins and hair-bobs (that's what we call a hair accessory in my house). I'll show some of those later.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

The First Snow

What could be more perfect?!? We had our first snow on the day we were picking up our Christmas tree. Driving was a little sketchy and slow but it was also fun and exciting. I do admit that it took me a few minutes to calm myself and stop giving unsolicited advice to Gene while he was driving. I am positive he appreciated my helpful suggestions. ha ha
Our tree came from Trees for Troops. It is beautiful. I can't wait to post a picture of it when the girls are finished decorating it. I also have to mention the soldiers who volunteered to help load the trees. They where exceptionally outgoing and eager to help. They even had a stocking full of candy canes for the kids... and Gene.

Christmas and the treasured traditions we have reminds me to pray for the families who have a spouse that is deployed or has been lost. We know how tough it can be.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Little Things

It is the little things that really make me smile.
If you think that you are witty, even if no one else in your family thinks you are, then you need to share your brilliance with the world. Or, at least with the unlucky few who come to your front door.

November's message was about thanks... and for a friend who I am so thankful to have in my life (however, she did leave me and move to Seattle). I hope she enjoys it.
I don't have anything for Christmas yet but I am thinking.