Saturday, April 23, 2011

Iris Folding Fabric Egg Just In Time for Easter

I didn't show in my last post what we did for the ATC session at Bishan Library last Thursday. We did drawing, cartoon drawing, using Rich Davis' Pick and Draw cards Moses supplied. It was pretty easy, even the children did very well. I am terrible with drawing and only managed these.

Traded a number of ATCs at the trading session this time: the pair of butterflies done by Sor Huang, and the B is for Bear from Jennifer. Another 3 pieces are currently not in my hands yet, so I can't show you yet.

Kristine has been busy with her school works, calligraphy and Malay lessons, so these are some rare pieces she did - C is for Cat and Secret Land, and swapped with me.

I have one person asking for another Joy card, so I did another iris-folding piece, and one more with an "e" for my girl, Joey.

Here's the iris-folding fabric postcard from Leah M (USA) - spring-coloured egg. Sure cheerful looking and so neat, and just in time for Easter!
My fabric Alphabet ATCs are back in production! These are my K cards with Martha Ess' tatted koala pattern. More alphabets are on the way!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Sunflowers and Umbrellas

Art dolls for April - Sunflowers! Again, I mixed and matched my QuicKutz dies to come up with these paper dolls with movable head and hands. The big sunflowers were snipped from a daisy cut out of watercolour paper and painted with watercolours, and the small sunflowers on the pants were tatted with size 80 yellow thread and 1 strand of brown embroidery floss. One will be leaving for Canada soon, going to Karen Bassie, who created the pair of lovely ladybug ATC dolls for me last month.

Now in Singapore, it's bright and sunny just like the sunflowers, but rainy in the afternoon for the whole of last week. I don't leave my house without an umbrella. Talking about umbrella, this is one of the themes for the April inchie mingle. Failing to find suitable stuff to go on the inchies and my drawing is terrible, I had to make use of yet another QuicKutz die and tried my best to squeeze the umbrella on the 1-inch square!

Rita once showed me an ATC incorporating an inchie and a twinchie. This came to my mind suddenly when I'm looking at this postcard of a lady. So I cut it up into inchie, plus-size inchie and twinchie and assembled all the pieces back on an ATC to form the doll back. The top left one shows it all folded up. What do you think of it? I'll say it's a good one to show the relativity of all the different sizes!

The theme for the ATC session this Apr was "Alphabet". I came across this "Hands" word in a book, and was so intrigued by it that I simply had to try to re-create it. Again, using embossing folder for the background and die-cuts for the letters and hands, they looked classic.

Still in the mood for more iris-folding after the 2 fabric postcards, I went on to these alphabets. These ATCs are done with embossed origami papers though - E for Ellen, K for Kristine and J is for Joy.

Ok, now let's see what came in the mail this week. First, I have Lyn (USA)'s X is for Xylophone , Y is for Yellow Submarine and Z is for Zebra-Striped Zero. In case anyone is wondering, this is showing up in the wrong orientation again :(

A mouth-watering needle-punched "I is for Ice-cream" from Sherry Dreier (USA) and a jovial "J is for Joker" from Norma Mason (USA).

I'm so excited to receive my third fabric postcard in the mail, this time from Lyn Hodge (USA). Lyn created a winter landscape with sparkling snow - something we don't get to see in Singapore!
Thank you for all the fabulous cards, dear swap partners!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Iris Folding Fabric Postcards, Art Dolls and More ATCs

My new maid is finally here! But looks like it's going to be a long way to teach/supervise her. I shouldn't be complaining really, it has to be easier with an extra help. So hopefully, I'll have more time to supervise my children's homework and of course, on work on my crafts :)

Heard of iris-folding? Iris folding is a paper craft technique, which originated in Holland, that involves taping folded strips of coloured paper in such a way to create a spiralling design that resembles the iris of an eye or a camera. Early designs were done using patterned paper cut from the inside of envelopes. Today, crafters use any light weight papers and even RIBBONS. Yes, I read that somewhere, so when Leah M organised an iris folding fabric postcard swap, I specially requested for a private swap with her.

And I used fabric ribbons, which I picked and matched from my stash, I do think they fit into place pretty neatly. How can I not go further to tat some flowers for that special touch to the card? I'm so pleased with them, I couldn't bear to post it out naked to Leah in the States. So, I even ran down especially to the Philatelic Museum to pay for the special chop on the stamp affixed on the fabric postcard, and mailed it in an envelope! Hope this piece will have a very special place in Leah's collections!

My patience paid off - I really felt that way when Lynette McNamara's Goddess doll finally arrived after a whole month of travelling from New Zealand to Singapore. I almost can imagine the Nature Goddess savouring the places she past by and abosorbing all the natural elements by the time she came!

Dana Keenan's "By The Seaside doll "swam" much faster from the USA in comparison, despites her heavy sea-shell head! How artistic we crafters get! It's such a great feeling to receive all the treasured mails in the post from every corner of the Earth. Just amazing, the exchange of not just arts, but also the culture and friendship!

Presenting Lady Madeline and Lady Mae, ladybug ATC dolls created by Karen Bassie (Canada). I always fancy red ladybird, my regret is not having seen a real red one but only those brown beetles. Well, Karen had a great way to incorporate the ladybug on the head! Lovely!

All the metallic ATC swap pieces have also came in. Here's the group photo of all the 8 pieces. Starting from top left corner going clockwise: Marjolijn van Wijk (The Netherlands), Cathy Vigor (USA), "Steel Magnolia" from Mrs Carol Jamieson (Scotland), "Thai Elephant" from Dayle Morrison (Australia), Kim Young (USA), postcard from Pauline Mackenzie (Australia), Debbi Baker (Australia), and finally, mine in the centre.

Cathy's coppery piece had a square brad to hold the metal pieces together, while Dayle's "Thai Elephant" had wire crotchet, old copper coin, beads and modelling clay stamped with an elephant! Interesting array of metallic elements in each and every pieces!

Thank you, ladies, for all the swaps!

I showed a mini-ATC album in my last post. Valerie asked to see the inside. Here are the interiors - the ATCs can be changed. I didn't made the pages fanciful as I wanted the focus on the ATCs.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

My First Inchies

What is an Inchie?

An Inchie is a miniature art piece. Inchies are 1 inch square pieces. A Plus-Size Inchie (PSI) is a larger size Inchie which is 1.5 inch square. 1 inch circle is called a Rinchie, and 2 inch square is called a Twinchie. It was mentioned somewhere that they evolved from the popular Artist Trading Card revolution, I'm not sure, but like ATCs, they can be created in any media or technique including paper, metal and fabric done with drawing, painting, quilting, collage, clay, altered materials, etc, the only criteria is the size. And because of their small sizes, they can be incorporated as embellishments on larger projects, to create mosaic artworks, and to create jewelry.

Depending on how you see it - whether it is more challenging or time-saving to do your art on this small size, I jumped on the bandwagon to create my first inchies. Nothing really fanciful, but they still took me a good 10 nights to finish the 2 sets of 16 inchies based on the theme "Well Wishes" - mostly collage-style on painted watercolour papers and some scrapbooking cardstock, putting my QuicKutz dies to good use, and utilizing whatever sequins and stuff I could find in my stash. I also designed an ambigram for my name or is that what it is called? In any case, it's a mirror-image, or almost one, and embellished with a small tatted butterfly.

I was surfing the internet and ordering some supplies when I came across ways to display ATCs - not about storing the bulk of them, but displaying just a few. They are some pretty neat kits and products selling in the stores, but some are kind of steep in the price too. So, I whipped out my die-cuts and machine to assemble this little album. The inserts are just great to display 1 ATC on each page. And since I'm just working on inchies, I incorporated them on the cover, tying everything together with yarns and fancy trims.

Remember the backgrounds for my ladybug boys and girls in my last post? They were paper napkins. Art4Mail group has a playshop last weekend, coincidentally, on Napkin Art. So I used the 2 napkin designs to do up some small cards. I didn't try much style, just simply using the napkin wholesale with mod podge. Either I was clumsy or I was too much of a perfectionalist, I made at least 5 failed attempts before I could get something decent-looking. Will either try stamping some words on or using some word stickers on the cards as a finishing touch.

Another piece of the metallic ATC came - this Steel Magnolia from Carol Jamieson (Scotland).

Moses graciously extended the invitation for the National Library's Learning Communities Appreciation Dinner to a few of us, regulars to the ATC sessions. The dinner was held at The Pod, the roof top gallery on the 16th storey of the National Library building.

The view there was fantastic, and here's one seeing the Singapore Flyer and Marina Bay Sands.

The other thing I must mention was the delicious halal buffet dinner catered from Old Chang Kee Take 5, a brand extension of Old Chang Kee, which serves 5 distinctive Asian dishes. Simple fare, but simply fantastic on the taste buds! It was a great evening!!