Do You Doodle?

Just a quick post today.  We had a busy weekend and then i pulled a 15-16 hour workday yesterday,  so I haven’t done a whole lot of crafting in a few days.

Do you doodle?  What I mean by that is,  do you pick up a pen or pencil (or crayon) and draw random things on paper?  It could be the edge of a page of notes.  Something drawn on a small scrap of paper.  On the back of a placemat at a restaurant. In a sketch pad.  You get the idea.

With my job,  I sometimes have small bits of time where I’m just sitting and waiting.  The class is taking a test,  the instructor isn’t there yet,  I’m on standby, etc.  (For those that don’t know,  I provide C-print services for deaf students in college. The link I provided gives a good overview of what C-print is, although I use a different program than what is noted in the article).

So…I doodle!

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Some of my doodles I do more often than others.

This vine with flowers I’ve been doodling most of my life, with variations to the amount of flowers and direction of vines:

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I regularly draw hearts with the infinity symbol wrapping around it:

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And i often draw 3-dimensional objects,  rough drawing of course:

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Every so often,  my doodles veer off and something new appears,  like this odd little bird:

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Very odd little bird.  But he has potential. I think.  Haha.

So,  what do you doodle?

Sew Crazy, LLC

(Let’s hope this finally will upload and post.) 

A disclaimer first: While I do help out up at Sew Crazy occasionally,  I am not receiving pay or compensation for writing this review.  This may be seen as a bit of advertising,  but it is done out of my own free will.  This happens to be one of my favorite stores and i wanted to share it with you.

“Sew Crazy: you don’t have to be crazy to shop here,  we’ll train you!” 

Gwyn, the owner of Sew Crazy,  opened up the store almost two years ago.  If you are down in the dumps when you walk in,  you can rest assured you’ll probably be laughing shortly thereafter and smiling on your way out. She just has that type of personality.  And an amazing memory.  Visit a time or two and after that,  she will most likely greet you by name any time you walk in the door.  (I’m lucky when i can remember my own name!  So I’m personally amazed by this).

I hear someone in the background saying, “well,  where’s the goodies??”

Here they are!  Luscious fabrics. She has bright colors,  she has muted colors. Prints.  Solids. Stripes!  Shadowplay! Swirls! !  (Sadly I did not take individual bolt pictures. )

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There are numerous items throughout the store that have been made by the ladies who help out at the store.  Just about anything you see that’s a finished product can be offered as a class as well. 
Such as Tiny Fancyass Hats:

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She sells the small stream iron (love mine! !) And there is a class to make an iron caddy to go with it:

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Table runners,  coasters,  hot pads,  and bowl cozies can be made during the Make-It-And-Take-It Saturdays.  They can also be done separately as classes. Here is a matching set:

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And here are some of the bowl cozies that are already made up (also available in kits):

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Need some proof that the ladies of Sew Crazy are,  well,  crazy? 

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Customers are not innocent either,  some more guilty than others:

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I also have pictures of some of the quilts hanging around the shop but i want to talk with Gwyn before posting those pictures first,  make sure there aren’t any copyright issues with the original pattern quilts. 

Let me see what other pictures I can share:

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My favorite,  the jelly rolls! :

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Handmade soaps made by one of the ladies that works there.  And they are wonderful.  I’ve been using the oatmeal one and my skin is loving it. 

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That looks like all i can share right now. If you are ever in Michigan,  look up Sew Crazy,  LLC and come check it out!

 

Squirrel!!

If you are a crafter, you may have heard the term Squirrel!! used occasionally. Around here, you can hear it almost daily, multiple times a day! 

 

What does it mean? Well, it means you’re talking about one thing, or working on something, or just thinking, and BAM, something completely changes your path that you’re on.  Something shiny catches your attention. A word someone says grabs your attention. An idea grabs your attention. 

 

“I think I’m going to put a blue bor…HEY! Did you see that pattern with the bus?” (Squirrel!!)

“Yeah I did! I was going to ma…Oh you know what would be even BETTER??” (Squirrel!!)

“I know! A beaded squirrel hanging on a…what about that coaster pattern you were going to make?” (Squirrel!!)

 

Yes, that type of thing happens regularly! Especially up at Sew Crazy, my favorite place to hang out. Some days I’m not sure any of us actually complete a full sentence or thought, because ‘Squirrel!!’ jumps in and off we go on the next thing. 

 

I’m bad about having squirrel moments while I’m working on a project. I was working on the Long Stem Rose and that dang squirrel peeked around the corner and the next thing I knew, I was ready to jump to a different project. I literally was like “I think this petal needs to be firs…, oh hey what if I do an embroidered state? Hm, where’s my background fabric. I can draw our sta…, what happened to that picture of that swirly embroidered heart?” 

 

I finally decided to write out a more detailed list of embroidery projects in my brain’s queue…then the list kept growing and growing. 

Maybe I’ll post the list someday.  Anyway, back to what I was doi…hey, shiny beads! 

Next Up – Long Stem Rose

I love roses.  When I was younger I did not like them,  but that was because of the smell. (I still can’t stand fake rose scent,  like in candles or soaps). As I’ve grown older,  I’ve come to love roses more and more.  They are one of the most beautiful flowers to me,  especially in a deep red or creamy white. 

Unfortunately,  it’s hard to needle paint a deep red rose as there is not enough variety in red floss.  Pinks yes.  Burgundy yes.  But not deep rich gorgeous red.

I ended up deciding my next needle painting,  instead of being the hibiscus,  is going to be another rose.  But this one will be more of a long stem rose. As long of a stem as I could fit into the design space anyway.   

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The rose itself is from Trish Burr’s Long and Short Stitch Embroidery book again,  with just a few subtle changes in a couple petals. Then I added my own stem to the rose.

I’m kind of doubting my background choice now,  but I’m far enough that i don’t want to rip it all out and start over.

This is the background with it just drawn on. 

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Next up,  outlined in split stitch:

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The colors I have picked out go from a creamy light pink up to a nice deep red.  And I have a deeper red color picked out just in case I need to add a hint of real dark to some petals.

The stem is almost done.  Then comes the leaves.  Then the fun of filling in the petals!

The hibiscus is still in the queue to be done.  But since it is my own drawing and not from the book,  I’m taking some time to look more at pictures of hibiscus flowers and figure out my shading,  such as what direction the light is coming from and what do I want to highlight on the petals.

In case anyone is curious,  I’m using an 8×8 q-snap frame for holding the fabric tight while stitching.  I would recommend if you are looking for any,  to buy them through Amazon.com. They are made/sold by Keepsake Treasures, which is where Amazon will order them from for you. (I am not affiliated with Amazon or Keepsake Treasures, and I do not make anything from you buying these from them,  I just wanted to point you in the right direction).

I am possibly going to start teaching needle painting up at Sew Crazy soon. Wish me luck!

Blue Roses – Needle Painting

True blue roses. Rare,  and said not to occur in nature, at least not until fairly recently.

After the iris,  I decided to combine the rose and rosebud from Trish Burr’s book into one design.  The only real change to either design was to add the thorny stem.

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For fun,  I got my colored pencils out again and colored in the paper drawing after the design had been transferred to fabric.

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I’m still loving needle painting.  It is relaxing. And you end up with a (hopefully) beautiful result.  You can fix a section with a subtle addition of a few stitches,  as I mentioned in my last post.

Ready for the roses? 

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Well,  what do you think?  Was blue a good choice of color? 

I still need to put it on interfacing and then bind it,  but I need to get more interfacing first.

The next design is one that is not from a book.  I looked up hibiscus flowers and studied them then drew out a design.  Then i compared it to a couple of other drawings.  Mine was fairly similar to another so I want to get the link for that one before i share mine here.

A Couple Stitches Make a Difference

I’m working on my second needle painting project,  a rose and rosebud.

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I chose a peach shadow play fabric for the background and decided to make blue and cream color roses.

I’m not done yet,  but I wanted to show how just a couple little stitches in another shade can make a subtle difference.

I didn’t have enough green shades to do a couple of the leaves but i filled them in anyway. The leaves in question are the brightest ones which go from bright green to light green rather abruptly. This picture is before:

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So, I visited the craft section of the local store and picked up a few new embroidery colors.

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Ok. … a couple more than just a few. But they are all ones i didn’t have and they were a good price.

Using #471, I added some stitches between the bright and light on the leaves.

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It’s subtle,  but it’s less of a jump from the bright to light now.

A few stitches can make a difference.  (I hope I’m not the only one to see the difference).

Hm. Should i give you a sneak peek at the rosebud? 

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That’s all you get until the rest of it is done!

Needle Painting – Purple Bearded Iris

When I decided that I wanted to try needle painting,  I did some research,  then more,  then even more.  I finally decided to pick up Long and Short Stitch Embroidery,  A Collection of Flowers,  by Trish Burr. 

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What drew me to this book was one flower in particular,  the purple bearded iris.  As soon as I saw that flower, I immediately had to buy the book.

I showed my mom the book when I got it.  And I showed her the beginning of working on the flower. 

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But then after that,  I really didn’t show her much and did not send her any more pictures of it.

What she didn’t know was that I had planned from the moment I saw the picture that I would be making it for her.  My mom loves iris.  My grandma,  mom’s mom,  had iris all over the farm.  I love iris as well,  especially the purple ones and the creamy color ones. 

I finished the stitching last night,  put it on fusible interfacing,  then bound it. And I gave it to her today.

Here are the pictures!

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I’m extremely happy with my first needle painting project. 

On the back,  I used a micron pen and wrote: To Mom,  I love you.  Love, Michelle.  August 2014.

Oh and a sneak peek to the next needle painting:

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I combined the rose and the rosebud from the book,  adding the longer stem with thorns to connect the two flowers.  I have it traced onto the fabric now and started stitching this afternoon.  Stay tuned for more!