Enjoying the company of a jewelry artist who specializes in fine metals.
I spent the better part of my weekend barefoot in a beautiful park, with my wares on display again. This time there were: hammocks, fabric nesting bowls, handmade notebooks, fabric fortune cookies, tote bags and bottles of maple syrup produced locally by a friend of mine.
The weather was beautiful and the people were wonderful. Fellow artists inspired each other and those who were there to hunt for treasures eagerly shared their stories with us as they licked their ice-cream cones.
I shared a booth with jewelry artist and friend of mine, Jenna Dupee, of Picturesque Jewellery. She’s a woman who knows her fine metals and can appreciate a quality product. She works with anything from dinosaur bones to diamonds, and titanium to silver with copper accents. She recently did a custom piece for me and I am so pleased that I happily recommend her work.
Here are a few of the things I had on display.
This birch tree duvet cover is inspired by years of living up north and camping
These cookies are made of raw cotton canvas but I found that they didn’t hold their shape as well, so I switched to felt.
The notebooks were very popular, particularly the ones with doodles of vintage looking camper vans, trailers, and burnt marshmallows.
Tote bags made of re-purposed curtains, outdoor upholstery fabric, and indoor upholstery fabric
Once again, I would like to extend a thank you to those who shared their homes with me and lent me sewing machines, projector screens, workshops and their support!
I had so much fun, the art fair was a great success.
For a tutorial on how to make the fabric nesting bowls, see earlier post “Fabric Bowls”.
So I bought a cute little owl at an art festival and decided to make a similar one for a baby shower.
yellow: festival owl
black: my owly-owl
I heard that babies eyes develop a certain way, and that in the early weeks, they prefer high contrast images of black and white, only developing the ability to distinguish between bold colours after a month or so. Around that time, they still prefer bold contrasting patterns to lighter ones. This is why I decided to make my owl out of bold, contrasting colours, with a striking pattern on its belly.
I will have to wait to hear how the owl performs and if it catches baby’s attention at all. Time will tell.
How to “Tutowlrial”
This is where I found visuals that explained how this little stuffie comes together.
For mine, I used a Pentel pen -“Gel Roller for Fabric BN15-A” (my current favourite for quick fabric decor for the last two years) to draw on the eyes (less of a choking hazard than buttons) and the belly pattern that loosely resembles feathers. I contacted Pentel to make sure that my owl was sufficiently non-toxic and explained that it is expected to come into contact with a lot of drool.
Pentel told me that prolonged or chronic exposure has not proven to have harmful health effects and offered to send me the MSDS sheets for the particular ink pen in question, I hope they are right.
My roommate has this set of woven nesting bowls. She keeps all sorts of interesting things in them, often her extra little bottles of things in the bathroom, hairbrushes, hair accessories etc…
I liked the idea and so I decided to make my own. It turns out they are a nice way to spruce up a boring plant pot as well (just make sure you remember to place a barrier inside to protect from water leaking from the pot).
- This design is pretty simple. It consists of a circle of fabric for the bottom of your bowl and a strip that will form the walls.
- Find a round container of the size you would like to reproduce and use it for your template. Trace the bottom for your round bowl bottom and measure the outside walls of the container to determine how long of a strip of fabric you will need to make the outside wall of the bowl. For instance, you could use a large coffee tin for your bigger bowl.
- Another option would be to use math. Once you decide on how big your circle needs to be for the bottom, measure the diameter of the circle (the distance across the center from one edge to the other). Using an equation that we learned in grade-school, figure out the length you will need to make the strip that goes around the perimeter of the bottom circle, to make the walls of your bowl.
C= Pi x d
“C” is circumference (the perimeter of your circle). “Pi” is 3.14, and “d” is diameter.
- Once you have cut your fabric, cut a second set of shapes to be the liner for your bowl. I used a raw cotton canvas material because I wanted something that would be strong and hold its shape. If you use fabric that is too soft (i.e.: silk or thin cotton) the bowl may not hold its shape as well.
- Once you have your pieces, sew your two circles together and sew your strips together.
- Sew your strip together along its short edge so that it forms a sleeve shape. This will look like a container with no bottom.
- Using a zig-zag stitch setting on your sewing machine attach the circle to the strip. Be patient here, this takes time. You may need to remove the front piece of your machine base (so that you are working on the sleeve arm) while attaching the bottom piece. Alternatively, you may sew this bottom circle on by hand.
- Once the piece is attached, you are done.
line up your pieces to make sure they fit
use a straight stitch or a zig-zag stitch here.
reversing the fabric after the first seam is done, will give you an opportunity to make another seam along the edge. this will give it a “finished” look.
to reduce fraying of fabric, fold cut ends inward and sew together to secure and create a “finished” seam.
once you form the sleeve, you may want to double stitch the seam. I used a zig-zag stitch. it looks a little messy, but it’s a good way to flatten the seam and keep the bowl looking more smooth and round along the outside.
this might be the trickiest part, negotiating with your machine. if your bowl is too small (not deep enough) this step will be difficult. My smallest bowl was no less than 4 inches deep and 5 inches across the base. anything smaller might require hand sewing.