Just keep weaving...
I took a long break from this tapestry. Sometimes that works well for me to just step back and do other work for a while. Then when I come back to it with fresh eyes I find a new energy and the process moves on rather well. This work is sett pretty fine at 12 epi so it takes time. Tapestry weaving and time go hand and hand. Ha Ha making jokes now. But really if I were to think too much about the time I would probably not be a tapestry weaver. You have to love it for all that it is and it is far more than time. People always ask "How long did that take?" And I never really know for sure. I don't record very minute or hour or day or month. I just weave.
Making Art Journal pages is sort of addictive.
And so it goes....stacks of pages ready to be sewn into journals. And the handwoven tapestry journal cover is now off the loom and ready for finishing. It's an experiment that I don't know if I will be able to part with because I'm in love with it so far. More coming soon....
Tapestry weaving with Varpapuu Loom
hThis year is flying by and I got lost in my work and have failed to post in a bit. However, if you have been following on Instagram then you know what I've been up to. But today I'm sharing a pic of my new to me Varpapuu Upright Tapestry Loom. I have a Varpa floor loom that I love that I got used in the 90's and I fell in love with it but I always wanted a vertical tapestry loom made by Varpapuu too.
The hunt was on and no luck. Everything I found was in Europe. So I thought I would just run a goggle search every few months to see if one ever showed up in the USA. Well, that went on for years and years and years but I never really gave up. I would search at least a few times per year. And finally only 30 years later I found one in the USA and it was close enough for a road trip of 5 hours up north and she was mine.
Then came the clean up and new heddles were needed. I started making them by hand but gave up. I didn't want to make a 1000 heddles. Ugh! So heddles were ordered in Jan. of this year but with Covid delays they only just arrived 7 months later. That was more waiting.....but after 30 years that didn't seem too bad. So now she is finally ready to go. I mean ready to dress. I have to make a warp and then dress her and then I will finally get to weave on my beloved Upright Varpapuu. She weaves 58 inch width almost 5 feet. She doesn't have a worm gear like my floor Varpa but she has huge ratchet and pawl gears that look like they can handle tight tension for tapestry weaving like a charm. Here she is...isn't she lovely. I'll post more as I get her warped and start weaving. Yay!
The more I weave on my Fireside loom the more I love it. This little project is a test run to see how a tapestry woven art journal cover will work. I think it would feel great in your hands. Excited to get it off the loom and do the finishing work so I can sew some pages into it.
A splash of color with Lichen Inspiration and Digital Papers
Working on Art Journal Pages and finding some Inspiration with Lichen from my garden. I think I want to make some digital art printables with a Lichen Theme. I love the colors and textures. But how to put them into a journal? You can seal the pieces with medium but they are very delicate etc. Maybe some images of them would be much more workable. I think so.
So I'm still collaging and stitching and having fun with these pages. Some more mark making printables with asemic writing and textures and splatters. Just playing and experimenting and enjoying the process.
Stitching Paper for Art Journals
October just flew by and I did not want it to. It's one of my favorite months. But what can you do...time just clicks away. I've been working on some Art Journal pages and having fun stitching coffee dyed papers. That weedy golden grass grows in my wild ass unkept garden and I have no idea what it is but I love the color. It looks like it was coffee or tea dyed so it matches the dyed pages. Collaging and stitching paper for page layouts is addictive. I would like to be able to offer some of these journals in my Shop but I'm going to have to manage my time and work out the details as to keep the prices in a good range. This sort of work can really eat up time. I just want to fill all the pages but what I need to do is find a balance with filled pages and blank ones also etc. Leaving areas for the customer to write, paint, draw, sketch, collage or do whatever they want to the pages.
Watercolor Art Journal
Well, this 30 day challenge sort of got away from me. I was not able to post each day. But I'm still working on my experiments and making. I finished a Watercolor inspired journal yesterday. It's a simple journal with watercolor pages for the covers. I made bookcloth for the spine with a handdyed cotton and inserted eyelets. The binding is pamphlet stitch. I added a simple elastic closure. Inside some of my favorite drawing paper which is a nice weight for this size journal. On another note, more digital art printables are coming to the shop soon. Well, I better get back to the studio and see what happens today. Thanks for stopping by.
Wabi - Sabi Barn Digital Art Printables
A couple of new Digtial Art Printable Packs are now in the shop. Wabi - Sabi Barn and The Beauty of Weeds.
Inspiration from my nature walks at my favorite park. There is always something interesting to see. Milkweed always catches my eye. With Autumn coming I'm hoping to get more photos to work with. Hope you can pop over to the shop and take a look. I really enjoy offering these for people to be creative with. I know I love working with them for book and journal covers and pages. I hope to be posting some videos of my art journals soon. A flip through.
I'm currently using some of these images on book covers. I'll be posting more when the art journal is done.
Posting daily is getting difficult
I got a little side tracked this weekend. I'm trying to get my weaving studio into some sort of order. Fall is coming and I'm itching to weave but things are pushed all around and sort of crazy. We had to make an office space for my husband when Covid-19 hit so he could work from home, so he is in the weaving studio. Months have passed and we don't think he will be going back to the office any time soon. So I need to probably do some down sizing of looms etc. I've been thinking about this for some time. I really need to sell some looms. It's hard to decide what to keep and what must go. I'm all over the place with this decision. If your a weaver then you know what I speak of. It's hard to let go sometimes. Oh well, I need to get on with it.
Now back to the challenge subject. My art journals in progress are all over the studio upstairs. I work in batches. I can never just start one thing and go from start to finish. Maybe I should. I have book covers in progress and pages and the sewing of cloth journals going on and I'm feeling like I need to get organized. It's feeling a bit crazy. So today when I get into the studio after this cup of tea and I stop procrastinating maybe I'll try and get organized. I hope to be back with some pics of something getting closer to being done. Done is good. Well, the day got away from me again. No pics yet but I'm getting there soon. Working on testing out a grommet or eyelet kit that I got for the fabric journals. Nothing beautiful to see yet just a big mess on my work table. Hang in there Peeps. And some new digital printables are coming soon.
Preparing fabric for resist dyeing
I'm doing a little fabric dyeing for some art journals and thought I might do some faux shibori. Instead of hand stitching or hand tying resist areas I sometimes like to just use my sewing machine to add stitching that I pull tight. I can also add some hand wrapping to it as well. It's fun and fast to do. I have found that my Bernina baste stitch works great for this. That stitch sews every other stitch so it is long and easy to pull out after dyeing. If your machine doesn't have a long basting stitch just set it to the longest stitch you have. Sometimes a gathering foot helps but with this stitch I don't need one.
There are so many ways to experiment with your machine and doing various resist techniques to fabric. Chain Stitch is another that is very helpful because it pulls out easily but you have to make sure you knot it so it doesn't pull out during dyeing. The only machine I have right now that does chain stitch is an old Singer 626 Touch-N-Sew. That is why I bought it for the chain stitch set up. If you look for one of those make sure you get a model that has metal gears. You don't want those old plastic ones. The Touch-N-Sew 600 series had metal gears but it's always best to look inside the machine to check before buying one. If your doing Craig's List or Thrift Shops just bring a screw driver with you. Here is an article about the 626 if your interested.
I purchased mine for the chain stitch but it does a lovely satin stitch as well and a beautiful straight stitch. I heard someone refer to this series of machines as "Stitch and Throw" once. I think many people might have had issues because they were not winding the bobbins correctly and you must keep the bobbin area clean. It has that wind in place bobbin system. I have never had any issues with it. But you know I love Vintage Sewing Machines as well as my Bernina and Juki. All of my other machines are Vintage. The thing I love most about Vintage machines is that I can work on them myself because there are no computer parts. Also they are just cool. The look and the sound that they make and the stitch quality is really outstanding. Ok, I got off on a rant about Vintage Machines. Anyway, if your getting into resist dyeing or Shibori looks give your machine a try for some interesting effects. I'll post these after dyeing. Here is a little video clip of the basting stitch. Catch yo later.
30 Days of Making Art Journals and My New Book Sewing Frame
I took some time off for the holiday weekend. But I did get a couple of photos of my book sewing frame that we made. If there is enough interest Ron says he can make them as made to order so I'll list it in the shop if people contact me and say they are interested in one.
I'm so happy with the way it turned out. I love it. And the fact that we made it makes it even better. The maple is lovely and I have always loved beautiful grain on Maple. It will only get darker and richer over time. That honey look of aged maple is so sweet. Catch ya later. And if your interested in a Sewing Frame drop me a line from the contact page. Or Direct Message me on Instagram.
Mixed Media Textile Collage in progress.
I was working on this piece today and I thought it was done. But then I was thinking maybe more stitching but I just was not sure. I posted to Instagram to get some opinions. So far people say it is done. I will put it aside as to not over do it and see what I think.
Over working something is the worst because you can't go back.
Sometimes less is more. This is painted Linen on Linen canvas with stitching and a tiny handwoven tapestry style fabric done with a silk warp, and silk and wool weft. The little drawing in watercolor and graphite is stitched with asemic writing. It's on linen and paper with a touch of a beautiful handmade Japanese paper remnant that I love. I've got a few of these that I'm working on for the shop. When I paint Linen like this it has a very Wabi-Sabi feel to me. I often call this color Wabi-Sabi White. The working series name was Remnants. That may or may not change.
Hope your labor day is going well with some nice time off.
Making Little Book Covers
This is my first Youtube video and there is a learning curve. I thought I would add some little snippets of me at my work table etc. Still working on some little book covers. Hope your having a lovely Labor Day weekend. Me.... I'm going to try and figure out the ins and outs of Youtube a bit for now. Catch ya later Peeps.
The art journal challenge continues with Pamphlet Stitch...
I'm still here plugging along. I'm working on some simple bindings. This one is pamphlet stitch.
And google says:pamphlet stitch is a simple binding often used to bind chapbooks. Chapbooks are inexpensively made booklets, originally sold by “chapmen” door-to-door and village-to-village.
And there is the term Chapbooks again. It just keeps popping up.
Anyway, I used pamphlet stitch and hard boards. I made a linen bookcloth for the spine. I have purchased bookcloth before and it was quite heavy so I wanted to make my own with a finer linen cloth and it turned out very nice. The weight was lighter and not so bulky. I'm going to be making more. The linen I used was a medium weight not too coarse.
The cover boards are where I just played with collage, stitching, digital papers, pastels, and wax. I was worried that the wax would warp the boards but I put them into my handmade press and that worked. The edges that I left uncovered I painted and dyed. More experimentation with that is in order. To wrap the edges or not? It depends on the paper. If it is too thick it doesn't wrap nicely. Heavy watercolor paper for example, it looks better trimmed clean to the edge. I wonder if I lightly sprayed it with water first if I make it more pliable? Maybe. Ok off to the studio to take it out of the press.
Well lesson learned. I forgot to put parchment paper on the top of my waxed cover before putting it in the press. It stuck to it. Ugh! Not too bad I got if off but I did lose a little wax in the process. No biggie it just adds to the wabi-sabiness of it. I had sealed it with spray varnish and I thought that would do the trick but now I know. It's always a learning process but that is what keeps things fun and interesting and never boring.
The back cover was fine no issues with sticking there. So as you can see this is just a simple pamphlet stitch binding stitched with waxed linen thread. The paper is a 80lb drawing paper. It takes all dry media very well. The next one I do will have mixed media paper so you can use wet media. I love how the asemic free form stitching I did is bonded into the wax and also with the hand stitching on the back cover. I'm going to keep experimenting with the coldwax and when the weather breaks I'm firing up the Encaustic wax pot to use on some covers. I'll probably use wood or masonite boards for that. The hot wax might be too much for the book board. Ok, another day is slipping away. I've got to get back to it. Ta Ta and hope your getting some creative time today. We have a 3 day weekend coming up so maybe you will. The weather is suppose to be fine here so I'm going to head to the mountains again for some forest bathing and recharging of my batteries.
Making Art Journals and Digital Printables
Today I played with fabric hinges for journal pages. I'm thinking about combining them with sections that are pamphlet stitched so the whole book would not be only fabric hinges. I don't know if that will work but it might. I'll just have to play around with it and see. I also got a new Digital Pack into the shop today. Asemic Art and just for fun I put an image of myself in one of the pieces. That picture is from many many moons ago. I think I was sweet sixteen in that photo. That got me thinking I might want to do a pack with old family pictures. Maybe just title it Family. So on my list it goes.
I still have not gotten a good photo of my sewing frame. It is stormy here today. So black with no good light. Sigh... I'll get it.
So here are my fabric hinges below. Some watercolor paintings collaged with silk organza overlays and some tea printed paper. Well, it is time to get off of this computer. Too much time on here today and I'm getting what I call a "computer eyeball headache" my body is telling me enough all ready. Later Peeps...
Art Journal Making with Asemic Art and Little Weavings.
Good morning. Well, Saturday I got a few things on the work table and yesterday was a gorgeous day here in Pa. so we went for a lovely country drive. I try to do that whenever I can on the weekend. I just have to get outside and breathe some fresh air. I'm getting excited because Autumn is coming and I get all fired up to weave and do other fiber like things. So there will be many drives to the mountains coming. Ok enough of me salivating over Autumn.
Back to book making stuff. We did get the sewing frame made and today I hope to get some good shots of it. But first I have to ship out an order that makes me happy. "One Held Breathe" sold and she is going to her new forever home. The reason I bring her up is because I've been thinking that a mixed media stitched piece like that could possibly make a nice book cover. I would have to find a way to do it where the edges would not be too bulky. Perhaps the stitched work would just be collaged on to it. Hmmmm....thinking about that. Also thinking about printing the image of the finished work on to canvas. So many ideas running around in my head.
Well, my tea is getting cold. I'm off to the studio as I always like to start these post in the morning and finish after my studio time. Maybe I can actually open a window today, wouldn't that be great. Can't wait to say goodbye to Summer. I'll be back with pics.
And I'm back.....
I worked on some more of my little weavings and playing around with some of my digital papers to see what goes well with them. Asemic writing with a rosegold weaving, bluegreys and teals, blacks, creams and a navy indigo style blue weaving. It looks black in the photo but it's really more blue. That color is one that I dye that simulates indigo.
All of these little weavings are using my hand dyed yarns. The yummy texture in the digital paper under the black actually started as a photo I shot of winter snow on a brick sidewalk and a rusty fence image that I shot near an old barn. Pa is loaded with that sort of rustic rusty stuff. I love it!
The teal and greys are on a watercolor painting I did. I also cut out some more text for collage. I just cut things out and stock pile them. I also cut up an old book to use the boards and I think I'm going to add that tree digital I did to the inside cover. Nothing is glued or stitched down yet. Isn't it the worst to glue something down and then change your mind. Ugh! I try my best to not break out the PVA until I'm sure about the composition and layout. Live and learn.
Speaking of PVA glue... I have found that it drys so fast. So I have been mixing in some paste to slow it down when I'm working so I don't feel so rushed. I use Yasutomo Nori paste and sometimes I make my own. Nori last longer than homemade paste. And I love the way it smells. I love the stuff. It's great on delicate papers too and it's acid free.
I've tried a 50/50 mix of Nori with PVA and a 75/25 PVA/Nori just play around with it and see what mix percentage you like. For Book Cloth I have made my own paste because it takes a lot of paste. I haven't tried the Nori for that yet but I might. I keep a couple in the fridge, that is the best place to store it. You can get it at Blick here. I get the 10oz. containers. I'm sure Amazon has it too.
And FYI I did take some photos of my sewing frame but the light was running out and I didn't like them so I'll try again tomorrow. So that's all for now. Ta Ta my Peeps.
Making a Book Sewing Frame and Collaged Art Journal Cover.
A new project is at hand and I have a helper. My hubby is helping me make a Book Sewing Frame. I have drawn up a sketch and we have all of our supplies ready, and he is now the owner of a Router so that is going to help make the slots where the tapes and cords go etc. I will post some pics when we are done. I have wanted a sewing frame for some time now so I'm excited to make one. With all of the little copper tapestry looms that we have made we had several of the parts already on hand. It's very similar to making a little loom with the threaded rod for tension.
As for todays work on my books and journals I have to get to the studio and see what happens. Still drinking my morning tea and getting ready for my studio time. So I'm off now and I'll be back and you won't even know that hours have passed.......
And just like that I'm back. Didn't get pics of the new Sewing Frame yet, probably tomorrow. It's looking good, almost done. I'm loving it. So today I continued with the idea of something woven on the book cover page but I wove with paper. I pulled out my paper strip basket and used them for the warp and the weft. Then began a collage page on coffee dyed paper with linen, a little asemic stitching leftover, other fabrics and Japanese papers etc.
Also a couple more digital paper print outs to play with. The woven paper is from a Japanese book, I love how Japanese text looks, it's like little mark making magic. It probably seems even more enchanting to me because I can't read it. Ha Ha
This text is from a wonderful book with poems and it is translated to English as well but I'm only cutting up the Japanese text. Well, so far.
So here are a couple of pics for you and I'm off to dinner for Friday night Sushi. If you didn't already know I'm a Sushi Monster. That's right. I love it!!!! One of my all time favorite foods. Yummy! I have my friend Ann from grad school to thank because she got me started on it and she created a Monster! Thanks Ann! Twenty some years later and I still love it. My mouth is watering just thinking about it. Got to go EAT! Later Peeps.
Making Art Journal Covers with Digital Papers.
Hello, today I continued with yesterdays ideas. I used my old barn digitals to cover more boards. I really like the look of those and I'm super critical of everything so saying I really like them means I must really like them. Ha Ha
Still playing with these little mixed media collaged tapestry pieces. Laying things out... I like to cut a window the same size as my cover to help with the layout and composition. I started doing that all the way back to my days in school in Montana, when I was working on my textiles and clothing degree in the fashion department. It's a great trick. I use it all the time. I always save old mats and modify them to the size I need.
I determined today that the fringe on the first one seems to be fine. We will see once I glue it down and stitch the book. So a couple of people on Instagram said they would like a digital package of the old barns so I will be making one for the shop.
Time to go and make some dinner. Thanks for stopping by and as always thank you for your kind comments on Instagram and for you support. I really appreciate it.
Oh yeah, I forgot to mention my little hand carved wood book corner cutter I made. You slide it up on the board corner and then make a mark on the paper or just cut it. It gives you just the right amount of paper for the corner turn in. Not sure if book corner cutter is the correct name but that is what I'm calling it.
Making Art Journals the challenge begins.
Ok so today I'm starting my next 30 day challenge. So far so good and it really felt good to get back to my work table after all of that digital work. I was missing the hands on work. Touching fabric, and paper and all that yummy tactile stuff that I adore.
I got one book board covered to see what I think of my old barn doors on book covers and I think I love it. I haven't made a digitial papers pack of this yet but I think I might. What do you think? Read on to find out more about that little mixed media tapestry collage. I was having so much fun I'm heading back to the studio for more. Catch ya later.
So I was playing around with some of these little tapestry weavings and I wondered if it could be a book cover? Is the fringe too long and will that be an issue? Not sure yet. I'm going to use my digital peeling paint paper and cover my board then put the tapestry collage on and see what I think. If it seems to long I'll just snip it down. This was really fun to make today. I have a whole basket of these little weavings that I want to collage etc. A little mixed media tapestry fun. A very tactile art journal experience. Old hand dyed linen, Japanese papers, tea dyed paper, text, a tiny weaving on a small weaving. Talk about layers, hand stitches, all the things I love.
Digital Printables are now in my shop
This last week has been a busy one. I was working hard to get my first digital papers into packs and made into collections etc. The first six are done and now live in my shop.
I hope you can get a chance to pop over and have a look. The response has been great and I'm making more soon but before I can do that I have got to get back to my art journals that I promised.
I've decided that I will do Art Journals as my next 30 day challenge, this will help me push on and get some finished and into the shop. So the new challenge will begin soon. I'll put up a new count down meter and then I'll be off to the races. Now I just have to remember how I put that first meter into the site. Hmmmm isn't that the way it goes. If you don't do something everyday then when you need to do it again you have to re- learn what you did. Especially with blogs and html code and all of that annoying stuff. Ugh! Anyway here are a few of digital pack images for you. The high res images are in the packs when you purchase/download.
Artist and maker living and working in the beautiful state of Pa.