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11  Re: beaded wire bracelets - with tutorial!! in Beads: Completed Projects by amyshrugged on: August 02, 2005 08:59:34 PM
ok, just had to toss my finished piece into the mix:

a little messy, but I love it anyway... 

an action shot!

the colors match my boring work uniform, so now I get to feel pretty while strangers yell at me..  Smiley
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12  Tree/Klee Tapestry in Weaving: Completed Projects by amyshrugged on: August 02, 2005 10:31:30 AM
Well, sad to say, but I think this is the first completed project I have posted to Craftster.. I guess late is better than never, right?

This is my first tapestry... I made it in my fiber arts class last semester, but decided after it was done that I wanted to add the black fringe to the top also, and I actually just finished doing that last night.  It might need a little more, but it looks a lot better with the fringe on top, I think.

I am excited that weaving has its own board now -- and I'm really interested to hear some opinions on my piece.  The tree silhouette was taken from a photograph, and the background is based on a Paul Klee painting called "Ancient Sounds."  I wish the edges were straighter... actually it looks straighter in person, especially on the right side, lol.  I guess that's something most people have to work on at first. 

Anyway -- let me know what you think!

Thanks for looking.  Smiley
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13  Re: handmade paper with plants anyone? in Paper Crafts: Discussion and Questions by amyshrugged on: July 11, 2005 04:32:34 PM

As far as I've been taught, and this seems to make a lot of sense, the "papery"ness of your paper, vs. brittleness, is all about the length of the fibers in the plant you're using.  Things that have long fibers make better (ie stronger, more flexible) paper.  When pulling a sheet of paper with a mould and deckle, I was taught to gently shake the pulp in the mould, back and forth and forward and back, to align the fibers so they will interlock and increase the strength of the dried sheet.  Let me know if that doesn't make any sense.. here are a couple pictures I just took of some interesting papers:

Japanese kozo makes great paper because the fibers are so long.  They are the inner bark of the Japanese mulberry tree, so they're also very strong.  Here's an example of some kozo papers I made.. two overlapping sheets.  The top one is undyed, the bottom one is dyed pink.. they are both pretty transulcent.  

This picture shows, from left to right, a sheet of 1/2 bleached cotton and 1/2 unbleached abaca, which yields a nice oatmeal color when combined (abaca by itself is a light beige when it dries), a partial sheet of iris leaves (brown) laminated onto a full sheet of spanish flax (white), and a sheet of iris pulp mixed into spanish flax.  You can see the long iris fibers really well in the last sheet.

The sheet on the left is really nice and strong, because abaca fibers are really tough... our professor told us to mix in some abaca any time we needed durability (for sculpture, etc).  When the fibers are over-beaten (3+ hours in the Hollander beater), abaca also shrinks a LOT, so if you drape wet sheets of it on other structures, it will pull tight like a drum when it dries.  Lots of potential there.  I wish I had a picture of that to show you.

This is a closeup of a sheet of iris mixed with some cotton and abaca for softness and durability.  It's from one of the batches I dyed red for my body project.  I tried to zoom in to show the iris fibers, because I really like the way they look embedded in the more "normal" pulp, but I think the picture might be too blurry to really show it.  

Iris by itself does a lot of "cockling," which just means that it curls and buckles as it's drying, unless it's being dried under weights, which is why I combined it with two other kinds of pulp for my project.  I imagine it's similar to your blackberry, but maybe less brittle?  I don't know if the blackberry leaves have long enough fibers to hold a sheet together.. I've never seen anyone try it... (do you have pictures?)

The abaca, cotton, and flax pulp sheets were definitely purchased, but I'm not sure where.  The dried cotton pulp sheet is called a "linter."  Arnold Grummer's website has some sheets for sale, you might find them cheaper elsewhere, I don't really know what a good price is.. this doesn't seem too bad though.  
Cotton: http://www.arnoldgrummer.com/ordering/index.cfm?action1=Prod&action2=Details&prod_id=57
Abaca: http://www.arnoldgrummer.com/ordering/index.cfm?action1=Prod&action2=Details&prod_id=197

I would love to see pictures of any of the papers you've made, especially the crocus, but the others too.  I did have one classmate who experimented with corn leaves; I'll try to find my swatch of it and post a picture soon.
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14  Re: Paper & Ephemera Swap Gallery (warning: may induce envy) in The Swap Gallery by amyshrugged on: July 09, 2005 06:54:20 AM
Ok... well I know silloh_77 received from me a while ago, and I received her envelope as well.  I can only assume that kellyfitz84 got her envelope from me, since I've sent her 3 PMs over the course of this swap and she hasn't replied to any of them... has anyone heard from her?   Huh

So anyway, I'm posting pictures, because it doesn't look like silloh_77 will mind, and if it ruins kellyfitz84's surprise, too bad.  Tongue  I had a lot of fun putting together my envelopes, and I hope she enjoys everything I sent her, even if she isn't sending back or responding to my PMs.    Undecided

Here is what I sent out to both my swap partners:

and some closeups...

this one shows (clockwise from upper left corner) some nice brown and burgundy bookbinding leathers, handmade decorative papers I made last semester, pages from a weird princess-themed coloring book, pages from a 1980's photography book, pink resume paper, a paste paper, also from last semester, origami papers,  decorative papers from my favorite bookbinding store (Hollanders.com, check it out!), and in the center, four pieces of Italian bookcloth.

this one shows more of my handmade paste papers (very top, teal/orange), a bunch of decorative papers fanned out across the middle (japanese yuzen, batiks from India, woodblock prints, artist-designed silkscreened paper (see the bugs? it's from papermojo), some italian prints, leaf-prints, and marbled papers)... and at the bottom, some funny cat stickers, ribbons, bookbinding linen thread, and some cute cards with animals on them.  

Whew!  Not done yet.  Here is what I received from silloh_77:

a wide array of holiday-themed Simpsons ephemera, a page from a kitten calendar, some really cute vintage valentines, a big stack of stationery, and some other decorative papers, including:

my favorites, illustrations from on old Robin Hood book and some botanical postcards from IKEA.

Thanks, silloh_77!  

If anyone has heard from kellyfitz84, let me know..  Roll Eyes
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15  Re: Thrift Store Picture Revamp Round II! Sign-up- 5/20/05-5/28/05 Send by-06/15 in ARCHIVE OF SWAPS THAT ARE TOTALLY FINISHED by amyshrugged on: May 31, 2005 04:23:17 PM
krazigal that picture is awesome I love the way its crackling. Heres the one I bought. Can't you just see the potential.

LOL!  I had that picture in my last apartment!  My roommate had it.. it hung in the living room... it was so hilarious and creepy... I miss it... how funny that it's even in the same frame.. wonder where they originally came from.  Can't wait to see what you do to it.  Smiley
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