Saturday, September 26, 2009

Beaded Button Fun!

September means a week at Padre with my family to walk the beach and celebrate Janet's birthday.

And, getting the girls together means its time for a 'craft project'. This year, I brought beads and stuff to try and make beaded buttons. I've seen pictures of some, and read up on tips to making them easier . . . and got some hints from my friend Melodie who took a class. I gathered together a few vials of mixed beads, a few squares of fabric, some covered button kits and a small hoop. Did I remember thread? Of course not! Thank goodness HEB had a little thread kit for not much money!

Before you get started, let me tell you - beaded buttons are addicting to make!

Here is my first one:

In looking at it, I wanted more texture. So, tried using different sizes of beads.

Then, I wanted to try one color - would a monocromtic button be better?

How about one big bead, and lots of colors?

What if I tried almost like a flower in the center?

My sisters decided I was having too much fun by myself. Here is Ginny's button - a terrific spiral . . .

Bobbie's first button used some bigger beads, and more monochromatic

And, her second button is full of color . . .

We had a wonderful week together, and a fun time making the beaded buttons - now what to do with them all?

Friday, September 4, 2009

It's finally time . . .

I read blogs . . . all of the time.

In my 'real job', I am developing strategies to reach out to bloggers, as a marketing tool.

Isn't it time to have one of my own? Understand what makes bloggers tick?

Back-to-school time, and time to begin something new. Since it's not school for me, it's time to begin playing with new techniques, and journaling about them.

Several of us were at a retreat last weekend - we want to explore textile collage art, but where to begin? Reading the latest issue of Cloth, Paper, Scissors generated an idea - develop a list of 'prompts' for our collages, then we don't need to think of the millions of ideas - just do one thing at a time. I'm calling mine 'Creative Catalysts' - ideas that help the mental block of 'what-to-do-next'

Here is how it works:
1. Develop a list of your Creative Catalysts (see our list below), can be anything!
2. Cut them up and put them in a bowl, basket or bag. I have a beautiful new 3-D pentagon shaped box made by a very good friend. To me, this must be a special container!
3. Start with a base - it can be pieced, or just one piece. I'm going to try diferent bases. It can be 3-D, or 2-D.
4. Put your hand in your special container and pull out one of the Creative Catalysts. Do that one thing to your piece. Only that one thing.
5. Keep 'drawing and doing' until you think your piece is done. Is it balanced? Does it have repetition? Scale? Value?

This makes collage art very approachable, building a piece one element at a time. We have made a commitment to make a piece each month using this method. My goal will be to post my work on this blog. Come back and check out my progress - keep me accountable!

Creative Catalysts:
Add a straight line
Add dots
Add an image
Add text
Add a symbol
Add a star
Cut into two pieces
Add black
Add something organic
Couch something onto it
Add pleats / pleat
Gather or add gathers
Piece something
Add appliqué
Stamp on it
Use your fancy embroidery stitches
Free motion machine stitch
Add strips
Add some wire or something metal
Add something plastic
Cut something out and replace it
Add a different type of fabric (silk, velvet, cheesecloth, chiffon, tulle, etc.)
Add a trim
Add a printed fabric
Add a circle
Add something LARGE
Add a skinny line
Add a texture
Add a different value of a color already used
Add red
Add curvy lines
Add a strong vertical line
Add a strong horizontal line
Add a strong diagonal line
Add something ugly
Use a repeating pattern
Make connected dots with wavy or straight lines
Outline a shape and fill in with writing
Add something shiny
Add one shape in multiple sizes
Cover something up
Add something very dark or very light
Add something that isn’t fully anchored
Add a black & white doodle and color it in
Discharge it
Blindfold and grab a fabric from your scrap bag
Add a button
Add a facial image
Add a heart
Add paper
Add paint
Add newspaper
Hand embroidery
Your handwriting
Sign it
Add gold/silver
Use a kitchen utensil to mark the piece
Use something from the bathroom – either on the piece or to mark the piece
Add wings
Add yarn or string
Do bobbin work
Add a flower
Add a bow
Add a key
Add a checkerboard
Add a crown
Cut into three pieces
Cut into four pieces
Stencil it
Screenprint on it
Use paintsticks
Add fringe
Add foil
Add lime green
Add bright orange
Something torn
Add a shadow
Rick Rack
Make a pocket
Add a secret
Prairie Points