Saturday, October 31, 2009

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year - Halloween!

For many Craft-0-holics such as myself, Halloween is truly is the most wonderful time of the year. The sweet treats are great, but nothing can top the satisfaction of completing a truly original costume.
Before my son was even born, I had already decided that my boy was going to dress up as Popeye. In doing the research, there were a few variations on the look depending on what era of Popeye you found. I started with a simple black onesie and then sewed the nude arms to the cuffs, tipped in red elastic for easy on-and-off functionality. I stuffed cotton balls between the 2 layers and drew the anchors directly onto the fabric. The hat & collar I simply designed on paper before cutting the fabric. The collar has a snap-front so that I wouldn't have to stretch it over his head. The hat is secured with a thin elastic strap. I wanted to play with scale which is why I made it purposely small & tipped to one side.
My daughter is obsessed with Mary Had a Little Lamb, so naturally I found this store-bought pattern to follow and picked a cotton print that looked somewhat vintage. The hat was purchased at a second-hand store and I added the large ribbon to finish it off. The lamb is secured in her trick-or-treat bucket by the yellow ribbon around it's neck.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Ladies Choice

Recently our classic car club, Hell's Belles, had it's annual Pinewood Derby & Silent Art Auction. I'm not quite the wood whittler, so I opted to make a piece to donate for the auction. Rather than a painting or photograph, I wanted to embroider an "illustration". Keep in mind that the final size of this piece was only 4" x 4". Tedious, but a fun challenge.
I started with a layout in Illustrator combining line art, type and a bitmapped photograph. Next I printed the image in black onto iron-on transfer paper (this time NOT reversed, as you usually do for iron-ons). I ironed the image onto the backside of the cotton fabric to be embroidered.
With the right side facing up, the image is ghosted on the fabric surface which makes a perfect guideline for the embroidery. Secondly, the iron-on transfer paper provides a natural stabilizer once applied to the fabric, making it sturdier to work with.