Tangled 2.0

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What’s an artist with too much time on their hands to do once an obsession begins with a new medium?

Take it to the next level.

So, I as I was fighting against the alarm clock yesterday morning, it hit me: the next level of Zentangles. Zentangles are traditionally 3.5″ square tiles of abstract art goodness. Some artists design many of them for collages. Some artists, like myself, possess a love of all colors and a sewing machine…

Do you see where I’m going with this? 🙂

Zentangles. Tiles. Squares. Colors…. Fabrics. Fabric markers… QUILTS.

Yes. Within the last 36 hours, I have built the foundation for my zentangle quilt. After finishing the rest of the design work, I’ll actually set to quilting inside the Zentangle lines to bind the quilt layers together.

I love when projects come together this quickly. I love feeling that “divine spark” for lack of a better term, when the artistic muse blesses your hands, and time flies away, and all you are left with is creation and creating and art and design. Sigh. Bliss!!

Here’s the first photo gallery of the work in progress:

Assembling the supplies — all procured for under $20. And notice the world’s cutest tiny iron, to ensure I actually press my sewn seams after attaching the squares together, just like Grandma taught me. 🙂

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Can’t deny we’re family. We share the same cheekbones! 🙂

Next, cutting out 4″ fabric squares from 1/3 yard cuts of 45″ wide 100% cotton solids in rainbow hues. Did I have to get a 4″ clear plastic official “quilting” ruler? Nosiree, Bob. I found a 4″ cardboard jewelry box for $1 at the craft store. Ka-ching! Art on a budget.

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Fast forward 45 minutes…

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Next came some math for pattern design once I knew how many squares I had. I’ll spare you the convoluted way I came up with all this. Just suffice it to say that it was easily my least favorite part of this project. (My name may be McMath, but the entire disciple hates me.)

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And now… We sew! Chain-stitching pieces together using my brand new heavy-duty Singer sewing machine. Pure bliss!

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And fast forward some more… After all the piecing is done. I realized halfway through that I put a strip into the quilt with the pattern headed the wrong direction. No worries. Just changed the pattern. That’s just how I roll here in my art land 😉

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I hope you enjoyed the photos, and stay tuned! I may have this project wrapped up within the next few days, and I can’t wait to share how it turns out!

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Welcome Back!

Hello, fellow readers! So sorry for the long time away, but hopefully with a new semester of classes and teaching starting, I’ll have some more wonderful posts for you!

Just wanted to share a few photos of the wonderful fur I’ve ordered from Mendel’s in California.  They are the only supplier I use to buy my puppet fur, because they are AMAZING! I have been beyond thrilled with their customer service, their quality of materials and shipping, and their vast inventory of fur textures, colors and patterns.  Plus they do so much more than just fur!! Go to their website and check it out. You won’t regret it. PLUS from now until September 5, 2012, everything in your order is 25% off!  WOOHOO!! 🙂

I ordered these furs for my advanced puppet class this fall.  They use them with the Mostro pattern from Project Puppet.com.  The results are wonderful! (and hopefully I’ll be able to upload photos of their creations this summer as well in the next few weeks!) Again, this is the only supplier I use for my patterns, as they are wonderfully designed, easy to follow, and practically foolproof!! (To date, I’ve used all their patterns in the monster and simple series, with students aged 7 to 17, and no one has failed to finish a puppet yet!)

Enjoy the photos below, and check back soon for more updates!

Monster Hair Plug fur – lime green base with teal “plugs”

Monster Hair Plug fur – teal base with green “plugs”

Monster Hair Plug fur — Orange base, pink “plugs”

Recreating the Past: Sewing Sousa

Recently, a commission request came through my inbox from a director I know from a prior theatre show.  The mission, should I choose to accept it? Recreate this jacket ensemble (or the spirit of this jacket ensemble) of Philip Sousa:

I love projects like this. It gives me a chance to stretch my pattern creation muscles and also really delve into the history of the piece to recreate it in a historically accurate fashion.

This isn’t the first time I’ve tackled a project like this.  This director is also the one I worked with to reproduce the costumes for the 1903 Operetta of The Wizard of Oz.  The blog article that covers this project can be found here.

So, needless to say, though puppet class has ended, I will still be sewing and busy! Here’s to historical creations: Huzzah!