A bit more than a year ago I started a new job and in the beginning I had a real rough patch with some other women on the floor. My boss introduced me to Mona, who does admin work like me, but on the "other" coast. Since then she has been a mentor, inspiration and release valve.
I love how inspiration happens sometimes. After a conversation we had that morphed somehow into what would happen if we came into the office wearing a crown, (I admitted I would get questions, but would be left alone otherwise; while my friend boasted that no one would dare ask her why or comment on her wearing a crown to work.), came the thought to make her a crown. It bounced around in my head for a while and I toyed with several different ideas (mixed media, beads, office supplies) until I remembered a card a dear friend gave me many years ago. On the front it said, "You are the Queen of Everything." Perfect! Despite my interest in exploring other mediums, in the end I fell back on my first love..embroidery.
The crown is heavy cotton fabric painted with watercolors, embroidered onto felt to give it the stiffness it needed to stand on it's own. The design is my own and each symbol has it's own significance.
Front 1 - The crown reads "Queen of Everything" in the center, with a paperclip chain running across the bottom. Here you can see the "rays" radiating from the center of the crown. For the energy that my friend puts off at work. I added some bi-cone crystals in light yellow and aurora clear to give it some "sparkle."
Front 2 - More of the "rays" and paperclip chain. The rays were embroidered onto a double layer of felt. It gives the front a bit of a "quilted" look and helps keep it standing tall. Yes. She *is* the queen of everything...on her coast. On my coast it's definitely my title.
Side 1 - On this side you can see a hen perching on one paperclip, denoting her "mothering" attitude towards me, the butterflies floating above a symbol of her wonderful spirit. The CG emblem had to be there somewhere, as we both work for the CG and she is a CG spouse.
Side 2 - On this side I put the most common "rates" we work with and support.
Inside view - I picked the paisley cotton to back the crown with because of the rich colors and "regal" look to it.
Over the course of about two months I put in about 20 plus hours of work into this, including design and execution.
Mona comes into town next week and we finally get to meet in person for the first time. I can't wait to give her the crown!
Two years ago I was blessed to join in a Christmas ornament swap and had so much fun designing my ornaments that I've made it a habit.
This year I did a quick private swap with one of my favorite people, spookshowbaby77! We've done several swaps over the past couple of years and I love making new things for her and know that I'll always get awesomeness in return!
I ended up designing two new ornaments this year, (another one made it to the cutwork phase but was never completed), and wanted to share.
Monster Christmas light bulb 1 I'm still not sure why this guy is pissed. I figured because either he got left off the string of lights this year, or because he doesn't want to be on the string of lights this year? Regardless, boy is he irked!
Monster Christmas light bulb 1 No matter how much I fiddled with this guy's face, he looked bored. I think that he was angry for so long his face froze like this and now he's just bored of being angry.
WIP - monster light bulbs in cutwork phase with their inspiration piece. I made this brooch last year and while perusing my material for ideas he caught my eye. I thought he'd make a great ornament!
I saw an ornament on flickr using *real* scrabble tiles and thought it would be cool to do a couple in felt. I have one in a baggie spelling out "peace" waiting to be sewn together and stuffed.
For a while, at the beginning of the year, I lived with my brother and family. During that time my nephew, Kyle, got me hooked on the cartoon Ben 10. He's a little kid that finds a watch that can turn him into different aliens. We're both a touch obsessed with it and watch it together on a regular basis. As a matter of a fact, they save them until I can come down and watch them with him and my brother. We're a bit of Ben 10 geeks and obsess over the tiniest details! LoL
So, I had the idea of making Ben's watch for him. It's made completely of felt with a velcro closure and is 3D.
I gave it to him for his birthday this year and I'm told he wears it pretty regularly.
Good Lord I haven't been here in fo-evah! Last swap was Jan of this year and I've missed it! But...the trade off was getting a real job and making enough money to move back to the SF Bay Area. In the end, the trade off is worth the time away.
I realized though that I had been doing swaps here but haven't been posting my work over here to share once it is all done and over with. I love sharing over here as I enjoy seeing everyone else's work and hearing what others who do what I do think of my work.
I'm sharing a piece I did for a IYP swap here in December. spookshowbaby77 invited me to be her partner, of which I was eternally grateful. I have swapped several times with Kerry and have enjoyed each time. She's my all-time favorite swap partner.
I posted this on my Flickr, so the below is excerpted from that posting:
Embroidered piece of artwork done for craftster swap (IYP with spookshowbaby77). Crayon and watercolor tinted, hand embroidered. It's probably my first piece that wasn't mostly traced and then embroidered.
While the artwork is true to the original iconic painting, because I used Blythe's face as the base I had to completely rework the entire thing to look proportionate. I am not an "artist" so doing this is not my forte usually. Note: My brother reworked the hands as I was having a dicken of a time reworking them to look "correct."
Kerry, my partner who is receiving this, loves dolls and had many on her "favorites" here on Flickr. She also had a couple of Lady of Guadalupe statues in her favorites as well, so as I was perusing all of her information to come up with an idea of what to do for this swap I had a flash of...well, I hope it was brilliance..because the idea came together perfectly at that moment.
If you look closely you might note that the angel below Blythe's feet was reworked slightly to make him look like Elvis. Sacreligious? Absolutely I'm sure.
The piece was sent to her as a raw piece of artwork for her to do what she wants with it. I hope she likes it as much as I do. :-)
This guy was made for a swap on Flickr with my friend spookshowbaby77. We had mutually admired each others foray into the dotee doll, had swapped twice before, and decided to do another swap for a dotee doll.
I originally had the idea to come up with a doll idea that would at least match my last efforts and be something I know Kerry would like. After muddling along with some ideas that were decent, but not awe-worthy...I had a light bulb flash when I was moving around some felt pins I am making for an Etsy shop I hope to open soon.
I figured that while he would be 3-dimensional like the pin, I could make him into what would be the accepted format of the "dotee" doll, which was the original intent of the swap, right?
Well, as I began to work on them, the felt and ideas sort of took over. I truly don't remember when he turned into a fish, (let alone a space fish), instead of a monster; but I'm glad he did! And I'm sure you recognize Bud, or at least recognize where he's inspired from anyway.
They are hand-stitched entirely of recycled felt, with Alistar's eyes made from two buttons and Bud's eyes are glued on googly eyes. He is stuffed with polyfill.
I absolutely love his belly. Originally it was just going to be flat but something called to me and I just had to make a ridged belly for him.
I am participating in the most recent dotee doll swap and had a lot of fun stalking my partners to come up with something that they would really love. I love the creative process. While my partners have not posted yet on the swap thread I know that two out of the three have received their dolls and so I can't resist posting the two that have been received.
First up is Steve. Until pretty recently he was a member of his high school's basketball team. Died in a high speed chase on a lonely road outside of town. His craving for brains began soon after he dug himself out of his grave. He tried to be "civilized" and eat only animal brains, but he found them unsatisfying. So now he just tries to go as long as he can between feedings and picks the best brains he can find for his meals. At night, after he feeds, you can see him speeding down that same lonely road, flipping off the police as they chase him across the countryside.
Next in the line up is Tyche. She is the Greek goddess of Fortune. Personification of the Fates Tyche was one of the most popular gods to be worshiped by the Greeks. She wears a crown with a ball on her head to show the unsteadiness of luck, carries a cornucopia symbolizing the plentiful gifts of Fortune and holds a rudder showing how she guides the Destiny of man. Wings are shown sometimes signifying Fortune's ability to wing us high. Inside I placed a money prayer, to attract wealth.
As usual, you can find more photos on my Flickr photostream.
When I first "discovered" embroidery I had already been a Craftster of a different kind and a stalker extraordinaire. I had peeked in on numerous threads in the swap gallery depicting tea towels that were prettily embroidered and always, in the back of my mind, knew I wanted to participate..some day.
Flash forward to the most recent tea towel swap being featured in the swap gallery right now. When I received my eagerly anticipated partner I was happy to see she had listed a variety of topics she was interested in, many of which would do nicely embroidered on a tea towel to be neatly hung on the fridge or stove (where my mom keeps the ones I embroidered her for xmas ). Then we begin the back and forth conversation. She asks me a couple of questions, I ask her a couple of questions...and in her reply she says, "oh all of those are great but what I REALLY want is Yeti's."
Yeti's? What the heck? What the hell am I suppose to do with that? I looked and looked and...let me tell you. There's a lot of cute stuff out there using Yeti's and Big Foots (or is it Feet) and Sasquatch and a bunch of other names the guy goes by but I just don't remember. But I really didn't want to go for cute. It was too easy. Really.
I must have searched high and low for something to spark my creativity. Something..anything to move me forward and make me happy with the output. Nothing. Every single time I sat down at a computer I searched.
Finally I found the inspiration I was looking for. One simple picture of Big Foot. Done as a portrait like you'd see done at Sear's.
My partner told me she didn't expect to use the towels in the kitchen, so while they are stitched on 100% cotton kitchen towels, they were created to be hung on the wall versus over the handle of the stove. She received them today and seems to be as much in love with them as I am. She's lucky I sent them.
George Sasquatch (Stitched on 100% cotton, painted with watercolors)
Close up of face
The Yeti (Stitched on 100% cotton, painted with watercolors)
Big Foot Xing (Stitched on 100% cotton, embellished with acrylic felt)
I hope you like them! As usual, to see more photos of this work please pop over to my Flickr photostream.
So....I have this thread in the ATC forum where I put all of my ATCS and that was cool...until they recently moved it under papercrafts...and GOSH DARN IT, I don't use paper for my ATCs! (At least not yet.) All of my ATCs have been embroidered up to this point and I haven't had time to really embroider much anything else except my ATCs and so I haven't been feeling like I've been posting here EVEN THOUGH this is where I love to post the most....