Tangled 3.0 – Shoes!

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Yet again, I find myself apologizing for a delay on updating. So here is a quick post on how my zentangling art adventures have evolved: let’s use some fabric markers and zentangle on some shoes!

TOMS brand shoes are wonderful. I own a pair of plain beige canvas ones that I’ve actually worn holes in because I wear them so frequently. I bought them with the intention of painting on them, and perpetually put it off for a variety of reasons: I didn’t know what to paint, I wanted to break them in and stretch them out first, I didn’t have the right media for the project… Etc. however, when it came down to it, I was basically just scared of ruining a $55 pair of shoes that had been a gift to me from my co-coach on our church 3rd grade Upward cheerleader squad.

So, the solution? Buy some faux TOMS at the dollar store (for $6!) and play with Sharpie markers and Zentangles!

This particular pair is a work in progress. However, I’m liking the results so far, and they got quite a few compliments at church today!

So what are you waiting for? For a $1.99 marker (I bought mine at Staples, and they come in a variety of colors) and under $10 in a pair of basic canvas shoes, you have the recipe for a fun weekend project. Practice your zentangling, or if you’re nervous about drawing freehand, use any number of chalk pattern transfer methods to copy the deign of your choice. Then go out for a night on the town with you new kicks!

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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!

Zendala!

A quick photo gallery of a recent zentangle drawing: a Mandela of Zentangles, or a Zendala. (Such a pretty portmanteau, don’t you think? As a book I read once put it, “Zendala sounds better than Mantangle, doesn’t it?”)

Mandelas come to use from Hindu or Buddhist traditions. Simply put, they are a circular design to help focus thoughts and aid in meditation. Zentangling in a Mandela is just another way of using the deliberate artistic strokes to create fabulous art and experience some great meditation.

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The entire design doesn’t have to be circular. You can incorporate zendala elements into other zentangle designs as well. Here is a series of photos detailing one of my sketches:

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Also, who said Zentangles must always be black and white? No one! Experimenting with adding color is also a fun way to continue your zentangle experience.

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