Monday, August 30, 2010

Repurposed Adornments

I've recently started to do more jewelry. I love the books that show how to re-use items that you no longer wear into new items or to take vintage pieces and re-make them into more vogue pieces. Here is a necklace I made from a vintage glass brooch. The beads were recycled from a vintage necklace with vintage buttons, brass findings and glass pearls. 
I wholesaled this assemblage to a chic store upstate for re-sale. I've been listing some creations on my etsy site too.  I've married new pieces with vintage to make some very pretty items. 

Monday, July 26, 2010

Recycled Art

This has been a crazy two weeks I found out about a Recycled Art Exhibit in Alamosa Colorado about three weeks ago and decided to enter a couple pieces. Because I have never been to this show before I really was worried about what to create. This show is usually only open for people in Alamosa to enter pieces too so I was so excited to be able to enter two pieces. So in order to enter pieces you have to send digital photos before they are due and the "jury" decides if they are accepted into the exhibit. Each person can enter 3 pieces and they will let you know if they are selected. Well, the deadline was just two weeks away and I had no idea what I wanted to do also the pieces had to be 90 percent recycled material. The picture on the front of the postcard I found advertising the exhibit was of some plastic bags weaved together as a wall hanging. Nothing against that type of art but that is just not me. I love assemblage and altered art and decided to do two wall hangings and one drawer which I had never attempted before. The first one here is a cupboard door re-purposed as a background canvas for the piece. I has found some horseshoe nails (I believe) at a re-store shop and loved the look of them and wanted to use them for a project and this is what took shape above. I also added a vintage padlock on the bottom of the heart not shown because I found it on the way to the exhibit at an antique store. This one was accepted and is to be on display all of August.

This piece was also accepted for the exhibit. I had a lot of fun making these pieces I haven't worked on larger creations for awhile everything has been jewelry and smaller fabric collages. The funny thing is I've been harboring most of the materials I used in this project for awhile. I hate to throw things out and am trying to reconcile being a pack rat with trying to keep the house decluttered enough to be able to sit down and eat and watch t.v. You may laugh but sometimes and especially last week we almost didn't have a place to sit. I used to have a plaque that says "Creative people are seldom tidy." I thought it was funny and made for me but I have seen some other artists homes and studios and have heard some stories and I think it's true for creative people. Try as I might but by the end of the week the house looks like a bomb has gone off and with
a 16mo old that isn't exactly a good thing.
Anyway this was also done on a cupboard door sanded a little but mostly left as it was and things glued to it. If you can make it out it says "2 Grow and Learn is Key" with all the elements and words.

The next project I did wasn't accepted ;( I think it was because it was too girly! which I thought was funny. Who cares if a couple people on the jury didn't like it as much but if it sells and they get their commission why should they care if it doesn't meet their taste. My dear husband was very upset that someone didn't want my work. He doesn't really understand my altered art and assemblage sometimes but he didn't understand why they would not accept it. I do love the man!!! He doesn't get my mad and sometimes crazy need to create all the time but he supports me and puts up with the mess (most of the time). Occasionally I agree with him it does get old having a wiped out house. Our solution... we are gonna move! Hopefully we can get a large house and turn a basement into a studio for me :) ! I have been dreaming about a studio for years.
Anyway here's the pic of the third piece. After the exhibit is over if they don't sell I'm listing them on my etsy site for sell. Right now I am living with the "Soar" piece before I can part with it. I tend to be a girly girl even if I don't really dress like one.

On the next post I'll be showing some jewelry that I've started to created from vintage pieces that are re-purposed. Cia

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Artist retreat and such

It has been forever since I've been able to sit down and write. This is a new piece I made the other day. Jewelry has been my passion of late. This is a rose quartz pink carved rose with glass pearls, seed beads and Czech iridescent pressed glass beads. The chain is double rings of antiqued brass. I have been drawn to the antiqued brass because it doesn't tarnish or change like silver and isn't expensive to work with. I making a ton of pieces to take to a store in Denver where a lady is interested in my creations.
When I was out yesterday I ran across the book "Rejuvenated Jewels" by Amy Hanna. I love this book! She makes such beautiful things. I love the fact of reusing items to make something new. She mixes metals and mediums. I love antique and vintage items and rarely buy them because they're usually beat up a bit and now I think I can find ways to incorporate them into some of my jewelry.

I went to an artist retreat a little over a week ago in Durango Colorado. This is the wonderful place I spent the retreat in. Obaro Cabins is on the Florida river . The cabin has two sides with a dividing door. There is an upstairs bedroom and a pullout sofa in the living room. This is such a beautiful place I am looking forward to returning with my husband. It was a four day three night retreat with about eighteen women I had never met. This worked out great for me because I hadn't been away from the baby or my husband for 15months and I needed somewhere fun and safe to travel by myself. We worked in watercolor, inks, collage and also did some writing and acting. The instructors talked about getting into areas you've never done anything in before to re-start your creative abilities and think of new things. The writing exercises were a little challenging for me but they brought up all kinds of feelings and new memories many of the women hadn't thought of in a long time. One of the exercises was to think of an article of clothing you had worn and when and why it had a strong memory. I loved the inks section, we did a mandala which is a circle cut into sections and everyone takes a different section. In the section you look at some pictures and a word is written to embody the mandala and you're suppose to ink something in that represents that word. I had fire and the blue gold and red section to the upper left is mine.

I became so entranced by this I had to work after hours to finish it one night. I'm looking forward to getting my own set of inks and starting a mandala myself. The pictures that weren't finished the instructor was going to finish and then all of the twelve that we started are going to be printed into a calender for all of us as a keepsake. We had full days from 8:00 a.m to about 5:30 p.m. The breakfast and lunch were provided and appetizers and wine for the evening. The caterer was great. She made a feta, butter, thyme and lemon spread that I fell in love with and lemon usually isn't my thing. We had a roasted red pepper dip also that I could have eaten on anything. The most unusual was a lentil and beet salad that was really good and light. I enjoy pickled beets in salad but haven't ever had lentils except in soup.
Anyway every night I sat out on the deck and read "Pride and Prejudice" and loved the cool nights next to the river with some wine then went inside next to the fire and worked on a collage I wanted to do to take home. I'm still working on it a little slow going but it should be done and I'll post a picture. The picture down below is the river not twenty feet from the cabin.

What a beautiful view!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Here's another cuff bracelet I've made from re-purposed materials. This fabric is so bright and beautiful. The piece has embroidery, glass beading, vintage laces. I made the rose from a hot pink shirt I found at the thrift store. I love the texture of the rose. This is to be worn loosely on the wrist. There is batting between the two layers of fabric to give it more structure. I left the lace for the closure a little long for a nice bow or hanging. The width is 2 in thick which is around the size I've been working with and about 7 1/2 inches in length. I did just complete a romantic goth cuff that I'll be posting soon and that one is much wider. I got the inspiration for these cuffs in the Sew Somerset Magazine Dec/Jan/Feb 2010 edition. The article talked about a workshop the author attended from an artist Sally Casper. One of the pictures showed  a vintage, rhinestone jewelry piece that was re-purposed for the cuff and some vintage lace on a pale blue remnant of fabric. The article was by Norma Kooi, she had several pictures of cuffs in different designs. I've enjoyed working on these they can be completed in an hour or so and really help the creative process for other works of art. I have found if I don't try and create something regularly I have a difficult time trying to accomplish anything. I do have this item for sell in my etsy shop listed above. Have a great day! 

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Textile Collage

This is a textile collage I created from re-purposed fabrics like clothes etc. I used a broad cloth for the substructure and built upon that. The fabric on the right is upholstery sample fabric from a garage sale. I was able to purchase several boxes for a couple dollars from a lady that was getting rid of old hobby stuff. I have a huge box of wool yarn I haven't found projects for yet. Most of what I create with is from thrift stores and garage sales. I found a package of wooden beads with only certain letters and was able to use some for this piece. The picture is from a collage pack I bought 8 years ago. I love the velvet leaves,  I found those on a dealer's site on etsy. I have just realized recently a lot of people have no idea what etsy is. This site is like ebay but for artist and crafters. People also sell vintage items and supplies for creating art etc. This is a wonderful site for inspiration. Sometimes I go to the buy section and click the button for "pounce". Pounce is for seeing something that is newly sold which is helpful to see what is selling. I "favorite" several shops and try to see what they're selling new.  My shop is and from my site you can see what shops I like and items I'm selling. I always keep an eye out for vintage lace.  I love these collages so much. I just started working on them after seeing examples in Somerset. I'll be showing another one soon, I'm thinking about changing it a bit before showing it. Most of the piece here is embroidered with some gluing here and there. A section of an old torn table cloth has been tea dyed and applied on the right side. Hand painted vintage buttons are in a handmade nest on the left. This collage kind of goes into the mixed media, assemblage area of creating which I find fascinating.  I am amazed at assemblage artist sometimes and how they re-purpose items. I laugh because my husband doesn't quite get the assemblage aspect of art but he is very supportive. Hope those that see this are inspired. Let me know what you think.

Friday, April 9, 2010

More Wrist Cuff Bracelets

I am loving these wrist cuff bracelets. Last year when I was doing my garage sale thing I found a ton of fabrics in clothing and unused upholstery fabric swatches. Now I have found a way to use some of these and create some beautiful works of wearable art. I am using some jewelry findings that are new on some of these if I can't find something I like to add otherwise. I have starting seeing these in the celebrity circles even on the men, but they are really basic and plain. I love the more vintage, romantic feel of jewelry. I'll be continuing to make more and list them on my etsy site.  I have been thinking about some kits also but haven't taken that too far yet. Enjoy!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Romantic Wrist Cuff Bracelets

I love to work with re-purposing items. The hot term is upcycling. I have recently found a love of fabric collage and making wrist cuff bracelets. I search thrift stores etc. for fabrics to reuse. I like the idea of wearable art being able to wear a piece and have people express how much they love it.  Telling someone that you made what they admire and that they can have one of there own is so much fun. The experience is very validating. As an artist sometimes you wonder to yourself if what you make will be liked by others. I spent countless years never even showing my work for fear people wouldn't like it. I have a new outlook now. I try to spend a lot more time on my art and being creative in life. I've made several of these cuffs and am looking forward to making more. Hope you enjoy them.

A New Day

I feel the need to share and I hope there will be people out there interested. I've never blogged before so pardon my grammar. My mind tends to go faster than my fingers. I became interested in blogging because I LOVE to learn new things and I research on the web constantly. So hopefully I can help some people learn some new things and be inspired. Now a little background: I used to be a Dental Hygienist but decide to stay home with my son when I got pregnant last year. I find the experience wonderful although sometimes BORING. I am a creative person but at many times find myself unmotivated. I call myself an artist and have been since I was a child. Okay sometimes I lean closer to a crafter but in my mind they're almost the same. What was once a crafter is now an artist through mixed media etc. Artist use to be thought of as just painters or sculptors but that idea has expanded greatly. There are so many talented people out there and so many ways to create art that many people don't know about so hopefully I will enlighten some and they can enlighten me. I will also blog about food because that can be so creative and I'm sad to say a lot of people I know can't cook. I was raised with multicultural foods that a lot of people experience now with restaurant food but don't know how to cookat home. I didn't get alot of bland food at home thank goodness and my family didn't cook a lot of traditional italian but the basics I have down. I cook many things now that I never grew up eating but, I find myself getting trapped in several basic dishes so hopefully with the blogging I will be inspired to new meals.

Next, I may at times go on and on about weight loss and exercise. I find that if I keep my focus on those two things they might just happen. I will of course try not to bore you. If you haven't noticed I will be writing as though I am speaking right to you I hope it doesn't annoy!

By and by the dog in the photo is my Fraiser one of three Shih Tzu's that we are priviledged to have. If anyone wants a fantastic dog get a Shih Tzu but please pronounce it correctly (sheed zoo). Everyone thinks it's shit-zu. My three are great with my son even if he's a little rough.

My next post will be later tonight because I want to post about my newest craze fabric wrist cuff bracelets. I know a lot of people don't know what they are but they are getting hot!!!