Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Upcycled Wedding Dress ~ Part 3

I'm back to working on the "Wedding Dress."
I had to get the kiln cleaned out & re-loaded with a slump firing,
go to Costco, clean the house & then get out the serger & sewing machine
so I could start to work on the "wedding dress."
I just had my 1970 Pfaff sewing machine tuned up & this little
girl sews like a dream.  My "new" 1991 White serger...not so much.
It has a plastic body so it needs a lot of adjustment & re-threading
on a frequent basis when sewing.  The White was the first machine I
ever purchased new.  It was treat one year with my pfd ~
 I think I spent $298 on sale at Riehl Sew & Vac.
It should go back to Riehl for a tune up ~ they can fix anything!
Before I could start to work on
the "dress"  project. I needed to clean the studio & house...
I think it's like clearing the slate or
having a fresh start.  It stills the mind & allows fewer distractions.
Although, sometimes there's little distractions afoot when you least expect it ~!
I spy a little bird...oh, wait ~ it's a shop rat!
So, after working for most of the afternoon on the "wedding dress"
I was able to add four layers of tulle on the bottom of the hoop skirt.
The tulle has some nice sparkle so it adds a bit of fluff & reflection.
I added a layer of "leaf" fabric over the bodice.
This was harder than I thought it would be but it turned out nice.
I was going to add the leaves on the back of the bodice too but
I think it would be too much...it has a better line on the back with the simple polyester.
So, I'm learning a little bit about the polyester.
It's very forgiving, doesn't wrinkle, repels spills, is easy to sew...
hmmm....maybe that's why this "wedding dress" was made out of polyester?
More to do...

Saturday, January 26, 2013

End of the Day Painting ~

It's the end of the day.
I've been checking things off my list...

year end accounting done ~ check
kiln cleaned out ~ check
kitchen cleaned & dishwasher loaded ~ check
copper cut for the next kiln load ~ check
working on the laundry ~ check
pizza dough made for pizza night ~ check

studio cleaned ~ No
dog brushed & teeth cleaned ~ No
inventory done ~ No
glass inventory & order complete ~ No

End of the day painting done ~ No...but I'm working on it.

So, I know this is sort of ugly but it's a work in progress.
I often have a canvas in the studio so I can add extra paint, beads,
glass, paper, etc. to it as the mood hits.  This was a canvas that I gesso'ed (is that a word?)
over & then just added whatever paint I had left on the palate' over the course of a few days.

It's needs more layers of paint ~ over the base of some watercolor & acrylic.
I prefer working in oils as they are slow to dry so I can remove & add layers 
of color & texture.  I think I'll move on to oils now.

~ Thoughts? ~

Friday, January 18, 2013

Upcycled Wedding Dress ~ Part 2

The deconstruction has begun...
The 80's have met the scissors & the scissors have won!
The first thing I did was to cut off the outer layer of the polyester
tiered skirt.  It was gathered at the waist so it is a LOT of fabric!
I cut the layered underskirt to a shorted length so it could serve as a sort of "base."
The fabric I have left over is voluminous & LOTS of lace.
The tulle "hoop" skirt has been shorted on top or from the waist
so it still works as a hoop to give the skirt some flare.
Did you notice the poofy sleeves are gone?
William has begged me for days to cut them off so
"POOF!"  They're gone!
I made a pattern for a simple half circle skirt & ta-da!!!...
a cool over skirtin a botanical design that will be embellished with
over & under applique' with metallics.
I have a surprise for the bodice & more....I'm excited.
This is such a fun challenge.
I should be cutting copper but I'm playing with fabric & clay.
So much more to come ~!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Upcycled Wedding Dress ~ Part 1

I thought I'd shoot a few photos of the wedding dress
before I started to transform it into....?
Here it is in all its 1980's fashion glory!
My friend, Sherrill, loaned me this cool mannequin she uses in her home to display
various projects & wearable art pieces.
She already had it wrapped with the cream fabric & the
tuff of tulle' on the top.
The hoop came with the lovely wedding dress so I slipped in on the mannequin.
The hoop fit fairly well & had a tie closure so it was easy to adjust.
Here's the dress displayed on the mannequin pre-any-modification.
It's a really great fit!
The dress is a 9/10 & it fit perfectly on the mannequin.
I have the mannequin on loan for the next month so
I better get busy!
I've got to find or make a mannequin so I have a
way to display my creation for the event.
Any ideas???

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Transformed Treasures 2013 ~

As an artist, the Transformed Treasures fundraiser for the
Salvation Army is one of my favorite events.

Artists are given $50 in store vouchers with which to purchase
an item to transform into a treasure.
All the treasures are auctioned off a gala luncheon in the spring.

This year the Salvation Army is offering two challenges to artists.
One is a chair challenge ~ 5 chairs to be transformed.
The second is a wedding dress challenge ~ 5 dresses to be transformed.

I really wanted a wedding dress....and here it is!!

Good grief it's UGLY!!
I just assumed all wedding dresses would be made out of silk, charmeuse, or some such
quality fabric.  These types of fabrics take a dye bath well if I wanted to change the color.
BUT ~ NO!  This dress is polyester.

Polyester??  Really??
Who would buy a polyester wedding dress?
An if it's polyester why would it have to be dry cleaned?
Throw this puppy in the washer & dryer....which I might do just to see what happens.

Now I've got to re-think some of my original brainstorming ideas.

Let the challenge begin!

Monday, January 14, 2013

The Streets Are Like A Skating Ring ~

We've had such warm weather that it's been raining for the
last 3 days.  Rain on top of snow makes for glare ice conditions.
Our street is a skating ring!  He's my son, Will, skating in the street.
The sidewalks are about the same & it's probably safer
to have your skates on than grippers.
Although I'm enjoying the warmer temperatures I'd like to be
able to be outside and go for a walk or ski.
Hopefully, we'll get some snow as the temperatures drop later in the week.
Looking at this picture I also noticed that Will has his jammie pants on & no
helmet.  This is what happens when I work a show on the weekend!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Alaska Gift Show Spring 2013 ~!

It's Show Time!
This weekend is the Alaska Wholesale Gift Show at the
 Dena'ina Convention Center in Anchorage, Alaska.
I'm looking forward so seeing my customers from all over
Alaska & from Outside.  My Reps, from
Taku Graphics, will be right down the isle.  Retailers will be able
to look at samples & write orders for the spring & summer.
My web site is sporting a new look, too.
Check it out at  ~
The web site is still under construction but I'm hoping it will
work as an on-line catalog of sorts for my work.
The blog will continue to be an outlet to showcase the
glass process, as well as, life in & outside the studio.
~ Show Hours ~
January 10th, 3 to 7 pm
January 11th, 10 to 6 pm
January 11, 10 to 5 pm