26 January 2016

Catch Up Time!

Hello Readers!
I have not been overly busy since the last post on the first day of 2016.  I need a clean out around my desk. There are UFOs all over the place! (UFO=unfinished object)
The UFOs are a result of the daily brain fog from the fibro. I swear I'm losing my mind! The muse is all over the place, flighty as ever! There are numerous books in one stage of doneness or another. I have a basket in the works. A crocheted hat half done. Went through collage papers yesterday thinking I might start a bigger canvas with a forest scene done in nothing but paper. That's as far as that got though. I went through that box of papers that came in the mail sometime last year. Separated them all out according to my filing system and then stuffed them all back in the same box they came out of. I've been working on Annie's Kitty Book too.

At any rate, the finished objects are outnumbered by the UFOs at this time.

So we might as well get on with it.

You all saw the kitty book in last post. It's about 5x7 inches. The cover was made from a cake mix box and covered with the graphics from a bag of cat food. It has copy paper pages numbering somewhere around 100 sheets. Sewn with embroidery thread in the long stitch.
The kids finally showed to do Christmas on the second weekend in January. I finished Annie's blanket half an hour before they left to go back home. Annie was tickled pink that Grandma made her a blanket! Only thing is, I didn't make that blanket. I only put the strips together to form it into a blanket.
Here we have Tommy showing off a little book made from a cream cheese box covered with painted newspaper. It measures about 3x4 inches and has about 50 pages. I'm guessing on how many pages. I think it has 5 signatures of 10 pages each. Paper is a random assortment. It's sewn in the long stitch with embroidery thread. It has a button and bead closure.
New kitties for Annie's book. Green one is markers on construction paper, as is the spotted one. The red one is markers and acrylics on construction paper.
Markers on construction paper.
From left to right: acrylics and marker on construction paper. Pink one is ball point pen on copy paper. Next is markers on construction paper. And the gray one is markers on copy paper.
"White" kitty is crayons on copy paper, the other two are acrylics on drawing paper.
Little blue kitty is crayons and markers on construction paper.
Acrylics on drawing paper.
Acrylics and marker on construction paper.
Again acrylics and marker on construction paper.
These guys are painted now and in the book with the exception of the red cat in the middle, bottom row. I started that fella, but he's not quite done yet.

I made another wire basket.
This one is about 2 inches across the top and 2 inches tall. Made from salvaged copper wire from a front loading washing machine and aluminum craft wire.
This one took a couple hours or so to make.
Tommy seems to be our model for this post. Here he is showing off a basket. You'll see this basket again in moment.
This is the envelope I sent to Jazzie for EAU for January. I hope she likes the silly bird.
The basket Tommy was showing off in the picture above. It's made with copper wire (from that broken washing machine) and mardi gras beads. It's about 6 inches across, 5 inches tall. It's a wonky basket but I kinda like the wonkiness of it.

I really do have a lot of works in progress.
 This square of aloe juice bottles will eventually be a footstool. It took me 'forever' to collect these 25 bottles, having to drink all that yummy juice myself!  Next step is to take a hike out to the burnt house and see if I can locate something to use for the bottom, top and sides to sturdy it all up a bit. The bottles are taped together with clear packing tape. It'll have a cushy top (foam pads x 2). I'll use some fabric yarn (heaven knows I have enough balls already cut) and crochet it a cover. It may be a few days before that excursion takes place. There is about 4 inches of snow on the ground right now and its cold out there!
 Backside of an envie.
 Front side. This is just your run of the mill white envelope. I prettied it up with some markers while sitting here watching a string of Coronation Street a few weeks ago. I was behind a few days.
 Tommy showed you all the first mardi gras bead basket I made last week. I have a grocery sack full of mardi gras beads that my sister gave me last month. Ask and ye shall receive! 
I originally started collecting mardi gras beads for my alien babies, which are yet another work in progress. You will get to see a finished alien baby eventually. And there will be mardi gras beads involved. I got the bright idea to sew them into a coil basket with copper wire. I rather like this basket. It's about 6 inches across and maybe 5 inches tall. It's a tad wonky too. Matter of fact, all the bead baskets are a tad wonky.
 This past Saturday was my sister's 59th birthday. She's the second from the oldest of us. All gathered at my house for a party of 'hen talk', pineapple upside down cake with real whip cream and presents, of course. All, being me, Ma, Birthday girl Linda, Susan and Aunt Sherry. I let Linda choose her present. I have a whole closet full of things to choose from! She chose this oval mardi gras bead basket. It's not really mardi gras beads though. These beads were once all braided together as a Christmas tree garland. It's about  5 inches long, 3 inches deep.
 This one is about 3 inches tall, 3 inches across.  Some of the same beads as the last one. I sewed them together with the copper wire from the washing machine.  (Thanks for the wire, Sammy!)
I have another bead basket in the works but it isn't exactly cooperating.  I have little little patience when things don't go my way in the creative department. I have to lay it down, walk away, think about it for a while and eventually get back to it. 

 I'm still working on Fish Picture 16. I don't remember what it looked like the last time you all seen it. I've been working on this thing for almost a year, I think. I added the green color since the last time you saw and I believe I put the blue, red, and yellow at the bottom too? I don't remember. This thing just isn't talking to me.
 This is going to be Fish Picture 19. Doesn't look like much at the moment but I spent a bit of time making that textured surface to cover up the writing that was there when I brought this 6x6 inch wooden sign home from the Dollar General, where I bought it for a quarter on Christmas clearance. I bought three of them. All will be Fish Pictures.
 And speaking of fish pictures...this is number 18. (FP17 is in Lucas at the gift shop for sale. It has been there since September 2015. That tells you how long FP16 has been in the works!) The fish is not attached yet. I have some bubbles to add to the background and I'll give it a coat of varnish to cover up that pva glue shining under the rickrack. This one goes in a wooden frame with a glass front, once I get it done. The yellow and purple stuff is tissue paper and little sparkly puffy balls...kinda like pompoms.
 I've cut quite a few book covers in the past few weeks. These four are the only one's I've finished completely. I have books in all stages of doneness. These are 1.25x2inches and about a half inch thick. They have glued spines. I covered the spines with glittery tape. The boards are the top of a fancy chipboard box. You'll see some bigger books in future that will have these same covers minus the glittery tape.
 I should have turned the flash off for this picture but I was standing in the dark in the kitchen at 3 in the morning when I took this picture. Cats--for Annie's Kitty Book.  Collage style cats, most of them.
 Another cat.....Miss Lola.
 I asked Ma if she wanted to contribute some kitties to Annie's book. She brought me this one yesterday. He'll work wonderfully!
And I'll leave you with this brat of a cat, Miss Murray. 
Tommy was sound asleep in Ma's lap yesterday while she was here. Murray came from across the room from her perch in front of the window to the arm of the sofa. She carefully got into the best position possible and walloped Tommy awake so he'd get out of Ma's lap. Brat cat! Anyone who sits at the end of the sofa is fair game for Murry to occupy their lap. She just didn't want Tommy sleeping in her spot. She gives him a wide berth when he's snuggled in bed with me. She's fully armed with claws. Tommy has no front ones. Therefore, brat cat is Murray! Tommy will get his revenge on her! The two of them play everyday.

Thanks for hanging round to the end!
Be kind to one another!
It matters!

01 January 2016

And Hello To 2016

I can guarantee the next check I write I will write 2015 for the date.

Here we are sixteen years into the 21st century! Blows the mind, it does!

One of the good things to come about for we 21st century dwellers is YouTube. I have John Cougar Mellencamp up as loud as I can get those rinky dink speakers to go. Listening to songs I haven't heard in a very long time! I watched/listened to a Bee Gees concert before John Fogerty sang for an hour and a half. 
At any rate, time's a ticking! 
I will have to convince this yellow cat sitting on my mouse to leave before I can upload any pictures into this post. He wasn't impressed with our photo shoot earlier. I put the snake you're going to see around his neck and tried to take his picture. I had to chase him down to retrieve my snake and I didn't get a picture of him wearing it.

Took some convincing but Tommy finally got his back end off my mouse! We'll get back to him and the snake in a bit. Right now we are going to talk about pickles.
I sent three of them off in the mail a few days ago. I seriously considered sending one of them naked but I chickened out at the last minute and put all three of them in envelopes.
If you are in the pickle swap over at AFA be forewarned if you continue you will see your pickle and if that isn't good for you cause your pickle hasn't arrived yet, you might want to close your eyes and scroll down a bit.

 This is Super Girl Pickle. I didn't know about Super Pickle when I crocheted this lovely little green girl with her big red smile and cape. Her hair is different kinds of green strings, yarn and such. I crocheted her with acrylic yarn and stuffed her with green fiber filling. Her arms and legs are crocheted green silk fabric. The pin at her throat (do pickles have throats?) is a girl scout pin.
Her cape is satin material that was the lining of a green leather jacket. I don't know what the girl scout badge on the cape is awarded for but it has garden flowers embroidered on it. Super Girl Pickle is about a foot tall. Somewhere around there. She's headed to Sunny California.
 This is Grandpa Gherkin and Baby Dill. Baby Dill looks like a hairy growth on Grandpa's side, but he looks like a little hairy pickle when you see him in hand. Grandpa is about 5 inches tall not counting his hat or his legs. His mustache is black felt glued to chipboard, sewn to his face. He started out with hair but my grand daughter said he looked like he had a turd on his head and we started calling him poop head. On a shopping spree to Hobby Lobby I found the straw hat on clearance. 71 cents for three of them. It solved his rather embarrassing problem. He's crocheted out of cotton yarn. His arms and legs are crochet cotton thread. Baby Dill is eyelash yarn crocheted. Both are stuffed with green fiber filling.
 This is Darla Dill and her little one Baby Dill. (Yes, another Baby Dill.) Darla and Baby are both crocheted out of acrylic yarn in camo. Their arms and legs are cotton yarn braided, knotted and attached. They have mother of pearl eyes and felt mouths. Mama is about a foot tall not counting her eyelash yarn hair nor her legs. Darla is the one I seriously considered sending naked. I worried about little Dill getting lost on the journey. He is sewn to his mama but the postal system can be brutal!

 This is Pete. He's about nine inches tall. He's crocheted with acrylic yarn and embroidered with light green cotton yarn. He has lots of acrylic yarn french knots too. I like doing french knots. I'll be keeping this little fella. He already resides atop the headboard with the rest of my stuffed menagerie of elephants, rabbits, a black bear and a monster or two.
I think these two will reappear in the future with a bit more character than they possess at the moment. The biggest one is about six inches. Both are crocheted out of eyelash yarn, stuffed with green fiber fill. 
All of the pickles were done while I was away on my kidnapping.

A whole peck of pickles!

And one more pickle, along with Miss Lola whose keeping her eye on Tommy cause she doesn't trust him. That little pickle is crocheted from some ribbon yarn. It didn't start out to be a pickle. I was trying to make some horns for a fish I'd crocheted. That didn't work out quite like I had hoped so I sewed the two together and they sure look like a pickle! I gave this pickle to the cats to play with. They don't seem too interested in it as of yet, but I'm pretty sure it will move from room to room with help of a feline sooner or later.

I wish I could say I have a picture of the fish I had planned to put horns on. I don't though. Not even sure just where that pink whale/shark, not to be confused with a whale shark, is at at the moment. It didn't get any horns. Not yet anyway. That's still an idea.

I had a great time making all these pickles but I'm glad to be over that phase!
 This is the little felt snake Tommy just didn't appreciate at all. No pattern to make it. You draw a spiral on paper. Pin it to your two pieces of fabric and cut it out so you end up with a snake. Then you sew up the inside seam and start stuffing the little devil as you sew the outside seam closed. You can wind him around posts, handles, ect. This one is orange on the other side. He's about five inches across. His eyes are french knots. I made him while away on my kidnapping.
 I showed you all two pink bags in the last post. This is just a pouch. It's about five inches across the bottom and maybe six inches tall. I wire wrapped a quartz bead to use as a closure.
This too was made while away from home.
I've been home from my kidnapping for almost a month and I just this evening unpacked all the stuff I brought home with me. I will have to clean my bed of the bags still sitting there before I can climb between the sheets.
I did a lot of crocheting when I was away on my kidnapping. I still haven't finished Annie's blanket since I came home. I've put about a dozen stitches in it but nothing more. An hour of crocheting and I'd have it completely done!
Instead I am on a book making kick...
 I apologize for the terrible picture. This one is a cake box covered in painted newspaper. About 5x7 inches. It has notebook paper pages. Seven signatures of five sheets each. Sewn with crochet cotton in the lazy long stitch. the leather button is purely decorative.
 This one started out as a pudding box. I covered it with painted newspaper before filling it with notebook paper. Five signatures of ten pages each. It's sewn with embroidery thread in the long stitch. I'm uncertain how I accomplished those criss crosses in the stitching but I replicated it in the next pudding box book also.
 Another pudding box book. This one is covered in a drawing on a book page. The drawing is of an old barn and a windmill. The yellow packing tape along the spine says something about caution gorgeous or something like that. It too has five signatures of ten sheets of notebook paper. It has a plastic button closure with a glass bead on a string.
 This is the back side. These two books are 2.75x3.25 inches.
 Another horrible picture. This one is 4x 5.5 inches. The covers are plastic that was once a sign that went in a holder by the front of a convenience store. It was an advertisement for Red Bull Energy Drink. This particular book has copy paper pages. There are 18 signatures of five sheets each. It's sewn with waxed embroidery thread in the copic stitch. 
This sheet of plastic is white on the backside but I thought using fragments of the advertisement would be cool for a book cover. The sheet of plastic is about the thickness of a notebook cover and was about four feet long and two feet wide.

 Here's another Red Bull book. This one is 5x7 inches. It has three signatures of 10 sheets copy paper each. It's sewn with red waxed embroidery thread. The back of this one is the red color along the right hand edge of the front of the book.
 This one is made from the Red Bull sign as well. It is 4x4 inches. It has 12 signatures of 6 sheets of notebook paper. It's sewn in the copic stitch with waxed embroidery thread.
 Another box book. This one is 3.5x2.5 inches. Test strips came in the box originally. I covered the box with painted newspaper. It's sewn in two shades of red embroidery thread in the long stitch. It has six signatures of 12 sheets of notebook paper each. The closure is a clear plastic button with a glass bead on a string.
And to end the art part of this post we have a little notebook with copy paper pages sewn in the pamphlet stitch. The cover is wall paper, a double thickness of wall paper. I folded the edges over and hand sewed them in a running stitch to secure them. The button is plastic as is the little yellow apple bead. This one measures 2x3.5 or so. It has about 20 pages.
On top of the heap beside me are three more books ready to be sewn together. One of them has all its holes punched too. The other ones still need measuring and holes punched. There are two different kinds of binding between those three books.

My stash of paper ends is getting out of hand so some little little book making will be in the near future for sure. 
My intentions for the new year are to 

make at least three fish pictures
make at least one book a week
finish Annie's kitty book before January is finished
crochet for half an hour every day
make one mug rug every week
We'll see how that all works out for me!
Here is one of those books I have to sew together in the next couple days. This one started out life as a cake box. I covered it with the graphics from a bag of Deli Cat cat food. The v3 are metal sticky back letters. I tried three different projects with cat food bags and this is the first one successful enough to merit showing off so I figured it needed a bit of bling when I ran across a pile of those metal sticky back letters and numbers when I was putting things away earlier today. They really jazzed up the cover. You all will get to see the cat book next post.

It's 3 a.m so I probably better think about getting to bed. 
Thanks for hanging in till the end.
May the new year bring you happiness beyond your wildest dreams.

Be good to one another!
It matters!