Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Mermaid Dotee

What is a Dotee?

Dotee dolls were created by a very talented Australian artist called Dot. They are little friendship dolls, made using scraps of fabric and beads, embellishments etc, and the rules are that they are only to be given away, as gifts or traded, not sold. They are usually 3-5 inches long, and they include a hanger, and a beaded tail.

I created my first mermaid dotee just the other day!

Since it is a mermaid, I skipped the beaded tail and just used a 'real' tail. Traced it out on leather.

The leather was very difficult to work with. After sewing, taking apart and re-sewing, it is finally ok. The final tail, after adding some beads and drawing.

I'm not very good at arms, or anything like that, so she's a bit of a stump arm, with drawn on face...She is also larger than dotee's usually are, but thats ok.

I sewed in some yarn for hair (which I had to do twice because I did it wrong the first time...), and used some green tulle for decoration.
The final product :

Wine Cork Stamps

Sifting through recycled materials at work I found a huge container full of wine corks. I remember people using these as stamps, so I decided to try that out.

First, I took the wine cork and on the side that seemed most flat, I drew a design (a heart)

Then, using an Exacto knife, I cut out the design. You have to be really careful when doing this. It is easy to just cut the whole thing off. Especially with the star stamp that you can see below. I tried using my rubber cutters. Nope, bad idea. It just made a scratch on the top of the cork which you can now see in the stamped image.

I stamped the image and used that to create a paper image so people know what the stamp is of.

I also created a star stamp!

Here you can see the depth of which I cut.

REALLY SIMPLE! I sent these to the same swap partner that got my pumpkin cushion.

Pumpkin Pin Cushion

I found some fabric that inspired me to make a pumpkin pin cushion. Nice fall colors, and an easy project for a swap partner.

First, I traced my design onto the fabric.

Then, I made an outlying line that will serve as my cutting line. This is so I make sure to have enough space when I'm sewing so it doesn't come apart. Cut.

Sew together leaving a small space.

Make sure to cut off most of the extra fabric. Turn inside out, and stuff with filler. Sew closed.

Next, I took embroidery thread and starting in the middle, sewed the pumpkin creases. What are these called anyway? Make sure to pull tight so that it makes the pumpkin plump.

TaDa! I added a green stem just by cutting some random fabric and sewing it on as I sewed the creases. Perfect for pins, or just decoration.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Thrift store find

Friday I went to a few thrift stores, and came across this box.
I had to have it. At only $10, it was worth it. The carving is so intricate, and the flower inlay is metal.
The inside is lined with a thin felt, but amazingly clean and reinforced with paper thin wood. I love how the metal work is so tiny and old looking.
This inspires me to go into more thrift stores when I see them. Especially ones with home goods.

Syrenka stamp

I was invited to join a mermaid themed group on Swap-Bot. This brought to the forefront of my mind my love of folklore and imaginary creatures. I was inspired to make a stamp of such a creature :

The initial drawing and transfer
After carving, and initial stamping
After some touchups, and adhering the stamp backing. I used a dye based stamp for this, and it turned out interesting. It is as if the mermaid is underwater...
Anyway, I typically use a non-smear waterproof ink for this, and this is why.

Swap packages

I sent out 4 packages today. 2 went to Canada, 1 to Finland, and 1 to Arizona. I hope they all get there safe and sound.

A view of the insides :

What the envelopes looked like. On the back I stamped a scene of a boat and waves...

Little Pouches

Having felt around is the greatest thing. I'm able to create little pouches for anything.
Over the last week I've created a pouch for my fiance's video camera...
I'm going to add a velcro closure to this today.

and a little pouch for beads that I sent out to a swapper....

I can't stress enough for amazing having a sewing machine set up is.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Old T-shirt Necklace

I realize that I could easily stay home everyday doing nothing/crafting/ watching Martha. I would cook/clean/make money online. I'm getting over a cold, so I stayed home from work today and worked on various things, this necklace being one of them.

A tutorial.
Start with an old shirt. I loved this shirt when I bought it. Then, like most great shirts, it shrunk lengthwise and grew width-wise and it just was not flattering anymore.
Lay flat and cut the bottom seam off. I used sharp scissors. Martha used some crazy sharp pizza cutter looking thing.

Every 3/4 inch cut a strip and put aside. I cut 17 strips from this specific shirt. Do you best not to get nicks in the fabric (unless you want that look..)

Once you cut it all, hold each piece at the seams and pull. This is cause the cords to curl at the ends. Place one cord to the side (you will use this to bind it all together later)

Place together at the seams, pull, and fold the seams together in a figure 8.

Take your extra piece and cut one seam open. Place around the end and bind together by pulling the cut ends through the attached end with the cords in the middle of all of this.

Wrap it all around and secure hiding the ends.


Really simple for us crafty ones.

Friday, April 16, 2010


I've been working on some artist trading cards. I wasn't sure what these were, but on Swap-Bot, they seem pretty popular so I decided to get into it.
I bought a pack of 100 cards that are mouldmade with torn edges, very cool look...

I did a swap with two owl cards, and another with a tree of life.

This one I drew with no reference. I used some embossing accents, and sewing on the tree. I decided I would incorporate this into all of my ATCs.
This one I used a photo as a model. I'm not loving it how it turned out. The color choice is weird... it will do.My favorite part about this one is the root system, aka crazy sewing.
I've joined a few more swaps, so more to come eventually...

Friday, April 9, 2010

Beach Collection

I took a trip to the beach today and found so many things

Some sort of crystallized ice plant
Lime green!
One of many starfish that we saw
This seaweed reminded me of some kind of amazing jewelry. I love the color as well.
Sand tubes
This rock reminded me of some sort of long haired creature. Green and sleeping..

My finds for the dayAnd the best find of the day:
This will be immediately made into a project!

Maya Made winner!

I was the winner of a giveaway by : MayaMade!

I received my winnings in the mail today and they are amazing!
Just the envelope alone was great. I love hand cut rubber stamps!
A bucket, a pin cushion, and a notebook!