Wednesday, December 31, 2008

New Year's Eve, and a swap package.

Okay so it's almost the new year but I'd like to post some photos of things I've worked on during the holidays. I just decided to start early while I had the motivation time. This will be a photo heavy post.

This is the package I sent for the Yule swap over at Craftster. The main item is a Moon Goddess shrine. When I asked how my partner how she envisioned the goddess she said as a moon goddess so I kinda ran with that theme.

The background is old book pages over a box built from thin wood and watercolor paper for the sides (so as not to ripple when many layers of paint were added). I then used acrylic paints to build up the background color. The moon is from a science book from the 1960s and the goddess is a vintage image I found online. I printed her out in black and white and painted her with watered down acrylics and glitter paint. The pressed flowers in the background are from my yard (periwinkle and silver maple). The stars in the background are iridescent sequins with paint in the center.

I also made a Pagan rosary. Instead of using a charm for the end I decided to use a small glass vial instead. You can put a small gemstone or even herbs within it. I attached that pretty little topper to the plain cork myself to jazz it up. I originally attached a small bail to the cork on the vial but I didn't want the cork to pop out if she chose to wear it, so I had to devise something pretty but appropriate to hold the vial. I wrapped a thin piece of jewelry wire around the small neck of the vial and created two loops to attach jump rings and therefore the silver chain. Ta-da.

There are 9 beads around the actual circumference of the necklace, 9 being a sacred number to the Goddess. There are three spiral beads surrounded by marcasite, each spiral representing the three aspects of the Goddess (maid, mother, crone). Along the hanging part above the vial is one spiral bead, several marcasite beads and 4 small glass seed beads representing the elements. Each of the colored glass beads represents her children and one for herself.

I hand carved a pine box so she could store her tarot cards in. It's painted with acrylics. I lined the inside with purple felt and the inside of the top with another vintage book page.

This is a Yule ornament I made using one of those blank glass ornaments. The little goddess is carved out of wood. The gold spiral is painted on the inside. I won't even tell you how hard that was.

Here's a few goodies I included with the package. A few drawstring bags and incense and gemstones.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Happy Holidays

I'm too busy right now to keep up here, so I'll start blogging again in the new year when I'll have time to post all my holiday projects and gifts. Stay safe, everyone! See you in 2009.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Women's health, My beautiful Cervix

If you ladies out there have not visited My Beautiful Cervix yet, you really should. It chronicles a 25 year old student midwife and the changes in her cervix during her cycle through photography; one photo for each day of her cycle. Having never seen my cervix, this website was wonderful, empowering, and informative. And incredibly interesting. I love learning how different parts work and look and this site is right up my alley. Also being the daughter of a very healthy nurse makes me appreciate this website and the impact is has for women's health and fertility awareness.

Take a minute. Take a look.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Brain fuzz ground fluff

Snapped a quick blurry picture of some left over snow on the deck. It was the first snow of the season. You can see a small paw print in the upper left from my sister's Chihuahua. I'm mad at it right now since it barked from 8:30 this morning until 3pm at nothing. Or it could have very well been barking at ghosts. Either way it was difficult to ignore and has left me slightly cranky.

As you can see I changed the layout of the blog. It's marking the transition of the Holly Kings reign into the Oak Kings reign. I'm literally going cross eyed from sitting in front of the computer for so many consecutive days. Still chugging away at my holiday crafts and I really wish I could get a break. You should see my apron. It's covered in paint and three types of glue. I've also hit a creative block. It usually doesn't take me any time at all to redo a web layout but it took me 2 days. My brain is tapped out. My brain needs a break. Can't even type a cohesive entry. What are you doing to fight the crafting block blues?

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Mini shrine, The Gloaming of the Forest Floor

So this is my new deal. Wanted to try something new but didn't want to buy anything new since money is tight. I recently gutted a few old books from the 60's while making stash book boxes and wanted to use the pages for something fun. Anyway, I call this one The Gloaming of the Forest Floor. The little lady is supposed to be a dryad or a little woodsy person with roots for feet. I know they look like tentacles :D. I wish I had a camera that could pick up all the details.

I cranked this out last night in about 3 hours or so. They go quickly when you get inspired.
I built the box out of a small piece of wood for the back and watercolor paper for the sides since I would be adding lots of paint and glue I didn't want it to ripple or warp. The box is 5.5in x 3.75in and .75in deep. I then built up the insides with ripped book pages. I added acrylic paint in many layers and then pasted on pressed leaves from my backyard (dandelion, silver maple, clover). Then I added all the dimensional parts like the moss and the trees. The tree leaves are leaves from black fake flowers. I cut and shaped a few of them. The little lady is a vintage photo I printed out and pasted on card stock. I then used thin acrylic paint to color her.

Holly King scarf

So here is my finished scarf. Worked on it maniacally while watching movies at the boyfriend's house a few days ago. I call it the Holly King scarf because of the colors and the season. I used 2 worsted weight yarns, Lambs Pride (85% wool 15% mohair) in Aubergene and some Peruvian brand called Chaco (100% Virgin wool) that I got at the Maryland Sheep and Wool festival several years ago. This scarf is soft and squishy and feels great. What do you think? (ignore hair and face please, it's been a long day)

It feels good to have finally finished something while all these half finished projects lay in pieces around me. My room is a disaster because of all the craft supplies. I could make a nest with them. I have been trying to put away and organize things as I go, but it's been tough with all the different projects I've been working on. Yesterday I managed to fold a bunch of fabric and organize it by color, hang up clothes and sort out all the dresses and skirts I need to hem and alter once my machine gets out of the shop (hopefully by next Thursday), and organize some beads and ephemera. I still need to go and buy more of those plastic bead cases and some boxes for scrapbook papers but my car is also in the shop until at least next week. So I'm stranded at home with my crafts. They're holding me hostage. Save meee!!!

Last week I also took a quick sewing gig making a few children's capes for a local dinner theater's winter production of A Christmas Carol. One of my friends is an actor and they had a costumer quit suddenly on them so he called and asked if I'd break out the sewing machine. I had to use my backup which I nearly ended up destroying out of anger. They also gave me a pattern with missing pieces so I had to improvise. It didn't earn me anywhere near the amount I expected, but it was money none the less. It will at least pay for shipping for my holiday stuff.

Once I finish all these projects I might start gearing up to do some more swapping and maybe an Etsy shop?? I know, I'm dreaming, but it would be nice since I have so many supplies already. The better question would be is it worth it or would people buy my stuff. I can't wait to show you some of the stuff I've been making but I don't want to ruin any surprises for my swap partner :). I've been getting into collage stuff lately which is super fun. Ya know, shrines and all that. It's a hoot.

Okay, enough talking, back to the grind.