Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Playing with Paper

 I have been playing with paper again and have made some unique wedding cards and favors from vintage paper and images from an old french paper doll.  I love the little groom with his stiff posture.  He looks slightly terrified!  I have decided to list these on Etsy instead of putting them here in my local gallery. If you know of anyone getting married these would make a unique keepsake.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Uncle Claude's Chair

I have had this chair for ages.  It belonged to my Auntie Florence and Uncle Bob (who were brother and sister living together as they used to do in those days).  Auntie Florence had a "boyfriend" who we called Uncle Claude.  He was the whitest palest human I've ever known with deathly pale skin and pure white hair, but he was always very well dressed and groomed.  He wore sweater vests and little bow ties. He worked as a haberdasher in a very swanky (for our town) men's clothing shop so I imagine he had a thing for nice clothes.  He used to sit in this chair and nod off during most family get togethers.  He was always there on the fringe of things.  Very nice man but very sleepy as I recall.  All of us kids descending on my aunt and uncle's house probably gave him a massive headache.  Anyway I inherited the chair and it was due for a make-over.

I have never attempted reupholstery and now I know why.  It's a lot harder than it would seem.  I was careful to take off the old fake leather and million plus nails and take lots of digital photos lest I forget how it was put together.  But I still totally screwed it up and under cut one of my pieces plus I underestimated the yardage so I bit my lip and went back to the fabric store and bought three more yards of the sale fabric which was still $12.99 a yard.  This time I found my upholstery guardian angel "Chris" on YouTube.  He is an expert and has put together a 13 part video series on redoing a chair very similar to mine. I watched the series multiple times.  I feel like Chris and I are old friends and I hope he would be proud of my efforts.  I think it came out pretty good considering I don't have Chris' snazzy staple gun (which I am totally saving up for if I ever do a project like this again!)  I went old school and used a tack hammer and tacks.  Chris was right, those electric staplers do not work.  Check it out:

 This is a departure from my usual floral choices but the drapes that are coming for the bedroom are floral and I wanted a more tailored complimentary look.  This almost looks like menswear (a fitting tribute to Uncle Claude as it turns out)  but I like it.  I made the pillow last night because it needed a little something soft.  I like the contrast between the wool and lace.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Good Swap

Part of being part of a great local artisan group is the opportunity to swap with some of the other talented artists.  I recently made a swap with my dear friend Sharyn who is a potter and avid gardener.  Here is what I made for her:

She grows the most gorgeous dahlias and I made her one out of vintage silks and taffetas.  She also loves sunflowers and features them on many of her pots so I made one from felted wool.

And here is what I got in return.  A beautiful and useful little pitcher with a clever little built in whisk.  I use it nearly every day for my scrambled eggs or salad dressing.  Thanks Sharyn!

Friday, April 1, 2011

My New Etsy Shop

Time to clean out and do a reality check about how much fabric and other supplies I really need.  I am always overly optimistic about how much I can really do in one lifetime!  I will be adding goods each day. There are bargains to be had!