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Sunday, September 28, 2008

Crafty Community

These are almost all the toys that I have made in the last couple of years. They are all the result of being inspired by the work, swaps, and suggestions of other craft bloggers. Some are my own design, some are online patterns, and some are from books.

Here's the list of my inspirations — I hope you find some, too.

Top row (left to right):

Middle Row (left to right)

Front row (left to right)
Phew! Now that was a lot of links. Enjoy!

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Thursday, September 04, 2008

Mustard & Catsup: A Hand-Rolled Hem Headkerchief





This headkerchief was inspired by the Purl Bee's hand-rolled handkerchief. I didn't really follow their directions, 'cause I was out in the world without a computer — but mine was fun to make, with its whip-stitched edge. I made it with roughly 1/2 of a fat quarter of batik fabric that I got at one of my LYFs, Round Robin Fabrics. It even had little bits of wax still on it (at first I thought it was kid schmutz, but I remembered what it was from my own adventures in batik).

I don't make it over to the other side of town much, but each time I find myself at RRF, I really enjoy the store and its owner, Robin. We talk quilting, craft blogs, and kids — just like here, but IRL.


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Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Gnome Doll Sewn & Stuffed

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.
Not much to say today. My little guy loves this gnome. The size and shape are perfect for him to hold. The big bro likes to use the mushroom as a hammer, which made me think about doing a batik softie tool series: pick axe, jack hammer, drill, hatchet, etc. I also want to do a Skelvis — you know, a skeleton Elvis; a subject I've played with before. I think it would be a good match for the crackily dreariness of the batik.

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Friday, August 10, 2007

Batik Doll Inspiration

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.
These are the dolls that inspired my adventures in batik. As you can see, I borrowed heavily in the stripes and checks department. This idea was in one of the many books that I got at an estate sale awhile back. I swear, the woman had every craft book spanning the 60s, 70s, and 80s — I bought nearly all of them.

In the past few years I've been lucky enough to happen upon, or be passed down, several people's craft stashes: Peggy's mom's yarn, Bob's mom's sewing supplies, Kathy's mom's vintage fabric and patterns, to name a few. I feel very honored to be able to give these things a good crafty home. I enjoy thinking about these woman and the things they made with these same supplies. I hope that when I'm gone that my stash finds a welcoming next generation to inspire.

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Thursday, August 09, 2007

Kitchen Imp: Batik Doll


This was the prototype for the fabric swap. I only dyed one color (blue) and then drew on the black parts. I sewed across the top of each leg so that she can sit comfortably on the kitchen shelves.

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Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Fabric Swap Contribution: Sew-Your-Own Dolls

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Originally uploaded by Green Kitchen.

Finally, I'm back online — our network was down — feels like forever, but I think it was only a week. Isn't it amazing how much you can get done when that happens?

These are a few of the fat quarters that I hand-printed for Bethany's swap. They're supposed to be sew-your-own dolls. I was inspired by a batik doll that I saw in a 70s kid craft book. I'll try to find it and scan it, but you know how that goes.

First, I needed a crash course in batik. Thanks, Sara. I think I called her twenty times that first day, when she loaned me her supplies. Then, I needed my own supplies. Thanks, Dharma Trading Co. Their stuff only took one day to get to me UPS Ground.

Several 1 a.m. nights and a week later I had eight sew-your-own dolls. They definitely have a bit of a creepiness that I'm digging. Finally, I got my dreary element I've been searching for in my craft. Who knew I'd find it with batik. I used some fabric pens to draw details and felt like I was cheating.

The top photo is Little Red Riding Hood. The second one I made specifically for Beth because she's got a collection of show-your-guts dolls. The third is a Franken-alice of sorts. She was born with a black eye. And, lastly, a gnome. Could have seen that one coming. I'm keeping him and have already sewn him up. I'll try to get photos of that, too, as well as the prototype. More photos over at Flickr.

I forgot to mention that I was a bit creeped out by the warnings on all the dyes, chemicals, and soaps that I used for this project and will be soon following in the footsteps of two inspirational natural dyers, Simmy and Siri. In addition to plant matter I think I'll delve into the world of mushroom dyeing, which I've been itching to do ever since I found some dyers polypore. I love it when craft interests collide — mushrooms and dyeing, sigh.

So much to do, so little time.

P.S. Even though I always turn up as Snape when I do those online quiz things, I really want to be Mrs. Weasley when I grow up. Sorry, Frick.

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